Verse > Anthologies > George Herbert Clarke, ed. > A Treasury of War Poetry
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George Herbert Clarke, ed. (1873–1953).  A Treasury of War Poetry.  1917.
 
7. To America
 
By Charles Langbridge Morgan
 
 
WHEN the fire sinks in the grate, and night has bent
Close wings about the room, and winter stands
Hard-eyed before the window, when the hands
Have turned the book’s last page and friends are sleeping,
Thought, as it were an old stringed instrument        5
Drawn to remembered music, oft does set
The lips moving in prayer, for us fresh keeping
Knowledge of springtime and the violet.
 
And, as the eyes grow dim with many years,
The spirit runs more swiftly than the feet,        10
Perceives its comfort, knows that it will meet
God at the end of troubles, that the dreary
Last reaches of old age lead beyond tears
To happy youth unending. There is peace
In homeward waters, where at last the weary        15
Shall find rebirth, and their long struggle cease.
 
So, at this hour, when the Old World lies sick,
Beyond the pain, the agony of breath
Hard drawn, beyond the menaces of death,
O’er graves and years leans out the eager spirit.        20
First must the ancient die; then shall be quick
New fires within us. Brother, we shall make
Incredible discoveries and inherit
The fruits of hope, and love shall be awake.
 

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