Romance

By George Sterling

Thou passest, and we know thee not, Romance!
    Thy gaze is backward, and thy heart is fed
    With murmurs and with music of the dead.
Alas, our battle! for the rays that glance
On thy dethroning sword and haughty lance
    Are of forgotten suns and stars long fled;
    Thou weavest phantom roses for thy head,
And ghostly queens in thy dominion dance.

Would we might follow thy returning wings,
    And in thy farthest haven beach our prow—
        Thy dragons conquered and thine oceans crossed—
And find thee standing on the dust of kings,
    A lion at thy side, and on thy brow
        The light of sunsets wonderful and lost!

Originally titled "Of Yesterday"

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