Robert Louis Stevenson
AWAY with funeral music - set
The pipe to powerful lips -
The cup of life's for him that drinks
And not for him that sips.
Upon Concluded Lives
There's nothing cooler falls --
Than Life's sweet Calculations --
The mixing Bells and Palls --
Make Lacerating Tune --
To Ears the Dying Side --
'Tis Coronal -- and Funeral --
Saluting -- in the Road --
A funeral stone
Or verse, I covet none;
But only crave
Of you that I may have
A sacred laurel springing from my grave:
Which being seen
Blest with perpetual green,
May grow to be
Not so much call'd a tree,
As the eternal monument of me.
'Tis good -- the looking back on Grief --
To re-endure a Day --
We thought the Mighty Funeral --
Of All Conceived Joy --
To recollect how Busy Grass
Did meddle -- one by one --
Till all the Grief with Summer -- waved
And none could see the stone.
And though the Woe you have Today
Be larger -- As the Sea
Exceeds its Unremembered Drop --
They're Water -- equally --
? ON CHUFFE, BANKS THE USURER'S KINSMAN.
CHUFFE, lately rich in name, in chattels, goods,
And rich in issue to inherit all,
Ere blacks were bought for his own funeral,
Saw all his race approach the blacker floods :
He meant they thither should make swift repair,
When he made him executor, might be heir.
BARCAROLE ON THE STYX
Fair youth with the rose at your lips,
A riddle is hid in your eyes;
Discard conversational quips,
Give over elaborate disguise.
The rose's funeral breath
Confirms by intuitive fears;
To prove your devotion, Sir Death,
Avaunt for a dozen of years.
But do not forget to array
Your terror in juvenile charms;
I shall deeply regret my delay
If I sleep in a skeleton's arms.
This air is flooded with her.
I am a boy again, and my mother
and I lie on wet grass, laughing.
She startles, turns to
marigolds at my side, saying beautiful, and I can see the red
there is in them.
When she would fall into her thoughts, we'd look for what
distracted her from us.
My mother's gone again as suddenly as ever and, seven months
after the funeral, I go dancing.
I am becoming grateful.
Breathing, thinking, marigolds.
This is a Blossom of the Brain --
A small -- italic Seed
Lodged by Design or Happening
The Spirit fructified --
Shy as the Wind of his Chambers
Swift as a Freshet's Tongue
So of the Flower of the Soul
Its process is unknown.
When it is found, a few rejoice
The Wise convey it Home
Carefully cherishing the spot
If other Flower become.
When it is lost, that Day shall be
The Funeral of God,
Upon his Breast, a closing Soul
The Flower of our Lord.