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Title: Ballades and Rondeaus, Chants Royal, Sestinas, Villanelles, etc,
Author: Various
Language: English
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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 "Ballades and Rondeaus, Chants Royal, Sestinas, Villanelles, etc," ***

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                        WALTER SCOTT, LIMITED,
                          PATERNOSTER SQUARE.


Robert Louis Stevenson.

_The crowning pleasure in the compilation of this book is the
permission to dedicate it to you, and this token of personal admiration
is not without special fitness, since you were among the earliest to
experiment in these French rhythms, and to introduce_ CHARLES D'ORLÉANS
_and_ FRANÇOIS VILLON _to the majority of English readers_.

_"Those old French ways of verse making that have been coming into
fashion of late. Surely they say a pretty thing more prettily for
their quaint old-fashioned liberty! That_ TRIOLET--_how deliciously
impertinent it is! is it not?... The variety of dainty modes wherein
by shape and sound a very pretty something is carved out of nothing at
all. Their fantastic surprises, the ring of their bell-like returns
upon themselves, their music of triangle and cymbal. In some of
them poetry seems to approach the nearest possible to bird-song--to
unconscious seeming through most unconscious art, imitating the
carelessness and impromptu of forms as old as the existence of birds,
and as new as every fresh individual joy in each new generation,
growing their own feathers, and singing their own song, yet always the
feathers of their kind, and the song of their kind."--_

                                  "Home Again."--GEORGE MACDONALD.


_* An asterisk is attached to the titles of those not previously
published. Names of American Authors are in Italic type._


  AUTHOR.                     TITLE.                      SOURCE.  PAGE

  _Adams, Oscar Fay_      'Pipes of Pan'               _American_     3

  ALLEN, GRANT            'Of Evolution'         _Evolutionist at     4

  ANONYMOUS                'Of Bothers'        _Cambridge Meteor_     6

  BLACK, WILLIAM           'Of Solitude'         _Longman's Mag._     5

  DICK, COTSFORD            'Of Belief'         _The Model, etc._     7

        "                   'Of Burial'                   "           8

  DOBSON, AUSTIN          'Of the Spanish      _Old World Idylls_     9

        "                   'On a Fan'                    "          10

        "                 'Of Imitation'                  "          11

        "              'Of Prose and Rhyme'               "          12

  GOSSE, EDMUND          'Of Dead Cities'             _New Poems_    13

  GRANT, JOHN CAMERON         Ballade        Songs of Sunny South    14

        "                    'Lilith'            _A Year of Life_    15

  HENLEY, W. E.         'Of Antique Dances'           _Belgravia_    16

        "                'Of Dead Actors'       _Magazine of Art_    17

        "                    'Of June'                _Belgravia_    18

        "               'Of Ladies' Names'           _The London_    19

        "                   'Of Spring'                   "          20

        "                'Midsummer Days'                 "          21

        "               'Of Youth and Age'                "          22

        "                'Of Hot Weather'                 "          77

        "                'Of Aspirations'                 "          78

        "                  'Of Truisms'                   "          79

        "               'Of Life and Fate'                "          80

        "               'Of the Nothingness               "          82
                            of Things'

  JEWITT, W. H.               Ballade           _Romance of Love_    23

  LANG, ANDREW              'Gringoire'      _New Quarterly Mag._    24

        "                   'Valentine'        _Waifs and Strays_    25

        "               'Of Primitive Man'      _Ballades in Blue    26

        "                   'Of Sleep'                    "          84

        "                   'Of Summer'        _Rhymes a la mode_    27

        "                    'Of Yule'                    "          28

        "                 'Of Middle Age'                 "          29

        "               'For the Laureate'       _Longman's Mag._    30

        "                'Of the Southern                 "          31

  LE GALLIENNE         'Of Old Sweethearts'  _My Ladies' Sonnets_    32

  "Love in Idleness"          Ballade                                33

        "               'Of Dead Thinkers'                           34

  MCCARTHY, JUSTIN H.       'Of Roses'*                              35

  _MacCulloch, Hunter_      'Of Death'        _From Dawn to Dusk_    36

  _Matthews, Brander_      'Of Tobacco'                _American_    37

        "                 'Of Adaptation'                 "          38

        "                 'Of Midsummer'                  "          39

        "                'Rain and Shine'           _The Century_    40

        "               'An American Girl'                "          41

  MOORE, GEORGE            'Of Lovelace'            _Pagan Poems_    86

  _Moran, John_        'From Battle, Murder'           _American_    42

  _Moulton, L. C._          'In Winter'             _The Century_    43

  NICHOLS, J. B. B.        'Of his Lady'     _Longman's Magazine_    44

  F. S. P.                  'Of Exmoor'        _Waifs and Strays_    45

  PAYNE, JOHN           'Of Past Delights'            _New Poems_    46

        "                     Ballad                      "          87

        "              'Singers of the Time'              "          88

  _Peck, S. M._            'The Pixies'         _'Cap and Bells'_    47

  PFEIFFER, E.          'Of the Thuner-See'   _Songs and Sonnets_    48

  PROBYN, MAY              'Grandmother'     _Ballad of the Road_    49

  _Roberts, C. D. G._       'Philomela'         _In Divers Tones_    50

        "                    'Calypso'                    "          51

  ROBINSON, A. M. F.   'Of Forgotten Tunes'   _An Italian Garden_    52

        "                'Of Lost Lovers'             _Handful of    90

        "                   'Of Heroes'                   "          91

  ROPES, ARTHUR REED       'Of a Garden'                  _Poems_    53

  _Scollard, Clinton_      'Of the Bard'       _Pictures in Song_    54

        "                 'Of Dead Poets'                 "          55

        "                   'To Villon'                   "          56

        "              'The Blithe Ballade'  _With Reed and Lyre_    57

        "                  'O Lady Mine'                  "          58

        "                 'Ships of Tyre'                 "          59

  SHARP, WILLIAM         'Of Vain Hopes'*                            60

        "               'Of the Sea-Wind'*                           61

        "               'Of the Sea-Folk'*                           62

  _Sherman, F. D._      'To Austin Dobson'         _Madrigals and    63

        "                   'Of Rhyme'                    "          64

  SWINBURNE, A. C.        'Of Dreamland'      _Poems and Ballads,    65
                                                         2d Ser._

        "              'Of François Villon'               "          93

        "                Villon's Epitaph                 "          94

        "                    'Of Bath'        _English Ill. Mag._    95

        "                    'Of Sark'                    "          97

  SYMONS, ARTHUR            'Of Kings'                     _Time_    66

  TOMSON, GRAHAM R.        'Of Acheron'          _Longman's Mag._    67

        "                  'Of Asphodel'                  "          68

        "                 'Of the Bourne'         _Harper's Mag._    69

        "                'Of Fairy Gold'*                            70

        "                 'Of Might-be'*                             71

        "                'Of the Optimist'   _St. James' Gazette_    72

  WHEELER, MORTIMER    'Of Old Instruments'       _Mag. of Music_    73

        "                 'Of Sea-Music'                  "          74

  WHITNEY, ERNEST        'Nightingale and                            75

  WILTON, RICHARD        'Grandchildren at                           76

                           CHANTS ROYAL.

  DOBSON, AUSTIN       'The Dance of Death'    _Old World Idylls_    98

  GOSSE, EDMUND           'The Praise of              _New Poems_   100

  PAYNE, JOHN            'The God of Love'            _New Poems_   102

  PFEIFFER, E.           'Children of the     _Gerard's Monument_   104

  _Scollard, Clinton_      'King Boreas'       _Pictures in Song_   106

  WADDINGTON, S.        'The New Epiphany'        _Sonnets, etc._   108

  _Whitney, E._         'Glory of the Year'         _The Century_   110


  PAYNE, JOHN                Kyrielle                 _New Poems_   115

  ROBINSON, A. M. F.      'The Pavilion'      _An Italian Garden_   116

  _Scollard, Clinton_        Kyrielle          _Pictures in Song_   116


  DOBSON, AUSTIN             'In Town'        _At the Sign of the   117

  "Love in Idleness"    'Monologue d'outre                          119

  PAYNE, JOHN            Pantoum Songs of                           121
                          Life and Death

  _Matthews, Brander_       'En route'              _The Century_   124

  _Scollard, Clinton_    'Sultan's Garden'     _Pictures in Song_   126

                        RONDEAUX REDOUBLES.

  MONKHOUSE, COSMO       'My Soul is Sick'                          128

  PAYNE, JOHN           'My Day and Night'            _New Poems_   129

  _Scollard, Clinton_   'Prayer of Dryope'     _Pictures in Song_   130

  TOMSON, GRAHAM R.     'I will go hence'*                          131


  _Bunner, H. C._      'O Honey of Hymettus'   _Airs from Arcady_   135

        "              'Ready for the Ride'         _The Century_   135

  CRANE, WALTER             Two Rondels                             136

  DABSON, AUSTIN          'The Wanderer'       _Old World Idylls_   137

  _Fay, A. M._                Rondel                                137

  GOSSE, EDMUND                  "                    _New Poems_   138

  GRANT, J. C.                   "                _Songs from the   138
                                                     Sunny South_

  HENLEY, W. E.           Four Variations            _The London_   139

        "               'The Ways of Death'               "         141

  MCCARTHY, JUSTIN H.         Rondel*                               141

  MACDONALD, GEORGE         Two Rondels        _A Threefold Cord_   142

  MOORE, GEORGE            Two Rondels*                             143

  MONKHOUSE, COSMO        'To a Sheet of                            144

  PAYNE, JOHN          'Kiss me, Sweetheart'          _New Poems_   144

  _Peck, S. M._          'Before the Dawn'        _Cap and Bells_   145

  PFEIFFER, EMILY             Rondel                                147

  PROBYN, MAY                    "           _Ballad of the Road_   145

        "                    Rondelets                    "         151

  ROPES, A. REED            Two Rondels                   _Poems_   146

  _Scollard, Clinton_      'Come, Love'      _With Reed and Lyre_   147

        "                'Upon the Stair'      _Pictures in Song_   148

        "                'I Heard a Maid'                 "         148

  _Sherman, F. D._          'Valentine'                   "         149

  WARING, C. H.          'Love's Captive'                   _Fun_   149

        "                     'Love'                      "         150

  WILTON, RICHARD        Rondel Sungleams                           150

        "                   'Benedicte'          _Sunday at Home_   151


  _Bates, Arlo_           'Might Love be                            152

        "              'In Thy Clear Eyes'*                         152

  BELL, C. D.          'The Sweet Sad Years' _Songs in Many Keys_   153

        "                    'A Wish'                     "         153

  BOWEN, H. C.          'To a Doleful Poet'  _Longman's Magazine_   154

  BRIDGES, ROBERT      'His Poisoned Shafts'              _Poems_   155

  BULLOCH, J. M.            'To Homer'*                             155

  _Bunner, H. C._           'September'        _Airs from Arcady_   156

        "              'Les Morts vont vite'              "         156

  CRANE, WALTER        'In Love's Disport'*                         157

        "                 'What makes the                           157

                       THE SICILIAN OCTAVE.

  Two Examples by Dr.                                               132

  DOBSON, AUSTIN         'O fons Bandusiæ'     _Old World Idylls_   158

        "               'On London Stones'                "         158

        "                   'To Ethel'                    "         159

        "              'With Pipe and Flute'              "         160

        "                'To a June Rose'     _At the Sign of the   159

        "                 'In After Days'                 "         160

        "                'In Vain To-day'                 "         161

        "                 'When Burbadge                  "         161

  _Chew, Beverly_           'Old Books'         _New York Critic_   162

  GRANT, J. C.           'A Coward Still'         _Songs of Sunny   162

  _Grant, Robert_      'Rondeaux of Cities'         _The Century_ 163-4

  _Goodale, E._           'Could She have                 "         165

  GOSSE, EDMUND          'Fortunate Love'     _On Viol and Flute_ 165-8

        "                 'If Love should             _New Poems_   168

  HENLEY, W. E.           'My Love to Me'            _The London_   169

        "               'With Strawberries'               "         169

        "                 'A Flirted Fan'                 "         170

        "                 'In Rotten Row'                 "         170

        "              'The Leaves are Sere'              "         171

        "                  'With a Fan'                   "         171

        "                'If I were King'                 "         172

        "               'The Gods are Dead'               "         172

        "                'Her Little Feet'                "         173

        "               'When you are Old'*               "         173

  _Levy, Nathan_            'My Books'                 _American_   174

  "Love in Idleness"    'Most Sweet of All'                         174

  _Lüders, C. H._         'The Redbreast'       _Hallo, my fancy_   175

        "                  'To Q. H. F.'                  "         175

  MCCARTHY, JUSTIN H.   'Love in London '*                "         176

  MARTIN, ADA L.              'Sleep'        _Cassell's Magazine_   176

  MARZIALS, THEO.          'To Tamaris'                _Athenæum_   177

        "                'When I see you'                 "         177

        "                  'Carpe Diem'                             178

  _Matthews, Brander_      'Old and New'               _American_   178

        "                   'Sub Rosa'              _The Century_   179

  MONKHOUSE, COSMO           'Violet'             _The Spectator_   179

        "                'O scorn me not'*                          180

        "                  'Ten Thousand                            180

  PAYNE, JOHN           'One of these days'           _New Poems_   181

        "                'Life lapses by'                 "         181

  _Peck, S. M._         'Beyond the Night'        _Cap and Bells_   182

        "                'Among my Books'                 "         182

  PFEIFFER, E.            'I go my Gait'      _Gerard's Monument_   183

  _Roberts, C. G. D._   'Laurels for Song'      _In Divers Tones_   183

        "               'Without one Kiss'                _Orion_   184

  _Scollard, Clinton_      'Vis Erotis'      _With Reed and Lyre_   184

        "              'When Sirius Shines'               "         185

        "                'At Peep of Dawn'                "         185

        "               'In Greenwood Glen'    _Pictures in Song_   186

  _Sherman, F. D._        'Her China Cup'          _Madrigals and   186

        "                'Behind her Fan'                 "         187

        "                   'Valentine'                   "         187

        "              'When Twilight comes'              "         188

        "              'Come, Pan, and Pipe'              "         188

        "                 'An Old Rondo'                  "         189

  STERRY, J. ASHBY       'A Street Sketch'    _The Lazy Minstrel_   189

        "                     'Dover'                     "         190

        "                   'Homesick'                    "         190

  TOMSON, GRAHAM R.     'In Beechen Shade'*                         191

        "              'The Gates of Horn'*                         191

  WADDINGTON, S.         'If Love be True'        _Sonnets, etc._   192

        "                 'The Coquette'                  "         192

  WEATHERLY, G.             'Yes or No'      _Cassell's Magazine_   193

  WILTON, REV. R.        'My Window Birds'            _Sungleams_   193

        "                 'Snowdrops and                  "         194

        "                 'Chiff-chaff's                  "         194

  WRIGHT, ARTHUR G.     'When Summer Dies'                 _Time_   195

        "                   'My Little                              195


  BLOMFIELD, D. F.        Three Roundels      _English Ill. Mag._ 196-7

  SWINBURNE, A. C.      'A Singing Lesson'  _Century of Roundels_   197

  "                        'In Guernsey'                  "       198-9

  "                        'The Roundel'                  "         199

  SAYLE, C.             'Nothing so Sweet'         _Bertha, etc._   200

  "                     'The Trysting-Tree'               "         200

  SYMONS, ARTHUR            'Of Rest'*                              201

  WADDINGTON, S.          'Mors et Vita'*                           201

  WELLER, BERNARD           'Rondels of             _Home Chimes_   202


  _Byrne, F. M._              Sestina                  _American_   205

  _Coleman, C. W._        'Love's Going'      _Harper's Magazine_   206

  GOSSE, EDMUND               Sestina                 _New Poems_   207

  ROBINSON, A. M. F.     'Pulvis et Umbra'      _An Italian Song_   209

  _Scollard, C._          'Cupid and the       _Pictures in Song_   210

  SWINBURNE, A. C.            Sestina          _Poems and Ballads   211
                                                      (2nd ser.)_


  ALEXANDER, GRIFFITH     'My Sweetheart'                           215

  BRIDGES, ROBERT          Two Triolets                   _Poems_   215

  _Bates, Arlo_           Four Triolets*               _American_   216

  _Bunner, H. C._             Triolet               _The Century_   217

  CRANE, WALTER              Triolet*                               217

  DICK, COTSFORD         'Triolets for the            _The Model_   218

  DOBSON, AUSTIN           'Rose-leaves'       _Old World Idylls_   219

  "                      'Oh, Love's but a                "         220

  GOSSE, EDMUND          'After Catullus'*                          221

  HENLEY, W. E.               Triolet                _The London_   221

  _Learned, Walter_              "                     _American_   221

  MCCARTHY, JUSTIN H.        Triolets*                              222

  _Lüders, C. H._                "              _Hallo, my fancy_   223

  "Love in Idleness"          Triolet                               224

  MACDONALD, GEORGE          Triolets          _A Threefold Cord_ 224-6

  _Peck, S. M._          'Under the Rose'         _Cap and Bells_   227

  PFEIFFER, E.                Triolet         _Gerard's Monument_   228

  RADFORD, ERNEST          Six Triolets          _Measured Steps_229-30

  _Robertson, Harrison_    Two Triolets             _The Century_   228

  ROBINSON, A. M. F.      'From Fiametta'             _Handful of   231

  _Scollard, Clinton_      'A Snowflake'     _With Reed and Lyre_   233

  STERRY, J. ASHBY         'A Tiny Trip'      _The Lazy Minstrel_   233

  SYMONS, ARTHUR            'Vestigia'              _Home Chimes_   235

  "The Century"               Triolet                               224

  "                    'Apology for gazing'                         233

  "                         'Rejected'                              238

  TOMSON, GRAHAM R.          Triolets*                            236-8

  WARING, C. H.         'A Pair of Gloves'                  _Fun_   239

  WEATHERLY, G.          'In the Orchard'    _Cassell's Magazine_   240


  BEVINGTON, L. S.            'Roses'                 _Key Notes_   243

  DICK, COTSFORD            'A Vacation               _The Model_   244

  DOBSON, AUSTIN        'Tu ne quaesieris'     _Old World Idylls_   245

  "                       'When I saw you                 "         246
                            last, Rose'

  "                        'Theocritus'                   "         247

  "                     'On a Nankin Plate'               "         248

  GOSSE, EDMUND             Villanelle                _New Poems_   249

  "                      'Little Mistress                 "         250

  HENLEY, W. E.         'Where's the use of          _The London_   251

  "                      'The Villanelle'                 "         252

  "                     'In the Clatter of                "         253
                            the Train'

  LANG, ANDREW           'To M. Boulmier'       _Ballades in Blue   254
  "Love in Idleness"   'To the Nightingale'                         255

  MONKHOUSE, COSMO           'Hetty'*                               256

  NOBLE, J. ASHCROFT          'Life'                 _Verses of a   257

  PAYNE, JOHN           'The Air is White'            _New Poems_   258

  _Peck, S. M._           'Bonnie Belle'          _Cap and Bells_   259

  "                        'If some true                  "         260

  PFEIFFER, E.           'When the brow of     _Sonnets v. Songs_   261

  "                       'O Summer-time'                 "         262

  PROBYN, MAY            'In every Sound'                           263

  "                       'The Daffodils'    _Ballad of the Road_   264

  _Scollard, Clinton_       'To Helen'       _With Reed and Lyre_   265

  "                      'To the Daffodil'                "         266

  "                       'Spring knocks'      _Pictures in Song_   267

  STERRY, J. ASHBY             'Dot'                                268

  _Thomas, Edith W._    'Across the World'*               "         270

  "                       'Where are the          _The Manhattan_   271

  TOMSON, GRAHAM R.       'To Hesperus'*                  "         272

  "                     'I did not Dream'*                          273

  WADDINGTON, S.       'Come, to the Woods'       _Sonnets, etc._   274

  WILDE, OSCAR             'Theocritus'                   _Poems_   275


  PAYNE, JOHN           'Spring's sadness'            _New Poems_   276

                         VIRELAI NOUVEAU.

  DOBSON, AUSTIN              'July'              _Evening Hours_   279

                         BURLESQUES, ETC.

  Anonymous               'Ballade of Old           _The Century_   285

  "                       'Ballade of the                 "         287

  _Bunner, H. C._       'On Newport Beach'                "         290

  "                     'Ballade of Summer                "         283

  "                     Chant Royal, 'Mrs.                "         294

  _Cranch, C. P._      'Young Poet's Advice'    _New York Critic_   284

  DOBSON, AUSTIN            Villanelle         _Walnuts and Wine_   293

  G. H.                    'Malapropos'                _The Lute_   294

  HENLEY, W. E.         'Villon's Straight                          288

  "                       'Culture in the                           290

  LANG, ANDREW         'Ballade of Cricket'    _Rhymes a la mode_   286

  MOORE, A. M.              'Ballade of           _Hood's Annual_   289


       *       *       *       *       *

This anthology is chosen entirely from poems written in the traditional
fixed forms of the _ballade_, _chant royal_, _kyrielle_, _rondel_,
_rondeau_, _rondeau redoublé_, _sestina_, _triolet_, _villanelle_, and
_virelai_, with the addition of the _pantoum_. That such a choice is
the result of circumstances it is needless to point out, since only
those that had found favour with English writers were available for
the purpose. So far as I know, this collection is the first of its
sort, although Mr. W. Davenport Adams' _Latter Day Lyrics_ included a
section chosen on the same lines. Having, in company, no doubt, with
many others, a genuine regard for the group Mr. Adams included there,
I had long hoped to see a more ample compilation of later work in
this school; but notwithstanding the steady increase in the number of
poems written in the forms systematically arranged herein, the ground
remained unoccupied, until the appearance of this book; which may
fairly claim to be the first in the field, since no other volume has
devoted its whole space to them, save in the rarer cases, where an
author has published a collection of original poems cast in one mould,
notably Mr. Swinburne's _Century of Roundels_ and Mr. Andrew Lang's
_Ballades in Blue China_.

In Mr. Adams' volume another valuable feature was the _Note on some
Foreign forms of Verse_ by Mr. Austin Dobson, which many years since
introduced to me the laws of the various forms and created my special
interest in them. It is no derogation to the charming group in the
former volume to say of the present collection, that it far exceeds its
predecessor in number and variety, for now there is a wide field to
choose from, whereas Mr. Adams was then limited to a selection from the
small number extant.

The rules which Mr. Austin Dobson was the first to formulate in English
are made the basis (side by side with the treatises of M. de Gramont,
M. de Banville, and other authorities) of the following chapter on the
rules of the various forms. Lest a name so intimately associated with
the introduction of the old French metrical shapes in English poetry
should appear to be brought in to add weight to my own attempt, and
the reputation of a master invoked for the work of one who at furthest
can but style himself an apprentice, I must ask that this necessary
tribute to Mr. Dobson's labours be taken only as an apology for so
freely using his material, and that his ready help is by no means to
be regarded in the faintest way as an imprimatur of any statements in
this prefatory matter, save those quoted avowedly and directly from his

It may be best to name at once the authorities who have been consulted
in the preparation of the introductory chapter. These include the
French treatises of De Banville, De Gramont, and Jullienne, Mr.
Saintsbury's _Short History of French Literature_, Mr. Hueffers'
_Troubadours_, an article by Mr. Gosse in the _Cornhill Magazine_,
July 1877, _Les Villanelles_ by M. Joseph Boulmier, _The Rhymester_ of
Mr. Brander Matthews, and many occasional papers on the various forms
that have appeared in English and American periodicals. To arrange in
one chapter the materials gathered from these and other sources is all
that I have attempted. If at times the need to crowd enough matter for
a volume into the limits of a few pages results in a want of lucidity,
I must plead the necessity imposed by limited space. To those who, by
their kindly permission, have allowed their poems to be quoted here,
the thanks that I can offer are as hearty as the expression of my
gratitude is brief. The somewhat onerous task of obtaining consent
from about two hundred authors has been turned to a pleasure, by the
evidence of interest taken in this, the first collection of the later
growth of this branch of poetic art. Nor did the help cease with the
loan of the poems; in many instances a correspondence followed that
brought to light fresh material, both for the body of the book and the
introductory chapter, and rendered assistance not easy to overvalue.
If any writer is quoted without direct permission, it was through
no want of effort to trace him, excepting in the case of a very few
that reached me in the shape of newspaper cuttings, wholly devoid of
any clue to the locality of the writer. To Mr. Austin Dobson my best
thanks are due. From Mr. Andrew Lang and Mr. Edmund Gosse I have also
appropriated material, acknowledged as often as practicable; also to
my friend, Mr. A. G. Wright, for invaluable help during the rather
monotonous task of hunting up and copying at the reading-room of the
British Museum; and to Mr. William Sharp, whose critical advice and
generous encouragement throughout have left a debt of gratitude beyond

In a society paper, _The London_, a brilliant series of these poems
appeared during 1877-8. After a selection was made for this volume, it
was discovered that they were all by _one_ author, Mr. W. E. Henley,
who most generously permitted the whole of those chosen to appear,
and to be for the first time publicly attributed to him. The poems
themselves need no apology, but in the face of so many from his pen,
it is only right to explain the reason for the inclusion of so large a

From America Mr. Brander Matthews and Mr. Clinton Scollard have shown
sympathy with the collection, not only by permitting their works to
be cited, but also by calling my attention to poems by authors almost
unknown in England; while all those writers who in the new world are
using the old shapes with a peculiar freshness and vigour, gave ready
assent to the demand.

To Messrs. Cassell & Co., for allowing poems that appeared in
_Cassell's Family Magazine_ (those by Miss Ada Louise Martin and Mr.
G. Weatherley); to Messrs. Longman, for liberty to quote freely from
the many graceful examples that appeared in _Longman's Magazine_; to
Messrs. Kegan Paul, Trench, & Co., for endorsing Mr. Andrew Lang's
permission to include specimens from _Rhymes à la Mode_ and _Ballades
in Blue China_, the utmost thanks are due for the courtesy shown;
also to the proprietors of the _Century Magazine_, where so many of
the American poems (many since collected by the authors in their own
volumes) first appeared; and to Messrs Harper for permission to use
Mr. Coleman's _Sestina_, and Mr. Graham R. Tomson's _Ballade of the
Bourne_, which first appeared in their popular monthly. The poems that
are cited by the courtesy of Mr. John Payne appear respectively in
_Songs of Life and Death_ (W. H. Allen & Co.), _New Poems_ (ditto), and
_Poems by François Villon_ (Reeves & Turner), now out of print.

Having named so many who have lent aid, it is but fair to exonerate
them from any blame for errors that, no doubt, in spite of the utmost
care, may have crept in. In view of a later edition, I should be
glad to be informed of any additional data of the use of the forms
in English verse, which, if quoted, would add to the value of the
collection, or to have any erroneous statements corrected.

Notwithstanding the many shortcomings of my own share in the production
of this volume, I cannot doubt but that the charm of the poems
themselves will endear it to readers; and as a lover of the "Gallic
bonds," I venture to hope it may do some little towards their complete
naturalisation in our tongue.

                                                         GLEESON WHITE.

  _August 1887._





In the limited space available, it is hardly possible to give more than
a very crude sketch of the origin of these forms; but some reference
to early Provençal literature is inevitable, since the nucleus of
not a few of them can be traced among the intricate rhyming of the
Troubadours. Yet it would be beyond the purpose to go minutely into the
enticing history of that remarkable period, nor is it needful to raise
disputed questions regarding the origin of each particular fashion. The
number of books on Provençal subjects is great, the mere enumeration
of the names of those in the library of the British Museum would fill
several pages. The language itself has a fascination which allures
many to disaster, for as Mr. Hueffer points out, it "looks at first
sight so like the Latin and more familiar Romance languages that it
offers special temptations" to guess at its meaning, with very doubtful

The term Provençal is usually applied to a dialect more correctly
known as "the Langue d'Oc, which, with the Langue d'Oil, forms the two
divisions of the Romance language spoken in the country we now know as
France;" but Mr. Saintsbury remarks that, strictly speaking, the Langue
d'Oc should not be called "French" at all, since it is hardly more akin
to the Langue d'Oil than it is to Spanish and Italian, and that those
who spoke it applied the term "French" to northern speech, calling
their own Limousin, or Provençal, or Auvergnat. The limits where it
prevailed extended far beyond Provence itself. Authorities differ
with regard to the exact boundaries. It will suffice for the present
purpose to take those Mr. Hueffer adopts--namely, the district within a
boundary formed by a line drawn from the mouth of the Gironde to that
of the Saone, in the north, while the southern limit includes parts of
Spain, such as Aragon, Valencia, Catalonia, and the Balearic Islands.

Herr Karl Bartsch, the eminent historian of Provençal literature,
divides it into three periods:--the first, to the end of the eleventh
century; the second, which is the one that marks the most flourishing
time of the poetry of the Troubadours, extending over the twelfth and
thirteenth; and the third period--of its decadence--in the fourteenth
and fifteenth centuries. To this may be added the attempt to revive
it in our own day, by the school of the so-called _Félibres_,
including Mistral, Aubanel, Alphonse Daudet, and others, who have
worked vigorously, and with no mean success, to produce a modern
literature in the old dialect, worthy of its former dignity. In this
preface it is impossible to mention any part of the prose of this
marvellous literature, which sprang almost suddenly into a gigantic
growth, that has been a fruitful theme for wonder and admiration ever
since, and left its influence widely felt. The point that is to the
purpose here, concerns the invention by the Provençal poets of many
set forms of verse, some few of which are still written, but most
so altered and renewed by later use, that their original character
is well-nigh obscured. The forms included in this book are often
erroneously attributed _en masse_ to the _jongleurs_ of Provence, yet
few assumptions are less true. Altered by the Trouvères, the fifteenth
century poets, the Ronsardists, and later writers, it is safer to
assign to the Troubadours only the germs which evolved gradually into
their now matured forms. To linger over the extraordinary period is
a temptation hard to dismiss; the very name still has a flavour of
romance, and brings a curious medley of images to the mind when it is
heard, many perhaps as far from the actual Provençal Troubadour as
_Nanki-Poo_ in the "_Mikado_" is from the wandering minstrel of the
court of King Thibaut. Of the Troubadours who have come down to fame,
four hundred and sixty are recorded by name, besides two hundred and
fifty-one pieces that have survived without evidence of their authors.
King Richard I. (our own Coeur de Lion), Guillem de Cabestanh, Peire
Vidal, Bertran de Born, The Monk of Montaudon, and many others, have
biographical sketches of exceeding interest allotted to them in Mr.
Hueffer's "The Troubadours." A halo of romance has gathered round
their names, and thrown a glamour over the record of their lives; to
read their history is to be transported to a region where all topics
but love and song are deemed unimportant trifles, unless the old
chroniclers are singularly untruthful in their statements. We know
now-a-days many a young poet's crushed life appears only in his verses,
and outside those he appears but an average Philistine to vulgar eyes.
Perhaps the "land of the nightingale and rose" was not so idyllic as
its historians paint it; but with every deduction, there yet remains
evidence of an exceptional importance attached to the arts, more
especially to that of song. To those who wrote, or rather sang, witty
impromptus (made often, we can but fancy, with much labour beforehand),
or produced dainty conceits in elaborate rhymes and rhythms, when
sound came perilously near triumphing over sense, a welcome was
extended, as widespread and far more personal in its application than
even that accorded to our modern substitute for the troubadour--the
popular novelist. The doings of the Courts of Love, set down in sober
chronicles, are hardly less fantastic than Mr. Gilbert's ingenious
operas. Matters of the most sentimental and amorous character were
debated in public, with all the earnestness of a question of state.
That their poetry was singularly limited in its character there is
little doubt, but Mr. Hueffer declares that it had its serious side,
often lost sight of, and that no small portion was devoted to stately
and dignified subjects. Mr. Lowell, on the other hand, in an essay on
Chaucer in _My Study Windows_, says--

     "Their poetry is purely lyric in its most narrow sense, that is,
     the expression of personal and momentary moods. To the fancy of
     the critics who take their cue from tradition, Provence is a
     morning sky of early summer, out of which innumerable larks rain a
     faint melody (the sweeter because rather half divined than heard
     too distinctly) over an earth where the dew never dries and the
     flowers never fade. But when we open Raynouard it is like opening
     the door of an aviary. We are deafened and confused by a hundred
     minstrels singing the same song at once, and more than suspect the
     flowers they welcome are made of French cambric, spangled with
     dewdrops of prevaricating glass."

The forms in which the Provençal poets wrote were chiefly these:--The
oldest was called _vers_, and consisted of octosyllabic lines arranged
in stanzas; from this grew the _canzo_, with interlaced rhymes--later
on with the distinctive feature still prominent in French, but
unknown in English poetry, the rhymes _masculine_ and _feminine_.
The _canzo_ was used entirely for subjects of love and gallantry,
but the _sirvente_, composed of short stanzas, simply rhyming, and
corresponding one to the other, was employed for political and social
subjects, sometimes treated seriously, at others satirically. The
_tenso_ was a curious trial of skill in impromptu versification. Two
antagonists met and agreed that the one should reply on the opposite
side to any argument the first might select. The opening stanza,
chosen at will by the speaker, was imitated in the reply, both in
observance of its rhyme and rhythm, the same rhyme-sound being often
kept throughout the whole poem. It must not be forgotten that the
Langue d'Oc was singularly fertile in rhymes, so that the feat was less
arduous than it would be in other tongues. The _alba_, a farewell at
morning, and the _serena_, or evening song, the _pastorella_, devoted,
as its name implies, to pastoral subjects, appear to govern the themes
of the verses rather than the form. There is record, however, of the
_breu-doble_ (double short), invented by Guirant Riquier, a little
form with three rhymes, two of which are repeated twice in three
four-lined stanzas, and given once in a concluding couplet, while the
third finished each quatrain. The _retroensa_ is noticeable for its
refrain of more than one line. The sonnet has ceased to be claimed
as a Provençal invention, yet it must be noted, as at one time its
origin there was a favourite theory. The _ballade_, "a song serving
to accompany the dance," must not be confused with the later ballade;
and lastly, the greatest in most respects, the _sestina_, which, as
it occurs among the poems noticed technically later on, need not be
further mentioned here.

"The artificial verse-forms of Provence include some as peculiar and
arbitrary as ever issued from the brain of Persian poet--verse-forms
by the side of which the metrical glitter of _ballade_, _chant royal_,
_rondeau_, _rondel_, _triolet_, _virelai_ and _villanelle_ must pale,"
says a writer in the _Westminster Review_ (October 1878), and instances
the _tenso_ and the _sestina_ in proof of his assertion. Mr. Hueffer
also treats the _chant royal_ as mere child's play beside the intricate
feats displayed by the Troubadours. The above short list shows many
examples of forms using the refrain and some other features preserved
in Northern poetry; but the debt owed by the North to the Troubadours
is far less, according to later writers, than that assigned to
Provençal influence some few years ago. Mr. Saintsbury says that "poems
called _rondeaux_ and _ballades_, of loose construction and undecided
form, began to make their appearance at the end of the twelfth and
beginning of the thirteenth century," but the forms as we know them
owe their present shape to their reformation in Northern France,
culminating in the poems of Charles d'Orléans and François Villon.
In this revival, the _lai_ and _pastourelle_ kept their Provençal
titles, but were made much more exact in form, and never attained the
widespread celebrity of the newer shapes, which are to all intents and
purposes the models for the forms in this volume, save the _sestina_,
which is practically an Italian, and the _pantoum_, an Eastern form.

There is no space here to notice more than the names of a few of even
the most prominent of the poets who succeeded the Provençal singers
in their use of these forms. There are thousands of ballades in MSS.
in the Royal French Library, by known and unknown writers. Eustache
Deschamps (1328-1415), a friend of Chaucer's, "has left no less than
1175 ballades. Rondeaus, virelais, etc., also proceeded in great
numbers from his pen; also an important _Art of Poetry_, a treatise
rendered at once necessary and popular by the fashion of artificial
rhyming."[1] Some of the earliest ballades and rondel-triolets bear the
name of Jehan Froissart (1337-1410), the chronicler. Messire Guy de
la Tremouille, according to Mr. Gosse, is supposed to have been the
first to devise the elaborate rules of construction of the ballade,
which have been in force ever since. He was guard of the Oriflamme in
1383, and died in 1398; but Deschamps is more often credited with the
honour. That he cultivated the form we know, besides writing an "Art of
making Chansons, Ballades, Virelais, and Rondels," which is a valuable
relic of his time. Jehannot de Lescurel, "of whom absolutely nothing
is known, has left sixteen ballades, fifteen rondeaus (not in regular
form), and other pieces, said to be 'of singular grace, lightness, and

[1] See Saintsbury's _Short History of French Literature_, p. 103.

Guillaume de Machault (1284-1377) was also a voluminous writer. One of
his poems, a _chanson balladée_, is printed in Mr. Saintsbury's _Short
History of French Literature_, which contains also a _Ballade_ by Alain
Chartier (1390-1458), the hero of the famous story of the kiss of Queen
Margaret of Scotland, and other specimens of this period, in a succinct
and trustworthy account of the growth of French poetry, surpassed by no
book in our own language.

Charles d'Orléans (1391-1466), noticed among the English writers,
is specially honoured as the master of the rondel; while François
Villon (1431-1485) stands out as the "prince of all ballade-makers."
For brief, but splendid sketches of these two, Mr. R. L. Stevenson's
_Familiar Studies of Men and Books_ should be consulted, while for
more prosaic description there is no lack of data. Since the revival
of interest in Villon, France has done tardy but unstinted honour to
her most famous poet, as it is the fashion just now to style him, but
there is a doubt whether the praise given is not in danger of being
exaggerated. Yet, making all allowances, there is vital humanity in his
wondrous writings, that now, after four hundred years, read as living
and modern in their presentation of life, as though they were by a
realist of our own day. In Villon, student, poet, housebreaker, we
find the forerunner of the Zola of to-day--one who, in so eminently an
artificial form as the ballade, cast aside all conventional restraints,
and sang of what he saw and knew. It is much to be regretted that
space forbids more translations of his poems to be included in this
collection. For those who wish to tackle him in his old, and by no
means easy, French, a good edition is published for a franc, in the
_Collection Jannet-Picard (Paris)_. Mr. Payne has translated the whole
of his authentic works into English in a volume, at present out of
print, which contains also a very graphic and full biography of this
remarkable man. Space forbids insertion of the sketch of his life
prepared for this chapter. Born in 1431, student 1448, B.A. in 1452,
writing his _Lesser Testament_ in 1446, his _Greater Testament_ in
1461; in those few years he contrived to win more fame, and, to speak
truly, more infamy, than a whole generation of lesser poets. He was
condemned to die--he wrote his marvellous _Ballade of the Gibbet_ while
lying under sentence of death--but escaped. Where he died is unknown,
the date of his _Greater Testament_ being the last record of Master
François Villon of Paris.

In 1493 appeared _L'art et science de rhéthorique pour faire rigmes et
ballades_, by Henry de Croï--an invaluable treatise on French Poetics.
The works of Pierre Gringoire (1478-1544) must be named, if only for
the fact of De Banville's splendid ballade in his comedy "Gringoire,"
founded on an incident in the poet's life. By Mr. Lang's permission a
translation is quoted in the body of this volume. Mr. John Payne also
englished it, in the _Dublin University Magazine_, 1879. The works of
Clement Marot (1497-1544) demand special note, since his _ballades_ and
_chants royaux_ are now accepted as the ideal models for imitation.

In his _Art Poëtique_, 1555, Thomas Sibilet reviews many of the
former writers, and gives the rules of the poetry then in force.
Immediately after this date came another change; with the famous
school of Ronsard (1524-1585) and the _Pléiade_, as they are styled,
one of whom, however, Du Bellay, was eager to abolish the _ballade_
and _chant royal_ in favour of the _sonnet_. The members of this group
produced some notable work in strict forms. Among the Ronsardists we
find Grévin the dramatist, who wrote some graceful poems which he
called _Villanesques_--a modified form of the _Villanelle_--and Jean
Passerat (1534-1602) who is specially noteworthy, since in his hand the
_Villanelle_ crystallised into its present shape, Joseph Boulmier, in
the last revival, making this form his special study, and writing all
his verses after Passerat's model given elsewhere in this volume.

The rondeau was revived in great splendour in the middle of the
seventeenth century. Foremost among the brilliant group is Voiture
(1598-1648), the acknowledged master of this form. Only thirty of
his rondeaus are left, but each one of these is a masterpiece, and
may be studied for all the subtle devices and dainty inventions that
the form has yet yielded. Benserade (1612-1691) and Sarrasin were
also famous for rondeau-making, the former translating the whole of
Ovid's _Metamorphoses_ into rondeaus, which were sumptuously printed
at the King's Press at a cost of 10,000 francs. When Voiture died in
1648, it is curious to note that Sarrasin wrote a "pompous funereal
poem--possibly the most funny serious elegy ever composed--in which,
among other strange mourners, he makes the 'poor little triolet,' all
in tears, trot by the side of the dead poet," who, according to Mr.
Gosse, from whom the above paragraph is quoted, had never written one
in his life. Sarrasin also left a curious specimen of the _Glose_,
written on the famous Sonnet "de IOB" by Benserade. In 1649 Gérard de
Saint Amant wrote a volume of sixty-four triolets. From the seventeenth
to the nineteenth century no important examples occur. About thirty
years ago De Banville revived these old shapes, and initiated a
movement that Daudet, Glatigny, Boulmier, and a host of others have
helped forward, so that now modern French literature is flooded with
examples of the forms-the ballade, rondeau, and triolet being the most
widely used.

Having imperfectly followed the growth of the forms in France, it
will be interesting to give a few notes of the various attempts made
to acclimatise some in England. Although no effort previous to 1873
warrants us in claiming an English pedigree for them, yet it is
curious to see how often the attempt was made to write them in our own
tongue. The sonnet gradually grew into use, until it became as little
an exotic as the potato, to employ an uncouth simile; the ballade and
rondeau--hardly more formal in their rules, and with susceptibilities
of infinite grace and beauty--failed to be even residents amongst
us, much less naturalised subjects, sharing the rights and duties of
citizens. Chaucer is believed to have used these forms, as in "The
Legend of Good Women" he says, speaking of himself--

    "Many a himpne for your holy daies
    That highten balades, roundels, virelaies."

His "Balade de Vilage sauns Peynture," however, does not correspond
with the accepted form. Mr. Gosse says that the Chaucer of 1651
contains a number of poems attributed to himself and Lydgate "which
are merely pieces in rhyme-royal, so arranged as to imitate the French
ballade: without its severity of form."

The following is a roundel attributed to Chaucer:--


    So hath your beauty fro your hertè chased
      Pitee, that mee availeth not to pleyne;
      For daunger[2] halt your mercy in his cheyne.


    Giltles my deth thus have ye purchased,
      I sey you soth, me nedeth not to fayne;
    So hath, etc.


    Alas, that Nature hath in you compassed
      So grete beaute, that no man may atteyne
      To mercy, though he stewe[3] for the peyne.
    So hath, etc.

[2] Dominion, power.

[3] Sterve.

This is given in Furnival's _Trial-Forewords to Chaucer's Minor Poems_,
and is especially interesting in connection with the history of the
forms in English use.

Of his immediate followers, Lydgate, a monk of Bury, author of _London
Lyckpenny_, is said by Guest to have written a "roundle," and one by
Thomas Occleve is printed in Morley's _Shorter English Poems_.

John Gower (1340-1408), author of _Confessio Amantis_, at the
coronation of Henry IV. presented the king with a collection of fifty
_Ballades_, written in the Provençal manner, "to entertain his noble
court." The thin oblong MS., on vellum, which contains them is still
extant in the Marquis of Stafford's library at Trentham, and in 1818 it
was printed for the Roxburghe Club; but as the poems are unfortunately
written in French, they do not assist in supporting a claim for the
early use of the form in England. Professor Henry Morley has translated
one for his _English Writers_; it follows the rhymes accurately, but
has a somewhat trite subject. A critic has well said of it, that the
poets of Gowers's day "were not burdened with solving 'the riddle of
the painful earth.' It may be that a good deal of their guileless
delight in things fresh and young was feigned, but then so is much
of our more pretentious philosophy." From its special interest it is
quoted here--

    Winter departs, and comes the flowery May,
      And round from cold to heat the seasons fly;
    The bird that to its nest had lost the way
      Rebuilds it that he may rejoice thereby.
      Like change in my love's world I now descry,
    With such a hope I comfort myself here,
      And you, my lady, on this truth rely:
    When grief departs the coming joys are near.

    My lady sweet, by that which now I say
      You may discover how my heart leaps high,
    That serves you, and has served you many a day,
      As it will serve you daily till I die.
      Remember, then, my lady, knowing why,
    That my desire for you will never veer
      As God wills that it be, so be our tie:
    When grief departs the coming joys are near.

    The day that news of you came where I lay,
      It seem'd there was no grief could make me sigh;
    Wherefore of you, dear lady mine, I pray
      By your own message--when you will, not I--
      Send me what you think best as a reply
    Wherewith my heart can keep itself from fear;
      And, lady, search the reason of my cry--
    When grief departs the coming joys are near.


    O noble Dame, to you this note shall hie,
      And when God wills I follow to my dear.
    This writing speaks, and says, till I am by,
      When grief departs the coming joys are near.

John Shirley, who lived about 1440, made a collection of _Ballades_,
_Roundels_, _Virelais_, and Tragedies, in MSS., which are still
extant in the Ashmolean Museum at Oxford. After noticing Gower, who
wrote ballades in French, Charles d'Orléans, who wrote rondels in
English, comes as another instance of the early use, but again as a
mere exception, since the accident which led both writers to adopt
exotic forms is outside the history of our native poetry, and cannot
be brought forward to prove their early naturalisation. Of Charles
d'Orléans much might be said worth saying, but there are so many
sources of information open, that here we need note only the poems
written during his captivity. He is said to have been our prisoner for
about twenty-five years, and during that time to have acquired a taste
for our language. The Abbé Sallier, who unearthed the manuscript of
his poems in the Royal Library at Paris during the last century, says
he wrote but two in English; but in the MS. at the British Museum,
the Rev. H. F. Cary, the translator of Dante, found three, quoted in
his _Early French Poets_ (Bohn, 1846). The editor of that volume, the
Rev. Henry Cary, son of the author, mentions in a footnote a large
collection among the Harleian MSS., attributed to Charles d'Orléans,
but throws doubt on their being more than translations. Into this
question there is no space to enter. These are the three from Cary's

    Go forth, my hert, with my lady;
    Loke that ye spar no bysines
    To serve her with such lolyness
    That ye gette her oftyme prively
    That she kepe truly her promes.
    Go forth, etc.

    I must, as a helis-body,[4]
    Abyde alone in hevynes;
    And ye that dwell with your mastris
    In plaisaunce glad and mery,
    Go forth, etc.

           *       *       *       *       *

    My hertly love is in your governas,
    And ever shall whill that I live may.
    I pray to God I may see that day
    That ye be knyt with trouthful alyans.
    Ye shall not fynd feyning or variaunce
    As in my part; that wyl I truly say.
    My hertly, etc.

           *       *       *       *       *

    Bewere, my trewe innocent hert,
    How ye hold with her aliauns,
    That somtym with word of plesuns
    Resceyved you under covert.
    Thynke how the stroke of love comsmert[5]
    Without warnyng or deffiauns.
    Bewere, my, etc.

    And ye shall pryvely or appert
    See her by me in loves dauns,
    With her faire femenyn contenauns
    Ye shall never fro her astert.
    Bewere, my, etc.

[4] _Helis-body_--One deprived of health or happiness.

[5] _Comsmert_--Can smart, or comes smart.

Spenser (1553-1599) is said (but I cannot trace the authority) to have
used some of these forms. Again, Sir Philip Sidney's (1554-1586) famous
ditty, "My true love hath my heart," recalls the rondel, but cannot
claim to be one. Drummond of Hawthornden (1585-1649) has a fine sestina
(too long for quotation), "Sith gone is my delight and only pleasure."

_The Trivial Poems, and Triolets_ of Patrick Carey deserve mention.
This volume was unknown until the beginning of the present century,
although dated Warnefurd, 1651. The poems were brought into notice by
Sir Walter Scott, who obtained the MSS. from John Murray, and after
inserting a few in the _Edinburgh Annual Register_, 1810, published the
whole for the first time in 1819. The following specimen is taken from
Scott's reprint, p. 43:--

    Worldly designes, feares, hopes, farwell!
    Farwell all earthly joyes and cares!

    On nobler thoughts my soule shall dwell
    Worldly designes, feares, hopes, farwell!
    Att quiett, in my peacefull cell,
    I'le thincke on God, free from your snares;
    Worldly designes, feares, hopes, farwell!
    Farwell all earthly joyes and cares.

In the _Athenæum_, May 7, 1887, is a long article on Carey, signed C.
F. S. Warner, M. A. Charles Cotton, the friend of Izaak Walton, wrote
a rondeau, "a very ungallant example," cited in Dr. Guests' _History
of English Rhythms_. There is also one unquotable, by reason of its
subject, among the correspondence of Alexander Pope (1688-1744), and
in the _Rolliad_, 1784, a volume of satires in prose and verse, that
enjoyed a great popularity for a time, there is a set of five rondeaus,
written in pure form after the Voiture model. They satirise North,
Eden, Pitt, and Dorset, and are perfect in construction, and vigorous
in their ridicule. The popularity of these effusions led to many
imitations in the periodical prints at the beginning of this century,
few, however, of sufficient merit to be worth reviving. By the courtesy
of Mr. Austin Dobson, the owner, I am able to extract a specimen from a
scarce and little-known book, entitled _Rondeaulx; translated from the
Black Letter French Edition of 1527, by J. R. Best, Esq._;--

    #Rondeaulx en Nombre trois cens cinquante.#
      #Singuliers et a tous propos. Nouvellement#
        #Imprimez a Paris. Avec Privelege#
    #On les vend en la grant salle du palays au#
    #Premier pillier en la boutique de Galliot du#
    #Pre marchaut librarie jure de L'universite.#

The dedication to Robert Studley Vidal, Esq., is dated 1838. The first
poem is preceded by a quaint apology, that unfortunately is too long
to quote, but the rondeau itself, if its rhythm is faulty and its
language ungraceful, shows that the original had sterling advice to
offer, and that the translator was not ignorant of the true rules of
the form.

                            UNG BON RONDEAU

    A good rondeau I was induced to show
    To some fair ladies some short while ago;
        Well knowing their ability and taste,
        I asked, should ought be added or effac'd,
    And prayed that every fault they'd make me know

    The first did her most anxious care bestow
    To impress one point from which I ne'er should go:
        "Upon a good beginning must be based
                      A good rondeau."

