Introduction Biography Selected Works History of Gardiner Location Map Bibliography

Robinson-Palmer family burial site,
Oak Grove Cemetery,
Danforth Street

Inscriptions on the Robinson-Palmer Monument in the Oak Grove Cemetery, Gardiner, Maine

[East face of monument]

Edward Robinson
June 19, 1818 — July 15, 1892
Mary E. Palmer
July 28, 1833 — Nov. 22, 1896

[South face of monument]

H. Dean Robinson
1857 – 1899
Edwin A. Robinson
1869 – 1935
Hermon E. Robinson
1865 – 1909
Emma L. Shepherd
1868 –1940
1884 William Nivison 1944
His wife
1890 Ruth Robinson 1971

[West face of monument]

Seth Palmer
Nov. 26, 1818 – April 24, 1894
and his wife
Lydia A. Palmer
April 11, 1824 – Oct. 20, 1891

[North face of monument]
Irwin W. Palmer
1851 – 1872
Oscar A. Palmer
1845 – 1874
Orric C. Palmer
1848 – 1891
Clara E. Palmer
1847 – 1930
Oakes M. Palmer
1847 –1842
1855 Fred W. Palmer 1922
His wife 1860 Nellie W. Young

[on two smaller stones to the east of the main monument]
Carl Fenton Palmer
1892 – 1974

Minnie Clennon Palmer
1895 – 1971

Note that Emma’s sister Lydia A. Palmer had married her first cousin Seth Palmer so that she was actually Lydia A. (Palmer) Palmer.

There is a tradition in the Robinson family that the “crimson leaves upon the wall” in “Luke Havergal” refer to the ivy that turned red in the fall on the western fence of Oak Grove Cemetery when the poet was a child in Gardiner. David Nivison, grandnephew of the poet, in a conversation with this compiler on the afternoon of February 19, 2006, said that people leaving the front door of the Robinson House would turn towards the cemetery and see the crimson foliage of the ivy in the autumn.

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Luke Havergal
Go to the western gate, Luke Havergal,
There where the vines cling crimson on the wall,
And in the twilight wait for what will come.
The leaves will whisper there of her, and some,
Like flying words, will strike you as they fall;
But go, and if you listen she will call.
Go to the western gate, Luke Havergal—
Luke Havergal.
No, there is not a dawn in eastern skies
To rift the fiery night that’s in your eyes;
But there, where western glooms are gathering,
The dark will end the dark, if anything:
God slays Himself with every leaf that flies,
And hell is more than half of paradise.
No, there is not a dawn in eastern skies—
In eastern skies.
Out of a grave I come to tell you this,
Out of a grave I come to quench the kiss
That flames upon your forehead with a glow
That blinds you to the way that you must go.
Yes, there is yet one way to where she is,
Bitter, but one that faith may never miss.
Out of a grave I come to tell you this—
To tell you this.
There is the western gate, Luke Havergal,
There are the crimson leaves upon the wall.
Go, for the winds are tearing them away,—
Nor think to riddle the dead words they say,
Nor any more to feel them as they fall;
But go, and if you trust her she will call.
There is the western gate, Luke Havergal—
Luke Havergal.

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A Virtual Tour of Robinson's Gardiner, Maine

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This website is maintained by the Gardiner Public Library
152 Water Street, Gardiner, Maine 04345, and the Gardiner Library Association.

This website is sponsored by the Kennebec-Chaudière Heritage Commission and Maine Humanities Council, the J. W. Robinson Welfare Trust Fund, the Gardiner Library Association, and the Gardiner Board of Trade.

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