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Is’r true the false poor beauty flies
From thee 7 oh, 'tis well—’tis right!
My lore shall now adorn thine eyes,
With brightness like the unclouded night!
The poet sheds, on herb and flower,
His fancies, till they breathe and shine:
And shall I, in thy drooping hour,
Neglect to hallow aught of thine 7
Love shall flow along,
Singing iike a gentle river;
Its saddesl, still its sweetest song
For ever—for ever !
Uome to me—dearer, fairer far,
Than when men's smiles did round thee fawn.
Look on me—as the last pale star
Looks round upon the glowing dawn
Yet, fly not Stay, and smile, sweet heart,
On whate'er chance may now befall;
My love, though every good depart,
Shall make thee dear amends for all !
True love reigns on high,
Like the coustanl stars, that quiver
..And look bright from every sky,
For ever—for ever !
I Love thee Oh, the strife, the pain,
The fiery thoughts that through me roll I
I love thee! Look—again, again
O Stars that thou couldst read my soul :
I would thy bright bright eye could pierce
The crimson folds that hide my heart;
Then wouldst thou find the serpent fierce,
That stings me—and will not depart |
Look love upon me, with thine eyes |
Yet, no—men’s evil tongues are nigh:
Look pity, then, and with thy sighs
Waste music on me—till I die!
Yet, love not sigh not Turn (thou must)
Thy beauty from me, sweet and kind;
'Tis fit that I should burn to dust—
To death: because—I am not blind 1
I love thee—and I live! The Moon
Who sees me from her calin above,
The Wind who weaves her dim soft tune
About me, know how much I love :
Naught else, save Night and the lonely Hour,
E’er heard my assion wild and strong:
Even thou yet deemst not of thy power,
Unless—thou readst aright my song
WEAve no more the marriage chain All unmated is the lover;
Death has ta'en the place of Pain;
Love doth call on love in vain
Life and years of hope are over !
No more want of marriage bell
No more need of bridal favor
Where is she to wear them well ?
You beside the lover tell!
Gone—with all the love he gave her
Paler than the stone she lies.:
Colder than the winter's morning
Wherefore did she thus despise
(She with pity in her eyes)
Mother's care, and lover’s warning 7
Youth and beauty—shall they not Last beyond a brief to-morrow 7
No : a prayer, and then forgot
This the truest lover's lot;
This the sum of human sorrow!
WE've sailed through banks of green,
Where the wild waves fret and quiver.
And we’ve down the Danube been,
The dark deep thundering river!
We’ve thridded the Elbe and Rhone,
The Tyber and blood-died Seine,
And have watched where the blue Garonne
Goes laughing to meet the main;
But what is so lovely, what is so grand,
Jis the river that runs through Rhine-land?
On the Rhine-river were we born,
Midst its flowers and famous wines,
And we know that ur country’s morn,
With a treble-sweet aspect shines.
Let other lands boast their flowers,
Let other men dream wild dreams;
Let them hope they’ve a land like ours,
And a stream, like our stream of streams;
Yet, what is half so bright or so grand,
...As the river that runs through Rhine-land?
Are we smit by the blinding sun,
That fell on our tender youth
Do we coward-like shrink and shun
The thought-telling touch of truth?
On our heads be the sin, then, set!
We’ll bear all the shame divine;
But we’ll never disown the debt,
That we owe to our noble Rhine!
O, the Rhine! the Rhine ! the broad and the grand
Is the river that runs through Rhine-land!
SWEET FRIEND, WHERE SLEEPS THY SONG!
Sweet friend where sleeps thy song?
Ah, wherefore hath it lain so long
In idle slumbers!
Quick thou, the ancient bondage break,
And bid its dreaming soul awake
In airy numbers!
Bid it burst forth, like Spring,
When first the youthful rivers sing—
That small bright river,
That runneth laughing from the earth,
And thinketh, in its new-born mirth,
To live for ever!
Bid it come forth, like Spring,
When brooks and trees their music bring,
And ficlós their flowers;
And we will hearken all, and hoard
Thy sweet sweet thoughts, like riches stored, For after hours!
SONG OF WOOD-NYMPHS. CoME here, come here, and dwell In forest deep Come here, come here, and tell Why thou dost weep Is it for love (sweet pain!) That “us thou darest complain Among our pleasant shades, our summer leave Where naught else grieves 1 Come here, come here, and lie By whispering stream! Here no one dares to die For love’s sweet dream; But health all seek, and joy, And shun perverse annoy, And race along green paths till close of day, And laugh—alway ! Or else, through half the year, On rushy floor, We lie by waters clear, While sky-larks pour Their songs into the sun ? And when bright day is done, We hide 'neath hells of flowers, or nodding * And dream—till inorn 1
Oh! happy thou—whose all of time
Day and eve, and morning prime)
fill’d with talk on pleasant themes—
Or visions quaint, which come in dreams
Such as panther’d Bacchus rules,
When his rod is on “the schools,”
Mixing wisdom with their wine—
Or, perhaps, thy wit so fine
Strayeth in some elder book
Whereon our modern Solons look,
With severe ungifted eyes,
Wondering what thou seest to prize.