    Zeal bid the other's choicest language glow:
    She softly said, "Recount your weal or woe,
        Your every subject free from pause or haste:
        Ne'er let your hero fail, nor be disgraced."
    The third--"With varying emphasis should flow
                      A good rondeau."

In Mr. Oxenford's _Book of French Songs_, now published with Miss
Costello's _Specimens of the Early Poetry of France_, in a volume of
the _Chandos Classics_, there is one ballade given (with its original
French, both without envoy); but although noting the peculiarity that
each stanza has the same terminations, Mr. Oxenford has not kept it
in his translation, nor has Miss Costello, in a numerous collection
of ballades, rondels, lais, and other forms, once paraphrased them
accurately, usually varying even the refrain; nor can I see, in her
voluminous notes, that she draws attention to this important feature,
although she gives the particulars of the eccentricities of rhyming
known as _Fraternisée, Brisée_, and the like, and condemns their
triviality rather strongly. In the edition before me no date is given;
the authoress died in 1870. The oft-quoted Rondeau by Leigh Hunt is so
beautiful in itself that all its shortcomings in the matter of form
may be readily pardoned, and if--but the saving clause is great--others
as beautiful could be built on the same shape, a "Leigh Hunt" variation
would be a welcome addition to the forms in English; but it is no
_rondeau_, and has not the faintest claim to be so styled. Probably it
is familiar to all readers, but in case even one should not know it, it
is quoted here:--

    "Jenny kissed me when we met,
      Jumping from the chair she sat in.
    Time, you thief, who love to get
      Sweets upon your list, put that in!
    Say I'm weary, say I'm sad;
      Say that health and wealth have missed me;
    Say I'm growing old, but add--
                            Jenny kissed me."

If Mr. Swinburne's examples of the forms in his earlier volumes be not
counted (since he then ignored many of the rules that, as his later
books show, he can use with such splendid mastery), to Mr. Andrew
Lang's _Lays and Lyrics of Old France_ (Longman, 1872) must be assigned
the honour of leading the way in the reproduction in English of the old
French metrical forms, made in conformance to their ascertained laws.
How far that volume led the way to the modern employment of these forms
for original poetry in our own tongue, is not so easily proved. One
thing, at least, is certain, that Mr. Austin Dobson, Mr. Edmund Gosse,
Mr. W. E. Henley, Mr. Payne, and one or two other writers, were each,
unknown to the rest, trying the new measures. In the words of one of
these, "the study of French literature was in the air;" and naturally,
as we now see, the new movement began simultaneously to adapt its rules
to English conditions. To Mr. Bridges belongs the honour of printing
the first Triolet in modern English; but he expressly disclaims being
looked upon as the apostle for the naturalisation of the exotic forms,
for which he had no peculiar sympathy, and after his _Poems_, 1873,
ceased to use. So little were his experiments appreciated, that their
presence in his volume was considered prejudicial to its success,
by competent authorities of the day, who little foresaw the rapid
growth that would so soon spring up. To Mr. Austin Dobson is assigned
the first _ballade_, "The Prodigals;" to Mr. Edmund Gosse the first
_villanelle_ and _chant royal_; and to Mr. W. E. Henley the first
_double ballade_, and a few other variations. But it is most likely
that the priority of some of these was due to the mere accident of
publication, and that it is more near the truth to regard the whole
as a contemporaneous movement toward French rhythms, thought out and
experimented upon by many writers, ignorant of the fact that they were
not alone in the study, and that others were working upon the same
lines. One of the first who made trial of these French rhythms has (I
believe) never published any; yet examples of their use by the author
of _A Child's Garden of Verse_ would have added greatly to the interest
of this collection, but the author has willed that they should remain
unquoted, so I can only regret their absence.

From 1873 to 1877 a fair number had appeared, but these were produced
almost entirely by the writers already named. From 1877, however, the
number of those who made them increased rapidly. In that year Mr.
Dobson's _Proverbs in Porcelain_ was published, containing a series of
these forms, which, as internal evidence of much subsequent work shows,
have been accepted as typical models to be followed in their English
use. The series in _The London_ noticed elsewhere, during this year and
1878, also increased their popularity, while the later English use may
be traced to some extent by the examples here collected. In America
about the same time the new fashion in versemaking was taken up very
warmly, and to the present day the Americans have shown themselves more
cordial towards the Gallic measures than even our own countrymen. In
the popular periodicals of the United States there are more specimens
than in our English magazines, and the appearance of so many examples
in this book shows that the American poets have caught a great deal of
the peculiar quality, hard to define but easy to recognise, which the
forms demand. Then came Mr. W. Davenport Adams's _Latter Day Lyrics_,
with a section devoted to these forms, and "A Note on Some Foreign
Forms of Verse," by Mr. Dobson. Since then the poems written in these
styles have been increasing in number, until the idea of collecting
them in one volume, long in my mind, was favourably entertained by Mr.
William Sharp, the general editor of the series in which this book

The taste for these _tours de force_ in the art of versemaking is
no doubt an acquired one; yet to quote the first attempt to produce
a lyric with a repeated burden would take one back to the earliest
civilisation. The use of the refrain and conventional arrangement of
rhyme in these forms differs as widely from the burdens of the old
examples, as the purely conventional design of Greek art from the
savage patterns of its ancestral stock. Whether the first refrains
were used for decorative effect only, or to give the singer time to
recollect or to improvise the next verse, it matters little, since
the once mere adjunct was made in later French use an integral and
vital part of the verse. The charm of these strictly written verses
is undoubtedly increased by some knowledge of their technical rules.
As a subtle harmony of colours may reveal, to those who can grasp
it, a miracle of skill and science, while it is no more nor less
than "a pretty picture" to others--or polyphonic harmony, with all
the resources of the science of music, may be employed to enrich a
clear popular melody, to which the unmusical can yet nod their heads
and fancy they understand it all; so a ballade or rondeau may be so
deftly wrought, with an infinity of care and grace, that those who
read it simply as a dainty poem never suspect the stern laws ordering
the apparent spontaneity of the whole. To approach ideal perfection,
nothing less than implicit obedience to all the rules is the first
element of success; but the task is by no means finished there. Every
quality that poetry demands, whether clearness of thought, elegance of
expression, harmonious sound, or faultless rhythm, is needed as much
in these shapes as in unfettered verse, and not until all those are
contributed comes the final test of the poem itself; whether it utters
thoughts worth uttering, or suggests ideas worth recalling. It may be
said, without fear of exaggeration, that all the qualities required to
form a perfect lyric in poetry are equally needful here, _plus_ a great
many special ones the forms themselves demand. To the students of any
art there is always a peculiar charm when the highest difficulties are
surmounted with such ease, that the consummate art is hidden to all
who know not the magic password to unveil it. But for those who have
no special knowledge of poetry, it is pertinent to inquire what good
these ingenious _tours de force_ achieve, and why the poem could not
please as well if it was written in ordinary verse? This is hard to
answer; but the fact remains that in every phase of art, whether music,
picture, or poem, such technical achievements have invariably found
admirers in any period of advanced civilisation. It has been said that
these forms display no higher aim than the verses printed to resemble
an hour-glass or altar, in some of our early poets; but such an
accusation is hardly worthy of serious reply. If the sonnet in Italian
form has gained world-wide fame, the principle of fixed form is at once
shown to be acceptable to the majority of scholars, and it becomes
only a question of degree whether these rondeaus and ballades gain so
prominent a place. It is hardly fair to expect to find among these
forms a lyric that has caught the ear of the public, and won its way
to the hearts of everyone; fifteen years of use is all they may claim,
and compared with the lyric poetry guileless of bonds, during the same
period, they at least hold their own. It must also be remembered that
they were adopted by the younger men, who won no small amount of their
present fame by these pretty devices.

ON THE RULES OF THE VARIOUS FORMS.--There are several general laws
governing these fixed metrical forms that must be insisted on at
the outset. The rule of the limited number of rhymes holds good of
nearly all. One feature prominent in the French rules is impossible in
English, as the difference between the rhyme masculine on words that
have not the _e_ mute for their final letter, and the rhyme feminine
on words that possess the _e_ mute, is unknown to us; but side by
side with the release from one binding law in French verse, a new one
is imposed. In that language, words of exactly similar _sound_ and
_spelling_ may be used to rhyme together, provided the meaning of the
words is distinct--such license the most doggerel bard would reject in
English--in spite of the precedent Milton offers, having "Ruth" and
"ruth" in one of his sonnets. Purists forbid in our tongue the use of
words of distinct spelling, but identical sound, as "sail" and "sale,"
"bear" and "bare;" nor would they allow words closely allied, as
"claim," "disclaim," "reclaim," to be employed, the strict rule being,
_that no syllable once used as a rhyme can be used again for that
purpose throughout the poem, not even if it be spelt differently while
keeping the same sound; nor if the whole word is altered by a prefix;
the syllable that rhymes must always be a new one both in sense and
sound_. It is this feature of the many rhymes to be found on a limited
root-sound that proves the initial difficulty in these shapes.

If the above rule is thought too strict--and it must be owned very
few writers acknowledge it to the extent of excluding such words as
"claim, acclaim, prove, reprove," etc.--at least such words should
be kept as far apart as possible, not used in the same stanza, if it
can be avoided, and never to rhyme with one another. Next in order,
but of equal, perhaps primary importance, is the use of the refrain.
This recurrent phrase is common in many languages; but the way these
ballades, rondeaus, and other shapes employ it, differs from all
others. In most old ballads and folk-songs the refrain comes as a
mere jingle, or, at best, an interlude, not reflecting the idea of
the verse it closes, nor varying its sense in spite of retaining its
sound, as it does in a perfect example of these forms. An ordinary
refrain in other poetry is usually kept to one note resounding through
the whole poem, much as the drone-bass in "pifferari" or "musette"
music is kept going throughout. In music there is another form of
bass always kept continuous--the ground-bass, on which Handel and
Bach built some mighty choruses; but in this the repeated sequence of
notes in the phrase, although they occur again and again unaltered,
have the superstructure welded into them, one splendid harmony--not,
as in the other, a melody merely floating over the accompaniment of
the one note or chord of the drone bass. It may be a somewhat forced
parallel, but in the instance quoted, and the fugue, canon, and other
contrapuntal laws of classical music, there is much in common with
these laws of strict metrical verse. The enormous use of set forms
in the masterpieces of tone-art may be a happy augury to the future
that yet awaits them in word-art. It may be said that at present the
poems dare claim no such success as the contrapuntal devices in music
can show, where the greatest works employ such devices frequently;
yet the leap from the simple forms of counterpoint to the works of
the mighty John Sebastian took but comparatively few years, although
the distance was so great. But fanciful parallels of this sort are
rarely satisfactory to any, except their maker, and need not be dwelt
on here. The refrain in each case is noticed more especially among the
laws of each form, but with regard to all the forms it is necessary to
insist on the importance of introducing it unaltered in sound on each
recurrence; it is sometimes changed by using, say, "and" for "but," or
"then" for "if;" but, without condemning any who take this license, it
is better to avoid it. Still, any change of meaning that be obtained by
alteration of punctuation, accent, or even of spelling, provided the
sound is unchanged, is not merely allowable but desirable, in lighter
verse especially. Without recommending the use of the pun pure and
simple, where its easy vulgarity would quickly be fatal to the dainty
conceits that mark the best humorous verse in these forms, yet any
pretty play upon words, or a sentence with new meaning read into it by
the context, is more than permissible, being present in the best models
of the Voiture rondeau and many triolets and ballades. This applies
chiefly to poems of the class called _Vers de Société_, for want of an
English synonym. The comic papers of our own country show no use of the
form quite so fine in burlesque treatment as some of the American ones,
notably the chant royal, _Mrs. Jones_, by Mr. H. C. Bunner; in the
burlesque examples printed in this book it will be seen that the forms
can be made to give added zest to satire or humour, beside imparting a
certain scholarly finish, that itself raises them from the terribly
dead level of much of our so-called comic poetry. A few shapes yet
await presentation in English dress. I have not succeeded in finding
specimens of the _glose_ or the _virelai_ (rhythme d'Alain Chartier),
while the example of the _virelai_ (_nouveau_), Mr. Dobson's "July,"
is the only one brought to light. The _lai_ and the _rondelet_ are
also very little used, so that anyone interested in these old measures
will yet find plenty of unhackneyed forms for experimenting upon. It
is curious that the sonnet, no less exacting in its technical rules,
and far more imperious in the treatment it demands, finds so many eager
followers, for with its wealth of literature, the chance of attaining
to the second rank even, among such splendid poems, requires a high
amount of talent, if not absolute genius. In the rondeau, or ballade,
many writers who are ignored in the ampler crowd of sonnet-makers might
find pleasing forms, not merely to display true poetic thoughts (if
they have the power to do so), but verse that has in its shape some air
of novelty still, and would sound less like the faint re-echoes of a
stronger song, the frequent effect of many a modern sonnet.

These few prefatory lines may well close with De Banville's own words
(in Mr. Lang's English)--"This cluster of forms is one of our most
precious treasures, for each of them forms a rhythmic whole, complete
and perfect, while at the same time they all possess the fresh and
unconscious grace which marks the production of primitive times." As
the translator adds, "There is some truth in this criticism, for it is
a mark of man's early ingenuity in many arts to seek complexity (where
you would expect simplicity), and yet to lend to that complexity an
infantine naturalness. One can see this phenomenon in early decorative
art, and in early law and custom, and even in the complicated
structure of primitive languages. Now, just as early and even savage
races are our masters in the decorative use of colour and of carving,
so the nameless mastersingers of ancient France may be our teachers in
decorative poetry--the poetry some call _vers de société_."

In analysing the structure of these forms, it would be, no doubt,
possible for a master to present them in English, as terse and
epigrammatic as the French of de Banville or de Gramont. But there
would be a danger in so doing. A famous prelate is said to have
apologised for a long letter, on the ground that he had not time to
write a short one: this anecdote may be paraphrased here, for it often
happens that many have time to run through a discursive, gossipy
description, when they could not devote the attention needful to
_read_ a short one. If every word is carefully chosen, and used in an
exact way to convey as much as possible, it requires no less careful
reading;--as in some of our Science Primers, where the material for
an ordinary chapter is condensed and reduced to the crystal of a
single sentence, that demands almost equal exactness in obtaining
its solution, if one would absorb all the learning compressed in so
small a compass. This excuse may serve in lieu of a better for the
somewhat prolix method in which these rules are presented. Let no one
imagine that the most perfect knowledge of the laws of these forms is
enough to start him in writing poetry; for such rules are but what the
fundamental rules of arithmetic are to astronomers--all important as
the basis, but powerless, without genius and science, to discover new
worlds, or formulate an hypothesis for the existence of known ones.
If such books as those the present chapter follows are looked upon as
handbooks to making _poetry_, that one stupendous flight of imagination
is probably the only one its author is fated to achieve.

THE BALLADE.--In the alphabetical sequence adopted in the arrangement
of this volume, the _Ballade_ happily comes first. This is as it
should be, since no other of these forms has been more frequently
used in English, nor, it may be, is any other so capable of variety,
since among its successful examples many different treatments will be
found. This form adapts itself to its subject, and may be sonorous or
stately, playful or easy, at the will of its writer, as, in capable
hands, it can strike any note in the gamut of passions, from religious
exaltation or fierce grim satire, to actual pathos, or, if needful,
pure burlesque. It is possible the _Ballade_ will never be written so
strictly to one model as the sonnet, but that many variations--to be
noticed presently--will each find admirers; but the existing examples
warrant a belief that the shape will continue in our poetry, for it is
impossible, in face of many hundred examples, to style it an exotic at
the present day.

The construction of the _Ballade_, although not less stern in insisting
on the introduction of a refrain than many of the other shapes, uses
it at wider intervals, and so escapes the besetting danger of such
forms as the _villanelle_ or _triolet_, where its constant recurrence
may easily become as senseless as the "with a fal, la, la" of the
old madrigal writers, unless it be very skilfully brought in. Again,
its length, generally of twenty-eight or thirty-five lines, with the
refrain in either case appearing but four times, allows room to display
the subject, and yet forbids the diffuseness of many ordinary lyrics,
where one fancies a happy rhyme-sound is often responsible for the
intrusion of an additional couplet or quatrain, that weakens the whole
poem. Its length, moreover, strictly within hard and fast limits though
it be, is not so cramped as the fourteen lines of the true sonnet,
nor has tradition fixed the style of treatment of the central idea.
The narrative ballade is perfectly legitimate, provided the writer
has sufficient power to overcome the extreme difficulty it presents.
It is often urged that the unalterable sequence of rhymes, which must
be found after the set of three or five are once chosen, proves a
hindrance to the imagination of the poet who uses it. M. Lemâitre has
answered this objection very aptly. He says--"The poet who begins a
ballade does not know very exactly what he will put into it. The rhyme,
and nothing but the rhyme, will whisper things unexpected and charming,
things he would never have thought of but for her, things with strange
and remote relations to each other, all united in the disorder of a
dream. Nothing, indeed, is richer in suggestion than the strict laws of
these difficult pieces; they force the fancy to wander afield, hunting
high and low; and while she seeks through all the world the foot that
can wear Cinderella's slipper, she makes delightful discoveries by the

[6] Mr. Andrew Lang, _Longman's Magazine_, April 1887.

The BALLADE, in its normal type, consists of three stanzas of eight
lines, followed by a verse of four lines, known as the envoy, or three
verses of ten lines, with envoy of five, each of the stanzas and the
envoy closing with the refrain. The most important rules for the
ballade may be put briefly:--_First_, The same set of rhymes in the
same order they occupy in the first stanza must repeat throughout the
whole of its verses. _Secondly_, No word once used as a rhyme must be
used again for that purpose in the whole length of the poem. _Thirdly_,
Each stanza and the envoy must close with the refrain; the envoy
always taking the same rhymes as the last half of the preceding verse,
in the same order. For the eight-lined ballade, but three rhymes are
allowable. In ordinary rhyme formula the sequence of these is A, B, A,
B, B, C, B, C, for each of the three verses, and B, C, B, C, for the
envoy. The importance of the refrain must now be noticed. Old writers
and purists of our own time insist that the length of the refrain
should govern not only the length of each line, but the number of the
lines; in other words, that a refrain of eight syllables involves the
choice of an eight-lined stanza, while the refrain of ten syllables
demands a ten-lined verse. This is the strict rule of the ballade as
written by Clement Marot, and by some modern writers; but it must be
clearly understood that it is only the rule for the ideally pure form,
and that variations in this respect are perfectly allowable. Now the
importance of the refrain in one aspect is given, a still more vital
point must be named--namely, that the sense of the refrain must be
supreme throughout the ballade, the culminating line of each stanza
always brought in without effort as the natural close of the verse.
In the verses a special feature must not be overlooked, namely, that
the stanza (of eight or ten lines, as the case may be) should carry
an unbroken sense throughout, and not split into two verses of four
lines or five lines, that are by chance printed as though they were
one. The needful pauses for punctuation are of course allowed, but the
sense should not finish at the end of the first quatrain (or quintain),
but demand the rest of the verse to complete the idea presented. All
these apparently trivial details must be regarded if the ballade is
attempted. The advice given in _Alice in Wonderland_, "Take care of
the sense and the sounds will take care of themselves," whether in
that way or its inversion, "Take care of the sounds and the sense will
take care of itself," is exactly the direct opposite of the true rule.
Neither sense nor sound may be scamped here. If you neglect the sounds
it is no ballade; if you neglect the sense--why write it at all? No one
is compelled to use these complex forms, but if chosen, their laws
must be obeyed to the letter if success is to be attained. The chief
pleasure they yield consists in the apparent spontaneity, which is the
result of genius, if genius be indeed the art of taking infinite pains;
or, if that definition is rejected, they must yet exhibit the art which
conceals art, whether by intense care in every minute detail, or a
happy faculty for naturally wearing these fetters. The dance in chains
must be skilful, the chains worn as decorative adjuncts, and the whole
with as much apparent ease as the unfettered dancer could produce, or
woe betide the unlucky wight who attempts to perform in them.

The ENVOY is so peculiarly a feature of the Ballade and Chant Royal,
that it is needful to draw our attention to the invocation which with
it invariably commences. Of old this envoy was really addressed to
the patron of the poet, or at least to the high dignitary to whom he
dedicated his ballade. So that we find Prince! or Princess! Sire! or
some mythical or symbolical personality invoked in the opening word.
Often the person chosen was in very truth a noble of the rank assigned,
but the custom of opening the envoy in this fashion grew so common that
it lost its special fitness, and was often employed as a conventional
ascription to those not of noble rank, while in some instances all
the lovers' ballades intended for their own ladies were yet ascribed
by the poets to the "Princess" of the court, who quite understood the
fiction employed, and accepted praise of the golden hair and blue eyes
of the rightful owner of the poem, while possibly her royal tresses
were black and her eyes brown. In the number of ballades included
in this collection the larger number will still be found to follow
the old custom, which is so marked that the use of this dedication
certainly carries out the spirit of the poem, in accordance with its
original design. The envoy is not only a dedication, but should be the
peroration of the subject, and richer in its wording and more stately
in its imagery than the preceding verses, to convey the climax of the
whole matter, and avoid the suspicion that it is a mere postscript, as
it were, to the ballade.

In the ballade with stanzas of ten lines, usually of ten syllables
each, four rhymes are permitted in this order--A, B, A, B, B, C, C,
D, C, D, with C, C, D, C, D for the envoy. It is not needful to quote
examples, or describe varieties with eight or ten-lined stanzas, that
have lines of equal or unequal length, but in other respects follow
all the true rules. De Gramont has observed that the strict laws of
the _ballade_ belong more to the prosodists who studied the form
after it had ceased to be in current use, and that the writers of the
_ballade_ themselves frequently took great liberty. In some by Marot
there are verses of eleven or twelve decasyllabic lines, and in poets
who preceded him, some with thirteen and fourteen lines to the stanza,
while the number of verses has also been flagrantly disregarded, some
even using four or five verses, and still worse, having different
rhymes to them; but in such cases the poem must not be regarded as an
irregular ballade, nor a ballade at all, but simply as a set of verses
with refrain.

The _Ballade with double refrain_, of which the "Frere Lubin" of
Clement Marot is the only well-known example in old French, is said
by Thomas Sibilet, in his _Art Poétique_, 1555, to be "_autant rare
que plaisante_." Its point of difference is that a second refrain is
introduced at the fourth line of each stanza, and the second of the
envoy. This necessarily alters the order of the rhymes of the envoy.
In the best known English example the rhyme order is A, B, A, B, B,
C, B, C, with B, B, C, C, for the envoy. There are several in modern
English, and some in recent French.

The _Double Ballade_ consists of six stanzas of eight or ten lines, and
is written usually without an envoy. The "Ballade of Dead Lions," in
_London_, January 12, 1878, was the first English specimen; it is not
quoted here, as its subject is now out of date. De Banville has written
several. "_Pour les bonnes gens_," "_Des sottises de Paris_" are two in
his "_Trente-six Ballades Joyeuses_" written in this form.

M. de Banville humorously reveals a secret of the poet's workshop,
and gives a method to construct a "correct" ballade in a mechanical
fashion, dispensing with genius, and easy to work--First, at one
sitting write the last half of all the verses, and at another time
the first half, then join them together, and the result will be an
irremediably bad ballade; but elsewhere he writes, in all seriousness
this time, "All the art is to bring in the refrain without effort,
naturally, gaily, and at each time with novel effect and with fresh
light cast on the central idea. 'Now you can' teach 'no one to do that,
and M. de Banville never pretends to give any receipts for cooking
_rondels_ or _ballades_ worth reading.' Without poetic vision all is
mere marqueterie and cabinetmaker's work; that is, so far as poetry is
concerned, nothing."[7]

[7] A. Lang on De Banville, _New Quarterly Magazine_, Oct. 1878.

The CHANT ROYAL is now accepted by most writers as merely a larger
form of the ballade, written with five verses of eleven lines, and
envoi of five. De Gramont treats the idea to regard it as a distinct
form as a mere fanciful attempt of prosodists, founded chiefly on the
fact that Clement Marot has left four so named which conform to the
above rule; but he shows that on the one hand there are ballades with
stanzas of eleven lines, and on the other chants royal with ten only.
It has been suggested that the _Chant Royal_ derived its name from
the subjects that are more usually dedicated to its use; but while
these are generally sublime topics treated in dignified allegory, yet
there are examples extant entirely devoid of these characteristics.
Again, the idea that it owes its name to being a form selected for
competition before the king for the dignity of laureate, and hence
dubbed royal-song, he also rejects, and points out that its name
simply denotes that it is the most excellent form of the ballade (as
we might say, the "king of ballades" in English), one that, from
the increased length, both in stanzas and number of lines in each,
largely augments the difficulties of construction met with in the
true ballade, and marks it as "the final _tour de force_ of poetic
composition." Henry de Croï derives the title of this form from the
fact that persons excelling in the composition of chants royal were
worthy to be crowned with garlands like conquerors and kings. It is
a moot point with students whether the ballade or chant royal is the
earlier and original poem. The chant royal in the old form is usually
devoted to the unfolding of an allegory in its five stanzas, the envoy
supplying the key; but this is not always observed in modern examples.
Whatever be the subject, however, it must always march in stately
rhythm with splendid imagery, using all the poetic adornments of
sonorous, highly-wrought lines and rich embroidery of words to clothe
a theme in itself a lofty one. Unless the whole poem is constructed
with intense care, and has intrinsic beauty of its own of no mean
order, the monotony of its sixty-one lines rhymed on five sounds is
unbearable. In spite of the increased burden imposed by the necessity
of so many similar rhymes, no shadow of "poetic" or other license must
be taken. Nothing short of complete success can warrant the choice of
this exacting form, which demands all that can be given to it; enriched
with all the elaboration of consummate art in its every detail, and
rising stanza by stanza, until the climax is reached in the envoy.

The laws of the ballade apply to the chant royal, with some added
details of its own. The rhyme order is usually--a, b, a, b, c, c, d, d,
e, d, e, with envoy of d, d, e, d, e. An example by Deschamps, "_Sur le
mort du Seigneur de Coucy_," observes this order, a, b, a, b, b, c, c,
d, c, d, and envoy, c, c, d, c, c, d. In either case the rhyme-order
must be kept the same for each stanza, and the envoy commenced with an
invocation as in the old ballades.

CHAIN VERSE.--There is one beautiful poem in so-called chain verse,
which has so much likeness to these once-exotic forms that it deserves
quotation in full, if only as an example of a native specimen of poetic
ingenuity. It has little affinity with the chain verse of French art,
as then the one word only grew from each line into the other (La rime

    Dieu des Amans, de mort me garde
    Me gardant donne-moi bonheur,
    Et me le donnant prend ta darde
    Et la prenant navre son coeur
    Et le navrant me tiendras seur.

       *       *       *       *       *

                                                --_Clement Marot._

The following hymn was written by John Byrom, and published in vol. ii.
of his _Posthumous Poems_, 1773:--

                      THE DESPONDING SOUL'S WISH.

    My spirit longeth for Thee,
    Within my troubled breast,
    Although I be unworthy
    Of so Divine a Guest.

    Of so Divine a Guest
    Unworthy though I be,
    Yet has my heart no rest,
    Unless it comes from Thee.

    Unless it comes from Thee,
    In vain I look around;
    In all that I can see
    No rest is to be found.

    No rest is to be found
    But in thy blessèd love:
    Oh, let my wish be crowned,
    And send it from above.

_The Answer._

    Cheer up, desponding soul,
    Thy longing pleased I see:
    'Tis part of that great whole
    Wherewith I longed for Thee.

    Wherewith I longed for Thee
    And left my Father's throne,
    From death to set thee free,
    To claim thee for my own.

    To claim thee for my own
    I suffered on the cross:
    O! were my love but known,
    No soul need fear its loss.

    No soul need fear its loss,
    But, filled with love divine,
    Would die on its own cross
    And rise for ever thine.

This has so many points resembling the forms in this book, that it
seemed worth quoting, if only to compare with the Malay Pantoum, the
Villanelle, and the Rondel.

KYRIELLE.--The _Kyrielle_ is so simple, and so widely used by writers,
all unwittingly, that but for M. de Banville including it, it would
be left unnoticed here. It is merely a poem in four-lined verses of
eight-syllable lines, having the last line of each the same. Our hymn
books show many, witness "Jesus! Son of Mary, hear," or "Jesus, our
Love, is crucified." It is a device so evident that it has naturally
been used in almost all schools of poetry, and may be dismissed with no
more words here.

PANTOUM.--The _Pantoum_, at first sight, has little reason for being
included in a volume of verse in strict traditional forms, that are
nearly all of French origin, since it is of Malay invention; but being
introduced by M. Ernest Fouinet, and reproduced by M. Victor Hugo in
the _Orientales_, it has found a place in the group of these forms
given by De Banville, De Gramont, and others. The Pantoum is written in
four-line stanzas. The second and fourth line of each verse form the
first and third of each succeeding one, through an indefinite number of
quatrains. At the close, to complete the unity of the work, the second
and fourth line of the last stanza are made from the first and third of
the first verse. The rhymes are a b, a b,--b c, b c,--c d, c d,--d e,
d e, and so on, until the last (which we may call z) z a, z a. In Mr.
Austin Dobson's "In Town" and Mr. Brander Matthews' "En route"--as the
latter himself points out in _The Rhymester_--"there is an attempt to
make the constant repetitions not merely tolerable but subservient to
the general effect of monotonously recurrent sound--in the one case the
buzzing of the fly, and in the other the rattle and strain of the cars."

THE RONDEL, RONDEAU, and ROUNDEL, a group having a common origin, are
now to some extent classified, by each accepted variety using one form
of the common name to denote its shape, but this division is purely
arbitrary and a modern custom, only followed here, both in these notes
and in the arrangement of the volume itself, to facilitate reference.

The RONDEL is merely the old form of the word rondeau; like _oisel_ for
_oiseau_, _chastel_ for _chateau_ so _rondel_ has become _rondeau_.
It is one of the earliest of these forms, and freely used in the
fourteenth century by Froissart, Eustache Deschamps, and others. It
probably arose in Provence, and passed afterwards into use in Northern
France. The name (rondel) is still applied to forms written after its
early shape, the later spelling of the name being kept for the more
recent variations of its form. In its origin, the rondel was a lyric
of two verses, each having four or five lines, rhyming on two rhymes
only. In its eight (or ten) lines, but five (or six) were distinct,
the others being made by repeating the first couplet at the end of the
second stanza, sometimes in an inverse order, and the first line at
the end of its first stanza. The eight-lined rondel is thus, to all
intents and purposes, a triolet, although labelled a rondel. Here is a
fourteenth century one by Eustache Deschamps:--

    Est ce donc vostre intencion
    De voloir retrancher mes gaiges
    Vingt livres de ma pension?
    Est-ce donc vostre intencion?
    Laissez passer l'Ascension,
    Que honni soit vostre visaige!
    Est-ce donc vostre intencion
    De voloir retrancher mes gaiges?

Nor are these rondel-triolets exceptions; they are quite common till
the beginning of the fifteenth century. With Charles d'Orléans the
rondel took the distinct shape we now assign to it, namely, of fourteen
lines on two rhymes, the first two lines repeating for the seventh
and eighth, and the final couplet (see page 135). In this, the true
type of the rondel, the two-lined refrain occurring three times in its
fourteen makes it an unwieldy form to handle. In later French ones the
last refrain uses but one of its lines. In Mr. Austin Dobson's "The
Wanderer," the rhymes are in this order:--A. B. b. a.--a. b. A. B.--a.
b. b. a. A. (the refrain being marked by capital letters). In another
by the same author, "How hard it is to Sing," the rhyme order is A. B.
a. b.--b. a. A. B.--a. b. a. b. A. B.; the rondel of Charles d'Orléans
having A. B. b. a. a. b. A. B.--a. b. b. a. A. B. The length of the
lines is not confined to any particular number of syllables in modern

By the time of Octavien de Saint Gelais (1466-1502) the rondel has
nearly become the rondeau as we know it. Still rhymed on but two
sounds, it repeats the first line only, nor always the whole of that,
as the quoted examples show:--

    De ce qui est au pouvoir de Fortune
    Nul ne se doit vanter ny tenir fort:
    Car ung jour sert de plaisir et confort,
    Et l'autre après, de courroux et rancune.

    Aux ungs est bonne, aux autres importune,
    Estrange à tous, car nuls n'entent le sort
    De ce qui est au pouvoir de Fortune.

    Les ungs ont d'elle honneur, scavoir, pecune;
    L'autres n'ònt que pitié et remort,
    Et povreté, qu'est pire que la mort.
    Est-il aucun qui soit seur soubz la lune
    De ce qui est au pouvoir de Fortune?

Here it is formally divided into three parts with the rhymes--a, b,
b, a; a, b, a; a, b, b, a, a. The refrain, too, is no longer a mere
reiteration of the text, but linked with the preceding verse, as a
refrain should be, and absorbed into the sense of the whole stanza to
which it belongs. This change is still more noticeable in the rondel,
using but half the first line for its refrain, as in this example:--

    Je vous arreste de main mise.
    Mes yeulx; emprisonnez serez.
    Plus mon coeur ne gouvernerez
    Desormais, je vous en advise.

    Trop avez fait à vostre guise;
    Par ma foy plus ne le ferez,
                Je vous arreste.

    On peut bien pour vous corner prise:
    Pris estes, point n' eschapperez.
    Nul remede n'y treuverez;
    Rien n'y vault appel ne franchise:
                Je vous arreste.

Here we pass into the later form called (for convenience only) the
_Rondeau_. In these few examples the evolution of the _Voiture_ type,
from the Charles d'Orléans original, is clearly traceable. The rondel,
however, still continues to be used, but much less frequently. De
Banville often omits the thirteenth line, while otherwise following the
model of Charles d'Orléans. Again, the order of the rhymes is sometimes
changed, but the examples quoted in this collection will show more
clearly the deviations from the true rondel than any description would

The RONDEAU after Voiture's model is without doubt the most popular
variety of the form now in use. It is written throughout on two rhymes,
being composed of thirteen lines and two unrhymed refrains. The lines
are now nearly always of eight syllables only, in many of the old ones
they were of ten. The refrain is usually made from the first half of
the first line, but it is not uncommon to find the first word only
taken for this use. Its thirteen lines are grouped in three stanzas,
the first and third having five lines each, the second consisting of
three only. The refrain occurs at the end of the second stanza, and at
the close of the poem. The usual rhyme order is a, a, b, b, a,----a,
a, b (and refrain)--a, a, b, b, a, and refrain. The refrain is not
counted among the lines of the verse, but is added to the thirteen, and
in the neatness of its introduction, and in the way each of the two
verses to which it belongs flow into it, so that it forms an integral
and inseparable part of the stanza, the chief difficulty of the rondeau
lies. If, like an "Amen" to a hymn, the refrain comes merely as an
extraneous comment on the preceding lines, it is no true rondeau. At
the risk of reiteration of a warning given in the description of each
of these poems that use a refrain, this point must be insisted on, as
the most vital one. The mechanical laws of the poem may be obeyed with
scrupulous exactitude, and every technical rule complied with, while
the still more important quality of sense is overlooked. The thought
of the poet must so find its expression that the refrain completes
it, and forms the true climax of his speech--the culminating phrase
of his sentence. The refrain is the very text of the whole discourse,
in itself an epitome of the subject of the whole poem, otherwise the
reason for its existence in one of these fixed shapes is wanting, and
the poem would be better in free verse. In the refrain the sound must
reappear exactly, but the sense may be altered; in fact, this playful
variation of its meaning is one of the charms of the verse when used
for lighter and more dainty subjects. The good taste of the author must
decide how far an actual pun is allowable. There are precedents for the
use of the pun pure and simple--"votre beau thé" "vòtre beauté," or, "à
la fontaine," used in its literal sense, and also with reference to the
famous fabulist. But in English use the pun has fallen into disrepute,
perhaps from the execrable word-contortions of our so-called comic
papers and its terrible vulgarity in stage burlesques, the intrusion
of one is fatal to the delicacy and refinement which are the peculiar
charm of the rondeau. But if a play upon words of a scholarly kind, or
a new reading given either by punctuation, or the use of the words
with a new light thrown on them by the lines leading up to the refrain,
can be secured, every effort should be made to vary the refrain by so

This quality of dainty and spontaneous wit is the secret of the
rondeau, only revealed, if it is to be found at all, by close analysis
of the best examples. De Banville quotes three of Voiture's--"Je ne
sçaurois," "L'Amour," and "Penser"--especially for this all-important
feature; but in this volume may be found examples equally worthy of
study. It would be invidious to draw attention to the best of those
that have been allowed to appear here, but if the wit of the would-be
rondeau-maker fails to discover the successful use of the refrain, and
to pick out the best examples, it is in itself evidence that he had
better abstain from trying to produce rondeaus that would certainly
lack the airy grace and caressing tenderness which should be an element
of this verse. A famous example of Voiture's is quoted on page 134.

The following is its English paraphrase by Mr. Austin Dobson, withdrawn
from his later editions, but quoted now by his consent:--

    You bid me try, BLUE-EYES, to write
    A Rondeau. What! forthwith?--To-night?
        Reflect. Some skill I have, 'tis true;
        But thirteen lines!--and rhymed on two!--
    "Refrain," as well. Ah, hapless plight!
    Still there are five lines--ranged aright.
    These Gallic bonds, I feared, would fright
        My easy Muse. They did, till you--
                    _You_ bid me try!

    "That makes them eight.--The port's in sight:
    Tis all because your eyes are bright!
        Now just a pair to end in "oo,"--
        When maids command, what can't we do!
    Behold! The RONDEAU--tasteful, light--
                        You bid me try!"

A study of rondeaus will show, both in ancient and modern examples,
some little alteration of the rhyme-order, and a few trivial
differences in other respects. But as the sonnet has evolved through
many stages into one accepted shape that is now permanently fixed as
its true type, so the rondeau of Voiture may be taken as the typical
form to be imitated--the one that has, by process of selection,
been proved to be the best to display the subject of the poem, and
to work-in the refrains to the best advantage. Like the sonnet, the
perfected form is jealously guarded. The genius which consists in
breaking rules is looked upon with suspicion in all these forms, but
especially in this one. There are some beautiful variations in old
and new examples where the shape is widely varied, but these stand
apart from the pure rondeaus of Voiture, and are generally still
more difficult to construct by reason of the additional laws the
writers have imposed on themselves. But the trifling evasion of the
rhyme-order, a want of exactitude on the repetition of the refrain,
is apt to be taken as evidence of lack of power to conform gracefully
to the bonds, and not as an outburst of genius that is too strong
to be confined in such puny fetters. But there are a few _poems_ in
these forms written fairly near the true shape, which, like some
irregular, but yet in themselves beautiful sonnets, are not to be
condemned solely for being impure in form. For the sake of poetry one
is ready to forgive much, but it must be only real _poetry_ that takes
such liberty; and all the time comes a wish that having gone so near
perfection of shape as well as of sense, the poet had taken the last
steps needful to make his poem perfect in each respect.

There is another form than Voiture's, which is equally a true
rondeau--that used by Villon. This is quoted, with Mr. Payne's
translation, to show clearly the ten-lined rondeau:--

                        LAY OU PLUTOST RONDEAU.

    Mort, j'appelle de ta rigueur,
    Qui m'as ma maistresse ravie,
    Et n'es pas encore assouvie,
    Se tu ne me tiens en langueur.
    Onc puis n'euz force ne vigueur
    Mais que te nuysoit-elle en vie,

    Deux estions, et n'avions qu'ung cueur;
    S'il est mort, force est que devie,
    Voire, ou que je vive sans vie,
    Comme les images, par cueur.

                                              --_François Villon._

                    LAY, OR RATHER RONDEAU.

    Death, of thy rigour I complain,
      That hast my lady torn from me,
      And yet wilt not contented be,
    Till from me too all strength be ta'en
    For languishment of heart and brain.
      What harm did she in life to thee,

    One heart we had betwixt us twain;
      Which being dead, I too must dree
      Death, or, like carven saints we see
    In choir, sans life to live be fain,

                                                   --_John Payne._

Mr. Austin Dobson's _Rose_, which appeared in _The Spectator_, was one
of the earliest, if not the very first, of the few examples of this
variety in English use.

The ROUNDEL, which, it must again be said, is simply a variation of the
rondeau, and not a distinct form, is grouped apart in this collection
for the sake of convenience. Since Mr. Swinburne devoted a volume,
entitled _A Century of Roundels_, to this particular form of the
rondeau, it has been used by other writers, and the name applied by
him has been kept by those who chose to follow the same form. Probably
Mr. Swinburne, during his readings in early French poetry, found poems
of this shape extant, or it may be that, for reasons of his own, he
formulated this variety, which slightly differs from any I have been
able to find. In Marot's _De l'Amoureux Ardant_ there is a likeness to
this shape, and in Villon's _Mort_ there is also a resemblance, but Mr.
Swinburne's roundel has eleven lines always, while Villon's has twelve,
rhyming a.b.b. a.a.b. refrain, a.b.b.a. refrain. Again, Mr. Swinburne's
roundel not only has a new rhyme order, A.B.A. refrain; B.A.B.; A.B.A.
refrain; but when the refrain consists of more than a single word it
rhymes with the B lines. The rhythm, too, of Mr. Swinburne's are in
every possible and--in any hands but his--impossible variety. The lines
vary from four to sixteen syllables, but are generally identical in
length in the same roundel. As an experiment in rhythm the _Century
of Roundels_ will, no doubt, always command attention, and there are
not wanting signs that his _Roundel_, keeping its length and other
details, may become a recognised shape in English verse; but it must
be distinctly understood that Mr. Swinburne is responsible for its
introduction, and to him, not to the early French poets, must be
awarded the honour of its invention, unless he himself refers it to an
earlier source for its authority; but it may be that with admiration
for the old shapes, he yet saw that for English use a variation was
preferable, and so rearranged the lines and the refrain of the olden
form in the way he considered best suited to our tongue.

The _Rondelet_ is a little form not noticed in De Gramont or De
Banville. Boulmier has printed several in his "Poésies en language du
XVe. Siècle" at the end of his volume, entitled _Les Villanelles_. Here
is one.

            François Villon,
    Sur tous rithmeurs, à qui qu'en poise,
            François Villon
    Du mieulx disant eut le guerdon
    Né de Paris empres Pontoise
    Il ne féit oncq vers à la toise
            François Villon.

Here we find he adopts a seven-line stanza with four eight-syllable
lines, and three of four syllables on two rhymes, a, b, a, a, b, b,
a. While strongly resembling the triolet and the early rondel, it yet
seems worth noting as a pretty variety for trifling subjects. There are
several in English verse.

The RONDEAU REDOUBLÉ would fail to suggest kinship with either form
of the Rondeau, did not it include the name in its designation, as
De Banville notes. It is probable that many more poems were grouped
under the word Rondeau than we now are able to trace. The one we are
now describing is in no way a doubled rondeau, and hardly suggests
that form more than any of these that have the features of limited
rhyme sounds, and more or less frequent reiteration of a refrain. The
Rondeau Redoublé is written in six octosyllabic quatrains, rhyming on
two alternate rhymes, with half the initial line used (unrhymed) after
the last verse. Its one distinctive feature is this:--Each line of the
first quatrain is used again in the same order to serve for the last
line of verses two, three, four, and five; while the last line of the
sixth has a new wording for itself, but takes, in addition, a final
refrain of the first half of the initial line of the poem to conclude
the whole. As the rhymes of the first quatrain are a. b. a. b., it must
necessarily--to use as refrain the first line rhyming on _a_--reverse
the order for the second verse, which is therefore b. a. b. a., and so
on alternately until the end of the rondeau redoublé. Specimens of its
use are extant by Marot, La Fontaine, Benserade, and others, while
in modern French it is not infrequent, but in English it is rare. The
examples quoted in this book comprise all that diligent search could
discover except one of too fugitive a character to reprint. As the
poems written in this form in English show the rules of the verse as
plainly as the original French, it has not been thought needful to
quote one in its native tongue, especially as De Gramont, De Banville,
and Jullien reprint specimens in their handbooks. A form so simple
that, if well wrought, and the refrain brought in with skill, it can be
read in a casual way, without discovering that it was written to exact
rules, deserves more use. The disposition of the subject is excellently
laid out; a "text," four "divisions," and "in conclusion," with the
text repeated, is a method so familiar to Englishmen on Sundays that
the order for variations on the initial theme is peculiarly easy: nor
need the result be the least like a sermon, although this description
of its shape is suggestive of one.

Another form, the GLOSE, resembles the Rondeau Redoublé in many ways;
indeed, it may be almost looked upon as a freer form of that poem.
It appears, however, to be of distinct origin, and very rare in
French poetry, although much used in Spanish and Portuguese verse. It
begins, like the Rondeau Redoublé, with a quatrain, here called the
_texte_;--this is usually a quotation from a former poet. This text
the Glose proceeds to comment on, or amplify, in four stanzas of ten
lines, closing each as in the rondeau redoublé, with one of the lines
of the text in the original order; but the necessity for restricting
the rhymes to two is not observed here. Each stanza has the sixth,
ninth, and tenth (the refrain) line, rhyming on the same sound, but
the others appear to be chosen at the fancy of the writer, while the
final refrain of the rondeau redoublé is also wanting in the glose.
First employed solely for serious themes of religion or philosophy, it
is now in France, like the once sacred triolet, devoted to parody and
the lightest forms of humour. Owing to the impossibility of collating
the mass of periodical literature of the last ten or fifteen years, it
would be rash to say that the _glose_ has never appeared in English,
but not one has been discovered to include in this book. Yet, as De
Gramont places the shape among those he includes as frequently used in
France, it seemed best to give here a brief outline of its form. De
Banville quotes one by Jean François Sarazin formed on the sonnet "de
IOB" by Benserade, where fourteen quatrains are ended by the lines of
the sonnet, employed in their original order. This form offers a field
for serious comment or sarcastic parody that deserves working.

The SESTINA, invented by the famous troubadour, Arnaut Daniel, at the
end of the thirteenth century, has not been used in French poetry so
often as the ballade and rondeau. There are specimens in the poetry
of Pontus de Thyard, and one in the Pleiade of the sixteenth century,
besides many others, but it has been comparatively an exotic in French
poetry, as in English, until recent years. That it was used and admired
by Dante and Petrarch, alone gives the sestina a royal precedence over
all of the other forms. Many judges consider it to be the supreme work
of poetic art in fixed forms, while others claim similar distinction
for the chant royal, and not a few for the sonnet. To distinguish
between the charms of these three royal forms would need a Paris, nor
is it necessary to do so, since each will to his own taste, no matter
who claims authority on the ever-disputed question of supreme beauty.
Mr. Hueffer in his "Troubadours" has a chapter so full of interest and
teeming with information of the growth of the stanza, that in despair
of condensing its knowledge within the space possible here, the mere
notice of it must suffice. De Gramont give the rules of the poem as
written by the originator and followers in Italy, Spain, and Portugal:--

1st.--The Sestina has six stanzas, each of six lines, these being of
the same length.

2nd.--The lines of the six verses end with the six same words, not
rhyming with each other; these end words are chosen exclusively from
two syllabled nouns.

3rd.--The arrangement of these six terminal words follows a regular law
(a somewhat complex one, which is replaced in modern poetry by the one
given below).

4th.--The piece closes with a three-line stanza, using the six words,
three at the end; the other three, placed in the middle of its lines.

But, as now written, the words of the sestina at times rhyme with each
other; if so, De Banville says they should be in two rhymes alone (as
Mr. Swinburne uses them), but other writers allow three rhymes. But
these details all belong to the subtle laws of the verse which it is
not possible to include here. De Gramont's _Sestines_ is, perhaps, the
best authority for study.

For our purpose, enough to say that the six end-words must repeat
unchanged in sound and spelling throughout each succeeding verse.
The order in which they occur is best expressed by a numerical
formula. If the rules themselves were compressed, a more complex and
incomprehensible jargon of firsts and seconds and thirds, etc., could
hardly be found. The first verse has, of course, the initial order, 1,
2, 3, 4, 5, 6; the second, 6, 1, 5, 2, 4, 3; the third, 3, 6, 4, 1,
2, 5; the fourth, 5, 3, 2, 6, 1, 4; the fifth, 4, 5, 1, 3, 6, 2; the
sixth, 2, 4, 6, 5, 3, 1; the last half-stanza ends with 2, 4, 6, and
uses 1, 3, 5 at the beginning (not the first word always) of the line,
or at the half-line in rhymes that permit their introduction there. It
will be seen that no end-word occurs more than once in the same place,
and that the end-word of every stanza is invariably chosen to take its
place as terminal of the first line of the next verse.

As though this feat in rhyming were not complex enough, a double
sestina of twelve verses of twelve lines has been sometimes written.
There are two, at least, of these _tours de force_ in English--one,
"The Complaint of Lisa," in Mr. Swinburne's _Poems and Ballads_, Second
Series; another, by Mr. George Barlow, in _A Life's Love_, entitled
"Alone." It was hoped to include these, but the required space in
this little book would have excluded so many specimens of smaller
poems, that the desire to make this collection as widely varied and
representative as possible forbade their quotation.

THE TRIOLET, as we know it, may be regarded as almost an epitome of
the other forms, in its limited space. It introduces one refrain three
times, and the second refrain twice, keeps strictly to two rhymes, and
is inflexible in its laws, brief though it be. One poet says of it,
"It is charming--nothing can be more ingeniously mischievous, more
playfully sly, than this tiny trill of epigrammatic melody turning
so simply upon its own innocent axis." Those who are unaware of the
rules that govern this little stanza, yet often fall in love with the
verse itself, possibly because a good example has a pretty sequence
of sound, that allures the ear by its musical jingle, and reads like
a spontaneous and easy impromptu. Nevertheless, the subtle art needed
to acquire the ease that is the charm of a good triolet is generally
the result of infinite care. Few things are more simple than to write
a triolet--of a sort--yet the triolet affords so little space to
explain its motif, and within its five lines must tell its story, and
also carry the three other repeated ones easily, and with a definite
meaning. To introduce the refrain naturally as the only thing to say,
and yet with an air of freshness and an unexpected recognition of a
phrase heard before, is in itself no mean difficulty, even in the
ballade and rondeau; but when it comes three times in eight lines, and
has a second line attached to it on its first and last appearance,
it is a matter of small wonder that the successful triolets are not
very numerous. That the ideally perfect triolet is as yet unwritten,
or at least represented by very few, it may be urged; but if that be
true, it should only provoke more attempts, one would fancy. It might
be pertinent to ask, if this is the chief objection, how many ideally
perfect poems in any set shape, or in free form, the world acknowledges?

