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A Hero and Some Other Folks by William A. Quayle

Far off a solitary trumpet blew


From point to point, with power and grace And music in the bounds of law, To those conclusions when we saw The God within him light his face.

And while the wind began to sweep A music out of sheet and shroud, We steer'd her toward a crimson cloud That landlike slept along the deep.

Abiding with me till I sail To seek thee on the mystic deeps, And this electric force, that keeps A thousand pulses dancing, fail.

And hear at times a sentinel, Who moves about from place to place, And whispers to the worlds of space, In the deep night, that all is well."

"Brawling, or like a clamor of the rooks At distance, ere they settle for the night."

"In words whose echo lasts, they were so sweet."

"That I could rest, a rock in ebbs and flows."

"But as a man to whom a dreadful loss Falls in a far land, and he knows it not."

"The long way smoke beneath him in his fear."

"Then, after all was done that hand could do, She rested, and her desolation came Upon her, and she wept beside the way."

"Seam'd with an ancient sword-cut on the cheek, And bruised and bronzed, she lifted up her eyes

And loved him, with that love which was her doom."

"And in the meadows tremulous aspen-trees And poplars made a noise of falling showers."

"No greatness, save it be some far-off touch Of greatness to know well I am not great."

"Hurt in the side, whereat she caught her breath; Through her own side she felt the sharp lance go."

"Rankled in him and ruffled all his heart, As the sharp wind that ruffles all day long A little bitter pool about a stone On the bare coast."

"Thy shadow still would glide from room to room, And I should evermore be vext with thee In hanging robe or vacant ornament, Or ghostly footfall echoing on the stair."

"Far off a solitary trumpet blew. Then, waiting by the doors, the war-horse neigh'd As at a friend's voice, and he spake again."

"Through the thick night I hear the trumpet blow."

"And slipt aside, and like a wounded life Crept down into the hollows of the wood."

"Then Philip, with his eyes Full of that lifelong hunger, and his voice Shaking a little like a drunkard's hand."

"Had he not Spoken with That, which being everywhere Lets none, who speaks with Him, seem all alone, Surely the man had died of solitude."

"Because things seen are mightier than things heard."

"For sure no gladlier does the stranded wreck See through the gray skirts of a lifting squall The boat that bears the hope of life approach To save the life despair'd of, than he saw Death dawning on him, and the close of all."

"And he lay tranced; but when he rose and paced Back toward his solitary home again, All down the narrow street he went, Beating it in upon his weary brain, As though it were the burthen of a song, 'Not to tell her, never to let her know.'"


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