Art And Life

Poem By George Sterling

The children of the flesh of men,
They pass from night to night;
They weep and laugh and labor, then
Are lost to human sight.

Musing on such a fate, the mind
Stirs with a tragic sense-
So brave they walk the stage assigned,
So soon they hurry thence.

The children of the artist's brain
Elude mortality,
O'er them Time swings his scythe in
vain,
Till time no more shall be.

In many hearts, in many lands,
They live again their tale,
As, young or old, the Future's hands
Arise to give them hail.

As here the crafts of men assure
Their presence to the years,
So too shall Memory's bronze endure,
With all their smiles and tears.

Such lives within our lives can be;
Such comrades Art can give.
Are men but shadows? is it we
Or they who truly live?

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Other poems of GEORGE STERLING

As It Was In The Beginning

The royal word goes forth, and armies do
The work of devils. Agony and waste
Are on the world, and the grim legions haste

A Compact?

Far up the mountain-side today
The slopes are baked and hot;
I find no shade upon my way,
And water-springs are not.

A Winter Dawn

Untouched by crimson or by gold,
Its pure and fleeting marble rose
Beyond the wall of eastern snows —
Ethereal, Pentelic, cold.

At Midnight

Cast round me now your arms' cool wreath of white
Forget the day's far wakening, and lie
More close! Without, the weary world goes by,

Aftermath

Slowly among the wounded and the slain
The gleaners take the harvest of the kings,
But harvest-song no joyous maiden sings,