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´╗┐Title: The Little Book of Modern Verse
 - A Selection from the Work of Contemporaneous American Poets
Author: - To be updated
Language: English
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*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "The Little Book of Modern Verse
 - A Selection from the Work of Contemporaneous American Poets" ***

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The Little Book of Modern Verse
ed. Jessie B. Rittenhouse

[Note on text:  Italicized lines or stanzas are marked by tildes (~).
Other italicized words have capitalized.  Lines longer than 78 characters
are broken and the continuation is indented two spaces.  Some obvious errors
may have been corrected.]

The Little Book of Modern Verse
A Selection from the work of contemporaneous American poets

Edited by Jessie B. Rittenhouse
[Selections made in 1913.]


"The Little Book of Modern Verse", as its name implies,
is not a formal anthology.  The pageant of American poetry
has been so often presented that no necessity exists
for another exhaustive review of the art.  Nearly all anthologies, however,
stop short of the present group of poets, or represent them so inadequately
that only those in close touch with the trend of American literature
know what the poet of to-day is contributing to it.

It is strictly, then, as a reflection of our own period,
to show what is being done by the successors of our earlier poets,
what new interpretation they are giving to life, what new beauty
they have apprehended, what new art they have evolved,
that this little book has taken form.  A few of the poets included
have been writing for a quarter of a century, and were, therefore,
among the immediate successors of the New England group,
but many have done their work within the past decade and the volume as a whole
represents the twentieth-century spirit.

From the scheme of the book, that of a small, intimate collection,
representative rather than exhaustive, it has been impossible
to include all of the poets who would naturally be included
in a more ambitious anthology.  In certain instances, also,
matters of copyright have deterred me from including those
whom I had originally intended to represent, but with isolated exceptions
the little book covers the work of our later poets and gives a hint
of what they are doing.

I have attempted, as far as possible, to unify the collection by arranging
the poems so that each should set the keynote to the next, or at least
bear some relation to it in mood or theme.  While it is impossible,
with so varied a mass of material, that such a sequence should be exact,
and in one or two instances the arrangement has been disturbed
by the late addition or elimination of poems, the idea has been
to differentiate the little volume from the typical anthology
by giving it a unity impossible to a larger collection.

Jessie B. Rittenhouse.


Across the Fields to Anne.  [Richard Burton]
After a Dolmetsch Concert.  [Arthur Upson]
Agamede's Song.  [Arthur Upson]
As I came down from Lebanon.  [Clinton Scollard]
As in the Midst of Battle there is Room.  [George Santayana]
The Ashes in the Sea.  [George Sterling]
At Gibraltar.  [George Edward Woodberry]
At the End of the Day.  [Richard Hovey]
The Automobile.  [Percy MacKaye]
Azrael.  [Robert Gilbert Welsh]

Bacchus.  [Frank Dempster Sherman]
Bag-Pipes at Sea.  [Clinton Scollard]
Ballade of my Lady's Beauty.  [Joyce Kilmer]
Be still.  The Hanging Gardens were a dream.  [Trumbull Stickney]
Black Sheep.  [Richard Burton]
The Black Vulture.  [George Sterling]
Da Boy from Rome.  [Thomas Augustine Daly]
The Buried City.  [George Sylvester Viereck]

Calverly's.  [Edwin Arlington Robinson]
The Candle and the Flame.  [George Sylvester Viereck]
Candlemas.  [Alice Brown]
A Caravan from China comes.  [Richard Le Gallienne]
Chavez.  [Mildred McNeal Sweeney]
The Cloud.  [Josephine Preston Peabody]
Comrades.  [Richard Hovey]
Comrades.  [George Edward Woodberry]

The Daguerreotype.  [William Vaughn Moody]
Departure.  [Hermann Hagedorn]
The Dreamer.  [Nicholas Vachel Lindsay]
The Dust Dethroned.  [George Sterling]

The Eagle that is forgotten.  [Nicholas Vachel Lindsay]
Euchenor Chorus.  [Arthur Upson]
Evensong.  [Ridgely Torrence]
Ex Libris.  [Arthur Upson]
Exordium.  [George Cabot Lodge]

A Faun in Wall Street.  [John Myers O'Hara]
Fiat Lux.  [Lloyd Mifflin]
The Flight.  [Lloyd Mifflin]
Four Winds.  [Sara Teasdale]
"Frost To-Night".  [Edith M. Thomas]
The Frozen Grail.  [Elsa Barker]
The Fugitives.  [Florence Wilkinson]

Gloucester Moors.  [William Vaughn Moody]
Golden Pulse.  [John Myers O'Hara]
"Grandmither, think not I forget".  [Willa Sibert Cather]
Grey Rocks, and Greyer Sea.  [Charles G. D. Roberts]
Grieve not, Ladies.  [Anna Hempstead Branch]

The Happiest Heart.  [John Vance Cheney]
Harps hung up in Babylon.  [Arthur Colton]
He whom a Dream hath possessed.  [Shaemas O Sheel]
The Heart's Country.  [Florence Wilkinson]
Here is the Place where Loveliness keeps House.  [Madison Cawein]
Hora Christi.  [Alice Brown]
The House and the Road.  [Josephine Preston Peabody]

I know not why.  [Morris Rosenfeld]
I shall not care.  [Sara Teasdale]
I would I might forget that I am I.  [George Santayana]
The Inverted Torch.  [Edith M. Thomas]
The Invisible Bride.  [Edwin Markham]
Irish Peasant Song.  [Louise Imogen Guiney]

The Joy of the Hills.  [Edwin Markham]
Joyous-Gard.  [Thomas S. Jones, Jr.]

Kinchinjunga.  [Cale Young Rice]
The Kings.  [Louise Imogen Guiney]

Da Leetla Boy.  [Thomas Augustine Daly]
The Lesser Children.  [Ridgely Torrence]
Let me no more a Mendicant.  [Arthur Colton]
Life.  [John Hall Wheelock]
Lincoln, the Man of the People.  [Edwin Markham]
Little Gray Songs from St. Joseph's.  [Grace Fallow Norton]
Live blindly.  [Trumbull Stickney]
Lord of my Heart's Elation.  [Bliss Carman]
Love came back at Fall o' Dew.  [Lizette Woodworth Reese]
Love knocks at the Door.  [John Hall Wheelock]
Love Triumphant.  [Frederic Lawrence Knowles]
Love's Ritual.  [Charles Hanson Towne]
Love's Springtide.  [Frank Dempster Sherman]

The Man with the Hoe.  [Edwin Markham]
Martin.  [Joyce Kilmer]
De Massa ob de Sheepfol'.  [Sarah Pratt McLean Greene]
The Master.  [Edwin Arlington Robinson]
May is building her House.  [Richard Le Gallienne]
A Memorial Tablet.  [Florence Wilkinson]
Miniver Cheevy.  [Edwin Arlington Robinson]
Mockery.  [Louis Untermeyer]
Mother.  [Theresa Helburn]
The Mystic.  [Witter Bynner]
The Mystic.  [Cale Young Rice]

The New Life.  [Witter Bynner]
The Nightingale unheard.  [Josephine Preston Peabody]
Night's Mardi Gras.  [Edward J. Wheeler]

An Ode in Time of Hesitation.  [William Vaughn Moody]
Of Joan's Youth.  [Louise Imogen Guiney]
On a Fly-Leaf of Burns' Songs.  [Frederic Lawrence Knowles]
On a Subway Express.  [Chester Firkins]
On the Building of Springfield.  [Nicholas Vachel Lindsay]
Once.  [Trumbull Stickney]
Only of thee and me.  [Louis Untermeyer]
The Only Way.  [Louis V. Ledoux]
The Outer Gate.  [Nora May French]

A Parting Guest.  [James Whitcomb Riley]
The Path to the Woods.  [Madison Cawein]
The Poet.  [Mildred McNeal Sweeney]
The Poet's Town.  [John G. Neihardt]
The Prince.  [Josephine Dodge Daskam]

The Quiet Singer.  [Charles Hanson Towne]

The Recessional.  [Charles G. D. Roberts]
Renascence.  [Edna St. Vincent Millay]
A Rhyme of Death's Inn.  [Lizette Woodworth Reese]
The Ride to the Lady.  [Helen Gray Cone]
The Rival.  [James Whitcomb Riley]
The Rosary.  [Robert Cameron Rogers]

Sappho.  [Sara Teasdale]
Scum o' the Earth.  [Robert Haven Schauffler]
The Sea Gypsy.  [Richard Hovey]
The Sea-Lands.  [Orrick Johns]
The Secret.  [George Edward Woodberry]
Sentence.  [Witter Bynner]
Sic Vita.  [William Stanley Braithwaite]
Sometimes.  [Thomas S. Jones, Jr.]
Somewhere.  [John Vance Cheney]
Song.  "For me the jasmine buds unfold".  [Florence Earle Coates]
Song.  "If love were but a little thing --".  [Florence Earle Coates]
Song.  [Richard Le Gallienne]
A Song in Spring.  [Thomas S. Jones, Jr.]
Song is so old.  [Hermann Hagedorn]
The Song of the Unsuccessful.  [Richard Burton]
Songs for my Mother.  [Anna Hempstead Branch]
Souls.  [Fannie Stearns Davis]
Stains.  [Theodosia Garrison]

Tears.  [Lizette Woodworth Reese]
The Tears of Harlequin.  [Theodosia Garrison]
That Day you came.  [Lizette Woodworth Reese]
There's Rosemary.  [Olive Tilford Dargan]
They went forth to Battle, but they always fell.  [Shaemas O Sheel]
The Thought of her.  [Richard Hovey]
To a New York Shop-Girl dressed for Sunday.  [Anna Hempstead Branch]
To William Sharp.  [Clinton Scollard]
To-Day.  [Helen Gray Cone]
Trumbull Stickney.  [George Cabot Lodge]
Tryste Noel.  [Louise Imogen Guiney]

The Unconquered Air.  [Florence Earle Coates]
Under Arcturus.  [Madison Cawein]
The Unreturning.  [Bliss Carman]
Uriel.  [Percy MacKaye]

A Vagabond Song.  [Bliss Carman]

Wanderers.  [George Sylvester Viereck]
Water Fantasy.  [Fannie Stearns Davis]
We needs must be divided in the Tomb.  [George Santayana]
A West-Country Lover.  [Alice Brown]
When I am dead and Sister to the Dust.  [Elsa Barker]
When I have gone Weird Ways.  [John G. Neihardt]
When the Wind is low.  [Cale Young Rice]
Why.  [Bliss Carman]
The Wife from Fairyland.  [Richard Le Gallienne]
A Winter Ride.  [Amy Lowell]
Winter Sleep.  [Edith M. Thomas]
Witchery.  [Frank Dempster Sherman]

Biographical Notes

Sincere thanks are due to my friend Thomas S. Jones, Jr.,
who, during my absence in Europe, has kindly taken charge of all details
incident to putting "The Little Book of Modern Verse" through the press.

The Little Book of Modern Verse

Lord of my Heart's Elation.  [Bliss Carman]

Lord of my heart's elation,
Spirit of things unseen,
Be thou my aspiration
Consuming and serene!

Bear up, bear out, bear onward,
This mortal soul alone,
To selfhood or oblivion,
Incredibly thine own, --

As the foamheads are loosened
And blown along the sea,
Or sink and merge forever
In that which bids them be.

I, too, must climb in wonder,
Uplift at thy command, --
Be one with my frail fellows
Beneath the wind's strong hand,

A fleet and shadowy column
Of dust or mountain rain,
To walk the earth a moment
And be dissolved again.

Be thou my exaltation
Or fortitude of mien,
Lord of the world's elation,
Thou breath of things unseen!

Gloucester Moors.  [William Vaughn Moody]

A mile behind is Gloucester town
Where the fishing fleets put in,
A mile ahead the land dips down
And the woods and farms begin.
Here, where the moors stretch free
In the high blue afternoon,
Are the marching sun and talking sea,
And the racing winds that wheel and flee
On the flying heels of June.

Jill-o'er-the-ground is purple blue,
Blue is the quaker-maid,
The wild geranium holds its dew
Long in the boulder's shade.
Wax-red hangs the cup
From the huckleberry boughs,
In barberry bells the grey moths sup
Or where the choke-cherry lifts high up
Sweet bowls for their carouse.

Over the shelf of the sandy cove
Beach-peas blossom late.
By copse and cliff the swallows rove
Each calling to his mate.
Seaward the sea-gulls go,
And the land-birds all are here;
That green-gold flash was a vireo,
And yonder flame where the marsh-flags grow
Was a scarlet tanager.

This earth is not the steadfast place
We landsmen build upon;
From deep to deep she varies pace,
And while she comes is gone.
Beneath my feet I feel
Her smooth bulk heave and dip;
With velvet plunge and soft upreel
She swings and steadies to her keel
Like a gallant, gallant ship.

These summer clouds she sets for sail,
The sun is her masthead light,
She tows the moon like a pinnace frail
Where her phosphor wake churns bright.
Now hid, now looming clear,
On the face of the dangerous blue
The star fleets tack and wheel and veer,
But on, but on does the old earth steer
As if her port she knew.

God, dear God!  Does she know her port,
Though she goes so far about?
Or blind astray, does she make her sport
To brazen and chance it out?
I watched when her captains passed:
She were better captainless.
Men in the cabin, before the mast,
But some were reckless and some aghast,
And some sat gorged at mess.

By her battened hatch I leaned and caught
Sounds from the noisome hold, --
Cursing and sighing of souls distraught
And cries too sad to be told.
Then I strove to go down and see;
But they said, "Thou art not of us!"
I turned to those on the deck with me
And cried, "Give help!"  But they said, "Let be:
Our ship sails faster thus."

Jill-o'er-the-ground is purple blue,
Blue is the quaker-maid,
The alder-clump where the brook comes through
Breeds cresses in its shade.
To be out of the moiling street
With its swelter and its sin!
Who has given to me this sweet,
And given my brother dust to eat?
And when will his wage come in?

Scattering wide or blown in ranks,
Yellow and white and brown,
Boats and boats from the fishing banks
Come home to Gloucester town.
There is cash to purse and spend,
There are wives to be embraced,
Hearts to borrow and hearts to lend,
And hearts to take and keep to the end, --
O little sails, make haste!

But thou, vast outbound ship of souls,
What harbor town for thee?
What shapes, when thy arriving tolls,
Shall crowd the banks to see?
Shall all the happy shipmates then
Stand singing brotherly?
Or shall a haggard ruthless few
Warp her over and bring her to,
While the many broken souls of men
Fester down in the slaver's pen,
And nothing to say or do?

On a Subway Express.  [Chester Firkins]

I, who have lost the stars, the sod,
 For chilling pave and cheerless light,
Have made my meeting-place with God
 A new and nether Night --

Have found a fane where thunder fills
 Loud caverns, tremulous; -- and these
Atone me for my reverend hills
 And moonlit silences.

A figment in the crowded dark,
 Where men sit muted by the roar,
I ride upon the whirring Spark
 Beneath the city's floor.

In this dim firmament, the stars
 Whirl by in blazing files and tiers;
Kin meteors graze our flying bars,
 Amid the spinning spheres.

Speed! speed! until the quivering rails
 Flash silver where the head-light gleams,
As when on lakes the Moon impales
 The waves upon its beams.

Life throbs about me, yet I stand
 Outgazing on majestic Power;
Death rides with me, on either hand,
 In my communion hour.

You that 'neath country skies can pray,
 Scoff not at me -- the city clod; --
My only respite of the Day
 Is this wild ride -- with God.

The Automobile.  [Percy MacKaye]

Fluid the world flowed under us:  the hills
   Billow on billow of umbrageous green
   Heaved us, aghast, to fresh horizons, seen
One rapturous instant, blind with flash of rills
And silver-rising storms and dewy stills
   Of dripping boulders, till the dim ravine
   Drowned us again in leafage, whose serene
Coverts grew loud with our tumultuous wills.

Then all of Nature's old amazement seemed
   Sudden to ask us:  "Is this also Man?
   This plunging, volant, land-amphibian
What Plato mused and Paracelsus dreamed?
   Reply!"  And piercing us with ancient scan,
The shrill, primeval hawk gazed down -- and screamed.

The Black Vulture.  [George Sterling]

Aloof upon the day's immeasured dome,
   He holds unshared the silence of the sky.
   Far down his bleak, relentless eyes descry
The eagle's empire and the falcon's home --
Far down, the galleons of sunset roam;
   His hazards on the sea of morning lie;
   Serene, he hears the broken tempest sigh
Where cold sierras gleam like scattered foam.

And least of all he holds the human swarm --
 Unwitting now that envious men prepare
  To make their dream and its fulfillment one,
When, poised above the caldrons of the storm,
 Their hearts, contemptuous of death, shall dare
  His roads between the thunder and the sun.

Chavez.  [Mildred McNeal Sweeney]

 So hath he fallen, the Endymion of the air,
  And so lies down in slumber lapped for aye.
 Diana, passing, found his youth too fair,
  His soul too fleet and willing to obey.
 She swung her golden moon before his eyes --
Dreaming, he rose to follow -- and ran -- and was away.

 His foot was winged as the mounting sun.
  Earth he disdained -- the dusty ways of men
 Not yet had learned.  His spirit longed to run
  With the bright clouds, his brothers, to answer when
 The airs were fleetest and could give him hand
Into the starry fields beyond our plodding ken.

 All wittingly that glorious way he chose,
  And loved the peril when it was most bright.
 He tried anew the long-forbidden snows
  And like an eagle topped the dropping height
 Of Nagenhorn, and still toward Italy
Past peak and cliff pressed on, in glad, unerring flight.

 Oh, when the bird lies low with golden wing
  Bruised past healing by some bitter chance,
 Still must its tireless spirit mount and sing
  Of meadows green with morning, of the dance
 On windy trees, the darting flight away,
And of that last, most blue, triumphant downward glance.

 So murmuring of the snow:  "THE SNOW, AND MORE,
  O GOD, MORE SNOW!" on that last field he lay.
 Despair and wonder spent their passionate store
  In his great heart, through heaven gone astray,
 And early lost.  Too far the golden moon
Had swung upon that bright, that long, untraversed way.

 Now to lie ended on the murmuring plain --
  Ah, this for his bold heart was not the loss,
 But that those windy fields he ne'er again
  Might try, nor fleet and shimmering mountains cross,
 Unfollowed, by a path none other knew:
His bitter woe had here its deep and piteous cause.

 Dear toils of youth unfinished!  And songs unwritten, left
  By young and passionate hearts!  O melodies
 Unheard, whereof we ever stand bereft!
  Clear-singing Schubert, boyish Keats -- with these
 He roams henceforth, one with the starry band,
  Still paying to fairy call and far command
His spirit heed, still winged with golden prophecies.

The Sea Gypsy.  [Richard Hovey]

I am fevered with the sunset,
I am fretful with the bay,
For the wander-thirst is on me
And my soul is in Cathay.

There's a schooner in the offing,
With her topsails shot with fire,
And my heart has gone aboard her
For the Islands of Desire.

I must forth again to-morrow!
With the sunset I must be
Hull down on the trail of rapture
In the wonder of the sea.

At Gibraltar.  [George Edward Woodberry]


England, I stand on thy imperial ground,
Not all a stranger; as thy bugles blow,
I feel within my blood old battles flow --
The blood whose ancient founts in thee are found
Still surging dark against the Christian bound
Wide Islam presses; well its peoples know
Thy heights that watch them wandering below;
I think how Lucknow heard their gathering sound.
I turn, and meet the cruel, turbaned face.
England, 't is sweet to be so much thy son!
I feel the conqueror in my blood and race;
Last night Trafalgar awed me, and to-day
Gibraltar wakened; hark, thy evening gun
Startles the desert over Africa!


Thou art the rock of empire, set mid-seas
Between the East and West, that God has built;
Advance thy Roman borders where thou wilt,
While run thy armies true with His decrees.
Law, justice, liberty -- great gifts are these;
Watch that they spread where English blood is spilt,
Lest, mixed and sullied with his country's guilt,
The soldier's life-stream flow, and Heaven displease!
Two swords there are:  one naked, apt to smite,
Thy blade of war; and, battle-storied, one
Rejoices in the sheath, and hides from light.
American I am; would wars were done!
Now westward, look, my country bids good-night --
Peace to the world from ports without a gun!

Euchenor Chorus.  [Arthur Upson]

    (From "The City")

Of old it went forth to Euchenor, pronounced of his sire --
Reluctant, impelled by the god's unescapable fire --
To choose for his doom or to perish at home of disease
Or be slain of his foes, among men, where Troy surges down to the seas.

Polyides, the soothsayer, spake it, inflamed by the god.
Of his son whom the fates singled out did he bruit it abroad;
And Euchenor went down to the ships with his armor and men
And straightway, grown dim on the gulf, passed the isles
  he passed never again.

Why weep ye, O women of Corinth?  The doom ye have heard
Is it strange to your ears that ye make it so mournful a word?
Is he who so fair in your eyes to his manhood upgrew,
Alone in his doom of pale death -- are of mortals the beaten so few?

O weep not, companions and lovers!  Turn back to your joys:
The defeat was not his which he chose, nor the victory Troy's.
Him a conqueror, beauteous in youth, o'er the flood his fleet brought,
And the swift spear of Paris that slew completed the conquest he sought.

Not the falling proclaims the defeat, but the place of the fall;
And the fate that decrees and the god that impels through it all
Regard not blind mortals' divisions of slayer and slain,
But invisible glories dispense wide over the war-gleaming plain.

He whom a Dream hath possessed.  [Shaemas O Sheel]

He whom a dream hath possessed knoweth no more of doubting,
For mist and the blowing of winds and the mouthing of words he scorns;
Not the sinuous speech of schools he hears, but a knightly shouting,
And never comes darkness down, yet he greeteth a million morns.

He whom a dream hath possessed knoweth no more of roaming;
All roads and the flowing of waves and the speediest flight he knows,
But wherever his feet are set, his soul is forever homing,
And going, he comes, and coming he heareth a call and goes.

He whom a dream hath possessed knoweth no more of sorrow,
At death and the dropping of leaves and the fading of suns he smiles,
For a dream remembers no past and scorns the desire of a morrow,
And a dream in a sea of doom sets surely the ultimate isles.

He whom a dream hath possessed treads the impalpable marches,
From the dust of the day's long road he leaps to a laughing star,
And the ruin of worlds that fall he views from eternal arches,
And rides God's battlefield in a flashing and golden car.

The Kings.  [Louise Imogen Guiney]

A man said unto his Angel:
"My spirits are fallen low,
And I cannot carry this battle:
O brother! where might I go?

"The terrible Kings are on me
With spears that are deadly bright;
Against me so from the cradle
Do fate and my fathers fight."

Then said to the man his Angel:
"Thou wavering, witless soul,
Back to the ranks!  What matter
To win or to lose the whole,

"As judged by the little judges
Who hearken not well, nor see?
Not thus, by the outer issue,
The Wise shall interpret thee.

"Thy will is the sovereign measure
And only events of things:
The puniest heart, defying,
Were stronger than all these Kings.

"Though out of the past they gather,
Mind's Doubt, and Bodily Pain,
And pallid Thirst of the Spirit
That is kin to the other twain,

"And Grief, in a cloud of banners,
And ringletted Vain Desires,
And Vice, with the spoils upon him
Of thee and thy beaten sires, --

"While Kings of eternal evil
Yet darken the hills about,
Thy part is with broken sabre
To rise on the last redoubt;

"To fear not sensible failure,
Nor covet the game at all,
But fighting, fighting, fighting,
Die, driven against the wall."

Mockery.  [Louis Untermeyer]

God, I return to You on April days
   When along country roads You walk with me,
   And my faith blossoms like the earliest tree
That shames the bleak world with its yellow sprays --
My faith revives, when through a rosy haze
   The clover-sprinkled hills smile quietly,
   Young winds uplift a bird's clean ecstasy . . .
For this, O God, my joyousness and praise!

But now -- the crowded streets and choking airs,
   The squalid people, bruised and tossed about;
These, or the over-brilliant thoroughfares,
   The too-loud laughter and the empty shout,
The mirth-mad city, tragic with its cares . . .
   For this, O God, my silence -- and my doubt.

An Ode in Time of Hesitation.  [William Vaughn Moody]


Before the solemn bronze Saint Gaudens made
To thrill the heedless passer's heart with awe,
And set here in the city's talk and trade
To the good memory of Robert Shaw,
This bright March morn I stand,
And hear the distant spring come up the land;
Knowing that what I hear is not unheard
Of this boy soldier and his Negro band,
For all their gaze is fixed so stern ahead,
For all the fatal rhythm of their tread.
The land they died to save from death and shame
Trembles and waits, hearing the spring's great name,
And by her pangs these resolute ghosts are stirred.


Through street and mall the tides of people go
Heedless; the trees upon the Common show
No hint of green; but to my listening heart
The still earth doth impart
Assurance of her jubilant emprise,
And it is clear to my long-searching eyes
That love at last has might upon the skies.
The ice is runneled on the little pond;
A telltale patter drips from off the trees;
The air is touched with Southland spiceries,
As if but yesterday it tossed the frond
Of pendant mosses where the live-oaks grow
Beyond Virginia and the Carolines,
Or had its will among the fruits and vines
Of aromatic isles asleep beyond
Florida and the Gulf of Mexico.


Soon shall the Cape Ann children shout in glee,
Spying the arbutus, spring's dear recluse;
Hill lads at dawn shall hearken the wild goose
Go honking northward over Tennessee;
West from Oswego to Sault Sainte-Marie,
And on to where the Pictured Rocks are hung,
And yonder where, gigantic, wilful, young,
Chicago sitteth at the northwest gates,
With restless violent hands and casual tongue
Moulding her mighty fates,
The Lakes shall robe them in ethereal sheen;
And like a larger sea, the vital green
Of springing wheat shall vastly be outflung
Over Dakota and the prairie states.
By desert people immemorial
On Arizonan mesas shall be done
Dim rites unto the thunder and the sun;
Nor shall the primal gods lack sacrifice
More splendid, when the white Sierras call
Unto the Rockies straightway to arise
And dance before the unveiled ark of the year
Sounding their windy cedars as for shawms,
Unrolling rivers clear
For flutter of broad phylacteries;
While Shasta signals to Alaskan seas
That watch old sluggish glaciers downward creep
To fling their icebergs thundering from the steep,
And Mariposa through the purple calms
Gazes at far Hawaii crowned with palms
Where East and West are met, --
A rich seal on the ocean's bosom set
To say that East and West are twain,
With different loss and gain:
The Lord hath sundered them; let them be sundered yet.


Alas! what sounds are these that come
Sullenly over the Pacific seas, --
Sounds of ignoble battle, striking dumb
The season's half-awakened ecstasies?
Must I be humble, then,
Now when my heart hath need of pride?
Wild love falls on me from these sculptured men;
By loving much the land for which they died
I would be justified.
My spirit was away on pinions wide
To soothe in praise of her its passionate mood
And ease it of its ache of gratitude.
Too sorely heavy is the debt they lay
On me and the companions of my day.
I would remember now
My country's goodliness, make sweet her name.
Alas! what shade art thou
Of sorrow or of blame
Liftest the lyric leafage from her brow,
And pointest a slow finger at her shame?


Lies! lies!  It cannot be!  The wars we wage
Are noble, and our battles still are won
By justice for us, ere we lift the gage.
We have not sold our loftiest heritage.
The proud republic hath not stooped to cheat
And scramble in the market-place of war;
Her forehead weareth yet its solemn star.
Here is her witness:  this, her perfect son,
This delicate and proud New England soul
Who leads despised men, with just-unshackled feet,
Up the large ways where death and glory meet,
To show all peoples that our shame is done,
That once more we are clean and spirit-whole.


Crouched in the sea-fog on the moaning sand
All night he lay, speaking some simple word
From hour to hour to the slow minds that heard,
Holding each poor life gently in his hand
And breathing on the base rejected clay
Till each dark face shone mystical and grand
Against the breaking day;
And lo, the shard the potter cast away
Was grown a fiery chalice crystal-fine,
Fulfilled of the divine
Great wine of battle wrath by God's ring-finger stirred.
Then upward, where the shadowy bastion loomed
Huge on the mountain in the wet sea light,
Whence now, and now, infernal flowerage bloomed,
Bloomed, burst, and scattered down its deadly seed, --
They swept, and died like freemen on the height,
Like freemen, and like men of noble breed;
And when the battle fell away at night
By hasty and contemptuous hands were thrust
Obscurely in a common grave with him
The fair-haired keeper of their love and trust.
Now limb doth mingle with dissolved limb
In nature's busy old democracy
To flush the mountain laurel when she blows
Sweet by the Southern sea,
And heart with crumbled heart climbs in the rose: --
The untaught hearts with the high heart that knew
This mountain fortress for no earthly hold
Of temporal quarrel, but the bastion old
Of spiritual wrong,
Built by an unjust nation sheer and strong,
Expugnable but by a nation's rue
And bowing down before that equal shrine
By all men held divine,
Whereof his band and he were the most holy sign.


O bitter, bitter shade!
Wilt thou not put the scorn
And instant tragic question from thine eye?
Do thy dark brows yet crave
That swift and angry stave --
Unmeet for this desirous morn --
That I have striven, striven to evade?
Gazing on him, must I not deem they err
Whose careless lips in street and shop aver
As common tidings, deeds to make his cheek
Flush from the bronze, and his dead throat to speak?
Surely some elder singer would arise,
Whose harp hath leave to threaten and to mourn
Above this people when they go astray.
Is Whitman, the strong spirit, overworn?
Has Whittier put his yearning wrath away?
I will not and I dare not yet believe!
Though furtively the sunlight seems to grieve,
And the spring-laden breeze
Out of the gladdening west is sinister
With sounds of nameless battle overseas;
Though when we turn and question in suspense
If these things be indeed after these ways,
And what things are to follow after these,
Our fluent men of place and consequence
Fumble and fill their mouths with hollow phrase,
Or for the end-all of deep arguments
Intone their dull commercial liturgies --
I dare not yet believe!  My ears are shut!
I will not hear the thin satiric praise
And muffled laughter of our enemies,
Bidding us never sheathe our valiant sword
Till we have changed our birthright for a gourd
Of wild pulse stolen from a barbarian's hut;
Showing how wise it is to cast away
The symbols of our spiritual sway,
That so our hands with better ease
May wield the driver's whip and grasp the jailer's keys.


Was it for this our fathers kept the law?
This crown shall crown their struggle and their ruth?
Are we the eagle nation Milton saw
Mewing its mighty youth,
Soon to possess the mountain winds of truth,
And be a swift familiar of the sun
Where aye before God's face his trumpets run?
Or have we but the talons and the maw,
And for the abject likeness of our heart
Shall some less lordly bird be set apart?
Some gross-billed wader where the swamps are fat?
Some gorger in the sun?  Some prowler with the bat?


