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Title: Minor Poems - Little Classics, Vol. 15
Author: Johnson, Rossiter, 1840-1931 [Editor]
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Minor Poems - Little Classics, Vol. 15" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

                            Fifteenth Volume

                            LITTLE CLASSICS

                               EDITED BY

                            ROSSITER JOHNSON

                              Minor Poems

                          BOSTON AND NEW YORK
                     HOUGHTON, MIFFLIN AND COMPANY
                     The Riverside Press, Cambridge

               COPYRIGHT, 1875, BY JAMES R. OSGOOD & CO.
                          ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


  AE FOND KISS                  _Robert Burns_                      52
  AGE OF WISDOM, THE            _William Makepeace Thackeray_      115
  ARSENAL AT SPRINGFIELD, THE   _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow_       146
  ASTARTE                       _Robert Bulwer Lytton_              54
  BETROTHED ANEW                _Edmund Clarence Stedman_           86
  BLINDNESS, ON HIS             _John Milton_                      143
  BRAVE AT HOME, THE            _Thomas Buchanan Read_             142
  BREAK, BREAK, BREAK           _Alfred Tennyson_                   53
  BRIDAL DIRGE, A               _Bryan Waller Procter_             163
  BROOKSIDE, THE                _Richard Monckton Milnes_           36
  BUGLE-SONG                    _Alfred Tennyson_                   40
  CAVALIER'S SONG, THE          _William Motherwell_               132
  CHAMBERED NAUTILUS, THE       _Oliver Wendell Holmes_            214
  CHANGES                       _Robert Bulwer Lytton_              71
  CHILDREN'S HOUR, THE          _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow_       152
  CHRISTMAS HYMN, A             _Alfred Dommett_                   217
  CLOUD, THE                    _John Wilson_                      213
  COME, REST IN THIS BOSOM      _Thomas Moore_                      46
  CORONACH                      _Sir Walter Scott_                 133
  COURTIN', THE                 _James Russell Lowell_              26
  DAYS THAT ARE NO MORE, THE    _Alfred Tennyson_                   65
  DEATH-BED, THE                _Thomas Hood_                      160
  DEATH OF THE FLOWERS, THE     _William Cullen Bryant_            100
  DEATH'S FINAL CONQUEST        _James Shirley_                    182
  DIRGE FOR A SOLDIER           _George Henry Boker_               134
  DRAKE, JOSEPH RODMAN          _Fitz-Greene Halleck_              169
  DRIVING HOME THE COWS         _Kate Putnam Osgood_               140
  EAGLE, THE                    _Alfred Tennyson_                  105
  ENTICED                       _William C. Wilkinson_             224
  EPILOGUE                      _The Editor_                       231
  EVELYN HOPE                   _Robert Browning_                  161
  FAREWELL, A                   _Charles Kingsley_                 199
  FAREWELL, A                   _Alfred Tennyson_                  112
  GIRDLE, ON A                  _Edmund Waller_                     23
  GOING HOME                    _Benjamin F. Taylor_               185
  GRAVES OF A HOUSEHOLD, THE    _Felicia Hemans_                   174
  HAUNTED HOUSES                _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow_        73
  HEALTH, A                     _Edward Coate Pinkney_              21
  HERMIT, THE                   _James Beattie_                    175
  HEROES                        _Edna Dean Proctor_                144
  HIGHLAND MARY                 _Robert Burns_                     166
  HOW'S MY BOY?                 _Sydney Dobell_                    150
  HYMN TO THE NIGHT             _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow_       103
  ICHABOD                       _John Greenleaf Whittier_          123
  INDIAN GOLD COIN, TO AN       _John Leyden_                      183
  IN MEMORIAM                   _Thomas K. Hervey_                 173
  I REMEMBER, I REMEMBER        _Thomas Hood_                       72
  IVY GREEN, THE                _Charles Dickens_                   90
  KNIGHT'S TOMB, THE            _Samuel Taylor Coleridge_          133
  KUBLA KHAN                    _Samuel Taylor Coleridge_           16
  LAMENT, A                     _Percy Bysshe Shelley_             192
  LAMENT OF THE IRISH EMIGRANT  _Lady Dufferin_                    158
  LAND OF LANDS, THE            _Alfred Tennyson_                  126
  LAND O' THE LEAL, THE         _Lady Nairne_                      156
  LAST LEAF, THE                _Oliver Wendell Holmes_            117
  LAST ROSE OF SUMMER, THE      _Thomas Moore_                     111
  LIE, THE                      _Sir Walter Raleigh_               204
  LIFE                          _Anna Lætitia Barbauld_            193
  LIFE                          _Henry King_                       192
  LINES ON A SKELETON           _Anonymous_                        201
  LINES TO AN INDIAN AIR        _Percy Bysshe Shelley_              42
  LITTLE BLACK BOY, THE         _William Blake_                    181
  LITTLE YEARS, THE             _Robert T. S. Lowell_              114
  LONG-AGO, THE                 _Richard Monckton Milnes_           88
  LOST LEADER, THE              _Robert Browning_                  119
  LOVE NOT                      _Caroline Norton_                   51
  LUCASTA, TO                   _Richard Lovelace_                 125
  MAID OF ATHENS, ERE WE PART   _Lord Byron_                        45
  MANGO TREE, THE               _Charles Kingsley_                  59
  MAN'S MORTALITY               _Simon Wastel_                     189
  MARIANA                       _Alfred Tennyson_                   37
  MARY IN HEAVEN, TO            _Robert Bums_                       61
  MINSTREL'S SONG               _Thomas Chatterton_                171
  MONTEREY                      _Charles Fenno Hoffman_            128
  MOORE, THOMAS, TO             _Lord Byron_                       110
  MUSICAL INSTRUMENT, A         _Elizabeth Barrett Browning_        11
  MY CHILD                      _John Pierpont_                    154
  MY HEID IS LIKE TO REND       _William Motherwell_                56
  MY PSALM                      _John Greenleaf Whittier_          221
  MY SLAIN                      _Richard Realf_                    219
  NICE CORRESPONDENT, A         _Frederick Locker_                  24
  NIGHT AND DEATH               _Joseph Blanco White_              104
  NOT FAR TO GO                 _William Barnes_                    43
  ODE                           _William Collins_                  139
  ODE                           _Theodore P. Cook_                 137
  ODE                           _Sir William Jones_                148
  ODE                           _Henry Timrod_                     136
  ODE ON A GRECIAN URN          _John Keats_                       199
  OFT IN THE STILLY NIGHT       _Thomas Moore_                      64
  OLD FAMILIAR FACES, THE       _Charles Lamb_                      66
  OLD MAN'S IDYL, AN            _Richard Realf_                     84
  ON A PICTURE OF PEEL CASTLE   _William Wordsworth_               209
  OVER THE RIVER                _Nancy Priest Wakefield_            78
      MORTAL BE PROUD?          _William Knox_                     177
  PAUPER'S DEATH-BED, THE       _Caroline Bowles Southey_          208
  PETITION TO TIME, A           _Bryan Waller Procter_             122
  PHILIP, MY KING               _Dinah Maria Mulock Craik_         149
  PROGRESS                      _Robert Bulwer Lytton_             179
  QUA CURSUM VENTUS             _Arthur Hugh Clough_                69
  RIVER PATH, THE               _John Greenleaf Whittier_           82
  ST. AGNES                     _Alfred Tennyson_                  215
  SANDS OF DEE, THE             _Charles Kingsley_                 102
  SERENADE                      _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow_        41
  SHE DIED IN BEAUTY            _Charles Doyne Sillery_            164
  SHE IS FAR FROM THE LAND      _Thomas Moore_                     170
  SHE WALKS IN BEAUTY           _Lord Byron_                        34
  SHE WAS A PHANTOM OF DELIGHT  _William Wordsworth_                18
      OF GRACE                  _Bryan Waller Procter_             165
  SKYLARK, THE                  _James Hogg_                       104
  SKYLARK, TO THE               _Percy Bysshe Shelley_             106
  SLANTEN LIGHT O' FALL, THE    _William Barnes_                    20
  SNOW-STORM, A                 _Charles Gamage Eastman_            97
  SOLDIER'S DREAM, THE          _Thomas Campbell_                  127
      NIGHT"                    _Sir Walter Scott_                 124
  SONG FOR SEPTEMBER, A         _Thomas William Parsons_            63
  SONG OF THE CAMP, A           _Bayard Taylor_                    130
  SONNETS                       _William Shakespeare_               48
  SPINNING-WHEEL SONG, THE      _John Francis Waller_               32
      THE SUMMER ROSE"          _Richard Henry Wilde_              113
  SUMMER LONGINGS               _Denis Florence Mac-Carthy_         91
  THANATOPSIS                   _William Cullen Bryant_             75
  THEY ARE ALL GONE             _Henry Vaughan_                     80
  THREE FISHERS, THE            _Charles Kingsley_                 143
  TIGER, THE                    _William Blake_                     96
  TIME'S CHANGES                _David Macbeth Moir_                67
  TITHONUS                      _Alfred Tennyson_                  193
  TOM BOWLING                   _Charles Dibdin_                   168
  TOO LATE!                     _Dinah Maria Mulock Craik_         167
  TOO LATE                      _Fitz-Hugh Ludlow_                 120
  TOUJOURS AMOUR                _Edmund Clarence Stedman_          228
  TREASURES OF THE DEEP, THE    _Felicia Hemans_                   212
  TWO WOMEN                     _Nathaniel Parker Willis_          207
  UNDISCOVERED COUNTRY, THE     _Edmund Clarence Stedman_          220
  VIRTUE                        _George Herbert_                   203
  VOICELESS, THE                _Oliver Wendell Holmes_            229
  VOYAGE, THE                   _Alfred Tennyson_                   13
  WEARINESS                     _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow_       227
  WELCOME, THE                  _Thomas Davis_                      35
  WHEN THE KYE COME HAME        _James Hogg_                        30
  WOMAN OF THREE COWS, THE      _James Clarence Mangan_            196
  WOMAN'S QUESTION, A           _Adelaide Anne Procter_             46
  YARROW UNVISITED              _William Wordsworth_                93

       *       *       *       *       *


  What was he doing, the great god Pan,
    Down in the reeds by the river?
  Spreading ruin and scattering ban,
  Splashing and paddling with hoofs of a goat,
  And breaking the golden lilies afloat
    With the dragon-fly on the river.

  He tore out a reed, the great god Pan,
    From the deep cool bed of the river:
  The limpid water turbidly ran,
  And the broken lilies a-dying lay,
  And the dragon-fly had fled away,
    Ere he brought it out of the river.

  High on the shore sat the great god Pan,
    While turbidly flowed the river;
  And hacked and hewed as a great god can,
  With his hard bleak steel at the patient reed,
  Till there was not a sign of a leaf indeed
    To prove it fresh from the river.

  He cut it short, did the great god Pan,
    (How tall it stood in the river!)
  Then drew the pith, like the heart of a man,
  Steadily from the outside ring,
  And notched the poor dry empty thing
    In holes, as he sat by the river.

  "This is the way," laughed the great god Pan
    (Laughed while he sat by the river),
  "The only way, since gods began
  To make sweet music, they could succeed."
  Then, dropping his mouth to a hole in the reed,
    He blew in power by the river.

  Sweet, sweet, sweet, O Pan!
    Piercing sweet by the river!
  Blinding sweet, O great god Pan!
  The sun on the hill forgot to die,
  And the lilies revived, and the dragon-fly
    Came back to dream on the river.

  Yet half a beast is the great god Pan,
    To laugh as he sits by the river,
  Making a poet out of a man:
  The true gods sigh for the cost and pain,--
  For the reed which grows nevermore again
    As a reed with the reeds in the river.

                                       _Elizabeth Barrett Browning._

       *       *       *       *       *


  We left behind the painted buoy
    That tosses at the harbor-mouth:
  And madly danced our hearts with joy,
    As fast we fleeted to the south:
  How fresh was every sight and sound
    On open main or winding shore!
  We knew the merry world was round,
    And we might sail forevermore.

  Warm broke the breeze against the brow,
    Dry sang the tackle, sang the sail:
  The lady's-head upon the prow
    Caught the shrill salt, and sheered the gale.
  The broad seas swelled to meet the keel,
    And swept behind: so quick the run,
  We felt the good ship shake and reel,
    We seemed to sail into the sun!

  How oft we saw the sun retire,
    And burn the threshold of the night,
  Fall from his ocean-lane of fire,
    And sleep beneath his pillared light!
  How oft the purple-skirted robe
    Of twilight slowly downward drawn,
  As through the slumber of the globe
    Again we dashed into the dawn!

  New stars all night above the brim
    Of waters lightened into view;
  They climbed as quickly, for the rim
    Changed every moment as we flew.
  Far ran the naked moon across
    The houseless ocean's heaving field,
  Or flying shone, the silver boss
    Of her own halo's dusky shield;

  The peaky islet shifted shapes,
    High towns on hills were dimly seen,
  We passed long lines of northern capes
    And dewy northern meadows green.
  We came to warmer waves, and deep
    Across the boundless east we drove,
  Where those long swells of breaker sweep
    The nutmeg rocks and isles of clove.

  By peaks that flamed, or, all in shade,
    Gloomed the low coast and quivering brine
  With ashy rains, that spreading made
    Fantastic plume or sable pine;
  By sands and steaming flats, and floods
    Of mighty mouth, we scudded fast,
  And hills and scarlet-mingled woods
    Glowed for a moment as we passed.

  O hundred shores of happy climes,
    How swiftly streamed ye by the bark!
  At times the whole sea burned, at times
    With wakes of fire we tore the dark;
  At times a carven craft would shoot
    From havens hid in fairy bowers,
  With naked limbs and flowers and fruit,
    But we nor paused for fruits nor flowers.

  For one fair Vision ever fled
    Down the waste waters day and night,
  And still we followed where she led
    In hope to gain upon her flight.
  Her face was evermore unseen,
    And fixed upon the far sea-line;
  But each man murmured, "O my Queen,
    I follow till I make thee mine."

  And now we lost her, now she gleamed
    Like Fancy made of golden air,
  Now nearer to the prow she seemed
    Like Virtue firm, like Knowledge fair,
  Now high on waves that idly burst
    Like Heavenly Hope she crowned the sea,
  And now, the bloodless point reversed,
    She bore the blade of Liberty.

  And only one among us,--him
    We pleased not,--he was seldom pleased:
  He saw not far: his eyes were dim:
    But ours he swore were all diseased.
  "A ship of fools!" he shrieked in spite,
    "A ship of fools!" he sneered and wept.
  And overboard one stormy night
    He cast his body, and on we swept.

  And never sail of ours was furled
    Nor anchor dropped at eve or morn;
  We loved the glories of the world,
    But laws of nature were our scorn;
  For blasts would rise and rave and cease,
    But whence were those that drove the sail
  Across the whirlwind's heart of peace,
    And to and through the counter-gale?

  Again to colder climes we came,
    For still we followed where she led:
  Now mate is blind and captain lame,
    And half the crew are sick or dead.
  But blind or lame or sick or sound,
    We follow that which flies before:
  We know the merry world is round,
    And we may sail forevermore.

                                                  _Alfred Tennyson._

       *       *       *       *       *


      In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
      A stately pleasure-dome decree
      Where Alph, the sacred river, ran,
      Through caverns measureless to man,
        Down to a sunless sea.
  So twice five miles of fertile ground
  With walls and towers were girdled round;
  And there were gardens, bright with sinuous rills,
  Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
  And here were forests ancient as the hills,
  Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.

  But oh! that deep romantic chasm, which slanted
  Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover!
  A savage place! as holy and enchanted
  As e'er beneath a waning moon was haunted
  By woman wailing for her demon-lover!
  And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething,
  As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing,
  A mighty fountain momently was forced,
  Amid whose swift, half-intermitted burst
  Huge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail,
  Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher's flail;
  And 'mid these dancing rocks at once and ever
  It flung up momently the sacred river.
  Five miles, meandering with a mazy motion
  Through wood and dale, the sacred river ran,--
  Then reached the caverns measureless to man,
  And sank in tumult to a lifeless ocean;
  And 'mid this tumult Kubla heard from far
  Ancestral voices prophesying war.

      The shadow of the dome of pleasure
      Floated midway on the waves,
      Where was heard the mingled measure
      From the fountain and the caves.
    It was a miracle of rare device,--
    A sunny pleasure-dome with caves of ice!
      A damsel with a dulcimer
      In a vision once I saw;
    It was an Abyssinian maid,
    And on her dulcimer she played,
    Singing of Mount Abora.
    Could I revive within me
    Her symphony and song,
    To such a deep delight 'twould win me
    That, with music loud and long,
    I would build that dome in air,--
    That sunny dome! those caves of ice!
    And all who heard should see them there,
    And all should cry, Beware! beware
    His flashing eyes, his floating hair!
    Weave a circle round him thrice,
    And close your eyes with holy dread,
    For he on honey-dew hath fed,
    And drunk the milk of Paradise.

                                          _Samuel Taylor Coleridge._

       *       *       *       *       *


  She was a phantom of delight
  When first she gleamed upon my sight;
  A lovely apparition, sent
  To be a moment's ornament;
  Her eyes as stars of twilight fair;
  Like Twilight's, too, her dusky hair;
  But all things else about her drawn
  From May-time and the cheerful dawn;
  A dancing shape, an image gay,
  To haunt, to startle, and waylay.

  I saw her upon nearer view,
  A spirit, yet a woman too!
  Her household motions light and free,
  And steps of virgin-liberty;
  A countenance in which did meet
  Sweet records, promises as sweet;
  A creature not too bright or good
  For human nature's daily food,
  For transient sorrows, simple wiles,
  Praise, blame, love, kisses, tears, and smiles.

  And now I see with eye serene
  The very pulse of the machine;
  A being breathing thoughtful breath,
  A traveller between life and death:
  The reason firm, the temperate will,
  Endurance, foresight, strength, and skill;
  A perfect woman, nobly planned
  To warn, to comfort, and command;
  And yet a spirit still, and bright
  With something of an angel-light.

                                               _William Wordsworth._

       *       *       *       *       *



  Ah! Jeane, my maid, I stood to you,
    When you wer' christen'd, small an' light,
  Wi' tiny earms o' red an' blue,
    A-hangen in your robe o' white.
  We brought ye to the hallow'd stwone,
  Vor Christ to teake ye vor his own,
  When harvest-work wer' all a-done,
  An' time brought round October zun,--
    The slanten light o' Fall.

  An' I can mind the wind wer' rough,
    An' gather'd clouds, but brought noo storms,
  An' you wer' nessled warm enough,
    'Ithin your smilen mother's earms.
  The whindlen grass did quiver light,
  Among the stubble, feaded white,
  An' if at times the zunlight broke
  Upon the groun', or on the vo'k,
    'Twer' slanten light o' Fall.

  An' when we brought ye droo the door
    O' Knapton church, a child o' greace,
  There cluster'd roun' a'most a score
    O' vo'k to zee your tiny feace.
  An' there we all did veel so proud,
  To zee an op'nen in the cloud,
  An' then a stream o' light break droo,
  A-sheenen brightly down on you,--
    The slanten light o' Fall.

  But now your time's a-come to stan'
    In church a-blushen at my zide,
  The while a bridegroom vrom my han'
    Ha' took ye vor his faithvul bride.
  Your christen neame we gi'd ye here,
  When Fall did cool the weasten year;
  An' now, agean, we brought ye droo
  The doorway, wi' your surneame new,
    In slanten light o' Fall.

  An' zoo vur, Jeane, your life is feair,
    An' God ha' been your steadvast friend,
  An' mid ye have mwore jay than ceare,
    Vor ever, till your journey's end.
  An' I've a-watch'd ye on wi' pride,
  But now I soon mus' leave your zide,
  Vor you ha' still life's springtide zun,
  But my life, Jeane, is now a-run
    To slanten light o' Fall.

                                                   _William Barnes._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I fill this cup to one made up
    Of loveliness alone,
  A woman, of her gentle sex
    The seeming paragon;
  To whom the better elements
    And kindly stars have given
  A form so fair, that, like the air,
    'Tis less of earth than heaven.

  Her every tone is music's own,
    Like those of morning birds,
  And something more than melody
    Dwells ever in her words;
  The coinage of her heart are they,
    And from her lips each flows
  As one may see the burdened bee
    Forth issue from the rose.

  Affections are as thoughts to her,
    The measures of her hours;
  Her feelings have the fragrancy,
    The freshness of young flowers;
  And lovely passions, changing oft,
    So fill her, she appears
  The image of themselves by turns,--
    The idol of past years!

  Of her bright face one glance will trace
    A picture on the brain,
  And of her voice in echoing hearts
    A sound must long remain;
  But memory, such as mine of her,
    So very much endears,
  When death is nigh my latest sigh
    Will not be life's, but hers.

  I fill this cup to one made up
    Of loveliness alone,
  A woman, of her gentle sex
    The seeming paragon,--
  Her health! and would on earth there stood
    Some more of such a frame,
  That life might be all poetry,
    And weariness a name.

                                             _Edward Coate Pinkney._

       *       *       *       *       *


  That which her slender waist confined
  Shall now my joyful temples bind;
  No monarch but would give his crown,
  His arms might do what this hath done.

  It was my heaven's extremest sphere,
  The pale which held that lovely deer:
  My joy, my grief, my hope, my love,
  Did all within this circle move.

  A narrow compass! and yet there
  Dwelt all that's good, and all that's fair.
  Give me but what this ribbon bound,
  Take all the rest the sun goes round!

                                                    _Edmund Waller._

       *       *       *       *       *


  The glow and the glory are plighted
    To darkness, for evening is come;
  The lamp in Glebe Cottage is lighted;
    The birds and the sheep-bells are dumb.
  I'm alone at my casement, for Pappy
    Is summoned to dinner at Kew:
  I'm alone, my dear Fred, but I'm happy,--
    I'm thinking of you.

  I wish you were here. Were I duller
    Than dull, you'd be dearer than dear;
  I am dressed in your favorite color,--
    Dear Fred, how I wish you were here!
  I am wearing my lazuli necklace,
    The necklace you fastened askew!
  Was there ever so rude or so reckless
    A darling as you?

  I want you to come and pass sentence
    On two or three books with a plot;
  Of course you know "Janet's Repentance"?
    I'm reading Sir Waverley Scott,
  The story of Edgar and Lucy,
    How thrilling, romantic, and true;
  The master (his bride was a goosey!)
    Reminds me of you.

  To-day, in my ride, I've been crowning
    The beacon; its magic still lures,
  For up there you discoursed about Browning,
    That stupid old Browning of yours.
  His vogue and his verve are alarming,
    I'm anxious to give him his due;
  But, Fred, he's not nearly so charming
    A poet as you.

  I heard how you shot at The Beeches,
    I saw how you rode Chanticleer,
  I have read the report of your speeches,
    And echoed the echoing cheer.
  There's a whisper of hearts you are breaking,--
    I envy their owners, I do!
  Small marvel that Fortune is making
    Her idol of you.

  Alas for the world, and its dearly
    Bought triumph, and fugitive bliss!
  Sometimes I half wish I were merely
    A plain or a penniless miss;
  But perhaps one is best with a measure
    Of pelf, and I'm not sorry, too,
  That I'm pretty, because it's a pleasure,
    My dearest, to you.

  Your whim is for frolic and fashion,
    Your taste is for letters and art;
  This rhyme is the commonplace passion
    That glows in a fond woman's heart.
  Lay it by in a dainty deposit
    For relics,--we all have a few!--
  Love, some day they'll print it, because it
    Was written to you.

                                                 _Frederick Locker._

       *       *       *       *       *


  God makes sech nights, all white an' still
    Fur'z you can look or listen.
  Moonshine an' snow on field an' hill,
    All silence an' all glisten.

  Zekle crep' up quite unbeknown
    An' peeked in thru' the winder,
  An' there sot Huldy all alone,
    'Ith no one nigh to hender.

  A fireplace filled the room's one side
    With half a cord o' wood in,--
  There warn't no stoves (tell comfort died)
    To bake ye to a puddin'.

  The wa'nut logs shot sparkles out
    Towards the pootiest, bless her!
  An' leetle flames danced all about
    The chiny on the dresser.

  Agin the chimbley crook-necks hung,
    An' in amongst 'em rusted
  The ole queen's arm thet Gran'ther Young
    Fetched back from Concord busted.

  The very room, coz she was in,
    Seemed warm from floor to ceilin',
  An' she looked full ez rosy agin
    Ez the apples she was peelin'.

  'Twas kin' o' kingdom-come to look
    On sech a blesséd cretur.
  A dog-rose blushin' to a brook
    Ain't modester nor sweeter.

  He was six foot o' man, Al,
    Clean grit an' human natur';
  None couldn't quicker pitch a ton
    Nor dror a furrer straighter.

  He'd sparked it with full twenty gals,
    He'd squired 'em, danced 'em, druv 'em,
  Fust this one, an' then thet, by spells,--
    All is, he couldn't love 'em.

  But long o' her his veins 'ould run
    All crinkly like curled maple,
  The side she breshed felt full o' sun
    Ez a south slope in Ap'il.

  She thought no v'ice hed sech a swing
    Ez hisn in the choir;
  My! when he made Ole Hunderd ring,
    She _knowed_ the Lord was nigher.

  An' she'd blush scarlit, right in prayer,
    When her new meetin'-bunnet
  Felt somehow thru' its crown a pair
    O' blue eyes sot upon it.

  Thet night, I tell ye, she looked _some_!
    She seemed to 've gut a new soul,
  For she felt sartin-sure he'd come,
    Down to her very shoe-sole.

  She heered a foot, an' knowed it tu,
    A-raspin' on the scraper,--
  All ways to once her feelin's flew
    Like sparks in burnt-up paper.

  He kin' o' l'itered on the mat,
    Some doubtfle o' the sekle;
  His heart kep' goin' pity-pat,
    But hern went pity Zekle.

  An' yit she gin her cheer a jerk
    Ez though she wished him furder,
  An' on her apples kep' to work,
    Parin' away like murder.

  "You want to see my Pa, I s'pose?"
    "Wal ... no ... I come dasignin'"--
  "To see my Ma? She's sprinklin' clo'es
    Agin to-morrer's i'nin'."

  To say why gals acts so or so,
    Or don't, 'ould be presumin';
  Mebby to mean _yes_ an' say _no_
    Comes nateral to women.

  He stood a spell on one foot fust,
    Then stood a spell on t' other,
  An' on which one he felt the wust
    He couldn't ha' told ye nuther.

  Says he, "I'd better call agin";
    Says she, "Think likely, Mister";
  Thet last word pricked him like a pin,
    An' ... Wal, he up an' kist her.

  When Ma bimeby upon 'em slips,
    Huldy sot pale ez ashes,
  All kin' o' smily roun' the lips
    An' teary roun' the lashes.

  For she was jes' the quiet kind
    Whose naturs never vary,
  Like streams that keep a summer mind
    Snowhid in Jenooary.

  The blood clost roun' her heart felt glued
    Too tight for all expressin',
  Tell mother see how metters stood,
    And gin 'em both her blessin'.

