Alone I sat; the summer day
Had died in smiling light away;
I saw it die, I watched it fade
From the misty hill and breezeless glade.
And thoughts in my soul were rushing,
And my heart bowed beneath their power;
And tears within my eyes were gushing
Because I could not speak the feeling,
The solemn joy around me stealing,
In that divine, untroubled hour.
I asked myself, O why has Heaven
Denied the precious gift to me,
The glorious gift to many given,
To speak their thoughts in poetry?
Dreams have encircled me, I said,
From careless childhood's sunny time;
Visions by ardent fancy fed
Since life was in its morning prime.
But now, when I had hoped to sing,
My fingers strike a tuneless string;
And still the burden of the strain—
I strive no more, 'tis all in vain.