Contradictions




(Longfellow)


THE DROWSY carrier sways
To the drowsy horses’ tramp.
His axles winnow the sprays
Of the hedge where the rabbit plays
In the light of his single lamp.

He hears a roar behind,
A howl, a hoot, and a yell,
A headlight strikes him blind
And a stench o’erpowers the wind
Like a blast from the mouth of Hell.

He mends his swingle-bar,
And loud his curses ring;
But a mother watching afar
Hears the hum of the doctor’s car
Like the beat of an angel’s wing!

So, to the poet’s mood,
Motor or carrier’s van,
Properly understood,
Are neither evil nor good—
Ormuzd not Ahriman!