  Then her red come back like the tide
    Down to the Bay o' Fundy,
  An' all I know is they was cried
    In meetin' come nex' Sunday.

                                             _James Russell Lowell._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Come, all ye jolly shepherds,
    That whistle through the glen!
  I'll tell ye o' a secret
    That courtiers dinna ken:
  What is the greatest bliss
    That the tongue o' man can name?
  'Tis to woo a bonnie lassie
    When the kye come hame.
        When the kye come hame,
        When the kye come hame,--
        'Tween the gloamin' an' the mirk,
        When the kye come hame.

  'Tis not beneath the burgonet,
    Nor yet beneath the crown;
  'Tis not on couch o' velvet,
    Nor yet in bed o' down:
  'Tis beneath the spreading birk,
    In the glen without the name,
  Wi' a bonnie bonnie lassie,
    When the kye come hame.

  There the blackbird bigs his nest
    For the mate he lo'es to see,
  And on the tapmost bough
    O, a happy bird is he!
  There he pours his melting ditty,
    And love is a' the theme;
  And he'll woo his bonnie lassie,
    When the kye come hame.

  When the blewart bears a pearl,
    And the daisy turns a pea,
  And the bonnie lucken gowan
    Has fauldit up his ee,
  Then the laverock, frae the blue lift,
    Draps down and thinks nae shame
  To woo his bonnie lassie,
    When the kye come hame.

  See yonder pawky shepherd,
    That lingers on the hill:
  His yowes are in the fauld,
    And his lambs are lying still;
  Yet he downa gang to bed,
    For his heart is in a flame,
  To meet his bonnie lassie
    When the kye come hame.

  When the little wee bit heart
    Rises high in the breast,
  And the little wee bit starn
    Rises red in the east,
  O, there's a joy sae dear
    That the heart can hardly frame!
  Wi' a bonnie bonnie lassie,
    When the kye come hame.

  Then since all nature joins
    In this love without alloy,
  O, wha wad prove a traitor
    To nature's dearest joy?
  Or wha wad choose a crown,
    Wi' its perils an' its fame,
  And miss his bonnie lassie,
    When the kye come hame?

                                                       _James Hogg._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Mellow the moonlight to shine is beginning;
  Close by the window young Eileen is spinning;
  Bent o'er the fire, her blind grandmother, sitting,
  Is croaning, and moaning, and drowsily knitting,--
  "Eileen, achora, I hear some one tapping."
  "'Tis the ivy, dear mother, against the glass flapping."
  "Eileen, I surely hear somebody sighing."
  "'Tis the sound, mother dear, of the summer wind dying."
  Merrily, cheerily, noisily whirring,
  Swings the wheel, spins the reel, while the foot's stirring;
  Sprightly, and lightly, and airily ringing,
  Thrills the sweet voice of the young maiden singing.

  "What's that noise that I hear at the window, I wonder?"
  "'Tis the little birds chirping the holly-bush under."
  "What makes you be shoving and moving your stool on,
  And singing all wrong that old song of 'The Coolun'?"
  There's a form at the casement,--the form of her true-love,--
  And he whispers, with face bent, "I'm waiting for you, love;
  Get up on the stool, through the lattice step lightly,
  We'll rove in the grove while the moon's shining brightly."
  Merrily, cheerily, noisily whirring,
  Swings the wheel, spins the reel, while the foot's stirring;
  Sprightly, and lightly, and airily ringing,
  Thrills the sweet voice of the young maiden singing.

  The maid shakes her head, on her lip lays her fingers,
  Steals up from her seat,--longs to go, and yet lingers;
  A frightened glance turns to her drowsy grandmother,
  Puts one foot on the stool, spins the wheel with the other.
  Lazily, easily, swings now the wheel round;
  Slowly and lowly is heard now the reel's sound;
  Noiseless and light to the lattice above her
  The maid steps,--then leaps to the arms of her lover.
  Slower--and slower--and slower the wheel swings;
  Lower--and lower--and lower the reel rings;
  Ere the reel and the wheel stop their ringing and moving,
  Through the grove the young lovers by moonlight are roving.

                                              _John Francis Waller._

       *       *       *       *       *


  She walks in beauty like the night
    Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
  And all that's best of dark and bright
    Meets in her aspect and her eyes;
  Thus mellowed to that tender light
    Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

  One shade the more, one ray the less,
    Had half impaired the nameless grace
  Which waves in every raven tress,
    Or softly lightens o'er her face;
  Where thoughts serenely sweet express
    How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.

  And on that cheek, and o'er that brow,
    So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
  The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
    But tell of days in goodness spent,
  A mind at peace with all below,
    A heart whose love is innocent.

                                                       _Lord Byron._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Come in the evening, or come in the morning;
  Come when you're looked for, or come without warning;
  Kisses and welcome you'll find here before you,
  And the oftener you come here the more I'll adore you!
    Light is my heart since the day we were plighted;
    Red is my cheek that they told me was blighted;
    The green of the trees looks far greener than ever,
    And the linnets are singing, "True lovers don't sever!"

  I'll pull you sweet flowers, to wear if you choose them!
  Or, after you've kissed them, they'll lie on my bosom;
  I'll fetch from the mountain its breeze to inspire you;
  I'll fetch from my fancy a tale that won't tire you.
    O, your step's like the rain to the summer-vexed farmer,
    Or sabre and shield to a knight without armor;
    I'll sing you sweet songs till the stars rise above me,
    Then, wandering, I'll wish you, in silence, to love me.

  We'll look through the trees at the cliff and the eyry;
  We'll tread round the rath on the track of the fairy;
  We'll look on the stars, and we'll list to the river,
  Till you ask of your darling what gift you can give her,--
    O, she'll whisper you, "Love, as unchangeably beaming,
    And trust, when in secret, most tunefully streaming;
    Till the starlight of heaven above us shall quiver,
    As our souls flow in one down eternity's river."

  So come in the evening, or come in the morning:
  Come when you're looked for, or come without warning;
  Kisses and welcome you'll find here before you,
  And the oftener you come here the more I'll adore you!
    Light is my heart since the day we were plighted;
    Red is my cheek that they told me was blighted;
    The green of the trees looks far greener than ever,
    And the linnets are singing, "True lovers don't sever!"

                                                     _Thomas Davis._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I wandered by the brookside,
    I wandered by the mill;
  I could not hear the brook flow,--
    The noisy wheel was still.
  There was no burr of grasshopper,
    No chirp of any bird,
  But the beating of my own heart
    Was all the sound I heard.

  I sat beneath the elm-tree:
    I watched the long, long shade,
  And, as it grew still longer,
    I did not feel afraid;
  For I listened for a footfall,
    I listened for a word,--
  But the beating of my own heart
    Was all the sound I heard.

  He came not,--no, he came not,--
    The night came on alone,--
  The little stars sat one by one,
    Each on his golden throne;
  The evening wind passed by my cheek,
    The leaves above were stirred,--
  But the beating of my own heart
    Was all the sound I heard.

  Fast, silent tears were flowing,
    When something stood behind:
  A hand was on my shoulder,--
    I knew its touch was kind:
  It drew me nearer--nearer--
    We did not speak one word,
  For the beating of our own hearts
    Was all the sound we heard.

                                          _Richard Monckton Milnes._

       *       *       *       *       *


"Mariana in the moated grange."--_Measure for Measure._

  With blackest moss the flower-pots
    Were thickly crusted, one and all:
  The rusted nails fell from the knots
    That held the peach to the garden-wall.
  The broken sheds looked sad and strange:
    Unlifted was the clinking latch:
    Weeded and worn the ancient thatch
  Upon the lonely moated grange.
      She only said, "My life is dreary,
        He cometh not," she said;
      She said, "I am aweary, aweary,
        I would that I were dead!"

  Her tears fell with the dews at even;
    Her tears fell ere the dews were dried;
  She could not look on the sweet heaven,
    Either at morn or eventide.
  After the flitting of the bats,
    When thickest dark did trance the sky,
    She drew her casement-curtain by,
  And glanced athwart the glooming flats.
      She only said, "The night is dreary,
        He cometh not," she said;
      She said, "I am aweary, aweary,
        I would that I were dead!"

  Upon the middle of the night,
    Waking she heard the night-fowl crow:
  The cock sung out an hour ere light:
    From the dark fen the oxen's low
  Came to her: without hope of change,
    In sleep she seemed to walk forlorn,
    Till cold winds woke the gray-eyed morn
  About the lonely moated grange.
      She only said, "The day is dreary,
        He cometh not," she said;
      She said, "I am aweary, aweary,
        I would that I were dead!"

  About a stone-cast from the wall
    A sluice with blackened waters slept,
  And o'er it many, round and small,
    The clustered marish-mosses crept.
  Hard by a poplar shook alway,
    All silver-green with gnarléd bark:
    For leagues no other tree did mark
  The level waste, the rounding gray.
      She only said, "My life is dreary,
        He cometh not," she said;
      She said, "I am aweary, aweary,
        I would that I were dead!"

  And ever when the moon was low,
    And the shrill winds were up and away,
  In the white curtain, to and fro,
    She saw the gusty shadow sway.
  But when the moon was very low,
    And wild winds bound within their cell,
    The shadow of the poplar fell
  Upon her bed, across her brow.
      She only said, "The night is dreary,
        He cometh not," she said;
      She said, "I am aweary, aweary,
        I would that I were dead!"

  All day within the dreamy house,
    The doors upon their hinges creaked;
  The blue-fly sung i' the pane; the mouse
    Behind the mouldering wainscot shrieked,
  Or from the crevice peered about.
    Old faces glimmered through the doors,
    Old footsteps trod the upper floors,
  Old voices called her from without.
      She only said, "My life is dreary,
        He cometh not," she said;
      She said, "I am aweary, aweary,
        I would that I were dead!"

  The sparrow's chirrup on the roof,
    The slow clock ticking, and the sound
  Which to the wooing wind aloof
    The poplar made, did all confound
  Her sense; but most she loathed the hour
    When the thick-moted sunbeam lay
    Athwart the chambers, and the day
  Was sloping toward his western bower.
      Then said she, "I am very dreary,
        He will not come," she said;
      She wept, "I am aweary, aweary,
        O God, that I were dead!"

                                                  _Alfred Tennyson._

       *       *       *       *       *


    The splendor falls on castle walls
      And snowy summits old in story;
    The long light shakes across the lakes,
      And the wild cataract leaps in glory.
  Blow, bugle, blow, set the wild echoes flying,
  Blow, bugle; answer, echoes, dying, dying, dying.

    O hark, O hear! how thin and clear,
      And thinner, clearer, farther going!
    O sweet and far from cliff and scar
      The horns of Elfland faintly blowing!
  Blow, let us hear the purple glens replying:
  Blow, bugle; answer, echoes, dying, dying, dying.

    O love, they die in yon rich sky,
      They faint on hill or field or river:
    Our echoes roll from soul to soul,
      And grow forever and forever.
  Blow, bugle, blow, set the wild echoes flying,
  And answer, echoes, answer, dying, dying, dying.

                                                  _Alfred Tennyson._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Stars of the summer night!
    Far in yon azure deeps,
  Hide, hide your golden light!
        She sleeps!
    My lady sleeps!

  Moon of the summer night!
    Far down yon western steeps,
  Sink, sink in silver light!
        She sleeps!
    My lady sleeps!

  Wind of the summer night!
    Where yonder woodbine creeps,
  Fold, fold thy pinions light!
        She sleeps!
    My lady sleeps!

  Dreams of the summer night!
    Tell her, her lover keeps
  Watch, while in slumbers light
        She sleeps!
    My lady sleeps!

                                       _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I arise from dreams of thee,
    In the first sweet sleep of night,
  When the winds are breathing low,
    And the stars are shining bright;
  I arise from dreams of thee,
    And a spirit in my feet
  Has led me,--who knows how?
    To thy chamber-window, sweet!

  The wandering airs they faint
    On the dark, the silent stream,--
  The champak odors fail,
    Like sweet thoughts in a dream.
  The nightingale's complaint
    It dies upon her heart,
  As I must die on thine,
    O beloved as thou art!

  O lift me from the grass!
    I die, I faint, I fail.
  Let thy love in kisses rain
    On my lips and eyelids pale.
  My cheek is cold and white, alas!
    My heart beats loud and fast.
  Oh! press it close to thine again,
    Where it will break at last.

                                             _Percy Bysshe Shelley._

       *       *       *       *       *


  As upland fields were sunburnt brown,
  And heat-dried brooks were running small,
  And sheep were gathered, panting all,
  Below the hawthorn on the down,--
  The while my mare, with dipping head,
  Pulled on my cart above the bridge,--
  I saw come on, beside the ridge,
  A maiden white in skin and thread,
  And walking, with an elbow-load,
  The way I drove along my road.

  As there with comely steps up hill
  She rose by elm-trees all in ranks,
  From shade to shade, by flowery banks,
  Where flew the bird with whistling bill,
  I kindly said, "Now won't you ride,
  This burning weather, up the knap?
  I have a seat that fits the trap,
  And now is swung from side to side."
  "O no," she cried, "I thank you, no.
  I've little farther now to go."

  Then, up the timbered slope, I found
  The prettiest house a good day's ride
  Would bring you by, with porch and side
  By rose and jessamine well bound;
  And near at hand a spring and pool,
  With lawn well sunned and bower cool;
  And while the wicket fell behind
  Her steps, I thought, "If I would find
  A wife I need not blush to show,
  I've little farther now to go."

                                                   _William Barnes._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Maid of Athens, ere we part,
  Give, O give me back my heart!
  Or, since that has left my breast,
  Keep it now, and take the rest!
  Hear my vow before I go,
    [Greek: Zôê mou sas agapô.]

  By those tresses unconfined,
  Wooed by each Ægean wind;
  By those lids whose jetty fringe
  Kiss thy soft cheeks' blooming tinge;
  By those wild eyes like the roe,
    [Greek: Zôê mou sas agapô.]

  By that lip I long to taste;
  By that zone-encircled waist;
  By all the token-flowers that tell
  What words can never speak so well;
  By love's alternate joy and woe,
    [Greek: Zôê mou sas agapô.]

  Maid of Athens! I am gone.
  Think of me, sweet! when alone.
  Though I fly to Istambol,
  Athens holds my heart and soul:
  Can I cease to love thee? No!
    [Greek: Zôê mou sas agapô.]

                                                       _Lord Byron._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Come, rest in this bosom, my own stricken deer:
  Though the herd have fled from thee, thy home is still here;
  Here still is the smile that no cloud can o'ercast,
  And a heart and a hand all thy own to the last.

  Oh! what was love made for, if 't is not the same
  Through joy and through torment, through glory and shame?
  I know not, I ask not, if guilt's in that heart,
  I but know that I love thee, whatever thou art.

  Thou hast called me thy Angel in moments of bliss,
  And thy Angel I 'll be, 'mid the horrors of this,
  Through the furnace, unshrinking, thy steps to pursue,
  And shield thee, and save thee,--or perish there too!

                                                     _Thomas Moore._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Before I trust my fate to thee,
    Or place my hand in thine,
  Before I let thy future give
    Color and form to mine,
  Before I peril all for thee,
  Question thy soul to-night for me.

  I break all slighter bonds, nor feel
    A shadow of regret:
  Is there one link within the past
    That holds thy spirit yet?
  Or is thy faith as clear and free
  As that which I can pledge to thee?

  Does there within thy dimmest dreams
    A possible future shine,
  Wherein thy life could henceforth breathe,
    Untouched, unshared by mine?
  If so, at any pain or cost,
  O, tell me before all is lost!

  Look deeper still: if thou canst feel,
    Within thy inmost soul,
  That thou hast kept a portion back,
    While I have staked the whole,
  Let no false pity spare the blow,
  But in true mercy tell me so.

  Is there within thy heart a need
    That mine cannot fulfil?
  One chord that any other hand
    Could better wake or still?
  Speak now, lest at some future day
  My whole life wither and decay.

  Lives there within thy nature hid
    The demon-spirit, change,
  Shedding a passing glory still
    On all things new and strange?
  It may not be thy fault alone,--
  But shield my heart against thine own.

  Couldst thou withdraw thy hand one day
    And answer to my claim,
  That fate, and that to-day's mistake,--
    Not thou,--had been to blame?
  Some soothe their conscience thus; but thou
  Wilt surely warn and save me now.

  Nay, answer _not_,--I dare not hear,--
    The words would come too late;
  Yet I would spare thee all remorse,
    So comfort thee, my fate:
  Whatever on my heart may fall,
  Remember, I _would_ risk it all!

                                            _Adelaide Anne Procter._

       *       *       *       *       *


  When forty winters shall besiege thy brow,
  And dig deep trenches in thy beauty's field,
  Thy youth's proud livery, so gazed on now,
  Will be a tattered weed, of small worth held:
  Then being asked where all thy beauty lies,
  Where all the treasure of thy lusty days;
  To say, within thine own deep-sunken eyes,
  Were an all-eating shame, and thriftless praise.
  How much more praise deserved thy beauty's use,
  If thou couldst answer,--"This fair child of mine
  Shall sum my count, and make my old excuse--"
  Proving his beauty by succession thine.
    This were to be new-made when thou art old,
    And see thy blood warm when thou feel'st it cold.

       *       *       *       *       *

  When I do count the clock that tells the time,
  And see the brave day sunk in hideous night;
  When I behold the violet past prime,
  And sable curls all silvered o'er with white;
  When lofty trees I see barren of leaves,
  Which erst from heat did canopy the herd,
  And summer's green all girded up in sheaves,
  Borne on the bier with white and bristly beard;
  Then, of thy beauty do I question make,
  That thou among the wastes of time must go,
  Since sweets and beauties do themselves forsake,
  And die as fast as they see others grow;
    And nothing 'gainst Time's scythe can make defence,
    Save breed, to brave him, when he takes thee hence.

       *       *       *       *       *

  My glass shall not persuade me I am old,
  So long as youth and thou are of one date;
  But when in thee Time's furrows I behold,
  Then look I death my days should expiate.
  For all that beauty that doth cover thee
  Is but the seemly raiment of my heart,
  Which in thy breast doth live, as thine in me;
  How can I then be elder than thou art?
  O therefore, love, be of thyself so wary,
  As I not for myself but for thee will;
  Bearing thy heart, which I will keep so chary
  As tender nurse her babe from faring ill.
    Presume not on thy heart when mine is slain;
    Thou gav'st me thine, not to give back again.

       *       *       *       *       *

  As an unperfect actor on the stage,
  Who with his fear is put beside his part,
  Or some fierce thing replete with too much rage,
  Whose strength's abundance weakens his own heart;
  So I, for fear of trust, forget to say
  The perfect ceremony of love's rite,
  And in mine own love's strength seem to decay,
  O'ercharged with burthen of mine own love's might.
  O let my books be then the eloquence
  And dumb presagers of my speaking breast;
  Who plead for love, and look for recompense,
  More than that tongue that more hath more expressed.
    O learn to read what silent love hath writ:
    To hear with eyes belongs to love's fine wit.

       *       *       *       *       *

  Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
  Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
  Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
  And summer's lease hath all too short a date:
  Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
  And often is his gold complexion dimmed;
  And every fair from fair sometime declines,
  By chance, or nature's changing coarse, untrimmed;
  But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
  Nor lose possession of that fair thou owest;
  Nor shall Death brag thou wander'st in his shade,
  When in eternal lines to time thou growest;
    So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see,
    So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.

                                              _William Shakespeare._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Love not, love not! ye hapless sons of clay!
  Hope's gayest wreaths are made of earthly flowers,--
  Things that are made to fade and fall away
  Ere they have blossomed for a few short hours.
                        Love not!

  Love not! the thing ye love may change;
  The rosy lip may cease to smile on you,
  The kindly-beaming eye grow cold and strange,
  The heart still warmly beat, yet not be true.
                        Love not!

  Love not! the thing you love may die,--
  May perish from the gay and gladsome earth;
  The silent stars, the blue and smiling sky,
  Beam o'er its grave, as once upon its birth.
                        Love not!

  Love not! O warning vainly said
  In present hours as in years gone by!
  Love flings a halo round the dear ones' head,
  Faultless, immortal, till they change or die.
                        Love not!

                                                  _Caroline Norton._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Ae fond kiss, and then we sever!
  Ae fareweel, alas! forever!
  Deep in heart-wrung tears I'll pledge thee;
  Warring sighs and groans I'll wage thee.
  Who shall say that Fortune grieves him,
  While the star of hope she leaves him?
  Me, nae cheerfu' twinkle lights me;
  Dark despair around benights me.

  I'll ne'er blame my partial fancy,--
  Naething could resist my Nancy:
  But to see her was to love her,
  Love but her, and love forever.
  Had we never loved sae kindly,
  Had we never loved sae blindly,
  Never met,--or never parted,
  We had ne'er been broken-hearted.

  Fare thee weel, thou first and fairest!
  Fare thee weel, thou best and dearest!
  Thine be ilka joy and treasure,
  Peace, enjoyment, love, and pleasure!
  Ae fond kiss, and then we sever!
  Ae fareweel, alas! forever!
  Deep in heart-wrung tears I'll pledge thee;
  Warring sighs and groans I'll wage thee.

                                                     _Robert Burns._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Break, break, break,
    On thy cold gray stones, O sea!
  And I would that my tongue could utter
    The thoughts that arise in me.

  O well for the fisherman's boy
    That he shouts with his sister at play!
  O well for the sailor lad
    That he sings in his boat on the bay!

  And the stately ships go on,
    To the haven under the hill;
  But O for the touch of a vanished hand,
    And the sound of a voice that is still!

  Break, break, break,
    At the foot of thy crags, O sea!
  But the tender grace of a day that is dead
    Will never come back to me.

                                                  _Alfred Tennyson._

       *       *       *       *       *


  When the latest strife is lost, and all is done with,
    Ere we slumber in the spirit and the brain,
  We drowse back, in dreams, to days that life begun with,
    And their tender light returns to us again.

  I have cast away the tangle and the torment
    Of the cords that bound my life up in a mesh;
  And the pulse begins to throb that long lay dormant
    'Neath their pressure; and the old wounds bleed afresh.

  I am touched again with shades of early sadness,
    Like the summer-cloud's light shadow in my hair;
  I am thrilled again with breaths of boyish gladness,
    Like the scent of some last primrose on the air.

  And again she comes, with all her silent graces,
    The lost woman of my youth, yet unpossessed;
  And her cold face so unlike the other faces
    Of the women whose dead lips I since have pressed.

  The motion and the fragrance of her garments
    Seem about me, all the day long, in the room;
  And her face, with its bewildering old endearments,
    Comes at night, between the curtains, in the gloom.

  When vain dreams are stirred with sighing, near the morning,
    To my own her phantom lips I feel approach;
  And her smile, at eve, breaks o'er me without warning
    From its speechless, pale, perpetual reproach.

  When life's dawning glimmer yet had all the tint there
    Of the orient, in the freshness of the grass
  (Ah, what feet since then have trodden out the print there!)
    Did her soft, her silent footsteps fall, and pass.

  They fell lightly, as the dew falls, 'mid ungathered
    Meadow-flowers, and lightly lingered with the dew.
  But the dew is gone, the grass is dried and withered,
    And the traces of those steps have faded too.

  Other footsteps fall about me,--faint, uncertain,
    In the shadow of the world, as it recedes;
  Other forms peer through the half-uplifted curtain
    Of that mystery which hangs behind the creeds.

  What is gone, is gone forever. And new fashions
    May replace old forms which nothing can restore;
  But I turn from sighing back departed passions,
    With that pining at the bosom as of yore.

  I remember to have murmured, morn and even,
    "Though the Earth dispart these Earthlies, face from face,
  Yet the Heavenlies shall surely join in Heaven,
    For the spirit hath no bonds in time or space.

  "Where it listeth, there it bloweth; all existence
    Is its region; and it houseth where it will.
  I shall feel her through immeasurable distance,
    And grow nearer and be gathered to her still.

  "If I fail to find her out by her gold tresses,
    Brows, and breast, and lips, and language of sweet strains,
  I shall know her by the traces of dead kisses,
    And that portion of myself which she retains."

  But my being is confused with new experience,
    And changed to something other than it was;
  And the Future with the Past is set at variance;
    And Life falters with the burthens which it has.

  Earth's old sins press fast behind me, weakly wailing;
    Faint before me fleets the good I have not done;
  And my search for her may still be unavailing
    'Mid the spirits that have passed beyond the sun.

                                             _Robert Bulwer Lytton._

       *       *       *       *       *


  My heid is like to rend, Willie,
    My heart is like to break;
  I'm wearin' aff my feet, Willie,
    I'm dyin' for your sake!
  O, lay your cheek to mine, Willie,
    Your hand on my briest-bane,--
  O, say ye'll think on me, Willie,
    When I am deid and gane!

  It's vain to comfort me, Willie,
    Sair grief maun ha'e its will;
  But let me rest upon your briest
    To sab and greet my fill.
  Let me sit on your knee, Willie,
    Let me shed by your hair,
  And look into the face, Willie,
    I never sall see mair!

  I'm sittin' on your knee, Willie,
    For the last time in my life,--
  A puir heart-broken thing, Willie,
    A mither, yet nae wife.
  Ay, press your hand upon my heart,
    And press it mair and mair,
  Or it will burst the silken twine,
    Sae strang is its despair.

  O, wae's me for the hour, Willie,
    When we thegither met,--
  O, wae's me for the time, Willie,
    That our first tryst was set!
  O, wae's me for the loanin' green
    Where we were wont to gae,--
  And wae's me for the destinie
    That gart me luve thee sae!

  O, dinna mind my words, Willie,
    I downa seek to blame;
  But O, it's hard to live, Willie,
    And dree a warld's shame!
  Het tears are hailin' ower your cheek,
    And hailin' ower your chin;
  Why weep ye sae for worthlessness,
    For sorrow, and for sin?

  I'm weary o' this warld, Willie,
    And sick wi' a' I see,
  I canna live as I ha'e lived,
    Or be as I should be.
  But fauld unto your heart, Willie,
    The heart that still is thine,
  And kiss ance mair the white, white cheel
    Ye said was red langsyne.

  A stoun' gaes through my heid, Willie,
    A sair stoun' through my heart;
  O, haud me up and let me kiss
    Thy brow ere we twa pairt.
  Anither, and anither yet!--
    How fast my life-strings break!--
  Fareweel! fareweel! through yon kirk-yard
    Step lichtly for my sake!

  The laverock in the lift, Willie,
    That lilts far ower our heid,
  Will sing the morn as merrilie
    Abune the clay-cauld deid;
  And this green turf we're sittin' on,
    Wi' dew-draps shimmerin' sheen,
  Will hap the heart that luvit thee
    As warld has seldom seen.

  But O, remember me, Willie,
    On land where'er ye be;
  And O, think on the leal, leal heart,
    That ne'er luvit ane but thee!
  And O, think on the cauld, cauld mools
    That file my yellow hair,
  That kiss the cheek, and kiss the chin
    Ye never sall kiss mair!

