He sat in a wheeled chair, waiting for dark,
And shivered in his ghastly suit of grey,
Legless, sewn short at elbow. Through the park
Voices of boys rang saddening like a hymn,
Voices of play and pleasure after day,
Till gathering sleep had mothered them from him.
About this time Town used to swing so gay
When glow-lamps budded in the light blue trees,
And girls glanced lovelier as the air grew dim,-
I'll tell you something: every day
people are dying. And that's just the beginning.
Every day, in funeral homes, new widows are born,
new orphans. They sit with their hands folded,
trying to decide about this new life.
Then they're in the cemetery, some of them
for the first time. They're frightened of crying,
sometimes of not crying. Someone leans over,
tells them what to do next, which might mean
Before I die I may be great,
The chanting guest of kings,
A queen in wonderlands of song
Where every blossom sings.
I may put on a golden gown
And walk in sunny light,
Carrying in my hair the day,
And in my eyes the night.
After all the rain, the sun
Shines on hill and grassy mead;
Fly into the garden, child,
You are very glad indeed.
For the days have been so dull,
Oh, so special dark and drear,
That you told me, "Mr. Sun
Has forgotten we live here."
My love came up from Barnegat,
The sea was in his eyes;
He trod as softly as a cat
And told me terrible lies.
His hair was yellow as new-cut pine
In shavings curled and feathered;
I thought how silver it would shine
By cruel winters weathered.
Thank you for the air we breathe in
So that we can filter out
Dust and dirt;
Thank you for the water we drink
So that we can water plants, trees,
Green roots and ruts.
Thank you for the food we eat
So that we live to save the canopy
Of man and mankind;
h a p p e n
A SONG of the good green grass!
A song no more of the city streets;
A song of farms--a song of the soil of fields.
A song with the smell of sun-dried hay, where the nimble pitchers
handle the pitch-fork;
A song tasting of new wheat, and of fresh-husk'd maize.
For the lands, and for these passionate days, and for myself,
Now I awhile return to thee, O soil of Autumn fields,
Reclining on thy breast, giving myself to thee,
In the rapture of life and of living,
I lift up my head and rejoice,
And I thank the great Giver for giving
The soul of my gladness a voice.
In the glow of the glorious weather,
In the sweet-scented, sensuous air,
My burdens seem light as a feather –
They are nothing to bear.
In the strength and the glory of power,
You will forget me. The years are so tender,
They bind up the wounds which we think are so deep,
This dream of our youth will fade out as the splendour
Fades from the skies when the sun sinks to sleep,
The cloud of forgetfulness, over and over
Will banish the last rosy colours away,
And the fingers of time will weave garlands to cover
The scar which you think is a life-mark today.
You will forget me. The one boon you covet