Lonely Burial

Stephen Vincent Benét

There were not many at that lonely place,
Where two scourged hills met in a little plain.
The wind cried loud in gusts, then low again.
Three pines strained darkly, runners in a race
Unseen by any.  Toward the further woods
A dim harsh noise of voices rose and ceased.
— We were most silent in those solitudes —
Then, sudden as a flame, the black-robed priest,
The clotted earth piled roughly up about
The hacked red oblong of the new-made thing,
Short words in swordlike Latin — and a rout
Of dreams most impotent, unwearying.
Then, like a blind door shut on a carouse,
The terrible bareness of the soul's last house.