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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.
The Library of the World’s Best Literature. An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

At the Granite Gate

By Bliss Carman (1861–1929)

From ‘Behind the Arras’

THERE paused to shut the door

A fellow called the Wind.

With mystery before,

And reticence behind,

A portal waits me too

In the glad house of spring;

One day I shall pass through

And leave you wondering.

It lies beyond the marge

Of evening or of prime,

Silent and dim and large,

The gateway of all time.

There troop by night and day

My brothers of the field;

And I shall know the way

Their wood-songs have revealed.

The dusk will hold some trace

Of all my radiant crew

Who vanished to that place,

Ephemeral as dew.

Into the twilight dun,

Blue moth and dragon-fly

Adventuring alone,—

Shall be more brave than I?

There innocents shall bloom,

And the white cherry tree,

With birch and willow plume

To strew the road for me.

The wilding orioles then

Shall make the golden air

Heavy with joy again,

And the dark heart shall dare

Resume the old desire,—

The exigence of spring

To be the orange fire

That tips the world’s gray wing.

And the lone wood-bird—Hark!

The whippoorwill, night-long,

Threshing the summer dark

With his dim flail of song!—

Shall be the lyric lift,

When all my senses creep,

To bear me through the rift

In the blue range of sleep.

And so I pass beyond

The solace of your hand.

But ah, so brave and fond!

Within that morrow-land,

Where deed and daring fail,

But joy forevermore

Shall tremble and prevail

Against the narrow door,

Where sorrow knocks too late,

And grief is overdue,

Beyond the granite gate

There will be thoughts of you.