All That’s Past

Very old are the woods; 

And the buds that break 
Out of the brier’s boughs, 
When March winds wake, 
So old with their beauty are– 
Oh, no man knows 
Through what wild centuries 
Roves back the rose. 
Very old are the brooks; 
And the rills that rise 
Where snow sleeps cold beneath 
The azure skies 
Sing such a history 
Of come and gone, 
Their every drop is as wise 
As Solomon. 

Very old are we men; 
Our dreams are tales 
Told in dim Eden 
By Eve’s nightingales; 
We wake and whisper awhile, 
But, the day gone by, 
Silence and sleep like fields 
Of amaranth lie.

by Walter de la Mare


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