John Greenleaf Whittier
A Lay Of Old Time
One morning of the first sad Fall,
Poor Adam and his bride
Sat in the shade of Eden's wall--
But on the outer side.
She, blushing in her fig-leaf suit
For the chaste garb of old;
He, sighing o'er his bitter fruit
For Eden's drupes of gold.
Behind them, smiling in the morn,
Their forfeit garden lay,
Before them, wild with rock and thorn,
The desert stretched away.
They heard the air above them fanned,
A light step on the sward,
And lo! they saw before them stand
The angel of the Lord!
'Arise,' he said, 'why look behind,
When hope is all before,
And patient hand and willing mind,
Your loss may yet restore?
'I leave with you a spell whose power
Can make the desert glad,
And call around you fruit and flower
As fair as Eden had.
'I clothe your hands with power to lift
The curse from off your soil;
Your very doom shall seem a gift,
Your loss a gain through Toil.
'Go, cheerful as yon humming-bees,
To labor as to play.'
White glimmering over Eden's trees
The angel passed away.
The pilgrims of the world went forth
Obedient to the word,
And found where'er they tilled the earth
A garden of the Lord!
The thorn-tree cast its evil fruit
And blushed with plum and pear,
And seeded grass and trodden root
Grew sweet beneath their care.
We share our primal parents' fate,
And, in our turn and day,
Look back on Eden's sworded gate
As sad and lost as they.
But still for us his native skies
The pitying Angel leaves,
And leads through Toil to Paradise
New Adams and new Eves!
John Greenleaf Whittier'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 Lay Of Old Time by John Greenleaf Whittier )
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(7 May 1861 – 7 August 1941)
Harivansh Rai Bachchan
(27 November 1907 – 18 January 2003)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616)
(2 June 1840 – 11 January 1928)
(13 February 1879 - 2 March 1949)
(31 October 1795 – 23 February 1821)
- Daffodils, William Wordsworth
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Fire and Ice, Robert Frost
- Invictus, William Ernest Henley
- If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
- Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- A Poison Tree, William Blake
- Jiske Dhun Par Duniya Nache, Kumar Vishwas
- TRUST COMMITMENT & LOVE, Tom Zart
Poem of the Day
- Interviewed, Nassy Fesharaki
- What Can The Heart Do If It Falls In Lov.., Bijay Kant Dubey
- Gypsy Songs, Ben Jonson
- A hope that is not available, MOHAMMAD SKATI
- INSTRUCTIONS TO LIFE, Michael P. Johnson
- An English Girl, So Beautiful And Lovely!, Bijay Kant Dubey
- Peace, hafiz qasim
- While Strolling Down the Beach Today, Kenn Nesbitt
- I Am A Don, I Am A Don. Yes, Boss, You A.., Bijay Kant Dubey
- In a Nutshell, hafiz qasim