A Wine of Wizardry: And Other Poems

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A.M. Robertson, 1908 - American poetry - 129 pages
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Page 47 - THE NIGHT OF GODS Their mouths have drunken the eternal wine— The draught that Baal in oblivion sips. Unseen about their courts the adder slips, Unheard the sucklings of the leopard whine; The toad has found a resting'place divine And bloats in stupor between Ammon's lips. 0 Carthage and the unreturning ships, The fallen pinnacle, the shifting Sign! Lo! when I hear from voiceless court and fane Time's adoration of Eternity— The cry of kingdoms past and gods undone...
Page 29 - IN EXTREMIS TILL dawn the Winds' insuperable throng Passed over like archangels In their might, With roar of chariots from their stormy height, And broken thunder of mysterious song — By mariner or sentry heard along The star-usurping battlements of night — And wafture of immeasurable flight, And high-blown trumpets mutinous and strong. Till louder on the dreadful dark I heard The shrieking of the tempest-tortured tree, And deeper on immensity the call And tumult of the empire-forging sea; But...
Page 46 - The monuments of power's imaginings: About their base the wind Assyrian flings The dust that throned the satrap in his pride; Cambyses and the Memphian pomps abide As in the flame the moth's presumptuous wings. There gleams no glory that her hand shall spare, Nor any sun whose rays shall cross her night, Whose realm enfolds man's empire and its end. No armor of renown her sword shall dare, No council of the gods withstand her might — Stricken at last Time's lonely Titans bend. THE DUST DETHRONED...
Page 11 - A single tear, and whence the wind hath flown And left a silence. Far on shadowy tow'rs Droop blazoned banners, and the woodland shade, With leafy flames and dyes autumnal hung, Makes beautiful the twilight of the year. For this the fays will dance, for elfin cheer, Within a dell where some mad girl hath flung A bracelet that the painted lizards fear— Red pyres of muffled light! Yet Fancy spurns The revel, and to...
Page 47 - THE DUST DETHRONED Sargon is dust, Semiramis a clod ! In crypts profaned the moon at midnight peers; The owl upon the Sphinx hoots in her ears, And scant and sear the desert grasses nod Where once the armies of Assyria trod, With younger sunlight splendid on the spears; The lichens cling the closer with the years, And seal the eyelids of the weary god. Where high the tombs of royal Egypt heave, The vulture shadows with arrested wings The indecipherable boasts of kings...
Page 10 - A little past the striving billows' reach, Or seek the russet mosses of the sea, And wrinkled shells that lure along the beach, And please the heart of Fancy; yet she turns, Tho' trembling, to a grotto rosy-sparred, Where wattled monsters redly gape, that guard A cowled magician peering on the damned Thro' vials wherein a splendid poison burns, Sifting Satanic gules athwart his brow.
Page 17 - ... them at all? There priestesses in purple robes hold each A sultry garnet to the sea-linkt sun, Or, just before the colored morning shakes A splendor on the ruby-sanded beach, Cry unto Betelgeuze a mystic word. Faith! I would give value to know that word! Where icy philters brim with scarlet foam. Satan, yawning on his brazen seat, Fondles a screaming thing his fiends have flayed. A sick enchantress scans the dark to curse, Beside a caldron vext with harlots' blood, The stars of that red Sign...
Page 47 - And scant and sear the desert grasses nod Where once the armies of Assyria trod, With younger sunlight splendid on the spears; The lichens cling the closer with the years, And seal the eyelids of the weary god. Where high the tombs of royal Egypt heave, The vulture shadows with arrested wings The indecipherable boasts of kings, As Arab children hear their mother's cry And leave in mockery their toy—they leave The skull of Pharaoh staring at the sky.
Page 17 - ... word. It is all color and fire and movement, with nothing of the cold simplicity and repose of the Grecian ideal. Nor is it Homeric, nor in the Miltonic vein. It is in no vein but the author's own ; in the entire work is only one line suggesting the manner of another poet — the last in this passage: Who leads from hell his whitest queens, arrayed - In chains so heated at their master's fire That one new-damned had thought their bright attire Indeed were coral, till the dazzling dance So terribly...
Page 13 - Mid stillness of all pageantries of bloom. Within, lurk orbs that graven monsters clasp; Red-embered rubies smolder in the gloom, Betrayed by lamps that nurse a sullen flame, And livid roots writhe in the marble's grasp, As moaning airs invoke the conquered rust Of lordly helms made equal in the dust. Without, where baleful cypresses make rich The bleeding sun's phantasmagoric gules, Are fungus-tapers of the twilight witch (Seen by the bat above unfathomed pools) And tiger-lilies known to silent...

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