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So waste not thou ; but come ; for all the vales

Await thee ; azure pillars of the hearth

Arise to thee; the children call, and I

Thy shepherd pipe, and sweet is every sound,
Sweeter thy voice, but every sound is sweet ;
Myriads of rivulets hurrying thro' the lawn,

The moan of doves in immemorial elms,

And murmuring of innumerable bees.'

So she low-toned ; while with shut eyes I lay Listening ; then look'd. Pale was the perfect face ; The bosom with long sighs labour'd ; and meek Seem’d the full lips, and mild the luminous eyes,

And the voice trembled and the hand. She said

Brokenly, that she knew it, she had fail'd

In sweet humility ; had fail'd in all ;

That all her labour was but as a block

Left in the quarry ; but she still were loth,

She still were loth to yield herself to one,
That wholly scorn'd to help their equal rights

Against the sons of men, and barbarous laws.

She pray'd me not to judge their cause from her That wrong'd it, sought far less for truth than power In knowledge: something wild within her breast,

A greater than all knowledge, beat her down.

And she had nursed me there from week to week :

Much had she learnt in little time. In part

It was ill counsel had misled the girl
To vex true hearts : yet was she but a girl —
• Ah fool, and made myself a Queen of farce !
When comes another such ? never, I think
Till the Sun drop dead from the signs.'

Her voice

Choked, and her forehead sank


her hands,

And her great heart thro' all the faultful Past

Went sorrowing in a pause I dared not break;
Till notice of a change in the dark world
Was lispt about the acacias, and a bird,
That early woke to feed her little ones,

Sent from a dewy breast a cry for light :
She moved, and at her feet the volume fell.

• Blame not thyself too much,' I said, 'nor blame

Too much the sons of men and barbarous laws ;

These were the rough ways of the world till now. Henceforth thou hast a helper, me, that know The woman's cause is man's : they rise or sink

Together, dwarf'd or godlike, bond or free:

For she that out of Lethe scales with man

The shining steps of Nature, shares with man
His nights, his days, moves with him to one goal,
Stays all the fair young planet in her hands
If she be small, slight-natured, miserable,
How shall men grow? but work no more alone !
Our place is much : as far as in us lies
We two will serve them both in aiding her-
Will clear away the parasitic forms
That seem to keep her up but drag her down
Will leave her space to burgeon out of all

Within her- let her make herself her own

To give or keep, to live and learn and be

All that not harms distinctive womanhood.

For woman is not undevelopt man

But diverse : could we make her as the man,

Sweet love were slain : his dearest bond is this

Not like to like, but like in difference.

Yet in the long years liker must they grow ;

The man be more of woman, she of man ;

He gain in sweetness and in moral height,
Nor lose the wrestling thews that throw the world ;
She mental breadth, nor fail in childward care,
Nor lose the childlike in the larger mind;

Till at the last she set herself to man,

Like perfect music unto noble words ;
And so these twain, upon the skirts of Time,
Sit side by side, full-summ'd in all their powers,
Dispensing harvest, sowing the To-be,

Self-reverent each and reverencing each,

Distinct in individualities,

But like each other ev'n as those who love.

Then comes the statelier Eden back to men :
Then reign the world's great bridals, chaste and calm :
Then springs the crowning race of humankind.

May these things be!'

Sighing she spoke • I fear

They will not.'

• Dear, but let us type them now
In our own lives, and this proud watchword rest
Of equal ; seeing either sex alone
Is half itself, and in true marriage lies
Nor equal, nor unequal : each fulfils
Defect in each, and always thought in thought,
Purpose in purpose, will in will, they grow,
The single pure and perfect animal,
The two-cell'd heart beating, with one full stroke,


And again sighing she spoke : * A dream That once was mine! what woman taught you this ? '

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