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Chester Firkins: On a Subway Express

On a Subway Express

Chester Firkins

I, who have lost the stars, the sod,
For chilling pave and cheerless light,
Have made my meeting-place with God
A new and nether Night —
Have found a fane where thunder fills
Loud caverns, tremulous; — and these
Atone me for my reverend hills
And moonlit silences.
A figment in the crowded dark,
Where men sit muted by the roar,
I ride upon the whirring Spark
Beneath the city's floor.
In this dim firmament, the stars
Whirl by in blazing files and tiers;
Kin meteors graze our flying bars,
Amid the spinning spheres.
Speed! speed! until the quivering rails
Flash silver where the head-light gleams,
As when on lakes the Moon impales
The waves upon its beams.
Life throbs about me, yet I stand
Outgazing on majestic Power;
Death rides with me, on either hand,
In my communion hour.
You that 'neath country skies can pray,
Scoff not at me — the city clod; —
My only respite of the Day
Is this wild ride — with God.
William Vaughn Moody: Gloucester Moors Percy MacKaye: The Automobile