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Woman divine! ideal best-beloved,
Here was thy image realized to me;
Her look, her smile, was thine,
Blending their souls' sublimest needs
With tasks of every day,
As noble boys at play.
They did not probe and bare,
To watch the misery there, For that their love but flow'd more fast,
Their charities more free,
Into the evil sea.
Lie close about his feet,
That we are sick to greet: For flowers that grow our hands beneath
We struggle and aspire,
The air of fresh desire,
Advance with hopeful cheer,
As chill as they are clear;
The loftier that ye go,
On all that lies below.
Gently supported by the ready aid
Of loving hands, whose little work of toil
She turned her failing feet
To the soft-pillow'd seat,
I bow'd in spirit, thinking that she were
That we might learn from her
The art to minister
That ever prest her blue-vein'd eyelids down, But could not dim her lustrous eyes with pain, Nor seam her forehead with the faintest frown;
She was as she were proud,
So young, to be allow'd To follow Him who wore the thorny crown. Nor was she sad, but over every mood,
To which her lightly-pliant mind gave birth, Gracefully changing, did a spirit brood, Of quiet gayety and serenest mirth;
And thus her voice did flow,
So beautifully low,
Eyes which can but ill define
Shapes that rise about and near, Through the far horizon's line
Stretch a vision free and clear: Memories feeble to retrace
Yesterday's immediate flow, Find a dear familiar face
In each hour of long-ago. Follow yon majestic train
Down the slopes of old renown, Knightly forms without disdain,
Sainted heads without a frown; Emperors of thought and hand
Congregate, a glorious show,
In the plains of long-ago.
Something of eternal joy,
Such as life can scarce destroy ;
Spirits, wandering to and fro, Rest upon the resting time
In the peace of long-ago. Youthful hope's religious fire,
When it burns no longer, leaves Ashes of impure desire
On the altars it deceives; But the light that fills the past
Sheds a still diviner glow, Ever farther it is cast
O'er the scenes of long-ago. Many a growth of pain and care,
Cumbering all the present hour, Yields, when once transplanted there,
Healthy fruit or pleasunt flower; Thoughts that hardly flourish here,
Feelings long have ceased to blow, Breathe a native atmosphere
In the world of long-ago. On that deep-retiring shore
Frequent pearls of beauty lie, Where the passion-waves of yore
Fiercely beat and mounted high : Sorrows that are sorrows still
Lose the bitter taste of woe;
Tombs where lonely love repines,
Ghastly tenements of tears, Wear the look of happy shrines
Through the golden mist of years : Death, to those who trust in good,
Vindicates his hardest blow; Oh! we would not, if we could,
Wake the sleep of long-ago! Though the doom of swift decay
Shocks the soul where life is strong, Though for frailer hearts the day
Lingers sad and overlong,
Still the spoiler's hand is slow,
And the past its long-ago.
PRINCE EMILIUS OF HESSEN-DARM.
From Hessen-Darmstadt every step
To Moskwa's blazing banks,
Before the foremost ranks ;
That host was backward cast, On Beresina's bloody bridge,
His banner waved the last.
On all that dread retreat,
Athwart the blinding sleet;
Could all endure and dare,
Or stronger in despair.
The demon Cossacks sweep;
The weariest must not sleep;
Whichever first shall tire;-
May feel the saving fire.
Nor rose the savage morn,
Some noble part was shorn, And, sick at heart, the prince resolved,
To keep his purposed way, With steadfast, forward looks, nor count
The losses of the day.
At one unmeditated glance,
He number'd only ten!
That left his German home,
Or lookt for love to come,
His spirit overcame,
And called each ancient name.
“Dear brothers, it is best That here, with perfect trust in Heaven,
We give our bodies rest;
Our part of toil and pain,
We shall not sleep in vain."
They had no heart to speak;
Approacht the callous cheek;
To him at least did seem
Of variegated dream.
Of old familiar Rhine,
Above him seemed to shine ;
On every aching limb,
Thicken’d and all was dim.
If that tremendous night
And left no deadly blight;
And warm he woke at last,
Between him and the past.
He found himself alone,
Of vestments not his own;
Revealing more and more,
Closed up the narrow door.
Miraculous succour came,
This worthy deed to fame.
Oh, strength of loving will ! These are the holy balsam drops
That woful wars distil.
