The New Altman Building

by Christopher Morley

Christopher Morley

Madison Avenue and Thirty-fourth Street

Fled is the glamour, fled the royal dream,
Fled is the joy. They work no more by night
Deep in that cave of dazzling amber light,
In pools of darkness, under plumes of steam.
Gone are the laughing drills that sting and hiss
Deep in the ribs of the metropolis.

Gone are the torches and the great red cranes
That swung their arms with such resistless might;
Gone are the flags and drums of that great fight,
No more they swink with rocks and autumn rains;
And only girders, rising tier on tier,
Give hint of all the struggle that was here.

We too, mad zealots of the hardest craft,
Striving to build a word-house fair and tall,
Have wept to see our dear erections fall;
Have wept--then flung away our tools, and laughed.
Fled is the dream, but working year by year
We see our buildings rising, tier on tier.

Last updated November 03, 2022