Collected Poems Volume Two

Poetry/
#Poetry #General
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Excerpt MIST IN THE VALLEY I Mist in the valley, weeping mistBeset my homeward way.No gleam of rose or amethystHallowed the parting day;A shroud, a shroud of awful greyWrapped every woodland brow,And drooped in crumbling disarrayAround each wintry bough. II And closer round me now it clungUntil I scarce could seeThe stealthy pathway overhungBy silent tree and treeWhich floated in that mysteryAs—poised in waveless deeps—Branching in worlds below the sea,The grey sea-forest sleeps. III Mist in the valley, mist no lessWithin my groping mind!The stile swam out: a wildernessRolled round it, grey and blind. A yard in front, a yard behind,So strait my world was grown,I stooped to win once more some kindGlimmer of twig or stone. IV I crossed and lost the friendly stileAnd listened. Never a soundCame to me. Mile on mile on mileIt seemed the world aroundBeneath some infinite sea lay drownedWith all that e'er drew breath;Whilst I, alone, had strangely foundA moment's life in death. V A universe of lifeless greyOppressed me overhead.Below, a yard of clinging clayWith rotting foliage redGlimmered. The stillness of the dead,Hark!—was it broken nowBy the slow drip of tears that bledFrom hidden heart or bough. VI Mist in the valley, mist no lessThat muffled every cryAcross the soul's grey wildernessWhere faith lay down to die;Buried beyond all hope was I,Hope had no meaning there:A yard above my head the skyCould only mock at prayer. VII E'en as I groped along, the gloomSuddenly shook at my feet!O, strangely as from a rending tombIn resurrection, sweetSwift wings tumultuously beatAway! I paused to hark—O, birds of thought, too fair, too fleetTo follow across the dark! VIII Yet, like a madman's dream, there cameOne fair swift flash to meOf distances, of streets a-flameWith joy and agony,And further yet, a moon-lit seaFoaming across its bars,And further yet, the infinityOf wheeling suns and stars, IX And further yet ... O, mist of sunsI grope amidst your light,O, further yet, what vast responseFrom what transcendent height?Wild wings that burst thro' death's dim nightI can but pause and hark;For O, ye are too swift, too white,To follow across the dark! X Mist in the valley, yet I saw,And in my soul I knewThe gleaming City whence I drawThe strength that then I drew,My misty pathway to pursueWith steady pulse and breath
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