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Boston, 135 Washixgton Strbbt, 
May, iBol. 




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mbtcalp and company, 

printers to the university. 

The American publishers of Mr. Procter's 
Poems have taken the liberty to retain in this 
edition the forty Songs which the author has 
omitted in the latest English copy, counting 
them, as he says, of an " inferior quality." 
Among them were so many pieces which had 
long ago become favorites in this country, it 
was thought desirable to include them all in 
this new collection, the most complete one yet 
published. The present edition contains sev- 
enty new Poems in rhyme, and a considerable 
quantity of Dramatic Verse not before printed. 

Boston, May, 1851. 

"Bakry Cornwall, with tlic exception of Coleridge, is the 
most genuine poet of love who has, for a long period, appeared 
among us. There is an intense and passionate beauty, a depth 
of aifection, in his little dramatic poems, which appear even in 
the affectionate triflings of his gentle characters. He illustrates 
that holiest of human emotions, which, while it will twine itself 
with the frailest twig, or dally with the most evanescent shadow 
of creation, wasting its excess of kindliness on all around it, is yet 
able to ' look on tempests and be never shaken.' Love is gently 
omnipotent in his poems ; accident and death itself are but pass- 
ing clouds, which scarcely vex and which cannot harm it. The 
lover seems to breathe out his life in the arms of his mistress, 
as calmly as the infant sinks into its softest slumber. The fair 
blossoms of his genius, though light and trembling at the breeze, 
spring from a wide, and deep, and robust stock, which will sus- 
tain far taller branches without being exhausted." 

I N T R D U C T I x\ 


England is singularly barren of Song-writers. There 
is no English writer of any rank, in my recollection, whose 
songs form the distinguishing feature of his poetry. The 
little lyrics which are scattered, like stars, over the surface 
of our old dramas, are sometimes minute, trifling, and unde- 
fined in their object ; but they are often eminently fine, — in 
fact, the finest things of the kind which our language pos- 
sesses. There is more inspiration, more air and lyrical 
quality about them, than in songs of ten times their preten- 
sions. And this, perhaps, arises from the dramatic faculty 
of the writers ; who, being accustomed, in other things, to 
shape their verse so as to suit the characters and different 
purposes of the drama, naturally extend this care to the 
fashion of the songs themselves. In cases where a writer 
speaks in his own person, he expends all his egotism upon 
his lyrics ; and requires that a critic should be near to curtail 
his misdeeds. When he writes as a dramatist, he is, or 
ought to be, the critic himself. He is not, so to speak, at all 
implicated in what is going forward in the poem ; but deals 


out the dialogue, like an indifferent by-stander, seeking only 
to adjust it to the necessities of the actors. He is above the 
struggle and turmoil of the battle below, and 

'•Sees, as from a tower, the end of all." 

It is, in fact, this power of forgetting himself, and of imagin- 
ing and fashioning characters different from his own, which 
constitutes the dramatic quality. A man who can set aside 
his own idiosyncrasy is half a dramatist. 

It may be thought paradoxical to assert that the songs 
which occur in dramas are more natural than those which 
proceed from the author in person : yet such is generally the 
case. If, indeed, a poet wrote purely and seasonably only, 

— that is to say, if his poetry sprung always from the pas- 
sion or humor of the moment, — the fact might be otherwise. 
But it may easily be seen, that many rhymes are produced 
out of season ; and are often nothing more than the result 
of ingenuity taxed to the uttermost ; or otherwise, are simply 
the indiscretions of "gentleman at ease," who have nothing, 
or nothing better, to do. Now Poetry is not to be thus con- 
strained ; nor is it ever the offspring of ennui or languor. It 
demands not only the " faculty divine," (so called,) but also, 
that it should be left to its own impulses. The intellectual 
faculties are in no one always in a state of tension, or capa- 
ble of projecting those thoughts which, in happier moments, 
are cast forth with perfect ease, — and which, when thrown 
out by the Imagination or the Fancy, constitute the charm, 
and indeed form the essence, of poetry. 

Much of what I have said applies to verse in general ; but 
it applies more especially to songs and small pieces of verse, 

— those nugtE canor(B, — which, at the time that they plead 
their "want of pretension," take due care, but too often, to 
justify their professed defects. When a writer commences a 


poem ol' serious length, he throws all his strength into it : 
he selects the happiest hour ; he condenses, and amends, and 
rejects; and, in short, does his best to produce something 
good. But in a song, or " a trifle in verse," he feels no re- 
sponsibility. He professes nothing, and, unfortunately, does 
little more. 

It may be said that a song is necessarily a trifling matter ; 
but, if good, it is a Irifie, of at least a different sort. And 
to make even a trifle perfect or agreeable, should satisfy a 
moderate ambition. It demands some talent Where po- 
etry is concerned, it requires even more : for it requires that 
this talent should be of a peculiar order, and should be ex- 
erted at a happy time. 1 am by no means forward to 
imagine that these two requisites have at any time concurred 
in my case. But I hope that I have, in a few instances, so 
far succeeded as to allure other writers, (having more lei- 
sure than I possess,) to direct their powers to this species of 
verse. It has been too much disdained. Poets have in 
general preferred exhibiting their tediousness in long com- 
positions, and have neglected the song. But the brevity, 
which is the " soul " of song, as well as of wit, is not neces- 
sarily allied to insignificance. The battle-songs of Mr. 
Campbell are a triumphant proof of the contrary. So also 
are many of the songs and ballads of Sir Walter Scott, Mr. 
Moore, Mr. Lockhart, Mr. Hogg, my friend Allan Cunning- 
ham, and, finally, the charming songs of Burns. To my 
thinking, the sentiment in some of Burns's songs is as fine 
and as true as any thing in Shakspeare himself. I do not 
.speak of his imagination, or of his general power, (both 
which in the Scottish poet are immeasurably inferior,) but 
of the mere sentiment or feeling, — that fine natural elo- 
quence which a warm heart taujiht him, and which he 
poured out so profusely in song. There is an earnestness 


and directness of purpose in Burns, which, if attended to, 
would, I think, strengthen the poetry of the present day. 
As an instance of his going at once to the sentiment, without 
any parade of words, or preliminary flourish, one may refer 
to the lilies, — 

"Although thou maun never be mine, 

Although even hope is denied, 
'T is sweeter for thee despairing, 

Than aught in the world beside, — Jessy f" 

in which the sentiment is exquisitely tender and beautiful. 
We do not, I think, deal thus fairly with our thoughts at 
present. We accumulate multitudes of words around them ; 
as though the idea were unable to support itself. Our ver- 
biage is the Corinthian capital, which has succeeded the finer 
Ionic. One might almost suspect that " the Schoolmaster," 
who is everywhere abroad, has generated rather a facility 
of spreading common thoughts, than a power of originating 
new ones. At all events, the verbiage which I have alluded 
to is a manifestation of weakness rather than of strength, 
and indicates, (if one may judge from analogies,) a de- 
clension, at least as much as a refinement, in taste. Feeling 
this, — and feeling also that I myself am far from exempted 
from this defect, — I have occasionally introduced some 
poems in this volume, which are bald enough in expression ; 
and which, in fact, have little beyond the mere sentiment 
to recommend them. But this ought to be sufficient. If 
it be not sufficient in my case, (for it is so, frequently, in 
Mr. Wordsworth's poems,) I can plead nothing beyond a 
good intention ; and must throw myself on the charity of 
the reader. 

It cannot be very flattering to our self-love, to observe, 
that all the song-writers, except Mr. Moore, (and, I ought 
to have added, Dibdin,) are Scottish poets. In our songs, 


however, we differ — not only in merit, but frequently also 
in character — from the songs which have proceeded from 
Scotland. The latter approach more nearly to the ballad, 
which comprises a slory. A song — (adopting the English 
model as the fit one) — may be considered as the expression 
of a senlirnent, varying according to the humor of the poet. 
It should be fitted for music; and, in fact, should become 
belter for the accompaniment of music ; otherwise it can 
scarcely be deemed, essentially, a song. 

The character of Poetry has always fluctuated with the 
times; and Songs, as well as the epic poem and the diama, 
have partaken of each successive change. In early ages, 
they were spontaneous and necessarily rude productions: in 
refined times they became artificial. Neither of these two 
periods are, I apprehend, the most favorable to poetry. The 
mind of the poet requires to be somewhat cultivated and en- 
larged by reading ; but it should not be perplexed by too 
many critical distinctions, nor weakened by excessive refine- 
ment. The age of poetry precedes that of criticism ; as the 
act precedes the law, which is made to control it. It is then, 
— in the youth and first manhood of literature, — that all 
imaginative writings are the best. If they exhibit not the 
fastidiousness and superfluous accuracy of later ages, (which, 
in many cases, is little better than the " ridiculous excess,") 
they make amends for such deficiencies by the freshness and 
beauty, the originality and undaunted vigor, of their images. 
In effect, it is a species of paradox in criticism, to insist upon 
minute and mathematical niceties, in things which deal mainly 
with the passions. 

In our country, (and I believe in most others,) the ballad 
preceded the song. The achievements of the warrior were 
reflected in the magnifying verse of the minstrel. There 
scarcely ever was an age so dark, or a people so barbarous. 


as not to have possessed bards who sang the praises of their 
heroes. These two seem, in fact, to have been almost neces- 
sary to each other ; and to have gone, hand in hand, tog-ether, 
illustrating the soul and sinews of the times. The soldier 
would have lacked one strong incentive, had a minstrel been 
found wanting to shout forth his deeds; and, without a hero, 
the minstrel would have had little or no subject for his song. 
For all the subtleties of thought, which writers in more ad- 
vanced ages pour out so profusely, are beyond the range of 
an uneducated poet. He knows, and sings only, what he 
sees and hears. The sheep and their pastures, the strug- 
gles and bloody feuds of his province, form the staple of his 
verse. His heroes are renowned, like the racer, for blood, 
and bone, and sinew. All else is beyond his limit, — beyond 
his power. It is the educated poet only who subdues abstract 
ideas to the purposes of his verse, and lets loose his Imagina- 
tion into daring and subtle speculations. There is no one, 
with whose works I am acquainted, who falsifies this posi- 
tion ; saving perhaps Shakspeare, — who is an exception to 
all things ! 

The ballad-writers of our country were men of great tal- 
ent ; but they did not go beyond their age. They roared out 
Bacchanalian songs, over sack and the " blood-red wine " ; 
they bruited about the deeds of their favorite heroes, till the 
heroism of the verse bore the same proportion to the original 
actions that vapor does to water. In return for this, — they 
were paid — in bed and board ; in wine, and mead, and broad- 
cloth ; and in huge quantities of praise I Occasionally, in- 
deed, when some rich and puissant baron was transformed 
into a god, or his dame or daughter was exhibited in flat- 
tering comparison with the foam-born. Venus, by the false 
glamour of poetry, the minstrel became master of a jewel 
or an ounce of gold. Subsequently to all this, our ballad- 


makers and players wandered about to fairs and revels. Pri- 
vate beneficence was often found wanting; (perhaps it was 
sometimes taxed too heavily;) and the men who had wares 
for all tastes, wisely left the individual for the multitude. 
And hence began the patronage of " the Public." 

The competition for public favor, however, was not long 
confined to professed minstrels. The arts of reading and 
writing opened a new prospect of ambition to our noble an- 
cestors. The spirit of chivalry, which had previously mani- 
fested itself in hard blows alone, sought opportunities for 
exhibiting its gentler qualities in song. Love, Devotion, 
Constancy, Generosity, and the various other Virtues, (which 
do not consist merely in the muscles, or spring from the sheer 
insensibility of the animal man,) found historians. Surrey, 
Wyatt, Sidney, Raleigh, and a host of others, form part of 
this early class of poets. Their style and gallantry (with 
such small gradual change as is always occurring in litera- 
ture) remained till the death of Charles the First. Upon 
that occasion the belles lettres, as well as monarchy, were 
overturned for a time ; but returned, — the former in a new 
guise and thoroughly degenerated, — with the courtiers of 
his son. From that period, till the time of Thomson and 
Collins, (for I refer Milton to the earlier period,) all our 
songs, and most of our poems, were evidently written by the 
celebrated " Lady of Quality." * I recollect scarcely a sin- 
gle Ejiglish song of high character, which has been ten years 
before the public. And yet. Burns and other Scottish poets 

* Dryden, and Pope, and a few others, fonn of course illuslrious exceplions 
to this censure. 

♦ * * Since the foregoing Introduction was written. I have 
submitted it to the perusal of a friend, who^e opinion I respect ; and he tells 
me that I have not done justice to the song-writers who have flourished since 
the Resioralion. Perhaps I have relied too much on my old impressions, in- 
stead of examinins the facts a?aia. 


have, for almost half a century, been scattering among us 
the seeds of a better taste. Let us hope, that, in an agreea- 
ble (although not very important) department of literature, we 
are destined to some improvement. 

For the following poems, (about one third of which may be 
called Songs,) I do not insist very strongly on the admiration 
of the reader. They are intended somewhat in the shape of 
a farewell offering, from a person who has met with much 
kindness from the Public, and is neither able — nor inclined 
— to forget it. 




The Sea 1 

The Home of the Absentee 3 

Indian Love 4 

King Death 5 

Past Times 6 

A Serenade 7 

To my Lyre 8 

The Onset : — A Battle Song 9 

Song for Twilight 10 

The Hunter's Song 1 1 

The Recall 12 

The Exile's Farewell 13 

On a Mother and Child sleeping 14 

The Sea-King . 15 

The Wild Cherry-Tree 16 

The Common Lot 17 

The Little Voice 18 

A Bacchanalian Song 19 

Dark-eyed Beauty of the South 20 

The Poet's Song to his Wife 21 

She was not fair nor full of Grace 22 

A Song for the Seasons 23 

The Quadroon 24 

The Bloodhound 25 



Is my Lover on the Sea ? 26 

The Mistletoe 27 

Constancy 28 

The Nights 29 

To a Nightingale, at Mid-day 30 

The Stormy Petrel 31 

Earth and Air 32 

Song of the Soldier to his Sword 33 

The Happy Hours 34 

Hurrah for Merry England 35 

Why doth the Bottle stand ? 36 

Count Balthazar 37 

When Friends look dark and cold 39 

The Night is closing round, Mother .... 40 

Peace! What do Tears avail ? 41 

The Wood-Thrush 42 

Midnight Rhymes . 43 

A Love Song 44 

The Stranger 45 

Song in Praise of Spring 46 

The Night before the Bridal 47 

A deep and a mighty Shadow 48 

Belshazzar 49 

The Heart-Broken .50 

A Phantasy 51 

Life 52 


The Return of the Admiral 55 

Home 58 

The Vintage-Song . . .59 

The Evening Star 60 

The Weaver's Song 61 

Sleep on 62 



Love and Mirth 63 

Song over a Child 64 

The Landsman's Song 65 

Perdita 66 

Love the Poet, pretty One 67 

Lucy 68 

The Wooing Song 69 

Hermione 70 

The Owl 71 

Marian 72 

The Humber Ferry 73 

A Repose 74 

The Lake has burst 75 

Sing, Maiden, sing ! 76 

Maureen 77 

Unequal Love 78 

Wine 79 

Sing ! Who mingles with my Lays ? .... 80 

I love my Love, because he loves me 81 

Talk not to me of Love ....... 82 

Miriam 83 

Babylon 85 

Her large, dark, luminous Eyes are on me . . . .86 

The Remonstrance 87 

Kill the Love that winds around thee 88 

What say the Clouds on the Hill and Plain ? . . . 89 

A Dilemma 90 

The Beggar's Song 91 

To Sophie 92 

Build up a Column to Bolivar 93 

The Farewell of the Soldier 94 

The Nightshade 95 

True Love 96 

Song of the Outcast 97 

To a Flower 98 

Forbidden Love 99 



A Bridal Dirge 100 

The Convict's Farewell 101 

The Rhine 105 

Sweet Friend, where sleeps thy Song ? . . . . 106 

The Hirias Horn 107 

Come ! Let us go to the Land 108 

The Leveller 109 

The Secret of Singing 110 


The Fight of Ravenna 113 

The Fire-FIy 122 

The Blood Horse 123 

Hidden Thoughts 124 

An Epistle to Charles Lamb 125 

Sit down, sad Soul 1 29 

A Chamber Scene 130 

Courage 131 

The Fisherman 132 

The Pauper's Jubilee 133 

The Falcon 136 

The Past 137 

Song of Wood-Nymphs 1 39 

The Song of a Felon's Wife 140 

To the Singer Pasta 141 

Fuller's Bird 143 

The Sea, — in Calm 144 

A Hymn of Evil Spirits 145 

Softly woo away her Breath 146 

A Thought on a Rivulet 147 

I loved her when she looked from me . . . .148 

A Storm 149 

Parents' Love 151 

The Vain Regret 152 



The Violet 153 

Beauty 1.54 

Sybilla 155 

A Midsummer Fancy 156 

Past and Present 157 

Wilt thou go ? 158 

On some Human Bones, found on a Headland in the Bay of 

Panama 159 

An Irish Song . 160 

'T is better we laugh than weep 161 

A Drinking Song 162 

River of the Morn 1 6.3 

Song sliould breathe 1 64 

Song for our Father-land 165 

Thou hast Love within thine Eyes . . . . 166 

To the Snow-drop 167 

Wilt thou leave me ? 168 

In Commemoration of Haydn 169 

On tlie Portrait of a Child 1 70 

Inscriptions. — More Grcecum 171 

Napoleon 173 

Golden-tressed Adelaide 174 

Love flying 175 

A Dreamer's Song • . 176 

A Poet's Thought 177 

To a Lady attiring herself 177 

Wilt thou remember me ? 178 

I go, and she doth miss me not ' 178 

A Parting Song 179 

I die for thy sweet Love 179 

What Use is all the Love I bear thee ? . . . . l SO 

A Farewell 1 80 

She sate by the River Springs 181 

A Reproach 182 

A Conceit 182 

A Night Song 183 




To Adelaide 184 

A Prayer in Sickness 185 

To a Voyager 186 

His Love is hidden 186 

Song. — From a Play 187 

Sister, I cannot read to-day 187 

Sea-shore Stanzas 1 88 

On the Death of a Child 189 

To a Poetess 1 90 

A Petition to Time 191 

A Question and Reply 191 

Wishes 192 

An Epitaph 192 


A Song for the New Year 195 

London 197 

My old Arm-Chair . . ." 199 

II Pensoroso and L'Allegro 202 

Within and Without 204 

A Panegyric on Ale 206 

The Pearl- Wearer 210 

A Farewell to Home 212 

The Rake's Progress 214 

Thirteen Years ago 217 

A Dirge 220 

The Fate of the Oak 221 

The History of a Life 222 

On a Stranger's Grave near Venice .... 223 

Music 223 

To the Eyes of a Young Actress 226 

An Invocation to Music 227 

To a Friend in Autumn 228 



Lowly Pleasures 229 

To our Neighbor's Health 230 

To a Poet abandoning his Art 232 

Ignorance is Bliss 233 

Mens Divinior 234 

Henri Quatre 235 

A Catalogue of Common-places 236 

An Extravaganza 237 

Love and Light 237 

The Twin-Bom 238 

A Common Thought 239 

A Phantasy 240 

On a Lady slandered • 242 

To a Sleeper 243 

A Dirge 244 

A Lament 245 

Stanzas 246 

Song, after Labor 247 

The Sailor's Lament for the Sea 248 

The Poet and the Fisher 249 

To D. Maclise, K. A 250 

Song 252 

For Music 252 

Song 253 

A Love Song 253 

Song 254 

Song 255 

A Song on an Old Subject 256 

Song 257 

Question and Reply 257 

To the South Wind 259 

Song 260 

The Poor-House 261 

Pastoral 264 

The Pale Queen 264 

The Stars 266 



The last Stave 267 

The Rising of the North 268 

The Sea Fight 272 

The Wreck 274 

The Time of Charlemagne 276 

The Approach of Winter 278 

A Christmas Reminiscence ...... 280 

A Farewell to December 281 

The Modem Cj-raon 284 

The Poor Scholar's Song 289 

Rind and Fruit 290 

The Prophet 291 

Sit near ! Sit near ! 293 

The Mother's last Song 294 



Introduction to a Drama (1821) 297 

The Valley of Ladies 302 

An Utilitarian 303 

The Uses of Courage 303 

Life everywhere 304 

Fame the Offspring of Fortune 304 

Love independent of Reason 303 

A Jester ; from the antique 305 

A Case of Witchcraft 307 

Mesalliance 307 

Resolution 308 

Ascending Visions 308 

The New Year 309 

Life and Death ........ 309 

Autumn 310 



The Sorrow of an Heir 310 

Unborn Flowers 311 

A Mother pleads to see her Children 311 

A Superstition 312 

A Page untranslatable 314 

Twilight 314 

Exiles 314 

Friends in Death 316 

ANewAlcestis 316 

Old Romance 319 

An Agrarian Law 320 

Aggrandizement by the Passions 321 

Advice on Marriage 321 

Death in Youth 322 

Hopefulness of Lore 322 

Good in every Heart 322 

A Lover's Memory 323 

Polyphemus 323 

Parents' Love : Value of Reproof 324 

Goodness comes without Parade 324 

Evening Music 324 

Fancy thrives in Darkness 326 

Children 326 

Pride of Birth 327 

A Discovery. Confidential Talk 327 

Constancy in Crime 330 

Popular Commotions 331 

Battles .331 

Animal Love 332 

"Wisdom, a Problem 333 

Comfort in Nature ........ 334 

Mute Confession 334 

A Lily 334 

Uninspired Music 335 

Fellowship 335 

The Rise of a Favorite 336 




Fate of the Daring 337 

A Father's Anger • . 337 

Good never ceases 338 

The Limit of a Hero 338 

A Prophet 339 

A Sceptic in Happiness 340 

False Worship 340 

The Test of Love 341 

A Truism 341 

Silence 342 

A Conqueror's Account of Himself 342 

Parish Law-givers 343 

Kindness is Power 344 

Soldier's Love 344 

A Poet's Reply 345 


A Murderer reproaches his Employer; — the Retort . 349 

A Man without Repentance 351 

A Jew's Use for Riches 352 

Consolation in Poverty 353 

The same subject 353 

The Exultation of an Heir 354 

Love 354 

Revenge 355 

A Blush 356 

A Butt 356 

Specimen of Courtiers 356 

Account of a Boaster 357 

A Bridal Couple 358 

A Mature Taste 358 

The Schoolmaster abroad 359 

Nothing perfect 359 

Remonstrance 360 



The Intellect strengthened by Study . 

Taste in Vice 

A Eich Man 

Sadness avoided by the Wealthy . 
Loss of Strength . . . . 
Questions to one restored from Death 

The Grave 


A Poor Man 

A Constant Soldier 

The Heathen Deities . 

Might and Right 

Unions dangerous 

Death stationary 

A Lover's Likeness 

Another .... 

Music .... 

The Town 

Specimen of a Cavalier 

A Publican and his Customers 

A New Pctruchio 


Night Thoughts . 

Mute Sorrow the most powerful 

Flowers .... 

A Lover's Irresolution 

Useless Fear 

A transient Thought 

Reproof to one who has no ear 

Grief fontastical 

Dreams .... 

Age double-sighted . 

Philosophers human . 

Kings .... 

Revenge .... 

Picture of a Hypochondriac 





Infirmity lies in the Mind 376 

An Ancient Pile 376 

The Exaggeration of Grief 377 

A Princess's Dishonor 377 

A Desperate Man 377 

Suitable Music . . . . " . . . . 378 

A Tender Voice 378 

A Fancy 378 

A Young Man's Opinion of Age 379 

A Sceptic in Virtue 379 

Slander of Women 380 

No Love to be despised 381 

A Lover of Sentiment 381 

AProt6g6 382 

The General Law . 383 

A Bold Man 383 

A Brother . . • 383 

An Epitaph 384 

"We love one different from ourselves 385 

Satisfaction in a Blow 386 

A Lady drowned 386 


*^* The Writer of the following Poems has, for some years 
past, abandoned verse- writing, foiP graver, and (to him) more 
important occupations. He has, however, — influenced by mo- 
tives with which he need not trouble the reader, — allowed some 
of the MSS. remaining in his portfolio to be printed. The time 
is not very favorable to productions of this sort; but — "Le 
Printemps reviendral" the days for relishing poetry can never 
be utterly at an end. We may as well hope to extinguish the 
Imagination and the Fancy themselves, as to put a final stop 
to the love which poetrj' (their offspring) has so long excited. 
When "the spring shall return," the Author hopes that a few 
of tibese verses will find favor with the public ; upon whose kind- 
ness and courtesy he throws himself, as a writer of verse, for — 
he believes — the last time ! 

It is proper to state that several of the following Songs, which 
have obtained considerable popularity, are indebted for it mainly, 
if not solely, to the music of the Chevalier Sigishond Neo- 
komm; — a composer of the very first order. 

SONGS, &c. 






The sea ! the sea ! the open sea ! 

The blue, the fresh, the ever free ! 

Without a mark, without a bound, 

It runneth the earth's wide regions round ; 

It plays with the clouds ; it mocks the skies ; 

Or like a cradled creature lies. 

I 'm on the sea ! I 'm on the sea ! 
I am where I would ever be ; 
With the blue above, and the blue below. 
And silence wheresoe'er I go ; 
If a storm should come and awake the deep. 
What matter ? / shall ride and sleep. 


I love, O, how I love to ride 
On the fierce, foaming, bursting tide, . 
When every mad wave drowns the moon, 
Or whistles aloft his tempest tune. 
And tells how goeth the world below, 
And why the sou' west blasts do blow. 

I never was on the dull, tame shore. 
But I loved the great sea more and more. 
And backwards flew to her billowy breast. 
Like a bird that seeketh its mother's nest ; 
And a mother she was, and is, to me ; 
For I was born on the open sea ! 

The waves were white, and red the mom, 
In the noisy hour wlien I was born ; 
And the whale it whistled, the porpoise rolled, 
And the dolphins bared their backs of gold ; 
And never was heard such an outcry wild 
As welcomed to life the ocean-child ! 

I 've lived since then, in calm and strife, 
Full fifty summers, a sailor's life. 
With wealth to spend and a power to range, 
But never have sought nor sighed for change ; 
And Death, whenever he comes to me. 
Shall come on the wild, unbounded sea ! 



The weed mourns on the castle wall, 
The grass lies on the chamber floor, 
And on the hearth, and in the hall, 
Where merry music danced of yore ! 
And the blood-red wine no longer 
Runs, — (how it used to run !) 
And the shadows within, grown stronger. 
Look black on the midday sun ! 

All is gone ; save a Voice 

That never did yel rejoice : 

' T is sweet and low ; V is sad and lone ; 

And it biddeth tis love the thing that ''sjloicn. 

The Gardens feed no fruits nor flowers. 
But childless seem, and in decay ; 
The traitor clock forsakes the hours, 
And points to times, — O, far away ! 
And the steed no longer neigheth. 

Nor paws the startled ground ; 
And the dun hound no longer bayeth ; 
But death is in all around ! 

All is gone ; save a Voice 

That never did yet rejoice : 

' T is siceet and low ; '< is sad and lone ; 

And it biddeth us love the thing that ''s flown. 


The Lord of all the lone domain, 

An undeserving master, flies, 

And leaves a land where he might reign. 

For alien hearts and stranger skies : 

And the peasant disdains the story 

He loved to recount of yore ; 
And the Name, that was once a glory. 
Is heard in the land no more ! 

All is gone ; save a Voice 

That never did yet rejoice : 

' T is sweet and low ; '< is sad and lone ; 

And it hiddeth us love the thing that ''sjlown. 


Tell me not that thou dost love me, 
Though it thrill me with delight : 

Thou art, like the stars, above me ; 
I, the lowly earth at night. 

Hast thou {thou from kings descended) 
Loved the Indian cottage-born ; 

And shall she, whom Love befriended. 
Darken all thy hopeful mom ? 

Go, — and, for thy fathers' glory. 
Wed the blood that 's pure find free : 

'T is enough to gild my story 
That I once was loved by thee ! 




King Death was a rare old fellow ! 

He sat where no sun could shine ; 
And he lifted his hand so yellow. 

And poured out his coal-black wine. 

Hurrah ! for the coal-black Wine ! 

There came to him many a Maiden, 
Whose eyes had forgot to shine ; 

And Widows, with grief o'erladen, 
For a draught of his sleepy wine. 

Hurrah ! for the coal-black Wine ! 

The Scholar left all his learning ; 

The Poet his fancied woes ; 
And the Beauty her bloom returning, 

Like life to the fading rose. 

Hurrah ! for the coal-black Wine ! 

All came to the royal old fellow. 

Who laughed till his eyes dropped brine, 
As he gave them his hand so yellow, 

And pledged them in Death's black wine. 
Hurrah ! Hurrah ! 
Hurrah ! for the coal-black Wine ! 



Old Acquaintance, shall the nights 

You and I once talked together 
Be forgot like common things, — 

Like some dreary night that brings 

Naught, save foul weather ? 

We were young, when you and I 

Talked of golden things together, — 
Of love and rhyme, of books and men : 
Ah ! our hearts were buoyant then 
As the wild-goose feather! 

Twenty years have fled, we know, 

Bringing care and changing weather ; 
But hath th' heart no backward flights, 
That we again may see those nights, 
And laugh together ? 

Jove's eagle, soaring to the sun. 

Renews the past year's mouldering feather 
Ah, why not you and I, then, soar 
From age to youth, — and dream once more 

Long nights together ? 




Awake ! — The starry midnight Hour 

Hangs charmed, and pauseth in its flight ; 
In its own sweetness sleeps the flower, 
And the doves lie hushed in deep delight ! 
Awake ! Awake ! 
Look for th^ my love^for Love''s sweet sake ! 

Awake ! — Soft dews will soon arise 

From daisied mead, and thorny brake ; 
Then, Sweet, uncloud those eastern eyes, 
And like the tender morning break ! 
Awake ! Awake ! 
Dawn forth., my love, for Love''s sweet sake ! 

Awake ! — Within the musk-rose bower 
I watch, pale flower of love, for thee : 
Ah, come, and show the starry Hour 

What wealth of love thou hid'st from me ! 
Awake ! Awake ! 
Show all thy love, for Love''s sweet sake ! 


Awake ! — Ne'er heed, though listening Night 

Steal music from thy silver voice : 
Uncloud thy beauty, rare and bright. 
And bid the world and me rejoice ! 
Awake ! Awake ! • 

She comes^ at last^for Lovers sweet sake ! 


Sleep, — sleep, my Lyre ! 

Untouched, — unsought, — unstrung ! 

No one now will e'er inquire 

If poet to thee ever sung ; 

Nor if his spirit clung 

To thy witching wire ! — 

Bid thy soul of music sleep. 

As winds lie on the charmed deep, 

When the mistress Moon doth chide 

The tempest, or the murmuring tide ! 

'T is well to be a thing forgot ! 

Oblivion is a happy lot ! 

'T is well that neither Love, nor Woe, 

Nor sad, sweet thoughts of " long ago," 

Should 'waken again thy self-consuming fire ! 

Therefore, therefore, — sleep, my Lyre ! 



Sound an alarum ! The foe is come ! 
I hear the tramp, the neigh, the hum, 
The cry, and the blow of his daring drum ! 

