The first is a minor re-drafting, the second a cannibalizing of a poem based on a poem by Seneca, and the third new.
Skies are gray today; but what of it?
Every gray sky has blue sky above it,
and warm light;
when gray clouds are done
out will spring the splendid sun,
clear and bright.
Swiftly spring to winter tends
as all things hurry to their place;
but swifter far than to this end
do human hearts to nothing race.
With nothing left, no more than death,
the final goal, so swiftly found,
let craving flee with fleeing breath,
resign to fate with reason sound,
and, if you fear the heart's last beat,
then bury fear within the grave.
Time and night do not retreat.
Death will not in mercy save.
The road before is yet unknown;
who of our spirit's fate is sure?
Ask those now laid beneath the stone,
ask those who never lived nor were --
but still the battle-lines are drawn,
still I stand, though but a husk,
and though there may not be a dawn
I yet may have a hero's dusk.
On the Genealogy of Christ
Long years stretch back
where legends walk and men
who toiled in the lack
and famine born of sin;
long years, and endless days
of men at city gates
as women in sundry ways
bore children and life's weight,
and not one, not one, knew
the things God had in store,
how simple things and true
heaven's promise bore,
not one person dreamed
in households in the land
the light of heaven gleamed
in married life's demand,
that fathers grown from sons
and mothers made from maids
would be the chosen ones,
that in their daily work
to live and to survive
hope would begin to lurk
and glory to revive,
that God, our God, in men
blood and womb would mesh
to make himself our kin,
our cousin, Word made flesh.