The Eavesdropper

by BLISS CARMAN (1861-1929)

In a still room at hush of dawn,
   My Love and I lay side by side
And heard the roaming forest wind
   Stir in the paling autumn-tide.

I watched her earth-brown eyes grow glad
   Because the round day was so fair;
While memories of reluctant night
   Lurked in the blue dusk of her hair.

Outside, a yellow maple tree,
   Shifting upon the silvery blue
With tiny multitudinous sound,
   Rustled to let the sunlight through.

The livelong day the elvish leaves
   Danced with their shadows on the floor;
And the lost children of the wind
   Went straying homeward by our door.

And all the swarthy afternoon
   We watched the great deliberate sun
Walk through the crimsoned hazy world,
   Counting his hilltops one by one.

Then as the purple twilight came
   And touched the vines along our eaves,
Another Shadow stood without
   And gloomed the dancing of the leaves.

The silence fell on my Love’s lips;
   Her great brown eyes were veiled and sad
With pondering some maze of dream,
   Though all the splendid year was glad.

Restless and vague as a gray wind
   Her heart had grown,— she knew not why.
But hurrying to the open door,
   Against the verge of western sky

I saw retreating on the hills,
   Looming and sinister and black,
The stealthy figure swift and huge
   Of One who strode and looked not back.

Bliss Carman

In the last 20 years of his life, Bliss Carman resided in New Canaan, CT and he died there on June 8, 1929 at the age of 68. By this time, he was Canada’s best known poet. His body was returned home and interred in the Forest Hill Cemetery in Fredericton, New Brunswick.

Bliss Carman Contemporaries
Sam Walter Foss
Ernest L. Thayer
Oscar Wilde
William Butler Yeats

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