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Poem by Stephen Vincent Benet


Music


My friend went to the piano; spun the stool 
A little higher; left his pipe to cool; 
Picked up a fat green volume from the chest; 
And propped it open. 
Whitely without rest, 
His fingers swept the keys that flashed like swords, 
. . . And to the brute drums of barbarian hordes, 
Roaring and thunderous and weapon-bare, 
An army stormed the bastions of the air! 
Dreadful with banners, fire to slay and parch, 
Marching together as the lightnings march, 
And swift as storm-clouds. Brazen helms and cars 
Clanged to a fierce resurgence of old wars 
Above the screaming horns. In state they passed, 
Trampling and splendid on and sought the vast -- 
Rending the darkness like a leaping knife, 
The flame, the noble pageant of our life! 
The burning seal that stamps mans high indenture 
To vain attempt and most forlorn adventure; 
Romance, and purple seas, and toppling towns, 
And the winds valiance crying oer the downs; 
That nerves the silly hand, the feeble brain, 
From the loose net of words to deeds again 
And to all courage! Perilous and sharp 
The last chord shook me as wind shakes a harp! 
. . . And my friend swung round on his stool, and from gods we were men, 
How pretty! we said; and went on with our talk again.



Stephen Vincent Benet


Stephen Vincent Benet's other poems:
  1. Ghosts of a Lunatic Asylum
  2. The Congressmen Came out to See Bull Run
  3. Portrait of a Boy
  4. Before an Examination
  5. Lonely Burial


Poems of the other poets with the same name:

  • Percy Shelley Music ("I pant for the music which is divine")
  • Wilfred Owen Music ("I have been urged by earnest violins")
  • William Bowles Music ("O harmony! thou tenderest nurse of pain")
  • Henry White Music ("Music, all powerful o'er the human mind")
  • John Cheney Music ("Take of the maiden's and the mother's sigh")
  • Amy Lowell Music ("The neighbour sits in his window and plays the flute")
  • Henry Van Dyke Music ("Daughter of Psyche, pledge of that last night")

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