Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > An American Anthology, 1787–1900
Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  An American Anthology, 1787–1900.  1900.
1052. Ballad of the Faded Field
By Robert Burns Wilson
BROAD bars of sunset-slanted gold
  Are laid along the field, and here
The silence sings, as if some old
  Refrain, that once rang long and clear,
  Came softly, stealing to the ear        5
Without the aid of sound. The rill
  Is voiceless, and the grass is sere,
But beauty’s soul abideth still.
Trance-like, the mellow air doth hold
  The sorrow of the passing year;        10
The heart of Nature groweth cold,
  The time of falling snow is near;
  On phantom feet, which none may hear,
Creeps—with the shadow of the hill—
  The semblance of departed cheer,        15
But beauty’s soul abideth still.
The dead, gray-clustered weeds enfold
  The well-known summer path, and drear
The dusking hills, like billows rolled
  Against the distant sky, appear.        20
  From lonely haunts, where Night and Fear
Keep ghostly tryst, when mists are chill,
  The dark pine lifts a jaggëd spear,
But beauty’s soul abideth still.

  Dear love, the days that once were dear
May come no more; life may fulfill
  Her fleeting dreams with many a tear,
But beauty’s soul abideth still.


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