The blossom breathes light from the green of the leaf:
its colors are bright, and swift like a thief.
The songs of the birds cascade from the trees;
they mean without words in the tongue of the breeze.
Where is the plough and where is the sword?
They are flown away now like the migrating birds.
Where is the stream and where is the sea?
And where is the dream of the hope to be free?
They are gone and lost; nor can we know
the terrible cost of their death in harsh snow,
but still mid this blight is a tonic for grief:
the blossom breathes light from the green of the leaf.
The starlight bright upon the sea
takes shield and sword and conquers me;
with tide and wave it overcomes,
with rhythmic roll like sounding drums.
Who beneath the moon's bright sliver
would not fall, and quake and quiver
at the silver splendor fair
when burning argent lights the air?
For all this grim and silent host
of stars that shine on sea and coast
are marching in a dauntless manner,
terrible with spear and banner.