Road-Hymn For The Start

Leave the early bells at chime,
Leave the kindled hearth to blaze,
Leave the trellised panes where children linger out the waking-time,
Leave the forms of sons and fathers trudging through the misty ways,
Leave the sounds of mothers taking up their sweet laborious days.
Pass them by! even while our soul
Yearns to them with keen distress.
Unto them a part is given; we will strive to see the whole.
Dear shall be the banquet table where their singing spirits press;
Dearer be our sacred hunger, and our pilgrim loneliness.
We have felt the ancient swaying
Of the earth before the sun,
On the darkened marge of midnight heard sidereal rivers playing;
Rash it was to bathe our souls there, but we plunged and all was done.
That is lives and lives behind us--lo, our journey is begun!
Careless where our face is set,
Let us take the open way.
What we are no tongue has told us: Errand-goers who forget?
Soldiers heedless of their harry? Pilgrim people gone astray?
We have heard a voice cry "Wander!" That was all we heard it say.
Ask no more: 't is much, 't is much!
Down the road the day-star calls;
Touched with change in the wide heavens, like a leaf the frost winds
Flames the failing moon a moment, ere it shrivels white and falls;
Hid aloft, a wild throat holdeth sweet and sweeter intervals.
Leave him still to ease in song
Half his little heart's unrest:
Speech is his, but we may journey toward the life for which we long.
God, who gives the bird its anguish, maketh nothing manifest,
But upon our lifted foreheads pours the boon of endless quest.
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Submitted on August 03, 2020

Modified on March 05, 2023

1:26 min read

Quick analysis:

Closest metre Iambic hexameter
Characters 1,547
Words 289
Stanzas 6
Stanza Lengths 5, 5, 5, 5, 6, 5

William Vaughn Moody

William Vaughn Moody was an American dramatist and poet. more…

All William Vaughn Moody poems | William Vaughn Moody Books

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