H O M E

Poems
by Alan Seeger

(1917)



    Juvenilia

  1. An Ode to Natural Beauty
  2. The Deserted Garden
  3. The Torture of Cuauhtemoc
  4. The Nympholept
  5. The Wanderer
  6. The Need to Love
  7. El Extraviado
  8. La Nue
  9. All That's Not Love . . .
  10. Paris
  11. The Sultan's Palace
  12. Fragments

    Thirty Sonnets:

  13. Sonnet I
  14. Sonnet II
  15. Sonnet III
  16. Sonnet IV
  17. Sonnet V
  18. Sonnet VI
  19. Sonnet VII
  20. Sonnet VIII
  21. Sonnet IX
  22. Sonnet X
  23. Sonnet XI
  24. Sonnet XII
  25. Sonnet XIII
  26. Sonnet XIV
  27. Sonnet XV
  28. Sonnet XVI
  29. Kyrenaikos
  30. Antinous
  31. Vivien
  32. I Loved . . .
  33. Virginibus Puerisque . . .
  34. With a Copy of Shakespeare's Sonnets on Leaving College
  35. Written in a Volume of the Comtesse de Noailles
  36. Coucy
  37. Tezcotzinco
  38. The Old Lowe House, Staten Island
  39. Oneata
  40. n the Cliffs, Newport
  41. O
  42. To England at the Outbreak of the Balkan War
  43. At the Tomb of Napoleon Before the Elections in America -- November, 1912

  44. The Rendezvous
  45. Do You Remember Once . . .
  46. The Bayadere
  47. Eudaemon
  48. Broceliande
  49. Lyonesse
  50. Tithonus
  51. An Ode to Antares

    Translations

  52. Dante. Inferno, Canto XXVI
  53. Ariosto. Orlando Furioso, Canto X, 91-99
  54. On a Theme in the Greek Anthology
  55. After an Epigram of Clement Marot

    Last Poems

  56. The Aisne (1914-15)
  57. Champagne (1914-15)
  58. The Hosts
  59. Maktoob
  60. I Have a Rendezvous with Death . . .

    Sonnets:

  61. Sonnet I
  62. Sonnet II
  63. Sonnet III
  64. Sonnet IV
  65. Sonnet V
  66. Sonnet VI
  67. Sonnet VII
  68. Sonnet VIII
  69. Sonnet IX
  70. Sonnet X
  71. Sonnet XI
  72. Sonnet XII

  73. Bellinglise
  74. Liebestod
  75. Resurgam
  76. A Message to America
  77. Introduction and Conclusion of a Long Poem
  78. Ode in Memory of the American Volunteers Fallen for France

Poets' Corner Scripting
© 2009 Bob Blair, S.L. Spanoudis and
theotherpages.org.
All rights reserved worldwide.


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A young Alan Seeger
Poems




Alan Seeger

(1917)

Edited for the Web by Bob Blair

. Kyrenaikos

    LAY me where soft Cyrene rambles down
    In grove and garden to the sapphire sea;
    Twine yellow roses for the drinker's crown;
    Let music reach and fair heads circle me,
    Watching blue ocean where the white sails steer
    Fruit-laden forth or with the wares and news
    Of merchant cities seek our harbors here,
    Careless how Corinth fares, how Syracuse;
    But here, with love and sleep in her caress,
    Warm night shall sink and utterly persuade
    The gentle doctrine Aristippus bare, -- -
    Night-winds, and one whose white youth's loveliness,
    In a flowered balcony beside me laid,
    Dreams, with the starlight on her fragrant hair.

    Alan Seeger

. Antinous

    STRETCHED on a sunny bank he lay at rest,
    Ferns at his elbow, lilies round his knees,
    With sweet flesh patterned where the cool turf pressed,
    Flowerlike crept o'er with emerald aphides.
    Single he couched there, to his circling flocks
    Piping at times some happy shepherd's tune,
    Nude, with the warm wind in his golden locks,
    And arched with the blue Asian afternoon.
    Past him, gorse-purpled, to the distant coast
    Rolled the clear foothills. There his white-walled town,
    There, a blue band, the placid Euxine lay.
    Beyond, on fields of azure light embossed
    He watched from noon till dewy eve came down
    The summer clouds pile up and fade away.

