Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE PATHS OF PEACE, by JAMES WHITCOMB RILEY

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THE PATHS OF PEACE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: He would have holiday - outworn
Last Line: Of all his loveliest dreams!
Alternate Author Name(s): Johnson Of Boone, Benj. F.
Subject(s): Dreams; Forests; Peace; Spring; Youth; Nightmares; Woods

HE would have holiday -- outworn, in sooth,
Would turn again to seek the old release, --
The open fields -- the loved haunts of his youth --
The woods, the waters, and the paths of peace.

The rest -- the recreation he would choose
Be his abidingly! Long has he served
And greatly -- ay, and greatly let us use
Our grief, and yield him nobly as deserved.

Perchance -- with subtler senses than our own
And love exceeding ours -- he listens thus
To ever nearer, clearer pipings blown
From out the lost lands of Theocritus.

Or haply, he is beckoned from us here,
By night or yeoman of the bosky wood,
Or, chained in roses, haled a prisoner
Before the blithe Immortal, Robin Hood.

Or, mayhap, Chaucer signals, and with him
And his rare fellows he goes pilgriming;
Or Walton signs him, o'er the morning brim
Of misty waters midst the dales of Spring.

Ho! wheresoe'er he goes, or whosoe'er
He fares with, he has bravely earned the boon.
Be his the open, and the glory there
Of April-buds, May-blooms and flowers of June!

Be his the glittering dawn, the twinkling dew,
The breathless pool or gush of laughing streams --
Be his the triumph of the coming true
Of all his loveliest dreams!

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