Poems (Coates 1916)/Volume I/A Meeting in the Forest

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LEAVING my tent once as the dawn grew fair,
Behold! we stood at gaze, a deer and I,
Regarding one another furtively,—
Too much surprised, too curious for a care
Beyond the miracle that each was there!
An instant, then—as arrow swift doth fly,
Sudden as light that darts across the sky—
Gone was he: and the wood seemed reft and bare.

What startled so the gentle, soft-eyed thing?
'T was but my love his idle fear outran—
Love that would fain have fed him shoots of Spring,
Balsam and cedar from the groves of Pan!
Why fled he? Ah, a voice admonishing
Whispered the free, wild creature: "It is Man!"