Poems (1898)/Dryad Song

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For other versions of this work, see Dryad Song.
Poems (1898) by Florence Earle Coates
Dryad Song

DRYAD SONG

When the wolds of Lycaeus are silvery fair,
 When Maenalian forests are doubtful and dim,
When the hound strains the leash and the wolf quits his lair,
 And the startled fawn flies from the fountain's cool rim;
When with panting delight we impatiently follow
The shuddering stags over hillock and hollow,—
 A form from the shadows comes bounding out,
 And we know it is Pan by his horrid shout.


  A form from the shadows comes bounding out,
  At head of the Satyrs' impetuous rout,
  And we know it is Pan, we know it is Pan,
  We know it is Pan by his horrid shout!


When hidden with Dian in deep woodland bower,
 We loosen her quiver, her sandals unbind,
Bathe her beautiful feet in the pearl-trickling shower,
 Pellucid and pure; when we deftly enwind
The silvery fillet that clasps and caresses
The wonder and wealth of her shadowy tresses,—
 A face through the pleachèd blooms stealthily peers,
 And we know it is Pan by his furry ears.


  A face through the pleachèd blooms stealthily peers,
  Makes mouths to affright us, then mocks at our fears,
  And we know it is Pan, we know it is Pan,
  We know it is Pan by his furry ears!


When, shunning the shafts of Apollo at noon,
 To the kindly green coverts we thankfully creep,
Athirst for fresh runnels, and ready to swoon,—
 Oft, sudden we come to one fallen asleep:
Fallen asleep midst the tangles and grasses
That trip up the confident clown as he passes,
 And fearful we peep at the form supine,
 For we know it is Pan, though he makes no sign.


  And fearful we peep at the form supine,
  With the hoofs of a goat and the brow divine,
  For we know it is Pan, we know it is Pan,
  We know it is Pan, though he makes no sign!


When the shepherds are gone from the sunset hills,
 When evening is mildest in dingle and dale,
Through the hush comes a sound that enraptures and thrills,
 Light wafted along on the tremulous gale:
So passionate-sweet, so wildly out-welling,
That Landon hears it with bosom swelling.
 We listen and sigh,—sigh and listen again,
 For we know it is Pan by that melting strain!


  We listen and sigh,—sigh and listen again,
  While the lithe reeds quiver as if in pain,—
  For we know it is Pan, we know it is Pan,
  We know it is Pan by that melting strain!