Words are not just words
they are kisses
on the lips of silence
that speak of your essence

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Listeners by Walter de la Mare

The Listeners

‘IS there anybody there?’ said the Traveller,
Knocking on the moonlit door;
And his horse in the silence champ’d the grasses
Of the forest’s ferny floor:
And a bird flew up out of the turret,
Above the Traveller’s head:
And he smote upon the door again a second time;
‘Is there anybody there?’ he said.
But no one descended to the Traveller;
No head from the leaf-fringed sill
Lean’d over and look’d into his grey eyes,
Where he stood perplex’d and still.
But only a host of phantom listeners
That dwelt in the lone house then
Stood listening in the quiet of the moonlight
To that voice from the world of men:
Stood thronging the faint moonbeams on the dark stair,
That goes down to the empty hall,
Hearkening in an air stirr’d and shaken
By the lonely Traveller’s call.
And he felt in his heart their strangeness,
Their stillness answering his cry,
While his horse moved, cropping the dark turf,
’Neath the starr’d and leafy sky;
For he suddenly smote on the door, even
Louder, and lifted his head:—
’Tell them I came, and no one answer’d,
’That I kept my word,’ he said.
Never the least stir made the listeners,
Though every word he spake
Fell echoing through the shadowiness of the still house
From the one man left awake:
Ay, they heard his foot upon the stirrup,
And the sound of iron on stone,
And how the silence surged softly backward,
When the plunging hoofs were gone.

Walter de la Mare
(25 April 1873 – 22 June 1956)
was an English poet, short story writer and novelist, probably best remembered for his works for children and "The Listeners".

Thank you Bruce for introducing me to this poem and for walking into this blog.


Bruce said...

Thank you Vesna. This poem always sends chills up my spine. Dazzled by your poems and music selections. Thank you.

☆sapphire said...

Thank you Vesna for this beautiful poem! Inspired by you, I'd like to quote a verse from his "Alexander" (←one of my favorites)in my next post.

diane said...

Thank you Vesna, this post is magic!

Vesna said...

Bruce, again thank you. I love the poem, it has so many layers. Thank you for your kind words about the blog, you're welcome here:)

Sapphire, such an honour that you felt inspired here. I look forward to read your post.

Diane, I am so glad you like it too:) Love you my dear