Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. III. Sorrow and Consolation
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Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume III. Sorrow and Consolation.  1904.
 
II. Parting and Absence
Palinode
James Russell Lowell (1819–1891)
 
Autumn

STILL thirteen years: ’t is autumn now
  On field and hill, in heart and brain;
The naked trees at evening sough;
The leaf to the forsaken bough
  Sighs not,—“Auf wiedersehen!”        5
 
Two watched yon oriole’s pendent dome,
  That now is void, and dank with rain,
And one,—oh, hope more frail than foam!
The bird to his deserted home
  Sings not,—“Auf wiedersehen!”        10
 
The loath gate swings with rusty creak;
  Once, parting there, we played at pain;
There came a parting, when the weak
And fading lips essayed to speak
  Vainly,—“Auf wiedersehen!”        15
 
Somewhere is comfort, somewhere faith,
  Though thou in outer dark remain;
One sweet sad voice ennobles death,
And still, for eighteen centuries saith
  Softly,—“Auf wiedersehen!”        20
 
If earth another grave must bear,
  Yet heaven hath won a sweeter strain,
And something whispers my despair,
That, from an orient chamber there,
  Floats down,—“Auf wiedersehen!”        25
 
 
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