Gateway to the Classics: In the Days of the Guild by Louise Lamprey
 
In the Days of the Guild by  Louise Lamprey

The Wood-Carver's Vision

The Hounds of Gabriel racing with the gale,

Baying wild music past the tossing trees,

The Ship of Souls with moonlight-silvered sail

High over storm-swept seas,

The faun-folk scampering to their dim abode,

The goblin elves that haunt the forest road,

With visage of the snake and eft and toad,—

I carve them as I please.


Bertrand's gray saintly patriarchs of stone,

Angelo the Pisan's gold-starred sapphire sky,

Marc's Venice glass, a jeweled rose full-blown,—

Envy of none have I.

Mine be the basilisk with mitered head,

And loup-garou and mermaid, captive led

By little tumbling cherubs who,—'tis said,—

Are all but seen to fly.


Why hold we here these demons in the light

Of the High Altar, by God's candles cast?

They are the heathen creatures of the night,

In heavenly bonds made fast.

They are set here, that for all time to be,

When God's own peace broods over earth and sea,

Men may remember, in a world set free,

The terrors that are past.


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