                                               _William Motherwell._

       *       *       *       *       *


  He wiled me through the furzy croft;
    He wiled me down the sandy lane;
  He told his boy's love, soft and oft,
    Until I told him mine again.

  We married, and we sailed the main,--
    A soldier, and a soldier's wife.
  We marched through many a burning plain;
    We sighed for many a gallant life.

  But his--God keep it safe from harm.
    He toiled, and dared, and earned command,
  And those three stripes upon his arm
    Were more to me than gold or land.

  Sure he would win some great renown;
    Our lives were strong, our hearts were high.
  One night the fever struck him down.
    I sat, and stared, and saw him die.

  I had his children,--one, two, three.
    One week I had them, blithe and sound.
  The next--beneath this mango tree
    By him in barrack burying-ground.

  I sit beneath the mango shade;
    I live my five years' life all o'er,--
  Round yonder stems his children played;
    He mounted guard at yonder door.

  'Tis I, not they, am gone and dead.
    They live, they know, they feel, they see.
  Their spirits light the golden shade
    Beneath the giant mango tree.

  All things, save I, are full of life:
    The minas, pluming velvet breasts;
  The monkeys, in their foolish strife;
    The swooping hawks, the swinging nests;

  The lizards basking on the soil;
    The butterflies who sun their wings;
  The bees about their household toil;--
    They live, they love, the blissful things!

  Each tender purple mango shoot,
    That folds and droops so bashful down,
  It lives, it sucks some hidden root,
    It rears at last a broad green crown.

  It blossoms: and the children cry,
    "Watch when the mango apples fall."
  It lives; but rootless, fruitless, I,--
    I breathe and dream,--and that is all.

  Thus am I dead, yet cannot die;
    But still within my foolish brain
  There hangs a pale blue evening sky,
    A furzy croft, a sandy lane.

                                                 _Charles Kingsley._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Thou lingering star, with lessening ray,
    That lov'st to greet the early morn,
  Again thou usherest in the day
    My Mary from my soul was torn.
  O Mary! dear departed shade!
    Where is thy place of blissful rest?
  See'st thou thy lover lowly laid?
    Hear'st thou the groans that rend his breast?

  That sacred hour can I forget,
    Can I forget the hallowed grove,
  Where by the winding Ayr we met,
    To live one day of parting love?
  Eternity will not efface
    Those records dear of transports past;
  Thy image at our last embrace;
    Ah! little thought we 'twas our last!

  Ayr gurgling kissed his pebbled shore,
    O'erhung with wild woods, thickening green;
  The fragrant birch, and hawthorn hoar,
    Twined amorous round the raptured scene;
  The flowers sprang wanton to be pressed,
    The birds sang love on every spray,--
  Till too, too soon, the glowing west
    Proclaimed the speed of wingéd day.

  Still o'er these scenes my memory wakes,
    And fondly broods with miser care!
  Time but the impression deeper makes,
    As streams their channels deeper wear.
  My Mary, dear departed shade!
    Where is thy place of blissful rest?
  See'st thou thy lover lowly laid?
    Hear'st thou the groans that rend his breast?

                                                     _Robert Burns._

       *       *       *       *       *


  September strews the woodland o'er
    With many a brilliant color;
  The world is brighter than before,--
    Why should our hearts be duller?
  Sorrow and the scarlet leaf,
    Sad thoughts and sunny weather!
  Ah me! this glory and this grief
    Agree not well together.

  This is the parting season,--this
    The time when friends are flying;
  And lovers now, with many a kiss,
    Their long farewells are sighing.
  Why is Earth so gayly dressed?
    This pomp, that Autumn beareth,
  A funeral seems where every guest
    A bridal garment weareth.

  Each one of us, perchance, may here,
    On some blue morn hereafter,
  Return to view the gaudy year,
    But not with boyish laughter.
  We shall then be wrinkled men,
    Our brows with silver laden,
  And thou this glen may'st seek again,
    But nevermore a maiden!

  Nature perhaps foresees that Spring
    Will touch her teeming bosom,
  And that a few brief months will bring
    The bird, the bee, the blossom;
  Ah! these forests do not know--
    Or would less brightly wither--
  The virgin that adorns them so
    Will nevermore come hither!

                                           _Thomas William Parsons._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Oft in the stilly night,
    Ere Slumber's chain has bound me,
  Fond Memory brings the light
    Of other days around me;
      The smiles, the tears,
      Of boyhood's years,
    The words of love then spoken;
      The eyes that shone,
      Now dimmed and gone,
    The cheerful hearts now broken!
  Thus in the stilly night,
    Ere Slumber's chain has bound me,
  Sad Memory brings the light
    Of other days around me.

  When I remember all
    The friends, so linked together,
  I've seen around me fall,
    Like leaves in wintry weather,
      I feel like one
      Who treads alone
    Some banquet-hall deserted,
      Whose lights are fled,
      Whose garlands dead,
    And all but he departed!
  Thus in the stilly night,
    Ere Slumber's chain has bound me,
  Sad Memory brings the light
    Of other days around me.

                                                     _Thomas Moore._

       *       *       *       *       *


    Tears, idle tears, I know not what they mean,
  Tears from the depth of some divine despair
  Rise in the heart, and gather to the eyes,
  In looking on the happy autumn fields,
  And thinking of the days that are no more.

    Fresh as the first beam glittering on a sail
  That brings our friends up from the under world,
  Sad as the last which reddens over one
  That sinks with all we love below the verge,--
  So sad, so fresh, the days that are no more.

    Ah, sad and strange as in dark summer dawns
  The earliest pipe of half-awakened birds
  To dying ears, when unto dying eyes
  The casement slowly grows a glimmering square,--
  So sad, so strange, the days that are no more.

    Dear as remembered kisses after death,
  And sweet as those by hopeless fancy feigned
  On lips that are for others; deep as love,
  Deep as first love, and wild with all regret,
  O death in life! the days that are no more.

                                                  _Alfred Tennyson._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I have had playmates, I have had companions,
  In my days of childhood, in my joyful school-days;
  All, all are gone, the old familiar faces.

  I have been laughing, I have been carousing,
  Drinking late, sitting late, with my bosom cronies;
  All, all are gone, the old familiar faces.

  I loved a love once, fairest among women;
  Closed are her doors on me, I must not see her;
  All, all are gone, the old familiar faces.

  I have a friend, a kinder friend has no man;
  Like an ingrate, I left my friend abruptly,--
  Left him, to muse on the old familiar faces.

  Ghost-like I paced round the haunts of my childhood.
  Earth seemed a desert I was bound to traverse,
  Seeking to find the old familiar faces.

  Friend of my bosom, thou more than a brother,
  Why wert thou not born in my father's dwelling?
  So might we talk of the old familiar faces,--

  How some they have died, and some they have left me,
  And some are taken from me; all are departed,
  All, all are gone, the old familiar faces!

                                                     _Charles Lamb._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I saw her once,--so freshly fair,
    That, like a blossom just unfolding,
  She opened to life's cloudless air,
    And Nature joyed to view its moulding:
  Her smile, it haunts my memory yet;
    Her cheek's fine hue divinely glowing;
  Her rosebud mouth, her eyes of jet,
    Around on all their light bestowing.
  O, who could look on such a form,
    So nobly free, so softly tender,
  And darkly dream that earthly storm
    Should dim such sweet, delicious splendor?
  For in her mien, and in her face,
    And in her young step's fairy lightness,
  Naught could the raptured gazer trace
    But beauty's glow and pleasure's brightness.

  I saw her twice,--an altered charm,
    But still of magic richest, rarest,
  Than girlhood's talisman less warm,
    Though yet of earthly sights the fairest;
  Upon her breast she held a child,
    The very image of its mother,
  Which ever to her smiling smiled,--
    They seemed to live but in each other.
  But matron cares or lurking woe
    Her thoughtless, sinless look had banished,
  And from her cheeks the roseate glow
    Of girlhood's balmy morn had vanished;
  Within her eyes, upon her brow,
    Lay something softer, fonder, deeper,
  As if in dreams some visioned woe
    Had broke the Elysium of the sleeper.

  I saw her thrice,--Fate's dark decree
    In widow's garments had arrayed her;
  Yet beautiful she seemed to be
    As even my reveries portrayed her;
  The glow, the glance, had passed away,
    The sunshine and the sparkling glitter,--
  Still, though I noted pale decay,
    The retrospect was scarcely bitter;
  For in their place a calmness dwelt,
    Serene, subduing, soothing, holy,--
  In feeling which, the bosom felt
    That every louder mirth is folly,--
  A pensiveness which is not grief;
    A stillness as of sunset streaming;
  A fairy glow on flower and leaf,
    Till earth looks like a landscape dreaming.

  A last time,--and unmoved she lay,
    Beyond life's dim, uncertain river,
  A glorious mould of fading clay,
    From whence the spark had fled forever!
  I gazed--my heart was like to burst--
    And, as I thought of years departed--
  The years wherein I saw her first,
    When she, a girl, was lightsome-hearted--
  And as I mused on later days,
    When moved she in her matron duty,
  A happy mother, in the blaze
    Of ripened hope and sunny beauty,--
  I felt the chill--I turned aside--
    Bleak Desolation's cloud came o'er me;
  And Being seemed a troubled tide,
    Whose wrecks in darkness swam before me!

                                               _David Macbeth Moir._

       *       *       *       *       *


  As ships becalmed at eve, that lay
    With canvas drooping, side by side,
  Two towers of sail at dawn of day
    Are scarce, long leagues apart, descried;

  When fell the night, upsprung the breeze,
    And all the darkling hours they plied,
  Nor dreamt but each the selfsame seas
    By each was cleaving, side by side:

  E'en so,--but why the tale reveal
    Of those whom, year by year unchanged,
  Brief absence joined anew to feel,
    Astounded, soul from soul estranged?

  At dead of night their sails were filled,
    And onward each rejoicing steered;
  Ah, neither blame, for neither willed,
    Or wist, what first with dawn appeared!

  To veer, how vain! On, onward strain,
    Brave barks! In light, in darkness too,
  Through winds and tides one compass guides,--
    To that, and your own selves, be true.

  But O blithe breeze, and O great seas,
    Though ne'er, that earliest parting past,
  On your wide plain they join again,
    Together lead them home at last!

  One port, methought, alike they sought,
    One purpose hold where'er they fare,--
  O bounding breeze, O rushing seas,
    At last, at last, unite them there!

                                               _Arthur Hugh Clough._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Whom first we love, you know, we seldom wed.
  Time rules us all. And life, indeed, is not
  The thing we planned it out ere hope was dead.
  And then, we women cannot choose our lot.

  Much must be borne which it is hard to bear;
  Much given away which it were sweet to keep.
  God help us all! who need, indeed, his care.
  And yet I know the Shepherd loves his sheep.

  My little boy begins to babble now
  Upon my knee his earliest infant prayer.
  He has his father's eager eyes, I know;
  And, they say, too, his mother's sunny hair.

  But when he sleeps and smiles upon my knee,
  And I can feel his light breath come and go,
  I think of one (Heaven help and pity me!)
  Who loved me, and whom I loved, long ago;

  Who might have been ... ah, what I dare not think!
  We are all changed. God judges for us best.
  God help us do our duty, and not shrink,
  And trust in Heaven humbly for the rest.

  But blame us women not, if some appear
  Too cold at times; and some too gay and light.
  Some griefs gnaw deep. Some woes are hard to bear.
  Who knows the past? and who can judge us right?

  Ah, were we judged by what we might have been,
  And not by what we are,--too apt to fall!
  My little child,--he sleeps and smiles between
  These thoughts and me. In heaven we shall know all!

                                             _Robert Bulwer Lytton._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I remember, I remember
    The house where I was born,
  The little window where the sun
    Came peeping in at morn;
  He never came a wink too soon,
    Nor brought too long a day;
  But now, I often wish the night
    Had borne my breath away!

  I remember, I remember
    The roses, red and white,
  The violets, and the lily-cups,--
    Those flowers made of light!
  The lilacs where the robin built,
    And where my brother set
  The laburnum on his birthday,--
    The tree is living yet!

  I remember, I remember
    Where I was used to swing,
  And thought the air must rush as fresh
    To swallows on the wing;
  My spirit flew in feathers then,
    That is so heavy now,
  And summer pool could hardly cool
    The fever on my brow!

  I remember, I remember
    The fir-trees dark and high;
  I used to think their slender tops
    Were close against the sky.
  It was a childish ignorance,
    But now 'tis little joy
  To know I'm farther off from heaven
    Than when I was a boy.

                                                      _Thomas Hood._

       *       *       *       *       *


  All houses wherein men have lived and died
    Are haunted houses. Through the open doors
  The harmless phantoms on their errands glide,
    With feet that make no sound upon the floors.

  We meet them at the doorway, on the stair,
    Along the passages they come and go,
  Impalpable impressions on the air,
    A sense of something moving to and fro.

  There are more guests at table than the hosts
    Invited; the illuminated hall
  Is thronged with quiet, inoffensive ghosts,
    As silent as the pictures on the wall.

  The stranger at my fireside cannot see
    The forms I see, nor hear the sounds I hear;
  He but perceives what is; while unto me
    All that has been is visible and clear.

  We have no title-deeds to house or lands;
    Owners and occupants of earlier dates
  From graves forgotten stretch their dusty hands,
    And hold in mortmain still their old estates.

  The spirit-world around this world of sense
    Floats like an atmosphere, and everywhere
  Wafts through these earthly mists and vapors dense
    A vital breath of more ethereal air.

  Our little lives are kept in equipoise
    By opposite attractions and desires!
  The struggle of the instinct that enjoys
    And the more noble instinct that aspires.

  These perturbations, this perpetual jar
    Of earthly wants and aspirations high,
  Come from the influence of an unseen star,
    An undiscovered planet in our sky.

  And as the moon from some dark gate of cloud
    Throws o'er the sea a floating bridge of light,
  Across whose trembling planks our fancies crowd
    Into the realm of mystery and night,--

  So from the world of spirits there descends
    A bridge of light, connecting it with this,
  O'er whose unsteady floor, that sways and bends,
    Wander our thoughts above the dark abyss.

                                       _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow._

       *       *       *       *       *


    To him who in the love of nature holds
  Communion with her visible forms, she speaks
  A various language: for his gayer hours
  She has a voice of gladness, and a smile
  And eloquence of beauty; and she glides
  Into his darker musings with a mild
  And healing sympathy, that steals away
  Their sharpness ere he is aware. When thoughts
  Of the last bitter hour come like a blight
  Over thy spirit, and sad images
  Of the stern agony, and shroud, and pall,
  And breathless darkness, and the narrow house,
  Make thee to shudder and grow sick at heart,
  Go forth under the open sky, and list
  To Nature's teachings, while from all around--
  Earth and her waters, and the depths of air--
  Comes a still voice: Yet a few days, and thee
  The all-beholding sun shall see no more
  In all his course; nor yet in the cold ground,
  Where thy pale form was laid with many tears,
  Nor in the embrace of ocean, shall exist
  Thy image. Earth, that nourished thee, shall claim
  Thy growth, to be resolved to earth again;
  And, lost each human trace, surrendering up
  Thine individual being, shalt thou go
  To mix forever with the elements,--
  To be a brother to the insensible rock,
  And to the sluggish clod, which the rude swain
  Turns with his share and treads upon. The oak
  Shall send his roots abroad, and pierce thy mould.

    Yet not to thine eternal resting-place
  Shalt thou retire alone, nor couldst thou wish
  Couch more magnificent. Thou shalt lie down
  With patriarchs of the infant world,--with kings,
  The powerful of the earth,--the wise, the good,--
  Fair forms, and hoary seers of ages past,
  All in one mighty sepulchre. The hills,
  Rock-ribbed and ancient as the sun,--the vales
  Stretching in pensive quietness between,--
  The venerable woods,--rivers that move
  In majesty, and the complaining brooks
  That make the meadows green; and, poured round all,
  Old ocean's gray and melancholy waste,--
  Are but the solemn decorations all
  Of the great tomb of man. The golden sun,
  The planets, all the infinite host of heaven,
  Are shining on the sad abodes of death,
  Through the still lapse of ages. All that tread
  The globe are but a handful to the tribes
  That slumber in its bosom. Take the wings
  Of morning; traverse Barca's desert sands,
  Or lose thyself in the continuous woods
  Where rolls the Oregon, and hears no sound
  Save his own dashings,--yet the dead are there;
  And millions in those solitudes, since first
  The flight of years began, have laid them down
  In their last sleep,--the dead reign there alone.
  So shalt thou rest; and what if thou withdraw
  In silence from the living, and no friend
  Take note of thy departure? All that breathe
  Will share thy destiny. The gay will laugh
  When thou art gone, the solemn brood of care
  Plod on, and each one, as before, will chase
  His favorite phantom; yet all these shall leave
  Their mirth and their employments, and shall come
  And make their bed with thee. As the long train
  Of ages glide away, the sons of men--
  The youth in life's green spring, and he who goes
  In the full strength of years, matron, and maid,
  And the sweet babe, and the gray-headed man--
  Shall one by one be gathered to thy side
  By those who in their turn shall follow them.

    So live that when thy summons comes to join
  The innumerable caravan which moves
  To that mysterious realm where each shall take
  His chamber in the silent halls of death,
  Thou go not, like the quarry-slave at night,
  Scourged to his dungeon, but, sustained and soothed
  By an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave
  Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch
  About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams.

                                            _William Cullen Bryant._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Over the river they beckon to me,
    Loved ones who've crossed to the farther side,
  The gleam of their snowy robes I see,
    But their voices are lost in the dashing tide.
  There's one with ringlets of sunny gold,
    And eyes the reflection of heaven's own blue;
  He crossed in the twilight gray and cold,
    And the pale mist hid him from mortal view.
  We saw not the angels who met him there,
    The gates of the city we could not see:
  Over the river, over the river,
    My brother stands waiting to welcome me.

  Over the river the boatman pale
    Carried another, the household pet;
  Her brown curls waved in the gentle gale,
    Darling Minnie! I see her yet.
  She crossed on her bosom her dimpled hands,
    And fearlessly entered the phantom bark;
  We felt it glide from the silver sands,
    And all our sunshine grew strangely dark;
  We know she is safe on the farther side,
    Where all the ransomed and angels be:
  Over the river, the mystic river,
    My childhood's idol is waiting for me.

  For none return from those quiet shores,
    Who cross with the boatman cold and pale;
  We hear the dip of the golden oars,
    And catch a gleam of the snowy sail;
  And lo! they have passed from our yearning heart,
    They cross the stream and are gone for aye;
  We may not sunder the veil apart
    That hides from our vision the gates of day;
  We only know that their barks no more
    May sail with us o'er life's stormy sea;
  Yet somewhere, I know, on the unseen shore,
    They watch, and beckon, and wait for me.

  And I sit and think, when the sunset's gold
    Is flushing river and hill and shore,
  I shall one day stand by the water cold,
    And list for the sound of the boatman's oar;
  I shall watch for a gleam of the flapping sail,
    I shall hear the boat as it gains the strand,
  I shall pass from sight with the boatman pale,
    To the better shore of the spirit-land.
  I shall know the loved who have gone before,
    And joyfully sweet will the meeting be,
  When over the river, the peaceful river,
    The angel of death shall carry me.

                                           _Nancy Priest Wakefield._

       *       *       *       *       *


  They are all gone into the world of light,
    And I alone sit lingering here!
  Their very memory is fair and bright,
      And my sad thoughts doth clear;

  It glows and glitters in my cloudy breast,
    Like stars upon some gloomy grove,--
  Or those faint beams in which this hill is dressed
      After the sun's remove.

  I see them walking in an air of glory,
    Whose light doth trample on my days,--
  My days which are at best but dull and hoary,
      Mere glimmerings and decays.

  O holy hope! and high humility,--
    High as the heavens above!
  These are your walks, and you have showed them me
      To kindle my cold love.

  Dear, beauteous death,--the jewel of the just,--
    Shining nowhere but in the dark!
  What mysteries do lie beyond thy dust,
      Could man outlook that mark!

  He that hath found some fledged bird's nest may know,
    At first sight, if the bird be flown,
  But what fair dell or grove he sings in now,
      That is to him unknown.

  And yet, as angels in some brighter dreams
    Call to the soul when man doth sleep,
  So some strange thoughts transcend our wonted themes,
      And into glory peep.

  If a star were confined into a tomb,
    Her captive flames must needs burn there;
  But when the hand that locked her up gives room,
      She'll shine through all the sphere.

  O Father of eternal life, and all
    Created glories under Thee!
  Resume thy spirit from this world of thrall
      Into true liberty.

  Either disperse these mists, which blot and fill
    My perspective still as they pass;
  Or else remove me hence unto that hill
      Where I shall need no glass.

                                                    _Henry Vaughan._

       *       *       *       *       *


  No bird-song floated down the hill,
  The tangled bank below was still;

  No rustle from the birchen stem,
  No ripple from the water's hem.

  The dusk of twilight round us grew,
  We felt the falling of the dew;

  For from us, ere the day was done,
  The wooded hills shut out the sun.

  But on the river's farther side,
  We saw the hill-tops glorified,--

  A tender glow, exceeding fair,
  A dream of day without its glare.

  With us the damp, the chill, the gloom;
  With them the sunset's rosy bloom;

  While dark, through willowy vistas seen,
  The river rolled in shade between.

  From out the darkness where we trod,
  We gazed upon those hills of God,

  Whose light seemed not of morn or sun;
  We spake not, but our thought was one.

  We paused, as if from that bright shore
  Beckoned our dear ones gone before;

  And stilled our beating hearts to hear
  The voices lost to mortal ear!

  Sudden our pathway turned from night;
  The hills swung open to the light;

  Through their green gates the sunshine showed,
  A long slant splendor downward flowed.

  Down glade and glen and bank it rolled;
  It bridged the shaded stream with gold;

  And, borne on piers of mist, allied
  The shadowy with the sunlit side!

  "So," prayed we, "when our feet draw near
  The river dark with mortal fear,

  "And the night cometh, chill with dew,
  O Father, let thy light break through!

  "So let the hills of doubt divide,
  To bridge with faith the sunless tide!

  "So let the eyes that fail on earth
  On thy eternal hills look forth,

  "And in thy beckoning angels know
  The dear ones whom we loved below!"

                                          _John Greenleaf Whittier._

       *       *       *       *       *


  By the waters of Life we sat together,
    Hand in hand, in the golden days
  Of the beautiful early summer weather,
    When hours were anthems and speech was praise;
  When the heart kept time to the carol of birds,
    And the birds kept tune to the songs that ran
  Through shimmer of flowers on grassy swards,
    And trees with voices Æolian.

  By the rivers of Life we walked together,
    I and my darling, unafraid;
  And lighter than any linnet's feather
    The burdens of being on us weighed;
  And Love's sweet miracles o'er us threw
    Mantles of joy outlasting Time;
  And up from the rosy morrows grew
    A sound that seemed like a marriage-chime.

  In the gardens of Life we roamed together;
    And the luscious apples were ripe and red,
  And the languid lilac and honeyed heather
    Swooned with the fragrance which they shed.
  And under the trees the Angels walked,
    And up in the air a sense of wings
  Awed us sacredly while we talked
    Softly in tender communings.

  In the meadows of life we strayed together,
    Watching the waving harvests grow;
  And under the benison of the Father
    Our hearts like the lambs skipped to and fro.
  And the cowslips, hearing our low replies,
    Broidered fairer the emerald banks;
  And glad tears shone in the daisies' eyes,
    And the timid violet glistened thanks.

  Who was with us, and what was round us,
    Neither myself nor darling guessed;
  Only we knew that something crowned us
    Out from the heavens with crowns of rest.
  Only we knew that something bright
    Lingered lovingly where we stood,
  Clothed with the incandescent light
    Of something higher than humanhood.

  O the riches Love doth inherit!
    Ah the alchemy which doth change
  Dross of body and dregs of spirit
    Into sanctities rare and strange!
  My flesh is feeble, and dry, and old,
    My darling's beautiful hair is gray;
  But our elixir and precious gold
    Laugh at the footsteps of decay.

  Harms of the world have come upon us,
    Cups of sorrow we yet shall drain;
  But we have a secret which doth show us
    Wonderful rainbows through the rain;
  And we hear the tread of the years go by,
    And the sun is setting behind the hills;
  But my darling does not fear to die,
    And I am happy in what God wills.

  So we sit by our household fires together,
    Dreaming the dreams of long ago.
  Then it was balmy summer weather,
    And now the valleys are laid in snow,
  Icicles hang from the slippery eaves,
    The wind grows cold,--it is growing late.
  Well, well,--we have garnered all our sheaves,
    I and my darling,--and we wait.

                                                    _Richard Realf._

       *       *       *       *       *


  The sunlight fills the trembling air,
    And balmy days their guerdons bring;
  The Earth again is young and fair,
    And amorous with musky spring.

  The golden nurslings of the May
    In splendor strew the spangled green,
  And hues of tender beauty play,
    Entangled where the willows lean.

  Mark how the rippled currents flow;
    What lustres on the meadows lie!
  And hark! the songsters come and go,
    And trill between the earth and sky.

  Who told us that the years had fled,
    Or borne afar our blissful youth?
  Such joys are all about us spread,
    We know the whisper was not truth.

  The birds that break from grass and grove
    Sing every carol that they sung
  When first our veins were rich with love,
    And May her mantle round us flung.

  O fresh-lit dawn! immortal life!
    O Earth's betrothal, sweet and true,
  With whose delights our souls are rife,
    And aye their vernal vows renew!

  Then, darling, walk with me this morn,
    Let your brown tresses drink its sheen;
  These violets, within them worn,
    Of floral fays shall make you queen.

  What though there comes a time of pain
    When autumn winds forebode decay?
  The days of love are born again;
    That fabled time is far away!

  And never seemed the land so fair
    As now, nor birds such notes to sing,
  Since first within your shining hair
    I wove the blossoms of the spring.

                                          _Edmund Clarence Stedman._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Eyes which can but ill define
    Shapes that rise about and near,
  Through the far horizon's line
    Stretch a vision free and clear;
  Memories feeble to retrace
    Yesterday's immediate flow,
  Find a dear familiar face
    In each hour of Long-Ago.

  Follow yon majestic train
    Down the slopes of old renown;
  Knightly forms without disdain,
    Sainted heads without a frown,
  Emperors of thought and hand,
    Congregate, a glorious show,
  Met from every age and land,
    In the plains of Long-Ago.

  As the heart of childhood brings
    Something of eternal joy
  From its own unsounded springs,
    Such as life can scarce destroy,
  So, remindful of the prime,
    Spirits wandering to and fro
  Rest upon the resting-time
    In the peace of Long-Ago.

  Youthful Hope's religious fire,
    When it burns no longer, leaves
  Ashes of impure desire
    On the altars it bereaves;
  But the light that fills the past
    Sheds a still diviner glow,
  Ever farther it is cast
    O'er the scenes of Long-Ago.

