by Humbert Wolfe (1885 - 1940)

Language: English 
The feathers in a fan
Are not so frail as man;
The green embossed leaf
Than man is no more brief.
His life is not so loud
As the passing of a cloud;
His death is quieter 
Than harebells, when they stir.

The years that have no form
And substance are as warm,
And space has hardly less
Supreme an emptiness,
And yet man being frail
Does on himself prevail,
And with a single thought
Can bring the world to naught.

As being brief he still
Bends to his fleeting will
All time, and makes of it
The shadow of his wit.
Soundless in life and death
Although he vanisheth,
The echo of a song
Makes all the stars a gong.

Cold, void, and yet the grim
Darkness is hot with him,
And space is but the span
Of the long love of man.


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Researcher for this text: Mike Pearson

Text added to the website: 2015-07-28 00:00:00
Last modified: 2015-07-28 15:33:45
Line count: 28
Word count: 144