Black Vesper's Pageants.

A poem by Madison Julius Cawein

The day, all fierce with carmine, turns
An Indian face towards Earth and dies;
The west, like some gaunt vase, inurns
Its ashes under smouldering skies,
Athwart whose bowl one red cloud streams,
Strange as a shape some Aztec dreams.

Now shadows mass above the world,
And night comes on with wind and rain;
The mulberry-colored leaves are hurled
Like frantic hands against the pane.
And through the forests, bending low,
Night stalks like some gigantic woe.

In hollows where the thistle shakes
A hoar bloom like a witch's-light,
From weed and flower the rain-wind rakes
Dead sweetness as a wildman might,
From out the leaves, the woods among,
Dig some dead woman, fair and young.

Now let me walk the woodland ways,
Alone! except for thoughts, that are
Akin to such wild nights and days;
A portion of the storm that far
Fills Heaven and Earth tumultuously,
And my own soul with ecstasy.

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