Page images
[merged small][merged small][merged small][graphic][merged small][graphic][merged small][merged small][merged small]


£H, there be souls none understand,

Like clouds, they cannot touch the land,
Drive as they may by field or town.
Then we look wise at this, and frown.
And we cry "Fool!" and cry "Take hold
Of earth, and fashion gods of gold! '*

Unanchored ships, that blow' and blow,

Sail to and fro, and then go down

In unknown seas that none shall know,

Without one ripple of renown;
Poor drifting dreamers, sailing by,
That seem to only live to die.

Call these not fools; the test of worth
Is not the hold you have of earth;
Lo, there be gentlest souls, sea blown,
That kuow not any harbor known;
And it may be the reason is
They touch on fairer shores than this.

Joaouin Miller.


i you ask what the birds say? The sparrow, the dove,

The linnet, and thrush say " I love, and I love!" In the winter they 're silent, the wind is so strong;

What it says I don't know, but it sings a loud song. But green leaves, and blossoms, and sunny warm, weather.

And singing and loving — all come back together.
But the lark is so brimful of gladness and love.
The green fields below him. the blue sky above,
That he sings, and he sings, and forever sings he,
"I love my Love, and my Love loves me."

Samuel Taylor Coleridge.

[graphic][merged small]


|ALR are the flowers and the children, but their S4p subtle suggestion is fairer;

Rare is the roseburst of dawn, but the secret that clasps it is rarer; I Sweet the exultauce of song, but the strain that t precedes it is sweeter;

And never was poem yet writ, but the meaning out-mastered the metre.

Never a daisy that grows, but a mystery guideth the growing;

Never a river that flows, but a majesty sceptres the flowing;

Never a Shakespeare that soared, but a stronger than

he did enfold him; Nor never a prophet foretells, but a mightier seer

hath foretold him.

Back of the canvas that throbs the painter is hinted and hidden;

Into the statue that breathes the soul of the sculptor Is bidden;

Under the joy that is felt lie the infinite issues of feeling!

Crowning the glory revealed is the glory that crowns the revealing.

Great are the symbols of being, but that which issymbolcd is greater;

Vast the create and beheld, but vaster the inward creator;

Back of the sound broods the silence, back of the gift

stands the giving; Back of the hand that receives thrill the sensitive

nerves of receiving.

Space is as nothing to spirit, the deed is outdone by the doing;

The heart of the wooer is warm, but warmer the heart of the wooing;

And up from the pits where these shiver, and up from the heights where those shine.

Twin voices and shadows swim starward, and the essence of life is divine.

Richard Realp.

[merged small][graphic][merged small][merged small][merged small][graphic]

Still in my visions a golden-haired glory Loud 'gainst the window the winter wind dashes,
Flits to and fro; Dreary and cold;

She whom I loved—but 'tis just the old story: Over the floor the red fire-light flashes,
Dead, long ago. just as of old.


Just as of old—but the embers are scattered,

Whose ruddy blaze Flashed o'er the floor where the fairy feet pattered

lu other days!

Then, her dear voice, like a silver chime ringing,

Melted away;
Often these walls have re-echoed her singing,

Now hushed for aye!

Why should love bring naught but sorrow, I wonder?

Everything dies!

Time and death, sooner or later, must sunder
Holiest ties.

Year3 have rolled by; 1 am wiser and older—

Wiser, but yet Not till my heart and my feelings grow colder,

Can I forget.

So. in my snug little fire-lit chamber,

Sit I alone;
And, as I gaze in the coals, I remember

Days long agone!

George Arnold.



CSLDE a massive gateway built up in years gone by

Upon whose top the clouds in eternal shadow lie.

While streams the evening sunshine on quiet wood and lea,

I stand and calmly wait till the hinges turn for me.

The tree-tops faintly rustle beneath the breeze's flight,

A soft and soothing sound, yet it whispers of the night;

I hear the wood-thrush piping one mellow descant more.

And scent the flowers that blow when the heat of day is o'er.

Behold the portals open, aud o'er the threshold, now, There steps a weary one with pale aud furrowed brow;

His count of years is full, his allotted task is wrought; He passes to his rest from a place that needs him not.

In sadness then I ponder how quickly fleets the hour Of human strength and action, man's courage and his power;

I muse while still the wood-thrush sings down the

golden day;
And as I look and listen the sadness wears away,

Again the hinges turn, and a youth departing throws
A look of longing backward and sorrowfully goes;
A blooming maid, unbinding the roses from her hair.
Moves mournfully away from amidst the young and

Oh glory of our race that so suddenly decays!

