Marco Polo at Finisterre

For R. L. B.

For all the far-flung continents he'd crossed,
Revealing lands they found beyond belief;
For all the roads that lay behind him, lost
In caverns of some atavistic grief

He'd carried with him since he was a boy;
For all the years, he should be weary now.
How then could he explain this welling joy,
A old man on a wintry beach? Or how

It seemed the wind bore perfumes of a whole
New wilderness, a lush and green Brazil
Over the dim horizon of his soul,
Farther than memory, beyond his will,

Where even now, in vibrant canopies,
The twilight songs of bird to hidden bird
Rose up in wild, untutored harmonies
More lovely for their never being heard.

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