  Many a growth of pain and care,
    Cumbering all the present hour,
  Yields, when once transplanted there,
    Healthy fruit or pleasant flower.
  Thoughts that hardly flourish here,
    Feelings long have ceased to blow,
  Breathe a native atmosphere
    In the world of Long-Ago.

  On that deep-retiring shore
    Frequent pearls of beauty lie,
  Where the passion-waves of yore
    Fiercely beat and mounted high;
  Sorrows that are sorrows still,
    Lose the bitter taste of woe;
  Nothing's altogether ill
    In the griefs of Long-Ago.

  Tombs where lonely love repines,
    Ghastly tenements of tears,
  Wear the look of happy shrines
    Through the golden mist of years;
  Death, to those who trust in good,
    Vindicates his hardest blow;
  O, we would not, if we could,
    Wake the sleep of Long-Ago!

  Though the doom of swift decay
    Shocks the soul where life is strong;
  Though for frailer hearts the day
    Lingers sad and over-long;
  Still the weight will find a leaven,
    Still the spoiler's hand is slow,
  While the future has its Heaven,
    And the past its Long-Ago.

                                          _Richard Monckton Milnes._

       *       *       *       *       *


  O, a dainty plant is the ivy green,
    That creepeth o'er ruins old!
  Of right choice food are his meals, I ween,
    In his cell so lone and cold.
  The walls must be crumbled, the stones decayed,
    To pleasure his dainty whim;
  And the mouldering dust that years have made
    Is a merry meal for him.
        Creeping where no life is seen,
        A rare old plant is the ivy green.

  Fast he stealeth on, though he wears no wings,
    And a stanch old heart has he!
  How closely he twineth, how tight he clings
    To his friend, the huge oak-tree!
  And slyly he traileth along the ground,
    And his leaves he gently waves,
  And he joyously twines and hugs around
    The rich mould of dead men's graves.
        Creeping where no life is seen,
        A rare old plant is the ivy green.

  Whole ages have fled, and their works decayed,
    And nations have scattered been;
  But the stout old ivy shall never fade
    From its hale and hearty green.
  The brave old plant in its lonely days
    Shall fatten upon the past;
  For the stateliest building man can raise
    Is the ivy's food at last.
        Creeping where no life is seen,
        A rare old plant is the ivy green.

                                                  _Charles Dickens._

       *       *       *       *       *


    Ah! my heart is weary waiting,
      Waiting for the May,--
    Waiting for the pleasant rambles
    Where the fragrant hawthorn-brambles,
    With the woodbine alternating,
      Scent the dewy way.
    Ah! my heart is weary waiting,
      Waiting for the May.

    Ah! my heart is sick with longing,
      Longing for the May,--
  Longing to escape from study,
  To the young face fair and ruddy,
    And the thousand charms belonging
      To the summer's day.
    Ah! my heart is sick with longing,
      Longing for the May.

    Ah! my heart is sore with sighing,
      Sighing for the May,--
  Sighing for their sure returning,
  When the summer beams are burning,
    Hopes and flowers that, dead or dying,
      All the winter lay.
    Ah! my heart is sore with sighing,
      Sighing for the May.

    Ah! my heart is pained with throbbing,
      Throbbing for the May,--
  Throbbing for the seaside billows,
  Or the water-wooing willows;
    Where, in laughing and in sobbing,
      Glide the streams away.
    Ah! my heart, my heart is throbbing,
      Throbbing for the May.

    Waiting sad, dejected, weary,
      Waiting for the May:
  Spring goes by with wasted warnings,--
  Moonlit evenings, sunbright mornings,--
    Summer comes, yet dark and dreary
      Life still ebbs away;
    Man is ever weary, weary,
      Waiting for the May!

                                        _Denis Florence Mac-Carthy._

       *       *       *       *       *


  From Stirling castle we had seen
    The mazy Forth unravelled;
  Had trod the banks of Clyde and Tay,
    And with the Tweed had travelled;
  And when we came to Clovenford,
    Then said my "winsome Marrow,"
  "Whate'er betide, we'll turn aside,
    And see the braes of Yarrow."

  "Let Yarrow folk, frae Selkirk town,
    Who have been buying, selling,
  Go back to Yarrow; 'tis their own,--
    Each maiden to her dwelling!
  On Yarrow's banks let herons feed,
    Hares couch, and rabbits burrow!
  But we will downward with the Tweed,
    Nor turn aside to Yarrow.

  "There's Galla Water, Leader Haughs,
    Both lying right before us;
  And Dryborough, where with chiming Tweed
    The lintwhites sing in chorus;
  There's pleasant Teviot-dale, a land
    Made blithe with plough and harrow:
  Why throw away a needful day
    To go in search of Yarrow?

  "What's Yarrow but a river bare,
    That glides the dark hills under?
  There are a thousand such elsewhere,
    As worthy of your wonder."
  Strange words they seemed, of slight and scorn;
    My true-love sighed for sorrow,
  And looked me in the face, to think
    I thus could speak of Yarrow!

  "O, green," said I, "are Yarrow's holms,
    And sweet is Yarrow flowing!
  Fair hangs the apple frae the rock,
    But we will leave it growing.
  O'er hilly path and open strath
    We'll wander Scotland thorough;
  But, though so near, we will not turn
    Into the dale of Yarrow.

  "Let beeves and homebred kine partake
    The sweets of Burn-mill meadow;
  The swan on still St. Mary's Lake
    Float double, swan and shadow!
  We will not see them; will not go
    To-day, nor yet to-morrow;
  Enough, if in our hearts we know
    There's such a place as Yarrow.

  "Be Yarrow stream unseen, unknown!
    It must, or we shall rue it:
  We have a vision of our own;
    Ah! why should we undo it?
  The treasured dreams of times long past,
    We'll keep them, winsome Marrow!
  For when we're there, although 'tis fair,
    'Twill be another Yarrow!

  "If care with freezing years should come,
    And wandering seem but folly,--
  Should we be loath to stir from home,
    And yet be melancholy,--
  Should life be dull, and spirits low,
    'Twill soothe us in our sorrow,
  That earth has something yet to show,--
    The bonny holms of Yarrow!"

                                               _William Wordsworth._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Tiger! Tiger! burning bright,
  In the forests of the night;
  What immortal hand or eye
  Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

  In what distant deeps or skies
  Burned the fire of thine eyes?
  On what wings dare he aspire?
  What the hand dare seize the fire?

  And what shoulder, and what art,
  Could twist the sinews of thine heart?
  And when thy heart began to beat,
  What dread hand? and what dread feet?

  What the hammer? what the chain?
  In what furnace was thy brain?
  What the anvil? what dread grasp
  Dare its deadly terrors clasp?

  When the stars threw down their spears,
  And watered heaven with their tears,
  Did he smile his work to see?
  Did He who made the lamb make thee?

  Tiger! Tiger! burning bright,
  In the forests of the night,
  What immortal hand or eye
  Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

                                                    _William Blake._

       *       *       *       *       *



  'Tis a fearful night in the winter time,
    As cold as it ever can be;
  The roar of the blast is heard like the chime
    Of the waves on an angry sea.
  The moon is full; but her silver light
  The storm dashes out with its wings to-night;
  And over the sky from south to north
  Not a star is seen, as the wind comes forth
    In the strength of a mighty glee.


  All day had the snow come down,--all day
    As it never came down before;
  And over the hills, at sunset, lay
    Some two or three feet, or more;
  The fence was lost, and the wall of stone;
  The windows blocked and the well-curbs gone;
  The haystack had grown to a mountain lift,
  And the wood-pile looked like a monster drift,
    As it lay by the farmer's door.

  The night sets in on a world of snow,
    While the air grows sharp and chill,
  And the warning roar of a fearful blow
    Is heard on the distant hill;
  And the norther, see! on the mountain peak
  In his breath how the old trees writhe and shriek!
  He shouts on the plain, ho-ho! ho-ho!
  He drives from his nostrils the blinding snow,
    And growls with a savage will.


  Such a night as this to be found abroad,
    In the drifts and the freezing air,
  Sits a shivering dog, in the field, by the road,
    With the snow in his shaggy hair.
  He shuts his eyes to the wind and growls;
  He lifts his head, and moans and howls;
  Then crouching low, from the cutting sleet,
  His nose is pressed on his quivering feet,--
    Pray, what does the dog do there?

  A farmer came from the village plain,--
    But he lost the travelled way;
  And for hours he trod with might and main
    A path for his horse and sleigh;
  But colder still the cold winds blew,
  And deeper still the deep drifts grew,
  And his mare, a beautiful Morgan brown,
  At last in her struggles floundered down,
    Where a log in a hollow lay.

  In vain, with a neigh and a frenzied snort,
    She plunged in the drifting snow,
  While her master urged, till his breath grew short,
    With a word and a gentle blow;
  But the snow was deep, and the tugs were tight;
  His hands were numb and had lost their might;
  So he wallowed back to his half-filled sleigh,
  And strove to shelter himself till day,
    With his coat and the buffalo.


  He has given the last faint jerk of the rein,
    To rouse up his dying steed;
  And the poor dog howls to the blast in vain
    For help in his master's need.
  For a while he strives with a wistful cry
  To catch a glance from his drowsy eye,
  And wags his tail if the rude winds flap
  The skirt of the buffalo over his lap,
    And whines when he takes no heed.


  The wind goes down and the storm is o'er,--
    'Tis the hour of midnight, past;
  The old trees writhe and bend no more
    In the whirl of the rushing blast.
  The silent moon with her peaceful light
  Looks down on the hills with snow all white,
  And the giant shadow of Camel's Hump,
  The blasted pine and the ghostly stump,
    Afar on the plain are cast.

  But cold and dead by the hidden log
    Are they who came from the town,--
  The man in his sleigh, and his faithful dog,
    And his beautiful Morgan brown,--
  In the wide snow-desert, far and grand,
  With his cap on his head and the reins in his hand,--
  The dog with his nose on his master's feet,
  And the mare half seen through the crusted sleet,
    Where she lay when she floundered down.

                                           _Charles Gamage Eastman._

       *       *       *       *       *


  The melancholy days are come, the saddest of the year,
  Of wailing winds, and naked woods, and meadows brown and sear.
  Heaped in the hollows of the grove, the autumn leaves lie dead;
  They rustle to the eddying gust, and to the rabbit's tread.
  The robin and the wren are flown, and from the shrubs the jay,
  And from the wood-top calls the crow through all the gloomy day.

  Where are the flowers, the fair young flowers, that lately sprang and
  In brighter light and softer airs, a beauteous sisterhood?
  Alas! they all are in their graves; the gentle race of flowers
  Are lying in their lowly beds with the fair and good of ours.
  The rain is falling where they lie; but the cold November rain
  Calls not from out the gloomy earth the lovely ones again.

  The wind-flower and the violet, they perished long ago,
  And the brier-rose and the orchis died amid the summer glow;
  But on the hill the golden-rod, and the aster in the wood,
  And the yellow sunflower by the brook in autumn beauty stood,
  Till fell the frost from the clear cold heaven, as falls the plague
          on men,
  And the brightness of their smile was gone from upland, glade, and

  And now, when comes the calm mild day, as still such days will come,
  To call the squirrel and the bee from out their winter home;
  When the sound of dropping nuts is heard, though all the trees are
  And twinkle in the smoky light the waters of the rill,
  The south-wind searches for the flowers whose fragrance late he bore,
  And sighs to find them in the wood and by the stream no more.

  And then I think of one who in her youthful beauty died,
  The fair meek blossom that grew up and faded by my side.
  In the cold moist earth we laid her, when the forests cast the leaf,
  And we wept that one so lovely should have a life so brief;
  Yet not unmeet it was that one, like that young friend of ours,
  So gentle and so beautiful, should perish with the flowers.

                                            _William Cullen Bryant._

       *       *       *       *       *


  "O Mary, go and call the cattle home,
      And call the cattle home,
      And call the cattle home,
    Across the sands of Dee."
  The western wind was wild and dank with foam,
    And all alone went she.

  The western tide crept up along the sand,
      And o'er and o'er the sand,
      And round and round the sand,
    As far as eye could see.
  The rolling mist came down and hid the land:
    And never home came she.

  "Oh! is it weed, or fish, or floating hair,--
      A tress of golden hair,
      A drownéd maiden's hair,
    Above the nets at sea?
  Was never salmon yet that shone so fair
    Among the stakes on Dee."

  They rowed her in across the rolling foam,
      The cruel crawling foam,
      The cruel hungry foam,
    To her grave beside the sea.
  But still the boatmen hear her call the cattle home,
    Across the sands of Dee.

                                                 _Charles Kingsley._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I heard the trailing garments of the Night
    Sweep through her marble halls!
  I saw her sable skirts all fringed with light
    From the celestial walls!

  I felt her presence, by its spell of might,
    Stoop o'er me from above;
  The calm, majestic presence of the Night,
    As of the one I love.

  I heard the sounds of sorrow and delight,
    The manifold, soft chimes,
  That fill the haunted chambers of the Night,
    Like some old poet's rhymes.

  From the cool cisterns of the midnight air
    My spirit drank repose;
  The fountain of perpetual peace flows there,--
    From those deep cisterns flows.

  O holy Night! from thee I learn to bear
    What man has borne before!
  Thou layest thy finger on the lips of Care,
    And they complain no more.

  Peace! Peace! Orestes-like I breathe this prayer!
    Descend with broad-winged flight,
  The welcome, the thrice-prayed for, the most fair,
    The best-belovéd Night!

                                       _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Mysterious Night! when our first parent knew
    Thee from report divine, and heard thy name,
    Did he not tremble for this lovely frame,
  This glorious canopy of light and blue?
  Yet 'neath the curtain of translucent dew,
    Bathed in the rays of the great setting flame,
    Hesperus, with the host of heaven, came;
  And lo! creation widened in man's view.
  Who could have thought such darkness lay concealed
    Within thy beams, O Sun? or who could find,
  While fly, and leaf, and insect stood revealed,
    That to such countless orbs thou mad'st us blind?
  Why do we then shun death with anxious strife?--
  If light can thus deceive, wherefore not life?

                                              _Joseph Blanco White._

       *       *       *       *       *


      Bird of the wilderness,
      Blithesome and cumberless,
  Sweet be thy matin o'er moorland and lea!
      Emblem of happiness,
      Blest is thy dwelling-place,--
  O, to abide in the desert with thee!
      Wild is thy lay and loud
      Far in the downy cloud,
  Love gives it energy, love gave it birth.
      Where, on thy dewy wing,
      Where art thou journeying?
  Thy lay is in heaven, thy love is on earth.
      O'er fell and fountain sheen,
      O'er moor and mountain green,
  O'er the red streamer that heralds the day,
      Over the cloudlet dim,
      Over the rainbow's rim,
  Musical cherub, soar, singing, away!
      Then, when the gloaming comes,
      Low in the heather blooms
  Sweet will thy welcome and bed of love be!
      Emblem of happiness,
      Blest is thy dwelling-place,
  O, to abide in the desert with thee!

                                                       _James Hogg._

       *       *       *       *       *


  He clasps the crag with hookéd hands;
  Close to the sun in lonely lands,
  Ringed with the azure world, he stands.

  The wrinkled sea beneath him crawls;
  He watches from his mountain walls,
  And like a thunderbolt he falls.

                                                  _Alfred Tennyson._

       *       *       *       *       *


        Hail to thee, blithe spirit!
          Bird thou never wert,--
        That from heaven, or near it,
          Pourest thy full heart
  In profuse strains of unpremeditated art.

        Higher still and higher
          From the earth thou springest,
        Like a cloud of fire;
          The blue deep thou wingest,
  And singing still dost soar, and soaring ever singest.

        In the golden lightning
          Of the setting sun,
        O'er which clouds are brightening,
          Thou dost float and run;
  Like an embodied joy whose race is just begun.

        The pale purple even
          Melts around thy flight;
        Like a star of heaven,
          In the broad daylight
  Thou art unseen, but yet I hear thy shrill delight.

        Keen as are the arrows
          Of that silver sphere,
        Whose intense lamp narrows
          In the white dawn clear,
  Until we hardly see, we feel that it is there.

        All the earth and air
          With thy voice is loud,
        As, when night is bare,
          From one lonely cloud
  The moon rains out her beams, and heaven is overflowed.

        What thou art we know not;
          What is most like thee?
        From rainbow clouds there flow not
          Drops so bright to see,
  As from thy presence showers a rain of melody.

        Like a poet hidden
          In the light of thought,
        Singing hymns unbidden,
          Till the world is wrought
  To sympathy with hopes and fears it heeded not;

        Like a high-born maiden
          In a palace tower,
        Soothing her love-laden
          Soul in secret hour
  With music sweet as love, which overflows her bower;

        Like a glow-worm golden,
          In a dell of dew,
        Scattering unbeholden
          Its aerial hue
  Among the flowers and grass which screen it from the view;

        Like a rose embowered
          In its own green leaves,
        By warm winds deflowered,
          Till the scent it gives
  Makes faint with too much sweet these heavy-wingéd thieves.

        Sound of vernal showers
          On the twinkling grass,
        Rain-awakened flowers,
          All that ever was
  Joyous and fresh and clear thy music doth surpass.

        Teach us, sprite or bird,
          What sweet thoughts are thine;
        I have never heard
          Praise of love or wine
  That panted forth a flood of rapture so divine.

        Chorus hymeneal,
          Or triumphant chant,
        Matched with thine, would be all
          But an empty vaunt,--
  A thing wherein we feel there is some hidden want.

        What objects are the fountains
          Of thy happy strain?
        What fields, or waves, or mountains?
          What shapes of sky or plain?
  What love of thine own kind? What ignorance of pain?

        With thy clear keen joyance
          Languor cannot be:
        Shadow of annoyance
          Never came near thee;
  Thou lovest; but ne'er knew love's sad satiety.

        Waking or asleep,
          Thou of death must deem
        Things more true and deep
          Than we mortals dream,
  Or how could thy notes flow in such a crystal stream?

        We look before and after,
          And pine for what is not:
        Our sincerest laughter
          With some pain is fraught:
  Our sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought.

        Yet if we could scorn
          Hate, and pride, and fear;
        If we were things born
          Not to shed a tear,
  I know not how thy joy we ever could come near.

        Better than all measures
          Of delight and sound,
        Better than all treasures
          That in books are found,
  Thy skill to poet were, thou scorner of the ground.

        Teach me half the gladness
          That thy brain must know,
        Such harmonious madness
          From my lips would flow,
  The world should listen then, as I am listening now.

                                             _Percy Bysshe Shelley._

       *       *       *       *       *


  My boat is on the shore,
    And my bark is on the sea;
  But, before I go, Tom Moore,
    Here's a double health to thee!

  Here's a sigh for those that love me,
    And a smile for those who hate;
  And, whatever sky's above me,
    Here's a heart for every fate.

  Though the ocean roar around me,
    Yet it still shall bear me on;
  Though a desert should surround me,
    It hath springs that may be won.

  Were 't the last drop in the well,
    As I gasped upon the brink,
  Ere my fainting spirit fell
    'Tis to thee that I would drink.

  With that water, as this wine,
    The libation I would pour
  Should be,--Peace with thine and mine,
    And a health to thee, Tom Moore!

                                                       _Lord Byron._

       *       *       *       *       *


  'Tis the last rose of summer,
    Left blooming alone;
  All her lovely companions
    Are faded and gone;
  No flower of her kindred,
    No rosebud is nigh,
  To reflect back her blushes,
    Or give sigh for sigh!

  I'll not leave thee, thou lone one!
    To pine on the stem;
  Since the lovely are sleeping,
    Go, sleep thou with them;
  Thus kindly I scatter
    Thy leaves o'er the bed
  Where thy mates of the garden
    Lie scentless and dead.

  So soon may I follow,
    When friendships decay,
  And from love's shining circle
    The gems drop away!
  When true hearts lie withered,
    And fond ones are flown,
  O, who would inhabit
    This bleak world alone?

                                                     _Thomas Moore._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Flow down, cold rivulet, to the sea,
    Thy tribute wave deliver;
  No more by thee my steps shall be,
    Forever and forever.

  Flow, softly flow, by lawn and lea,
    A rivulet, then a river;
  Nowhere by thee my steps shall be,
    Forever and forever.

  But here will sigh thine alder-tree,
    And here thine aspen shiver;
  And here by thee will hum the bee,
    Forever and forever.

  A thousand suns will stream on thee,
    A thousand moons will quiver;
  But not by thee my steps shall be,
    Forever and forever.

                                                  _Alfred Tennyson._

       *       *       *       *       *


  My life is like the summer rose
    That opens to the morning sky,
  But, ere the shades of evening close,
    Is scattered on the ground--to die!
  Yet on the rose's humble bed
  The sweetest dews of night are shed,
  As if she wept the waste to see,--
  But none shall weep a tear for me!

  My life is like the autumn leaf
    That trembles in the moon's pale ray;
  Its hold is frail--its date is brief,
    Restless--and soon to pass away!
  Yet, ere that leaf shall fall and fade,
  The parent tree will mourn its shade,
  The winds bewail the leafless tree,--
  But none shall breathe a sigh for me!

  My life is like the prints which feet
    Have left on Tampa's desert strand;
  Soon as the rising tide shall beat,
    All trace will vanish from the sand;
  Yet, as if grieving to efface
  All vestige of the human race,
  On that lone shore loud moans the sea,--
  But none, alas! shall mourn for me!

                                              _Richard Henry Wilde._

       *       *       *       *       *


  These years! these years! these naughty years!
    Once they were pretty things:
  Their fairy footfalls met our ears,
    Our eyes their glancing wings.
  They flitted by our school-boy way;
  We chased the little imps at play.

  We knew them, soon, for tricksy elves:
    They brought the college gown,
  With thoughtful books filled up our shelves,
    Darkened our lips with down,
  Played with our throat, and lo! the tone
  Of manhood had become our own.

  They smiling stretched our childish size;
    Their soft hands trimmed our hair;
  Cast the deep thought within our eyes,
    And left it glowing there;
  Sang songs of hope in college halls,
  Bright fancies drew upon the walls.

  They flashed upon us love's bright gem;
    They showed us gleams of fame;
  Stout-hearted work we learned from them,
    And honor more than name:
  And so they came, and went away;
  We said not go, we said not stay.

  But one sweet day, when quiet skies
    And still leaves brought me thought,
  When hazy hills drew forth my eyes,
    And woods with deep shade fraught,
  That day I carelessly found out
  What work these elves had been about.

  Alas! those little rogues, the years,
    Had fooled me many a day,
  Plucked half the locks above my ears,
    And tinged the rest all gray.
  They'd left me wrinkles great and small.
  I fear that they have tricked us all.

  Well,--give the little years their way;
    Think, speak, and act the while;
  Lift up the bare front to the day,
    And make their wrinkles smile.
  They mould the noblest living head;
  They carve the best tomb for the dead.

                                              _Robert T. S. Lowell._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Ho! pretty page with the dimpled chin,
    That never has known the barber's shear,
  All your wish is woman to win;
  This is the way that boys begin,--
    Wait till you come to forty year.

  Curly gold locks cover foolish brains;
    Billing and cooing is all your cheer,--
  Sighing, and singing of midnight strains,
  Under Bonnybell's window-panes,--
    Wait till you come to forty year.

  Forty times over let Michaelmas pass;
    Grizzling hair the brain doth clear;
  Then you know a boy is an ass,
  Then you know the worth of a lass,--
    Once you have come to forty year.

  Pledge me round; I bid ye declare,
    All good fellows whose beards are gray,--
  Did not the fairest of the fair
  Common grow and wearisome ere
    Ever a month was passed away?

  The reddest lips that ever have kissed,
    The brightest eyes that ever have shone,
  May pray and whisper and we not list,
  Or look away and never be missed,--
    Ere yet ever a month is gone.

  Gillian's dead! God rest her bier,--
    How I loved her twenty years syne!
  Marian's married; but I sit here,
  Alone and merry at forty year,
    Dipping my nose in the Gascon wine.

                                      _William Makepeace Thackeray._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I saw him once before,
  As he passed by the door;
      And again
  The pavement-stones resound
  As he totters o'er the ground
      With his cane.

  They say that in his prime,
  Ere the pruning-knife of time
      Cut him down,
  Not a better man was found
  By the crier on his round
      Through the town.

  But now he walks the streets,
  And he looks at all he meets
      Sad and wan;
  And he shakes his feeble head,
  That it seems as if he said,
      "They are gone."

  The mossy marbles rest
  On the lips that he has pressed
      In their bloom;
  And the names he loved to hear
  Have been carved for many a year
      On the tomb.

  My grandmamma has said--
  Poor old lady! she is dead
      Long ago--
  That he had a Roman nose,
  And his cheek was like a rose
      In the snow.

  But now his nose is thin,
  And it rests upon his chin
      Like a staff;
  And a crook is in his back,
  And a melancholy crack
      In his laugh.

  I know it is a sin
  For me to sit and grin
      At him here,
  But the old three-cornered hat,
  And the breeches,--and all that,
      Are so queer!

  And if I should live to be
  The last leaf upon the tree
      In the spring,
  Let them smile, as I do now,
  At the old forsaken bough
      Where I cling.

                                            _Oliver Wendell Holmes._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Just for a handful of silver he left us:
    Just for a ribbon to stick in his coat,--
  Found the one gift of which Fortune bereft us,
    Lost all the others she lets us devote.
  They, with the gold to give, doled him out silver,
    So much was theirs who so little allowed:
  How all our copper had gone for his service!
    Rags,--were they purple, his heart had been proud!
  We that had loved him so, followed him, honored him,
    Lived in his mild and magnificent eye,
  Learned his great language, caught his clear accents,
    Made him our pattern to live and to die!
  Shakespeare was of us, Milton was for us,
    Burns, Shelley, were with us,--they watch from their graves!
  He alone breaks from the van and the freemen,
    He alone sinks to the rear and the slaves!

  We shall march prospering,--not through his presence;
    Songs may inspirit us,--not from his lyre:
  Deeds will be done,--while he boasts his quiescence,
    Still bidding crouch whom the rest bade aspire.
  Blot out his name then,--record one lost soul more,
    One task more declined, one more footpath untrod,
  One more triumph for devils, and sorrow for angels,
    One wrong more to man, one more insult to God!
  Life's night begins; let him never come back to us!
    There would be doubt, hesitation, and pain;
  Forced praise on our part,--the glimmer of twilight,
    Never glad, confident morning again!
  Best fight on well, for we taught him,--strike gallantly,
    Aim at our heart, ere we pierce through his own;
  Then let him receive the new knowledge and wait us,
    Pardoned in heaven, the first by the throne!

                                                  _Robert Browning._

       *       *       *       *       *


"Ah! si la jeunesse savait,--si la vieillenne pouvait!"

  There sat an old man on a rock,
    And unceasing bewailed him of Fate,--
  That concern where we all must take stock
    Though our vote has no hearing or weight;
      And the old man sang him an old, old song,--
      Never sang voice so clear and strong
      That it could drown the old man's long,
        For he sang the song "Too late! too late!"