Happy thou, whose skill can take
Pleasure at each turn, and slake
Thy thirst by every fountain’s brink,
Where less wise men would pause to shrink i
Sometimes 'mid stately avenues
With Cowley thou, or Marvel’s muse,
Dost walk; or Gray, by Eton towers;
Or Pope, in Hampton's chestnut bowers;
Or Walton, by his loved Lea stream;
Or dost thou with our Milton dream
Of Eden and the Apocalypse,
And hear the words from his great lips ?
Speak—in what grove or hazel shade,
For “musing meditation made,”
Dost wander 2—or on Penshurst lawn,
Where Sidney’s fame had time to dawn
And die, ere yet the hate of Men
Could envy at his perfect pen 7
Or, dost thou, in some London street
£. voices fill'd and thronging feet)
iter, with mien 'twixt grave and gay—
Or take, along some pathway sweet,
Thy calm suburban way 7
Happy beyond that man of Ross,
Whom mere content could ne'er engross,
Art thou—with hope, health, “learned leisure,”
Friends, books, thy thoughts—an endless pleasure!
—Yet—yet—(for when was pleasure made
Sunshine all without a shade 2)
Thou, perhaps, as now thou rovest
Through the busy scenes thou lovest,
With an Idler’s careless look,
Turning some moth-pierced book,
Feel'st a sharp and sudden wo
For visions vanished long ago!
And then, thou think'st how time has fled
Over thy unsilvered head,
Snatching many a fellow mind
Away, and leaving—what ?—behind 1
Naught, alas ! save joy and pain
Mingled ever, like a strain
Of music where the discords vie
With the truer harmony.
So, perhaps, with thee the ven
Is sullied ever—so the chain
Of habits and affections old,
Like a weight of solid gold,
Presseth on thy gentle breast,
Till sorrow rob thee of thy rest.
Aye: so’t must be E’en I (whose lot
The fairy Love so long forgot),
Seated beside this Sherris wine,
And near to books and shapes divine,
Which poets and the painters past
Have wrought in lines that aye shall last—
E’en I, with Shakspere’s self beside me,
And one whose tender talk can guide me
Through fears, and pains, and troublous themes
Whose smile doth fall upon my dreams
Like sunshine on a stormy sea—
Want something—when I think of thee!
THE FALCON. (AFTER A PAINTING BY TITIax
THE Falcon is a noble bfru.
And when his heart of hearts is stirred,
He’ll seek the eagle, though he run
Into his chamber near the sun.
Never was there brute or bird,
Whom the woods or mountains heard,
That could force a fear or care
From him—the Arab of the air!
To-day he sits upon a wrist,
Whose purple veins a queen has kissed,
And on him falls a sterner eye
Than he can face where’er he fly,
Though he scale the summit cold
Of the Grimsel, vast and old—
Though he search yon sunless stream,
That thrids the forest like a dream.
Ah, noble Soldier! noble Bird!
Will your names be ever heard—
Ever seen in future story,
Crowning it with deathless glory?
—Peace, ho!—the master's eye is drawn
Away unto the bursting dawn
Arise, thou bird of birds, arise,
And seek thy quarry in the skies!
BUILD UP A COLUMN TO BOLIVAR!
Build up a column to Bolivar!
Build it under a tropic star!
Build it high as his mounting fame!
Crown its head with his noble name !
Let the letters tell, like a light afar,
“This is the column of Bolivar”
Soldier in war, in peace a man,
Did he not all that a hero can f
Wasting his life for his country’s care,
Laying it down with a patriot prayer,
Shedding his blood like the summer rain,
Loving the land, though he loved in vain
Man is a creature, good or ill,
Little or great, at his own strong will;
And he grew good, and wise, and great,
Albeit he fought with a tyrant fate,
And showered his golden gifts on men,
Who paid him in basest wrongs again!
Raise the column to Bolivar !
Firm in peace, and fierce in war!
Shout forth his noble, noble name!
Shout till his enemies die, in shame!
Shout till Columbia’s woods awaken,
Like seas by a mighty tempest shaken-
Till pity, and praise, and great disdain,
Sound like an Indian hurricane!
Shout, as ye shout in conquering war,
While ye build the column to Bolivar"
THE FIRE-FLY. TELL us, O Guide by what strange natural laws This winged flower throws out, night after night, Such lunar brightness Why P for what grave cause Is this earth-insect crown'd with heavenly light 7 Peace! Rest content See where, by cliff and dell, Past tangled forest paths and silent river, The little lustrous creature guides us well, And where we fail, his small light aids us ever. Night's shining servant Pretty star of earth! I ask not why thy lamp doth ever burn. Perhaps it is thy very life—thy mind; And thou, if robbed of that strange right of birth, Might be no more than Man—when Death doth turn His beauty into darkness, cold and blind
“I have read of a bird, which hath a face like, and yet will prey upon, a man ; who corning to the water to drink, and finding there by rehection that he had killed one like himself, pineth away by degrees, and never afterward enjoyeth itself.”—Fuller's Won thisa. THE wild-winged creature, clad in gore, (His bloody human meal being o'er,) Comes down to the water’s brink: 'Tis the first time he there hath gazed, And straight he shrinks—alarmed—amazed, And dares not drink.
