Yeats' FAIRY AND FOLK
TALES OF THE IRISH PEASANTRY
I heard the dogs howl in the moonlight night;
I went to the window to see
All the Dead that ever I knew
Going one by one and two by
On they pass'd, and on they pass'd;
Townsfellows all, from first to
Born in the moonlight of the lane,
Quench'd in the heavy shadow
Schoolmates, marching as when we play'd
At soldiers once--but now more
Those were the strangest sight to me
Who were drown'd, I knew, in
the awful sea.
Straight and handsome folk; bent and weak, too;
Some that I loved, and
gasp'd to speak to;
Some but a day in their churchyard bed;
Some that I
had not known were dead.
A long, long crowd--where each seem'd lonely,
Yet of them all there was
one, one only,
Raised a head or look'd my way.
She linger'd a moment,--she
might not stay.
How long since I saw that fair pale face!
Ah! Mother dear! might I only
My head on thy breast, a moment to rest,
While thy hand on my
tearful cheek were prest!
On, on, a moving bridge they made
Across the moon-stream, from shade to
Young and old, women and men;
Many long-forgot, but remember'd
And first there came a bitter laughter;
A sound of tears the moment
And then a music so lofty and gay,
That every morning, day by
I strive to recall it if I may.