Watching [poem by Henry Kendall]

[Editor: This poem by Henry Kendall was published in Poems and Songs (1862).]

Watching.

Like a bark of pearl, on a sapphire sea,
A pure bright Moon cometh over me ;
And I stand on the crags, and hear the falls
Go tumbling down, through the black river-walls ;
And the heart of the gorge is rent with the cry
Of the pent-up winds in their agony !
You are far from me, dear, where I watch and wait,
Like a weary bird for a long-lost mate,
And my life is as dull as the sluggish stream
Feeling its way through a world of dream ;
For here is a waste of darkness and fear,
And I call and I call, but no one will hear !

O, darling of mine, do you ever yearn
For a something lost, which will never return ?
O, darling of mine, on the grave of dead Hours,
Do you feel, like me, for a handful of flowers ?
Through the glens of the Past, do you wander along,
Like a restless ghost that hath done a wrong ?
And, lying alone, do you look from the drouth
Of a thirsty Life with a pleading mouth ?
When the rain’s on the roof, and the gales are abroad,
Do you wash with your tears the feet of your God ?
Oh ! I know you do, and he sitteth alone,
Your wounded Love, while you mourn and moan —
Oh ! I know you do, and he never will leap
From his silence with smiles, while you weep — and weep !

Your coolness shake down, ye gathered green leaves,
For my Spirit is faint with the love that it grieves !
Is there aught on the summit, O yearner through Night,
Aught on the summit which looks like the light ;
When my soul is a-wearied and lone in the land,
Groping around will it touch a kind hand ?
There are chasms between us as black as a pall,
But bring us together, O God over all !
And let me cast from me these fetters of Fear,
When I hear the glad singing of Faith so near ;
For I know by the cheeks, which are pallid and wet,
And a listening life we shall mingle yet !
Oh ! then I will turn to those eloquent eyes,
And clasp thee close, with a sweet surprise ;
And a guest will go in by the heart’s holy door,
And the chambers of Love shall be left no more.



Source:
Henry Kendall, Poems and Songs, J. R. Clarke, Sydney, 1862, pages 95-97

Editor’s notes:
bark = (also spelt “barque”) a small sailing ship in general, or specifically a sailing ship with three (or more) masts, in which the aftmost mast is fore-and-aft rigged, whilst the other masts are square-rigged

drouth = drought (a prolonged period of no rain or an abnormally low amount of rain); or, in general terms, a prolonged shortage or lack of something

Speak Your Mind

*