    Alan Seeger

. Vivien

    HER eyes under their lashes were blue pools
    Fringed round with lilies; her bright hair unfurled
    Clothed her as sunshine clothes the summer world.
    Her robes were gauzes -- - gold and green and gules,
    All furry things flocked round her, from her hand
    Nibbling their foods and fawning at her feet.
    Two peacocks watched her where she made her seat
    Beside a fountain in Broceliande.
    Sometimes she sang. . . . Whoever heard forgot
    Errand and aim, and knights at noontide here,
    Riding from fabulous gestes beyond the seas,
    Would follow, tranced, and seek . . . and find her not . . .
    But wake that night, lost, by some woodland mere,
    Powdered with stars and rimmed with silent trees.

    Alan Seeger

. I Loved . . .

    I LOVED illustrious cities and the crowds
    That eddy through their incandescent nights.
    I loved remote horizons with far clouds
    Girdled, and fringed about with snowy heights.
    I loved fair women, their sweet, conscious ways
    Of wearing among hands that covet and plead
    The rose ablossom at the rainbow's base
    That bounds the world's desire and all its need.
    Nature I worshipped, whose fecundity
    Embraces every vision the most fair,
    Of perfect benediction. From a boy
    I gloated on existence. Earth to me
    Seemed all-sufficient and my sojourn there
    One trembling opportunity for joy.

    Alan Seeger

. Virginibus Puerisque . . .

    I CARE not that one listen if he lives
    For aught but life's romance, nor puts above
    All life's necessities the need to love,
    Nor counts his greatest wealth what Beauty gives.
    But sometime on an afternoon in spring,
    When dandelions dot the fields with gold,
    And under rustling shade a few weeks old
    'Tis sweet to stroll and hear the bluebirds sing,
    Do you, blond head, whom beauty and the power
    Of being young and winsome have prepared
    For life's last privilege that really pays,
    Make the companion of an idle hour
    These relics of the time when I too fared
    Across the sweet fifth lustrum of my days.

    Alan Seeger

. With a Copy of Shakespeare's Sonnets on Leaving College

    AS ONE of some fat tillage dispossessed,
    Weighing the yield of these four faded years,
    If any ask what fruit seems loveliest,
    What lasting gold among the garnered ears, -- -
    Ah, then I'll say what hours I had of thine,
    Therein I reaped Time's richest revenue,
    Read in thy text the sense of David's line,
    Through thee achieved the love that Shakespeare knew.
    Take then his book, laden with mine own love
    As flowers made sweeter by deep-drunken rain,
    That when years sunder and between us move
    Wide waters, and less kindly bonds constrain,
    Thou may'st turn here, dear boy, and reading see
    Some part of what thy friend once felt for thee.

    Alan Seeger

. Written in a Volume of the Comtesse de Noailles

    BE MY companion under cool arcades
    That frame some drowsy street and dazzling square
    Beyond whose flowers and palm-tree promenades
    White belfries burn in the blue tropic air.
    Lie near me in dim forests where the croon
    Of wood-doves sounds and moss-banked water flows,
    Or musing late till the midsummer moon
    Breaks through some ruined abbey's empty rose.
    Sweetest of those to-day whose pious hands
    Tend the sequestered altar of Romance,
    Where fewer offerings burn, and fewer kneel,
    Pour there your passionate beauty on my heart,
    And, gladdening such solitudes, impart
    How sweet the fellowship of those who feel!

    Alan Seeger

. Coucy

    THE rooks aclamor when one enters here
    Startle the empty towers far overhead;
    Through gaping walls the summer fields appear,
    Green, tan, or, poppy-mingled, tinged with red.
    The courts where revel rang deep grass and moss
    Cover, and tangled vines have overgrown
    The gate where banners blazoned with a cross
    Rolled forth to toss round Tyre and Ascalon.
    Decay consumes it. The old causes fade.
    And fretting for the contest many a heart
    Waits their Tyrtaeus to chant on the new.
    Oh, pass him by who, in this haunted shade
    Musing enthralled, has only this much art,
    To love the things the birds and flowers love too.

