Old Nod

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Softly along the road of evening,
In a twilight dim with rose,
Wrinkled with age, and drenched with dew,
Old Nod, the shepherd goes.

His drowsy flocks stream on before him,
Their fleeces charged with gold,
To where the sun’s last beams leans low
On Nod the shepherd’s fold.

The hedge is quick and green with briar,
From their sand the conies creep;
And all the birds that fly in heaven
Flock singing home to sleep.

His lambs outnumber a noon’s roses,
Yet, when night’s shadows fall,
His blind old sheep-dog, Slumber-soon,
Misses not one at all.

His are the quiet steeps of dreamland,
The waters of no-more-pain,
His ram’s bell rings ‘neath an arch of stars
“Rest, rest, and rest again”

                                              Walter de la Mare

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