Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, CANADA NOT LAST, by WILLIAM DOUW LIGHTHALL

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CANADA NOT LAST, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Lo venice, gay with color, lights and song
Last Line: Tive land.
Alternate Author Name(s): Schuyler-lighthall, William Douw
Subject(s): Canada; Italy; Patriotism; Canadians; Italians


Lo Venice, gay with color, lights and song,
Calls from St. Mark's with ancient voice and
I am the Witch of Cities! glide along
My silver streets that never wear by change
Of years: forget the years, and pain, and wrong,
And ever sorrow reigning men among.
Know I can soothe thee, please and marry thee
To my illusions. Old and siren strong,
I smile immortal, while the mortals flee
Who whiten on to death in wooing me.


Say, what more fair by Arno's bridged gleam
Than Florence, viewed from San Miniato's slope
At eventide, when west along the stream
The last of day reflects a silver hope! --
Lo, all else softened in the twilight beam: --
The city's mass bleat in one hazy cream,
The brown Dome 'midst it, and the Lily tower,
And stern Old Tower more near, and hills that
Afar, like clouds to fade, and hills of power
On this side greenly dark with cypress, vine and


End of desire to stray I feel would come
Though Italy were all fair skies to me,
Though France's fields went mad with flowery
And Blanc put on a special majesty,
Not all could match the growing thought of home
Nor tempt to exile. Look I not on Rome --
This ancient, modern, mediaeval queen --
Yet still sigh westward over hill and dome,
Imperial ruin and villa's princely scene
Lovely with pictured saints and marble gods


Rome, Florence, Venice -- noble, fair and quaint,
They reign in robes of magic round me here;
But fading, blotted, dim, a picture faint,
With spell more silent, only pleads a tear.
Plead not! Thou hast my heart, O picture dim!
I see the fields, I see the autumn hand
Of God upon the maples! Answer Him
With weird, translucent glories, ye that stand
Like spirits in scarlet and in amethyst!
I see the sun break over you: the mist
On hills that lift from iron bases grand
Their heads superb!--the dream, it is my na-
tive land.

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