  "When we want, we have for our pains
    The promise that if we but wait
  Till the want has burned out of our brains,
    Every means shall be present to sate;
      While we send for the napkin the soup gets cold,
      While the bonnet is trimming the face grows old,
      When we've matched our buttons the pattern is sold,
        And everything comes too late,--too late!

  "When strawberries seemed like red heavens,--
    Terrapin stew a wild dream,--
  When my brain was at sixes and sevens,
    If my mother had "folks" and ice-cream,
      Then I gazed with a lickerish hunger
      At the restaurant-man and fruit-monger,--
      But oh! how I wished I were younger
        When the goodies all came in a stream, in a stream!

  "I've a splendid blood horse, and--a liver
    That it jars into torture to trot;
  My row-boat's the gem of the river,--
    Gout makes every knuckle a knot!
      I can buy boundless credits on Paris and Rome,
      But no palate for _ménus_,--no eyes for a dome,--
      _Those_ belonged to the youth who must tarry at home,
        When no home but an attic he'd got,--he'd got!

  "How I longed, in that lonest of garrets,
    Where the tiles baked my brains all July,
  For ground to grow two pecks of carrots,
    Two pigs of my own in a sty,
      A rosebush,--a little thatched cottage,--
      Two spoons--love--a basin of pottage!--
      Now in freestone I sit,--and my dotage,--
        With a woman's chair empty close by,--close by!

  "Ah! now, though I sit on a rock,
    I have shared one seat with the great;
  I have sat--knowing naught of the clock--
    On love's high throne of state;
      But the lips that kissed, and the arms that caressed,
      To a mouth grown stern with delay were pressed,
      And circled a breast that their clasp had blessed
        Had they only not come too late,--too late!"

                                                 _Fitz-Hugh Ludlow._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Touch us gently, Time!
    Let us glide adown thy stream
  Gently,--as we sometimes glide
    Through a quiet dream!
  Humble voyagers are we,
  Husband, wife, and children three,--
  (One is lost,--an angel, fled
  To the azure overhead!)

  Touch us gently, Time!
    We've not proud nor soaring wings,
  Our ambition, our content,
    Lies in simple things.
  Humble voyagers are we,
  O'er Life's dim, unsounded sea,
  Seeking only some calm clime;--
  Touch us gently, gentle Time!

                                             _Bryan Waller Procter._

       *       *       *       *       *


  So fallen! so lost! the light withdrawn
      Which once he wore!
  The glory from his gray hairs gone

  Revile him not,--the tempter hath
      A snare for all!
  And pitying tears, not scorn and wrath,
      Befit his fall!

  Oh! dumb is passion's stormy rage,
      When he who might
  Have lighted up and led his age,
      Falls back in night.

  Scorn! Would the angels laugh, to mark
      A bright soul driven,
  Fiend-goaded, down the endless dark,
      From hope and heaven?

  Let not the land, once proud of him,
      Insult him now;
  Nor brand with deeper shame his dim,
      Dishonored brow.

  But let its humbled sons, instead,
      From sea to lake,
  A long lament, as for the dead,
      In sadness make.

  Of all we loved and honored, naught
      Save power remains,--
  A fallen angel's pride of thought,
      Still strong in chains.

  All else is gone; from those great eyes
      The soul has fled:
  When faith is lost, when honor dies,
      The man is dead!

  Then, pay the reverence of old days
      To his dead fame;
  Walk backward, with averted gaze,
      And hide the shame!

                                          _John Greenleaf Whittier._

       *       *       *       *       *


  The heath this night must be my bed,
  The bracken curtain for my head,
  My lullaby the warder's tread,
    Far, far from love and thee, Mary;
  To-morrow eve, more stilly laid,
  My couch may be my bloody plaid,
  My vesper-song thy wail, sweet maid!
    It will not waken me, Mary!

  I may not, dare not, fancy now
  The grief that clouds thy lovely brow;
  I dare not think upon thy vow,
    And all it promised me, Mary.
  No fond regret must Norman know;
  When bursts Clan-Alpine on the foe,
  His heart must be like bended bow,
    His foot like arrow free, Mary.

  A time will come with feeling fraught!
  For, if I fall in battle fought,
  Thy hapless lover's dying thought
    Shall be a thought on thee, Mary:
  And if returned from conquered foes,
  How blithely will the evening close,
  How sweet the linnet sing repose
    To my young bride and me, Mary.

                                                 _Sir Walter Scott._

       *       *       *       *       *



  Tell me not, sweet, I am unkinde,
    That from the nunnerie
  Of thy chaste breast and quiet minde,
    To warre and armes I flee.

  True, a new mistresse now I chase,--
    The first foe in the field;
  And with a stronger faith imbrace
    A sword, a horse, a shield.

  Yet this inconstancy is such
    As you, too, should adore;
  I could not love thee, deare, so much,
    Loved I not honor more.

                                                 _Richard Lovelace._

       *       *       *       *       *


  You ask me, why, though ill at ease,
      Within this region I subsist,
      Whose spirits falter in the mist,
  And languish for the purple seas?

  It is the land that freemen till,
      That sober-suited Freedom chose,
      The land where, girt with friends or foes,
  A man may speak the thing he will;

  A land of settled government,
      A land of just and old renown,
      Where Freedom broadens slowly down
  From precedent to precedent;

  Where faction seldom gathers head,
      But by degrees to fulness wrought,
      The strength of some diffusive thought
  Hath time and space to work and spread.

  Should banded unions persecute
      Opinion, and induce a time
      When single thought is civil crime,
  And individual freedom mute;

  Though Power should make from land to land
      The name of Britain trebly great,--
      Though every channel of the state
  Should almost choke with golden sand,--

  Yet waft me from the harbor-mouth,
      Wild wind! I seek a warmer sky,
      And I will see before I die
  The palms and temples of the South.

                                                  _Alfred Tennyson._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Our bugles sang truce; for the night-cloud had lowered,
    And the sentinel stars set their watch in the sky;
  And thousands had sunk on the ground overpowered,--
    The weary to sleep, and the wounded to die.

  When reposing that night on my pallet of straw,
    By the wolf-scaring fagot that guarded the slain,
  At the dead of the night a sweet vision I saw,
    And thrice ere the morning I dreamt it again.

  Methought from the battle-field's dreadful array
    Far, far I had roamed on a desolate track:
  'Twas autumn,--and sunshine arose on the way
    To the home of my fathers, that welcomed me back.

  I flew to the pleasant fields traversed so oft
    In life's morning march, when my bosom was young;
  I heard my own mountain-goats bleating aloft,
    And knew the sweet strain that the corn-reapers sung.

  Then pledged we the wine-cup, and fondly I swore
    From my home and my weeping friends never to part;
  My little ones kissed me a thousand times o'er,
    And my wife sobbed aloud in her fulness of heart.

  Stay, stay with us!--rest; thou art weary and worn!--
    And fain was their war-broken soldier to stay;
  But sorrow returned with the dawning of morn,
    And the voice in my dreaming ear melted away.

                                                  _Thomas Campbell._

       *       *       *       *       *


  We were not many,--we who stood
    Before the iron sleet that day;
  Yet many a gallant spirit would
  Give half his years if but he could
    Have been with us at Monterey.

  Now here, now there, the shot it hailed
    In deadly drifts of fiery spray,
  Yet not a single soldier quailed
  When wounded comrades round them wailed
    Their dying shout at Monterey.

  And on, still on our column kept,
    Through walls of flame, its withering way;
  Where fell the dead, the living stept,
  Still charging on the guns which swept
    The slippery streets of Monterey.

  The foe himself recoiled aghast,
    When, striking where he strongest lay,
  We swooped his flanking batteries past,
  And, braving full their murderous blast,
    Stormed home the towers of Monterey.

  Our banners on those turrets wave,
    And there our evening bugles play;
  Where orange-boughs above their grave
  Keep green the memory of the brave
    Who fought and fell at Monterey.

  We are not many,--we who pressed
    Beside the brave who fell that day;
  But who of us has not confessed
  He'd rather share their warrior rest
    Than not have been at Monterey?

                                            _Charles Fenno Hoffman._

       *       *       *       *       *


  "Give us a song!" the soldiers cried,
    The outer trenches guarding,
  When the heated guns of the camp allied
    Grew weary of bombarding.

  The dark Redan, in silent scoff,
    Lay grim and threatening under;
  And the tawny mound of the Malakoff
    No longer belched its thunder.

  There was a pause. A guardsman said:
    "We storm the forts to-morrow;
  Sing while we may, another day
    Will bring enough of sorrow."

  They lay along the battery's side,
    Below the smoking cannon,--
  Brave hearts from Severn and from Clyde,
    And from the banks of Shannon.

  They sang of love, and not of fame;
    Forgot was Britain's glory;
  Each heart recalled a different name,
    But all sang "Annie Laurie."

  Voice after voice caught up the song,
    Until its tender passion
  Rose like an anthem rich and strong,
    Their battle-eve confession.

  Dear girl! her name he dared not speak;
    But as the song grew louder,
  Something upon the soldier's cheek
    Washed off the stains of powder.

  Beyond the darkening ocean burned
    The bloody sunset's embers,
  While the Crimean valleys learned
    How English love remembers.

  And once again a fire of hell
    Rained on the Russian quarters,
  With scream of shot and burst of shell,
    And bellowing of the mortars!

  And Irish Nora's eyes are dim
    For a singer dumb and gory;
  And English Mary mourns for him
    Who sang of "Annie Laurie."

  Sleep, soldiers! still in honored rest
    Your truth and valor wearing;
  The bravest are the tenderest,--
    The loving are the daring.

                                                    _Bayard Taylor._

       *       *       *       *       *


  A steed! a steed of matchlesse speed,
    A sword of metal keene!
  All else to noble hearts is drosse,
    All else on earth is meane.
  The neighyinge of the war-horse prowde,
    The rowlinge of the drum,
  The clangor of the trumpet lowde,
    Be soundes from heaven that come;
  And oh! the thundering presse of knightes,
    Whenas their war-cryes swell,
  May tole from heaven an angel bright,
    And rouse a fiend from hell.

  Then mounte! then mounte, brave gallants all,
    And don your helmes amaine:
  Deathe's couriers, Fame and Honor, call
    Us to the field againe.
  No shrewish teares shall fill our eye
    When the sword-hilt's in our hand,--
  Heart-whole we'll part, and no whit sighe
    For the fayrest of the land.
  Let piping swaine and craven wight
    Thus weepe and puling crye;
  Our business is like men to fight,
    And hero-like to die!

                                               _William Motherwell._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Where is the grave of Sir Arthur O'Kellyn?
  Where may the grave of that good man be?--
  By the side of a spring, on the breast of Helvellyn,
  Under the twigs of a young birch tree!
  The oak that in summer was sweet to hear,
  And rustled its leaves in the fall of the year,
  And whistled and roared in the winter alone,
  Is gone,--and the birch in its stead is grown.
  The knight's bones are dust,
  And his good sword rust;--
  His soul is with the saints, I trust.

                                          _Samuel Taylor Coleridge._

       *       *       *       *       *


  He is gone on the mountain,
    He is lost to the forest,
  Like a summer-dried fountain,
    When our need was the sorest.
  The fount reappearing
    From the rain-drops shall borrow;
  But to us comes no cheering,
    To Duncan no morrow!

  The hand of the reaper
    Takes the ears that are hoary,
  But the voice of the weeper
    Wails manhood in glory.
  The autumn winds, rushing,
    Waft the leaves that are searest,
  But our flower was in flushing
    When blighting was nearest.

  Fleet foot on the correi,
    Sage counsel in cumber,
  Red hand in the foray,
    How sound is thy slumber!
  Like the dew on the mountain,
    Like the foam on the river,
  Like the bubble on the fountain,
    Thou art gone, and forever.

                                                 _Sir Walter Scott._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Close his eyes; his work is done!
    What to him is friend or foeman,
  Rise of moon or set of sun,
    Hand of man or kiss of woman?
      Lay him low, lay him low,
      In the clover or the snow!
      What cares he? he cannot know;
        Lay him low!

  As man may, he fought his fight,
    Proved his truth by his endeavor;
  Let him sleep in solemn night,
    Sleep forever and forever.
      Lay him low, lay him low,
      In the clover or the snow!
      What cares he? he cannot know;
        Lay him low!

  Fold him in his country's stars,
    Roll the drum and fire the volley!
  What to him are all our wars?--
    What but death bemocking folly?
      Lay him low, lay him low,
      In the clover or the snow!
      What cares he? he cannot know;
        Lay him low!

  Leave him to God's watching eye;
    Trust him to the hand that made him.
  Mortal love weeps idly by;
    God alone has power to aid him.
      Lay him low, lay him low,
      In the clover or the snow!
      What cares he? he cannot know;
        Lay him low!

                                               _George Henry Boker._

       *       *       *       *       *


Sung on the occasion of decorating the graves of the Confederate dead at
Magnolia Cemetery, Charleston, S. C., 1867.

  Sleep sweetly in your humble graves,--
    Sleep, martyrs of a fallen cause!
  Though yet no marble column craves
    The pilgrim here to pause,

  In seeds of laurel in the earth
    The blossom of your fame is blown,
  And somewhere, waiting for its birth,
    The shaft is in the stone!

  Meanwhile, behalf the tardy years
    Which keep in trust your storied tombs,
  Behold! your sisters bring their tears,
    And these memorial blooms.

  Small tributes! but your shades will smile
    More proudly on these wreaths to-day,
  Than when some cannon-moulded pile
    Shall overlook this bay.

  Stoop, angels, hither from the skies!
    There is no holier spot of ground
  Than where defeated valor lies,
    By mourning beauty crowned!

                                                     _Henry Timrod._

       *       *       *       *       *


Read at Utica, N. Y., on the occasion of decorating the graves of the
Federal dead, May 30, 1872.

  They sleep so calm and stately,
    Each in his graveyard bed,
  It scarcely seems that lately
    They trod the fields blood-red,
        With fearless tread.

  They marched and never halted,
    They scaled the parapet,
  The triple lines assaulted,
    And paid without regret
        The final debt.

  The debt of slow accruing
    A guilty nation made,
  The debt of evil doing,
    Of justice long delayed,
        'Twas this they paid.

  On fields where Strife held riot,
    And Slaughter fed his hounds,
  Where came no sense of quiet,
    Nor any gentle sounds,
        They made their rounds.

  They wrought without repining,
    Till, weary watches o'er,
  They passed the bounds confining
    Our green, familiar shore,

  And now they sleep so stately,
    Each in his graveyard bed,
  So calmly and sedately
    They rest, that once I said:
        "These men are dead.

  "They know not what sweet duty
    We come each year to pay,
  Nor heed the blooms of beauty,
    The garland gifts of May,
        Strewn here to-day.

  "The night-time and the day-time,
    The rise and set of sun,
  The winter and the May-time,
    To them whose work is done,
        Are all as one."

  Then o'er mine eyes there floated
    A vision of the Land
  Where their brave souls, promoted
    To Heaven's own armies, stand
        At God's right hand.

  From out the mighty distance
    I seemed to see them gaze
  Back on their old existence,
    Back on the battle-blaze
        Of war's dread days.

  "The flowers shall fade and perish
    (In larger faith spake I),
  But these dear names we cherish
    Are written in the sky,
        And cannot die."

                                                 _Theodore P. Cook._

       *       *       *       *       *


  How sleep the brave who sink to rest
  By all their country's wishes blessed!
  When Spring, with dewy fingers cold,
  Returns to deck their hallowed mould,
  She there shall dress a sweeter sod
  Than Fancy's feet have ever trod.

  By fairy hands their knell is rung;
  By forms unseen their dirge is sung;
  There Honor comes, a pilgrim gray,
  To bless the turf that wraps their clay;
  And Freedom shall awhile repair,
  To dwell a weeping hermit there!

                                                  _William Collins._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Out of the clover and blue-eyed grass
    He turned them into the river-lane;
  One after another he let them pass,
    Then fastened the meadow bars again.

  Under the willows, and over the hill,
    He patiently followed their sober pace;
  The merry whistle for once was still,
    And something shadowed the sunny face.

  Only a boy! and his father had said
    He never could let his youngest go;
  Two already were lying dead
    Under the feet of the trampling foe.

  But after the evening work was done,
    And the frogs were loud in the meadow-swamp,
  Over his shoulder he slung his gun
    And stealthily followed the foot-path damp.

  Across the clover and through the wheat
    With resolute heart and purpose grim,
  Though cold was the dew on his hurrying feet,
    And the blind bat's flitting startled him.

  Thrice since then had the lanes been white,
    And the orchards sweet with apple-bloom;
  And now, when the cows came back at night,
    The feeble father drove them home.

  For news had come to the lonely farm
    That three were lying where two had lain;
  And the old man's tremulous, palsied arm
    Could never lean on a son's again.

  The summer day grew cool and late,
    He went for the cows when the work was done;
  But down the lane, as he opened the gate,
    He saw them coming one by one,--

  Brindle, Ebony, Speckle, and Bess,
    Shaking their horns in the evening wind;
  Cropping the buttercups out of the grass,--
    But who was it following close behind?

  Loosely swung in the idle air
    The empty sleeve of army blue;
  And worn and pale, from the crisping hair
    Looked out a face that the father knew.

  For Southern prisons will sometimes yawn,
    And yield their dead unto life again;
  And the day that comes with a cloudy dawn
    In golden glory at last may wane.

  The great tears sprang to their meeting eyes;
    For the heart must speak when the lips are dumb;
  And under the silent evening skies
    Together they followed the cattle home.

                                               _Kate Putnam Osgood._

       *       *       *       *       *


  The maid who binds her warrior's sash
    With smile that well her pain dissembles,
  The while beneath her drooping lash
    One starry tear-drop hangs and trembles,
  Though Heaven alone records the tear,
    And Fame shall never know her story,
  Her heart has shed a drop as dear
    As e'er bedewed the field of glory!

  The wife who girds her husband's sword,
    'Mid little ones who weep or wonder,
  And bravely speaks the cheering word,
    What though her heart be rent asunder,
  Doomed nightly in her dreams to hear
    The bolts of death around him rattle,
  Hath shed as sacred blood as e'er
    Was poured upon the field of battle!

  The mother who conceals her grief
    While to her breast her son she presses,
  Then breathes a few brave words and brief,
    Kissing the patriot brow she blesses,
  With no one but her secret God
    To know the pain that weighs upon her,
  Sheds holy blood as e'er the sod
    Received on Freedom's field of honor!

                                             _Thomas Buchanan Read._

       *       *       *       *       *


  When I consider how my light is spent
    Ere half my days, in this dark world and wide,
    And that one talent which is death to hide,
  Lodged with me useless, though my soul more bent
  To serve therewith my Maker, and present
    My true account, lest he returning chide;
    "Doth God exact day-labor, light denied?"
  I fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent
  That murmur, soon replies, "God doth not need
    Either man's work or his own gifts; who best
      Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best: his state
  Is kingly; thousands at his bidding speed,
    And post o'er land and ocean without rest;
      They also serve who only stand and wait."

                                                      _John Milton._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Three fishers went sailing out into the west,
    Out into the west, as the sun went down,
  Each thought on the woman who loved him the best,
    And the children stood watching them out of the town;
  For men must work, and women must weep,
  And there's little to earn, and many to keep,
    Though the harbor-bar be moaning.

  Three wives sat up in the lighthouse tower,
    And they trimmed the lamps as the sun went down;
  They looked at the squall, and they looked at the shower,
    And the night-rack came rolling up ragged and brown;
  But men must work, and women must weep,
  Though storms be sudden, and waters deep,
    And the harbor-bar be moaning.

  Three corpses lie out on the shining sands,
    In the morning gleam, as the tide goes down,
  And the women are weeping and wringing their hands,
    For those who will never come home to the town.
  For men must work, and women must weep,
  And the sooner it's over, the sooner to sleep,
    And good by to the bar and its moaning.

                                                 _Charles Kingsley._

       *       *       *       *       *


  The winds that once the Argo bore
    Have died by Neptune's ruined shrines:
  And her hull is the drift of the deep-sea floor,
    Though shaped of Pelion's tallest pines.
  You may seek her crew on every isle
    Fair in the foam of Ægean seas;
  But out of their rest no charm can wile
    Jason and Orpheus and Hercules.

  And Priam's wail is heard no more
    By windy Ilion's sea-built walls;
  Nor great Achilles, stained with gore,
    Cries, "O ye gods, 'tis Hector falls!"
  On Ida's mount is the shining snow;
    But Jove has gone from its brow away;
  And red on the plain the poppies grow
    Where the Greek and the Trojan fought that day.

  Mother Earth, are the heroes dead?
    Do they thrill the soul of the years no more?
  Are the gleaming snows and the poppies red
    All that is left of the brave of yore?
  Are there none to fight as Theseus fought,
    Far in the young world's misty dawn?
  Or to teach as the gray-haired Nestor taught?
    Mother Earth, are the heroes gone?

  Gone? In a grander form they rise!
    Dead? We may clasp their hands in ours,
  And catch the light of their clearer eyes,
    And wreathe their brows with immortal flowers!
  Wherever a noble deed is done,
    'Tis the pulse of a hero's heart is stirred;
  Wherever the Right has a triumph won,
    There are the heroes' voices heard.

  Their armor rings on a fairer field
    Than the Greek or the Trojan ever trod:
  For Freedom's sword is the blade they wield,
    And the light above is the smile of God.
  So in his isle of calm delight
    Jason may sleep the years away;
  For the heroes live, and the skies are bright,
    And the world is a braver world to-day.

                                                _Edna Dean Proctor._

       *       *       *       *       *


  This is the arsenal. From floor to ceiling,
    Like a huge organ, rise the burnished arms;
  But from their silent pipes no anthem pealing
    Startles the villages with strange alarms.

  Ah! what a sound will rise, how wild and dreary,
    When the death-angel touches those swift keys!
  What loud lament and dismal Miserere
    Will mingle with their awful symphonies!

  I hear even now the infinite fierce chorus,--
    The cries of agony, the endless groan,
  Which, through the ages that have gone before us,
    In long reverberations reach our own.

  On helm and harness rings the Saxon hammer;
    Through Cimbric forest roars the Norseman's song;
  And loud, amid the universal clamor,
    O'er distant deserts sounds the Tartar gong.

  I hear the Florentine, who from his palace
    Wheels out his battle-bell with dreadful din;
  And Aztec priests upon their teocallis
    Beat the wild war-drums made of serpent's skin;

  The tumult of each sacked and burning village;
    The shout that every prayer for mercy drowns;
  The soldiers' revels in the midst of pillage;
    The wail of famine in beleaguered towns;

  The bursting shell, the gateway wrenched asunder,
    The rattling musketry, the clashing blade;
  And ever and anon, in tones of thunder,
    The diapason of the cannonade.

  Is it, O man, with such discordant noises,
    With such accursed instruments as these,
  Thou drownest Nature's sweet and kindly voices,
    And jarrest the celestial harmonies?

  Were half the power that fills the world with terror,
    Were half the wealth bestowed on camps and courts,
  Given to redeem the human mind from error,
    There were no need of arsenals or forts;

  The warrior's name would be a name abhorréd;
    And every nation that should lift again
  Its hand against a brother, on its forehead
    Would wear forevermore the curse of Cain!

  Down the dark future, through long generations,
    The echoing sounds grow fainter and then cease;
  And like a bell, with solemn, sweet vibrations,
    I hear once more the voice of Christ say, "Peace!"

  Peace!--and no longer from its brazen portals
    The blast of war's great organ shakes the skies;
  But, beautiful as songs of the immortals,
    The holy melodies of love arise.

                                       _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow._

       *       *       *       *       *


      What constitutes a state?
  Not high raised battlement or labored mound,
      Thick wall or moated gate;
  Not cities proud with spires and turrets crowned;
      Not bays and broad-armed ports,
  Where, laughing at the storm, rich navies ride;
      Not starred and spangled courts,
  Where low-browed baseness wafts perfume to pride.
      No: men, high-minded men,
  With powers as far above dull brutes endued
      In forest, brake, or den,
  As beasts excel cold rocks and brambles rude,--
      Men who their duties know,
  But know their rights, and, knowing, dare maintain,
      Prevent the long-aimed blow,
  And crush the tyrant while they rend the chain;
      These constitute a state;
  And sovereign law, that state's collected will,
      O'er thrones and globes elate,
  Sits empress, crowning good, repressing ill.
      Smit by her sacred frown,
  The fiend Dissension like a vapor sinks;
      And e'en the all-dazzling crown
  Hides his faint rays, and at her bidding shrinks.
      Such was this heaven-loved isle,
  Than Lesbos fairer and the Cretan shore!
      No more shall freedom smile?
  Shall Britons languish, and be men no more?
      Since all must life resign,
  Those sweet rewards which decorate the brave
      'Tis folly to decline,
  And steal inglorious to the silent grave.

                                                _Sir William Jones._

       *       *       *       *       *


      "Who bears upon his baby brow the round
      And top of sovereignty."

  Look at me with thy large brown eyes,
      Philip, my king!
  For round thee the purple shadow lies
  Of babyhood's royal dignities.
  Lay on my neck thy tiny hand
    With Love's invisible sceptre laden;
  I am thine Esther, to command
    Till thou shalt find thy queen-handmaiden,
      Philip, my king!

  O, the day when thou goest a-wooing,
      Philip, my king!
  When those beautiful lips 'gin suing,
  And, some gentle heart's bars undoing,
  Thou dost enter, love-crowned, and there
    Sittest love-glorified!--Rule kindly,
  Tenderly over thy kingdom fair;
    For we that love, ah! we love so blindly,
      Philip, my king!

  Up from thy sweet mouth,--up to thy brow,
      Philip, my king!
  The spirit that there lies sleeping now
  May rise like a giant, and make men bow
  As to one Heaven-chosen amongst his peers.
    My Saul, than thy brethren taller and fairer
  Let me behold thee in future years!
    Yet thy head needeth a circlet rarer,
      Philip, my king;--

  A wreath not of gold, but palm. One day,
      Philip, my king,
  Thou too must tread, as we trod, a way
  Thorny, and cruel, and cold, and gray;
  Rebels within thee and foes without
    Will snatch at thy crown. But march on, glorious,
  Martyr, yet monarch; till angels shout,
    As thou sitt'st at the feet of God victorious,
      "Philip, the king!"

                                         _Dinah Maria Mulock Craik._

       *       *       *       *       *


  "Ho, sailor of the sea!
  How's my boy,--my boy?"
  "What's your boy's name, good wife,
  And in what ship sailed he?"

  "My boy John,--
  He that went to sea,--
  What care I for the ship, sailor?
  My boy's my boy to me.

  "You come back from sea,
  And not know my John?
  I might as well have asked some landsman,
  Yonder down in the town.
  There's not an ass in all the parish
  But knows my John.

  "How's my boy,--my boy?
  And unless you let me know,
  I'll swear you are no sailor,
  Blue jacket or no,--
  Brass buttons or no, sailor,
  Anchor and crown or no,--
  Sure his ship was the 'Jolly Briton'"--
  "Speak low, woman, speak low!"

  "And why should I speak low, sailor,
  About my own boy John?
  If I was loud as I am proud
  I'd sing him over the town!
  Why should I speak low, sailor?"
  "That good ship went down."

