Sunday, July 19, 2020


Here we have another poem from Clark Ashton Smith (CAS) that was published in the pages of Weird Tales magazine, in the issue for October 1930.

O ye that follow the sun,
O ye that follow the light
Of the fen-fire through the night,
Are your ways in the end not one?

Ye shall know but the single doom,
Ye shall sleep the self-same sleep,
And the trench of the trooper is deep
As the vault of an emperor's tomb.

Though dolor be yours, and dearth,
And the noon be darkness above,
Or ye know delight and love
In the pleasant places of the earth,

Though your mouths be mirthful or dumb,
When the worm has eaten them thin
Ye shall grin with the same white grin
At the death whereto ye are come.

This is not the first poem by CAS that I have read where the grim finality of human existence is front-and-center.  Even if it's not a standout poem among that group, the closing stanza has a sort of morbid humor reminiscent of some of Edgar Allan Poe's better pieces.

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