Nonfiction > E.C. Stedman & E.M. Hutchinson, eds. > A Library of American Literature > 1835–1860
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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps.  A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes.  1891.
Vols. VI–VIII: Literature of the Republic, Part III., 1835–1860
 
Every Year
By Albert Pike (1809–1891)
 
[From Hymns to the Gods, and Other Poems. Text of the Privately Printed Collection. 1881.]

LIFE is a count of losses,
          Every year;
For the weak are heavier crosses
          Every year;
Lost Springs with sobs replying        5
Unto weary Autumns’ sighing,
While those we love are dying
          Every year.
 
The days have less of gladness,
          Every year;        10
The nights more weight of sadness
          Every year;
Fair Springs no longer charm us,
The winds and weather harm us,
The threats of Death alarm us,        15
          Every year.
 
There come new cares and sorrows
          Every year;
Dark days and darker morrows,
          Every year;        20
The ghosts of dead loves haunt us,
The ghosts of changed friends taunt us,
And disappointments daunt us,
          Every year.
 
To the Past go more dead faces        25
          Every year,
As the loved leave vacant places,
          Every year;
Everywhere the sad eyes meet us,
In the evening’s dusk they greet us,        30
And to come to them entreat us,
          Every year.
 
“You are growing old,” they tell us,
          “Every year;
“You are more alone,” they tell us,        35
          “Every year;
“You can win no new affection,
You have only recollection,
Deeper sorrow and dejection,
          “Every year.”        40
 
Too true!—Life’s shores are shifting
          Every year;
And we are seaward drifting
          Every year;
Old places, changing, fret us,        45
The living more forget us,
There are fewer to regret us,
          Every year.
 
But the truer life draws nigher
          Every year;        50
And its Morning-star climbs higher,
          Every year;
Earth’s hold on us grows slighter,
And the heavy burthen lighter,
And the Dawn Immortal brighter,        55
          Every year.
 
 
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