A Birthday Song. To S. G.
For ever wave, for ever float and shine
Before my yearning eyes, oh! dream of mine
Wherein I dreamed that time was like a vine,
A creeping rose, that clomb a height of dread
Out of the sea of Birth, all filled with dead,
Up to the brilliant cloud of Death o'erhead.
This vine bore many blossoms, which were years.
Their petals, red with joy, or bleached by tears,
Waved to and fro i' the winds of hopes and fears.
Here all men clung, each hanging by his spray.
Anon, one dropped; his neighbor 'gan to pray;
And so they clung and dropped and prayed, alway.
But I did mark one lately-opened bloom,
Wherefrom arose a visible perfume
That wrapped me in a cloud of dainty gloom.
And rose -- an odor by a spirit haunted --
And drew me upward with a speed enchanted,
Swift floating, by wild sea or sky undaunted,
Straight through the cloud of death, where men are free.
I gained a height, and stayed and bent my knee.
Then glowed my cloud, and broke and unveiled thee.
"O flower-born and flower-souled!" I said,
"Be the year-bloom that breathed thee ever red,
Nor wither, yellow, down among the dead.
"May all that cling to sprays of time, like me,
Be sweetly wafted over sky and sea
By rose-breaths shrining maidens like to thee!"
Then while we sat upon the height afar
Came twilight, like a lover late from war,
With soft winds fluting to his evening star.
And the shy stars grew bold and scattered gold,
And chanting voices ancient secrets told,
And an acclaim of angels earthward rolled.
Sidney Lanier's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (A Birthday Song. To S. G. by Sidney Lanier )
Ella Wheeler Wilcox
(5 November 1850 - 30 October 1919)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(25 July 1956)
(27 October 1914 – 9 November 1953)
Harivansh Rai Bachchan
(27 November 1907 – 18 January 2003)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616)
- Daffodils, William Wordsworth
- Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
- Invictus, William Ernest Henley
- Thanks for Remembering Us, Dana Gioia
- I Am the Only Being Whose Doom, Emily Jane Brontë
- Tarantella, Hilaire Belloc
- Gratefulness, Joseph T. Renaldi
- Jiske Dhun Par Duniya Nache, Kumar Vishwas
Poem of the Day
- The Land, Marites C. Cayetano
- Touch and claim, hasmukh amathalal
- Sonnet: The Awesome Creator, Dr John Celes
- Sashay, Cee Bea
- Snakes are snakes always, gajanan mishra
- Sonnets Uncorseted, Maxine Kumin
- Sky, mina lotfi
- Where are my children, gajanan mishra
- Winter Festival Chant, Luo Zhihai
- A Humble Heroine, Max Plowman