written by Walter de la Mare
|Songs of Childhood (1902)|
The sun is clear of bird and cloud,
The grass shines windless, grey, and still,
In dusky ruin the owl dreams on,
The cuckoo echoes on the hill;
Yet soft along Alulvan's walks
The ghost at noonday stalks.
His eyes in shadow of his hat
Stare on the ruins of his house;
His cloak, up-fasten'd with a brooch,
Of faded velvet grey as mouse,
Brushes the roses as he goes:
Yet wavers not one rose.
The wild birds in a cloud fly up
From their sweet feeding in the fruit;
The droning of the bees and flies
Rises gradual as a lute;
Is it for fear the birds are flown,
And shrills the insect-drone?
Thick is the ivy o'er Alulvan,
And crisp with summer-heat its turf;
Far, far across its empty pastures
Alulvan's sands are white with surf:
And he himself is grey as sea,
Watching beneath an elder-tree.
All night the fretful, shrill Banshee
Lurks in the chambers' dark festoons,
Calling for ever, o'er garden and river,
Through magpie changing of the moons:
'Alulvan, O, alas! Alulvan,
The doom of lone Alulvan!'
|Works by this author are in the public domain in countries where the copyright term is the author's life plus 60 years or less.|