Henry Timrod

(8 December 1828 - 7 October 1867 / Charleston, South Carolina)

Youth And Manhood


Another year! a short one, if it flow
Like that just past,
And I shall stand -- if years can make me so --
A man at last.

Yet, while the hours permit me, I would pause
And contemplate
The lot whereto unalterable laws
Have bound my fate.

Yet, from the starry regions of my youth,
The empyreal height
Where dreams are happiness, and feeling truth,
And life delight --

From that ethereal and serene abode
My soul would gaze
Downward upon the wide and winding road,
Where manhood plays;

Plays with the baubles and the gauds of earth --
Wealth, power, and fame --
Nor knows that in the twelvemonth after birth
He did the same.

Where the descent begins, through long defiles
I see them wind;
And some are looking down with hopeful smiles,
And some are -- blind.

And farther on a gay and glorious green
Dazzles the sight,
While noble forms are moving o'er the scene,
Like things of light.

Towers, temples, domes of perfect symmetry
Rise broad and high,
With pinnacles among the clouds; ah, me!
None touch the sky.

None pierce the pure and lofty atmosphere
Which I breathe now,
And the strong spirits that inhabit there,
Live -- God sees how.

Sick of the very treasure which they heap;
Their tearless eyes
Sealed ever in a heaven-forgetting sleep,
Whose dreams are lies;

And so, a motley, unattractive throng,
They toil and plod,
Dead to the holy ecstasies of song,
To love, and God.

Dear God! if that I may not keep through life
My trust, my truth,
And that I must, in yonder endless strife,
Lose faith with youth;

If the same toil which indurates the hand
Must steel the heart,
Till, in the wonders of the ideal land,
It have no part;

Oh! take me hence! I would no longer stay
Beneath the sky;
Give me to chant one pure and deathless lay,
And let me die!

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Form:


Read poems about / on: truth, sick, trust, happiness, birth, faith, sky, fate, god, power, song, green, sleep, heaven, wind, light, life, lost, smile, dream

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Youth And Manhood by Henry Timrod )

Read all 2 comments »

Famous Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  3. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  4. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  8. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  9. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  10. A Dream Within A Dream
    Edgar Allan Poe
Trending Poets
Trending Poems
  1. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  2. Dreams, Langston Hughes
  3. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  4. Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
  5. Daffodils, William Wordsworth
  6. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
  7. If, Rudyard Kipling
  8. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
  9. A Dream Within A Dream, Edgar Allan Poe
  10. Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
[Hata Bildir]