G. W. J. Macfarlane
The shadows lengthen of the elm and lime,
While Night with her dark cloak enfolds the land,
And lights the watch-fires where her sentinels stand
Waiting for dawn. Hushed is the forge of time
Whereon men fashion noble deed and crime,
For Nature's pulse beats thro' the empty strand
And heavy-scented lane, as hand in hand
With leaden-footed Night she threads the dark sublime.
Then from the Seventh Gate's ivory portal hies
Grim Death's twin-sister Sleep, with slumbrous crown
Of drooping poppies dipped in Lethe's stream,
And here a kiss and here a rosy dream
Bestows on mortals, soothing tired eyes
With gracious gifts that pain and sorrow drown.