The Poems Of Henry Kendall Part 53

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Said the Dream to me, heavily moaning, "Her voice in your slumber is ringing; And where is the end--the atoning?

Can you look at the red of the roses; Are you friend of the fields and the flowers?

Can you bear the faint day as it closes And dies into twilighted hours?

Do you love the low notes of the ballad She sang in her darling old fashion?"

And I whispered, "O Dream, I am pallid And perished because of my pa.s.sion."

But the Wraith withered out, and the rifted Gray hills gleaming over the granges, Stood robed with moon-rainbows that shifted And shimmered resplendent with changes!

While, for the dim ocean ledges, The storm and the surges were blended, Sheer down the bluff sides of the ridges Spent winds and the waters descended.

The forests, the crags, and the forelands, Grew sweet with the stars after raining; But out in the north-lying moorlands, I heard the lone plover complaining.

From these to Kiama, half-hidden In a yellow sea-mist on the slopings Of hills, by the torrents be-ridden, I turned with my aches and my hopings, Saying _this_--"There are those that are taken By Fate to wear Love as a raiment Whose texture is trouble with breaking Of youth and no hope of repayment."

Pa.s.sing Away

The spirit of beautiful faces, The light on the forehead of Love, And the spell of past visited places, And the songs and the sweetness thereof; These, touched by a hand that is h.o.a.ry; These, vext with a tune of decay, Are spoiled of their glow and their glory; And the burden is, "Pa.s.sing away!

Pa.s.sing away!"

Old years and their changes come trooping At nightfall to you and to me, When Autumn sits faded and drooping By the sorrowful waves of the sea.

Faint phantoms that float in the gloaming, Return with the whispers that say, "The end which is quiet is coming; Ye are weary, and pa.s.sing away!

Pa.s.sing away!"

It is hard to awake and discover The swiftness that waits upon Time; But youth and its beauty are over, And Love has a sigh in its rhyme.

The Life that looks back and remembers, Is troubled and tired and gray, And sick of the sullen Decembers, Whose burden is, "Pa.s.sing away!

Pa.s.sing away!"

We have wandered and wandered together, And our joys have been many and deep; But seasons of alien weather Have ended in longings for sleep.

Pale purpose and perishing pa.s.sion, With never a farewell to say, Die down into sobs of suppression; The burden is, "Pa.s.sing away!

Pa.s.sing away!"

We loved the soft tangle of tresses, The lips that were fain and afraid.

And the silence of far wildernesses, With their dower of splendour and shade!

For faces of sweetness we waited, And days of delight and delay, Ere Time and its voices were mated To a voice that sighs, "Pa.s.sing away!

Pa.s.sing away!"

O years interwoven with stories Of strong aspirations and high, How fleet and how false were the glories That lived in your limited sky!

Here, sitting by ruinous altars Of Promise, what word shall we say To the speech that the rainy wind falters, Whose burden is, "Pa.s.sing away!

Pa.s.sing away!"

James Lionel Michael

Be his rest the rest he sought: Calm and deep.

Let no wayward word or thought Vex his sleep.

Peace--the peace that no man knows-- Now remains Where the wasted woodwind blows, Wakes and wanes.

Latter leaves, in Autumn's breath, White and sere, Sanctify the scholar's death, Lying here.

Soft surprises of the sun-- Swift, serene-- O'er the mute grave-gra.s.ses run, Cold and green.

Wet and cold the hillwinds moan; Let them rave!

Love that takes a tender tone Lights his grave.

He who knew the friendless face Sorrows shew, Often sought this quiet place Years ago.

One, too apt to faint and fail, Loved to stray Here where water-shallows wail Day by day.

Care that lays her heavy hand On the best, Bound him with an iron hand; Let him rest.

Life, that flieth like a tune, Left his eyes, As an April afternoon Leaves the skies.

Peace is best! If life was hard Peace came next.

Thus the scholar, thus the bard, Lies unvext.

Safely housed at last from rack-- Far from pain; Who would wish to have him back?

Back again?

Let the forms he loved so well Hover near; Shine of hill and shade of dell, Year by year.

All the wilful waifs that make Beauty's face, Let them sojourn for his sake Round this place.

Flying splendours, singing streams, Lutes and lights, May they be as happy dreams: Sounds and sights;

So that Time to Love may say, "Wherefore weep?

Sweet is sleep at close of day!

Death is sleep."


Into that good old Hebrew's soul sublime The spirit of the wilderness had pa.s.sed; For where the thunders of imperial Storm Rolled over mighty hills; and where the caves Of cloud-capt h.o.r.eb rang with hurricane; And where wild-featured Solitude did hold Supreme dominion; there the prophet saw And heard and felt that large mysterious life Which lies remote from cities, in the woods And rocks and waters of the mountained Earth.

And so it came to pa.s.s, Elijah caught That scholarship which gave him power to see And solve the deep divinity that lies With Nature, under lordly forest-domes, And by the seas; and so his spirit waxed, Made strong and perfect by its fellowship With G.o.d's authentic world, until his eyes Became a splendour, and his face was as A glory with the vision of the seer.

Thereafter, thundering in the towns of men, His voice, a trumpet of the Lord, did shake All evil to its deep foundations. He, The hairy man who ran before the king, Like some wild spectre fleeting through the storm, What time Jezreel's walls were smitten hard By fourfold wind and rain; 'twas he who slew The liars at the altars of the G.o.ds, And, at the very threshold of a throne, Heaped curses on its impious lord; 'twas he Jehovah raised to grapple Sin that stalked, Arrayed about with kingship; and to strike Through gold and purple, to the heart of it.

And therefore Falsehood quaked before his face, And Tyranny grew dumb at sight of him, And l.u.s.t and Murder raged abroad no more; But where these were he walked, a shining son Of Truth, and cleared and sanctified the land.

Not always was the dreaded Tishbite stern; The scourge of despots, when he saw the face Of Love in sorrow by the bed of Death, Grew tender as a maid; and she who missed A little mouth that used to catch, and cling-- A small, sweet trouble--at her yearning breast;*

Yea, she of Zarephath, who sat and mourned The silence of a birdlike voice that made Her flutter with the joy of motherhood In other days, she came to know the heart Of Pity that the rugged prophet had.

And when he took the soft, still child away, And laid it on his bed; and in the dark Sent up a pleading voice to Heaven; and drew The little body to his breast; and held It there until the bright, young soul returned To earth again; the gladdened woman saw A radiant beauty in Elijah's eyes, And knew the stranger was a man of G.o.d.

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The Poems Of Henry Kendall Part 53 summary

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