The triolet consists (to quote Mr. Dobson) of _eight_ lines with _two_
rhymes. The first pair of lines are repeated as the seventh and eighth,
while the first is repeated as the fourth. The order of the rhymes is
thus as follows:--a. b. a. a. a. b. a. b. The example (on page 214)
by--of all persons in the world--a grave French magistrate, Jacques
Ranchin, has been christened by Ménage the "King of _Triolets_."

The first triolet known is in the Cléomadés of Adenèz-le-Roi
(1258-1297), a poem of 20,000 verses. In old examples the triolet was
devoted to grave verse, but, as M. de Gramont shows, it has now not
only abandoned the old ten syllable lines, and is written in those of
eight and often six syllables, but from the elegiac dignity of its
former subjects, it has become in French verse the form especially
devoted to the most ephemeral and trivial subjects. Since M. de
Banville renewed its use, triolets are common in French newspapers, and
with all due deference be it said--possibly only thereby exposing my
own ignorance of the subtle charm conveyed to their readers by their
"argot" and "idiom"--as inferior as they are plentiful. There is one,
however, that has justly won great favour since its appearance in _Odes
Funnambulesques_ of M. Theodore de Banville.

These two French examples (on page 214) are hackneyed by frequent
quotation, but are so generally regarded as the most successful of
their class that it seemed best not to omit them, nor this one by
Froissart, given in most authorities, and called a rondeau by the
writer (rondel, rondeau, and triolet being evidently regarded as but
one form in his day--the beginning of the fifteenth century), and the
modern grouping completely unknown:--

    Mon coer s'esbat en oudourant la rose
    Et s'esjoïst en regardant ma dame.
    Trop mieulz me vault l'une que l'autre chose,
    Mon coer s'esbat en oudourant la rose,
    L'oudour m'est bon, mès dou regart je n'ose
    Juer trop fort, je le vous jur par m'ame
    Mon coer s'esbat en oudourant la rose
    Et s'esjoïst en regardant ma dame.


The weak point of the Triolet being the monotony of its refrain, every
attempt, at giving a new accent to the words, short of actual punning,
is welcomed as a relief. There is an air composed by Charles Delioux,
to which all triolets in the pure form may be sung. De Banville
quotes the melody in his "Odes Funnambulesques." Most people who have
attempted to make rhymes know that when once a haunting melody gains
control the words and sentences will try and fit themselves to it; so
perhaps a would-be writer of triolets could secure correct form by
learning this tune and writing his triolets to it. It is quite certain
that this alone would not ensure a good poem, but it might keep one
to the usual rhythm and exact number of syllables, with the correct
musical accent, singularly near, if not identical, with the poetical
one, when properly used. A quaint example found by Mr. Dobson in an old
French play is given on page 214, as it has not hitherto been printed
in England.

The VILLANELLE has been called "the most ravishing jewel worn by the
Muse Erato." The large number of Villanelles in modern English was the
most unexpected find that came to light in the course of collecting
material for the present volume. Many of these fulfil a condition now
held strictly binding, since promulgated by Joseph Boulmier in his own
Villanelles--that is, that their length should imitate the example of
Jean Passerat's famous model, and be complete in nineteen lines. The
rules sound simple, and the result must read easily; but the ease is
only to be attained by an elaborate amount of care in production, which
those who read only would hardly suspect existed. The accepted model
for all to follow will be found on page 242. The example that follows
is an interesting translation by Boulmier of Mr. Dobson's Villanelle,
"When I saw you last, Rose," first printed by his permission in
_Longman's Magazine_ (under the heading "At the Sign of the Ship") for
July 1887:--


    Vous étiez encore petite
    Rose, la dernière fois...
    Dieu! que le temps passe vite.

    Fleur innocente qu'abrite
    Tendrement l'ombre des bois
    Vous étiez encore petite.

    Et déjà la marguerite
    Va s'effeuillant sous vos doigts...
    Dieu! que le temps passe vite!

    Oh, comme se précipite
    La vie. A peine j'y crois...
    Vous étiez encor petite.

    Dans votre sein qui palpite
    Se glisse un hôte sournois...
    Dieu! que le temps passe vite.

    Chez vous Cupidon s'invite:
    Adieu la paix d'autrefois!
    Vous étiez encore petite:
    Dieu! que le temps passe vite!

The Villanelle is written in five three-lined stanzas, concluding with
one of four lines. It will be seen that the refrain occupies eight of
the nineteen lines, and is of paramount importance; taken from the
first and third line of the first stanza, the two supply alternately
the last lines from the second to the fifth verse, and both conclude
the quatrain which ends the villanelle. Two rhymes only are allowed.
The refrains must repeat in the order quoted in the example, the first
refrain to conclude the second and fifth stanzas, the second refrain
for the first, third, and fifth, and both for the sixth.

"The primitive _Villanelle_ was, in truth, a 'shepherd's song,' and,
according to custom, its 'thoughts should be full of sweetness and
simplicity,'" a hint given in a "Note on some Foreign Forms of Verse"
that has been taken to heart by later writers, who almost invariably
select pastoral or idyllic subjects for this most artificial but dainty
lyric. Mr. Joseph Boulmier's "_Les Villanelles_," Paris, 1878, contains
a valuable essay on the history and construction of the poem, and a
series of forty original Villanelles, with twenty-two other poems, all
of singular beauty.

The LAI and the VIRELAI are so nearly related that they must be
considered together. De Gramont says, that the _lai_ has been unused
since the earliest days in French poetry, but as it is invariably
quoted in all treatises on the art, he prints a seventeenth century
one, evidently written as a specimen to illustrate its laws. De
Banville cites the following by Pere Mourgues, from his _Traité de la


    Sur l'appui du Monde
    Que faut-il qu'on fonde
    Cette mer profonde
    Et débris féconde
    Fait voir
    Calme au matin l'onde;
    Et l'orage y gronde
    Le Soir.

As no examples of the Lai are included in this volume, by the courtesy
of the author I am allowed to quote the following:--

                             FROM OVERSEA.

        From oversea--
    Violets, for memories,
        I send to thee.

    Let them bear thought of me,
        With pleasant memories
    To touch the heart of thee,
        Far oversea.

    A little way it is for love to flee,
        Love wing'd with memories,
    Hither to thither oversea.

                                                --_William Sharp._

In the French example the form is seen to be composed of couplets of
five syllable lines, all on the same rhyme, separated by single lines
of two syllables, also on one rhyme throughout the stanza, which
therefore employs but two rhymes. The number of lines in each verse
was not fixed, nor the number of verses in the complete poem. The LAI
has preserved a curious old tradition in the form it appears either
in writing or print. As in the verse quoted, the first letter of each
line begins exactly under the preceding one; not with the short line
indented--that is coming under the middle of the larger ones--usual
in other poems composed of lines of irregular length. This detail was
called _Arbre fourchu_ (a forked tree), from the fanciful resemblance
of a trunk with bare branches projecting, found by imaginative persons
in its appearance on paper.

In the Lai each fresh stanza of the poem has its own two rhyme sounds,
without reference to the preceding ones. By curtailing this liberty,
and compelling each succeeding stanza to take the rhyme for its longer
lines, from the short line of the preceding verse the Virelai is

The VIRELAI (ancien) is a lai that preserves a sequence of rhymes
throughout. For example, in a twelve-line stanza the rhymes are A. A.
b. A. A. b. A. A. b. A. A. b. (the long lines being marked by capital
letters, and the shorter by small ones). Therefore, to follow the rules
of the virelai, the next verse must have its rhymes B. B. c. B. B. c.
B. B. c. B. B. c., and the next C. C. d. C. C. d., and so on until the
last verse (taking seven verses for an example) would have G. G. a. G.
G. a. G. G. a. G. G. a., its short lines rhyming with the two first
lines of the poem. Thus each rhyme appears twice, once in its longer
couplets, once in the short single lines. In the English examples this
rule is preserved, but the length of the lines are frequently varied.

The VIRELAI (Rhythme d'Alain Chartier) by Boulmier may be quoted as a
form yet unused (I believe) in England.

    Triste remembrance!
    Hé! Dieu! quand i'y pense
    Ce m'est grand penance:
    Las! de ma iouuence
    A passé la flour.

    Sanz doubter meschance,
    Bercé d'esperance
    Plain de desirance
    Auecq Oubliance
    Ay faict long seiour.

    Nice troubadour
    Assoty pastour
    Serf ie feus d' Amour
    Mais de ma folour
    Ie n' ay repentance.

    Ouyl, maugré Doulour
    Bel Aage engignour
    En moy fay retour,
    Ne fust-ce qu'vng iour...
    Et ie recommence.

The rhymes are a, a, a, a, b; a, a, a, b; b, b, b, b, a; b, b, b, b,
a. As but one example has come to notice, so it must speak for itself,
for it would be unfair to deduce rules from a single specimen. Before
leaving this heading there is another form, the _Virelai nouveau_,
singularly unlike its name. It is curious that both the Rondeau
Redoublé and this one, masquerading under the names of well-known
forms, should be each unlike their unqualified title, and yet so nearly
akin to the other.

The _Virelai nouveau_ is written throughout in two rhymes. Like the
_rondeau redoublé_, its first stanza serves as refrain for the later
ones, but its initial verse is but a couplet, and the two lines
close each stanza alternately until the last, where they appear both
together, but in inverse order. Unfortunately, space forbids an example
being quoted in its complete length. The one usually chosen is "Le
Rimeur Rebuté;" this commences with the couplet--

    Adieu vous dy, triste Lyre,
    C'est trop apprêter à rire.

Then follows a five-line stanza, rhyming a, a, b, a, a, with "Adieu
vous dy," etc., for its last line; then an eight-lined one rhymed
a, b, a, a, b, a, b, a, the last line being "_C'est trop_," etc.;
that is followed by a four-line one closing with first line; then
a sixteen-line one, using the second line for its refrain; then a
seventeen-line one, with first line ending it; and finally a five-line
stanza, its last lines being--

    C'est trop apprêter à rire,
    Adieu vous dy, triste lyre.

If this description conveys its intended meaning, it will be seen that
the verses are singularly irregular in form, and choose both the order
of the rhymes and the length of the verses exactly at the will of the
poet; but each paragraph must not only use its proper refrain to close
with, but must bring it in naturally and easily as an inherent part of
the verse. The last two lines in the inverted order must also be worked
in with equal skill. Excepting one by Mr. Austin Dobson, that appeared
in _Evening Hours_ about 1878, this form has been unused, or at least
unpublished, in English verse.

       *       *       *       *       *

The poems in the following collections have been chosen for several
reasons--some for their intrinsic excellence, some as examples of pure
form, some for their bold attempts to produce variations from the
typical models. There has been no limit to the subjects, since the
purpose was to give a representative group of the rhythms, treated in
the most diverse ways. Even burlesque and diatribe of the use of the
forms, masquerading in guise of the enemy they professed to attack,
have been welcomed, as the points of the construction of the verse
are often seen more clearly in such examples. For similar reasons
the parody of the pioneer Ballade, Mr. Austin Dobson's _Prodigals_,
is quoted, since the doubtful honour of parody is at least a proof
of wide popularity, the only others marked in this way being Mr.
Swinburne's '_Dreamland_' and Mr. Lang's '_Primitive Man_.' Here,
too, in default of a better place, it may be noted that Mr. Henley's
'Villonism' is not an imitation of the incomprehensible ballades in
'Jargon' or 'Jobelin,' but a paraphrase in thieves' patter of to-day of
Villon's _Ballade of Good Counsel_.

It may be that such a medley of themes handled in so many different
ways, was never of set purpose grouped side by side before, but is to
be hoped that a method in the madness will be found. While conscious
of a few noteworthy examples, Rossetti's _Translations from Villon_ to
wit, being not included for reasons beyond my control, so it may be
that one or two here inserted would have been replaced by later comers,
had they not gone to the printer's eternity of stereotype. Started as
a collection, but turned perforce to a selection, from the increasing
number available, they yet do not aim so much at being a selection of
the best work solely, as of the best and least-accessible examples.
This explanation of the progress and purpose of the volume is offered
in common fairness both to its readers and to those authors who have
permitted their works to be included, also to those who by oversight or
too late discovery on my part have no examples of their poetry included

       *       *       *       *       *

[Note to page xxxvi.--For Wyatt's Rondeaus, and alteration of the same
into Sonnets by Tottel, in his _Miscellany_, 1557, see Mr. Austin
Dobson's Note in the _Athenæum_.]

#The Ballade, The Double Ballade, and The Chant Royal.#

_Ballade en huitains d' octosyllabes._

     Chant de May.

    _En ce beau mois delicieux,_
    _Arbres, fleurs et agriculture,_
    _Qui, durant l' yver soucieux,_
    _Avez esté en sepulture,_
    _Sortez pour servir de pasture_
    _Aux troupeaux du plus grand Pasteur:_
    _Chacun de vous en sa nature,_
    _Louez le nom de Createur._

    _Les servans d' amour furieux_
    _Parlent de l' amour vaine et dure,_
    _Où vous, vrays amans curieux_
    _Parlez de l' amour sans laidure._
    _Allez aux champs sur la verdure_
    _Ouir l' oyseau, parfait chanteur;_
    _Mais du plaisir, si peu qu'il dure_
    _Louez le nom de Createur._

    _Quand vous verrez rire les Cieux_
    _Et la terre en sa floriture,_
    _Quand vous verrez devant vos yeux_
    _Les eaux lui bailler nourriture,_
    _Sur peine de grand forfaiture_
    _Et d' estre larron et menteur,_
    _N' en louez nulle creature,_
    _Louez le nom de Createur._


    _Prince, pensez, veu la facture,_
    _Combien est puissant le facteur;_
    _Et vous aussi, mon escriture,_
    _Louez le nom de Createur._

                                              --CLEMENT MAROT.


    In these prosaic days
        Of politics and trade,
    Where seldom fancy lays
        Her touch on man or maid,
        The sounds are fled that strayed
    Along sweet streams that ran;
        Of song the world's afraid;
    Where are the Pipes of Pan?

    Within the busy maze
        Wherein our feet are stayed,
    There roam no gleesome fays
        Like those which once repaid
        His sight who first essayed
    The stream of song to span,
        Those spirits are all laid.
    Where are the Pipes of Pan?

    Dry now the poet's bays;
        Of song-robes disarrayed
    He hears not now the praise
        Which erst those won who played
        On pipes of rushes made,
    Before dull days began
        And love of song decayed.
    Where are the Pipes of Pan?


    Prince, all our pleasures fade;
        Vain all the toils of man;
    And fancy cries dismayed,
        Where are the Pipes of Pan?

                                              OSCAR FAY ADAMS.


    In the mud of the Cambrian main
        Did our earliest ancestor dive:
    From a shapeless albuminous grain
        We mortals our being derive.
        He could split himself up into five,
    Or roll himself round like a ball;
        For the fittest will always survive,
    While the weakliest go to the wall.

    As an active ascidian again
        Fresh forms he began to contrive,
    Till he grew to a fish with a brain,
        And brought forth a mammal alive.
        With his rivals he next had to strive,
    To woo him a mate and a thrall;
        So the handsomest managed to wive
    While the ugliest went to the wall.

    At length as an ape he was fain
        The nuts of the forest to rive;
    Till he took to the low-lying plain,
        And proceeded his fellow to knive.
        Thus did cannibal men first arrive,
    One another to swallow and maul;
        And the strongest continued to thrive
    While the weakliest went to the wall.


    Prince, in our civilised hive
        Now money's the measure of all;
    And the wealthy in coaches can drive
        While the needier go to the wall.

                                                  GRANT ALLEN.


    Thank Heaven, in these despondent days,
        I have at least one faithful friend,
    Who meekly listens to my lays,
        As o'er the darkened downs we wend.
        Nay, naught of mine may him offend;
    In sooth he is a courteous wight,
        His constancy needs no amend--
    My shadow on a moonlight night.

    Too proud to give me perjured praise,
        He hearkens as we onward tend,
    And ne'er disputes a doubtful phrase,
        Nor says he cannot comprehend.
        Might God such critics always send!
    He turns not to the left or right,
        But patient follows to the end--
    My shadow on a moonlight night.

    And if the public grant me bays,
        On him no jealousies descend;
    But through the midnight woodland ways,
        He velvet-footed will attend;
        Or where the chalk cliffs downward bend
    To meet the sea all silver-bright,
        There will he come, most reverend--
    My shadow on a moonlight night.


    O wise companion, I commend
        Your grace in being silent quite;
    And envy with approval blend--
        My shadow on a moonlight night.

                                                WILLIAM BLACK.


    From country, from coast and from city,
      From nowhere and goodness knows where,
    The visitors come without pity,
      There is not a corner to spare;
      And students with work to prepare
    Must charter a captive balloon
      And study aloft in the air,
    For the May Week has fallen in June.

    The grinding of feet that are gritty
      So ceaseless on landing and stair;
    The notes of some drawing-room ditty
      Disturb the recluse in his lair
      And cause him to clutch at his hair
    As he toils in the hot afternoon;
      But nobody hears if he swear,
    For the May Week has fallen in June.

    Then the damsels supposing its pretty
      Their art-curtain patterns to wear,
    And the youths who conceive they are witty,
      Came round to be stared at, and stare.
      And amateur buglers that blare,
    And singers that howl to the moon,
      Are more than the system can bear;
    For the May Week has fallen in June.


    Friend, do not be caught in the snare,
      And strive not to sing or to spoon,
    Your tripos is all your affair,
      For the May Week has fallen in June.

                                    From the '_Cambridge Meteor._'


    Says Herbert: Pray, list to my notion,
      All ye who the truth would invite;
    Be Agnostics, and spurn the emotion
      That ghosts and the gospels excite.
      In th' Unknown do I find all delight,
    And in Infinite Energy see
      All casual cravings unite--
    And that's the religion for me.

    Says Frederic: Pray list to _my_ notion,
      Away with Impersonal Might,
    To Humanity tender promotion,
      And worship the idëal wight.
      Though from stock that is Simian hight
    He may trace out a pure pedigree,
      Yet to Man will I anthems recite--
    And that's the religion for me.

    Says Wilfrid: Pray, list to _my_ notion,
      On the hip I will infidels smite;
    'Tis only through Christian devotion
      That virtues with vices can fight.
      Whate'er may Theology write,
    Whatever the Church may decree,
      My soul shall acknowledge as right--
    And that's the religion for me.


                 (_Voice of the bewildered one._)

    O faith full of riddle and rite,
      O philosophies deep as the sea,
    In this posse of problems polite,
      Prithee, where's the religion for me?

                                                COTSFORD DICK.


    The sunlight sways the summer sky,
      Quivers with breath each quicken'd blade,
    The birds with one another vie
      To move to mirth the grove and glade,
      While yonder solemn cavalcade
    Winds o'er the glebe in gloom august,
      Chanting a dead man's serenade,
    Ashes to ashes, dust to dust.

    A smile is mated to a sigh,
      One flashes ere the other fade,
    Farce arm-in-arm with tragedy,
      So struts the motley masquerade.
      Youth deems for joy the world is made,
    Till disappointment deals disgust,
      Disease defiles the last decade,
    Ashes to ashes, dust to dast.

    Within the grave our earnest eye
      Beholds a brother's body laid,
    Around us sombre hirelings ply
      The unctuous usage of their trade.
      Beneath the hedgerow laughs a maid,
    Held in a lover's arm robust;
      One day for her it shall be said,
    Ashes to ashes, dust to dust.


    Life, dost thou still possess the shade
      Of him in earth so rudely thrust?
    Canst thou the sentence yet evade,
      Ashes to ashes, dust to dust?

                                                COTSFORD DICK.


                         Of the Spanish Armada.

    King Philip had vaunted his claims;
      He had sworn for a year he would sack us;
    With an army of heathenish names
      He was coming to fagot and stack us;
      Like the thieves of the sea he would track us,
    And shatter our ships on the main;
      But we had bold Neptune to back us,--
    And where are the galleons of Spain?

    His carackes were christened of dames
      To the kirtles whereof he would tack us;
    With his saints and his gilded stern-frames,
      He had thought like an egg-shell to crack us:
      Now Howard may get to his Flaccus,
    And Drake to his Devon again,
      And Hawkins bowl rubbers to Bacchus,--
    For where are the galleons of Spain?

    Let his Majesty hang to St. James
      The axe that he whetted to hack us;
    He must play at some lustier games
      Or at sea he can hope to out-thwack us;
      To his mines of Peru he would pack us
    To tug at his bullet and chain;
      Alas that his Greatness should lack us!--
    But where are the galleons of Spain?


      GLORIANA!--the Don may attack us
    Whenever his stomach be fain;
      He must reach us before he can rack us, ...
    And where are the galleons of Spain?

                                                AUSTIN DOBSON.


    Chicken-skin, delicate, white,
      Painted by Carlo Vanloo,
    Loves in a riot of light,
      Roses and vaporous blue;
      Hark to the dainty _frou-frou_!
    Picture above if you can,
      Eyes that could melt as the dew,--
    This was the Pompadour's fan!

    See how they rise at the sight,
      Thronging the _OEil de Boeuf_ through,
    Courtiers as butterflies bright,
      Beauties that Fragonard drew,
    _Talon-rouge_, falbala, queue,
      Cardinal, Duke,--to a man,
      Eager to sigh or to sue,--
    This was the Pompadour's fan!

    Ah! but things more than polite
      Hung on this toy, _voyez vous_!
    Matters of state and of might,
      Things that great ministers do;
      Things that, maybe, overthrew
    Those in whose brains they began;
      Here was the sign and the cue,--
    This was the Pompadour's fan!


    Where are the secrets it knew?
      Weavings of plot and of plan?
    --But where is the Pompadour, too?
      _This_ was the Pompadour's _Fan_!

                                                AUSTIN DOBSON.


"_C'est imiter quelqu'un que de planter des choux._"

                                           --ALFRED DE MUSSET.

    If they hint, O Musician, the piece that you played
      Is nought but a copy of Chopin or Spohr;
    That the ballad you sing is but merely "conveyed"
      From the stock of the Arnes and the Purcells of yore;
      That there's nothing, in short, in the words or the score,
    That is not as out-worn as the "Wandering Jew;"
      Make answer--Beethoven could scarcely do more--
    That the man who plants cabbages imitates, too!

    If they tell you, Sir Artist, your light and your shade
      Are simply "adapted" from other men's lore;
    That--plainly to speak of a "spade" as a "spade"--
      You've "stolen" your grouping from three or from four;
      That (however the writer the truth may deplore),
    Twas Gainsborough painted _your_ "Little Boy Blue;"
      Smile only serenely--though cut to the core--
    For the man who plants cabbages imitates, too!

    And you too, my Poet, be never dismayed
      If they whisper your Epic--"Sir Eperon d' Or"--
    Is nothing but Tennyson thinly arrayed
      In a tissue that's taken from Morris's store;
      That no one, in fact, but a child could ignore
    That you "lift" or "accommodate" all that you do;
      Take heart--though your Pegasus' withers be sore--
    For the man who plants cabbages imitates, too!

    POSTSCRIPTUM.--And you, whom we all so adore,
      Dear Critics, whose verdicts are always so new!--
    One word in your ear. There were Critics before ...
      And the man who plants cabbages imitates, too!

                                                AUSTIN DOBSON.


                      (Ballade à double refrain.)

    When the roads are heavy with mire and rut,
      In November fogs, in December snows,
    When the North Wind howls, and the doors are shut,
      There is place and enough for the pains of prose;--
      But whenever a scent from the whitethorn blows,
    And the jasmine-stars to the casement climb,
      And a Rosalind-face at the lattice shows,
    Then hey!--for the ripple of laughing rhyme!

    When the brain gets dry as an empty nut,
      When the reason stands on its squarest toes,
    When the mind (like a beard) has a "formal cut,"
      There is place and enough for the pains of prose;--
      But whenever the May-blood stirs and glows,
    And the young year draws to the "golden prime,"--
      And Sir Romeo sticks in his ear a rose,
    Then hey!--for the ripple of laughing rhyme!

    In a theme where the thoughts have a pedant strut
      In a changing quarrel of "Ayes" and "Noes,"
    In a starched procession of "If" and "But,"
      There is place and enough for the pains of prose;--
      But whenever a soft glance softer grows,
    And the light hours dance to the trysting-time,
      And the secret is told "that no one knows,"
    Then hey!--for the ripple of laughing rhyme!


    In the work-a-day world,--for its needs and woes,
    There is place and enough for the pains of prose;
    But whenever the May-bells clash and chime,
    Then hey!--for the ripple of laughing rhyme!

                                                AUSTIN DOBSON.


                                To A. L.

    Where are the cities of the plain?
      And where the shrines of rapt Bethel?
    And Calah built of Tubal-Cain?
      And Shinar whence King Amraphel
      Came out in arms, and fought, and fell,
    Decoyed into the pits of slime
      By Siddim, and sent sheer to hell;
    Where are the cities of old time?

    Where now is Karnak, that great fane
      With granite built, a miracle?
    And Luxor smooth without a stain,
      Whose graven scriptures still we spell?
      The jackal and the owl may tell,
    Dark snakes around their ruins climb,
      They fade like echo in a shell;
    Where are the cities of old time?

    And where is white Shusan, again,
      Where Vashti's beauty bore the bell,
    And all the Jewish oil and grain
      Were brought to Mithridath to sell,
      Where Nehemiah would not dwell,
    Because another town sublime
      Decoyed him with her oracle?
    Where are the cities of old time?


    Prince, with a dolorous, ceaseless knell,
      Above their wasted toil and crime
    The waters of oblivion swell:
      Where are the cities of old time?

                                                 EDMUND GOSSE.


    Love thou art sweet in the spring-time of sowing
        Bitter in reaping and salt as the seas,
    Lovely and soft when the young buds are growing
        Harsh when the fruitage is ripe on the trees:
        Yet who that hath plucked him thy blossom e'er flees
          Who that hath drunk of thy sweetness can part,
        Tho' he find when thy chalice is drained to the lees
          Ashes and dust in the place of a heart?

    'Tis myself that I curse at, the wild thoughts flowing
        Against myself built up of the breeze
    Like mountainous waves to my own o'erthrowing
        Strike and I tremble, my shivering knees
        Sink thro' the quicksands that round them freeze,
          From their treacherous hold I am loth to start:--
        In my breast laid bare, had you only the keys,
          Ashes and dust in the place of a heart.

    The world wide over young hearts are glowing
        With high held hopes we believed with ease,
    And have them still, but the saddest knowing
        Is the knowledge of how by slow degrees
        They slip from our side like a swarm of bees
          Bearing their sweetness away, and depart
        Leaving their stings in our bosom, with these
          Ashes and dust in the place of a heart.


    Love, free on the uplands, the lawns, and leas;
      Priced and sold in the World's base mart:
    But the same in the end; tho' at first it please,
      Ashes and dust in the place of a heart.

                                           JOHN CAMERON GRANT.


    Lady, around thy throat
      Gleameth the one gold hair;
    And none that hath taken note
      Of the first that he looked on fair,
      The moment his boyish air
        Was moved by that mystic breeze,
      But hath felt the spell of thy presence there,
        Lilith, the first Love sees!

    We sail in an open boat,
      'Mid breakers that rage and tear,
    And ply the oars by rote
      As over the waves we fare,
      But never a moment dare
        Gaze down at the Form by our knees,
      For her eyes that thro' Self and thro' Soul do stare,
        Lilith, the first Love sees!

    Circle of wall and moat,
      Vain as the thought to wear
    Cunning of knightly coat
      Steely and tempered rare,
      Against her mute despair;
        For none there is who frees
      His soul from her spell, who hath all in care,
        Lilith, the first Love sees!

_L' Envoi._

    Maid without mate or pair,
      From the Past's pale Presences,
    Who is there but next his heart doth bear
      Lilith, the first Love sees!

                                           JOHN CAMERON GRANT.


    Before the town had lost its wits,
      And scared the bravery from its beaux,
    When money-grubs were merely cits,
      And verse was crisp and clear as prose,
      Ere Chloë and Strephon came to blows
    For votes, degrees, and cigarettes,
      The world rejoiced to point its toes
    In Gigues, Gavottes, and Minuets.

    The solemn fiddlers touch their kits;
      The twinkling clavichord o'erflows
    With contrapuntal quirks and hits;
      And, with all measure and repose,
      Through figures grave as royal shows,
    With noble airs and pirouettes,
      They move, to rhythms HANDEL knows,
    In Gigues, Gavottes, and Minuets.

    O Fans and Swords, O Sacques and Mits,
      That was the better part you chose!
    You know not how those gamesome chits
      Waltz, Polka, and Schottische arose,
      Or how Quadrille--a kind of doze
    In time and tune--the dance besets;
      You aired your fashion till the close
    In Gigues, Gavottes, and Minuets.


      Muse of the many-twinkling hose,
    TERPSICHORE, O teach your pets
      The charm that shines, the grace that glows
    In Gigues, Gavottes, and Minuets.

                                                 W. E. HENLEY.


    Where are the passions they essayed,
      And where the tears they made to flow?
    Where the wild humours they portrayed
      For laughing worlds to see and know?
      Othello's wrath and Juliet's woe?
    Sir Peter's whims and Timon's gall?
      And Millamant and Romeo?--
    Into the night go one and all.

    Where are the braveries, fresh or frayed?
      The plumes, the armours--friend and foe?
    The cloth of gold, the rare brocade,
      The mantles glittering to and fro?
      The pomp, the pride, the royal show?
    The cries of war and festival?
      The youth, the grace, the charm, the glow?--
    Into the night go one and all.

    The curtain falls, the play is played:
      The Beggar packs beside the Beau;
    The Monarch troops, and troops the Maid;
      The Thunder huddles with the Snow.
      Where are the revellers high and low?
    The clashing swords? The lover's call?
      The dancers gleaming row on row?--
    Into the night go one and all.


      Prince, in one common overthrow
    The hero tumbles with the thrall:
      As dust that drives, as straws that blow,
    Into the night go one and all.

                                                 W. E. HENLEY.


    Lilacs glow, and jasmines climb,
        Larks are loud the livelong day.
    O the golden summer-prime!
        June takes up the sceptre of May,
        And the land beneath her sway
    Glows, a dream of flowerful closes,
        And the very wind's at play
    With Sir Love among the roses.

    Lights and shadows in the lime
        Meet in exquisite disarray.
    Hark! the rich recurrent rhyme
        Of the blackbird's roundelay!
        Where he carols, frank and gay,
    Fancy no more glooms or proses;
        Joyously she flits away
    With Sir Love among the roses.

    O the cool sea's slumbrous chime!
        O the links that beach the bay,
    Tricked with meadow-sweet and thyme,
        Where the brown bees murmur and stray!
        Lush the hedgerows, ripe the hay!
    Many a maiden, binding posies,
        Finds herself at Yea-and-Nay
    With Sir Love among the roses.


        Boys and girls, be wise, I pray!
    Do as dear Queen June proposes,
        For she bids you troop and stay
    With Sir Love among the roses.

                                                 W. E. HENLEY.


    Brown's for Lalage, Jones for Lelia,
        Robinson's bosom for Beatrice glows,
    Smith is a Hamlet before Ophelia.
        The glamour stays if the reason goes!
        Every lover the years disclose
    Is of a beautiful name made free.
        One befriends, and all others are foes.
    Anna's the name of names for me.

    Sentiment hallows the vowels of Delia;
        Sweet simplicity breathes from Rose;
    Courtly memories glitter in Celia;
        Rosalind savours of quips and hose,
        Araminta of wits and beaux,
    Prue of puddings, and Coralie
        All of sawdust and spangled shows;
    Anna's the name of names for me.

    Fie upon Caroline, Madge, Amelia--
        These I reckon the essence of prose!--
    Cavalier Katharine, cold Cornelia,
        Portia's masterful Roman nose,
        Maud's magnificence, Totty's toes,
    Poll and Bet with their twang of the sea,
        Nell's impertinence, Pamela's woes!
    Anna's the name of names for me.


    Ruth like a gillyflower smells and blows,
        Sylvia prattles of Arcadee,
    Sybil mystifies, Connie crows,
        Anna's the name of names for me!

                                                 W. E. HENLEY.


    There's a noise of coming, going,
        Budding, waking, vast and still.
    Hark, the echoes are yeo-hoing
        Loud and sweet from vale and hill!
        Do you hear it? With a will,
    In a grandiose lilt and swing,
        Nature's voices shout and trill ...
    'Tis the symphony of Spring!

    Rains are singing, clouds are flowing,
        Ocean thunders, croons the rill,
    And the West his clarion's blowing,
        And the sparrow tunes his quill,
        And the thrush is fluting shrill,
    And the skylark's on the wing,
        And the merles their hautboys fill--
    'Tis the symphony of Spring!

    Lambs are bleating, steers are lowing,
        Brisk and rhythmic clacks the mill.
    Kapellmeister April, glowing
        And superb with glee and skill,
        Comes, his orchestra to drill
    In a music that will ring
        Till the grey world yearn and thrill.
    'Tis the symphony of Spring!


    Princes, though your blood he chill,
        Here's shall make you leap and fling,
    Fling and leap like Jack and Jill!
        'Tis the symphony of Spring.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


                           (Double refrain.)

    With a ripple of leaves and a tinkle of streams
        The full world rolls in a rhythm of praise,
    And the winds are one with the clouds and beams-
        Midsummer days! midsummer days!
        The dusk grows vast; in a purple haze,
    While the West from a rapture of sunset rights,
        Faint stars their exquisite lamps upraise-
    Midsummer nights! O midsummer nights!

    The wood's green heart is a nest of dreams,
        The lush grass thickens and springs and sways,
    The rathe wheat rustles, the landscape gleams-
        Midsummer days! midsummer days!
        In the stilly fields, in the stilly ways,
    All secret shadows and mystic lights,
        Late lovers murmurous linger and gaze-
    Midsummer nights! O midsummer nights!

    There's a music of bells from the trampling teams,
        Wild skylarks hover, the gorses blaze,
    The rich, ripe rose as with incense steams--
        Midsummer days! midsummer days!
        A soul from the honeysuckle strays,
    And the nightingale as from prophet heights,
        Sings to the Earth of her million Mays-
    Midsummer nights! O midsummer nights!


    And its O! for my dear and the charm that stays-
    Midsummer days! midsummer days!
        Its O! for my Love and the dark that plights-
        Midsummer nights! O midsummer nights!

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


                           (Double refrain.)

    Spring at her height on a morn at prime,
      Sails that laugh from a flying squall,
    Pomp of harmony, rapture of rhyme-
      Youth is the sign of them, one and all.
      Winter sunsets and leaves that fall,
    An empty flagon, a folded page,
      A tumble-down wheel, a tattered ball-
    These are a type of the world of Age.

    Bells that clash in a gorgeous chime,
      Swords that clatter in outsets tall,
    The words that ring and the fames that climb-
      Youth is the sign of them, one and all.
      Old hymnals prone in a dusty stall,
    A bald blind bird in a crazy cage,
      The scene of a faded festival-
    These are a type of the world of Age.

    Hours that strut as the heirs of time,
      Deeds whose rumour's a clarion-call,
    Songs where the singers their souls sublime-
      Youth is the sign of them, one and all.
      A staff that rests in a nook of wall,
    A reeling battle, a rusted gage,
      The chant of a nearing funeral-
    These are a type of the world of Age.


    Struggle and sacrifice, revel and brawl-
    Youth is the sign of them, one and all.
      A smouldering hearth and a silent stage-
      These are a type of the world of Age.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    The sun across the meads glows bright;
        The river shines a silver sheet,
    And mirrors back the pearly light.
        In its warm gleam the shadows fleet,
        Earth seems in joy the heaven to greet;
    Heaven's love illumes the deep blue skies,
        And birds and flowers and streams repeat,
    'Where true love dwells is Paradise.'

    Beneath the hedge with May-bloom white
        An old man and a child, whose feet
    In cadence move to love's fond might;
        In its warm gleam the shadows fleet;
        Like op'ning flowers in morn's soft heat.
    A youth and maid whose beaming eyes
        Flash forth the thought their hearts secrete,
    'Where true love dwells is Paradise.'

    Within the minster's fane the rite
        Is breathed; down-pours His own to meet
    The glory of the Infinite:
        In its warm gleam the shadows fleet;
        Faith falls before the mercy-seat,
    And knows, though veiled to mortal eyes,
        There, there in loveliness complete,
    Where True Love dwells is Paradise.

    Past sounding brass are love's tones sweet,
        Than gold or gems more rare its price;
    In its warm gleam the shadows fleet;
        Where true love dwells is Paradise.

                                                  W. H. JEWITT.


    Where wide the forest boughs are spread,
        When Flora wakes with sylph and fay,
    Are crowns and garlands of men dead,
        All golden in the morning gay;
    Within this ancient garden grey
        Are clusters such as no man knows,
    Where Moor and Soldan bear the sway:
        _This is King Louis' orchard close._

    These wretched folk wave overhead,
        With such strange thoughts as none may say;
    A moment still, then sudden sped,
        They swing in a ring and waste away.
    The morning smites them with her ray;
        They toss with every breeze that blows,
    They dance where fires of dawning play:
        _This is King Louis' orchard close._

    All hanged and dead, they've summoned
        (With Hell to aid that hears them pray)
    New legions of an army dread,
        Now down the blue sky flames the day;
    The dew dries off; the foul array
        Of obscene ravens gathers and goes,
    With wings that flaps and beaks that flay:
        _This is King Louis' orchard close._


    Prince, where leaves murmur of the May,
        A tree of bitter clusters grows;
    The bodies of men dead are they,
        This is King Louis' orchard close.

                                                   ANDREW LANG.


    The soft wind from the south land sped,
        He set his strength to blow,
    O'er forests where Adonis bled
        And lily flowers a-row.
    He crossed the straits like streams that flow
        The ocean dark as wine
    To my true love to whisper low
        To be your Valentine.

    The spring-time raised her drowsy head,
        Besprent with drifted snow,
    "I'll send an April Day," she said,
        "To lands of wintry woe."
    He came; wan winter's overthrow
        With showers that sing and shine
    Pied daisies round your path to strow,
        To be your Valentine.

    Where sands of Egypt swart and red
        'Neath suns Egyptian glow,
    In places of the princely dead
        By the Nile's overflow,
    The swallow preened her wings to go,
        And for the North did pine,
    And fain would brave the frost, her foe,
        To be your Valentine.


    Spring, Swallow, South Wind, even so
        Their various voice combine,
    But that they crave on me bestow
        To be your Valentine.

                                                   ANDREW LANG.


                           (To J. A. Farrer.)

    He lived in a cave by the seas,
        He lived upon oysters and foes,
    But his list of forbidden degrees
        An extensive morality shows;
        Geological evidence goes
    To prove he had never a pan,
        But he shaved with a shell when he chose.
    'Twas the manner of Primitive Man!

    He worshipp'd the rain and the breeze,
        He worshipped the river that flows,
    And the Dawn, and the Moon, and the trees,
        And bogies, and serpents, and crows;
        He buried his dead with their toes
    Tucked up, an original plan,
        Till their knees came right under their nose,
    'Twas the manner of Primitive Man!

    His communal wives, at his ease,
        He would curb with occasional blows;
    Or his State had a queen, like the bees
        (As another philosopher trows):
        When he spoke it was never in prose,
    But he sang in a strain that would scan,
        For (to doubt it, perchance, were morose)
    'Twas the manner of Primitive Man!


        MAX, proudly your Aryans pose,
    But their rigs they undoubtedly ran,
        For, as every Darwinian knows,
    'Twas the manner of Primitive Man!

                                                   ANDREW LANG.


                        (To Constance Arkcoll.)

    When strawberry pottles are common and cheap,
        Ere elms be black, or limes be sere,
    When midnight dances are murdering sleep,
        Then comes in the sweet o' the year!
        And far from Fleet Street, far from here
    The Summer is Queen in the length of the land,
        And moonlight nights they are soft and clear,
    When fans for a penny are sold in the Strand.

    When clamour that doves in the lindens keep,
        Mingles with musical plash of the weir,
    Where drowned green tresses of crowsfoot creep,
        Then comes in the sweet o' the year!
        And better a crust and a beaker of beer,
    With rose-hung hedges on either hand,
        Than a palace in town and a prince's cheer,
    When fans for a penny are sold in the Strand!

    When big trout late in the twilight leap,
        When cuckoo clamoureth far and near,
    When glittering scythes in the hayfield reap,
        Then comes in the sweet o' the year!
        And it's oh to sail, with the wind to steer,
    Where kine knee-deep in the water stand,
        On a Highland loch, or a Lowland mere,
    When fans for a penny are sold in the Strand.


        Friend, with the fops while we dawdle here,
        Then comes in the sweet o' the year!
    And Summer runs out like grains of sand,
    When fans for a penny are sold in the Strand.

                                                   ANDREW LANG.


                         "Heigh-ho, the holly!
                       This life is most jolly."

    _This life's most jolly_, Amiens said
        Heigh-ho, the Holly! So sang he
    As the good duke was comforted
        By these reflections, so may we!
    The years may darken as they flee,
        And Christmas bring his melancholy;
    But round the old mahogany tree
        We drink, we sing _Heigh-ho, the Holly_!

    Though some are dead and some are fled
        To lands of summer over sea,
    The holly berry keeps his red,
        The merry children keep their glee;
    They hoard with artless secresy,
        This gift for Maude, and that for Molly,
    And Santa Claus he turns the key
        On Christmas Eve, _Heigh-ho, the Holly_!

    Amid the snow the birds are fed,
        The snow lies deep on lawn and lea,
    The skies are shining overhead,
        The robin's tame that was so free.
    Far North, at home, the "barley bree"
        They brew; they give the hour to folly.
    How "Rab and Allen cam' to prie"
        They sing; we sing _Heigh-ho, the Holly_!


    Friend, let us pay the wonted fee,
        The yearly tithe of mirth: be jolly!
    It is a duty so to be,
        Though half we sigh, _Heigh-ho, the Holly_!

                                                   ANDREW LANG.


    Our youth began with tears and sighs
        With seeking what we could not find;
    Our verses all were threnodies,
        In elegiacs still we whined;
        Our ears were deaf, our eyes were blind,
    We sought and knew not what we sought.
        We marvel, now we look behind:
    Life's more amusing than we thought!

    Oh! foolish youth, untimely wise!
        Oh! phantoms of the sickly mind!
    What? not content with seas and skies,
        With rainy clouds and southern wind,
        With common cares and faces kind,
    With pains and joys each morning brought?
        Ah, old and worn, and tired we find
    Life's more amusing than we thought!

    Though youth "turns spectre-thin and dies,"
        To mourn for youth we're not inclined;
    We set our souls on salmon-flies,
        We whistle where we once repined.
        Confound the woes of human-kind!
    By Heaven we're "well deceived," I wot;
        Who hum, contented or resigned,
    "Life's more amusing than we thought!"


        _O nate mecum_, worn and lined
    Our faces show, but that is naught;
        Our hearts are young 'neath wrinkled rind--
    Life's more amusing than we thought!

                                                   ANDREW LANG.


                     (After Theodore de Banville.)

    Rhyme, in a late disdainful age,
        Hath many and many an eager knight,
    Each man of them, to print his page,
        From every quarter wings his flight!
    What tons of manuscript alight
        Here in the Row, how many a while
    For all can rhyme, when all can write--
        The master's yonder in the Isle!

    Like Otus some, with giant rage,
        But scarcely with a giant's might,
    Ossa on Pelion engage
        To pile, and scale Parnassus' height!
    And some, with subtle nets and slight,
        Entangle rhymes exceeding vile,[8]
    And wond'rous adjectives unite--
        The master's yonder in the Isle!

    Alas, the Muse they cannot cage
        These poets in a sorry plight!
    Vain is the weary war they wage,
        In vain they curse the Critic's spite!
    While grammar some neglect outright,
        While others polish with the file,
    The Fates contrive their toil to blight--
        The master's yonder in the Isle!


    Prince, Arnold's jewel-work is bright,
        And Browning, in his iron style,
    Doth gold on his rude anvil smite--
        The master's yonder in the Isle!

                                                   ANDREW LANG.

[8] For example 'dawning' and 'warning.'


    Fair islands of the silver fleece,
      Hoards of unsunned, uncounted gold,
    Whose havens are the haunts of Peace,
      Whose boys are in our quarrel bold;
    _Our_ bolt is shot, our tale is told,
      Our ship of state in storms may toss,
    But ye are young if we are old,
      Ye Islands of the Southern Cross!

    Aye, _we_ must dwindle and decrease,
      Such fates the ruthless years unfold;
    And yet we shall not wholly cease,
      We shall not perish unconsoled;
    Nay, still shall Freedom keep her hold
      Within the sea's inviolate fosse,
    And boast her sons of English mould,
      Ye Islands of the Southern Cross!

    All empires tumble--Rome and Greece--
      Their swords are rust, their altars cold!
    For us, the Children of the Seas,
      Who ruled where'er the waves have rolled,
    For us, in Fortune's books enscrolled,
      I read no runes of hopeless loss;
    Nor--while _ye_ last--our knell is tolled,
      Ye Islands of the Southern Cross!


    Britannia, when thy hearth's a-cold,
      When o'er thy grave has grown the moss,
    Still _Rule Australia_ shall be trolled
      In Islands of the Southern Cross!

                                                   ANDREW LANG.


                               (To M. C.)

    Who is it that weeps for the last year's flowers
        When the wood is aflame with the fires of spring,
    And we hear her voice in the lilac bowers
        As she croons the runes of the blossoming?
        For the same old blooms do the new years bring.
    But not to our lives do the years come so,
        New lips must kiss and new bosoms cling.--
    Ah! lost are the loves of the long ago.

    Ah! me for a breath of those morning hours
        When Alice and I went awandering
    Through the shining fields, and it still was ours
        To kiss and to feel we were shuddering--
        Ah! me, when a kiss was a holy thing.--
    How sweet were a smile from Maud, and oh!
        With Phyllis once more to be whispering.--
    Ah! lost are the loves of the long ago.

    But it cannot be that old Time devours
        Such loves as was Annie's and mine we sing,
    And surely beneficent heavenly powers
        Save Muriel's beauty from perishing;
        And if in some golden evening
    To a quaint old garden I chance to go,
        Shall Marion no more by the wicket sing?--
    Ah! lost are the loves of the long ago.

    In these lives of ours do the new years bring
        Old loves as old flowers again to blow?
    Or do new lips kiss and new bosoms cling?--
        Ah! lost are the loves of the long ago.

                                               R. LE GALLIENNE.


    O Love, whom I have never seen,
        Yet ever hope to see;
    The memory that might have been
        The hope that yet may be;
    The passion that persistently
        Makes all my pulses beat
    With unassuaged desire that we
        Some day may come to meet:

    This August night outspread serene,
        The scent of flower and tree,
    The fall of water that unseen
        Moans on incessantly,
    That line of fire, where breaks the sea
        In ripples at my feet;
    What mean they all, if not that we
        Some day may come to meet?

    About your window bowered in green
        The night wind wanders free,
    While out into the night you lean,
        And dream, but not of me,
    As now I dream of you who flee
        Before my dream complete
    The shadow of the day when we
        Some day may come to meet.


    Princess, while yet on lawn and lea
        The harvest moon is sweet,
    Ere August die, who knows but we
        Some day may come to meet?

"_Love in Idleness._"


    Where's _Heraclitus_ and his Flux
        Of Sense that never maketh stay?
    Or _Thales_, with whom water sucks
        Into itself both Clod and Clay?
    Or He, who in an evil Day
        ~Nomos~ and ~physis~ first employ'd;
    And of the Sum of Things doth say,
        They all are Atoms in the Void?

    Where's grave _Parmenides_? Death plucks
        His Beard: and by the _Velian_ Bay
    Sleeps _Zeno_; _Plato's_ Pen their Crux
        Of _One and Many_ doth portray.
    _Empedocles_ too, well-away,
        His taste for climbing, unalloy'd
    By Prudence, led him far astray:
        They all are Atoms in the Void.

    Where's _Socrates_ himself, who chucks
        Up _Physics_, makes of _Sophists_ hay,
    Into _Induction_ briskly tucks,
        And _Definitions_ frames alway?
    The good _Athenians_ him did slay,
        His _Dialectic_ them annoy'd;
    And his Disciples, where are they?
        They all are Atoms in the Void.


    Prince, tho' with these old names and grey
        Our peace of mind be half destroyed,
    Take comfort; say they what they may,
        They all are Atoms in the Void.

"_Love in Idleness._"


                    ~To rhodon to tôn erôtôn.~

    When Venus saw Ascanius sleep
        On sweet Cythera's snow-white roses
    His face like Adon's made her weep,
        And long to kiss him where he dozes;
    But fearing to disturb the boy,
        She kissed the pallid blooms instead,
    Which blushed and kept their blush for joy,
        When Venus kissed white roses red.

    Straight of these roses she did reap
        Sufficient store of pleasant posies,
    And coming from Cythera's steep
        Where every fragrant flower that grows is,
    She tossed them for the winds to toy
        And frolic with till they were dead.
    Heaven taught the earth a fair employ
        When Venus kissed white roses red.

    For each red rose the symbol deep
        In its sad, happy heart encloses
    Of kisses making love's heart leap,
        And every summer wind that blows is
    A prayer that ladies be not coy
        Of kisses ere brief life be sped.
    There gleamed more gold in earth's alloy
        When Venus kissed white roses red.


    All lovers true since windy Troy
        Flamed for a woman's golden head,
    You gained surcease from life's annoy
        When Venus kissed white roses red.

                                        JUSTIN HUNTLY MCCARTHY.


    The furious storm takes wing;
        Quenched is the fiery ray;
    And broken the frosty air's sting,
        For these hold mutable sway:
    Pain puts an end to its stay;
        Ills have a time to endure;
    One thing will not heal nor allay:
        For death there is no cure!

    For the good that the future may bring,
        We strive to exist to-day.
    With the veering vane we swing,
        When fate sweeps fortune away:
    Seldom will misery slay;
        And ever will hope allure;
    Yet one thing endureth for aye,
        For death there is no cure!

    Though life be an exquisite thing,
        Death shatters the curious clay;
    Though in frenzy we cry and we cling,
        There is none who can save us that day:
    So life is devoured as a prey,
        And in darkness for aye will immure;
    And silence for ever hath sway:
        For death there is no cure!


    O man, be ye sad, be ye gay,
        In the end there is one thing sure:
    Make out of life what ye may,
        For death there is no cure!

                                             HUNTER MACCULLOCH.


    When verdant youth sees life afar,
        And first sets out wild oats to sow,
    He puffs a stiff and stark cigar,
        And quaffs champagne of Mumm & Co.
        He likes not smoking yet; but though
    Tobacco makes him sick indeed,
        Cigars and wine he can't forego:--
    A slave is each man to the weed.

    In time his tastes more dainty are,
        And delicate. Become a beau,
    From out the country of the Czar
        He brings his cigarettes, and lo!
        He sips the vintage of Bordeaux.
    Thus keener relish shall succeed
        The baser liking we outgrow:--
    A slave is each man to the weed.

