1. Low Barometer

    The south-wind strengthens to a gale,
    Across the moon the clouds fly fast,
    The house is smitten as with a flail,
    The chimney shudders to the blast.

    On such a night, when Air has loosed
    Its guardian grasp on blood and brain,
    Old terrors then of god or ghost
    Creep from their caves to life again;

    And Reason kens he herits in
    A haunted house. Tenants unknown
    Assert their squalid lease of sin
    With earlier title than his own.

    Unbodied presences, the pack’d
    Pollution and remorse of Time,
    Slipp’d from oblivion reënact
    The horrors of unhouseld crime.

    Some men would quell the thing with prayer
    Whose sightless footsteps pad the floor,
    Whose fearful trespass mounts the stair
    Or burts the lock’d forbidden door.

    Some have seen corpses long interr’d
    Escape from hallowing control,
    Pale charnel forms—nay ev’n have heard
    The shrilling of a troubled soul,

    That wanders till the dawn hath cross’d
    The dolorous dark, or Earth hath wound
    Closer her storm-spredd cloke, and thrust
    The baleful phantoms underground.

    By Robert Bridges

    1. eating-poetry posted this