The Song of the Gun


AS the thick red mist that comes creeping after
The fall of the sun in the fathomless deep,
When echoes are dying and hushed is the laughter,
And ocean is lulling the fair earth to sleep;
As the dull flaming clouds that westward simmer,
Rolling up into the courts of the morn
To smother the stars where they silently glimmer,
I am born.

As the lion that roars in the jungle of fever
Sating itself on the meek helpless prey;
As gibbering Death doth earthly ties sever
And mocking goes swiftly upon his dread way;
As the hawk swooping down on the quiet pasture
To take what the earth is unwilling to give;
I stalk and I slay with a ruthless gesture;
Thus I live.

Love knows me not, of my mind is no part;
For I have not a soul, and I worship no God
Save the Baal of Destruction, but in my cold heart
I know he is the slave, I am the god!
I roll like the thunder, and flash in a flame
That scorches and blasts with a venomous blight;
And I laugh in wild glee, and know nothing of shame,
But delight.

That a blow form a blow and an eye for an eye
Is the message that still makes appeal to the hurt;
And revenge when aroused never stops to ask why,
But is hot for redress and to see the blood spurt.
And I live for the moment when, hatred supreme,
The hands of assassins unleash all my power,
And my burden released I can vomit and scream
In my hour.

But the fire will grow cold and the iron will rust,
For a time will approach for me to meet death;
Then the grime and the smoke will return to the dust
Whence it came, with the bodies of heroes beneath.
And my voice shall be stilled till Eternity fail,
And the singing of birds will be heard in the sky,
The world will know peace, and the Devil will quail
When I die!

1. 2. 1928