The Tower

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He built a tower for all to see,
With sun-washed gardens planted wide.
And there with pomp of pageantry,
With men-at-arms and minstrelsy
And moonbeam ladies fair and free,
He revelled in his pride.
And there, with soft prayers muttered slow,
And wind-blown candles burning low,
And hooded mourners row on row,
In pomp of peace he died.

Now time forgets how many a sun
Above the waste has risen and run
Since all the feasts were over and done;
Yet still from rusty pinnacle,
From cobwebbed pane and broken bell,
A wind-voice murmurs: Here am I—
'Twas good to live and die;
And good to rear these carved stones well
'Twixt laboring earth and dreaming sky.
And now 'tis good to watch and wait
While the slow centuries pass in state,
And make old time my glory tell
To you who wander by.

© Harriet Monroe