Ah, no!
We have not fallen so.
We are our fathers' sons:  let those who lead us know!
'T was only yesterday sick Cuba's cry
Came up the tropic wind, "Now help us, for we die!"
Then Alabama heard,
And rising, pale, to Maine and Idaho
Shouted a burning word.
Proud state with proud impassioned state conferred,
And at the lifting of a hand sprang forth,
East, west, and south, and north,
Beautiful armies.  Oh, by the sweet blood and young
Shed on the awful hill slope at San Juan,
By the unforgotten names of eager boys
Who might have tasted girl's love and been stung
With the old mystic joys
And starry griefs, now the spring nights come on,
But that the heart of youth is generous, --
We charge you, ye who lead us,
Breathe on their chivalry no hint of stain!
Turn not their new-world victories to gain!
One least leaf plucked for chaffer from the bays
Of their dear praise,
One jot of their pure conquest put to hire,
The implacable republic will require;
With clamor, in the glare and gaze of noon,
Or subtly, coming as a thief at night,
But surely, very surely, slow or soon
That insult deep we deeply will requite.
Tempt not our weakness, our cupidity!
For save we let the island men go free,
Those baffled and dislaureled ghosts
Will curse us from the lamentable coasts
Where walk the frustrate dead.
The cup of trembling shall be drained quite,
Eaten the sour bread of astonishment,
With ashes of the hearth shall be made white
Our hair, and wailing shall be in the tent;
Then on your guiltier head
Shall our intolerable self-disdain
Wreak suddenly its anger and its pain;
For manifest in that disastrous light
We shall discern the right
And do it, tardily. --  O ye who lead,
Take heed!
Blindness we may forgive, but baseness we will smite.

Candlemas.  [Alice Brown]

   O hearken, all ye little weeds
    That lie beneath the snow,
(So low, dear hearts, in poverty so low!)
   The sun hath risen for royal deeds,
   A valiant wind the vanguard leads;
   Now quicken ye, lest unborn seeds
    Before ye rise and blow.

   O furry living things, adream
    On winter's drowsy breast,
(How rest ye there, how softly, safely rest!)
   Arise and follow where a gleam
   Of wizard gold unbinds the stream,
   And all the woodland windings seem
    With sweet expectance blest.

   My birds, come back! the hollow sky
    Is weary for your note.
(Sweet-throat, come back!  O liquid, mellow throat!)
   Ere May's soft minions hereward fly,
   Shame on ye, laggards, to deny
   The brooding breast, the sun-bright eye,
    The tawny, shining coat!

The Unreturning.  [Bliss Carman]

The old eternal spring once more
 Comes back the sad eternal way,
With tender rosy light before
 The going-out of day.

The great white moon across my door
 A shadow in the twilight stirs;
But now forever comes no more
 That wondrous look of Hers.

A Song in Spring.  [Thomas S. Jones, Jr.]

O little buds all bourgeoning with Spring,
 You hold my winter in forgetfulness;
Without my window lilac branches swing,
Within my gate I hear a robin sing --
 O little laughing blooms that lift and bless!

So blow the breezes in a soft caress,
 Blowing my dreams upon a swallow's wing;
O little merry buds in dappled dress,
You fill my heart with very wantonness --
 O little buds all bourgeoning with Spring!

May is building her House.  [Richard Le Gallienne]

May is building her house.  With apple blooms
   She is roofing over the glimmering rooms;
Of the oak and the beech hath she builded its beams,
   And, spinning all day at her secret looms,
With arras of leaves each wind-swayed wall
She pictureth over, and peopleth it all
   With echoes and dreams,
   And singing of streams.

May is building her house.  Of petal and blade,
Of the roots of the oak, is the flooring made,
   With a carpet of mosses and lichen and clover,
   Each small miracle over and over,
And tender, traveling green things strayed.

Her windows, the morning and evening star,
And her rustling doorways, ever ajar
   With the coming and going
   Of fair things blowing,
The thresholds of the four winds are.

May is building her house.  From the dust of things
She is making the songs and the flowers and the wings;
   From October's tossed and trodden gold
   She is making the young year out of the old;
    Yea:  out of winter's flying sleet
    She is making all the summer sweet,
    And the brown leaves spurned of November's feet
She is changing back again to spring's.

Here is the Place where Loveliness keeps House.  [Madison Cawein]

Here is the place where Loveliness keeps house,
Between the river and the wooded hills,
Within a valley where the Springtime spills
Her firstling wind-flowers under blossoming boughs:
Where Summer sits braiding her warm, white brows
With bramble-roses; and where Autumn fills
Her lap with asters; and old Winter frills
With crimson haw and hip his snowy blouse.
Here you may meet with Beauty.  Here she sits
Gazing upon the moon, or all the day
Tuning a wood-thrush flute, remote, unseen:
Or when the storm is out, 't is she who flits
From rock to rock, a form of flying spray,
Shouting, beneath the leaves' tumultuous green.

Water Fantasy.  [Fannie Stearns Davis]

O brown brook, O blithe brook, what will you say to me
If I take off my heavy shoon and wade you childishly?

    O take them off, and come to me.
    You shall not fall.  Step merrily!

But, cool brook, but, quick brook, and what if I should float
White-bodied in your pleasant pool, your bubbles at my throat?

    If you are but a mortal maid,
    Then I shall make you half afraid.
    The water shall be dim and deep,
    And silver fish shall lunge and leap
    About you, coward mortal thing.
    But if you come desiring
    To win once more your naiadhood,
    How you shall laugh and find me good --
    My golden surfaces, my glooms,
    My secret grottoes' dripping rooms,
    My depths of warm wet emerald,
    My mosses floating fold on fold!
    And where I take the rocky leap
    Like wild white water shall you sweep;
    Like wild white water shall you cry,
    Trembling and turning to the sky,
    While all the thousand-fringed trees
    Glimmer and glisten through the breeze.
    I bid you come!  Too long, too long,
    You have forgot my undersong.
    And this perchance you never knew:
    E'en I, the brook, have need of you.
    My naiads faded long ago, --
    My little nymphs, that to and fro
    Within my waters sunnily
    Made small white flames of tinkling glee.
    I have been lonesome, lonesome; yea,
    E'en I, the brook, until this day.
    Cast off your shoon; ah, come to me,
    And I will love you lingeringly!

O wild brook, O wise brook, I cannot come, alas!
I am but mortal as the leaves that flicker, float, and pass.
My body is not used to you; my breath is fluttering sore;
You clasp me round too icily.  Ah, let me go once more!
Would God I were a naiad-thing whereon Pan's music blew;
But woe is me! you pagan brook, I cannot stay with you!

Bacchus.  [Frank Dempster Sherman]

Listen to the tawny thief,
Hid beneath the waxen leaf,
Growling at his fairy host,
Bidding her with angry boast
Fill his cup with wine distilled
From the dew the dawn has spilled:
Stored away in golden casks
Is the precious draught he asks.

Who, -- who makes this mimic din
In this mimic meadow inn,
Sings in such a drowsy note,
Wears a golden-belted coat;
Loiters in the dainty room
Of this tavern of perfume;
Dares to linger at the cup
Till the yellow sun is up?

Bacchus 't is, come back again
To the busy haunts of men;
Garlanded and gaily dressed,
Bands of gold about his breast;
Straying from his paradise,
Having pinions angel-wise, --
'T is the honey-bee, who goes
Reveling within a rose!

Da Leetla Boy.  [Thomas Augustine Daly]

Da spreeng ees com'! but oh, da joy
 Eet ees too late!
He was so cold, my leetla boy,
 He no could wait.

I no can count how manny week,
How manny day, dat he ees seeck;
How manny night I seet an' hold
Da leetla hand dat was so cold.
He was so patience, oh, so sweet!
Eet hurts my throat for theenk of eet;
An' all he evra ask ees w'en
Ees gona com' da spreeng agen.
Wan day, wan brighta sunny day,
He see, across da alleyway,
Da leetla girl dat's livin' dere
Ees raise her window for da air,
An' put outside a leetla pot
Of -- w'at-you-call? -- forgat-me-not.
So smalla flower, so leetla theeng!
But steell eet mak' hees hearta seeng:
"Oh, now, at las', ees com' da spreeng!
Da leetla plant ees glad for know
Da sun ees com' for mak' eet grow.
So, too, I am grow warm and strong."
So lika dat he seeng hees song.
But, Ah! da night com' down an' den
Da weenter ees sneak back agen,
An' een da alley all da night
Ees fall da snow, so cold, so white,
An' cover up da leetla pot
Of -- w'at-you-call? -- forgat-me-not.
All night da leetla hand I hold
Ees grow so cold, so cold, so cold!

Da spreeng ees com'; but oh, da joy
 Eet ees too late!
He was so cold, my leetla boy,
 He no could wait.

Agamede's Song.  [Arthur Upson]

Grow, grow, thou little tree,
His body at the roots of thee;
Since last year's loveliness in death
The living beauty nourisheth.

Bloom, bloom, thou little tree,
Thy roots around the heart of me;
Thou canst not blow too white and fair
From all the sweetness hidden there.

Die, die, thou little tree,
And be as all sweet things must be;
Deep where thy petals drift I, too,
Would rest the changing seasons through.

Why.  [Bliss Carman]

For a name unknown,
Whose fame unblown
Sleeps in the hills
   For ever and aye;

For her who hears
The stir of the years
Go by on the wind
   By night and day;

And heeds no thing
Of the needs of Spring,
Of Autumn's wonder
   Or Winter's chill;

For one who sees
The great sun freeze,
As he wanders a-cold
   From hill to hill;

And all her heart
Is a woven part
Of the flurry and drift
   Of whirling snow;

For the sake of two
Sad eyes and true,
And the old, old love
   So long ago.

The Wife from Fairyland.  [Richard Le Gallienne]

Her talk was all of woodland things,
 Of little lives that pass
Away in one green afternoon,
 Deep in the haunted grass;

For she had come from fairyland,
 The morning of a day
When the world that still was April
 Was turning into May.

Green leaves and silence and two eyes --
 'T was so she seemed to me,
A silver shadow of the woods,
 Whisper and mystery.

I looked into her woodland eyes,
 And all my heart was hers,
And then I led her by the hand
 Home up my marble stairs;

And all my granite and my gold
 Was hers for her green eyes,
And all my sinful heart was hers
 From sunset to sunrise;

I gave her all delight and ease
 That God had given to me,
I listened to fulfill her dreams,
 Rapt with expectancy.

But all I gave, and all I did,
 Brought but a weary smile
Of gratitude upon her face;
 As though a little while,

She loitered in magnificence
 Of marble and of gold
And waited to be home again
 When the dull tale was told.

Sometimes, in the chill galleries,
 Unseen, she deemed, unheard,
I found her dancing like a leaf
 And singing like a bird.

So lone a thing I never saw
 In lonely earth or sky,
So merry and so sad a thing,
 One sad, one laughing, eye.

There came a day when on her heart
 A wildwood blossom lay,
And the world that still was April
 Was turning into May.

In the green eyes I saw a smile
 That turned my heart to stone:
My wife that came from fairyland
 No longer was alone.

For there had come a little hand
 To show the green way home,
Home through the leaves, home through the dew,
 Home through the greenwood -- home.

Life.  [John Hall Wheelock]

Life burns us up like fire,
 And Song goes up in flame:
The radiant body smoulders
 To the ashes whence it came.

Out of things it rises
 With a mouth that laughs and sings,
Backward it fades and falters
 Into the char of things.

Yet soars a voice above it --
 Love is holy and strong;
The best of us forever
 Escapes in Love and Song.

Song is so old.  [Hermann Hagedorn]

Song is so old,
Love is so new --
Let me be still
And kneel to you.

Let me be still
And breathe no word,
Save what my warm blood
Sings unheard.

Let my warm blood
Sing low of you --
Song is so fair,
Love is so new!

That Day you came.  [Lizette Woodworth Reese]

Such special sweetness was about
 That day God sent you here,
I knew the lavender was out,
 And it was mid of year.

Their common way the great winds blew,
 The ships sailed out to sea;
Yet ere that day was spent I knew
 Mine own had come to me.

As after song some snatch of tune
 Lurks still in grass or bough,
So, somewhat of the end o' June
 Lurks in each weather now.

The young year sets the buds astir,
 The old year strips the trees;
But ever in my lavender
 I hear the brawling bees.

Song.  "For me the jasmine buds unfold".  [Florence Earle Coates]

For me the jasmine buds unfold
 And silver daisies star the lea,
The crocus hoards the sunset gold,
 And the wild rose breathes for me.
I feel the sap through the bough returning,
 I share the skylark's transport fine,
I know the fountain's wayward yearning,
 I love, and the world is mine!

I love, and thoughts that sometime grieved,
 Still well remembered, grieve not me;
From all that darkened and deceived
 Upsoars my spirit free.
For soft the hours repeat one story,
 Sings the sea one strain divine;
My clouds arise all flushed with glory --
 I love, and the world is mine!

Mother.  [Theresa Helburn]

I have praised many loved ones in my song,
      And yet I stand
Before her shrine, to whom all things belong,
      With empty hand.

Perhaps the ripening future holds a time
      For things unsaid;
Not now; men do not celebrate in rhyme
      Their daily bread.

Songs for my Mother.  [Anna Hempstead Branch]


  Her Hands

My mother's hands are cool and fair,
 They can do anything.
Delicate mercies hide them there
 Like flowers in the spring.

When I was small and could not sleep,
 She used to come to me,
And with my cheek upon her hand
 How sure my rest would be.

For everything she ever touched
 Of beautiful or fine,
Their memories living in her hands
 Would warm that sleep of mine.

Her hands remember how they played
 One time in meadow streams, --
And all the flickering song and shade
 Of water took my dreams.

Swift through her haunted fingers pass
 Memories of garden things; --
I dipped my face in flowers and grass
 And sounds of hidden wings.

One time she touched the cloud that kissed
 Brown pastures bleak and far; --
I leaned my cheek into a mist
 And thought I was a star.

All this was very long ago
 And I am grown; but yet
The hand that lured my slumber so
 I never can forget.

For still when drowsiness comes on
 It seems so soft and cool,
Shaped happily beneath my cheek,
 Hollow and beautiful.


  Her Words

My mother has the prettiest tricks
 Of words and words and words.
Her talk comes out as smooth and sleek
 As breasts of singing birds.

She shapes her speech all silver fine
 Because she loves it so.
And her own eyes begin to shine
 To hear her stories grow.

And if she goes to make a call
 Or out to take a walk
We leave our work when she returns
 And run to hear her talk.

We had not dreamed these things were so
 Of sorrow and of mirth.
Her speech is as a thousand eyes
 Through which we see the earth.

God wove a web of loveliness,
 Of clouds and stars and birds,
But made not any thing at all
 So beautiful as words.

They shine around our simple earth
 With golden shadowings,
And every common thing they touch
 Is exquisite with wings.

There's nothing poor and nothing small
 But is made fair with them.
They are the hands of living faith
 That touch the garment's hem.

They are as fair as bloom or air,
 They shine like any star,
And I am rich who learned from her
 How beautiful they are.

The Daguerreotype.  [William Vaughn Moody]

This, then, is she,
My mother as she looked at seventeen,
When she first met my father.  Young incredibly,
Younger than spring, without the faintest trace
Of disappointment, weariness, or tean
Upon the childlike earnestness and grace
Of the waiting face.
Those close-wound ropes of pearl
(Or common beads made precious by their use)
Seem heavy for so slight a throat to wear;
But the low bodice leaves the shoulders bare
And half the glad swell of the breast, for news
That now the woman stirs within the girl.
And yet,
Even so, the loops and globes
Of beaten gold
And jet
Hung, in the stately way of old,
From the ears' drooping lobes
On festivals and Lord's-day of the week,
Show all too matron-sober for the cheek, --
Which, now I look again, is perfect child,
Or no -- or no -- 't is girlhood's very self,
Moulded by some deep, mischief-ridden elf
So meek, so maiden mild,
But startling the close gazer with the sense
Of passions forest-shy and forest-wild,
And delicate delirious merriments.

As a moth beats sidewise
And up and over, and tries
To skirt the irresistible lure
Of the flame that has him sure,
My spirit, that is none too strong to-day,
Flutters and makes delay, --
Pausing to wonder on the perfect lips,
Lifting to muse upon the low-drawn hair
And each hid radiance there,
But powerless to stem the tide-race bright,
The vehement peace which drifts it toward the light
Where soon -- ah, now, with cries
Of grief and giving-up unto its gain
It shrinks no longer nor denies,
But dips
Hurriedly home to the exquisite heart of pain, --
And all is well, for I have seen them plain,
The unforgettable, the unforgotten eyes!
Across the blinding gush of these good tears
They shine as in the sweet and heavy years
When by her bed and chair
We children gathered jealously to share
The sunlit aura breathing myrrh and thyme,
Where the sore-stricken body made a clime
Gentler than May and pleasanter than rhyme,
Holier and more mystical than prayer.

God, how thy ways are strange!
That this should be, even this,
The patient head
Which suffered years ago the dreary change!
That these so dewy lips should be the same
As those I stooped to kiss
And heard my harrowing half-spoken name,
A little ere the one who bowed above her,
Our father and her very constant lover,
Rose stoical, and we knew that she was dead.
Then I, who could not understand or share
His antique nobleness,
Being unapt to bear
The insults which time flings us for our proof,
Fled from the horrible roof
Into the alien sunshine merciless,
The shrill satiric fields ghastly with day,
Raging to front God in his pride of sway
And hurl across the lifted swords of fate
That ringed Him where He sat
My puny gage of scorn and desolate hate
Which somehow should undo Him, after all!
That this girl face, expectant, virginal,
Which gazes out at me
Boon as a sweetheart, as if nothing loth
(Save for the eyes, with other presage stored)
To pledge me troth,
And in the kingdom where the heart is lord
Take sail on the terrible gladness of the deep
Whose winds the gray Norns keep, --
That this should be indeed
The flesh which caught my soul, a flying seed,
Out of the to and fro
Of scattering hands where the seedsman Mage,
Stooping from star to star and age to age
Sings as he sows!
That underneath this breast
Nine moons I fed
Deep of divine unrest,
While over and over in the dark she said,
"Blessed! but not as happier children blessed" --
That this should be
Even she . . .
God, how with time and change
Thou makest thy footsteps strange!
Ah, now I know
They play upon me, and it is not so.
Why, 't is a girl I never saw before,
A little thing to flatter and make weep,
To tease until her heart is sore,
Then kiss and clear the score;
A gypsy run-the-fields,
A little liberal daughter of the earth,
Good for what hour of truancy and mirth
The careless season yields
Hither-side the flood of the year and yonder of the neap;
Then thank you, thanks again, and twenty light good-byes. --
O shrined above the skies,
Frown not, clear brow,
Darken not, holy eyes!
Thou knowest well I know that it is thou
Only to save me from such memories
As would unman me quite,
Here in this web of strangeness caught
And prey to troubled thought
Do I devise
These foolish shifts and slight;
Only to shield me from the afflicting sense
Of some waste influence
Which from this morning face and lustrous hair
Breathes on me sudden ruin and despair.
In any other guise,
With any but this girlish depth of gaze,
Your coming had not so unsealed and poured
The dusty amphoras where I had stored
The drippings of the winepress of my days.
I think these eyes foresee,
Now in their unawakened virgin time,
Their mother's pride in me,
And dream even now, unconsciously,
Upon each soaring peak and sky-hung lea
You pictured I should climb.
Broken premonitions come,
Shapes, gestures visionary,
Not as once to maiden Mary
The manifest angel with fresh lilies came
Intelligibly calling her by name;
But vanishingly, dumb,
Thwarted and bright and wild,
As heralding a sin-defiled,
Earth-encumbered, blood-begotten, passionate man-child,
Who yet should be a trump of mighty call
Blown in the gates of evil kings
To make them fall;
Who yet should be a sword of flame before
The soul's inviolate door
To beat away the clang of hellish wings;
Who yet should be a lyre
Of high unquenchable desire
In the day of little things. --
Look, where the amphoras,
The yield of many days,
Trod by my hot soul from the pulp of self,
And set upon the shelf
In sullen pride
The Vineyard-master's tasting to abide --
O mother mine!
Are these the bringings-in, the doings fine,
Of him you used to praise?
Emptied and overthrown
The jars lie strown.
These, for their flavor duly nursed,
Drip from the stopples vinegar accursed;
These, I thought honied to the very seal,
Dry, dry, -- a little acid meal,
A pinch of mouldy dust,
Sole leavings of the amber-mantling must;
These, rude to look upon,
But flasking up the liquor dearest won,
Through sacred hours and hard,
With watching and with wrestlings and with grief,
Even of these, of these in chief,
The stale breath sickens reeking from the shard.
Nothing is left.  Aye, how much less than naught!
What shall be said or thought
Of the slack hours and waste imaginings,
The cynic rending of the wings,
Known to that froward, that unreckoning heart
Whereof this brewage was the precious part,
Treasured and set away with furtive boast?
O dear and cruel ghost,
Be merciful, be just!
See, I was yours and I am in the dust.
Then look not so, as if all things were well!
Take your eyes from me, leave me to my shame,
Or else, if gaze they must,
Steel them with judgment, darken them with blame;
But by the ways of light ineffable
You bade me go and I have faltered from,
By the low waters moaning out of hell
Whereto my feet have come,
Lay not on me these intolerable
Looks of rejoicing love, of pride, of happy trust!

Nothing dismayed?
By all I say and all I hint not made
O then, stay by me!  Let
These eyes afflict me, cleanse me, keep me yet,
Brave eyes and true!
See how the shrivelled heart, that long has lain
Dead to delight and pain,
Stirs, and begins again
To utter pleasant life, as if it knew
The wintry days were through;
As if in its awakening boughs it heard
The quick, sweet-spoken bird.
Strong eyes and brave,
Inexorable to save!

Tears.  [Lizette Woodworth Reese]

When I consider Life and its few years --
A wisp of fog betwixt us and the sun;
A call to battle, and the battle done
Ere the last echo dies within our ears;
A rose choked in the grass; an hour of fears;
The gusts that past a darkening shore do beat;
The burst of music down an unlistening street, --
I wonder at the idleness of tears.
Ye old, old dead, and ye of yesternight,
Chieftains, and bards, and keepers of the sheep,
By every cup of sorrow that you had,
Loose me from tears, and make me see aright
How each hath back what once he stayed to weep:
Homer his sight, David his little lad!

The Sea-Lands.  [Orrick Johns]

Would I were on the sea-lands,
 Where winds know how to sting;
And in the rocks at midnight
 The lost long murmurs sing.

Would I were with my first love
 To hear the rush and roar
Of spume below the doorstep
 And winds upon the door.

My first love was a fair girl
 With ways forever new;
And hair a sunlight yellow,
 And eyes a morning blue.

The roses, have they tarried
 Or are they dun and frayed?
If we had stayed together,
 Would love, indeed, have stayed?

Ah, years are filled with learning,
 And days are leaves of change!
And I have met so many
 I knew . . . and found them strange.

But on the sea-lands tumbled
 By winds that sting and blind,
The nights we watched, so silent,
 Come back, come back to mind.

I mind about my first love,
 And hear the rush and roar
Of spume below the doorstep
 And winds upon the door.

Bag-Pipes at Sea.  [Clinton Scollard]

Above the shouting of the gale,
 The whipping sheet, the dashing spray,
I heard, with notes of joy and wail,
 A piper play.

Along the dipping deck he trod,
 The dusk about his shadowy form;
He seemed like some strange ancient god
 Of song and storm.

He gave his dim-seen pipes a skirl
 And war went down the darkling air;
Then came a sudden subtle swirl,
 And love was there.

What were the winds that flailed and flayed
 The sea to him, the night obscure?
In dreams he strayed some brackened glade,
 Some heathery moor.

And if he saw the slanting spars,
 And if he watched the shifting track,
He marked, too, the eternal stars
 Shine through the wrack.

And so amid the deep sea din,
 And so amid the wastes of foam,
Afar his heart was happy in
 His highland home!

The Heart's Country.  [Florence Wilkinson]

Hill people turn to their hills;
 Sea-folk are sick for the sea:
Thou art my land and my country,
 And my heart calls out for thee.

The bird beats his wings for the open,
 The captive burns to be free;
But I -- I cry at thy window,
 For thou art my liberty.

Joyous-Gard.  [Thomas S. Jones, Jr.]

Wind-washed and free, full-swept by rain and wave,
 By tang of surf and thunder of the gale,
 Wild be the ride yet safe the barque will sail
And past the plunging seas her harbor brave;
Nor care have I that storms and waters rave,
 I cannot fear since you can never fail --
 Once have I looked upon the burning grail,
And through your eyes have seen beyond the grave.

I know at last -- the strange, sweet mystery,
 The nameless joy that trembled into tears,
  The hush of wings when you were at my side --
For now the veil is rent and I can see,
 See the true vision of the future years,
  As in your face the love of Him who died!

The Secret.  [George Edward Woodberry]

Nightingales warble about it,
 All night under blossom and star;
The wild swan is dying without it,
 And the eagle crieth afar;
The sun he doth mount but to find it,
 Searching the green earth o'er;
But more doth a man's heart mind it,
 Oh, more, more, more!

Over the gray leagues of ocean
 The infinite yearneth alone;
The forests with wandering emotion
 The thing they know not intone;
Creation arose but to see it,
 A million lamps in the blue;
But a lover he shall be it
 If one sweet maid is true.

The Nightingale unheard.  [Josephine Preston Peabody]

Yes, Nightingale, through all the summer-time
 We followed on, from moon to golden moon;
 From where Salerno day-dreams in the noon,
And the far rose of Paestum once did climb.
 All the white way beside the girdling blue,
Through sun-shrill vines and campanile chime,
 We listened; -- from the old year to the new.
  Brown bird, and where were you?

You, that Ravello lured not, throned on high
 And filled with singing out of sun-burned throats!
 Nor yet Minore of the flame-sailed boats;
Nor yet -- of all bird-song should glorify --
 Assisi, Little Portion of the blest,
Assisi, in the bosom of the sky,
 Where God's own singer thatched his sunward nest,
  That little, heavenliest!

And north and north, to where the hedge-rows are,
 That beckon with white looks an endless way;
 Where, through the fair wet silverness of May,
A lamb shines out as sudden as a star,
 Among the cloudy sheep; and green, and pale,
The may-trees reach and glimmer, near or far,
 And the red may-trees wear a shining veil.
  And still, no nightingale!

The one vain longing, -- through all journeyings,
 The one:  in every hushed and hearkening spot, --
 All the soft-swarming dark where you were not,
Still longed for!  Yes, for sake of dreams and wings,
 And wonders, that your own must ever make
To bower you close, with all hearts' treasurings;
 And for that speech toward which all hearts do ache; --
  Even for Music's sake.

But most, his music whose beloved name
 Forever writ in water of bright tears,
 Wins to one grave-side even the Roman years,
That kindle there the hallowed April flame
 Of comfort-breathing violets.  By that shrine
Of Youth, Love, Death, forevermore the same,
 Violets still! --  When falls, to leave no sign,
  The arch of Constantine.

Most for his sake we dreamed.  Tho' not as he,
 From that lone spirit, brimmed with human woe,
 Your song once shook to surging overflow.
How was it, sovran dweller of the tree,
 His cry, still throbbing in the flooded shell
Of silence with remembered melody,
 Could draw from you no answer to the spell?
  -- O Voice, O Philomel?

Long time we wondered (and we knew not why): --
 Nor dream, nor prayer, of wayside gladness born,
 Nor vineyards waiting, nor reproachful thorn,
Nor yet the nested hill-towns set so high
 All the white way beside the girdling blue, --
Nor olives, gray against a golden sky,
 Could serve to wake that rapturous voice of you!
  But the wise silence knew.

O Nightingale unheard! --  Unheard alone,
 Throughout that woven music of the days
 From the faint sea-rim to the market-place,
And ring of hammers on cathedral stone!
 So be it, better so:  that there should fail
For sun-filled ones, one blessed thing unknown.
 To them, be hid forever, -- and all hail!
  Sing never, Nightingale.

Sing, for the others!  Sing; to some pale cheek
 Against the window, like a starving flower.
 Loose, with your singing, one poor pilgrim hour
Of journey, with some Heart's Desire to seek.
 Loose, with your singing, captives such as these
In misery and iron, hearts too meek,
 For voyage -- voyage over dreamful seas
  To lost Hesperides.

Sing not for free-men.  Ah, but sing for whom
 The walls shut in; and even as eyes that fade,
 The windows take no heed of light nor shade, --
The leaves are lost in mutterings of the loom.
 Sing near!  So in that golden overflowing
They may forget their wasted human bloom;
 Pay the devouring days their all, unknowing, --
  Reck not of life's bright going!

Sing not for lovers, side by side that hark;
 Nor unto parted lovers, save they be
 Parted indeed by more than makes the Sea,
Where never hope shall meet -- like mounting lark --
 Far Joy's uprising; and no memories
Abide to star the music-haunted dark:
 To them that sit in darkness, such as these,
  Pour down, pour down heart's-ease.

Not in Kings' gardens.  No; but where there haunt
 The world's forgotten, both of men and birds;
 The alleys of no hope and of no words,
The hidings where men reap not, though they plant;
 But toil and thirst -- so dying and so born; --
And toil and thirst to gather to their want,
 From the lean waste, beyond the daylight's scorn,
  -- To gather grapes of thorn!

     .    .    .    .    .

And for those two, your pilgrims without tears,
 Who prayed a largess where there was no dearth,
Forgive it to their human-happy ears:
 Forgive it them, brown music of the Earth,
 Unknowing, -- though the wiser silence knew!
Forgive it to the music of the spheres
 That while they walked together so, the Two
  Together, -- heard not you.

Only of thee and me.  [Louis Untermeyer]

Only of thee and me the night wind sings,
 Only of us the sailors speak at sea,
The earth is filled with wondered whisperings
 Only of thee and me.

Only of thee and me the breakers chant,
 Only of us the stir in bush and tree;
The rain and sunshine tell the eager plant
 Only of thee and me.

Only of thee and me, till all shall fade;
 Only of us the whole world's thoughts can be --
For we are Love, and God Himself is made
 Only of thee and me.

When the Wind is low.  [Cale Young Rice]

When the wind is low, and the sea is soft,
 And the far heat-lightning plays
On the rim of the west where dark clouds nest
 On a darker bank of haze;
When I lean o'er the rail with you that I love
 And gaze to my heart's content;
I know that the heavens are there above --
 But you are my firmament.

When the phosphor-stars are thrown from the bow
 And the watch climbs up the shroud;
When the dim mast dips as the vessel slips
 Through the foam that seethes aloud;
I know that the years of our life are few,
 And fain as a bird to flee,
That time is as brief as a drop of dew --
 But you are Eternity.

Love Triumphant.  [Frederic Lawrence Knowles]

Helen's lips are drifting dust;
Ilion is consumed with rust;
All the galleons of Greece
Drink the ocean's dreamless peace;
Lost was Solomon's purple show
Restless centuries ago;
Stately empires wax and wane --
Babylon, Barbary, and Spain; --
Only one thing, undefaced,
Lasts, though all the worlds lie waste
And the heavens are overturned.
Dear, how long ago we learned!

