My lover died a century ago,
Her dear heart stricken by my sland'rous breath,
Wherefore the Gods forbade that I should know
The peace of death.
Men pass my grave, and say, "'Twere well to sleep,
Like such an one, amid the uncaring dead!"
How should they know the vigils that I keep,
The tears I shed?
Upon the grave, I count with lifeless breath,
Each night, each year, the flowers that bloom and die,
Deeming the leaves, that fall to dreamless death,
More blest than I.
'Twas just last year -- I heard two lovers pass
So near, I caught the tender words he said:
To-night the rain-drenched breezes sway the grass
Above his head.
That night full envious of his life was I,
That youth and love should stand at his behest;
To-night, I envy him, that he should lie
At utter rest.
John McCrae's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (Penance by John McCrae )
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(27 October 1914 – 9 November 1953)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
Mewlana Jalaluddin Rumi
(1207 - 1273)
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Invictus, William Ernest Henley
- If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
- Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
- Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
- If, Rudyard Kipling
- Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep, Mary Elizabeth Frye
- As I Grew Older, Langston Hughes
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- Alone, Maya Angelou
Poem of the Day
- Everlasting silence, Mario,Lucien,Rene Odekerken
- all the sun does is stare at my faults, Mandolyn ...
- If I seem, Rodney R. Cooper
- Mojo, Morgan Michaels
- The Tiny Beauty, Zoila T. Flores
- Christmas Tree Ornaments, Frank Avon
- Wasted Words, Kela LewisMorin
- the lights are still up, Bull Hawking
- Unclassified, Kela LewisMorin
- Someone Else, Kela LewisMorin