Verse > Anthologies > Louis Untermeyer, ed. > Modern American Poetry
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Louis Untermeyer, ed. (1885–1977). Modern American Poetry.  1919.
 
Richard Le Gallienne. 1866–
 
35. August Moonlight
 
THE solemn light behind the barns, 
  The rising moon, the cricket's call, 
The August night, and you and I— 
  What is the meaning of it all! 
  
Has it a meaning, after all?         5
  Or is it one of Nature's lies, 
That net of beauty that she casts 
  Over Life's unsuspecting eyes? 
  
That web of beauty that she weaves 
  For one strange purpose of her own,—  10
For this the painted butterfly, 
  For this the rose—for this alone! 
  
Strange repetition of the rose, 
  And strange reiterated call 
Of bird and insect, man and maid,—  15
  Is that the meaning of it all? 
  
If it means nothing after all! 
  And nothing lives except to die— 
It is enough—that solemn light 
  Behind the barns, and you and I.  20
 
 
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