Monday, October 15, 2018

The White Road

A poem from Weird Tales in 1928, and a reminder that many pulp writers were also poets:

The White Road, by Manly Wade Wellman

The desert is dun at the noon of day
And sable at noon of night;
At dawn and at dusk it is silver-gray
But the caravan route is white.
Across the sand
Like a pallid band,
The caravan route is white.


The traveler's face is drawn and pale
And he prays beneath his breath;
For the bones of Dead Things fill the trail
Like the road to the gates of Death.
Instead of stones
It is paved with bones,
Like the road to the gates of Death.


The men of Egypt, the men of Rome,
The men of many a land
Lay down to die far away from home
On the road through the weary sand.
They died, and each
Left his bones to bleach
On the road through the weary sand.


Men turn from the path when daylight dies;
For after the sun is ser
The ghosts of the Dead Things stir and rise
To travel the roadway yet.
Dead beasts and men
Are alive again,
To travel the roadway yet.


The desert is dun at the noon of day
And sable at noon of night;
At dawn and at dusk it is silver-gray
But the caravan route is white.
The silent dead
Build a road of dread--
The caravan route is white.

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