Edwin Arlington Robinson

(22 December 1869 – 6 April 1935 / Maine / United States)

John Evereldown


"Where are you going to-night, to-night, --
Where are you going, John Evereldown?
There's never the sign of a star in sight,
Nor a lamp that's nearer than Tilbury Town.
Why do you stare as a dead man might?
Where are you pointing away from the light?
And where are you going to-night, to-night, --
Where are you going, John Evereldown?"

"Right through the forest, where none can see,
There's where I'm going, to Tilbury Town.
The men are asleep, -- or awake, may be, --
But the women are calling John Evereldown.
Ever and ever they call for me,
And while they call can a man be free?
So right through the forest, where none can see,
There's where I'm going, to Tilbury Town."

"But why are you going so late, so late, --
Why are you going, John Evereldown?
Though the road be smooth and the path be straight,
There are two long leagues to Tilbury Town.
Come in by the fire, old man, and wait!
Why do you chatter out there by the gate?
And why are you going so late, so late, --
Why are you going, John Evereldown?"

"I follow the women wherever they call, --
That's why I'm going to Tilbury Town.
God knows if I pray to be done with it all,
But God is no friend to John Evereldown.
So the clouds may come and the rain may fall,
The shadows may creep and the dead men crawl, --
But I follow the women wherever they call,
And that's why I'm going to Tilbury Town."

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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