206 THE GRAY BOATMAN.
And if I come then to the May-buds no more, But sleep with the leaves on the October shore, I ll fold up my hands as I cling to the mast, Looking up to the flag till the earth-lights are passed.
��THE GRAY BOATMAN.
��HITHER, oh whither, boatman,
With your garb of hodden gray? From whence, and what your errand ? And where will you land, I pray?"
��" I come with the king s commission,
Still seeking if I may find On shore, in the hall, or hamlet, One ever-contented mind.
"I come from the mountain-streamlet;
I ve carried my gray canoe Around where the rocks are roughest ; The rapids I ve battled through.
I ve been at the woodman s cottage,
I ve answered the castle s call ;
But the jewel that tests the question
Grows paler before them all."
Then I saw on his broad breast lying An opal without its spark,