Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, ABER STATIONS: STATIO QUINTA, by THOMAS EDWARD BROWN

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

ABER STATIONS: STATIO QUINTA, by                     Poet's Biography
First Line: The shepherd calls
Last Line: Back from the mountain wall.
Alternate Author Name(s): Brown, T. E.
Subject(s): Death; Echo (mythology); Shepherds & Shepherdesses; Dead, The

The shepherd calls --
How these great mountain walls
Re-echo! See his dog
Come limping from the bog!
How far he holds him
With that thin clamour! Scolds him?
Or cheers him -- which?
Say both -- most like. The pitch
Is steep, poor fellow!
And still that bellow --
Ya, ya!
Whoop! tittiva!
And Echo from her niche
Shrieks challenged. Shout,
O shepherd! flout
The irritable Echo till she raves!
As man behaves,
So God apportions, doing what is best
For you, and for the rest.
As man behaves? You do not help me much,
Nay, sir, nor touch
The central point at all --
Retributive, mechanical --
I see it. But outside all this
I miss . . . I miss . . .
Sir, know you Death? Permit me introduce . . .
No? What's the use?
The use! . . . One thing I can collect,
You have but scant respect
For Death. Why, sir, he made a feint
That very minute at you -- quaint!
The way he grins and skips --
Whips! whips!
Down! down! good dog! good Death!
To heel, you rogue!
Good Death! good dog!
You'd rather not behold him?
I've told him --
I' faith,
He'd frighten you, would Death.
Provoked me -- yes, you did --
The shepherd chid
His lagging hound --
I had no other thought
But how mad Echo caught
The sound
Of that exasperant call,
And made it bound
Back from the mountain wall.

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