Huzzah ! 
Sound ! The blast of our trumpet blown 
Shall carry dismay into hearts of stone. 
What ! shall we shake at a foe unknown ? 

Huzzah ! — Huzzah ! 

Have we not sinews as strong as they } 
Have we not hearts that ne'er gave way .? 
Have we not God on our side to-day } 

Huzzah ! 
Look ! They are staggered on yon black heath 
Steady awhile, and hold your breath ! 
Now is your time, men ! — Down like Death ! 

Huzzah ! — Huzzah ! 

Stand by each other, and front your foes ! 
Fight, whilst a drop of the red blood flows ! 
Fight, as ye fought for the old red rose ! 

Huzzah ! 
Sound ! Bid your terrible trumpets bray ! 
Blow, till their brazen throats give way ! 
Sound to the battle ! Sound, I say ! 

Huzzah ! — Huzzah ! 

10 SONGS. 



Hide me, O twilight Air ! 

Hide me, from thought, from care, 

From all things, foul or fair. 

Until to-morrow ! 
To-night I strive no more ; 
No more my soul shall soar : 
Come, Sleep, and shut the door 

'Gainst Pain and Sorrow ! 

If I must see through dreams, 
Be mine Elysian gleams. 
Be mine by morning streams 

To watch and wander ! 
So may my spirit cast 
(Serpent-like) off the past, 
And my free soul at last 

Have leave to ponder ! 

And shouldst thou 'scape control. 
Ponder on love, sweet Soul, 
On joy, — the end, the goal. 

Of all endeavour ! 
But if earth's pains will rise, 
(As damps will seek the skies,) 
Then, Night, seal thou mine eyes, 

In sleep, for ever ! 

soNes. 11 



Rise ! Sleep no more ! 'T is a noble morn : 
The dews hang thick on the fringed thorn, 
And the frost shrinks back, like a beaten hound, 
Underthe steaming, steaming ground. 
Behold, where the billowy clouds flow by. 
And leave us alone in the clear gray sky ! 
Our horses are ready and steady. — So, ho ! 
I 'm gone, like a dart from the Tartar's bow. 

Hark, hark ! — Wlio calhlh the maiden Morn 
From her sleep in the woods and the stuhble corn 7 

The horn, — the horn ! 
The merry, sweet ring of the hunter''s horn. 

Now, thorough the copse, where the fox is found. 
And over the stream, at a mighty bound. 
And over the high lands, and over the low. 
O'er furrows, o'er meadows, the hunters go ! 
Away ! — as a hawk flies full at its prey. 
So flieth the hunter, away, — away ! 
From the burst at the cover till set of sun. 
When the red fox dies, and — the day is done ! 

Hark, hark ! — What sound on the wind is home ? 

'Tis the conquering voice of the hunter''s horn. 
The horn, — the horn ! 

The merry, hold voice of the hunfer''s horn. 

12 SONGS. 

Sound ! Sound the horn ! To the hunter good 
What 's the gulley deep or the roaring flood ? 
Right over he bounds, as the wild stag bounds, 
At the heels of his swift, sure, silent hounds. 
O, what delight can a mortal lack. 
When he once is firm on his horse's back. 
With his stirrups short, and his snaffle strong, 
And the blast of the horn for his morning song ? 

Hark, hark ! — Noip, home ! and dream fill morn 
Of the hold, siceet sound of the hunter''s horn ! 

The horn, — the horn ! 
O, the sound of all sounds is the hunter'' s horn ! 


Come again ! Come again ! 

Sunshine cometh after rain. 

As a lamp fed newly burneth. 

Pleasure, who doth fly, returneth, 

Scattering every cloud of pain. 

As the year, which dies in showers, 

Riseth in a world of flowers, 

Called by many a vernal strain, 

Come thou, — for whom tears were falling, 

And a thousand tongues are calling ! 

Come again, O, come again ! 

Like the sunshine after rain ! 

SONGS. 13 



Faeewell Old England's shores ! 

Farewell her rugged men ! 
Now, sailors, strain your oars ! 

I ne'er will look again. 
I 've lived, — I 've sought, — I 've seen,- 

O, things I love too well, 
Upon those shores of green : 

So, England ! long farewell ! 

Fareicell ! 

I go, — what matter where ? 

The E.xile, when he flies, 
Thinks not of other air, — 

Dreams not of alien skies : 
He seeks but to depart 

From the land he loves too well, — 
From thoughts that smite his heart : 

So, England ! long farewell ! 

Farewell ! 

O'er lands and the lonely main, 

A lonelier man, I roam. 
To seek some balm for pain, — 

Perhaps to find a home : 

14 SONGS. 

I go, — but Time nor tide, 
Nor all that tongue may tell, 

Shall e'er from thee divide 
My heart, — and so, farewell ! 

Old England^ fare thee well ! 


Night, gaze, but send no sound ! 

Fond heart, thy fondness keep ! 
Nurse Silence, wrap them round ! 

Breathe low ; — they sleep, they sleep ! 

No wind ! no murmuring showers ! 

No music, soft and deep ! 
No thoughts, nor dreams of flowers ! 

All hence ; — they sleep, they sleep ! 

Time's step is all unheard : 

Heaven's stars bright silence keep : 
No breath, no sigh, no word ! 

All 's still ; — they sleep, they sleep ! 

O Life ! O Night ! O Time ! 

Thus ever round them creep ! 
From pain, from hate, from crime. 

E'er guard them, gentle Sleep ! 

SONGS. 15 



Come sing, come sing, of the great Sea-King, 

And the fame that now hangs o'er him, 
Who once did sweep o'er the vanquished deep. 

And drove the world before him ! 
His deck was a throne, on the ocean lone, 

And the sea was his park of pleasure. 
Where he scattered in fear the human deer. 
And rested — when he had leisure ! 

Come, — shout, and sing 
Of the great Sea-King, 
And ride in the track he rode in ! 
He sits at the head 
Of the mighty dead. 
On the red right-hand of Odin ! 

He sprang, from birth, like a God on earth, 

And soared on his victor pinions, 
And he traversed the sea, as the eagles flee, 

When they look on their blue dominions. 
His whole earth life was a conquering strife. 

And he lived till his beard grew hoary, 
And he died at last, by his blood-red mast, 

And now — he is lost in glory ! 

So, — shout and sing, ^c. 

16 SONGS. 


O, THERE never was yet so fair a thing, 

By racing river or bubbling spring, 

Nothing that ever so gayly grew 

Up from the ground when the skies were blue. 

Nothing so brave, nothing so free, 

As thou, — my wild, wild Cherry-tree ! 

Jove ! how it danced in the gusty breeze ! 
Jove ! how it frolicked amongst the trees ! 
Dashing the pride of the poplar down. 
Stripping the thorn of his hoary crown ! 
Oak or ash, — what matter to thee ? 
'T was the same to my wild, wild Cherry-tree. 

Never at rest, like one that 's young 
Abroad to the winds its arms it flung. 
Shaking its bright and crowned head, 
Whilst I stole up for its berries red. 
Beautiful berries ! beautiful tree ! 
Hurrah ! for the wild, wild Cherry-tree ! 

Back I fly to the days gone by, 

And I see thy branches against the sky, 

I see on the grass thy blossoms shed, 

1 see (nay, I taste) thy berries red. 

And I shout, like the tempest loud and free, 

Hurrah ! for the wild, wild Cherry-tree ! 



Mourn not thy daughter fading ! 

It is the common lot, 
That those we love should come and go, 
And leave us in this world of woe : 

So, murmur not ! 

Her life was short, but fair, 

Unsullied by a blot ; 
And now she sinks to dreamless rest, — 
(A dove, who makes the earth her nest ;) 

So, murmur not ! 

No pangs, nor passionate grief. 

Nor anger raging hot, 
No ills shall ever harm her more ; 
She goes unto the silent shore. 

Where pain is not. 

Weep'st thou that none should mourn 

For thee, and thy sad lot ? 
Peace, peace ! and know that few e'er grieve 
When Death, the tyrant, doth unweave 

Life's little knot. 

1$ SONGS. 

E'en thou scarce wept must fade ! 

It is the common lot, 
To link our hearts to things that fly, • 
To love without return, — and die, 

And be — forgot ! 



Once there was a little Voice, 
Merry as the month of May, 

That did cry " Rejoice ! Rejoice ! 
Now — 't is flown away ! 

Sweet it was, and very clear, 
Chasing every thought of pain : 

Summer ! shall I ever hear 
Such a voice again ? 

I have pondered all night long. 

Listening for as soft a sound ; 
But so sweet and clear a song 
• Never have I found ! 

I would give a mine of gold. 
Could I hear that little Voice, — 

Could I, as in days of old. 
At a sound rejoice ! 

SONGS. 19 



Sing ! — Who sings 
To her who weareth a hundred rings ? 
Ah, who is this lady fine .'' 
The Vine, boys, the Vine ! 
The mother of mighty Wine. 
A roamer is she 
O'er wall and tree. 
And sometimes very good company. 

Drink ! — Who drinks 
To her who blusheth and never thinks ? 
Ah, who is this maid of thine ? 
The Grape, boys, the Grape ! 
O, never let her escape 
Until she be turned to Wine ! 
For better is she 
Than vine can be. 
And very, very good company ! 

Dream ! — Who dreams 
Of the God who governs a thousand streams ? 
Ah, who is this Spirit fine ? 
'T is Wine, boys, 't is Wine ! 
God Bacchus, a friend of mine. 
O, better is he 
Than grape or tree, 
And the best of all good company ! 

20 SONGS. 


Dark-eyed beauty of the South ! 
Mistress of the rosy mouth ! 
Doth thy heart desert its duty ? 
Doth thy blood belie thy beauty ? 
Art thou false, and art thou cold ? 
Art thou sworn to wed for gold ? 

On thy forehead sitteth pride, 
Crowned with scorn and falcon-eyed ; 
But beneath, methinks, thou twinest 
Silken smiles that seem divinest. 
Can such smiles be false and cold ? 
Canst thou, will thou, wed for gold ? 

We, who dwell on Northern earth, 
Fill the frozen air with mirth, — 
Soar upon the wings of laughter, 
(Though we droop the moment after :) 
But, through all our regions cold, 
None will sell their hearts for gold. 

SONGS. 21 



How many summers, love, 

Have I been thine ? 
How many days, thou dove, 

Hast thou been mine ? 
Time, like the winged wind 

When 't bends the flowers, 
Hath left no mark behind, 

To count the hours ! 

Some weight of thought, though loth, 

On thee he leaves ; 
Some lines of care round both 

Perhaps he weaves ; 
Some fears, — a soft regret 

For joys scarce known ; 
Sweet looks we half forget ; — 

All else is flown ! 

Ah ! — With what thankless heart 

I mourn and sing ! 
Look, where our children start. 

Like sudden Spring ! 
With tongues all sweet and low, 

Like a pleasant rhyme, 
They tell how much I owe 

To thee and Time ! 




She was not fair, nor full of grace, 

Nor crowned with thought or aught beside ; 
Nor wealth had she, of mind or face, 

To win our love, or raise our pride: 
No lover's thought her cheek did touch ; 

No poet's dream was round her thrown ; 
And yet we miss her, — ah, too much. 

Now — she hath flown ! 

We miss her when the morning calls. 

As one that mingled in our mirth ; 
We miss her when the evening falls, — 

A trifle wanted on the earth ! 
Some fancy small or subtle thought 

Is checked ere to its blossom grown ; 
Some chain is broken that we wrought, 

Now — she hath flown ! 

No solid good, nor hope defined. 

Is marred now she hath sunk in night ; 
And yet the strong, immortal Mind 

Is stopped in its triumphant flight ! 
Stem friend, what power is in a tear. 

What strength to one poor thought alone, 
When all we know is, — " She was here," 

And — " She hath flown ! " 

SONGS. 23 


When the merry lark doth gild 

With his song the summer hours, 
And their nests the swallows build 

In the roofs and tops of towers, 
And the golden broom-flower burns 

All about the waste, 
And the maiden May returns 

With a pretty haste, — 

Then., how merry are the times ! 

The Summer times I the Spring times ! 

NoiD, from off the ashy stone 

The chilly midnight cricket crieth, 
And all merry birds are flown. 

And our dream of pleasure dieth j 
Now the once blue, laughing sky 

Saddens into gray, 
And the frozen rivers sigh, 

Pining all away ! 

Now, how solemn are the times ! 
The Winter times ! the Night times ! 

Yet, be merry : all around 

Is through one vast change resolving : 
Even Night, who lately frowned. 

Is in paler dawn dissolving : 

24 SONGS. 

Earth will buret her fetters strange, 

And in spring grow free : 
All things in the world will change, 
Save — my love for thee ! 

Sing then, hopeful are all times ! 
Winter, Summer, Spring times ! 


Say they that all beauty lies 
In the paler maiden's hue ? 
Say they that all softness flies, 
Save from eyes of April blue ? 
Arise thou, like a night in June, 
Beautiful Quadroon ! 

Come, — all dark and bright, as skies 
With the tender starlight hung ! 
Loose the Love from out thine eyes ! 
Loose the Angel from thy tongue ! 
Let them hear Heaven's own sweet tune. 
Beautiful Quadroon 1 

Tell them. Beauty (born above) 
From no shade nor hue doth fly : 
All she asks is Mind, is Love, 
And both upon thine aspect lie, — 
Like the light upon the moon. 
Beautiful Quadroon I 

SONGS. 25 



Come, Herod, my hound, from the stranger's floor ! 

Old friend, — we must wander the world once more ! 

For no one now liveth to welcome us back : 

So, come ! — let us speed on our fated track. 

What matter the region, — what matter the weather, 

So you and I travel, till death, together ? 

And in death r — why, e'en there I may still be found 

By the side of my beautiful black bloodhound. 

We 've traversed the desert, we 've traversed the sea. 

And we 've trod on the heights where the eagles be ; 

Seen Tartar, and Arab, and swart Hindoo ; 

(How thou puH'dst down the deer in those skies of blue !) 

No joy did divide us ; no peril could part 

The man from his friend of the noble heart ; 

Ay, his friend ; for where — where shall there ever be 

A friend like his resolute, fond bloodhound ? 

What, Herod, old hound ! dost remember the day 
When I fronted the wolves, like a stag at bay ? 
When downwards they galloped to where we stood. 
Whilst I staggered with fear in the dark pine wood } 
Dost remember their bowlings ? their horrible speed ? 
God, God ! how I prayed for a friend in need ! 
And — he came ! Ah ! 't was then, my dear Herod, I 

That the best of all friends was my bold bloodhound. 


Men tell us, dear friend, that the noble hound 

Must for ever be lost in the worthless ground : 

Yet, ' Courage' — ' Fidelity ' — ' Love ' — (they say) 

Bear Man, as on wings, to his skies away. 

Well, Herod, — go tell them whatever may be 

I Ml hope I may ever be found by thee. 

If in sleep, — in sleep ; if with skies around, 

Mayst thou follow e'en thither, my dear bloodhound ! 


Is my lover on the sea. 

Sailing East, or sailing West ? 
Mighty Ocean, gentle be. 

Rock him into rest ! 

Let no angry wind arise. 

Nor a wave with whitened crest : 
All be gentle as his eyes 

When he is caressed ! 

Bear him (as the breeze above 
Bears the bird unto its nest) 

Here, — unto his home of love, 
And there bid him rest ! 

SONGS. 27 



When winter nights grow long, 
And winds without blow cold, 
We sit in a ring round the warm wood-fire. 

And listen to stories old ! 
And we tiy to look grave, (as maids should be,) 
When the men bring in boughs of the Laurel-tree. 
O the Laurel, the evergreen tree ! 
The Poets have laurels, — and why not we ? 

How pleasant, when night falls down, 

And hides the wintry sun. 
To see them come in to the blazing fire. 

And know that their work is done ; 
Whilst many bring in, with a laugh or rhyme. 
Green branches of Holly for Christmas time ! 
O the Holly, the bright green Holly, 
It tells (like a tongue) that the times are jolly ! 

Sometimes — (in our grave house. 

Observe, this happeneth not ;) 
But, at times, the evergreen laurel boughs 

And the holly are all forgot ! 


And then ! what then ? why, the men laugh low, 
And hang up a branch of - the Mistletoe ! 

O, brave is the Laurel ! and brave is the Holly ! 

But the Mistletoe banisheth melancholy ! 

-4/t, nobody knows, nor ever shall know. 

What is done — under the Mistletoe ! 


I WOULD I were the bold March- wind. 
The merry, boisterous, bold March-wind, 
Who in the violet's tender eyes 
Casts a kiss, — and forwards flies ! 

Yet, — no ! No slight to thee ! 

O Constancy ! O Constancy ! 

I would I were the soft West-wind » 
The wandering, sighing, soft West-wind, 
Who fondles round the hyacinth bells, 
Then takes wing, — as story tells ! 

Yet, — no ! No slight to thee ! 

O Constancy ! O Constancy ! 

No ; rather will I be the breeze. 
That blows straight on in Indian seas ; 
Or scents, which, in the rose's heart. 
Live and love, — and ne''er depart ! 

Love, — Love, — for aye to thee ! 

Constancy ! Constancy ! 



O, THE Summer Night 

Has a smile of light, 
And she sits on a sapphire throne ; 

Whilst the sweet Winds load her 

With garlands of odor, 
From the bud to the rose o'erblown ! 

But the Autumn Night 

Has a piercing sight, 
And a step both strong and free ; 

And a voice for wonder. 

Like the wrath of the Thunder, 
When he shouts to the stormy sea ! 

And the Winter Night 
Is all cold and white. 
And she singeth a song of pain ; 
Till the wild bee hummeth, 
And warm Spring cometh, 
W^hen she dies in a dream of rain ! 

O, the Night, the Night ! 

'T is a lovely sight. 
Whatever the clime or time ; 

For sorrow then soareth. 

And the lover outpoureth 
His soul in a star-bright rhyme. 



It bringeth sleep 

To the forests deep, 
The forest bird to its nest ; 

To Care bright hours, 

And dreams of flowers, 
And that balm to the weary, — Rest ! 


Thy voice is sweet, — is sad, — is clear, 
And yet, methinks, 't should flow unseen. 

Like hidden rivers that we hear 
Singing amongst the forests green. 

Delay, delay ! till downy Eve 

Into her twilight woods hath flown : 

Too soon, musician, dost thou grieve ; 

Love bloometh best (like thought) — alone. 

Cease, cease awhile ! Thy holy strain 
Should be amongst the silence born ; 

Thy heart may then unfold its pain. 
Leaning upon its bridal thorn. 

The insect noise, the human folly 

Disturb thy grave thoughts with their din ; 

Then, cease awhile, bird Melancholy, 

And when the fond Night hears, — begyi ! 

SONGS. 31 



A THODSAND milcs from land are we, 

Tossing about on the roaring sea ; 

From billow to bounding billow cast, 

Like fleecy snow on the stormy blast : 

The sails are scattered abroad, like weeds, 

The strong masts shake, like quivering reeds, 

The mighty cables, and iron chains. 

The hull, which all earthly strength disdains. 

They strain and they crack, and hearts like stone 

Their natural hard, proud strength disown. 

Up and down ! Up and down ! 

From the base of the wave to the billow's crown, 

And amidst the flashing and feathery foam 

The Stormy Petrel finds a home, — 

A home, if such a place may be. 

For her who lives on the wide, wide sea, 

On the craggy ice, in the frozen air. 

And only seeketh her rocky lair 

To warm her young, and to teach them spring 

At once o'er the waves on their stormy wing ! 

O'er the Deep ! O'er the Deep ! 

Where the whale, and the shark, and the sword-fish sleep, 

Outflying the blast and the driving rain. 

The Petrel telleth her tale — in vain ; 


For the mariner curseth the warning bird 
Who bringeth him news of the storms unheard ! 
Ah ! thus does the prophet, of good or ill, 
Meet hate from the creatures he serveth still : 
Yet he ne'er falters : — So, Petrel ! spring 
Once more o'er the waves on thy stormy wing ! 


How bountiful, how wonderful 

Thou art, sweet Air ! 
And yet, albeit thine odors lie 
On every gust that mocks the eye, 
We pass thy gentle blessings by 

Without a care ! 

How bountiful, how wonderful 

Thou art, sweet Earth ! 
Thy seasons, changing with the sun, — 
Thy beauty out of darkness won ! 
And yet, whose tongue (when all is done) 

Will tell thy worth ? 

The poet's ! — He alone doth still 

Uphold all worth ! 
Then, love the poet ; — love his themes, 
His thoughts, half-hid in golden dreams, 
Which make thrice fair the songs and streams 

Of Air and Earth. 

SONGS. 33 


My Sword ! My friend ! My noble friend ! 

Champion fearless ! Servant true ! 

Whom my fathers without end 

In their thousand battles drew, — 

Come ! 

Let me bare thee to the light ! 

Let me clutch thee in my hand ! 

0, how keen, how blue, how bright, 

Is my noble, noble brand ! 

Thou wast plucked from some base mine, — 

Bom 'midst stone and stubborn clay : 

Ah ! who dreamt that aught divine 

In that rugged aspect lay ? 

Come ! 

Once we called and thou didst come, 

Straight from out thy sleep didst start. 

And the trump and stormy drum 

Woke at once thine iron heart ! 

Thou wast like the lightning, driven 
By the tempest's strength at speed ! 
Brazen shields and armor riven 
Told what thou couldst do, at need. 
Come ! 

Hark ! again the trumpets bray ! 
Hark ! where rolls the stormy drum ! 
I am here to lead the way : 
Servant of my fathers, — Come ! 

34 SONGS. 



O THE Hours ! the happy Hours ! 
When there shone the Hght of Love, 
And all the sky was blue above, 
And the earth was full of flowers ! 

Why should Time and Toil 

The worth and beauty spoil 

Of such happy Hours ? 

O the Hours ! the spring-time Hours ! 
When the Soul doth forwards bend 
And dream the sweet world hath no end, 
Neither spot, nor shade, nor showers ! 
Can we ne'er resume 
The love, the light, the bloom 
Of those vernal Hours ? 

Ever do the year's bright Hours 
Come, with laughing April, round, 
And with her walk the grassy ground, 
When she calleth forth the flowers : 

But no new springs bear 
To us thoughts half so fair 
As the bygone Hours ! 

SONGS. 35 


Hurrah, for the Land of England ! 

Firm-set in the subject sea ; 
Where the women are fair, 
And the men (like air) 

Are all lovers of liberty ! 

Hurrah ! for merry England ! 

Long life, without strife, for England ! 

Hurrah, for the Spirit of England ! 

The bold, the true, the free ; 
Who stretcheth his hand. 
With a king's command. 

All over the circling sea ! 

Hurrah ! for merry England ! 

Long life, without strife, for England ! 

Let tyrants rush forth on the nations. 

And strive to chain down the free ; 
But do Thou stand fast, 
From the first to the last. 

For " The Right," — wheresoever it be ! 
merry and nolle England ! 
Long life to the Spirit of England ! 

Hurrah, for William of England ! 

Our friend, — as a King should be ; 
Who casteth aside 
Man's useless pride. 

And leans on his people free ! 

Hurrah ! for the King of England ! 
The friend of merry England ! 

36 SONGS. 

Her King is the friend of England ; 

Her guards are her ships at sea ; 
But her beauty lies 
In her women's eyes, 

And her strength in her people free ! 
So, Hurrah for merry England ! 
For the King and the free Men of England ! 


Why doth the bottle stand, boys ? 
Let the glass run silent round ! 
Wine should go, 
As the blood doth flow, 
Its course, without pause or sound. 

Scorn not Wine ! — Truth divine 
And Courage dwell with noble Wine. 

Send round the bottle quick, boys ! 
No reason ask nor pause ! 

Wine should run. 

Like a circling sun. 
By its own unquestioned laws. 
Scorn not Wine ! 8fc. 

Fill to the beaded brims, boys. 

Let each gleiss, like a king, be crowned ! 

Drink, — " Joy, and Wealth, 

And a mighty Health," 
To ourselves and the world around ! " 
Scorn not Wine ! Sec. 

SONGS. 37 



" A famous man is Robin Hood ; 
But ' each land ' hath a thief as good j 
Then let us chant a passing stave 
In honor of the Hero brave ! " 

M^ordsworth's Rob Roy. 

Count Balthazar reigns in his strong stone tower, 

Girt round by his iron men ; 
And his strength, Hke the terrible Tempest's power, 

Sweeps through each Alpine glen ! 

A hunter he is, though a monarch grim 

He seems on his mountain throne ; 
But he hunts not the stag, nor the ermine slim, 

Nor the wolf, nor the eagle lone. 

He breedeth no cattle, he traineth no vine, 

He hath naught that is bought or sold : 
Yet his cellars are bursting with brave bright wine, 

And his coffers are crammed with gold. 

Whenever he lacketh or kine or com 

He calls to his armed band ; 
And they hunt through the valleys, from night till mom, 

And beg for him, — sword in hand ! 


So he drinks and he revels, till daylight gleams : 

But — nothing is free from pain ! 
For a Demon e'er watches his blood-red dreams, 

(Whose laughter is deep 

As the depths of sleep,) 

And scares him to life again ! 

So Balthazar lives, and so must he die. 

However the seasons roll ; 
The visions of guilt must haunt his eye. 

And the dread of the damned, his soul ! 

He arose, like a pillar of fire, whose head 

Is borne up by the raving blast : 
He will sink, (like the fire,) deserted, — dead. 

And be trodden in dust, at last ! 

So, — Down with the tower, the old stone tower ! 

And, down with the iron men ! 
Let 's summon our hearts, and unfetter our power. 

And cleanse out the robbers' den ! 

Where lieth their strength ? In a vague, false fame. 

Where based ? On our fear alone. 
Then let us build a phantom, and forge us a name, 

In a foundery of our own ! 

SONGS. 39 



When friends look dark and cold, 

And maids neither laugh nor sigh, 
And your enemy proffers his gold. 
Be sure there is danger nigh. 

O, then H is time to look forward. 
And back, like the hunted hare ; 
And to watch, as the little bird watches, 
When the falcon is in the air. 

When the trader is scant of words, 
And your neighbor is rough or shy. 

And your banker recalls his hoards. 
Be sure there is danger nigh. 

O, then H is time to look forward, SfC. 

Whenever a change is wrought, 
And you know not the reason why, 

In your own or an old friend's thought. 
Be sure there is evil nigh. 

0, then H is time to look forward, S^c. 

40 SONGS. 


The night is closing round, Mother ! 

The shadows are thick and deep ! 
All round me they cling, like an iron ring, 

And I cannot, cannot sleep ! 

Ah, Heaven ! — thy hand, thy hand, Mother ! 

Let me lie on thy nursing breast ! 
They have smitten my brain with a piercing pain 

But 't is gone ! — and I now shall rest, 

I could sleep a long, long sleep, Mother ! 

So, seek me a calm, cool bed : 
You may lay me low, in the virgin snow, 

With a moss-bank for my head. 

I would lie in the wild, wild woods. Mother ! 

Where naught but the birds are known ; 
Where nothing is seen, but the branches green. 

And flowers on the greensward strewn. 

No lovers there witch the air. Mother ! 

Nor mock at the holy sky : 
One may live and be gay, like a summer day. 

And at last, like the Summer, — die ! 

SONGS. 41 


Peace ! what can tears avail ? 
She Ues all dumb and pale, 

And from her eye 
The spirit of lovely life is fading, — 

And she must die ! 
Why looks the lover wroth ? the friend upbraiding ? 

Reply, reply ! 

Hath she not dwelt too long 
'Midst pain, and grief, and wrong? 

Then, why not die ? 
Why suffer again her doom of sorrow. 

And hopeless lie ? 
Why nurse the trembling dream until to-morrow ? 

Reply, reply ! 

Death ! Take her to thine arms, 
In all her stainless charms. 

And with her fly 
To heavenly haunts, where, clad in brightness, 

The Angels lie ! 
Wilt bear her there, O Death ! in all her whiteness ? 

Reply, reply ! 



Whither hath the Wood-thrush flown, 
From our greenwood bowers ? 

Wherefore builds he not again, 
Where the white-thorn flowers ? 

Bid him come ! for on his wings, 
The sunny year he bringeth ; 

And the heart unlocks its springs, 
Wheresoe'er he singeth. 

Lover-like the creature waits, 
And when Morning soareth, 

All his little soul of song 
Tow'rd the dawn he poureth. 

Sweet one, why art thou not heard 
Now, where woods are stillest ? 

O, come back ! and bring with thee, 
— Whatsoe'er thou wiliest ; — 

Laughing thoughts, — delighting songs,- 

Dreams of azure hours, — 
Something, — nothing ; — ^ all we ask 

Is to see thee ours ! 

'T is enough that thou shouldst sing 
For thy own pure pleasure ! 

'T is enough that thou hast once 
Sweetened human leisure ! 

SONGS. 43 



O, 't is merry when stars are bright 

To sing, as you pace along, 
Of the things that are dreamt by night. 

To the motion of some old song : 
For the fancy of mortals teems, 
Whether they wake or sleep. 
With figures, that shine like dreams, 
Then — die in the darkness deep ! 

O, merry are Christmas limes. 
And merry the belfry chimes; 
But the merriest things 
That a man e'er sings 
Are his Midnight Rhymes ! 

'T is night when the usurers feel 

That their money is thrice repaid ; 
'T is night when adorers kneel. 

By scores, to the sleeping maid ; 
'T is night when the author deems 

That his critics are all at bay. 
And the gamester regains in dreams 

The gold that he lost by day. 

0, merry are Christmas times, 4*c. 

At night, both the sick and the lame 

Abandon their world of care ; 
And the creature that droops with shame 

Forgetteth her old despair ! 
The boy on the raging deep 

Laughs loud that the skies are clear ; 

44- SONGS. 

And the murderer turns, in sleep, 
And dreams that a pardon 's near ! 

0, merry are Christmas times, ^c. 

At night, all wrongs are right, 

And all perils of life grow smo'oth ; 
Then why cometh the fierce daylight, 

When fancy is bright as truth ? 
All hearts, 'tween the earth and the moon, 

Recover their hopes again : 
Ah, — 't is pity so sweet a tune 

Should ever be jarred by pain ! 

Yet, — merry are Christmas times, Sfc. 


Give me but thy heart, though cold ; 

I ask no more ! 
Give to others gems and gold ; 

But leave me poor ! 
Give to whom thou wilt thy smiles ; 
Ceist o'er others all thy wiles ; 
But let thy tears flow fast and free, 
For me, with me I 

Giv'st thou but one look, sweet heart ? 

A word, — no more ? 
It is Music's sweetest part 

When lips run o'er ! 
'T is a part I fain would learn. 
So, pr'ythee, here thy lessons turn, 
And teach me, to the close. 
All Love's pleasures, — all its woes ! 

SONGS, 45 


A Stranger came to a rich man's door. 

And smiled on his mighty feast ; 
And away his brightest child he bore, 

And laid her toward the East. 

He came next spring, with a smile as gay, 
(At the time when the East wind blows,) 

And another bright creature he led away, 
With a cheek like a burning rose. 

And he came once more, when the spring was blue. 

And whispered the last to rest. 
And bore her away, — yet nobody knew 

The name of the dreadful guest ! 

