The Dark Stag Poem Rhyme Scheme and Analysis


A startled stag the blue grey NightA
Leaps down beyond black pinesB
Behind a length of yellow lightA
The hunter's arrow shinesB
His moccasins are stained with redC
He bends upon his kneeD
From covering peaks his shafts are spedC
The blue mists plume his mighty headC
Well may the swift Night fleeD
The pale pale Moon a snow white doeE
Bounds by his dappled flankF
They beat the stars down as they goE
Like wood bells growing rankF
The winds lift dewlaps from the groundG
Leap from the quaking reedsH
Their hoarse bays shake the forests roundG
With keen cries on the track they boundG
Swift swift the dark stag speedsH
Away his white doe far behindI
Lies wounded on the plainJ
Yells at his flank the nimblest windI
His large tears fall in rainJ
Like lily pads small clouds grow whiteA
About his darkling wayK
From his bald nest upon the heightA
The red eyed eagle sees his flightA
He falters turns the antlered NightA
The dark stag stands at bayK
His feet are in the waves of spaceL
His antlers broad and dunM
He lowers he turns his velvet faceL
To front the hunter SunM
He stamps the lilied clouds and highN
His branches fill the westO
The lean stork sails across the skyN
The shy loon shrieks to see him dieN
The winds leap at his breastO
Roar the rent lakes as thro' the waveP
Their silver warriors plungeQ
As vaults from core of crystal caveP
The strong fierce muskallungeQ
Red torches of the sumach glareR
Fall's council fires are litS
The bittern squaw like scolds the airR
The wild duck splashes loudly whereR
The rustling rice spears knitS
Shaft after shaft the red Sun speedsH
Rent the stag's dappled sideT
His breast fanged by the shrill winds bleedsH
He staggers on the tideT
He feels the hungry waves of spaceL
Rush at him high and blueU
Their white spray smites his dusky faceL
Swifter the Sun's fierce arrows raceL
And pierce his stout heart thro'R
His antlers fall once more he spurnsV
The hoarse hounds of the dayK
His blood upon the crisp blue burnsV
Reddens the mounting sprayK
His branches smite the wave with criesW
The loud winds pause and flagX
He sinks in space red glow the skiesW
The brown earth crimsons as he diesW
The strong and dusky stagX

Isabella Valancy Crawford


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