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Poems   By: (1888-1916)

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[Note on text: Italicized words or phrases are capitalized, placed in single quotes, or otherwise marked as needed. Lines longer than 78 characters are broken and the continuation is indented two spaces. Some obvious errors have been corrected.]

[Alan Seeger, American (New York) Poet. 22 June 1888 04 July 1916.]



Alan Seeger

With an introduction by William Archer


Introduction by William Archer


An Ode to Natural Beauty The Deserted Garden The Torture of Cuauhtemoc The Nympholept The Wanderer The Need to Love El Extraviado La Nue All That's Not Love . . . Paris The Sultan's Palace Fragments

Thirty Sonnets: Sonnet I Sonnet II Sonnet III Sonnet IV Sonnet V Sonnet VI Sonnet VII Sonnet VIII Sonnet IX Sonnet X Sonnet XI Sonnet XII Sonnet XIII Sonnet XIV Sonnet XV Sonnet XVI Kyrenaikos Antinous Vivien I Loved . . . Virginibus Puerisque . . . With a Copy of Shakespeare's Sonnets on Leaving College Written in a Volume of the Comtesse de Noailles Coucy Tezcotzinco The Old Lowe House, Staten Island Oneata On the Cliffs, Newport To England at the Outbreak of the Balkan War At the Tomb of Napoleon Before the Elections in America November, 1912

The Rendezvous Do You Remember Once . . . The Bayadere Eudaemon Broceliande Lyonesse Tithonus An Ode to Antares


Dante. Inferno, Canto XXVI Ariosto. Orlando Furioso, Canto X, 91 99 On a Theme in the Greek Anthology After an Epigram of Clement Marot

Last Poems

The Aisne (1914 15) Champagne (1914 15) The Hosts Maktoob I Have a Rendezvous with Death . . .

Sonnets: Sonnet I Sonnet II Sonnet III Sonnet IV Sonnet V Sonnet VI Sonnet VII Sonnet VIII Sonnet IX Sonnet X Sonnet XI Sonnet XII

Bellinglise Liebestod Resurgam A Message to America Introduction and Conclusion of a Long Poem Ode in Memory of the American Volunteers Fallen for France

Introduction by William Archer

This book contains the undesigned, but all the more spontaneous and authentic, biography of a very rare spirit. It contains the record of a short life, into which was crowded far more of keen experience and high aspiration of the thrill of sense and the rapture of soul than it is given to most men, even of high vitality, to extract from a life of twice the length. Alan Seeger had barely passed his twenty eighth birthday, when, charging up to the German trenches on the field of Belloy en Santerre, his "escouade" of the Foreign Legion was caught in a deadly flurry of machine gun fire, and he fell, with most of his comrades, on the blood stained but reconquered soil. To his friends the loss was grievous, to literature it was we shall never know how great, but assuredly not small. Yet this was a case, if ever there was one, in which we may not only say "Nothing is here for tears," but may add to the well worn phrase its less familiar sequel:

Nothing to wail Or knock the breast, no weakness, no contempt, Dispraise, or blame, nothing but well and fair, And what may quiet us in a death so noble.

Of all the poets who have died young, none has died so happily. Without suggesting any parity of stature, one cannot but think of the group of English poets who, about a hundred years ago, were cut off in the flower of their age. Keats, coughing out his soul by the Spanish Steps; Shelley's spirit of flame snuffed out by a chance capful of wind from the hills of Carrara; Byron, stung by a fever gnat on the very threshold of his great adventure for all these we can feel nothing but poignant unrelieved regret. Alan Seeger, on the other hand, we can very truly envy. Youth had given him all that it had to give; and though he would fain have lived on though no one was ever less world weary than he yet in the plenitude of his exultant strength, with eye undimmed and pulse unslackening, he met the death he had voluntarily challenged, in the cause of the land he loved, and in the moment of victory... Continue reading book >>

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