Next year, there was none but the rich man left, — 

Left alone in his pride and pain, 
Who called on the Stranger, like one bereft. 

And sought through the land, — in vain ! 

He came not : he never was heard nor seen 

Again ; (so the story saith :) 
But, wherever his terrible smile had been. 

Men shuddered, and talked of — Death ! 



When the wind blows 

In the sweet rose-tree, 
And the cow lows 

On the fragrant lea, 
And the stream flows 

All bright and free, 

'T is not for thee, 't is not for me ; 
'T is not for any one here, I trow : 

The gentle wind bloweth. 

The happy cow loweth. 

The merry stream floweth, 
For all below ! 

O the Spring ! the bountiful Spring ! 
She shineth and smileth on every thing. 

Where come the sheep ? 

To the rich man's moor. 
Where cometh sleep ? 

To the bed that 's poor. 
Peasants must weep. 

And kings endure ; 

That is a fate that none can cure : 
Yet Spring doeth all she can, I trow : 

She bringeth the bright hours, 

She weaveth the sweet flowers, 

She dresseth her bowers. 
For all below ! — the Spring, 4*c. 

SONGS. 47 


Now, what shady wreath wilt wear, 
Maiden, — Maiden ? 
Bid them bind the veil with care, 
Round the sunshine of thy hair ! 
Let thy brow be free from scorn ; 
Let thine eye have gentle light, 
On the gentle marriage morn ; 
And so — Good Night ! 

It is now the youth of May, 
Maiden, — Maiden ! 
Choose thou, then, at blush of day, 
Buds and blossoms, not too gay ; 
And, behind their veiling sweets, 
Bashful be, 'midst all their light. 
When the tender lover greets ; 
And so — Good Night ! 

Soon To-morrow will be here, 
Maiden, — Maiden ! 
Then, — as hopes aye mix with fears, 
Mix thou smiles with pearled tears ; 
So shall he who loves thee feel 
Thrice his first sweet, pure delight. 
And nearer to thy bosom steal ; 
And so — Good Night ! 

48 SONGS. 


A DEEP and a mighty shadow 

Across my heart is thrown, 
Like the cloud on a summer meadow, 

Where the Thunder-wind hath blown ! 
The wild- rose, Fancy, dieth. 

The sweet bird, Memory, flieth. 
And leaveth me alone, — 

Alone with my hopeless Sorrow : 

No other mate I know ! 
I strive to awake To-morrow ; 

But the dull words will not flow ! 
I pray, — but my prayers are driven 
Aside, by the angry Heaven, 

And weigh me down with woe ! 

I call on the Past, to lend me 
Its songs, to soothe my pain : 

I bid the dim Future send me 
A light from its eyes, — in vain ! 

Naught comes ; but a shrill cry starteth 

From Hope, as she fast departeth ; — 
" 1 go, and come not again ! " 

SONGS. 49 


Belshazzar is King ! Belshazzar is Lord ! 

And a thousand dark nobles all bend at his board : 

Fruits glisten, flowers blossom, meats steam, and a flood 

Of the wine that man loveth runs redder than blood : 

Wild dancers are there, and a riot of mirth, 

And the beauty that maddens the passions of earth ; 

And the crowds all shout. 

Till the vast roofs ring, — 
" All praise to Belshazzar, Belshazzar the king ! " 

" Bring forth," cries the Monarch, " the vessels of gold, 
Which my father tore down from the temples of old ; — 
Bring forth, and we '11 drink, while the trumpets are 

To the Gods of bright silver, of gold, and of stone : 
Bring forth ! " — and before him the vessels all shine, 
And he bows unto Baal, and he drinks the dark wine ; 

WhDst the trumpets bray, 

And the cymbals ring, — 
" Praise, praise to Belshazzar, Belshazzar the king ! '' 

Now what conieth — look, look ! — without menace, or 

call ? 
Who writes, with the Lightning's bright hand, on the 

wall ? 
What pierceth the king, like the point of a dart ? 
What drives the bold blood from his cheek to his heart ? 


" Chaldeans ! Magicians ! the letters expound ! " 
They are read, — and Belshazzar is dead on the ground ! 

Hark ! — The Persian is come 

On a conqueror's wing ; 
And a M ede 's on the throne of Belshazzar the king ! 



Gentle Mother, do not weave 
Garlands for my forehead pale ! 

Unto hearts that e'er must grieve, 
What do crowns avail ? 

Tell me not of bridal flowers ! 

What are they when life is past ? 
Tell me not of happy hours, 

When they flee so fast ! 

Bind thy cypress round my heart ! 

Hide me in the mortal pall ! 
Show them, when all hopes depart, 

What sad things befall ! 

I am — dead, a statue, left 

Pointing perils out unknown, 
Shorn of life, and love-bereft, 

All my youth o'erthrown ! 
All o'erthrown ! 

SONGS. 51 


Feed her with the leaves of Love, — 
(Love, the rose, that blossoms here) ! 
Music, gently round her move ! 
Bind her to the cypress near ! 
Weave her round and round, 
With skeins of silken sound ! 
'T is a little stricken deer, 
Who doth from the hunter fly, 
And comes here to droop, — to die, 
Ignorant of her wound ! 

Soothe her with sad stories, 

O poet, till she sleep ! 

Dreams, come forth with all your glories ! 

Night, breathe soft and deep ! 

Music, round her creep ! 

If she steal away to weep. 

Seek her out, — and, when you find her, 

Gentle, gentlest Music, wind her 

Round and round. 

Round and round, 

With your bands of softest sound ; — 

Such as we, at nightfall, hear 

In the wizard forest near. 

When the charmed Maiden sings 

At the hidden springs ! 

52 SONGS. 


We are born ; we laugh ; we weep ; 

We love ; we droop ; we die ! 
Ah ! wherefore do we laugh or weep ? 

Why do we live, or die ? 
Who knows that secret deep ? 

Alas, not I ! 

Why doth the violet spring 

Unseen by human eye ? 
Why do the radiant seasons bring 

Sweet thoughts that quickly fly ? 
Why do our fond hearts cling 

To things that die .'' 

We toil, — through pain and wrong ; 

We fight, — and fly ; 
We love ; we lose ; and then, ere long. 

Stone-dead we lie. 
life ! is all thy song 

" Endure and — die ? " 






How gallantly, how merrily 

We ride along the sea ! 
The morning is all sunshine, 

The wind is blowing free : 
The billows are all sparkling, 

And bounding in the light. 
Like creatures in whose sunny veins 

The blood is running bright. 

All nature knows our triumph : 
Strange birds about us sweep ; 

Strange things come up to look at us, 
The masters of the deep : 

56 SONGS. 

In our wake, like any servant, 
Follows even the bold shark ; — 

O, proud must be our Admiral 
Of such a bonny barque ! 

Proud, proud, must be our Admiral, 

(Though he is pale to-day,) 
Of twice five hundred iron men. 

Who all his nod obey ; 
Who 've fought for him and conquered. 

Who 've won, with sweat and gore. 
Nobility ! which he shall have 

Whene'er he touch the shore. 
O, would I were our Admiral, 

To order, with a word, — 
To lose a dozen drops of blood, 

And straight rise up a lord ! 
I 'd shout e'en to yon shark, there. 

Who follows in our lee, 
" Some day, I '11 make thee carry me, 

Like lightning, through the sea." 

The Admiral grew paler, 

And paler as we flew : 
Still talked he to his officers. 

And smiled upon his crew ; 
And he looked up at the heavens, 

And he looked down on the sea, 


And at last he spied the creature, 

That kept following in our lee. 
He shook — 't was but an instant — 

For speedily the pride 
Ran crimson to his heart, 

Till all chances he defied : 
It threw boldness on his forehead ; 

Grave firmness to his breath ; 
And he stood like some grim warrior 

New risen up from death. 

That night, a horrid whisper 

Fell on us where we lay ; 
And we knew our old fine Admiral 

Was changing into clay ; 
And we heard the wash of waters. 

Though nothing could we see. 
And a whistle, and a plunge 

Among the billows in our lee ! 
Till dawn we watched the body 

In its dead and ghastly sleep, 
And next evening at sunset 

It was slung into the deep ! 
And never, from that moment, 

Save one shudder through the sea, 
Saw we (or heard) the shark 

That had followed in our lee ! 

58 SONGS. 

Ln.— HOME. (A DUET.) 

He. Dost thou love wandering 1 Whither wouldst thou go? 
Dream'st thou, sweet daughter, of a land more fair? 
Dost thou not love these aye-blue streams that flow 1 
These spicy forests? and this golden air? 

She. O, yes, I love the woods, and streams, so gay ; 
And, more than all, O father, I love thee; 
Yet would I fain be wandering — far away, 

Where such things never were, nor e'er shall be. 

He. Speak, mine own daughter with the sunbright locks ! 

To what pale, banished region wouldst thou roam ? 
Slie. O father, let us find our frozen rocks ! 

Let 's seek that country of all countries, — Home ! 

He. Seest thou these orange flowers ? this palm that rears 

Its head up towards Heaven's blue and cloudless 
dome ? 

She. I dream, I dream ; mine eyes are hid in tears : 

My heart is wandering round our ancient home. 

He. Why, then, we '11 go. Farewell, ye tender skies, 
Who sheltered us, when we were forced to roam ! 

She. On, on ! Let 's pass the swallow as he flies ! 

Farewell, kind land I Now, father, now, — for Home ! 



O THE merry vintage-time ! 
The merry, matchless vintage-time ! 
What can vie 
Beneath the sky 
With the merry, merry vintage-time ? 
What though summer birds have fled, 

Singing to some other clime ; 
We have tongues that music shed 
Still, and a song for vintage-time ! 

Come ! — O'er the hills the moon is glancing ! 
Now 's the time for dancing, dancing ! 
Noic 's the time, Now 's the time. 
The merry, merry vintage-time ! 

Now 's the happy vintage-time ! 
The happy, honored vintage-time ! 

E'en great Earth 

Doth mix in mirth 
With us, her sons, at vintage-time. 
Not a storm doth vex her brow, 

Flooding rain, nor frosty rime ; 
But the sunny Autumn now 

Laugheth out, " 'T is vintage-time." — Come, ifc. 

Praise, then, all the vintage-time, 
Children of the vintage-time ! 

Girls and boys 

Who know the joys 
Of the merry, fruitful vintage-time ! 

60 SONGS. 

Leave to Spring the love-sweet flowers ; 

Winter still its song and rhyme ; 
Summer all her balmy hours ; 

Still we 've our dance at vintage-time ! — Come^ SfC. 



The Evening Star, the lover's star, 
The beautiful star, comes hither ! 

He steereth his barque 

Through the azure dark, 
And brings us the bright blue weather, — Love ! 

The beautiful bright blue weather. 

The birds lie dumb, when the night stars come, 
And silence broods o'er the covers : 
But a voice now wakes 
In the thorny brakes. 
And singeth a song for lovers, — Love ! 
A sad, sweet song for lovers 1 

It singeth a song, of grief and wrong, 
A passionate song for others ; 

Yet its own sweet pain 

Can never be vain, 
If it 'wakeneth love in others, — Love ! 

It 'wakeneth love in others. 

soxGs. 6L 


Weave, brothers, weave ! — Swiftly throw 

The shuttle athwart the loom, 
And show us how brightly your flowers grow. 

That have beauty but no perfume ! 
Come, show us the rose, with a hundred dyes. 

The lily, that hath no spot ; 
The violet, deep as your truelove's eyes, 
And the little forget-me-not ! 

Si7ig, — sing, brothers ! weave and sing ! 

' T is good both to sing and to weave : 
' T is better to work than live idle : 
' T is better to sing than grieve. 

Weave, brothers, weave ! — Weave, and bid 

The colors of sunset glow ! 
Let grace in each gliding thread be hid ! 

Let beauty about ye blow ! 
Let your skein be long, and your silk be fine, 

And your hands both firm and sure, 
And Time nor chance shall your work untwine ; 

But all, — like a truth, — endure ! 
So, — sing, brothers, 4*c. 

Weave, brothers, weave ! — Toil is ours ; 
But toil is the lot of men : 

62 SONGS. 

One gathers the fruit, one gathers the flowers, 

One soweth the seed again ! 
There is not a creature, from England's king 

To the peasant that delves the soil, 
That knows half the pleasures the seasons bring, 

If he have not his share of toil ! 

So, — sing, brothers, (J-c. 



Sleep on ! The world is vain ; 
All grief, and sin, and pain : 
If there be a dream of joy. 
It comes in slumber, pretty boy ! 

So, sweet Sleep ! 

Hang upon his eyelids deep ; 

Show him all that cannot be. 

Ere thou dost flee ! 

Sleep on ! Let no bad truth 
Fall yet upon his youth : 
Let him see no thing unkind. 
But live a little longer blind ! 

O sweet Sleep ! 

Hang upon his eyelids deep ; 

Show him Love, without his wings, 

And all fair things ! 

SONGS. 63 


What song doth the cricket sing ? 
What news doth the swallow bring ? 
What doth laughing boyhood tell ? 
What calls out the marriage bell ? 

What say all ? — Love and Mirth ! 

In the air, and in the earth : 

Very, very soft and me-rry 

Is the natural song of Earth. 

Mark the Morn, when first she springs 
Upwards on her golden wings ; 
Hark, to the soaring, soaring lark ! 
And tlie echoing forests, — hark ! 

What say they ? Love and Mirth, 8fc. 

With the leaves the apples wrestle ; 
In the grass the daisies nestle ; 
And the sun smiles on the wall ; — 
Tell us, what 's the cause of all ? 

Mirth and Love ; Love and Mirth, 8fc, 

Is it Mirth ? Then why will man 

Spoil the sweet song all he can ? 

Bid him, rather, aye rejoice. 

With a kind and a merry voice ! 

Bid him sing " Love and Mirth ! " 
To the air, and to the earth, Sj-c. 



Dream, Baby, dream ! 

The stars are glowing. 
Hear'st thou the stream ? 

'T is softly flowing. 
All gently glide the Hours : 
Above, no tempest lowers : 
Below, are fragrant flowers 

In silence growing. 

Sleep, Baby, sleep, 

Till dawn to-morrow ! 
Why shouldst thou weep, 

Who know'st not sorrow ? 
Too soon come pains and fears ; 
Too soon a cause for tears : 
So from thy future years 

No sadness borrow ! 

Dream, Baby, dream ! 

Thine eyelids quiver. 
Know'st thou the theme 

Of yon soft river ? 
It saith, " Be calm, be sure, 
Unfailing, gentle, pure ; 
So shall thy life endure. 

Like mine, for ever ! " 

SONGS. 65 



O, WHO would be bound to the barren Sea, 

If he could dwell on Land, — 
Where his step is ever both firm and free. 

Where flowers arise, 

Like sweet girls' eyes. 

And rivulets sing 

Like birds in spring ? — 
For me, — I will take my stand 

On Land, on Land ! 
For ever and ever on solid Land ! 

I 've sailed on the riotous, roaring Sea, 

With an undaunted band : 
Yet my village home more pleaseth me, 

With its valley gay 

Where maidens stray. 

And its grassy mead 

Where the white flocks feed ; — 
And so, — I will take my stand 

On Land, on Land ! 
For ever and ever on solid Land ! 

Some swear they could die on the salt, salt Sea ! 

(But have they been loved on Land .?) 
Some rave of the Ocean in drunken glee, — 
Of the music born 
On a gusty morn, 

66 SONGS. 

When the tempest is waking, 
And billows are breaking, 
And lightning flashing, 
And the thick rain dashing. 
And the winds and the thunders 
Shout forth the sea- wonders ! 
— Such things may give joy 
To a dreaming boy ; — 

But for wie, — I will take my stand 
On Land, on Land ! 

For ever and ever on solid Land ! 



The nest of the dove is rifled ; 

Alas ! alas ! 
The dream of delight is stifled ; 

And all that was 
Of beauty and hope is broken ; 

But words will flee. 
Though truest were ever spoken : - 

Alas, for me ! 

His love was as fragrant ever, 
As flowers to bees ; 

His voice like the mournful river ; 
But streams will freeze ! 

Ah ! where can I fly, deceived ? 
' Ah ! where, where rest ? 

I am sick, like the dove bereaved, 
And have no nest ! 

SONGS. 67 


Love the poet, pretty one ! 

He unfoldeth knowledge fair, — 
Lessons of the earth and sun, 

And of azure air. 

He can teach thee how to reap 
Music from the golden lyre : 

He can shew thee how to steep 
All thy thoughts in fire. 

Heed not, though at times he seem 
Dark and still, and cold as clay : 

He is shadowed by his Dream ! 
But 't will pass away. 

Then — bright fancies will he weave, 
Caught from air and heaven above : 

Some will teach thee how to grieve ; 
Others, how — to love ! 

How from sweet to sweet to rove, — 
How all evil things to shun : 

Should I not then whisper, — " Love - 
Love the poet^ pretty one " ? 

68 SONGS. 


Lucy is a golden girl ; 

But a man — a man should woo her ! 
They who seek her shrink aback, 

When they should, like storms, pursue her. 

All her smiles are hid in light ; 

All her hair is lost in splendor ; 
But she hath the eyes of Night, 

And a heart that 's over-tender. 

Yet, — the foolish suitors fly, 

(Is 't excess of dread or duty ?) 
From the starlight of her eye, 

Leaving to neglect her beauty ! 

Men by fifty seasons taught 

Leave her to a young beginner. 
Who, without a second thought. 

Whispers, wooes, and straight must win her. 

Lucy is a golden girl ! 

Toast her in a goblet brimming ! 
May the man that wins her wear 

On his heart the Rose of Women ! 

SONGS. 69 



O, PLEASANT is the fisher's life, 

By the waters streaming ; 
And pleasant is the poet's life, 

Ever, ever dreaming : 
And pleasant is the hunter's life, 

O'er the meadows riding : 
And pleasant is the sailor's life. 

On the seas abiding ! 

But, 1 the merry life is wooing, is wooing ; 
Never overtaking, and always pursuing ! 

The hunter, when the chase is done, 

Laugheth loud and drinketh ; 
The poet, at the set of sun, 

Sigheth deep and thinketh : 
The sailor, though from sea withdrawn. 

Dreams he 's half seas over. 
The fisher dreameth of the dawn. 

But, what dreams the lover ? 

He dreams that the merry life is wooing, is wooing ; 
Never overtaking, and always pursuing ! 

Some think that life is very long, 
And murmur at the measure ; 

70 SONGS. 

Some think it is a syren song, — 

A short, false, fleeting pleasure : 
Some sigh it out in gloomy shades, 

Thinking nought, nor doing ; 
But we '11 ne'er think it gloomy. Maids ! 
Whilst there 's time for wooing. 

For^ sure, the merry life is wooing, is wooing ; 
Never overtaking^ and always pursuing ! 


Thou hast beauty bright and fair, 

Manner noble, aspect free. 
Eyes that are untouched by care : 

What then do we ask from thee ? 
Hermione, Hermione ? 

Thou hast reason quick and strong, 
Wit that envious men admire. 

And a voice, itself a song ! 

What then can we still desire ? 
Hermione, Hermione 7 

Something thou dost want, O queen ! 

(As the gold doth ask alloy,) 
Tears, — amidst thy laughter seen. 
Pity, — mingling with thy joy. 

This is all we ask from thee, 
Hermione, Hermione ! 

SONGS. 71 

LXT. — THE 0\^T.. 

In the hollow tree, in the old gray tower, 

The spectral Owl doth dwell ; 
Dull, hated, despised, in the sunshine hour. 

But at dusk — he 's abroad and well ! 
Not a bird of the forest e'er mates with him ; 

All mock him outright, by day : 
But at night, when the woods grow still and dim, 

The boldest will shrink away ! 

0, when the nightfalls, and roosts the fowl. 
Then, then, is the reign of the Homed Owl ! 

And the Owl hath a bride, who is fond and bold, 

And loveth the wood's deep gloom ; 
And, with eyes like the shine of the moonstone cold, 

She awaiteth her ghastly groom ? 
Not a feather she moves, not a carol she sings, 

As she waits in her tree so still ; 
But when her heart heareth his flapping wings. 

She hoots out her welcome shrill ! 

O — wlien the moon shines, and dogs do howl I 
Then, then, is the joy of the Horned Owl! 

Mourn not for the Owl, nor his gloomy plight ! 

The Owl hath his share of good : 
If a prisoner he be in the broad daylight, 

He is lord in the dark greenwood ! 

72 SONGS. 

Nor lonely the bird, nor his ghastly mate, 

They are each unto each a pride ; 
Thrice fonder perhaps, since a strange, dark fate 
Hath rent them from all beside ! 

So, when the night falls, and dogs do liowl. 
Sing, Ho ! for the reign of the Homed Owl ! 
We know not alway 
Who are kings by day. 
But the King of the night is the hold hrovm Owl ! 


Spirit of the summer breeze ! 
Wherefore sleep'st thou in the trees ? 
Come, and kiss the maiden rose, 
That on Marian's bosom blows ! 

Come, and fawn about her hair ! 

Kiss the fringes of her eyes ! 
Ask her why she looks so fair, 

When she heedeth not my sighs ? 

Tell her, murmuring summer air. 
That her beauty 's all untrue ; 

Tell her, she should not seem fair, 
Unless she be gentle too ! 

SONGS. 73 


Boatman, hither ! Furl your sail ! 

Row us o'er the Humber ferry ! 
Furl it close ! The blustering gale 

Seems as he would fain be merry. 
Pleasant is he, when in fun 

He blows about the bud or berry ; 
But his mirth we fain would shun, 

Out upon the Humber ferry ! 

Now, bold fisher, shall we go 

With thee, o'er the Humber river ? 
Hear'st thou how the blast doth blow, 

Seest thou how thy sail doth shiver ? 
Wilt thou dare (dismayed by nought) 

Wind and wave, thou bold sea-liver ? 
And shall we^ whom love hath taught, 

Tremble at the rolling river ! 

Row us forth ! Unfurl thy sail ! 

Wh^t care we for tempests blowing ? 
Let us kiss the blustering gale ! 

Let us breast the waters flowing ! 
Though the North rush cold and loud. 

Love shall warm and make us merry ; 
Though the waves all weave a shroud, 

We will dare the Humber ferry ! 

74" SONGS. 

LXnil. — A REPOSE. 

She sleeps amongst her pillows soft, 

(A dove, now wearied with her flight,) 
And all around, and all aloft. 

Hang flutes and folds of virgin white : 
Her hair outdarkens the dark night, 

Her glance outshines the starry sky ; 
But now her locks are hidden quite, 

And closed is her fringed eye ! 

She sleepeth : wherefore doth she start ? 

She sigheth : doth she feel no pain ? 
None, none ! the Dream is near her heart ; 

The Spirit of sleep is in her brain. 
He Cometh down like golden rain, 

Without a wish, without a sound ; 
He cheers the sleeper (ne'er in vain) 

Like May, when earth is winter-bound. 

All day within some cave he lies. 

Dethroned from his nightly sway, t- 
Far fading when the dawning skies 

Our souls with wakening thoughts array. 
Two Spirits of might doth man obey ; 

By each he 's wrought, from each he learns ; 
The one is Lord of life by day ; 

The other when starry Night returns. 

SONGS. 75 


The lake has burst ! The lake has burst ! 
Down through the chasms the wild waves flee : 

They gallop along 

With a roaring song, 
Away to the eager awaiting sea ! 

Down through the valleys, and over the rocks. 
And over the forests the flood runs free ; 

And wherever it dashes, 

The oaks and the ashes 
Shrink, drop, and are borne to the hungry sea ! 

The cottage of reeds and the tower of stone, 
Both sheiken to ruin, at last agree ; 

And the slave and his master 

In one wide disaster 
Are hurried like weeds to the scornful sea ! 

The sea-beast he tosseth his foaming mane ; 
He bellows aloud to the misty sky. 

And the sleep-buried Thunder 

Awakens in wonder. 
And the Lightning opens her piercing eye ! 

There is death above, there is death around. 
There is death wheresoever the waters be. 

There is nothing now doing 

But terror and ruin, 
On earth, and in air, and the stormy sea ! 

76 SONGS. 


Sing, Maiden, sing ! 

Mouths were made for singing ; 
Listen, — Songs thou 'It hear 

Through the wide world ringing ; 
Songs from all the birds, 

Songs from winds and showers, 
Songs from seas and streams, 

Even from sweet flowers. 

Hear'st thou the rain, 

How it gently falleth ? 
Hearest thou the bird 

Who from forest calleth ? 
Hearest thou the bee 

O'er the sunflower ringing ? 
Tell us, Maiden, now — 

Shouldst thou not be singing ? 

Hear'st thou the breeze 

Round the rose-bud sighing ? 
And the small, sweet rose 

Love to love replying ? 
So shouldst thou reply 

To the prayer we 're bringing : 
So that bud, thy mouth, 

Should burst forth in singing ! 

SONGS. 77 


The cottage is here, as of old I remember ; 

The pathway is worn, as it ever hath been : 
On the turf-piled hearth there still lives a bright ember ; 
But, — where is Maureen ? 

The same pleasant prospect still shineth before me, — 

The river, the mountain, the valley of green. 
And Heaven itself (a bright blessing !) is o'er me! 
But, — where is Maureen ? 

Lost ! Lost ! — Like a dream that hath come and departed , 

(Ah, why are the loved and lost ever seen?) 
She hath fallen, — hath flown, with a lover false-hearted ; 
So, mourn for Maureen ! 

And She, who so loved her, is slain (the poor mother), 

Struck dead, in a day, by a shadow unseen ! 
And the home we now loved is the home of another, 
And — lost is Maureen ! 

Sweet Shannon ! a moment by thee let me ponder ; 

A moment look back at the things that have been ; 
Then, away to the world where the ruined ones wander. 
To look for Maureen ! 

78 SONGS. 


"Wailing for his daemon iover." 

Wilt not eat with me, my bride ? 

Wilt not drink my amorous wines ? 
Dainty meats are by thy side : 

Mark how bright the Rhenish shines ! 

Come, be kind ! What ills betide thee 7 
Is not he thou lov''st beside thee ? 

Wherefore sigh'st thou, maiden mine ? 

Must thou to the forest haste ? 

Nothing have I, meats nor wine, 

That thy fairy hps may taste ? 

Speak, love ! must I vainly woo thee 1 
/, — who gave my heart unto thee ? 

Dark one, thou hast bid me press 

Human love upon thy lips : 

But thou yield'st a cold caress, 

And thy love is in eclipse ! 

Cold and dim whilst I am burning ! 
In Love, is there no returning ? 

I have loved thee, sought, — pursued, — 

Won thee from thy charmed springs. 
O, that I, instead, had wooed 
The humblest girl that laughs and sings ! 
From the dust thy beauty won me ; 
But, sweet Love ! — He hath undone me ! 

SONGS. 79 

LXXm. — WINE. 


I LOVE Wine ! Bold bright Wine ! 

That maketh the Spirit both dance and shine ! 

Others may care 

For water fare ; 
But give me — Wine ! 

Ancient Wine ! Brave old Wine ! 
How it around the heart doth twine ! 

Poets may love 

The stars above ; 
But I love — Wine ! 

Nought but Wine ! Noble Wine, 
Strong, and sound, and old, and fine. 

What can scare 

The devil Despair, 
Like brave bright Wine ? 

O brave Wine ! Rare old Wine ! 
Once thou wast deemed a God divine ! 

Bad are the rhymes, 

And bad the times, 
That scorn old Wine ! 

So, brave Wine ! Dear old Wine ! 
Morning, Noon, and Night I 'm thine ! 

Whatever may be, 

I '11 stand by thee. 
Immortal Wine ! 

80 SONGS. 


Sing ! who mingles with my lays ? 
Maiden of the primrose days ! 
Sing with me, and I will shew 
All that thou in spring shouldst know, 
All the names of all the flowers, 
What to do with primrose hours ! 

Sing ! who mingles with my song ? 
Soldier in the battle strong ! 
Sing, and thee I '11 music teach, 
Such as thunders on the beach. 
When the waves run mad and white. 
Like a warrior in the fight ! 

Sing ! who loves the music tender ? 
Widow, who hath no defender ! — 
Orphan ! — Scholar ! — Mother wild. 
Who hast loved (and lost) a child ! 
Maiden, dreaming of to-morrow ! 
Let us sing and banish sorrow ! 
Come ! — Sweet music hath a smart. 
And a balm for every heart ! 

SONGS- 81 



Man, man loves his steed, 

For its blood or its breed, 
For its odor the rose, for its honey the bee, 

His own haughty beauty 

From pride or from duty ; 
But / love my love, because — he loves me. 

O, my love has an eye, 

Like a star in the sky. 
And breath like the sweets from the hawthorn tree ; 

And his heart is a treasure. 

Whose worth is past measure ; 
And yet he hath given all — all to me ! 

It crowns me with light 

In the dead of the night, 
It brightens my journey by land and sea ; 

And thus, while I wander, 

I sigh and grow fonder. 
For my love ever grows with his love for me. 

Why didst thou depart. 

Thou sweet bird of my heart? 
O, come back to my bosom, and never flee : 

I never will grieve thee, 

I '11 never deceive thee. 
But love thee for ever, as — Ihou lov'st m£. 

82 SONGS. 


Talk not to me of love ! 

The deer that dies 
Knows more of love than I, 

Who seek the skies. 
Strive not to bind my soul 

With chains of clay ! 
I scorn thy poor control ; 

Away, — Away ! 

Now wherefore dost thou weave 

Thy falsehoods strange ? 
Sad words may make me grieve, 

But never change. 
A snake sleeps in thine eye ; 

It stirs thine heart : 
Why dost thou vainly sigh ? 

Depart, — Depart ! 

Thy dreams, when Fortune flew, 

Did elsewhere range : 
But love is always true. 

And knows no change, 
More firm in want, in strife, 

Ay, firm through crime. 
He looketh down on life, 

The star of Time ! 

SONGS. 83 




Darkness and God's great wrath for many an age 

Have lain on Israel ! O what nights of woe ! 

What dreams of long and lonely banishment ! 

Spring Cometh round, and Summer sweet returneth 

Still to our father's land ; — But where are We ? 

Still Siloa murmurs ; but we hear her not ! 

Still the rose opens, and the lilies pale 

Are born beneath the sun : but we have lost 

All suns, all seasons, — music, — fragrance, — flowers ! 

Peace, — Darkness hath her share of good, like day : 

Sleep and the world of dreams belong to her ; 

And, in our long, dark exile, we have stars 

That light us onwards, and their beauty shed 

Alone upon the sons of Israel ! 

Look, — where one shines ; — 't is — Miriam ! Judah's 

Her pride, — her glory ! Statelier than the palm, 
Swift as the roe, dowered with love, — she comes ! 
And thus I celebrate her grace in song ! 


O, fairer than the fairest of the flowers ! 
O, sweeter than the bud when it blows ! 

84 SONGS. 

O, brighter than the Summer when it showers 
Its riches on the red, red rose ! 

Come, — Shew vs that the color of the sky 
Still lives in the Hebrew'' s eye, 

Miriam ! 

