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THE CHAMBER OVER THE GATE

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow



In Poetry Pages:

"Recollecting Longfellow"
A selection of poems by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow originally published in The Atlantic Monthly.


Also by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow:

Santa Filomena (1857)
The Children's Hour (1860)
Paul Revere's Ride (1861)
Canto XXIII, from Three Cantos of Dante's Paradiso (1864)
On Translating the Divina Commedia (1864; 1866)
Vox Populi (1871)
The Leap of Roushan Beg (1878)


More poetry from The Atlantic Monthly.
Is it so far from thee
Thou canst no longer see
In the Chamber over the Gate
That old man desolate,
Weeping, and wailing sore
For his son, who is no more?
    O Absalom, my son!

Is it so long ago
That cry of human woe
From the walled city came,
Calling on his dear name,
That it has died away
In the distance of to-day?
    O Absalom, my son!

There is no far nor near,
There is neither there nor here,
There is neither soon nor late,
In that Chamber over the Gate,
Nor any long ago
To that cry of human woe,
    O Absalom, my son!

From the ages that are past
The voice comes like a blast,
Over seas that wreck and drown,
Over tumult of traffic and town;
And from ages yet to be
Come the echoes back to me,
    O Absalom, my son!

Somewhere at every hour
The watchman on the tower
Looks forth, and sees the fleet
Approach of the hurrying feet
Of messengers, that bear
The tidings of despair.
    O Absalom, my son!

He goes forth from the door,
Who shall return no more.
With him our joy departs;
The light goes out in our hearts;
In the Chamber over the Gate
We sit disconsolate.
    O Absalom, my son!

That 't is a common grief
Bringeth but slight relief;
Ours is the bitterest loss,
Ours is the heaviest cross;
And forever the cry will be
"Would God I had died for thee,
    O Absalom, my son!


The Atlantic Monthly; March 1879; "The Chamber Over the Gate," by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow ; Volume 43, No. 3; pages 368-369.
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