by ARCHIBALD MACLEISH
For the first time in five years, ARCHIBALD MACLEISH was free for his own work at his summer home in Conway, Massachusetts, where these lyrics were written. As this goes to press he is leaving for Paris as Deputy Chairman of the U.S. delegation to UNESCO. — THE EDITOR

1

WE LAY beneath the alder tree
Her breast she leaned upon my hand
The alder leaf moved over me
The sun moved over on the land
Her mouth she pressed upon my mouth
I felt the leaf beat in her breast
I felt the sun move on the year
But nearer than the leaf the sun
I felt the love go deep in me
That has no season in the earth
That has no time of spring or birth
That cannot flower like a tree
Or like one die
but only be

2

Take it up in your arms I said
Let it lie where it must
At your side on your breast
Let it rest
Love has life not of love
But of us I said
Let it lie where it must
Let it be what it is she said
Let it wait as it must
It will choose soon or late
Let it wait
Love has life not of us
But of love she said
Let it lie where it must

3

Lovers who must say farewell
When the road has reached the trees
Lovers who have all to tell
Where the road runs out of sight
In the green beyond the leaves
The green cove below the light
Lovers who must say farewell
When the road has reached the trees
Touching hand to hand to speak
All their love has ever known
Find no words to speak and say
Love. . . . O love. . . .
and each alone
Walk together toward the trees
Where the road runs out of sight
In the green beyond the leaves
The green cove below the light