There's a sight that blinds the sun,
Sound that lives when sounds are done,
Music that rebukes the birds,
Language lovelier than words,
Hue and scent that shame the rose,
Wine no earthly vineyard knows,
Silence stiller than the shore
Swept by Charon's stealthy oar,
Ocean more divinely free
Than Pacific's boundless sea, --
Ye who love have learned it true.
Dear, how long ago we knew!

Be still.  The Hanging Gardens were a dream.  [Trumbull Stickney]

Be still.  The Hanging Gardens were a dream
That over Persian roses flew to kiss
The curled lashes of Semiramis.
Troy never was, nor green Skamander stream.
Provence and Troubadour are merest lies,
The glorious hair of Venice was a beam
Made within Titian's eye.  The sunsets seem,
The world is very old and nothing is.
Be still.  Thou foolish thing, thou canst not wake,
Nor thy tears wedge thy soldered lids apart,
But patter in the darkness of thy heart.
Thy brain is plagued.  Thou art a frighted owl
Blind with the light of life thou'ldst not forsake,
And Error loves and nourishes thy soul.

The Tears of Harlequin.  [Theodosia Garrison]

To you he gave his laughter and his jest,
His words that of all words were merriest,
 His glad, mad moments when the lights flared high
And his wild song outshrilled the plaudits' din.
 For you that memory, but happier I --
I, who have known the tears of Harlequin.

Not mine those moments when the roses lay
Like red spilled wine on his triumphant way,
 And shouts acclaimed him through the music's beat,
Above the voice of flute and violin.
 But I have known his hour of sore defeat --
I -- I have known the tears of Harlequin.

Light kisses and light words, they were not mine --
Poor perquisites of many a Columbine
 Bought with his laughter, flattered by his jest;
But when despair broke through the painted grin,
 His tortured face has fallen on my breast --
I -- I have known the tears of Harlequin.

You weep for him, who look upon him dead,
That joy and jest and merriment are fled;
 You weep for him, what time my eyes are dry,
Knowing what peace a weary soul may win
 Stifled by too much masking -- even I --
I, who have known the tears of Harlequin.

The Buried City.  [George Sylvester Viereck]

My heart is like a city of the gay
 Reared on the ruins of a perished one
 Wherein my dead loves cower from the sun,
White-swathed like kings, the Pharaohs of a day.
Within the buried city stirs no sound,
 Save for the bat, forgetful of the rod,
 Perched on the knee of some deserted god,
And for the groan of rivers underground.

Stray not, my Love, 'mid the sarcophagi --
 Tempt not the silence, for the fates are deep,
Lest all the dreamers, deeming doomsday nigh,
 Leap forth in terror from their haunted sleep;
And like the peal of an accursed bell
Thy voice call ghosts of dead things back from hell.

The Ride to the Lady.  [Helen Gray Cone]

"Now since mine even is come at last, --
For I have been the sport of steel,
And hot life ebbeth from me fast,
And I in saddle roll and reel, --
Come bind me, bind me on my steed!
Of fingering leech I have no need!"
The chaplain clasped his mailed knee.
"Nor need I more thy whine and thee!
No time is left my sins to tell;
But look ye bind me, bind me well!"
They bound him strong with leathern thong,
For the ride to the lady should be long.

Day was dying; the poplars fled,
Thin as ghosts, on a sky blood-red;
Out of the sky the fierce hue fell,
And made the streams as the streams of hell.
All his thoughts as a river flowed,
Flowed aflame as fleet he rode,
Onward flowed to her abode,
Ceased at her feet, mirrored her face.
(Viewless Death apace, apace,
Rode behind him in that race.)

"Face, mine own, mine alone,
Trembling lips my lips have known,
Birdlike stir of the dove-soft eyne
Under the kisses that make them mine!
Only of thee, of thee, my need!
Only to thee, to thee, I speed!"
The Cross flashed by at the highway's turn;
In a beam of the moon the Face shone stern.

Far behind had the fight's din died;
The shuddering stars in the welkin wide
Crowded, crowded, to see him ride.
The beating hearts of the stars aloof
Kept time to the beat of the horse's hoof.
"What is the throb that thrills so sweet?
Heart of my lady, I feel it beat!"
But his own strong pulse the fainter fell,
Like the failing tongue of a hushing bell.
The flank of the great-limbed steed was wet
Not alone with the started sweat.

Fast, and fast, and the thick black wood
Arched its cowl like a black friar's hood;
Fast, and fast, and they plunged therein, --
But the viewless rider rode to win.

Out of the wood to the highway's light
Galloped the great-limbed steed in fright;
The mail clashed cold, and the sad owl cried,
And the weight of the dead oppressed his side.

Fast, and fast, by the road he knew;
And slow, and slow, the stars withdrew;
And the waiting heaven turned weirdly blue,
As a garment worn of a wizard grim.
He neighed at the gate in the morning dim.

She heard no sound before her gate,
Though very quiet was her bower.
All was as her hand had left it late:
The needle slept on the broidered vine,
Where the hammer and spikes of the passion-flower
Her fashioning did wait.

On the couch lay something fair,
With steadfast lips and veiled eyne;
But the lady was not there.
On the wings of shrift and prayer,
Pure as winds that winnow snow,
Her soul had risen twelve hours ago.
The burdened steed at the barred gate stood,
No whit the nearer to his goal.
Now God's great grace assoil the soul
That went out in the wood!

Evensong.  [Ridgely Torrence]

Beauty calls and gives no warning,
Shadows rise and wander on the day.
In the twilight, in the quiet evening,
We shall rise and smile and go away.
Over the flaming leaves
Freezes the sky.
It is the season grieves,
Not you, not I.
All our spring-times, all our summers,
We have kept the longing warm within.
Now we leave the after-comers
To attain the dreams we did not win.
O we have wakened, Sweet, and had our birth,
And that's the end of earth;
And we have toiled and smiled and kept the light,
And that's the end of night.

Witchery.  [Frank Dempster Sherman]

Out of the purple drifts,
 From the shadow sea of night,
On tides of musk a moth uplifts
 Its weary wings of white.

Is it a dream or ghost
 Of a dream that comes to me,
Here in the twilight on the coast,
 Blue cinctured by the sea?

Fashioned of foam and froth --
 And the dream is ended soon,
And lo, whence came the moon-white moth
 Comes now the moth-white moon!

Golden Pulse.  [John Myers O'Hara]

Golden pulse grew on the shore,
 Ferns along the hill,
And the red cliff roses bore
 Bees to drink their fill;

Bees that from the meadows bring
 Wine of melilot,
Honey-sups on golden wing
 To the garden grot.

But to me, neglected flower,
 Phaon will not see,
Passion brings no crowning hour,
 Honey nor the bee.

Sappho.  [Sara Teasdale]

The twilight's inner flame grows blue and deep,
And in my Lesbos, over leagues of sea,
The temples glimmer moonwise in the trees.
Twilight has veiled the little flower face
Here on my heart, but still the night is kind
And leaves her warm sweet weight against my breast.
Am I that Sappho who would run at dusk
Along the surges creeping up the shore
When tides came in to ease the hungry beach,
And running, running, till the night was black,
Would fall forespent upon the chilly sand
And quiver with the winds from off the sea?
Ah, quietly the shingle waits the tides
Whose waves are stinging kisses, but to me
Love brought no peace, nor darkness any rest.
I crept and touched the foam with fevered hands
And cried to Love, from whom the sea is sweet,
From whom the sea is bitterer than death.
Ah, Aphrodite, if I sing no more
To thee, God's daughter, powerful as God,
It is that thou hast made my life too sweet
To hold the added sweetness of a song.
There is a quiet at the heart of love,
And I have pierced the pain and come to peace.
I hold my peace, my Cleis, on my heart;
And softer than a little wild bird's wing
Are kisses that she pours upon my mouth.
Ah, never any more when spring like fire
Will flicker in the newly opened leaves,
Shall I steal forth to seek for solitude
Beyond the lure of light Alcaeus' lyre,
Beyond the sob that stilled Erinna's voice.
Ah, never with a throat that aches with song,
Beneath the white uncaring sky of spring,
Shall I go forth to hide awhile from Love
The quiver and the crying of my heart.
Still I remember how I strove to flee
The love-note of the birds, and bowed my head
To hurry faster, but upon the ground
I saw two winged shadows side by side,
And all the world's spring passion stifled me.
Ah, Love, there is no fleeing from thy might,
No lonely place where thou hast never trod,
No desert thou hast left uncarpeted
With flowers that spring beneath thy perfect feet.
In many guises didst thou come to me;
I saw thee by the maidens while they danced,
Phaon allured me with a look of thine,
In Anactoria I knew thy grace,
I looked at Cercolas and saw thine eyes;
But never wholly, soul and body mine,
Didst thou bid any love me as I loved.
Now I have found the peace that fled from me;
Close, close, against my heart I hold my world.
Ah, Love that made my life a lyric cry,
Ah, Love that tuned my lips to lyres of thine,
I taught the world thy music, now alone
I sing for one who falls asleep to hear.

Harps hung up in Babylon.  [Arthur Colton]

The harps hung up in Babylon,
Their loosened strings rang on, sang on,
And cast their murmurs forth upon
The roll and roar of Babylon:
"~Forget me, Lord, if I forget
Jerusalem for Babylon,
If I forget the vision set
High as the head of Lebanon
Is lifted over Syria yet,
If I forget and bow me down
To brutish gods of Babylon.~"

Two rivers to each other run
In the very midst of Babylon,
And swifter than their current fleets
The restless river of the streets
Of Babylon, of Babylon,
And Babylon's towers smite the sky,
But higher reeks to God most high
The smoke of her iniquity:
"~But oh, betwixt the green and blue
To walk the hills that once we knew
When you were pure and I was true,~" --
So rang the harps in Babylon --
"~Or ere along the roads of stone
Had led us captive one by one
The subtle gods of Babylon.~"

The harps hung up in Babylon
Hung silent till the prophet dawn,
When Judah's feet the highway burned
Back to the holy hills returned,
And shook their dust on Babylon.
In Zion's halls the wild harps rang,
To Zion's walls their smitten clang,
And lo! of Babylon they sang,
They only sang of Babylon:
"~Jehovah, round whose throne of awe
The vassal stars their orbits draw
Within the circle of Thy law,
Canst thou make nothing what is done,
Or cause Thy servant to be one
That has not been in Babylon,
That has not known the power and pain
Of life poured out like driven rain?
I will go down and find again
My soul that's lost in Babylon.~"

Live blindly.  [Trumbull Stickney]

Live blindly and upon the hour.  The Lord,
Who was the Future, died full long ago.
Knowledge which is the Past is folly.  Go,
Poor child, and be not to thyself abhorred.
Around thine earth sun-winged winds do blow
And planets roll; a meteor draws his sword;
The rainbow breaks his seven-coloured chord
And the long strips of river-silver flow:
Awake!  Give thyself to the lovely hours.
Drinking their lips, catch thou the dream in flight
About their fragile hairs' aerial gold.
Thou art divine, thou livest, -- as of old
Apollo springing naked to the light,
And all his island shivered into flowers.

Love's Springtide.  [Frank Dempster Sherman]

My heart was winter-bound until
 I heard you sing;
O voice of Love, hush not, but fill
 My life with Spring!

My hopes were homeless things before
 I saw your eyes;
O smile of Love, close not the door
 To paradise!

My dreams were bitter once, and then
 I found them bliss;
O lips of Love, give me again
 Your rose to kiss!

Springtide of Love!  The secret sweet
 Is ours alone;
O heart of Love, at last you beat
 Against my own!

Wanderers.  [George Sylvester Viereck]

Sweet is the highroad when the skylarks call,
 When we and Love go rambling through the land.
 But shall we still walk gayly, hand in hand,
At the road's turning and the twilight's fall?
Then darkness shall divide us like a wall,
 And uncouth evil nightbirds flap their wings;
 The solitude of all created things
Will creep upon us shuddering like a pall.

This is the knowledge I have wrung from pain:
We, yea, all lovers, are not one, but twain,
 Each by strange wisps to strange abysses drawn;
But through the black immensity of night
Love's little lantern, like a glowworm's, bright,
 May lead our steps to some stupendous dawn.

Ballade of my Lady's Beauty.  [Joyce Kilmer]

Squire Adam had two wives, they say,
 Two wives had he, for his delight,
He kissed and clypt them all the day
 And clypt and kissed them all the night.
 Now Eve like ocean foam was white
And Lilith roses dipped in wine,
 But though they were a goodly sight
No lady is so fair as mine.

To Venus some folk tribute pay
 And Queen of Beauty she is hight,
And Sainte Marie the world doth sway
 In cerule napery bedight.
 My wonderment these twain invite,
Their comeliness it is divine,
 And yet I say in their despite,
No lady is so fair as mine.

Dame Helen caused a grievous fray,
 For love of her brave men did fight,
The eyes of her made sages fey
 And put their hearts in woeful plight.
 To her no rhymes will I indite,
For her no garlands will I twine,
 Though she be made of flowers and light
No lady is so fair as mine.


Prince Eros, Lord of lovely might,
 Who on Olympus dost recline,
Do I not tell the truth aright?
 No lady is so fair as mine.

Grieve not, Ladies.  [Anna Hempstead Branch]

Oh, grieve not, Ladies, if at night
 Ye wake to feel your beauty going.
It was a web of frail delight,
 Inconstant as an April snowing.

In other eyes, in other lands,
 In deep fair pools, new beauty lingers,
But like spent water in your hands
 It runs from your reluctant fingers.

Ye shall not keep the singing lark
 That owes to earlier skies its duty.
Weep not to hear along the dark
 The sound of your departing beauty.

The fine and anguished ear of night
 Is tuned to hear the smallest sorrow.
Oh, wait until the morning light!
 It may not seem so gone to-morrow!

But honey-pale and rosy-red!
 Brief lights that made a little shining!
Beautiful looks about us shed --
 They leave us to the old repining.

Think not the watchful dim despair
 Has come to you the first, sweet-hearted!
For oh, the gold in Helen's hair!
 And how she cried when that departed!

Perhaps that one that took the most,
 The swiftest borrower, wildest spender,
May count, as we would not, the cost --
 And grow more true to us and tender.

Happy are we if in his eyes
 We see no shadow of forgetting.
Nay -- if our star sinks in those skies
 We shall not wholly see its setting.

Then let us laugh as do the brooks
 That such immortal youth is ours,
If memory keeps for them our looks
 As fresh as are the spring-time flowers.

Oh, grieve not, Ladies, if at night
 Ye wake, to feel the cold December!
Rather recall the early light
 And in your loved one's arms, remember.

Of Joan's Youth.  [Louise Imogen Guiney]

I would unto my fair restore
A simple thing:
The flushing cheek she had before!
No more, no more,
On our sad shore,
The carmine grape, the moth's auroral wing.

Ah, say how winds in flooding grass
Unmoor the rose;
Or guileful ways the salmon pass
To sea, disclose:
For so, alas,
With Love, alas,
With fatal, fatal Love a girlhood goes.

I shall not care.  [Sara Teasdale]

When I am dead and over me bright April
 Shakes out her rain-drenched hair,
Though you should lean above me broken-hearted,
 I shall not care.

I shall have peace as leafy trees are peaceful,
 When rain bends down the bough,
And I shall be more silent and cold-hearted
 Than you are now.

Love came back at Fall o' Dew.  [Lizette Woodworth Reese]

Love came back at fall o' dew,
Playing his old part;
But I had a word or two
That would break his heart.

"He who comes at candlelight,
That should come before,
Must betake him to the night
From a barred door."

This the word that made us part
In the fall o' dew;
This the word that brake his heart --
Yet it brake mine, too.

There's Rosemary.  [Olive Tilford Dargan]

O love that is not Love, but dear, so dear!
 That is not love because it goes full soon,
 Like flower born and dead within one moon,
And yet is love, for that it comes too near
The guarded fane where love alone may peer,
 Ere, like young spring by summer soon outshone,
 It trembles into death; yet comes anon
As thoughts of spring will come though summer's here.

O star prelusive to a dream more fair,
 Within my heart I'll keep a heaven for thee
  Where thou mayst freely come and freely go,
Touching with thy faint gold ere I am 'ware
 A twilight hope -- a dawn I did not see --
  O love that is not Love, but nearly so!

Love's Ritual.  [Charles Hanson Towne]

Breathe me the ancient words when I shall find
 Your spirit mine; if, seeking you, life wins
New wonder, with old splendor let us bind
 Our hearts when Love's high sacrament begins.

Exalt my soul with pomp and pageantry,
 Sing the eternal songs all lovers sing;
Yea, when you come, gold let our vestments be,
 And lamps of silver let us softly swing.

But if at last, (hark how I whisper, Love!)
 You from my temple and from me should turn,
I pray you chant no psalm my grief above,
 Over the body of Pain let no light burn.

Go forth in silence, quiet as a dove,
 Drift, with no sign, from our exultant place;
We need no `Ite' at the death of Love,
 And none should come to look on Love's white face.

Grey Rocks, and Greyer Sea.  [Charles G. D. Roberts]

Grey rocks, and greyer sea,
 And surf along the shore --
And in my heart a name
 My lips shall speak no more.

The high and lonely hills
 Endure the darkening year --
And in my heart endure
 A memory and a tear.

Across the tide a sail
 That tosses, and is gone --
And in my heart the kiss
 That longing dreams upon.

Grey rocks, and greyer sea,
 And surf along the shore --
And in my heart the face
 That I shall see no more.

"Grandmither, think not I forget".  [Willa Sibert Cather]

Grandmither, think not I forget, when I come back to town,
An' wander the old ways again, an' tread them up and down.
I never smell the clover bloom, nor see the swallows pass,
Wi'out I mind how good ye were unto a little lass;
I never hear the winter rain a-pelting all night through
Wi'out I think and mind me of how cold it falls on you.
An' if I come not often to your bed beneath the thyme,
Mayhap 't is that I'd change wi' ye, and gie my bed for thine,
      Would like to sleep in thine.

I never hear the summer winds among the roses blow
Wi'out I wonder why it was ye loved the lassie so.
Ye gave me cakes and lollipops and pretty toys a score --
I never thought I should come back and ask ye now for more.
Grandmither, gie me your still white hands that lie upon your breast,
For mine do beat the dark all night and never find me rest;
They grope among the shadows an' they beat the cold black air,
They go seekin' in the darkness, an' they never find him there,
      They never find him there.

Grandmither, gie me your sightless eyes, that I may never see
His own a-burnin' full o' love that must not shine for me.
Grandmither, gie me your peaceful lips, white as the kirkyard snow,
For mine be tremblin' wi' the wish that he must never know.
Grandmither, gie me your clay-stopped ears, that I may never hear
My lad a-singin' in the night when I am sick wi' fear;
A-singin' when the moonlight over a' the land is white --
Ah, God! I'll up and go to him, a-singin' in the night,
      A-callin' in the night.

Grandmither, gie me your clay-cold heart, that has forgot to ache,
For mine be fire wi'in my breast an' yet it cannot break.
Wi' every beat it's callin' for things that must not be, --
So can ye not let me creep in an' rest awhile by ye?
A little lass afeard o' dark slept by ye years agone --
An' she has found what night can hold 'twixt sunset an' the dawn:
So when I plant the rose an' rue above your grave for ye,
Ye'll know it's under rue an' rose that I would like to be,
      That I would like to be.

When I am dead and Sister to the Dust.  [Elsa Barker]

When I am dead and sister to the dust;
 When no more avidly I drink the wine
 Of human love; when the pale Proserpine
Has covered me with poppies, and cold rust
Has cut my lyre-strings, and the sun has thrust
 Me underground to nourish the world-vine, --
 Men shall discover these old songs of mine,
And say:  This woman lived -- as poets must!

This woman lived and wore life as a sword
 To conquer wisdom; this dead woman read
In the sealed Book of Love and underscored
 The meanings.  Then the sails of faith she spread,
And faring out for regions unexplored,
 Went singing down the River of the Dead.

Little Gray Songs from St. Joseph's.  [Grace Fallow Norton]


With cassock black, baret and book,
 Father Saran goes by;
I think he goes to say a prayer
 For one who has to die.

Even so, some day, Father Saran
 May say a prayer for me;
Myself meanwhile, the Sister tells,
 Should pray unceasingly.

They kneel who pray:  how may I kneel
 Who face to ceiling lie,
Shut out by all that man has made
 From God who made the sky?

They lift who pray -- the low earth-born --
 A humble heart to God:
But O, my heart of clay is proud --
 True sister to the sod.

I look into the face of God,
 They say bends over me;
I search the dark, dark face of God --
 O what is it I see?

I see -- who lie fast bound, who may
 Not kneel, who can but seek --
I see mine own face over me,
 With tears upon its cheek.


If my dark grandam had but known,
 Or yet my wild grandsir,
Or the lord that lured the maid away
 That was my sad mother,

O had they known, O had they dreamed
 What gift it was they gave,
Would they have stayed their wild, wild love,
 Nor made my years their slave?

Must they have stopped their hungry lips
 From love at thought of me?
O life, O life, how may we learn
 Thy strangest mystery?

Nay, they knew not, as we scarce know;
 Their souls, O let them rest;
My life is pupil unto pain --
 With him I make my quest.


My little soul I never saw,
 Nor can I count its days;
I do not know its wondrous law
 And yet I know its ways.

O it is young as morning-hours,
 And old as is the night;
O it has growth of budding flowers,
 Yet tastes my body's blight.

And it is silent and apart,
 And far and fair and still,
Yet ever beats within my heart,
 And cries within my will.

And it is light and bright and strange,
 And sees life far away,
Yet far with near can interchange
 And dwell within the day.

My soul has died a thousand deaths,
 And yet it does not die;
My soul has broke a thousand faiths,
 And yet it cannot lie;

My soul -- there's naught can make it less;
 My soul -- there's naught can mar;
Yet here it weeps with loneliness
 Within its lonely star.

My soul -- not any dark can bind,
 Nor hinder any hand,
Yet here it weeps -- long blind, long blind --
 And cannot understand.

Irish Peasant Song.  [Louise Imogen Guiney]

I try to knead and spin, but my life is low the while.
Oh, I long to be alone, and walk abroad a mile;
Yet if I walk alone, and think of naught at all,
Why from me that's young should the wild tears fall?

The shower-sodden earth, the earth-colored streams,
They breathe on me awake, and moan to me in dreams,
And yonder ivy fondling the broke castle-wall,
It pulls upon my heart till the wild tears fall.

The cabin-door looks down a furze-lighted hill,
And far as Leighlin Cross the fields are green and still;
But once I hear the blackbird in Leighlin hedges call,
The foolishness is on me, and the wild tears fall!

The Prince.  [Josephine Dodge Daskam]

My heart it was a cup of gold
That at his lip did long to lie,
But he hath drunk the red wine down,
And tossed the goblet by.

My heart it was a floating bird
That through the world did wander free,
But he hath locked it in a cage,
And lost the silver key.

My heart it was a white, white rose
That bloomed upon a broken bough,
He did but wear it for an hour,
And it is withered now.

Four Winds.  [Sara Teasdale]

"Four winds blowing thro' the sky,
You have seen poor maidens die,
Tell me then what I shall do
That my lover may be true."
Said the wind from out the south,
"Lay no kiss upon his mouth,"
And the wind from out the west,
"Wound the heart within his breast,"
And the wind from out the east,
"Send him empty from the feast,"
And the wind from out the north,
"In the tempest thrust him forth;
When thou art more cruel than he,
Then will Love be kind to thee."

A West-Country Lover.  [Alice Brown]

Then, lady, at last thou art sick of my sighing.
So long as I sue, thou wilt still be denying?
Ah, well! shall I vow then to serve thee forever,
And swear no unkindness our kinship can sever?
Nay, nay, dear my lass! here's an end of endeavor.

Yet let no sweet ruth for my misery grieve thee.
The man who has loved knows as well how to leave thee.
The gorse is enkindled, there's bloom on the heather,
And love is my joy, but so too is fair weather;
I still ride abroad though we ride not together.

My horse is my mate; let the wind be my master.
Though Care may pursue, yet my hound follows faster.
The red deer's a-tremble in coverts unbroken.
He hears the hoof-thunder; he scents the death-token.
Shall I mope at home, under vows never spoken?

The brown earth's my book, and I ride forth to read it.
The stream runneth fast, but my will shall outspeed it.
I love thee, dear lass, but I hate the hag Sorrow.
As sun follows rain, and to-night has its morrow,
So I'll taste of joy, though I steal, beg, or borrow!

A Winter Ride.  [Amy Lowell]

Who shall declare the joy of the running!
 Who shall tell of the pleasures of flight!
Springing and spurning the tufts of wild heather,
 Sweeping, wide-winged, through the blue dome of light.
Everything mortal has moments immortal,
 Swift and God-gifted, immeasurably bright.
So with the stretch of the white road before me,
 Shining snow crystals rainbowed by the sun,
Fields that are white, stained with long, cool, blue shadows,
 Strong with the strength of my horse as we run.
Joy in the touch of the wind and the sunlight!
 Joy!  With the vigorous earth I am one.

Sic Vita.  [William Stanley Braithwaite]

Heart free, hand free,
 Blue above, brown under,
All the world to me
 Is a place of wonder.
Sun shine, moon shine,
 Stars, and winds a-blowing,
All into this heart of mine
 Flowing, flowing, flowing!

Mind free, step free,
 Days to follow after,
Joys of life sold to me
 For the price of laughter.
Girl's love, man's love,
 Love of work and duty,
Just a will of God's to prove
 Beauty, beauty, beauty!

Across the Fields to Anne.  [Richard Burton]

How often in the summer-tide,
His graver business set aside,
Has stripling Will, the thoughtful-eyed,
As to the pipe of Pan,
Stepped blithesomely with lover's pride
Across the fields to Anne.

It must have been a merry mile,
This summer stroll by hedge and stile,
With sweet foreknowledge all the while
How sure the pathway ran
To dear delights of kiss and smile,
Across the fields to Anne.

The silly sheep that graze to-day,
I wot, they let him go his way,
Nor once looked up, as who should say:
"It is a seemly man."
For many lads went wooing aye
Across the fields to Anne.

The oaks, they have a wiser look;
Mayhap they whispered to the brook:
"The world by him shall yet be shook,
It is in nature's plan;
Though now he fleets like any rook
Across the fields to Anne."

And I am sure, that on some hour
Coquetting soft 'twixt sun and shower,
He stooped and broke a daisy-flower
With heart of tiny span,
And bore it as a lover's dower
Across the fields to Anne.

While from her cottage garden-bed
She plucked a jasmine's goodlihede,
To scent his jerkin's brown instead;
Now since that love began,
What luckier swain than he who sped
Across the fields to Anne?

The winding path whereon I pace,
The hedgerow's green, the summer's grace,
Are still before me face to face;
Methinks I almost can
Turn poet and join the singing race
Across the fields to Anne!

The House and the Road.  [Josephine Preston Peabody]

The little Road says, Go,
The little House says, Stay:
And O, it's bonny here at home,
But I must go away.

The little Road, like me,
Would seek and turn and know;
And forth I must, to learn the things
The little Road would show!

And go I must, my dears,
And journey while I may,
Though heart be sore for the little House
That had no word but Stay.

Maybe, no other way
Your child could ever know
Why a little House would have you stay,
When a little Road says, Go.

The Path to the Woods.  [Madison Cawein]

Its friendship and its carelessness
Did lead me many a mile,
Through goat's-rue, with its dim caress,
And pink and pearl-white smile;
Through crowfoot, with its golden lure,
And promise of far things,
And sorrel with its glance demure
And wide-eyed wonderings.

It led me with its innocence,
As childhood leads the wise,
With elbows here of tattered fence,
And blue of wildflower eyes;
With whispers low of leafy speech,
And brook-sweet utterance;
With bird-like words of oak and beech,
And whisperings clear as Pan's.

It led me with its childlike charm,
As candor leads desire,
Now with a clasp of blossomy arm,
A butterfly kiss of fire;
Now with a toss of tousled gold,
A barefoot sound of green,
A breath of musk, of mossy mold,
With vague allurements keen.

It led me with remembered things
Into an old-time vale,
Peopled with faery glimmerings,
And flower-like fancies pale;
Where fungous forms stood, gold and gray,
Each in its mushroom gown,
And, roofed with red, glimpsed far away,
A little toadstool town.

It led me with an idle ease,
A vagabond look and air,
A sense of ragged arms and knees
In weeds grown everywhere;
It led me, as a gypsy leads,
To dingles no one knows,
With beauty burred with thorny seeds,
And tangled wild with rose.

It led me as simplicity
Leads age and its demands,
With bee-beat of its ecstasy,
And berry-stained touch of hands;
With round revealments, puff-ball white,
Through rents of weedy brown,
And petaled movements of delight
In roseleaf limb and gown.

It led me on and on and on,
Beyond the Far Away,
Into a world long dead and gone, --
The world of Yesterday:
A faery world of memory,
Old with its hills and streams,
Wherein the child I used to be
Still wanders with his dreams.

Sometimes.  [Thomas S. Jones, Jr.]

Across the fields of yesterday
 He sometimes comes to me,
A little lad just back from play --
 The lad I used to be.

And yet he smiles so wistfully
 Once he has crept within,
I wonder if he hopes to see
 The man I might have been.

Renascence.  [Edna St. Vincent Millay]

All I could see from where I stood
Was three long mountains and a wood;
I turned and looked another way,
And saw three islands in a bay.
So with my eyes I traced the line
Of the horizon, thin and fine,
Straight around till I was come
Back to where I'd started from;
And all I saw from where I stood
Was three long mountains and a wood.
Over these things I could not see;
These were the things that bounded me;
And I could touch them with my hand,
Almost, I thought, from where I stand.
And all at once things seemed so small
My breath came short, and scarce at all.
But, sure, the sky is big, I said;
Miles and miles above my head;
So here upon my back I'll lie
And look my fill into the sky.
And so I looked, and, after all,
The sky was not so very tall.
The sky, I said, must somewhere stop,
And -- sure enough! -- I see the top!
The sky, I thought, is not so grand;
I 'most could touch it with my hand!
And, reaching up my hand to try,
I screamed to feel it touch the sky.

I screamed, and -- lo! -- Infinity
Came down and settled over me;
And, pressing of the Undefined
The definition on my mind,
Held up before my eyes a glass
Through which my shrinking sight did pass
Until it seemed I must behold
Immensity made manifold;
Whispered to me a word whose sound
Deafened the air for worlds around,
And brought unmuffled to my ears
The gossiping of friendly spheres,
The creaking of the tented sky,
The ticking of Eternity.
I saw and heard, and knew at last
The How and Why of all things, past,
And present, and forevermore.
The universe, cleft to the core,
Lay open to my probing sense
That, sick'ning, I would fain pluck thence
But could not, -- nay!  But needs must suck
At the great wound, and could not pluck
My lips away till I had drawn
All venom out. --  Ah, fearful pawn!
For my omniscience paid I toll
In infinite remorse of soul.
All sin was of my sinning, all
Atoning mine, and mine the gall
Of all regret.  Mine was the weight
Of every brooded wrong, the hate
That stood behind each envious thrust,
Mine every greed, mine every lust.
And all the while for every grief,
Each suffering, I craved relief
With individual desire, --
Craved all in vain!  And felt fierce fire
About a thousand people crawl;
Perished with each, -- then mourned for all!
A man was starving in Capri;
He moved his eyes and looked at me;
I felt his gaze, I heard his moan,
And knew his hunger as my own.
I saw at sea a great fog-bank
Between two ships that struck and sank;
A thousand screams the heavens smote;
And every scream tore through my throat.
No hurt I did not feel, no death
That was not mine; mine each last breath
That, crying, met an answering cry
From the compassion that was I.
All suffering mine, and mine its rod;
Mine, pity like the pity of God.
Ah, awful weight!  Infinity
Pressed down upon the finite Me!
My anguished spirit, like a bird,
Beating against my lips I heard;
Yet lay the weight so close about
There was no room for it without.
And so beneath the Weight lay I
And suffered death, but could not die.

