Thursday, November 23, 2017

NOCTURNE, a poem

Flock of Sheep by
Ferdinand Chaigneau (1830-1906)

THE houseless wind has gone to rest
     In some rude cavern-bed of ocean,
And Neptune smooths his foamy crest,
     At Dian's will, with meek devotion;
The shepherd, gathering his sheep,
          Has brought them safely to the fold,—
          And in my arms my world I hold!

Forespent with hunting on the hill,
     My truant, in the dusk returning,
Finds the lone heart, he left at will,
     With the one worship burning.
The moonlight pales—the shade grows deep—
          The nightingale doth silence break!
          Ah, love, until the lark shall wake,

No homeless wanderer art thou!
     Here, pillowed safe, thy head is lying.
The nightingale! Ah, listen now!
     What passion—death itself defying!
Peace! Stars above us vigil keep,
          While breathes for thee each mystic flower
          A-bloom to-night in Dreamland bower:
"Nocturne" by Florence Earle Coates. Published in Harper's Monthly Magazine (November 1907), Lyrics of Life (1909) and Poems (1916) Volume II.

The Coates' owned Ferdinand Chaigneau's Guarding the Flock, and it was gifted to the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) by Mrs. Coates in 1923.

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