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"GRAY RAIN ON THE DARK BROWN SHINGLES"
Gray rain on the dark lor own shingles, And a. whisper of vanished days, The lisp of a gliding river, Fern folk in the woodland ways; The call of a waking "black-bird In the gray of the "breaking dawn, The purple glint of the vervain On the green of a dewy lawn;
The kindly tread of the thunder
Round the "brow of a rock-hound height,
A dead tree etched in "blackness
On the rim of the sunset light;
The sound of a lonely cock-crow
Mid the moonlit silence deep,
Where the scattered brown-thatched village
On the hillside lies asleep:
Gray rain on the dark "brown shingles As the dawn is breaking clear, Like the multitudinous foot-steps Of spirits passing here, Do you weep for a vanished season? Are your tears for a past forlorn? Or the crystal christening symbol On the "brow, of a day that is born?
AT THE END OP THE.DAY
0 the young birds all are calling In the pleasant northern land, When the long, long shadows falling Show that sunset is at hand;
0 the white roads o'er the commons Seek the bosom of the town, Prom the coast they wander upward, Prom the hills they wander down;
But the stir has left the market And it ebbs along the way, For the heart of man turns homeward At the ending of the day.
While the cowboy's slow hallooings For the pasture echoes grope, Like a hand the lengthening shadows; Towards the east horizon slope;
And the cool pure air is brimming, Chaliced in the sunlit air, Like a wine exhilarating, Like a wine exceeding rare:
Day, with caravans of splendour, Enters on the wastes of Night, With Imperial standards streaming Garlanded with sunset light;
And he lifts the sun-gemmed chalice, Pledging Earth a sure return, When across the east horizon .'. Glories of the dawn shall burn.
In her slumber Earth is smiling; On the long, dark eastern line And beyond the hill-serrations Soft illuminations shine.
Swift creations permeating, Wide and far, the darkened air. With a spirit touch translating Dreams to radiations rare.
Throbbings of a soul-pulsation All aglow from sunken dreams, Soundless merriment upwelling Through swift-born, swift-dying gleams.
All the black lake of the valley, All. the mountains' towering gloom In that subtle lumination Into mystic beauty bloom:
Magic flowers rarely springing Asphodels on fields of sleep, Inner radiance from the Spirit, Founts below Day's, deepest deep.
Earth is; dreaming; and, expanding Like a quivering bubble blown, Never perfectly unfettered, Soundlessly her dreams are shown.
And men say "'tis summer lightning", As they watch the pulse of light With its soft illumination Mid the silent world of night.
Ingle s ide
(Composed during a sleepless night).
Soft sleep,that gently falls, like flakes of snow
Making a white world whiter, and more still; Soothingj as Jesu's touch soothed long agOj. Calming the fevered heart, the thought-racked will:
Cod's mystery His sacrament with Man, His recreating pause mid Life's outcry; Here deep-eyed Mercy frees the hardened soul, His Love decrees that here our cares shall die<>
DRY HARBOUR, ST0 ANN, JAMAICA.
At this place where Columbus landed, in lk9h there was a settlement of Arawak Indians, a. race now practically extinct,
A girdle of green beauty clasps her breasts; O'er the blue sea, with limpid Indian eyes, She gazes; reef-lines foam 'gainst far-off skies; ^he white sands, crescentwise, curve east and
Locked from the terror of the storm's unrest,
And devastation of disastrous seas,
Here only, haunted by the moaning breeze,
The tempest's conscience havens, guilt-opprest.
The wharf's dark, gaunt projection feels the
As the slow-swinging surges seek the shores-She sees not these, nor the black>dripping
Her eyes pursue the years that are no more: Seawrack and flotsam at her feet are cast Whose sad, clear, steadfast gaze sees but the
WILLOW OF INGLESIDE
Vtflllow of Ingleside, soft is thy sigh
When the gray beautiful dawn-light is nigh,
When, heavy-laden, the twilight is here
With trailing garments darkened by Pear.
Ocean's- deep surgings in shadow of sound
Into mysterious music are bound;
Here the wave plunges, there the gull soars,
Yonder sea-lispings lap the white shores;
By go the wraiths of the thunderous tides,
Sadly refluent the ebbing subsides:
Wastes of gray water, sunsets of blood,
White pluming foam on a storm-shaken flood
These are the ghosts on thy music that go,
Willow of Ingleside, murmuring low.
For from the twilight and out of the dawn
Unto you magical powers are drawn,
Harper of melody shadowy sweet,
Chords of dim harmony hauntingly fleet.
SUMMER LIGHTNING ON A MOONLIGHT NIGHT
Liguanea, wide arena Mountains-pent by many a. height, Here tonight two gladiators Mutely wage soundless fight.
Luna with her net of silver,
Subtle meshes, flung to snare
Grim old Earth, with shield of shadow,.