Oh crimson flush of morning that darkens as we gaze!

Oh breath of summer blossoms that on the restless

air Scatters a moment's sweetness and flies we know not


I grieve for life's bright promise, just shown and then withdrawn;

But still the sun shines round me: the evening bird sings on,

And I again am soothed, and, beside the ancient gate, In the soft evening .sunlight, I calmly stand and wait.

Once more the gates are opened; an infant group go out,

The sweet smile quenched forever, and stilled the

sprightly shout. Oh frail, frail tree of life, that upon the greensward


Its fair young buds unopened, with every wind that blows!

So come from every region, so enter, side by side, The strong and faint of spirit, the meek, and men of pride.

Steps of earth's great and mighty, between those pillars gray,

And prints of little feet mark the dust along the way.

And some approach the threshold whose looks are blank with fear,

And some whose temples brighten with joy in drawing near.

As if they saw dear faces, and caught the gracious eye Of Him, the sinless teacher, who came for us to die.

I mark the joy, the terror; yet these withm my heart, Can neither make the dread nor the longing to depart; And, in the sunshine streaming on quiet wood and lea,

I stand and calmly wait till the hinges turn for me.

William Cullen Bryant.


[graphic][merged small]

I, that am curtailed of this fair proportion,
Cheated of feature by dissembling nature,
Deformed, unfinished, sent before my time
Into this breathing world, scarce half made up,
And that so lamely and unfashionable,
That dogs bark at me, as I halt by them;
Why I, in this weak piping time of peace,
Have no delight to pa*>s away the time,
Unless to spy my shadow in the sun,
And descant on mine own deformity;
And therefore, since I cannot prove a lover,
To entertain these fair well-spoken days,
I am determined to prove a villain,
And hate the idle pleasures of these days.



BABY sat on his mother's knee,

On the golden morn of a summer's day,
Clapping his tin}- hands in glee.
As he watched the shifting sunbeams play.

A sunbeam glanced through the open door,
With its shimmering web of atoms tine,

And crept along on the sanded floor
In a glittering, glimmering, golden line.

The baby laughed in his wild delight.

And clutched at the quivering golden baud; But the sunbeam fled from his eager sight,

And nought remained in the dimpled hand.

For a cloud had swept o'er the summer sky, And gathered the beam to its bosom gray.

And wrapped iu a mantle of sombre dye
The glory and pride of the summer's day.

Thus cheated sore in his eager quest,
With a puzzled look that was sad to see,

He laid his head on his mother's breast
And gazed iu the dear face wistfully.

The cloud swept by, and the beam returned,
But the weary child was slumbering now.

And heeded it not, though it glowed and burned
Like a crown of flame on his baby brow.

And I thought, ah, babe, thou art not alone
In thy bootless quest for a fleeting toy,

For we all are babes, little wiser grown,

Iu our chase for some idle and transient joy.

We are grasping at sunbeams day by day.
And get but our toil for our weary pains;

For ever some cloudlet obscures the ray,
And naught in the sordid grasp remains.

But when the lures o* our youth depart,
And our empty strivings are all forgot,

Then down in some nook of the peaceful heart
The sunbeam glows when we seek it not.

Egbert Phelps.


f,0 farewell to the little good you boar me. Farewell, a long farewell, to all my greatness! £/k This is the state of man: to-day he puts forth Tff 'rite tender leaves of hope; to-morrow blossoms. And bears his blushing honors thick upon him; The third day comes a frost, a killing frost. And, when he thinks, good easy man. full surely His greatness is a-ripening, nips his root. And then he falls, as I do. I have ventured. Like liltle wanton boys that swim on bladders. This many summers in a sea of glory. But far beyond my depth: my high-blown pride

At length broke under me. and now has left me,
Weary, and old with service, to the mercy
Of a rude stream, that must for ever hide me.
Vain pomp and glory of this world, I hate ye;
I feel my heart new opened. O, how wretched
Is that poor man that hangs on princes' favors!
There is, betwixt that smile we would aspire to.
That sweet aspect of princes, and their ruin,
More pangs and fears than wars or women have;
And when he falls, he falls like Lucifer,
Never to hope again.

William Shakespeare.

« PreviousContinue »