William Bell Scott

(1811-1890 / Scotland)

Memory - Poem by William Bell Scott

Last night I lost a word, the one
Just wanted for my madrigal:
Then went to bed disconsolate,
Groping through a web half spun,
Listening for sounds beyond recall:
Unrhymed my ruined verses hung,
Till I was lost myself—had won
Within the silence-hingéd gate,
The gate of horn:
And lo, at morn
I found the word upon my tongue.

It was so in my school-boy year,
When the lesson would not lie
Within the jaded memory,
With day-light it would reappear,
Unravelled, clear.

Perhaps 'twill be so that dread morn
Far beyond the gate of horn;
All we have said, or thought, or done,
Like blades in a grass-field in the sun,
Innumerable and clear each one,
Will present be, no loss and no decay
Of all our growth throughout life's play:—
And that will be our Judgment day:
Ourselves the judge, the judged, the soul
To be advanced, from goal to goal!

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, April 22, 2010

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