I am the nearest nightingale
That singeth in Eden after you;
And I am singing loud and true,
And sweet, --I do not fail.
I sit upon a cypress bough,
Close to the gate, and I fling my song
Over the gate and through the mail
Of the warden angels marshall'd strong, --
Over the gate and after you!
And the warden angels let it pass,
Because the poor brown bird, alas,
Sings in the garden, sweet and true.
And I build my song of high pure notes,
Note over note, height over height,
Till I strike the arch of the Infinite,
And I bridge abysmal agonies
With strong, clear calms of harmonies, --
And something abides, and something floats,
In the song which I sing after you.
Fare ye well, farewell!
The creature-sounds, no longer audible,
Expire at Eden's door.
Each footstep of your treading
Treads out some cadence which ye heard before
Farewell! the birds of Eden
Ye shall hear nevermore!
Submitted by Ferdinando Albeggiani
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
Text added to the website: 2008-06-21.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:02:35
Line count: 26
Word count: 161
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