Verse > Anthologies > William Wilfred Campbell, ed. > The Oxford Book of Canadian Verse
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William Wilfred Campbell, comp.  The Oxford Book of Canadian Verse.  1913.
 
Illusion
By Nicholas Flood Davin (1843–1901)
 
(From Eos, an Epic of the Dawn)

ILLUSION makes the better part of life.
Happy self-conjurers, deceived, we win
Delight, and, ruled by fancy, live in dreams;—
The mood, the hour, the standpoint, rules the scene;
The past, the present, the to-be, weave charms;        5
White-flashing memory’s fleet footsteps fly,
And all the borders of her way are pied
With flowers full glad e’en when their roots touch quick
With pain. With tears upon his dimpled cheek
Forth steps the infant Joy and, laughing, mocks        10
At care. In time smiles play upon the cheek
Of pale Regret, who grows transformed, and stands
A pensive queen, more fair than boisterous Mirth.
The present ’s odorous with leaves of trees
Long dead, and dead defacing woods and thorns,        15
And past the cloud that glowered, the blast that smote,
And out from never-to-be-trodden days
Hope smiles, and airs from dawns we’re never doomed
To see, come rich with fragrance, fresh with power,
Profuse of promises of golden days,        20
And join the necromancy of the past,
Mingling the magic which makes up our lives.
 
 
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