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Margaritae Sorori -- William Ernest Henley

Guest poem sent in by Flavia Iacobaeus
(Poem #1206) Margaritae Sorori
 A late lark twitters from the quiet skies:
 And from the west,
 Where the sun, his day's work ended,
 Lingers as in content,
 There falls on the old, gray city
 An influence luminous and serene,
 A shining peace.

 The smoke ascends
 In a rosy-and-golden haze. The spires
 Shine and are changed. In the valley
 Shadows rise. The lark sings on. The sun,
 Closing his benediction,
 Sinks, and the darkening air
 Thrills with a sense of the triumphing night--
 Night with her train of stars
 And her great gift of sleep.

 So be my passing!
 My task accomplish'd and the long day done,
 My wages taken, and in my heart
 Some late lark singing,
 Let me be gather'd to the quiet west,
 The sundown splendid and serene,
-- William Ernest Henley
This is one image I've always loved! As clear and peaceful as Tennyson's
"Crossing the Bar". But does anyone know what the title refers to?
['margaritae' = pearl, 'sorori' = sisters. leaves me no wiser than before, i'm
afraid - martin]


Here's what the Columbia Encyclopedia has to say about Henley;

Henley, William Ernest

   1849–1903, English poet, critic, and editor. Although crippled by
tuberculosis of the bone, he led an active, vigorous life. As editor of
several reviews successively, he introduced to the public a galaxy of
young writers, including Kipling, Wells, and Yeats. Although his verse
is noted for its bravado and spirit of defiance, his poetry could be
equally delicate and lyrical. His best-known poems include "England, My
England," and "Invictus," which concludes with the famous lines "I am the
master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul." Henley's volumes of verse
include A Book of Verses (1888), The Song of the Sword (1892), and For
Sake (1900). He collaborated on four plays with Robert Louis Stevenson, with
whom he enjoyed a long friendship.

147 comments: ( or Leave a comment )

William King said...

I do not know if Flavia's question about the meaning of "Margaritae
Sorori" has been answered yet -- her question was about 18 months ago,
but I just ran across it. Anyway, the Latin simply means "To His Sister

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