By the Aurelian Wall and Other Elegies

by Bliss Carman



To G.B.R.


BROTHER, the world above you
Is very fair to-day,
And all things seem to love you
The old accustomed way.

Here in the heavenly weather


In June's white arms you sleep,
Where once on the hills together
Your haunts you used to keep.

The idling sun that lazes
Along the open field


And gossips to the daisies
Of secrets unrevealed;

The wind that stirs the grasses
A moment, and then stills
Their trouble as he passes


Up to the darkling hills,—

And to the breezy clover
Has many things to say
Of that unwearied rover
Who once went by this way;


The miles of elm-treed meadows;
The clouds that voyage on,
Streeling their noiseless shadows
From countries of the sun;

The tranquil river reaches


And the pale stars of dawn;
The thrushes in their beeches
For reverie withdrawn;

With all your forest fellows
In whom the blind heart calls,


For whom the green leaf yellows,
On whom the red leaf falls;

The dumb and tiny creatures
Of flower and blade and sod,
That dimly wear the features


And attributes of God;

The airy migrant comers
On gauzy wings of fire,
Those wanderers and roamers
Of indefinite desire;


The rainbirds and all dwellers
In solitude and peace,
Those lingerers and foretellers
Of infinite release;

Yea, all the dear things living


That rove or bask or swim,
Remembering and misgiving,
Have felt the day grow dim.

Even the glad things growing,
Blossom and fruit and stem,


Are poorer for your going
Because you were of them.

Yet since you loved to cherish
Their pleading beauty here,
Your heart shall not quite perish


In all the golden year;

But God's great dream above them
Must be a tinge less pale,
Because you lived to love them
And make their joy prevail.