Against The Cold Pale Sky

A poem by John Frederick Freeman

Against the cold pale sky
The elm tree company rose high.
All the fine hues of day
That flowered so bold had died away.
Only chill blue, faint green,
And deepening dark blue were seen.

There swinging on a bough
That hung or floated broad and low.
The lamp of evening, bright
With more than planetary light,
Was beautiful and free--
A white bird swaying on the tree.

You watched and I watched,
Our eyes and hearts so surely matched.
We saw the white bird leap, leap
Shining in his journey steep
Through that vast cold sky.
Our hearts knew his unuttered cry--

A cry of free delight
Spreading over the clustering night.
Pole Hill grave and stark
Stared at the valley's tidal dark,
The Darent glimmered wan;
But that eager planet winging on,

And singing on, went high
Into the deeps and heights of sky.
And our thoughts rising too
Brightened the mortal darkness through
Trembled and danced and sang
Till the mute invisible heavens rang.

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