O, shew us there is truth in thy story ; 

That thy country is worthy of her fame ! 
Reappear, — Uke the shadow of her glory ! 
Reappear, — like the Spirit of her name ! 
Come, — Shew us all the starriness that lies 
In the night of the Hebrew''s eyes, 
Miriam I 

Look ! Look ! where a Spirit, like the lightning, 

Comes flashing from her dark, deep gaze ! 
Is the tempest e'er more terrible or blighting, in 
The strength of its storm-bright days ? 

Quick ! — Shew us all the terror that may lie 
In the flash of a Hebrew''s eye, 

Miriam ! 
Our pride, our glory, — Miriam ! 

SONGS. 85 




Pause in this desert ! Here, men say, of old 
Belshazzar reigned, and drank from cups of gold ; 
Here, to his hideous idols, bowed the slave. 
And here — God struck him dead ! 

Where lies his grave ? 
'T is lost ! — His brazen gates ? his soaring towers, 
From whose dark tops men watched the starry hours ? 
All to the dust gone down ! The desert bare 
Scarce yields an echo when we question " Where ? " 
The lonely herdsman seeks in vain the spot ; 
And the black wandering Arab knows it not. 
No brick, nor fragment lingereth now, to tell 
Where Babylon (mighty city !) rose — and fell ! 


O City, vast and old ! 

Where, where is thy grandeur fled ? 
The stream that around thee rolled 
Still rolls in its ancient bed ! 

But ichere, 0, where art Thou gone ) 
Babylon ! Babylon ! 

The Giant, when he dies. 

Still leaveth his bones behind, 

86^ SONGS, 

To shrink in the winder skies, 
And whiten beneath the wind ! 

But where, 0, where art Thov gone ? 
Babylon ! Babylon ! 

Thou liv'st ! — for thy name still glows, 

A light in the desert skies ; 
As the fame of the hero grows 

Thrice trebled because he dies ! 
Babylon ! O Babylon ! 


Her large, dark, luminous eyes are on me ! 

I cannot fly, — I cannot move ! 
The beauty that in boyhood won me 

Wins me still, — to look and love ! 

The tongue that wound its music 'round me. 
And might have charmed aside all pain, 

Again all bare and weak hath found me, 
And stings me, to the heart, again ! 

O Beauty, who my soul subdueth ! 

What mean the lightnings of thine eye ? 
Why is it that thy scorn pursueth 

My love, — yet leaves it not to die ? 

Sweet Music, cease ! Bright Eyes, all beaming 
VVith light that makes me mad, — ah, close ! 

Give back my colder, calmer dreaming ! 
Give back my dull, dark, old repose ! 

SONGS. 87 


Thou 'lt take me with thee, my love, my love ? 
Wherever thou 'rt forced by fate to move ? 
Over the land, or over the sea ? — 
Thou know'st't is the same delight to me. 
What say'st thou, dear ? 
Thy bride is here. 
All ready to live and die with thee. 

Her heart teas in the song ; 
It murmured in the measure ; 
It touched the music, all along. 
With a grave, sweet pleasure. 

Thou wilt not leave me behind, behind, 
To the malice of fortune, harsh and blind ? 
I '11 follow thy call, as a bird would flee. 
And sing or be mute as thou biddest me. 
What say'st thou, dear. 
To my fond, fond fear ? 
Thou canst not banish thy love from thee ! 

Her heart was in the song ; 
It murmured in the measure ; 
It touched the music, all along, 
With a grave, sweet pleasure. 

What say'st thou, my soldier, my love, my pride ? 
Thy answer ? What, was I not born thy bride .' 
From my cradle e'er cherished for love and thee, 
And dar'st thou now banish or bid me flee ? 

88 SONGS. 

Smil'st thou at my fear ? 
Ah, then, my dear, 
I know I may love — live — die with thee ! 

Her heart was in the song ; 
It murmured in the measure ; 
It touched the music, all along, 
With a grave, sweet pleasure. 


Kill the love that winds around thee 

With its snake-like, death-like twine ! 
Where 's the guardian steel that bound thee ? 

Where are all thy gifts divine ? 
Where is wisdom ? Where is wine ? 

Where 's the sad, dark truth of story ? 
Where the Muse's mighty line ? 

Where the fame that burned before thee ? 

What is love, but life deformed 

From its grand original aim ? 
Hero into slave transformed ? 

Worlds lost at a single game ? 
Whose the peril, — whose the shame, 

Shouldst thou die in love's fond slavery ? 
Rise ! Earth 's nought without its fame ! 

Rise ! Life 's nought without its bravery ! 

SONGS. 89 


What say the clouds on the hill and plain ? 

" We come, we go." 
What say the springs of the dreaming brain ? 

" We shrink, we flow." 
What say the maids in tlieir changeful hours ? 

" We laugh, we cry." 
What say the budding and fading flowers ? 
" We live, we die." 

And thus all things go ranging^ 

From riddle to riddle changing, 

From day into night, from life into death, 

And no one knows why, my song saith. 

A fable is good, and a truth is good. 

And loss, and gain ; 
And the ebb and the flood, and the black pine wood. 

And the vast, bare plain ; 
To wake and to sleep, and to dream of the deep, 

Are good, say I ; 
And 't is good to laugh and 't is good to weep ; 

But who knows why } 

Yet thus all things go ranging, 8fC. 

We cumber the earth for a hundred years ; 

We learn, we teach ; 
We fight amidst perils, and hopes, and fears, 

Fame's rock to reach. 

90 SONGS. 

We boast that our fellows are sages wrought 

In toil and pain ; 
Yet the common lesson by Nature taught 

Doth vex their brain ! 

0, all things here go ranging^ 8^c. 


Which is the maiden I love best ? 

Twenty now are buzzing round me ; 

Three in their milk-white arms have wound me, 

Gently, — yet I feel no rest ! 

One hath showered her black locks o'er me, 

Ten kneel on the ground before me. 

Casting forth such beams of blue, 

That I 'm pierced, — O, through and through ! 

Bacchus ! Gods ! what can I do ? 

Which must I love best ? 

Tell me — (ah, more gently take me. 
Sweet one, in thy warm white arms !) 
Tell me, which will ne'er forsake me 
Thorough all life's ills and harms ? 
Is it sAe, whose blood 's retreating 

From that forehead crowned with pride ? 
Is it she^ whose pulse is beating 

Full against my unarmed side ? 

What do all these things betide ? 
Strong my doubts grow, — strong, — and stronger: 

Quick ! give answer to my call ! 
If ye pause a moment longer, 

I shall love ye — All ! 


I AM a merry beggar, 

A beggar I was born, 
Tossed about the wild world, 

From evening till morn ; 
A plaything of the tempest, 

A brother of the night, 
A conqueror, a conjurer. 

When 't is merry star-light ! 

O, nothing can withstand me, 

Whenever I do stoop. 
From the warm heart of the housewife 

To the chicken in the coop ; 
From the linen of the lady 

To the larder of the knight, 
All come when I do conjure, 

In the merry star-light ! 

I pay no tithes to parson. 

Though I follow like his clerk ; 
For he takes his tenths by daylight, 

I take mine in the dark. 
I pay the king no window-tax ; 

From some it may be right, 
But all I do beneath the blue 

Is by merry star-light ! 

I roam from lane to common. 

From city unto town, 
And I tell a merry story. 

To gentleman or clown : 


92 SONGS. 

Each gives me bed or victuals, 
Or ale that glitters bright, 

Or — I contrive to borrow them 
By merry star-light ! 

O, the tradesman he is rich, Sirs, 

The farmer well to pass, 
The soldier he 's a lion, 

The alderman 's an ass ; 
The courtier he is subtle. Sirs, 

And the scholar he is bright ; 
But who, like me, is ever free 

In the merry star-light ? 


Wilt thou be a nun, Sophie ? 

Nothing but a nun ? 
Is it not a better thing 
With thy friends to laugh and sing ? 
To be loved and sought ? 

To be wooed and — won ? 
Dost thou love the shadow, Sophie, 

Better than the sun ? 

I 'm a poor lay -brother, Sophie ; 

Yet, I this may say, — 
Thou hadst better bear with love. 
Than dwell here, a prisoned dove, 

Weeping life away, 
O, — I'd bear love's pangs, rather, 

Fifty times a day ! 

SONGS. 93 


Build up a column to Bolivar! 
Build it under a tropic star ! 
Build it high as his mounting fame ! 
Crown its head with his noble name ! 
Let the letters tell, like a light afar, 
" This is the column of Bolivar ! " 

Soldier in war, in peace a man, 
Did he not all that a hero can ? 
Wasting his life for his country's care, 
Laying it down with a patriot prayer, 
Shedding his blood like the summer rain, 
Loving the land, though he loved in vain ! 

Man is a creature, good or ill, 
Jjittle or great, at his own strong will ; 
And he grew good, and wise, and great. 
Albeit he fought with a tyrant fate. 
And showered his golden gifts on men 
Who paid him in basest wrongs again ! 

Raise the column to Bolivar ! 
Firm in peace, and fierce in war ! 
Shout forth his noble, noble name ! 
Shout till his enemies die, in shame ! 
Shout till Columbia's woods awaken. 
Like seas by a mighty tempest shaken, — 

94 SONGS. 

Till pity, and praise, and great disdain, 
Sound like an Indian hurricane ! 
Shout, as ye shout in conquering war, 
While ye build the column to Bolivar ! 


I LOVE thee, I love thee, 
Far better than wine, 

But the curse is above me ; 
Thou 'It never be mine ! 

As the blade wears the scabbard, 
The billow the shore. 

So sorrow doth fret me 
For evermore. 

Fair beauty, I leave thee, 
To conquer my heart : 

I '11 see thee, I '11 bless thee. 
And then — depart. 

Let me take, ere I vanish, 
One look of thine eyes, — 

One smile for remembrance. 
For life soon flies ! 

And now for the fortune 
That hangeth above ; 

And to bury in battle 
My dream of love ! 

SONGS. 95 


Tread aside from my starry bloom ! 
I am the nurse, who feed the tomb 

(The tomb, my child) 

With dainties piled, 
Until it grows strong as a tempest wild. 

Trample not on a virgin flower ! 

I am the maid of the midnight hour ; 

I bear sweet sleep 

To those who weep. 
And lie on their eyelids dark and deep. 

Tread not thou on my snaky eyes ! 
I am the worm that the weary prize. 

The Nile's soft asp. 

That they strive to grasp. 
And one that a queen has loved to clasp ! 

Pity me ! I am she whom man 

Hath hated since ever the world began ; 

I soothe his brain 

In the night of pain, 
But at morning he waketh, — and all is vain ! 

96 SONGS. 


Is 't true the false, poor beauty flies 

From thee ? O, 't is well, — 't is right ! 
My lovp shall now adorn thine eyes 

With brightness like the unclouded night ! 
The poet sheds, on herb and flower. 

His fancies, till they breathe and shine ; 
And shall J, in thy drooping hour, 
Neglect to hallow aught of thine ? 
Love should Jiow alongy 

Singing like a gentle river, 
Its saddest still its sweetest song, 
For ever, — for ever ! 

Come to me, — dearer, fairer far, 

Than when men's smiles did round thee fawn ! 
Look on me, — as the last pale star 

Looks round upon the glowing dawn ! 
Yet, fly not ! Stay, and smile, sweet heart, 

On whatever chance may now befall ; 
My love, though every good depart, 
Shall make thee dear amends for all ! 
True love reigns on high. 

Like the constant stars, that quiver. 
And look bright from every sky. 
For ever, — for ever ! 

SONGS. 97 


I WAS born on a winter's morn, 

Welcomed to life with hate and scorn. 

Torn from a famished mother's side, 

Who left me here, with a laugh, and — died ; 

Left me here, with the curse of life, 

To be tossed about in the burning strife, 

Linked to nothing, but shame and pain, 

Echoing nothing, but man's disdain ; 

O, that I might again be born. 

With treble my strength of hate and scorn ! 

I was born by a sudden shock, — 
Born by the blow of a ruffian sire, 
Given to air, as the blasted rock 
Gives out the reddening, roaring fire. 
My sire was stone ; but my dark blood 
Ran its round like a fiery flood. 
Rushing through every tingling vein. 
And flaming ever at man's disdain ; 
Ready to give back, night or morn, 
Hate for hate, and scorn for scorn ! 

They cast me out, in my hungry need, 
(A dog, whom none would own nor feed,) 
Whhout a home, without a meal, 
And bade me go forth — to slay and steal ! 

98 SONGS. 

What wonder, God ! had my hands been red 
With the blood of a host in secret shed ! 
But no ! I fought on the free sea-wave, 
And perilled my life for my plunder brave, 
And never yet shrank, in nerve or breath. 
But struck, as the pirate strikes, — to death ! 


Dawn, gentle flower, 

From the morning earth I 

We will gaze and wonder 
At thy wondrous birth ! 

Bloom, gentle flower ! 

Lover of the light, 
Sought by wind and shower, 

Fondled by the night ! 

Fade, gentle flower ! 

All thy white leaves close ; 
Having shewn thy beauty. 
Time 't is for repose. 

Die, gentle flower, 

In the silent sun ! 
So, — all pangs are over, 

All thy tasks are done ! 

Day hath no more glory. 
Though he soars so high ; 

Thine is all man's story. 

Live, — and love, — and die ! 

SONGS. 99 


I LOVE thee ! — O, the strife, the pain, 

The fiery thoughts that through me roll ! 
I love thee ! Look, — again, again ! 

O Stars ! that thou couldst read my soul. 
I would thy bright, bright eye could pierce 

The crimson folds that hide my heart, 
Then wouldst thou find the serpent fierce, 

That stings me — and will not depart ! 

Look love upon me with thine eyes ! 

Yet, no, — men's evil tongues are nigh : 
Look pity, then, and with thy sighs 

Waste music on me — till I die ! 
Yet, — love not ! sigh not ! Turn (thou mtist) 

Thy beauty from me, sweet and kind ; 
'T is fit that I should burn to dust. 

To death, because — I am not blind ! 

I love thee, — and I live ! The Moon 

Who sees me from her calm above, 
The Wind who weaves her dim soft tune 

About me, know how much I love ! 
Nought else, save Night and the lonely Hour, 

E'er heard my passion wild and strong : 
Even thou yet deem'st not of thy power. 

Unless — thou read'st aright my song ! 

100 SONGS. 


Weave no more the marriage chain ! 

All unmated is the lover ; 
Death has ta'en the place of Pain ; 
Love doth call on love in vain : 

Life and years of hope are over ! 

No more want of marriage bell ! 

No more need of bridal favor ! 
Where is she to wear them well ? 
You beside the lover tell ! 

Gone — with all the love he gave her ! 

Paler than the stone she lies : 

Colder than the winter's morning ! 

Wherefore did she thus despise 

(She with pity in her eyes) 

Mother's care, and lover's warning ? 

Youth and beauty, — shall they not 
Last beyond a brief to-morrow ? 

No : a prayer and then forgot ! 

This the truest lover's lot ; 

This the sum of human sorrow ! 

SONGS. 101 


A Boat is rowed along the sea, 

Full of souls as it may be ; 

Their dress is coarse, their hair is shorrf. 

And every squalid face forlorn 

Is full of sorrow, and hate, and scorn ! 

What is 't ? — It is the Convict Boat, 

That o'er the waves is forced to float. 

Bearing its wicked burden o'er 

The ocean, to a distant shore : 

Man scowls upon it ; but the sea 

(The same with fettered as with free) 

Danceth beneath it heedlessly ! 

Slowly the boat is borne along ; 

Yet they who row are hard and strong, 

And well their oars keep time 
To one who sings (and clanks his chain, 
The better thus to hide his pain) 

A bitter, banished rhyme ! 
He sings : and all his mates in woe 
Chaunt sullen chorus as they go ! 

102 SONGS. 


Row US on, a felon band, 

Farther out to sea. 
Till we lose eJI sight of land. 

And then — we shall be free ! 
Row us on, and loose our fetters ; 

Yeo ! the boat makes way : 
Let 's say " Good bye " unto our betters, 

And, hey for a brighter day ! 

c H o EU s. 

RoiD us fast ! Row us fast ! 

Trial 's o^er and sentence past : 

Here 's a whistle for those who tried to blind «s, 

And a curse on all we leave behind us ! 

Farewell, juries, — jailors, — friends, 

(Traitors to the close !) 
Here the felon's danger ends. 

Farewell, bloody foes ! 
Farewell, England ! We are quilting 

Now thy dungeon doors: 
Take our blessing, as we 're flitting, — 

" A curse upon thy shores ! " 

Farewell, England, — honest nurse 
Of all our wants and sins ! 

SONGS, 103 

What to thee 's the felon's curse ? 

What to thee who wins ? 
Murder thriveth in thy cities, 

Famine through thine isle : 
One may cause a dozen ditties, 

But t' other scarce a smile. 

Farewell, England, — tender soil. 

Where babes who leave the breast 
From morning into midnight toil. 

That pride may be proudly drest ! 
Where he who 's right and he who swerveth 

Meet at the goal the same ; 
Where no one hath what he deserveth, 

Not even in empty fame ! 

So, fare thee well, our country dear ! 

Our last wish, ere we go. 
Is, — May your heart be never clear 

From tax, nor tithe, nor woe ! 
May they who sow e'er reap for others. 

The hundred for the one ! 
May friends grow false, and twin-bom brothers 

Each hate his Mother's son ! 

May pains and forms still fence the place 

Where justice must be bought ! 
So he who 's poor must hide his face, 

And he who thinks — his thought ! 


May Might o'er Right be crowned the winner, 

The head still o'er the heart, 
And the Saint be still so like the Sinner, 

You '11 not know them apart ! 

May your traders grumble when bread is high, 

And your farmers when bread is low, 
And your pauper brats, scarce two feet high. 

Learn more than your nobles know ! 
May your sick have foggy or frosty weather. 

And your convicts all short throats. 
And your blood-covered bankers e'er hang together, 

And tempt ye with one pound notes ! 

And so, — v/ith hunger in your jaws, 

And peril within your breast. 
And a bar of gold to guard your laws. 

For those who pay the best ; 
Farewell to England's woe and weal ! 

. . For our betters, so bold and blythe, 
May they never want, when they want a meal, 

A Parson to take their Tithe ! 

SONGS. 105 


We 've sailed through banks of green, 

Where the wild waves fret and quiver, 
And we 've down the Danube been. 

The dark, deep, thundering river ! 
We 've threaded the Elbe and Rhone, 

The Tyber and blood-died Seine, 
And have watched where the blue Garonne 

Goes laughing to meet the main : 

But what is so loveli/, what is so grand^ 
As the river thai runs through Rhine-land ? 

On the Rhine-river were we born, 

'Midst its flowers and famous wines, 
And we know that our country's mom 

With a treble-sweet aspect shines. 
Let other lands boast their flowers, 

Let other men dream wild dreams, 
Let them hope they 've a land like ours, 

And a stream like our stream of streams : 
Yet, what is half so bright or so grand, 
As the river that ru7is through Rhine-land 7 

Are we smit by the blinding sun. 

That fell on our tender youth ? 
Do we coward-like shrink and shun 

The thought-telling touch of Truth ? 

106 SONGS. 

On our heads be the sin, then, set ! 
We '11 bear all the shame divine : 
But we 'II never disown the debt 
That we owe to our noble Rhine ! 

O the Rhine ! the Rhine ! the broad and the grand. 
Is the river that runs through Rhine-land ! 


Sweet friend ! where sleeps thy song ? 
Ah, wherefore hath it lain so long 

In idle slumbers ? 
Quick thou, the ancient bondage break, 
And bid its dreaming soul awake 

In airy numbers ! 

Bid it burst forth, like Spring, 

When first the youthful rivers sing, — 

The small, bright river. 
That runneth laughing from the earth, 
And thinketh, in its new-born mirth, 

To live for ever ! 

Bid it come forth, like Spring, 

When brooks and trees their music bring. 

And fields their flowers ; 
And we will hearken all, and ho£ird 
Thy sweet, sweet thoughts, like riches stored, 

For after hours ! 

SONGS. 107 


Fill high, fill high the Hirlas horn, 

Rimmed, with sunlight, like the morn ! 

Deep, and vast, and fit to drown 

All the troubles of a crown ; 

Deep, and vast, and crowned with mead, 

'T is a cup for kings indeed, 

Full of courage, full of worth, 

Mciking man a god on earth ! 

Warriors, Heroes, Cambrian-horn, 
Drink, — from the Hirlas horn ! 

Hide with foam the golden tip ; 

Make it rich for a prince's lip ! 

Here 's to the fame of Roderick dead ! 

Bards ! why do your harps not shed 

Music ? Come, — a mighty draught 

To dead Roderick's name be quaffed ! 

Tell us all the hero won, 

All he did, from sun to sun ! 

Bards, and Heroes, Cambrian-horn^ 
Drink, — from the Hirlas horn ! 

Fill the horn to Madoc's name, 
First in the mighty race of fame, 
Eagle-hearted, eagled-eyed. 
All hearts shuddered when he died ! 
Yet, why so ? for Tudor rose 
Like a lion upon our foes ; — 

108 SONGS. 

Like the wild, storm-smitten ocean, 
When he puts his strength in motion ! 

Come, brave Spirits, Cambrian-born, 
Drink, — from the Hirlas horn ! 

Cambrian people — Cambrian mountains. 

Back into your wizard fountains 
' (Where the Druid seers are dwelling) 

Shout unto the crowned Llewellin ! 

Patriot ! Hero ! Monarch ! Friend ! 

Wreathed with virtues without end ! 

First of men 'tween Earth and Sky ! 

The sword and the shield of Liberty ! 
Drink, all Spirits, Cambrian-born, 
Drink to the good, great crowned Llewellin ? 
Drink, — from the Hirlas horn ! 



Come, — let us go to the land 

Where the violets grow ! 
Let 's go thither, hand in hand, 

Over the waters, over the snow, 

To the land where the sweet, sweet violets blow ! 

There, — in the beautiful South, 
Where the sweet flowers lie. 

Thou shalt sing, with thy sweeter mouth, 
Under the light of the evening sky. 
That Love never fades, though violets die ! 

SONGS. 109 


The king he reigns on a throne of gold, 

Fenced round by his " power divine " ; 
The baron he sits in his castle old, 

Drinking his ripe red wine : 
But below, below, in his ragged coat. 
The beggar he tuneth a hungry note. 
And the spinner is bound to his weary thread, 
And the debtor lies down with an aching head. 

So the world goes ! 

So the stream Jloics ! 

Yet there is a fellow, rchom nobody knows. 

Who maketh all free 

On land and sea. 

And forceth the rich like the poor to fee ! 

The lady lies down in her warm, white lawn. 

And dreams of her pearled pride ; 
The milkmaid sings, to the wild-eyed dawn. 

Sad songs on the cold hill-side : 
And the Saint he leaves (while he prattles of faith) 
Good deeds to the sinner, as scandal saith. 
And the scholar he bows to the face of brass, 
And the wise man he worships the golden ass ! 
So the world goes, Sfc. 

110 SONGS. 


Lady, sing no more ! 

Silence all is vain, 
Till the heart be touched, lady. 

And give forth its pain. 

'T is a hidden lyre, 
Cherished near the sun, 

O'er whose witching wire, lady, 
Faery fingers run. 

Pity comes in tears, 
From her home above, 

Hope and sometimes Fears, lady, 
And the wizard, — Love ! 

Each doth search the heart, 

To its utmost springs. 
And when they depart, lady. 

Then the Spirit sings ! 

SONGS, &c. 





He is bound for the wars. 

He is armed for the fight, 
With lion-like sinews, 

And the heart of a knight ; 
All hidden in steel, 

Like the sun in a cloud. 
And he calls for his charger, 

Who neigheth aloud ; 
And he calls for his page, 

Who comes forth like the light ; 
And they mount and ride off. 

For the Brescian fight. 

114 SONGS. 

Count Gaston de Foix 

Ts the heir of Narbonne, 
But his page is an orphan, 

Known, — Hnked unto none ; 
The master is young. 

But as bold as the blast ; 
The servant all tender, — 

Too tender to last ; 
A bud that was born 

For the summer-soft skies, 
But, left to wild winter, 

Unfoldeth, and dies ! 

" Come forward, my young one, 

Ride on by my side ; 
What, child, wilt thou quell 

The Castilian pride ? " 
Thus speaks the gay soldier, 

His heart in his smile. 
But his page blushes deep, — 

Was it anger ? — the while. 
Was it anger ? Ah, no : 

For the tender dark eye 
Saith, — "Master, for thee 

I will live, I will die ! " 

They speed to the field. 
Storm-swift in their flight, 

SONGS. 115 

And Brescia falleth, 

Like fruit in a blight ; 
Scarce a blow for a battle, 

A shout for her fame ; 
All 's lost, — given up 

To the sound of a name ! 
But Ravenna hath soldiers 

Whose hearts are more bold, 
Whose wine is all Spanish, 

Whose pay is all gold. 

So he turns, with a laugh 

Of contempt for his foe, 
And now girdeth his sword 

For a weightier blow. 
Straight forward he rideth 

Till night 's in the sky, 
When the page and the meister 

Together must lie. 
Where loiters the page ? 

Ha ! he hangeth his head. 
And with forehead like fire 

He shunneth the bed. 

" Now rest thee, my weary one ; 

Drown thee in sleep ! 
The great sun himself 

Lieth down in the deep ; 

116 SONGS. 

The beast on his pasture, 

The bird on his bough, 
The lord and the servant 

Are slumberers now." 
" I am wont," sighed the page, 

" A long watching to keep ; 
But my lord shall lie down 

While I charm him to sleep." 

Soon (cased in his armor) 

Down lieth the knight, 
And the page he is tuning 

His cittern aright. 
At last, through a voice 

That is tender and low. 
The melody mourns 

Like a stream at its flow, — 
Sad, gentle, uncertain, 

As the life of a dream ; 
And thus the page singeth, 

With love for his theme : — 



There lived a lady, long ago ; 

Her heart was sad and dark, — ah, me ! 
Dark with a single secret woe, 

That none could ever see ! 

SONGS. 1 17 


She left her home, she lost her pride, 
Forgot the jeering world, — ah, me ! 

And followed a knight, and fought, and died. 
All for the love of — chivalry ! 


She died, — and when in her last dull sleep 
She lay all pale and cold, — ah, me ! 

They read of a love as wild and deep 
As the dark, deep sea ! 

The song 's at an end ! 

But the singer, so young. 
Still weeps at the music 

That fell from his tongue : 
His hands are enclasped ; 

His cheeks are on fire ; 
And his black locks, unloosened, 

Lie mixed with the wire : 
But his lord — he reposes 

As calm as the night. 
Until dawn cometh forth 

With her summons of light : 

Then — onwards they ride 

Under clouds of the vine ; 
Now silent, now singing 

Old stories divine ; 
Now resting awhile. 

Near the cool of a stream. 

1 18 SONGS. 

Now wild for the battle ; 

Now lost in a dream : 
At last — they are threading 

The forest of pines, 
And Ravenna beleaguered 

By chivalry shines ! 

* « « 

Ravenna ! Ravenna ! 

Now " God for the right ! " 
For the Gaul and the Spaniard 

Are full in the fight. 
French squadrons are charging, 

Some conquer, some reel ; 
Wild trumpets are braying 

Aloud for Castile ! 
Each cannon that roareth 

Bears blood on its sound, 
And the dead and the dying 

Lie thick on the ground. 

Now shrieks are the music 

That 's borne on the gust, 
And the groan of the war-horse 

Who dies in the dust : 
Now Spaniards are cheered 

By the " honor " they love ; 
Now France by the flower 

That bloometh above ; 
And, indeed, o'er the riot. 

The steam, and the cloud, 


Still the Oriflamme floateth, — 
The pride of the proud ! 

What ho ! for King Louis ! 

What ho ! for Narbonne ! 
Come, soldiers ! 't is Gaston 

Who leadeth ye on ! 
'T is Gaston, your brother. 

Who waveth his hand ; 
Who fights, as ye fight. 

For the vine-covered land I 
'T is Gaston, — 't is Gaston, 

The last of his name, 
Who fights for sweet France, 

And will die for her fame ! 

" Come forward ! Come " Ha ! 

What is doing ? He stops ! 
Why ? why ? By Saint Denis ! 

He staggers, — he drops ! 
'T was something — 't was nothing - 

A shot and a sound ; 
Yet the ever-bright hero 

Lies low on the ground ! 
He loseth his eye-sight — 

He loseth his breath — 
He smiles — Ah ! his beauty 

Is darkened by death ! 

No pause — not an instant — 
For wailinor or woe ! 


120 SONGS. 

For the battle still rageth ; 

Still fighteth the foe ; 
Again roar the cannon — 

Again flies the ball — 
And the heart of the Spaniard 

Spouts blood on the Gaul 1 
Strong armor is riven, 

Proud courage laid low, 
And Frenchmen and foemen 

Are dead at a blow ! 

O, the bellowing thunders ! 

The shudders — the shocks ! 
When thousands 'gainst thousands 

Come clashing like rocks ! 
When the rain is all scarlet. 

And clouds are half fire, 
And men's sinews are snapped 

Like the threads of a lyre ! 
When each litter 's a hearse. 

And each bullet a knell, — 
When each breath is a curse. 

And each bosom — a hell ! 

• * • 

Mourn, Soldiers, — he 's dead ! 

The last heir of Narbonne ! 
The bravest — the best ! 

But the battle is won ! 
The Spaniards have flown 

To their fosse-covered tent ; 

SONGS, 121 

And the victors are left 

To rejoice and lament ! 
They still have proud leaders, 

Still chivalry brave ; 
But the Jirst of their heroes 

Lies dumb in the grave ! 

They bear him in honor ; 

They laurel his head ; 
But, who meets the pale burthen. 

And drops by the dead ? 
The Page ? — No, — the Woman ! 

Who followed her love 
And who '11 follow him still 

(If it may be) — above ; 
Who '11 watch him, and tend him, 

On earth, or in sky ; 
Who was ready to live for him, — 

Ready to die ! 

... A month has flown by. 

On the wings of the year ; 
And a train of sad maidens 

Droop after a bier ; 
No crown on the coffin — 

No name on the lid — 
Yet the flower of all Provence 

Within it is hid ! 
Blanche — Countess, — and heiress — 

Who loved like the sun. 
Lies, at leist, by the side 

Of the heir of Narbonne ! 

123 SONGS. 

. . . O Courage ! dost always 

Pay blood for a name ? 
True Love ! must thou et'er-more 

Die for thy fame ? 
'T were sweet — could it be — 

That the lover should dwell 
In the bosom (a heaven !) 

He loveth so well : 
But, if not — why, then, Death, 

Be thou just to his worth, 
And sweep him at once 

From the scorn of the earth ! 


Tell us, O Guide ! by what strange natural laws 
This winged flower throws out, night after night. 
Such lunar brightness ? Why^ — for what grave cause 
Is this earth-insect crowned with heavenly light ? 
Peace ! Rest content ! See where, by cliff and dell. 
Past tangled forest paths and silent river. 
The little lustrous creature guides us well, 
And where we fail, his small light aids us ever. 

Night's shining servant ! Pretty star of earth ! 

I ask not why thy lamp doth ever burn. 

Perhaps it is thy very life, — thy mind ; 

And thou, if robbed of that strange right of birth, 

Might be no more than Man, — when Death doth turn 

His beauty into darkness, cold and blind ! 