At length beside a black-burnt hut,
An island of the snow,-
Toward the saddle bow,
That thousand banded men,
Festus is the title of a very remarkable | face to face with Him whom no one hath seen poem published anonymously by Pickering, in or at any time shall see. In some respects it 1839. It is stated in Horne's New Spirit of the is not unlike the Faust of Goethe. It is Age, that it was written by P. J. Bailey, but of not equal to that wonderful book; yet it Mr. Bailey, more than that he wrote Festus, I has passages of deepest wisdom, of power know nothing. The poem attracted consi- | and tenderness, such as few poets in our day derable attention, on its appearance, but was have produced ; and it will live. not generally praised. The versification is in the Monthly Magazine for 1840 is an often careless, and the work shows a want of additional scene to Festus, in which the the constructive faculty. Moreover, it is too | author speaks of himself and his poem. The daring in action and conclusion. It has scenes first of the following extracts is from this in the unknown world, and its hero speaks | scene.
FESTUS DESCRIBES HIS FRIEND. As doth a lamp from air which hath itself
Matter of light although it show not. His He had no times of study, and no place; Was but the power to light what might be lit. All places and all times to him were one.
He met a muse in every lonely maid;
But his heart ripen'd most 'neath southern eyes,
The poet's power is to sort these out, Thundered his thoughts into him; and at night And to make music from the common strings Tte stars would whisper theirs, the moon sigh hers, With which the world is strung; to make the dumb He spake the world's one tongue; in earth and Earth utter heavenly harmony, and draw heaven
Life clear and sweet and harmless as spring water, There is but one, it is the word of truth.
Welling its way through flowers. Without faith, To him the eye let out its hidden meaning; Illimitable faith, strong as a state's And young and old made their hearts over to him; In its own might, in God, no bard can be. And thoughts were told to him as unto none, All things are signs of other and of nature. Save one who heareth, said and unsaid, all. ... It is at night we see heaven moveth, and All things were inspiration unto him—
A darkness thick with suns; the thoughts we think Wood, wold, hill, field, sea, city, solitude,
Subsist the same in God, as stars in heaven, And crowds, and streets, and man where'er he was, And as those specks of light will prove great worlds, And the blue eye of God which is above us; When we approach them sometime free from flesh, Brook-bounded pine spinnies, where spirits flit; So too our thoughts will become magnified And haunted pits the rustic hurries by,
To mindlike things immortal. And as space Where cold wet ghosts sit ringing jingling bells ; Is but a property of God, wherein Old orchards' leaf-roofed aisles, and red-cheek'd load; Is laid all matter, other attributes And the blood-colour'd tears which yew-trees weep May be the intinite homes of mind and soul. ... O'er churchyard graves, like murderers remorseful; Love, mirth, wo, pleasure, was in turn his theme, The dark green rings where fairies sit and sup, And the great good which beauty does the soul, Crushing the violet dew in the acorn cup;
And the God-made necessity of things. Where by his new-made bride the bridegroom sips, And, like that noble knight in olden tale, The white moon shimmering on their longing lips; Who changed his armour's hue at each fresh charge The large, o’er-loaded, wealthy-looking wains By virtue of his lady-love's strange ring, Quietly swaggering home through leafy lanes, So that none knew him save his private page, Leaving on all low branches, as they come, And she who cried, God save him, every time Straws for the birds, ears of the harvest-home; He brake spears with the brave till he quell'd allHe drew his light from that he was amidst, So he applied him to all themes that came;
Loving the most to breast the rapid deep,
The mind, when in a dark, hot, cloudful state,
May God that moment judge me when I do!
.....After that I left her And only saw her once again alive.
CALMNESS OF THE SUBLIME.
I loved her, for that she was beautiful, And that to me she seem'd to be all nature And all varieties of things in one; Would set at night in clouds of tears, and rise All light and laughter in the morning; fear No petty customs nor appearances; But think what others only dream'd about; And say what others did but think; and do What others would but say ; and glory in [me; What others dared but do; it was these which won And that she never schoold within her breast One thought or feeling, but gave holiday To all; and that she told me all her woes And wrongs and ills ; and so she made them mine In the communion of love ; and we Grew like each other, for we loved each other; She, mild and generous as the sun in spring; And I, like earth, all budding out with love. The beautiful are never desolate; For some one alway loves them—God or man. If man abandons, God Himself takes them, And thus it was. She whom I once loved died. The lightning loathes its cloud; the soul its clay. Can I forget that hand I took in mine, Pale as pale violets; that eye, where mind And matter met alike divine ? Ah, no!