  "How's my boy,--my boy?
  What care I for the ship, sailor?
  I was never aboard her.
  Be she afloat or be she aground,
  Sinking or swimming, I'll be bound
  Her owners can afford her!
  I say, how's my John?"
  "Every man on board went down,
  Every man aboard her."

  "How's my boy,--my boy?
  What care I for the men, sailor?
  I'm not their mother,--
  How's my boy,--my boy?
  Tell me of him and no other!
  How's my boy,--my boy?"

                                                    _Sydney Dobell._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Between the dark and the daylight,
    When the night is beginning to lower,
  Comes a pause in the day's occupations
    That is known as the children's hour,

  I hear in the chamber above me
    The patter of little feet,
  The sound of a door that is opened,
    And voices soft and sweet.

  From my study I see in the lamplight,
    Descending the broad hall-stair,
  Grave Alice, and laughing Allegra,
    And Edith with golden hair.

  A whisper, and then a silence;
    Yet I know by their merry eyes
  They are plotting and planning together
    To take me by surprise.

  A sudden rush from the stairway,
    A sudden raid from the hall:
  By three doors left unguarded
    They enter my castle wall.

  They climb up into my turret
    O'er the arms and back of my chair;
  If I try to escape, they surround me:
    They seem to be everywhere.

  They almost devour me with kisses;
    Their arms about me entwine,
  Till I think of the Bishop of Bingen
    In his Mouse-Tower on the Rhine.

  Do you think, O blue-eyed banditti!
    Because you have scaled the wall,
  Such an old mustache as I am
    Is not a match for you all?

  I have you fast in my fortress,
    And will not let you depart,
  But put you down into the dungeon
    In the round tower of my heart.

  And there will I keep you forever,--
    Yes, forever and a day,
  Till the walls shall crumble to ruin,
    And moulder in dust away.

                                       _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow._

       *       *       *       *       *


      I cannot make him dead!
      His fair sunshiny head
  Is ever bounding round my study chair;
      Yet when my eyes, now dim
      With tears, I turn to him,
  The vision vanishes,--he is not there!

      I walk my parlor floor,
      And through the open door
  I hear a footfall on the chamber stair;
      I'm stepping toward the hall
      To give the boy a call;
  And then bethink me that--he is not there!

      I thread the crowded street;
      A satchelled lad I meet,
  With the same beaming eyes and colored hair;
      And, as he's running by,
      Follow him with my eye,
  Scarcely believing that--he is not there!

      I know his face is hid
      Under the coffin lid;
  Closed are his eyes; cold is his forehead fair;
      My hand that marble felt;
      O'er it in prayer I knelt;
  Yet my heart whispers that--he is not there!

      I cannot make him dead!
      When passing by the bed,
  So long watched over with parental care,
      My spirit and my eye
      Seek him inquiringly,
  Before the thought comes that--he is not there!

      When, at the cool gray break
      Of day, from sleep I wake,
  With my first breathing of the morning air
      My soul goes up, with joy,
      To Him who gave my boy;
  Then comes the sad thought that--he is not there!

      When at the day's calm close,
      Before we seek repose,
  I'm with his mother, offering up our prayer;
      Whate'er I may be saying,
      I am in spirit praying
  For our boy's spirit, though--he is not there!

      Not there!--Where, then, is he?
      The form I used to see
  Was but the raiment that he used to wear.
      The grave, that now doth press
      Upon that cast-off dress,
  Is but his wardrobe locked;--he is not there!

      He lives!--In all the past
      He lives; nor, to the last,
  Of seeing him again will I despair;
      In dreams I see him now;
      And on his angel brow
  I see it written, "Thou shalt see me _there_!"

      Yes, we all live to God!
      Father, thy chastening rod
  So help us, thine afflicted ones, to bear,
      That in the spirit-land,
      Meeting at thy right hand,
  'Twill be our heaven to find that--he is there!

                                                    _John Pierpont._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I'm wearin' awa', John,
  Like snaw-wreaths in thaw, John,
  I'm wearin' awa'
    To the land o' the leal.
  There's nae sorrow there, John,
  There's neither cauld nor care, John,
  The day is aye fair
    In the land o' the leal.

  Our bonnie bairn's there, John,
  She was baith gude and fair, John,
  And oh! we grudged her sair
    To the land o' the leal.
  But sorrow's sel' wears past, John,
  And joy's a-comin' fast, John,
  The joy that's aye to last
    In the land o' the leal.

  Sae dear's that joy was bought, John,
  Sae free the battle fought, John,
  That sinfu' man e'er brought
    To the land o' the leal.
  Oh! dry your glist'ning e'e, John,
  My saul langs to be free, John,
  And angels beckon me
    To the land o' the leal.

  Oh! haud ye leal and true, John,
  Your day it's wearin' thro', John,
  And I'll welcome you
    To the land o' the leal.
  Now fare ye weel, my ain John,
  This warld's cares are vain, John,
  We'll meet, and we'll be fain,
    In the land o' the leal.

                                                      _Lady Nairne._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I'm sittin' on the stile, Mary,
    Where we sat side by side
  On a bright May mornin' long ago,
    When first you were my bride;
  The corn was springin' fresh and green,
    And the lark sang loud and high;
  And the red was on your lip, Mary,
    And the love-light in your eye.

  The place is little changed, Mary;
    The day is bright as then;
  The lark's loud song is in my ear,
    And the corn is green again;
  But I miss the soft clasp of your hand,
    And your breath, warm on my cheek;
  And I still keep list'nin' for the words
    You never more will speak.

  'Tis but a step down yonder lane,
    And the little church stands near,--
  The church where we were wed, Mary;
    I see the spire from here.
  But the graveyard lies between, Mary,
    And my step might break your rest,--
  For I've laid you, darling, down to sleep,
    With your baby on your breast.

  I'm very lonely now, Mary,--
    For the poor make no new friends;
  But, oh! they love the better still
    The few our Father sends!
  And you were all I had, Mary,--
    My blessin' and my pride:
  There's nothing left to care for now,
    Since my poor Mary died.

  Yours was the good, brave heart, Mary,
    That still kept hoping on,
  When the trust in God had left my soul,
    And my arm's young strength was gone;
  There was comfort ever on your lip,
    And the kind look on your brow,--
  I bless you, Mary, for that same,
    Though you cannot hear me now.

  I thank you for the patient smile
    When your heart was fit to break,--
  When the hunger-pain was gnawin' there,
    And you hid it for my sake;
  I bless you for the pleasant word,
    When your heart was sad and sore,--
  Oh! I'm thankful you are gone, Mary,
    Where grief can't reach you more!

  I'm biddin' you a long farewell,
    My Mary,--kind and true!
  But I'll not forget you, darling,
    In the land I'm goin' to;
  They say there's bread and work for all,
    And the sun shines always there,--
  But I'll not forget old Ireland,
    Were it fifty times as fair!

  And often in those grand old woods
    I'll sit, and shut my eyes,
  And my heart will travel back again
    To the place where Mary lies;
  And I'll think I see the little stile
    Where we sat side by side,
  And the springin' corn, and the bright May morn,
    When first you were my bride.

                                                    _Lady Dufferin._

       *       *       *       *       *


  We watched her breathing through the night,
    Her breathing soft and low,
  As in her breast the wave of life
    Kept heaving to and fro.

  So silently we seemed to speak,
    So slowly moved about,
  As we had lent her half our powers
    To eke her living out.

  Our very hopes belied our fears,
    Our fears our hopes belied,--
  We thought her dying when she slept,
    And sleeping when she died.

  For when the morn came, dim and sad,
    And chill with early showers,
  Her quiet eyelids closed,--she had
    Another morn than ours.

                                                      _Thomas Hood._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Beautiful Evelyn Hope is dead,--
    Sit and watch by her side an hour.
  That is her book-shelf, this her bed;
    She plucked that piece of geranium flower,
  Beginning to die, too, in the glass.
    Little has yet been changed, I think,--
  The shutters are shut, no light may pass,
    Save two long rays through the hinge's chink.

  Sixteen years old when she died!
    Perhaps she had scarcely heard my name,--
  It was not her time to love: beside,
    Her life had many a hope and aim,
  Duties enough and little cares;
    And now was quiet, now astir,--
  Till God's hand beckoned unawares,
    And the sweet white brow is all of her.

  Is it too late, then, Evelyn Hope?
    What! your soul was pure and true;
  The good stars met in your horoscope,
    Made you of spirit, fire, and dew,--
  And just because I was thrice as old,
    And our paths in the world diverged so wide,
  Each was naught to each, must I be told?
    We were fellow-mortals,--naught beside?

  No, indeed! for God above
    Is great to grant, as mighty to make,
  And creates the love to reward the love,--
    I claim you still, for my own love's sake!
  Delayed, it may be, for more lives yet,
    Through worlds I shall traverse, not a few,--
  Much is to learn and much to forget
    Ere the time be come for taking you.

  But the time will come--at last it will--
    When, Evelyn Hope, what meant, I shall say,
  In the lower earth, in the years long still,
    That body and soul so pure and gay?
  Why your hair was amber, I shall divine,
    And your mouth of your own geranium's red,--
  And what you would do with me, in fine,
    In the new life come in the old one's stead.

  I have lived, I shall say, so much since then,
    Given up myself so many times,
  Gained me the gains of various men,
    Ransacked the ages, spoiled the climes;
  Yet one thing, one, in my soul's full scope,
    Either I missed or itself missed me,--
  And I want and find you, Evelyn Hope!
    What is the issue? let us see!

  I loved you, Evelyn, all the while;
    My heart seemed full as it could hold,--
  There was space and to spare for the frank young smile,
    And the red young mouth, and the hair's young gold.
  So hush,--I will give you this leaf to keep,--
    See, I shut it inside the sweet cold hand.
  There, that is our secret! go to sleep;
    You will wake, and remember, and understand.

                                                  _Robert Browning._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Weave no more the marriage-chain!
    All unmated is the lover;
  Death has ta'en the place of Pain;
  Love doth call on Love in vain:
    Life and years of hope are over!

  No more want of marriage-bell!
    No more need of bridal favor!
  Where is she to wear them well?
  You beside the lover tell!
    Gone,--with all the love he gave her!

  Paler than the stone she lies;
    Colder than the winter's morning!
  Wherefore did she thus despise
  (She with pity in her eyes)
    Mother's care and lover's warning?

  Youth and beauty,--shall they not
    Last beyond a brief to-morrow?
  No: a prayer, and then forgot!
  This the truest lover's lot;
    This the sum of human sorrow!

                                             _Bryan Waller Procter._

       *       *       *       *       *


  She died in beauty,--like a rose
    Blown from its parent stem;
  She died in beauty,--like a pearl
    Dropped from some diadem.

  She died in beauty,--like a lay
    Along a moonlit lake;
  She died in beauty,--like the song
    Of birds amid the brake.

  She died in beauty,--like the snow
    On flowers dissolved away;
  She died in beauty,--like a star
    Lost on the brow of day.

  She lives in glory,--like night's gems
    Set round the silver moon;
  She lives in glory,--like the sun
    Amid the blue of June.

                                            _Charles Doyne Sillery._

       *       *       *       *       *


  She was not fair, nor full of grace,
    Nor crowned with thought or aught beside;
  Nor wealth had she, of mind or face,
    To win our love or raise our pride;
  No lover's thought her cheek did touch;
    No poet's dream was round her thrown;
  And yet we miss her,--ah, too much,
    Now--she hath flown!

  We miss her when the morning calls,
    As one that mingled in our mirth;
  We miss her when the evening falls,--
    A trifle wanted on the earth!
  Some fancy small, or subtile thought,
    Is checked ere to its blossom grown;
  Some chain is broken that we wrought,
    Now--she hath flown!

  No solid good, nor hope defined,
    Is marred now she has sunk in night;
  And yet the strong immortal Mind
    Is stopped in its triumphant flight!
  Perhaps some grain lost to its sphere
    Might cast the great Sun from his throne;
  For all we know is--"She was here,"
    And--"She hath flown!"

                                             _Bryan Waller Procter._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Ye banks, and braes, and streams around
    The castle o' Montgomery,
  Green be your woods, and fair your flowers,
    Your waters never drumlie!
  There simmer first unfald her robes,
    And there the langest tarry!
  For there I took the last fareweel
    O' my sweet Highland Mary.

  How sweetly bloomed the gay green birk!
    How rich the hawthorn blossom!
  As, underneath their fragrant shade,
    I clasped her to my bosom!
  The golden hours, on angel wings,
    Flew o'er me and my dearie;
  For dear to me as light and life
    Was my sweet Highland Mary.

  Wi' monie a vow and locked embrace
    Our parting was fu' tender;
  And pledging aft to meet again,
    We tore ourselves asunder;
  But oh! fell death's untimely frost,
    That nipt my flower sae early!
  Now green's the sod, and cauld's the clay,
    That wraps my Highland Mary!

  O pale, pale now, those rosy lips
    I aft hae kissed sae fondly!
  And closed for aye the sparkling glance
    That dwelt on me sae kindly!
  And mouldering now in silent dust
    That heart that lo'ed me dearly!
  But still within my bosom's core
    Shall live my Highland Mary.

                                                     _Robert Burns._

       *       *       *       *       *


"Douglas, Douglas, tendir and treu."

  Could ye come back to me, Douglas, Douglas,
    In the old likeness that I knew,
  I would be so faithful, so loving, Douglas,
    Douglas, Douglas, tender and true.

  Never a scornful word should grieve ye,
    I'd smile on ye sweet as the angels do,--
  Sweet as your smile on me shone ever,
    Douglas, Douglas, tender and true.

  O to call back the days that are not!
    My eyes were blinded, your words were few;
  Do you know the truth now up in heaven,
    Douglas, Douglas, tender and true?

  I never was worthy of you, Douglas,
    Not half worthy the like of you;
  Now all men beside seem to me like shadows,--
    I love _you_, Douglas, tender and true.

  Stretch out your hand to me, Douglas, Douglas,
    Drop forgiveness from heaven like dew,
  As I lay my heart on your dead heart, Douglas,
    Douglas, Douglas, tender and true.

                                         _Dinah Maria Mulock Craik._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Here, a sheer hulk, lies poor Tom Bowling,
    The darling of our crew;
  No more he'll hear the tempest howling,--
    For death has broached him to.
  His form was of the manliest beauty;
    His heart was kind and soft;
  Faithful below, he did his duty;
    But now he's gone aloft.

  Tom never from his word departed,--
    His virtues were so rare;
  His friends were many and true-hearted;
    His Poll was kind and fair.
  And then he'd sing so blithe and jolly,--
    Ah, many's the time and oft!
  But mirth is turned to melancholy,
    For Tom is gone aloft.

  Yet shall poor Tom find pleasant weather,
    When He, who all commands,
  Shall give, to call life's crew together,
    The word to pipe all hands.
  Thus Death, who kings and tars despatches,
    In vain Tom's life has doffed;
  For, though his body's under hatches,
    His soul is gone aloft.

                                                   _Charles Dibdin._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Green be the turf above thee,
    Friend of my better days!
  None knew thee but to love thee,
    Nor named thee but to praise.

  Tears fell, when thou wert dying,
    From eyes unused to weep,
  And long, where thou art lying,
    Will tears the cold turf steep.

  When hearts whose truth was proven,
    Like thine, are laid in earth,
  There should a wreath be woven
    To tell the world their worth;

  And I, who woke each morrow
    To clasp thy hand in mine,
  Who shared thy joy and sorrow,
    Whose weal and woe were thine,--

  It should be mine to braid it
    Around thy faded brow,
  But I've in vain essayed it,
    And feel I cannot now.

  While memory bids me weep thee,
    Nor thoughts nor words are free,
  The grief is fixed too deeply
    That mourns a man like thee.

                                              _Fitz-Greene Halleck._

       *       *       *       *       *


  She is far from the land where her young hero sleeps,
    And lovers are round her sighing;
  But coldly she turns from their gaze, and weeps,
    For her heart in his grave is lying!

  She sings the wild songs of her dear native plains,
    Every note which he loved awaking;
  Ah! little they think, who delight in her strains,
    How the heart of the minstrel is breaking!

  He had lived for his love, for his country he died,
    They were all that to life had entwined him;
  Nor soon shall the tears of his country be dried,
    Nor long will his love stay behind him.

  Oh! make her a grave where the sunbeams rest,
    When they promise a glorious morrow;
  They'll shine o'er her sleep, like a smile from the west,
    From her own loved island of sorrow!

                                                     _Thomas Moore._

       *       *       *       *       *


  O sing unto my roundelay!
    O, drop the briny tear with me!
  Dance no more at holiday;
    Like a running river be.
      My love is dead,
      Gone to his death bed,
      All under the willow tree.

  Black his hair as the winter night,
    White his neck as the summer snow,
  Ruddy his face as the morning light;
    Cold he lies in the grave below.
      My love is dead,
      Gone to his death bed,
      All under the willow tree.

  Sweet his tongue as the throstle's note;
    Quick in dance as thought can be;
  Deft his tabor, cudgel stout;
    O, he lies by the willow tree!
      My love is dead,
      Gone to his death bed,
      All under the willow tree.

  Hark! the raven flaps his wing
    In the briered dell below;
  Hark! the death-owl loud doth sing
    To the nightmares as they go.
      My love is dead,
      Gone to his death bed,
      All under the willow tree.

  See! the white moon shines on high;
    Whiter is my true-love's shroud,
  Whiter than the morning sky,
    Whiter than the evening cloud.
      My love is dead,
      Gone to his death bed,
      All under the willow tree.

  Here, upon my true-love's grave
    Shall the barren flowers be laid,
  Nor one holy saint to save
    All the coldness of a maid.
      My love is dead,
      Gone to his death bed,
      All under the willow tree.

  With my hands I'll bind the briers
    Round his holy corse to gre;
  Ouphant fairy, light your fires;
    Here my body still shall be.
      My love is dead,
      Gone to his death bed,
      All under the willow tree.

  Come, with acorn-cup and thorn,
    Drain my heart's blood all away;
  Life and all its good I scorn,
    Dance by night, or feast by day.
      My love is dead,
      Gone to his death bed,
      All under the willow tree.

  Water-witches, crowned with reytes,
    Bear me to your lethal tide.
  I die! I come! my true-love waits.
    Thus the damsel spake, and died.

                                                _Thomas Chatterton._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Farewell! since nevermore for thee
    The sun comes up our earthly skies,
  Less bright henceforth shall sunshine be
    To some fond hearts and saddened eyes.

  There are who for thy last long sleep
    Shall sleep as sweetly nevermore,
  Shall weep because thou canst not weep,
    And grieve that all thy griefs are o'er.

  Sad thrift of love! the loving breast,
    On which the aching head was thrown,
  Gave up the weary head to rest,
    But kept the aching for its own.

                                                 _Thomas K. Hervey._

       *       *       *       *       *


  They grew in beauty, side by side,
      They filled one home with glee,--
  Their graves are severed far and wide,
      By mount, and stream, and sea.

  The same fond mother bent at night
      O'er each fair sleeping brow;
  She had each folded flower in sight,--
      Where are those dreamers now?

  One, 'midst the forests of the West,
      By a dark stream is laid,--
  The Indian knows his place of rest,
      Far in the cedar shade.

  The sea, the blue lone sea, hath one;
      He lies where pearls lie deep;
  He was the loved of all, yet none
      O'er his low bed may weep.

  One sleeps where southern vines are dressed
      Above the noble slain;
  He wrapped his colors round his breast,
      On a blood-red field of Spain.

  And one,--o'er her the myrtle showers
      Its leaves, by soft winds fanned;
  She faded 'midst Italian flowers,
      The last of that bright band.

  And parted thus they rest, who played
      Beneath the same green tree;
  Whose voices mingled as they prayed
      Around one parent knee!

  They that with smiles lit up the hall,
      And cheered with song the hearth,--
  Alas for love! if _thou_ wert all,
      And naught beyond, O earth!

                                                   _Felicia Hemans._

       *       *       *       *       *


  At the close of the day, when the hamlet is still,
    And mortals the sweets of forgetfulness prove,
  When naught but the torrent is heard on the hill,
    And naught but the nightingale's song in the grove,
  'Twas thus, by the cave of the mountain afar,
    While his harp rang symphonious, a hermit began;
  No more with himself or with nature at war,
    He thought as a sage, though he felt as a man:

  "Ah! why, all abandoned to darkness and woe,
    Why, lone Philomela, that languishing fall?
  For spring shall return, and a lover bestow,
    And sorrow no longer thy bosom enthrall.
  But, if pity inspire thee, renew the sad lay,--
    Mourn, sweetest complainer, man calls thee to mourn!
  O, soothe him whose pleasures like thine pass away!
    Full quickly they pass,--but they never return.

  "Now, gliding remote on the verge of the sky,
    The moon, half extinguished, her crescent displays;
  But lately I marked when majestic on high
    She shone, and the planets were lost in her blaze.
  Roll on, thou fair orb, and with gladness pursue
    The path that conducts thee to splendor again!
  But man's faded glory what change shall renew?
    Ah, fool! to exult in a glory so vain!

  "'Tis night, and the landscape is lovely no more.
    I mourn,--but, ye woodlands, I mourn not for you;
  For morn is approaching your charms to restore,
    Perfumed with fresh fragrance, and glittering with dew.
  Nor yet for the ravage of winter I mourn,--
    Kind nature the embryo blossom will save;
  But when shall spring visit the mouldering urn?
    O, when shall day dawn on the night of the grave?

  "'Twas thus, by the glare of false science betrayed,
    That leads to bewilder, and dazzles to blind,
  My thoughts wont to roam from shade onward to shade,
    Destruction before me, and sorrow behind.
  'O pity, great Father of light,' then I cried,
    'Thy creature, who fain would not wander from thee!
  Lo, humbled in dust, I relinquish my pride;
    From doubt and from darkness thou only canst free.'

  "And darkness and doubt are now flying away:
    No longer I roam in conjecture forlorn.
  So breaks on the traveller, faint and astray,
    The bright and the balmy effulgence of morn.
  See truth, love, and mercy in triumph descending,
    And nature all glowing in Eden's first bloom!
  On the cold cheek of death smiles and roses are blending,
    And beauty immortal awakes from the tomb."

                                                    _James Beattie._

       *       *       *       *       *


  O why should the spirit of mortal be proud?
  Like a swift-fleeting meteor, a fast-flying cloud,
  A flash of the lightning, a break of the wave,
  Man passes from life to his rest in the grave.

  The leaves of the oak and the willow shall fade,
  Be scattered around and together be laid;
  And the young and the old, and the low and the high,
  Shall moulder to dust and together shall lie.

  The infant a mother attended and loved,
  The mother that infant's affection who proved,
  The husband that mother and infant who blessed,
  Each, all, are away to their dwellings of rest.

  The maid on whose cheek, on whose brow, in whose eye,
  Shone beauty and pleasure,--her triumphs are by;
  And the memory of those who have loved her and praised,
  Are alike from the minds of the living erased.

  The hand of the king that the sceptre hath borne,
  The brow of the priest that the mitre hath worn,
  The eye of the sage, and the heart of the brave,
  Are hidden and lost in the depth of the grave.

  The peasant whose lot was to sow and to reap,
  The herdsman who climbed with his goats up the steep,
  The beggar who wandered in search of his bread,
  Have faded away like the grass that we tread.

  The saint who enjoyed the communion of heaven,
  The sinner who dared to remain unforgiven,
  The wise and the foolish, the guilty and just,
  Have quietly mingled their bones in the dust.

  So the multitude goes, like the flower or the weed
  That withers away to let others succeed;
  So the multitude comes, even those we behold,
  To repeat every tale that has often been told.

  For we are the same that our fathers have been;
  We see the same sights that our fathers have seen,--
  We drink the same stream, and we view the same sun,
  And run the same course that our fathers have run.

  The thoughts we are thinking our fathers would think;
  From the death that we shrink from our fathers would shrink;
  To the life that we cling to they also would cling;
  But it speeds for us all, like a bird on the wing.

  They loved, but the story we cannot unfold;
  They scorned, but the heart of the haughty is cold;
  They grieved, but no wail from their slumbers will come;
  They joyed, but the tongue of their gladness is dumb.

  They died, ay! they died: and we things that are now,
  Who walk on the turf that lies over their brow,
  Who make in their dwelling a transient abode,
  Meet the things that they met on their pilgrimage road.

  Yea! hope and despondency, pleasure and pain,
  We mingle together in sunshine and rain;
  And the smiles and the tears, the song and the dirge,
  Still follow each other, like surge upon surge.

  'Tis the wink of an eye, 'tis the draught of a breath,
  From the blossom of health to the paleness of death,
  From the gilded saloon to the bier and the shroud,--
  O, why should the spirit of mortal be proud?

                                                     _William Knox._

       *       *       *       *       *


  When Liberty lives loud on every lip,
      But Freedom moans,
  Trampled by nations whose faint footfalls slip
      Round bloody thrones;
  When, here and there, in dungeon and in thrall,
      Or exile pale,
  Like torches dying at a funeral,
      Brave natures fail;
  When Truth, the armed archangel, stretches wide
      God's tromp in vain,
  And the world, drowsing, turns upon its side
      To drowse again;--
  O Man, whose course hath called itself sublime
      Since it began,
  What art thou in such dying age of time,
      As man to man?

  When Love's last wrong hath been forgotten coldly,
      As First Love's face;
  And, like a rat that comes to wanton boldly
      In some lone place,
  Once festal, in the realm of light and laughter
      Grim Doubt appears,
  Whilst weird suggestions from Death's vague Hereafter,
      O'er ruined years,
  Creep, dark and darker, with new dread to mutter
      Through life's long shade,
  Yet make no more in the chill breast the flutter
      Which once they made:
  Whether it be, that all doth at the grave
      Round to its term,
  That nothing lives in that last darkness, save
      The little worm,
  Or whether the tired spirit prolong its course
      Through realms unseen,--
  Secure, that unknown world cannot be worse
      Than this hath been:
  Then when thro' Thought's gold chain, so frail and slender,
      No link will meet;
  When all the broken harps of Language render
      No sound that's sweet;
  When, like torn books, sad days weigh down each other
      I' the dusty shelf;--
  O Man, what art thou, O my friend, my brother,
      Even to thyself?

                                             _Robert Bulwer Lytton._

       *       *       *       *       *


  My mother bore me in the southern wild,
    And I am black; but, O, my soul is white!
  White as an angel is the English child,
    But I am black as if bereaved of light.

  My mother taught me underneath a tree;
    And, sitting down before the heat of day,
  She took me on her lap, and kisséd me,
    And, pointing to the east, began to say:--

  "Look on the rising sun; there God does live,
    And gives his light, and gives his heat away;
  And flowers and trees, and beasts and men, receive
    Comfort in morning, joy in the noonday.

  "And we are put on earth a little space,
    That we may learn to bear the beams of love,
  And these black bodies and this sunburnt face
    Are but a cloud, and like a shady grove.