Gamarra is a dainty steed, 
Strong, black, and of a noble breed, 
Full of fire, and full of bone. 
With all his line of fathers known ; 
Fine his nose, his nostrils thin, 
But blown abroad by the pride within ! 
His mane is like a river flowing. 
And his eyes like embers glowing 
In the darkness of the night. 
And his pace as swift as light. 

Look, — how 'round his straining throat 

Grace and shifting beauty float ! 

Sinewy strength is on his reins. 

And the red blood gallops through his veins. 

Richer, redder, never ran 

Through the boasting heart of man. 

He can trace his lineage higher 

Than the Bourbon dare aspire, — 

Douglas, Guzman, or the Guelph, 

Or O'Brien's blood itself ! 

He, who hath no peer, — was born 
Here, upon a red March morn : 
But his famous fathers dead 
Were Arabs all, and Arab bred, 

124 SONGS. 

And the last of that great \me 

Trod like one of a race divine ! 

And yet, — he was but friend to one, 

Who fed him at the set of sun, 

By some lone fountain fringed with green : 

With him, a roving Bedouin, 

He lived, — (none else would he obey 

Through all the hot Arabian day,) — 

And died untamed upon the sands 

Where Balkh amidst the desert stands ! 


Some joys we loudly tell ; 

Some thoughts we keep apart, , 
Fenced round, and bid them dwell 

In inmost heart. 

Close in that heart (their den) 
The tiger passions sleep : 

There, too, shut out from men, 
Resolve lies deep. 

There dreams repose, — so fair. 
So frail, that but to sigh 

Their names unto the air 
Would force them die. 

These give, like violets hid, 
A perfume to the mind, — 

Give sight, as once they did, 
To poet blind ! 




Dear Lamb, I drink to thee, — to thee 
Married to sweet Liberty ! 

What ! old friend, and art thou freed 

From the bondage of the pen ? 

Free from care and toil indeed ? 

Free to wander amongst men 

When and howsoe'er thou wilt ? 

All thy drops of labor spilt. 

On those huge and figured pages, 

Which will sleep unclasped for ages, 

Little knowing who did wield 

The quill that traversed their white field ? 

Come, — another mighty health ! 
Thou hast earned thy sum of wealth, — 
Countless ease, — immortal leisure, — 
Days and nights of boundless pleasure, 
Checquered by no dream of pain, 
Such as hangs on clerk-like brain 

126 soxGS. 

Like a nightmare, and doth press 
The happy soul from liappiness. 

O, happy thou, — whose all of time 

(Day and eve, and morning prime) 

Is filled with talk on pleasant themes, — 

Or visions quaint, which come in dreams 

Such as panthered Bacchus rules. 

When his rod is on " the schools," 

Mixing wisdom with theirwine ; — 

Or, perhaps, thy wit so fine 

Strayeth in some elder book. 

Whereon our modern Solons look 

With severe, ungifted eyes, 

Wondering what thou seest to prize. 

Happy thou, whose skill can take 

Pleasure at each turn, and slake 

Thy thirst by every fountain's brink. 

Where less wise men would pause to shrink 

Sometimes 'mid stately avenues 

With Cowley thou, or Marvel's muse, 

Dost walk ; or Gray, by Eton towers ; 

Or Pope, in Hampton's chestnut bowers ; 

Or Walton, by his loved Lea stream : 

Or dost thou with our Milton dream 

Of Eden and the Apocalypse, 

And hear the words from his great lips ? 

Speak, — in what grove or hazel shade, 
For " musing meditation made," 

SONGS. 127 

Dost wander ? — or on Penshurst lawn. 
Where Sidney's fame had time to dawn 
And die, ere yet the hate of Men 
Could envy at his perfect pen ? 
Or, dost thou, in some London street 
(With voices filled and thronging feet,) 
Loiter, with mien 'twixt grave and gay, — 
Or take, along some pathway sweet, 
Thy calm suburban way ? 

Happy beyond that man of Ross, 

Whom mere content could ne'er engross, 

Art thou, — with hope, health, " learned leisure," 

Friends, books, thy thoughts, an endless pleasure ! 

— Yet — yet, — (for when was pleasure made 

Sunshine all without a shade ?) 

Thou, perhaps, as now thou rovest 

Through the busy scenes thou lovest. 

With an Idler's careless look. 

Turning some moth-pierced book, 

Feel'st a sharp and sudden woe 

For visions vanished long ago ! 

And then, thou think'st how time has fled 

Over thy unsilvered head. 

Snatching many a fellow-mind 

Away, and leaving — what ? — behind ! 

Nought, alas ! save joy and pain 

Mingled ever, like a strain 

Of music where the discords vie 

With the truer harmony. 

128 SONGS. 

So, perhaps, with thee the vein 
Is suHied ever, — so the chain 
Of habits and affections old. 
Like a weight of solid gold, 
Presseth on thy gentle breast, 
Till sorrow rob thee of thy rest. 

Ay : so 't must be ! — Ev'n I, (whose lot 

The Fairy Love so long forgot,) 

Seated beside this Sherris wine, 

And near to books and shapes divine, 

Which poets and the painters past 

Have wrought in lines that aye shall last, — 

Ev'n I, with Shakspeare's self beside me. 

And one whose tender talk can guide me 

Through fears, and pains, and troublous themes. 

Whose smile doth fall upon my dreams 

Like sunshine on a stormy sea, — 

Want something — when I think of thee ! 

SONGS. 129 


Sit down, sad soul, and count 

The moments flying : 
Come, — tell the sweet amount 

That 's lost by sighing ! 
How many smiles ? — a score ? 
Then laugh, and count no more ; 
For day is dying ! 

Lie down, sad soul, and sleep. 
And no more measure 

The flight of Time, nor weep 
The loss of leisure ; 

But here, by this lone stream, 

Lie down with us, and dream 
Of starry treasure ! 

We dream : do thou the same : 

We love — for ever ; 
We laugh ; yet few we shame. 

The gentle, never. 
Stay, then, till Sorrow dies ; 
Then — hope and happy skies 
Are thine for ever ! 

130 SONGS. 


Tread softly through these amorous rooms ; 
For every bough is hung with Hfe, 
And kisses, in harmonious strife, 
Unloose their sharp and winged perfumes ! 
From Afric, and the Persian looms, 
The carpet's silken leaves have sprung, 
And heaven, in its blue bounty, flung 
These starry flowers, and azure blooms. 

Tread softly ! By a creature fair 
The deity of love reposes. 
His red lips open, like the roses 
Which round his hyacinthine hair 
Hang in crimson coronals ; 
And Passion fills the arched halls ; 
And Beauty floats upon the air. 

Tread softly, — softly, like the foot 
Of Winter, shod with fleecy snow. 
Who cometh white, and cold, and mute. 
Lest he should wake the Spring below. 
O, look ! — for here lie Love and Youth, 
Fair Spirits of the heart and mind ; 
Alas ! that one should stray fi'om truth ; 
And one — be ever, ever blind ! 

SONGS. 131 


Courage ! — Nothing can withstand 
Long a wronged, undaunted land ; 
If the hearts within her be 
True unto themselves and thee, 
Thou freed giant, Liberty ! 
O, no mountain-nymph art thou, 
When the helm is on thy brow, 
And the sword is in thy hand. 
Fighting for thy own good land ! 

Courage ! — Nothing e'er withstood 
Freemen fighting for their good ; 
Armed with all their fathers' fame, 
They will win and wear a name. 
That shall go to endless glory. 
Like the Gods of old Greek story. 
Raised to heaven and heavenly worth, 
For the good they gave to earth. 

Courage ! — There is none so poor, 
(None of all who wrong endure,) 
None so humble, none so weak, 
But may flush his father's cheek, 
And his Maiden's dear and true. 
With the deeds that he may do. 

132 SONGS. 

Be his days as dark as night, 
He may make himself a light. 
"What ! though sunken be the sun, 
There are stars when day is done ! 

Courage ! — Who will be a slave, 
That hath strength to dig a grave, 
And therein his fetters hide. 
And lay a tyrant by his side ? 
Courage ! — Hope, howe'er he fly 
For a time, can never die ! 
Courage, therefore, brother men ! 
Cry, " God ! and to the fight again ! " 



A PERILOUS life, and sad as life may be. 

Hath the lone fisher on the lonely sea, 

O'er the wild waters laboring, far from home. 

For some bleak pittance e'er compelled to roam, 

Few hearts to cheer him through his dangerous life. 

And none to aid him in the stormy strife. 

Companion of the sea and silent air. 

The lonely fisher thus must ever fare : 

Without the comfort, hope, — with scarce a friend. 

He looks through life and only sees — its end ! 

SONGS. 133 


Hurrah ! Who was e'er so gay, 

As we merry folks to-day ? 

Brother Beggars, do not stare, 

But toss your rags into the air, 

And cry, " No work, and better fare ! " 

Each man, be he saint or sinner, 

Shall to-day have — Meat for Dinner ! ! ! 

Yesterday, O, yesterday ! 
That indeed was a bad day ; 
Iron bread, and rascal gruel, 
Water drink, and scanty fuel, 
With the beadle at our backs. 
Cursing us as we beat flax. 
Just like twelve Old Bailey Varlets, 
Amongst oakum-picking harlots ! 

Why should we such things endure } 
Though we be the parish Poor, 
This is usage bad and rough. 
Are not age and pain enough .'' 
Lonely age, unpitied pain .? 
With the Ban that, like a chain. 

134 SONGS. 

To our prison bare hath bound us, 
And the unwelcomed Winter round us ? 

Why should we for ever work ? 
Do we starve beneath the Turk, 
That, with one foot in the grave, 
We should still toil like the slave ? 
Seventy winters on our heads, 
Yet we freeze on wooden beds ! 
With one blanket for a fold, 
That lets in the horrid cold, 
And cramps and agues manifold ! 

Yet, — sometimes we 're merry people. 
When the chimes clang in the steeple : 
If 't be summer-time, we all 
(Dropsied, palsied, crippled,) crawl 
Underneath the sunny wall : 
Up and down like worms we creep. 
Or stand still and fall asleep, 
With our faces in the sun, 
Forgetting all the world has done ! 

If 't be May, with hawthorn blooms 

In our breasts, we sit on tombs. 

And spell o'er, with eager ken, 

The epitaphs of older men, 

(Choosing those, for some strange reasons, 

Who 've weathered ninety, — a hundred seasons,) 

SONGS. 135 

Till forth at last we shout in chorus, 

" We 've thirty good years still before us ! " 

But to-day 's a bonny day ! 

What shall we be doing ? 

What 's the use of saving money, 

When rivers flow with milk and honey ? 

Prudence is our ruin. 

What have we to do with care ? 

Who, to be a pauper's heir. 

Would mask his false face in a smile, 

Or hide his honest hate in guile ? 

But come, — why do we loiter here ? 

Boy, go get us some small beer : 

Quick ! 't will make our blood run quicker. 

And drown the devil Pain in liquor ! 

March so fierce is almost past, 

April will be here at last, 

And May must come, 

When bees do hum. 

And Summer over cold victorious ! 

Hurrah ! 'T is a prospect glorious ! 

Meat ! Small Beer ! and Warmer Weather ! 

Come, boys, — let 's be mad together ! 

136 SONGS. 



The Falcon is a noble bird, 
And when his heart of hearts is stirred, 
He '11 seek the eagle, though he run 
Into his chamber near the sun. 
Never was there brute or bird. 
Whom the woods or mountains heard. 
That could force a fear or care 
From him, — the Arab of the air ! 

To-day he sits upon a wrist, 
Whose purple veins a queen has kissed. 
And on him falls a sterner eye 
Than he can face where'er he fly. 
Though he scale the summit cold 
Of the Grimsel, vast and old, — 
Though he search yon sunless stream, 
That threads the forest like a dream. 

Ah, noble Soldier ! noble Bird ! 
Will your names be ever heard, — 
Ever seen in future story. 
Crowning it with deathless glory ? 
Peace, ho ! — the master's eye is drawn 
Away unto the bursting dawn ! 
Arise, thou bird of birds, arise. 
And seek thy quarry in the skies ! 

SONGS. 137 


This common field, this little brook, — 
What is there hidden in these two. 

That I so often on them look, 

Oftener than on the heavens blue ? 

No beauty lies upon the field ; 

Small music doth the river yield ; 

And yet I look and look again. 

With something of a pleasant pain. 

'T is thirty — can it be thirty years, 
Since last I stood upon this plank. 
Which o'er the brook its figure rears, 

And watched the pebbles as they sank ? 
How white the stream ! I still remember 
Its margin glassed by hoar December, 
And how the sun fell on the snow : 
Ah ! can it be so long ago ? 

It Cometh back ; — so blythe, so bright, 

It hurries to my eager ken, 
As though but one short winter's night 

Had darkened o'er the world since then. 
It is the same clear, dazzling scene ; — 
Perhaps the grass is scarce as green ; 
Perhaps the river's troubled voice 
Doth not so plainly say, — " Rejoice." 

138 SONGS. 

Yet Nature surely never ranges, 

Ne'er quits her gay and flowery crown ; 
But, ever joyful, merely changes 

The primrose for the thistle-down. 
'Tts we alone who, waxing old. 
Look on her with an aspect cold, 
Dissolve her in our burning tears, 
Or clothe her with the mists of years ! 

Then, why should not the grass be green ? 

And why should not the river's song 
Be merry, — as they both have been 

When I was here an urchin strong ? 
Ah, true, — too true ! I see the sun 
Through thirty winter years hath run. 
For grave eyes, mirrored in the brook, 
Usurp the urchin's laughing look ! 

So be it ! I have lost, — and won ! 

For, once, the past was poor to me, — 
The future dim ; and though the sun 

Shed life and strength, and I was free, 
I felt noi — Arneio no grateful pleasure : 
All seemed but as the common measure : 
But NOW — the experienced Spirit old 
Turns all the leaden past to gold ! 

SONGS. 139 


Come here, come here, and dwell 

In forest deep ! 

Come here, come here, and tell 

Why thou dost weep ! 

Is it for love (sweet pain !) 

That thus thou dar'st complain 

Unto our pleasant shades, our summer leaves, 

Where nought else grieves ? 

Come here, come here, and lie 

By whispering stream ! 

Here no one dares to die 

For Love's sweet dream ; 

But health all seek, and joy, 

And shun perverse annoy. 

And race along green paths till close of day, 

And laugh — alway ! 

Or else, through half the year, 

On rushy floor, 

We lie by waters clear. 

While sky-larks pour 

Their songs into the sun ! 

And when bright day is done. 

We hide 'neath bells of flowers or nodding com. 

And dream — till morn ! 




The brand is on thy brow, 

A dark and guilty spot ; 
'T is ne'er to be erased ! 

'T is ne'er to be forgot ! 

The brand is on thy brow, 
Yet / must shade the spot : 

For who will love thee now. 
If J love thee not ? 

Thy soul is dark, — is stained, — 
From out the bright world thrown ; 

By God and man disdained. 
But not by me, — thy own ! 

O, even the tiger slain 

Hath 07ie who ne'er doth flee. 

Who soothes his dying pain f — 
That one am I to thee ! 

SONGS. 141 


Never till now, — never till now, O Queen 

And Wonder of the enchanted world of sound ! 

Never till now was such bright creature seen, 
Startling to transport all the regions round ! 

Whence com'st thou — with those eyes and that fine 
Thou sweet, sweet singer ? — Like an angel found 

Mourning alone, thou seem'st (thy mates all fled) 

A star 'mongst clouds, — a spirit 'midst the dead. 

Melodious thoughts hang round thee ! Sorrow sings 
Perpetual sweetness near, — divine despair ! 

Thou speak'st, — and Music, with her thousand strings, 
Gives golden answers from the haunted air ! 

Thou mov'st, — and round thee Grace her beauty flings ! 
Thou look'st, — and Love is bom ! O songstress rare ! 

Lives there on earth a power like that which lies 

In those resistless tones, — in those dark eyes ? 

O, I have lived — how long ! — with one deep treasure. 
One fountain of delight unlocked, unknown ; 

But thou, the prophetess of my new pleasure, 
Hast come at last, and struck my heart of stone ; 

And now outgushes, without stint or measure. 
The endless rapture, — and in places lone 

1^ SONGS. 

I shout it to the stars and winds that flee, 
And then I think on all I owe to thee ! 

I see thee at all hours, — beneath all skies, — 
In every shape thou tak'st, or passionate path : 

Now art thou like some winged thing that cries 
Over a city flaming fast to death ; 

Now, in thy voice, the mad Medea dies : 

Now Desdemona yields her gentle breath : — 

All things thou art by turns, — from wrath to love ; 

From the queen eagle to the vestal dove ! 

Horror is stem and strong, and death (unmasked 
In slow, pale silence, or 'mid brief eclipse) ; 

But what are they to thy sweet strength, when tasked 
To its height, — with all the God upon thy lips ? 

Not even the cloudless days and riches, asked 
By one who in the book of darkness dips. 

Vies with that radiant wealth which they inherit 

Who own, like thee, the Muse's deathless spirit. 

Would I could crown thee as a king can crown ! 

Yet, what are kingly gifts to thy fair fame. 
Whose echoes shall all vulgarer triumphs drown, — 

Whose light shall darken every meaner name ? 
The gallant courts thee for his own renown ; 

Mimicking thee, he plays love's pleasant game ; 
The critic brings thee praise, which all rehearse ; 
And I — alas ! — I can but bring my verse ! 

SONGS. 143 


" I have read of a bird, which hath a face like, and yet will prey 
upon, a man; who, coming to the water to drink, and finding there 
by reflection that lie had killed one like himself, piueth away by de- 
grees, and never afterwards enjoyeth itself" — Fuller's Worthies. 

The wild-winged creature, clad in gore, 
(His bloody human meal being o'er,) 

Comes down to the water's brink : 
'T is the first time he there hath gazed, 
And straight he shrinks — alarmed — amazed. 

And dares not drink. 

" Have I till now," he sadly said, 

" Preyed on my brother's blood, and made 

His flesh my meal to-day ? " — 
Once more he glances in the brook, 
And once more sees his victim's look ; 

Then turns away. 

With such sharp pain as human hearts 
May feel, the drooping thing departs 

Unto the dark, wild wood ; 
And there, 'midst briars and sheltering weeds. 
He hideth his remorse, and feeds 

No more on blood. 

And in that weedy brake he lies. 
And pines, and pines, until he dies ; 
And, when all 's o'er, 

144 SONGS. 

What follows ? — Nought ! his brothers slake 
Their thirst in blood in that same brake, 
Fierce as before ! 

So fable flows ! — But would you find 
Its moral wrought in human kind, 

Its tale made worse ; 
Turn straight to Man^ and in his fame 
And forehead read " The Harpy''s " name ; 

But no remorse ! 


Look what immortal floods the sunset pours 
Upon us ! — Mark ! how still (as though in dreams 
Bound) the once wild and terrible Ocean seems ! 
How silent are the winds ! No billow roars : 
But all is tranquil as Elysian shores ! 
The silver margin which aye runneth round 
The moon-enchanted sea, hath here no sound : 
Even Echo speaks not on these radiant mooi-s ! 

What ! is the Giant of the ocean dead, 

Whose strength was all unmatched beneath the sun 

No ; he reposes ! Now his toils are done, 

More quiet than the babbling brooks is he. 

So mightiest powers by deepest calms are fed. 

And sleep, how oft, in things that gentlest be ! 

SONGS. 145 


The Moon is shining on her way, 

The planets, yet undimmed by sleep. 
Drink light from the far-flaming day, 

"Who still is hid beyond the deep : 
But here both men and Spirits weep, 

And earth all mourneth unto air. 
Because there liveth nothing fair, 

Nor great, save on the azure steep. 

And on that hill of Heaven, none 

Of human strength or thought may climb ; 
For there bright Angels lie alone. 

Reposing since the birth of Time. 
They bask beneath his looks sublime ; 

But nought of ease or hope is here. 
Where sleep is linked to dreams of fear, 

And error to the pains of crime. 

The moon is come, — but she shall go : 

The stars are in their azure nest ; 
The jaded wind shall cease to blow ; 

But when shall we have hope or rest ? 
Now some are sad, and some are blessed ; 

But what to us is smile or sigh ? 
Though Peace, the white-winged dove, be nigh. 

It ne'er must be the Spirit's guest ! i 


146 SONGS. 

Behold ! The young and glistening Hour 

Comes riding through the gate of morn, 
And we awhile must quit our power, 

And vanish from a world we scorn. 
Look ! Flattering sin begins to dawn 

From man's false lips and woman's eyes. 
And hopes and hearts are racked and torn 

In God's green, earthly paradise ! 


Softly woo away her breath, 

Gentle Death ! 
Let her leave thee with no strife. 

Tender, mournful, murmuring Life ! 
She hath seen her happy day : 

She hath had her bud and blossom : 
Now she pales and shrinks away. 

Earth, into thy gentle bosom ! 

She hath done her bidding here, 

Angels dear ! 
Bear her perfect soul above, 

Seraph of the skies, — sweet Love ! 
Good she was, and fair in youth, 

And her mind was seen to soar, 
And her heart was wed to truth : 

Take her, then, for evermore, — 
For ever — evermore ! 

SONGS. 147 


Look at this brook, so blithe, so free ! 
Thus hath it been, fair boy, for ever, — 
A shining, dancing, babbHng river; 
And thus 't will ever be. 
'T will run, from mountain to the main, 
With just the same sweet, babbling voice 
That now sings out, " Rejoice, — rejoice ! '* 
Perhaps 't will be a chain 
That will a thousand years remain, — 
Ay, through all times and changes last, 
And link the present to the past. 
Perhaps upon this selfsame spot, 
Hereafter, may a merry knot 
(My children's children !) meet and play, 
And think on me, some summer day ; 
And smile (perhaps through youth's brief tears. 
While thinking back through wastes of years), 
And softly say, — 

" 'T was here the old man used to stray, 
And gaze upon the sky ; and dream 
(Long, long ago !) by this same stream. 
He 's in his grave ! Ungentle Time 
Hath dealt but harshly with his rhyme ; 
But We will ne'er forget that he 
Taught us to love this river free." 

148 SONGS. 


I LOVED her when she looked from me, 

And hid her stifled sighs : 
rioved her, too, when she did smile 

With shy and downcast eyes. 
The light within them rounding " like 

The young moon in its rise." 

I loved her ! — Dost thou love no more, 

Now she from thee is flown. 
To some far distant, distant shore 

Unfettered, and alone } 
Peace, peace ! I know her : She will come 

Again, and be mine own. 

A kiss — a sigh — a little word 
We changed, when we did part ; 

No more ; yet read I in her eyes 
The promise of her heart ; 

And Hope (who from all others flies) 
From me will ne'er depart 

So here I live, — a lover lone. 

Contented with my state. 
More sure of love, if she return, 

Than others are of hate : 
And if she die ? — I too can die, 

Content still with my fate. 

SONGS. 149 


The Spirits of the mighty Sea 

To-night are 'wakened from their dreams, 
And upwards to the tempest flee, 

Baring their foreheads where the gleams 
Of hghtning run, and thunders cry. 
Rushing and raining through the sky ! 

The Spirits of the sea are waging 
Loud war upon the peaceful Night, 

And bands of the black winds are raging 
Thorough the tempest blue and bright; 

Blowing her cloudy hair to dust 

With kisses, like a madman's lust ! 

What Ghost now, like an Ate, walketh 

Earth, — ocean, — air ? and aye with Time, 

Mingled, as with a lover talketh ? 
Methinks their colloquy sublime 

Draws anger from the sky, which raves 

Over the self-abandoned waves ! 

Behold ! like millions massed in battle. 
The trembling billows headlong go, 

Lashing the barren deeps, which rattle 
In mighty transport till they grow 

150 SONGS. 

All fruitful in their rocky home, 
And burst from frenzy into foam. 

And look ! where on the faithless billows 
Lie women, and men, and children fair ; 

Some hanging, like sleep, to their swollen pillows, 
With helpless sinews and streaming hair. 

And some who plunge in the yawning graves ! 

Ah ! lives there no strength beyond the waves ? 

'T is said, the Moon can rock the Sea 
From frenzy strange to silence mild, — 

To sleep, — to death : — But where is S/je, 
While now her storm-bom giant child 

Upheaves his shoulder to the skies ? 

Arise, sweet planet pale, — arise ! 

She cometh, — lovelier than the dawn 
In summer, when the leaves are green, 

More graceful than the alarmed fawn, 
Over his grassy supper seen : 

Bright quiet from her beauty falls. 

Until — again the tempest calls ! 

The supernatural Storm, — he 'waketh 
Again, and lo ! from sheets all white, 

Stands up unto the stars, and shaketh 
Scorn on the jewelled locks of Night. 

He carries a ship on his foaming crown. 

And a cry, like Hell, as he rushes down! 

SONGS. 151 

And so still soars from calm to storm 

The stature of the unresting Sea : — 
So doth desire or wrath deform 
Our else calm humanity, — 
Until at last we sleep, 
And never 'wake nor weep ; 
(Hushed to death, by some faint tune,) 
In our grave beneath the Moon ! 


Young Love ! what have thy dreams above, 
Thy hope, thy gladness, thy despair, 

That with the parenCs painful love 
May dare compare ? 

Thy hopes are like the misty cloud ; 

Thy gladness like the shrinking stream ; 
Thy loud despair all over-loud ; 

Thy life — a dream ! 

But deeper than the unfathomed Main, 
The parent's voiceless love e'er lies ; 
nd, O, the dread, the deatJi, the pain, 
When all hope dies ! 

152 SONGS. 


O, HAD I nursed, when I was young, 
The lessons of my father's tongue, 
(The deep, laborious thoughts he drew 
From all he saw and others knew,) 
I might have been, — ah, me ! 
Thrice sager than I e'er shall be. 

For what saith Time ? 
Alas ! he only shews the truth 
Of all that I was told in youth ! 

The thoughts now budding in my brain, — 
The wisdom I have bought with pain, — 
The knowledge of life's brevity, — 
Frail friendship, — false philosophy, 
And all that issues out of woe, 
Methinks, were taught me long ago ! 

Then what says Time ? 
Alas ! he but brings back the truth 
Of all I heard (and lost !) in youth. 

Truths ! — hardly learned and lately brought 
From many a far, forgotten scene ! 

Had I but listened, as I ought. 
To your voices, sage, — serene, 

O, what might I not have been 
In the realms of thought ! 

SONGS. 153 


I LOVE all things the seasons bring, 
All buds that start, all birds that sing, 

All leaves, from white to jet ; 
All the sweet words that summer sends, 
When she recalls her flowery friends, 

But chief — the Violet ! 

I love, how much I love the rose. 

On whose soft lips the South-wind blows. 

In pretty, amorous threat ; 
The lily, paler than the moon. 
The odorous, wondrous world of June, 

Yet more — the Violet ! 

She comes, the first, the fairest thing 
That Heaven upon the earth doth fling. 

Ere Winter's star has set: 
She dwells behind her leafy screen. 
And gives, as Angels give, unseen. 

So, love — the Violet ! 

What modest thoughts the Violet teaches. 
What gracious boons the Violet preaches. 

Bright maiden, ne'er forget ! 
But learn, and love, and so depart. 
And sing thou, with thy wiser heart, 

"-Long lice the Violet ! " 

154 SONGS. 


Painters, — Poets, — who can tell 
What Beauty is, — bright miracle ? 
Sometimes brown and sometimes white, 
She shifts from darkness into light. 
Swimming on with such fine ease 
That we miss her small degrees, 
Knowing not that she hath ranged 
Till we find her sweetly changed. 

They are poets false who say 

That Beauty must be fair as day, 

And that the rich red rose 

On her cheek for ever glows. 

Or that the cold white lily lieth 

On her breast, and never flieth. 

Beauty is not so unkind. 

Not so niggard, not so blind. 

As yield her favor but to one, 

When she may walk uncon fined, 

Associate with the unfettered Wind, 

And wander with the Sun. 

No ; she spreads her gifts, her grace. 

O'er every color, every face. 

She can laugh, and she can breathe 

Freely where she will, — beneath 

Polar darkness, tropic star. 

Impoverished Delhi, dark Bahar, 

And all the regions, bright and far, 

Where India's sweet-voiced women are ! 

SONGS. 155 


Stbilla ! Dost thou love ? 

O, swear ! O, swear ! 
By those stedfast stars above ! 

By this pure, sweet air ! 

By all things true, and deep, and fair ! 
By hearts made rich with love. 

Made wise by care ! 

Sybilla ! I love thee ! 

I swear, I swear, — 
By all bright things that be ! 

By thyself, my fair ! 
By thine eyes, and motions free ! 
By thy sling, thou honey-bee ! 
By thy angel thoughts, that flee 
Singing through the golden air, 
I swear, I swear ! 

Sybilla ! dost thou frown ? 

Beware, beware ! 
If scorn thy beauty crown, 

1 fly, — yet where ? 
Why are thine eyes withdrawn ? 
Why dost thou turn, thou fawn ? 
Look on me, like the dawn 

On weeping air ! 
She smiles— O Beauty blessed, 
Take, — take me to thy breast, 

And cure all care ! 

156 SONGS. 


Come hither ! Let thou and I 
Mount on the dolphin, Pleasure, 
And dive through the azure air ! 
Would 't not be fine, — would 't not be rare 
To live in that sweet, sweet sea, the air, — 
That ocean which hath no measure. 

No peril, no rocky shore, 
(But only its airy, airy streams, 
And its singing stars, and its orbed dreams,) 
For ever and evermore ! 

Of its wild and its changing weather 

What matter — how foul or fair .'' 
We will ever be found together ; 
Ah ! then, sweet Love, what care, 

Whether we haunt on the earth or air ? 
In ocean or inland stream ? 
Or are lost in some endless, endless dream ? 
Or are bodiless made, like the tender sprite 
Of Love, who watched me but yesternight. 
With moon-flowers white on her whiter brow, 

And smiled and sighed. 

In her sad, sweet pride, 
As Thou, fair girl ! dost now. 

SONGS. 157 


In earlier days, in happier hours, 

I watched and wandered with the Sun : 

I saw him when the East was red ; 

I saw him when the day was dead, — 
All his earthly journey done ! 
Looks of love were in the West, 
But he passed, — and took no rest ! 

O'er the immeasurable blue, 

Across the rain, amid the blast. 
Onwards and onwards, like a God, 
Through the trackless air he trod, 

Scattering bounties as be passed 

By the portals of the West, — 

And never shut his eyes in rest ! 

O, how — in those too happy hours — 
How deeply then did I adore 

The bright, unwearied, sleepless Sun, 
And wish, just thus, my course to run, — 
From sea to sea, from shore to shore, 
My deeds thus good, thus known, thus bright. 
Thus undisturbed by rest or night. 

158 SONGS. 

But now, — since I have heard and seen 
The many cares that trouble life, 
The evil that requiteth good, 
The benefits not understood, 
Unfilial, unpaternal strife, 
The hate, the lie, the bitter jest, — 
I feel how sweet are night and rest ! 

And, O, what morning ever looked 
So lovely as the quiet eve. 

When low and fragrant winds arise, 
And draw the curtains of the skies, 
And gentle songs of summer weave ; — 
Such as between the alders creep, 
Now, and soothe my soul to sleep ! 


