O’er the wide world I wander evermore,
Through wind and weather heedless and alone,
Alike through summer, and through winter hoar,
On cloud-capt mountain, by the sea-wash’d shore,
Seeking the star that riseth in the East.
O’er the wide world—the world that
knows not why,
And stares with stupid scorn to see me go;
Whilst I with solemn secret face pass by,
To laugh in desert spots where none are nigh,
Laugh loud and shrill unto the winds, Ho! Ho!
For that which none but I and it do know.
To think how when I find this lucky star,
And stand beneath it, like the Wise of old,
I shall mount upward on a golden car,
Girt round with glory unto worlds afar,
While Earth amazed the wonder shall behold,
That bears me unto happiness untold!
Hush! I’ll not whisper it, lest some should
And hurry on before me to the spot,
Leaving me bound for ever to this sphere,
Parted for ever from my child—I here,
She in the realm that I could enter not.
Hush! I must hurry on—for many nights
Have I sought for the star about the sky,
And found it not amid the myriad lights,
Greater and lesser with their satellites,
Flashing confusedly upon mine eye.
I must unravel every golden hair
Upon the brow of Night for what I seek,
Lift every straggler from its moony lair,
Lest too the star should haply linger there,
Unnoted by mine eyes so faint and weak.
For as the Wise Men did in old time trace
The Holy Child by this same guiding star,
So I know well that by the Virgin’s grace,
I too by it shall come unto the place
Where my sweet babe and its nurse-angels are.
Wearisome are the days, they mock me so,
Pouring down light that seems to bid me see,
Yet hides the starry pilot by its glow,
Whose light I thirst for, whilst light-fountains, flow
Around me like the swelling of the sea.
Wearisome are they, till the sun-god pales
Beneath the surges of the western wave,
And the last fold of his golden mantle trails
O’er the horizon where Earth’s vision fails,
And space becomes a darkness and a grave.
I ofttimes think to curse the Day, that tries
To keep my babe hid in its envious breast,
Smit with its hair of gold, and large blue eyes,
Close hid within its mantle, careless of my sighs,
That night and day must wake it from its rest.
But Patience! when the sun is in the deep,
The Star will beam upon me suddenly,
And ere the sun-god waketh from his sleep,
The dear one shall be mine for whom I weep,
Mine, mine alone for all eternity.
They call me crazed—Ha! ha!—They
Who are the crazed of Earth, or they, or I—
They, by their greed of gold urged to and fro,
For petty pleasures bending God’s soul low—
I, seeking for my star about the sky.