Long had I lain thus, craving death,
When quietly the earth beneath
Gave way, and inch by inch, so great
At last had grown the crushing weight,
Into the earth I sank till I
Full six feet under ground did lie,
And sank no more, -- there is no weight
Can follow here, however great.
From off my breast I felt it roll,
And as it went my tortured soul
Burst forth and fled in such a gust
That all about me swirled the dust.

Deep in the earth I rested now;
Cool is its hand upon the brow
And soft its breast beneath the head
Of one who is so gladly dead.
And all at once, and over all,
The pitying rain began to fall;
I lay and heard each pattering hoof
Upon my lowly, thatched roof,
And seemed to love the sound far more
Than ever I had done before.
For rain it hath a friendly sound
To one who's six feet underground;
And scarce the friendly voice or face:
A grave is such a quiet place.

The rain, I said, is kind to come
And speak to me in my new home.
I would I were alive again
To kiss the fingers of the rain,
To drink into my eyes the shine
Of every slanting silver line,
To catch the freshened, fragrant breeze
From drenched and dripping apple-trees.
For soon the shower will be done,
And then the broad face of the sun
Will laugh above the rain-soaked earth
Until the world with answering mirth
Shakes joyously, and each round drop
Rolls, twinkling, from its grass-blade top.
How can I bear it; buried here,
While overhead the sky grows clear
And blue again after the storm?
O, multi-colored, multiform,
Beloved beauty over me,
That I shall never, never see
Again!  Spring-silver, autumn-gold,
That I shall never more behold!
Sleeping your myriad magics through,
Close-sepulchred away from you!
O God, I cried, give me new birth,
And put me back upon the earth!
Upset each cloud's gigantic gourd
And let the heavy rain, down-poured
In one big torrent, set me free,
Washing my grave away from me!

I ceased; and, through the breathless hush
That answered me, the far-off rush
Of herald wings came whispering
Like music down the vibrant string
Of my ascending prayer, and -- crash!
Before the wild wind's whistling lash
The startled storm-clouds reared on high
And plunged in terror down the sky,
And the big rain in one black wave
Fell from the sky and struck my grave.

I know not how such things can be
I only know there came to me
A fragrance such as never clings
To aught save happy living things;
A sound as of some joyous elf
Singing sweet songs to please himself,
And, through and over everything,
A sense of glad awakening.
The grass, a-tiptoe at my ear,
Whispering to me I could hear;
I felt the rain's cool finger-tips
Brushed tenderly across my lips,
Laid gently on my sealed sight,
And all at once the heavy night
Fell from my eyes and I could see, --
A drenched and dripping apple-tree,
A last long line of silver rain,
A sky grown clear and blue again.
And as I looked a quickening gust
Of wind blew up to me and thrust
Into my face a miracle
Of orchard-breath, and with the smell, --
I know not how such things can be! --
I breathed my soul back into me.
Ah!  Up then from the ground sprang I
And hailed the earth with such a cry
As is not heard save from a man
Who has been dead, and lives again.
About the trees my arms I wound;
Like one gone mad I hugged the ground;
I raised my quivering arms on high;
I laughed and laughed into the sky,
Till at my throat a strangling sob
Caught fiercely, and a great heart-throb
Sent instant tears into my eyes;
O God, I cried, no dark disguise
Can e'er hereafter hide from me
Thy radiant identity!
Thou canst not move across the grass
But my quick eyes will see Thee pass,
Nor speak, however silently,
But my hushed voice will answer Thee.
I know the path that tells Thy way
Through the cool eve of every day;
God, I can push the grass apart
And lay my finger on Thy heart!

The world stands out on either side
No wider than the heart is wide;
Above the world is stretched the sky, --
No higher than the soul is high.
The heart can push the sea and land
Farther away on either hand;
The soul can split the sky in two,
And let the face of God shine through.
But East and West will pinch the heart
That cannot keep them pushed apart;
And he whose soul is flat -- the sky
Will cave in on him by and by.

Souls.  [Fannie Stearns Davis]

My Soul goes clad in gorgeous things,
 Scarlet and gold and blue;
And at her shoulder sudden wings
 Like long flames flicker through.

And she is swallow-fleet, and free
 From mortal bonds and bars.
She laughs, because Eternity
 Blossoms for her with stars!

O folk who scorn my stiff gray gown,
 My dull and foolish face, --
Can ye not see my Soul flash down,
 A singing flame through space?

And folk, whose earth-stained looks I hate,
 Why may I not divine
Your Souls, that must be passionate,
 Shining and swift, as mine!

Fiat Lux.  [Lloyd Mifflin]

Then that dread angel near the awful throne,
 Leaving the seraphs ranged in flaming tiers,
 Winged his dark way through those unpinioned spheres,
And on the void's black beetling edge, alone,
Stood with raised wings, and listened for the tone
 Of God's command to reach his eager ears,
 While Chaos wavered, for she felt her years
Unsceptered now in that convulsive zone.
Night trembled.  And as one hath oft beheld
 A lamp within a vase light up its gloom,
 So God's voice lighted him, from heel to plume:
"Let there be light!" It said, and Darkness, quelled,
 Shrunk noiseless backward in her monstrous womb
Through vasts unwinnowed by the wings of eld!

The Dreamer.  [Nicholas Vachel Lindsay]

"~Why do you seek the sun,
In your Bubble-Crown ascending?
Your chariot will melt to mist,
Your crown will have an ending.~"
"Nay, sun is but a Bubble,
Earth is a whiff of Foam --
To my caves on the coast of Thule
Each night I call them home.
Thence Faiths blow forth to angels
And Loves blow forth to men --
They break and turn to nothing
And I make them whole again:
On the crested waves of chaos
I ride them back reborn:
New stars I bring at evening
For those that burst at morn:
My soul is the wind of Thule
And evening is the sign,
The sun is but a Bubble,
A fragile child of mine."

A Caravan from China comes.  [Richard Le Gallienne]

    (After Hafiz)

A caravan from China comes;
 For miles it sweetens all the air
With fragrant silks and dreaming gums,
 Attar and myrrh --
A caravan from China comes.

O merchant, tell me what you bring,
 With music sweet of camel bells;
How long have you been travelling
 With these sweet smells?
O merchant, tell me what you bring.

A lovely lady is my freight,
 A lock escaped of her long hair, --
That is this perfume delicate
 That fills the air --
A lovely lady is my freight.

Her face is from another land,
 I think she is no mortal maid, --
Her beauty, like some ghostly hand,
 Makes me afraid;
Her face is from another land.

The little moon my cargo is,
 About her neck the Pleiades
Clasp hands and sing; Hafiz, 't is this
 Perfumes the breeze --
The little moon my cargo is.

As I came down from Lebanon.  [Clinton Scollard]

As I came down from Lebanon,
Came winding, wandering slowly down
Through mountain passes bleak and brown,
The cloudless day was well-nigh done.
The city, like an opal set
In emerald, showed each minaret
Afire with radiant beams of sun,
And glistened orange, fig, and lime,
Where song-birds made melodious chime,
As I came down from Lebanon.

As I came down from Lebanon,
Like lava in the dying glow,
Through olive orchards far below
I saw the murmuring river run;
And 'neath the wall upon the sand
Swart sheiks from distant Samarcand,
With precious spices they had won,
Lay long and languidly in wait
Till they might pass the guarded gate,
As I came down from Lebanon.

As I came down from Lebanon,
I saw strange men from lands afar,
In mosque and square and gay bazar,
The Magi that the Moslem shun,
And grave Effendi from Stamboul,
Who sherbet sipped in corners cool;
And, from the balconies o'errun
With roses, gleamed the eyes of those
Who dwell in still seraglios,
As I came down from Lebanon.

As I came down from Lebanon,
The flaming flower of daytime died,
And Night, arrayed as is a bride
Of some great king, in garments spun
Of purple and the finest gold,
Outbloomed in glories manifold,
Until the moon, above the dun
And darkening desert, void of shade,
Shone like a keen Damascus blade,
As I came down from Lebanon.

The Only Way.  [Louis V. Ledoux]


Memphis and Karnak, Luxor, Thebes, the Nile:
 Of these your letters told; and I who read
 Saw loom on dim horizons Egypt's dead
In march across the desert, mile on mile,
A ghostly caravan in slow defile
 Between the sand and stars; and at their head
 From unmapped darkness into darkness fled
The gods that Egypt feared a little while.

There black against the night I saw them loom
 With captive kings and armies in array
Remembered only by their sculptured doom,
 And thought:  What Egypt was are we to-day.
Then rose obscure against the rearward gloom
 The march of Empires yet to pass away.


I looked in vision down the centuries
 And saw how Athens stood a sunlit while
 A sovereign city free from greed and guile,
The half-embodied dream of Pericles.
Then saw I one of smooth words, swift to please,
 At laggard virtue mock with shrug and smile;
 With Cleon's creed rang court and peristyle,
Then sank the sun in far Sicilian seas.

From brows ignoble fell the violet crown.
 Again the warning sounds; the hosts engage:
 In Cleon's face we fling our battle gage,
We win as foes of Cleon loud renown;
 But while we think to build the coming age
The laurel on our brows is turning brown.


We top the poisonous blooms that choke the state,
 At flower and fruit our flashing strokes are made,
 The whetted scythe on stalk and stem is laid,
But deeper must we strike to extirpate
The rooted evil that within our gate
 Will sprout again and flourish, branch and blade;
 For only from within can ill be stayed
While Adam's seed is unregenerate.

With zeal redoubled let our strength be strained
 To cut the rooted causes where they hold,
 Nor spend our sinews on the fungus mold
When all the breeding marshes must be drained.
 Be this our aim; and let our youth be trained
 To honor virtue more than place and gold.


A hundred cities sapped by slow decay,
 A hundred codes and systems proven vain
 Lie hearsed in sand upon the heaving plain,
Memorial ruins mounded, still and gray;
And we who plod the barren waste to-day
 Another code evolving, think to gain
 Surcease of man's inheritance of pain
And mold a state immune from evil's sway.

Not laws; but virtue in the soul we need,
 The old Socratic justice in the heart,
The golden rule become the people's creed
 When years of training have performed their part
 For thus alone in home and church and mart
Can evil perish and the race be freed.

The Dust Dethroned.  [George Sterling]

Sargon is dust, Semiramis a clod!
 In crypts profaned the moon at midnight peers;
 The owl upon the Sphinx hoots in her ears,
And scant and sear the desert grasses nod
Where once the armies of Assyria trod,
 With younger sunlight splendid on the spears;
 The lichens cling the closer with the years,
And seal the eyelids of the weary god.

Where high the tombs of royal Egypt heave,
 The vulture shadows with arrested wings
 The indecipherable boast of kings,
    As Arab children hear their mother's cry
And leave in mockery their toy -- they leave
    The skull of Pharaoh staring at the sky.

Kinchinjunga.  [Cale Young Rice]

    (Which is the next highest of mountains)


O white Priest of Eternity, around
Whose lofty summit veiling clouds arise
Of the earth's immemorial sacrifice
To Brahma in whose breath all lives and dies;
O Hierarch enrobed in timeless snows,
First-born of Asia whose maternal throes
Seem changed now to a million human woes,
Holy thou art and still!  Be so, nor sound
One sigh of all the mystery in thee found.


For in this world too much is overclear,
Immortal Ministrant to many lands,
From whose ice-altars flow to fainting sands
Rivers that each libation poured expands.
Too much is known, O Ganges-giving sire!
Thy people fathom life and find it dire,
Thy people fathom death, and, in it, fire
To live again, though in Illusion's sphere,
Behold concealed as Grief is in a tear.


Wherefore continue, still enshrined, thy rites,
Though dark Thibet, that dread ascetic, falls
In strange austerity, whose trance appalls,
Before thee, and a suppliant on thee calls.
Continue still thy silence high and sure,
That something beyond fleeting may endure --
Something that shall forevermore allure
Imagination on to mystic flights
Wherein alone no wing of Evil lights.


Yea, wrap thy awful gulfs and acolytes
Of lifted granite round with reachless snows.
Stand for Eternity while pilgrim rows
Of all the nations envy thy repose.
Ensheath thy swart sublimities, unscaled.
Be that alone on earth which has not failed.
Be that which never yet has yearned or ailed,
But since primeval Power upreared thy heights
Has stood above all deaths and all delights.


And though thy loftier Brother shall be King,
High-priest art thou to Brahma unrevealed,
While thy white sanctity forever sealed
In icy silence leaves desire congealed.
In ghostly ministrations to the sun,
And to the mendicant stars and the moon-nun,
Be holy still, till East to West has run,
And till no sacrificial suffering
On any shrine is left to tell life's sting.

Scum o' the Earth.  [Robert Haven Schauffler]


At the gate of the West I stand,
On the isle where the nations throng.
We call them "scum o' the earth";

Stay, are we doing you wrong,
Young fellow from Socrates' land? --
You, like a Hermes so lissome and strong
Fresh from the Master Praxiteles' hand?
So you're of Spartan birth?
Descended, perhaps, from one of the band --
Deathless in story and song --
Who combed their long hair at Thermopylae's pass?
Ah, I forget the straits, alas!
More tragic than theirs, more compassion-worth,
That have doomed you to march in our "immigrant class"
Where you're nothing but "scum o' the earth".


You Pole with the child on your knee,
What dower bring you to the land of the free?
Hark! does she croon
That sad little tune
That Chopin once found on his Polish lea
And mounted in gold for you and for me?
Now a ragged young fiddler answers
In wild Czech melody
That Dvorak took whole from the dancers.
And the heavy faces bloom
In the wonderful Slavic way;
The little, dull eyes, the brows a-gloom,
Suddenly dawn like the day.
While, watching these folk and their mystery,
I forget that they're nothing worth;
That Bohemians, Slovaks, Croatians,
And men of all Slavic nations
Are "polacks" -- and "scum o' the earth".


Genoese boy of the level brow,
Lad of the lustrous, dreamy eyes
A-stare at Manhattan's pinnacles now
In the first sweet shock of a hushed surprise;
Within your far-rapt seer's eyes
I catch the glow of the wild surmise
That played on the Santa Maria's prow
In that still gray dawn,
Four centuries gone,
When a world from the wave began to rise.
Oh, it's hard to foretell what high emprise
Is the goal that gleams
When Italy's dreams
Spread wing and sweep into the skies.
Caesar dreamed him a world ruled well;
Dante dreamed Heaven out of Hell;
Angelo brought us there to dwell;
And you, are you of a different birth? --
You're only a "dago", -- and "scum o' the earth"!


Stay, are we doing you wrong
Calling you "scum o' the earth",
Man of the sorrow-bowed head,
Of the features tender yet strong, --
Man of the eyes full of wisdom and mystery
Mingled with patience and dread?
Have not I known you in history,
Sorrow-bowed head?
Were you the poet-king, worth
Treasures of Ophir unpriced?
Were you the prophet, perchance, whose art
Foretold how the rabble would mock
That shepherd of spirits, erelong,
Who should carry the lambs on his heart
And tenderly feed his flock?
Man -- lift that sorrow-bowed head.
Lo! 't is the face of the Christ!

The vision dies at its birth.
You're merely a butt for our mirth.
You're a "sheeny" -- and therefore despised
And rejected as "scum o' the earth".


Countrymen, bend and invoke
Mercy for us blasphemers,
For that we spat on these marvelous folk,
Nations of darers and dreamers,
Scions of singers and seers,
Our peers, and more than our peers.
"Rabble and refuse", we name them
And "scum o' the earth", to shame them.
Mercy for us of the few, young years,
Of the culture so callow and crude,
Of the hands so grasping and rude,
The lips so ready for sneers
At the sons of our ancient more-than-peers.
Mercy for us who dare despise
Men in whose loins our Homer lies;
Mothers of men who shall bring to us
The glory of Titian, the grandeur of Huss;
Children in whose frail arms shall rest
Prophets and singers and saints of the West.

Newcomers all from the eastern seas,
Help us incarnate dreams like these.
Forget, and forgive, that we did you wrong.
Help us to father a nation, strong
In the comradeship of an equal birth,
In the wealth of the richest bloods of earth.

Da Boy from Rome.  [Thomas Augustine Daly]

To-day ees com' from Eetaly
 A boy ees leeve een Rome,
An' he ees stop an' speak weeth me --
 I weesh he stay at home.

He stop an' say "Hallo," to me.
 An' w'en he standin' dere
I smal da smal of Eetaly
 Steell steeckin' een hees hair,
Dat com' weeth heem across da sea,
 An' een da clo'es he wear.

Da peopla bomp heem een da street,
 Da noise ees scare heem, too;
He ees so clumsy een da feet
 He don't know w'at to do,
Dere ees so many theeng he meet
 Dat ees so strange, so new.

He sheever an' he ask eef here
 Eet ees so always cold.
Den een hees eye ees com' a tear --
 He ees no vera old --
An', oh, hees voice ees soun' so queer
 I have no heart for scold.

He look up een da sky so gray,
 But oh, hees eye ees be
So far away, so far away,
 An' w'at he see I see.
Da sky eet ees no gray to-day
 At home een Eetaly.

He see da glada peopla seet
 Where warma shine da sky --
Oh, while he eesa look at eet
 He ees baygeen to cry.
Eef I no growl an' swear a beet
 So, too, my frand, would I.

Oh, why he stop an' speak weeth me,
 Dees boy dat leeve een Rome,
An' com' to-day from Eetaly?
 I weesh he stay at home.

The Fugitives.  [Florence Wilkinson]

We are they that go, that go,
Plunging before the hidden blow.
We run the byways of the earth,
For we are fugitive from birth,
Blindfolded, with wide hands abroad
That sow, that sow the sullen sod.

We cannot wait, we cannot stop
For flushing field or quickened crop;
The orange bow of dusky dawn
Glimmers our smoking swath upon;
Blindfolded still we hurry on.

How we do know the ways we run
That are blindfolded from the sun?
We stagger swiftly to the call,
Our wide hands feeling for the wall.

Oh, ye who climb to some clear heaven,
By grace of day and leisure given,
Pity us, fugitive and driven --
The lithe whip curling on our track,
The headlong haste that looks not back!

The Song of the Unsuccessful.  [Richard Burton]

We are the toilers from whom God barred
 The gifts that are good to hold.
We meant full well and we tried full hard,
 And our failures were manifold.

And we are the clan of those whose kin
 Were a millstone dragging them down.
Yea, we had to sweat for our brother's sin,
 And lose the victor's crown.

The seeming-able, who all but scored,
 From their teeming tribe we come:
What was there wrong with us, O Lord,
 That our lives were dark and dumb?

The men ten-talented, who still
 Strangely missed of the goal,
Of them we are:  it seems Thy will
 To harrow some in soul.

We are the sinners, too, whose lust
 Conquered the higher claims,
We sat us prone in the common dust,
 And played at the devil's games.

We are the hard-luck folk, who strove
 Zealously, but in vain;
We lost and lost, while our comrades throve,
 And still we lost again.

We are the doubles of those whose way
 Was festal with fruits and flowers;
Body and brain we were sound as they,
 But the prizes were not ours.

A mighty army our full ranks make,
 We shake the graves as we go;
The sudden stroke and the slow heartbreak,
 They both have brought us low.

And while we are laying life's sword aside,
 Spent and dishonored and sad,
Our epitaph this, when once we have died:
 "The weak lie here, and the bad."

We wonder if this can be really the close,
 Life's fever cooled by death's trance;
And we cry, though it seem to our dearest of foes,
 "God, give us another chance!"

They went forth to Battle, but they always fell.  [Shaemas O Sheel]

They went forth to battle, but they always fell;
 Their eyes were fixed above the sullen shields;
Nobly they fought and bravely, but not well,
And sank heart-wounded by a subtle spell.
 They knew not fear that to the foeman yields,
 They were not weak, as one who vainly wields
A futile weapon; yet the sad scrolls tell
How on the hard-fought field they always fell.

It was a secret music that they heard,
 A sad sweet plea for pity and for peace;
And that which pierced the heart was but a word,
Though the white breast was red-lipped where the sword
 Pressed a fierce cruel kiss, to put surcease
 On its hot thirst, but drank a hot increase.
Ah, they by some strange troubling doubt were stirred,
And died for hearing what no foeman heard.

They went forth to battle but they always fell;
 Their might was not the might of lifted spears;
Over the battle-clamor came a spell
Of troubling music, and they fought not well.
 Their wreaths are willows and their tribute, tears;
 Their names are old sad stories in men's ears;
Yet they will scatter the red hordes of Hell,
Who went to battle forth and always fell.

The Eagle that is forgotten.  [Nicholas Vachel Lindsay]

    (John P. Altgeld)

Sleep softly . . . eagle forgotten . . . under the stone.
Time has its way with you there, and the clay has its own.
"We have buried him now," thought your foes, and in secret rejoiced.
They made a brave show of their mourning, their hatred unvoiced.
They had snarled at you, barked at you, foamed at you, day after day.
Now you were ended.  They praised you . . . and laid you away.
The others, that mourned you in silence and terror and truth,
The widow bereft of her crust, and the boy without youth,
The mocked and the scorned and the wounded, the lame and the poor,
That should have remembered forever, . . . remember no more.
Where are those lovers of yours, on what name do they call,
The lost, that in armies wept over your funeral pall?
They call on the names of a hundred high-valiant ones,
A hundred white eagles have risen, the sons of your sons.
The zeal in their wings is a zeal that your dreaming began,
The valor that wore out your soul in the service of man.
Sleep softly . . . eagle forgotten . . . under the stone.
Time has its way with you there, and the clay has its own.
Sleep on, O brave-hearted, O wise man that kindled the flame --
To live in mankind is far more than to live in a name,
To live in mankind, far, far more than to live in a name! --

A Memorial Tablet.  [Florence Wilkinson]

    Oh, Agathocles, fare thee well!

Naked and brave thou goest
 Without one glance behind!
Hast thou no fear, Agathocles,
 Or backward grief of mind?

The dreamy dog beside thee
 Presses against thy knee;
He, too, oh, sweet Agathocles,
 Is deaf and visioned like thee.

Thou art so lithe and lovely
 And yet thou art not ours.
What Delphic saying compels thee
 Of kings or topless towers?

That little blowing mantle
 Thou losest from thine arm --
No shoon nor staff, Agathocles,
 Nor sword, to fend from harm!

Thou hast the changed impersonal
 Awed brow of mystery --
Yesterday thou wast burning,
 Mad boy, for Glaucoe.

Philis thy mother calls thee:
 Mine eyes with tears are dim,
Turn once, look once, Agathocles --
 (~The gods have blinded him.~)

Come back, Agathocles, the night --
 Brings thee what place of rest?
Wine-sweet are Glaucoe's kisses,
 Flower-soft her budding breast.

He seems to hearken, Glaucoe,
 He seems to listen and smile;
(~Nay, Philis, but a god-song
 He follows this many a mile.~)

Come back, come back, Agathocles!
 (~He scents the asphodel;
Unearthly swift he runneth.~)
 Agathocles, farewell!

To-Day.  [Helen Gray Cone]

Voice, with what emulous fire thou singest free hearts of old fashion,
English scorners of Spain, sweeping the blue sea-way,
Sing me the daring of life for life, the magnanimous passion
Of man for man in the mean populous streets of To-day!

Hand, with what color and power thou couldst show, in the ring hot-sanded,
Brown Bestiarius holding the lean tawn tiger at bay,
Paint me the wrestle of Toil with the wild-beast Want, bare-handed;
Shadow me forth a soul steadily facing To-day!

The Man with the Hoe.  [Edwin Markham]

    (Written after seeing Millet's world-famous painting)

Bowed by the weight of centuries he leans
Upon his hoe and gazes on the ground,
The emptiness of ages in his face,
And on his back the burden of the world.
Who made him dead to rapture and despair,
A thing that grieves not and that never hopes,
Stolid and stunned, a brother to the ox?
Who loosened and let down this brutal jaw?
Whose was the hand that slanted back this brow?
Whose breath blew out the light within this brain?
Is this the Thing the Lord God made and gave
To have dominion over sea and land;
To trace the stars and search the heavens for power;
To feel the passion of Eternity?
Is this the Dream He dreamed who shaped the suns
And marked their ways upon the ancient deep?
Down all the stretch of Hell to its last gulf
There is no shape more terrible than this --
More tongued with censure of the world's blind greed --
More filled with signs and portents for the soul --
More fraught with menace to the universe.

What gulfs between him and the seraphim!
Slave of the wheel of labor, what to him
Are Plato and the swing of Pleiades?
What the long reaches of the peaks of song,
The rift of dawn, the reddening of the rose?
Through this dread shape the suffering ages look;
Time's tragedy is in that aching stoop;
Through this dread shape humanity betrayed,
Plundered, profaned and disinherited,
Cries protest to the Judges of the World,
A protest that is also prophecy.

O masters, lords and rulers in all lands,
Is this the handiwork you give to God,
This monstrous thing distorted and soul-quenched?
How will you ever straighten up this shape;
Touch it again with immortality;
Give back the upward looking and the light;
Rebuild in it the music and the dream;
Make right the immemorial infamies,
Perfidious wrongs, immedicable woes?

O masters, lords and rulers in all lands,
How will the Future reckon with this Man?
How answer his brute question in that hour
When whirlwinds of rebellion shake the world?
How will it be with kingdoms and with kings --
With those who shaped him to the thing he is --
When this dumb Terror shall reply to God,
After the silence of the centuries?

Exordium.  [George Cabot Lodge]

Speak! said my soul, be stern and adequate;
The sunset falls from Heaven, the year is late,
Love waits with fallen tresses at thy gate
    And mourns for perished days.
Speak! in the rigor of thy fate and mine,
Ere these scant, dying days, bright-lipped with wine,
All one by one depart, resigned, divine,
    Through desert, autumn ways.

Speak! thou art lonely in thy chilly mind,
With all this desperate solitude of wind,
The solitude of tears that make thee blind,
    Of wild and causeless tears.
Speak! thou hast need of me, heart, hand and head,
Speak, if it be an echo of thy dread,
A dirge of hope, of young illusions dead --
    Perchance God hears!

The Frozen Grail.  [Elsa Barker]

    (To Peary and his men, before the last expedition)

Why sing the legends of the Holy Grail,
The dead crusaders of the Sepulchre,
While these men live?  Are the great bards all dumb?
Here is a vision to shake the blood of Song,
And make Fame's watchman tremble at his post.

What shall prevail against the spirit of man,
When cold, the lean and snarling wolf of hunger,
The threatening spear of ice-mailed Solitude,
Silence, and space, and ghostly-footed Fear
Prevail not?  Dante, in his frozen hell
Shivering, endured no bleakness like the void
These men have warmed with their own flaming will,
And peopled with their dreams.  The wind from fierce
Arcturus in their faces, at their backs
The whip of the world's doubt, and in their souls
Courage to die -- if death shall be the price
Of that cold cup that will assuage their thirst;
They climb, and fall, and stagger toward the goal.
They lay themselves the road whereby they travel,
And sue God for a franchise.  Does He watch
Behind the lattice of the boreal lights?
In that grail-chapel of their stern-vowed quest,
Ninety of God's long paces toward the North,
Will they behold the splendor of His face?
To conquer the world must man renounce the world?
These have renounced it.  Had ye only faith
Ye might move mountains, said the Nazarene.
Why, these have faith to move the zones of man
Out to the point where All and Nothing meet.
They catch the bit of Death between their teeth,
In one wild dash to trample the unknown
And leap the gates of knowledge.  They have dared
Even to defy the sentinel that guards
The doors of the forbidden -- dared to hurl
Their breathing bodies after the Ideal,
That like the heavenly kingdom must be taken
Only by violence.  The star that leads
The leader of this quest has held the world
True to its orbit for a million years.

And shall he fail?  They never fail who light
Their lamp of faith at the unwavering flame
Burnt for the altar service of the Race
Since the beginning.  He shall find the strange --
The white immaculate Virgin of the North,
Whose steady gaze no mortal ever dared,
Whose icy hand no human ever grasped.
In the dread silence and the solitude
She waits and listens through the centuries
For one indomitable, destined soul,
Born to endure the glory of her eyes,
And lift his warm lips to the frozen Grail.

The Unconquered Air.  [Florence Earle Coates]


Others endure Man's rule:  he therefore deems
 I shall endure it -- I, the unconquered Air!
 Imagines this triumphant strength may bear
His paltry sway! yea, ignorantly dreams,
Because proud Rhea now his vassal seems,
 And Neptune him obeys in billowy lair,
 That he a more sublime assault may dare,
Where blown by tempest wild the vulture screams!

Presumptuous, he mounts:  I toss his bones
 Back from the height supernal he has braved:
Ay, as his vessel nears my perilous zones,
I blow the cockle-shell away like chaff
 And give him to the Sea he has enslaved.
He founders in its depths; and then I laugh!


Impregnable I held myself, secure
 Against intrusion.  Who can measure Man?
 How should I guess his mortal will outran
Defeat so far that danger could allure
For its own sake? -- that he would all endure,
 All sacrifice, all suffer, rather than
 Forego the daring dreams Olympian
That prophesy to him of victory sure?

Ah, tameless courage! -- dominating power
That, all attempting, in a deathless hour
 Made earth-born Titans godlike, in revolt! --
Fear is the fire that melts Icarian wings:
Who fears nor Fate, nor Time, nor what Time brings,
 May drive Apollo's steeds, or wield the thunderbolt!

The Happiest Heart.  [John Vance Cheney]

Who drives the horses of the sun
 Shall lord it but a day;
Better the lowly deed were done,
 And kept the humble way.

The rust will find the sword of fame,
 The dust will hide the crown;
Ay, none shall nail so high his name
 Time will not tear it down.

The happiest heart that ever beat
 Was in some quiet breast
That found the common daylight sweet,
 And left to Heaven the rest.

To a New York Shop-Girl dressed for Sunday.  [Anna Hempstead Branch]

To-day I saw the shop-girl go
Down gay Broadway to meet her beau.

Conspicuous, splendid, conscious, sweet,
She spread abroad and took the street.

And all that niceness would forbid,
Superb, she smiled upon and did.

Let other girls, whose happier days
Preserve the perfume of their ways,

Go modestly.  The passing hour
Adds splendor to their opening flower.

