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Poem by James Clarence Mangan

Shapes and Signs

I SEE black dragons mount the sky,
   I see earth yawn beneath my feet --
      I feel within the asp, the worm
That will not sleep and cannot die,
   Fair though may show the winding-sheet!
      I hear all night as through a storm
      Hoarse voices calling, calling
         My name upon the wind--
      All omens monstrous and appalling
         Affright my guilty mind.

I exult alone in one wild hour --
   That hour in which the red cup drowns
      The memories it anon renews
In ghastlier guise, in fiercer power --
   Then Fancy brings me golden crowns,
      And visions of all brilliant hues
      Lap my lost soul in gladness,
         Until I awake again,
      And the dark lava-fires of madness
         Once more sweep through my brain. 

James Clarence Mangan

James Clarence Mangan's other poems:
  1. A Lament for the Princes of Tyrone and Tyrconnel
  2. Dark Rosaleen
  3. Kathaleen Ny-Houlahan
  4. King Cahal Mór of the Wine-Red Hand
  5. Woman of Three Crows

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