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I have words thine ear to fill, And would kiss thee at my will.
Dear, I heard thee in the spring,
Boughs of May-bloom for the bees.
What a day it was, that day!
Hills and vales did openly Seem to heave and throb away, At the sight of the great sky; And the silence, as it stood In the glory's golden flood, Audibly did bud - and bud!
Through the winding hedge-rows green,
And the gates that showed the view;
Till the pleasure, grown too strong,
I sat down beneath the beech
Which leans over to the lane,
Did not promise any pain;
As the speakers drew more near-
What you wished me to hear.
In thy thoughts, untouched by blame. Could he help it, if my hand
He had claimed with hasty claim!
Had he seen thee, when he swo
He would love but me alone? Thou wert absent, sent before To our kin in Sidmouth town. When he saw thee, who art best Past compare, and loveliest, He but judged thee as the rest. Could we blame him with grave words, Thou and I, dear, if we might? Thy brown eyes have looks like birds Flying straightway to the light; Mine are older. Hush!-look outUp the street! Is none without? How the poplar swings about!
And that hour- beneath the beech-
That he owed me all esteem,
I fell flooded with a dark,
In the silence of a swoon: When I rose, still, cold, and stark, There was night, I saw the moon; And the stars, each in its place, And the May-blooms on the grass, Seemed to wonder what I was.
And I walked as if apart
From myself when I could stand, And I pitied my own heart,
As if I held it in my hand
And I answered coldly too,
When you met me at the door; And I only heard the dew
Dripping from me to the floor;
ELIZABETH BARRETT BROWNING.
With that look, besides, we have
In our faces who die young.
We are so unlike each other,
Thou and I, that none could guess We were children of one mother,
But for mutual tenderness.
I am pale as crocus grows
Close beside a rose-tree's root! Whosoe'er would reach the rose
Treads the crocus underfoot;
Yet who plucks me?-no one mourns;
Which I could not live without.
Look out quickly. Yea or nay?
Some last word that I might say.
Rather smile there, blessed one,
Art thou near me? nearer? so!
Sweetly as it used to rise,
So no more vain words be said!
Jesus, Victim, comprehending
Love's divine self-abnegation, Cleanse my love in its self-spending, And absorb the poor libation! Wind my thread of life up higher, Up through angels' hands of fire! — I aspire while I expire!
A MUSICAL INSTRUMENT.
WHAT was he doing, the great god Pan,
Down in the reeds by the river? Spreading ruin and scattering ban, Splashing and paddling with hoofs of a goat,
And breaking the golden lilies afloat
He tore out a reed, the great god Pan,
From the deep, cool bed of the river, The limpid water turbidly ran, And the broken lilies a-dying lay, And the dragon-fly had fled away,
Ere he brought it out of the river.
High on the shore sat the great god Pan,
Till there was not a sign of a leaf indeed To prove it fresh from the river.
He cut it short, did the great god Pan, (How tall it stood in the river!)
Then drew the pith like the heart of a | And how, when one by one sweet sounds
Steadily from the outside ring,
and wandering lights departed, He wore no less a loving face because so broken-hearted;
He shall be strong to sanctify the poet's high vocation,
And bow the meekest Christian down in meeker adoration;
Nor ever shall he be, in praise, by wise
or good forsaken;
Named softly as the household name of one whom God hath taken.
With quiet sadness and no gloom I learn
With meekness that is gratefulness to
And wrought within his shattered brain such quick poetic senses
As hills have language for, and stars harmonious influences!
pulse of dew upon the grass kept his within its number; And silent shadows from the trees refreshed him like a slumber.
Wild timid hares were drawn from woods to share his home-caresses, Uplooking to his human eyes with sylvan tendernesses:
The very world, by God's constraint, from falsehood's ways removing, Its women and its men became, beside him, true and loving.
But though in blindness he remained
Nor man nor nature satisfy whom only
Like a sick child that knoweth not his
That turns his fevered eyes around, "My