The Absence of the Muse

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The Absence of the Muse  (1921) 
by Clark Ashton Smith
1921. First published in Lyric West vol. 1, no. 6.

O Muse, where loiterest thou? In any land
Of Saturn, lit with moons and nenuphars?
Or in what high metropolis of Mars—
Hearing the gongs of dire, occult command,
And bugles blown from strand to unknown strand
Of continents embattled in old wars
That primal kings began? Or on the bars
Of ebbing seas in Venus, from the sand
Of shattered nacre with a thousand hues,
Dost pluck the blossoms of the purple wrack
And roses of blue coral for thy hair?
Or, flown beyond the roaring Zodiac,
Translatest thou the tale of earthly news
And earthly songs to singers of Altair?

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.

The author died in 1961, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 50 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.