Fires of Driftwood eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 58 pages of information about Fires of Driftwood.

. . . . . . .

This spirit is my own happy ghost—­
But I, myself,—­alas!


There was a man, once, and a woman
Whose love was so entire
That an angel, watching them,
Said wistfully, “Would I were no angel
But a mortal,
Loving so, and so beloved!”
. . . .  Yet, when these two mated,
A muddied drop, from some forgotten vial of ancestry,
Brought them a child whose mind was dark;
Who lived—­and never called them by their names . . .
. . . .  They tended her
For twenty years. 
Only when she died
Did they weep, whispering,
The years could find no answer,
Though they went questioning
Until the end.

. . . . . . .

Still wondering
They wandered out into the other country . . . . 
It was lonely there,
Being parted from familiar things,
And there was no one to answer questions,
But, suddenly,
(As a wind blows or a swallow flies against the sun)
Came a young girl—­eager! 
She ran to them,
Calling dear names,
(Names that would open heaven)
“Who are you?” they entreated, trembling . . . . 
But they knew!—­
Had they not dreamed her so
For twenty years?


The knowledge of love
Is like sudden sun upon a river—­
The slipping water
Is instantly opaque and glorious. 
No longer can we look into it
Counting the pebbles,
Watching the ribboned water-reeds,
Or searching idly
For that something which we lost
(A ring with gems)
It is all glamour, now! 
We turn away, shading our eyes.


I thought of friendship
As a golden ring,
Round as the world
Yet fitted to my finger;
I thought of friendship
As a path in spring
Where there are flowers
And the footsteps linger;
I thought of friendship
As a globe of light,
Yellow before the doorway of my life,
A flame diffused
Yet potent against night;
I thought—­but thought itself in ruin lies
Since, yesterday, you passed with lowered eyes!

The Returned Man

They thought that he would come back
Less boyish,
But still a hero with tales to tell. 
So, when there were no tales,
Only blank silences—­
When he lay for hours
Staring through leafing branches
And forgot them
They tried to arouse him, saying: 
“The war is over.” 
But when he turned on them
His shadowed eyes
They stammered—­
Knowing that they lied!


(For the unknown soldier buried in Westminster Abbey.)

You who died fighting
For me and my little children;
You who are a million
Yet are but one,
I lay upon your grave
A rose and a tear—­
The tear is the world’s sorrow,
The rose is your joy.

Project Gutenberg
Fires of Driftwood from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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