Wilt thou go ? Thou 'It come again ? 
Swear it. Love, by love's sweet pain ! 
Swear it, by the stars that glisten 
In thy brow as thou dost listen ! 
Swear it, by the love-sick air. 
Wandering, murmuring, here and there, 
Seeking for some tender nest. 
Yet, like thee, can never rest. 
Swear ! — and I shall safer be 
Amidst love's sweet mutiny ! 

SONGS. 159 


Vague Mystery hangs on all these desert places ! 

The fear which hath no name, hath wrought a spell \ 
Strength, courage, wrath — have been, and left no 
traces ! 

They came, — and fled ; but whither ? Who can tell ? 

We know but that they were, — that once {in days 
When ocean was a bar 'twixt man and man) 

Stout spirits wandered o'er these capes and bays, 
And perished where these river waters ran. 

Methinks they should have built some mighty tomb. 
Whose granite might endure the century's rain, 

Cold winter, and the sharp night winds, that boom 
Like Spirits ia their purgatorial pain. 

They left, 't is said, their proud, unburied bones 
To whiten on this unacknowledged shore : 

Yet nought beside the rocks and worn sea-stones 
Now answer to the great Pacific's roar ! 

A mountain stands where Agamemnon died : 
And Cheops hath derived eternal fame, 

Because he made his tomb a place of pride : 
And thus the dead Metella earned a name. 

But these, — they vanished as the lightnings die 
(Their mischiefs over) in the affrighted earth ; 

And no one knoweth underneath the sky 

What heroes perished here, nor whence their birth ! 

160 SONGS. 



He is gone to the wars, and has left me alone, 
The poor Irish soldier, unfriended, unknown, 

My husband, my Patrick, 
The bird of my bosom, — though now he is flown ! 

How I mourned for the boy ! yet I murmured the more, 
'Cause we once were so happy in darlin' Lismore, 

Poor Ellen and Patrick ! — 
Perhaps he now thinks of poor Ellen no more ! 

A cabin we had, and the cow was hard by, 
And a slip of a garden that gladdened the eye : 

And there was our Patrick, — 
Ne'er idle whilst light ever lived in the sky. 

We married, — too young, and it 's likely too poor. 
Yet no two were so happy in happy Lismore, 

As Ellen and Patrick, 
Till they tempted and took him away from our door. 

He said he would bring me, ere Autumn should fall, 
A linnet or lark that should come at my call : 

Alas ! the poor Patrick ! 
He has left me a bird that is sweeter than all. 

T was bom in a hovel, 't was nourished in pain. 
But it came in my grief, like a light on the brain, 

(The child of poor Patrick,) 
And taught me to hope for bright fortune again. 

SONGS. 161 

And now, — We two wander from door unto door, 
And, sometimes, we steal back to happy Lismore, 

And ask for poor Patrick ; 
And dream of the days when all wars will be o'er ! 


Why, why doth your music grieve 

In passion so grave and deep ? 
Ah ! sweet Musicians, believe, 
'T is better we laugh than weep. 
Say, say, — holh grave and gay, 
Should we not laugh, whene''er we may ? 
Thro'' day and night, thro'' night and day 7 

Life, life has its share of pain ; 

Yet for ever why weep or fear ? 
Since the Past ne'er cometh again, 

And To-morrow is not yet here ? 

All, all that is quite our own, 

Is the minute we touch to-day. 
And that, while we speak, is flown, 

And beareth its ills away ! 

So, let not your music grieve 

In melodies grave nor deep ; 
For, dear Musicians, believe, 

'T is better we laugh than weep ! 

162 SONGS. 


Drink, and fill the night with mirth ! 

Let us have a mighty measure, 
Till we quite forget the earth, 

And soar into the world of pleasure. 
Drink, and let a health go round, 

('T is the drinker's noble duty,) 
To the eyes that shine and wound, 

To the mouths that bud in beauty ! 

Here 's to Helen ! Why, ah ! why 

Doth she fly from my pursuing ? 
Here 's to Marian, cold and shy ! 

May she warm before thy wooing ! 
Here 's to Janet! I 've been e'er. 

Boy and man, her staunch defender. 
Always sworn that she was fair, 

Always knovm that she was tender ! 

Fill the deep-mouthed glasses high. 

Let them with the champagne tremble, 
Like the loose wrack in the sky. 

When the four wild winds assemble ! 
Here 's to all the love on earth, 

(Love, the young man's, wise man's, treasure !) 
Drink, and fill your throats with mirth ! 

Drink, and drown the world in pleasure ! 

SONGS. 163 


River of the morn ! 
Fast thou flow'st and bright ; 

From the sundered East thou flowest, 
Bearing down the Night : 

Every cloud thy beauty drinketh ; 

Darkness from thy current shrinketh ; 
Leaving the heavens empty quite, 
For the conquering Light ! 

O, the Thought new-born ! 

Lovely 't is, and bright : 

Like some jewel of the morn. 

Nursed in frozen night. 

But it trembleth soon and groweth. 
And dissolved in splendor floweth, 
(Like the flooding dawn that pours 
O'er and o'er the cloudy shores,) 

Till blind Ignorance wings her flight 

From the conquering Light ! 

O, ye Thoughts of youth. 

Long since flown away ! 
What ye want in truth. 

Ye in love repay ! 

Though in shadowy forests hidden. 
Like the bird that 's lost and chidden. 
Back again with all your songs 
Ye do come, and soothe our wrongs. 

Till the unburthened heart doth soar 

Wiser than before ! 

164 SONGS. 


Song should breathe of scents and flowers ; 

Song should like a river flow ; 
Song should bring back scenes and hours 

That we loved, — ah, long ago ! 

Song from baser thoughts should win us ; 

Song should charm us out of woe ; 
Song should stir the heart within us, 

Like a patriot's friendly blow. 

Pains and pleasures, all man doeth. 

War and peace, and right and wrong, — 

All things that the soul subdueth 
Should be vanquished, too, by Song. 

Song should spur the mind to duty ; 

Nerve the weak, and stir the strong : 
Every deed of truth and beauty 

Should be crowned by starry Song ! 

SONGS. 165 


HuERAH ! Here 's a health to the land, 

Brave brothers, wherein we were born ; 
Here 's a health to the friend that we love ! 
Here 's a heart for the man that 's forlorn ! 
Let us drink unto all, 
Who help us or lack us. 
From the child and the poor man 
To Ceres and Bacchus ; 
And to Plenty (thrice over !) not forgetting her horn ! 

Here 's a health to the Sun in the sky ; 

To the corn, — to the fruit in the ground ; 
To the fish, — to the brute, — to the bird ; 
To the vine, — may it spread and abound ! 
To good fellows and friends 
Whom we love or who love us, 
Far off us, or near us. 
Below, or above us ; 
For a friend is a gem, — wheresoever he 's found ! 

Here 's a curse on bad times that are past ! 

Were they better — but now they 're no more ! 
So, here 's to all Good, — may it last ! 

And a health to the future, — thrice o'er ! 
May the hope that we look upon 
Never deceive us ! 
May the Spirit of good 
Never fail us or leave us ; 
But stand up like a friend that is true to the core ! 

166 SONGS. 

Ambition, — O, lay it in dust ! 

Revenge, — 't is a snake : let it die ! 
And for Pride, — let it feed on a crust, 
Though sweet Pity look out from the sky ! 
But Wisdom and Hope, 
And the honest endeavor, — 
May they smile on us now, 
And stand by us for ever. 
Fast friends, wheresoever the tempest shall fly ! 


Thou hast love within thine eyes, 

Though they be as dark as night ; 
And a pity (shewn by sighs) 

Heaveth in thy bosom white : 

What is all the azure light 
Which the flaxen beauties shew. 

If the scorn be sharp and bright. 
Where the tender love should glow ? 

Do I love thee ? — Lady, no ! 

I was born for other skies. 
Where the palmy branches grow. 

And the unclouded mornings rise : 

There — (when sudden evening dies) 
I will tell of thee, before 

The beauty of Dione's eyes, 
And she shall love thee evermore ! 



Peettt firstling of the year ! 

Herald of the host of flowers ! 
Hast thou left my cavern drear, 

In the hope of summer hours ? 

Back unto my earthem bowers ! 
Back to thy warm world below, 

Till the strength of suns and showers 
Quell the now relentless snow ! 

Art still here ? — Alive ? and blythe ? 

Though the stormy Night hath fled, 
And the Frost hath passed his scythe 

O'er thy small, unsheltered head ? 

Ah ! — some lie amidst the dead, 
(Many a giant, stubborn tree, — 

Many a plant, its spirit shed,) 
That were better nursed than thee ! 

What hath saved thee ? Thou wast not 

'Gainst the arrowy winter furred, — 
Armed in scale, — but all forgot 

When the frozen winds were stirred. 

Nature, who doth clothe the bird, 
ShouW have hid thee m the earth. 

Till the cuckoo's song was heard. 
And the Spring let loose her mirth. 

Nature, — deep and mystic word ! 
Mighty mother, still unknown ! 

168 SONGS. 

Thou didst sure the Snow-drop gird 
With an armor all thine own ! 
Thou, who sent'st it forth alone 

To the cold and sullen season, 

(Like a thought at random thrown,) 

Sent it thus for some grave reason ! 

If 't were but to pierce the mind 

With a single, gentle thought, 
Who shall deem thee harsh or blind ? 

Who that thou hast vainly wrought ? 

Hoard the gentle virtue caught 
From the Snow-drop, — reader wise ! 

Good is good, wherever taught, 
On the ground or in the skies ! 


Wilt thou leave me ? I did give 
All my fond, true heart to i/iee. 

Dreaming thou mightst scorn it not ; 
And canst thou abandon me ? 

I have loved, — O, word of love, 
Bear me to thy star of bliss ! 

Let me know if worlds above 
Can requite the pain of this ? • 

I have loved, — O, lover, why 
Must I all my fondness tell ? 

Do not — do not bid me die 

At thy cruel word — " Farewell ! " 

SONGS. 169 



Come forth, victorious Sounds, — from harp and horn, 
From viol, and trump, and echoing instruments ! 

A hundred years have flown ! A hundred years 

Of toil and strife, of joys and tears. 
Have risen to life, and died 'midst vain laments, 

Since that harmonious morn 

Whereon the Muse's mighty Son was bom ! 

Sound, — Immortal Music, sound! 

Bid the golden words go round ! 

Every heart and tongue proclaim 

Haydn's power ! Haydn's fame ! 

Sing, — how well he earned his glory ! 

Sing, — how he shall live in story ! 

Sing, — how he doth live in light; 
Shining like a star above us. 
Bending down to cheer and love us. 

Crowned with his own divine delight ! 

Sound, — Immortal Music, sound ! 

Bid thy golden words go round ! 

Every grand and gentle tone. 
Every truth he made his own ; 
Gathering from the human mind 
All the bloom that poets find, — 

170 SONGS. 

Gathering, from the winds and ocean, 
Dreams, to feed his high emotion, 
When the Muse was past control, — 
Gathering, from all things that roll 
Within Time's vast and starry round. 
The thoughts that give a Soul to sound ! 


A YEAR — an age shall fade away, 

(Ages of pleasure and of pain, 
And yet the face I see to-day 

For ever shall remain, — 
In my heart and in my brain ! 
Not all the scalding tears of care 
Shall wash away that vision fair ; 
Not all the thousand thoughts that rise, 
Not all the sights that dim mine eyes. 

Shall e'er usurp the place 

Of that little angel face ! 

But here it shall remain 
For ever ; and if joy or pain 
Turn my troubled winter gaze 
Back unto my hawthorn days. 
There, amongst the hoarded past, 
I shall see it to the last ; 
The only thing, save poet's rhyme. 
That shall not own the touch of Time ! 

SONGS. 171 

CXLin. — INSCRIPTIONS. — More Gractim. 
I. For a Focntain. 

Rest ! This little Fountain runs 

Thus for aye : — It never stays 
For the look of summer suns, 

Nor the cold of winter days. 
Whosoe'er shall wander near, 

When the Syrian heat is worst, 
Let him hither come, nor fear 

Lest he may not slake his thirst : 
He will find this little river 
Running still as bright as ever. 
Let him drink, and onwards hie. 
Bearing but in thought that I, 
Erotas, bade the Naiad fall. 
And thank the great god Pan for all ! 

II. For a Templk op ^Escclapius. 

In this high nook, built all by mortal hand. 
An Epidaurian Temple, here I stand 
Sacred to him who drives away disease. 
And gives to all who seek him health and ease ! 
I stand devoted to the God of health, — 
To .(Esculapius old ; built by the wealth 
Of grateful men, who owe to his rare skill 
Life, ease, and all that fortune spares them still ! 

172 SONGS. 

III. For a Streamlet. 

Traveller, note ! Although I seem 
But a little sparkling stream, 
I come from regions where the sun 
Dwelleth when his toil is done, — 
From yon proud hills in the West. 
Thence I come, and never rest. 
Till (curling round the mountain's feet 
I find myself 'mid pastures sweet. 
Vernal, green, and ever gay ; 
And then I gently slide away, 
A thing of silence, — till I cast 
My life into the sea at last ! 

IV. For an Antique Drinking Cup. 

Drink ! If thou find'st my round all filled with wine, 
Which lifts men's creeping thoughts to dreams divine, 
Drink, and become a God ! Anacreon old 
Once quenched his mighty thirst from out my gold : 
Rich was I, red, and brimming ; — but he laughed, 
And, (tasting sparely,) drained me at a draught. 
Bacchanal ! If thou lov'st the Teian's fame. 
Take courage, — grasp me fast, — and straight do Thou 
the same ! 

SONGS. 173 


Hark ! the world is rent asunder : 
Nations are aghast ; and kings 
(Mingling in the common wonder) 
Shake, Hke humbler things. 

Only thou art left alone, 

Napoleon ! Napoleon ! 

Plague, from out her trance awaking. 

Quits her ancient hot domain ; 
And War, the statesman's fetters breaking. 
Shouts to thee — in vain ! 

Both to thee are now unknown. 

Napoleon ! Napoleon ! 

He who rode War's fiery billows 

Once, and ruled their surges wild, 
Now beneath Helena's willows 
Sleepeth — like a child ! 

All thy soaring spirit jlown : 

Napoleon ! Napoleon ! 

In his grave the warrior sleepeth, 
Humbly laid, and half forgot. 
And nought, besides the willow, weepeth 
O'er that silent spot ! 

Calm it is, and all thine own ; 

Napoleon ! Napoleon ! 

But, — what columns teach his merit } 
What rich ermines wrap him round } — 

174 SONGS. 

None ; — His proud and plumed Spirit 
Crowns alone the ground ! 

Proud and pale, and all alone., 

Lies the dead Napoleon ! 



Sing, I pray, a little song, 

Mother dear ! 
Neither sad nor very long : 
It is for a little maid, 
Golden-tressed Adelaide ! 
Therefore let it suit a merry, merry ear, 

Mother dear ! 

Let it be a merry strain, 

Mother dear ! 
Shunning e'en the thought of pain : 
For our gentle child will weep. 
If the theme be dark and deep ; 
And We will not draw a single, single tear. 

Mother dear ! 

Childhood should be all divine. 

Mother dear ! 
And like an endless summer shine ; 

SONGS. 175 

Gay as Edward's shouts and cries, 
Bright as Agnes' azure eyes : 

Therefore, bid thy song be merry : — dost thou hear, 
Mother dear ? 


Love flies, fond wretch, across the desert air ; 

Pursued by passionate thoughts and phantom fears, 
His tender heart, though young, the home of care. 

His eyes (now hidden) blind with many tears : 
To what less hopeless region can he flee. 

Sweet and gentle lole ! 

Tell me, and bid me fly ; and tell me, too. 

Why Love goes weeping when he looks at thee ? 

Why do his eyes, like mine, forsake heaven's blue ? 
Why can we nothing see. 

Save that one spot of earth where Thou mayst be ? 

Give me one smile, sweet heart ! — for my eyes now 
Grow dim, like Love's, with tears ; and I could fade 

Beneath the beauty of thy gentle brow, 
Into the everlasting fatal shade. 

Where cold Oblivion near pale Death is laid. 
Could I but win one tender thought from thee. 

Sweet, — sweet lole ! 

176 SONGS. 


I DREAM of thee at mom. 
When all the earth is gay. 

Save I, who live a life forlorn. 
And die through a long decay. 

I dream of thee at noon, 

^Vhen the summer sun is high, 

And the river sings a sleepy tune. 
And the woods give no reply. 

I dream of thee at eve. 

Beneath the fading sun. 
When even the winds begin to grieve ; 

And I dream till day is done. 

I dream of thee at night. 

When dreams, men say, are free : 
Alas, thou dear — too dear delight ! 

WTien dream I not of thee ? 

SONGS. 177 


Tell me, what is a poet's thought ? 

Is it on the sudden born ? 
Is it from the starlight caught ? 
Is it by the tempest taught ? 

Or by whispering mom ? 

Was it cradled in the brain ? 

Chained awhile, or nursed in night ? 
Was it wrought with toil and pain ? 
Did it bloom and fade again, 
* Ere it burst to light ? 

No more question of its birth : 

Rather love its better part ! 
'T is a thing of sky and earth. 
Gathering all its golden worth 

From the Poet's heart. 


For whom — (too happy for the earth or skies !) 
Dost thou adorn thee with such restless care .'' 

Or veil the starlight beautj' of thine eyes ? 
Or bind in fatal wreaths thy golden hair ? 

He dies who looks on thee, ... as 7 have died, 

(Love's ghost and victim,) slain by thy cold pride ! 

He dies, O, he must die ! — but will he wander 
(As I have done) for ever round thy door.^ 

Or on thy deadly beauty dream and ponder, 
(As I still dream) — for ever and evermore ? 

178 SONGS. 


Wilt thou remember me when I am gone, — 
Gone to that leaden darkness, where men lie, 

Shut out from friends, in chambers all of stone, — 
Waiting my summons from the awful sky ? 

Think of me, sometimes, sweet! — all cold, — all pale, 
Beyond the power of pain, — a Spirit taken 
By Death to regions where no hearts awaken ; 
Where no hopes haunt us, — no wild sorrows wail, — 
Where even thy love itself can then no more avail ! 


I GO, — and she doth miss me not ! 
So shall I die, and be forgot, — 
Forgot, as is some sorrow past, 
Or cloud by fleeting sickness cast. 

Death, and the all absorbing tomb. 
Will hide me in eternal gloom ; 
And she will live — as gay — alone. 
As though I had been never known ! 

'T is well, perhaps, that this should be ; 

'T is, surely, well sad thoughts should flee ! 

Nor would I wish — when I am hid 

Underneath the coffin's lid — 

That thou shouldst spoil one blooming thought for me, 

Fair and for-aye-beloved lole ! 

SONGS. 179 


Wilt thou leave thy home so kind, 

For the Ocean wild ? 
Canst thou leave me, old and blind, 

Untender child ? 

Dost thou think the storms above thee 

Will respect my son ? 
Dost thou dream the world will love thee, 

As I have done ? 

Boy, through nights and years I Ve nursed thee, 

How — thy heart should tell, 
And (come what will) I have not cursed thee ; 

And so — farewell ! 


I DIE for thy sweet love ! The ground 

Not panteth so for summer rain, 
As I for one soft look of thine ; 

And yet — I sigh in vain ! 

A hundred men are near thee now, — 
Each one, perhaps, surpassing me : 

But who doth feel a thousandth part 
Of what I feel for thee ? 

They look on thee, as men will look. 

Who round the wild world laugh and rove ; 

I only think how sweet 't would be 
To die for thy sweet love ! 

180 SONGS. 


What use is all the love I bear thee, 

Without thy sweet return ? 
What use in Fate's cold, patient lesson, 

Which my soul cannot learn ? 

I love thee — as, they tell in story. 

Men love in burning climes ; 
And I let loose my wild heart before thee, 

In burning, burning rhymes ! 

Were 't not for this, my chafed Spirit 
Would burst its bonds and flee ! 

And Thou 7 Ah, yes, thy gentle heart 
Would still give a thought to me ! 


Farewell ! — Now Time must slowlier move 
Than e'er since this dark world began ! 

And thou wilt give thy heaven of love 
Unto another, happier man ! 

And then — I never more will see 

Those eyes, — but hide, far off, my pain ; 

And thou wilt have forgotten //jc. 
Or smile thou seest me not again. 

Live happy, in thy happier lot ; 

And I will strive, (if 't so must be,) 
To think 't is well to be forgot. 

Since it may keep a pang from thee. 



She sate by the river springs, 
And bound her coal-black hair ; 
And she sang, as the cuckoo sings, 
Alone, — in the Evening air, 
With a patient smile, and a look of care, 
And a cheek that was dusk, not fair : — 
She sate, but her thoughts had wings, 
That carried her sweet despair 
Away to the azure plains, 
Where Truth and the angels are ; 
She sang, — but she sang in vain : 
Ah ! why doth she sing again ? 

She mourns, like the sweet wind grieving in 

The pines on an autumn night ; 
She will fade, like the fading Evening, 
When Hesper is blooming bright : 
And her song ? — it must take its flight ! 
So pretty a song 
Must die ere long, 
Like a too, too sharp delight ! 

She was — like the rose in summer; 

She is — like the lily frail ; 
Yet, they '11 welcome the sweet new-comer, 
Below, in the regions pale ! 
And the ghost will forget his pain, 
As he roams through the dusk alone : 
And We 7 — We will mourn in vain. 
O'er the Shadow of beauty flown ! 

182 SONGS. 


Look gently on me ! Thou dost move 
(Yet why ?) thine eyes away ! 

Dost dream that I could harm thee, Love, 
Or thy sweet soul betray ? 

Know better ! Some may seek their end, 
Through all bad deeds that be : 

But I — beyond the world thy friend — 
Can never injure thee ! 

My love, my woe, I not deny ; 

And I cannot from them flee : 
But — if thou biddest — I can die 

Far — far away from thee ! 


Sweet sights, sweet scents, sweet sounds. 

All to my sweet Love hie : 
Some go their viewless rounds ; 

Some sail before her eye ; 
But the sweetest — O, the sweetest. 

Deep in her bosom lie ! 

The violet comes to woo her, 

With an eye like Heaven above ; 

Night's sweet bird mourns unto her ; 
Soft winds all round her rove ; 

And tender — tenderest thoughts pursue her, 
With a voice as sweet as love ! 

SONGS. 183 


'T IS Night ! 't is Night, — the Hour of hours, 
When Love hes down with folded wings, 

By Psyche in her starless bowers, 
And down his fatal arrows flings, — 

Those bowers whence not a sound is heard, 

Save only from the bridal bird, 

Who 'midst that utter darkness sings : 

This her burthen soft and clear, — 

Love is here ! Love is here ! 

'T is Night ! The moon is on the stream ; 

Bright spells are on the soothed sea ; 
And Hope, the child, is gone to dream 

Of pleasures which may never be ! 
And now is haggard Care asleep ; 

Now doth the widow Sorrow smile ; 
And slaves are hushed in slumber deep, 

Forgetting grief and toil awhile ! 

What sight can fierj'- morning shew 

To shame the stars or pale moonlight ? 
What bounty can the day bestow. 

Like that which falls from gentle Night ? 

Sweet Lady, sing I not aright ? 
O, turn and tell me ! — for the day 
Is faint and fading fast away ; 
And now comes back the Hour of hours. 

When Love his lovelier mistress seeks. 
And sighs, like winds 'mong evening flowers, 

Until the maiden Silence speaks ! 

184 SONGS. 

Fair girl, methinks — nay, hither turn 
Those eyes, which 'mid their blushes burn — 
Methinks, at such a time one's heart 
Can better bear both sweet and smart, — 
Love's look — the first — which never dieth, 
Or Death — who comes when Beauty flieth. 
When strength is slain, when youth is past, 
And all, save Truth, is lost at last ! 


Child of my heart ! My sweet, beloved First-born ! 
Thou dove who tidings bring'st of calmer hours ! 
Thou rainbow who dost shine when all the showers 
Are past, — or passing ! Rose which hath no thorn, — 
No spot, no blemish, — pure, and unforlorn ! 
Untouched, untainted ! O my Flower of flowers ! 
More welcome than to bees are summer bowers, 
To stranded seamen life-assuring morn ! 
Welcome, — a thousand welcomes ! Care, who clings 
Round all, seems loosening now its serpent fold : 
New hope springs upward ; and the bright World seems 
Cast back into a youth of endless springs ! 
Sweet mother, is it so ? — or grow I old, 
Bewildered in divine Elysian dreams ? 

November, 1825. 

SONGS. 185 


Send down thy winged angel, God ! 

Amidst this night so wild ; 
And bid him come where now we watch, 

And breathe upon our child ! 

She lies upon her pillow, pale. 

And moans within her sleep. 
Or wakeneth with a patient smile, 

And striveth not to weep ! 

How gentle and how good a child 

She is, we know too well. 
And dearer to her parents' hearts 

Than our weak words can tell. 

We love, — we watch throughout the night, 

To aid, when need may be ; 
We hope, — and have despaired, at times ; 

But now we turn to Thee ! 

Send down thy sweet-souled angel, God ! 

Amidst the darkness wild, 
And bid him soothe our souls to-night, 

And heal our gentle child ! 

186 SONGS. 


My Love is journeying o'er the sea ! 

God guard her on the deep ! 
And force the Ocean harms to flee, 

And bid the tempests sleep ! 
To-night she leaves our English strand, 
To sail unto the Indian land ! 

She goes, all ignorant of my love ! 

And fit it thus should be ! 
For why should waves or winds above 

Bear hopeless sighs from me ? 
'T is better I should bear — in vain, 
Than she should answer — pain for pain ! 

Bright Stars, look gently on her sleep ! 

Sweet guardian Heaven, enfold her round ; 
And quell all madness in the deep ; 

And banish from the air its sound ! 
O, guard her from all ill, — all strife ; 
And bless her through the bloom of life ! 


His love is hidden, like the springs 

Which lie in Earth's deep heart below ; 

And murmur there a thousand things 
Which nought above may hear or know. 

'T is hid, not buried ! Without sound, 
Or light, or limit, night and day. 

It (like the dark springs underground) 
Runs, ebbs not, and ne'er can decay ! 

SONGS. 187 


Why art thou, Love ! so fair, so young ? 
Why is that sad, sweet music hung, 
For ever, on thy gentle tongue ? 

Why art thou fond ? Why art thou fair ? 
Why sitteth, in thy soft eye. Care ? 
Why smil'st thou in such sweet despair ? 

Youth, Beauty fade, — like summer roses : 
Sad music sadder love discloses : 
Dark Care in darker death reposes ! 

All 's vain ! the rough world careth not 
For thee, — for me, — for our dark lot. 
We love. Sweet, but to be forgot ! 

We love, — and meet the world's sharp scorn : 
We live, — to die some common mom, — 
Unknown, unwept, and still forlorn ! 
Why, dear one, why, — why were we born } 


Sister, I cannot read to-day! 

Before my eyes the letters stream ; 
Now, — one by one, — they fade away. 

Like shadows in a dream : 
All seems a fancy, half forgot : 
Sweet sister, do I dream or not } 

I cannot work ; I cannot rest ; 

I cannot sing — nor think, to-day : 

188 SONGS. 

The wild heart panteth in my breast. 

As though 't would break away. 
Why — wherefore — Ah, girl ! ease my woe, 
And tell me — why he tarrieth so ! 


Methinks I fain would lie by the lone Sea, 

And hear the waters their white music weave ! 

Methinks it were a pleasant thing to grieve, 

So that our sorrows might companioned be 

By that strange harmony 

Of winds and billows, and the living sound 

Sent down from Heaven when the Thunder speaks, 

Unto the listening shores and torrent creeks. 

When the swollen Sea doth strive to burst his bound ! 

Methinks, when tempests come and kiss the Ocean, 

Until the vast and terrible billows wake, 

I see the writhing of that curled snake. 

Which men of old believed, — and my emotion 

Warreth within me, till the fable reigns 

God of my fancy, and my curdling veins 

Do homage to that serpent old. 

Which clasped the great world in its fold. 

And brooded over earth, and the charmed sea. 

Like endless, restless, drear Eternity ! 

SONGS. 189 


Hither come, at close of day, 

And o'er this dust, sweet Mothers, pray ! 
A little infant lies within, 
Who never knew the name of sin. 

Beloved, — bright, — and all our own ; 

Like morning fair, — and sooner flown ! 

No leaves or garlands wither here. 

Like those in foreign lands ; 
No marble hides our dear one's bier, 

The work of alien hands : 
The months it lived, the name it bore, 
The silver telleth, — nothing more ! 

No more ; — yet Silence stalketh round 

This vault so dim and deep, 
And Death keeps watch without a sound. 

Where all lie pale and sleep ; 
But palest here, and latest hid. 
Is He — beneath this coffin lid. 

How fair he was, — how very fair, — 

What dreams we pondered o'er. 
Making his life so long and clear, 

His fortunes flowing o'er ; 
Our hopes — (that he would happy be, 

When we ourselves were old,) 
The scenes we saw, or hoped to see, — 

They 're soon and sadly told. 
All was a dream ! — it came and fled, 
And left us here, among the dead ! 

190 SONGS. 

Pray, Mothers, pray, at close of day. 
While we, sad parents, weep alway ! 
Pray, too, (and softly be 't and long,) 
That all your babes, now fair and strong, 
May blossom like — not hke the rose. 
For that doth fade when summer goes, — 
('T was thus our pretty infant died, 
The summer and its mother's pride !) 
But, like some stern, enduring tree. 
That reacheth its green century, 
May grow, may flourish, — then decay, 
After a long, calm, happy day. 
Made happier by good deeds to men, 
And hopes in heaven to meet again ! 

Pray ! — From the happy, prayer is due ; 
While we — ('t is all we now can do !) 
Will check our tears, and pray with you. 


Dreadst thou lest thou shouldst die unknown ? 

What matter ? All the strength of Fame 
And Death have this poor power alone, — 

To give thee an uncertain name. 

The critic dull and envious bard 
Will quarrel o'er thine ashes dear ; 

That past, — thy single sad reward 
Must be some lonely lover's tear 1 

SONGS. 191 


ToTJCH US gently, Time ! 

Let us glide adown thy stream 
Gently, — as we sometimes glide 

Through a quiet dream ! 
Humble voyagers are We, 
Husband, wife, and children three — 
(One is lost, — an angel, fled 
To the azure overhead !) 

Touch us gently. Time ! 

We 've not proud nor soaring wings : 
Our ambition, our content, 

Lies in simple things. 
Humble voyagers are We, 
O'er Life's dim, unsounded sea. 
Seeking only some calm clime ; — 
Touch us gently^ gentle Time ! 


" What is there on this dark, cold bank, 

That thou so long hast sought .-' 
Methinks these briers and rushes dank, — 
This hollow, with the wild grass rank, — 

Shew nothing worth a thought ! " 

" I seek what thou canst value not. 

What thou canst never see, — 
Soft eyes, by all but me forgot. 
Which here — ay, on this dark, cold spot — 

Bent their last look on me ! " 

192 SONGS. 


Sweet be her dreams, the fair, the young ! 

Grace, Beauty, breathe upon her ! 
Music, haunt thou about her tongue ! 

Life, fill her path with honor ! 

All golden thoughts, all wealth of days. 
Truth, Friendship, Love, surround her ! 

