Wednesday, April 2, 2008

The Wind and the Moon

~ George MacDonald (1824-1905)

Said the Wind to the Moon, “I will blow you out.
                You stare
                In the air
        Like a ghost in a chair,
Always looking what I am about;
I hate to be watched — I’ll blow you out.”

The Wind blew hard, and out went the Moon.
                So deep,
                On a heap
        Of clouds, to sleep,
Down lay the Wind, and slumbered soon –
Muttering low, “I’ve done for that Moon.”

He turned in his bed; she was there again!
                On high
                In the sky
        With her one ghost eye,
The Moon shone white and alive and plain.
Said the Wind — “I will blow you out again.”

The Wind blew hard, and the Moon grew dim.
                “With my sledge
                And my wedge
        I have knocked off her edge!
If only I blow right fierce and grim,
The creature will soon be dimmer than dim.”

He blew and he blew, and she thinned to a thread.
                “One puff
                More’s enough
        To blow her to snuff!
One good puff more where the last was bred,
And glimmer, glimmer, glum will go the thread!”

He blew a great blast, and the thread was gone;
                In the air
                Nowhere
        Was a moonbeam bare;
Far off and harmless the shy stars shone;
Sure and certain the Moon was gone.

The Wind, he took to his revels once more;
                On down
                In town,
        Like a merry-mad clown,
He leaped and hallooed with whistle and roar,
“What’s that?” The glimmering thread once more!

He flew in a rage — he danced and blew;
                But in vain
                Was the pain
        Of his bursting brain;
For still the broader the Moon-scrap grew,
The broader he swelled his big cheeks and blew.

Slowly she grew — till she filled the night,
                And shone
                On her throne
        In the sky alone,
A matchless, wonderful, silvery light,
Radiant and lovely, the Queen of the night.

Said the Wind — “What a marvel of power am I!
                With my breath,
                Good faith!
        I blew her to death–
First blew her away right out of the sky–
Then blew her in; what strength have I!”

But the Moon, she knew nothing about the affair,
                For high
                In the sky,
        With her one white eye,
Motionless, miles above the air,
She had never heard the great Wind blare.

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