Poetry of Kansas

River Road

Quiet . . . stars, earth, the black wood and the river,
A white sliver
Of new, rayless moon against the farther west,
And . . . rest.
Straight sycamores my tent poles are, their strength deep found,
That silken sound
Is the soft flutter of my weaving canopy,
Tree touching tree.
Quiet . . . I do not even guess whose finger lies
Over my eyes;
Who walks the forest, soothing a lute to rhythms low,
I do not know,
Save that the presence of some self, who always sings
Of certain things,
As stars, the black wood and river, stands so near
I almost hear
Final interpretation, hold the theme complete . . .
Ah, wise defeat,
Borne on earth's hushing sounds, a monotone of leaves!
The presence grieves,
The finger lifts, footsteps tread silently the forest deep . . .
Quiet... sleep.

__Alice Wilson Oldroyd

Contemporary Kansas Poetry
Helen Rhoda Hoopes
Page 98
(Kansas City: Joseph D. Havens Company. 1927)

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December 15, 2002 / John & Susan Howell / Wichita, Kansas / howell@kotn.org

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