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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps. A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes. 1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889


By Richard Watson Gilder (1844–1909)

THE POET died last night;

Outworn his mortal frame.

He hath fought well the fight,

And won a deathless name.

Bring laurel for his bier,

And flowers to deck the hearse.

The tribute of a tear

To his immortal verse.

Hushed is that piercing strain,—

Who heard, for pleasure wept.

His were our joy and pain:

He sang—our sorrow slept.

Yes, weep for him; no more

Shall such high songs have birth:

Gone is the harp he bore

Forever from the earth.

Weep, weep, and scatter flowers

Above his precious dust:

Child of the heavenly powers,—

Divine, and pure, and just.

Weep, weep—for when to-night

Doth hoot the hornèd owl,

Beneath the pale moon’s light

The human ghouls will prowl.

What creatures those will throng

Within the sacred gloom,

To do our poet wrong—

To break the sealèd tomb?

Not the great world and gay

That pities not, nor halts

By thoughtless night or day—

But, O more sordid-false,

His trusted friend and near,

To whom his spirit moved;

The brother he held dear;

The woman that he loved.