So may she smile till life be closed. 
And Angel hands have crowned her ! 


He died, and left the world behind ! 

His once wild heart is cold ! 
His once keen eye is quelled and blind ! 

What more ? — His tale is told. 

He came, and, baring his heaven-bright thought. 

He earned the base World's ban : 
And, — having vainly lived and taught, 

Gave place to a meaner man ! 




l — a song for the new year. 


The Old Year is gone ! 

And the young New Year is coming ! 

Through minutes, and days, and unknown skies, 

My soul on her forward journey flies ; 

Over the regions of rain and snow ; 

And beyond where the wild March-trumpets blow 

And I see the meadows, all cowslip-strewn ; 

And I dream of the dove in the greenwood lone ; 

And the wild bee humming : — 

And all because the New Year is coming ! 

The Winter is cold, the Winter is gray. 

But he hath not a sound on his tongue to-day : 

The son of the stormy Autumn, he 

Totters about on a palsied knee. 

With a frozen heart and a feeble head : 

Let us pierce a barrel and drink him dead ! 

196 SONGS. 

The fresh New Year is almost here ; 
Let us warm him with mistletoe boughs, my dear ! 
Let us welcome him hither, with songs and wine, 
Who holdeth such joys in his arms divine I 

What is the Past, — to you, or me, 
But a thing that was, and was to be ? 
And now it is gone to a world unknown ; 
Its deeds are done ; its flight is flown ! 

Hark to The Past ! In a bitter tone, 
It crieth, " The good Old Year is flown," — 
The sire of a thousand thoughtful hours. 
Of a thousand songs, of a thousand flowers ! 
Ah ! why, thou ungrateful child of rhyme, 
Rail'st thou at the deeds of our father Time ? 
Hath he not fed thee, day by day. 
With fancies that soothe thy soul alway ? 
Hath he not 'wakened, with pleasant pain, 
The Muse that slept in thy teeming brain ? 
Hath he not — ah ! dost thou forget 
All the amount of the mighty debt ? 

Hush, hush ! — The little J owe to Time 

I '11 pay him, some day, with a moody rhyme, — 

Full of phantasmas, dark and drear. 

As the shadows thrown down by the old Old Year,- 

Dim as the echoes that lately fell 

From the deep Night's funereal bell, 

Sounding hollow o'er hill and vale. 

Like the close of a mournful tale ! 

SONGS. 197 

.... In the mean time, — speak, trump and drum ! 
The Year is gone ! the Year is come ! 
The fresh New Year, the bright New Year, 
That telleth of hope and joy, my dear ! 
Let us model our spirit to chance and change, 
Let us lesson our spirit to hope, and range 
Through pleasures tocome, — through years unknown ; 
But never forget the time that 's flown ! 

n. -LONDON. 

O, WHEN I was a little boy, 

How often was I told 
Of London, and its silver walls. 

And pavements all of gold ; 
Of women all so beautiful. 

And men so true and bold. 
And how all things 'tween earth and sky 

Were therein bought and sold. 

And so I came to London : 

'T was on a summer's day. 
And I walked at times and rode at times, 

And whistled all the way ; 
And the blood rushed to my head. 

When Ben, the wagoner, did say, — 
" Here 's London, boy, the Queen of towns, 

As proud as she is gay." 

198 SONGS. 

I listened, and I looked about, 

And questioned, and — behold ! 
The walls were not of silver. 

The pavement was not gold ; 
But women, O, so beautiful. 

And — may I say — so bold, 
I saw, and Ben said, — "All things here 

Are to be bought and sold." 

And I found they sold the dearest things ; 

The mother sold her child, 
And the sailor sold his life away 

To plough the waters wild ; 
And Captains sold commissions 

To young gentlemen so mild. 
And some thieves sold their brother thieves. 

Who hanged were or exiled. 

And critics sold their paragraphs ; 

And poets sold their lays ; 
And great men sold their little men 

With votes of "Ays " and " Nays " ; 
And parsons sold their holy words. 

And blessed rich men's ways ; 
And women sold their love — (for life, 

Or only a few days). 

'T was thus with all : — For gold, bright Art 

Her radiant flag unfurled ; 
And the young rose let its unblown leaves 

Be cankered and uncurled ; 

SONGS. 199 

For gold, against the tender heart 

The liar's darts were hurled ; 
And soldiers, whilst Fame's trumpet blew. 

Dared death across the world. 

And so, farewell to London ! 

Where men do sell and buy 
All things that are (of good and bad) 

Beneath the awful sky ; 
Where some win wealth, and many want ; 

Some laugh, and many sigh : 
Till, at last, all folks, from king to clown. 

Shut up their books, and — die ! 


Let poets coin their golden dreams ; 
Let lovers weave their vernal themes ; 

And paint the earth all fair. 
To me no such bright fancies throng : 
I sing a humble hearthstone song 

Of thee, — my old Arm-chair ! 

Poor — faded — ragged — crazy — old, — 
Thou 'rt yet worth thrice thy weight in gold ; 

Ay, though thy back be bare : 
For thou hast held a world of worth, 
A load of heavenly human earth, — 

My old Arm-chair ! 

200 SONGS. 

Here sate, — ah, many a year ago, — 
When, young, I nothing cared to know 

Of life, or its great aim, — 
Friends (gentle hearts) who smiled and shed 
Brief sunshine on my boyish head : 

At last the wild clouds came, — 

And vain desires, and hopes dismayed. 
And fears that cast the earth in shade, 

My heart did fret ; 
And dreaming wonders, foul and fair ; 
And who then filled mine ancient, 

I now forget. 

Then Love came — Love ! — without his wings. 
Low murmuring here a thousand things 

Of one I once thought fair : 
'T was here he laughed, and bound my eyes. 
Taking me, boy, by sweet surprise. 

Here, — in my own Arm-chair. 

How I escaped from that soft pain, 
And (nothing lessoned) fell again 

Into another snare. 
And how again Fate set me free. 
Are secrets 'tween my soul and me, — 

Me, and my old Arm-chair. 

Years fade : — Old Time doth all he can : 
The soft youth hardens into man ; 
The vapor Fame 

SONGS. 201 

Dissolves ; Care's scars indent our brow ; 
Friends fail us in our need : — but Thou 
Art still the same. 

Thou bring'st calm thoughts ; strange dreamings ; sleep ; 
And fancies subtle (sometimes deep) ; 

And the unseen Air 
Which round thy honored tatters plays 
Bears with it thoughts of other days, 

That quell despair. 

Let the world turn, then, — wrong or right ; 
Let the hired critic spit his spite : 

With thee, old friend. 
With thee, companion of my heart, 
I '11 still try on the honest part, 

Unto the end ! 


iv. — il penseroso and l'allegro. 

Old Thames ! thy merry waters run 
Gloomily now, without star or sun ! 
The wind blows o'er thee, wild and loud. 
And Heaven is in its death-black shroud ; 
And the rain comes down with all its might. 
Darkening the face of the sullen Night. 

Midnight dies ! There booms a sound, 

From all the church-towers thundering round : 

Their echoes into each other run. 

And sing out the grand Night's awful " one " ! 

Saint Bride, — Saint Sepulchre, — great Saint Paul, 

Unto each other, in chorus, call ! 

Who speaks ? — 'T was nothing : — the patrol grim 
Moves stealthily over the pavement dim : 
The debtor dreams of the gripe of law ; 
The harlot goes staggering to her straw ; 
And the drunken robber and beggar bold 
Laugh loud, as they limp by the Bailey Old. 

Hark, — I hear the blood in a felon's heart ! 
I see him shiver, — and heave, — and start 
(Does he cry?) from his last short, bitter slumber, 
To find that his days have reached their number, — 
To feel that there comes, with the morning text. 
Blind death, and the scaffold, and then — what next ? 

SONGS. 203 

Sound, stormy Autumn ! Brazen bell, 

Into the morning send your knell ! 

Mourn, Thames ! keep firm your chant of sorrow : 

Mourn, men ! for a fellow-man dies to-morrow. 

Alas 1 none mourn ; none care : — the debt 

Of pity the whole wide world forget ! 

... 'T is dawn, — 't is Day ! In floods of light 
He drives back the dark and shrinking Night. 
The clouds ? — they 're lost. The rains ? — they 're fled ; 
And the streets are alive with a busy tread : 
And thousands are thronging, with gossip gay. 
To see how a felon wiU die to-day. 

The thief is abroad in his last new dress, 

Earning his bread in the thickest press ; 

The idler is there, and the painter fine. 

Studying a look for his next design ; 

The fighter, the brawler, the drover strong ; 

And all curse that the felon should stay so long. 

At last, — he comes ! With a heavy tread. 

He mounts, — he reels, — he drops, — he 's dead! 

The show is over ! — the crowd depart, 

Each with a laugh and a merry heart. 

— Hark 1 merrily now the bells are ringing : 

The Thames on his careless way is springing : 

The bird on the chimney-top is singing : 

Now, who will say 

That Earth is not gay. 

Or that Heaven is not brighter than yesterday ? 

204 SONGS. 

v.— wrnirN and wixHOFr. 



The winds are bitter ; the skies are wild ; 

From the roof comes plunging the drowning rain 
Without, in tatters, the world's poor child 

Sobbeth abroad her grief, her pain ! 
No one heareth her, no one heedeth her : 

But Hunger, her friend, with his bony hand, 
Grasps her throat, whispering huskily, — 

" What dost Thou in a Christian land ? " 

The skies are wild, and the blast is cold ; 

Yet riot and luxury brawl within : 
Slaves are waiting, in crimson and gold, 

Waiting the nod of a child of sin. 
The fire is crackling, wine is bubbling 

Up in each glass to its beaded brim : 
The jesters are laughing, the parasites quaffing 

" Happiness," — " honor," — and all for him ! 

She who is slain in the winter weather, 
Ah ! she once had a village fame ; 

SONGS. 205 

Listened to love on the moonlit heather ; 

Had gentleness, — vanity, — maiden shame : 
Now, her allies are the Tempest howling ; 

Prodigal's curses ; self-disdain ; 
Poverty ; misery : Well, — no matter ; 

There is an end unto every pain ! 

The harlot's fame was her doom to-day, 

Disdain, — despair ; by to-morrow's light 
The ragged boards and the pauper's pall ; 

And so she '11 be given to dusty night ! 
. • . Without a tear or a human sigh, 

She 's gone, — poor life and its " fever " o'er ! 
So, let her in calm oblivion lie ; 

While the world runs merry £is heretofore ! 

He who yon lordly feast enjoyeth, 

He who doth rest on his couch of down, 
He it was who threw the forsaken 

Under the feet of the trampling town : 
Liar, — betrayer, — false as cruel, 

What is the doom for his dastard sin ? 
His peers, they scorn ? — high dames, they shun him ? 

— Unbar yon palace, and gaze within. 

Tliere, — yet his deeds are all trumpet-sounded, — 

There, upon silken seats recline 
Maidens as fair as the summer morning, 

Watching him rise from the sparkling wine. 


Mothers all proffer their stainless daughters ; 

Men of high honor salute him " friend " ; 
Skies ! O, where are your cleansing waters ? 

World ! O, where do thy wonders end ? 



I HAVE a Friend who loveth me, 
And sendeth me Ale of Trinitie : 
A very good fellow is my true friend, 
With talents and virtues without end ; 
Filled with Learning's very best seed ; 
Ready to think (or drink, at need) ; 
In short, a very good fellow indeed : 
But the best of all is, as it seems to me, 
That he yieldeth the Ale of Trinitie. 

O, Trinitie Ale is stout and good, 

Whether in bottle it be or wood : 

'T is good at morning, 't is good at night ; 

(Ye should drink whilst the liquor is bubbling bright :) 

'T is good for man, woman, and child. 

Being neither too strong, nor yet too mild : 

It strengthens the body ; it strengthens the mind ; 

And hitteth the toper's taste refined. 

Once, — once, I believed that the famous Cam 
Was a riddle, a cheat, an enormous Flam, 

SONGS. 207 

Vamped up by tutors of Hall and College ; 

(Who 've a great deal of learning and little knowledge ;) 

But now — I acknowledge, with tears of shame, 

That the river it meriteth thrice its fame ; 

For, with it, — though seemingly poor and pale, 

Men manufacture — The Mighty Ale ! 

Alma Mater ! Thou mother kind, 
Who traineth the youthful human mind 
(By circles, and squares, and classic stories,) 
Until it arrives at Earth's high glories, 
Who, — who, amongst all thy children, dare 
With the bright Trinitie boys compare ? 
Mingling their ale with bookish learning. 
They acquire by such means keen discerning. 
And thus (in a circle arguing) steer 
Between the extremes of books and beer. 
Other men, — somehow or other, — pine 
Whether they trust to Greek or wine. 

O, in truth, it gladdens the heart to see 

What may spring from the Ale of Trinitie, — 

A scholar, — a fellow, — a rector blithe, 

(Fit to take a7iy amount of tithe,) — 

Perhaps a bishop, — perhaps, by grace. 

One may mount to the Archiepiscopal place, 

And wield the crosier, an awful thing, 

The envy of all, and — the parsons' King ! 

O Jove ! who would struggle with Learning pale. 

That could beat down the world by the strength of Ale ! 

208 SONGS. 

For me, — I avow, could my thoughtless prime 
Come back with the wisdom of mournful time, 
I 'd labor — 1 'd toil — by night and day, 
(Mixing liquor and books away,) 
Till I conquered that high and proud degree, 
M. A. (Master of Ale) of Trinitie. 

Ale ! Ale, if properly understood, 
Promoteth a brotherly neighborhood. 
Now, what can be better, on winter night. 
When the fagot is blazing bright. 
And your friend is perplexed how to kill the time, 
With " Useful Knowledge," or idle rhyme, 
To step in and say, — " Neighbor, I think 
Your Trinitie Ale must be fit to drink ? 
Let 's try it." He answers, " With all my soul ! ' 
And in the capacious tumblers roll : 
Hark, — to the music rich and rare ! 
.Note, — how it stealeth the sting from Care I 
Behold, — both Pride and Prudery bend. 
And each man groweth a warmer friend. 
I repeat it, that Ale, if understood, 
Promoteth a brotherly neighborhood. 
Why, some time since, we were enemies all 
In our small village, — the short, the tall ; 
The old, the young ; the dull, the bright ; 
Churchman, Simeonite, Puseyite : 
But now, we are knit into one firm band. 
By Sir John Barleycorn's high command : 
No more envy, no more strife. 
But tipplers honest and friends for life. 

SONGS. 209 

It would do good both to your head and heart, 

Could you see how each playeth his social part, 

In a bumper, a song, or a round of wit. 

Jolly philosophers ! here we sit, — 

Ten reformed tea-totallers, all 

Pulled up before Chief-Magistrate Hall, 

Merely for moistening a dry lip ; 

And again before Justice Broderip ; 

Ten bold widowers, each forlorn 

Until he had been at Highgate sworn ; 

Ten thick squires, with brains made clear 

By the irresistible strength of beer ; 

Ten plurality Vicars (sent 

By Heaven, — to take commutation rent) ; 

Ten prebendaries ; Canons ten ; 

(All very fat, virtuous men) : 

And, last of us, / — who offer to thee 

(I, — scribe of this choice society), 

With grateful glee, 

Postage free. 

These rhymes for thy dozens of Trinitie. 


210 SONGS. 


Within the midnight of her hair, 

Half hidden in its deepest deeps, 

A single, peerless, priceless pearl, 

(All filmy-eyed,) for ever sleeps. 

Without the diamond's sparkling eyes, 

The ruby's blushes, — there it lies. 

Modest as the tender dawn, 

When her purple veil 's withdrawn, — 

The flower of gems, a lily cold and pale ! 

Yet, — what doth all avail ? 

All its beauty, all its grace .? 

All the honors of its place ? 

He who plucked it from its bed. 

In the far blue Indian ocean, 

Lieth, without life or motion, 

In his earthy dwelling, — dead ! 

And his children, one by one, 

When they look upon the sun. 

Curse the toil, by which he drew 

The treasure from its bed of blue. 

* It is recorded of a pearl-diver, that he died (from over-exer- 
tion) immediately after he had reached land, having brought up 
with him, amongst other shells, one that contained a pearl of sur- 
passing size and beauty. 

SONGS. 211 

Gentle Bride, no longer wear, 
In thy night-black odorous hair, 
Such a spoil. It is not fit 
That a tender soul should sit 
Under such accursed gem ! 
What need'st thou a diadem ? — 
Thou, within whose eastern eyes 
Thought (a starry Genius) lies ? — 
Thou, whom Beauty has arrayed ? — 
Thou, whom Love and Truth have made 
Beautiful, — in whom we trace 
Woman's softness ; angel's grace ; 
All we hope for ; all that streams 
Upon us in our haunted dreams ? 

O sweet Lady ! cast aside, 
With a gentle, noble pride, 
All to sin or pain allied ! 
Let the wild-eyed conqueror wear 
The bloody laurel in his hair ! 
Let the black and snaky vine 
'Round the drinker's temples twine ! 
Let the slave-begotten gold 
Weigh on bosoms hard and cold ! 
But be THOU for ever known 
By thy natural light alone ! 

212 SONGS. 


The Autumn winds are sounding wild ; — 
Sad Nature, mourn'st thou for thy child, 
From the fresh air and green fields driven, 
And all the beauteous face of Heaven, 
Into the wilderness of stone ; 
Destined there to dwell alone. 
Toiling upwards, day by day. 
For the Fame that lives for aye. 
And for Fortune (golden sun). 
And all else that must be won ? 

Evening falls : the sky is wild ; 
And cloud on mountain cloud is piled, 
And the black Tempest o'er the plain 
Comes moaning in his wrath of rain, — 
Comes chiding, like an angry friend, 
That I should leave thee. Old Grove End ! 
Ah, well ! Time toas, when thou and I 
Were all in all, beneath the sky. 
Unto each other ; when I played 
Upon thy grass ; beneath thy shade ; 
Before thy hundred branching vines ; 
And where Ayr's wanderer rose entwines 
The gray wall in its thorny arms. 
And loved and laughed on all thy charms ! 
Farewell ! — Farewell each path and lawn. 
Each tree whose music met the dawn, — 

SONGS. 213 

Laburnums, with your drops of gold ; 

Broad Plane ; Dark Mulberry, rich and old, 

Rough-visaged, raining blood-red fruit, 

(Which ladies' lips did sometimes suit, 

As sweet tunes match the sweeter lute :) 

Farewell, twin Poplars, — mine no more, — 

Whom I in boyhood taught to soar ; 

(Why stand ye murmuring, mom and eve ? 

Is it for me ye strive to grieve ? ) 

And thou, wild Giant Plant, who clingest 

Column and trelliced arch about. 

And shadows in thy vast leaves bringest. 

Shutting the fiery West all out ; 

And you, ye myriad-colored flowers. 

Sweet playmates of the sunshine hours. 

Farewell ! — Farewell the dreams of youth ; 

When life was joy ; when hope was truth ; 

When days were cloudless; Time too brief; 

And my pillow was the Poppy leaf: 

When all the world was frank and true ; 

Wlien Heaven was one eternal blue ; — 

Farewell ! — and Thou, — nurse, guardian, friend, 

Farewell for ever, — Old Grove End ! 

214 SONGS. 


(a faint impression of HOGARTH.) 

The Old Man is dead ! — Toll heavily, ye bells ! 

The Son, the heir, is coming, — hark ! the music how it 

swells ! 
That roar and shock of merriment strikes sadly on the 

heart : 
Joy is here, almost ere Death has yet had leisure to depart : 
And the last of that dark funeral (the holy rite scarce done) 
Cries out, — " The Father 's buried, friends : Long life 

unto the Son ! " 

From out the miser mansion is swept the black array : 
The windows are unbarred, and straight in dances merry 

The cold, grim hearth is blazing : the cellars shed their 

wine ; 
The chests give up their hoarded souls, and the Sake 

saith, — " All is mine ! " 
Yet the first debt that he pays is with an oath, — for 

virtue won, 
(And lost, alas !) — and so begin the triumphs of the Son. 

The Rake dawns forth in scarlet: his ears are deaf 

with praise ; 
The fencer and the fiddler and the jockey court his gaze : 
The poet mouths his stanzas ; the bully, with a curse. 
Swears how he '11 cut a throat for him, and only asks — 

his purse. 

SONGS. 215 

O Steward of the needy, be careful of thy prize ; 
Above thee beams the firmament : Thy way is to the 
skies : 

No, no : his doom is earthly ; coarse, earthly are his joys, 
Black wine and wild-eyed women round him stun the 

night with noise ; 
And one, a painted Thais, doth fire a painted world ; 
And others round the dizzy room in drunken dance are 

whirled : 
Foul songs are met by fouler jibes ; mad screams by 

curses bold ; 
Till even the drowsy watchman wakes, and — claims 

his bribe in gold. 

But pleasures are not endless, however far we range ; 
And summer friendship faileth, and golden seasons 

change : 
And then the fierce-eyed creditor comes clamoring for 

his debt ; 
And all who fed upon the Rake are eager to forget. 
The bailifTs are upon him, — ah ! he 's saved : A gentle 

Redeems him : 't is a Magdalen who plays an angel's part. 

For once the rescue serveth : But blacker days may be ; 
And how to live he ponders, and still riot with the free : 
He sells his youth, his manhood : takes sour Old Age to 

And thus (for a nauseous respite) twists a serpent round 

his life : 

216 SONGS. 

That sting will drive him frantic, — ay ! the dice are in 

his hands ; 
And the terrible eye of Morning sees him beggared 

where he stands. 

What followeth in the story ? Why, horror and the jail ; 

Where food is not, and fire is not, and every friend doth 

Where each jailer is a robber, and each prisoner 'round 
a foe ; 

Where nothing linketh heart to heart, — not even the 
common woe. 

One hope he had : — 't is vanished ! He sits down with 
vacant stare. 

And the game of life abandons, with the quiet of de- 
spair : ' 

And then — The Madhouse opens ! Look round ; — 

he cannot : Blight 
And frenzy hang about his brain, and blind his staring 

sight : 
In vain pope, king, sit crowned ; in vain the martyr raves; 
In vain the herds of idiots sit chattering o'er their graves : 
He heareth not ; he seeth not : all sense is dimmed by 

pain : 
Ambition, Pride, Religion, Fear, scream out to him in 


And yet, O human Virtue ! Thou never canst escape : 
Thou comest here, as everywhere, in woman's angel 
shape : 

SONGS, 217 

The loved, the lost, the ruined One, — She leaves him 

not at last ; 
But soothes and serves about him, till the damps of 

death are past : 
His hmbs she then composes, — weeps, — prays, — 

(they heed her not;) 
Then glides away in silence, — like a benefit forgot ! 


Thirteen years ago, mother, 

A little child had you : 
Its limbs were light ; its voice was soft ; 

Its eyes were — O, so blue ! 
It was your last, your dearest ; 

And you said, when it was born, 
It cheered away your widowhood. 

And made you unforlorn. 

Thirteen years ago, mother. 

You loved that little child ; 
Although its temper wayward was. 

And its will so strong and wild : 
You likened it to the free bird 

That flies to the woods to sing. 

318 SONGS. 

To the river fair, the unfettered air, 
And many a pretty thing. 

Thirteen years ago, mother, 

The world was in its youth : 
There was no past : and the all to come 

Was Hope, and Love, and Truth : 
The dawn came dancing onwards, 

The day was ne'er too long ; 
And every night had a faery sight. 

And every voice a song. 

Thirteen years ago, mother. 

Your child was an infant small ; 
But she grew, and budded, and bloomed at last, 

Like the rose on your garden wall : 
Ah ! the rose that you loved was trod on. 

Your child was lost in shame ; 
And never since hath she met your smile. 

And never heard your name ! 


Be dumb, thou gipsy slanderer ; 

What is my child to thee ? 
What are my troubles, — what my joys ? 

Here, take these pence and flee ! 
If thou wilt frame a story, 

Which telleth of me or mine. 
Go, say you found me singing, girl, 

In the merry sunshine. 

SONGS. 219 


Thirteen years ago, mother, 

The sun shone on your wall : 
He shineth now through the winter's mist, 

Or he shineth not at all. 
You laughed then, and your little one 

Ran round with merry feet ; 
To-day you hide your eyes in tears ; 

And I — am in the street ! 


Ah, God ! — what frightful spasm 

Runs piercing through my heart : 
It cannot be my bright one. 

So pale, — so worn : — Depart, 
Depart, — yet, no ; come hither ! 

Here, — hide thee in my breast ! 
I see thee again, — again ! and I 

Am once more with the blessed ! 


Ay, — gaze ! — 'T is I, indeed, mother ; 

Your loved, — your lost, — your child ! 
The rest of the bad world scorn me. 

As a creature all defiled ; 
But you, — you '11 take me home, mother } 

And I, — though the grave seems nigh, 
I '11 bear up still ; and, for your sake, 

I '11 struggle — not to die ! 

220 SONGS. 

(for music.) 

Steew boughs, — strew flowers, 

Through all the hours. 

On yon low tomb ! 

Unblown, yet faded, 

Unloved, unknown. 

Here Beauty sleepeth beneath a stone ; 

Once how fair, but now degraded ! 

Hither she came, alone — alone. 

From the South Sea bowers. 

Where summer dowers 

The world with bloom : 

Mingle with music the strange perfume ! 

Let the tears of the Hours 

Now fall like rain, 

And freshen the flowers. 

Again, again ! 

The sweetness they borrow 

Shall ne'er be vain. 

While human sorrow 

Is falling in showers. 

That yield no comfort to human pain ! 

SONGS 221 


The owl to her mate is calling ; 

The river his hoarse song sings ; 
But the Oak is marked for falling, 

That has stood for a hundred springs. 
Hark ! — a blow, and a dull sound follows ; 

A second, — he bows his head ; 
A third, — and the wood's dark hollows 

Now know that their king is dead. 

His arms from their trunk are riven ; 

His body all barked and squared ; 
And he 's now, like a felon, driven 

In chains to the strong dock-yard : 
He 's sawn through the middle, and turned 

For the ribs of a frigate free ; 
And he 's caulked, and pitched, and burned ; 

And now — he is fit for sea ! 

O, now, with his wings outspread 

Like a ghost (if a ghost may be). 
He will triumph again, though dead. 

And be dreaded in every sea ! 
The Lightning will blaze about. 

And wrap him in flaming pride ; 
And the thunder-loud cannon will shout. 

In the fight, from his bold broad-side. 

222 SONGS. 

And when he has fought, and won, 

And been honored from shore to shore, 
And his journey on earth is done, — 

Why, what can he ask for more ? 
There is nought that a king can claim, 

Or a poet or warrior bold. 
Save a rhyme and a short-lived name. 

And to mix with the common mould ! 


Day dawned : — Within a curtained room, 
Filled to faintness with perfume, 
A lady lay at point of doom. 

Day closed : — A Child had seen the light ; 
But for the lady, fair and bright, 
She rested in undreaming night. 

Spring rose : — The lady's grave was seen ; 
And near it oftentimes was seen 
A gentle Boy, with thoughtful mien. 

Years fled : — He wore a manly face, 
And struggled in the world's rough race, 
And won, at last, a lofty place. 

And then — he died ! Behold, before ye, 

Humanity's poor sum and story ; 

Life, — Death, — and all that is of Glory. 

SONGS. 223 


Low lies the grave wherein a Stranger sleeps ! 

Nought comes to mourn beside that humble ground ; 

Save when, in melancholy Autumn, creeps 

The sullen Adriatic round and round ; 

Or when the sea-bird, with his wings unbound. 

Screams out a dirge, and toward the mountains sweeps ; 

Or when a dead man floats across the deeps ; 

Or clouds, blown landward, pass without a sound ! 

All gloom forsakes the spot whereon she died : 

The merry marriage-bells send forth their chimes ; 

And joy flies upwards as in ancient times : 

Ah, no ! — One tender heart, to hers allied. 

In sorrow sweeter than the poet's rhymes, 

Sings a lament, above the stranger's grave, 

Its murmurs mingling with the ever-murmuring wave. 


Hark ! Music speaks from out the woods and streams ; 

Amidst the winds, amidst the harmonious rain : 
It fills the voice with sweets, the eye with beams ; 

It stirs the heart ; it charms the sting from pain. 

Great Memory hoards it 'midst her golden themes ; 

The wise man keeps it with his learned gain ; 
The minstrel hears it in his listening dreams ; 

And no one, save the fool, doth deem it vain. 

224 SONGS. 

Whatever thing doth bring a joy unstained 
Unto the soul, if rightly understood, 

Is one more ingot to our fortune gained, 
Is wisdom to the wise, good to the good : 

" Sing, then, divine one ! " — Thus a lover sighed 
To one who sate beside him fair and young. 

Preluding with coquettish, conscious pride, 

And checked the half-born music on her tongue 

Sing, maiden, — gentle maiden ! 

Sing for me ; sing to me ; 
With a heart not overladen, 

Nor too full of glee. 
Give thy voice its way divine ; 
Let thine eyes, sweet spirits, shine ; 
Not too bright, but also tender. 
Softness stealing half their splendor. 

Sing, — but toubh a sadder strain, 

Till our eyes are hid in rain. 

Tell of those whose hopes are wrecked 

On that cruel strand, — neglect ; 

Widow poor and unbefriended ; 

Virgin dreams in ruin ended ; 

All the pleasure, all the pain. 

That hideth from the world's disdain. 

Sing, — an airier, blither measure. 
Full and overflown with pleasure ; 

SONGS. 225 

Sing, — with smiles and dimpling mouth, 
Opening like the sunny South, 
When it breathes amongst the roses, 
And a thousand thousand sweets discloses. 

Sing, — fair child of music, sing 

Like love, — hope, — sorrow, — any thing ; 

Like a sparkling, murmuring river, 

Running its blue race for ever ; 

Like the sounds that haunt the Sun, 

When the god's bright day is done ; 

Like the voice of dreaming Night, 

Tender, touching, airy, light. 

Not a wind, but just a breeze 

Moving in the citron-trees ; 

Like the first sweet murnxur creeping 

O'er Love's lips, (when pride is sleeping,) 

Love's first unforgotten word. 

By maiden in the silence heard. 

Heard, hoarded, and repeated oft, 

In mimic whisper, low and soft, — 

Yet, what matter for the strain. 

Be it joy, or be it pain. 
So thy now imprisoned Voice 

In its matchless strength rejoice ; 
So it burst its fetters strong. 

Arid soar forth on winged Song ! 


226 SONGS. 


Where now are those dark Eyes — (sweet eyes !) — 

In tears ? — in thought ? — in sleep ? 
Those lights, like stars in the stormy skies, 

Which gently shine, when all else weep ? 
O dark, unconquered Eyes ! 
Are ye from human anguish freed ? 
Or do ye sometimes mourn indeed. 
In pity, or superior pain, 
For some deep secret hid from all the world, in vain ! 

O melancholy Eyes, which love to dwell 

On Juliet's passion, — Belvidera's woe, — 
Where was the light which now ye wear so well, 

(That tender, touching lustre !) long ago ? 
Did it lie dreaming in your orbs unknown, 

As in the rose's bud the unblown perfume, 
Till evil fortune (now for ever flown) 

Struck out your dazzling doom ? 
For what too dangerous purpose were ye born ? 

