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George Sterling

Atthan Dances - From

The silver of the lyre
Cries, and thy silver feet
Like living flowers repeat
Thy body's silver fire.

What scents without a name
Within thy tresses hide?
What perfect roses died
To give thy mouth its flame?

Thy hands, uplifting, float
More delicate than Love's.
Thy breasts are two white doves
Whose moan is in thy throat.

As lyre and cithern swoon.
Thou lingerest, in thy pace
The panther's gift of grace.
Who glides below the moon.

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The City By the Sea -- San Francisco

At the end of our streets is sunrise;
At the end of our streets are spars;
At the end of our streets is sunset;
At the end of our streets the stars.


Ever the winds of morning
Are cool from the flashing sea-
Flowing swift from our ocean,
Till the fog-dunes crumble and flee.

Slender spars in the offing,
Mast and yard in the slips-
How they tell on the azure
Of the sea-contending ships!

Homeward into the sunset
Sill unwearied we go,
Till the northern hills are misty
With the amber of afterglow.

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The Common Cult

Up to the House of Mammon, from dawn to sister dawn,
Called by remembered voices the sons of men are drawn;
By noon the dust goes skyward, by night the torches flare,
On veining roads that mingle—and you and I are there.

Around the House of Mammon, like ruined cities’ stones,
The stubborn and the haughty have left their trampled bones.
They were the few in number that would not enter in,
Saying, “The god is evil.” Saying, “To kneel is sin.”

The ebony House of Mammon goes up against the sky;
The north wind and the south wind before its portals die.
Its towers go near to Heaven; its vaults go nearer Hell,
And all are fat with favor to some who serve them well.

Before the House of Mammon stand you not overlong,
But enter to the worship, unnoted in the throng;
There it is ill to parley, to ask the why or when,
For he whose line would prosper shall be as other men.

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