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Robert Louis Stevenson, an Elegy; and Other Poems   By: (1866-1947)

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First Page:

ROBERT

LOUIS

STEVENSON

AN ELEGY

AND OTHER POEMS MAINLY PERSONAL

BY RICHARD LE GALLIENNE

MDCCCXCV

TO MY DEAR MOTHER AND FATHER THESE POEMS ARE LOVINGLY DEDICATED

CONTENTS

ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON: AN ELEGY AN ODE TO SPRING TREE WORSHIP A BALLAD OF LONDON PARIS DAY BY DAY: A FAMILIAR EPISTLE ALFRED TENNYSON PROFESSOR MINTO ON MR. GLADSTONE'S RETIREMENT OMAR KHAYYAM THE SECOND CRUCIFIXION AN IMPRESSION NATURAL RELIGION FAITH REBORN HESPERIDES JENNY DEAD MY BOOKS MAMMON ART TO A POET A NEW YEAR LETTER SNATCH MY MAIDEN VOTE THE ANIMALCULE ON MAN COME, MY CELIA TIME'S MONOTONE

COR CORDIUM

O GOLDEN DAY! O SILVER NIGHT! LOVE'S EXCHANGE TO A SIMPLE HOUSEWIFE LOVE'S WISDOM HOME LOVE'S LANDMARKS IF, AFTER ALL...! SPIRIT OF SADNESS AN INSCRIPTION SONG

ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON

AN ELEGY

High on his Patmos of the Southern Seas Our northern dreamer sleeps, Strange stars above him, and above his grave Strange leaves and wings their tropic splendours wave, While, far beneath, mile after shimmering mile, The great Pacific, with its faery deeps, Smiles all day long its silken secret smile.

Son of a race nomadic, finding still Its home in regions furthest from its home, Ranging untired the borders of the world, And resting but to roam; Loved of his land, and making all his boast The birthright of the blood from which he came, Heir to those lights that guard the Scottish coast, And caring only for a filial fame; Proud, if a poet, he was Scotsman most, And bore a Scottish name.

Death, that long sought our poet, finds at last, Death, that pursued him over land and sea: Not his the flight of fear, the heart aghast With stony dread of immortality, He fled 'not cowardly'; Fled, as some captain, in whose shaping hand Lie the momentous fortunes of his land, Sheds not vainglorious blood upon the field, Death! why at last he finds his treasure isle, And he the pirate of its hidden hoard; Life! 'twas the ship he sailed to seek it in, And Death is but the pilot come aboard, Methinks I see him smile a boy's glad smile On maddened winds and waters, reefs unknown, As thunders in the sail the dread typhoon, And in the surf the shuddering timbers groan; Horror ahead, and Death beside the wheel: Then spreading stillness of the broad lagoon, And lap of waters round the resting keel.

Strange Isle of Voices! must we ask in vain, In vain beseech and win no answering word, Save mocking echoes of our lonely pain From lonely hill and bird? Island beneath whose unrelenting coast, As though it never in the sun had been, The whole world's treasure lieth sunk and lost, Unsunned, unseen. For, either sunk beyond the diver's skill, There, fathoms deep, our gold is all arust, Or in that island it is hoarded still. Yea, some have said, within thy dreadful wall There is a folk that know not death at all, The loved we lost, the lost we love, are there. Will no kind voice make answer to our cry, Give to our aching hearts some little trust, Show how 'tis good to live, but best to die? Some voice that knows Whither the dead man goes: We hear his music from the other side, Maybe a little tapping on the door, A something called, a something sighed No more. O for some voice to valiantly declare The best news true! Then, Happy Island of the Happy Dead, How gladly would we spread Impatient sail for you!

O vanished loveliness of flowers and faces, Treasure of hair, and great immortal eyes, Are there for these no safe and secret places? And is it true that beauty never dies? Soldiers and saints, haughty and lovely names, Women who set the whole wide world in flames, Poets who sang their passion to the skies, And lovers wild and wise: Fought they and prayed for some poor flitting gleam, Was all they loved and worshipped but a dream? Is Love a lie and fame indeed a breath, And is there no sure thing in life but death? Or may it be, within that guarded shore, He meets Her now whom I shall meet no more Till kind Death fold me 'neath his shadowy wing: She whom within my heart I softly tell That he is dead whom once we loved so well, He, the immortal master whom I sing... Continue reading book >>




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