Monday, 19 December 2011

"I sat beneath an agéd tree"

I sat beneath an agéd tree
   Of autumn brown. Intent to muse,
And quite forget my human self;
   With shadows fuse.

Amidst the roots in sylvan weave,
   Above my head a voice was blown;
A wind-born sigh of mournful leaves
   And wooden groan.

The tree itself, with whispered sound
   Of forest deep in secret, said:
"With mobile limbs, why sit beneath
   The living dead?"

"Despite the gusts and desperate growth
   I cannot move; my roots go deep.
Cruel gods have made my waking life
   Eternal sleep."

"But you, with limbs of movement free,
   Could visit further fields than these;
And yet you sit beneath a tree
   To hear the breeze?"

For hours I listened, 'till my words
   Like vengeful light, cut through the gloam.
“I sit here, that my mind is free
   To further roam.”

“A thinking soul's imagination
   Invents more beauties than the earth
Could hold. And finds, in unseen worlds,

“Deny what atom deems as truth!
   And in the fields of Fancy's breath
Take root. To wake from life and die
   A dreamer's death!”

The ancient tree gave no reply.

His voice was taken by the wind.
   Too far away to give retort.
For dreamers' minds can distant fly
   On wings of thought.