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Abram Joseph Ryan (Абрам Джозеф Райан)


Reverie (Only a few more years!)


    Only a few more years!
     Weary years!
    Only a few more tears!
     Bitter tears!
And then -- and then -- like other men,
 I cease to wander, cease to weep,
 Dim shadows o'er my way shall creep;
And out of the day and into the night,
Into the dark and out of the bright
 I go, and Death shall veil my face,
 The feet of the years shall fast efface
 My very name, and every trace
I leave on earth; for the stern years tread --
Tread out the names of the gone and dead!
And then, ah! then, like other men,
 I close my eyes and go to sleep,
 Only a few, one hour, shall weep:
 Ah! me, the grave is dark and deep!

    Alas!  Alas!
     How soon we pass!
    And ah! we go
     So far away;
When go we must,
From the light of Life, and the heat of strife,
To the peace of Death, and the cold, still dust,
 We go -- we go -- we may not stay,
 We travel the lone, dark, dreary way;
Out of the day and into the night,
Into the darkness, out of the bright.
And then, ah! then, like other men,
 We close our eyes and go to sleep;
We hush our hearts and go to sleep;
Only a few, one hour, shall weep:
Ah! me, the grave is lone and deep!

I saw a flower, at morn, so fair;
I passed at eve, it was not there.
 I saw a sunbeam, golden bright,
 I saw a cloud the sunbeam's shroud,
 And I saw night
 Digging the grave of day;
And day took off her golden crown,
And flung it sorrowfully down.
 Ah! day, the Sun's fair bride!
 At twilight moaned and died.
And so, alas! like day we pass:
   At morn we smile,
   At eve we weep,
   At morn we wake,
 In night we sleep.
We close our eyes and go to sleep:
Ah! me, the grave is still and deep!

    But God is sweet.
     My mother told me so,
    When I knelt at her feet
     Long -- so long -- ago;
She clasped my hands in hers.
Ah! me, that memory stirs
 My soul's profoundest deep --
 No wonder that I weep.
She clasped my hands and smiled,
Ah! then I was a child --
   I knew not harm --
   My mother's arm
Was flung around me; and I felt
That when I knelt
 To listen to my mother's prayer,
 God was with my mother there.

Yea! "God is sweet!"
   She told me so;
 She never told me wrong;
And through my years of woe
Her whispers soft, and sad, and low,
 And sweet as Angel's song,
Have floated like a dream.

And, ah! to-night I seem
 A very child in my old, old place,
 Beneath my mother's blessed face,
And through each sweet remembered word,
This sweetest undertone is heard:
 "My child! my child! our God is sweet,
 In Life -- in Death -- kneel at his feet --
Sweet in gladness, sweet in gloom,
Sweeter still beside the tomb."
 Why should I wail?  Why ought I weep?
 The grave -- it is not dark and deep;
Why should I sigh?  Why ought I moan?
The grave -- it is not still and lone;
 Our God is sweet, our grave is sweet,
 We lie there sleeping at His feet,
Where the wicked shall from troubling cease,
And weary hearts shall rest in peace!



Abram Joseph Ryan's other poems:
  1. Song of the Mystic
  2. A Memory (One bright memory shines like a star)
  3. “Out of the Depths”
  4. Reunited
  5. A Laugh -- and A Moan


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