    When age and his own lucky star
        To him perfected wisdom show,
    The schooner glides across the bar,
        And beer for him shall freely flow,
        A pipe with genial warmth shall glow;
    To which he turns in direst need,
        To seek in smoke surcease of woe:--
    A slave is each man to the weed.


    Smokers! who doubt or con or pro,
        And ye who dare to drink, take heed!
    And see in smoke a friendly foe:--
        A slave is each man to the weed.

                                              BRANDER MATTHEWS.


    The native drama's sick and dying,
        So say the cynic critic crew:
    The native dramatist is crying--
        "Bring me the paste! Bring me the glue!
        Bring me the pen, and scissors, too!
    Bring me the works of E. Augier!
        Bring me the works of V. Sardou!
    I am the man to write a play!"

    For want of plays the stage is sighing,
        Such is the song the wide world through:
    The native dramatist is crying--
        "Behold the comedies I brew!
        Behold my dramas not a few!
    On German farces I can prey,
        And English novels I can hew;
    _I_ am the man to write a play!"

    There is, indeed, no use denying
        That fashion's turned from old to new:
    The native dramatist is crying--
        "Molière, good-bye! Shakespeare adieu!
        I do not think so much of you.
    Although not bad, you've had your day,
        And for the present you won't do.
        I am the man to write a play!"


    Prince of the stage, don't miss the cue,
        A native dramatist, I say
    To every cynic critic, "Pooh!
        I am the man to write a play!"

                                              BRANDER MATTHEWS.


    The heat wave sweeps along the street,
        And torrid ripples mark its flow;
    Successive billows follow fleet,
        And blister all things with their glow.
        No puff of air swings to and fro;
    No gentle zephyr stirs the trees.
        O for the winds that o'er ocean blow!
    O for a breath of the salt sea-breeze!

    Along the shadeless ways you greet
        No damsel fair, no buckramed beau--
    The solitude is ruled by heat--
        A sultry, sullen, scorching woe.
        The blazing sun rides high and slow,
    As if with laziness to tease
        The melting, sweltering world below--
    O for a breath of the salt sea-breeze!

    The laggard steed with aching feet
        Must stagger on; for him is no
    Surcease of labour, no retreat
        Before his stint is done. And so
        Must man still labour on, although
    He hopeless longs to take his ease,
        Or to the ocean fain would go--
    O for a breath of the salt sea-breeze!


    Princes or peasants, friend and foe,
        No man may have all that he please;
    Midsummer heat shall lay him low--
        O for a breath of the salt sea-breeze!

                                              BRANDER MATTHEWS.


                      (Ballade à double refrain.)

    The clouds are thick and darkly lower;
        The sullen sodden sky would fain
    Pour down a never-ending shower:
        I hear the pattering of the rain,
        I hear it rattle on the pane.--
    And then I see the mist entwining,
        Nor one position long retain.
    Behold! the gentle sun is shining!

    As though exulting in its power,
        The storm beats down with steady strain;
    Upon the ivy of the tower
        I hear the pattering of the rain;
        It swiftly sweeps across the plain.--
    And then I see the sky refining,
        And molten with a golden stain.
    Behold! the gentle sun is shining!

    Beneath the storm the cattle cower;
        It beats upon the growing grain,
    And as it breaks both bud and flower,
        I hear the pattering of the rain,--
        From where the clouds too long have lain
    They turn, and show a silver lining,
        A splendid glory comes again.
    Behold! the gentle sun is shining!


    Although like some far, faint refrain,
    I hear the pattering of the rain,
    The storm is past. No more repining--
    Behold! the gentle sun is shining!

                                              BRANDER MATTHEWS.


    She's had a Vassar education,
        And points with pride to her degrees;
    She's studied household decoration;
        She knows a dado from a frieze,
        And tells Corots from Boldonis;
    A Jacquemart etching, or a Haden,
        A Whistler, too, perchance might please
    A free and frank young Yankee maiden.

    She does not care for meditation;
        Within her bonnet are no bees;
    She has a gentle animation,
        She joins in singing simple glees.
        She tries no trills, no rivalries
    With Lucca (now Baronin Räden),
        With Nilsson or with Gerster; she's
    A frank and free young Yankee maiden.

    I'm blessed above the whole creation,
        Far, far, above all other he's;
    I ask you for congratulation
        On this the best of jubilees:
        I go with her across the seas
    Unto what Poe would call an Aiden,--
        I hope no serpent's there to tease
    A frank and free young Yankee maiden.


    Princes, to you the western breeze
        Bears many a ship and heavy laden,
    What is the best we send in these?
        A free and frank young Yankee maiden.

                                              BRANDER MATTHEWS.


    What of this prayer which myriad skies
        Hear from the shrines where tired men kneel,
    Godward upturning anguished eyes,
        Clasping gaunt hands in strong appeal?
        What of this fear that worn lives feel?
    Why should some strain their labouring breath,
        Since they must gain not woe but weal,
    From battle, murder and sudden death!

    Is it not well with him who dies
        Flushed amid smoke and flash of steel;
    Stabbed by some traitor's swift surprise;
        Stricken by doom no signs reveal?
        Ruin and wrong can no more deal
    Blows beneath which (man's record saith)
        Men ask deliverance, while they reel,
    From battle, murder and sudden death!

    Can one so dead be harmed by lies,
        Tortured by wounds smiles ill conceal?
    Can love bring loss, or desire devise
        Vain visions, or grim fate's iron heel
        Brand both on brow and soul its seal,
    Till, wretched as He of Nazareth,
        Man loathes the life he yet prays to steal
    From battle, murder and sudden death?


    Waifs that on life's tide sink and rise,
        Chaff that each chance wind winnoweth,
    Why dread God's rest that comes, a prize
        From battle, murder and sudden death?

                                                    JOHN MORAN.


    Oh, to go back to the days of June,
        Just to be young and alive again,
    Hearken again to the mad, sweet tune
        Birds were singing with might and main:
    South they flew at the summer's wane,
        Leaving their nests for storms to harry,
    Since time was coming for wind and rain
        Under the wintry skies to marry.

    Wearily wander by dale and dune
        Footsteps fettered with clanking chain--
    Free they were in the days of June,
        Free they never can be again:
    Fetters of age, and fetters of pain,
        Joys that fly, and sorrows that tarry--
    Youth is over, and hopes were vain
        Under the wintry skies to marry.

    Now we chant but a desolate rune--
        Oh to be young and alive again!
    But never December turns to June,
        And length of living is length of pain:
    Winds in the nestless trees complain,
        Snows of winter about us tarry,
    And never the birds come back again
        Under the wintry skies to marry.


    Youths and maidens, blithesome and vain,
        Time makes thrusts that you cannot parry;
    Mate in season, for who is fain
        Under the wintry skies to marry?

                                       LOUISE CHANDLER MOULTON.


    My lady's heart 'twere hard to touch,
        And sighs and vows she'd soon repel;
    But if she liked one twice as much,
        One would not like her half as well;
        She careth not for sage or swell,
    For guardsman stout or poet lean,
        Who haunt Parnassus or Pall Mall;
    My lady-love is just thirteen.

    She loves a rabbit in a hutch
        (A fat Aquinas in his cell),
    She loves an aged cat, whose clutch
        At breakfast-time exerts a spell,
        A most ungracious Florizel.
    In fact it's easy to be seen,
        Were she at all averse to tell,
    My lady-love is just thirteen.

    Although she reads the Higher Dutch,
        On culture's peaks apart to dwell,
    She feigns not; nor of things 'as such'
        Does she discourse, nor parallel
        Dante and Dante Gabriel;
    Yet she has 'views' advanced and keen,
        On chocolate and caramel,--
    My lady-love is just thirteen.


    Madam, just homage you compel,
        Mature, self-conscious, and serene,
    One heart alone you cannot quell;
        _My_ lady-love is just thirteen.

                                              J. B. B. NICHOLS.


    Fly westward, westward, gentle wind,
        Where erst we trod the windy ways;
    And wake within her wayward mind
        The memory of forgotten days.
        The stars step forth aslant the bays,
    The still moon silvers tower and tree,
        And never sound the silence frays
    Athwart the slumberous Severn Sea.

    So soft, so strange the light that lined
        The ferny moors, the forest maze,
    Till all the west was smitten blind
        With glamour of the golden haze;
        What time we watch'd the stag upraise
    His lordly brow by linn and lea,
        To fright the morris of the fays
    Athwart the slumberous Severn Sea.

    O'er the dim passes flung behind
        The dying daylight all ablaze,
    About those dainty tresses twined
        One aureole of dreamy rays,
        And many a winged lamp that strays
    Darkling his weird in heaven to dree,
        Lit the rare eyne downdrops to gaze
    Athwart the slumberous Severn Sea.


        O westward wind, whose low breath sways
    Her locks, whereto night's shadows flee,
        Bear hence a lilt of summer lays
    Athwart the slumberous Severn Sea.

                                                               F. S. P.


    Where are the dreams of the days gone by,
        The hopes of honour, the glancing play
    Of fire-new fancies that filled our sky--
        The songs we sang in the middle May,
        Carol and ballad and roundelay?
    Where are the garlands our young hands twined?
        Life's but a memory, well-away!
    All else flits past on the wings of the wind.

    Where are the ladies fair and high--
        Marie and Alice and Maud and May
    And merry Madge with the laughing eye--
        And all the gallants of yesterday
        That held us merry--ah, where are they?
    Under the mould we must look to find
        Some; and the others are worn and grey.
    All else flits past on the wings of the wind.

    I know of nothing that lasts, not I,
        Save a heart that is true to its love alway--
    A love that is won with tear and sigh
        And never changes or fades away,
        In a breast that is oftener sad than gay;
    A tender look and a constant mind--
        These are the only things that stay:
    All else flits past on the wings of the wind.


    Prince, I counsel you, never say,
        Alack for the years that are left behind!
    Look you keep love when your dreams decay;
        All else flits past on the wings of the wind.

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.


    The frost hath spread a shining net
        Where late the autumn roses blew,
    On lake and stream a seal is set
        Where floating lilies charmed the view;
        So silently the wonder grew
    Beneath pale Dian's mystic light,
        I know my fancies whisper true,
    The Pixies are abroad to-night.

    When at the midnight chime are met
        Together elves of every hue,
    I trow the gazer will regret
        That peers upon their retinue;
        For limb awry and eye askew
    Have oft proclaimed a fairy's spite-
        Peep slyly, gallants, lest ye rue,
    The Pixies are abroad to-night.

    'Tis said their forms are tiny, yet
        All human ills they can subdue,
    Or with a wand or amulet
        Can win a maiden's heart for you;
        And many a blessing know to strew
    To make the way to wedlock bright;
        Give honour to the dainty crew,
    The Pixies are abroad to-night.


    Prince, e'en a prince might vainly sue,
        Unaided by a fairy's might;
    Remember Cinderella's shoe,
        The Pixies are abroad to-night.

                                           SAMUEL MINTURN PECK.


    Soft on the lake's soft bosom we twain
        Float in the haze of a dim delight,
    While the wavelets cradle the sleepless brain,
        And the eyes are glad of the lessening light,
        And the east with a fading glory is bright--
    The lingering smile of a sun that is set,--
        And the earth in its tender sorrow is dight,
    And the shadow that falleth hath spared us yet.

    Oh, the mellow beam of the suns that wane,
        Oh the joys, ah me! that are taking flight,
    Oh, the sting of a rapture too near to pain,
        And of love that loveth in death's despite.
        But the hour is ours, and its beauty's might
    Subdues our souls to a still regret,
        While the Blumlis-alp unveils to the night,
    And the shadow that falleth hath spared us yet.

    Now we set our prow to the land again,
        And our backs to those splendours ghostly white,
    But a mirrored star with a watery train
        We hold in our wake as a golden kite;
        When we near the shore with its darkening height,
    And its darker shade on the waters set,
        Lo! the dim shade fleeth before our sight,
    And the shadow that falleth hath spared us yet.


    From the jewelled circles where I indite
        This song which my faithless tears make wet,
    We trail the light till its gemmed rings smite
        The shadow--that falleth! and spares us yet.

                                                EMILY PFEIFFER.


    Another new gown, as I declare!
        How many more is it going to be?
    And your forehead all hid in a cloud of hair--
        'Tis nothing but folly, that I can see!
        The maidens of nowaday make too free;
    To right and to left is the money flung;
        _We_ used to dress as became our degree--
    But things have altered since I was young.

    Stuff, in my time, was made to wear;
        Gowns we had never but two or three;
    Did we fancy them spoilt, if they chanced to tear?
        And shrink from a patch, or a darn? not we!
        For pleasure, a gossiping dish of tea,
    Or a mushroom hunt, while the dew yet hung,
        And no need, next day, for the doctor's fee--
    But things have altered since I was young.

    The yellow gig, and a drive to the fair;
        A keepsake bought in a booth on the lea;
    A sixpence, perhaps, to break and share--
        That's how your grandfather courted me.
        Did your grandmother blush, do you think--not she!
    When he found her, the churn and the pails among?
        Or your grandfather like her the less? not he!
    But things have altered since I was young.


        Child! you pout, and you urge your plea--
    Better it were that you held your tongue!
        Maids should learn at their elders' knee--
    But things have altered since I was young.

                                                    MAY PROBYN.


    From gab of jay and chatter of crake
        The dusk wood covered me utterly.
    And here the tongue of the thrush was awake.
        Flame floods out of the low bright sky
        Lighted the gloom with gold-brown dye,
    Before dark; and a manifold chorussing
        Arose of thrushes remote and nigh,--
    For the tongue of the singer needs must sing.

    Midmost a close green covert of brake
        A brown bird listening silently
    Sat; and I thought--"She grieves for the sake
        Of Itylus,--for the stains that lie
        In her heritage of sad memory."
    But the thrushes were hushed at evening.
        Then I waited to hear the brown bird try,--
    For the tongue of the singer needs must sing.

    And I said--"The thought of the thrushes will shake
        With rapture remembered her heart; and her shy
    Tongue of the dear times dead will take
        To make her a living song, when sigh
        The soft night winds disburthened by.
    Hark now!" for the upraised quivering wing,
        The throat exultant, I could descry,--
    For the tongue of the singer needs must sing.


    But the bird dropped dead with only a cry:
        I found its tongue was withered, poor thing!
    Then I no whit wondered, for well knew I
        That the heart of the singer will break or sing.

                                         CHARLES G. D. ROBERTS.


    The loud black flight of the storm diverges
        Over a spot in the loud mouthed main,
    Where, crowned with summer and sun, emerges
        An isle unbeaten of wind or rain.
        And here, of its sweet queen grown full fain,
    By whose kisses the whole broad earth seems poor,
        Tarries the wave-worn prince, Troy's bane,
    In the green Ogygian Isle secure.

    To her voice our sweetest songs are dirges.
        She gives him all things, counting it gain.
    Ringed with the rocks and ancient surges,
        How could Fate dissever these twain?
        But him no loves nor delights retain;
    New knowledge, new lands, new loves allure;
        Forgotten the perils, and toils, and pain,
    In the green Ogygian Isle secure.

    So he spurns her kisses and gifts, and urges
        His weak skiff over the wind-vext plain,
    Till the grey of the sky in the grey sea merges,
        And nights reel round, and waver and wane.
        He sits once more in his own domain.
    No more the remote sea-walls immure.-
        But ah, for the love he shall clasp not again
    In the green Ogygian Isle secure.


    Princes, and ye whose delights remain,
        To the one good gift of the gods hold sure,
    Lest ye, too, mourn, in vain, in vain,
        Your green Ogygian Isle secure.

                                         CHARLES G. D. ROBERTS.


                           TO V. L.

    Forgotten seers of lost repute
        That haunt the banks of Acheron,
    Where have you dropped the broken lute
        You played in Troy or Calydon?
        O ye that sang in Babylon
    By foreign willows cold and grey,
        Fall'n are the harps ye hanged thereon,
    _Dead are the tunes of yesterday!_

    De Coucy, is your music mute,
        The quaint old plain-chant woe-begone
    That served so many a lover's suit?
        Oh, dead as Adam or Guédron!
        Then, sweet De Caurroy, try upon
    Your virginals a virelay;
        Or play Orlando, one pavonne--
    _Dead are the tunes of yesterday!_

    But ye whose praises none refute,
        Who have the immortal laurel won;
    Trill me your quavering close acute,
        Astorga, dear unhappy Don!
        One air, Galuppi! Sarti one
    So many fingers used to play!-
        Dead as the ladies of Villon,
    _Dead are the tunes of yesterday!_


        Vernon, in vain you stoop to con
    The slender, faded notes to-day-
        The Soul that dwelt in them is gone:
    _Dead are the tunes of yesterday!_

                                           A. MARY F. ROBINSON.


    With plash of the light oars swiftly plying,
        The sharp prow furrows the watery way;
    The ripples' reach as the bank is dying,
        And soft shades slender, and long lights play
        In the still dead heat of the drowsy day,
    As on I sweep with the stream that flows
        By sleeping lilies that lie astray
    In the Garden of Grace whose name none knows.

    There ever a whispering wind goes sighing,
        Filled with the scent of the new-mown hay,
    Over the flower hedge peering and prying,
        Wooing the rose as with words that pray;
        And the waves from the broad bright river bay
    Slide through clear channels to dream and doze,
        Or rise in a fountain's silver spray
    In the Garden of Grace whose name none knows.

    The sweet white rose with the red rose dying,
        Blooms where the summer follows the May,
    Till the streams be hid by the lost leaves lying,
        That autumn shakes where the lilies lay.
        But now all bowers and beds are gay
    And no rain ruffles the flower that blows,
        And still on the water soft dreams stay
    In the Garden of Grace whose name none knows.


    Before the blue of the sky grows grey
        And the frayed leaves fall from the faded rose,
    Love's lips shall sing what the day-dreams say
        In the Garden of Grace whose name none knows.

                                             ARTHUR REED ROPES.


    Though through the cloudy ranks of morn
        The Sun-god sends no golden ray,
    Though swift along the air are borne
        The feathery shafts that none may stay;
        Though wrathful storm-blasts pangless slay,
    And wan the patient plodder rues
        His lonely lot each dagging day-
    He's gay who courts the merry muse!

    When down the fields the tender corn
        Upsprings, and sees blue skies in May,
    When budding blooms the boughs adorn,
        And flowers bespangle sprig and spray,
        When torrid summer's regnant sway
    Has dimmed the foliage's fairest hues,
        And bronzèd reapers house the hay--
    He's gay who courts the merry muse!

    And when the hollow harvest horn
        O'erflows with autumn's rich display,
    When high, with goodly grain, new-shorn,
        Is piled each lofty granary,
        When, like dark moons amid the gray
    Of cornfields, where the red ear woos,
        The pumpkins lie in long array-
    He's gay who courts the merry muse!


    Prince, e'en though Fortune go astray
        And lost is wealth's bright-shining cruse,
    Though dark and drear the weary way-
        He's gay who courts the merry muse.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    Theocritus, who bore
        The lyre where sleek herds graze
    On the Sicilian shore,
        (There yet the shepherd strays)--
        And Horace, crowned with bays,
    Who dwelt by Tiber's flow,
        Sleep through the silent days--
    For God will have it so!

    The bard, whose requiem o'er
        And o'er the sad sea plays,
    Who sang of classic lore,
        Of Mab, the queen of fays--
        And Keats, fair Adonais,
    The child of song and woe,
        No longer thread life's maze--
    For God will have it so!

    Your voices, sweet of yore,
        With honied word and phrase,
    Are heard by men no more,
        They list to other lays--
        New poets now have praise,
    But all in turn must go
        To follow in your ways--
    For God will have it so!


    Poets, the thrones ye raise
        Are not a "fleeting show;"
    Fame lives, though dust decays--
        For God will have it so!

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    Where, prithee, are thy comrades bold,
        With ruffle, flounce, and furbelow,
    Who, in the merry days of old,
        Made light of all but red wine's flow?
        Where now are cavalier and beau
    Who joyed with thee in that bright clime?
        Ah! dust to dust!--and none may know--
    Alas, for the fleet wings of Time!

    Where now are they whom gleaming gold
        Led on to many a bandit blow,
    Who roamed with thee the widening wold
        And vine-clad hills, and shared thy woe?
        Where they, who, in the sunset glow,
    With thee heard Paris' sweet bells chime?
        Ah! they are gone!--and still men go--
    Alas, for the fleet wings of Time!

    And where are they, those maids untold,
        Thy lighter loves, each one thy foe?
    They too are now but loathsome mould,
        With earth above and earth below.
        And she who won, aside to throw
    Thy love, the promise of thy prime,
        Doth any seek her name? Ah! no--
    Alas, for the fleet wings of Time!


    Poet of ballade and rondeau,
        Prince of the tripping, laughing rhyme,
    Thy name alone hath 'scaped the snow;
        Alas, for the fleet wings of Time.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    Of all the songs that dwell
        Where softest speech doth flow,
    Some love the sweet rondel,
        And some the bright rondeau,
        With rhymes that tripping go
    In mirthful measures clad;
        But would I choose them?--no,
    For me the blithe ballade!

    O'er some, the villanelle,
        That sets the heart aglow,
    Doth its enchanting spell
        With lines' recurring throw;
        Some weighed with wasting woe,
    Gay triolets make them glad;
        But would I choose them?--no,
    For me the blithe ballade!

    On chant of stately swell
        With measured feet and slow,
    At grave as minster bell
        As vesper tolling low,
        Do some their praise bestow;
    Some on sestinas sad;
        But would I choose them?--no,
    For me the blithe ballade!


    Prince, to these songs a-row
        The Muse might endless add;
    But would I choose them?--no,
        For me the blithe ballade!

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    O lady mine with the sunlit hair,
        The birds are caroling blithe and gay
    In the bourgeoning boughs that sway in air
        O'er the grassy aisles of the orchard way.
        The mock-bird pipes to the busy jay:
    There's a gleam of white on the vines that twine
        Where your casement opes to the golden day,
                                O lady mine.

    O lady mine with the sunlit hair,
        The rills are glad that the month is May;
    The dawns are bright and the eves are fair
        O'er the grassy aisles of the orchard way.
        The dales have doffed their gowns of grey,
    The sending buttercups spill their wine,
        There is joy in the heart of faun and fay,
                                O lady mine.

    O lady mine with the sunlit hair
        The bees, like ruthless bandits, prey
    On the blooms that part their lips in prayer
        O'er the grassy aisles of the orchard way.
        From the sunny shores where the nereids play
    The breezes blow o'er the foamy brine,
        And I dream I hear them softly say,
                                "O lady mine!"


    O lady mine, wilt thou not stray
    O'er the grassy aisles of the orchard way,
    And list to Love where the wind-flowers shine,
                                O lady mine?

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    Hark, how the surges dash
        On Tyrian beaches hoar!
    With far-resounding crash,
        And unremitting roar,
        The white foam squadrons pour
    Their ranks with sullen ire
        Along the sandy floor;
    "Where are the ships of Tyre?"

    Within her walls the clash
        Of arms is heard no more;
    No supple bough of ash
        Is hewn for mast or oar;
        Through no tall temple's door
    Now gleams the altar fire,
        But winds and waves deplore,
    "Where are the ships of Tyre?"

    By night no torches flash
        From porches as of yore;
    'Neath sword or stinging lash
        No slave now lies in gore;
        No voice that men adore
    Lifts song to lute or lyre;
        With all the freight they bore,
    "Where are the ships of Tyre?"


    Prince, with these "gone before,"
        We, whom these days inspire,
    Must seek that unknown shore
        "Where are the ships of Tyre?"

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    O ghosts of Bygone Hours, that stand
        Upon the marge of yonder shore
    Where by the pale feet-trampled sand
        (Though none is seen to walk that floor)
        The Stygian wave flows evermore:
    We fain would buy what ye can tell,
        Speak! Speak! And thrill to each heart's core--
    _Vain Hopes are all we have to sell!_

    O spectral Hours that throng this land--
        Where no sweet floods of sunshine pour,
    But vast, tenebriously grand,
        Dense glooms abide, wind-swept or frore--
        O ye who thus have gone before,
    Break silence--break your charmëd spell!
        Heed not our negligence of yore!
    _Vain Hopes are all we have to sell!_

    O sombre, sad-eyed, shadowy band,
        Speak, speak, and wave not o'er and o'er
    Each wan phantasmal shadow-hand;
        O say, if when with battling sore
        We cross the flood and hear the roar
    O' the world like a sighed farewell,
        What waits beyond the Grave's last door?
    _Vain Hopes are all we have to sell!_


    O coming Hours, O unspent store,
        _Your_ promise breathe--as in sea-shell
    Imprison'd Echo sings her lore--
        _Vain Hopes are all we have to sell!_

                                                 WILLIAM SHARP.


    What is the song the sea-wind sings--
        The old, old song it singeth for aye?
    When abroad it stretcheth its mighty wings
        And driveth the white clouds far away,--
        What is the song it sings to-day?
    _From fire and tumult the white world came,_
        _Where all was a mist of driven spray_
        _And the whirling fragments of a frame!_

    What is the song the sea-wind sings--
        The old, old song it singeth for aye?
    It seems to breathe a thousand things
        Ere the world grew sad and old and grey--
        Of the dear gods banished far astray--
    Of strange wild rumours of joy and shame!
        _The Earth is old, so old, To-day--_
        _Blind and halt and weary and lame._

    What is the song the sea-wind sings--
        The old, old song it singeth for aye?
    Like a trumpet blast its voice out-rings,
        _The world spins down the darksome way!_
        It crieth aloud in wild dismay,
    _The Earth that from fire and tumult came_
        _Draws swift to her weary end To-day,_
        _Her fires are fusing for that last Flame!_


    What singeth the sea-wind thus for aye--
        _From fire and tumult the white world came!_
    What is the sea-wind's cry To-day--
        _Her central fires make one vast flame!_

                                                 WILLIAM SHARP.


    Where are the creatures of the deep,
        That made the sea-world wondrous fair?
    The dolphins that with royal sweep
        Sped Venus of the golden-hair
        Through leagues of summer sea and air?
    Are they all gone where past things be?
        The merman in his weedy lair?
        O sweet wild creatures of the sea!

    O singing syrens, do ye weep
        That now ye hear not anywhere
    The swift oars of the seamen leap,
        See their wild, eager eyes a-stare?
        O syrens, that no more ensnare
    The souls of men that once were free,
        Are ye not filled with cold despair--
        O sweet wild creatures of the sea!

    O Triton, on some coral steep
        In green-gloom depths, dost thou forbear
    With wreathëd horn to call thy sheep,
        The wandering sea-waves, to thy care?
        O mermaids, once so debonnair,
    Sport ye no more with mirthful glee?
        The ways of lover-folk forswear?--
        O sweet wild creatures of the sea!


    Deep down 'mid coral caves, beware!
        They wait a day that yet must be,
    When Ocean shall be earth's sole heir--
        O sweet wild creatures of the sea!

                                                 WILLIAM SHARP.


    From the sunny climes of France,
        Flying to the west,
    Came a flock of birds by chance,
        There to sing and rest:
        Of some secrets deep in quest,--
    Justice for their wrongs,--
        Seeking one to shield their breast,
    One to write their songs.

    Melodies of old romance,
        Joy and gentle jest,
    Notes that made the dull heart dance
        With a merry zest;--
        Maids in matchless beauty drest,
    Youths in happy throngs;--
        These they sang to tempt and test
    One to write their songs.

    In old London's wide expanse
        Built each feathered guest,--
    Man's small pleasure to entrance,
        Singing him to rest,--
        Came, and tenderly confessed,
    Perched on leafy prongs,
        Life were sweet if they possessed
    One to write their songs.


    Austin, it was you they blest:
        Fame to you belongs!
    Time has proven you're the best
        One to write their songs.

                                        FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN.


    When blossoms born of balmy spring
        Breathe fragrance in the pleasant shade
    Of branches where the blue-birds sing,
        Their hearts with music overweighed;
        When brooks go babbling through the glade,
    And over rocks the grasses climb
        To greet the sunshine, half-afraid,-
    How easy 'tis to write a rhyme!

    When invitations are a-wing
        For gay Terpsichore's parade;
    When dreamy waltzes stir the string
        And jewels flash on rich brocade,
        Where Paris dresses are displayed,
    And slippered feet keep careful time;-
        In winter, when the roses fade,
    How easy 'tis to write a rhyme!

    When by your side, with graceful swing,
        Some fair-faced, gentle girl has strayed,
    Willing and glad to have you bring
        Your claims for love and get them paid
        In kisses, smiles, and words that aid
    The bells of bliss to better chime;-
        When Cupid's rules are first obeyed,
    How easy 'tis to write a rhyme!


    Reader, forgive me, man or maid,
        Against Calliope this crime;
    And let this brief ballade persuade
        How easy 'tis to write a rhyme!

                                        FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN.


    I hid my heart in a nest of roses,
        Out of the sun's way, hidden apart;
    In a softer bed than the soft white snow's is,
        Under the roses I hid my heart.
        Why would it sleep not? why should it start,
    When never a leaf of the rose-tree stirred?
        What made sleep flutter his wings and part?
    Only the song of a secret bird.

    Lie still, I said, for the wind's wing closes,
        And mild leaves muffle the keen sun's dart;
    Lie still, for the wind on the warm seas dozes,
        And the wind is unquieter yet than thou art.
        Does a thought in thee still as a thorn's wound smart
    Does the fang still fret thee of hope deferred?
        What bids the lips of thy sleep dispart?
    Only the song of a secret bird.

    The green land's name that a charm encloses,
        It never was writ in the traveller's chart,
    And sweet on its trees as the fruit that grows is,
        It never was sold in the merchant's mart.
        The swallows of dreams through its dim fields dart,
    And sleep's are the tunes in its tree-tops heard;
        No hound's note wakens the wildwood hart,
    Only the song of a secret bird.


    In the world of dreams I have chosen my part,
        To sleep for a season and hear no word
    Of true love's truth or of light love's art,
        Only the song of a secret bird.

                                    ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE.


    Where are the mighty kings of yore
        Whose sword-arm cleft the world in twain?
    And where are they who won and wore
        The empire of the land and main?
        Where's Alexander, Charlemain?
    Alone the sky above them brings
        Their tombs the tribute of the rain.
    Dust in dust are the bones of kings!

    Where now is Rome's old emperor,
        Who gazed on burning Rome full fain;
    And where, at one for evermore,
        The Liege of France, the Lord of Spain?
        What of Napoleon's lightning brain,
    Grim Fritz's iron hammerings,
        Forging the links of Europe's chain?
    Dust in dust are the bones of kings!

    Where, 'neath what ravenous curses sore,
        Hath Well-Loved Louis lapsed and lain?
    Where is the Lion-Heart, who bore
        The spears toward Zion's gate again?
        And can so little space contain,
    Quiet from all his wanderings,
        The world-demanding Tamburlaine?
    Dust in dust are the bones of kings!


    O Kings, bethink ye then how vain
        The pride and pomp of earthly things:
    A little pain, a little gain,
        Then dust in dust are the bones of kings.

                                                 ARTHUR SYMONS.


    Between the Midnight and the Morn,
        The under-world my soul espied;
    I saw the shades of men out-worn,
        The Heroes fallen in their pride;
        I saw the marsh-lands drear and wide,
    And many a ghost that strayed thereon;
        "Still must I roam," a maiden sighed,
    "The sunless marsh of Acheron."

    "And is thy fate thus hope-forlorn?"
        "Yea, even so," the shade replied,
    "For one I wronged in life hath sworn
        In hatred ever to abide:
        The lover seeketh not the bride,
    But aye, with me, his heart dreams on,
        Asleep in these cold mists that hide
    The sunless marsh of Acheron.

    "And still for me will Lacon mourn,
        And still my pardon be denied:
    Ah, never shall I cross the bourne
        That Dead from Living doth divide;
        Yet I repent me not!" she cried,
    "Nay--only that mine hour is gone;
        One memory hath glorified
    The sunless marsh of Acheron."


    Ah, Princess! when _thy_ ghost shall glide
        Where never star nor sunlight shone,
    See thou she tarry not beside
        The sunless marsh of Acheron.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


                     ~Kat' asphodelon leimôna.~

    Now who will thread the winding way,
        Afar from fervid summer heat,
    Beyond the sunshafts of the day,
        Beyond the blast of winter sleet?
    In the green twilight, dimly sweet,
        Of poplar shades, the shadows dwell,
    Who found erewhile a fair retreat
        Along the mead of Asphodel.

    There death and birth are one, they say;
        Those lowlands bear no yellow wheat;
    No sound doth rise of mortal fray,
        Of lowing herds, of flocks that bleat:
    Nor wind nor rain doth blow nor beat;
        Nor shrieketh sword, nor tolleth bell;
    But lovers one another greet
        Along the mead of Asphodel.

    I would that there my soul might stray;
        I would my phantom, fair and fleet,
    Might cleave the burden of the clay,
        Might leave the murmur of the street,
    Nor with half-hearted prayer entreat
        The half-believed-in Gods; too wel
    I know the name I shall repeat
        Along the mead of Asphodel.


    Queen Proserpine, at whose white feet
        In life my love I may not tell,
    Wilt give me welcome when we meet
        Along the mead of Asphodel?

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    What goal remains for pilgrim feet
        Now all our gods are banishèd?
    Afar, where sea and sunrise meet,
        Tall portals bathed in gold and red,
        From either door a carven head
    Smiles down on men full drowsilie
        'Mid mystic forms of wings outspread
    Between the Gates of Ivorie.

    Now if beyond lie town or street
        I know not nor hath any said,
    Though tongues wag fast and winds are fleet;
        Some say that there men meet the dead,
        Or filmy phantoms in their stead,
    And some "it leads to Arcadie,"
        In sooth I know not, yet would tread
    Between the Gates of Ivorie.

    For surely there sounds music sweet
        With fair delights and perfumes shed,
    And all things broken made complete,
        And found again things forfeited;
        All this for him who scorning dread
    Shall read the wreathen fantasie,
        And pass, where no base soul had sped
    Between the Gates of Ivorie.


    Ah, Princess! grasp the golden thread,
        Rise up and follow fearlesslie,
    By high desire and longing led
        Between the Gates of Ivorie.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    A goblin trapped in netted skein,
        Did bruise his wings with vain essay;
    "Now who will rend this hempen chain?
        Let that man ask me what he may,
        I shall not, surely, say him nay:
    The shadows wane, the day grows old,
        Meseems this mesh will keep for aye
    The sun-bright glint of Fairy Gold!"

    These echoes of the creature's pain,
        As in the fowler's net he lay,
    Drew soon anigh a surly swain
        Who cut the cords and freed the fay:
        "Now what fair gift shall well repay
    Thy service done?--for words are cold--
        Sweet looks or wisdom! vine or bay?"
    "The sun-bright glint of Fairy Gold."

    "Thou choosest ill, but speech is vain,
        Lo! here is treasure good and gay:"
    The goat-herd grasped his golden gain
        And bore the shining store away;
        He oped his chest, at break of day,
    To find--no talents, bright and cold,
        But soft, dead cowslips--nowhere lay
    The sun-bright glint of Fairy Gold!


    Take hands, O Prince, for we will stray,
        We twain, where nought is bought or sold,
    And find in every woodland way,
        The sun-bright glint of Fairy Gold.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    Young Love flies fast, on wavering wing,
        Full fast he flies for woe or weal,
    And some do bear his grievous sting
        Too deep for any leech to heal;
        I scorn to swell their sad appeal,
    False phantom, fled from our embrace!
        And yet--I doubt me I might kneel
    Should you but chance to turn your face.

    Of days long done our praises ring
        Right loud and full, a valorous peal,
    For life was then a lusty thing:
        Ah! then were mighty blows to deal.
        Brave days, my masters!--still, I feel
    In sooth I could not deem him base
        Who'd shun your stare, O age of steel!
    Should you but chance to turn your face.

    "Alas!" our dainty minstrels sing,
        "That sorrow sets unbroken seal
    On saint and sinner, clown and king."
        They beg death's boon with busy zeal.
        They'll do you homage warm and leal,
    Death! while you pass their dwelling-place
        But lips would gape and senses reel,
    Should you but chance to turn your face.


    Queen Fortune! of the mystic wheel,
        We bow to find you full of grace,
    We would not turn on sullen heel
        Should _you_ but chance to turn your face.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    Heed not the folk who sing or say
      In sonnet sad or sermon chill,
    "Alas, alack, and well-a-day,
      This round world's but a bitter pill."
    Poor porcupines of fretful quill!
      Sometimes we quarrel with our lot:
    We, too, are sad and careful; still
      We'd rather be alive than not.

    What though we wish the cats at play
      Would some one else's garden till;
    Though Sophonisba drop the tray
      And all our worshipped Worcester spill,
    Though neighbours "practise" loud and shrill,
      Though May be cold and June be hot,
    Though April freeze and August grill,
      We'd rather be alive than not.

    And, sometimes, on a summer's day
      To self and every mortal ill
    We give the slip, we steal away,
      To lie beside some sedgy rill;
    The darkening years, the cares that kill,
      A little while are well forgot;
    Deep in the broom upon the hill
      We'd rather be alive than not.

    Pistol, with oaths didst thou fulfil
      The task thy braggart tongue begot.
    We eat our leek with better will,
      We'd rather be alive than not.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    So quaintly sadly mute they hang,
        We ask in vain what fingers played,
    What hearts were stirred, what voices sang,
        What songs in life's brief masquerade,--
        What old-world catch or serenade,
    What ill-worn mirth, what mock despairs
        Found voice when maid or ruffling blade
    Sang long-forgot familiar airs.

    We only know that once they rang
        In oaken room and forest glade,
    Where yule logs glowed or branches swang;
        When earth and heaven itself were made
        For roistering off a Spanish raid,
    To drown in such life's shallower cares,
        Or trip in ruffs and old brocade,
    To long-forgot familiar airs.

    Dead all--a pun for every pang
        (So Shakespeare then the race portrayed
    That fought and revelled, danced and sprang
        Half-way to meet death undismayed);
        About them gather mist and shade,
    Yet Time ironically spares
        These strings on which their fingers strayed
    To long-forgot familiar airs.


    Ah! child, so soon the colours fade
        From Watteau fêtes and Teniers fairs,
    You yet may seek in notes decayed
        _Our_ long-forgot familiar airs.

                                              MORTIMER WHEELER.


    Sink, sun, in crimson far away,
        Float out, pale moon, above the roar,
    While brown and silver, flame and grey,
        Round rock and sand, the waters pour;
        For night hath clue to all the store,
    Of wild wave-harmony that rings,
        And earth hath not in all her lore,
    The legends that sea-music brings.

    Here singing silver shallows fray
        The ruby-tufted golden floor,
    Here wondrous twilight forests sway
        Round coral porch and corridor
        Where lurk----but ah; why yet implore
    The splendid dream that round them clings?...
        Where lie the dead who heard of yore
    The legends that sea-music brings.

    This is the sea that could not stay,
        The tides of men that evermore
    Rolled westward still and cleft its spray,
        With hollowed trunk, and dauntless oar.
        Here Grecian trireme reeled before,
    Rome's purple galley; here sea kings,
        Left red on wave and blackened shore
    The legends that sea-music brings.


    Earth keeps not now the face she wore
        The smoke-trails dusk the wide white wings;
    No longer as of old shall soar,
        The legends that sea-music brings.

                                              MORTIMER WHEELER.


    When the fairies are all for their dances drest,
      When day's discords in the distance fail,
    When the robin and wren are asleep in the nest,
      Then list to the note of the nightingale!
      But when diamonds glint on the dewy swale,
    When star-fires are fading spark by spark,
      And the little birds all the dawning hail,
    O hark to the song of the merry lark!

    When over the hills the silver crest
      Is pouring enchantment on mere and vale,
    And the world lies hushed in a dreamy rest,
      Then list to the note of the nightingale!
      But when the bright sun dight in golden mail
    Flames over the tree-tops in the park,
      And the world goes again on its busy trail,
    O hark to the song of the merry lark!

    When the young heart flutters in Mabel's breast,
      And Algernon's cheek for once only is pale,
    As the secret, half guessed, is at last confessed,
      Then list to the note of the nightingale!
      But when Corydon hides in a turn o' the dale,
    And Phillis is met where no one may mark,
      And the sudden blush and the kiss tell the tale,
    O hark to the song of the merry lark!


    If Il Penseroso's mood prevail,
      Then list to the note of the nightingale!
    But whenever L'Allegro woos, then hark,
      O hark to the song of the merry lark!

                                                ERNEST WHITNEY.


    Bright Dorothy, with eyes of blue,
        And serious Dickie, brave as fair,
    Crossing to Church you oft may view
        When no one but myself is there:
        First to the belfry they repair,
    And while to the large ropes they cling,
        And make believe to call to prayer,
    For angels' ears the bells they ring!

    Next seated gravely in a pew,
        A pulpit homily they share,
    Meet for my little flock of two,
        Pointed and plain as they can bear:
        Then venture up the pulpit's stair,
    Pray at the desk or gaily sing:
        O sweet Child-life without a care-
    For angels' ears the bells they ring!

    Dear little ones, the early dew
        Of holy infancy they wear,
    And lift to Heaven a face as true
        As flowers that breathe the morning air:
        Whate'er they do, where'er they fare,
    They can command an angel's wing
        Their voices have a music rare,
    For angels' ears the bells they ring!

    O parents, of your charge beware:
        Their angels stand before the King:
    In work, play, sleep, and everywhere
        For angels' ears the bells they ring!

                                                RICHARD WILTON.


    Fountains that frisk and sprinkle
        The moss they overspill;
    Grass that the breezes crinkle;
        The wheel beside the mill,
        With its wet, weedy frill;
    Wind-shadows in the wheat;
    A water-cart in the street;
        The fringe of foam that girds
    An islet's ferneries;
        A green sky's minor thirds-
    To live, I think of these!

    Of ice and glass the tinkle,
        Pellucid, silver-shrill;
    Peaches without a wrinkle;
        Cherries and snow, at will
        From china bowls that fill
    The senses with a sweet
    Incuriousness of heat;
        A melon's dripping sherds;
    Cream-clotted strawberries;
        Dusk dairies set with curds-
    To live, I think of these!

    Vale-lily and periwinkle;
        Wet stone-crop on the sill;
    The look of leaves a-twinkle
        With windlets clear and still;
        The feel of a forest rill
    That wimples fresh and fleet
    About one's naked feet;
        The muzzles of drinking herds;
    Lush flags and bulrushes;
        The chirp of rain-bound birds-
    To live, I think of these!


    Dark aisles, new packs of cards,
        Mermaidens' tails, cool swards,
        Dawn dews and starlit seas,
    White marbles, whiter words--
        To live, I think of these!

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    O to be somewhere by the sea,
        Far from the city's dust and shine,
        From Mammon's priests and from Mammon's shrine,
    From the stony street, and the grim decree
        That over an inkstand crooks my spine,
    From the books that are and the books to be,
        And the need that makes of the sacred Nine
        A school of harridans!--sweetheart mine,
    O to be somewhere by the sea!

    Under a desk I bend my knee,
        Whether the morn be foul or fine.
        I envy the tramp, in a ditch supine,
    Or footing it over the sunlit lea.
        But I struggle and write and make no sign,
    For a labouring ox must earn his fee,
        And even a journalist has to dine;
        But O for a breath of the eglantine!
    O to be somewhere by the sea!

    Out on the links, where the wind blows free,
        And the surges gush, and the rounding brine
        Wanders and sparkles, an air like wine
    Fills the senses with pride and glee.
        In neighbour hedges are flowers to twine,
    A white sail glimmers, the foamlines flee:
        Life, love, and laziness are a trine
        Worshipful, wonderful, dear, divine....
    O to be somewhere by the sea!


        Out and alas for the sweet Lang Syne,
    When I was rich in a certain key--
        The key of the fields; and I hadn't to pine,
        Or to sigh in vain at the sun's decline,
    O to be somewhere by the Sea!

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    Gold or silver every day,
                      Dies to grey.
    There are knots in every skein.
    Hours of work and hours of play
                      Fade away
    Into one immense Inane.
    Shadow and substance, chaff and grain,
                      Are as vain
    As the foam or as the spray.
    Life goes crooning, faint and fain,
                      One refrain--
    "If it could be always May!"

    Though the earth be green and gay,
                      Though, they say,
    Man the cup of heaven may drain;
    Though his little world to sway.
                      He display
    Hoard on hoard of pith and brain,
    Autumn brings a mist and rain
                      That constrain
    Him and his to know decay,
    Where undimmed the lights that wane
                      Would remain,
    If it could be always May.

    _Yea_, alas, must turn to _Nay_,
                      Flesh to clay.
    Chance and Time are ever twain.
    Men may scoff and men may pray,
                      But they pay
    Every pleasure with a pain.
    Life may soar and Fortune deign
                      To explain
    Where her prizes hide and stay;
    But we lack the lusty train
                      We should gain
    If it could be always May.


    Time the pedagogue his cane
                      Might retain,
    But his charges all would stray
    Truanting in every lane--
                      Jack with Jane!--
    If it could be always May.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    Fools may pine, and sots may swill,
        Cynics jibe and prophets rail,
    Moralists may scourge and drill,
        Preachers prose, and faint hearts quail.
        Let them whine, or threat, or wail!
    'Till the touch of Circumstance
        Down to darkness sink the scale--
    Fate's a fiddler, Life's a dance.

    What if skies be wan and chill?
        What if winds be harsh and stale?
    Presently the East will thrill,
        And the sad and shrunken sail,
        Bellying with a kindly gale,
    Bear you sunwards, while your chance
        Sends you back the hopeful hail--
    "Fate's a fiddler, Life's a dance."

    Idle shot or coming bill,
        Hapless love or broken bail,
    Gulp it (never chew your pill!)
        And if Burgundy should fail,
        Try a humble pot of ale!
    Over all is heaven's expanse.
        Gold exists among the shale.
    Fate's a fiddler, Life's a dance.

    Dull Sir Joskin sleeps his fill,
        Good Sir Galahad seeks the Grail,
    Proud Sir Pertinax flaunts his frill,
        Hard Sir Æger dints his mail;
        And the while, by hill and dale,
    Tristram's braveries gleam and glance,
        And his blithe horn tells its tale....
    Fate's a fiddler, Life's a dance.

    Araminta's grand and shrill,
        Delia's passionate and frail,
    Doris drives an earnest quill,
        Athanasia takes the veil;
        Wiser Phyllis o'er her pail,
    At the heart of all romance
        Reading, sings to Strephon's flail--
    Fate's a fiddler, Life's a dance.

    Every Jack must have his Jill,
        (Even Johnson had his Thrale!)
    Forward, couples--with a will!
        This, the world, is not a jail.
        Hear the music, sprat and whale!
    Hands across, retire, advance!
        Though the doomsman's on your trail,
    Fate's a Fiddler, Life's a dance.


    Boys and girls, at slug and snail
        And their compeers look askance.
    Pay your footing on the nail:
        Fate's a fiddler, Life's a dance.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    The big teetotum twirls,
        And epochs wax and wane
    As chance subsides or swirls;
        But of the loss and gain
        The sum is always plain.
    Read on the mighty pall,
    The weed of funeral
        That covers praise and blame,
    The isms and the anities,
        Magnificence and shame,
    "O Vanity of Vanities!"

    The Fates are subtile girls!
        They give us chaff for grain;
    And Time, the Thunderer, hurls,
        Like bolted death, disdain
        At all that heart and brain
    Conceive, or great or small,
    Upon this earthly ball.
        Would you be knight and dame?
    Or woo the sweet humanities?
        Or illustrate a name?
    O Vanity of Vanities!

    We sound the sea for pearls,
        Or lose them in the drain;
    We flute it with the merles,
        Or tug and sweat and strain;
        We grovel, or we reign;
    We saunter, or we brawl;
    We answer, or we call;
        We search the stars for Fame,
    Or sink her subterranities;
        The legend's still the same:--
    "O Vanity of Vanities!"

    Here at the wine one birls,
        There someone clanks a chain.
    The flag that this man furls
        That man to float is fain.
        Pleasure gives place to pain:--
    These in the kennel crawl,
    While others take the wall.
        _She_ has a glorious aim,
    _He_ lives for the inanities.
        What comes of every claim?
    O Vanity of Vanities!

    Alike are clods and earls.
        For sot, and seer, and swain,
    For emperors and for churls,
        For antidote and bane,
        There is but one refrain:
    But one for king and thrall,
    For David and for Saul,
        For fleet of foot and lame,
    For pieties and profanities,
        The picture and the frame--
    "O Vanity of Vanities!"

    Life is a smoke that curls--
        Curls in a flickering skein,
    That winds and whisks and whirls,
        A figment thin and vain,
        Into the vast Inane.
    One end for hut and hall!
    One end for cell and stall!
        Burned in one common flame
    Are wisdoms and insanities.
        For this alone we came:--
    "O Vanity of Vanities!"


    Prince, pride must have a fall.
    What is the worth of all
        Your state's supreme urbanities?
    Bad at the best's the game.
    Well might the sage exclaim:--
      "O Vanity of Vanities!"

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    The hours are passing slow,
        I hear their weary tread
    Clang from the tower, and go
        Back to their kinsfolk dead.
        Sleep! death's twin brother dread!
    Why dost thou scorn me so?
        The wind's voice overhead
    Long wakeful here I know,
        And music from the steep,
    Where waters fall and flow.
        Wilt thou not hear me, Sleep?

    All sounds that might bestow
        Rest on the fever'd bed,
    All slumb'rous sounds and low
        Are mingled here and wed,
        And bring no drowsihed.
    Shy dreams flit to and fro
        With shadowy hair dispread;
    With wistful eyes that glow,
        And silent robes that sweep.
    Thou wilt not hear me; no?
        Wilt thou not hear me, Sleep?

    What cause hast thou to show
        Of sacrifice unsped?
    Of all thy slaves below
        I most have labourèd
        With service sung and said;
    Have cull'd such buds as blow,
        Soft poppies white and red
    Where thy still gardens grow
        And Lethe's waters weep,
    Why, then, art thou my foe?
        Wilt thou not hear me, Sleep?


    Prince, ere the dark be sped
        By golden shafts, ere low
    And long the shadows creep:
    Lord of the wand of lead,
        Soft-footed as the snow,
    Wilt thou not hear me, Sleep?

                                                   ANDREW LANG.


    My days for singing and loving are over
        And stark I lie in my narrow bed,
    I care not at all if roses cover
        Or if above me the snow is spread;
        I am weary of dreaming of my sweet dead--
    Vera and Lily and Annie and May,
    And my soul is set on the present fray,
        Its piercing kisses and subtle snares:
    So gallants are conquered, ah wellaway,
        My love was stronger and fiercer than theirs.

