Verse > Anthologies > James and Mary Ford, eds. > Every Day in the Year
James and Mary Ford, eds.  Every Day in the Year.  1902.
March 26
By Richard Watson Gilder (1844–1909)
(Died March 26, 1827)

I CAME to a great city. Palaces
Rose glittering, mile on mile. Here dwells the King,
The Emperor and King; here lived, here ruled
How many mountainous far-looming fames;
Here is the crown of shadowy Charlemagne.        5
What housing of what glorious dignities!
Yet in a narrow street, unfrequented,
No palace near—one name upon a wall,
And all these majesties seem small and shrunk:
For here unto the bitter end abode        10
He who from pain wrought noble joy for men,
He who from silence gave the world to song;
For in his mind an awful music rose
As when, in darkness of the under-seas,
Currents tremendous over currents pour.        15
He heard the soundless tone, its voice he was,
And he of vast humanity the voice,
And his the empire of the human soul.

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