This common field, this little brook—
What is there hidden in these two,
That I so often on them look,
Ostener than on the heavens blue?
No beauty lies upon the field;
Small music doth the river yield;
And yet I look and look again,
With something of a pleasant pain.
'Tis thirty—can’t be thirty years,
Since last I stood upon this plank,
Which o'er the brook its figure rears,
And watch'd the pebbles as they sank?
How white the stream" I still remember
Its margin glassed by hoar December,
And how the sun fell on the snow:
Ah! can it be so long ago?
It cometh back;-So blythe, so bright,
It hurries to my eager ken,
As though but one short winter’s night
Had darkened o'er the world since then.
It is the same clear dazzling scene;—
Perhaps the grass is scarce as green;
Perhaps the river's troubled voice
Doth not so plainly say—“Rejoice.”
Yet Nature surely never ranges,
Ne'er quits her gay and flowery crown;
But, ever joyful, merely changes
The primrose for the thistle-down.
'Tis we alone who, waxing old,
Look on her with an aspect cold,
I)issolve her in our burning tears,
Or clothe her with the mists of years 1
Then, why should not the grass be green 1
And why should not the river’s song
Be merry—as they both have been
When I was here an urchin strong?
Ah, true—too true ! I see the sun
Through thirty winter years hath run,
For grave eyes, mirrored in the brook,
Usurp the urchin's laughing look I
So be it! I have lost—and won 1
For, once, the past was poor to me—
The future dim; and though the sun
Shed life and strength, and I was free,
I felt not—knew no grateful pleasure:
All seemed but as the common measure :
But Now—the experienced Spirit old
Turns all the leaden past to gold !
HURRAH ! Who was e'er so gay,
As we merry folks to-day !
Brother Beggars, do not stare,
But toss your rags into the air,
And cry, “No work, and better fare P"
Each man, be he saint or sinner,
Shall to-day have—MEAT for Dinner 11
Yesterday, oh, Yesterday !
That indeed was a bad day;
Iron bread, and rascal gruel,
Water drink, and scanty fuel,
With the beadle at our backs,
Cursing us as we beat flax,
Just like twelve Old Bailey varlets,
Among ochre-picking harlots |
Why should we such things endure ?
Though we be the parish Poor,
This is usage bad and rugh. •
Are not age and pain enough 7
Lonely age, unpitied pain 7
With the Ban that, like a chain,
To our prison bare hath bound us,
And the unwelcomed Winter 'round us f
Why should we for ever work
Do we starvc beneath the Turk,
That, with one foot in the grave,
We should still toil like the slave 7
Seventy winters on our heads,
Yet we freeze on wooden beds !
With one blanket for a fold,
That lets in the horrid cold,
And cramps and agues manifold:
Yet—sometimes we’re merry people,
When the chimes clang in the steeple:
If't be summer-time, we all
(Dropsied, palsied, crippled) crawl
Underneath the sunny wall:
Up and down like worms we creep,
Or stand still and fall asleep,
With our faces in the sun,
Forgetting all the world has done!
If’t be May, with hawthorn blooms
In our breasts, we sit on tombs,
And spell o'er, with eager ken,
The epitaphs of older men,
(Choosing those, for some strange reasons,
Who’ve weather'd ninety—a hundred seasons,)
Till forth at last we shout in chorus,
“We’ve thirty good years still before us"
But to-day’s a bonny day !
What shall we be doing 7 -
What's the use of saving money,
When rivers flow with milk and honey?
Prudence is our ruin.
What have we to do with care?
Who, to be a pauper’s heir,
Would mask his false face in a smile,
Or hide his honest hate in guile?
But come—why do we loiter here?
Boy, go get us some small beer:
Quick ' 'twill make our blood run quicker,
And drown the devil Pain in liquor "
March so fierce is almost past,
April will be here at last,
And May must come,
When bees do hum,
And Summer over cold victorious!
Hurrah! 'tis a prospect glorious !
Meat small beer and warmer treather 7
Come boys—let's be mad together
Look at this brook, so blithe, so free!
Thus hath it been, fair boy, for ever—
A shining, dancing, babbling river;
And thus twill ever be.
*Twill run, from mountain to the main,
With just the same sweet babbling voice
That now sings out, “Rejoice—rejoice!”
Perhaps "twill be a chain
That will a thousand years remain—
Ay, through all times and changes last,
And link the present to the past.
Perhaps upon this self-same spot,
Hereafter, may a merry knot
(My children's children () meet and play,
And think on me, some summer day;
And smile (perhaps through youth's brief tears
While thinking back through wastes of years,)
And softly say—
“’Twas here the old man used to stray,
And gaze upon the sky; and dream
(Long, long ago!) by this same stream.
He’s in his grave! Ungentle Time
Hath dealt but harshly with his rhyme 1
But We will ne'er forget, that he
Taught us to love this river free.”