AUTUMN WALK BY THE SEA.

IN the wan sunlight, when the day was ending,

The chilly autumn day,

I walkt where waves dasht white and lonely, wending

Mine unforgotten way

Across the long, low sands that hem the sea,

Where in the summer days one walkt with me.

Dark clouds blew up from eastward, and the loud land

Rang with the calling wind;

The last red rays lagg'd in a desert cloudland

Of desert west behind;

And on the dull sea-line a single sail

Shone red, far-off, and faded, faint and pale.

The twilight follow'd hard the trailing sunlight

Across the yellow sands;

I walkt and was in darkness, lacking one light,

And empty were my hands.

Yet ever from the wailing sea there came

Voices that echoed one remember'd name!

The sea's face only, veil'd in desolation,

And sad with foam like tears!

A face all wrinkled from its prime creation

With burdens of the years, -

With grievous burdens; and for their distress,

The gray lips part in sighs of bitterness.

O sea, thou knowest only what hath vanisht,

Not what is yet to be;

From thy wan face hath time the last smile banisht -

Thou hast no hope, O sea!

Thy waysare dark; and on the darkening shore

Thy wet white feet stumble forevermore!