    O happy moths that now flit and hover
        From the blossom of white to the blossom of red,
    Take heed, for I was a lordly lover
        Till the little day of my life had sped;
        As straight as a pine tree, a golden head,
    And eyes as blue as an austral bay.
    Ladies when loosing your satin array,
        Reflect, in my years had you lived my prayers
    Might have won you from weakly lovers away.
        My love was stronger and fiercer than theirs.

    Through the song of the thrush and the pipe of the plover
        Sweet voices come down through the binding lead;
    O queens that every age must discover
        For men, that Man's delight may be fed;
        Oh, sister queens to the queens I wed
    For the space of a year, a month, a day,
    No thirst but mine could your thirst allay;
        And oh, for an hour of life, my dears,
    To kiss you, to laugh at your lovers' dismay,--
        My love was stronger and fiercer than theirs.


    Prince was I ever of festival gay,
    And time never silvered my locks with grey;
        The love of your lovers is as hope that despairs,
    So think of me sometimes dear ladies I pray,
        My love was stronger and fiercer than theirs.

                                                  GEORGE MOORE.



    What do we here who, with reverted eyes,
        Turn back our longing from the modern air
    To the dim gold of long-evanished skies,
        When other songs in other mouths were fair?
        Why do we stay the load of life to bear,
    To measure still the weary, worldly ways,
        Waiting upon the still-recurring sun,
    That ushers in another waste of days,
    Of roseless Junes and unenchanted Mays?
        Why, but because our task is yet undone?


    Were it not thus, could but our high emprise
        Be once fulfilled, which of us would forbear
    To seek that haven where contentment lies?
        Who would not doff at once life's load of care,
        To be at peace amid the silence there?
    Ah, who alas?--Across the heat and haze
        Death beckons to us in the shadow dun--
    Favouring and fair--"My rest is sweet," he says;
    But we reluctantly avert our gaze:
        Why, but because our task is yet undone?


    Songs have we sung, and many melodies
        Have from our lips had issue rich and rare;
    But never yet the conquering chant did rise,
        That should ascend the very heaven's stair,
        To rescue life from anguish and despair.
    Often and again, drunk with delight of lays,
        "Lo!" have we cried, "this is the golden one
    That shall deliver us!"--Alas! Hope's rays
    Die in the distance, and Life's sadness stays.
        Why, but because our task is yet undone?


    Great God of Love, thou whom all poets praise,
        Grant that the aim of rest for us be won;
    Let the light shine upon our life that strays
    Disconsolate within the desert maze;
        Why, but because our task is yet undone?

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.



    Why are our songs like the moan of the main,
        When the wild winds buffet it to and fro,
    (Our brothers ask us again and again),
        A weary burden of hope laid low?
        Have birds ceased singing or flowers to blow?
    Is life cast down from its fair estate?
        This I answer them, nothing mo',
    _Songs and singers are out of date._


    What shall we sing of? Our hearts are fain,
        Our bosoms burn with a sterile glow.
    Shall we sing of the sordid strife for gain
        For shameful honour, for wealth and woe,
        Hunger and luxury--weeds that throw
    Up from one seeding their flowers of hate?
        Can we tune our lute to these themes? ah no!
    _Songs and singers are out of date._


    Our songs should be of faith without stain,
        Of haughty honour and deaths that sow
    The seeds of life on the battle-plain,
        Of loves unsullied and eyes that show
        The fair white soul in the deeps below.
    Where are they, these that our songs await,
        To wake to joyance? Doth any know?
    _Songs and singers are out of date._


    What have we done with meadow and lane?
        Where are the flowers and the hawthorn snow?
    Acres of brick in the pitiless rain,----
        These are our gardens for thorpe and stow!
        Summer has left us long ago,
    Gone to the lands where the turtles mate
        And the crickets chirp in the wild rose row;
    _Songs and singers are out of date._


    We sit and sing to a world in pain,
        Our heartstrings quiver sadly and slow;
    But, aye and anon, the murmurous strain
        Swells up to a clangour of strife and throe,
        And the folks that hearken, or friend or foe,
    Are ware that the stress of the time is great
        And say to themselves, as they come and go,
    _Songs and singers are out of date._


    Winter holds us, body and brain:
        Ice is over our being's flow;
    Song is a flower that will droop and wane,
        If it have no heaven toward which to grow.
        Faith and beauty are dead, I trow
    Nothing is left but fear and fate:
        Men are weary of hope; and so
    _Songs and singers are out of date._

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.


    Beyond the end of Paradise
        Where never mortal may repair,
    A phantom-haunted forest lies
        With twisted branches always bare,
        And here unhappy lovers fare
    And ever more complain their lot,
        Ah! pity them that wander there,
    _Half-remembered and half-forgot._

    There Orpheus leaves his lute and cries
        No more on Eurydice the fair,
    There silent Sappho sits and sighs,
        Sad as the violets in her hair,
        And pale Francesca's heart-strings stir
    (She knows not why) if Launcelot
        Look round, and dead days call to her
    _Half-remembered and half-forgot._

    There Jason walks with coward eyes
        Bent down yet seeing everywhere
    How fiery vested Glaucé dies,
        And white Medea's wild despair,
        Fair Rosamond and French Heaulmière,
    And he who sang the queenly Scot,
        Meet many another wanderer,
    _Half-remembered and half-forgot._

    Alas! they never shall arise
        Nor leave this lonely limbo where
    They share not in our common skies,
        And know not of our sunlit air;
        They had their time for work and prayer,
    For hope and help, but used them not,
        Or if they dreamed that such things were,
    _Half-remembered and half-forgot._


    Lovers, I pray ye mind whene'er
        Your youth is proud and passion-hot,
    How Love itself may turn a care
        _Half-remembered and half-forgot._

                                           A. MARY F. ROBINSON.


    O conquerors and heroes, say-
        Great Kings and Captains tell me this,
    Now that you rest beneath the clay
        What profit lies in victories?
        Do softer flower-roots twine and kiss
    The whiter bones of Charlemain?
        Our crownless heads sleep sweet as his,
    _Now all your victories are in vain._

    All ye who fell that summer's day
        When Athens lost Amphipolis,
    Who blinded by the briny spray
        Fell dead i' the sea at Salamis,
        You captors of Thyreatis,
    Who bear yourselves a heavier chain,
        With your young brother, Bozzaris,
    _Now all your victories are in vain._

    And never Roman armies may
        Rouse Hannibal where now he is,
    When Cæsar makes no king obey,
        And fast asleep lies Lascaris;
        Who fears the Goths or Khan-Yenghiz?
    Not one of all the paynim train
        Can taunt us with Nicopolis,
    _Now all your victories are in vain._

    What reck you Spartan heroes, pray,
        Of Arcady or Argolis?
    When one barbarian boy to-day
        Would fain be king of all of Greece.
        Brave knights, you would not stir I wis,
    Altho' the very Cross were ta'en;
        Not Rome itself doth Cæsar miss,
    _Now all your victories are in vain._


    O kings, bethink how little is
        The good of battles or the gain--
    Death conquers all things with his peace
        _Now all your victories are in vain._

                                           A. MARY F. ROBINSON.



    Bird of the bitter bright grey golden morn
        Scarce risen upon the dusk of dolorous years,
    First of us all and sweetest singer born
        Whose far shrill note the world of new men hears
        Cleave the cold shuddering shade as twilight clears;
    When song new-born put off the old world's attire
    And felt its tune on her changed lips expire,
        Writ foremost on the roll of them that came
    Fresh girt for service of the latter lyre,
        Villon, our sad bad glad mad brother's name!

    Alas the joy, the sorrow, and the scorn,
        That clothed thy life with hopes and sins and fears,
    And gave thee stones for bread and tares for corn
        And plume-plucked gaol-birds for thy starveling peers
        Till death clipt close their flight with shameful shears;
    Till shifts came short and loves were hard to hire,
    When lilt of song nor twitch of twangling wire
        Could buy thee bread or kisses; when light fame
    Spurned like a ball and haled through brake and briar,
        Villon, our sad bad glad mad brother's name!

    Poor splendid wings so frayed and soiled and torn!
        Poor kind wild eyes so dashed with light quick tears!
    Poor perfect voice, most blithe when most forlorn,
        That rings athwart the sea whence no man steers
        Like joy-bells crossed with death-bells in our ears!
    What far delight has cooled the fierce desire
        That like some ravenous bird was strong to tire
        On that frail flesh and soul consumed with flame,
    But left more sweet than roses to respire,
        Villon, our sad bad glad mad brother's name?


    Prince of sweet songs made out of tears and fire,
    A harlot was thy nurse, a God thy sire;
        Shame soiled thy song, and song assoiled thy shame.
    But from thy feet now death has washed the mire,
    Love reads out first at head of all our quire,
        Villon, our sad bad glad mad brother's name.

                                    ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE.


     Which Villon made for himself and his comrades, expecting to be
     hanged along with them.

    Men, brother men, that after us yet live,
        Let not your hearts too hard against us be;
    For if some pity of us poor men ye give,
        The sooner God shall take of you pity.
        Here are we five or six strung up, you see,
    And here the flesh that all too well we fed
    Bit by bit eaten and rotten, rent and shred,
        And we the bones grow dust and ash withal;
    Let no man laugh at us discomforted,
        But pray to God that he forgive us all.

    If we call on you, brothers, to forgive,
        Ye should not hold our prayer in scorn, though we
    Were slain by law; ye know that all alive
        Have not wit alway to walk righteously;
        Make therefore intercession heartily
    With him that of a virgin's womb was bred,
    That his grace be not as a dry well-head
        For us, nor let hell's thunder on us fall;
    We are dead, let no man harry or vex us dead,
        But pray to God that he forgive us all.

    The rain has washed and laundered us all five,
        And the sun dried and blackened; yea, per die,
    Ravens and pies with beaks that rend and rive,
    Have dug our eyes out, and plucked off for fee
        Our beards and eyebrows; never are we free,
        Not once, to rest; but here and there still sped,
    Drive at its wild will by the wind's change led,
        More pecked of birds than fruits on garden-wall.
    Men, for God's love, let no gibe here be said,
        But pray to God that he forgive us all.

    Prince Jesus, that of all art lord and head,
    Keep us, that hell be not our bitter bed;
        We have nought to do in such a master's hall.
    Be not ye therefore of our fellowhead,
        But pray to God that he forgive us all.

                                    ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE.


    Like a queen enchanted who may not laugh or weep,
        Glad at heart and guarded from change and care like ours,
    Girt about with beauty by days and nights that creep
    Soft as breathless ripples that softly shoreward sweep,
        Lies the lovely city whose grace no grief deflowers.
    Age and grey forgetfulness, time that shifts and veers,
    Touch thee not, our fairest, whose charm no rival nears,
        Hailed as England's Florence of one whose praise gives grace,
    Landor, once thy lover, a name that love reveres:
        Dawn and noon and sunset are one before thy face.

    Dawn whereof we know not, and noon whose fruit we reap,
        Garnered up in record of years that fell like flowers;
    Sunset liker sunrise along the shining steep
    Whence thy fair face lightens, and where thy soft springs leap,
        Crown at once and gird thee with grace of guardian powers.
    Loved of men beloved of us, souls that fame inspheres,
    All thine air hath music for him who dreams and hears;
        Voices mixed of multitudes, feet of friends that pace,
    Witness why for ever, if heaven's face clouds or clears,
        Dawn and noon and sunset are one before thy face.

    Peace hath here found harbourage mild as very sleep:
        Not the hills and waters, the fields and wildwood bowers,
    Smile or speak more tenderly, clothed with peace more deep,
    Here than memory whispers of days our memories keep
        Fast with love and laughter and dreams of withered hours.
    Bright were these as blossom of old, and thought endears
    Still the fair soft phantoms that pass with smiles or tears,
        Sweet as roseleaves hoarded and dried wherein we trace
    Still the soul and spirit of sense that lives and cheers:
        Dawn and noon and sunset are one before thy face.

    City lulled asleep by the chime of passing years,
    Sweeter smiles thy rest than the radiance round thy peers;
        Only love and lovely remembrance here have place.
    Time on thee lies lighter than music on men's ears;
        Dawn and noon and sunset are one before thy face.

                                    ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE.


    High beyond the granite portal arched across,
        Like the gateway of some godlike giant's hold
    Sweep and swell the billowy breasts of moor and moss
        East and westward, and the dell their slopes enfold.
        Basks in purple, glows in green, exults in gold.
    Glens that know the dove and fells that hear the lark
    Fill with joy the rapturous island, as an ark
        Full of spicery wrought from herb and flower and tree,
    None would dream that grief even here may disembark
        On the wrathful woful marge of earth and sea.

    Rocks emblazoned like the mid shield's royal boss
        Take the sun with all their blossom broad and bold.
    None would dream that all this moorland's glow and gloss
        Could be dark as tombs that strike the spirit acold,
        Even in eyes that opened here, and here behold
    Now no sun relume from hope's belated spark,
    Any comfort, nor may ears of mourners hark
        Though the ripe woods ring with golden-throated glee,
    While the soul lies shattered, like a stranded bark
        On the wrathful woful marge of earth and sea.

    Death and doom are they whose crested triumphs toss
        On the proud plumed waves whence mourning notes are tolled.
    Wail of perfect woe and moan for utter loss
        Raise the bride-song through the graveyard on the wold
        Where the bride-bed keeps the bridegroom fast in mould,
    Where the bride, with death for priest and doom for clerk,
    Hears for choir the throats of waves like wolves that bark,
        Sore anhungered, off the drear Eperquerie,
    Fain to spoil the strongholds of the strength of Sark
        On the wrathful woful marge of earth and sea.

    Prince of storm and tempest, lord whose ways are dark,
    Wind whose wings are spread for flight that none may mark,
        Lightly dies the joy that lives by grace of thee.
    Love through thee lies bleeding, hope lies cold and stark,
        On the wrathful woful marge of earth and sea.

                                    ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE.


                  (_Chant Royal, after Holbein._)

    "_Contra vim_ MORTIS
      _Non est medicamen in hortis._"

    He is the despots' Despot. All must bide,
      Later or soon, the message of his might;
    Princes and potentates their heads must hide,
      Touched by the awful sigil of his right;
    Beside the Kaiser he at eve doth wait
    And pours a potion in his cup of state;
      The stately Queen his bidding must obey;
      No keen-eyed Cardinal shall him affray;
    And to the Dame that wantoneth he saith--
      "Let be, Sweetheart, to junket and to play...."
    There is no king more terrible than Death.

    The lusty Lord, rejoicing in his pride,
      He draweth down; before the armèd Knight
    With jingling bridle-rein he still doth ride;
      He crosseth the strong Captain in the fight;
    He beckons the grave Elder from debate,
    He hales the Abbot by his shaven pate,
      Nor for the Abbess' wailing will delay;
      No bawling Mendicant shall say him nay;
    E'en to the pyx the Priest he followeth,
      Nor can the Leech his chilling finger stay....
    There is no king more terrible than Death.

    All things must bow to him. And woe betide
      The Wine-bibber,--the Roisterer by night;
    Him the feast-master, many bouts defied,
      Him 'twixt the pledging and the cup shall smite;
    Woe to the Lender at usurious rate,
    The hard Rich Man, the hireling Advocate;
      Woe to the Judge that selleth right for pay;
      Woe to the Thief that like a beast of prey
    With creeping tread the traveller hurryeth:--
      These, in their sin, the sudden sword shall slay....
    There is no king more terrible than Death.

    He hath no pity,--nor will be denied.
      When the low hearth is garnishèd and bright,
    Grimly he flingeth the dim portal wide,
      And steals the Infant in the Mother's sight;
    He hath no pity for the scorned of fate:--
    He spares not Lazarus lying at the gate,
      Nay, nor the Blind that stumbleth as he may;
      Nay, the tired Ploughman,--at the sinking ray,--
    In the last furrow,--feels an icy breath,
      And knows a hand hath turned the team astray....
    There is no king more terrible than Death.

    He hath no pity. For the new-made Bride,
      Blithe with the promise of her life's delight,
    That wanders gladly by her Husband's side,
      He with the clatter of his drum doth fright;
    He scares the Virgin at the convent grate;
    The maid half-won, the Lover passionate;
      He hath no grace for weakness or decay:
      The tender Wife, the Widow bent and grey,--
    The feeble Sire whose footstep faltereth,--
      All these he leadeth by the lonely way....
    There is no king more terrible than Death.


      YOUTH, for whose ear and monishing of late,
      I sang of Prodigals and lost estate,
        Have thou thy joy of living and be gay;
      But know not less that there must come a day,--
    Aye, and perchance e'en now it hasteneth,--
      When thine own heart shall speak to thee and say,--
    There is no king more terrible than Death.

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


                             (Chant Royal.)

    Behold, above the mountains there is light,
      A streak of gold, a line of gathering fire,
    And the dim East hath suddenly grown bright
      With pale aerial flame, that drives up higher
    The lurid mists that, of the night aware,
    Breasted the dark ravines and coverts bare;
      Behold, behold! the granite gates unclose,
      And down the vales a lyric people flows,
    Who dance to music, and in dancing fling
      Their frantic robes to every wind that blows,
    And deathless praises to the vine-god sing.
    Nearer they press, and nearer still in sight,
      Still dancing blithely in a seemly choir;
    Tossing on high the symbol of their rite,
      The cone-tipped thyrsus of a god's desire;
    Nearer they come, tall damsels flushed and fair,
    With ivy circling their abundant hair,
      Onward, with even pace, in stately rows,
      With eye that flashes, and with cheek that glows,
    And all the while their tribute songs they bring,
      And newer glories of the past disclose,
    And deathless praises to their vine-god sing.

    The pure luxuriance of their limbs is white,
        And flashes clearer as they draw the nigher,
    Bathed in an air of infinite delight,
        Smooth without wound of thorn or fleck of mire,
    Born up by song as by a trumpet's blare,
    Leading the van to conquest, on they fare;
        Fearless and bold, whoever comes or goes,
        These shining cohorts of Bacchantes close,
    Shouting and shouting till the mountains ring,
        And forests grim forget their ancient woes,
    And deathless praises to the vine-god sing.

    And youths are there for whom full many a night
        Brought dreams of bliss, vague dreams that haunt and tire,
    Who rose in their own ecstasy bedight,
        And wandered forth through many a scourging briar,
    And waited shivering in the icy air,
    And wrapped their leopard-skins about them there,
        Knowing, for all the bitter air that froze,
        The time must come, that every poet knows,
    When he shall rise and feel himself a king,
        And follow, follow where the ivy grows,
    And deathless praises to the vine-god sing.
    But oh! within the heart of this great flight,
        What ivory arms held up the golden lyre?
    What form is this of more than mortal height
        What matchless beauty, what inspirèd ire?
    The brindled panthers know the prize they bear,
    And harmonise their steps with stately care;
        Bent to the morning like a living rose,
        The immortal splendour of his face he shows,
    And where he glances, leaf and flower and wing
        Tremble with rapture, stirred in their repose,
    And deathless praises to the vine-god sing.


        Prince of the flute and ivy, all thy foes
    Record the bounty that thy grace bestows,
    But we, thy servants, to thy glory cling;
        And with no frigid lips our songs compose,
    And deathless praises to the vine-god sing.

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


                             (Chant Royal.)


    O most fair God, O Love both new and old,
        That wast before the flowers of morning blew,
    Before the glad sun in his mail of gold
        Leapt into light across the first day's dew;
    That art the first and last of our delight,
    That in the blue day and the purple night
        Holdest the hearts of servant and of king,
        Lord of liesse, sovran of sorrowing,
    That in thy hand hast heaven's golden key
        And Hell beneath the shadow of thy wing,
    Thou art my Lord to whom I bend the knee.


    What thing rejects thy mastery? who so bold
        But at thine altars in the dusk they sue?
    Even the strait pale goddess, silver-stoled,
        That kissed Endymion when the Spring was new,
    To thee did homage in her own despite,
    When in the shadow of her wings of white
        She slid down trembling from her moonèd ring
        To where the Latmian boy lay slumbering,
    And in that kiss put off cold chastity.
        Who but acclaim with voice and pipe and string,
    "Thou art my Lord to whom I bend the knee?"


    Master of men and gods, in every fold
        Of thy wide vans the sorceries that renew
    The labouring earth, tranced with the winter's cold,
        Lie hid--the quintessential charms that woo
    The souls of flowers, slain with the sullen might
    Of the dead year, and draw them to the light.
        Balsam and blessing to thy garments cling;
        Skyward and seaward, when thy white hands fling
    Their spells of healing over land and sea,
        One shout of homage makes the welkin ring,
    "Thou art my Lord to whom I bend the knee!"


    I see thee throned aloft; thy fair hands hold
        Myrtles for joy, and euphrasy and rue:
    Laurels and roses round thy white brows rolled,
        And in thine eyes the royal heaven's hue:
    But in thy lips' clear colour, ruddy bright,
    The heart's blood shines of many a hapless wight.
        Thou are not only fair and sweet as spring;
        Terror and beauty, fear and wondering
    Meet on thy brow, amazing all that see:
        All men do praise thee, ay, and everything;
    Thou art my Lord to whom I bend the knee.


    I fear thee, though I love. Who can behold
        The sheer sun burning in the orbèd blue,
    What while the noontide over hill and wold
        Flames like a fire, except his mazèd view
    Wither and tremble? So thy splendid sight
    Fills me with mingled gladness and affright.
        Thy visage haunts me in the wavering
        Of dreams, and in the dawn awakening,
    I feel thy radiance streaming full on me.
        Both fear and joy unto thy feet I bring;
    Thou art my Lord to whom I bend the knee!


    God above Gods, High and Eternal King,
    To whom the spheral symphonies do sing,
        I find no whither from thy power to flee,
    Save in thy pinions vast o'ershadowing.
        Thou art my Lord to whom I bend the knee.

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.


                             (Chant Royal.)

    I waited on a mountain's midmost side,
        The lifting of a cloud, and standing there,
    Keeping my soul in patience far and wide
        Beheld faint shadows wandering, felt the air
    Stirred as with voices which in passing by
    Still dulled its weary weight with many a sigh.
        No band of pilgrims or of soldiers they--
        These children of the mist--who took their way,
            Each one aloof, perplexed and pondering
        With steps untimed to music grave or gay;--
            This was a people that had lost its king.

    In happier days of old it was their pride
        To serve him on their knee and some were 'ware
    E'en of his voice or presence as they plied
        Their daily task, or ate their simple fare.
    Now in new glory shrouded, far and nigh
    He had withdrawn himself from ear and eye;
        Scorning such service as they knew to pay,
        His ministers were as the golden ray
            Shot from the sun when he would wake the spring,--
        Swift to perform and pliant to obey--
            This was a people that had lost its king.

    Single as beasts, or if allied, allied
        But as the wolf who leaves his dusky lair
    To hound for common need, which scarce supplied,
        He lone returns with his disputed share,--
    Even so sole, so scornful, or so shy,
    Each man of these pursued his way on high,
        Still high and higher, seeking through the grey
        Gloom of the mist, the lord of yesterday.
            Dim, serviceless, bereft and sorrowing
        Shadows continuing never in one stay;--
            This was a people that had lost its king.

    Then as the day wore on, and none descried
        The longed-for presence, as the way grew bare,
    As strength declined, and hope within them died
        A sad new birth,--the fruit of their despair,--
    Stirred in their midst, and with a human cry
    Awoke a human love, and flushed a dry
        Sweet spring of tears, whose fertilising play
        Broke up the hard cold barriers of their clay,
            Till hands were stretched in help, or seen to cling
    In fealty that was only joined to pray;
        This was a people that had lost its king.

    So blent in heart and hand, so myriad-eyed,
        With gathering power and ever lessening care,
    The veiled beguilements of the way defied
        They cleave the cloud, and climb that mountain fair;
    Till lo upon its crown at last they vie
    In songs of rapture as they hail the sky,
        And trace their lost one through the vast array
        Of tuneful suns, which keep not now at bay
        Their questing love, but help to waft and wing;
    And over all a voice which seems to say,
        This is a people that has found its king!


    Lord of our lives! Thou scorned us that day
        When at thy feet a scattered host we lay.
    Behold us ONE! One mighty heart we bring,
    Strong for thy tasks, and level to thy sway.
        This was the people that had lost its king!

                                                EMILY PFEIFFER.


                             (Chant Royal.)

    I sit enthroned 'mid icy wastes afar,
        Beyond the level land of endless snow,
    For months I see the brilliant polar star
        Shine on a shore, the lonelier none may know.
    Supreme I rule in monarchy of might,--
    My realms are boundless as the realms of Night.
        Proud court I hold, and tremblingly obey
        My many minions from the isles of Day;
    And when my heralds sound aloud, behold
        My slaves appear with suppliant heads alway!
    I am great Boreas, King of wind and cold.

    I am the god of the winds that are!
        I blow where'er I list,--I come, I go.
    Athwart the sky upon my cloud-capped car
        I rein my steeds, swift-prancing to and fro.
    The dreary woodlands shudder in affright
    To hear my clarion on the mountain height.
        The sobbing sea doth moan in pain, and pray,
        "Is there no refuge from the storm-king's sway?"
    I am as aged as the earth is old,
        Yet strong am I although my locks are grey;
    I am great Boreas, King of wind and cold.

    I loose my chains, and then with awful jar
        And presage of disaster and dire woe,
    Out rush the storms and sound the clash of war
        'Gainst all the earth, and shrill their bugles blow.
    I bid them haste; they bound in eager flight
    Toward far fair lands, where'er the sun's warm light
        Makes mirth and joyance; there, in rude affray,
        They trample down, despoil, and crush and slay.
    They turn green meadows to a desert wold,
        And naught for rulers of the earth care they;--
    I am great Boreas, King of wind and cold.

    When in the sky, a lambent scimitar,
        In early eve Endymion's bride doth glow,
    When night is perfect, and no cloud doth mar
        The peace of nature, when the rivers flow
    Is soft and musical, and when the sprite
    Whispers to lovers on each breeze bedight
        With fragrance, then I steal forth, as I may,
        And seize upon whate'er I will for prey.
    I see the billows high as hilltops rolled,
        And clutch and flaunt aloft the snowy spray!
    I am great Boreas, King of wind and cold.

    I am in league with Death. When I unbar
        My triple-guarded doors, and there bestow
    Upon my frost-fiends freedom, bid them scar
        The brightest dales with summer blooms a-row,
    They breathe on every bower a deadly blight,
    And all is sere and withered in their sight.
        Unheeded now, Apollo's warming ray
        Wakes not the flower, for my chill breezes play
    Where once soft zephyrs swayed the marigold,
        And where his jargon piped the noisy jay,--
    I am great Boreas, King of wind and cold.


    O Princes, hearken what my trumpets say!--
    "Man's life is naught, no mortal lives for aye;
        His might hath empire only of the mold,"
    Boast not yourselves, ye fragile forms of clay!
        I am great Boreas, King of wind and cold.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


                             (Chant Royal.)

    Awake, awake, nay, slumber not, nor sleep!
      Forth from the dreamland and black dome of night,
    From chaos and thick darkness, from the deep
      Of formless being, comes a gracious light,
    Gilding the crystal seas, and casting round
    A golden glory on the enchanted ground;--
      Awake, O souls of harmony, and ye
      That greet the dayspring with your jubilee
    Of lute and harp! Awake, awake, and bring
      Your well-tuned cymbals, and go forth with glee,
    Go forth, and welcome the eternal king.

    Far o'er the hills have not the watchful sheep
      Espied their shepherd, and with eager flight
    Gone forth to meet him on the craggy steep;
      Hasting the while his summoning notes invite
    Where riper grasses and green herbs abound:--
    But ye! your shepherd calls, thrice happy sound!
      He comes, he comes, your shepherd king, 'tis he!
      Oh, quit these close-cropped meads, and gladly flee
    To him who makes once more new growths upspring;
      Oh, quit your ancient glebes,--oh, joyfully
    Go forth, and welcome the eternal king.

    Too long ye till exhausted lands and reap
      Thin crops that ne'er your weary toil requite:
    Too long your laggard oxen labouring creep
      Up the wide furrows, and full idly smite
    The weed-encircled ridge, the rocky mound:
    Will ye not quit these fields now barren found?
      Ah! ye are old, yet not too old to be
      Brave travellers o'er bald custom's boundary;--
    Then each, let each his robe around him fling,
      And with his little one, his child, set free,
    Go forth, and welcome the eternal king.

    See, on the strand, watching the waves that sweep
      Their creamy ripples up the sandy bight,
    Your child waits, leaping as the wavelets leap,
      The faery infant of the infinite!
    Ah! happy child, with what new wonders crowned
    He'll turn to thee to fathom and expound;
      Asking, enquiring, looking unto thee
      To solve the universe, its destiny;--
    And still unto thy vestment's hem will cling,
      Asking, enquiring,--whispering, may not we
    Go forth, and welcome the eternal king.

    Oh, linger not, no longer vainly weep
      O'er vanished hopes, but with new strength unite;
    Oh, linger not! But let your glad eyes keep
      Watch on this guiding star that beams so bright
    Around your brows be this phylacter bound,--
    _Let Truth be king and let his praise resound!_
      Oh, linger not! Let earth, and sky, and sea,
      To sound his praises let all hearts agree;
    Still loud, and louder, let your pæans ring,
      Go forth, go forth, in glad exultancy
    Go forth, and welcome the eternal king.


      Thou art the king, O Truth! we bend the knee
      To thee; we own thy wondrous sovranty;
    And still thy praises in our songs we'll sing,
      Bidding all people with blithe minstrelsy
    Go forth, and welcome the eternal king.

                                             SAMUEL WADDINGTON.


    When Spring came softly breathing o'er the land,
      With warmer sunshine and sweet April shower;
    Bidding the silken willow leaves expand;
      Calling to hill and meadow, bee and flower,
    Bright with new life and beauty; on light wing
    Bringing the birds again to love and sing;
      And waking in the heart its joy amain,
      With old fond hopes and memories in its train;
    Childishly glad mid universal cheer,
      How oft we sang the half-forgotten strain:
    "_Now_ we behold the glory of the year!"

    When Summer by her fervid breezes fanned,
      With footstep free and proud in restless power,
    With plump, round cheek to ruddy beauty tanned,
      In blooming loveliness came to her bower,
    Her golden tresses loosely wandering
    In wild luxuriance,--then pretty Spring
      Seemed but a playful sister, pettish, vain.
      How well we loved the passionate Summer's reign!
    How day by day our empress grew more dear!
      "Beyond," we asked, "what fairer can remain?
    _Now_ we behold the glory of the year!"

    But when grave Autumn's ever bounteous hand
      Poured round our feet the riches of her dower:
    The pulpy fruit, the nut's sweet ripened gland,
      The largess free to gleaner and to plower,
    And all the Summer sought in vain to bring;
    When stood the hills in glorious garmenting;
      Shadowed by low-hung skies of sober grain,
      No more could our ennobled thoughts sustain
    Regretful memory of Summer sere,--
      "What of the past!" we cried in quick disdain;
    "_Now_ we behold the glory of the year!"

    Then before mighty Winter, stern and grand,
      We saw defenceless Autumn shivering, cower,
    Changed to Duessa by his potent wand,
      Shorn of her loveliness, in Fortune's lower
    Naked for Winter's scourge to smite and sting.
    How godlike came the world's new sceptered King!
      He fettered fast her torrents with his chain,
      Bound with his manacles the moaning main,
    Yea, wrought his will with all things far and near.
      "At last," we said, "what more can Time attain?
    _Now_ we behold the glory of the year!"

    Neglected Spring, despised, insulted, banned!
      Poor weakling! came again one April hour,
    The tyrant struck his tent at her command;
      She laughed,--down tumbling fell his frosty tower;
    At one light finger-touch his captives fling
    Their shackles off and make the valleys ring
      With praises to the conqueror of pain.
      All the lost lives that languishing have lain,
    Leaves, grasses, buds, and birds again appear,
      "O now!" we cried again and yet again,
    "_Now_ we behold the glory of the year!"

    Prince, while Spring sports with sunbeam, flower, and rain,--
    While wanton Summer riots on the plain,--
      'Neath Autumn's calm, or Winter's frown severe,
    Change only clearer chants the old refrain,
    "_Now_ we behold the glory of the year!"

                                                ERNEST WHITNEY.

#The Kyrielle, Pantoum, and Rondeau Redouble.#

    _Qui voudra sçavoir la pratique_
    _De cette rime juridique,_
    _Je dis que bien mise en effet_
    _La Kyrielle ainsi se fait._
    _De plante de sillabes huit_
    _Usez en donc si bien vous duit;_
    _Pour faire le couplet parfait_
    _La Kirielle ainsi si fait._



    A lark in the mesh of the tangled vine,
    A bee that drowns in the flower-cup's wine,
    A fly in the sunshine,--such is man.
    All things must end, as all began.

    A little pain, a little pleasure,
    A little heaping up of treasure;
    Then no more gazing upon the sun.
    All things must end that have begun.

    Where is the time for hope or doubt?
    A puff of the wind, and life is out;
    A turn of the wheel, and rest is won.
    All things must end that have begun.

    Golden morning and purple night,
    Life that fails with the failing light;
    Death is the only deathless one.
    All things must end that have begun.

    Ending waits on the brief beginning;
    Is the prize worth the stress of winning?
    E'en in the dawning the day is done.
    All things must end that have begun.

    Weary waiting and weary striving,
    Glad outsetting and sad arriving;
    What is it worth when the goal is won?
    All things must end that have begun.

    Speedily fades the morning glitter;
    Love grows irksome and wine grows bitter.
    Two are parted from what was one.
    All things must end that have begun.

    Toil and pain and the evening rest;
    Joy is weary and sleep is best;
    Fair and softly the day is done.
    All things must end that have begun.

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.


    In the tent the lamps were bright;
    Out beyond the summer night
    Thrilled and quivered like a star:
    _We beneath were left so far._

    From the depths of blue profound
    Never any sight or sound
    Came our loneliness to mar:
    _We beneath were left so far._

    But against the summer sky
    Only you stood out and I;
    From all other things that are
    _We beneath were left so far._

                                           A. MARY F. ROBINSON.


    In spring Love came, a welcome guest,
    And tarried long at my behest;
    Now autumn wanes, the skies are grey
    But loyal Love flees not away.

    I charmed him with melodious lays
    Through long rose-scented summer days;
    My songs no more are clear and gay
    But loyal Love flees not away.

    We plucked and twined the myrtle flowers,
    Made joyance in the sylvan bowers;
    The blooms have died, wild winds hold sway,
    But loyal Love flees not away.

    Gone are the fifing crickets, gone
    The feathered harbingers of dawn,
    And gone the woodland's bright display,
    But loyal Love flees not away.

    With intermingled light and shade
    The shifting seasons come and fade;
    Our fond hopes fail, false friends betray,
    But loyal Love flees not away!

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


     "The blue fly sung in the pane."--_Tennyson._

    Toiling in Town now is "horrid"
      (There is that woman again!)--
    June in the zenith is torrid,
      Thought gets dry in the brain.

    There is that woman again:
      "Strawberries! fourpence a pottle!"
    Thought gets dry in the brain;
      Ink gets dry in the bottle.

    "Strawberries! fourpence a pottle!"
      Oh for the green of a lane!--
    Ink gets dry in the bottle;
      "Buzz" goes a fly in the pane!

    Oh for the green of a lane,
      Where one might lie and be lazy!
    "Buzz" goes a fly in the pane;
      Bluebottles drive me crazy!

    Where one might lie and be lazy,
      Careless of Town and all in it!--
    Bluebottles drive me crazy:
      I shall go mad in a minute!

    Careless of Town and all in it,
      With some one to soothe and to still you;
    I shall go mad in a minute,
      Bluebottle, then I shall kill you!

    With some one to soothe and to still you,
      As only one's feminine kin do,--
    Bluebottle, then I shall kill you:
      There now! I've broken the window!

    As only one's feminine kin do,--
      Some muslin-clad Mabel or May!--
    There now! I've broken the window!
      Bluebottle's off and away!

    Some muslin-clad Mabel or May,
      To dash one with eau de Cologne;--
    Bluebottle's off and away,
      And why should I stay here alone?

    To dash one with eau de Cologne,
      All over one's eminent forehead;
    And why should I stay here alone?
      Toiling in Town now is "horrid."

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.



    Morn and noon and night,
        Here I lie in the ground;
    No faintest glimmer of light,
        No lightest whisper of sound.

    Here I lie in the ground;
        The worms glide out and in;
    No lightest whisper of sound,
        After a life-long din.

    The worms glide out and in;
        They are fruitful and multiply;
    After a life-long din,
        I watch them quietly.

    They are fruitful and multiply,
        My body dwindles the while;
    I watch them quietly;
        I can scarce forbear a smile.

    My body dwindles the while,
        I shall soon be a skeleton;
    I can scarce forbear a smile
        They have had such glorious fun.

    I shall soon be a skeleton,
        The worms are wriggling away;
    They have had such glorious fun,
        They will fertilise my clay.

    The worms are wriggling away,
        They are what I have been,
    They will fertilise my clay.
        The grass will grow more green.

    They are what I have been.
        I shall change, but what of that?
    The grass will grow more green,
        The parson's sheep grow fat.

    I shall change, but what of that?
        All flesh is grass, one says,
    The parson's sheep grow fat,
        The parson grows in grace.

    All flesh is grass, one says,
        Grass becomes flesh, one knows,
    The parson grows in grace;
        I am the grace he grows.

    Grass becomes flesh, one knows,
        He grows like a bull of Bashan.
    I am the grace he grows;
        I startle his congregation.

    He grows like a bull of Bashan,
        One day he'll be Bishop or Dean,
    I startle his congregation:
        One day I shall preach to the Q--n.

    One day he'll be Bishop or Dean,
        One of those science-haters;
    One day I shall preach to the Q--n.
        To think of my going in gaiters!

    One of those science-haters,
        Blind as a mole or bat;
    To think of my going in gaiters,
        And wearing a shovel hat!

    Blind as a mole or bat,
        No faintest glimmer of light,
    And wearing a shovel hat,
        Morning and noon and night.

"_Love in Idleness._"


                      (Song in the Malay manner.)

    The wind brings up the hawthorn's breath.
        The sweet airs ripple up the lake:
    My soul, my soul is sick to death,
        My heart, my heart is like to break.

    The sweet airs ripple up the lake,
        I hear the thin woods' fluttering:
    My heart, my heart is like to break;
        What part have I, alas! in spring?

    I hear the thin woods' fluttering;
        The brake is brimmed with linnet-song:
    What part have I, alas! in spring?
        For me, heart's winter is life-long.

    The brake is brimmed with linnet song;
        Clear carols flutter through the trees;
    For me heart's winter is life-long;
        I cast my sighs on every breeze.

    Clear carols flutter through the trees;
        The new year hovers like a dove:
    I cast my sighs on every breeze;
        Spring is no spring, forlorn of love.

    The new year hovers like a dove
        Above the breast of the green earth:
    Spring is no spring, forlorn of love;
        Alike to me are death and birth.

    Above the breast of the green earth
        The soft sky flutters like a flower:
    Alike to me are death and birth;
        I dig Love's grave in every hour.

    The soft sky flutters like a flower
        Along the glory of the hills:
    I dig Love's grave in every hour,
        I hear Love's dirge in all the rills.

    Along the glory of the hills
        Flowers slope into a rim of gold:
    I hear Love's dirge in all the rills;
        Sad singings haunt me as of old.

    Flowers slope into a rim of gold
        Along the marges of the sky:
    Sad singings haunt me as of old;
        Shall Love come back to me to die?

    Along the marges of the sky
        The birds wing homeward from the East:
    Shall Love come back to me to die?
        Shall Hope relive, once having ceas'd?

    The birds wing homeward from the East;
        I smell spice-breaths upon the air:
    Shall Hope relive, once having ceas'd?
        It would lie black on my despair.

    I smell spice-breaths upon the air;
        The golden Orient savours pass:
    Hope would lie black on my despair,
        Like a moon-shadow on the grass.

    The golden Orient savours pass:
        The full spring throbs in all the shade:
    Like a moon-shadow on the grass,
        My hope into the dusk would fade.

    The full spring throbs in all the shade;
        We shall have roses soon, I trow;
    My hope into the dusk would fade;
        Bring lilies on Love's grave to strow.

    We shall have roses soon I trow;
        Soon will the rich red poppies burn:
    Bring lilies on Love's grave to strow:
        My hope is fled beyond return.

    Soon will the rich red poppies burn;
        Soon will blue iris star the stream:
    My hope is fled beyond return;
        Have my eyes tears for my waste dream?

    Soon will blue iris star the stream;
        Summer will turn the air to wine:
    Have my eyes tears for my waste dream?
        Can songs come from these lips of mine?

    Summer will turn the air to wine,
        So full and sweet the mid-spring flowers:
    Can songs come from those lips of mine?
        My thoughts are grey as winter hours.

    So full and sweet the mid-spring flowers.
        The wind brings up the hawthorn's breath;
    My thoughts are grey as winter hours;
        My soul, my soul is sick to death.

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.



    Here we are riding the rail,
        Gliding from out of the station;
    Man though I am, I am pale,
        Certain of heat and vexation.

    Gliding from out of the station,
        Out from the city we thrust;
    Certain of heat and vexation,
        Sure to be covered with dust.

    Out from the city we thrust:
        Rattling we run o'er the bridges:
    Sure to be covered with dust,
        Stung by a thousand of midges.

    Rattling we dash o'er the bridges,
        Rushing we dash o'er the plain;
    Stung by a thousand of midges,
        Certain precursors of rain.

    Rushing we dash o'er the plain,
        Watching the clouds darkly lowering,
    Certain precursors of rain:
        Fields about here need a showering.

    Watching the clouds darkly lowering,--
        Track here is high on a bank--
    Fields about here need a showering,
        Boy with the books needs a spank.

    Track here is high on a bank,
        Just by a wretched old hovel:
    Boy with the books needs a spank--
        "No! I don't want a new novel!"

    Just by a wretched old hovel,
        Small speck of dust in my eye.
    "No! I don't want a new novel!"
        --Babies beginning to cry.--

    Small speck of dust in my eye,
        "I will not buy papers or candy!"
    --Babies beginning to cry--.
        Oh, for a tomahawk handy!

    "I will not buy papers or candy!"
        Train boys deserve to be slain;
    Oh, for a tomahawk handy!
        Oh, for the cool of the rain!

    Train boys deserve to be slain,
        Heat and the dust--they are choking
    Oh, for the cool of the rain!
        --"Gent" just behind me is joking.

    Heat and the dust, they are choking,
        Clogging and filling my pores;
    --"Gent" just behind me is joking,
        "Gent" just in front of me snores.

    Clogging and filling my pores,
        Ears are on edge at the rattle;
    "Gent" just in front of me snores,
        Sounds like the noise of a battle.

    Ears are on edge at the rattle,
        Man tho' I am, I am pale,
    Sounds like the noise of a battle,
        Here we are riding the rail.

                                              BRANDER MATTHEWS.



    She oped the portal of the palace,
        She stole into the garden's gloom;
    From every spotless snowy chalice
        The lilies breathed a sweet perfume.

    She stole into the garden's gloom,
        She thought that no one would discover;
    The lilies breathed a sweet perfume,
        She swiftly ran to meet her lover.

    She thought that no one would discover,
        But footsteps followed ever near;
    She swiftly ran to meet her lover
        Beside the fountain crystal clear.

    But footsteps followed ever near;
        Ah, who is that she sees before her
    Beside the fountain crystal clear?
        'Tis not her hazel-eyed adorer.

    Ah, who is that she sees before her,
        His hand upon his scimitar?
    'Tis not her hazel-eyed adorer,
        It is her lord of Candahar!

    His hand upon his scimitar--
        Alas, what brought such dread disaster!
    It is her lord of Candahar,
        The fierce Sultan, her lord and master.

    Alas, what brought such dread disaster!
        "Your pretty lover's dead!" he cries--
    The fierce Sultan, her lord and master--
        "'Neath yonder tree his body lies."

    "Your pretty lover's dead!" he cries--
        (A sudden, ringing voice behind him);
    "'Neath yonder tree his body lies--"
        "Die, lying dog! go thou and find him!"

    A sudden, ringing voice behind him,
        A deadly blow, a moan of hate,
    "Die, lying dog! go thou and find him!
        Come, love, our steeds are at the gate!"

    A deadly blow, a moan of hate,
        His blood ran red as wine in chalice;
    "Come, love, our steeds are at the gate!"
        She oped the portal of the palace.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


        My soul is sick of nightingale and rose,
    The perfume and the darkness of the grove;
        I weary of the fevers and the throes,
    And all the enervating dreams of love.

        At morn I love to hear the lark, and rove
    The meadows, where the simple daisy shows
        Her guiltless bosom to the skies above--
    My soul is sick of nightingale and rose.

        The afternoon is sweet, and sweet repose,
    But let me lie where breeze-blown branches move.
        I hate the stillness where the sunbeams doze,
    The perfume and the darkness of the grove.

        I love to hear at eve the gentle dove
    Contented coo the day's delightful close.
        She sings of love and all the calm thereof,--
    I weary of the fevers and the throes.

        I love the night, who like a mother throws
    Her arms round hearts that throbbed and limbs that strove,
        As kind as Death, that puts an end to woes
    And all the enervating dreams of love.

        Because my soul is sick of fancies wove
    Of fervid ecstasies and crimson glows;
        Because the taste of cinnamon and clove
    Palls on my palate--let no man suppose
                          My soul is sick.

                                               COSMO MONKHOUSE.


        My day and night are in my lady's hand;
    I have no other sunrise than her sight;
        For me her favour glorifies the land;
    Her anger darkens all the cheerful light.

        Her face is fairer than the hawthorn white,
    When all a-flower in May the hedgerows stand;
        While she is kind, I know of no affright;
    My day and night are in my lady's hand.

        All heaven in her glorious eyes is spanned;
    Her smile is softer than the summer's night,
        Gladder than daybreak on the Faery strand;
    I have no other sunrise than her sight.

        Her silver speech is like the singing flight
    Of runnels rippling o'er the jewelled sand;
        Her kiss a dream of delicate delight;
    For me her favour glorifies the land.

        What if the Winter chase the Summer bland!
    The gold sun in her hair burns ever bright.
        If she be sad, straightway all joy is banned;
    Her anger darkens all the cheerful light.

        Come weal or woe, I am my lady's knight
    And in her service every ill withstand;
        Love is my Lord in all the world's despite
    And holdeth in the hollow of his hand
                            My day and night.

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.


                          (Rondeau Redoublé.)

    O goddess sweet, give ear unto my prayer.
        Come with thy doves across the briny sea,
    Leave thy tall fanes and thy rose gardens rare,
        From cruel bondage set thy vot'ress free!

    Ah how my heart would joy again to be
        Like chirming bird that cleaves the sunny air,
    Like wildwood roe that bounds in ecstasy;
        O goddess sweet, give ear unto my prayer!

    That I am innocent hast thou no care
        Of crime against celestial deity?
    Must I the fate of lovely Lotis share?--
        Come with thy doves across the briny sea!

    I hear no waters' silvern melody,
        And yet the rippling water once was there,
    And on its bloomy banks I worshipped thee;--
        Leave thy tall fanes and thy rose gardens rare!

    Could I but feel my boy's hands on my hair,
        Could I but kiss my sister Iole,
    Then bravely would I cast forth chill despair,
        From cruel bondage set thy vot'ress free!

    I, who was once the blithesome Dryope,
        Am now a tree bole, cold and brown and bare;
    Pity, I pray, my ceaseless agony,
        Or grant forgetfulness of all things fair,
                                O goddess sweet.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    I will go hence, and seek her, my old Love;
        All bramble-laced, and moss-grown is the way,
    There is no sun, nor broad, red moon above,
        The year is old, he said, and skies are grey.

    The rose-wreaths fade, the viols are not gay,
        That which seemed sweet doth passing bitter prove;
    So sweet _she_ was, she will not say me nay--
        I will go hence and seek her, my old Love.

    Low, labouring sighs stirred coldly through the grove,
        Where buds unblossomed on the mosses lay;
    His upraised hands the dusky tangle clove,
        "All bramble-laced and moss-grown is the way!"

    With grievous eyes, and lips that smiled alway,
        Strange, flitting shapes, wreathed round him as he strove
    Their spectral arms, and filmy green array;
        There was no sun, nor broad red moon above.

    Here lies her lute--and here her slender glove;
        (Her bower well won, sweet joy shall crown the day);
    But her he saw not, vanished was his Love,
        The year is old, he said, and skies are grey.

    The wrong was mine! he cried. I left my dove
        (He flung him down upon the weeping clay),
    And now I find her flown--ah wellaway!
        The house is desolate that held my Love,
                                I will go hence.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    To thee, fair Isle, Italia's satellite,
      Italian harps their native measures lend;
    Yet, wooing sweet diversity, not quite
      Thy octaves with Italia's octaves blend.
    Six streaming lines amass the arrowy might
      In hers, one cataract couplet doth expend;
    Thine lake-wise widens, level in the light,
      And like to its beginning is its end.

           *       *       *       *       *

    To thee 'tis pleasure, haply to have brought
      Home precious ware from China or Japan;
    And thine, when keen and long pursuit hath caught
     Strange bird, or Psyche gay with veinèd fan--
    And thine, to spell some sentence wisdom-fraught
      In palimpest or Arab alcoran;
    And mine, to seize some rare and coloured thought
      And cage it in my verse Sicilian.


     Although this shape is not actually akin to the group of forms in
     this book, yet for examples of another variety of strict verse,
     the author has kindly allowed two specimens to be quoted.

#The Rondel, Rondeau, and Roundel.#


    _Allez-vous en, allez, allez,_
    _Soussy, soing et merencolie:_
    _Me cuidez-vous toute ma vie_
    _Gouverner, comme fait avez?_
    _Je vous promets que non ferez_
    _Rayson aura sur vous maistrie_
    _Allez-vous en, allez, allez,_
    _Soussy, soing et merencolie._

    _Si jamais plus vous retournez_
    _Avecques vostre compaignie_
    _Je prye à Dieu qu' il vous mauldie_
    _Et le jour que vous reviendrez:_
    _Allez-vous en, allez, allez,_
    _Soussy, soing et merencolie._



    _Ma foi, c'est fait de moi, car Isabeau_
    _M'a conjuré de lui faire un rondeau._
    _Cela me met en peine extrême_
    _Quoi! treize vers, huit en eau, cinq en eme!_
    _Je lui ferais aussitôt un bateau._

    _En voilà cinq pourtant en un monceau._
    _Faisons-en huit en invoquant Brodeau,_
    _Et puis mettons, par quelque stratagème:_
                          _Ma foi, c'est fait._

    _Si je pouvais encor de mon cerveau_
    _Tirer cinq vers l'ouvrage serait beau;_
    _Mais cependant je suis dedans l'onzième:_
    _Et ci je crois que je fais le douzième;_
    _En voilà treize ajustés au niveau._
                          _Ma foi, c'est fait._



    O honey of Hymettus Hill,
        Gold-brown, and cloying sweet to taste,
    Wert here for the soft amorous bill
        Of Aphrodite's courser placed?

