Saturday, October 19, 2013

II. Afternoon.

By Louisa S. Guggenberger (1845–1895)
PURPLE headland over yonder,
  Fleecy, sun-extinguished moon,
I am here alone, and ponder
  On the theme of Afternoon.
Past has made a groove for Present,        5
  And what fits it is: no more.
Waves before the wind are weighty;
  Strongest sea-beats shape the shore.
Just what is is just what can be,
  And the Possible is free;        10
’Tis by being, not by effort,
  That the firm cliff juts to sea.
With an uncontentious calmness
  Drifts the Fact before the “Law”;
So we name the ordered sequence        15
  We, remembering, foresaw.
And a law is mere procession
  Of the forcible and fit;
Calm of uncontested Being,
  And our thought that comes of it.        20
In the mellow shining daylight
  Lies the Afternoon at ease,
Little willing ripples answer
  To a drift of casual breeze.
Purple headland to the westward!        25
  Ebbing tide, and fleecy moon!
In the “line of least resistance,”
  Flows the life of Afternoon.

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