The midnight folk, the eerie goblin-kind,
Leap upon drums and dance along the wind,
Pluck at the strings until the darkness fills
With black wings teeming from the tunnelled hills,
And shapes that gibber against the coming of day
Until the day comes, and gloomy array
A mood passes and a voice sings
Of passion's hunger and of beauty's thrall
And the faint shades of unremembered things
That fade at last for ever, lonely beyond recall.
Through lands fantastic and lands a-shimmer with heat,
Dark forests and lone plains benumbed with frost
(Icicles glittering over the violins)
The mind has travelled afar -- then a paean rings
In praise of the dancing, laughter and strength of Man.
And, all the while, the blind weaver of these dreams
Listens and dreams.
Slowly a hand falls, the music ends.
From the peopled hall
Call upon call of praise and love
To the ringing roof ascends.
Under a lighted dome
The wanderer comes home:
His country makes amends.
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