Here, at a quarter century,
Does one shed youth and mantle age:
Banish the fool, become the sage;
And soldier on in certainty?
Have I not lived and loved and lost?
Are not the poems in my head
So deep that they are interréd?
Have I not felt the flame and frost?
And victory I also know.
Did I not live to see my name
Merit some modicum of fame
Before my coil shuffled so?
Of friendship did I play some part
Though always much to my surprise.
My comrades met me in the eyes
And pierced together this weak heart.
So should a score and five years make
The feeling that I've lived an Age;
And as the birds sing i' th' cage
To whistle for a new life's sake?
The years have not me stricken dumb,
Though, Fate does not display her hand.
I am compelled for love to stand,
And see another sunrise come.