The Veil and other poems/Not That Way


No, no. Guard thee. Get thee gone.
Not that way.
See; the louring clouds glide on,
Skirting West to South; and see,
The green light under that sycamore tree—
Not that way.
There the leaden trumpets blow,
Solemn and slow.
There the everlasting walls
Frown above the waterfalls
Silver and cold;
Timelessly old:
Not that way.
Not toward Death, who, stranger, fairer,
Than any siren turns his head—
Than sea-couched siren, arched with rain-bows,
Where knell the waves of her ocean bed.

Alas, that beauty hangs her flowers
For lure of his demoniac powers:
Alas, that from these eyes should dart
Such piercing summons to thy heart;
That mine in frenzy of longing beats,
Still lusting for these gross deceits.
Not that way!