WE stand above the abyss; beneath our feet
Around and onward infinite darkness rolls.
The sky above is black; the watch-bell tolls
The dying year. While slow in silent feet
Pale ghosts come towards us from the ice-locked street
Of thought's great city; faces young and old,
Eyes sunken, features set and deathly cold
And noiseless bear the dead year's winding-sheet.
But lo! where now we stand is worn with tread
Of millions; in the darkness feel, the ground
Is dust of powdered bones; sure, on this peak
The years have died, and millions of the dead
Have waited vainly through the gloom profound,
For dawn of day or trumpet-voice to speak.