Before there was an hour for me to contemplate with

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Unformatted text preview: e was an hour for me To contemplate with less concern The crumbling realm awaiting us Than his that was beyond return, A dawning on the dust of years Had shaped with an elusive light Mirages of remembered scenes That were no longer for the sight. For now the gloom that hid the man Became a daylight on his wrath, And one wherein my fancy viewed New lions ramping in his path. The old were dead and had no fangs, Wherefore he loved them -- seeing not They were the same that in their time Had eaten everything they caught. The world around him was a gift Of anguish to his eyes and ears, And one that he had long reviled As fit for devils, not for seers. Where, then, was there a place for him That on this other side of death Saw nothing 5 The Three Taverns A Book of Poems By Edwin Arlington Robinson good, as he had seen No good come out of Nazareth? Yet here there was a reticence, And I believe his only one, That hushed him as if he beheld A Presence that would not be gone. In such a silence he confessed How much there was to be denied; And he would look at me and live, As others might have looked and died. As if at last he knew again That he had always known, his eyes Were like to those of one who gazed On those of One who never dies. For such a moment he revealed What life has in it to be lost; And I could ask if what I saw, Before me there, was man or ghost. He may have died so many times That all there was of him to see Was pride, that kept itself alive As too rebellious to be free; He may have told, when more than once Humility seemed imminent, How many a lonely time in vain The Second Coming came and went. Whether he still defies or not The failure of an angry task That relegates him out of time To chaos, I can only ask. But as I knew him, so he was; And somewhere among men to-day Those old, unyielding eyes may flash, And flinch -- and look the other way. 6 The Three Taverns A Book of Poems By Edwin Arlington Robinson Neighbors As often as we thought of her, We thought of a gray life That made a quaint economist Of a wolf-haunted wife; We made the best of all she bore That was not ours to bear, And honored her for wearing things That were not things to wear. There was a distance in her look That made us look again; And if she smiled, we might believe That we had looked in vain. Rarely she came inside our doors, And had not long to stay; And when she left, it seemed somehow That she was far away. At last, when we had all forgot That all is here to change, A shadow on the commonplace Was for a moment strange. Yet there was nothing for surprise, Nor much that need be told: Love, with his gift of pain, had given More than one heart could hold. 7 The Three Taverns A Book of Poems By Edwin Arlington Robinson The Mill The miller's wife had waited long, The tea was cold, the fire was dead; And there might yet be nothing wrong In how he went and what he said: "There are no millers any more," Was all that she had heard him say; And he had lingered at the door So long that it seemed yesterday. Sick with...
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This note was uploaded on 10/31/2010 for the course ENGLISH EN203 taught by Professor Micheal during the Spring '03 term at UC Irvine.

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