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- CROSS ROADS - 1/22 -


CROSS ROADS

by MARGARET E. SANGSTER,

To My Father

NOTE

Some of the verses in this book have been printed by The Christian Herald, Good Housekeeping, Pictorial Review, New Fiction Publishing Company and the C. H. Young Publishing Company. I wish to acknowledge, with thanks, permission to reprint them.

CONTENTS

PREFACE WOOD MAGIC WATERIN' THE HORSES AT DAWN THE HAUNTED HOUSE TO A PAIR OF GLOVES PEAKS LI'L FELLER TO AN OLD SCHOOLHOUSE THE OLD SAILOR THE RIVER AND THE TREE AUTUMN SONG SCARLET FLOWERS ON FIFTH AVENUE FROM A CITY WINDOW THE LADY ACROSS THE COURT TO A PORCELAIN PUPPY DOG COLORS POSSESSION (A TENEMENT MOTHER SPEAKS) LIGHTS OF THE CITY STEEL MUSIC OF THE SLUMS "BE OF GOOD CHEER!" FROM MY ROOM THE BALCONY SCENE A BOWERY PAWN-SHOP SPRING IN THE CITY LI'L EMPTY CLOSET TWO LULLABYS I DREAMED YOUR FACE ANSWER A BABY'S HANDS ALL ALONG THE BROAD HIGHWAY MY MOTHER HEREDITY APRIL THE DESERT PATH (SEVEN SONNETS) SUMMER SONG COMPREHENSION (A MOTHER'S SONG) SINGING ON THE MARCH EASTER RESURRECTION THE QUEEN FRAGMENTS IT'S LOTS OF FUN VALENTINE THE SACRIFICE TO A CERTAIN ROOM OTHER DAYS AT TWILIGHT THERE ARE SUCH WEARY LITTLE LINES THREE SONGS OF AWAKENING IN A CANOE CAPTIVE-HEART EVENING SONG AFTER A DAY OF WAITING INTANGIBLE AT FIRST SIGHT FIVE SONNETS FORGIVEN THE WRITING AT PARTING WHEN I AM OLD THE REFUGE TO DREAM ALONE NOW I MAY SING OF SADNESS WHEN WAR CAME WHEN YOU WENT BY IN MEMORIAM A PEASANT GIRL SINGS TOGETHER JIM-DOG SIX SONNETS AFTER PEACE FROM THE DECK OF A TRANSPORT TIM -- MY BUNKIE A PRAYER FOR OUR BOYS RETURNING PARIS SONG FROM FRANCE FROM PARIS TO CHATEAU-THIERRY A RUINED CHURCH CHILD FACES AFTER HEARING MUSIC COMING FROM A DEVASTATED FARMHOUSE RETURN THE PHOENIX A PRAYER ON EASTER FOR OUR BOYS KILLED IN ACTION INDEPENDENCE DAY, 1919 SHADOWS L'ENVOI

PREFACE

The candlelight sweeps softly through the room, Filling dim surfaces with golden laughter, Touching with mystery each high hung rafter, Cutting a path of promise through the gloom.

Slim little elves dance gently on each taper, Wistful, small ghosts steal out of shrouded corners -- And, like a line of vague enchanted mourners, Great shadows sway like wind-blown sheets of paper.

Gently as fingers drawn across your hair, I see the yellow flicker of it creep -- And in a silence that is kin to sleep, I feel a world away from pain and care.

Roads stretch like arms across the world outside, Roads reach to strife, to happiness, to fame -- Here, in the candlelight, I speak your name, Here we are at life's cross way, side by side!

OH, THERE ARE BROOKS THERE, AND FIELDS THERE AND NOOKS THERE -- NOOKS WHERE A SEEKER MAY FIND FOREST FLOWERS; BLUE IS THE SKY THERE, AND SOFT WINDS CREEP BY THERE, SINGING A SONG THROUGH THE LONG SUMMER HOURS.

WOOD MAGIC

The woods lay dreaming in a topaz dream, And we, who silently roamed hand in hand, Were pilgrims in a strange, enchanted land, Where life was love, and love was all a-gleam.

And old remembered songs came back to greet Our ears, from other worlds of long ago, The worlds that we of earth may seldom know -- And to those songs we timed our vagrant feet.

We did not speak, we did not need to say The thought that lay so buried in our hearts -- The thoughts as sweet as springtime rain, that starts The buds to blossoming in wistful May.

We did not need to speak, we could not speak, The wonder words that we in silence knew -- We walked, as very little children do, Who feel, but cannot tell, the thing they seek.

Beyond a screen of bushes, bending low, We knew that fair Titania lay at rest, Her pillowed head upon her lover's breast, Her kisses swift as birds that come and go!

And underneath a wall of mottled stone, We knew the sleeping beauty lay in state, Entangled in a mist of tears, to wait The prince whose kiss would raise her to a throne.

Perhaps a witch with single flaming eye, Was watching from beneath the hemlock tree; And fairies that our gaze might never see, Laughed at us as we, hand in hand, crept by.

Laughed at us? No, I somehow think they knew That you and I were kin to them that day! I think they knew that we were years away From everything but make-believe, come true.

I think they knew that, singing through the air, There thrilled a vague, insistent, harp-like call -- And that, where woodbine blazed against the wall,


CROSS ROADS - 1/22

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