THE raw materials of love are yours-
Fond hearts, and lusty blood, and minds in tune;
And so, dear innocents! you think yourselves
When to this fire I held a taper,
First flared the impressionable paper;
I watched the paper, as I stood,
Kindle the more enduring wood;
The bus is swaying. We have left Sloane Square.
Noisily the conductor climbs the stair.
'Fares, please!' says he. 'Two penny ones,' say I.
'Two to World's End?' says he. I want to cry,
You think yourselves the adventurous ones, you young ones,
And us becalmed, torpid, our days uneventful,
Our blood stagnant, our minds' antennae blunted:
But I, who was young and now am old, can tell you
There is no adventure like the adventure of age.
Sir Daniel was a fearless knight;
In doublet green he went to fight.
The yellow plumes upon his head
Like the sun their brightness shed.
King Midas saw a buttercup
In a meadow blowing;
King Midas saw a marigold
In a garden growing;
THROUGH space and time I range
Seeking these two alone:
The savour of the strange,
The solace of the known.
THEY are wrong. It is not the knowing of good from evil,
Virtue from vice,
God from devil,
That drives us from paradise:
Some god, quite irresponsible and young,
Has jumbled time and place and dealt amiss:
A day of Grecian spring-time he has flung
Into this winter-bound Metropolis.