The goodness of the heart is shown in deeds Of peacefulness and kindness. Hand and heart Are one thing with the good, as thou shouldst be. Do my words trouble thee? then treasure them. Pain overgot gives peace, as death doth Heaven. All things that speak of Heaven speak of peace. Peace hath more might than war; high brows are
calm; Great thoughts are still as stars; and truths, like
suns, Stir not, but many systems tend around them. Mind's step is still as Death's; and all great things Which cannot be controll'd, whose end is good.
TRUTH AND SORROW.
Night brings out stars as sorrow shows us truths; Though many, yet they help not; bright, they
light not. They are too late to serve us; and sad things Are aye too true. We never see the stars Till we can see naught but them. So with truth. And yet if one would look down a deep well, Even at noon, we might see these same stars, Far fairer than the blinding blue: the truth Stars in the water like a dark bright eye, But there are other eyes men better love Than truth's, for when we have her she is so cold And proud, we know not what to do with her... Sometimes the thought comes swiftening over us, Like a small bird winging the still blue air, And then again at other times it rises Slow, like a cloud which scales the skies all breath
FAITH. Faith is a higher faculty than reason, Though of the brightest power of revelation, As the snow-peaked mountain rises o'er The lightning, and applies itself to heaven, We know in daytime there are stars about us Just as at night, and name them what and where By sight of science; so by faith we know, Although we may not see them till our night, That spirits are about us, and believe, That to a spirit's eye all heaven may be As full of angels as a beam of light Of motes. As spiritual, it shows all Classes of life, perhaps above our kind, Known to tradition, reason, or God's word. As earthly, it imbodies most the life Of youth; its powers, its aims, its deeds, its failings; And as a sketch of world-life, it begins And ends, and rightly, in heaven, and with God; While heaven is also in the midst thereof. God, or all good, the evil of the world, And man, wherein are both, are each display'd; The mortal is the model of all men. The foibles, follies, trials, sufferings Of a young, hot, un-world-school'd heart, that has Had its own way in life, and wherein all May see some likeness of their own, 'tis these Attract, unite, and, sunlike, concentrate The ever-moving system of our feeling; Like life, too, as a whole, it has a moral, And, as in life, each scene too has its moral, A scene for every year of his young life, Shining upon it, like the quiet moon, Illustrating the obscure, unequal earth : And though these scenes may seem to careless eyes Irregular and rough and unconnected, Like to the stones at Stonehenge, still a use, A meaning, and a purpose may be mark'd Among them of a temple rear'd to God, It has a plan, no plot; and life has none.
And just o'erhead lets itself down on us.
THE END OF LIFE.
We live in deeds, not years; in thoughts, not
breaths; In feelings, not in figures on a dial. We should count time by heart-throbs. He most
lives, Who thinks most; feels the noblest; acts the best. And he whose heart beats quickest lives the longest: Lives in one hour more than in years do some Whose fat blood sleeps as it slips along their veins. Life is but a means unto an end ; that end, Beginning, mean, and end to all things—God. The dead have all the glory of the world.
GREAT THOUGHTS. Who can mistake great thoughts? They seize upon the mind; arrest, and search, And shake it; bow the tall soul as by wind; Rush over it like rivers over reeds, Which quaver in the current; turn us cold, And pale, and voiceless ; leaving in the brain A rocking and a ringing, -glorious, But momentary ; madness might it last, And close the soul with Heaven as with a seal.
When he hath had A letter from his lady dear, he bless'd The paper that her hand had traveli'd over, And her eye look'd on, and would think he saw Gleams of that light she lavish'd from her eyes, Wandering amid the words of love she'd traced Like glowworms among beds of flowers. He seem'd To bear with being but because she loved him; She was the sheath wherein his soul had rest, As hath a sword from war.
The bard must have a kind, courageous heart, And natural chivalry to aid the weak. He must believe the best of every thing; Love all below, and worship all above. All animals are living hieroglyphs. The dashing dog, and stealthy-stepping cat, Hawk, bull, and all that breathe, mean something
more To the true eye than their shapes show; for all Were made in love, and made to be beloved. Thus must he think as to earth's lower life, Who seeks to win the world to thought and love, As doth the bard, whose habit is all kindness To every thing.