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Pan the Fallen Analysis

Author: Poetry of William Wilfred Campbell Type: Poetry Views: 204

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1He wandered into the market

2With pipes and goatish hoof;

3He wandered in a grotesque shape,

4And no one stood aloof.

5For the children crowded round him,

6The wives and greybeards, too,

7To crack their jokes and have their mirth,

8And see what Pan would do.

9The Pan he was they knew him,

10Part man, but mostly beast,

11Who drank, and lied, and snatched what bones

12Men threw him from their feast;

13Who seemed in sin so merry,

14So careless in his woe,

15That men despised, scarce pitied him,

16And still would have it so.

17He swelled his pipes and thrilled them,

18And drew the silent tear;

19He made the gravest clack with mirth

20By his sardonic leer.

21He blew his pipes full sweetly

22At their amused demands,

23And caught the scornful, earth-flung pence

24That fell from careless hands.

25He saw the mob's derision,

26And took it kindly, too,

27And when an epithet was flung,

28A coarser back he threw;

29But under all the masking

30Of a brute, unseemly part,

31I looked, and saw a wounded soul,

32And a god-like, breaking heart.

33And back of the elfin music,

34The burlesque, clownish play,

35I knew a wail that the weird pipes made,

36A look that was far away,

37A gaze into some far heaven

38Whence a soul had fallen down;

39But the mob only saw the grotesque beast

40And the antics of the clown.

41For scant-flung pence he paid them

42With mirth and elfin play,

43Till, tired for a time of his antics queer,

44They passed and went their way;

45Then there in the empty market

46He ate his scanty crust,

47And, tired face turned to heaven, down

48He laid him in the dust.

49And over his wild, strange features

50A softer light there fell,

51And on his worn, earth-driven heart

52A peace ineffable.

53And the moon rose over the market,

54But Pan the beast was dead;

55While Pan the god lay silent there,

56With his strange, distorted head.

57And the people, when they found him,

58Stood still with awesome fear.

59No more they saw the beast's rude hoof,

60The furtive, clownish leer;

61But the lightest in that audience

62Went silent from the place,

63For they knew the look of a god released

64That shone from his dead face.


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