  "For when our souls have learned the heat to bear,
    The clouds will vanish; we shall hear his voice,
  Saving: 'Come from the grove, my love and care,
    And round my golden tent like lambs rejoice.'"

  Thus did my mother say and kisséd me,
    And thus I say to little English boy;
  When I from black, and he from white cloud free,
    And round the tent of God like lambs we joy,

  I'll shade him from the heat, till he can bear
    To lean in joy upon our Father's knee;
  And then I'll stand and stroke his silver hair,
    And be like him, and he will then love me.

                                                    _William Blake._

       *       *       *       *       *


  The glories of our birth and state
    Are shadows, not substantial things;
  There is no armor against fate,--
    Death lays his icy hands on kings;
      Sceptre and crown
      Must tumble down,
  And in the dust be equal made
  With the poor crooked scythe and spade.

  Some men with swords may reap the field,
    And plant fresh laurels where they kill;
  But their strong nerves at last must yield,--
    They tame but one another still;
      Early or late
      They stoop to fate,
  And must give up their murmuring breath,
  When they, pale captives, creep to death.

  The garlands wither on your brow,--
    Then boast no more your mighty deeds;
  Upon death's purple altar, now,
    See where the victor victim bleeds!
      All heads must come
      To the cold tomb,--
  Only the actions of the just
  Smell sweet, and blossom in the dust.

                                                    _James Shirley._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Slave of the dark and dirty mine,
    What vanity has brought thee here?
  How can I love to see thee shine
    So bright, whom I have bought so dear?
    The tent-ropes flapping lone I hear
  For twilight converse, arm in arm;
    The jackal's shriek bursts on mine ear
  When mirth and music wont to charm.

  By Cherical's dark wandering streams,
    Where cane-tufts shadow all the wild,
  Sweet visions haunt my waking dreams
    Of Teviot loved while still a child,
    Of castled rocks stupendous piled
  By Esk or Eden's classic wave,
    Where loves of youth and friendship smiled,
  Uncursed by thee, vile yellow slave!

  Fade, day-dreams sweet, from memory fade!
    The perished bliss of youth's first prime,
  That once so bright on fancy played,
    Revives no more in after-time.
    Far from my sacred natal clime,
  I haste to an untimely grave;
    The daring thoughts that soared sublime
  Are sunk in ocean's southern wave.

  Slave of the mine, thy yellow light
    Gleams baleful as the tomb-fire drear.
  A gentle vision comes by night
    My lonely widowed heart to cheer:
    Her eyes are dim with many a tear,
  That once were guiding stars to mine:
    Her fond heart throbs with many a fear!
  I cannot bear to see thee shine.

  For thee, for thee, vile yellow slave,
    I left a heart that loved me true!
  I crossed the tedious ocean-wave,
    To roam in climes unkind and new.
    The cold wind of the stranger blew
  Chill on my withered heart; the grave
    Dark and untimely met my view,--
  And all for thee, vile yellow slave!

  Ha! com'st thou now so late to mock
    A wanderer's banished heart forlorn,
  Now that his frame the lightning shock
    Of sun-rays tipped with death has borne?
    From love, from friendship, country, torn,
  To memory's fond regrets the prey,
    Vile slave, thy yellow dross I scorn!
  Go mix thee with thy kindred clay!

                                                      _John Leyden._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Drawn by horses with decorous feet,
  A carriage for one went through the street,
  Polished as anthracite out of the mine,
  Tossing its plumes so stately and fine,
  As nods to the night a Norway pine.

  The passenger lay in Parian rest,
  As if, by the sculptor's hand caressed,
  A mortal life through the marble stole,
  And then till an angel calls the roll
  It waits awhile for a human soul.

  He rode in state, but his carriage-fare
  Was left unpaid to his only heir;
  Hardly a man, from hovel to throne,
  Takes to this route in coach of his own,
  But borrows at last and travels alone.

  The driver sat in his silent seat;
  The world, as still as a field of wheat,
  Gave all the road to the speechless twain,
  And thought the passenger never again
  Should travel that way with living men.

  Not a robin held its little breath,
  But sang right on in the face of death;
  You never would dream, to see the sky
  Give glance for glance to the violet's eye,
  That aught between them could ever die.

  A wain bound east met the hearse bound west,
  Halted a moment, and passed abreast;
  And I verily think a stranger pair
  Have never met on a thoroughfare,
  Or a dim by-road, or anywhere:

  The hearse as slim and glossy and still
  As silken thread at a woman's will,
  Who watches her work with tears unshed,
  Broiders a grief with needle and thread,
  Mourns in pansies and cypress the dead;

  Spotless the steeds in a satin dress,
  That run for two worlds the Lord's Express,--
  Long as the route of Arcturus's ray,
  Brief as the Publican's trying to pray,
  No other steeds by no other way
  Could go so far in a single day.

  From wagon broad and heavy and rude
  A group looking out from a single hood;
  Striped with the flirt of a heedless lash,
  Dappled and dimmed with many a splash,
  "Gathered" behind like an old calash.

  It made you think of a schooner's sail
  Mildewed with weather, tattered by gale,
  Down "by the run" from mizzen and main,--
  That canvas mapped with stipple and stain
  Of Western earth and the prairie rain.

  The watch-dog walked in his ribs between
  The hinder wheels, with sleepy mien;
  A dangling pail to the axle slung;
  Astern of the wain a manger hung,--
  A schooner's boat by the davits swung.

  The white-faced boys sat three in a row,
  With eyes of wonder and heads of tow;
  Father looked sadly over his brood;
  Mother just lifted a flap of the hood;
  All saw the hearse,--and two understood.

  They thought of the one-eyed cabin small,
  Hid like a nest in the grasses tall,
  Where plains swept boldly off in the air,
  Grooved into heaven everywhere,--
  So near the stars' invisible stair

  That planets and prairie almost met,--
  Just cleared its edges as they set!
  They thought of the level world's "divide,"
  And their hearts flowed down its other side
  To the grave of the little girl that died.

  They thought of childhood's neighborly hills,
  With sunshine aprons and ribbons of rills,
  That drew so near when the day went down,
  Put on a crimson and golden crown,
  And sat together in mantles brown;

  The Dawn's red plume in their winter caps,
  And Night asleep in their drowsy laps,
  Lightening the load of the shouldered wood
  By shedding the shadows as they could,
  That gathered round where the homestead stood.

  They thought,--that pair in the rugged wain,
  Thinking with bosom rather than brain;
  They'll never know till their dying day
  That what they thought and never could say,
  Their hearts throbbed out in an Alpine lay,
  The old Waldensian song again;
  Thank God for the mountains, and amen!

  The wain gave a lurch, the hearse moved on,--
  A moment or two, and both were gone;
  The wain bound east, the hearse bound west,
  Both going home, both looking for rest.
  The Lord save all, and his name be blest!

                                               _Benjamin F. Taylor._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Like as the damask rose you see,
  Or like the blossoms on the tree,
  Or like the dainty flower of May,
  Or like the morning of the day,
  Or like the sun, or like the shade,
  Or like the gourd which Jonas had;
  Even such is man, whose thread is spun,
  Drawn out and cut, and so is done.
  The rose withers, the blossom blasteth,
  The flower fades, the morning hasteth,
  The sun sets, the shadow flies,
  The gourd consumes, and man,--he dies!

  Like to the grass that's newly sprung,
  Or like a tale that's new begun,
  Or like the bird that's here to-day,
  Or like the pearléd dew of May,
  Or like an hour, or like a span,
  Or like the singing of a swan;
  Even such is man, who lives by breath,
  Is here, now there, in life and death.
  The grass withers, the tale is ended,
  The bird is flown, the dew 's ascended,
  The hour is short, the span not long,
  The swan near death,--man's life is done!

  Like to a bubble in the brook,
  Or in a glass much like a look,
  Or like a shuttle in a weaver's hand,
  Or like the writing on the sand,
  Or like a thought, or like a dream,
  Or like the gliding of a stream;
  Even such is man, who lives by breath,
  Is here, now there, in life and death.
  The bubble 's out, the look 's forgot,
  The shuttle 's flung, the writing 's blot,
  The thought is past, the dream is gone,
  The water glides,--man's life is done!

  Like to a blaze of fond delight,
  Or like a morning clear and bright,
  Or like a frost, or like a shower,
  Or like the pride of Babel's tower,
  Or like the hour that guides the time,
  Or like to Beauty in her prime;
  Even such is man, whose glory lends
  That life a blaze or two, and ends.
  The morn 's o'ercast, joy turned to pain,
  The frost is thawed, dried up the rain,
  The tower falls, the hour is run,
  The beauty lost,--man's life is done!

  Like to an arrow from the bow,
  Or like swift course of waterflow,
  Or like that time 'twixt flood and ebb,
  Or like the spider's tender web,
  Or like a race, or like a goal,
  Or like the dealing of a dole;
  Even such is man, whose brittle state
  Is always subject unto Fate.
  The arrow 's shot, the flood soon spent,
  The time 's no time, the web soon rent,
  The race soon run, the goal soon won,
  The dole soon dealt,--man's life is done!

  Like to the lightning from the sky,
  Or like a post that quick doth hie,
  Or like a quaver in a short song,
  Or like a journey three days long,
  Or like the snow when summer 's come,
  Or like the pear, or like the plum;
  Even such is man, who heaps up sorrow,
  Lives but this day, and dies to-morrow.
  The lightning 's past, the post must go,
  The song is short, the journey's so,
  The pear doth rot, the plum doth fall,
  The snow dissolves,--and so must all!

                                                     _Simon Wastel._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Like to the falling of a star,
  Or as the flights of eagles are,
  Or like the fresh spring's gaudy hue,
  Or silver drops of morning dew,
  Or like a wind that chafes the flood,
  Or bubbles which on water stood;
  Even such is man, whose borrowed light
  Is straight called in, and paid to-night.
  The wind blows out, the bubble dies,
  The spring entombed in autumn lies,
  The dew dries up, the star is shot,
  The flight is past,--and man forgot!

                                                       _Henry King._

       *       *       *       *       *


  O World! O Life! O Time!
  On whose last steps I climb,
    Trembling at that where I had stood before;
  When will return the glory of your prime?
      No more,--O nevermore!

  Out of the day and night
  A joy has taken flight:
    Fresh spring, and summer, and winter hoar
  Move my faint heart with grief, but with delight
      No more,--O nevermore!

                                             _Percy Bysshe Shelley._

       *       *       *       *       *


    Life! I know not what thou art,
  But know that thou and I must part;
  And when, or how, or where we met,
  I own to me's a secret yet.

    Life! we've been long together,
  Through pleasant and through cloudy weather;
  'Tis hard to part when friends are dear,
  Perhaps 'twill cost a sigh, a tear;
  Then steal away, give little warning,
    Choose thine own time,
  Say not Good Night,--but in some brighter clime
    Bid me Good Morning.

                                            _Anna Lætitia Barbauld._

       *       *       *       *       *


  The woods decay, the woods decay and fall,
  The vapors weep their burden to the ground,
  Man comes and tills the field and lies beneath,
  And after many a summer dies the swan.
  Me only cruel immortality
  Consumes: I wither slowly in thine arms,
  Here at the quiet limit of the world,
  A white-haired shadow roaming like a dream
  The ever-silent spaces of the east,
  Far-folded mists, and gleaming halls of morn.

    Alas! for this gray shadow, once a man,--
  So glorious in his beauty and thy choice,
  Who madest him thy chosen, that he seemed
  To his great heart none other than a god!
  I asked thee, "Give me immortality."
  Then didst thou grant mine asking with a smile,
  Like wealthy men who care not how they give.
  But thy strong Hours indignant worked their wills,
  And beat me down and marred and wasted me,
  And though they could not end me, left me maimed
  To dwell in presence of immortal youth,
  Immortal age beside immortal youth,
  And all I was, in ashes. Can thy love,
  Thy beauty, make amends, though even now,
  Close over us, the silver star, thy guide,
  Shines in those tremulous eyes that fill with tears
  To hear me? Let me go: take back thy gift:
  Why should a man desire in any way
  To vary from the kindly race of men,
  Or pass beyond the goal of ordinance
  Where all should pause, as is most meet for all?

    A soft air fans the cloud apart: there comes
  A glimpse of that dark world where I was born.
  Once more the old mysterious glimmer steals
  From thy pure brows, and from thy shoulders pure,
  And bosom beating with a heart renewed.
  Thy cheek begins to redden through the gloom,
  Thy sweet eyes brighten slowly close to mine,
  Ere yet they blind the stars, and the wild team
  Which love thee, yearning for thy yoke, arise,
  And shake the darkness from their loosened manes,
  And beat the twilight into flakes of fire.

    Lo! ever thus thou growest beautiful
  In silence, then before thine answer given
  Departest, and thy tears are on my cheek.

    Why wilt thou ever scare me with thy tears,
  And make me tremble lest a saying learnt
  In days far-off, on that dark earth, be true?
  "The Gods themselves cannot recall their gifts."

    Ay me! ay me! with what another heart
  In days far-off, and with what other eyes
  I used to watch--if I be he that watched--
  The lucid outline forming round thee; saw
  The dim curls kindle into sunny rings;
  Changed with thy mystic change, and felt my blood
  Glow with the glow that slowly crimsoned all
  Thy presence and thy portals, while I lay,
  Mouth, forehead, eyelids, growing dewy-warm
  With kisses balmier than half-opening buds
  Of April, and could hear the lips that kissed
  Whispering I knew not what of wild and sweet,
  Like that strange song I heard Apollo sing,
  While Ilion like a mist rose into towers.

    Yet hold me not forever in thine East:
  How can my nature longer mix with thine?
  Coldly thy rosy shadows bathe me, cold
  Are all thy lights, and cold my wrinkled feet
  Upon thy glimmering thresholds, when the steam
  Floats up from those dim fields about the homes
  Of happy men that have the power to die,
  And grassy barrows of the happier dead.
  Release me, and restore me to the ground:
  Thou seest all things, thou wilt see my grave;
  Thou wilt renew thy beauty morn by morn;
  I earth in earth forget these empty courts,
  And thee returning on thy silver wheels.

                                                  _Alfred Tennyson._

       *       *       *       *       *


(From the Irish.)

  O woman of Three Cows, agragh! don't let yourtongue thus rattle!
  O don't be saucy, don't be stiff, because you may have cattle!
  I've seen--and here's my hand to you, I only say what's true--
  A many a one with twice your stock not half so proud as you.

  Good luck to you! don't scorn the poor, and don't be their despiser;
  For worldly wealth soon melts away, and cheats the very miser,
  And Death soon strips the proudest wreath from haughty human brows;
  Then don't be stiff, and don't be proud, good Woman of Three Cows!

  See where Mononia's heroes lie, proud Owen More's descendants,--
  'Tis they that won the glorious name, and had the grand attendants!
  If they were forced to bow to Fate, as every mortal bows,
  Can you be proud, can you be stiff, my Woman of Three Cows?

  The brave sons of the Lord of Clare, they left the land to mourning;
  Movrone! for they were banished, with no hope of their returning.
  Who knows in what abodes of want those youths were driven to house?
  Yet you can give yourself these airs, O Woman of Three Cows!

  O think of Donnell of the Ships, the chief whom nothing daunted,--
  See how he fell in distant Spain, unchronicled, unchanted!
  He sleeps, the great O'Sullivan, where thunder cannot rouse;
  Then ask yourself, should you be proud, good Woman of Three Cows?

  O'Ruark, Maguire, those souls of fire, whose names are shrined in
  Think how their high achievements once made Erin's greatest glory!
  Yet now their bones lie mouldering under weeds and cypress boughs,
  And so, for all your pride, will yours, O Woman of Three Cows!

  The O'Carrolls also, famed when fame was only for the boldest,
  Rest in forgotten sepulchres with Erin's best and oldest;
  Yet who so great as they of yore, in battle or carouse?
  Just think of that, and hide your head, good Woman of Three Cows!

  Your neighbor's poor, and you it seems are big with vain ideas,
  Because, forsooth, you've got three cows,--one more, I see, than
          she has;
  That tongue of yours wags more at times than charity allows,
  But if you're strong be merciful, great Woman of Three Cows!

  Now, there you go! You still, of course, keep up your scornful
  And I'm too poor to hinder you; but, by the cloak I'm wearing,
  If I had but four cows myself, even though you were my spouse,
  I'd thwack you well to cure your pride, my Woman of Three Cows!

                                            _James Clarence Mangan._

       *       *       *       *       *


  My fairest child, I have no song to give you;
    No lark could pipe to skies so dull and gray;
  Yet, ere we part, one lesson I can leave you
              For every day.

  Be good, sweet maid, and let who will be clever;
    Do noble things, not dream them, all day long:
  And so make life, death, and that vast forever
              One grand sweet song.

                                                 _Charles Kingsley._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Thou still unravished bride of quietness!
    Thou foster-child of silence and slow time!
  Sylvan historian, who canst thus express
    A flowery tale more sweetly than our rhyme!
  What leaf-fringed legend haunts about thy shape
    Of deities or mortals, or of both,
      In Tempe or the dales of Arcady?
    What men or gods are these? What maidens loath?
  What mad pursuit? What struggle to escape?
      What pipes and timbrels? What wild ecstasy?

  Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard
    Are sweeter; therefore, ye soft pipes, play on,--
  Not to the sensual ear, but, more endeared,
    Pipe to the spirit ditties of no tone!
  Fair youth beneath the trees, thou canst not leave
    Thy song, nor ever can those trees be bare;
      Bold lover, never, never canst thou kiss,
  Though winning near the goal; yet do not grieve,--
      She cannot fade, though thou hast not thy bliss;
    Forever wilt thou love, and she be fair!

  Ah, happy, happy boughs! that cannot shed
    Your leaves, nor ever bid the spring adieu:
  And happy melodist, unweariéd,
    Forever piping songs forever new;
  More happy love! more happy, happy love!
    Forever warm and still to be enjoyed,
      Forever panting, and forever young;
  All breathing human passion far above,
    That leaves a heart high sorrowful and cloyed,
      A burning forehead and a parching tongue.

  Who are these coming to the sacrifice?
    To what green altar, O mysterious priest,
  Lead'st thou that heifer lowing at the skies,
    And all her silken flanks with garlands dressed?
  What little town by river or sea-shore,
    Or mountain-built with peaceful citadel,
      Is emptied of its folk, this pious morn?
  Ah, little town, thy streets forevermore
    Will silent be; and not a soul, to tell
      Why thou art desolate, can e'er return.

  O Attic shape! Fair attitude! with brede
    Of marble men and maidens overwrought,
  With forest branches and the trodden weed!
    Thou, silent form! dost tease us out of thought,
  As doth eternity. Cold pastoral!
    When old age shall this generation waste,
      Thou shalt remain, in midst of other woe
    Than ours, a friend to man, to whom thou say'st
  "Beauty is truth, truth beauty,"--that is all
      Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.

                                                       _John Keats._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Behold this ruin! 'Twas a skull
  Once of ethereal spirit full
  This narrow cell was Life's retreat,
  This space was Thought's mysterious seat.
  What beauteous visions filled this spot,
  What dreams of pleasure long forgot,
  Nor hope, nor joy, nor love, nor fear,
  Have left one trace of record here.

  Beneath this mouldering canopy
  Once shone the bright and busy eye,
  But start not at the dismal void,--
  If social love that eye employed,
  If with no lawless fire it gleamed,
  But through the dews of kindness beamed,
  That eye shall be forever bright
  When stars and sun are sunk in night.

  Within this hollow cavern hung
  The ready, swift, and tuneful tongue;
  If Falsehood's honey it disdained,
  And when it could not praise was chained;
  If bold in Virtue's cause it spoke,
  Yet gentle concord never broke,--
  This silent tongue shall plead for thee
  When Time unveils Eternity!

  Say, did these fingers delve the mine?
  Or with the envied rubies shine?
  To hew the rock or wear a gem
  Can little now avail to them.
  But if the page of Truth they sought,
  Or comfort to the mourner brought,
  These hands a richer meed shall claim
  Than all that wait on Wealth and Fame.

  Avails it whether bare or shod
  These feet the paths of duty trod?
  If from the bowers of Ease they fled,
  To seek Affliction's humble shed;
  If Grandeur's guilty bribe they spurned,
  And home to Virtue's cot returned,--
  These feet with angel wings shall vie,
  And tread the palace of the sky!


       *       *       *       *       *


  Sweet day, so cool, so calm, so bright,
  The bridal of the earth and sky,
  Sweet dews shall weep thy fall to-night,
          For thou must die.

  Sweet rose, whose hue, angry and brave,
  Bids the rash gazer wipe his eye,
  Thy root is ever in its grave,
          And thou must die.

  Sweet spring, full of sweet days and roses,
  A box where sweets compacted lie,
  My music shows you have your closes,
          And all must die.

  Only a sweet and virtuous soul,
  Like seasoned timber, never gives;
  But when the whole world turns to coal,
          Then chiefly lives.

                                                   _George Herbert._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Go, Soul, the body's guest,
  Upon a thankless errand;
  Fear not to touch the best;
  The truth shall be thy warrant:
    Go, since I needs must die,
    And give them all the lie.

  Go tell the Court it glows
  And shines like rotten wood;
  Go tell the Church it shows
  What's good, but does no good:
    If Court and Church reply,
    Give Court and Church the lie.

  Tell Potentates they live
  Acting, but oh! their actions;
  Not loved, unless they give,
  Nor strong but by their factions:
    If Potentates reply,
    Give Potentates the lie.

  Tell men of high condition,
  That rule affairs of state,
  Their purpose is ambition;
  Their practice only hate:
    And if they do reply,
    Then give them all the lie.

  Tell those that brave it most
  They beg for more by spending,
  Who in their greatest cost
  Seek nothing but commending:
    And if they make reply,
    Spare not to give the lie.

  Tell Zeal it lacks devotion;
  Tell Love it is but lust;
  Tell Time it is but motion;
  Tell Flesh it is but dust:
    And wish them not reply,
    For thou must give the lie.

  Tell Age it daily wasteth;
  Tell Honor how it alters;
  Tell Beauty that it blasteth;
  Tell Favor that she falters:
    And as they do reply,
    Give every one the lie.

  Tell Wit how much it wrangles
  In fickle points of niceness;
  Tell Wisdom she entangles
  Herself in over-wiseness:
    And if they do reply,
    Then give them both the lie.

  Tell Physic of her boldness;
  Tell Skill it is pretension;
  Tell Charity of coldness;
  Tell Law it is contention:
    And if they yield reply,
    Then give them all the lie.

  Tell Fortune of her blindness;
  Tell Nature of decay;
  Tell Friendship of unkindness;
  Tell Justice of delay:
    And if they do reply,
    Then give them still the lie.

  Tell Arts they have no soundness,
  But vary by esteeming;
  Tell Schools they lack profoundness,
  And stand too much on seeming:
    If Arts and Schools reply,
    Give Arts and Schools the lie.

  Tell Faith it's fled the city;
  Tell how the country erreth;
  Tell, Manhood shakes off pity;
  Tell, Virtue least preferreth:
    And if they do reply,
    Spare not to give the lie.

  So when thou hast, as I
  Commanded thee, done blabbing;
  Although to give the lie
  Deserves no less than stabbing:
    Yet stab at thee who will,
    No stab the Soul can kill!

                                               _Sir Walter Raleigh._

       *       *       *       *       *


  The shadows lay along Broadway,
    'Twas near the twilight-tide,
  And slowly there a lady fair
    Was walking in her pride.
  Alone walked she; but, viewlessly,
    Walked spirits at her side.

  Peace charmed the street beneath her feet,
    And Honor charmed the air;
  And all astir looked kind on her,
    And called her good as fair,--
  For all God ever gave to her
    She kept with chary care.

  She kept with care her beauties rare
    From lovers warm and true,
  For her heart was cold to all but gold,
    And the rich came not to woo,--
  But honored well are charms to sell,
    If priests the selling do.

  Now walking there was one more fair,--
    A slight girl, lily-pale;
  And she had unseen company
    To make the spirit quail,--
  'Twixt Want and Scorn she walked forlorn,
    And nothing could avail.

  No mercy now can clear her brow
    For this world's peace to pray;
  For, as love's wild prayer dissolved in air,
    Her woman's heart gave way!--
  But the sin forgiven by Christ in heaven
    By man is cursed alway!

                                          _Nathaniel Parker Willis._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Tread softly,--bow the head,--
    In reverent silence bow,--
  No passing-bell doth toll,
  Yet an immortal soul
    Is passing now.

  Stranger, however great,
    With lowly reverence bow;
  There's one in that poor shed--
  One by that paltry bed--
    Greater than thou.

  Beneath that beggar's roof,
    Lo! Death doth keep his state.
  Enter, no crowds attend;
  Enter, no guards defend
    _This_ palace gate.

  That pavement, damp and cold,
    No smiling courtiers tread;
  One silent woman stands,
  Lifting with meagre hands
    A dying head.

  No mingling voices sound,--
    An infant wail alone;
  A sob suppressed,--again
  That short deep gasp, and then--
    The parting groan.

  O change! O wondrous change!
    Burst are the prison bars,--
  This moment _there_ so low,
  So agonized, and now
    Beyond the stars.

  O change! stupendous change!
    There lies the soulless clod;
  The sun eternal breaks,
  The new immortal wakes,--
    Wakes with his God.

                                          _Caroline Bowles Southey._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I was thy neighbor once, thou rugged pile!
    Four summer weeks I dwelt in sight of thee:
  I saw thee every day; and all the while
    Thy form was sleeping on a glassy sea.

  So pure the sky, so quiet was the air,
    So like, so very like was day to day,
  Whene'er I looked, thy image still was there;
    It trembled, but it never passed away.

  How perfect was the calm! It seemed no sleep,
    No mood which season takes away or brings:
  I could have fancied that the mighty deep
    Was even the gentlest of all gentle things.

  Ah! then if mine had been the painter's hand
    To express what then I saw, and add the gleam,
  The light that never was on sea or land,
    The consecration and the poet's dream,--

  I would have planted thee, thou hoary pile,
    Amid a world how different from this!
  Beside a sea that could not cease to smile,
    On tranquil land, beneath a sky of bliss.

  A picture had it been of lasting ease,
    Elysian quiet without toil or strife;
  No motion but the moving tide, a breeze,
    Or merely silent Nature's breathing life.

  Such, in the fond illusion of my heart,
    Such picture would I at that time have made,
  And seen the soul of truth in every part,
    A steadfast peace that might not be betrayed.

  So once it would have been,--'tis so no more.
    I have submitted to a new control;
  A power has gone which nothing can restore,
    A deep distress hath humanized my soul.

  Not for a moment could I now behold
    A smiling sea, and be what I have been;
  The feeling of my loss will ne'er be old;
    This, which I know, I speak with mind serene.

  Then, Beaumont, friend, who would have been the friend,
    If he had lived, of him whom I deplore,
  This work of thine I blame not, but commend,
    This sea in anger, and that dismal shore.

  O, 'tis a passionate work! yet wise and well,
    Well chosen is the spirit that is here;
  That hulk which labors in the deadly swell,
    This rueful sky, this pageantry of fear.