    Alan Seeger

. Tezcotzinco

    THOUGH thou art now a ruin bare and cold,
    Thou wert sometime the garden of a king.
    The birds have sought a lovelier place to sing.
    The flowers are few. It was not so of old.
    It was not thus when hand in hand there strolled
    Through arbors perfumed with undying Spring
    Bare bodies beautiful, brown, glistening,
    Decked with green plumes and rings of yellow gold.
    Do you suppose the herdsman sometimes hears
    Vague echoes borne beneath the moon's pale ray
    From those old, old, far-off, forgotten years?
    Who knows? Here where his ancient kings held sway
    He stands. Their names are strangers to his ears.
    Even their memory has passed away.

    Alan Seeger

. The Old Lowe House, Staten Island

    ANOTHER prospect pleased the builder's eye,
    And Fashion tenanted (where Fashion wanes)
    Here in the sorrowful suburban lanes
    When first these gables rose against the sky.
    Relic of a romantic taste gone by,
    This stately monument alone remains,
    Vacant, with lichened walls and window-panes
    Blank as the windows of a skull. But I,
    On evenings when autumnal winds have stirred
    In the porch-vines, to this gray oracle
    Have laid a wondering ear and oft-times heard,
    As from the hollow of a stranded shell,
    Old voices echoing (or my fancy erred)
    Things indistinct, but not insensible.

    Alan Seeger

. Oneata

    A HILLTOP sought by every soothing breeze
    That loves the melody of murmuring boughs,
    Cool shades, green acreage, and antique house
    Fronting the ocean and the dawn; than these
    Old monks built never for the spirit's ease
    Cloisters more calm -- - not Cluny nor Clairvaux;
    Sweet are the noises from the bay below,
    And cuckoos calling in the tulip-trees.
    Here, a yet empty suitor in thy train,
    Beloved Poesy, great joy was mine
    To while a listless spell of summer days,
    Happier than hoarder in each evening's gain,
    When evenings found me richer by one line,
    One verse well turned, or serviceable phrase.

    Alan Seeger

. On the Cliffs, Newport

    TONIGHT a shimmer of gold lies mantled o'er
    Smooth lovely Ocean. Through the lustrous gloom
    A savor steals from linden trees in bloom
    And gardens ranged at many a palace door.
    Proud walls rise here, and, where the moonbeams pour
    Their pale enchantment down the dim coast-line,
    Terrace and lawn, trim hedge and flowering vine,
    Crown with fair culture all the sounding shore.
    How sweet, to such a place, on such a night,
    From halls with beauty and festival a-glare,
    To come distract and, stretched on the cool turf,
    Yield to some fond, improbable delight,
    While the moon, reddening, sinks, and all the air
    Sighs with the muffled tumult of the surf!

    Alan Seeger

. To England at the Outbreak of the Balkan War

    A CLOUD has lowered that shall not soon pass o'er.
    The world takes sides: whether for impious aims
    With Tyranny whose bloody toll enflames
    A generous people to heroic war;
    Whether with Freedom, stretched in her own gore,
    Whose pleading hands and suppliant distress
    Still offer hearts that thirst for Righteousness
    A glorious cause to strike or perish for.
    England, which side is thine? Thou hast had sons
    Would shrink not from the choice however grim,
    Were Justice trampled on and Courage downed;
    Which will they be -- - cravens or champions?
    Oh, if a doubt intrude, remember him
    Whose death made Missolonghi holy ground.

    Alan Seeger

. At the Tomb of Napoleon Before the Elections in America -- November, 1912

    I STOOD beside his sepulchre whose fame,
    Hurled over Europe once on bolt and blast,
    Now glows far off as storm-clouds overpast
    Glow in the sunset flushed with glorious flame.
    Has Nature marred his mould? Can Art acclaim
    No hero now, no man with whom men side
    As with their hearts' high needs personified?
    There are will say, One such our lips could name;
    Columbia gave him birth. Him Genius most
    Gifted to rule. Against the world's great man
    Lift their low calumny and sneering cries
    The Pharisaic multitude, the host
    Of piddling slanderers whose little eyes
    Know not what greatness is and never can.

    Alan Seeger



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Poets' Corner Scripting © 2009 S.L. Spanoudis and theotherpages.org.
All rights reserved worldwide.