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Poem by Willa Sibert Cather


Spanish Johnny


THE old West, the old time,
   The old wind singing through
The red, red grass a thousand miles --
   And Spanish Johnny, you!
He'd sit beside the water ditch
   When all his herd was in,
And never mind a child, but sing
   To his mandolin.

The big stars, the blue night,
   The moon-enchanted lane;
The olive man who never spoke,
   But sang the songs of Spain.
His speech with men was wicked talk --
   To hear it was a sin;
But those were golden things he said
   To his mandolin.

The gold songs, the gold stars,
   The world so golden then;
And the hand so tender to a child --
   Had killed so many men.
He died a hard death long ago
   Before the Road came in --
The night before he swung, he sang
   To his mandolin. 



Willa Sibert Cather


Willa Sibert Cather's other poems:
  1. The Tavern
  2. Poppies on Ludlow Castle
  3. Evening Song
  4. London Roses
  5. A Likeness


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