Birds of the morn, of the morn of the
Chanting your lays in the bosky dell,
Higher and fuller your round notes swell,
Till the Fauns and the Dryads peer forth to hear
The trilling lays of your feathery band:
Ye came not, alas, from my native land.
Brook of the morn, of the morn of the
Burbling joyfully on your way,
Maiden and rose and woodland fay
Use as a mirror your waters clear:
But I mourn as upon your banks I stand,
That you come not, alas, from my native land.
Breezes and birds and brooks of the Spring,
Chanting your lays in the morn of the year,
Though Armenia, my country, be wasted and sere,
And mourns for her maidens who never shall sing,
Yet a storm, did it come from that desolate land,
Would awaken a joy that ye cannot command.
* * * * *
FLY, LAYS OF MINE!
Fly, lays of mine, but not to any clime
Where happiness and light and love prevail,
But seek the spots where woe and ill and crime
Leave as they pass a noisome serpent-trail
Fly, lays of mine, but not to the ether
Where golden sparks illume the heavenly sphere,
But seek the depths where nothing that is true
Relieves the eye or glads a listening ear.
Fly, lays of mine, but not to fruitful
Where spring the harvests by God’s benison,
But seek the deserts where for needed rains
Both prayers and curses rise in unison.
Fly, lays of mine, but not to riotous
Where dancing sylphs supply voluptuous songs,
But seek the huts where pestilence appals,
And death completes the round of human wrongs.
Fly, lays of mine, but not to happy wives,
Whose days are one unending flow of bliss,
But seek the maidens whose unfruitful lives
Have known as yet no lover’s passionate kiss.
Fly, lays of mine, and like the nightingales,
Whose liquid liltings charm away the night,
Reveal in song the sweets of summer’s gales,
Of lover’s pleadings and of love’s delight.
And tell my lady, when your quests are
That I, away from her, my heart’s desire,
Yearn for the blissful hour when I shall pour
Down at her feet a love surcharged with fire.
* * * * *
THE WOE OF ARAXES
Meditating by Araxes,
Pacing slowly to and fro,
Sought I traces of the grandeur
Hidden by her turgid flow.
“Turgid are thy waters, Mother,
As they beat upon the shore.
Do they offer lamentations
For Armenia evermore?