young William Carlos Williams


Portent 
by William Carlos Williams
[from The Tempers (1913)]



Red cradle of the night,
        In you
        The dusky child
Sleeps fast till his might
        Shall be piled
Sinew on sinew.

Red cradle of the night,
        The dusky child
Sleeping sits upright.
        Lo! how
                The winds blow now!
        He pillows back;
The winds are again mild.

When he stretches his arms out,
Red cradle of the night,
        The alarms shout
From bare tree to tree,
        Wild
                In afright!
Mighty shall he be,
Red cradle of the night,
        The dusky child!    !


* * *