Bacchus Is Gone

by Hervey Allen

Hervey Allen

Bacchus is gone!
I saw him leave the shore
Upon a moonless time,
And he is gone—is gone—
I saw the satyrs and the bacchanals—
Bacchus is gone—is gone—
With smoking torches as at funerals
Light him across the sea at dawn.

I saw the whimpering pards
Where he had passed—
Bacchus is gone—is gone—
Sniff to the water's edge,
Where purple stained, his footprints led—
I heard the Goat-foot whisper in the hedge,
"Bacchus is dead— is dead ,"
And go aghast,
Snapping the myrtle branches as he fled.

Bacchus is gone!
And with him dancing Folly—
Bacchus is dead—is dead—
Oh, Melancholy!

No! No! He is not dead; he has but fled
To kindlier lands he knew in days before
Men snatched the purple roses from his head.
He does but wanton by some liberal shore—
Sun kissed—
And wreathed with vine leaves as of old,
With spotted beasts and maidens by his car,
And sound of timbrels like a story told
Of youth and love and blood and wine and war.

Last updated September 07, 2017