  And this huge castle, standing here sublime,
    I love to see the look with which it braves,
  Cased in the unfeeling armor of old time,
    The lightning, the fierce wind, and trampling waves.

  Farewell, farewell, the heart that lives alone,
    Housed in a dream at distance from the kind!
  Such happiness, wherever it be known,
    Is to be pitied, for 'tis surely blind.

  But welcome, fortitude and patient cheer,
    And frequent sights of what is to be borne,
  Such sights, or worse, as are before me here:
    Not without hope we suffer and we mourn.

                                               _William Wordsworth._

       *       *       *       *       *


  What hid'st thou in thy treasure-caves and cells?
    Thou hollow-sounding and mysterious main!--
  Pale glistening pearls and rainbow-colored shells,
    Bright things which gleam unrecked of and in vain!--
  Keep, keep thy riches, melancholy sea!
          We ask not such from thee.

  Yet more, the depths have more!--what wealth untold,
    Far down and shining through their stillness lies!
  Thou hast the starry gems, the burning gold,
    Won from ten thousand royal argosies!--
  Sweep o'er thy spoils, thou wild and wrathful main!
          Earth claims not these again.

  Yet more, the depths have more!--thy waves have rolled
    Above the cities of a world gone by!
  Sand hath filled up the palaces of old,
    Sea-weed o'ergrown the halls of revelry.--
  Dash o'er them, Ocean, in thy scornful play!
          Man yields them to decay.

  Yet more, the billows and the depths have more!
    High hearts and brave are gathered to thy breast!
  They hear not now the booming waters roar,
    The battle-thunders will not break their rest.--
  Keep thy red gold and gems, thou stormy grave!
          Give back the true and brave!

  Give back the lost and lovely!--those for whom
    The place was kept at board and hearth so long,
  The prayer went up through midnight's breathless gloom,
    And the vain yearning woke midst festal song!
  Hold fast thy buried isles, thy towers o'erthrown,--
          But all is not thine own.

  To thee the love of woman hath gone down,
    Dark flow thy tides o'er manhood's noble head,
  O'er youth's bright locks, and beauty's flowery crown;
    Yet must thou hear a voice,--Restore the dead!
  Earth shall reclaim her precious things from thee!--
          Restore the dead, thou sea!

                                                   _Felicia Hemans._

       *       *       *       *       *


  A cloud lay cradled near the setting sun,
    A gleam of crimson tinged its braided snow;
  Long had I watched the glory moving on,
    O'er the still radiance of the lake below:
  Tranquil its spirit seemed, and floated slow,
    E'en in its very motion there was rest,
  While every breath of eve that chanced to blow,
    Wafted the traveller to the beauteous west.
  Emblem, methought, of the departed soul,
    To whose white robe the gleam of bliss is given,
  And by the breath of mercy made to roll
    Right onward to the golden gates of heaven,
  While to the eye of faith it peaceful lies,
  And tells to man his glorious destinies.

                                                      _John Wilson._

       *       *       *       *       *


  This is the ship of pearl which, poets feign,
          Sails the unshadowed main,--
          The venturous bark that flings
  On the sweet summer wind its purple wings
  In gulfs enchanted, where the Siren sings,
          And coral reefs lie bare,
  Where the cold sea-maids rise to sun their streaming hair.

  Its webs of living gauze no more unfurl;
          Wrecked is the ship of pearl!
          And every chambered cell
  Where its dim-dreaming life was wont to dwell,
  As the frail tenant shaped his growing shell,
          Before thee lies revealed,--
  Its irised ceiling rent, its sunless crypt unsealed.

  Year after year beheld the silent toil
          That spread his lustrous coil:
          Still, as the spiral grew,
  He left the past year's dwelling for the new,
  Stole with soft step its shining archway through,
          Built up its idle door,
  Stretched in his last-found home, and knew the old no more.

  Thanks for the heavenly message brought by thee,
          Child of the wandering sea,
          Cast from her lap, forlorn!
  From thy dead lips a clearer note is born
  Than ever Triton blew from wreathéd horn!
          While on mine ear it rings,
  Through the deep caves of thought I hear a voice that sings:

  Build thee more stately mansions, O my soul,
          As the swift seasons roll!
          Leave thy low-vaulted past!
  Let each new temple, nobler than the last,
  Shut thee from heaven with a dome more vast,
          Till thou at length art free,
  Leaving thine outgrown shell by life's unresting sea!

                                            _Oliver Wendell Holmes._

       *       *       *       *       *


  Deep on the convent-roof the snows
    Are sparkling to the moon:
  My breath to heaven like vapor goes:
    May my soul follow soon!
  The shadows of the convent-towers
    Slant down the snowy sward,
  Still creeping with the creeping hours
    That lead me to my Lord:
  Make Thou my spirit pure and clear
    As are the frosty skies,
  Or this first snowdrop of the year
    That in my bosom lies.

  As these white robes are soiled and dark,
    To yonder shining ground;
  As this pale taper's earthly spark,
    To yonder argent round;
  So shows my soul before the Lamb,
    My spirit before Thee;
  So in mine earthly house I am,
    To that I hope to be.
  Break up the heavens, O Lord! and far,
    Through all yon starlight keen,
  Draw me, thy bride, a glittering star,
    In raiment white and clean.

  He lifts me to the golden doors;
    The flashes come and go;
  All heaven bursts her starry floors,
    And strews her lights below,
  And deepens on and up! the gates
    Roll back, and far within
  For me the Heavenly Bridegroom waits,
    To make me pure of sin.
  The sabbaths of Eternity,
    One sabbath deep and wide,--
  A light upon the shining sea,--
    The Bridegroom with his bride!

                                                  _Alfred Tennyson._

       *       *       *       *       *


  It was the calm and silent night!
    Seven hundred years and fifty-three
  Had Rome been growing up to might,
    And now was queen of land and sea.
  No sound was heard of clashing wars,--
    Peace brooded o'er the hushed domain:
  Apollo, Pallas, Jove, and Mars
    Held undisturbed their ancient reign,
          In the solemn midnight,
              Centuries ago.

  'Twas in the calm and silent night!
    The senator of haughty Rome,
  Impatient, urged his chariot's flight,
    From lordly revel rolling home;
  Triumphal arches, gleaming, swell
    His breast with thoughts of boundless sway;
  What recked the Roman what befell
    A paltry province far away,
          In the solemn midnight,
              Centuries ago?

  Within that province far away
    Went plodding home a weary boor;
  A streak of light before him lay,
    Fallen through a half-shut stable-door
  Across his path. He passed,--for naught
    Told what was going on within;
  How keen the stars, his only thought,--
    The air how calm, and cold, and thin,
          In the solemn midnight,
              Centuries ago!

  O, strange indifference! low and high
    Drowsed over common joys and cares;
  The earth was still,--but knew not why;
    The world was listening, unawares.
  How calm a moment may precede
    One that shall thrill the world forever!
  To that still moment, none would heed,
    Man's doom was linked no more to sever,--
          In the solemn midnight,
              Centuries ago!

  It is the calm and solemn night!
    A thousand bells ring out, and throw
  Their joyous peals abroad, and smite
    The darkness,--charmed and holy now!
  The night that erst no name had worn,
    To it a happy name is given;
  For in that stable lay, new-born,
    The peaceful Prince of earth and heaven,
          In the solemn midnight,
              Centuries ago!

                                                    _Alfred Domett._

       *       *       *       *       *


  This sweet child which hath climbed upon my knee,
    This amber-haired, four-summered little maid,
  With her unconscious beauty troubleth me,
    With her low prattle maketh me afraid.
  Ah, darling! when you cling and nestle so
    You hurt me, though you do not see me cry,
  Nor hear the weariness with which I sigh,
    For the dear babe I killed so long ago.
  I tremble at the touch of your caress;
    I am not worthy of your innocent faith;
  I who with whetted knives of worldliness
    Did put my own child-heartedness to death,
  Beside whose grave I pace forevermore,
    Like desolation on a shipwrecked shore.

  There is no little child within me now,
    To sing back to the thrushes, to leap up
  When June winds kiss me, when an apple bough
    Laughs into blossoms, or a buttercup
  Plays with the sunshine, or a violet
    Dances in the glad dew. Alas! alas!
    The meaning of the daisies in the grass
  I have forgotten; and if my cheeks are wet
    It is not with the blitheness of the child,
  But with the bitter sorrow of sad years.
    O moaning life, with life irreconciled;
  O backward-looking thought, O pain, O tears,
    For us there is not any silver sound
    Of rhythmic wonders springing from the ground.

  Woe worth the knowledge and the bookish lore
    Which makes men mummies, weighs out every grain
  Of that which was miraculous before,
    And sneers the heart down with the scoffing brain.
  Woe worth the peering, analytic days
    That dry the tender juices in the breast,
    And put the thunders of the Lord to test,
  So that no marvel must be, and no praise,
    Nor any God except Necessity.
  What can ye give my poor, starved life in lieu
    Of this dead cherub which I slew for ye?
  Take back your doubtful wisdom, and renew
    My early foolish freshness of the dunce,
    Whose simple instincts guessed the heavens at once.

                                                    _Richard Realf._

       *       *       *       *       *


        Could we but know
  The land that ends our dark, uncertain travel,
    Where lie those happier hills and meadows low,--
  Ah, if beyond the spirit's inmost cavil
    Aught of that country could we surely know,
        Who would not go?

        Might we but hear
  The hovering angels' high imagined chorus,
    Or catch, betimes, with wakeful eyes and clear,
  One radiant vista of the realm before us,--
    With one rapt moment given to see and hear,
        Ah, who would fear?

        Were we quite sure
  To find the peerless friend who left us lonely,
    Or there, by some celestial stream as pure,
  To gaze in eyes that here were lovelit only,--
    This weary mortal coil, were we quite sure,
        Who would endure?

                                          _Edmund Clarence Stedman._

       *       *       *       *       *


  I mourn no more my vanished years;
    Beneath a tender rain,
  An April rain of smiles and tears,
    My heart is young again.

  The west-winds blow, and, singing low,
    I hear the glad streams run:
  The windows of my soul I throw
    Wide open to the sun.

  No longer forward nor behind
    I look in hope and fear;
  But grateful take the good I find,
    The best of now and here.

  I plough no more a desert land,
    To harvest weed and tare;
  The manna dropping from God's hand
    Rebukes my painful care.

  I break my pilgrim-staff, I lay
    Aside the toiling oar;
  The angel sought so far away
    I welcome at my door.

  The airs of spring may never play
    Among the ripening corn,
  Nor freshness of the flowers of May
    Blow through the autumn morn;

  Yet shall the blue-eyed gentian look
    Through fringéd lids to heaven;
  And the pale aster in the brook
    Shall see its image given;

  The woods shall wear their robes of praise,
    The south-wind softly sigh,
  And sweet calm days in golden haze
    Melt down the amber sky.

  Not less shall manly deed and word
    Rebuke an age of wrong:
  The graven flowers that wreathe the sword
    Make not the blade less strong.

  But smiting hands shall learn to heal,
    To build as to destroy;
  Nor less my heart for others feel,
    That I the more enjoy.

  All as God wills, who wisely heeds
    To give or to withhold,
  And knoweth more of all my needs
    Than all my prayers have told!

  Enough that blessings undeserved
    Have marked my erring track;
  That wheresoe'er my feet have swerved
    His chastening turned me back;

  That more and more a Providence
    Of love is understood,
  Making the springs of time and sense,
    Sweet with eternal good;

  That death seems but a covered way
    Which opens into light,
  Wherein no blinded child can stray
    Beyond the Father's sight;

  That care and trial seem at last,
    Through Memory's sunset air,
  Like mountain ranges overpast,
    In purple distance fair;

  That all the jarring notes of life
    Seem blending in a psalm,
  And all the angles of its strife
    Slow rounding into calm.

  And so the shadows fell apart,
    And so the west-winds play;
  And all the windows of my heart
    I open to the day.

                                          _John Greenleaf Whittier._

       *       *       *       *       *



  With what clear guile of gracious love enticed,
    I follow forward, as from room to room,
    Through doors that open into light from gloom,
  To find, and lose, and find again the Christ!

  He stands and knocks, and bids me ope the door;
    Without he stands, and asks to enter in:
    Why should he seek a shelter sad with sin?
  Will he but knock and ask, and nothing more?

  He knows what ways I take to shut my heart,
    And if he will he can himself undo
    My foolish fastenings, or by force break through,
  Nor wait till I fulfil my needless part.

  But nay, he will not choose to enter so,--
    He will not be my guest without consent,
    Nor, though I say "Come in," is he content;
  I must arise and ope, or he will go.

  He shall not go; I do arise and ope,--
    "Come in, dear Lord, come in and sup with me,
    O blesséd guest, and let me sup with thee,"--
  Where is the door? for in this dark I grope,

  And cannot find it soon enough; my hand,
    Shut hard, holds fast the one sure key I need,
    And trembles, shaken with its eager heed;
  No other key will answer my demand.

  The door between is some command undone;
    Obedience is the key that slides the bar,
    And lets him in, who stands so near, so far;
  The doors are many, but the key is one.

  Which door, dear Lord? knock, speak, that I may know;
    Hark, heart, he answers with his hand and voice,--
    O, still small sign, I tremble and rejoice,
  Nor longer doubt which way my feet must go.

  Full lief and soon this door would open too,
    If once my key might find the narrow slit
    Which, being so narrow, is so hard to hit,--
  But lo! one little ray that glimmers through,

  Not spreading light, but lighting to the light,--
    Now steady, hand, for good speed's sake be slow,
    One straight right aim, a pulse of pressure, so,--
  How small, how great, the change from dark to bright!


  Now he is here, I seem no longer here!
    This place of light is not my chamber dim,
    It is not he with me, but I with him,
  And host, not guest, he breaks the bread of cheer.

  I was borne onward at his greeting,--he
    Earthward had come, but heavenward I had gone;
    Drawing him hither, I was thither drawn,
  Scarce welcoming him to hear him welcome me!

  I lie upon the bosom of my Lord,
    And feel his heart, and time my heart thereby;
    The tune so sweet, I have no need to try,
  But rest and trust, and beat the perfect chord.

  A little while I lie upon his heart,
    Feasting on love, and loving there to feast,
    And then, once more, the shadows are increased
  Around me, and I feel my Lord depart.

  Again alone, but in a farther place
    I sit with darkness, waiting for a sign;
    Again I hear the same sweet plea divine,
  And suit, outside, of hospitable grace.

  This is his guile,--he makes me act the host
    To shelter him, and lo! he shelters me;
    Asking for alms, he summons me to be
  A guest at banquets of the Holy Ghost.

  So, on and on, through many an opening door
    That gladly opens to the key I bring,
    From brightening court to court of Christ, my King,
  Hope-led, love-fed, I journey evermore.

  At last I trust these changing scenes will cease;
    There is a court, I hear, where he abides;
    No door beyond, that further glory hides.--
  My host at home, all change is changed to peace.

                                             _William C. Wilkinson._

       *       *       *       *       *


  O little feet! that such long years
  Must wander on through hopes and fears,
    Must ache and bleed beneath your load;
  I, nearer to the wayside Inn,
  Where toil shall cease and rest begin,
    Am weary, thinking of your road!

  O little hands! that weak or strong
  Have still to serve or rule so long,
    Have still so long to give or ask;
  I, who so much with book and pen
  Have toiled among my fellow-men,
    Am weary, thinking of your task.

  O little hearts! that throb and beat
  With such impatient feverish heat,
    Such limitless and strong desires;
  Mine that so long has glowed and burned,
  With passions into ashes turned,
    Now covers and conceals its fires.

  O little souls! as pure and white
  And crystalline as rays of light
    Direct from heaven, their source divine;
  Refracted through the mist of years,
  How red my setting sun appears,
    How lurid looks this soul of mine!

                                       _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow._

       *       *       *       *       *


    Prithee tell me, Dimple-Chin,
    At what age does love begin?
    Your blue eyes have scarcely seen
    Summers three, my fairy queen,
    But a miracle of sweets,
    Soft approaches, sly retreats,
    Show the little archer there,
    Hidden in your pretty hair;
    When didst learn a heart to win?
    Prithee tell me, Dimple Chin!
    "Oh!" the rosy lips reply,
    "I can't tell you if I try.
  'Tis so long I can't remember:
    Ask some younger lass than I."

    Tell, O tell me, Grizzled-Face,
    Do your heart and head keep pace?
    When does hoary Love expire,
    When do frosts put out the fire?
    Can its embers burn below
    All that chill December snow?
    Care you still soft hands to press,
    Bonny heads to smooth and bless?
    When does Love give up the chase?
    Tell, O tell me, Grizzled-Face!
    "Ah!" the wise old lips reply,
    "Youth may pass and strength may die;
  But of Love I can't foretoken:
    Ask some older sage than I!"

                                          _Edmund Clarence Stedman._

       *       *       *       *       *


  We count the broken lyres that rest
    Where the sweet wailing singers slumber,
  But o'er their silent sister's breast
    The wild-flowers who will stoop to number?
  A few can touch the magic string,
    And noisy Fame is proud to win them;
  Alas for those who never sing,
    But die with all their music in them!

  Nay, grieve not for the dead alone
    Whose song has told their hearts' sad story;
  Weep for the voiceless, who have known
    The cross without the crown of glory!
  Not where Leucadian breezes sweep
    O'er Sappho's memory-haunted billow,
  But where the glistening night-dews weep
    O'er nameless sorrow's churchyard pillow.

  O hearts that break and give no sign
    Save whitening lip and fading tresses,
  Till Death pours out his cordial wine,
    Slow-dropped from Misery's crushing presses,--
  If singing breath or echoing chord
    To every hidden pang were given,
  What endless melodies were poured,
    As sad as earth, as sweet as heaven!

                                            _Oliver Wendell Holmes._

       *       *       *       *       *


  'Tis pleasant business making books,
    When other people furnish brains;
  Like finding them in running brooks,--
    The pleasure, minus all the pains!
  They tell us Wordsworth once declared
    That he could, if he had the mind,
  Write plays like those of Avon's bard;
    Whereat the stammering Lamb rejoined,
  "S-s-s-s-s-so you see,
    That all he wanted was the mind!"
  O gentle Wordsworth, to deride
    Thy simple speech I'm not inclined;
  For these good friends, and thou beside,
    Have freely lent me of their mind.
  I've Shakespeare's point, and Burns's fire,
    And Bulwer's own gentility,
  And Elia's meekness, yet aspire
    To Pope's infallibility.
  I've made myself at home with Holmes;
    I'm in two Taylors' garments dressed;
  Campbell has told his rhymes for me,
    And Shelley shelled out like the rest,
  And Hood put on his thinking-cap,
    And Goldsmith beaten out his best.
  I've pilfered Alfred's laureate strains,
    And boldly counted Henry's chickens,
  And drained Harte's blood from his best veins,
    And stol'n from Dickens like the dickens;
  Of Hogg I have not gone the whole,
    But of three Proctors tithes demanded,
  And from a Miller taken toll,
    And plucked a Reade, to do as Pan did.
  I've beaten Beattie like a tree
    That sheds its fruit for every knocker,
  Nor let Sir Walter go Scott free,
    And filched a shot from Frederick's Locker.
  The ladies, too--God bless them all!--
    What pieces of their minds I've taken!
  It would Achilles' self appall,
    If hiding here to save his bacon.
  By Hawthorne's genius hedged about,
    And deep in Browning's brownest study,
  This is the sure retreat, no doubt,
    From critics' favors, fair or muddy.
  Ah, How it Reads, How well it looks!--
    What one May call a death to pains!--
  This pleasant way of making books,
    With clever folks to furnish brains!

                                               NEW YORK, July, 1875.

       *       *       *       *       *


  A cloud lay cradled near the setting sun                           213
  Ae fond kiss, and then we sever!                                    52
  Ah! Jeane, my maid, I stood to you                                  20
  Ah! my heart is weary waiting                                       91
  All houses wherein men have lived and died                          73
  As an unperfect actor on the stage                                  50
  As ships becalmed at eve, that lay                                  69
  A steed! a steed of matchlesse speed                               132
  As upland fields were sunburnt brown                                43
  At the close of the day, when the hamlet is still                  175
  Beautiful Evelyn Hope is dead                                      161
  Before I trust my fate to thee                                      46
  Behold this ruin! 'Twas a skull                                    201
  Between the dark and the daylight                                  152
  Bird of the wilderness                                             104
  Break, break, break                                                 53
  By the waters of Life we sat together                               84
  Close his eyes; his work is done!                                  134
  Come, all ye jolly shepherds                                        30
  Come in the evening, or come in the morning                         35
  Come, rest in this bosom, my own stricken deer                      46
  Could we but know                                                  220
  Could ye come back to me, Douglas, Douglas                         167
  Deep on the convent-roof the snows                                 215
  Drawn by horses with decorous feet                                 185
  Eyes which can but ill define                                       88
  Farewell! since nevermore for thee                                 173
  Flow down, cold rivulet, to the sea                                112
  From Stirling castle we had seen                                    93
  "Give us a song!" the soldiers cried                               130
  God makes sech nights, all white an' still                          26
  Go, Soul, the body's guest                                         204
  Green be the turf above thee                                       169
  Hail to thee, blithe spirit!                                       106
  He clasps the crag with hookéd hands                               105
  He is gone on the mountain                                         133
  Here, a sheer hulk, lies poor Tom Bowling                          168
  He wiled me through the furzy croft                                 59
  Ho! pretty page with the dimpled chin                              115
  Ho, sailor of the sea!                                             150
  How sleep the brave who sink to rest                               139
  I arise from dreams of thee                                         42
  I cannot make him dead!                                            154
  I fill this cup to one made up                                      21
  I have had playmates, I have had companions                         66
  I heard the trailing garments of the night                         103
  I mourn no more my vanished years                                  221
  I'm sittin' on the stile, Mary                                     158
  I'm wearin' awa', John                                             156
  In Xanadu did Kubla Khan                                            16
  I remember, I remember                                              72
  I saw her once,--so freshly fair                                    67
  I saw him once before                                              117
  It was the calm and silent night                                   217
  I wandered by the brookside                                         36
  I was thy neighbor once, thou rugged pile!                         209
  Just for a handful of silver he left us                            119
  Life! I know not what thou art                                     193
  Like as the damask rose you see                                    189
  Like to the falling of a star                                      192
  Look at me with thy large brown eyes                               149
  Love not, love not! ye hapless sons of clay!                        51
  Maid of Athens, ere we part                                         45
  Mellow the moonlight to shine is beginning                          32
  My boat is on the shore                                            110
  My fairest child, I have no song to give you                       199
  My glass shall not persuade me I am old                             49
  My heid is like to rend, Willie                                     56
  My life is like the summer rose                                    113
  My mother bore me in the southern wild                             181
  Mysterious Night! when our first parent knew                       104
  No bird-song floated down the hill                                  82
  O, a dainty plant is the ivy green                                  90
  Oft in the stilly night                                             64
  O little feet! that such long years                                227
  O Mary, go and call the cattle home                                102
  O, sing unto my roundelay!                                         171
  Our bugles sang truce; for the night-cloud had lowered             127
  Out of the clover and blue-eyed grass                              140
  Over the river they beckon to me                                    78
  O, why should the spirit of mortal be proud?                       177
  O Woman of Three Cows, agragh! don't let your tongue thus rattle!  196
  O World! O Life! O Time!                                           192
  Prithee tell me, Dimple-Chin                                       228
  September strews the woodland o'er                                  63
  Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?                             50
  She died in beauty,--like a rose                                   164
  She is far from the land where her young hero sleeps               170
  She walks in beauty like the night                                  84
  She was a phantom of delight                                        18
  She was not fair, nor full of grace                                165
  Slave of the dark and dirty mine                                   183
  Sleep sweetly in your humble graves                                136
  So fallen! so lost! the light withdrawn                            123
  Stars of the summer night!                                          41
  Sweet day, so cool, so calm, so bright                             203
  Tears, idle tears, I know not what they mean                        65
  Tell me not, sweet, I am unkinde                                   125
  That which her slender waist confined                               23
  The glories of our birth and state                                 182
  The glow and the glory are plighted                                 24
  The heath this night must be my bed                                124
  The maid who binds her warrior's sash                              142
  The melancholy days are come, the saddest of the year              100
  There sat an old man on a rock                                     120
  These years! these years! these naughty years!                     114
  The shadows lay along Broadway                                     207
  The splendor falls on castle walls                                  40
  The sunlight fills the trembling air                                86
  The winds that once the Argo bore                                  144
  The woods decay, the woods decay and fall                          193
  They are all gone into the world of light                           80
  They grew in beauty, side by side                                  174
  They sleep so calm and stately                                     137
  This is the arsenal. From floor to ceiling                         146
  This is the ship of pearl, which, poets feign                      214
  This sweet child which hath climbed upon my knee                   219
  Thou lingering star, with lessening ray                             61
  Thou still unravished bride of quietness!                          199
  Three fishers went sailing out into the west                       143
  Tiger! Tiger! burning bright                                        96
  'Tis a fearful night in the winter time                             97
  'Tis pleasant business making books                                231
  'Tis the last rose of summer                                       111
  To him who in the love of nature holds                              75
  Touch us gently, Time!                                             122
  Tread softly,--bow the head                                        208
  Weave no more the marriage-chain!                                  163
  We count the broken lyres that rest                                229
  We left behind the painted buoy                                     13
  We watched her breathing through the night                         160
  We were not many,--we who stood                                    128
  What constitutes a state?                                          148
  What hid'st thou in thy treasure-caves and cells?                  212
  What was he doing, the great god Pan?                               11
  When forty winters shall besiege thy brow                           48
  When I consider how my light is spent                              143
  When I do count the clock that tells the time                       49
  When Liberty lives loud on every lip                               179
  When the latest strife is lost, and all is done with                54
  Where is the grave of Sir Arthur O'Kellyn?                         133
  Whom first we love, you know, we seldom wed                         71
  With blackest moss the flower-pots                                  37
  With what clear guile of gracious love enticed                     224
  Ye banks, and braes, and streams around                            166
  You ask me, why, though ill at ease                                126

  The Riverside Press
  _Electrotyped and printed by H. O. Houghton & Co._
  _Cambridge, Mass, U.S.A._

Little Classics

  Edited by ROSSITER JOHNSON. Each in one volume, 18mo, $1.00.
  The set, in box, $18.00.

       1. EXILE.
       2. INTELLECT.
       3. TRAGEDY.
       4. LIFE.
       5. LAUGHTER.
       6. LOVE.
       7. ROMANCE.
       8. MYSTERY.
       9. COMEDY.
      10. CHILDHOOD.
      11. HEROISM.
      12. FORTUNE.
      14  LYRICAL POEMS.
      15. MINOR POEMS.
      16. NATURE.
      17. HUMANITY.
      18. AUTHORS.

  _Sixteenmo Edition._ 18 vols., 16mo, gilt top, $18.00.
  (Sold only in sets.)

  A list of the entire contents of the volumes of this
  Series will be sent free on application.

  Boston and New York.

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