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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
The Little Field of Peace
By Sir Charles George Douglas Roberts (1860–1943)
 
From ‘Book of the Native’

BY the long wash of his ancestral sea
      He sleeps how quietly!
How quiet the unlifting eyelids lie
      Under this tranquil sky!
The little busy hands and restless feet        5
      Here find that rest is sweet;—
For, sweetly from the hands grown tired of play
      The child-world slips away,
With its confusion of forgotten toys
      And kind, familiar noise.        10
 
Not lonely does he lie in his last bed,
      For love o’erbroods his head.
Kindly to him the comrade grasses lean
      Their fellowship of green.
The wilding meadow companies give heed:        15
      Brave tansy, and the weed
That on the dike-top lifts its dauntless stalk,—
      Around his couch they talk.
The shadows of the oak-tree flit and play
      Above his dreams all day.        20
The wind that was his playmate on the hills
      His sleep with music fills.
 
Here in this tender acre by the tide
      His vanished kin abide.
Ah! what compassionate care for him they keep,        25
      Too soon returned to sleep!
They watch him in this little field of peace
      Where they have found release.
Not as a stranger or alone he went
      Unto his long content;        30
But kissed to sleep and comforted lies he
      By his ancestral sea.
 
 
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