By the Aurelian Wall and Other Elegies

by Bliss Carman


 

TO RICHARD LOVELACE


 

AH, Lovelace, what desires have sway
In the white shadow of your heart,
Which no more measures day by day,
Nor sets the years apart?

How many seasons for your sake

5

Have taught men over, age by age,
"Stone walls do not a prison make,
Nor iron bars a cage!"—

Since that first April when you fared
Into the Gatehouse, well content,

10

Caring for nothing so you cared
For honor and for Kent.

How many, since the April rain
Beat drear and blossomless and hoar
Through London, when you left Shoe Lane,

15

A-marching to no war!

Till now, with April on the sea,
And sunshine in the woven year,
The rain-winds loose from reverie
A lyric and a cheer.

20