But from this child too swift a doom
Must steal her prettiness and bloom,

Toil and weariness hide the grace
That pleads a moment from her face.

So blame her not if for a day
She flaunts her glories while she may.

She half perceives, half understands,
Snatching her gifts with both her hands.

The little strut beneath the skirt
That lags neglected in the dirt,

The indolent swagger down the street --
Who can condemn such happy feet!

Innocent! vulgar -- that's the truth!
Yet with the darling wiles of youth!

The bright, self-conscious eyes that stare
With such hauteur, beneath such hair!
~Perhaps the men will find me fair!~

Charming and charmed, flippant, arrayed,
Fluttered and foolish, proud, displayed,
Infinite pathos of parade!

The bangles and the narrowed waist --
The tinsled boa -- forgive the taste!
Oh, the starved nights she gave for that,
And bartered bread to buy her hat!

She flows before the reproachful sage
And begs her woman's heritage.

Dear child, with the defiant eyes,
Insolent with the half surmise
We do not quite admire, I know
How foresight frowns on this vain show!

And judgment, wearily sad, may see
No grace in such frivolity.

Yet which of us was ever bold
To worship Beauty, hungry and cold!

Scorn famine down, proudly expressed
Apostle to what things are best.

Let him who starves to buy the food
For his soul's comfort find her good,

Nor chide the frills and furbelows
That are the prettiest things she knows.

Poet and prophet in God's eyes
Make no more perfect sacrifice.

Who knows before what inner shrine
She eats with them the bread and wine?

Poor waif!  One of the sacred few
That madly sought the best they knew!

Dear -- let me lean my cheek to-night
Close, close to yours.  Ah, that is right.

How warm and near!  At last I see
One beauty shines for thee and me.

So let us love and understand --
Whose hearts are hidden in God's hand.

And we will cherish your brief Spring
And all its fragile flowering.

God loves all prettiness, and on this
Surely his angels lay their kiss.

A Faun in Wall Street.  [John Myers O'Hara]

What shape so furtive steals along the dim
 Bleak street, barren of throngs, this day of June;
 This day of rest, when all the roses swoon
In Attic vales where dryads wait for him?
What sylvan this, and what the stranger whim
 That lured him here this golden afternoon;
 Ways where the dusk has fallen oversoon
In the deep canyon, torrentless and grim?

Great Pan is far, O mad estray, and these
 Bare walls that leap to heaven and hide the skies
Are fanes men rear to other deities;
 Far to the east the haunted woodland lies,
And cloudless still, from cyclad-dotted seas,
 Hymettus and the hills of Hellas rise.

The Mystic.  [Witter Bynner]

By seven vineyards on one hill
 We walked.  The native wine
In clusters grew beside us two,
 For your lips and for mine,

When, "Hark!" you said, -- "Was that a bell
 Or a bubbling spring we heard?"
But I was wise and closed my eyes
 And listened to a bird;

For as summer leaves are bent and shake
 With singers passing through,
So moves in me continually
 The winged breath of you.

You tasted from a single vine
 And took from that your fill --
But I inclined to every kind,
 All seven on one hill.

The Cloud.  [Josephine Preston Peabody]

The islands called me far away,
 The valleys called me home.
The rivers with a silver voice
 Drew on my heart to come.

The paths reached tendrils to my hair
 From every vine and tree.
There was no refuge anywhere
 Until I came to thee.

There is a northern cloud I know,
 Along a mountain crest;
And as she folds her wings of mist,
 So I could make my rest.

There is no chain to bind her so
 Unto that purple height;
And she will shine and wander, slow,
 Slow, with a cloud's delight.

Would she begone?  She melts away,
 A heavenly joyous thing.
Yet day will find the mountain white,
 White-folded with her wing.

As you may see, but half aware
 If it be late or soon,
Soft breathing on the day-time air,
 The fair forgotten Moon.

And though love cannot bind me, Love,
 -- Ah no! -- yet I could stay
Maybe, with wings forever spread,
 -- Forever, and a day.

The Thought of her.  [Richard Hovey]

My love for thee doth take me unaware,
 When most with lesser things my brain is wrought,
 As in some nimble interchange of thought
The silence enters, and the talkers stare.
Suddenly I am still and thou art there,
 A viewless visitant and unbesought,
 And all my thinking trembles into nought
And all my being opens like a prayer.
Thou art the lifted Chalice in my soul,
 And I a dim church at the thought of thee;
  Brief be the moment, but the mass is said,
The benediction like an aureole
 Is on my spirit, and shuddering through me
  A rapture like the rapture of the dead.

Song.  "If love were but a little thing --".  [Florence Earle Coates]

If love were but a little thing --
 Strange love, which, more than all, is great --
One might not such devotion bring,
 Early to serve and late.

If love were but a passing breath --
 Wild love -- which, as God knows, is sweet --
One might not make of life and death
 A pillow for love's feet.

The Rosary.  [Robert Cameron Rogers]

The hours I spent with thee, dear heart,
 Are as a string of pearls to me;
I count them over, every one apart,
        My rosary.

Each hour a pearl, each pearl a prayer,
 To still a heart in absence wrung;
I tell each bead unto the end -- and there
        A cross is hung.

Oh, memories that bless -- and burn!
 Oh, barren gain -- and bitter loss!
I kiss each bead, and strive at last to learn
        To kiss the cross,
        To kiss the cross.

Once.  [Trumbull Stickney]

That day her eyes were deep as night.
She had the motion of the rose,
The bird that veers across the light,
The waterfall that leaps and throws
Its irised spindrift to the sun.
She seemed a wind of music passing on.

Alone I saw her that one day
Stand in the window of my life.
Her sudden hand melted away
Under my lips, and without strife
I held her in my arms awhile
And drew into my lips her living smile, --

Now many a day ago and year!
Since when I dream and lie awake
In summer nights to feel her near,
And from the heavy darkness break
Glitters, till all my spirit swims
And her hand hovers on my shaking limbs.

If once again before I die
I drank the laughter of her mouth
And quenched my fever utterly,
I say, and should it cost my youth,
'T were well! for I no more should wait
Hammering midnight on the doors of fate.

Love knocks at the Door.  [John Hall Wheelock]

In the pain, in the loneliness of love,
 To the heart of my sweet I fled.
I knocked at the door of her living heart,
 "Let in -- let in --" I said.

"What seek you here?" the voices cried,
 "You seeker among the dead" --
"Herself I seek, herself I seek,
 Let in -- let in!" I said.

They opened the door of her living heart,
 But the core thereof was dead.
They opened the core of her living heart --
 A worm at the core there fed.

"Where is my sweet, where is my sweet?"
 "She is gone away, she is fled.
Long years ago she fled away,
 She will never return," they said.

The Candle and the Flame.  [George Sylvester Viereck]

Thy hands are like cool herbs that bring
 Balm to men's hearts, upon them laid;
 Thy lovely-petalled lips are made
As any blossom of the spring.
But in thine eyes there is a thing,
 O Love, that makes me half afraid.

For they are old, those eyes . . .  They gleam
Between the waking and the dream
 With antique wisdom, like a bright
Lamp strangled by the temple's veil,
 That beckons to the acolyte
Who prays with trembling lips and pale
 In the long watches of the night.

They are as old as Life.  They were
 When proud Gomorrah reared its head
A new-born city.  They were there
 When in the places of the dead
Men swathed the body of the Lord.
 They visioned Pa-wak raise the wall
 Of China.  They saw Carthage fall
And marked the grim Hun lead his horde.

There is no secret anywhere
 Nor any joy or shame that lies
 Not writ somehow in those child-eyes
 Of thine, O Love, in some strange wise.
Thou art the lad Endymion,
 And that great queen with spice and myrrh
From Araby, whom Solomon
 Delighted, and the lust of her.

The legions marching from the sea
With Caesar's cohorts sang of thee,
 How thy fair head was more to him
Than all the land of Italy.
Yea, in the old days thou wast she
 Who lured Mark Antony from home
To death and Egypt, seeing he
 Lost love when he lost Rome.

Thou saw'st old Tubal strike the lyre,
 Yea, first for thee the poet hurled
Defiance at God's starry choir!
Thou art the romance and the fire,
 Thou art the pageant and the strife,
The clamour, mounting high and higher,
 From all the lovers in the world
 To all the lords of love and life.

     .    .    .    .    .

Perhaps the passions of mankind
 Are but the torches mystical
Lit by some spirit-hand to find
The dwelling of the Master-Mind
 That knows the secret of it all,
In the great darkness and the wind.

We are the Candle, Love the Flame,
 Each little life-light flickers out,
Love bides, immortally the same:
When of life's fever we shall tire
He will desert us and the fire
 Rekindle new in prince or lout.

Twin-born of knowledge and of lust,
 He was before us, he shall be
Indifferent still of thee and me,
When shattered is life's golden cup,
When thy young limbs are shrivelled up,
And when my heart is turned to dust.

Nay, sweet, smile not to know at last
 That thou and I, or knave, or fool,
 Are but the involitient tool
Of some world-purpose vague and vast.
No bar to passion's fury set,
 With monstrous poppies spice the wine:
 For only drunk are we divine,
And only mad shall we forget!

Stains.  [Theodosia Garrison]

The three ghosts on the lonesome road
 Spake each to one another,
"Whence came that stain about your mouth
 No lifted hand may cover?"
"From eating of forbidden fruit,
 Brother, my brother."

The three ghosts on the sunless road
 Spake each to one another,
"Whence came that red burn on your foot
 No dust nor ash may cover?"
"I stamped a neighbor's hearth-flame out,
 Brother, my brother."

The three ghosts on the windless road
 Spake each to one another,
"Whence came that blood upon your hand
 No other hand may cover?"
"From breaking of a woman's heart,
 Brother, my brother."

"Yet on the earth clean men we walked,
 Glutton and Thief and Lover;
White flesh and fair it hid our stains
 That no man might discover."
"Naked the soul goes up to God,
 Brother, my brother."

De Massa ob de Sheepfol'.  [Sarah Pratt McLean Greene]

De massa ob de sheepfol'
 Dat guard de sheepfol' bin,
Look out in de gloomerin' meadows
 Whar de long night rain begin --
So he call to de hirelin' shephe'd:
 "Is my sheep -- is dey all come in?"

Oh den, says de hirelin' shephe'd,
 "Dey's some, dey's black and thin,
And some, dey's po' ol' wedda's --
 But de res', dey's all brung in.
 But de res', dey's all brung in."

Den de massa ob de sheepfol'
 Dat guard de sheepfol' bin,
Goes down in de gloomerin' meadows
 Whar de long night rain begin --
So he le' down de ba's ob de sheepfol',
 Callin' sof':  "Come in!  Come in!"
 Callin' sof':  "Come in!  Come in!"

Den up t'ro de gloomerin' meadows,
 T'ro de col' night rain an' win',
An' up t'ro de gloomerin' rain-paf
 Whar de sleet fa' piercin' thin --
De po' los' sheep ob de sheepfol'
 Dey all comes gadderin' in.
De po' los' sheep ob de sheepfol',
 Dey all comes gadderin' in!

Black Sheep.  [Richard Burton]

From their folded mates they wander far,
 Their ways seem harsh and wild;
They follow the beck of a baleful star,
 Their paths are dream-beguiled.

Yet haply they sought but a wider range,
 Some loftier mountain-slope,
And little recked of the country strange
 Beyond the gates of hope.

And haply a bell with a luring call
 Summoned their feet to tread
Midst the cruel rocks, where the deep pitfall
 And the lurking snare are spread.

Maybe, in spite of their tameless days
 Of outcast liberty,
They're sick at heart for the homely ways
 Where their gathered brothers be.

And oft at night, when the plains fall dark
 And the hills loom large and dim,
For the Shepherd's voice they mutely hark,
 And their souls go out to him.

Meanwhile, "Black sheep!  Black sheep!" we cry,
 Safe in the inner fold;
And maybe they hear, and wonder why,
 And marvel, out in the cold.

Let me no more a Mendicant.  [Arthur Colton]

Let me no more a mendicant
Without the gate
Of the world's kingly palace wait;
Morning is spent,
The sentinels change and challenge in the tower,
Now slant the shadows eastward hour by hour.

Open the door, O Seneschal!  Within
I see them sit,
The feasters, daring destiny with wit,
Casting to win
Or lose their utmost, and men hurry by
At offices of confluent energy.

Let me not here a mendicant
Without the gate
Linger from dayspring till the night is late,
And there are sent
All homeless stars to loiter in the sky,
And beggared midnight winds to wander by.

Lincoln, the Man of the People.  [Edwin Markham]

When the Norn Mother saw the Whirlwind Hour
Greatening and darkening as it hurried on,
She left the Heaven of Heroes and came down
To make a man to meet the mortal need.
She took the tried clay of the common road --
Clay warm yet with the genial heat of Earth,
Dashed through it all a strain of prophecy;
Tempered the heap with thrill of human tears;
Then mixed a laughter with the serious stuff.
Into the shape she breathed a flame to light
That tender, tragic, ever-changing face.
Here was a man to hold against the world,
A man to match the mountains and the sea.

The color of the ground was in him, the red earth;
The smack and tang of elemental things;
The rectitude and patience of the cliff;
The good-will of the rain that loves all leaves;
The friendly welcome of the wayside well;
The courage of the bird that dares the sea;
The gladness of the wind that shakes the corn;
The pity of the snow that hides all scars;
The secrecy of streams that make their way
Beneath the mountain to the rifted rock;
The tolerance and equity of light
That gives as freely to the shrinking flower
As to the great oak flaring to the wind --
To the grave's low hill as to the Matterhorn
That shoulders out the sky.

                             Sprung from the West,
The strength of virgin forests braced his mind,
The hush of spacious prairies stilled his soul.
Up from log cabin to the Capitol,
One fire was on his spirit, one resolve --
To send the keen ax to the root of wrong,
Clearing a free way for the feet of God.
And evermore he burned to do his deed
With the fine stroke and gesture of a king:
He built the rail-pile as he built the State,
Pouring his splendid strength through every blow,
The conscience of him testing every stroke,
To make his deed the measure of a man.

So came the Captain with the mighty heart;
And when the judgment thunders split the house,
Wrenching the rafters from their ancient rest,
He held the ridgepole up, and spiked again
The rafters of the Home.  He held his place --
Held the long purpose like a growing tree --
Held on through blame and faltered not at praise.
And when he fell in whirlwind, he went down
As when a lordly cedar, green with boughs,
Goes down with a great shout upon the hills,
And leaves a lonesome place against the sky.

The Master.  [Edwin Arlington Robinson]


A flying word from here and there
Had sown the name at which we sneered,
But soon the name was everywhere,
To be reviled and then revered:
A presence to be loved and feared,
We cannot hide it, or deny
That we, the gentlemen who jeered,
May be forgotten by and by.

He came when days were perilous
And hearts of men were sore beguiled;
And having made his note of us,
He pondered and was reconciled.
Was ever master yet so mild
As he, and so untamable?
We doubted, even when he smiled,
Not knowing what he knew so well.

He knew that undeceiving fate
Would shame us whom he served unsought;
He knew that he must wince and wait --
The jest of those for whom he fought;
He knew devoutly what he thought
Of us and of our ridicule;
He knew that we must all be taught
Like little children in a school.

We gave a glamour to the task
That he encountered and saw through,
But little of us did he ask,
And little did we ever do.
And what appears if we review
The season when we railed and chaffed?
It is the face of one who knew
That we were learning while we laughed.

The face that in our vision feels
Again the venom that we flung,
Transfigured to the world reveals
The vigilance to which we clung.
Shrewd, hallowed, harassed, and among
The mysteries that are untold,
The face we see was never young,
Nor could it ever have been old.

For he, to whom we have applied
Our shopman's test of age and worth,
Was elemental when he died,
As he was ancient at his birth:
The saddest among kings of earth,
Bowed with a galling crown, this man
Met rancor with a cryptic mirth,
Laconic -- and Olympian.

The love, the grandeur, and the fame
Are bounded by the world alone;
The calm, the smouldering, and the flame
Of awful patience were his own:
With him they are forever flown
Past all our fond self-shadowings,
Wherewith we cumber the Unknown
As with inept Icarian wings.

For we were not as other men:
'T was ours to soar and his to see.
But we are coming down again,
And we shall come down pleasantly;
Nor shall we longer disagree
On what it is to be sublime,
But flourish in our perigee
And have one Titan at a time.

On the Building of Springfield.  [Nicholas Vachel Lindsay]

Let not our town be large -- remembering
 That little Athens was the Muses' home;
That Oxford rules the heart of London still,
 That Florence gave the Renaissance to Rome.

Record it for the grandson of your son --
 A city is not builded in a day:
Our little town cannot complete her soul
 Till countless generations pass away.

Now let each child be joined as to a church
 To her perpetual hopes, each man ordained;
Let every street be made a reverent aisle
 Where music grows, and beauty is unchained.

Let Science and Machinery and Trade
 Be slaves of her, and make her all in all --
Building against our blatant restless time
 An unseen, skillful, mediaeval wall.

Let every citizen be rich toward God.
 Let Christ, the beggar, teach divinity --
Let no man rule who holds his money dear.
 Let this, our city, be our luxury.

We should build parks that students from afar
 Would choose to starve in, rather than go home --
Fair little squares, with Phidian ornament --
 Food for the spirit, milk and honeycomb.

Songs shall be sung by us in that good day --
 Songs we have written -- blood within the rhyme
Beating, as when old England still was glad,
 The purple, rich, Elizabethan time.

Say, is my prophecy too fair and far?
 I only know, unless her faith be high,
The soul of this our Nineveh is doomed,
 Our little Babylon will surely die.

Some city on the breast of Illinois
 No wiser and no better at the start,
By faith shall rise redeemed -- by faith shall rise
 Bearing the western glory in her heart --

The genius of the Maple, Elm and Oak,
 The secret hidden in each grain of corn --
The glory that the prairie angels sing
 At night when sons of Life and Love are born --

Born but to struggle, squalid and alone,
 Broken and wandering in their early years.
When will they make our dusty streets their goal,
 Within our attics hide their sacred tears?

When will they start our vulgar blood athrill
 With living language -- words that set us free?
When will they make a path of beauty clear
 Between our riches and our liberty?

We must have many Lincoln-hearted men --
 A city is not builded in a day --
And they must do their work, and come and go
 While countless generations pass away.

The Poet's Town.  [John G. Neihardt]


'Mid glad green miles of tillage
And fields where cattle graze,
A prosy little village,
You drowse away the days.

And yet -- a wakeful glory
Clings round you as you doze;
One living lyric story
Makes music of your prose.

Here once, returning never,
The feet of song have trod;
And flashed -- Oh, once forever! --
The singing Flame of God.


These were his fields Elysian:
With mystic eyes he saw
The sowers planting vision,
The reapers gleaning awe.

Serfs to a sordid duty,
He saw them with his heart,
Priests of the Ultimate Beauty,
Feeding the flame of art.

The weird, untempled Makers
Pulsed in the things he saw;
The wheat through its virile acres
Billowed the Song of Law.

The epic roll of the furrow
Flung from the writing plow,
The dactyl phrase of the green-rowed maize
Measured the music of Now.


Sipper of ancient flagons,
Often the lonesome boy
Saw in the farmers' wagons
The chariots hurled at Troy.

Trundling in dust and thunder
They rumbled up and down,
Laden with princely plunder,
Loot of the tragic Town.

And once when the rich man's daughter
Smiled on the boy at play,
Sword-storms, giddy with slaughter,
Swept back the ancient day!

War steeds shrieked in the quiet,
Far and hoarse were the cries;
And Oh, through the din and the riot,
The music of Helen's eyes!

Stabbed with the olden Sorrow,
He slunk away from the play,
For the Past and the vast To-morrow
Were wedded in his To-day.


Rich with the dreamer's pillage,
An idle and worthless lad,
Least in a prosy village,
And prince in Allahabad;

Lover of golden apples,
Munching a daily crust;
Haunter of dream-built chapels,
Worshipping in the dust;

Dull to the worldly duty,
Less to the town he grew,
And more to the God of Beauty
Than even the grocer knew!


Corn for the buyers, and cattle --
But what could the dreamer sell?
Echoes of cloudy battle?
Music from heaven and hell?

Spices and bales of plunder
Argosied over the sea?
Tapestry woven of wonder,
And myrrh from Araby?

None of your dream-stuffs, Fellow,
Looter of Samarcand!
Gold is heavy and yellow,
And value is weighed in the hand!


And yet, when the years had humbled
The Kings in the Realm of the Boy,
Song-built bastions crumbled,
Ash-heaps smothering Troy;

Thirsting for shattered flagons,
Quaffing a brackish cup,
With all of his chariots, wagons --
He never could quite grow up.

The debt to the ogre, To-morrow,
He never could comprehend:
Why should the borrowers borrow?
Why should the lenders lend?

Never an oak tree borrowed,
But took for its needs -- and gave.
Never an oak tree sorrowed;
Debt was the mark of the slave.

Grass in the priceless weather
Sucked from the paps of the Earth,
And the hills that were lean it fleshed with green --
Oh, what is a lesson worth?

But still did the buyers barter
And the sellers squint at the scales;
And price was the stake of the martyr,
And cost was the lock of the jails.


Windflowers herald the Maytide,
Rendering worth for worth;
Ragweeds gladden the wayside,
Biting the dugs of the Earth;

Violets, scattering glories,
Feed from the dewy gem:
But dreamers are fed by the living and dead --
And what is the gift from them?


Never a stalk of the Summer
Dreams of its mission and doom:
Only to hasten the Comer --
Martyrdom unto the Bloom.

Ever the Mighty Chooser
Plucks when the fruit is ripe,
Scorning the mass and letting it pass,
Keen for the cryptic type.

Greece in her growing season
Troubled the lands and seas,
Plotted and fought and suffered and wrought --
Building a Sophocles!

Only a faultless temple
Stands for the vassal's groan;
The harlot's strife and the faith of the wife
Blend in a graven stone.

Ne'er do the stern gods cherish
The hope of the million lives;
Always the Fact shall perish
And only the Truth survives.

Gardens of roses wither,
Shaping the perfect rose:
And the poet's song shall live for the long,
Dumb, aching years of prose.


King of a Realm of Magic,
He was the fool of the town,
Hiding the ache of the tragic
Under the grin of the clown.

Worn with the vain endeavor
To fit in the sordid plan;
Doomed to be poet forever,
He longed to be only a man;

To be freed from the god's enthralling,
Back with the reeds of the stream;
Deaf to the Vision calling,
And dead to the lash of the Dream.


But still did the Mighty Makers
Stir in the common sod;
The corn through its awful acres
Trembled and thrilled with God!

More than a man was the sower,
Lured by a man's desire,
For a triune Bride walked close at his side --
Dew and Dust and Fire!

More than a man was the plowman,
Shouting his gee and haw;
For a something dim kept pace with him,
And ever the poet saw;

Till the winds of the cosmic struggle
Made of his flesh a flute,
To echo the tune of a whirlwind rune
Unto the million mute.


Son of the Mother of mothers,
The womb and the tomb of Life,
With Fire and Air for brothers
And a clinging Dream for a wife;

Ever the soul of the dreamer
Strove with its mortal mesh,
And the lean flame grew till it fretted through
The last thin links of flesh.

Oh, rending the veil asunder,
He fled to mingle again
With the dred Orestean thunder,
The Lear of the driven rain!


Once in a cycle the comet
Doubles its lonesome track.
Enriched with the tears of a thousand years,
Aeschylus wanders back.

Ever inweaving, returning,
The near grows out of the far;
And Homer shall sing once more in a swing
Of the austere Polar Star.

Then what of the lonesome dreamer
With the lean blue flame in his breast?
And who was your clown for a day, O Town,
The strange, unbidden guest?


~'Mid glad green miles of tillage
And fields where cattle graze;
A prosy little village,
You drowse away the days.

And yet -- a wakeful glory
Clings round you as you doze;
One living, lyric story
Makes music of your prose!~

The New Life.  [Witter Bynner]

Perhaps they laughed at Dante in his youth,
Told him that truth
Had unappealably been said
In the great masterpieces of the dead: --
Perhaps he listened and but bowed his head
In acquiescent honour, while his heart
Held natal tidings, -- that a new life is the part
Of every man that's born,
A new life never lived before,
And a new expectant art;
It is the variations of the morn
That are forever, more and more,
The single dawning of the single truth.
So answers Dante to the heart of youth!

Martin.  [Joyce Kilmer]

When I am tired of earnest men,
 Intense and keen and sharp and clever,
Pursuing fame with brush or pen
 Or counting metal disks forever,
Then from the halls of shadowland
 Beyond the trackless purple sea
Old Martin's ghost comes back to stand
 Beside my desk and talk to me.

Still on his delicate pale face
 A quizzical thin smile is showing,
His cheeks are wrinkled like fine lace,
 His kind blue eyes are gay and glowing.
He wears a brilliant-hued cravat,
 A suit to match his soft gray hair,
A rakish stick, a knowing hat,
 A manner blithe and debonair.

How good, that he who always knew
 That being lovely was a duty,
Should have gold halls to wander through
 And should himself inhabit beauty.
How like his old unselfish way
 To leave those halls of splendid mirth
And comfort those condemned to stay
 Upon the bleak and sombre earth.

Some people ask:  What cruel chance
 Made Martin's life so sad a story?
Martin?  Why, he exhaled romance
 And wore an overcoat of glory.
A fleck of sunlight in the street,
 A horse, a book, a girl who smiled, --
Such visions made each moment sweet
 For this receptive, ancient child.

Because it was old Martin's lot
 To be, not make, a decoration,
Shall we then scorn him, having not
 His genius of appreciation?
Rich joy and love he got and gave;
 His heart was merry as his dress.
Pile laurel wreaths upon his grave
 Who did not gain, but was, success.

As in the Midst of Battle there is Room.  [George Santayana]

As in the midst of battle there is room
 For thoughts of love, and in foul sin for mirth;
 As gossips whisper of a trinket's worth
Spied by the death-bed's flickering candle-gloom;
As in the crevices of Caesar's tomb
 The sweet herbs flourish on a little earth:
 So in this great disaster of our birth
We can be happy, and forget our doom.

For morning, with a ray of tenderest joy
 Gilding the iron heaven, hides the truth,
And evening gently woos us to employ
 Our grief in idle catches.  Such is youth;
Till from that summer's trance we wake, to find
Despair before us, vanity behind.

Ex Libris.  [Arthur Upson]

In an old book at even as I read
 Fast fading words adown my shadowy page,
 I crossed a tale of how, in other age,
At Arqua, with his books around him, sped
The word to Petrarch; and with noble head
 Bowed gently o'er his volume that sweet sage
 To Silence paid his willing seigniorage.
And they who found him whispered, "He is dead!"

Thus timely from old comradeships would I
 To Silence also rise.  Let there be night,
Stillness, and only these staid watchers by,
 And no light shine save my low study light --
Lest of his kind intent some human cry
 Interpret not the Messenger aright.

The Poet.  [Mildred McNeal Sweeney]

Himself is least afraid
 When the singing lips in the dust
With all mute lips are laid.
 For thither all men must.
Nor is the end long stayed.

But he, having cast his song
 Upon the faithful air
And given it speed -- is strong
 That last strange hour to dare,
Nor wills to tarry long.

Adown immortal time
 That greater self shall pass,
And wear its eager prime
 And lend the youth it has
Like one far blowing chime.

He has made sure the quest
 And now -- his word gone forth --
May have his perfect rest
 Low in the tender earth,
The wind across his breast.

When I have gone Weird Ways.  [John G. Neihardt]

When I have finished with this episode,
Left the hard, uphill road,
And gone weird ways to seek another load,
 Oh, friends, regret me not, nor weep for me,
 Child of Infinity!

Nor dig a grave, nor rear for me a tomb
To say with lying writ:  "Here in the gloom
He who loved bigness takes a narrow room,
 Content to pillow here his weary head,
 For he is dead."

But give my body to the funeral pyre,
And bid the laughing fire,
Eager and strong and swift, like my desire,
 Scatter my subtle essence into space,
 Free me of time and place.

And sweep the bitter ashes from the hearth,
Fling back the dust I borrowed from the earth
Into the chemic broil of death and birth,
 The vast alembic of the cryptic scheme,
 Warm with the master-dream.

And thus, O little house that sheltered me,
Dissolve again in wind and rain, to be
Part of the cosmic weird economy.
 And, Oh, how oft with new life shalt thou lift
 Out of the atom-drift!

Trumbull Stickney.  [George Cabot Lodge]


In silence, solitude and stern surmise
 His faith was tried and proved commensurate
 With life and death.  The stone-blind eyes of Fate
Perpetually stared into his eyes,
Yet to the hazard of the enterprise
 He brought his soul, expectant and elate,
 And challenged, like a champion at the Gate,
Death's undissuadable austerities.
And thus, full-armed in all that Truth reprieves
 From dissolution, he beheld the breath
  Of daybreak flush his thought's exalted ways,
While, like Dodona's sad, prophetic leaves,
 Round him the scant, supreme, momentous days
  Trembled and murmured in the wind of Death.


There moved a Presence always by his side,
 With eyes of pleasure and passion and wild tears,
 And on her lips the murmur of many years,
And in her hair the chaplets of a bride;
And with him, hour by hour, came one beside,
 Scatheless of Time and Time's vicissitude,
 Whose lips, perforce of endless solitude,
Were silent and whose eyes were blind and wide.
But when he died came One who wore a wreath
 Of star-light, and with fingers calm and bland
  Smoothed from his brows the trace of mortal pain;
And of the two who stood on either hand,
 "This one is Life," he said, "And this is Death,
  And I am Love and Lord over these twain!"

Sentence.  [Witter Bynner]

Shall I say that what heaven gave
 Earth has taken? --
Or that sleepers in the grave

One sole sentence can I know,
 Can I say:
You, my comrade, had to go,
 I to stay.

Comrades.  [George Edward Woodberry]

Where are the friends that I knew in my Maying,
 In the days of my youth, in the first of my roaming?
We were dear; we were leal; O, far we went straying;
 Now never a heart to my heart comes homing! --
Where is he now, the dark boy slender
 Who taught me bare-back, stirrup and reins?
I loved him; he loved me; my beautiful, tender
 Tamer of horses on grass-grown plains.

Where is he now whose eyes swam brighter,
 Softer than love, in his turbulent charms;
Who taught me to strike, and to fall, dear fighter,
 And gathered me up in his boyhood arms;
Taught me the rifle, and with me went riding,
 Suppled my limbs to the horseman's war;
Where is he now, for whom my heart's biding,
 Biding, biding -- but he rides far!

O love that passes the love of woman!
 Who that hath felt it shall ever forget,
When the breath of life with a throb turns human,
 And a lad's heart is to a lad's heart set?
Ever, forever, lover and rover --
 They shall cling, nor each from other shall part
Till the reign of the stars in the heavens be over,
 And life is dust in each faithful heart!

They are dead, the American grasses under;
 There is no one now who presses my side;
By the African chotts I am riding asunder,
 And with great joy ride I the last great ride.
I am fey; I am fain of sudden dying;
 Thousands of miles there is no one near;
And my heart -- all the night it is crying, crying
 In the bosoms of dead lads darling-dear.

