Richard Garnett (1835-1906)
1First-born and final relic of the night,
2I dwell aloof in dim immensity;
3The grey sky sparkles with my fairy light;
4I mix among the dancers of the sea;
5Yet stoop not from the throne I must retain
6High o'er the silver sources of the rain.
7Vicissitude I know not, nor can know,
8Yet much discern strewed everywhere around;
9The ever-stirring race of men below
10Much do I watch, and wish I were not bound
11The chainless captive of this lonely spot,
12Where light-winged Mutability is not.
13I see great cities rise, which being hoar
14Are slowly rendered unto dust again;
15And roaring billows preying on the shore;
16And virgin isles ascending from the main;
17The passing wave of the perpetual river;
18And men depart, and man remaining ever.
19The upturned eyes of many a mortal maid
20Glass me in gathering tears, soon kissed away;
21Then walks she for a space, and then is laid
22Swelling the bosom of the quiet clay.
23I muse what this all-kindling Love may be,
24And what this Death that never comes to me.
1] Even-Star: Venus, the evening and morning star, so-called because it accompanies the sun.
Online text copyright © 2004, Ian Lancashire for the Department
of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services,
University of Toronto Libraries.
Publication date note: Richard Garnett, Poems (London: Elkin Mathews and John Lane; Boston: Copeland and Day, 1895): 18-19. PR 4708 G5P6
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
Recent editing: 1:2004/6/16
Other poems by Richard Garnett