Littell's Living Age/Volume 144/Issue 1864/Fallen Flowers

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Littell's Living Age by Arthur O'Shaughnessy
Volume 144, Issue 1864 : Fallen Flowers
Originally published in Athenæum.

Fallen Flowers [edit]

One of the workers of the world
Living toiled and toiling died;
     But others worked and the world went on,
And was not changed when he was gone,
A strong arm stricken, a wide sail furled;
     And only a few men sighed.

One of the heroes of the world
     Fought to conquer, then fought to fail,
     And fell down slain in his blood-stained mail,
And over his form they stept;
His cause was lost and his banner furled;
And only a woman wept.

One of the singers among mankind
     Sang healing songs from an o'erwrought heart
But ere men listened the grass and wind
Were wasting the rest unsung like a wave;
     And now of his fame that will ne'er depart
He has never heard in his grave.

One of the women who only love
     Loved and grieved and faded away:
Ah me! are these gone to the God above,
     What more of each can I say?
They are human flowers that flower and fall,
This is the song and the end of them all.