The world was so much ours to win or lose.
fair was the crown unjeweled, sweet its wearing,
sweeter still, the untilled soil of our daring
to seek the truth and in its finding, refuse
to heed the glare that chills warm dark shadow,
Where are you now, brothers who danced gaily?
Dust or flesh, ash or bone, do you remember
the spring of our youth blooming in November?
And the grounds strewn with leaves rending frailly
like slender gold fronds of El Dorado?
Can you recall from time's mist, repairing
to the tavern, arm by arm, no thought ever
for death, sorrow or life's harsh endeavor?
But our lips kissed the grape, hardly caring,
while in song our voices rang with bravado.
Oh my friends, the maids were fair and callow,
ripe torsos trim and firm--young breasts jutting,
tresses gold and ebon--long legs strutting.
Breeze-soft, like a sigh, their love blew fallow,
stirring our hearts to a fevered staccato.
Laughter, dearer than love's zeal, rang loudly
as we trod youth's fruited plain of yesteryear.
We all, as one, reaped the joy and buried fear
and prayed to scale the stars, vying proudly,
but unknown, the truth lay incommunicado.
Time swallowed up our dreams, quelled our joys.
where are you now, dear comrades of yon day?
I can hear your hearts beating, as if to say:
Come fill the cup again, once more be boys
and dwell in the womb of youth's warm dark shadow.