Sonnet: The Ghosts Of James And Peirce In Harvard Yard - Poem by Delmore Schwartz
In memory of D. W. Prall
The ghosts of James and Peirce in Harvard Yard
At star-pierced midnight, after the chapel bell
(Episcopalian! palian! the ringing soared!)
Stare at me now as if they wish me well.
In the waking dream amid the trees which fall,
Bar and bough of shadow, by my shadow crossed,
They have not slept for long and they know all,
Know time's exhaustion and the spirit's cost.
"We studied the radiant sun, the star's pure seed:
Darkness is infinite! The blind can see
Hatred's necessity and love's grave need
Now that the poor are murdered across the sea,
And you are ignorant, who hear the bell;
Ignorant, you walk between heaven and hell."
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