Poems (Coates 1916)/Volume I/Buffalo
SEPTEMBER 6, 1901
ATRANSIENT city, marvelously fair,—
Humane, harmonious, yet nobly free,—
She built for pure delight and memory.
At her command, by lake and garden rare,
Pylon and tower majestic rose in air,
And sculptured forms of grace and symmetry.
Then came a thought of God, and, reverently,—
"Let there be Light!" she said; and Light was there.
O miracle of splendor! Who could know
That Crime, insensate, egoist and blind,
Destructive, causeless, caring but to smite,
Would in its dull Cimmerian gropings find
A sudden way to fill those courts with woe,
And swallow up that radiance in night?