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And the blessed light of the sun!”
100 And anon there breaks a sigh, And anou there drops a tear, From a sorrow-clouded eye, And a heart sorrow-laden, A long, long sigh, For the cold strange eyes of a little mer
maiden, And the gleam of her golden hair.
(Publ. 1863] HARK ! ah, the nightingale The tawny-throated ! Hark! from that moonlit cedar what a
Dost thou to-night behold,
lish grass. The unfriendly palace in the Thracian
wild ? Dost thou again peruse With hot cheeks and seared eyes The too clear web, and thy dumb sister's
shame ? Dost thou once more assay Thy flight, and feel come over thee, Poor fugitive, the feathery change Once more, and once more seem to make
through the leaves !
Biit, children, at midnight,
[Publ. 1853] TAE sea is calm to-night. The tide is full, the moon lies fair Upon the straits; on the French coast, the
Gleams and is gone; the cliffs of England | Let the long contention cease! stand,
Geese are swans, and swans are geese. Glimmering and vast, out in the tranquil Let them have it how they will! bay.
Thou art tired: best be still. Come to the window, sweet is the nightair!
They out-talked thee, bissed thee, tore thee? Only, from the long line of spray
Better men fared thus before thee; 10 Where the sea meets the moon-blanched Fired their ringing shot, and passed, sand,
Hotly charged — and savk at last.
Let the victors, when they come,
The spirit bloweth and is still,
In inystery our soul abides.
Can be through hours of gloom fulfilled.
We dig and heap, lay stone on stone;
Of the long day, and wish 't were done. 10 Its melancholy, long, withdrawing roar, Not till the hours of light return, Retreating, to the breath
All we have built do we discern. Of the night-wind, down the vast edges drear
Then, when the clouds are off the soul, And naked shingles of the world.
When thou dost bask in Nature's eye,
Ask how she viewed thy self-control, Ah, love, let us be true
Thy struggling, tasked morality, To one another ! for the world, which seems Nature, whose free, light, cheerful air, To lie before us like a land of dreams, 31 Oft made thee, in thy gloom, despair. So various, so beautiful, so new, Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor And she, whose censure thou dost dread, light,
Whose eye thou wast afraid to seek, 20 Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for See, on her face a glow is spread,
A strong emotion on her cheek! And we are here as on a darkling plain
“Ah, child!”sbe cries,“that strife divine, Swept with confused alarms of struggle Whence was it, for it is not mine?
and flight, Where ignorant armies clash by night. “There is no effort on my brow;
I do not strive, I do not weep:
I rush with the swift spheres, and glow THE LAST WORD
In joy, and when I will, I sleep.
Yet that severe, that earnest air,
I saw, I felt it once — but where ? 30
“I knew not yet the gauge of time,
I felt it in some other clime,
Their lives to some unmeaning task-work I saw it in some other place.
give, 'Twas when the heavenly house I trod, Dreaming of naught beyond their prisonAnd lay upon the breast of God.”
Fresh products of their barren labor fall
From their tired bands, and rest
Never yet comes more near, [Publ. 1852]
Gloom settles slowly down over their
breast. In the deserted, moon-blanched street, And while they try to stem How lonely rings the echo of my feet! The waves of mournful thought by which Those windows which I gaze at, frown,
they are prest, Silent and white, unopening down,
Death in their prison reaches them, Repellent as the world; but see,
Unfreed, having seen nothing, still unblest. A break between the housetops shows The moon! and lost behind her, fading dim And the rest, a few, Into the dewy dark obscurity
Escape their prison, and depart Down at the far horizon's rim,
On the wide ocean of life anew. Doth a whole tract of heaven disclose! 10 | There the freed prisoner, where'er his heart
Listeth, will sail; And to my mind the thought
Nor doth he know how there prevail, Is on a sudden brought
Despotic on that sea, Of a past night, and a far different scene. Trade-winds which cross it from eternity. Headlands stood out into the moonlit deep Awhile he holds some false way, undebarred As clearly as at noon;
By thwarting signs, and braves The spring-tide's brimming flow
The freshening wind and blackening waves. Heaved dazzlingly between;
And then the tempest strikes him; and beHouses, with long white sweep,
tween Girdled the glistening bay;
The lightning-bursts is seen Behind, through the soft air,
Only a driving wreck, The blue haze-cradled mountains spread And the pale master on his spar-strewn deck away.
With anguished face and flying hair, That night was far more fair
Grasping the rudder hard, But the same restless pacings to and fro Still bent to make some port, he knows not And the same vainly throbbing heart was where, there,
Still standing for some false, impossible And the same bright, calm moon.
