The India Wharf
Here in the velvet stillness
The wide sown fields fall to the faint horizon,
Sleeping in starlight…
A year ago we walked in the jangling city
One by one we crossed the avenues,
Rivers of light, roaring in tumult,
And came to the narrow, knotted streets.
Through the tense crowd
We went aloof, ecstatic, walking in wonder,
Unconscious of our motion.
Forever the foreign people with dark, deep-seeing eyes
Passed us and passed.
Lights and foreign words and foreign faces,
I forgot them all;
I only felt alive, defiant of all death and sorrow,
Sure and elated.
That was the gift you gave me…
The streets grew still more tangled,
And led at last to water black and glossy,
Flecked here and there with lights, faint and far off.
There on a shabby building was a sign
“The India Wharf”… and we turned back.
I always felt we could have taken ship
And crossed the bright green seas
To dreaming cities set on sacred streams
Of ivory and scarlet.