The Hanging of the Crane
The Hanging of the Crane
, 1899
Open Edition Print

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The Hanging of the Crane

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The Complete Poetical Works

I
The lights are out, and gone are all the guests
That thronging came with merriment and jests
To celebrate the Hanging of the Crane
In the new house,--into the night are gone;
But still the fire upon the hearth burns on,
And I alone remain.
O fortunate, O happy day,
When a new household finds its place
Among the myriad homes of earth,
Like a new star just sprung to birth,
And rolled on its harmonious way
Into the boundless realms of space!
So said the guests in speech and song,
As in the chimney, burning bright,
We hung the iron crane to-night,
And merry was the feast and long.
II
And now I sit and muse on what may be,
And in my vision see, or seem to see,
Through floating vapors interfused with light,
Shapes indeterminate, that gleam and fade,
As shadows passing into deeper shade
Sink and elude the sight.
For two alone, there in the hall,
As spread the table round and small;
Upon the polished silver shine
The evening lamps, but, more divine,
The
light of love shines over all;
Of love, that says not mine and thine,
But ours, for ours is thine and mine.
They want no guests, to come between
Their tender glances like a screen,
And tell them tales of land and sea,
And whatsoever may betide
The great, forgotten world outside;
They want no guests; they needs must be
Each other's own best company.

 



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