Verse > Anthologies > Harriet Monroe, ed. > Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, 1912–22
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Harriet Monroe, ed. (1860–1936).  Poetry: A Magazine of Verse.  1912–22.
 
Whence Comes the Stranger
By Joseph Campbell
 
  WHENCE comes this stranger
That with hoarse, lifted throat
Threatens the fields?
 
  Night’s darkness
And the darkness of mystery        5
Cover him as in a tent
Of two hides.
 
  At twilight
I looked through the windows of my body,
And, lo!        10
The sheaves scattered.
And the rooted trees uptorn.
 
  His feet are flails of iron:
What he has threshed
Only the birds of the air will gather.        15
Bedstraw and branch
Will lie, and rot,
And dig unseen graves.
 
  The wind blows where it wills:
(The Gift of Heaven wrote it in Patmos).        20
I hear the sound thereof,
But cannot tell whence it comes,
Or whither it will go.
 
  War rides, without thought,
On a pale horse        25
Through quiet places.
His banners are smoking torches;
His trumpets blow horribly.
 
  He reaps a red harvest,
But not with the crooks of sickles.        30
The swaths fall slowly,
And the wings of vultures shadow them.
 
  Love is a lamb, for weakness;
Kin a dove, for sorrow;
Peace the silence of a song.        35
 
  He thunders,
And the suckling’s cry
Is not heard:
He casts his lightning,
And flame breaks from the roofbeam:        40
He shakes the earth,
And the stones of the altar
Are dust.
 
  At dawn
I looked through the windows of my spirit,        45
And, lo!
A sower had passed,
Sowing.
 
  For my thoughts
Are not your thoughts,        50
Neither are your ways
My ways,
Saith the Lord.
 
 
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