Thursday, October 4, 2007

One of my favorite poems

THE BRIDGE BUILDER


AN OLD MAN, GOING A LONE HIGHWAY,
CAME AT THE EVENING, COLD AND GRAY,
TO A CHASM, VAST AND DEEP AND WIDE,
THROUGH WHICH WAS FLOWING A SULLEN TIDE.
THE OLD MAN CROSSED IN THE TWLIGHT DIM
THE SULLEN STREAM HAD NO FEARS FOR HIM
BUT HE TURNED WHEN SAFE ON THE OTHER SIDE
AND BUILT A BRIDGE TO SPAN THE TIDE.


“OLD MAN,” SAID A FELLOW PILGRAM NEAR,
“YOU ARE WASTING STRENGTH WITH BUILDING HERE;
YOUR JOURNEY WILL END WITH THE ENDING DAY,
YOU NEVER AGAIN MUST PASS THIS WAY;
YOU HAVE CROSSED THE CHASM, DEEP AND WIDE –
WHY BUILD YOU THE BRIDGE AT THE EVENTIDE?”


THE BUILDER LIFTED HIS OLD GRAY HEAD;
“GOOD FRIEND IN THE PATH I HAVE COME,” HE SAID,
“THERE FOLLOWETH AFTER ME TODAY
A YOUTH WHOSE FEET MUST PASS THIS WAY,
THIS CHASM THAT HAS BEEN NAUGHT TO ME
TO THAT FAIR-HAIRED YOUTH MAY A PITFALL BE
HE, TOO, MUST CROSS IN THE TWILIGHT DIM;
GOOD FRIEND, I AM BUILDING THIS BRIDGE FOR HIM.”

2 comments:

secretariat7 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
secretariat7 said...

Found this one, too, a little different but related:


Beattie is Three

At the top of the stairs
I ask for her hand. O.K.
She gives it to me.
How her fist fits my palm,
A bunch of consolation.
We take our time
Down the steep carpetway
As I wish silently
That the stairs were endless.

Adrian Mitchell