Nothing

Oh, what can nothing ever be
When all the wide world's crammed with things?
'Tis but the sound the forest makes
When no bird sings.

Why set your pens to such a theme,
You playwrights pale and poets wan?
The farmer worries not the field
When the harvest's done.

Though nothing be the end of all,
The means be something now to do.
A rose will bloom e'en if a rose
Fast withereth too.

The rose is on her cheek, sweet prince,
Ophelia fair, a faery's child.
Your nothings echo in her ear,
And her eyes are wild.

What should a man do but be merry?
For life is a lass to be known.
She looked at you as she did love
And made sweet moan.

Think country matters, Hamlet, then.
Make nothing all day long
The fairest thought you both shall sing,
A faery's song.

These nothings more than matter be.
For words, like thoughts, be no things too,
And sure in language strange she said
"I love thee true."

Bend not your eye on vacancy.
Ophelia weeps and sighs full sore,
And she can fill your empty eyes
With kisses four.

The hill of Heaven hath many ways
Invisible. Ah, woe betide.
Each sacred step is but a dream
On the cold hill side.

Blind men are there to point the way,
Death pale, ungracious pastors all,
To cry, "The primrose path, sweet prince,
Thee hath in thrall."

But oh, the steep and thorny way,
A path that dying men have tried,
Leads lovers on to nothingness,
The cold hill side.

The world's an echo of the mind.
'Tis here. 'Tis here. 'Tis gone. No thing.
'Tis but the sound the forest makes
When no birds sing.