Roughly brave, his javelin bare.
Silently the folks of heaven Watch the combat on the plain; The Net-Throwe^s crafty vantage; Then the Javelin-Wielder's gain.
Eastward far, chance lightnings glimmer, Burnished armour gleaming stirred, Some sky legionary turning With his neighbour then conferred.
Swopped a comment on the contest.
As he moved his armour glowed:
Through our night, like Summer Lightning
Polished greaves, a ripple, stirred.
JAMAICA TOM REDO AM
Liguanea., a. plain in Jamaica.
LOVE'S DARK ROBED SISTER
He takes from us our atom of delight. Strength is His name and still His:' essence .Love,
We see not and we cannot understando He rules a Universe: intricate ways, Mighty Magnificences, and Powers; dread, Blind we before the Mystery that brings us
Still while tears fall, we' seek to own Thy
Resigned, Creator, Guide, Redeemer, All we understand not: by Thy grace we live, We must resigned be Peace be ours Our loved one, goes, sorrow, our Sister comes With her dark robe, silent and Mystical Behind the Veil, His meaning learnt, She knows His purposed aim, His far and final
London, 16th July 1923
TO A MAIDEN
Dark hair and eyes, of limpid brown. As frank, as modest as the dawn, A maiden heart (whose only gems) The jewels of Purity adorn;
0 rich in youth, in artless grace, In loyal faith to Duty's round. Where in the bounds of Time or Space Shall wealth more measureless be found?
That thought of me will in that heart Remain, a talisman shall be, Amid the world's confusing mart And on Life's loud, tempestuous sea.
Its magic touch mid devious ways Shall guide the soul to Truth and light It shall renerve the shrinking heart That wavers in the clanging fight.
Men still will die for hearth and home That in their shelter there may shine The flowers of Maidenhood, the grace Of gentle spirits such as thine.
The Latin name of the Mosquito Hawk or the Gimme-me-hitp
0 please have you met with the Pyramidig?
The Pyramidig? Up there in the twilight he s dancing a jig, He's ahout and above and betwixt and between, The funniest fellow that ever Was seen.
He is away to the sky ere the stars come
At the shadowy end of a long summer's day;
He swoops- to the earth, and he mounts to the sky,
And "Gimme-me-bit" is his mystical cry.
0 what does he mean by his "Gimme-me-bits" And his bolts and his brakes and his jaggedy
He snaps off at angles obtuse and acute, At times he is crying, at times he is mute, And mildly surprised are the golden-eyed stars;. At the Pyramidig, his jabs and his jars.
The folks who should know what he means theydeclare That a Goblin has saddled him up in the air And wants to be carried to Trim-come-a-trig, The land of the Goblin and Tarra-de-dig;
But the Pyramidig he wants to be free To look for his supper like you or like me, And so he bolts off in those angles acute, Crying his "Gimme-me-bit" or is viciously
So he holts and he jolts and he jags and he jigs, For he don't want to go to no Tarra-de-digs. He circles and twists and holts through the sky, And "Gimme-me-bit" is his clamorous cry While he twists and he turns and buck-jumps as he tries
To fling that old Goblin right out in the skies,
And that's why he dances his curious jig
The Pyramidig. As we see him performing his curious jig And his odd flappulations the Pyramidig. Have you ever beheld his contrarious jig? 0 the Pyramidig, the Pyramidig.
0 I wonder if ever the Goblin astride of the
Pyramidig will finish his ride, And enter the land of the Tarra-de-dig On the back of the curvetting Pyramidig.
' Tis a day of days for walking When cloud-mists the sunlight soften And the wind is rushing past us, And it surges like the seas 0 all the dark wood? mutter As they toss and sigh and utter The voice of their complaining In the music of their leaves;
Por the Wind sweeps o'er the pastures Prom the .great "blue heights afar Prom the land heyond the pastures. Where the virgin forests are And it comes with sounding anthems And it sings in haunting strain To the valleys and the pastures Breathing gladness, "breathing pain,,
Permission bo publish these poems which have only recently come to light was kindly given "by the following owners of the original manuscripts:-
Mrs0 Lena Murray a relative of the poet, to whom the first six poems were dedicated under the title "Brown's Town Ballads"e
Miss Iris Arnett from whom the poems "Pyramidig" and "To A Maiden" were obtained*
Mrs, HaA. Darby who presented "Cissie's Poem"
"Summer Lightning On A Moonlight Night" and "Love's Dark Robed Sister" are from manuscripts presented to the Jamaica Library Service by Mrs. H. P Jacobs, a. niece of the poet.
The medallion on the cover is the work of Mrs. Aubrey Wiles of the Institute of Jamaica.
The hooklet has: been produced by the Jamaica Library Service for the Poetry League of Jamaica, on the occasion of the unveiling of the Medallion at the Institute of Jamaica on the 18th October, 1958. ,