Hearts of my music -- them dark earth covers;
 Comrades to die, and to die for, were they;
In the width of the world there were no such rovers --
 Back to back, breast to breast, it was ours to stay;
And the highest on earth was the vow that we cherished,
 To spur forth from the crowd and come back never more,
And to ride in the track of great souls perished
 Till the nests of the lark shall roof us o'er.

Yet lingers a horseman on Altai highlands,
 Who hath joy of me, riding the Tartar glissade;
And one, far faring o'er orient islands
 Whose blood yet glints with my blade's accolade;
North, west, east, I fling you my last hallooing,
 Last love to the breasts where my own has bled;
Through the reach of the desert my soul leaps pursuing
 My star where it rises a Star of the Dead.

Comrades.  [Richard Hovey]

Comrades, pour the wine to-night
For the parting is with dawn!
Oh, the clink of cups together,
With the daylight coming on!
Greet the morn
With a double horn,
When strong men drink together!

Comrades, gird your swords to-night,
For the battle is with dawn!
Oh, the clash of shields together,
With the triumph coming on!
Greet the foe,
And lay him low,
When strong men fight together!

Comrades, watch the tides to-night,
For the sailing is with dawn!
Oh, to face the spray together,
With the tempest coming on!
Greet the sea
With a shout of glee,
When strong men roam together!

Comrades, give a cheer to-night,
For the dying is with dawn!
Oh, to meet the stars together,
With the silence coming on!
Greet the end
As a friend a friend,
When strong men die together!

Calverly's.  [Edwin Arlington Robinson]

We go no more to Calverly's,
For there the lights are few and low;
And who are there to see by them,
Or what they see, we do not know.
Poor strangers of another tongue
May now creep in from anywhere,
And we, forgotten, be no more
Than twilight on a ruin there.

We two, the remnant.  All the rest
Are cold and quiet.  You nor I,
Nor fiddle now, nor flagon-lid,
May ring them back from where they lie.
No fame delays oblivion
For them, but something yet survives:
A record written fair, could we
But read the book of scattered lives.

There'll be a page for Leffingwell,
And one for Lingard, the Moon-calf;
And who knows what for Clavering,
Who died because he couldn't laugh?
Who knows or cares?  No sign is here,
No face, no voice, no memory;
No Lingard with his eerie joy,
No Clavering, no Calverly.

We cannot have them here with us
To say where their light lives are gone,
Or if they be of other stuff
Than are the moons of Ilion.
So, be their place of one estate
With ashes, echoes, and old wars, --
Or ever we be of the night,
Or we be lost among the stars.

Uriel.  [Percy MacKaye]

    (In memory of William Vaughn Moody)


Uriel, you that in the ageless sun
Sit in the awful silences of light,
Singing of vision hid from human sight, --
Prometheus, beautiful rebellious one!
And you, Deucalion,
For whose blind seed was brought the illuming spark,
Are you not gathered, now his day is done,
Beside the brink of that relentless dark --
The dark where your dear singer's ghost is gone?


Imagined beings, who majestic blend
Your forms with beauty! -- questing, unconfined,
The mind conceived you, though the quenched mind
Goes down in dark where you in dawn ascend.
Our songs can but suspend
The ultimate silence:  yet could song aspire
The realms of mortal music to extend
And wake a Sibyl's voice or Seraph's lyre --
How should it tell the dearness of a friend?


The simplest is the inexpressible;
The heart of music still evades the Muse,
And arts of men the heart of man suffuse,
And saddest things are made of silence still.
In vain the senses thrill
To give our sorrows glorious relief
In pyre of verse and pageants volatile,
And I, in vain, to speak for him my grief
Whose spirit of fire invokes my waiting will.


To him the best of friendship needs must be
Uttered no more; yet was he so endowed
That Poetry because of him is proud
And he more noble for his poetry,
Wherefore infallibly
I obey the strong compulsion which this verse
Lays on my lips with strange austerity --
Now that his voice is silent -- to rehearse
For my own heart how he was dear to me.


Not by your gradual sands, elusive Time,
We measure your gray sea, that never rests;
The bleeding hour-glasses in our breasts
Mete with quick pangs the ebbing of our prime,
And drip, like sudden rime
In March, that melts to runnels from a pane
The south breathes on -- oblivion of sublime
Crystallizations, and the ruthless wane
Of glittering stars, that scarce had range to climb.


Darkling those constellations of his soul
Glimmered, while racks of stellar lightning shot
The white, creative meteors of thought
Through that last night, where -- clad in cloudy stole --
Beside his ebbing shoal
Of life-blood, stood Saint Paul, blazing a theme
Of living drama from a fiery scroll
Across his stretched vision as in dream --
When Death, with blind dark, blotted out the whole.


And yet not all:  though darkly alien
Those uncompleted worlds of work to be
Are waned; still, touched by them, the memory
Gives afterglow; and now that comes again
The mellow season when
Our eyes last met, his kindling currents run
Quickening within me gladness and new ken
Of life, that I have shared his prime with one
Who wrought large-minded for the love of men.


But not alone to share that large estate
Of work and interchange of communings --
The little human paths to heavenly things
Were also ours:  the casual, intimate
Vistas, which consecrate --
With laughter and quick tears -- the dusty noon
Of days, and by moist beams irradiate
Our plodding minds with courage, and attune
The fellowship that bites its thumb at fate.


Where art thou now, mine host Guffanti? -- where
The iridescence of thy motley troop!
Ah, where the merry, animated group
That snuggled elbows for an extra chair,
When space was none to spare,
To pour the votive Chianti for a toast
To dramas dark and lyrics debonair,
The while, to `Bella Napoli', mine host
Exhaled his Parmazan, Parnassan air!


Thy Parmazan, immortal laird of ease,
Can never mold, thy caviare is blest,
While still our glowing Uriel greets the rest
Around thy royal board of memories,
Where sit, the salt of these,
He of the laughter of a Hundred Lights,
Blithe Eldorado of high poesies,
And he -- of enigmatic gentle knights
The kindly keen -- who sings of `Calverly's'.


Because he never wore his sentient heart
For crows and jays to peck, ofttimes to such
He seemed a silent fellow, who o'ermuch
Held from the general gossip-ground apart,
Or tersely spoke, and tart:
How should they guess what eagle tore, within,
His quick of sympathy for humblest smart
Of human wretchedness, or probed his spleen
Of scorn against the hypocritic mart!


Sometimes insufferable seemed to come
That wrath of sympathy:  One windy night
We watched through squalid panes, forlornly white, --
Amid immense machines' incessant hum --
Frail figures, gaunt and dumb,
Of overlabored girls and children, bowed
Above their slavish toil:  "O God! --  A bomb,
A bomb!" he cried, "and with one fiery cloud
Expunge the horrible Caesars of this slum!"


Another night dreams on the Cornish hills:
Trembling within the low moon's pallid fires,
The tall corn-tassels lift their fragrant spires;
From filmy spheres, a liquid starlight fills --
Like dew of daffodils --
The fragile dark, where multitudinous
The rhythmic, intermittent silence thrills,
Like song, the valleys. --  "Hark!" he murmurs, "Thus
May bards from crickets learn their canticles!"


Now Morning, not less lavish of her sweets,
Leads us along the woodpaths -- in whose hush
The quivering alchemy of the pure thrush
Cools from above the balsam-dripping heats --
To find, in green retreats,
'Mid men of clay, the great, quick-hearted man
Whose subtle art our human age secretes,
Or him whose brush, tinct with cerulean,
Blooms with soft castle-towers and cloud-capped fleets.


Still to the sorcery of August skies
In frilled crimson flaunt the hollyhocks,
Where, lithely poised along the garden walks,
His little maid enamoured blithe outvies
The dipping butterflies
In motion -- ah, in grace how grown the while,
Since he was wont to render to her eyes
His knightly court, or touch with flitting smile
Her father's heart by his true flatteries!


But summer's golden pastures boast no trail
So splendid as our fretted snowshoes blaze
Where, sharp across the amethystine ways,
Iron Ascutney looms in azure mail,
And, like a frozen grail,
The frore sun sets, intolerably fair;
Mute, in our homebound snow-tracks, we exhale
The silvery cold, and soon -- where bright logs flare --
Talk the long indoor hours, till embers fail.


Ah, with the smoke what smouldering desires
Waft to the starlight up the swirling flue! --
Thoughts that may never, as the swallows do,
Nest circling homeward to their native fires!
Ardors the soul suspires
The extinct stars drink with the dreamer's breath;
The morning-song of Eden's early choirs
Grows dim with Adam; close at the ear of death
Relentless angels tune our earthly lyres!


Let it be so:  More sweet it is to be
A listener of love's ephemeral song,
And live with beauty though it be not long,
And die enamoured of eternity,
Though in the apogee
Of time there sit no individual
Godhead of life, than to reject the plea
Of passionate beauty:  loveliness is all,
And love is more divine than memory.

Azrael.  [Robert Gilbert Welsh]

The angels in high places
 Who minister to us,
Reflect God's smile, -- their faces
 Are luminous;
Save one, whose face is hidden,
 (The Prophet saith),
The unwelcome, the unbidden,
 Azrael, Angel of Death.
And yet that veiled face, I know
 Is lit with pitying eyes,
Like those faint stars, the first to glow
 Through cloudy winter skies.
That they may never tire,
 Angels, by God's decree,
Bear wings of snow and fire, --
 Passion and purity;
Save one, all unavailing,
 (The Prophet saith),
His wings are gray and trailing,
 Azrael, Angel of Death.
And yet the souls that Azrael brings
 Across the dark and cold,
Look up beneath those folded wings,
 And find them lined with gold.

The Flight.  [Lloyd Mifflin]

Upon a cloud among the stars we stood.
The angel raised his hand and looked and said,
"Which world, of all yon starry myriad,
Shall we make wing to?"  The still solitude
Became a harp whereon his voice and mood
Made spheral music round his haloed head.
I spake -- for then I had not long been dead --
"Let me look round upon the vasts, and brood
A moment on these orbs ere I decide . . .
What is yon lower star that beauteous shines
And with soft splendour now incarnadines
Our wings? --  THERE would I go and there abide."
Then he as one who some child's thought divines:
"That is the world where yesternight you died."

The Rival.  [James Whitcomb Riley]

I so loved once, when Death came by I hid
   Away my face,
And all my sweetheart's tresses she undid
   To make my hiding-place.

The dread shade passed me thus unheeding; and
   I turned me then
To calm my love -- kiss down her shielding hand
   And comfort her again.

And lo! she answered not:  and she did sit
   All fixedly,
With her fair face and the sweet smile of it,
   In love with Death, not me.

A Rhyme of Death's Inn.  [Lizette Woodworth Reese]

A rhyme of good Death's inn!
 My love came to that door;
And she had need of many things,
 The way had been so sore.

My love she lifted up her head,
 "And is there room?" said she;
"There was no room in Bethlehem's inn
 For Christ who died for me."

But said the keeper of the inn,
 "His name is on the door."
My love then straightway entered there:
 She hath come back no more.

The Outer Gate.  [Nora May French]

Life said:  "My house is thine with all its store:
 Behold I open shining ways to thee --
 Of every inner portal make thee free:
O child, I may not bar the outer door.
Go from me if thou wilt, to come no more;
 But all thy pain is mine, thy flesh of me;
 And must I hear thee, faint and woefully,
Call on me from the darkness and implore?"

Nay, mother, for I follow at thy will.
 But oftentimes thy voice is sharp to hear,
  Thy trailing fragrance heavy on the breath;
Always the outer hall is very still,
 And on my face a pleasant wind and clear
  Blows straitly from the narrow gate of Death.

The Ashes in the Sea.  [George Sterling]

    N. M. F.

Whither, with blue and pleading eyes, --
 Whither, with cheeks that held the light
Of winter's dawn in cloudless skies,
 Evadne, was thy flight?

Such as a sister's was thy brow;
 Thy hair seemed fallen from the moon --
Part of its radiance, as now,
 Of shifting tide and dune.

Did Autumn's grieving lure thee hence,
 Or silence ultimate beguile?
Ever our things of consequence
 Awakened but thy smile.

Is it with thee that ocean takes
 A stranger sorrow to its tone?
With thee the star of evening wakes
 More beautiful, more lone?

For wave and hill and sky betray
 A subtle tinge and touch of thee;
Thy shadow lingers in the day,
 Thy voice in winds to be.

Beauty -- hast thou discovered her
 By deeper seas no moons control?
What stars have magic now to stir
 Thy swift and wilful soul?

Or may thy heart no more forget
 The grievous world that once was home,
That here, where love awaits thee yet,
 Thou seemest yet to roam?

For most, far-wandering, I guess
 Thy witchery on the haunted mind,
In valleys of thy loneliness,
 Made clean with ocean's wind.

And most thy presence here seems told,
 A waif of elemental deeps,
When, at its vigils unconsoled,
 Some night of winter weeps.

We needs must be divided in the Tomb.  [George Santayana]

We needs must be divided in the tomb,
 For I would die among the hills of Spain,
 And o'er the treeless, melancholy plain
Await the coming of the final gloom.
But thou -- O pitiful! -- wilt find scant room
 Among thy kindred by the northern main,
 And fade into the drifting mist again,
The hemlocks' shadow, or the pines' perfume.

Let gallants lie beside their ladies' dust
 In one cold grave, with mortal love inurned;
Let the sea part our ashes, if it must,
 The souls fled thence which love immortal burned,
For they were wedded without bond of lust,
 And nothing of our heart to earth returned.

Departure.  [Hermann Hagedorn]

My true love from her pillow rose
 And wandered down the summer lane.
She left her house to the wind's carouse,
 And her chamber wide to the rain.

She did not stop to don her coat,
 She did not stop to smooth her bed --
But out she went in glad content
 There where the bright path led.

She did not feel the beating storm,
 But fled like a sunbeam, white and frail,
To the sea, to the air, somewhere, somewhere --
 I have not found her trail.

Song.  [Richard Le Gallienne]

She's somewhere in the sunlight strong,
 Her tears are in the falling rain,
She calls me in the wind's soft song,
 And with the flowers she comes again.

Yon bird is but her messenger,
 The moon is but her silver car;
Yea!  Sun and moon are sent by her,
 And every wistful, waiting star.

The Invisible Bride.  [Edwin Markham]

The low-voiced girls that go
 In gardens of the Lord,
Like flowers of the field they grow
 In sisterly accord.

Their whispering feet are white
 Along the leafy ways;
They go in whirls of light
 Too beautiful for praise.

And in their band forsooth
 Is one to set me free --
The one that touched my youth --
 The one God gave to me.

She kindles the desire
 Whereby the gods survive --
The white ideal fire
 That keeps my soul alive.

Now at the wondrous hour,
 She leaves her star supreme,
And comes in the night's still power,
 To touch me with a dream.

Sibyl of mystery
 On roads unknown to men,
Softly she comes to me,
 And goes to God again.

The Inverted Torch.  [Edith M. Thomas]

Threading a darksome passage all alone,
The taper's flame, by envious current blown,
Crouched low, and eddied round, as in affright,
So challenged by the vast and hostile night,
Then down I held the taper; -- swift and fain
Up climbed the lovely flower of light again!

Thou Kindler of the spark of life divine,
Be henceforth the Inverted Torch a sign
That, though the flame beloved thou dost depress,
Thou wilt not speed it into nothingness;
But out of nether gloom wilt reinspire,
And homeward lift the keen empyreal fire!

Night's Mardi Gras.  [Edward J. Wheeler]

Night is the true democracy.  When day
 Like some great monarch with his train has passed,
 In regal pomp and splendor to the last,
The stars troop forth along the Milky Way,
A jostling crowd, in radiant disarray,
 On heaven's broad boulevard in pageants vast,
 And things of earth, the hunted and outcast,
Come from their haunts and hiding-places; yea,
Even from the nooks and crannies of the mind
 Visions uncouth and vagrant fancies start,
  And specters of dead joy, that shun the light,
And impotent regrets and terrors blind,
 Each one, in form grotesque, playing its part
  In the fantastic Mardi Gras of Night.

The Mystic.  [Cale Young Rice]

There is a quest that calls me,
 In nights when I am lone,
The need to ride where the ways divide
 The Known from the Unknown.
I mount what thought is near me
 And soon I reach the place,
The tenuous rim where the Seen grows dim
 And the Sightless hides its face.

   ~I have ridden the wind,
   I have ridden the sea,
   I have ridden the moon and stars.
   I have set my feet in the stirrup seat
   Of a comet coursing Mars.
   And everywhere
   Thro' the earth and air
   My thought speeds, lightning-shod,
   It comes to a place where checking pace
   It cries, "Beyond lies God!"~

It calls me out of the darkness,
 It calls me out of sleep,
"Ride! ride! for you must, to the end of Dust!"
 It bids -- and on I sweep
To the wide outposts of Being,
 Where there is Gulf alone --
And thro' a Vast that was never passed
 I listen for Life's tone.

   ~I have ridden the wind,
   I have ridden the night,
   I have ridden the ghosts that flee
   From the vaults of death like a chilling breath
   Over eternity.
   And everywhere
   Is the world laid bare --
   Ether and star and clod --
   Until I wind to its brink and find
   But the cry, "Beyond lies God!"~

It calls me and ever calls me!
 And vainly I reply,
"Fools only ride where the ways divide
 What Is from the Whence and Why"!
I'm lifted into the saddle
 Of thoughts too strong to tame
And down the deeps and over the steeps
 I find -- ever the same.

   ~I have ridden the wind,
   I have ridden the stars,
   I have ridden the force that flies
   With far intent thro' the firmament
   And each to each allies.
   And everywhere
   That a thought may dare
   To gallop, mine has trod --
   Only to stand at last on the strand
   Where just beyond lies God.~

I would I might forget that I am I.  [George Santayana]

I would I might forget that I am I,
 And break the heavy chain that binds me fast,
 Whose links about myself my deeds have cast.
What in the body's tomb doth buried lie
Is boundless; 't is the spirit of the sky,
 Lord of the future, guardian of the past,
 And soon must forth, to know his own at last.
In his large life to live, I fain would die.

Happy the dumb beast, hungering for food,
 But calling not his suffering his own;
Blessed the angel, gazing on all good,
 But knowing not he sits upon a throne;
Wretched the mortal, pondering his mood,
 And doomed to know his aching heart alone.

To William Sharp.  [Clinton Scollard]

    (Fiona Macleod)

The waves about Iona dirge,
 The wild winds trumpet over Skye;
Shrill around Arran's cliff-bound verge
 The gray gulls cry.

Spring wraps its transient scarf of green,
 Its heathery robe, round slope and scar;
And night, the scudding wrack between,
 Lights its lone star.

But you who loved these outland isles,
 Their gleams, their glooms, their mysteries,
Their eldritch lures, their druid wiles,
 Their tragic seas,

Will heed no more, in mortal guise,
 The potent witchery of their call,
If dawn be regnant in the skies,
 Or evenfall.

Yet, though where suns Sicilian beam
 The loving earth enfolds your form,
I can but deem these coasts of dream
 And hovering storm

Still thrall your spirit -- that it bides
 By far Iona's kelp-strewn shore,
There lingering till time and tides
 Shall surge no more.

The Quiet Singer.  [Charles Hanson Towne]

    (Ave! Francis Thompson)

He had been singing -- but I had not heard his voice;
He had been weaving lovely dreams of song,
O many a morning long.
But I, remote and far,
Under an alien star,
Listened to other singers, other birds,
And other silver words.
But does the skylark, singing sweet and clear,
Beg the cold world to hear?
Rather he sings for very rapture of singing,
At dawn, or in the blue, mild Summer noon,
Knowing that, late or soon,
His wealth of beauty, and his high notes, ringing
Above the earth, will make some heart rejoice.
He sings, albeit alone,
Spendthrift of each pure tone,
Hoarding no single song,
No cadence wild and strong.
But one day, from a friend far overseas,
As if upon the breeze,
There came the teeming wonder of his words --
A golden troop of birds,
Caged in a little volume made to love;
Singing, singing,
Flinging, flinging
Their breaking hearts on mine, and swiftly bringing
Tears, and the peace thereof.
How the world woke anew!
How the days broke anew!
Before my tear-blind eyes a tapestry
I seemed to see,
Woven of all the dreams dead or to be.
Hills, hills of song, Springs of eternal bloom,
Autumns of golden pomp and purple gloom
Were hung upon his loom.
Winters of pain, roses with awful thorns,
Yet wondrous faith in God's dew-drenched morns --
These, all these I saw,
With that ecstatic awe
Wherewith one looks into Eternity.

And then I knew that, though I had not heard
His voice before,
His quiet singing, like some quiet bird
At some one's distant door,
Had made my own more sweet; had made it more
Lovely, in one of God's miraculous ways.
I knew then why the days
Had seemed to me more perfect when the Spring
Came with old bourgeoning;
For somewhere in the world his voice was raised,
And somewhere in the world his heart was breaking;
And never a flower but knew it, sweetly taking
Beauty more high and noble for his sake,
As a whole wood grows lovelier for the wail
Of one sad nightingale.

Yet if the Springs long past
Seemed wonderful before I heard his voice,
I tremble at the beauty I shall see
In seasons still to be,
Now that his songs are mine while Life shall last.
O now for me
New floods of vision open suddenly . . .
Rejoice, my heart!  Rejoice
That you have heard the Quiet Singer's voice!

After a Dolmetsch Concert.  [Arthur Upson]

Out of the conquered Past
 Unravishable Beauty;
Hearts that are dew and dust
 Rebuking the dream of Death;
Flower o' the clay downcast
 Triumphant in Earth's aroma;
Strings that were strained in rust
 A-tremble with Music's breath!

Wine that was spilt in haste
 Arising in fumes more precious;
Garlands that fell forgot
 Rooting to wondrous bloom;
Youth that would flow to waste
 Pausing in pool-green valleys --
And Passion that lasted not
 Surviving the voiceless Tomb!

On a Fly-Leaf of Burns' Songs.  [Frederic Lawrence Knowles]

These are the best of him,
Pathos and jest of him;
Earth holds the rest of him.

Passions were strong in him, --
Pardon the wrong in him;
Hark to the song in him! --

Each little lyrical
Grave or satirical
Musical miracle!

Miniver Cheevy.  [Edwin Arlington Robinson]

Miniver Cheevy, child of scorn,
 Grew lean while he assailed the seasons;
He wept that he was ever born,
 And he had reasons.

Miniver loved the days of old
 When swords were bright and steeds were prancing;
The vision of a warrior bold
 Would set him dancing.

Miniver sighed for what was not,
 And dreamed, and rested from his labors;
He dreamed of Thebes and Camelot,
 And Priam's neighbors.

Miniver mourned the ripe renown
 That made so many a name so fragrant;
He mourned Romance, now on the town,
 And Art, a vagrant.

Miniver loved the Medici,
 Albeit he had never seen one;
He would have sinned incessantly
 Could he have been one.

Miniver cursed the commonplace
 And eyed a khaki suit with loathing;
He missed the mediaeval grace
 Of iron clothing.

Miniver scorned the gold he sought,
 But sore annoyed was he without it;
Miniver thought, and thought, and thought,
 And thought about it.

Miniver Cheevy, born too late,
 Scratched his head and kept on thinking;
Miniver coughed, and called it fate,
 And kept on drinking.

At the End of the Day.  [Richard Hovey]

There is no escape by the river,
There is no flight left by the fen;
We are compassed about by the shiver
Of the night of their marching men.
Give a cheer!
For our hearts shall not give way.
Here's to a dark to-morrow,
And here's to a brave to-day!

The tale of their hosts is countless,
And the tale of ours a score;
But the palm is naught to the dauntless,
And the cause is more and more.
Give a cheer!
We may die, but not give way.
Here's to a silent morrow,
And here's to a stout to-day!

God has said:  "Ye shall fail and perish;
But the thrill ye have felt to-night
I shall keep in my heart and cherish
When the worlds have passed in night."
Give a cheer!
For the soul shall not give way.
Here's to the greater to-morrow
That is born of a great to-day!

Now shame on the craven truckler
And the puling things that mope!
We've a rapture for our buckler
That outwears the wings of hope.
Give a cheer!
For our joy shall not give way.
Here's in the teeth of to-morrow
To the glory of to-day!

The Joy of the Hills.  [Edwin Markham]

I ride on the mountain tops, I ride;
I have found my life and am satisfied.
Onward I ride in the blowing oats,
Checking the field-lark's rippling notes --
      Lightly I sweep
      From steep to steep:
Over my head through the branches high
Come glimpses of a rushing sky;
The tall oats brush my horse's flanks;
Wild poppies crowd on the sunny banks;
A bee booms out of the scented grass;
A jay laughs with me as I pass.

I ride on the hills, I forgive, I forget
      Life's hoard of regret --
      All the terror and pain
      Of the chafing chain.
      Grind on, O cities, grind:
      I leave you a blur behind.
I am lifted elate -- the skies expand:
Here the world's heaped gold is a pile of sand.
Let them weary and work in their narrow walls:
I ride with the voices of waterfalls!

I swing on as one in a dream -- I swing
Down the airy hollows, I shout, I sing!
The world is gone like an empty word:
My body's a bough in the wind, my heart a bird!

The Lesser Children.  [Ridgely Torrence]

    A Threnody at the Hunting Season

In the middle of August when the southwest wind
Blows after sunset through the leisuring air,
And on the sky nightly the mythic hind
Leads down the sullen dog star to his lair,
After the feverous vigil of July,
When the loud pageant of the year's high noon
Passed up the ways of time to sing and part,
Grief also wandered by
From out the lovers and the leaves of June,
And by the wizard spices of his hair
I knew his heart was very Love's own heart.
Deep within dreams he led me out of doors
As from the upper vault the night outpours,
And when I saw that to him all the skies
Yearned as a sea asleep yearns to its shores,
He took a little clay and touched my eyes.

What saw I then, what heard?
Multitudes, multitudes, under the moon they stirred!
The weaker brothers of our earthly breed;
Watchmen of whom our safety takes no heed;
Swift helpers of the wind that sowed the seed
Before the first field was or any fruit;
Warriors against the bivouac of the weed;
Earth's earliest ploughmen for the tender root,
All came about my head and at my feet
A thousand, thousand sweet,
With starry eyes not even raised to plead;
Bewildered, driven, hiding, fluttering, mute!
And I beheld and saw them one by one
Pass and become as nothing in the night.
Clothed on with red they were who once were white;
Drooping, who once led armies to the sun,
Of whom the lowly grass now topped the flight:
In scarlet faint, who once were brave in brown;
Climbers and builders of the silent town,
Creepers and burrowers all in crimson dye,
Winged mysteries of song that from the sky
Once dashed long music down.

O who would take away music from the earth?
Have we so much?  Or love upon the hearth?
No more -- they faded;
The great trees bending between birth and birth
Sighed for them, and the night wind's hoarse rebuff
Shouted the shame of which I was persuaded.
Shall Nature's only pausing be by men invaded?
Or shall we lay grief's fagots on her shoulders bare?
Has she not borne enough?
Soon will the mirroring woodland pools begin to con her,
And her sad immemorial passion come upon her;
Lo, would you add despair unto despair?
Shall not the Spring be answer to her prayer?
Must her uncomforted heavens overhead,
Weeping, look down on tears and still behold
Only wings broken or a fledgling dead,
Or underfoot the meadows that wore gold
Die, and the leaves go mourning to the mould
Beneath poor dead and desperate feet
Of folk who in next summer's meadows shall not meet?
Who has not seen in the high gulf of light
What, lower, was a bird, but now
Is moored and altered quite
Into an island of unshaded joy?
To whom the mate below upon the bough
Shouts once and brings him from his high employ.
Yet speeding he forgot not of the cloud
Where he from glory sprang and burned aloud,
But took a little of the day,
A little of the colored sky,
And of the joy that would not stay
He wove a song that cannot die.
Then, then -- the unfathomable shame;
The one last wrong arose from out the flame,
The ravening hate that hated not was hurled
Bidding the radiant love once more beware,
Bringing one more loneliness on the world,
And one more blindness in the unseen air.
Nor may the smooth regret, the pitying oath
Shed on such utter bitter any leaven.
Only the pleading flowers that knew them both
Hold all their bloody petals up to heaven.

Winds of the fall that all year to and fro
Somewhere upon the earth go wandering,
You saw, you moaned, you know:
Withhold not then unto all time to tell
Lest unborn others of us see this thing.
Bring our sleek, comfortable reason low:
Recount how souls grown tremulous as a bell
Came forth each other and the day to greet
In morning air all Indian-Summer sweet,
And crept upstream, through wood or field or brake,
Most tremblingly to take
What crumbs that from the Master's table fell.
Cry with what thronging thunders they were met,
And hide not how the least leaf was made wet.
Cry till no watcher says that all is well
With raucous discord through the leaning spheres.
But tell
With tears, with tears
How the last man is harmed even as they
Who on these dawns are fire, at dusk are clay.
Record the dumb and wise,
No less than those who lived in singing guise,
Whose choric hearts lit each wild green arcade.
Make men to see their eyes,
Forced to suspect behind each reed or rose
The thorn of lurking foes.
And O, before the daylight goes,
After the deed against the skies,
After the last belief and longing dies,
Make men again to see their eyes
Whose piteous casements now all unafraid
Peer out to that far verge where evermore,
Beyond all woe for which a tear atones,
The likeness of our own dishonor moans,
A sea that has no bottom and no shore.

What shall be done
By you, shy folk who cease thus heart by heart?
You for whose fate such fate forever hovers?
O little lovers,
If you would still have nests beneath the sun
Gather your broods about you and depart,
Before the stony forward-pressing faces
Into the lands bereft of any sound;
The solemn and compassionate desert places.
Give unto men no more the strong delight
To know that underneath the frozen ground
Dwells the warm life and all the quick, pure lore.
Take from our eyes the glory of great flight.
Let us behold no more
People untroubled by a Fate's veiled eyes,
Leave us upon an earth of faith forlorn.
No more wild tidings from the sweet far skies
Of love's long utmost heavenward endeavor.
So shall the silence pour on us forever
The streaming arrows of unutterable scorn.

Nor shall the cry of famine be a shield
The altar of a brutish mood to hide.
Stains, stains, upon the lintels of our doors
Wail to be justified.
Shall there be mutterings at the seasons' yield?
Has eye of man seen bared the granary floors?
Are the fields wasted?  Spilled the oil and wine?
Is the fat seed under the clod decayed?
Does ever the fig tree languish or the vine?
Who has beheld the harvest promise fade?
Or any orchard heavy with fruit asway
Withered away?
No, not these things, but grosser things than these
Are the dim parents of a guilt not dim;
Ancestral urges out of old caves blowing,
When Fear watched at our coming and our going
The horror of the chattering face of Whim.
Hates, cruelties new fallen from the trees
Whereto we clung with impulse sad for love,
Shames we have had all time to rid us of,
Disgraces cold and sorrows long bewept,
Recalled, revived, and kept,
Unmeaning quarrels, blood-compelling lust,
And snarling woes from our old home, the dust.

