The Voice of Things

Forty Augusts--aye, and several more--ago,
   When I paced the headlands loosed from dull employ,
The waves huzza'd like a multitude below
   In the sway of an all-including joy
      Without cloy.

Blankly I walked there a double decade after,
   When thwarts had flung their toils in front of me,
And I heard the waters wagging in a long ironic laughter
   At the lot of men, and all the vapoury
      Things that be.

Wheeling change has set me again standing where
   Once I heard the waves huzza at Lammas-tide;
But they supplicate now--like a congregation there
   Who murmur the Confession--I outside,
      Prayer denied.

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