IN THIS last glow of the evening’s light,
The harp stands silent in the room
Like an archangel’s wing whose pinions bright
The wind sings through, or like a loom,
A waiting web for weaving song.
The harp stands like a weathered prow
Over which waves and foam were flung
Mast high, when sea and rope and sail
Outsang the sirens off the bow —
Stands like a swan whose dying song
Defeats the moonlit nightingale.
Music is memory that sings
An old enchantment to the ear.
Strike a great chord upon these strings,
It lives one throbbing moment here,
Echoes and fades and then is gone.
So memory is echoed song,
A spray of harp notes in the past
That beauty played — it lingers long,
Fades slowly, yet must end at last.
For some, it is the swan that sang,
For some the angel’s folded wing;
For some the prow with the briny tang,
For some the loom, threaded to sing —
All hoarded deep in the mind’s dark store:
Remembered music heard no more.