        Thy musky scent what virginal chaste
    Blossom was ravished to distil,
    O honey of Hymettus Hill,
        Gold-brown, and cloying sweet to taste?

    What upturned calyx drank its fill
        When ran the draught divine to waste,
    That her white hands were doomed to spill--
        Sweet Hebe, fallen and disgraced--
    O honey of Hymettus Hill,
        Gold-brown, and cloying sweet to taste?

                                                  H. C. BUNNER.


    Through the fresh fairness of the Spring to ride,
        As in the old days when he rode with her,
    With joy of Love that had fond Hope to bride,
        One year ago had made her pulses stir.

        Now shall no wish with any day recur
    (For Love and Death part year and year full wide),
    Through the fresh fairness of the Spring to ride,
        As in the old days when he rode with her.

    No ghost there lingers of the smile that died
        On the sweet pale lip where his kisses were--
    ... Yet still she turns her delicate head aside,
        If she may hear him come with jingling spur--
    Through the fresh fairness of the Spring to ride,
        As in the old days when he rode with her.

                                                  H. C. BUNNER.


    This book of hours Love wrought
        With burnished letters gold;
    Each page with art and thought,
        And colours manifold.

    His calendar he taught
        To youths and virgins cold;
    This book of hours Love wrought
        With burnished letters gold.

    This priceless book is bought
        With sighs and tears untold,
    Of votaries who sought
        His countenance of old--
    This book of hours Love wrought
        With burnished letters gold.

                                                  WALTER CRANE.


    When time upon the wing
        A swallow heedless flies,
    Love-birds forget to sing
        Beneath the lucent skies.

    For now belated spring
        With her last blossom hies,
    When time upon the wing
        A swallow heedless flies.

    What summer hope shall bring
        To wistful dreaming eyes?
    What fateful forecast fling
        Before life's last surprise?
    When time upon the wing
        A swallow heedless flies.

                                                  WALTER CRANE.



    Love comes back to his vacant dwelling,--
        The old, old Love that we knew of yore!
        We see him stand by the open door
    With his great eyes sad, and his bosom swelling.

    He makes as though in our arms repelling,
        He fain would lie as he lay before;--
    Love comes back to his vacant dwelling,--
        The old, old Love that we knew of yore!

    Ah! who shall help us from over-spelling,
        That sweet forgotten, forbidden lore!
        E'en as we doubt in our hearts once more,
    With a rush of tears to our eyelids welling,
    Love comes back to his vacant dwelling.

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    When love is in her eyes
        What need of Spring for me?
    A brighter emerald lies
        On hill and vale and lea.

    The azure of the skies
        Holds nought so sweet to me;
    When love is in her eyes
        What need of spring for me?

    Her bloom the rose outvies,
        The lily dares no plea,
    The violet's glory dies,
        No flower so sweet can be;
    When love is in her eyes
        What need of spring for me?

                                                ANNA MARIA FAY.


                        [After Anyte of Tegea.]

    Underneath this tablet rest,
      Grasshopper by autumn slain,
    Since thine airy summer nest
      Shivers under storm and rain.

    Freely let it be confessed
      Death and slumber bring thee gain
      Spared from winter's fret and pain,
    Underneath this tablet rest.

      Myro found thee on the plain,
    Bore thee in her lawny breast,
      Reared this marble tomb amain
    To receive so small a guest!
    Underneath this tablet rest,
      Grasshopper by autumn slain.

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


    How is it you and I
      Are always meeting so?
    I see you passing by
      Whichever way I go.

      I cannot say I know
    The spell that draws us nigh.
    How is it you and I
      Are always meeting so?

    Still thoughts to thoughts reply,
      And whispers ebb and flow;
    I say it with a sigh
      But half confessed and low,
    How is it you and I
      Are always meeting so?

                                            JOHN CAMERON GRANT.



     "Alons au bois le may cueillir."--CHARLES D'ORLÉANS.

    We'll to the woods and gather may
        Fresh from the footprints of the rain;
        We'll to the woods, at every vein
    To drink the spirit of the day.

    The winds of spring are out at play,
        The needs of spring in heart and brain.
    We'll to the woods and gather may
        Fresh from the footprints of the rain.

    The world's too near her end, you say?--
        Hark to the blackbird's mad refrain!
        It waits for her, the vast Inane?--
    Then, girls, to help her on the way
    We'll to the woods and gather may.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    "Ainsi qu' aux fleurs la vieillesse,
    Fera ternir votre beauté."--RONSARD.

    And lightly, like the flowers,
        Your beauties Age will dim,
        Who makes the song a hymn,
    And turns the sweets to sours!

    Alas! the chubby Hours
        Grow lank and grey and grim,
    And lightly, like the flowers,
        Your beauties Age will dim.

    Still rosy are the bowers,
        The walks yet green and trim.
        Among them let your whim
    Pass sweetly, like the showers,
    And lightly, like the flowers.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


"Hic habitat Felicitas."

    "Felicity. Enquire within.
      The genial goddess is at home!"
      So read and thought the rakes of Rome,
    Some frail one's lintel fain to win.

    And now it blares thro' bronze and tin,
      Thro' clarion, organ, catcall, comb:--
    "Felicity. Enquire within.
      The genial goddess is at home!"

    For, tent or studio, bank or bin,
      Platonic porch, Petræan dome,
      Where'er our hobbies champ and foam,
    Thero'er the brave old sign we pin--
    "Felicity. Enquire within."

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    "And sweet girl graduates in their golden hair."--TENNYSON.

    Sweet girl graduates, golden-haired,
    You for whom has been prepared
        Love's fair university,
        Dons and double-firsts to be-
    Why are you so quickly scared?

    When the prudes their worst have glared,
        When the dowagers have stared,
        What has passed they might not see,
    Sweet girl-graduates, golden-haired,
    You for whom has been prepared
        Love's fair university?

    Most is won when most is dared.
    Let your dainty lore be aired.
        Love and thought and fun are free.
        All must flirt in their degree.
    Books alone have never reared
    Sweet girl-graduates, golden-haired.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    The ways of Death are soothing and serene,
        And all the words of Death are grave and sweet.
        From camp and church, the fireside and the street,
    She signs to come, and strife and song have been.

    A summer night descending, cool and green
        And dark, on daytime's dust and stress and heat,
    The ways of Death are soothing and serene,
        And all the words of Death are grave and sweet

    O glad and sorrowful, with triumphant mien
        And hopeful faces look upon and greet
        This last of all your lovers, and to meet
    Her kiss, the Comforter's, your spirit lean....
    The ways of Death are soothing and serene.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    I love you dearly, O my sweet!
      Although you pass me lightly by,
      Although you weave my life awry,
    And tread my heart beneath your feet.

      I tremble at your touch; I sigh
    To see you passing down the street;
    I love you dearly, O my sweet!
      Although you pass me lightly by.

    You say in scorn that love's a cheat,
      Passion a blunder, youth a lie.
    I know not. Only when we meet
      I long to kiss your hand and cry,
    "I love you dearly, O my sweet,
      Although you pass me lightly by."

                                        JUSTIN HUNTLY MCCARTHY.



    When on the mid sea of the night,
        I waken at thy call, O Lord.
        The first that troop my bark aboard
    Are darksome imps that hate the light,
    Whose tongues are arrows, eyes a blight--
        Of wraths and cares a pirate horde--
    Though on the mid sea of the night
        It was thy call that waked me, Lord.

    Then I must to my arms and fight--
        Catch up my shield and two-edged sword,
        The words of him who is thy word:
    Nor cease till they are put to flight:--
    Then in the mid sea of the night
        I turn and listen for thee, Lord.


    There comes no voice from thee, O Lord,
        Across the mid sea of the night!
        I lift my voice and cry with might:
    If thou keep silent, soon a horde
    Of imps again will swarm aboard,
        And I shall be in sorry plight
    If no voice come from thee, O Lord,
        Across the mid sea of the night.

    There comes no voice; I hear no word!
        But in my soul dawns something bright:--
        There is no sea, no foe to fight!
    Thy heart and mine beat one accord:
    I need no voice from thee, O Lord,
        Across the mid sea of the night.

                                              GEORGE MACDONALD.



    The lilacs are in bloom,
      All is that ever was,
      And Cupids peep and pass
    Through the curtains of the room.

    Season of light perfume,
      Hide all beneath thy grass.
    The lilacs are in bloom,
      All is that ever was.

    Dead hopes new shapes assume;
      Town belle and country lass
      Forget the word "Alas,"
    For over every tomb
    The lilacs are in bloom.


    Summer has seen decay
      Of roses white and red,
      And Love with wings outspread
    Speeds after yesterday.

    Blue skies have changed to grey,
      And joy has sorrow wed:
    Summer has seen decay
      Of roses white and red.

    May's flowers outlast not May;
      And when the hour has fled,
      Around the roses dead
    The mournful echoes say--
    Summer has seen decay.

                                                  GEORGE MOORE.


    Paper, inviolate, white,
        Shall it be joy or pain?
        Shall I of fate complain,
    Or shall I laugh to-night?

    Shall it be hopes that are bright?
        Shall it be hopes that are vain?
    Paper, inviolate, white,
        Shall it be joy or pain?

    A dear little hand so light,
        A moment in mine hath lain;
        Kind was its pressure again--
    Ah, but it was so slight!

    Paper, inviolate, white,
    Shall it be joy or pain?

                                               COSMO MONKHOUSE.


    Kiss me, sweetheart; the Spring is here
        And Love is Lord of you and me.
        The blue-bells beckon each passing bee;
    The wild wood laughs to the flowered year:
    There is no bird in brake or brere,
        But to his little mate sings he,
    "Kiss me, sweetheart; the Spring is here,
        And Love is Lord of you and me!"

    The blue sky laughs out sweet and clear,
        The missel-thrush upon the tree
        Pipes for sheer gladness loud and free;
    And I go singing to my dear,
        "Kiss me, sweetheart; the Spring is here,
        And Love is Lord of you and me."

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.


    Before the dawn begins to glow,
        A ghostly company I keep;
        Across the silent room they creep,
    The buried forms of friend and foe.
    Amid the throng that come and go,
        There are two eyes that make me weep;
    Before the dawn begins to glow,
        A ghostly company I keep.

    Two dear dead eyes. I love them so!
        They shine like starlight on the deep;
        And often when I am asleep
    They stoop and kiss me, bending low,
        Before the dawn begins to glow.

                                           SAMUEL MINTURN PECK.


    Oh, say not ye that summer's over
        When birds within the wood stop singing!
        While hands still touch in desperate clinging,
    Some ghost of hope in hearts must hover;
    Though died the dream of loved and lover,
        While yet the marriage bells were ringing.
    Oh, say not ye that summer's over
        When birds within the wood stop singing!

    Their vanished hopes may none recover
        In some new day, new morrow bringing?
        And shall we see no buds fresh springing
    Upon the stalks of last year's clover?
    Oh, say not ye that summer's over
        When birds within the wood stop singing!

                                                    MAY PROBYN.




    We bless the coming of the Night,
        Whose cool sweet kiss has set us free,
        Life's clamour and anxiety
    Her mantle covers out of sight.
    All eating cares have taken flight,
        The scented air is wine to me;
    We bless the coming of the Night,
        Whose cool sweet kiss has set us free.
    Rest now, O reader, worn and white,
        Driven by some divinity,
        Aloft, like sparkling hoar frost see,
    A starry ocean throb in light,
    We bless the coming of the Night.


                               THE MOON.

    The moon, with all her tricksy ways,
        Is like a careless young coquette,
        Who smiles, and then her eyes are wet,
    And flies or follows or delays.
    By night, along the sand-hills' maze,
        She leads and mocks you till you fret.
    The moon with all her tricksy ways,
        Is like a careless young coquette.
    As oft she veils herself in haze,
        A cloak before her splendour set;
        She is a silly charming pet,
    We needs must give her love and praise,
    The moon with all her tricksy ways.

                                             ARTHUR REED ROPES.


    Oh, modern singers! ye who vote
        Our times for song unfit,
    Your Pegasus is smooth of coat,
        And patient of the bit;

    But lost the freedom of his throat,
        And dulled his prairie wit,
    Oh, modern singers, ye who vote
        Our times for song unfit,

    If kin, fame, critics, age, you quote
        As fain to thwart and twit,
    Just try to feel your wings, and float
        Above the scornful kit:-
    Oh, modern singers, ye who vote
        Our times for song unfit!

                                                EMILY PFEIFFER.



    Come, Love, across the sunlit land,
        As blithe as dryad dancing free,
    While time slips by like silvery sand
        Within the glass of memory.

    Ere Winter, in his reckless glee,
        Blights all the bloom with ruthless hand,
    Come, Love, across the sunlit land,
        As blithe as dryad dancing free.

    And all the years of life shall be
        Like peaceful vales that wide expand
    To meet a bright, untroubled sea
        By radiant azure arches spanned;
        Come, Love, across the sunlit land
    As blithe as dryad dancing free.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.



    Upon the stair I see my lady stand,
        Her hair is like the gleaming gold of dawn,
        And, like the laughing sunbeam on the lawn,
    The radiant smile by which her lips are spanned.

    A chiselled marvel seems her slender hand
        What time she waves it ere my steps are gone;
    Upon the stair I see my lady stand,
        Her hair is like the gleaming gold of dawn.

    Through the green covert that the breeze has fanned
        She fleets as graceful as the flexile fawn;
        She is the star to which my soul is drawn
    When shadows drive the daylight from the land.
    Upon the stair I see my lady stand,
        Her hair is like the gleaming gold of dawn.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.



    I heard a maid with her guitar
        Who played, like Orpheus, to the wind,
    And sent forth rhythmic notes afar
        From out an arbor vine-entwined.

    She knew the God of love was blind,
        And left her white heart-gates ajar--
    I heard a maid with her guitar
        Who played, like Orpheus, to the wind.

    But ah! Love's ears are keen as are
        The ears of shy, pool-haunting hind,
    And when she closed her bosom's bar
        She found the god was there enshrined;
    I heard a maid with her guitar
        Who played, like Orpheus, to the wind.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    Awake, awake, O gracious heart,
        There's some one knocking at the door;
    The chilling breezes make him smart;
        His little feet are tired and sore.

    Arise, and welcome him before
        Adown his cheeks the big tears start:
        Awake, awake, O gracious heart,
    There's some one knocking at the door.

    'Tis Cupid come with loving art
        To honour, worship, and implore;
    And lest, unwelcomed, he depart
        With all his wise mysterious lore,
    Awake, awake, O gracious heart,
        There's some one knocking at the door!

                                        FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN.


    I hide her in my heart, my May,
        And keep my darling captive there!
    But not because she'd fly away
        To seek for liberty elsewhere,
    For love is ever free as air!
        And as with me her love will stay,
    I hide her in my heart, my May,
        And keep my darling captive there.

    Our love is love that lives for aye
        Enchained in fetters strong and fair,
    So evermore, by night and day,
        That we our prisoned home may share,
    I hide her in my heart, my May,
        And keep my darling captive there.

                                                  C. H. WARING.


    Looks that love not are silver-cold--
        Gold the glory of love-sweet eyes!
        Hearts are wide as the boundless skies
    Full of loves--like the stars--untold!

    Love by love should be bought and sold.
        Other payments are shams and lies!
    Looks that love not are silver-cold--
        Gold the glory of love-sweet eyes!

    Many loves will a great heart hold--
        Foolish often, but often wise;
    _Some_ of silver, but _one_ of gold,--
        Life's great treasure, and crowning prize.
    Looks that love not are silver-cold--
        Gold the glory of love-sweet eyes--

                                                  C. H. WARING.


    The larch has donned its rosy plumes,
        And hastes its emerald beads to string:
        The warblers now are on the wing.
    Across the pathless ocean-glooms,
    Through tender grass and violet blooms,
        I move along and gaily sing.
    The larch has donned its rosy plumes,
        And hastes its emerald beads to string.

    Nature with beauteous tints illumes
        The fields and groves of budding Spring,
        Loud voices from afar to bring;
    And my glad Muse its song resumes--
    The larch has donned its rosy plumes,
        And hastes its emerald beads to string.

                                                RICHARD WILTON.


    O all ye Green Things on the Earth,
        Bless ye the Lord in sun and shade;
        To whisper praises ye were made,
    Or wave to Him in solemn mirth.
    For this the towering pine had birth,
        For this sprang forth each grassy blade;
    O all ye Green Things on the Earth,
        Bless ye the Lord in sun and shade.

    Ye wayside weeds of little worth,
        Ye ferns that fringe the woodland glade,
        Ye dainty flowers that quickly fade,
    Ye steadfast yews of mighty girth:
    O all ye Green Things on the Earth,
        Bless ye the Lord in sun and shade!

                                                RICHARD WILTON.


        "Which way he went?"
    I know not--how should I go spy
        Which way he went?
    I only know him gone. "Relent?"
    He never will--unless I die!
    And then, what will it signify
              Which way he went?

        Say what you please,
    But know, I shall not change my mind!
        Say what you please,
    Even, if you wish it, on your knees--
    And, when you hear me next defined
    As something lighter than the wind,
              Say what you please!

                                                    MAY PROBYN.


    Might Love be bought, I were full fain
    My all to give thy love to gain.
        Yet would such getting profit naught;
        Possession with keen fears were fraught,
    Would make even love's blisses vain.

    For who could tell what god might deign
    His golden treasures round thee rain,
        Till ruin on my hopes were brought,
                  Might Love be bought.

    Better a pensioner remain
    On thy dear grace, since to attain
        To worthiness in vain I sought.
        Thy kindness hath assurance wrought
    Could never be between us twain
                  Might Love be bought.

                                                    ARLO BATES.


    In thy clear eyes, fairest, I see
        Sometimes of love a transient glow;
    But ere my heart assured may be,
    With cold disdain thou mockest me:
        Hope fades as songs to silence flow.

    Ah! most bewitching, mocking she,
        Fairer than poet's dream may show,
    The glance of scorn how can I dree
                  In thy clear eyes?

        Life is so brief, and to and fro,
    Like thistledown above the lea,
        Fly on poor days; why then so slow
        To bend from pride? Let us bliss know
    Ere age the light dims ruthlessly
                  In thy clear eyes.

                                                    ARLO BATES.


    The sweet sad years; the sun, the rain,
    Alas! too quickly did they wane,
        For each some boon, some blessing bore;
        Of smiles and tears each had its store,
    Its chequered lot of bliss and pain.

    Although it idle be and vain,
    Yet cannot I the wish restrain
        That I had held them evermore,
                  The sweet sad years!

    Like echo of an old refrain
    That long within the mind has lain,
        I keep repeating o'er and o'er,
        "Nothing can e'er the past restore,
    Nothing bring back the years again,
                  The sweet sad years!"

                                     REV. CHARLES D. BELL, D.D.


    Fain would I pass from all the pain,
    The aching heart and weary brain,
        From gnawing grief and withering care,
        And passion rising to despair,
    From love dissatisfied and vain.

    From tears that burn the cheeks they stain,
    And hopes that droop like flowers in rain,
        From sorrows that turn grey the hair,
                  Fain would I pass!

    Beyond the silent, soundless main,
    Where the long lost are found again,
        Where summer smiles for ever fair,
        Where skies are pure, divine the air,
    Where love and joy eternal reign,
                  Fain would I pass!

                                     REV. CHARLES D. BELL, D.D.


    Why are you sad when the sky is blue?
    Why, when the sun shines bright for you,
        And the birds are singing, and all the air
        So sweet with the flowers everywhere?
    If life hath thorns, it has roses too.

    Be wise and be merry. 'Tis half untrue
    Your doleful song. You have work to do.
        If the work be good, and the world so fair,
                              Why are you sad?

    Life's sorrows are many, its joys so few!
    Ah! sing of the joys! Let the dismal crew
        Of black thoughts bide in their doleful lair,
        Give us glad songs; sing us free from care.
    Gladness maketh the world anew,
                              Why are you sad?

                           _An Answer._

    Why am I sad when the sky is blue,
    You ask, O friend, and I answer you--
        I love the sun and balmy air,
        The flowers and glad things everywhere.
    But if life is merry, 'tis earnest too.

    And the earnest hour, if hope be true,
    Must be solemn or sad; for the work we do
        Is little and weak. Ask the world so fair
                              Why I am sad.

    For me glad hours are nowise few,
    But life is so serious-ship and crew
        Bound such a voyage to death's dark lair.
        My work is my happy song: but care
    Still steals on the quiet hour anew
                              And makes it sad.

                                            H. COURTHOPE BOWEN.


    His poisoned shafts, that fresh he dips
    In juice of plants that no bee sips,
        He takes, and with his bow renown'd
        Goes out upon his hunting ground,
    Hanging his quiver at his hips.

    He draws them one by one, and clips
    Their heads between his finger tips,
        And looses with a twanging sound
                  His poisoned shafts.

    But if a maiden with her lips
    Suck from his wound the blood that drips,
        And drink the poison from the wound,
        The simple remedy is found
    That of their deadly terror strips
                  His poisoned shafts.

                                                ROBERT BRIDGES.


    All down the years thy tale has rolled--
    A brilliant streak of burnished gold
        Old Homer, near we seem to thee,
        As roving over vale and sea
    Thou tellest of thy hero bold!

    For we too wonder, as of old
    Thy hero did. The fates are doled
        To us the same, both serf and free,
                        All down the years.

    None other yet has ever told
    So sweet a tale; as we unfold
        Thy mystic page we find the key
        Of human sorrow, guilt and glee,
    Which ever comes our souls to mould
                        All down the years.

                                          JOHN MALCOLM BULLOCH.


    The Summer's gone--how did it go?
    And where has gone the dogwood's show?
        The air is sharp upon the hill,
        And with a tinkle sharp and chill
    The icy little brooklets flow.

    What is it in the season, though,
    Brings back the days of old, and so
        Sets memory recalling still
                      The Summer's gone?

    Why are my days so dark? for lo!
    The maples with fresh glory glow,
        Fair shimmering mists the valleys fill,
        The keen air sets the blood a-thrill-
    Ah! now that _you_ are gone, I know
                      The Summer's gone.

                                                  H. C. BUNNER.


    _Les morts vont vite!_ Ay for a little space
    We miss and mourn them, fallen from their place;
        To take our portion in their rest are fain;
        But by-and-by, having wept, press on again,
    Perchance to win their laurels in the race.

    What man would find the old in the new love's face?
    Seek on the fresher lips the old kisses' trace,
        For withered roses newer blooms disdain?
                          _Les morts vont vite!_

    But when disease brings thee in piteous case,
    Thou shalt thy dead recall, and thy ill grace
        To them for whom remembrance plead in vain.
        Then, shuddering, think, while thy bedfellow Pain
    Clasp thee with arms that cling like Death's embrace:
                          _Les morts vont vite!_

                                                  H. C. BUNNER.


    In love's disport, gay bubbles blown
    On summer winds light-freighted flown:
        A child intent upon delight
        The painted spheres would keep in sight,
    Dissolved too soon in worlds unknown.

    Lo! from the furnace mouth hath grown
    Fair shapes, as frail; with jewelled zone,
        Clear globes where fate may read aright
                        In love's disport.

    O frail as fair! though in the white
    Of flameful heat with force to fight,
        Art thou by careless hands cast down
        Or killed, when frozen hearts disown
    The children born of love and light
                        In love's disport.

                                                  WALTER CRANE.


    What makes the world, Sweetheart, reply?
    A space of lawn, a strip of sky,
        The bread and wine of fellowship,
        The cup of life for love to sip,
    A glass of dreams in Hope's blue eye

    So let the days and hours go by,
    Let Fortune flout, and Fame deny,
        With feathered heel shall fancy trip--
                  What makes the world?

    The wealth that never in the grip
    Of blighting greed shall heedless slip,--
        When bought and sold is liberty,
        With worth of life and love gone by--
                  What makes the world?

                                                  WALTER CRANE.


    O babbling Spring, than glass more clear,
    Worthy of wreath and cup sincere,
        To-morrow shall a kid be thine
        With swelled and sprouting brows for sign,--
    Sure sign!--of loves and battles near.

    Child of the race that butt and rear!
    Not less, alas! his life-blood dear
        Must tinge thy cold wave crystalline,
                          O babbling Spring!

    Thee Sirius knows not. Thou dost cheer
    With pleasant cool the plough-worn steer,--
        The wandering flock. This verse of mine
        Will rank thee one with founts divine;
    Men shall thy rock and tree revere,
                          O babbling Spring!

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    On London stones I sometimes sigh
    For wider green and bluer sky;--
        Too oft the trembling note is drowned
        In this huge city's varied sound;--
    "Pure song is country-born,"--I cry.

    Then comes the spring,--the months go by,
    The last stray swallows seaward fly;
        And I--I too!--no more am found
                    On London stones!

    In vain! the woods, the fields deny
    That clearer strain I fain would try;
        Mine is an urban Muse, and bound
        By some strange law to paven ground;
    Abroad she pouts;--she is not shy
                    On London stones!

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    "In teacup-times!" The style of dress
    Would suit your beauty, I confess;
        BELINDA-like, the patch you'd wear;
        I picture you with powdered hair,--
    You'd make a charming Shepherdess!

    And I--no doubt--could well express
    SIR PLUME'S complete conceitedness,--
        Could poise a clouded cane with care
                "In teacup-times!"

    The parts would fit precisely--yes:
    We should achieve a huge success!
        You should disdain and I despair,
        With quite the true Augustan air;
    But ... could I love you more, or less,--
                "In teacup-times?"

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    O royal Rose! the Roman dress'd
    His feast with thee; thy petals press'd
        Augustan brows; thine odour fine,
        Mix'd with the three-times-mingled wine,
    Lent the long Thracian draught its zest.

    What marvel then, if host and guest
    By Song, by Joy, by Thee caress'd,
        Half-trembled on the half-divine,
                      O royal Rose!

    And yet--and yet--I love thee best
    In our old gardens of the West,
        Whether about my thatch thou twine,
        Or Her's, that brown-eyed maid of mine,
    Who lulls thee on her lawny breast,
                      O royal Rose!

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    With pipe and flute the rustic Pan
    Of old made music sweet for man;
        And wonder hushed the warbling bird,
        And closer drew the calm-eyed herd,--
    The rolling river slowlier ran.

    Ah! would,--ah! would, a little span,
    Some air of Arcady could fan
        This age of ours, too seldom stirred
                    With pipe and flute!

    But now for gold we plot and plan;
    And from Beersheba unto Dan,
        Apollo's self might pass unheard,
        Or find the night-jar's note preferred ...
    Not so it fared, when time began
                    With pipe and flute!

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    In after days, when grasses high
    O'er-top the stone where I shall lie,
        Though ill or well the world adjust
        My slender claim to honoured dust,
    I shall not question nor reply.

    I shall not see the morning sky,
    I shall not hear the night-wind sigh,
        I shall be mute, as all men must
                      In after days!

    But yet, now living, fain were I
    That some one then should testify,
        Saying--_He held his pen in trust
        To Art, not serving shame or lust._
    Will none?... Then let my memory die
                      In after days!

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    In vain to-day I scrape and blot:
      The nimble words, the phrases neat,
      Decline to mingle and to meet;
    My skill is all forgone, forgot.

    He will not canter, walk, or trot,
      My Pegasus; I spur, I beat
            In vain to-day.

    And yet 'twere sure the saddest lot
      That I should fail to leave complete
      One poor ... the rhyme suggests "conceit!"
    Alas! 'tis all too clear I'm not
            In vein to-day.

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    When Burbadge played, the stage was bare
    Of fount and temple, tower and stair;
        Two backswords eked a battle out;
        Two supers made a rabble rout;
    The Throne of Denmark was a chair!

    And yet, no less, the audience there
    Thrilled through all changes of Despair,
        Hope, Anger, Fear, Delight, and Doubt,
                  When Burbadge played!

    This is the Actor's gift; to share
    All moods, all passions, nor to care
        One whit for scene, so he without
        Can lead men's minds the roundabout,
    Stirred as of old those hearers were,
                  When Burbadge played!

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


                             (To J. H. P.)

    Old books are best! With what delight
    Does "Faithorne fecit" greet our sight;
        On frontispiece or title-page
        Of that old time, when on the stage
    "Sweet Nell" set "Rowley's" heart alight!

    And you, O friend, to whom I write,
    Must not deny, e'en though you might,
        Through fear of modern pirates' rage,
                          Old books are best.

    What though the print be not so bright,
    The paper dark, the binding slight?
        Our author, be he dull or sage,
        Returning from that distant age
    So lives again, we say of right:
                          Old books are best.

                                                  BEVERLY CHEW.


    A coward still: I've longed to fling
    My arms about you, and to bring
        My beating heart so near to thine,
        That it might learn all thought of mine,
    And closer to me cling.

    But ere I dared do anything,
    My trembling courage took to wing,
        And left its bold design,
                            A coward still.

    Poor heart: these words for ever ring,
    Fair dame wins not the faint fearing;
        Tho' secretly it may repine
        The loss that would make life divine,
    Yet it must be content to sing,
                            A coward still.

                                            JOHN CAMERON GRANT.



                         (Rondeau à la Boston.)

    A cultured mind! Before I speak
    The words, sweet maid, to tinge thy cheek
        With blushes of the nodding rose
        That on thy breast in beauty blows,
    I prithee satisfy my freak.

    Canst thou read Latin and eke Greek?
    Dost thou for knowledge pine and peak?
        Hast thou, in short, as I suppose,
                          A cultured mind.

    Some men require a maiden meek
    Enough to eat at need the leek;
        Some lovers crave a classic nose,
        A liquid eye, or faultless pose;
    I none of these, I only seek
                          A cultured mind.


                        (Rondeau à la New York.)

    A pot of gold! O mistress fair,
    With eyes of brown that pass compare,
        Ere I on bended knee express
        The love which you already guess,
    I fain would ask a small affair.

    Hast thou, my dear, an ample share
    Of this world's goods? Wilt thy papa[9]
        Disgorge, to gild our blessedness,
                          A pot of gold?

    Some swains for mental graces care;
    Some fall a prey to golden hair;
        I am not blind, I will confess,
        To intellect or comeliness;
    Still let these go beside, _ma chère_,
                          A pot of gold.


                      (Rondeau à la Philadelphia.)

    A pedigree! Ah, lovely jade!
    Whose tresses mock the raven's shade,
        Before I free this aching breast,
        I want to set my mind at rest;
    'Tis best to call a spade a spade.

    What was thy father ere he made
    His fortune? Was he smeared with trade,
        Or does he boast an ancient crest--
                        A pedigree?

    Brains and bright eyes are overweighed,
    For wits grow dull and beauties fade;
        And riches, though a welcome guest,
        Oft jar the matrimonial nest;
    I kiss her lips who holds displayed
                        A pedigree.


                       (Rondeau à la Baltimore.)

    A pretty face! O maid divine,
    Whose vowels flow as soft as wine,
        Before I say upon the rack
        The words I never can take back,
    A moment meet my glance with thine.

    Say, art thou fair? Is the incline
    Of that sweet nose an aquiline?
        Hast thou, despite unkind attack,
                        A pretty face?

    Some sigh for wisdom; Three, not nine,
    The Graces were. I won't repine
        For want of pedigree, or lack
        Of gold to banish Care the black,
    If I can call forever mine
                        A pretty face.

                                                  ROBERT GRANT.

[9] Pronounced _papaire_.


    Could she have guessed my coward care?
    I knew her foot upon the stair,
        Her figure chained my inmost eye;
        I only looked a lover's lie,--
    I feigned indifference, felt despair.

    My very blood leaped up, aware
    Of her free step and morning air;
    She raised her head, she caught my eye--
                          Could she have guessed?

    I faced her with a chilly stare,
    With words so common and so bare!
        Her whispering skirts, as she went by,
        Swept every sense--a thrilling sigh!
    Ah, would her heart have heard my prayer
                          Could she have guessed?

                                                ELAINE GOODALE.


    When first we met the nether world was white,
        And on the steel-blue ice before her bower
        I skated in the sunrise for an hour,
    Till all the grey horizon, gulphed in light,
    Was red against the bare boughs black as night;
        Then suddenly her sweet face, like a flower
        Enclosed in sables from the frost's dim power,
    Shone at her casement, and flashed burning bright
                            When first we met!

    My skating being done, I loitered home,
        And sought that day to lose her face again;
    But love was weaving in his golden loom
        My story up with hers, and all in vain
        I strove to loose the threads he spun amain
                            When first we met!

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


    When flower-time comes and all the woods are gay,
        When linnets chirrup and the soft winds blow,
        Adown the winding river I will row,
    And watch the merry maidens tossing hay,
    And troops of children shouting in their play,
        And with my thin oars flout the fallen snow
        Of heavy hawthorn blossom as I go:
    And shall I see my love at fall of day
                          When flower-time comes?

    Ah, yes! for by the border of the stream
        She binds red roses to a trim alcove,
    And I shall fade into her summer-dream
    Of musing upon love,--nay, even seem
        To be myself the very god of love,
                          When flower-time comes!

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


    Oh! flame of grass, shot upward from the earth,
        Keen with a thousand quivering sunlit fires,
        Green with the sap of satisfied desires
    And sweet fulfilment of your pale sad birth,
    Behold! I clasp you as a lover might,
        Roll on you, bathing in the noonday sun,
        And, if it might be, I would fain be one
    With all your odour, mystery, and light,
                                Oh flame of grass!

    For here, to chasten my untimely gloom,
        My lady took my hand and spoke my name;
        The sun was on her gold hair like a flame;
    The bright wind smote her forehead like perfume;
        The daisies darkened at her feet; she came,
    As spring comes, scattering incense on your bloom
                                Oh flame of grass!

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


    Hot hands that yearn to touch her flower-like face,
        With fingers spread, I set you like a weir
        To stem this ice-cold stream in its career,--
    And chill your pulses there a little space;
    Brown hands, what right have you to claim the grace
        To touch her head so infinitely dear?
        Learn courteously to wait and to revere,
    Lest haply ye be found in sorry case,
                                Hot hands that yearn!

    But if ye pluck her flowers at my behest,
        And bring her crystal water from the well,
    And bend a bough for shade when she will rest,
        And if she find you fain and teachable,
        That flower-like face, perchance, ah! who can tell?
    In your embrace may some sweet day be found,
                                Hot hands that yearn!

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


    Among the flowers of summer-time she stood,
        And underneath the films and blossoms shone
        Her face, like some pomegranate strangely grown
    To ripe magnificence in solitude;
    The wanton winds, deft whisperers, had strewed
        Her shoulders with her shining hair outblown,
        And dyed her robe with many a changing tone
    Of silvery green, and all the hues that brood
                                    Among the flowers;

    She raised her arm up for her dove to know
        That he might perch him on her lovely head;
    Then I, unseen, and rising on tip-toe,
    Bowed over the rose-barrier, and lo,
        Touched not her arm, but kissed her lips instead
                                   Among the flowers!

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


    Beside the stream and in the alder-shade,
        Love sat with us one dreamy afternoon,
        When nightingales and roses made up June,
    And saw the red light and the amber fade
    Under the canopy the willows made,
        And watched the rising of the hollow moon,
        And listened to the water's gentle tune,
    And was as silent as she was, sweet maid,
                                  Beside the stream;

    Till with "Farewell!" he vanished from our sight,
        And in the moonlight down the glade afar
        His light wings glimmered like a falling star;
    Then ah! she took the left path, I the right,
    And now no more we sit by noon or night
                                  Beside the stream!

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


    If Love should faint, and half decline
    Below the fit meridian sign,
        And shorn of all his golden dress,
        His royal state and loveliness,
    Be no more worth a heart like thine,
    Let not thy nobler passion pine,
    But with a charity divine,
        Let Memory ply her soft address
                      If Love should faint;

    And oh! this laggard heart of mine,
    Like some halt pilgrim stirred with wine,
        Shall ache in pity's dear distress,
        Until the balm of thy caress
    To work the finished cure combine,
                      If Love should faint.

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


    My love to me is always kind:
    She neither storms, nor is she pined;
        She does not plead with tears or sighs,
        But gentle words and soft replies--
    Dear earnests of the thought behind.

    They say the little god is blind,
        They do not count him quite too wise;
    Yet he, somehow, could bring and bind
                            My love to me.

    And sweetest nut hath sourest rind?
        It may be so; but she I prize
        Is even lovelier in mine eyes
    Than good and gracious to my mind.
    I bless the fortune that consigned
                            My love to me.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    With strawberries we filled a tray,
    And then we drove away, away
        Along the links beside the sea,
        Where wave and wind were light and free,
    And August felt as fresh as May.

    And where the springy turf was gay
    With thyme and balm and many a spray
        Of wild roses, you tempted me
                    With strawberries!

    A shadowy sail, silent and grey,
    Stole like a ghost across the bay;
        But none could hear me ask my fee,
        And none could know what came to be.
    Can sweethearts _all_ their thirst allay
                    With strawberries?

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    A flirted fan of blade and gold
    Is wondrous winsome to behold:
        It seems an armoured shard to bear
        The Emperor-Scarab--strange and rare,
    Metallic, lustrous, jewel-cold.
    Fawning and fluttering fold on fold
    And scale on scale, its charm unrolled,
        Lures, dazzles, slays. It thrills the air,
                    A flirted fan!
    Ah me, that night ... I cannot scold--
    _Ich grolle nicht!_ My grief untold
        Shall still remain, but I will swear
        Some Spanish grace, dissembled there,
    Stood by her stall, she so controlled
                    A flirted fan.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    In Rotten Row a cigarette
    I sat and smoked, with no regret
        For all the tumult that had been.
        The distances were still and green,
    And streaked with shadows cool and wet.

    Two sweethearts on a bench were set,
    Two birds among the boughs were met;
        So love and song were heard and seen
                                In Rotten Row.
    A horse or two there was to fret
    The soundless sand; but work and debt,
        Fair flowers and falling leaves between,
        While clocks are chiming clear and keen,
    A man may very well forget
                                In Rotten Row.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    The leaves are sere, and on the ground
    They rustle with an eerie sound,
        A sound half-whisper and half-sigh--
        The plaint of sweet things fain to die,
    Poor things for which no ruth is found.

    With summer once the land was crowned;
    But now that autumn scatters round
        Decay, and summer fancies die,
                  The leaves are sere.

    Once, too, my thought within the bound
    Of summer frolicked, like a hound
        In meadows jocund with July.
        And now I sit and wonder why,
    With all my waste of plack and pound,
                  The leaves are sere!

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    Go, happy Fan, in all the land
    The happiest ... seek my lady's hand,
        And, swinging at her winsome waist,
        Forget for aye, so greatly graced,
    The House of Odours in the Strand.

    Ivory, with lilac silk outspanned,
    With ruffling black sedately grand,
        With bloom of eglantine o'ertraced,
                 Go, happy Fan.

    Her kindly heart will understand,
    Her gentle eyes will grow more bland
        At sight of you. Away in haste,
        Dear New Year's gift! Such perfect taste
    As yours her praises _may_ command ...
                 Go, happy Fan!

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    If I were king, my pipe should be premier.
    The skies of time and chance are seldom clear,
        We would inform them all with bland blue weather.
    Delight alone would need to shed a tear,
        For dream and deed should war no more together.

    Art should aspire, yet ugliness be dear;
        Beauty, the shaft, should speed with wit for feather;
    And love, sweet love, should never fall to sere,
                        If I were king.

    But politics should find no harbour near;
        The Philistine should fear to slip his tether;
    Tobacco should be duty free, and beer;
        In fact, in room of this, the age of leather,
    An age of gold all radiant should appear,
                        If I were king.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    The gods are dead? Perhaps they are! Who knows?
        Living at least in Lempriere undeleted,
    The wise, the fair, the awful, the jocose,
        Are one and all, I like to think, retreated
    In some still land of lilacs and the rose.

    Once high they sat, and high o'er earthly shows
        With sacrificial dance and song were greeted.
    Once ... long ago: but now the story goes,
                          The gods are dead.

    It must be true. The world a world of prose,
        Full-crammed with facts, in science swathed and sheeted,
    Nods in a stertorous after-dinner doze.
    Plangent and sad, in every wind that blows
        Who will may hear the sorry words repeated--
                          The gods are dead.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    Her little feet!... Beneath us ranged the sea,
        She sat, from sun and wind umbrella-shaded,
    One shoe above the other danglingly,
        And lo! a Something exquisitely graded,
    Brown rings and white, distracting--to the knee!

    The band was loud. A wild waltz melody
        Flowed rhythmic forth. The nobodies paraded.
    And thro' my dream went pulsing fast and free:
                            Her little feet.

    Till she made room for some one. It was He!
        A port-wine-flavoured He, a He who traded,
    Rich, rosy, round, obese to a degree!
    A sense of injury overmastered me.
        Quite bulbously his ample boots upbraided
                            Her little feet.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    When you are old, and I am passed away--
    Passed, and your face, your golden face, is grey--
        I think, whate'er the end, this dream of mine,
        Comforting you, a friendly star will shine
    Down the dim slope where still you stumble and stray.

    So may it be; that so dead Yesterday,
        No sad-eyed ghost, but generous and gay,
    May serve your memories like almighty wine,
                    When you are old.

    Dear Heart, it shall be so. Under the sway
    Of death the past's enormous disarray
        Lies hushed and dark. Yet though there come no sign,
        Live on well pleased! Immortal and divine,
    Love shall still tend you, as God's angels may,
                    When you are old.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    These are my books-a Burton old,
    A Lamb arrayed against the cold
        In polished dress of red and blue,
        A rare old Elzevir or two,
    And Johnson clothed in green and gold.

    A Pope in gilded calf I sold,
    To buy a Sterne of worth untold,
        To cry, as bibliomaniacs do,
        "These are my books!"

    What though a Fate unkind hath doled
    But favours few to me, yet bold
        My little wealth abroad I strew,
        To purchase acquisitions new,
    And say by love of them controlled,
        These are my books.

                                                NATHAN M. LEVY.


    Most sweet of all the flowers memorial
        That autumn tends beneath his wasted trees,
        Where wearily the unremembering breeze
    Whirls the brown leaves against the blackening wall
    More sweet than those that summer fed so tall
        And glad with soft wind blowing overseas;
        Through all incalculable distances
    Of many shades that swerve and sands that crawl,
                        Most sweet of all!

    When comes the fulness of the time to me
        As yours is full to-day, O flower of mine?
    Touched by her hand who evermore shall be,
        While the slow planets circle for a sign,
    Till periods flag and constellations fall,
                        Most sweet of all!

"_Love in Idleness._"


    In country lanes the robins sing,
    Clear-throated, joyous, swift of wing,
        From misty dawn to dewy eve
        (Though cares of nesting vex and grieve)
    Their little heart-bells ring and ring.

    And when the roses say to Spring:
    "Your reign is o'er" when breezes bring
        The scent of spray that lovers weave
                        In country lanes,

    The redbreast still is heard to fling
    His music forth; and he will cling
        To Autumn till the winds bereave
        Her yellowing trees, nor will he leave
    Till Winter finds him shivering
                        In country lanes.

                                                  C. H. LÜDERS.


    To Q. H. F. the idle band
    Of poetasters oft has planned
        Tributes of praise--and penned them, too--
        For love of verse that keeps its hue
    Though dead its language and its land.

    True, Pegasus has ever fanned
    The ether at a bard's command,
        But ah! how eagerly he flew
                        To Q. H. F.

    Not oversweet or overgrand
    Your poems, Horace, hence your stand
        Firm in the hearts of men: and few
        Have gained a place so clearly due,
    Since Death with unrelenting hand,
                        Took you, H. F.

                                                  C. H. LÜDERS.


    In London town men love and hate,
    And find Death tragic soon or late,
        Just in the old unreasoning way,
        As if they breathed the warmer day
      In Athens when the gods were great.

    Mine is the town by Thames's spate,
    And so it chanced I found my fate,
        One of my fates, that is to say--
                      In London town.

    The whole world comes to those who wait;
    Mine came and went with one year's date.
        Pity it made so short a stay!
        The sweetest face, the sweetest sway
    That ever Love did consecrate
                      In London town.

                                        JUSTIN HUNTLY MCCARTHY.


    O happy sleep! that bear'st upon thy breast
    The blood-red poppy of enchanting rest,
        Draw near me through the stillness of this place
        And let thy low breath move across my face,
    As faint winds move above a poplar's crest.

    The broad seas darken slowly in the west;
    The wheeling sea-birds call from nest to nest;
        Draw near and touch me, leaning out of space,
                        O happy Sleep!

    There is no sorrow hidden or confess'd,
    There is no passion uttered or suppress'd,
        Thou can'st not for a little while efface;
        Enfold me in thy mystical embrace,
    Thou sovereign gift of God, most sweet, most blest,
                          O happy Sleep!

                                             ADA LOUISE MARTIN.


    It is enough to love you. Let me be
    Only an influence, as the wandering sea
        Answers the moon that yet foregoes to shine;
        Only a sacrifice, as in a shrine
    The lamp burns on where dead eyes cannot see;
    Only a hope unknown, withheld from thee,
    Yet ever like a petrel plaintively,
        Just following on to life's far twilight line,
                            It is enough.

    Go where you will, I follow. _You_ are free.
    Alone, unloved, to all eternity
        I track that chance no virtue can divine,
        When pitiful, loving, with fond hands in mine,
    You say: "True heart, here take your will of me,
                            It is enough."

                                                THEO. MARZIALS.


    When I see you my heart sings
        Deep within me for deep love;
        In my deep heart's dreamiest grove,
    Your bright image comes like Spring's,
        Bringing back the murmured dove
    To the wan dim watersprings.
    Would my tongue could tell the things
        Love seems but one echo of
                    When I see you!

        Hope lies dying, Time's disproof
    Strips love's roses to the stings;
    But the bird that knows its wings
        Bear it where it will aloof,
    Sings not, Love, as my heart sings
                    When I see you.

                                                THEO. MARZIALS.


    To-day, what is there in the air
    That makes December seem sweet May?
        There are no swallows anywhere,
        Nor crocuses to crown your hair,
    And hail you down my garden way.

    Last night the full moon's frozen stare
        Struck me, perhaps; or did you say
    Really,--you'd come, sweet friend and fair!

    To-day is here:--come! crown to-day
        With Spring's delight or Spring's despair,
    Love cannot bide old Time's delay:--
    Down my glad gardens light winds play,
        And my whole life shall bloom and bear

                                                THEO. MARZIALS.


    The Old Year goes down-hill so slow
    And silent that he seems to know
        The mighty march of time, foretelling
        His passing: into his eyelids welling
    Come tears of bitter pain and woe.

    The lusty blast can scarce forego
    His cape about his ears to blow,
        As feebly to his final dwelling
                      The Old Year goes.

    Within the belfry, row on row,
    The bells are swinging to and fro;
        Now joyfully the chimes are swelling--
        Now solemn and few the notes are knelling--
    For here the New Year comes:--and lo!
                      The Old Year goes!

                                              BRANDER MATTHEWS.


    Under the rows of gas-jets bright,
    Bathed in a blazing river of light,
        A regal beauty sits; above her
        The butterflies of fashion hover,
    And burn their wings, and take to flight.

    Mark you her pure complexion,-white
    Though flush may follow flush? Despite
        Her blush, the lily I discover
                  Under the rose.

    All compliments to her are trite;
    She has adorers left and right;
        And I confess, here, under cover
        Of secrecy, I too-I love her!
    Say naught; she knows it not. 'Tis quite
                  Under the rose.

                                              BRANDER MATTHEWS.


    Violet, delicate, sweet,
        Down in the deep of the wood,
    Hid in thy still retreat,
    Far from the sound of the street,
        Man and his merciless mood:-

    Safe from the storm and the heat,
        Breathing of beauty and good
        Fragrantly, under thy hood

    Beautiful maid, discreet,
    Where is the mate that is meet,
        Meet for thee-strive as he could-
    Yet will I kneel at thy feet,
        Fearing another one should,

                                               COSMO MONKHOUSE.


    O scorn me not, although my worth be slight,
    Although the stars alone can match thy light,
        Although the wind alone can mock thy grace,
        And thy glass only show so fair a face--
    Yet--let me find some favour in thy sight.

    The proud stars will not bend from their chill height,
    Nor will the wind thy faithfulness requite.
        Thy mirror gives thee but a cold embrace.
                        O scorn me not.

    My lamp is feeble, but by day or night
    It shall not wane, and, but for thy delight,
        My footsteps shall not for a little space
        Forego the echo of thy tender pace,-
    I would so serve and guard thee if I might.
                        O scorn me not.

                                               COSMO MONKHOUSE.


    Ten thousand Pounds (a-year), no more
    Nor less will suit. A man is poor
        Without his horses and his cows,
        His city and his country house,
    His salmon river and his moor;

    And many things unmissed before
    Would be desired and swell the score;
        But 'tis enough when fate allows
                      Ten thousand Pounds.

    But O, my babies on the floor;
    My wife's blithe welcome at the door;
        My bread well-earned with sweat of brows;
        My garden flowerful, green of boughs;
    Friends, books;-I would not change ye for
                      Ten thousand Pounds.

                                               COSMO MONKHOUSE.


    One of these days, my lady whispereth,
        A day made beautiful with summer's breath,
        Our feet shall cease from these divided ways,
        Our lives shall leave the distance and the haze
    And flower together in a mingling wreath.

        No pain shall part us then, no grief amaze,
        No doubt dissolve the glory of our gaze;
    Earth shall be heaven for us twain, she saith,
                        One of these days.

        Ah love, my love! Athwart how many Mays
        The old hope lures us with its long delays!
    How many winters waste our fainting faith!
    I wonder, will it come this side of death,
        With any of the old sun in its rays,
                        One of these days?

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.


    Life lapses by for you and me;
        Our sweet days pass us by and flee
    And evermore death draws us nigh;
    The blue fades fast out of our sky,
        The ripple ceases from our sea.
    What would we not give, you and I,
    The early sweet of life to buy?
        Alas! sweetheart, that cannot we;
                Life lapses by.

    But though our young days buried lie,
    Shall love with Spring and Summer die?
        What if the roses faded be?
        We in each other's eyes will see
    New Springs, nor question how or why
                Life lapses by.

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.


    Beyond the night no withered rose
    Shall mock the later bud that blows,
        Nor lily blossom e'er shall blight,
        But all shall gleam more pure and white
    Than starlight on the Arctic snows.

    Sigh not when daylight dimmer grows,
    And life a turbid river flows,
        For all is sweetness-all is light
                        Beyond the night.

