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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 Golden Silence
By William Winter (1836–1917)
 
From ‘Wanderers’

WHAT though I sing no other song?
  What though I speak no other word?
Is silence shame? Is patience wrong?
  At least one song of mine was heard:
 
One echo from the mountain air,        5
  One ocean murmur, glad and free,
One sign that nothing grand or fair
  In all this world was lost to me.
 
I will not wake the sleeping lyre;
  I will not strain the chords of thought:        10
The sweetest fruit of all desire
  Comes its own way, and comes unsought.
 
Though all the bards of earth were dead,
  And all their music passed away,
What Nature wishes should be said        15
  She’ll find the rightful voice to say!
 
Her heart is in the shimmering leaf,
  The drifting cloud, the lonely sky;
And all we know of bliss or grief
  She speaks, in forms that cannot die.        20
 
The mountain peaks that shine afar,
  The silent stars, the pathless sea,
Are living signs of all we are,
  And types of all we hope to be.
 
 
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