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  ― 104 ―

The Law

RED, blood-red feathers lying on the road,
But the sky-ways keep no stain
Of loss or bitter gain,
Of the grim toll of Pain,
Only red feathers lying on the road
Remain!

Nature her olden cruel secret keeps;
Grey earth and brooding sky,
And old winds keening cry,
Like an eternal “Why?”—
While trembling life travailing creeps
To die!

Poor blood-red feathers lying on the road,
Mute witness of the Law
That nerved the tiger's claw,
That fanged the grey wolf's jaw,
And drives blind Europe groaning 'neath a goad
Blood-raw!

Poor soft red feathers lying in the dust,
In your bright span of days
Gave ye due meed of praise
To That Which smiles and slays
And holds Its smiling and Its slaying just—
Always?

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