Edwin Arlington Robinson Poems (178 Poems)

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    Mr. Flood’s Party (Edwin Arlington Robinson Poems)

       Old Eben Flood, climbing alone one night   Over the hill between the town below   And the forsaken upland hermitage   That held as much as he should ever know   On earth again of home, paused warily.   The road was his with not a native near;   And Eben, having leisure, said aloud,   For no man else in Tilbury Town to hear:   “Well, Mr. Flood, we have the harvest moon  Again, and we may not have many more;  The bird is on the wing, the poet says,  And you and I have said it here before.  Drink to the bird.” He raised up to the light  The jug that he had gone so far to fill,  And answered huskily: “Well, Mr. Flood,  Since you propose it, I believe I will.”   Alone, as if enduring to the end  A valiant armor of scarred hopes outworn,  He stood there in the middle of the road  Like Roland’s ghost winding a silent horn.  Below him, in the town among the trees,  Where friends of other days had honored him,  A phantom salutation of the dead  Rang thinly till old Eben’s eyes were dim.   Then, as a mother lays her sleeping child  Down tenderly, fearing it may awake,  He set the jug down slowly at his feet  With trembling care, knowing that most things break;  And only when assured that on firm earth  It stood, as the uncertain lives of men  Assuredly did not, he paced away,  And with his hand extended paused again:   “Well, Mr. Flood, we have not met like this  In a long time; and many a change has come  To both of us, I fear, since last it was  We had a drop together. Welcome home!”  Convivially returning with himself,  Again he raised the jug up to the light;  And with an acquiescent quaver said:  “Well, Mr. Flood, if you insist, I might.   “Only a very little, Mr. Flood —  For auld lang syne. No more, sir; that will do.”  So, for the time, apparently it did,  And Eben evidently thought so too;  For soon amid the silver loneliness  Of night he lifted up his voice and sang,  Secure, with only two moons listening,  Until the whole harmonious landscape rang —   “For auld lang syne.” The weary throat gave out,  The last word wavered; and the song being done,  He raised again the jug regretfully  And shook his head, and was again alone.  There was not much that was ahead of him,  And there was nothing in the town below —  Where strangers would have shut the many doors  That many friends had opened long ago. (Edwin Arlington Robinson)

    Sonnet 32: The Children of the Night (Edwin Arlington Robinson Poems)

    Oh for a poet-for a beacon bright  To rift this changless glimmer of dead gray;  To spirit back the Muses, long astray,  And flush Parnassus with a newer light;  To put these little sonnet-men to flightWho fashion, in a shrewd … Continue reading

    The Tree In Pamela’s Garden (Edwin Arlington Robinson Poems)

    Pamela was too gentle to deceive Her roses. “Let the men stay where they are,” She said, “and if Apollo’s avatar Be one of them, I shall not have to grieve.” And so she made all Tilbury Town believe She … Continue reading

    As a World Would Have It (Edwin Arlington Robinson Poems)

    Shall I never make him look at me again? I look at him, I look my life at him, I tell him all I know the way to tell, But there he stays the same. Shall I never make him … Continue reading

    The Pity of the Leaves (Edwin Arlington Robinson Poems)

    Vengeful across the cold November moors, Loud with ancestral shame there came the bleak Sad wind that shrieked, and answered with a shriek, Reverberant through lonely corridors. The old man heard it; and he heard, perforce, Words out of lips … Continue reading

    Lost Anchors (Edwin Arlington Robinson Poems)

    Like a dry fish flung inland far from shore, There lived a sailor, warped and ocean-browned, Who told of an old vessel, harbor-drowned, And out of mind a century before, Where divers, on descending to explore A legend that had … Continue reading

    The Valley of the Shadow (Edwin Arlington Robinson Poems)

    There were faces to remember in the Valley of the Shadow, There were faces unregarded, there were faces to forget; There were fires of grief and fear that are a few forgotten ashes, There were sparks of recognition that are … Continue reading

    Sainte-Nitouche (Edwin Arlington Robinson Poems)

    Though not for common praise of him, Nor yet for pride or charity, Still would I make to Vanderberg One tribute for his memory: One honest warrant of a friend Who found with him that flesh was grass- Who neither … Continue reading

    Cassandra (Edwin Arlington Robinson Poems)

    I heard one who said: “Verily, What word have I for children here? Your Dollar is your only Word, The wrath of it your only fear. “You build it altars tall enough To make you see but you are blind; … Continue reading

    Amaryllis (Edwin Arlington Robinson Poems)

    Once, when I wandered in the woods alone, An old man tottered up to me and said, “Come, friend, and see the grave that I have made For Amaryllis.” There was in the tone Of his complaint such quaver and … Continue reading

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