Archive for July 26th, 2019

Friday, 26 July 2019

Spectres by Alice Cary

Once more the shadows darken
Upon life’s solemn stream—
Once more I’m in my chamber
To ponder and to dream.

Down in the mist-white valley,
Across the hills afar,
The rosy light is gleaming
From Love’s descending star.

I hear from yonder parlour
A prattler cry, “He’s come!”
Oh, there’s a world of comfort—
I wish I had a home!

All last night, round about me
The lights of memory streamed,
And my heart to long-lost music
Kept beating as I dreamed.

We live with spectres haunted
That we cannot exorcise—
A pale and shadowy army
Between us and the skies.

Conjured by mortal weakness,
In their cerements they start
From the lonesome burial-places
Of the dead hopes of the heart.

They will meet thee, fellow-pilgrim,
For their graves are everywhere,
And thou canst not lay them better
Than by labour which is prayer.

From: Cary, Alice and Cary, Phoebe, The Poems of Alice and Phoebe Cary, 1850, Moss & Brother, Philadelphia, pp. 158-159.

Date: 1849

By: Alice Cary (1820-1871)