    Oh, haste, sweet hour that no man knows;
    Uplift us from our cumbering woes
        Where joy and peace shall crown the right,
        And perished hopes shall blossom bright-
    To aching hearts bring sweet repose
                       Beyond the night.

                                           SAMUEL MINTURN PECK.


    Among my books-what rest is there
    From wasting woes! what balm for care!
        If ills appal or clouds hang low,
        And drooping dim the fleeting show,
    I revel still in visions rare.

    At will I breathe the classic air,
    The wanderings of Ulysses share;
        Or see the plume of Bayard flow
                    Among my books.

    Whatever face the world may wear-
    If Lilian has no smile to spare,
        For others let her beauty blow,
        Such favours I can well forgo;
    Perchance forget the frowning fair
                   Among my books.

                                           SAMUEL MINTURN PECK.


    I go my gait, and if my way
    Is cheered by song and roundelay,
        Or if I bear upon my road,
        Like Issachar, a double load,
    I sing and bear as best I may.

    But lo a rondeau! Can I say,
    While halting thus my toll to pay
    Before a stile now _a la mode_,
                    I go my gate?

    Ah truly; if for once I stray
    Into the treadmill,-'tis in play.
      I will not own its narrow code,
      It shall not be my cramped abode.
    Free of the fields, in open day
                    I go my gait!

                                                EMILY PFEIFFER.


    Laurels for song! And nobler bays,
    In old Olympian golden days
        Of clamour thro' the clear-eyed morn,
        No bowed triumphant head hath borne
    Victorious in all Hellas' gaze!

    They watched his glowing axles graze
    The goal, and rent the heavens with praise;-
        Yet the supremer heads have worn
                      Laurels for song.

    So thee, from no palaestra-plays
    A conqueror, to the gods we raise,
        Whose brows of all our singers born
        The sacred fillets chief adorn,-
    Who first of all our choice displays
                      Laurels for song.

                                         CHARLES G. D. ROBERTS.


    Without one kiss she's gone away,
    And stol'n the brightness out of day;
      With scornful lips and haughty brow
      She's left me melancholy now,
    In spite of all that I could say.

    And so, to guess as best I may
    What angered her, awhile I stay
      Beneath this blown acacia bough,
          Without one kiss;

    Yet all my wildered brain can pay
    My questioning, is but to pray
      Persuasion may my speech endow,
      And Love may never more allow
    My injured sweet to sail away
          Without one kiss.

                                         CHARLES G. D. ROBERTS.


    Love that holdeth firm in fee
        Many a lord of many a land,
    From thy thraldom few would flee;
    Wide the wondrous potency
        Of thy heart-enchanting hand.

    Since on shining Cyprian sand
    Did thy mother, Venus, stand,
        Man and maid have worshipped thee,

    They that scorn thy slaves to be,
        Oft before thy throne, unmanned,
    Grant thy great supremacy;
        Hear my prayer, O Monarch, and
    Let my lady smile on me,

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    When Sirius shines, a fulgent fire,
    And locusts in a drowsy choir
        At noon within the maples drone,
        And pines at nightfall make sad moan
    Like waves upon the rocks of Tyre,

    Then strike the softly sounding lyre,
    And let the soaring song rise higher,
        Or fall to minor monotone,
                    When Sirius shines.

    But should the chiming voices tire,
    And thoughts of past and vain desire
        Refill the mind, as doves once flown
        Return to cotes aforetime known,
    Then let the soul to heaven aspire,
                    When Sirius shines.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    At peep of dawn the daffodil
    That slumbers 'neath the grassy hill
        Greets smilingly, with lifted head,
        The rosy morn's oncoming tread,
    The thrush sings matins by the rill.

    The swallows from the ruined mill
    Go coursing through the air, and fill
        The sky with songs till then unsaid
                      At peep of dawn.

    No harbinger of day is still.
    With pipe new tuned and merry trill,
        The lark uprises from her bed
        'Mong grasses wet with dews unshed,
    And puts to shame the whip-poor-will
                      At peep of dawn.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    In greenwood glen, where greedy bees
    Drain fragrant flower-cups to the lees,
        When summer's shining lances smite
        The grain-fields gleaming golden bright,
    I hear Æolian melodies.

    The music bounds along the breeze
    In ever-changing symphonies,
        And lulls my soul with calm delight
                     In Greenwood glen.

    Elusively it faints and flees,
    Retreats, returns,-but no one sees
        The piper; for, as in affright,
        He skilfully eludes the sight;
    'Tis Pan who hides amid the trees,
                    In Greenwood glen.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    Her china cup is white and thin;
    A thousand times her heart has been
        Made merry at its scalloped brink;
        And in the bottom, painted pink,
    A dragon greets her with a grin.

    The brim her kisses loves to win;
    The handle is a manikin,
        Who spies the foes that chip or chink
                        Her china cup.

    Muse, tell me if it be a sin:
    I watch her lift it past her chin
        Up to the scarlet lips and drink
        The Oolong draught, somehow I think
    I'd like to be the dragon in
                        Her china cup.

                                        FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN.


    Behind her fan of downy fluff,
    Sewed on soft saffron satin stuff,
        With peacock feathers, purple-eyed,
        Caught daintily on either side,
    The gay coquette displays a puff:
    Two blue eyes peep above the buff:
    Two pinky pouting lips ... enough!
        That cough means surely come and hide
                      Behind her fan.

    The barque of Hope is trim and tough,
    So out I venture on the rough,
        Uncertain sea of girlish pride.
        A breeze! I tack against the tide,-
    Capture a kiss and catch a cuff,-
                      Behind her fan.

                                        FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN.


                               (A. S. R.)

    Fast in your heart, O rondeau rare,
        Rich with the wealth of love, I dare,
    Alas! to send, but not to sign,
    Nestles my name. The fetters fine
        Kissed by her lips may break,--beware
    Delight is dizzy with despair.
    Suppose she fain would answer,-there!
        How shall she find this name of mine
                      Fast in your heart?

    Enough if secrecy you swear:
    Red lips can't solve the subtile snare
    My tricksy muse weaves with her line:
    And I am caught, vain Valentine!
        N.B.-Say,-should she ask you where?
                      "_Fast in your heart._"

                                        FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN.


    When twilight comes and nature stills
    The hum that haunts the dales and hills,
        Dim shadows deepen and combine,
        And Heaven with its crystal wine
    The cups of thirsty roses fills.

    Blithe birds with music-burdened bills
    Hush for a space their tender trills,
        And seek their homes in tree or vine
                      When twilight comes.

    Soft melody the silence thrills,
    Played by the nymphs along the rills;
        And where the dew-kist grasses twine,
        The toads and crickets tatoo fine
    Drums to the fife of whip-poor-wills,
                      When twilight comes.

                                        FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN.


    Come, Pan, and pipe upon the reed,
    And make the mellow music bleed,
        As once it did in days of yore,
        Along the brook's leaf-tangled shore,
    Through sylvan shade and fragrant mead.

    On Hybla honey come and feed,--
    To tempt the Fauns in dance to lead
        The Dryads on the mossy floor,--
                  Come, Pan, and pipe!

    To-day the ghosts,--Gold, Gain, and Greed,
    The world pursues with savage speed:
        Forgotten is your magic lore.
        Oh, bring it back to us once more!
    For simple, rustic song we plead:
        Come, Pan, and pipe!

                                        FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN.


    Her scuttle Hatt is wondrous wide,
    All furrie, too, on every side,
        Soe out she trippeth daintylie,
        To let ye Youth full well to see
    How fayre ye mayde is for ye Bryde.

    A lyttle puffed, may be, bye Pryde,
    She yett soe lovelye ys thatt I'd
        A Shyllynge gyve to tye, perdie,
                Her scuttle Hatt.

    Ye Coales unto ye Scuttle slide,
    Soe yn her Hatt wolde I, and hide
        To steale some Kissestwo or three:
        But synce She never asketh me,
    Ye scornful Cynick doth deride
                Her scuttle Hatt!

                                        FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN.


    Upon the Kerb, a maiden neat--
    Her hazel eyes are passing sweet--
        There stands and waits in dire distress:
        The muddy road is pitiless,
    And 'busses thunder down the street!

    A snowy skirt, all frills and pleat;
    Two tiny, well-shod, dainty feet
        Peep out, beneath her kilted dress,
                        Upon the Kerb.

    She'll first advance and then retreat,
    Half-frightened by a hansom fleet.
        She looks around, I must confess,
        With marvellous coquettishness!-
    Then droops her eyes and looks discreet,
                        Upon the Kerb!

                                               J. ASHBY STERRY.


    On Dover Pier, brisk blew the wind,
    The Fates against me were combined
        For when I noticed standing there,
        Sweet Some-one with the sunny hair-
    To start I felt not much inclined.

    Too late! I cannot change my mind,
    The paddles move! I am resigned-
        I only know I would I were
                        On Dover Pier.

    I wonder--will the Fates be kind?
    On my return, and shall I find
        That grey-eyed damsel passing fair,
        So bonny, blithe, and debonair,
    The pretty girl I left behind?
                        On Dover Pier?

                                               J. ASHBY STERRY.


    'Mid Autumn Leaves, now thickly shed,
    We wander where our paths o'erspread,
        With yellow russet, red and sere:
        The country's looking dull and drear,
    The sky is gloomy overhead.

    The equinoctial gales we dread,
    The summer's gone, the sunshine's fled;
        We've rambled far enough this year-
                        'Mid Autumn Leaves.

    Though fast our travel-time has sped,
    On London's flags we long to tread;
        The latest laugh and chaff to hear,
        To find the Club grown doubly dear;
    Its gas burns bright, its fire glows red-
                        'Mid Autumn Leaves.

                                               J. ASHBY STERRY.


    In beechen shade the hours are sweet,
    By mist-veiled morn or noonday heat
        (And sweeter still when daylight dies)
        So soft the wandering streamlet sighs
    In passage musical and fleet.

    Full drowsily the white lambs bleat,
    And tinkling bell-notes faintly beat
        The languid air where Lacon lies
                        In beechen shade.

    And still, when day and even meet;
    Selene strays with golden feet,
        That gleam along the low blue skies
        And paceth slow, with dreaming eyes
    That seek the shepherds' dim retreat
                        'Mid beechen shade.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    The Gates of Horn are dull of hue
    (If all our wise men tell us true).
        No songs, they say, nor perfumed air
        Shall greet the wistful pilgrim there,
    No leaves are green, no skies are blue.

    Yet he who will may find a clue
    (Mid shadows steeped in opal dew)
        To seek, and see them passing fair,
                      The Gates of Horn.

    The man that goes not wreathed with rue,
    Right lovely shapes his smile shall sue,
        With red rose-garlands in their hair
        And garments gay with gold and vair,
    Full fain to meet him trooping through
                      The Gates of Horn.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    If love be true-not bought at mart-
      Though night and darkness hide from view,
    What harshest of harsh things can part
    The loved-one from the lover's heart,
      Or stay the dreams that flit thereto?
    If love be true dreams need no chart
      To gain the goal to which they're due;
    For love will guide them with love's dart,
                    If love be true.

    If love be true, if thou be true,
      Sweet love, as fair thou surely art,
    Night shall not hide your eyes of blue
    From my heart's eyes the long night through;
      Though in sweet sadness tears may start,
                    If love be true.

                                             SAMUEL WADDINGTON.


    This pirate bold upon love's sea
    Will let no passing heart go free;
        No barque by those bright eyes espied
        May sail away o'er life's blue tide
    Till all its treasure yielded be.

    Her craft, the _Conquest_, waits for thee,
    Where her swift rapine none may see;
        From shadowing coves on thee will glide
                  This pirate bold.

    Yet thou, if thou her power wouldst flee,
    Go, feign thyself love's refugee,
        And crave sweet shelter;-she'll deride
        Thy piteous suit with scornful pride;
    And thou, thou shalt escape in glee
                  This pirate bold.

                                             SAMUEL WADDINGTON.


    A Good man's love! Oh, prithee, stay,
    Before you turn such gift away,
        And write no unconsidered "No"
        To him who proves he loves you so,
    And humbly owns your regal sway.

    For hearts may change, the wise folk say,
    And as full oft the brightest ray
        Fades in an hour, so too may go
                  A Good man's love.

    Then pause awhile. This short delay
    May gladden many an after-day.
        Search well your heart, and if it show
        True signs of love, bid pride bend low,
    And take this great gift while you may--
                  A Good man's love!

                                                  G. WEATHERLY.


    My window birds, I love to strew
    With punctual hands the crumb for you,
        Flying for comfort day by day
        From frozen woodland and highway,
    And bringing Christmas bills now due!

    Fair creditors of every hue
    Crimson and yellow, brown and blue,
        Whate'er your thoughts, your coats are gay,
                  My window birds.

    Your claims are neither small nor few,
    Dated, when May-flowers drank the dew,
        And on sweet pipes ye used to play,
        Scattering full many a golden lay;
    Now ye for wages mutely sue,
                  My window birds.

                                      REV. RICHARD WILTON, M.A.


    Silver and gold! The snowdrop white
    And yellow blossomed aconite,
        Waking from Winter's slumber cold,
        Their hoarded treasures now unfold,
    And scatter them to left and right.

    Ah, with how much more rare delight
    Upon my sense their colours smite
        Than if my fingers were to hold
                    Silver and gold.

    They bear the superscription bright
    Of the great King of love and might,
        Who stamped such beauty there of old
        That men might learn, as ages rolled,
    To trust in God, nor worship quite
                    Silver and gold.

                                      REV. RICHARD WILTON, M.A.


    "Cheer up, cheer up!" it seems to say,
    As lighting on some leafless spray,
        It shakes its dissyllabic song,
        And with small beak, but courage strong,
    Charges the East-wind all the day.

    "Soon will the Swallow round you play,
    The Nightingale be on its way,
        Blue skies and gladness come ere long,
                      Cheer up, cheer up!"

    Such happy voice be mine, I pray,
    Bleak hours to bless with sunny ray,
        A comfort life's rough path among;
        Be mine to lighten pain and wrong,
    Still letting fall a hopeful lay--
                      Cheer up, cheer up!

                                      REV. RICHARD WILTON, M.A.


    When Summer dies, the leaves are falling fast
    In fitful eddies on the chilly blast,
        And fields lie blank upon the bare hillside
        Where erst the poppy flaunted in its pride,
    And woodbine on the breeze its fragrance cast.

    And where the hawthorn scattered far and wide
    Its creamy petals in the sweet Springtide
        Red berries hang, for birds a glad repast
                      When summer dies.

    Gone are the cowslips and the daisies pied;
    The swallow to a warmer clime hath hied;
        The beech has shed its store of bitter mast,
        And days are drear and skies are overcast,
    But Love will warm our hearts whate'er betide
                      When summer dies.

                                              ARTHUR G. WRIGHT.


    Across the pew, with complaisance
    And eyes that with Love's sunshine dance,
        My little sweetheart smiles at me--
        She is the only saint I see;
    The sermon passes in a trance.

    The painted figures gaze askance,
    Down from their glassy vigilance,
        On this our tender heresy
                  Across the pew.

    Ah! little sweetheart, the romance
    Of Life, with all its change and chance,
        Is but a sealëd book to thee--
        When opened, may its pages be
    As fair and sweet as thy bright glance
                  Across the pew!

                                              ARTHUR G. WRIGHT.



    Love, though I die, and dying lave
        My soul in Lethe endlessly,
    Losing all else, I still would save
        --Love, though I die--

    Thy living presence, touch and sigh,
    All that the golden moments gave
    To vanished hours of ecstasy.

    Then make thou great and wide my grave,
    So wide we two therein may lie;
    For sense of thee my soul will crave,
                Love, though I die.


    My lips refuse to take farewell of bliss,
    Sweet Love! so sweet and false, I can but choose
    To leave thee, only parting word and kiss
                My lips refuse.

    Fancy wears livery of a thousand hues,
    So love in idleness may come to this!
    And I must bring the thought to common use

    That ever--save in memory--I shall miss
    Thy short-lived tenderness-ever lose
    All that has taught how dear a thing it is
                My lips refuse.


    Other lips than yours intreat
    Those I vowed in vanished hours,
    Never Fate should force to greet
          Other lips than yours.

    Memory dulls, perchance, or sours
    What was once so keenly sweet,
    Being ours and only ours.

    All the life and heart and heat,
    All the soul that love outpours,
    Dies upon the lips that meet
          Other lips than yours.

                                               D. F. BLOMFIELD.


    Far-fetched and dear bought, as the proverb rehearses,
    Is good, or was held so, for ladies: but nought
    In a song can be good if the turn of the verse is
                    Far-fetched and dear bought.

    As the turn of a wave should it sound, and the thought
    Ring smooth, and as light as the spray that disperses
    Be the gleam of the words for the garb thereof wrought.

    Let the soul in it shine through the sound as it pierces
    Men's hearts with possession of music unsought;
    For the bounties of song are no jealous god's mercies,
                    Far-fetched and dear bought.

                                    ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE.


                          (To Theodore Watts.)


    The heavenly bay, ringed round with cliffs and moors,
    Storm-stained ravines, and crags that lawns inlay,
    Soothes as with love the rocks whose guard secures
                      The heavenly bay.

    O friend, shall time take even this away,
    This blessing given of beauty that endures,
    This glory shown us, not to pass but stay?

    Though sight be changed for memory, love ensures
    What memory, changed by love to sight, would say--
    The word that seals for ever mine and yours,
                      The heavenly bay.


    My mother sea, my fortress, what new strand,
    What new delight of waters, may this be,
    The fairest found since time's first breezes fanned
                      My mother sea?

    Once more I give me body and soul to thee,
    Who hast my soul for ever: cliff and sand
    Recede, and heart to heart once more are we.

    My heart springs first and plunges, ere my hand
    Strike out from shore: more close it brings to me,
    More near and dear than seems my fatherland,
                      My mother sea.
    Across and along, as the bay's breadth opens, and o'er us
    Wild autumn exults in the wind, swift rapture and strong
    Impels us, and broader the wide waves brighten before us
            Across and along.

    The whole world's heart is uplifted, and knows not wrong;
    The whole world's life is a chant to the sea-tide's chorus;
    Are we not as waves of the water, as notes of the song?

    Like children unworn of the passions and toils that wore us,
    We breast for a season the breadth of the seas that throng,
    Rejoicing as they, to be borne as of old they bore us
            Across and along.

                                    ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE.


    A Roundel is wrought as a ring or a starbright sphere,
    With craft of delight and with cunning of sound unsought,
    That the heart of the hearer may smile if to pleasure his ear
                          A roundel is wrought.

    Its jewel of music is carven of all or of aught--
    Love, laughter, or mourning--remembrance of rapture or fear--
    That fancy may fashion to hang in the ear of thought.

    As a bird's quick song runs round, and the hearts in us hear--
    Pause answers to pause, and again the same strain caught,
    So moves the device whence, round as a pearl or tear,
                          A roundel is wrought.

                                    ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE.


    Nothing so sweet in all the world there is
        Than this-to stand apart in Love's retreat
    And gaze at Love. There is as that, ywis,
                Nothing so sweet.

        Yet surely God hath placed before our feet
    Some sweeter sweetness and completer bliss,
        And something that shall prove more truly meet.

    Soothly I know not:-when the live lips kiss
        There is no more that our prayers shall entreat,
    Save only Death. Perhaps there is as this
                Nothing so sweet.

                                                 CHARLES SAYLE.


    Meet me, love, where the woodbines grow
    And where the wild rose smells most sweet;
    And the breezes, as they softliest blow,

    Passing along through the field of wheat,
    By the hedge where in spring the violets glow,
    And the blue-bells blossom around one's feet;

    Where latest lingers the drifted snow,
    And the fir-tree grows o'er our trysting-seat,
    Come-and your love, as long ago,

                                                 CHARLES SAYLE.


    If rest is sweet at shut of day
        For tired hands and tired feet,
    How sweet at last to rest for aye,
                  If rest is sweet!

    We work or work not through the heat:
        Death bids us soon our labours lay
    In lands where night and twilight meet.

    When the last dawns are fallen on grey
        And all life's toils and ease complete,
    They know who work, not they who play,
                  If rest is sweet.

                                                 ARTHUR SYMONS.


    We know not yet what life shall be,
        What shore beyond earth's shore be set;
    What grief awaits us, or what glee,
                      We know not yet.

    Still, somewhere in sweet converse met,
        Old friends, we say, beyond death's sea
    Shall meet and greet us, nor forget

    Those days of yore, those years when we
        Were loved and true,-but will death let
    Our eyes the longed-for vision see?
                      We know not yet.

                                             SAMUEL WADDINGTON.


                         I.-WHEN CLARICE DIED.

    When Clarice died, and it was told to me,
        I only covered up my face, and sighed
    To lose the world and cease to breathe or see,
                        When Clarice died.

    She was my playmate, sweet, and thoughtful-eyed,
        With curls, gold curls, that fluttered wild and free;
    My child companion and most tender guide.

    When Clarice died I wandered wearily
        Down the mute grove where she was wont to hide,
    And cast myself beneath her favourite tree,
                        When Clarice died.

                                                BERNARD WELLER.

                          II.-IN A FAIRY BOAT.

    In a fairy boat on a fairy sea,
        All amber and gold, I used to float
    When never a wind rose stormily;
                    In a fairy boat.

    And sweet and sad like a white dove's note
        Strange voices wakened my soul to glee,
    And soft scents strayed from the violets' throat.

    In a fairy boat I shall no more be,
        For gloom has fallen on creek and moat,
    And my tired soul's too heavy to flee
                    In a fairy boat.

                                                BERNARD WELLER.

#The Sestina.#

     "_La sextine en général sera l'expression d'une rêverie, dans
     laquelle la même idée, les mêmes objets se représenteront
     successivement à l'esprit avec des nuances diverses jouant et se
     transformant par d'harmonieuses gradations._"



    When from the portals of her paradise
    Sweet Eve went forth an exile with sad heart,
    She lingered at the thrice-barred gate in tears,
    And to the guardian of that Eden fair,
    As on her cheeks there came and went the rose,
    She weeping mourned the harshness of her fate.

    "O angel," cried she, "bitter is the fate
    That drives me from this fairest paradise,
    And bids me wear life's rue and not its rose!
    Give me one flower to lay upon my heart
    Before I wander through far lands less fair,
    And drown all visions of my past in tears."

    She ceased, but still flowed fast her silent tears
    At memory of the waywardness of fate.
    "Ah," thought she, "young I am, 'tis true, and fair,
    But shall I find another paradise?"
    Then turning once again with trembling heart,
    She spake: "O angel, but a rose-one rose!"

    Within the angel's breast compassion rose
    At sight of her sad face and falling tears,
    The while her beauty touched his tender heart,
    And knowing well the misery of her fate,
    He gave the flower, a rose of paradise,
    Because she was so very young and fair.

    And since that time there may be flowers as fair,
    But they must all yield fealty to the rose,
    The red, red rose that bloomed in paradise,
    That Eve in exile watered with her tears,
    The only blossom in her cheerless fate,
    The one flower in the desert of her heart.

    And into every mortal's life and heart
    There come some time, in cloudy days or fair,
    It matters not, to bless and light his fate
    For one short space, the perfume of the rose;
    And though the after years may bring but tears,
    That moment's pleasure is of paradise.

    O wondrous rose of love most passing fair,
    Whate'er our fate in earthly paradise,
    Grant that our tears be dewdrops in thy heart.

                                             FLORENCE M. BYRNE.



    Love lies a-sleeping: maiden, softly sing,
        Lest he should waken; pluck the falling rose
        A-brushing 'gainst his cheek, her glowing heart
    Ope'd to the sun's hot kisses-foolish thing,
        To list the tale oft told!-but summer goes,
        And all the roses' petals fall apart.

    Love lies a-sleeping: let the curtains part
        So that the breeze may lightly to him sing
            A lullaby-the changeful breeze that goes
            A-whispering through the grass, where'er it rose,
        Where'er it listeth bound, a wilful thing,
    Low murmuring sweets from an inconstant heart.

    Love lies a-sleeping: press the pulsing heart
    That beats against thy bosom: stand apart
        And stay thine eager breath, lest anything
        Should mar his rest-the songs that lovers sing,
    The tale the butterfly tells to the rose,
    The low wind to the grass, and onward goes.

    Love lies a-sleeping: ah, how swiftly goes
        The sweet delusion he hath taught thy heart,
    Fair maiden, pressing to thy breast the rose
        Whose sun-kiss'd petals sadly fall apart
    With thy quick breath! That rhyme wouldst hear him sing
    Which yesterday seem'd such a foolish thing?

    Love lies a-sleeping: nay, for such a thing
        Break not his slumber. See how sweetly goes
    That smile across his lips, that will not sing
        For very wilfulness. Love hath no heart!
        If he should wake, these red-ripe lips would part
    In laughter low to see this ravish'd rose.

    Love lies a-sleeping: so the full-blown rose
        Falls to the earth a dead unpitied thing;
            The grasses 'neath the breeze deep-sighing part
    And sway; and as thy warm breath comes and goes
            In motion with the red tides of thy heart,
    The song is hush'd which Love was wont to sing.

    Love lies a-sleeping: thus in dreams he goes;
        Strive not to waken him, but tell thy heart,
            "Love lies a-sleeping, and he may not sing."

                                       CHARLES W. COLEMAN, JUN.


                                To F. H.

    "'_Fra tutte il primo Arnoldo Daniello
      Grand maestro d'amor._'"-PETRARCH.

    In fair Provence, the land of lute and rose,
    Arnaut, great master of the lore of love,
    First wrought sestines to win his lady's heart;
    For she was deaf when simpler staves he sang,
    And for her sake he broke the bonds of rhyme,
    And in this subtler measure hid his woe.

      'Harsh be my lines,' cried Arnaut, 'harsh the woe,
    My lady, that enthron'd and cruel rose,
    Inflicts on him that made her live in rhyme!'
    But through the metre spake the voice of Love,
    And like a wild-wood nightingale he sang
    Who thought in crabbed lays to ease his heart.

      It is not told if her untoward heart
    Was melted by her poet's lyric woe,
    Or if in vain so amorously he sang.
    Perchance through crowd of dark conceits he rose
    To nobler heights of philosophic love,
    And crowned his later years with sterner rhyme.

      This thing alone we know: the triple rhyme,
    Of him who bared his vast and passionate heart
    To all the crossing flames of hate and love,
    Wears in the midst of all its storm of woe,-
    As some loud morn of March may bear a rose,-
    The impress of a song that Arnaut sang.

      'Smith of his mother-tongue,' the Frenchman sang
    Of Lancelot and of Galahad, the rhyme
    That beat so bloodlike at its core of rose,
    It stirred the sweet Francesca's gentle heart
    To take that kiss that brought her so much woe,
    And sealed in fire her martyrdom of love.

      And Dante, full of her immortal love,
    Stayed his drear song, and softly, fondly sang
    As though his voice broke with that weight of woe;
    And to this day we think of Arnaut's rhyme
    Whenever pity at the labouring heart
    On fair Francesca's memory drops the rose.

      Ah! sovereign Love, forgive this weaker rhyme!
    The men of old who sang were great at heart,
    Yet have we too known woe, and worn thy rose.

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


                              (A Sestina.)

    Along the crowded streets I walk and think
    How I, a shadow, pace among the shades,
    For I and all men seem to me unreal:
    Foam that the seas of God, which cover all
    Cast on the air a moment, shadows thrown
    In moving westward by the Moon of Death.

    Oh, shall it set at last, that orb of Death?
    May any morning follow? As I think,
    From one surmise upon another thrown,
    My very thoughts appear to me as shades-
    Shades, like the prisoning self that bounds them all,
    Shades, like the transient world, and as unreal.

    But other hours there be when I, unreal,
    When only I, vague in a conscious Death,
    Move through the mass of men unseen by all;
    I move along their ways, I feel and think,
    Yet am more light than echoes, or the shades
    That hide me, from their stronger bodies thrown.

    And better moments come, when, overthrown
    All round me, lie the ruins of the unreal
    And momentary world, as thin as shades;
    When I alone, triumphant over Death,
    Eternal, vast, fill with the thoughts I think,
    And with my single soul the frame of all.

    Ah, for a moment could I grasp it all!
    Ah, could but I (poor wrestler often thrown)
    Once grapple with the truth, oh then, I think,
    Assured of which is living, which unreal,
    I would not murmur, though among the shades
    My lot were cast, among the shades and Death.

    "One thing is true," I said, "and that is Death,"
    And yet it may be God disproves it all;
    And Death may be a passage from the shades,
    And films on our beclouded senses thrown;
    And Death may be a step beyond the Unreal
    Towards the Thought that answers all I think.

    In vain I think. O moon-like thought of Death,
    All is unreal beneath thee, uncertain all,
    Dim moon-ray thrown along a world of shades.

                                           A. MARY F. ROBINSON.



    One merry morn when all the earth was bright,
        And flushed with dewy dawn's encrimsoning ray
    A shepherd youth, o'er whose fair face the light
        Of rosy smiles was ever wont to stray,
    Roamed through a level grassy mead, bedight
        With springtime blossoms, fragrant, fresh and gay.

    But now, alas! his mood was far from gay;
        And musing how the dark world would be bright
    Could he but win his maiden's love, and stray
        With her forever, basking in its light,
    He saw afar, in morn's bright beaming ray,
        A lissome boy with archer's arms bedight.

    The boy shot arrows at a tree bedight
        With red-winged songsters warbling sweet and gay
    Amid the leaves and blossoms blooming bright.
        He seemed an aimless, wandering waif astray,
    And so the shepherd caught him, stealing light,
        While from his eyes he flashed an angry ray.

    The fair boy plead until a kindly ray
        Shone o'er the shepherd's clouded brow, bedight
    With clustering locks, and he said, smiling gay,
        "I prithee promise, by thy face so bright,
    To ne'er again, where'er thou mayest stray,
        Slay the sweet birds that make so glad the light."

    While yet he spake, from out those eyes a light
        Divine shot forth, before whose glowing ray
    The shepherd quailed, it was so wondrous bright;
        Then well he knew 'twas Cupid coy and gay,
    With all his arts and subtle wiles bedight,
        And knelt in homage lest the boy should stray.

    "Rise," said the God, "and e'er thy footsteps stray
        Know that within her eyes where beamed no light
    Of love for thee, I will implant a ray.
        She shall be thine with all her charms bedight."
    The shepherd kissèd Love's hand and bounded gay
        To gain his bliss,--and all the world was bright.

    When naught is bright to these that sadly stray,
        Oftimes a single ray of Eros' light
    Will make all earth bedight with radiance gay.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    I saw my soul at rest upon a day
        As a bird sleeping in the nest of night,
    Among soft leaves that give the starlight way
        To touch its wings but not its eyes with light;
    So that it knew as one in visions may,
        And knew not as men waking, of delight.

    This was the measure of my soul's delight;
        It had no power of joy to fly by day,
    Nor part in the large lordship of the light;
        But in a secret moon-beholden way
    Had all its will of dreams and pleasant night,
        And all the love and life that sleepers may.

    But such life's triumph as men waking may
        It might not have to feed its faint delight
    Between the stars by night and sun by day,
        Shut up with green leaves and a little light;
    Because its way was as a lost star's way,
        A world's not wholly known of day or night.

    All loves and dreams and sounds and gleams of night
        Made it all music that such minstrels may,
    And all they had they gave it of delight;
        But in the full face of the fire of day
    What place shall be for any starry light,
        What part of heaven in all the wide sun's way?

    Yet the soul woke not, sleeping by the way,
        Watched as a nursling of the large eyed night,
    And sought no strength nor knowledge of the day,
        Nor closer touch conclusive of delight,
    Nor mightier joy nor truer than dreamers may,
        Nor more of song than they, nor more of light.

    For who sleeps once and sees the secret light
        Whereby sleep shows the soul a fairer way
    Between the rise and rest of day and night,
        Shall care no more to fare as all men may,
    But be his place of pain or of delight,
        There shall he dwell, beholding night as day.

    Song, have thy day and take thy fill of light
        Before the night be fallen across thy way;
    Sing while he may, man hath no long delight.

                                    ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE.

#The Triolet.#


    _Le premier jour du mois de mai_
    _Fut le plus heureux de ma vie:_
    _Le beau dessein que je formai,_
    _Le premier jour du mois de mai!_
    _Je vous vis et je vous aimai._
    _Si ce dessein vous plut, Sylvie,_
    _Le premier jour du mois de mai_
    _Fut le plus heureux de ma vie._



    _Moi, je regardais ce cou-là._
    _Maintenant chantez, me dit Paule._
    _Avec des mines d'Attila_
    _Moi, je regardais ce cou-là._
    _Puis, un peu de temps s' écoula ..._
    _Moi, je regardais ce cou-là;_
    _Maintenant chantez, me dit Paule._


       *       *       *       *       *

    _"Mon fils, Absalon_
    _Absalon, mon fils,_
    _Las! perdu l'avon_
    _Mon fils Absalon;_
    _Il faut que soyon_
    _En grief deuil confis_
    _Mon fils Absalon_
    _Absalon, mon fils!"_



    She's neither scholarly nor wise,
        But, oh, her heart is wondrous tender,
    And love lies laughing in her eyes.
    She's neither scholarly nor wise,
    And yet above all else I prize
        The right from evil to defend her.
    She's neither scholarly nor wise,
        But, oh, her heart is wondrous tender.

                                            GRIFFITH ALEXANDER.

       *       *       *       *       *

    When first we met, we did not guess
        That Love would prove so hard a master;
    Of more than common friendliness
    When first we met we did not guess.
    Who could foretell the sore distress,
        This irretrievable disaster,
    When first we met?-we did not guess
        That Love would prove so hard a master.

                                                ROBERT BRIDGES.

       *       *       *       *       *

    All women born are so perverse,
        No man need boast their love possessing,
    If nought seem better, nothing's worse;
    All women born are so perverse,
    From Adam's wife that proved a curse,
        Though God had made her for a blessing.
    All women born are so perverse
        No man need boast their love possessing.

                                                ROBERT BRIDGES.


    'Twas a Jacqueminot rose
        That she gave me at parting;
    Sweetest flower that blows,
    'Twas a Jacqueminot rose.
    In the love garden close,
        With the swift blushes starting,
    'Twas a Jacqueminot rose
        That she gave me at parting.

    If she kissed it, who knows-
        Since I will not discover,
    And love is that close,
    If she kissed it, who knows?
    Or if not the red rose
        Perhaps then the lover!
    If she kissed it, who knows,
        Since I will not discover.

    Yet at least with the rose
        Went a kiss that I'm wearing!
    More I will not disclose,
    Yet at least with the rose
    Went _whose_ kiss no one knows,-
        Since I'm only declaring,
    "Yet at least with the rose
        Went a kiss that I'm wearing."

                                                    ARLO BATES.

       *       *       *       *       *

    Wee Rose is but three,
        Yet coquettes she already.
    I can scarcely agree
    Wee Rose is but three,
    When her archness I see!
        Are the sex born unsteady?-
    Wee Rose is but three,
        Yet coquettes she already.

                                                    ARLO BATES.

       *       *       *       *       *

    A pitcher of mignonette
        In a tenement's highest casement;
    Queer sort of a flower-pot-yet
    That pitcher of mignonette
    Is a garden in heaven set
        To the little sick child in the basement,-
    The pitcher of mignonette
        In the tenement's highest casement.

                                                  H. C. BUNNER.

       *       *       *       *       *

    In the light, in the shade,
        This is time and life's measure:
    With a heart unafraid,
    In the light, in the shade,
    Hope is born and not made,
        And the heart finds its treasure
    In the light, in the shade;
        This is time and life's measure.

                                                  WALTER CRANE.


    Away from city chafe and care,
        At forty miles an hour flying,
    Nor let the train me, _blasé_, bear
    Away from city chafe and care.
    To breezy braes, from street and square,
        Who would not, an he could, be hieing;
    Away from city chafe and care,
        At forty miles an hour flying?

    How nice a month on moors to pass
        Mid purling becks and purpling heather,
    To give the grouse their _coup de grâce_,
    How nice a month on moors to pass!
    If Fortune prove a liberal lass,
        If but auspicious be the weather,
    How nice a month on moors to pass,
        Mid purling brooks and purpling heather.

    Plague take the rain! upon my word,
        These mountain mists, how they do hover!
    I wish from town I'd never stirred.
    Plague take the rain! upon my word,
    'Tis just my luck, and not a bird
        My guileless gun contrives to cover.
    Plague take the rain! upon my word,
        These mountain mists, how they _do_ hover.

                                                 COTSFORD DICK.



                                A KISS.

    Rose kissed me to-day,
        Will she kiss me to-morrow?
    Let it be as it may,
    Rose kissed me to-day.
    But the pleasure gives way
        To a savour of sorrow;--
    Rose kissed me to-day,--
        _Will_ she kiss me to-morrow?


    In the School of Coquettes
        Madam Rose is a scholar:-
    O, they fish with all nets,
    In the School of Coquettes!
    When her brooch she forgets,
        'Tis to show her new collar;
    In the School of Coquettes
        Madam Rose is a scholar!

                                A TEAR.

    There's a tear in her eye,-
        Such a clear little jewel!
    What _can_ make her cry?
    There's a tear in her eye.
    "Puck has killed a big fly,--
        And it's _horribly_ cruel;"
    There's a tear in her eye,--
        Such a clear little jewel!

                             A GREEK GIFT.

    Here's a present for Rose,
        How pleased she is looking!
    Is it verse? Is it prose?
    Here's a present for Rose!
    "_Plats_," "_Entrees_" and "_Rôts_,"--
        Why, its "Gouffé on Cooking!"
    _Here's_ a present for Rose,
        How _pleased_ she is looking!


    I intended an Ode,
        And it turned to a Sonnet,
    It began _à la mode_,
    I intended an Ode;
    But Rose crossed the road
        In her latest new bonnet.
    I intended an Ode,
        And it turned to a Sonnet.

           *       *       *       *       *

    Oh, Love's but a dance,
        Where Time plays the fiddle!
    See the couples advance,--
    Oh! Love's but a dance!
    A whisper, a glance,--
        'Shall we twirl down the middle?'
    Oh, Love's but a dance,
        Where Time plays the fiddle!

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


"Jucundum, mea vita."

    Happy, my Life, the love you proffer,
        Eternal as the gods above;
    With such a wealth within my coffer,
    Happy my life. The love you proffer,--
    If your true heart sustains the offer,-
        Will prove the Koh-i-noor of love;
    Happy my life! The love you proffer,
        Eternal as the gods above!

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.

       *       *       *       *       *

    Easy is the Triolet,
        If you really learn to make it!
    Once a neat refrain you get,
    Easy is the Triolet.
    As you see!-I pay my debt
        With another rhyme. Deuce take it,
    Easy is the Triolet,
        If you really learn to make it!

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.

       *       *       *       *       *

    Out from the leaves of my "Lucille"
        Falls a faded violet.
    Sweet and faint as its fragrance, steal
    Out from the leaves of my "Lucille"
    Tender memories, and I feel
        A sense of longing and regret.
    Out from the leaves of my "Lucille"
        Falls a faded violet.

                                                WALTER LEARNED.


    In the days of my youth
        I wooed woman with sonnets.
    My ideas were uncouth
    In the days of my youth.
    Now I know that her ruth
        Is best reached by new bonnets;
    In the days of my youth
        I wooed woman with sonnets.

           *       *       *       *       *

    Here's a flower for your grave,
        Little love of last year;
    Since I once was your slave,
    Here's a flower for your grave;
    Since I once used to rave
        In the praise of my dear,
    Here's a flower for your grave,
        Little love of last year.

           *       *       *       *       *

    Lo, my heart, so sound asleep,
        Lady! will you wake it?
    For lost love I used to weep,
    Now my heart is sound asleep,
    If it once were yours to keep,
        I fear you'd break it.
    Lo! my heart, so sound asleep,
        Lady, will you wake it?

                                        JUSTIN HUNTLY MCCARTHY.


                           A CORSAGE BOUQUET.

    Myrtilla, to-night,
      Wears Jacqueminot roses,
    She's the loveliest sight!
      Myrtilla, to-night:-
    Correspondingly light
      My pocket-book closes.
    Myrtilla, to-night
      Wears Jacqueminot roses.

                           TO AN AUTUMN LEAF.

    Wee shallop of shimmering gold!
      Slip down from your ways in the branches.
    Some fairy will loosen your hold-
    Wee shallop of shimmering gold
    Spill dew on your bows and unfold
      Silk sails for the fairest of launches!
    Wee shallop of shimmering gold,
      Slip down from your ways in the branches.

                                A KISS.

    You ask me what's a kiss?
      'Tis Cupid's keenest arrow!
    A thing to take a "miss"-
    (You ask me what's a kiss?)
    The brink of an abyss!
    A lover's pathway, narrow.
    You ask me what's a _kiss_?
      'Tis Cupid's _keenest_ arrow!

                                                  C. H. LÜDERS.

       *       *       *       *       *

    You know it is late,
        And the night's growing colder,
    Still you lean o'er the gate.
    You know it is late,
    There's a fire in the grate,
        Ah! sweetheart, be bolder.
    You know it is late,
        And the night's growing colder.

_The "Century."_

       *       *       *       *       *

    Under the sun
        There's nothing new;
    Poem or pun,
    Under the sun,
    Said Solomon,
        And he said true.
    Under the sun
        There's nothing new.

"_Love in Idleness._"

                           SERENADE TRIOLET.

    Why is the moon
        Awake when thou sleepest?
    To the nightingale's tune
    Why is the moon
    Making a noon
        When night is the deepest?
    Why is the moon
        Awake when thou sleepest?

                                              GEORGE MACDONALD.


    Few in joy's sweet riot
        Able are to listen:
    Thou, to make me quiet,
    Quenchest the sweet riot,
    Tak'st away my diet,
        Puttest me in prison-
    Quenchest joy's sweet riot
        That the heart may listen.

           *       *       *       *       *

    Spring sits on her nest,
        Daisies and white clover;
    And young love lies at rest
    In the Spring's white nest,
    For she loves me best,
        And the cold is over;
    Spring sits on her nest,
        Daisies and white clover.

           *       *       *       *       *

    In his arms thy silly lamb
        Lo! he gathers to his breast!
    See, thou sadly bleating dam,
    See him lift thy silly lamb!
    Hear it cry, "How blest I am!-
        Here is love and love is rest,"
    In his arms thy silly lamb
        See him gather to his breast!

                                              GEORGE MACDONALD.



    I was very cold
        In the summer weather;
    The sun shone all his gold,
    But I was very cold-
    Alone, we were grown old,
        Love and I together!-
    Oh, but I was cold
        In the summer weather!


    Sudden I grew warmer,
        When the brooks were frozen:-
    "To be angry is to harm her,"
    I said, and straight grew warmer.
    "Better men, the charmer
        Knows at least a dozen!"-
    I said, and straight grew warmer,
        Though the brooks were frozen.


    Spring sits on her nest-
        Daisies and white clover;
    And my heart at rest
    Lies in the spring's young nest:
    My love she loves me best,
        And the frost is over!
    Spring sits on her nest-
        Daisies and white clover!

                                              GEORGE MACDONALD.


                      HE (_aside_).

    If I should steal a little kiss,
        Oh, would she weep, I wonder?
    I tremble at the thought of bliss,-
    If I should steal a little kiss!
    Such pouting lips would never miss
        The dainty bit of plunder;
    If I should steal a little kiss,
        Oh, would she weep, I wonder?

                      SHE (_aside_).

    He longs to steal a kiss of mine--
        He may, if he'll return it:
    If I can read the tender sign,
    He longs to steal a kiss of mine;
    "In love and war"--you know the line
        Why cannot he discern it?
    He longs to steal a kiss of mine--
        He may if he'll return it.

               BOTH (_five minutes later_).

    A little kiss when no one sees,
        Where is the impropriety?
    How sweet amid the birds and bees
    A little kiss when no one sees!
    Nor is it wrong, the world agrees,
        If taken with sobriety.
    A little kiss when no one sees,
        Where is the impropriety?

                                           SAMUEL MINTURN PECK.

    Warm from the wall she chose a peach,
        She took the wasps for councillors;
    She said, "Such little things can teach;"
    Warm from the wall she chose a peach;
    She waved the fruit within my reach,
        Then passed it to a friend of hers:--
    Warm from the wall she chose a peach,
        She took the wasps for councillors.

                                                EMILY PFEIFFER.



                          _What he said._

    This kiss upon your fan I press,
        Ah! Saint Nitouche, you don't refuse it,
    And may it from its soft recess,
    This kiss upon your fan I press
    Be blown to you a shy caress
        By this white down whene'er you use it;
    This kiss upon your fan I press,
        Ah! Saint Nitouche, you don't refuse it.


                        _What she thought._

    To kiss a fan!
        What a poky poet!
    The stupid man
    To kiss a fan,
    When he knows that--he--can,
        Or ought to know it.
    To kiss a fan!
        What a poky poet!

                                            HARRISON ROBERTSON.


                              DEAR READER.

    If you never write verses yourself,
        Dear reader, I leave it with you,
    You will grant a half-inch of your shelf,
    If you never write verses yourself.
    It was praised by some lenient elf,
        It was damned by a heavy review;
    If you never write verses yourself,
        Dear reader, I leave it with you.


        'E thinks 'e's a Hirving, my eye!
    Why, Pussy, you're crying: afraid?
    It's the first time you've seen a piece played?
        Its pretty, but, Pussy, don't cry.
        'E thinks 'e's a Hirving, my eye!


    I killed her? Ah, why do they cheer?
        Are those twenty years gone to-day?
    Why, she was my wife, sir, dear-so dear.
    I killed her? Ah, why do they cheer?
         ... Ah hound! He was shaking with fear,
    And I rushed--with a knife, they say....
    I killed her? Ah, why do they cheer?
        Are those twenty years gone to-day?

     [_v._ Police Reports of the release of George Hall from Birmingham

                               A HUPROAR.

    Down 'Ob'n, sir? Circus, Bank, Bank!
        'Ere's a huproar, my bloomin', hoff side!
    A flower, miss? Ah, thankee, miss, thank-
    Down 'Ob'n, sir? Circus, Bank, Bank!
    'Igher up! 'Ullo, Bill, wot a prank!
        If that 'ere old carcase aint shied!
    Down 'Ob'n, sir? Circus, Bank, Bank!
        'Ere's a huproar, my bloomin', hoff side!

                             SPRING VOICES.

    Fine Violets! fresh Violets! come buy!
        Ah, rich man! I would not be you.
    All spring-time it haunts me, that cry:-
    Fine Violets! fresh Violets! come buy!
    Whose loss if she tell me a lie?
        "They're starving; my God, sir, it's true."
    Fine Violets! fresh Violets! come buy!
        Ah, rich man! I would not be you!

                           BETWEEN THE LINES.

    Cigar lights! yer honour? Cigar lights?
        May God forget you in your need.
    Ay, damn you! if folks get their rights
    (Cigar lights! yer honour?-cigar lights)
    Their babies shan't starve in the nights
        For wanting the price of your weed-
    Cigar lights! yer honour? Cigar lights!
        May God forget you in your need!

                                                ERNEST RADFORD.


    Since I am her's and she is mine
        We live in Love and fear no change!
    For Love is God, so we divine.
    Since I am her's and she is mine,
    In some fair love-land far and fine,
        Through golden years our feet shall range.
    Since I am her's and she is mine,
        We live in Love and fear no change.

    Why dost thou look so pale, my Love?
        Why dost thou sigh and say Farewell?
    "These myrtles seem a cypress grove."
    Why dost thou look so pale, my Love?
    "I hear the raven, not the dove,
        And for the marriage-peal, a knell."
    Why dost thou look so pale, my Love?
        Why dost thou sigh and say Farewell?

    "Since I can never come again,
        When I am dead and gone from here,
    Grieve not for me; all grief's in vain,
    Since I can never come again;
    But let no thought of me remain.
        With my last kiss give thy last tear,
    Since I can never come again,
        When I am dead and gone from here."

    All the night and all the day
        I think upon her lying dead,
    With lips that neither kiss nor pray
    All the night nor all the day.
    In that dark grave whose only ray
        Of sun or moon's her golden head,
    All the night and all the day
        I think upon her lying dead.

    Why should I live alone,
        Since Love was all in vain?
    My heart to thine is flown-
    Why should I live alone?
    Dost thou too make thy moan,
        In Paradise complain:
    Why should I live alone,
        Since Love was all in vain?

    What can heal a broken heart?
        Death alone, I fear me,
    Thou that dost true lovers part,
    What can heal a broken heart?
    Death alone, that made the smart,
        Death, that will not hear me.
    What can heal a broken heart?
        Death alone, I fear me.

                                           A. MARY F. ROBINSON.


    I saw a snowflake in the air
        When smiling May had decked the year,
    And then 'twas gone, I knew not where,--
    I saw a snowflake in the air,
    And thought perchance an angel's prayer
        Had fallen from some starry sphere;
    I saw a snowflake in the air
        When smiling May had decked the year.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


        The sermon was long
    And the preacher was prosy.
        Dou you think it was wrong?
        The sermon was long,
        The temptation was strong,
    Her cheeks were so rosy.
        The sermon was long
        And the preacher was prosy.

_The Century Magazine._


                          THE BILL OF LADING.

    She was cargo and crew,
        She was boatswain and skipper,
    She was passenger too
    Of the _Nutshell_ canoe;
    And the eyes were so blue
        Of this sweet tiny tripper!
    She was cargo and crew,
        She was boatswain and skipper!

                               THE PILOT.

    How I bawled "Ship, ahoy!"
        Hard by Medmenham Ferry!
    And she answered with joy,
    She moved like a convoy,
    And would love to employ
        A bold pilot so merry.
    How I bawled "Ship, ahoy!"
        Hard by Medmenham Ferry!

                              THE VOYAGE.

    'Neath the trees gold and red
        In that bright autumn weather,
    When our white sails were spread
    O'er the waters we sped-
    What was it she said?
        When we drifted together!
    'Neath the trees gold and red
        In that bright autumn weather!

                               THE HAVEN.

    Ah! the moments flew fast,
        But our trip too soon ended!
    When we reached land at last,
    And our craft was made fast,
    It was six or half-past-
        And Mama looked offended!
    Ah! the moments flew fast,
        But our trip too soon ended.

                                               J. ASHBY STERRY.



    I saw her shadow on the grass
        That day we walked together.
    Across the field where the pond was
    I saw her shadow on the grass.
    And now I sigh and say, Alas!
        That e'er in summer weather
    I saw her shadow on the grass
        That day we walked together!


    Hope bowed his head in sleep:
        Ah me and wellaway!
    Although I cannot weep,
    Hope bowed his head in sleep.
    The heavy hours creep:
        When is the break of day?
    Hope bowed his head in sleep,
        Ah me and wellaway!