Yet even of these one saving shape may rise;
Fear may unveil our eyes.
For know you not what curse of blight would fall
Upon a land lorn of the sweet sky races
Who day and night keep ward and seneschal
Upon the treasury of the planted spaces?
Then would the locust have his fill,
And the blind worm lay tithe,
The unfed stones rot in the listless mill,
The sound of grinding cease.
No yearning gold would whisper to the scythe,
Hunger at last would prove us of one blood,
The shores of dream be drowned in tides of need,
Horribly would the whole earth be at peace.
The burden of the grasshopper indeed
Weigh down the green corn and the tender bud,
The plague of Egypt fall upon the wheat,
And the shrill nit would batten in the heat.

But you, O poor of deeds and rich of breath,
Whose eyes have made our eyes a hue abhorred,
Red, eager aids of aid-unneeding Death,
Hunters before the Lord,
If on the flinted marge about your souls
In vain the heaving tide of mourning rolls,
If from your trails unto the crimson goals
The weeper and the weeping must depart,
If lust of blood come on you like a fiery dart
And darken all the dark autumnal air,
Then, then -- be fair.
Pluck a young ash tree or a sapling yew
And at the root end fix an iron thorn,
Then forth with rocking laughter of the horn
And passing, with no belling retinue,
All timorous, lesser sippers of the dew,
Seek out some burly guardian of the hills
And set your urgent thew against his thew.
Then shall the hidden wisdoms and the wills
Strive, and bear witness to the trees and clods
How one has dumb lore of the rocks and swales
And one has reason like unto the gods.
Then shall the lagging righteousness ensue,
The powers at last be equal in the scales,
And the man's club and the beast's claw be flails
To winnow the unworthy of the two.
Then on the earth, in the sky and the heavenly court
That broods behind it,
Justice shall be awakened and aware,
Then those who go forth greatly, seeking sport,
Shall doubtless find it,
And all things be fair.

A Vagabond Song.  [Bliss Carman]

There is something in the autumn that is native to my blood --
Touch of manner, hint of mood;
And my heart is like a rhyme,
With the yellow and the purple and the crimson keeping time.

The scarlet of the maples can shake me like a cry
Of bugles going by.
And my lonely spirit thrills
To see the frosty asters like a smoke upon the hills.

There is something in October sets the gypsy blood astir;
We must rise and follow her,
When from every hill of flame
She calls and calls each vagabond by name.

Somewhere.  [John Vance Cheney]

The weasel thieves in silver suit,
 The rabbit runs in gray;
And Pan takes up his frosty flute
 To pipe the cold away.

The flocks are folded, boughs are bare,
 The salmon take the sea;
And O my fair, would I somewhere
 Might house my heart with thee!

"Frost To-Night".  [Edith M. Thomas]

Apple-green west and an orange bar,
And the crystal eye of a lone, one star . . .
And, "Child, take the shears and cut what you will,
Frost to-night -- so clear and dead-still."

Then, I sally forth, half sad, half proud,
And I come to the velvet, imperial crowd,
The wine-red, the gold, the crimson, the pied, --
The dahlias that reign by the garden-side.

The dahlias I might not touch till to-night!
A gleam of the shears in the fading light,
And I gathered them all, -- the splendid throng,
And in one great sheaf I bore them along.

     .    .    .    .    .

In my garden of Life with its all-late flowers
I heed a Voice in the shrinking hours:
"Frost to-night -- so clear and dead-still" . . .
Half sad, half proud, my arms I fill.

Under Arcturus.  [Madison Cawein]


"I belt the morn with ribboned mist;
 With baldricked blue I gird the noon,
And dusk with purple, crimson-kissed,
 White-buckled with the hunter's-moon.

"These follow me," the Season says:
 "Mine is the frost-pale hand that packs
Their scrips, and speeds them on their ways,
 With gypsy gold that weighs their backs."


A daybreak horn the Autumn blows,
 As with a sun-tanned hand he parts
Wet boughs whereon the berry glows;
 And at his feet the red fox starts.

The leafy leash that holds his hounds
 Is loosed; and all the noonday hush
Is startled; and the hillside sounds
 Behind the fox's bounding brush.

When red dusk makes the western sky
 A fire-lit window through the firs,
He stoops to see the red fox die
 Among the chestnut's broken burrs.

Then fanfaree and fanfaree,
 His bugle sounds; the world below
Grows hushed to hear; and two or three
 Soft stars dream through the afterglow.


Like some black host the shadows fall,
 And blackness camps among the trees;
Each wildwood road, a Goblin Hall,
 Grows populous with mysteries.

Night comes with brows of ragged storm,
 And limbs of writhen cloud and mist;
The rain-wind hangs upon his arm
 Like some wild girl who cries unkissed.

By his gaunt hands the leaves are shed
 In headlong troops and nightmare herds;
And, like a witch who calls the dead,
 The hill-stream whirls with foaming words.

Then all is sudden silence and
 Dark fear -- like his who cannot see,
Yet hears, lost in a haunted land,
 Death rattling on a gallow's-tree.


The days approach again; the days
 Whose mantles stream, whose sandals drag,
When in the haze by puddled ways
 The gnarled thorn seems a crooked hag.

When rotting orchards reek with rain;
 And woodlands crumble, leaf and log;
And in the drizzling yard again
 The gourd is tagged with points of fog.

Now let me seat my soul among
 The woods' dim dreams, and come in touch
With melancholy, sad of tongue
 And sweet, who says so much, so much.

The Recessional.  [Charles G. D. Roberts]

Now along the solemn heights
Fade the Autumn's altar-lights;
 Down the great earth's glimmering chancel
Glide the days and nights.

Little kindred of the grass,
Like a shadow in a glass
 Falls the dark and falls the stillness;
We must rise and pass.

We must rise and follow, wending
Where the nights and days have ending, --
 Pass in order pale and slow
Unto sleep extending.

Little brothers of the clod,
Soul of fire and seed of sod,
 We must fare into the silence
At the knees of God.

Little comrades of the sky,
Wing to wing we wander by,
 Going, going, going, going,
Softly as a sigh.

Hark, the moving shapes confer,
Globe of dew and gossamer,
 Fading and ephemeral spirits
In the dusk astir.

Moth and blossom, blade and bee,
Worlds must go as well as we,
 In the long procession joining
Mount and star and sea.

Toward the shadowy brink we climb
Where the round year rolls sublime,
 Rolls, and drops, and falls forever
In the vast of time.

Like a plummet plunging deep
Past the utmost reach of sleep,
 Till remembrance has no longer
Care to laugh or weep.

I know not why.  [Morris Rosenfeld]

I lift mine eyes against the sky,
The clouds are weeping, so am I;
I lift mine eyes again on high,
The sun is smiling, so am I.
Why do I smile?  Why do I weep?
I do not know; it lies too deep.

I hear the winds of autumn sigh,
They break my heart, they make me cry;
I hear the birds of lovely spring,
My hopes revive, I help them sing.
Why do I sing?  Why do I cry?
It lies so deep, I know not why.

Winter Sleep.  [Edith M. Thomas]

I know it must be winter (though I sleep) --
I know it must be winter, for I dream
I dip my bare feet in the running stream,
And flowers are many, and the grass grows deep.

I know I must be old (how age deceives!)
I know I must be old, for, all unseen,
My heart grows young, as autumn fields grow green,
When late rains patter on the falling sheaves.

I know I must be tired (and tired souls err) --
I know I must be tired, for all my soul
To deeds of daring beats a glad, faint roll,
As storms the riven pine to music stir.

I know I must be dying (Death draws near) --
I know I must be dying, for I crave
Life -- life, strong life, and think not of the grave,
And turf-bound silence, in the frosty year.

Tryste Noel.  [Louise Imogen Guiney]

The Ox he openeth wide the Doore,
And from the Snowe he calls her inne,
And he hath seen her Smile therefor,
Our Ladye without Sinne.
Now soon from Sleep
A Starre shall leap,
And soone arrive both King and Hinde:
   ~Amen, Amen:~
But O, the Place co'd I but finde!

The Ox hath hush'd his voyce and bent
Trewe eyes of Pitty ore the Mow,
And on his lovelie Neck, forspent,
The Blessed layes her Browe.
Around her feet
Full Warme and Sweete
His bowerie Breath doth meeklie dwell:
    ~Amen, Amen:~
But sore am I with Vaine Travel!

The Ox is host in Judah stall
And Host of more than onelie one.
For close she gathereth withal
Our Lorde her littel Sonne.
Glad Hinde and King
Their Gyfte may bring,
But wo'd to-night my Teares were there,
    ~Amen, Amen:~
Between her Bosom and His hayre!

Hora Christi.  [Alice Brown]

Sweet is the time for joyous folk
 Of gifts and minstrelsy;
Yet I, O lowly-hearted One,
 Crave but Thy company.
On lonesome road, beset with dread,
 My questing lies afar.
I have no light, save in the east
 The gleaming of Thy star.

In cloistered aisles they keep to-day
 Thy feast, O living Lord!
With pomp of banner, pride of song,
 And stately sounding word.
Mute stand the kings of power and place,
 While priests of holy mind
Dispense Thy blessed heritage
 Of peace to all mankind.

I know a spot where budless twigs
 Are bare above the snow,
And where sweet winter-loving birds
 Flit softly to and fro;
There with the sun for altar-fire,
 The earth for kneeling-place,
The gentle air for chorister,
 Will I adore Thy face.

Loud, underneath the great blue sky,
 My heart shall paean sing,
The gold and myrrh of meekest love
 Mine only offering.
Bliss of Thy birth shall quicken me;
 And for Thy pain and dole
Tears are but vain, so I will keep
 The silence of the soul.

A Parting Guest.  [James Whitcomb Riley]

What delightful hosts are they --
 Life and Love!
Lingeringly I turn away,
 This late hour, yet glad enough
They have not withheld from me
 Their high hospitality.
So, with face lit with delight
 And all gratitude, I stay
 Yet to press their hands and say,
"Thanks. --  So fine a time!  Good night."


Biographical Notes

[The format of these notes has been slightly altered.  Most notably,
dates (hopefully correct, but not very certain for the lesser known poets)
have been added -- when available -- in square brackets after each name,
and the number of poems by that author in this anthology is in parentheses.
These notes (first included in 1917, whereas the selections were made in 1913)
combined with the searchability of electronic texts,
renders the original Indexes of Authors and of First Lines obsolete,
and so both have been dropped.  Occasionally, further information follows
in angled brackets.  -- A. L., 1998.]

Barker, Elsa.  [1869-1954]  (2)
Born at Leicester, Vermont.  Received her early education in that State.
After a short period of teaching, she became a newspaper writer
and contributed to various periodicals and syndicates.
Her journalistic period closed with editorial work upon "Hampton's Magazine"
in 1909 and 1910.  Since that date she has published several books
in different fields of literature:  "The Son of Mary Bethel",
a novel, putting the character of Christ in modern setting; "Stories from
the New Testament, for Children"; "Letters of a Living Dead Man",
psychic communications which have attracted much attention;
and in poetry, "The Frozen Grail, and Other Poems", 1910;
"The Book of Love", 1912; and "Songs of a Vagrom Angel", 1916.
Mrs. Barker's poem, "The Frozen Grail", addressed to Peary, the explorer,
did much, as he has testified, to inspire him, and was upon his person
when he finally achieved the North Pole.

Braithwaite, William Stanley.  [1878-1962]  (1)
Born at Boston, December 6, 1878.  Educated in the public schools
of that city.  He has published two volumes of his own verse,
"Lyrics of Life and Love", 1904, and "The House of Falling Leaves", 1908,
but has given his time chiefly to editorial and critical work.
Mr. Braithwaite edited three excellent anthologies:
"The Book of Elizabethan Verse", "The Book of Restoration Verse",
and "The Book of Georgian Verse", but has turned his entire attention,
for several years past, to contemporary American poetry,
having founded and edited "The Poetry Journal of Boston",
"The Poetry Review of America", etc.  Mr. Braithwaite summarizes each year
for the "Boston Transcript" the poetic output of the American magazines,
and publishes, in an "Anthology of Magazine Verse", what he regards
as the best poems printed in our periodicals during the year.

Branch, Anna Hempstead.  [1875-1937]  (3)
Born at Hempstead House, New London, Connecticut.  Graduated from
Smith College in 1897 and from the American Academy of Dramatic Art
in New York City in 1900.  While at college she began writing poetry,
and the year after her graduation won the first prize awarded
by the "Century Magazine" for a poem written by a college graduate.
This poem, "The Road 'Twixt Heaven and Hell", was printed in
the "Century Magazine" for December, 1898, and was followed soon after by
the publication of Miss Branch's first volume, "The Heart of the Road", 1901.
She has since published two volumes, "The Shoes that Danced", 1902,
and "Rose of the Wind", 1910, both marked by imagination and beauty
of a high order.

Brown, Alice.  [1857-1948]  (3)
Born at Hampton Falls, New Hampshire, December 5, 1857.
Educated at Robinson Seminary, Exeter.  She is chiefly known as a novelist,
having written with great art of the life of New England.  Among her
best-known volumes are "Meadow Grass", a collection of short stories;
"Tiverton Tales"; "The Mannerings"; "Margaret Warrener"; "Rose MacLeod";
"My Love and I", etc.  In 1915 Miss Brown received a prize of $10,000,
given by Winthrop Ames, for the best play submitted to him
by an American writer.  This drama, "Children of Earth",
was produced the following season at the Booth Theater in New York.
In poetry Miss Brown has done but one volume, "The Road to Castaly", 1896,
reprinted with new poems in 1917, but this is so fine in quality
as to give her a distinct place among American poets.

Burton, Richard.  [1861-1940]  (3)
Born at Hartford, Connecticut, March 14, 1859 [sic].  Received the degree
of A.B. from Trinity College in 1883 and of Ph.D. from John Hopkins University
in 1888.  He entered journalism and became for a short time
managing editor of "The Churchman", leaving this position to become
literary editor of the "Hartford Courant", where he remained
from 1890 to 1897.  During this period he was also associate editor
of the "Warner Library of the World's Best Literature".  In 1902
he went to Boston as literary editor of the Lothrop Publishing Company,
remaining until 1904.  Previous to this time, Dr. Burton had been
lecturing widely upon poetry and the drama and spent the succeeding two years
chiefly engaged in this work.  In 1906 he became the head
of the English Department of the University of Minnesota,
which position he still holds, although the scholastic year
is broken annually by a lecture tour through the East.
Dr. Burton has published many volumes of poetry and several upon the drama.
Among the former one may cite as most representative:  "Dumb in June", 1895;
"Lyrics of Brotherhood", 1899; "Message and Melody", 1903;
"Rahab:  A Poetic Drama", 1906; "From the Book of Life", 1909;
and "A Midsummer Memory", an elegy upon the untimely death
of Arthur Upson, 1910.

Bynner, Witter.  [1881-1968]  (3)
Born at Brooklyn, New York, August 10, 1881.  Graduated at Harvard University
in 1902.  After his graduation he became assistant editor
of "McClure's Magazine" and literary editor of McClure, Phillips & Company
until 1906.  Since that period he has devoted himself chiefly
to the writing of poetry and poetic drama.  His first volume,
"An Ode to Harvard, and Other Poems", was published in 1907.
This has been followed by the poetic dramas, "Tiger", 1913,
and "The Little King", 1917, both of which have had stage presentation,
and by "The New World", 1915, amplified from his Phi Beta Kappa Poem
delivered at Harvard in 1911.

Carman, Bliss.  [1861-1929]  (4)
Although so long a resident of America that he belongs among our poets,
Bliss Carman was born at Fredericton, New Brunswick, April 15, 1861.
He received the degree of A.B. from the University of New Brunswick in 1881
and of A.M. in 1884.  He studied also at Harvard and at
the University of Edinburgh.  Like most poets, Mr. Carman served his period
in journalism, being office editor of "The Independent" from 1890 to 1892,
and editor of "The Chap-Book" in 1894.  He has, however,
given almost his sole allegiance to poetry and has published many books,
chiefly of nature, interspersed now and then with volumes dealing with
myth or mysticism.  His first volume was "Low Tide on Grand Pre",
which appeared in 1893, and revealed at the outset his remarkable lyric gift
and his sensitive feeling for nature.  In collaboration with Richard Hovey
he did the well-known "Vagabondia Books", -- "Songs from Vagabondia", 1894;
"More Songs from Vagabondia", 1896; and "Last Songs from Vagabondia", 1900, --
which introduced a new note into American poetry, and appearing, as they did,
in the nineties, formed a wholesome contrast to some of the work
then emanating from the "Decadent School" in England.
Among the finest of Mr. Carman's volumes, aside from his work
with Richard Hovey, are "Behind the Arras:  A Book of the Unseen", 1895;
"Ballads of Lost Haven", 1897; "By the Aurelian Wall, and Other Elegies",
1899; "The Green Book of the Bards", 1898; "Pipes of Pan", 5 volumes,
first number in 1902; "Sappho:  One Hundred Lyrics", 1903.
Among his later books may be cited "Echoes from Vagabondia", 1912,
and "April Airs", 1916.

Cather, Willa Sibert.  [1873-1947]  (1)
Born at Winchester, Virginia, December 7, 1875 [sic].  During her childhood
the family moved to Nebraska, and in 1895 Miss Cather was graduated from
the University of that State.  Coming East to engage in newspaper work,
she became associated with the staff of the "Pittsburgh Daily Leader",
where she remained from 1897 to 1901.  Soon after, she became
one of the editors of "McClure's Magazine", doing important feature articles
until 1912.  Miss Cather is now writing fiction, and has published
three novels, "Alexander's Bridge", "O Pioneers!" and "The Song of the Lark".
In poetry, she has done but one small volume, "April Twilight", 1903,
but several poems from this collection seem likely to make for themselves
a permanent place.

Cawein, Madison.  [1865-1914]  (3)
Born at Louisville, Kentucky, March 23, 1865.  Educated in the public schools
of that city.  He began writing very early and published his first
book of verse, "Blooms of the Berry", 1887, when but twenty-two years of age.
From that time until his death, December 7, 1915 [sic],
he published many volumes of poetry inspired chiefly by the theme of nature.
As most of these volumes are out of print, it is unnecessary to list them all,
but among the more important may be cited:  "Intimations of the Beautiful",
1894; "Undertones", 1896; "The Garden of Dreams", 1896;
"Myth and Romance", 1899; "Weeds by the Wall", 1901;
"Kentucky Poems", with an Introduction by Edmund Gosse, London, 1902;
"A Voice on the Wind", 1902; "The Vale of Tempe", 1905;
"Complete Poetical Works", 5 volumes, 1907; "New Poems", London, 1909;
"Poems -- A Selection from the Complete Work", 1911;
"The Poet, the Fool, and the Fairies", 1912; "Minions of the Moon", 1913;
"The Poet and Nature", 1914; and "The Cup of Comus", posthumous publication,
1915.  Mr. Cawein was distinctly the creator of his own field.
From the publication of his first little volume, "Blooms of the Berry",
he had made himself the intimate, almost the mystic, comrade of nature.
He had an ecstatic sense of the visible world.  Beauty was his religion,
and he spent his life learning the ways and moods of nature and declaring them
in poetry rich in imagination.  He had the naturalist's eagerness for truth,
and one might explore the Kentucky woods and fields
with a volume of his poetry as a handbook and find the least regarded flower
minutely celebrated.  In his most affluent fancy his eye never left the fact,
and the accuracy of his observation gives his nature work a background
which adds greatly to its value.

Cheney, John Vance.  [1848-1922]  (2)
Born at Groveland, New York, December 29, 1848.  Received his early education
at Temple Hill Academy in Geneseo, New York.  After a short period
of teaching and of practicing law, he became the librarian
of the Free Public Library of San Francisco and held this position
from 1887 to 1894, when he accepted a similar one at the Newberry Library
in Chicago, where he remained until 1899.  Since that date
he has resided in California, where he devotes his time to literary work.
His volumes of poetry are:  "Thistle Drift", 1887; "Woodblooms", 1888;
"Out of the Silence", 1897; "Lyrics", 1901; "Poems", 1905;
"The Time of Roses", 1908; "At the Silver Gate", 1911.

Coates, Florence Earle.  [1850-1927]  (3)
Born at Philadelphia and educated at private schools in that city
and in France.  She studied also at Brussels.  Her volumes of poetry
in their order are, "Poems", 1898; "Mine and Thine", 1904;
"Lyrics of Life", 1909; "The Unconquered Air", 1912;
"Poems", Collected Edition, in two volumes, 1916.

Colton, Arthur.  [1868-1943]  (2)
Born at Washington, May 22, 1868.  Received the degree of A.B.
at Yale University in 1890 and of Ph.D. in 1893.  He was also instructor
in English at Yale for two years following the taking of his last degree.
Since 1906 he has been librarian of the University Club of New York City.
Mr. Colton has published several volumes of essays and but one volume
of poetry:  "Harps Hung up in Babylon", 1907.

Cone, Helen Gray.  [1859-1934]  (2)
Born in New York City, March 8, 1859.  Graduated at
the Normal College of New York City in 1876.  She has been
Professor of English Literature at her Alma Mater, now called Hunter College,
since 1899.  Her volumes of verse are:  "Oberon and Puck", 1885;
"The Ride to the Lady", 1893; "Soldiers of the Light", 1911;
"A Chant of Love for England, and Other Poems", 1915.

Daly, Thomas Augustine.  [1871-1948]  (2)
Born at Philadelphia, May 28, 1871, and educated at Fordham University.
He was for some time reporter and editorial writer on
the "Philadelphia Record", and is now the general manager of
the "Catholic Standard and Times".  Mr. Daly has put the Italian immigrant
into poetry and written several volumes of delightful verse in this field.
He has not pursued this exclusively, however, but has done some excellent work
in other themes.  His volumes are:  "Canzoni", 1906; "Carmina", 1909;
"Madrigali", 1912; and "Songs of Wedded Love", 1916.

Dargan, Olive Tilford.  [1869-1968]  (1)
Born in Grayson County, Kentucky, and educated at the University of Nashville
and at Radcliffe College.  She became a teacher and was connected with
various schools in Arkansas, Missouri, and Texas until her marriage.
Mrs. Dargan's first work was in poetic drama in which she revealed gifts of
a high order.  Her dramatic volumes are:  "Semiramis, and Other Plays", 1904;
"Lords and Lovers", 1906; and "The Mortal Gods", 1912.  Mrs. Dargan
has also written a collection of lyric verse called "Path Flower", 1914,
and a sonnet sequence, "The Cycle's Rim", 1916.

Daskam, Josephine Dodge (Mrs. Selden Bacon).  [1876-1961]  (1)
Born at Stamford, Connecticut, February 17, 1876.  Graduated at Smith College
in 1898.  She is chiefly known as a novelist and writer of short stories
in which field she has had conspicuous success.  Among her
volumes of fiction are:  "The Madness of Philip"; "Whom the Gods Destroyed";
"Margherita's Soul"; and "Open Market".  Miss Daskam has done
but one volume of verse:  "Poems", 1903.

Davis, Fannie Stearns (Mrs. Augustus McKinstrey Gifford).  [1884-?]  (2)
Born at Cleveland, Ohio, March 6, 1884.  Educated at Smith College,
from which she graduated in 1904.  She is the author of two volumes of poetry:
"Myself and I", 1913, and "Crack O' Dawn", 1915, both marked
by sensitive poetic feeling and delicate artistry.

Firkins, Chester.  [1882-1915]  (1)
Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, June 30, 1882.  Received his education
in the public schools of that city and at the University of Minnesota.
He was an active journalist, having been associated with the press
of Columbus and Cincinnati, Ohio, and of Chicago before coming to New York,
where he served on the staff of the "New York American" until his death,
March 1, 1915.  He was a contributor of stories and verse
to well-known magazines, but his volume of poems was brought out posthumously
in 1916.

French, Nora May.  [1881-1907]  (1)
Born in East Aurora, New York, and died at Carmel, California, on November 14,
1907, when twenty-six years of age.  A small volume of her poems,
edited by her friend, George Sterling, was brought out after her death.

Garrison, Theodosia (Mrs. Frederick J. Faulks).  [1874-1944]  (2)
Born at Newark, New Jersey.  Educated at private schools in New York.
She was for several years a constant contributor of poetry to the magazines,
though she has written less of late.  Her two published volumes of verse are:
"Joy O' Life", 1908, and "The Earth Cry", 1910.

Greene, Sarah Pratt McLean.  [1856-1935]  (1)
Born at Simsbury, Connecticut, July 3, 1856 and educated at
McLean Academy and at Mount Holyoke College.  She is chiefly known
as the author of "Cape Cod Folks", "Vesty of the Basins", and other volumes
dealing with the life of the Cape Cod fishermen, but Mrs. Greene has written
one poem destined to hold a permanent place not only in our literature, but in
the larger body of enduring poetry.  This is "De Massa ob de Sheepfol'",
contained in this collection.

Guiney, Louise Imogen.  [1861-1920]  (4)
Born at Boston, January 7, 1861.  Educated in the private schools of Boston
and the Sacred Heart Convent in Providence, Rhode Island.
Her father, Patrick Guiney, was a brigadier-general in our Civil War,
and having been born during the period of the conflict and her early youth
having been spent almost before the echo of the guns had died,
Miss Guiney's work was much influenced by this background of association.
The symbolism of her poetry is frequently drawn from battle
or from knight-errantry, as in "The Wild Ride", "The Kings",
"The Vigil-at-Arms", "The Knight Errant", "Memorial Day", etc.
Valor, transmuted to a spiritual quality, may, indeed, be said to be
the keynote of Miss Guiney's work.  Add to this a mystical element,
best illustrated in her poem, "Beati Mortui", a Celtic note,
shown so exquisitely in her "Irish Peasant Song", and one has
the more obvious characteristics of poetry that, whatever its theme,
is always distinguished and individual.  Miss Guiney has
a crisp economy of phrase, a pungency and tang, that invest her style
with an unusual degree of personality.  Her volumes in their order have been:
"The White Sail", 1887; "A Roadside Harp", 1893; "Nine Sonnets
Written at Oxford", 1895; "The Martyr's Idyl", 1899; and "Happy Ending",
her collected poems, 1909.

Hagedorn, Hermann.  [1882-1964]  (2)
Born July 18, 1882.  Educated at Harvard University
and the University of Berlin and served as instructor in English
at Harvard from 1909 to 1911.  Mr. Hagedorn is the author of
"The Silver Blade:  A Play in Verse", 1907; "The Woman of Corinth", 1908;
"A Troop of the Guard", 1909; "Poems and Ballads", 1911;
and "The Great Maze and the Heart of Youth:  A Poem and a Play", 1916.

Helburn, Theresa.  [1887-1959]  (1)
Born in New York City.  Educated at Bryn Mawr College and at Radcliffe.
She has not yet published a collection of poetry, but has contributed
to the leading magazines.
[Theresa Helburn is best known for her work in theatre.  -- A. L., 1998.]

Hovey, Richard.  [1864-1900]  (4)
Born at Normal, Illinois, May 4, 1864, died February 24, 1900.
He received his early education at Dartmouth College,
which he afterward celebrated in several of his best-known poems.
In collaboration with Bliss Carman he did the well known "Vagabondia Books",
-- "Songs from Vagabondia", 1894; "More Songs from Vagabondia", 1896;
"Last Songs from Vagabondia", 1900, -- books whose freshness and charm
immediately won them a place in public favor that time has not lessened.
Aside from his work with Mr. Carman and his lyric collection,
"Along the Trail", 1898, Hovey had done a remarkable group of poetic dramas
built upon the Arthurian legend and issued separately under the titles,
"The Quest of Merlin:  A Masque", 1898; "The Marriage of Guenevere:
A Tragedy", 1898; "The Birth of Galahad:  A Romantic Drama", 1898;
"Taliesin:  A Masque", 1899.  These were but part of the dramas
projected in the cycle and a fragment of the next to be issued,
"The Holy Grail", was published, with explanatory notes of the whole series,
in 1907.  The dramas stand for a dramatic achievement of a high order,
and contain poetry of great beauty, reaching at times,
in the lyric masque of "Taliesin", an almost consummate expression.
Richard Hovey was, indeed, both in lyric and dramatic work,
a poet of rare endowment and his early death was a distinct loss
to American letters.

Johns, Orrick.  [1887-1946]  (1)
Born in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1887.  Educated at the University of Missouri
and Washington University in St. Louis.  He was associated for a short time
with "Reedy's Mirror".  In 1912 he received the first prize,
of five hundred dollars, for a poem entitled "Second Avenue",
contributed to the prize contest of "The Lyric Year", and afterwards published
in that volume.

Jones, Thomas S., Jr.  [1882-1932]  (3)
Born at Boonville, New York, November 6, 1882.  Graduated at
Cornell University in 1904.  He was on the dramatic staff
of the "New York Times", from 1904 to 1907, and associate editor
of "The Pathfinder", in 1911.  His published volumes are:
"Path of Dreams", 1904; "From Quiet Valleys", 1907; "Interludes", 1908;
"Ave Atque Vale" (In Memoriam Arthur Upson), 1909; "The Voice in the Silence",
with a Foreword by James Lane Allen, 1911; and "The Rose-Jar",
originally published in 1906, but taken over in 1915
by Thomas B. Mosher and made the initial volume of "Lyra Americana",
his first series of American poetry.

Kilmer, Joyce.  [1886-1918]  (2)
Born at New Brunswick, New Jersey, December 6, 1886, and graduated
at Columbia University in 1908.  After a short period of teaching
he became associated with Funk and Wagnalls Company, where he remained
from 1909 to 1912, when he assumed the position of literary editor
of "The Churchman".  In 1913 Mr. Kilmer became a member of the staff
of the "New York Times", a position which he still occupies.
His volumes of poetry are:  "A Summer of Love", 1911,
and "Trees, and Other Poems", 1914.

Knowles, Frederick Lawrence.  [1869-1905]  (2)
Born at Lawrence, Massachusetts, September 8, 1869, and graduated
at Wesleyan University in 1894 and Harvard University in 1896.
He was connected for a short time with the editorial department
of Houghton Mifflin Company and with the staff of L. C. Page and Company
as literary adviser.  In 1900 he accepted a similar position
with Dana Estes and Company where he remained until his death
in September, 1905.  Mr. Knowles was the author of two volumes of verse:
"On Life's Stairway", 1900, and "Love Triumphant", 1904.  In addition to
his own work in poetry he was the editor of several excellent anthologies,
such as "The Golden Treasury of American Lyrics", 1897;
"A Treasury of Humorous Poetry", 1902; and "A Year-Book of Famous Lyrics".
Mr. Knowles was a poet of fine gifts and his early death was a loss
to American poetry.

Ledoux, Louis V.  [1880-1948]  (1)
Born at New York City, June 6, 1880.  Educated at Columbia University,
where he graduated in 1902.  He is the author of "Songs from the Silent Land",
1905; "The Soul's Progress", 1907; "Yzdra:  A Poetic Drama", 1909;
"The Shadow of Etna", 1914; "The Story of Eleusis:  A Lyrical Drama", 1916.

