Ina D. Coolbrith

Rookie (1842-1928 / Nauvoo, Illinois (Josephine D. Smith))

Edwin Booth


In vision, I beheld by Avon’s side
The mighty Shakespeare, and a wondrous train-
The vast creations of that matchless brain-
Walked with him through the dusk of eventide.
Slowly the dim procession, solemn-eyed,
Therewith the tawny Moor, and Cawdor’s thane,
And, soul most sorrowful, the princely Dane,
Passed, and repassed into shadows wide.
Then, with a sense of overmastering awe,
And listening heart that scarcely seemed to stir,
I woke: to lapsing centuries of time,
To thronged walls, and blaze of lights, and saw-
Not Shakespeare-but his grand Interpreter,
Than thought’s great master only less sublime.

Submitted: Thursday, July 10, 2008
Edited: Friday, July 11, 2008

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