    The sea on the beach
        Flung the foam of its ire.
    We watched without speech
    The sea on the beach,
    And we clung each to each
        As the tempest shrilled higher
    And the sea on the beach
        Flung the foam of its ire.


    When Love is once dead
        Who shall awake him?
    Bitter our bread
    When Love is once dead
    His comforts are fled,
        His favours forsake him.
    When Love is once dead
        Who shall awake him?


    Love is a swallow
        Flitting with spring:
    Though we would follow,
    Love is a swallow,
    All his vows hollow:
        Than let us sing,
    Love is a swallow
        Flitting with spring.

                                                 ARTHUR SYMONS.

       *       *       *       *       *

    A poor cicala, piping shrill,
        I may not ape the Nightingale,
    I sit upon the sun-browned hill,
    A poor cicala, piping shrill
    When summer noon is warm and still,
        Content to chirp my homely tale;
    A poor cicala piping shrill,
        I may not ape the Nightingale.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.



    Love's footsteps shall not fail nor faint,
        He will not leave our hearth again:
    So safely lulled his murmuring plaint,
    Love's footsteps shall not fail nor faint;
    All clasped and bound in fond constraint,
        And circled with a shining chain,
    Love's footsteps shall not fail nor faint,
        He will not leave our hearth again.


    Your rose-red bonds are all in vain,
        If bound Love weep for weariness:
    His faded eyes are drowned in rain.
    Your rose-red bonds are all in vain,
    He murmurs low a dull refrain,
        And turns his lips from our caress-
    Your rose-red bonds are all in vain
        If bound Love weep for weariness!


    That grey, last day we said goodbye
        Makes winter weather in my heart;
    Dull cloud wreaths veiled our summer sky
    That grey, last day we said goodbye
    And loosed faint love; I wonder why
        (For _then_, in truth, 'twas well to part)
    That grey, last day we said goodbye
        Makes wintry weather in my heart.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    The roses are dead,
        And swallows are flying:
    White, golden, and red,
    The roses are dead;
    Yet tenderly tread
        Where their petals are lying.
    The roses are dead,
        And swallows are flying.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    You've spoken of love,
        And I've answered with laughter;
    You've kissed--my kid glove.
    You've spoken of love.
    Why! powers above?
        Is there more to come after.
    You've spoken of love
        And I've answered with laughter.

    Her lips were so near
        That--what else could I do?
    You'll be angry, I fear,
    Her lips were so near.
    Well, I can't make it clear
        Or explain it to you.
    Her lips were so near
        That--what else could I do?

_From "The Century."_


    My love of loves--my May,
        In rippling shadows lying,
    Was sleeping mid the hay--
    My love of loves--my May!
        The ardent sun was trying
    To kiss her dreams away!
    My love of loves--my May,
        In rippling shadows lying.

    I knelt and kissed her lips,
        Sweeter than any flower
    The bee for honey sips!
    I knelt and kissed her lips,--
        And as her dark eyes' power
    Awoke from sleep's eclipse,
    I knelt and kissed her lips,
        Sweeter than any flower!

    The pair of gloves I won,
        My darling pays in kisses!
    Long may the sweet debt run--
    The pair of gloves I won!
        Till death our loves dismisses
    This feud will ne'er be done--
    The pair of gloves I won,
        My darling pays in kisses!

                                                  C. H. WARING.


                          A Trio of Triolets.

    O the apples rosy-red!
        O the gnarled trunks grey and brown,
    Heavy-branchèd overhead!
    O the apples rosy-red!
    O the merry laughter sped,
        As the fruit is showered down!
    O the apples rosy-red!
        O the gnarled trunks grey and brown!

    O the blushes rosy-red!
        O the loving autumn breeze!
    O the words so softly said!
    O the blushes rosy-red,
    While old doubts and fears lie dead,
        Buried 'neath the apple-trees!
    O the blushes rosy-red!
        O the loving autumn breeze!

    O the years so swiftly fled!
        O twin hearts that beat as one,
    With a love time-strengthenèd!
    O the years so swiftly fled!
    O the apples rosy-red,
        That still ripen in the sun!
    O the years so swiftly fled!
        O twin hearts that beat as one!

                                              GEORGE WEATHERLY.

#The Villanelle, Virelai, and Virelai Nouveau.#


    _J'ay perdu ma tourterelle;_
    _Est-ce-point elle que i'oy?_[10]
    _Je veux aller après elle._

    _Tu regrettes ta femelle;_
    _Hélas! aussy fay-je moy:_
    _J'ay perdu ma tourterelle._

    _Si ton amour est fidèle,_
    _Aussy est ferme ma foy;_
    _Je veux aller après elle._

    _Ta plainte se renouvelle?_
    _Toujours plaindre je me doy:_
    _J'ay perdu ma tourterelle._

    _En ne voyant plus la belle_
    _Plus rien de beau je ne voy:_
    _Je veux aller après elle._

    _Mort, que tant de fois j'appelle_
    _Prens ce qui se donne à toy:_
    _J'ai perdu ma tourterelle,_
    _Je veux aller après elle._


[10] _J'entends._


    There are roses white, there are roses red,
        Shyly rosy, tenderly white;-
    Which shall I choose to wreathe my head?

    Which shall I cull from the garden-bed
        To greet my love on this very night?
    There are roses white, there are roses red.

    The red should say what I would have said;
        Ah! how they blush in the evening light!
    Which shall I choose to wreathe my head?

    The white are pale as the snow new-spread,
        Pure as young eyes and half as bright;
    There are roses white, there are roses red.

    Roses white, from the heaven dew-fed,
        Roses red for a passion's plight;
    Which shall I choose to wreathe my head?

    Summer twilight is almost fled,
        Say, dear love! have I chosen right?
    There are roses white, there are roses red,
    All twined together to wreathe my head.

                                               L. S. BEVINGTON.


    O Halcyon hours of happy holiday,
        When frets of function and of fashion flee,
    (Sweet is the sunshine, soft the summer's sway).
    Ye whisper 'welcome' to our wandering way,
        And give a gracious greeting to our glee,
    O halcyon hours of happy holiday!

    Or pacing prairies in pursuit of prey,
        Or sailing silent on a southern sea,
    (Sweet is the sunshine, soft the summer's sway),
    Or gliding giddy down some glacier gray,
        Or joining in a German jubilee,
    O halcyon hours of happy holiday!

    We breathe such buoyant bliss that we betray
        Our sportive spirits strangely-_sans souci_
    Sweet is the sunshine, soft the summer's sway,
    And dear the dreaming of these days _distraits_
        We find we ye, so _fainéants_ and free,
    O halcyon hours of happy holiday!

                                                 COTSFORD DICK.


    Seek not, O maid, to know
        (Alas! unblest the trying!)
    When thou and I must go.

    No lore of stars can show.
        What shall be, vainly prying,
    Seek not, O maid, to know.

    Will Jove long years bestow?-
        Or is't with this one dying,
    That thou and I must go;

    Now,-when the great winds blow
        And waves the reef are plying?...
    Seek not, O maid, to know.

    Rather let clear wine flow,
        On no vain hope relying;
    When thou and I must go

    Lies dark; then be it so.
        Now,--_now_, churl Time is flying;
    Seek not, O maid, to know
    When thou and I must go.

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    When I saw you last, Rose,
        You were only so high;-
    How fast the time goes!

    Like a bud ere it blows,
        You just peeped at the sky,
    When I saw you last, Rose!

    Now your petals unclose,
        Now your May-time is nigh;-
    How fast the time goes!

    And a life,-how it grows!
        You were scarcely so shy,
    When I saw you last, Rose!

    In your bosom it shows
        There's a guest on the sly;
    How fast the time goes!

    Is it Cupid? Who knows!
        Yet you used not to sigh,
    When I saw you last, Rose;-
    How fast the time goes!

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    O singer of the field and fold,
        THEOCRITUS! Pan's pipe was thine,--
    Thine was the happier Age of Gold.

    For thee the scent of new-turned mould,
        The bee-hives, and the murmuring pine,
    O singer of the field and fold!

    Thou sang'st the simple feasts of old,--
        The beechen bowl made glad with wine ...
    Thine was the happier Age of Gold!

    Thou bad'st the rustic loves be told,--
        Thou bad'st the tuneful reeds combine,
    O singer of the field and fold!

    And round thee, ever laughing, rolled
        The blithe and blue Sicilian brine ...
    Thine was the happier Age of Gold.

    Alas for us! our songs are cold;
        Our northern suns too sadly shine:--
    O singer of the field and fold,
    Thine was the happier Age of Gold.

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    "Ah me, but it might have been!
      Was there ever so dismal a fate?"--
    Quoth the little blue mandarin.

    "Such a maid as was never seen!
      She passed, though I cried to her 'Wait,'--
    Ah me, but it might have been!

    "I cried, 'O my Flower, my Queen,
      Be mine!' 'Twas precipitate,"--
    Quoth the little blue mandarin,--

    "But then ... she was just sixteen,--
      Long-eyed,--as a lily straight,--
    Ah me, but it might have been!

    "As it was, from her palankeen,
      She laughed--'you're a week too late!'"
    (Quoth the little blue mandarin.)

    "That is why, in a mist of spleen,
      I mourn on this Nankin Plate.
    Ah me, but it might have been!"
    Quoth the little blue mandarin.

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.


    Wouldst thou not be content to die
        When low-hung fruit is hardly clinging
    And golden autumn passes by?

    Beneath this delicate rose-gray sky,
        While sunset bells are faintly ringing,
    Wouldst thou not be content to die?

    For wintry webs of mist on high
        Out of the muffled earth are springing,
    And golden Autumn passes by.

    O now when pleasures fade and fly,
        And Hope her southward flight is winging,
    Wouldst thou not be content to die?

    Lest Winter come, with wailing cry
        His cruel icy bondage bringing,
    When golden Autumn hath passed by;

    And thou with many a tear and sigh,
        While life her wasted hands is wringing,
    Shall pray in vain for leave to die
    When golden Autumn hath passed by.

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


    Little mistress mine, good-bye!
        I have been your sparrow true;
    Dig my grave, for I must die.

    Waste no tear and heave no sigh,
        Life should still be blithe for you,
    Little mistress mine, good-bye!

    In your garden let me lie;
        Underneath the pointed yew
    Dig my grave, for I must die.

    We have loved the quiet sky
        With its tender arch of blue;
    Little mistress mine, good-bye!

    That I still may feel you nigh,
        In your virgin bosom, too,
    Dig my grave, for I must die.

    Let our garden-friends that fly
        Be the mourners, fit and few.
    Little mistress mine, good-bye!
    Dig my grave, for I must die.

                                                  EDMUND GOSSE.


    Where's the use of sighing?
        Sorrow as you may,
    Time is always flying-

    Flying!-and defying
        Men to say him nay ...
    Where's the use of sighing?

    Look! To-day is dying
        After yesterday.
    Time is always flying.

    Flying--and when crying
        Cannot make him stay,
    Where's the use of sighing?

    Men with by-and-bying,
        Fritter life away.
    Time is always flying,

    Flying!--O, from prying
        Cease, and go to play.
    Where's the use of sighing,
    "Time is always flying?"

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    A dainty thing's the Villanelle.
        Sly, musical, a jewel in rhyme,
    It serves its purpose passing well.

    A double-clappered silver bell
        That must be made to clink in chime,
    A dainty thing's the Villanelle;

    And if you wish to flute a spell,
        Or ask a meeting 'neath the lime,
    It serves its purpose passing well.

    You must not ask of it the swell
        Of organs grandiose and sublime--
    A dainty thing's the Villanelle;

    And, filled with sweetness, as a shell
        Is filled with sound, and launched in time,
    It serves its purpose passing well.

    Still fair to see and good to smell
        As in the quaintness of its prime,
    A dainty thing's the Villanelle,
    It serves its purpose passing well.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    In the clatter of the train
        Is a promise brisk and bright.
    I shall see my love again!

    I am tired and fagged and fain;
        But I feel a still delight
    In the clatter of the train,

    Hurry-hurrying on amain
        Through the moonshine thin and white--
    I shall see my love again!

    Many noisy miles remain;
        But a sympathetic sprite
    In the clatter of the train

    Hammers cheerful:-that the strain
        Once concluded and the fight,
    I shall see my love again.

    Yes, the overword is plain,--
        If it's trivial, if it's trite--
    In the clatter of the train:
    "I shall see my love again."

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


(To M. Joseph Boulmier, Author of "Les Villanelles.")

    Villanelle, why art thou mute?
        Hath the singer ceased to sing?
    Hath the Master lost his lute?

    Many a pipe and scrannel flute
        On the breeze their discords fling;
    Villanelle, why art _thou_ mute?

    Sound of tumult or dispute,
        Noise of war the echoes bring;
    Hath the Master lost his lute?

    Once he sang of bud and shoot
        In the season of the Spring;
    Villanelle, why art thou mute?

    Fading leaf and falling fruit
        Say, "The year is on the wing,
    Hath the Master lost his lute?"

    Ere the axe lies at the root,
        Ere the winter comes as king,
    Villanelle, why art thou mute?
    Hath the Master lost his lute!

                                                   ANDREW LANG.


                   (To the Nightingale in September.)

    Child of the muses and the moon,
        O nightingale, return and sing,
    Thy song is over all too soon.

    Let not night's quire yield place to noon,
        To this red breast thy tawny wing,
    Child of the muses and the moon.

    Sing us once more the same sad tune
        Pandion heard when he was king,
    Thy song is over all too soon.

    Night after night thro' leafy June
        The stars were hush'd and listening,
    Child of the muses and the moon.

    Now new moons grow to plenilune
        And wane, but no new music bring;
    Thy song is over all too soon.

    Ah, thou art weary! well, sleep on,
        Sleep till the sun brings back the spring.
    Thy song is over all too soon,
    Child of the muses and the moon.

"_Love in Idleness._"


    Beautiful, distracting Hetty,
        This was how it came to be
    As we strolled upon the jetty.

    I had danced three times with Netty,
        She had flirted with Dobree,
    Beautiful, distracting Hetty.

    I was humming Donizetti,
        Hurt was I, and angry she,
    As we strolled upon the jetty.

    As she levelled her Negretti
        With provoking nicety,
    Beautiful, distracting Hetty,

    Suddenly she flashed a pretty,
        Half-defiant glance at me,
    As we strolled upon the jetty.

    And our quarrel seemed so petty
        By the grandeur of the sea!
    Beautiful, distracting Hetty,
    As we strolled upon the jetty.

                                               COSMO MONKHOUSE.


    Life, thou art vaguely strangely sweet,
        Thy gladness fills our throbbing veins,
    But Death comes on with footsteps fleet.

    With rapture men each morning greet,
        And spite of losses, cares and pains.
    Life, thou art vaguely strangely sweet.

    We, while with health our pulses beat,
        Heed not the falling hour glass grains,
    But Death comes in with footsteps fleet.

    Our lips may say "Life is a cheat,"
        But 'tis of Death our heart complains;
    Life, thou art vaguely strangely sweet.

    For one hour more do men entreat,
        As life within them quickly wanes,
    But Death comes on with footsteps fleet.

    Many we miss, but him we meet,
        He is a guest whom nought detains;
    Life, thou art vaguely strangely sweet,
    But Death comes on with footsteps fleet.

                                          JAMES ASHCROFT NOBLE.


    The air is white with snow-flakes clinging;
        Between the gusts that come and go
    Methinks I hear the woodlark singing.

    Methinks I see the primrose springing
        On many a bank and hedge, although
    The air is white with snow-flakes clinging.

    Surely the hands of spring are flinging
        Woodscents to all the winds that blow.
    Methinks I hear the woodlark singing;

    Methinks I see the swallow winging
        Across the woodlands sad with snow;
    The air is white with snow-flakes clinging.

    Was that the cuckoo's wood-chime swinging?
        Was that the linnet fluting low?
    Methinks I hear the woodlark singing.

    Or can it be the breeze is bringing
        The breath of violets?--Ah no!
    The air is white with snow-flakes clinging.

    It is my lady's voice that's stringing
        Its beads of gold to song; and so
    Methinks I hear the woodlark singing.

    The violets I see upspringing
        Are in my lady's eyes, I trow;
    The air is white with snow-flakes clinging.

    Dear, when thy tender tones are ringing,
        Even whilst amid the winter's woe
    The air is white with snow-flakes clinging,
    Methinks I hear the woodlark singing.

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.


    Just to please my Bonnie Belle
        With her winsome eyes of blue,
    Lo, I sing a villanelle.

    List the merry music swell!
        Haste, ye rhymes, in measure true,
    Just to please my Bonnie Belle.

    Have a care to foot it well,
        Tripping like a fairy crew,
    Lo, I sing a villanelle.

    Come from where the Pixies dwell,
        Dance with sandals dipped in dew,
    Just to please my Bonnie Belle.

    In her ear, the tiny shell
        Let my peerless passion sue;
    Lo, I sing a villanelle.

    Will she listen? Who can tell?
        Does she love me? Would I knew!
    Just to please my Bonnie Belle
    Lo, I sing a villanelle.

                                           SAMUEL MINTURN PECK.


    All worldly dreams I would resign,
        Nor ever long for hidden lore,
    If some true maiden's love were mine.

    If but two eyes of blue divine
        Could meet my glance forevermore,
    All worldly dreams I would resign.

    The clouds would show a silver line
        And rainbow tints would hue them o'er,
    If some true maiden's love were mine.

    A jasmine tree should droop and twine
        And peep within our cottage door,
    All worldly dreams I would resign.

    Our gems should be the dewdrop's shine,
        Our music float from larks that soar,
    If some true maiden's love were mine.

    Where is she now? She gives no sign,
        That loyal heart, leal to the core!
    All worldly dreams I would resign
    If some true maiden's love were mine.

                                           SAMUEL MINTURN PECK.


    When the brow of June is crowned by the rose
        And the air is fain and faint with her breath,
    Then the Earth hath rest from her long birth-throes;--

    The Earth hath rest and forgetteth her woes
        As she watcheth the cradle of Love and Death,
    When the brow of June is crowned by the rose.

    O Love and Death who are counted for foes,
        She sees you twins of one mind and faith--
    The Earth at rest from her long birth-throes.

    You are twins to the mother who sees and knows;
        (Let them strive and thrive together) she saith--
    When the brow of June is crowned by the rose.

    They strive, and Love his brother outgrows,
        But for strength and beauty he travaileth
    On the Earth at rest from her long birth-throes.

    And still when his passionate heart o'erflows,
        Death winds about him a bridal wreath--
    As the brow of June is crowned by the rose!

    So the bands of death true lovers enclose,
        For Love and Death are as Sword and Sheath
    When the Earth hath rest from her long birth-throes.

    They are Sword and Sheath, they are Life and its Shows
        Which lovers have grace to see beneath,
    When the brow of June is crowned by the rose
    And the Earth hath rest from her long birth-throes.

                                                EMILY PFEIFFER.


    O Summer-time so passing sweet,
        But heavy with the breath of flowers,
    But languid with the fervent heat.

    They chide amiss who call thee fleet,--
        Thee, with thy weight of daylight hours,
    O Summer-time so passing sweet!

    Young Summer thou art too replete,
        Too rich in choice of joys and powers,
    But languid with the fervent heat.

    Adieu! my face is set to meet
        Bleak Winter, with his pallid showers,
    O Summer-time so passing sweet!

    Old winter steps with swifter feet,
        He lingers not in wayside bowers,
    He is not languid with the heat;

    His rounded day, a pearl complete,
        Gleams on the unknown night that lowers;
    O Summer-time so passing sweet,
    But languid with the fervent heat!

                                                EMILY PFEIFFER.


    In every sound, I think I hear her feet--
        And still I wend my altered way alone,
    And still I say, "To-morrow we shall meet."

    I watch the shadows in the crowded street--
        Each passing face I follow one by one--
    In every sound I think I hear her feet.

    And months go by-bleak March and May-day heat--
        Harvest is over--winter well-nigh done--
    And still I say, "To-morrow we shall meet."

    Among the city square when flowers are sweet,
        With every breath a sound of her seems blown--
    In every sound I think I hear her feet.

    Belfry and clock the unending hours repeat
        From twelve to twelve--and still she comes in none--
    And still I say, "To-morrow we shall meet."

    Oh, long delayed to-morrow!--hearts that beat
        Measure the length of every minute gone--
    In every sound I think I hear her feet.

    Ever the suns rise tardily or fleet,
        And light the letters on a churchyard stone,--
    And still I say, "To-morrow we shall meet."

    And still from out her unknown far retreat
        She haunts me with her tender undertone--
    In every sound I think I hear her feet,
    And still I say, "To-morrow we shall meet."

                                                    MAY PROBYN.


    The daffodils are on the lea--
        Come out, sweetheart, and bless the sun!
    The birds are glad, and so are we.

    This morn a throstle piped to me,
        "'Tis time that mates were wooed and won--
    The daffodils are on the lea."

    Come out, sweetheart, their gold to see,
        And building of the nests begun--
    The birds are glad, and so are we.

    You said,--bethink you!--"It shall be
        When, yellow smocked, and winter done,
    The daffodils are on the lea."

    Yet, an' you will, to change be free!
        How sigh you?--"Changes need we none--
    The birds are glad--_and so are we_?"

    Come out, sweetheart! the signs agree,
        The marriage tokens March has spun--
    The daffodils are on the lea;
    The birds are glad--and so are we!

                                                    MAY PROBYN.


    Man's very voice is stilled on Troas' shore,
        Sweet Xanthus and Simois both are mute,
    Thus have the gods ordained forevermore!

    Springs the rank weed where bloomed the rose before,
        Unplucked on Ida hangs the purple fruit,
    Man's very voice is stilled on Troas' shore.

    When heavenly walls towered proud and high of yore,
        Unharmed now strays abroad the savage brute,
    Thus have the gods ordained forevermore!

    And they, the wronged, that wasting sorrow bore,
        Alas! their tree hath withered to the root,
    Man's very voice is stilled on Troas' shore.

    In Lacedæmon, loved of heroes hoar,
        No trumpet sounds, but piping shepherd's flute,
    Thus have the gods ordained forevermore!

    And thou, the cause, through Aphrodites lore,
        Unblamed, art praised on poet's lyre and lute--
    Man's very voice is stilled on Troas' shore.
    Thus have the gods ordained forevermore!

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    O daffodil, flower saffron-gowned,
        Effulgent with the Sun-god's gold,
    Thou bring'st the joyous season round!

    While yet the earth is blanched and browned,
        Thou dost thy amber leaves unfold,
    O daffodil, flower saffron-gowned.

    We see thee by yon mossy mound,
        Wave from thy stalks each pennon bold,--
    Thou bring'st the joyous season round!

    Fair child of April, promise-crowned,
        We longed for thee when winds were cold,
    O daffodil, flower saffron-gowned.

    Again we hear the merry sound
        Of sweet birds singing love-songs old,--
    Thou bring'st the joyous season round!

    Again we feel our hearts rebound
        With pleasures by thy birth foretold,--
    O daffodil, flower saffron-gowned,
        Thou bring'st the joyous season round!

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    Spring knocks at winter's frosty door:
        In boughs by wild March breezes swayed
    The bonnie bluebirds sing once more.

    The brooks have burst their fetters hoar,
        And greet with noisy glee the glade;
    Spring knocks at winter's frosty door.

    The swallow soon will northward soar,
        The rush uplift its gleaming blade,
    The bonnie bluebirds sing once more.

    Soon sunny skies their gold will pour
        O'er meads that breezy maples shade;
    Spring knocks at winter's frosty door.

    Along the reedy river's shore,
        Fleet fauns will frolic unafraid,
    The bonnie bluebirds sing once more.

    And Love, the Love we lost of yore,
        Will come to twine the myrtle braid;
    Spring knocks at winter's frosty door,
    The bonnie bluebirds sing once more.

                                              CLINTON SCOLLARD.


    O, had I but a fairy yacht,
        I know quite well what I would do--
    I soon would sail away with Dot!

    I'd quickly weave a cunning plot,
        Had I but fairies for my crew--
    O, had I but a fairy yacht!

    I'd soon be off just like a shot,
        Far, far across the ocean blue;
    I soon would sail away with Dot!

    What happiness would be my lot,
        With nought to do all day but woo--
    O, had I but a fairy yacht.

    To some sweet unfrequented spot--
        If I but thought that hearts were true--
    I soon would sail away with Dot.

    I'd sail away, not minding what,
        My friends approve, or foes pooh-pooh--
    O, had I but a fairy yacht!

    For name or fame care not a jot,
        I'd leave behind no trace or clue--
    I soon would sail away with Dot!

    Forgetting all, by all forgot,
        I'd live and love the whole day through--
    O, had I but a fairy yacht!

    In distant lands I'd build a cot,
        And live alone with I know who--
    I soon would sail away with Dot!

    I'd start at once--O, would I not?
        If I were only twenty-two--
    O, had I but a fairy yacht,
    I soon would sail away with Dot.

                                               J. ASHBY STERRY.


    Across the world I speak to thee;
        Where'er thou art (I know not where),
    Send thou a messenger to me!

    I here remain, who would be free,
        To seek thee out through foul or fair,
    Across the world I speak to thee.

    Whether beneath the tropic tree,
        The cooling night wind fans thy hair,--
    Send thou a messenger to me!

    Whether upon the rushing sea,
        A foamy track thy keel doth wear,-
    Across the world I speak to thee.

    Whether in yonder star thou be,
        A spirit loosed in purple air,--
    Send thou a messenger to me!

    Hath Heaven not left thee memory
        Of what was well in mortal's share?
    Across the world I speak to thee;
    Send thou a messenger to me!

                                               EDITH M. THOMAS.


    Come near, O sun--O south wind, blow,
        And be the winter's captives freed;
    Where are the springs of long ago?

    Drive under ground the lingering snow,
        And up the greensward legions lead;
    Come near, O sun--O south wind, blow!

    Are these the skies we used to know,
        The budding wood, the fresh-blown mead?
    Where are the springs of long ago?

    The breathing furrow will we sow,
        And patient wait the patient seed;
    Come near, O sun--O south wind, blow!

    The grain of vanished years will grow,
        But not the vanished years, indeed!
    Where are the springs of long ago?

    With sodden leafage, lying low,
        They for remembrance faintly plead!
    Come near, O sun--O south wind, blow!
    Where are the springs of long ago?

                                               EDITH M. THOMAS.


                       (To Hesperus, after Bion.)

    O jewel of the deep blue night!
        Too soon, to-day, the moon arose,
    I pray thee, lend thy lovely light.

    Than any other star more bright
        An hundred-fold, thy beauty glows,
    O jewel of the deep blue night.

    Too soon Selene gained the height,
        And now no more her glory shows;
    I pray thee, lend _thy_ lovely light.

    Anon our revel of delight
        Towards the shepherd's dwelling goes,
    O jewel of the deep blue night!

    And I must lead the dance aright,
        Yea--even I--for me they chose:
    I pray thee, lend thy lovely light.

    No thief am I, nor evil wight,
        Nor numbered with the traveller's foes,
    O jewel of the deep blue night!

    None would I spoil, nor e'en affright,
        Mine are the Lover's joys and woes;
    I pray thee, lend thy lovely light.

    For good it is, in all men's sight
        (Thou knowest well) to favour those,
    O jewel of the deep blue night!

    Thy golden lamp hath turned to white
        The silver of the olive-close;
    O jewel of the deep blue night!
    I pray thee, lend thy lovely light.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    "I did not dream that Love would stay.
        I deemed him but a passing guest,
    Yet here he lingers many a day.

    I said young Love will flee with May
        And leave forlorn the hearth he blest,"
    I did not dream that Love would stay.

    My envious neighbour mocks me, "Nay,
        Love lies not long in any nest."
    Yet here he lingers many a day.

    And though I did his will alway,
        And gave him even of my best,
    I did not dream that Love would stay.

    I have no skill to bid him stay,
        Of tripping tongue or cunning jest,
    Yet here he lingers many a day.

    Beneath his ivory feet I lay
        Pale plumage of the ringdove's breast,
    I did not dream that Love would stay.

    Will Love be flown? I ofttimes say,
        Home turning for the noonday rest,
    Yet here he lingers many a day.

    His gold curls gleam, his lips are gay,
        His eyes through tears smile loveliest;
    I did not dream that Love would stay.

    He sometimes sighs, when far away
        The low red sun makes fair the west,
    Yet here he lingers many a day.

    Thrice blest of all men am I! yea,
        Although of all unworthiest;
    I did not dream that Love would stay,
    Yet here he lingers many a day.

                                              GRAHAM R. TOMSON.


    Come! to the woods, love, let us go!
        Let us go pluck the purple flowers,
    And rest where rosy blossoms blow.

    'Twixt glade and shade the sun shall throw
        A halo round the laughing hours;--
    Come! to the woods, love, let us go!

    There are dim nooks the Dryads know,
        And we can hide in hawthorn-bowers,
    And rest where rosy blossoms blow.

    Shall not the fairies passing strow
        On us the dainty petal-showers?
    Come! to the woods, love, let us go.

    And we will roam by rills that flow
        'Neath skies from which no tempest lowers;
    We'll rest where rosy blossoms blow.

    Come, heart! Come, sweetheart, even so
        Life's holiest rapture shall be ours;--
    Come! to the woods, love, let us go,
    And rest where rosy blossoms blow.

                                             SAMUEL WADDINGTON.


    O Singer of Persephone!
        In the dim meadows desolate,
    Dost thou remember Sicily?

    Still through the ivy flits the bee
        Where Amaryllis lies in state;
    O Singer of Persephone!

    Simætha calls on Hecate,
        And hears the wild dogs at the gate;
    Dost thou remember Sicily?

    Still by the light and laughing sea
        Poor Polypheme bemoans his fate;
    O Singer of Persephone!

    And still in boyish rivalry
        Young Daphnis challenges his mate;
    Dost thou remember Sicily?

    Slim Lacon keeps a goat for thee;
        For thee the jocund shepherds wait;
    O Singer of Persephone!
    Dost thou remember Sicily?

                                                   OSCAR WILDE.



    As I sat sorrowing,
    Love came and bade me sing
        A joyous song and meet,
    For see (said he) each thing
    Is merry for the Spring,
        And every bird doth greet
    The break of blossoming,
    That all the woodlands ring
        Unto the young hours' feet.

    Wherefore put off defeat
    And rouse thee to repeat
        The chimes of merles that go,
    With flutings shrill and sweet,
    In every green retreat,
        The tune of streams that flow
    And mark the fair hours' beat,
    With running ripples fleet
        And breezes soft and low.

    For who should have, I trow,
    Such joyance in the glow
        And gladness of the May,--
    In all sweet bells that blow,
    In death of winter's woe
        And birth of Springtide gay,
    When in woodwalk and row
    Hand-linked the lovers go,--
        As he to whom alway

    God giveth day by day
    To set to roundelay
        Life's sad and sunny hours,--
    To weave into a lay
    Life's golden years and grey,
        Its sweet and bitter flowers,--
    To sweep with hands that stray
    In many a devious way
        Its harp of sun and showers?

    Nor in this life of ours,
    Whereon the sky oft lowers,
        Is any lovelier thing
    Than in the wild wood bowers
    The cloud of green that towers,
        The blithe birds welcoming
    The vivid vernal hours
    Among the painted flowers
        And all the pomp of Spring.

    True, life is on the wing,
    And all the birds that sing,
        And all the flowers that be
    Amid the glow and ring,
    The pomp and glittering
        Of Spring's sweet pageantry,
    Have here small sojourning,
    And all our bright hours bring
        Death nearer, as they flee.

    Yet this thing learn of me;
    The sweet hours fair and free
        That we have had of yore,
    The fair things we did see
    The linkéd melody
        Of waves upon the shore
    That rippled in their glee,
    Are not lost utterly,
        Though they return no more.

    But in the true heart's core
    Thought treasures evermore
        The tune of birds and breeze:
    And there the slow years store
    The flowers our dead Springs wore
        And scent of blossomed leas:
    There murmurs o'er and o'er
    The sound of woodlands hoar
        With newly burgeoned trees.

    So for the sad soul's ease
    Remembrance treasures these
        Against Time's harvesting,
    That so, when mild Death frees
    The soul from Life's disease
        Of strife and sorrowing,
    In glass of memories
    The new hope looks and sees
        Through Death a brighter Spring.

                                                    JOHN PAYNE.


                           (VIRELAI NOUVEAU.)

    Good-bye to the Town!--good-bye!
    Hurrah! for the sea and the sky!

    In the street the flower-girls cry;
    In the street the water-carts ply;
    And a fluter, with features a-wry,
    Plays fitfully, "Scots, wha hae"--
    And the throat of that fluter is dry;
    Good-bye to the Town!--good-bye!

    And over the roof-tops nigh
    Comes a waft like a dream of the May;
    And a lady-bird lit on my tie;
    And a cock-chafer came with the tray;
    And a butterfly (no one knows why)
    Mistook my Aunt's cap for a spray;
    And "next door" and "over the way"
    The neighbours take wing and fly:
    Hurrah! for the sea and the sky!

    To Buxton, the waters to try,--
    To Buxton goes old Mrs. Bligh;
    And the Captain to Homburg and play
    Will carry his cane and his eye;
    And even Miss Morgan Lefay
    Is flitting--to far Peckham Rye;
    And my Grocer has gone--in a "Shay,"
    And my Tailor has gone--in a "Fly;"--
    Good-bye to the Town!--good-bye!

    And it's O for the sea and the sky!
    And it's O for the boat and the bay!
    For the white foam whirling by,
    And the sharp, salt edge of the spray!
    For the wharf where the black nets fry,
    And the wrack and the oarweed sway!
    For the stroll when the moon is high
    To the nook by the Flag-house gray!
    For the _risus ab angulo_ shy
    From the Some-one we designate "Di!"
    For the moment of silence,-the sigh!
    "How I _dote_ on a Moon!" "So do I!"
    For the token we snatch on the sly
    (With nobody there to say Fie!)
    Hurrah! for the sea and the sky!

    So Phillis, the fawn-footed, hie
    For a hansom. Ere close of the day
    Between us a "world" must lie,-
    Good-bye to the Town!-GOOD-BYE!
    Hurrah! for the sea and the sky!

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.

#Burlesques, Pasquinades, etc., in Ballade, Chant Royal, Rondeau, and
Villanelle forms.#

If an apology seem needful for the presence of this section, this
quotation will explain why it was included:-

     "_We maintain that far from converting virtue into a paradox, and
     degrading truth by ridicule, Parody will only strike at what is
     chimerical and false; it is not a piece of buffoonery so much as a
     critical exposition._"

                                               ISAAC D'ISRAELI.


    Let all men living on earth take heed,
        For their own souls' sake, to a rhyme well meant;
    Writ so that he who runs may read--
        _We are the folk that a-summering went._
        Who while the year was young were bent--
    Yea, bent on doing this self-same thing
        Which we have done unto some extent,
    _This is the end of our summering._

    We are the folk who would fain be freed
        From wasteful burdens of rate and rent--
    From the vampire agents' ravening breed--
        _We are the folk that a-summering went._
        We hied us forth when the summer was blent
    With the fresh faint sweetness of dying spring,
        A-seeking the meadows dew-besprent
    _This is the end of our summering._

    For O the waiters that must be fee'd,
        And our meat-time neighbour, the travelling "gent;"
    And the youth next door with the ophicleide!
        _We are the folk that a-summering went!_
        Who from small bare rooms wherein we were pent,
    While birds their way to the southward wing,
        Come back, our money for no good spent--
    _This is the end of our summering._


    Citizens! list to our sore lament--
        While the landlord's hands to our raiment cling--
    _We are the folk that a-summering went:_
        _This is the end of our summering._

                                                  H. C. BUNNER.


                              (A Ballade.)

    You should study the bards of to-day
        Who in England are now all the rage;
    You should try to be piquant and gay:
        Your lines are too solemn and sage.
        You should try to fill only a page,
    Or two at the most with your lay;
        And revive the quaint verse of an age
    That is fading forgotten away.

    Study Lang, Gosse, and Dobson, I pray--
        That their rhymes and their fancies engage
    Your thought to be witty as they.
        You must stand on the popular stage.
        In the bars of an old fashioned cage
    We must prison the birds of our May,
        To carol the notes of an age
    That is fading forgotten away.

    Now this is a 'Ballade'-I say,
        So one stanza more to our page,
    But the "Vers de Société,"
        If you can are the best for your 'wage.'
        Though the purists may fall in a rage
    That two rhymes go thrice in one lay,
        You may passably echo an age
    That is fading forgotten away.


    Bard--heed not the seer and the sage,
        'Afflatus' and Nature don't pay;
    But stick to the forms of an age
        That is fading forgotten away.

                                                  C. P. CRANCH.


    When, in the merry realm of France,
        Bluff Francis ruled and loved and laughed,
    Now held the lists with knightly lance,
        Anon the knightly beaker quaffed;
        Where wit could wing his keenest shaft
    With Villon's verse or Montaigne's prose,
        Then poets exercised their craft
    In ballades, triolets, rondeaux.

    O quaint old times! O fitting chants!
        With fluttering banners fore and aft,
    With mirth of minstrelsy and dance,
        Sped Poesy's enchanted craft;
        The odorous gale was blowing abaft
    Her silken sails, as on she goes,
        Doth still to us faint echoes waft
    Of ballades, triolets, rondeaux.

    But tell me with what countenance
        Ye seek on modern rhymes to graft
    Those tender shoots of old Romance-
        Romance that now is only chaffed?
        O iron days! O idle raft
    Of rhymesters! they are '_peu de chose_,'
        What Scott would call supremely "saft"
    _Your_ ballades, triolets, rondeaux.


    Bards, in whose vein the maddening draught
        Of Hippocrene so wildly glows,
    Forbear, and do not drive us daft
        With ballades, triolets, rondeaux.

_The Century._


                            (To T. W. Lang.)

    The burden of hard hitting: slog away!
        Here shalt thou make a "five" and there a "four,"
    And then upon thy bat shalt lean and say,
        That thou art in for an uncommon score.
        Yea, the loud ring applauding thee shall roar,
    And thou to rival THORNTON shalt aspire,
        When low, the Umpire gives thee "leg before,"-
    "This is the end of every man's desire!"

    The burden of much bowling, when the stay
        Of all thy team is "collared," swift or slower,
    When "bailers" break not in their wonted way,
        And "yorkers" come not off as heretofore.
        When length balls shoot no more, ah never more,
    When all deliveries lose their former fire,
        When bats seem broader than the broad barn-door,-
    "This is the end of every man's desire!"

    The burden of long fielding, when the clay
        Clings to thy shoon in sudden showers downpour,
    And running still thou stumblest, or the ray
        Of blazing suns doth bite and burn thee sore,
        And blind thee till, forgetful of thy lore,
    Thou dost most mournfully misjudge a "skyer"
        And lose a match the Fates cannot restore,--
    "This is the end of every man's desire!"


        Alas, yet liefer on youth's hither shore
    Would I be some poor Player on scant hire
        Than king among the old who play no more,-
    "_This_ is the end of every man's desire!"

                                                   ANDREW LANG.


     (Dedicated to Mr. Chaplin, M.P., and Mr. Richard Power, M.P.
                      and 223 who followed them.)

    Ministers!-you, most serious,
        Critics and statesmen of all degrees,
    Hearken awhile to the motion of us,-
        Senators keen for the Epsom breeze!
        Nothing we ask of posts or fees;
    Worry us not with objections pray!
        Lo,-for the speakers wig we seize-
    Give us-ah! give us-the Derby Day.

    Scots most prudent, penurious!
        Irishmen busy as humblebees!
    Hearken awhile to the motion of us,-
        Senators keen for the Epsom breeze!
        For Sir Joseph's sake, and his owner's, please!
    (Solomon raced like fun, they say)
        Lo for we beg on our bended knees,-
    Give us-ah! give us-the Derby Day.

    Campbell-Asheton be generous!
        (But they voted such things were not the cheese)
    Sullivan, hear us, magnanimous!
        (But Sullivan thought with their enemies.)
        And shortly they got both of help and ease
    For a mad majority crowded to say-
        "Debate we've drunk to the dregs and lees;
    Give us--ah! give us--the Derby Day."


    Prince, most just was the motion of these
        And many were seen by the dusty way,
    Shouting glad to the Epsom breeze
        Give us--ah! give us--the Derby Day.

ANONYMOUS (_after Austin Dobson_).


"Tout aux tavernes et aux filles."

    Suppose you screeve? or go cheap-jack?
      Or fake the broads? or fig a nag?
    Or thimble-rig? or knap a yack?
      Or pitch a snide? or smash a rag?
      Suppose you duff? or nose and lag?
    Or get the straight, and land your pot?
      How do you melt the multy swag?
    Booze and the blowens cop the lot.

    Fiddle, or fence, or mace, or mack;
      Or moskeneer, or flash the drag;
    Dead-lurk a crib, or do a crack;
      Pad with a slang, or chuck a fag;
      Bonnet, or tout, or mump and gag;
    Rattle the tats, or mark the spot;
      You can not bank a single stag;
    Booze and the blowens cop the lot.

    Suppose you try a different tack,
      And on the square you flash your flag?
    At penny-a-lining make your whack,
      Or with the mummers mug and gag?
      For nix, for nix the dibbs you bag!
    At any graft, no matter what,
      Your merry goblins soon stravag:
    Booze and the blowens cop the lot.

                          THE MORAL.

      It's up the spout and Charley Wag
    With wipes and tickers and what not.
      Until the squeezer nips your scrag,
    Booze and the blowens cop the lot.

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.


    (After the manner of Master FRANÇOIS VILLON of Paris.)

    In _Ballades_ things always contrive to get lost,
        And Echo is constantly asking where
    Are last year's roses and last year's frost?
        And where are the fashions we used to wear?
        And what is a "gentleman," what is a "player?"
    Irrelevant questions I like to ask:
        Can you reap the _tret_ as well as the _tare_?
    And who was the Man in the Iron Mask?

    What has become of the ring I tossed
        In the lap of my mistress, false and fair?
    Her grave is green and her tombstone mossed;
        But who is to be the next Lord Mayor,
        And where is King William of Leicester Square?
    And who has emptied my hunting flask?
        And who is possessed of Stella's hair?
    And who was the Man in the Iron Mask?

    And what has become of the knee I crossed,
        And the rod, and the child they would not spare?
    And what will a dozen herring cost
        When herring are sold at threehalfpence a pair?
        And what in the world is the Golden Stair?
    Did Diogenes die in a tub or a cask,
        Like Clarence for love of liquor there?
    And who was the Man in the Iron Mask?


    Poets, your readers have much to bear,
        For _Ballade_-making is no great task.
    If you do not remember, I don't much care
        Who was the Man in the Iron Mask.

                                             AUGUSTUS M. MOORE.



    On Newport beach there ran right merrily,
    In dainty navy blue clothed to the knee,
        Thence to the foot in white _au naturel_,
        A little maid. Fair was she, truth to tell,
    As Oceanus' child Callirrhoë.
    In the soft sand lay one small shell, its wee
    Keen scallops tinct with faint hues, such as be
        In girlish cheeks. In some old storm it fell
                          On Newport Beach.
    There was a bather of the species _he_,
    Who saw the little maid go toward the sea;
        Rushing to help her through the billowy swell,
        He set his sole upon the little shell,
    And heaped profanely phraséd obloquy
                          On Newport Beach.

                                                  H. C. BUNNER.


                    (Inscribed to an Intense Poet.)

                              I. RONDEAU.

    "O crikey, Bill!" she ses to me, she ses.
        "Look sharp," ses she, "with them there sossiges.
    Yea! sharp with them there bags of mysteree!
    For lo!" she ses, "for lo! old pal," ses she,
        "I'm blooming peckish, neither more nor less."

    Was it not prime--I leave you all to guess
    How prime!----to have a jude in love's distress
        Come spooning round, and murmuring balmilee,
                                    "O crikey, Bill!"

    For in such rorty wise doth Love express
    His blooming views, and asks for your address,
        And makes it right, and does the gay and free.
        I kissed her--I did so! And her and me
    Was pals. And if that ain't good business,
                                    O crikey, Bill!

                            II. VILLANELLE.

    Now ain't they utterly too-too
        (She ses, my Missus mine,[11] ses she),
    Them flymy little bits of Blue.

    Joe, just you kool 'em-nice and skew
        Upon our old meogginee,
    Now ain't they utterly too-too?

    They're better than a pot'n' a screw,
        They're equal to a Sunday spree,
    Them flymy little bits of Blue!

    Suppose I put 'em up the flue,
        And booze the profits, Joe? Not me.
    Now ain't they utterly too-too?

    I do the 'Igh Art fake, I do.
        Joe, I'm consummate; and I _see_
    Them flymy little bits of Blue.

    Which, Joe, is why I ses te you--
        Æsthetic-like, and limp, and free--
    Now _ain't_ they utterly too-too,
    Them flymy little bits of Blue?

    I often does a quiet read
        At Booty Shelly's[12] poetry;
    I thinks that Swinburne at a screed
        Is really almost too-too fly;
        At Signor Vagna's[13] harmony
    I likes a merry little flutter;
        I've had at Pater many a shy;
    In fact, my form's the Bloomin' Utter.

    My mark's a tidy little feed,
        And 'Enery Irving's gallery,
    To see old 'Amlick do a bleed,
        And Ellen Terry on the die,
        Or Franky's ghostes at hi-spy,[14]
    And parties carried on a shutter.[15]
        Them vulgar Coupeaus is my eye!
    In fact, my form's the Bloomin' Utter.

    The Grosvenor's nuts-it is, indeed!
        I goes for 'Olman 'Unt like pie.
    It's equal to a friendly lead
        To see B. Jones's judes go by.
        Stanhope he makes me fit to cry.
    Whistler he makes me melt like butter.
        Strudwick he makes me flash my cly--
    In fact, my form's the Bloomin' Utter.


        I'm on for any Art that's 'Igh;
    I talks as quite as I can splutter;
        I keeps a Dado on the sly;
    In fact, my form's the Bloomin' Utter!

                                                  W. E. HENLEY.

[11] An adaptation of "Madonna mia."

[12] Probably Botticelli.

[13] Wagner (?)

[14] This seems to be a reference to _The Corsican Brothers_.

[15] _Richard III._ (?)


                      (Villanelle from my window.)

    He stands at the kerb and sings.
        'Tis a doleful tune and slow,
    Ah me, if I had but wings!

    He bends to the coin one flings,
        But he never attempts to go,-
    He stands at the kerb and sings.

    The conjurer comes with his rings,
        And the Punch-and-Judy show.
    Ah me, if I had but wings!

    They pass like all fugitive things--
        They fade and they pass, but lo!
    He stands at the kerb and sings.

    All the magic that Music brings
        Is lost when he mangles it so--
    Ah me, if I had but wings!

    But the worst is a thought that stings!
        There is nothing at hand to throw!
    He stands at the kerb and sings--
    Ah me, if I had but wings!

                                                 AUSTIN DOBSON.



     Imitated from the French of Count Anthony Hamilton.

    Malàpropos do English wits revive
        The Rondeau, which our beauties hear with scorn;
    Hide in an extinct form a heart alive,
    And woo bright lasses, whom they wish to wive,
        Malàpropos, with Gaulish verse outworn.

        More fondly would these rosebuds of the morn
    Unfold to airs-gay, playful, amative-
    Even Astrophel five phrases would contrive--

    O dazzling youth, to fashion's follies sworn,
    Would you their breasts with love's sweet pains were torn?
    Rondeau and Ballade to the Devil drive;
    Use honest English when for them you strive,
    Since never to their hearts would thus arrive--

G. H. (_In "The Lute."_)


                             (Chant Royal.)

     [Being the Plaint of Adolphe Culpepper Ferguson, Salesman of Fancy
     Notions, held in durance of his Landlady for a failure to connect
     on Saturday night.]


    I would that all men my hard case might know;
        How grievously I suffer for no sin:
    I, Adolphe Culpepper Ferguson, for lo!
        I, of my landlady am lockéd in,

    For being short on this sad Saturday,
    Nor having shekels of silver wherewith to pay;
        She has turned and is departed with my key;
        Wherefore, not even as other boarders free,
            I sing (as prisoners to their dungeon stones
        When for ten days they expiate a spree):
            Behold the deeds that are done of Mrs. Jones!


        One night and one day have I wept my woe;
            Nor wot I when the morrow doth begin,
        If I shall have to write to Briggs & Co.,
            To pray them to advance the requisite tin
    For ransom of their salesman, that he may
    Go forth as other boarders go alway----
        As those I hear now flocking from their tea,
        Led by the daughter of my landlady
            Piano-ward. This day for all my moans,
        Dry bread and water have been servéd me.
            Behold the deeds that are done of Mrs. Jones!


        Miss Amabel Jones is musical, and so
            The heart of the young he-boardér doth win,
        Playing "The Maiden's Prayer," _adagio_--
            That fetcheth him, as fetcheth the banco skin
    The innocent rustic. For my part, I pray:
    That Badarjewska maid may wait for aye
        Ere sits she with a lover, as did we
        Once sit together, Amabel! Can it be
            That all that arduous wooing not atones
        For Saturday shortness of trade dollars three?
            _Behold_ the deeds that are done of Mrs. Jones!


        Yea! she forgets the arm was wont to go
            Around her waist. She wears a buckle whose pin
        Galleth the crook of the young man's elbów;
            _I_ forget not, for I that youth have been.
    Smith was aforetime the Lothario gay.
    Yet once, I mind me, Smith was forced to stay
        Close in his room. Not calm, as I, was he;
        But his noise brought no pleasaunce, verily.
            Small ease he gat of playing on the bones,
        Or hammering on his stove-pipe, that I see.
            Behold the deeds that are done of Mrs. Jones!


        Thou, for whose fear the figurative crow
            I eat, accursed be thou and all thy kin!
        Thee will I show up-yea, up will I shew
            Thy too thick buckwheats, and thy tea too thin.
    Ay! here I dare thee, ready for the fray!
    Thou dost _not_ "keep a first-class house," I say!
        It does not with the advertisements agree.
        Thou lodgest a Briton with a puggaree,
            And thou hast harboured Jacobses and Cohns,
        Also a Mulligan. Thus denounce I thee!
            Behold the deeds that are done of Mrs. Jones!


    Boarders! the worst I have not told to ye:
    She hath stolen my trousers, that I may not flee
        Privily by the window. Hence these groans,
    There is no fleeing in a _robe de nuit_.
        Behold the deeds that are done of Mrs. Jones!

                                                  H. C. BUNNER.

       *       *       *       *       *


     Transcriber's Notes:

     Simple spelling, grammar, and typographical errors
     were corrected.

     Italics markup is enclosed in _underscores_.

     Greek text has been transliterated and enclosed in ~tildes~.

     Fancy font markup is enclosed in #number signs#.

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