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By Alfred Noyes

Now, in a breath, we’ll burst those gates of gold,

   And ransack heaven before our moment fails.

Now, in a breath, before we, too, grow old,

   We’ll mount and sing and spread immortal sails.


It is not time that makes eternity.

   Love and an hour may quite out-span the years,

And give us more to hear and more to see

   Than life can wash away with all its tears.


Dear, when we part, at last, that sunset sky

   Shall not be touched with deeper hues than this;

But we shall ride the lightning ere we die

   And seize our brief infinitude of bliss,


With time to spare for all that heaven can tell,

While eyes meet eyes, and look their last farewell.


n/a

Source: Collected Poems (1947)

  • Living
  • Mythology & Folklore
  • Relationships

Poet Bio

Alfred Noyes
Alfred Noyes was born in England and attended Oxford, where he left before completing his degree. He published his first book of poems, The Loom of Years, at age 21, and published five more volumes of poetry in the next five years. In 1914, he began teaching at Princeton University, and became noted for his criticisms of such Modernist writers as James Joyce. Though his early work often evokes fantastic, dream-like, storybook emotions, his later poetry increasingly deals with religious themes. In “The Highwayman,” one of his best-known poems, Noyes displays his skill at writing narrative poetry reminiscent of his two biggest influences, Wordsworth and Tennyson.

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