Moss And Fern

A poem by Madison Julius Cawein

Where rise the brakes of bramble there,
Wrapped with the trailing rose;
Through cane where waters ramble, there
Where deep the sword-grass grows,
Who knows?
Perhaps, unseen of eyes of man,
Hides Pan.

Perhaps the creek, whose pebbles make
A foothold for the mint,
May bear, where soft its trebles make
Confession, some vague hint,
(The print,
Goat-hoofed, of one who lightly ran,)
Of Pan.

Where, in the hollow of the hills
Ferns deepen to the knees,
What sounds are those above the hills,
And now among the trees?
No breeze!
The syrinx, haply, none may scan,
Of Pan.

In woods where waters break upon
The hush like some soft word;
Where sun-shot shadows shake upon
The moss, who has not heard
No bird!
The flute, as breezy as a fan,
Of Pan?

Far in, where mosses lay for us
Still carpets, cool and plush;
Where bloom and branch and ray for us.
Sleep, waking with a rush
The hush
But sounds the satyr hoof a span
Of Pan.

O woods, whose thrushes sing to us,
Whose brooks dance sparkling heels;
Whose wild aromas cling to us,
While here our wonder kneels,
Who steals
Upon us, brown as bark with tan,
But Pan?

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