And sterner comes the roar And the calm moonlight seems to say, — Of sea and wind; and through the deepenHast thou, then, still the old unquiet breast,
ing gloom Which neither deadens into rest,
Fainter and fainter wreck and helmsman Nor ever feels the fiery glow
loom, That whirls the spirit from itself away, 30 And he too disappears, and comes no more. But fluctuates to and fro, Never by passion quite possessed,
Is there no life, but these alone ? And never quite benumbed by the world's sway? | Madman or slave, must man be one ? And I, I know not if to pray Still to be what I am, or yield, and be Plainness and clearness without shadow of Like all the other men I see.
Clearness divine! For most men in a brazen prison live, Ye heavens, whose pure dark regions have Where, in the sun's hot eye,
no sign With heads bent o’er their toil, they lan- of languor, though so calm, and though so guidly
Ah! well for us, if even we,
Are yet untroubled and unpassionate; 80 Who, though so noble, share in the world's
toil, And, though so tasked, keep free from dust
and soil! I will not say that your mild deeps retain A tinge, it may be, of their silent pain Who have longed deeply once, and longed
in vain; But I will rather say that you remain A world above man's head, to let him see How boundless might his soul's horizons be, How vast, yet of what clear transparency! How it were good to live there, and breathe
free; How fair a lot to fill Is left to each man still !
Fate, which foresaw
THE BURIED LIFE
LIGHT flows our war of mocking words; and
yet, Behold, with tears mine eyes are wet! I feel a nameless sadness o'er me roll. Yes, yes, we know that we can jest, We know, we know that we can smile! But there's a something in this breast, To which thy light words bring no rest, And thy gay smiles no anodyne; Give me thy hand, and hush a while, And turn those limpid eyes on mine, 10 And let me read there, love! thy inmost
Alas! is even love too weak
20 Tricked in disguises, alien to the rest Of men, and alien to themselves - and yet The same heart beats in every human
But often, in the world's most crowded
streets, But often, in the din of strife, There rises an unspeakable desire After the knowledge of our buried life; A thirst to spend our fire and restless force In tracking out our true, original course; 50 A longing to inquire Into the mystery of this heart which beats So wild, so deep in us, – to know Whence our lives come, and where they go. And many a man in his own breast then
delves, But deep enough, alas! none ever mines. And we have been on many thousand lines, And we have shown, on each, spirit and
power; But hardly have we, for one little hour, Been on our own line, have we been ourselves,
60 Hardly had skill to utter one of all The nameless feelings that course through
our breast, But they course on forever unexpressed. And long we try in vain to speak and act Onr hidden self, and what we say and do Is eloquent, is well — but 't is not true! And then we will no more be racked With inward striving, and demand Of all the thousand nothings of the hour
Their stupefying power; | Ah, yes, and they benumb us at our call !
But we, my love! doth a like spell benumb Our hearts, our voices ? must we too be
Yet still, from time to time, vague and for Sometimes a thrush flit overhead lorn,
Deep in her unknown day's employ. From the soul's subterranean depth upborne
Here at my feet what wonders pass! As from an infinitely distant land,
What endless, active life is here ! Come airs, and floating echoes, and convey What blowing daisies, fragrant grass ! A melancholy into all our day.
Au air-stirred forest, fresh and clear. Only - but tbis is rare
Scarce fresher is the mountain sod When a beloved hand is laid in ours, Where the tired angler lies, stretched out, When, jaded with the rush and glare And, eased of basket and of rod, Of the interminable hours,
So Counts his day's spoil, the spotted trout. 20 Our eyes can in another's eyes read clear, When our world-deafened ear
In the huge world which roars hard by, Is by the tones of a loved voice caressed, - Be others happy if they can! A bolt is shot back somewhere in our breast, But in my helpless cradle I And a lost pulse of feeling stirs again. Was breathed on by the rural Pan. The eye sinks inward, and the heart lies plain,
I, on men's impious uproar hurled, And what we mean, we say, and what we Think often, as I hear them rave, would, we know.
That peace has left the upper world,
And now keeps only in the grave.
Still all things in this glade go through
The changes of their quiet day.
Then to their happy rest they pass;
The flowers upclose, the birds are fed, An air of coolness plays upon his face, The night comes down upon the grass, And an unwonted calm pervades his breast; | The child sleeps warmly in his bed. And then he thinks he knows The bills where his life rose,
Calm soul of all things ! make it mine
To feel, amid the city's jar,
Man did not make, and cannot mar.
The will to neither strive nor cry,
The power to feel with others, give ! [Publ. 1852)
Calm, calm me more ! nor let me die
Before I have begun to live.
A WANDERER is man from his birth.
He was born in a sbip
Brimming with wonder and joy,
He spreads out his arms to the light, How thick the tremulous sheep-cries come! | Rivets his gaze on the banks of the stream.
Sometimes a child will cross the glade
As what he sees is, so bave his thoughts been. 10 l Whether he wakes