The Wayfarers (Essex)

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Still the white stars burn overhead,
   The green earth swings upon her way
Where are the voices of the dead,
      The hearts of Yesterday?

Drawn by what strange, mysterious power,
   From what dream-world and magic sky
Came they to laugh on earth an hour,
      To weep, to toil, to die.

And whither gone? On what wild flight
   By planet pale and sceptred star?
What realms of sorrow or delight
      Now wander they afar?

Pale Wayfarers, whose noiseless tread
   ls near me as I seem to see
The mighty generations dead,
      And all that yet shall be!

Are Past and Future, then, a breath
   That one vast Present makes its own?
The Angel, Birth, the Shadow, Death;
      Each guard a world unknown.

Wayfarers all, we know not whence
   We came, nor whitherwards we go.
Deep In our hearts a haunting sense
      That somewhere we shall know.

Still the white stars burn overhead,
   The green earth swings upon her way;
Where are the voices of the dead,
      The hearts of yesterday?

This work is in the public domain in Australia because it was created in Australia and the term of copyright has expired.

See Australian Copyright Council - Duration of Copyright (August 2014).


This work is also in the public domain in the United States because it was in the public domain in Australia in 1996, and no copyright was registered in the U.S. (This is the combined effect of Australia having joining the Berne Convention in 1928, and of 17 USC 104A with its critical date of January 1, 1996.)

This work was published before January 1, 1924, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.