Verse > Anthologies > Harvard Classics > English Poetry III: From Tennyson to Whitman
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   English Poetry III: From Tennyson to Whitman.
The Harvard Classics.  1909–14.
 
740. Margaritæ Sorori
 
William Ernest Henley (1849–1903)
 
 
A LATE lark twitters from the quiet skies:
And from the west,
Where the sun, his day’s work ended,
Lingers as in content,
There falls on the old, gray city        5
An influence luminous and serene,
A shining peace.
 
The smoke ascends
In a rosy-and-golden haze. The spires
Shine, and are changed. In the valley        10
Shadows rise. The lark sings on. The sun,
Closing his benediction,
Sinks, and the darkening air
Thrills with a sense of the triumphing night—
Night with her train of stars        15
And her great gift of sleep.
 
So be my passing!
My task accomplished and the long day done,
My wages taken, and in my heart
Some late lark singing,        20
Let me be gathered to the quiet west,
The sundown splendid and serene,
Death.
 

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