Le Gallienne, Richard.  [1866-1947]  (4)
Born at Liverpool, England, January 20, 1866.  He was already
a well-known poet, novelist, and critic when he took up his residence
in the United States.  In each of these fields Mr. Le Gallienne
has achieved conspicuous success and it would be difficult to say
what phase of his literary work should take precedence of the others.
Among the best known of his prose works are:  "The Quest of the Golden Girl",
"Book Bills of Narcissus", "An Old Country House", "Little Dinners
with the Sphinx", etc.  In criticism he has done particularly fine work
in his study of George Meredith and in his volume, "Attitudes and Avowals".
In poetry, with which we are chiefly concerned, he has given us
several volumes distinguished by that delicacy and sensitive feeling
for beauty which characterize all of his work.  These are:
"English Poems", 1892; "Stevenson, and Other Poems", 1895;
"New Poems", 1909; "The Lonely Dancer", 1913.  In addition to these volumes,
Mr. Le Gallienne has made an admirable paraphrase of the "Rubaiyat"
of Omar Khayyam and of a group of odes from the "Divan" of Hafiz.

Lindsay, Vachel.  [1879-1931]  (3)
Born November 10, 1879.  Educated at Hiram College, Ohio.
He took up the study of art and studied at the Art Institute,
Chicago, 1900-03 and at the New York School of Art, 1904-05.
For a time after his technical study, he lectured upon art
in its practical relation to the community, and returning to his home
in Springfield, Illinois, issued what one might term his manifesto
in the shape of "The Village Magazine", divided about equally
between prose articles, pertaining to beautifying his native city,
and poems, illustrated by his own drawings.  Soon after this,
Mr. Lindsay, taking as scrip for the journey, "Rhymes to be Traded for Bread",
made a pilgrimage on foot through several Western States going as far afield
as New Mexico.  The story of this journey is given in his volume,
"Adventures while Preaching the Gospel of Beauty".  Mr. Lindsay first
attracted attention in poetry by "General William Booth Enters into Heaven",
a poem which became the title of his first volume, in 1913.  His second volume
was "The Congo", published in 1914.  He is attempting to restore to poetry
its early appeal as a spoken art, and his later work differs greatly
from the selections contained in this anthology.

Lodge, George Cabot.  [1873-1909]  (2)
Born at Boston, October 12, 1873.  Educated at Harvard University
and the University of Paris.  He did his first work in poetry at Harvard
in the stimulating companionship of a little group of poets
including Trumbull Stickney, William Vaughn Moody, and Philip Henry Savage,
all of whom, by a strange fatality, died within a few years after leaving
the University.  Mr. Lodge was a poet whose gift followed classical lines,
but was none the less individual and sincere.  His complete work
in lyric and dramatic poetry has been gathered into two volumes:
"Poems and Dramas", 1911.  He died at Boston in 1909.

Lowell, Amy.  [1874-1925]  (1)
Born at Boston, February 9, 1874.  Educated at private schools.
She has been prominently identified with the "Imagist" movement in poetry
and with the technical use of `vers libre'.  These movements, however,
were not yet influencing poetry when "The Little Book of Modern Verse"
was edited, and Miss Lowell is, therefore, represented by a lyric
in her earlier and less characteristic manner.  Her volumes
in their order are:  "A Dome of Many-Coloured Glass", 1912;
"Sword Blades and Poppy Seed", 1914; "Men, Women, and Ghosts", 1916.
Miss Lowell is also the editor of "Some Imagist Poets", 1915;
"Some Imagist Poets", 1916; and "Some Imagist Poets", 1917,
all of which contain a group of her own poems.

MacKaye, Percy.  [1875-1956]  (2)
Born at New York City, March 16, 1875.  Educated at Harvard University
and the University of Leipzig.  He has written many poetic dramas
and several volumes of lyric verse.  Among the best known of his dramas are:
"The Canterbury Pilgrims", 1903; "Fenris, the Wolf", 1905; "Jeanne d'Arc",
1906; "Sappho and Phaon", 1907; and "Caliban:  A Masque", 1916.  He is also
the author of several prose dramas which have been successfully produced.
In non-dramatic poetry his most representative volumes are:  "Poems", 1909;
"Uriel, and Other Poems", 1912; "The Sistine Eve, and Other Poems",
"The Present Hour", 1915.

Markham, Edwin.  [1852-1940]  (4)
Born at Oregon City, Oregon, April 23, 1852.  Removed at an early age
to California, where his childhood was spent upon a ranch
in herding sheep and riding the ranges after the cattle.
Later, when the cattle ranges turned into farms, he worked in the fields
and in autumn joined the threshers on their route from farm to farm.
During his boyhood he attended school but three months in the year, but later
studied at San Jose Normal School and the University of California.
His first books were earned, when a lad on the ranch, by ploughing
a twenty-acre lot at a dollar an acre and investing the entire sum
in the works of the great poets.  Thereafter, when he rode the ranges,
he balanced his saddle bags with Keats and Shelley.  It was, indeed,
largely due to the democracy of Shelley, coupled with his own
early experiences, that his genius took the social bent
which distinguishes it.  After leaving the University, Mr. Markham became
a teacher in California and was principal and superintendent
of several schools until 1899, when he sprang suddenly into fame
by the publication in the "San Francisco Examiner" of his poem
"The Man With the Hoe".  This poem, crystallizing as it did
the spirit of the time, and emphasizing one's obligation to Society,
became the impulse of the whole social movement in poetry, a movement
which largely prevailed during the early years of the twentieth century.
After the great success of "The Man With the Hoe", Mr. Markham removed
from California to New York City, where he has since been engaged
in literary work.  His volumes of poetry in their order are:
"The Man With the Hoe, and Other Poems", 1899; "Lincoln, and Other Poems",
1901; "The Shoes of Happiness", 1915.

Mifflin, Lloyd.  [1846-1921]  (2)
Born at Columbia, Pennsylvania, September 15, 1846.  He was educated
at Washington Classical Institute and studied art abroad.
His chief work in poetry has been in the sonnet form,
of which he has exceptional mastery.  His volumes are:  "The Hills", 1896;
"At the Gates of Song", 1897; "The Slopes of Helicon", 1898;
"The Fields of Dawn and Later Sonnets", 1900; "Castilian Days", 1903;
"Collected Sonnets", 1905; "My Lady of Dream", 1906;
and "Toward the Uplands", 1908.

Millay, Edna St. Vincent.  [1892-1950]  (1)
Born at Camden, Maine.  Educated at Vassar College.  Before entering college,
however, when she was but nineteen years of age, she wrote the poem
"Renascence", which was entered in the prize contest of "The Lyric Year".
The poem shows remarkable imagination and a poetic gift of a high order.
Miss Millay has not yet issued a volume of verse.

Moody, William Vaughn.  [1869-1910]  (3)
Born at Spencer, Indiana, July 8, 1869.  Educated at Riverside Academy,
New York, and at Harvard.  In 1895 he became Assistant Professor of English
in the University of Chicago, where he remained until 1903.
His period of teaching, however, was relieved by several trips abroad,
on one of which he visited Greece and re-read the entire body of Greek tragedy
with the background of the scenes which produced it.  The Greek influence,
dominant in his work, reaches its finest expression in "The Fire-Bringer",
a poetic drama of great beauty and philosophical depth.
This drama is one of a trilogy of which it is the first member,
the second being "The Masque of Judgment", and the third, "The Death of Eve".
The last was in process of writing at Mr. Moody's death
and only fragments of it have been published.  This trilogy,
profound in its spiritual meaning and artistic in execution,
would alone be sufficient to place Moody among the major poets
had he not left us a body of lyric poetry of equal distinction.
Moody first attracted wide attention by "An Ode in Time of Hesitation",
written in relation to the annexation of the Philippine Islands
by the United States.  In addition to this he has left us several poems
notable for their social vision, particularly "Gloucester Moors".
In the songs of "The Fire-Bringer", however, we have his truest
lyric offering, and in "The Daguerreotype", that poignant and beautiful poem
to his mother.  Moody died at Colorado Springs on October 17, 1910.
His work has been collected into two volumes, "The Poems and Plays
of William Vaughn Moody", 1912.

Neihardt, John G.  [1881-1973]  (2)
Born at Sharpsburg, Illinois, January 8, 1881.  Removed in his early boyhood
to Bancroft, Nebraska, his present home.  He has made a special study
of the pioneer life of the West and has also lived for a time
among the Omaha Indians to study them.  His work has virility and imagination
and reflects the life which inspired it.  His books of verse are:
"A Bundle of Myrrh", 1908; "Man-Song", 1909; "The Stranger at the Gate", 1912;
"The Song of Hugh Glass", 1915; and "The Quest", 1916.

Norton, Grace Fallow.  [1876-?]  (1)
Born at Northfield, Minnesota, October 29, 1876.  She is the author of
"The Little Gray Songs from St. Joseph's", 1912; "The Sister of the Wind",
1914; "Roads", 1915; "What is Your Legion?", 1916.

O'Hara, John Myers.  [1870-1944]  (2)
Author of "Songs of the Open", 1909; "The Poems of Sappho:
An Interpretative Rendition into English", 1910; "Pagan Sonnets", 1910;
"The Ebon Muse", 1914; "Manhattan", 1915.  Mr. O'Hara's rendition of "Sappho"
is one of the finest in English literature.

O Sheel, Shaemas.  [1886-1954]  (2)  
Born at New York City, September 19, 1886.  Educated at Columbia University.
His volumes are:  "The Blossomy Bough", 1911, and "The Light Feet of Goats",

Peabody, Josephine Preston (Mrs. Lionel Marks).  [1874-1922]  (3)
Born at New York City.  Educated at the Girls' Latin School of Boston
and at Radcliffe College.  She was instructor of English at Wellesley College
from 1901 to 1903.  Her volumes of lyric and dramatic poetry
in their order are:  "The Wayfarers", 1898; "Fortune and Men's Eyes", 1900;
"Marlowe:  A Drama", 1901; "The Singing Leaves", 1903; "The Wings", 1905;
"The Piper", a drama, awarded the Stratford-on-Avon Prize, 1910;
"The Singing Man", 1911; "The Wolf of Gubbio:  A Drama", 1913;
"The Harvest Moon", 1916.  Miss Peabody, as her volumes show,
is a poet of varied gifts and her work is always distinguished
by charm of personality and by insight.

Reese, Lizette Woodworth.  [1856-1935]  (4)
Born in Baltimore, Maryland, January 9, 1856.  Educated in the schools
of that city.  She has been for many years a teacher of English
in West High School of Baltimore.  Her volumes of verse are:
"A Branch of May", 1887; "A Handful of Lavender", 1891; "A Quiet Road", 1896;
"A Wayside Lute", 1909.  Miss Reese has a lyric gift unique in its
strict Saxon simplicity.  Her work has an early, Old-World flavor,
a quaintness, a magic of phrase that renders it wholly individual.

Rice, Cale Young.  [1872-1943]  (3)
Born at Dixon, Kentucky, December 7, 1872.  Graduated from
Cumberland University in 1893, and from Harvard University in 1895,
where he remained to take the degree of A.M. in 1896.
He is the author of many fine poetic dramas, some of which have had
successful stage presentation, and of several volumes of lyric poetry.
In poetic drama his best-known volumes are:  "Charles di Tocca", 1903;
"David", 1904; "Yolanda of Cyprus", 1906; "A Night in Avignon", 1907;
"The Immortal Lure", 1911; "Porzia", 1913.  In lyric poetry he has published
the following collections:  "From Dusk to Dusk", 1898; "Song Surf", 1900;
"Nirvana Days", 1908; "Many Gods", 1910; "Far Quests", 1912;
"At the World's Heart", 1914; "Earth and New Earth", 1916;
"Trails Sunward", 1917.  With the exception of the last two books,
Mr. Rice's plays and poems were collected into two volumes in 1915.

Riley, James Whitcomb.  [1853-1916]  (2)
Born in Greenfield, Indiana, in June, 1853, and died at Indianapolis,
July, 1916.  He occupied a field unique in American literature
and probably no poet came as near to the heart of the people.
Popularly known as "The Hoosier Poet", because his verse was largely written
in the dialect of the common people of his native State of Indiana,
he was yet a poet of the truest gifts, and many of his dialect poems
bid fair to become classic.  Mr. Riley did not confine himself, however,
to the use of dialect, but wrote some exquisite poetry in other fields.
Unlike many poets, he lived to see himself not only the most beloved
and honored citizen of his native State, which annually celebrates
"Riley Day", but the most widely known and beloved poet of his period
in America.  Mr. Riley was so voluminous a writer that we have scarcely space
to list all of his titles, but among the favorite volumes are:
"The Old Swimmin' Hole, and 'Leven More Poems", 1883; "Afterwhiles", 1887;
"Pipes o' Pan at Zekesbury", 1888; "Rhymes of Childhood", 1890;
"Green Fields and Running Brooks", 1892; "Armazindy", 1894;
"Love Lyrics", 1899; "Home Folks", 1900; "Farm Rhymes", 1901;
"An Old Sweetheart of Mine", 1902; "Out to Old Aunt Mary's", 1904;
"Raggedy Man", 1907; "The Little Orphant Annie Book", 1908;
"When the Frost is on the Punkin, and Other Poems", 1911;
"Knee Deep in June, and Other Poems", 1912; and the Biographical Edition
of the complete works, 1913.

Roberts, Charles G. D.  [1860-1943]  (2)
Born in Douglas, New Brunswick, January 10, 1860.  Educated at
the University of New Brunswick.  After a period of teaching,
he turned to journalism and was editor for a time of "The Week", Toronto,
and associate editor of "The Illustrated American".  Mr. Roberts has been
a voluminous writer as novelist, naturalist, and poet.
His volumes of verse are:  "Orion, and Other Poems", 1880;
"In Divers Tones", 1887; "Songs of the Common Day", 1893;
"The Book of the Native", 1896; "New York Nocturnes", 1898; "Poems", 1901;
"The Book of the Rose", 1903; Collected Poems, 1907.

Robinson, Edwin Arlington.  [1869-1935]  (3)
Born at Head Tide, Maine, December 22, 1869.  Educated at Harvard University.
He is the author of "Children of the Night", 1897; "Captain Craig", 1902;
"The Town Down the River", 1910; "The Man against the Sky", 1916;
"Merlin", 1917; and of two prose dramas, "Van Zorn" and "The Porcupine".
Mr. Robinson is a psychological poet of great subtlety.
His poems are usually studies of types and he has given us
a remarkable series of portraits.

Rogers, Robert Cameron.  [1862-1912]  (1)
Born at Buffalo, New York, January 7, 1862.  Died at Santa Barbara,
California, while still a young man [sic].  He was chiefly known for his poem,
"The Rosary", contained in this collection.

Rosenfeld, Morris.  [1862-1923]  (1)
A Yiddish poet who came to America in his early youth.
He has been connected editorially with the Jewish "Forward" and other papers.
He is chiefly known for his "Songs of the Ghetto".

Santayana, George E.  [1863-1952]  (3)
Born in Madrid, Spain, December 16, 1863.  He was for several years
Professor of Philosophy at Harvard University, and has written important works
in this field, particularly "The Sense of Beauty", 1896,
and "Interpretations of Poetry and Religion", 1900.  His work in poetry
has been largely in the sonnet form, of which he has a classic mastery.
His volumes of verse are:  "Sonnets, and Other Poems", 1894; "Lucifer", 1899;
"The Hermit of Carmel", 1901; "Collected Sonnets", 1910.

Schauffler, Robert Haven.  [1879-1964]  (1)
Born at Brun, Austria, though of American parentage, on April 8, 1879.
He studied at Northwestern University, but took his degree of B.A.
from Princeton in 1902, and afterwards spent a year in study
at the University of Berlin.  Mr. Schauffler was a musician before
he took up literature and was a pupil of many famous masters of the 'cello.
He has written upon musical subjects, notably in his volume,
"The Musical Amateur".  He has also written several books of travel,
such as "Romantic Germany" and "Romantic America".  He attracted
wide attention by his poem upon immigration, "The Scum o' the Earth",
which is the title poem of his volume of verse, 1912.

Scollard, Clinton.  [1860-1932]  (3)
Born at Clinton, New York, September 18, 1860.  Graduated at
Hamilton College in 1881.  He afterwards studied at Harvard University
and at Cambridge, England.  He was Professor of English Literature
at Hamilton College, 1888-96.  Mr. Scollard has been a voluminous writer,
and we must content ourselves with listing his more important books.
His first volume was "Pictures in Song", 1884, followed by:
"With Reed and Lyre", 1888; "Old and New World Lyrics", 1888;
"Songs of Sunrise Lands", 1892; "The Hills of Song", 1895;
"The Lutes of Morn", 1901; "Lyrics of the Dawn", 1902;
"The Lyric Bough", 1904; "Chords of the Zither", 1910;
"Sprays of Shamrock", 1914; "Poems", a selection from his complete work, 1914;
"Italy in Arms", 1915; "The Vale of Shadows", 1915;
"Ballads, Patriotic and Romantic", 1916.

Sherman, Frank Dempster.  [1860-1916]  (3)
Born at Peekskill, New York, May 6, 1860.  Died September 19, 1916.
He took the degree of Ph.B. from Columbia University in 1884,
and was Professor of Graphics in Columbia School of Architecture from 1904
until his death.  He was the author of "Madrigals and Catches", 1887;
"Lyrics for a Lute", 1890; "Little Folk Lyrics", 1892; "Lyrics of Joy", 1904;
and "A Southern Flight" (with Clinton Scollard), 1906.

Sterling, George.  [1869-1926]  (3)
Born at Sag Harbor, New York, December 1, 1869.  Educated at
private schools and at St. Charles College, Ellicott City, Maryland.
He is the author of "The Testimony of the Suns", 1903;
"A Wine of Wizardry", 1908; "The House of Orchids", 1911;
"Beyond the Breakers", 1914; "Exposition Ode", 1915; and "Yosemite", 1915.
Mr. Sterling is a writer to whom the sublimer aspects of nature appeal
and he has a style admirably suited to their portrayal.

Stickney, Joseph Trumbull.  [1874-1904]  (3)
Born at Geneva, Switzerland, June 20, 1874.  After a youth
spent for the most part in Italy and Switzerland, although his family
maintained a house in New York, Stickney entered Harvard University in 1891.
Graduating with high classical honors in 1895, he returned to Europe
to study for the degree Doctorat es Lettres.  This was conferred upon him
by the University of Paris in 1903, in exchange for his two theses,
"Les Sentences dans la Poesie Grecque d'Homere a Euripide"
and "De Hermolai Barbari vita atque ingenio dissertationem."  This degree,
the highest in the gift of the University, was never before bestowed
upon an American.  Stickney's volume of poems, "Dramatic Verses",
had been published in 1902.  Leaving Paris in April, 1903,
Stickney spent a few months in Greece and then returned to America to become
instructor in Greek at Harvard.  He died in Boston, October 11, 1904.
His "Poems" were collected and edited in 1905 by his friends,
George Cabot Lodge, William Vaughn Moody, and John Ellerton Lodge.

Sweeney, Mildred McNeal.  [1871-?]  (2)  
Born at Burnett, Wisconsin, August 30, 1871.  Graduated from
Lawrence University, Appleton, Wisconsin in 1889.  Mrs. Sweeney
has lived much abroad.  She is the author of "When Yesterday was Young", 1908;
and "Men of No Land", London, 1912.

Teasdale, Sara (Mrs. Ernst B. Filsinger).  [1884-1933]  (3)
Born in St. Louis, Missouri, August 10, 1884.  Educated at private schools.
She is the author of "Sonnets to Duse", 1907; "Helen of Troy,
and Other Poems", 1911; "Rivers to the Sea", 1915; "Love Songs", 1917.
Editor of "The Answering Voice:  A Hundred Love Lyrics by Women", 1917.
Miss Teasdale is a lyric poet of an unusually pure and spontaneous gift.

Thomas, Edith M.  [1854-1925]  (3)
Born at Chatham, Ohio, August 12, 1854.  Graduated at
the Normal Institute of Geneva, Ohio.  Since 1888 she has resided in New York
and is a member of the editorial staff of "Harper's Magazine".
She is the author of "A New Year's Masque", 1885; "Lyrics and Sonnets", 1887;
"The Inverted Torch", 1890; "Fair Shadowland", 1893; "In Sunshine Land", 1895;
"A Winter Swallow", 1896; "The Dancers", 1903; "The Guest at the Gate", 1909;
"The White Messenger", 1915; and "The Flower from the Ashes", 1915.
Miss Thomas is a poet of rare and subtle quality.  Her work is almost
wholly subjective, the emotional reaction to her own experience.
She has written many lyrics which are among the choicest possessions
of our literature.

Torrence, Ridgely.  [1875-1950]  (2)
Born at Xenia, Ohio, November 27, 1875.  Educated at Miami University, Ohio,
and at Princeton.  Served as assistant librarian at the Astor and Lenox
libraries in New York City from 1897 to 1903.  His volumes of poetry
and poetic drama are:  "The House of a Hundred Lights", 1900;
"El Dorado:  A Tragedy", 1903; "Abelard and Heloise:  A Drama", 1907.

Towne, Charles Hanson.  [1877-1949]  (2)
Born at Louisville, Kentucky, February 2, 1877.  Educated at
New York City College.  Mr. Towne has been an active journalist,
having been successively editor of "The Smart Set", "The Delineator",
"The Designer", and "McClure's Magazine".  Despite his journalistic work
he has found time to write several volumes of poetry of which
the best known are:  "The Quiet Singer, and Other Poems", 1908;
"Manhattan", 1909; "Youth, and Other Poems", 1910; "Beyond the Stars,
and Other Poems", 1912; and "To-day and To-morrow", 1916.

Untermeyer, Louis.  [1885-1977]  (2)
Born at New York City, October 1, 1885.  Educated in the public schools
of that city.  He has been connected editorially with "The Masses" and with
"The Seven Arts", and does critical work for the "Chicago Evening Post".
He is the author of "First Love", 1911; "Challenge", 1914;
"And Other Poets:  A Book of Parodies", 1916; "These Times", 1917;
and "The Poems of Heinrich Heine, Selected and Translated", 1917.

Upson, Arthur.  [1877-1908]  (4)
Born at Camden, New York, in 1877.  Educated at Camden Academy
and the University of Minnesota.  He is the author of "Westwind Songs", 1902;
"Octaves in an Oxford Garden", 1902; "The City:  A Poem Drama", 1905;
"The Tides of Spring, and Other Poems", 1907.  Mr. Upson died August 14, 1908.
His death was an inestimable loss to American literature,
as he was a poet of rare gifts which were maturing with each expression.

Viereck, George Sylvester.  [1884-1962]  (3)
Born in Munich, Germany, December 31, 1884.  Came to America
at the age of eleven years.  Graduated from the College of New York City
in 1906.  He was for several years upon the staff of "Current Opinion"
and is the editor of "The International" and of "Viereck's American Weekly",
formerly "The Fatherland".  Mr. Viereck's three volumes of verse are:
"Nineveh, and Other Poems", 1907; "The Candle and the Flame", 1911;
"Songs of Armageddon", 1916.

Welsh, Robert Gilbert.  [?-1924]  (1)
Dramatic critic of the "Evening Telegram" of New York City.
He has not yet published a collection of poetry, but has appeared
in the leading magazines.

Wheeler, Edward J.  [1859-1922]  (1)
Born at Cleveland, Ohio, March 11, 1859.  Graduated from Wesleyan University
in Ohio in 1879.  His university conferred upon him the degree of Litt.D.
in 1905.  Mr. Wheeler is one of the leading journalists of America,
having been editor of the "Literary Digest" from 1895 to 1905
and of "Current Literature", now "Current Opinion", since that date.
He is also literary editor of Funk and Wagnalls Company, Publishers.
Mr. Wheeler was one of the founders of the Poetry Society of America in 1909
and has been president of the organization since that date.

Wheelock, John Hall.  [1886-1978]  (2)
Born at Far Rockaway, New York, in 1886.  He took the degree of A.B.
from Harvard University in 1908, and spent the next two years in Germany,
studying during 1909 at Gottingen and during 1910
at the University of Berlin.  He is connected with the publishing house
of Charles Scribner's Sons.  Mr. Wheelock's volumes of poetry are:
"The Human Fantasy", 1911; "The Beloved Adventure", 1912;
and "Love and Liberation", 1913.

Wilkinson, Florence (Mrs. Wilfrid Muir Evans).  [1878-?]  (3)  
Born at Tarrytown, New York.  Miss Wilkinson studied at
Chicago University and other American colleges and afterwards
at the Sorbonne and the Bibliotheque Nationale of Paris.
She is the author of several novels, of which the best known are:
"The Lady of the Flag Flowers", "The Strength of the Hills",
and "The Silent Door"; and also of one or two volumes of plays;
but her most representative work is found in her poetry,
of which she has written two volumes:  "The Far Country", 1906,
and "The Ride Home", 1913.

Woodberry, George Edward.  [1855-1930]  (3)
Born at Beverly, Massachusetts, May 12, 1855.  Graduated with
the degree of A.B. from Harvard University in 1877.  The degree of Litt.D.
was conferred on him by Amherst College in 1905, and by Harvard University
in 1911, and the degree of LL.D. by Western Reserve University in 1907.
He was Professor of English at the University of Nebraska, 1877-78;
also 1880-82, and was Professor of Comparative Literature
at Columbia University 1891-1904.  Professor Woodberry is
one of the ablest critics and biographers in American literature as well as
one of the finest poets.  Among his best-known volumes of criticism are:
"Studies in Letters and Life", "The Heart of Man",
"Makers of Literature", "The Torch", "The Appreciation of Literature",
and "The Inspiration of Poetry".  In biography he has done
admirable studies of Poe, Hawthorne, Shelley, Swinburne, Emerson, etc.;
and in poetry he has published many volumes, of which
the most representative are:  "The North Shore Watch", 1890;
"Wild Eden", 1900; "Poems", 1903; "The Kingdom of All Souls", 1912;
"The Flight", 1914; and "Ideal Passion", 1917.

Rittenhouse, Jessie Belle.  [1869-1948]
Jessie Rittenhouse is best known as an editor and for her compilations,
but she was also a poet -- though she did not include her own work
in her compilations.  Her compilations and criticisms include:
"The younger American poets", 1904; "The Little Book of Modern Verse", 1913;
"The Little Book of American Poets, 1787-1900", 1915; "The Second Book
of Modern Verse", 1919; "The Little Book of Modern British Verse:
One Hundred Poets since Henley", 1924; "The Third Book of Modern Verse", 1927.
Her own works include:  "The Door of Dreams", 1918; "The Lifted Cup", 1921;
"The Secret Bird", 1930; "My House of Life; an Autobiography", 1934;
and "The Moving Tide; New and Selected Lyrics", 1939.
Her compilations went through numerous printings, and are still a good guide
to the poetry of the era.

Notes to the text:

Due to the technical limitations of ASCII, accents were not included
in the text.  However, a complete list follows of each line
where an accent occurred in the original.  The "pipe" character (|)
indicates a special character, and a marker for the accent follows,
except in cases where two vowels make a combined character, as in C(ae)sar.
Most should be obvious, but "=" represents an accent seldom used,
that looks like the bottom half of a circle.  The affected lines are:

Tryste No|"el.  [Louise Imogen Guiney]
 His foot was wing|\ed as the mounting sun.
  Bruis|\ed past healing by some bitter chance,
Who leads despis|\ed men, with just-unshackled feet,
Now limb doth mingle with dissolv|\ed limb
The cup of trembling shall be drain|\ed quite,
    While all the thousand-fring|\ed trees
"Bless|\ed! but not as happier children blessed" --
And the far rose of P|aestum once did climb.
But most, his music whose belov|\ed name
For sun-filled ones, one bless|\ed thing unknown.
The curl|\ed lashes of Semiramis.
And like the peal of an accurs|\ed bell
The chaplain clasped his mail|\ed knee.
With steadfast lips and veil|\ed eyne;
I hold my peace, my Cle|"is, on my heart;
Beyond the lure of light Alc|aeus' lyre,
I saw two wing|\ed shadows side by side,
Around thine earth sun-wing|\ed winds do blow
About their fragile hairs' a|"erial gold.
From a barr|\ed door."
Peopled with fa|"ery glimmerings,
A fa|"ery world of memory,
Upon my lowly, thatch|\ed roof,
Laid gently on my seal|\ed sight,
Who combed their long hair at Thermopyl|ae's pass?
That Dvo|=rak took whole from the dancers.
C|aesar dreamed him a world ruled well;
 Mad boy, for Glauc|"oe.
Wine-sweet are Glauc|"oe's kisses,
He seems to hearken, Glauc|"oe,
 The wing|\ed breath of you.
With C|aesar's cohorts sang of thee,
 An unseen, skillful, medi|aeval wall.
|Aeschylus wanders back.
As in the crevices of C|aesar's tomb
The mind conceived you, though the quench|\ed mind
Across his stretch|\ed vision as in dream --
Expunge the horrible C|aesars of this slum!"
In frill|\ed crimson flaunt the hollyhocks,
And yet that veil|\ed face, I know
Bless|\ed the angel, gazing on all good,
Yet wondrous faith in God's dew-drench|\ed morns --
He missed the medi|aeval grace
But sore am I with Vaine Trav|\el!
 My heart shall p|aean sing,
myth or mysticism.  His first volume was "Low Tide on Grand Pr|/e",
Mr. Le Gallienne has made an admirable paraphrase of the "Rub|/aiy|/at"
of Omar Khayy|/am and of a group of odes from the "Divan" of Hafiz.
studied at San Jos|/e Normal School and the University of California.
Born at Br|"un, Austria, though of American parentage, on April 8, 1879.
to study for the degree Doctorat |\es Lettres.  This was conferred upon him
"Les Sentences dans la Po|/esie Grecque d'Hom|\ere |\a Euripide"
"El Dorado:  A Tragedy", 1903; "Ab|/elard and H|/elo|"ise:  A Drama", 1907.
studying during 1909 at G|"ottingen and during 1910
at the Sorbonne and the Biblioth|\eque Nationale of Paris.

Three different printings were used for comparison, all three of which
were apparently from the same plates.  The punctuation in particular
was poorly printed, so even with three versions to choose from,
in a few cases the punctuation had to be guessed at.

The Acknowledgements section has been mostly omitted.

Otherwise, only two significant changes to the text were made,
other than adjusting the punctuation on an occasional title
so that the title in the text matched that in the table of contents,
a few other minor errors in punctuation, and the changes noted
in the Biographical Notes.

In "Da Leetla Boy" by Thomas Augustine Daly, the second occurrence of the line
"Of -- w'at-you-call? . . ." was "Of -- wa't-you-call? . . ." in the original.
After observing the spelling of "w'at" in the other poem by Mr. Daly,
this was changed to conform with the `correct' spelling.

"Sweeney, Mildred McNeal" was originally misspelled "Sweeney, Mildred McNeil"
in the notes.

The note on Jessie B. Rittenhouse is new.

*** End of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "The Little Book of Modern Verse
 - A Selection from the Work of Contemporaneous American Poets" ***

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