Poems by Abram Joseph Ryan

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Silently -- shadowly -- some lives go,
Be you near, or be you far,
Before an Altar
They ask me to sing them a Christmas song
Crushed with a burden of woe,
Star! Star, why dost thou shine
"A land without ruins is a land without memories --
The brook that down the valley
He walked alone beside the lonely sea,
Adown the valley dripped a stream,
One bright memory shines like a star
His face was sad; some shadow must have hung
Did I dream of a song? or sing in a dream?
Those hearts of ours -- how strange! how strange!
"O Songs!" I said:
Pure faced page! waiting so long
Hearts that are great beat never loud,
The summer rose the sun has flushed
There never was a valley without a faded flower,
I saw his face to-day; he looks a chief
I nearly died, I almost touched the door
Into a temple vast and dim,
Dreary! weary!
Better than grandeur, better than gold,
Do we weep for the heroes who died for us,
Ah! days so dark with death's eclipse!
Out of the shadows of sadness,
I love my mother, the wildwood,
Waileth a woman, "O my God!"
The moan of a wintry soul
Over the silent sea of sleep,
Go, words of mine! and if you live
Unroll Erin's flag! fling its folds to the breeze!
"Far Away!" what does it mean?
They are so sad to say: no poem tells
Dark! Dark! Dark!
The priests stood waiting in the holy place,
Two lights on a lowly altar;
"To Rev. Father E. Sourin, S.J., from A. J. Ryan; first, in memory of some happy hours passed in his company at Loyola College, Baltimore; next, in appreciation of a character of strange beautifulness, known of God, but hidden from men; and last, but
The Master's voice was sweet:
Deep in the dark I hear the feet of God:
S. M. A.
O Heart of Three-in-the evening,
Thine eyes are dim:
Some find work where some find rest,
Go! heart of mine! the way is long --
Thou art sleeping, brother, sleeping
Father Keeler died February 28, 1880, in Mobile, Ala.
Young as the youngest who donned the Gray,
Superior General of the Congregation of the Mission and of the Sisters of Charity.
In the eclipses of your soul, and when you cry
At last the dream of youth
What has been will be,
Between two pillared clouds of gold
Winter on the mountains
To the Children of Mary of the Cathedral of Mobile
A baby played with the surplice sleeve
Two loves came up a long, wide aisle,
Go down where the wavelets are kissing the shore,
Sometimes, from the far-away,
The death of men is not the death
The world is sweet, and fair, and bright,
We borrow,
When I am dead, and all will soon forget
Gather the sacred dust
They come, as the breeze comes over the foam,
The olden golden stories of the world,
Oft within our little cottage,
Sweet, blessed beads! I would not part
Each year cometh with all his days,
And "Happy! Happy! Happy!"
Betimes, I seem to see in dreams
I sit to-night by the firelight,
Sometimes a single hour
Old trees, old trees! in your mystic gloom
Only a Dream!
Lost! Lost! Lost!
Farewell! that word has broken hearts
Life's Vesper-bells are ringing
Sometimes the Saviour sleeps, and it is dark;
Poets are strange -- not always understood
"My Sister"
My feet are wearied, and my hands are tired,
[Written after the yellow fever epidemic of 1878.]
Only a few more years!
We laugh when our souls are the saddest,
One idle day --
To-day a bird on wings as white as foam
Far from "where the roses rest",
Strange Sea! why is it that you never rest?
When falls the soldier brave,
In the valley of my life
'Twas the dusky Hallowe'en --
I walk down the Valley of Silence --
A river went singing adown to the sea,
Thou wert once the purest wave
Sweet heaven's smile
Back to where the roses rest
First champion of the Crucified!
They come to ev'ry life -- sad, sunless days,
Weary hearts! weary hearts! by the cares of life oppressed,
The tears that trickled down our eyes,
The sunshine of thy Father's fame
Furl that Banner, for 'tis weary;
Fell the snow on the festival's vigil
Land of the gentle and brave!
The waves were weary, and they went to sleep;
How swift they go,
The shades of night were brooding
The Poet is the loneliest man that lives;
Not as of one whom multitudes admire,
Lines addressed to the daughter of Richard Dalton Williams.
My brow is bent beneath a heavy rod!
Some reckon their age by years,
Nature is but the outward vestibule
Flower! Flower, why repine?
Forth from its scabbard, pure and bright,
Two little children played among the flowers,
By sound of name, and touch of hand,
Just when the gentle hand of spring
Your past is past and never to return,
Brief while they last,
God knows all things -- but we
Out of the silences wake me a song,
"What ails the world?" the poet cried;
At the golden gates of the visions
Some day in Spring,
Wilt pray for me?
The winds are singing a death-knell
Gone! and they return no more,
From the mystic sidereal spaces,