Pan and Thalassius

THALASSIUS

Pan!

PAN

O sea-stray, seed of Apollo,

What word wouldst thou have with me?

My ways thou wast fain to follow

Or ever the years hailed thee

Man

Now

If August brood on the valleys,

If satyrs laugh on the lawns,

What part in the wildwood alleys

Hast thou with the fleet-foot fauns —

Thou?

See!

Thy feet are a man's — not cloven

Like these, not light as a boy's:

The tresses and tendrils inwoven

That lure us, the lure of them cloys

Thee.

Us

The joy of the wild woods never

Leaves free of the thirst it slakes:

The wild love throbs in us ever

That burns in the dense hot brakes

Thus.

Life,

Eternal, passionate, awless,

Insatiable, mutable, dear,

Makes all men's law for us lawless:

We strive not: how should we fear

Strife?

We,

The birds and the bright winds know not

Such joys as are ours in the mild

Warm woodland; joys such as grow not

In waste green fields of the wild

Sea.

No;

Long since, in the world's wind veering,

Thy heart was estranged from me:

Sweet Echo shall yield thee not hearing:

What have we to do with thee?

Go.

THALASSIUS

Ay!

Such wrath on thy nostril quivers

As once in Sicilian heat

Bade herdsmen quail, and the rivers

Shrank, leaving a path for thy feet

Dry?

Nay,

Low down in the hot soft hollow

Too snakelike hisses thy spleen:

" O sea-stray, seed of Apollo! "

What ill hast thou heard or seen?

Say.

Man

Knows well, if he hears beside him

The snarl of thy wrath at noon,

What evil may soon betide him,

Or late, if thou smite not soon,

Pan.

Me

The sound of thy flute, that flatters

The woods as they smile and sigh,

Charmed fast as it charms thy satyrs,

Can charm no faster than I

Thee.

Fast

Thy music may charm the splendid

Wide woodland silence to sleep

With sounds and dreams of thee blended

And whispers of waters that creep

Past

Here

The spell of thee breathes and passes

And bids the heart in me pause,

Hushed soft as the leaves and the grasses

Are hushed if the storm's foot draws

Near.

Yet

The panic that strikes down strangers

Transgressing thy ways unaware

Affrights not me nor endangers

Through dread of thy secret snare

Set.

PAN

Whence

May man find heart to deride me?

Who made his face as a star

To shine as a God's beside me?

Nay, get thee away from us, far

Hence.

THALASSIUS

Then

Shall no man's heart, as he raises

A hymn to thy secret head,

Wax great with the godhead he praises:

Thou, God, shalt be like unto dead

Men.

PAN

Grace

I take not of men's thanksgiving,

I crave not of lips that live;

They die, and behold, I am living,

While they and their dead Gods give

Place.

THALASSIUS

Yea:

Too lightly the words were spoken

That mourned or mocked at thee dead:

But whose was the word, the token,

The song that answered and said

Nay?

PAN

Whose

But mine, in the midnight hidden,

Clothed round with the strength of night

And mysteries of things forbidden

For all but the one most bright

Muse?

THALASSIUS

Hers

Or thine, O Pan, was the token

That gave back empire to thee

When power in thy hands lay broken

As reeds that quake if a bee

Stirs?

PAN

Whom

Have I in my wide woods need of?

Urania's limitless eyes

Behold not mine end, though they read of

A word that shall speak to the skies

Doom.

THALASSIUS

She

Gave back to thee kingdom and glory,

And grace that was thine of yore,

And life to thy leaves, late hoary

As weeds cast up from the hoar

Sea.

Song

Can bid faith shine as the morning

Though light in the world be none:

Death shrinks if her tongue sound warning,

Night quails, and beholds the sun

Strong.

PAN

Night

Bare rule over men for ages

Whose worship wist not of me

And gat but sorrows for wages,

And hardly for tears could see

Light.

Call

No more on the starry presence

Whose light through the long dark swam:

Hold fast to the green world's pleasance:

For I that am lord of it am

All.

THALASSIUS

God,

God Pan, from the glad wood's portal

The breaths of thy song blow sweet:

But woods may be walked in of mortal

Man's thought, where never thy feet

Trod.

Thine

All secrets of growth and of birth are,

All glories of flower and of tree,

Wheresoever the wonders of earth are;

The words of the spell of the sea

Mine.

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