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Siege Perilous Post by :mekell Category :Poems Author :Edwin Arlington Robinson Date :March 2011 Read :2848

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Siege Perilous

Long warned of many terrors more severe
To scorch him than hell's engines could awaken,
He scanned again, too far to be so near,
The fearful seat no man had ever taken.

So many other men with older eyes
Than his to see with older sight behind them
Had known so long their one way to be wise,--
Was any other thing to do than mind them?

So many a blasting parallel had seared
Confusion on his faith,--could he but wonder
If he were mad and right, or if he feared
God's fury told in shafted flame and thunder?

There fell one day upon his eyes a light
Ethereal, and he heard no more men speaking;
He saw their shaken heads, but no long sight
Was his but for the end that he went seeking.

The end he sought was not the end; the crown
He won shall unto many still be given.
Moreover, there was reason here to frown:
No fury thundered, no flame fell from heaven.

(The end)
Edwin Arlington Robinson's poem: Siege Perilous

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Think not, because I wonder where you fled, That I would lift a pin to see you there; You may, for me, be prowling anywhere, So long as you show not your little head: No dark and evil story of the dead Would leave you less pernicious or less fair-- Not even Lilith, with her famous hair; And Lilith was the devil, I have read. I cannot hate you,

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The ghost of Ninon would be sorry now To laugh at them, were she to see them here, So brave and so alert for learning how To fence with reason for another year. Age offers a far comelier diadem Than theirs; but anguish has no eye for grace, When time's malicious mercy cautions them To think a while of number and of space. The burning hope, the worn expectancy,