Verse > Anthologies > Harriet Monroe, ed. > Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, 1912–22
Harriet Monroe, ed. (1860–1936).  Poetry: A Magazine of Verse.  1912–22.
The Liar
By James Stephens
DID you think, old Grizzly-Face! to frighten me?—
    To frighten me who fronted you before
    Times out of mind,
    When, through that sudden door,
You took and bound and cast me to the sea        5
    Far from my kind,
Far from all friendly hands? Now I
Tremble no longer at your whisper, at your lie.
I go with you, but only till the end
    Of one small hour, and when the hour is done        10
    I shall again
    Arise and leap and run
From the wind-swept, icy caves: I shall ascend,
    I shall attain
To the pearly sky and the open door and the infinite sun        15
And find again my comrades with me, every one.
So, once more, here are my hands to wind
    Your cords about; here are my feet to tie
    Straitly and fast;
    And here, on either eye,        20
Press your strong fingers until I am blind:
    Now, at the last,
Heave me upon your shoulder, whispering sly,
As you so oft before have whispered, your dark lie.
A day dawns surely when you will not dare        25
    To come to me—then you will hide away
    In your dark lands;
    Then you will pray,
You will snarl and tremble when I seek you there
    To bind your hands,        30
To whisper truth where you have whispered lies,
To press my mighty fingers down upon your eyes.

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