To lead the youthful poet far astray ? 

Or, was 't to turn to tears the proud and gay. 
With looks that in their beauty mock the morn ? 

Long may ye shine ; as dark, as bright, as young, 
(Shall age e'er harm ye ?) — as complete in power, 
As when from out Verona's midnight bower 

Upon the moonlight first your glances hung, 

SONGS. 227 

And filled with love the rich, enamored air, 
And made the fair, more fair ! 

Long may ye shine ; undimmed by storm or cloud ; 

Uninjured, unconsumed by grief or pain ; 
Your high, heroic spirit never bowed. 

Your love ne'er lost, your tears ne'er shed — in vain ! 
Long may She live and shine, and have no fear 

Of fatal Fortune or the touch of Time, 
To whom belongs your beauty without peer, 

To whom belongs this slight and careless rhyme ! 


See where, upon the blue and waveless deep, 

Comes forth the silent Moon ! 

Now, Music, wake from out thy charmed sleep ; 

And bid thy sweet soul weep 

Her life away in some immortal tune ! 

Or, let thy soaring spirit run 

Aloft upon some wild, enchanted air, 

Before whose breath despair 

Dies, like a mist before the uprisen sun ! 

Come forth, lost Spirits of the world of sound ! 

Leave, leave awhile your aye-sweet tasks above ; 
And rear your starry heads with music crowned. 

And once more weave an earthly song of love ! 

228 SONGS. 

Weave it around the gentle heart, — 

Handel, Haydn, great Beethoven, 

And thou, sweet, sweet-souled Mozart ! 

Ah ! sure to sing and love must be the angel's part. 

Therefore, pour your skyey treasures, — 

Grand, unknown, immortal measures, 

Such as ne'er the blooming Earth 

Heard since first she burst to birth, 

And in endless ether hung, 

While the stare of Morning suns ! 


Friend ! the year is overgrown : 
Summer like a bird hath flown, 
Leaving nothing (fruits nor flowers) 
Save remembrance of sweet hours ; 
And a fierce and froward season, 
Blowing loud for some rough reason, 
Rusheth from a land unknown. 

Where is laughing INIay, who leapt 
From the ground when April wept .-* 
Where is rose-encumbered June ? 
July, with her lazy noon ? 
August, with her crown of corn ? 
And the fresh September morn .'' 
Will they come back to us, — soon ? - 

SONGS. 229 

Never ! Time is overgrown ! 
All that e'er was good is flown ! 
All things that were good and gay 
(Dances, songs, smiles) have flown away ; 
And we now must sinji together 
Strains more sad than autumn weather ; 
And dance upon a stormy ground. 
Whilst the wild winds pipe around, 
A dark and unforgotten measure, 
Graver than the ghost of pleasure ; 
Till at last, at Winter's call. 
We die, and are forgot by all ! 


Methinks I love all common things ; 
The common air, the common flower ; 

The dear, kind common thought that springs 
From hearts that have no other dower, 
No other wealth, no other power. 

Save love ; and will not that repay 

For all else fortune tears away ? 

Methinks T love the horny hand 
That labors until dusk from dawn ; 

Methinks 1 love the russet band, 
Beyond the band of silk or lawn ; 
And, O, the lovely laughter drawn 

From peasant lips, when sunny May 

Leads in some flowery holiday I 

230 SONGS. 

What good axe fancies rare, that rack 
With painful thought the poet's brain ? 

Alas ! they cannot bear us back 
Unto happy years again ! 
But the white rose without stain 

Bringeth times and thoughts of flowers, 

When youth was bounteous as the hours ! 

E'en now, were I but rich, my hand 
Should open like a vernal cloud. 

When 't casts its bounty on a land 
In music sweet, but never loud : 
But I am of the humble crowd ; 

And thus am I content to be, 

If thou, sweet Muse, wilt cherish me ! 


Send the red wine round to-night, 
For the blast is bitter cold : 
Let us sing a song that 's light ; 
Merry rhymes are good as gold. 

Here 's unto our neighbor's health ! 
O, he plays the better part ; 
Doing good, — but not by stealth : 
Is he not a noble heart } 

Should you bid me tell his name, — 
Show wherein his virtues dwell ; 

SONGS. 231 

'Faith, (I speak it to my shame,) 
I should scarce know what to tell. 

" Is he — ? " — " Sir, he is a thing 
Cast in common human clay ; 
'Tween a beggar and a king ; 
Fit to order or obey." 

" He is, then, a soldier brave ? " — 
" No ; he doth not kill his kin. 
Pampering the luxurious grave 
With the blood and bones of sin." 

" Or a Judge .? " — " He doth not sit 
Making hucksters' bargains plain ; 
Piercing cobwebs with his wit ; 
Cutting tangled knots in twain." 

" He is an Abbot, then, at least .'' " — 
" No, he is not proud and blithe : 
Leaving prayer to humble priest. 
Whilst he champs the golden tithe. 

" He is brave, but he is meek : 
Not as judge or soldier seems ; 
Not like Abbot proud and sleek : 
Yet his dreams are starry dreams, — 

" Such as lit the World of old 
Through the darkness of her way ; 

232 SONGS. 

Such as might, if clearly told, 
Guide blind Future into day. 

" Never hath he sought to rise 
On a friend's or neighbor's fall ; 
Never slurred a foe with lies : 
Never shrunk from hunger's call : 

" But from morning until eve, 
And through Autumn into Spring, 
He hath kept his course, (believe,) 
Courting neither slave nor king. 

" He, — whatever be his name. 

For I know it not aright, — 

He deserves a wider fame ; 

Come, — here 's to his health, to-night ! 


Friend ! desert not thou the Muse ! 

Shun not, — scorn not her control ! 
Thou the yellow dross mayst lose. 

But thou ''It gain the wealth of soul. 
What is gold, unless it bring 

More than gold has ever brought ? 
What is gold, if to it cling 

Narrower vision, meaner thought ? 

SONGS. 233 

They who bid us bend the spirit 

To a base or poor desire, 
Little know what they inherit 

Who unto the skies aspire. 
Let them (if the body claim 

AH their sordid hope and care) 
Leave the poet to his fame, 

His shadowy joy, — his finer air. 

Some there be, who feel no pain. 

So the baser mark they shun, 
Shouting when their end they gain, 

" Joy is joy, — however won." 
To us diviner dreams are given ; 

To us a sweet-voiced angel sings, 
" What were Earth without its Heaven : — 

The Soul without its win^s ? " 


Rains fall ; suns shine ; winds flee ; 
Brooks run ; yet few know how. 
Do not thou too deeply search 
Why thou lov'st me now ! 

Perhaps, by some command 

Sent earthward from above, 

Thy heart was doomed to lean on mine ; 

Mine to enjoy thy love. 

234 SONGS. 

Why ask, when joy doth smile, 
From what bright heaven it fell ? 
Men mar the beauty of their dreams 
By tracing their source too well. 


Love is born in joy. 
And is bred in sorrow. 

Cloudy-dark to-day, 
Sunshiny to-morrow ; 

Changing through each season, 

Without any reason. 

Reason ! — let it bend 

To an instinct finer; 
True as are its rules, 

There is " mind diviner" 
Shining o'er its summing. 
Like an angel's coming ; 

Thoughts that pass the stars. 
Love more sweet than flowers, 

Faith that steadfast shines 
Through the endless hours; 

Brightening every season. 

True, — yet passing reason 

soxGS. 2;?5 

Measure, if thou wilt, 

Light, and air, and ocean ; 
Leave us, undefaced, 

Our divine emotion, — 
Poet's, prophet's story, 
And the world of Glory. 

You, whose poor-house balance 

Weighs out want and crime ; 
You, whose sordid ledgers 

Crush the poet's rhyme, 
Leave us tears and laughter, 
And the hope of hopes, — Eternal bright Hereafter ! 


Bold Henri Quatre ! gay sovereign ! champion strong ! 
Whose life was one wild scene of love and war. 
Here wast thou (thou the heir of all Navarre) 
Nursed to the music of a peasant's song ; 
And well it was, indeed, when thou wast young, 
That fearless Truth and social Nature taught 
Thee lessons, unto monarchs seldom brought ; 
And duties, which to men and kings belong. 

Be sure, when princes learn, — 'midst equal mates. 
Frequent denial, scant and rugged fare, 
Frank intercourse with social joy and care. 
Their virtue from such wholesome lessons dates. 
These fit them to breathe well God's human air, 
And teach them how to sway the hearts of states. 

236 SONGS. 


" What is Earth ? " the poet saith. 

It is a place of birth and death ; 

A school wherein the schoolmen teach, 

And never practise as they preach ; 

Where Greek and Latin stamp the scholar ; 

Where Fame is reckoned by the dollar ; 

Where Scandal and false Innuendo 

Taint all that women and e'en men do ; 

Where Lie the first is peerless reckoned, 

Until thrust out by Lie the second : 

Where Candor, Worth, and Thought are sleeping ; 

Where Cant is upwards, upwards creeping ; 

Where Age is drivelling ; Youth pedantic ; 

Religion frozen, or else frantic ; 

Where great Palaver despot reigneth ; 

Where Wisdom to the moon complaineth ; 

Where folks who winds &.nd waters measure. 

And chattering Savans take their pleasure. 

And meet each year from hall and college. 

Stunning the soul with scraps of knowledge ; 

Where Strength is right ; where Truth is wrong ; 

Where Genius shrinks into a song ; 

Where struggling Girlhood toils and dies ; 

Where Childhood pines ; where Hunger cries. 

And none respondeth to its call ; 

And yet — blue Heaven is over all ! 

SONGS. 237 



Enfant ! si j'etais roi, je donnerais I'empire, etc. , 

I 'd give, Girl, (were I but a king,) 
Throne, sceptre, empire, — every thing ; 
My people suppliant on the knee ; 
My ships, that crowd the subject sea ; 
My crown, my oaths of porphyry. 

For one sweet look from thee ! 

Were I a God, I 'd give — the air, 
Earth, and the sea ; the angels fair ; 
The skies ; the golden worlds around ; 
The dsemons, whom my laws have bound ; 
Chaos, and its dark progeny ; 
All space, and all eternity. 

For one love-kiss from thee ! 


It is not in the quality of Love 

To be relieved from human error quite ; 

Nor quite unsullied is yon Orb above. 

That fills the o'erhanging heavens with warmth and light, 

And, from its vast and ever-burning fountains. 

Sheds on the slumbering earth those summer showers. 

238 SONGS. 

Which clothe her meads with green, and bid her moun- 
Shoot forests forth, in joy. And yet, O Love ! O Sun ! 
What a world were ours, 
Did ye not both your radiant journeys run. 
And touch us with your brightness, pure and kind ! 


Hope ! — is he for ever glad ? 
Sorrow ! — is she always sad ? 
(Sorrow, — is not that her name. 
Who hath won so sad a fame .'') 
Doth he ever smiling look ? 
Doth she gaze, as on a book, 
Always on the pictured past. 
While her eyes are flowing fast ? 
Sit by me ! — sit by me ! 
Let us watch, and we shall see 
If such changeless things can be, 
Where all is mutability. 

So, glad Spirit, as I speak. 
Thou hast tears on thy young cheek, 
Like the fresh dew on the rose ! 
And sweet Sorrow (though she knows 
She must turn to tears again) 
Smileth in a pause of pain. 

SONGS. 239 

Thus each telleth, in sweet guise, 
That Grief must leave the saddest eyes ; 
That even Hope itself must fly, 
With a sob and with a sigh ; 
But that each returneth soon, 
As constant as the moon ! 


All faces melt in smiles and tears, 
Stirred up by many a passion strange, 

(Likings, loathings, wishes, fears,) 
Till death : — then ends all change. 

Then king and peasant, bride and nun, 

Wear but one ! 

Spring, all beauty, aye laughs loud ; 

Summers smile, and Autumns rave ; 
But Winter puts on his white shroud. 

And lies down in his grave ; 
And when the next soft season nears. 
He disappears ! 

Merry Spring for childish face ; 

Summer for young manhood bold ; 
Autumn for a graver race ; 

Winter for the old ! 
After that, — what seasons run ? 
Alas ! not one ! 

240 SONGS. 

Then all the changing passions fade ; 

Then all the seasons strange have passed ; 
And over spreads one boundless shade, 

Which must for ever last : 
Then Life's uncounted sands are run, 
And — all is done ! 


I HEAR thy breath : 't is soft and near, 
'T is sweeter than the close of day, 
When June o'ertakes the maiden May 
Amidst the unblown eglantines, 
And round her scented bosom twines. 
I hear thy step, 't is light and near : 
Tell me where dost hide, my dear ? 
Voice. — Far away, far away ! 

Underneath what drooping showers 
Of lilac and laburnum flowers ? 
Voice. — Far away ! 

My love, my lady Lily, fair, 
Fairer than the crowned rose is,) 
Is it in the cowslip lair, 
Where the sweet South wind reposes, 
That thou dost lie 
All the spring-time long, and sigh. 
With the river by thy side, 
Murmuring like a one-day's bride ? 

SONGS. 241 

Hush ! — Give answer, Spirit sweet ! 
Ah, I hear thy tender feet 
Rustling in the grass unmown : 
Nay, at times, when all alone 
On the moonlit moor I walk, 
I can see thee, with a star 
On thy forehead, from afar. 
Shall I ever dare to talk 
With thy sweet ghost all alone ? 
What, though men do swear to me 
Thou art all a phantasy. 
Thou wilt live with me, as true 
As the stars are to the blue. 
Time may all alter : Youth be dead ; 
And the Spring may hide her head ; 
And the friend, now near my heart. 
May desert his better part ; 
But Thou ever wilt remain 
In my heart and in my brain. 
Truer, to the inward eye. 
Than many a gross reality. 


242 SONGS. 


Her doom is writ : her name is grown 
Familiar in the common mouth ; 

And she who was, when all unknown, 
Like a sunbeam bursting from the south, 

Is overshadowed by her fate ; 

By others' envy, others' hate ! 

I loved her when her fame was clear ; 

I love her now her fame is dark : 
Twice — thrice — a thousand times more dear 

Is she, with Slander's serpent mark. 
Than Beauty that did never know 
Shadow, — neither shame nor woe. 

Let who will admire — adore 

Her whom vulgar crowds do praise ; 

I will love my love the more 
When she falls on evil days ! 

Truer, firmer, will I be. 

When the truth-like fail or flee. 

Bird of mine ! though rivers wide 

And wild seas between us run. 
Yet I '11 some day come, with pride, 

And serve thee, from sun to sun ; 
Meantime, all my wishes flee 
To thy nest beyond the sea ! 

SONGS. 243 

Mourn not ! let a brighter doom 

Breed no anguish in thy mind : 
If the rose hath most perfume, 

It hath still the thorn behind : 
If the sun be at its height, 
Think what follows, — certain night. 

Murmur not ! whatever ill 

Cometh, am / not thy friend, 
(In false times the firmer still,) 

Without changing, without end ? 
Ah, if one true friend be thine. 
Dare not to repine ! 


Sleep, maiden, — gentle maiden, 

Through the calm night ! 
Be thy tender heart unladen 

Of its burthen quite ! 
And, when golden Morning streaming 
Wakeneth thee from happy dreaming. 

With its oriental light. 
Rise, — and let thy humble prayer 
Thank the God who made thee fair ; 
Fair, and happy, fit to dwell 
On a throne or in a cell. 

Shun the fevers of the mind. 
Envy, Hate, Ambition blind, 

244 SONGS. 

Too much Love, (if love thou must,) 
And the passions bom of dust. 
Learn to soothe another's smart ; 
Learn to rule thy own warm heart : 
For, of all the treasures sent 
Downwards from the azure air. 
Know, there 's nought that may compare 
With the sweetest sweet, — Content ! 

xxxm.— A DreGE. 

Here she lies, whom Fortune dowered 

With the virgin wealth of Youth, 

Beauty, and the love of Truth, 

Golden Honor, spotless Fame, 

Twenty-times transmitted name ! 

Here she lies, deserted, dead ! 

Dead, alas, and on her head 

The cold and crumbling earth is showered ! 

Not a stone is at her feet ; 

Not a bud, with Summer sweet, 

Sleepeth on her winding-sheet. 

Yet what do such poor wants avail ? 

The sad-eyed widow. Pity pale, 

Weepeth when her story 's told ; 

How her love was left for gold ; 

How, desert' and doomed to fade, 

(Underneath the green grass laid,) 

She left him whose sordid pride 

Left her for a meaner bride ! 

SONGS. 245 


Sweet friend, let 's mourn in music 

The passing of the year ; 
Fresh Autumn's spicy breezes ; 

The sunny Summer clear ; 
And Spring, so sweet and beautiful, 

When thoughts were never drear. 

As dreams that warmed our slumber 
Dissolve in morning gray ; 

As friends that loved our childhood 
All shrink and turn to clay ; 

So our some months' companion 
Fadeth at last away. 

He fadeth, he departeth. 

Beyond all human ken ; 
Bearing the sins, and agonies, 

Hopes, fears, and joys of men ; 
Loathed, dreaded, loved, lamented ; — 

Never to come again ! 

What sounds of life and laughter 

Were poured into his ear ; 
What thoughts, delights, and fantasies 

He passed in his career, 
We know not: Once so cherished. 
The deeds of Time have perished, 

Like the flowers upon his bier. 

246 SONGS. 


That was not a barren time, 

When the new World calmly lay 

Bare unto the frosty rime, 
Open to the burning day. 

Though her young limbs were not clad 
With the colors of the spring, 

Yet she was all inward glad. 
Knowing all she bore within, 
Undeveloped, blossoming. 

There was Beauty, such as feeds 
Poets in their secret hours ; 

Music mute ; and all the seeds 
And the signs of all the flowers. 

There was wealth, beyond the gold 

Hid in Oriental caves ; 
There was — all we now behold 

'Tween our cradles and our graves. 

Judge not, then, the Poet's dreams 
Barren all, and void of good : 

There are in them azure gleams, 
Wisdom not all understood. 

SONGS. 247 

Fables, with a heart of truth ; 

Mysteries, that unfold in light ; 
Morals, beautiful for youth ; 

Starry lessons for the night. 

Unto Man, in peace and strife, 

True and false, and weak and strong, 

Unto all,, in death and life. 
Speaks the poet in his song. 


Labor's strong and merry children, 
Comrades of the rising sun. 

Let us sing some songs together. 
Now our toil is done. 

No desponding, no repining ! 

Leisure must by toil be bought ; 
Never yet was good accomplished. 

Without hand and thought. 

Even God's all holy labor 

Framed the air, the stars, the sun ; 
Built our earth on deep foundations ; 

And — the World was won ! 

248 SONGS. 


Merry Ocean ! Honest Ocean ! 

Wherefore did I fly from thee ? 
Thou, whatever wind came fawning, 

Ever wast a friend to me : 
Joy was on thy morning billows, 

Quiet on thine evening wave ; 
In the South a world of pleasures, 

In the North — at least a grave. 

But amongst these sullen moorlands, 

Nothing that I seek I find ; 
Neither hope, nor pain, nor pleasure, 

Not even a tranquil mind. 
Once I had a dream : — wherever 

I was sailing, — near or far, — 
I could always see it sparkle 

In the distance, like a star ! 

But at last it faded : Helen, — 

Ah, why do I name her name } 
Even now I feel my forehead 

Flushing with its ancient shame ; 
She it is whose falsehood bringeth 

Darkness of the heart on me ; 
She it is whose falsehood drives me 

To thy stormy arms, O Sea ! 

SONGS. 249 

Once — no matter — I remember 

I did love my father's field, 
Every daisy, every berry 

That the autumn hedge did yield : 
But such things delight no longer ; 

There is change in them or me : 
So, once more, I '11 mate my Spirit 

With the spirit of the Sea. 

Come, old comrades ! Hearty seamen ! 

Are ye not fatigued with shore ? 
Shall we not go forth together 

One long, venturous voyage more ? 
Come ! Let 's on, where waters soothe us ; 

Where all winds can whistle free : 
Hearts ! there 's nowhere shed or shelter 

Like our own true home, — the Sea ! 



P. — O Fisher, who dost ever love to stand 

By waters streaming ! 
F. — O Poet, who dost lie, at Love's command. 

In azure dreaming ! 
P. — What is it bids us face, 'midst rain and wind. 

The wild Spring weather ? 
F. — What strange and unknown tie doth help to bind 

Such souls together ? 

250 SONGS. 


F. — What know'st thou, Poet, of the tedious time 

The fisher loseth ? 
r. — What know'st thou, Fisher, of the precious rhyme 

The bard abuseth ? 
F. — I only know that Health and Pleasure thrive 

In any season. 
P. — Enough : we Ml let our April friendship live 

Without a reason. 


On 1 — from honor unto honor ; ( let nor praise nor 

pelf allure ! ) 
Onwards, upwards, be thy course, and let thy foot 

be firm and sure. 

There is RafFaelle still before thee ; Titian, Michael, 

Rembrandt, all ; 
Now for a vigorous effort ; knit thy sinews and thou 

shalt not fall. 


In thy land is Hogarth's glory : side by side with 

Reynolds' fame ; 
Much to spur thee, nought to daunt thee : — Dare ! and 

thou shalt do the same. 

SONGS. 251 


On the Earth are lands untrodden ; (somewhere under- 
neath the sun;) 

Azure heights yet unascended ; pahny countries to be 


In tlie Heart's diviner regions, there are thoughts that 

stir the soul, 
Till it shoots the bounds of darkness, past where stars 

and planets roll. 


In the cottage as the palace, in the clown as in the 

Infinite, endless passions reign, and with them change 

and conduct bring ; — 


Love, whose strength doth vanquish sorrow ; Freedom, 

wealthy with his crust ; 
Truth the servant ; Faith the martyr ; Hope that soar- 

eth from the dust. 


Life in all its sunny aspects, — All the moods of vice 

and pain 
Lie before thee : — O, be certain, nothing need be 

sought in vain ! 

252 SONGS. 

XL. — SONG. 

Come, — let me dive into thine eyes ! 

So dim, so deep, so filled with love ! 
Touched with soft azure, like the skies, 

When evening veils the light above. 

Come, — let me gaze upon thy hand ! 

No ring ? — all 's fair and virgin white ! 
Thy heart ? I would I could command 

Thy heart to open on my sight. 

Yet, no : I '11 trust those stars of blue, 
And ask them now my doom divine : 

No need : thy lips give answer true ; 

They move, — they murmur, — "I am thine ! " 


Now whilst he dreams, O Muses, wind him round ! 

Send down thy silver words, O murmuring Rain ! 
Haunt him, sweet Music ! Fall, with gentlest sound, — 

Like dew, like night, upon his weary brain ! 
Come, Odors of the rose and violet, — bear 
Into his charmed sleep all visions fair ! 
So may the lost be found, 

So may his thoughts by tender Love be crowned, 
And Hope come shining like a vernal mom. 
And with its beams adorn 
The Future, till he breathes diviner air 
In some soft Heaven of joy, beyond the range of Care ! 

SONGS. 253 


Let us sing and sigh ! 

Let us sigh and sing ! 
Sunny haunts have no such pleasures 

As the shadows bring ! 

Who would seek the crowd ? 

Who would seek the noon ? 
That could woo the pale maid Silence 

Underneath the moon ? 

Smiles are things for youth, 
Things for a merry rhyme ; 

But the voice of Pity suiteth 
Any mood or time. 


Laugh not, nor weep ; but let thine eyes 
Grow soft and dim (so love should be) ; 

And be thy breathing tender, quick, 
And tremulous, whilst I gaze on thee. 

And let thy words be few or none ; 

But murmurs, such as soothe the air 
In summer when the day is done, 

Be heard, sweet heart, when I am there. 

254 SONGS. 

And I, — oh ! I, in those soft times 
When all around is still and sweet, 

Will love thee more a thousand times 
Than if the world was at thy feet ! 


Love me if I live ! 

Love me if I die ! 
What to me is life or death, 

So that thou be nigh ? 

Once I loved thee rich, 
Now I love tljee poor ; 

Ah ! what is there I could not 
For thy sake endure ? 

Kiss me for my love ! 

Pay me for my pain ! 
Come ! and murmur in my ear 

How thou lov'st again ! 

SONGS. 255 

XL v.— SONG. 

Sing no more ! Thy heart is crossed 

By some dire thing : 
Sing no more ! Thy lute has lost 

Its one sweet string. 
The music of the heart and lute 
Are mute, — are mute ! 

Laugh no more ! The earth hath taught 

A false, fond strain : 
Laugh no more ! Thy soul hath caught 

The grave's first stain. 
The pleasures of the world are known, 
And flown, — and flown ! 

Weep no more ! The fiercest pains 

Were love, were pride : 
Weep no more ! The world's strong chains 

Are cast aside. 
And all the war of life must cease, 
In peace, — in peace ! 

256 SONGS. 



Like a rose sprang Jeanie, 
From a blue May hour, 

Friendship all her pride, 
Virtue all her dower. 

Like a rose spread Jeanie, 
Whom warm skies illume ; 

Like its breath, in sweetness ; 
Like its dye, in bloom. 

Like a rose fell Jeanie, 

Smit by winter cold ; 
Loved, — destroyed, — derided : 

So, — her tale is told ! 

O, too tender woman ! 

Heed her shame, — her pain 
Let 's not tell her story 

A thousand times in vain ! 

SONGS. 257 


I LOVE him ; I dream of him ; 

I sing of him by day ; 
And all the night I hear him talk, 

And yet — he 's far away I 

There 's beauty in the morning ; 

There 's sweetness in the May ; 
There 's music in the running stream ; 

And yet — he 's far away ! 

I love him ; I trust in him ; 

He trusteth me alway : 
And so the time flies hopefully, 

Although — he 's far away ! 


Tell me what thou lovest best ? 
Vernal motion ? Summer rest ? 
Winter, with his merry rhymes ? 
Or the grand Autumnal times ? 
Dost thou Saxon beauty prize ? 
Or, in England, love-lit eyes ? 
Or the brown Parisian's grace ? 
Or the warm-souled Bordelaise ? 


258 SONGS. 

Or the forehead broad and clear 

Which the Italian Damas wear, 

Braiding round their night-black hair, 

Circe-like ? — Or the Spanish air, 

Where the Moor has mixed his blood 

With the dull Castilian flood, 

Giving life to sleepy pride ? 

Tell me, where wouldst thou abide, 

Choosing for thyself a season, 

And a mate, — for sweet Love's reason ? 

Nought for country should I care. 
So my mate were true and fair : 
But for her, — O, she should be 
(Thus far I '11 confess to thee) 
Like a bud when it is blowing ; 
Like a brook when it is flowing 
(Marred by neither heat nor cold) ; 
Fashioned in the lily's mould, — 
Stately, queen-like, very fair ; 
With a motion like the air ; 
Glances full of morning light. 
When the morn is not too bright ; 
With a forehead marble pale. 
When sad Pity tells her tale ; 
And a soft scarce-tincted cheek, 
(Flushing but when she doth speak ;) 
For her voice, 't should have a tone 
Sweetest when with me alone ; 
And Love himself should seek his nest 
Within the fragrance of her breast ! 

SONGS. 259 


O SWEET South Wind ! 

Long hast thou lingered 'midst those islands fair. 

Which lie, enchanted, on the Indian deep, 

Like sea-maids all asleep, 

Charmed by the cloudlet sun and azure air ! 

O sweetest Southern Wind ! 

Pause here awhile, and gently now unbind 

Thy dark rose-crowned hair ! 

Wilt thou not unloose now. 

In this, the bluest of all hours. 

Thy passion-colored flowers ? — 

Eest ; and let fall the fragrance from thy brow. 

On Beauty's parted lips and closed eyes. 

And on her cheeks, which crimson like the f^kies ; 

And slumber on her bosom, white as snow. 

Whilst starry Midnight flies ! 

We, whom the Northern blast 

Blows on, from night till mom, from mom till eve, 

Hearing thee, sometimes grieve 

That our poor summer's day not long may last : 

And yet, perhaps, 't were well 

We should not ever dwell 

With thee, sweet Spirit of the sunny South ; 

But touch thy odorous mouth 

260 SONGS. 

Once, and begone unto our blasts again, 

And their bleak welcome, and our wintry snow ; 

And arm us (by enduring) for that pain 

Which the bad world sends forth, and all its woe ! 

L. — SONG. 

The rain is falling ; 

The wind is loud ; 
The morning is hiding 

Behind a cloud ; 
The stars are scattered 

By dawn of day ; 
But where is my lover ? 

Afar — away ! 

The East is brighter ; 

The wind is still; 
The sun is rising 

Beyond the hill ; 
It Cometh, — it shineth ; 

The dawn is day ; 
And the step of my lover ? - 

It comes this way. 

Ah, the sky, — it chapgeth, 
The rain, — the sun. 

As the hope that we cherish 
Is lost or won. 

SONGS. 261 

What care for the shadows, 

If hearts be gay ? 
What use in the summer, 

If friends decay ? 

The bloom of the seasons 

Will come, will fly ; 
And the heavens will alter, 

W^e know not why : 
But the mind that we temper 

Is our domain ; 
And the Truth of the Spirit 

Should conquer pain. 


Close at the edge of a busy town, 
A huge quadrangular mansion stands ; 

Its rooms are all filled with the parish poor ; 
Its walls are all built by pauper hands ; 

And the pauper old and the pauper young 
Peer out, through the grates, in sullen bands. 


Behind is a patch of earth, by thorns 

Fenced in from the moor's wide, marshy plains ; 
By the side is a gloomy lane, that steals 

To a quarry now filled with years of rains : 

262 SONGS. 

But within, within ! There Poverty scowls. 
Nursing in wrath her brood of pains. 

Enter and look ! In the high-walled yards 

Fierce men are pacing the barren ground : 
Enter the long, bare chambers ; — girls 

And women are sewing, without a sound ; 
Sewing from dawn till the dismal eve. 

And not a laugh or a song goes round. 


No communion, — no kind thought 
Dwells in the pauper's breast of care ; 

Nothing but pain in the grievous past ; 
Nothing to come but the black despair — 

Of bread in prison, bereft of friends, 
Or Hunger, out in the open air ! 

Where is the bright-haired girl, that once 
With her peasant sire was used to play ? 

Where is the boy whom his mother blessed, 
Whose eyes were a light on her weary way ? 

Apart, — barred out (so the law ordains) ; 
Barred out from each other by night and day. 


Letters they teach in their infant schools ; 

But where are the lessons of great God taught 

SONGS. 263 

Lessons that child to the parent bind, — 

Habits of duty, — love unbought ? 
Alas ! small good will be learned in schools 

Where Nature is trampled and turned to nought, 


Seventeen summers, and where the girl 
Who never grew up at her father's knee ? 

Twenty autumnal storms have nursed 
The pauper's boyhood, and where is he ? 

She earneth her bread in the midnight lanes : 
He toileth in chains by the Southern Sea. 


O Power ! O Prudence ! Law ! — look down 
From your heights on the pining poor below ! 

O sever not hearts which God hath joined 
Together, on earth, for weal and woe ! 

O Senators grave, grave truths may be. 

Which ye have not learned, or deigned to know. 


O Wealth, come forth with an open hand ! 

O Charity, speak with a softer sound ! 
Yield pity to Age, — to tender Youth, — 

To Love, wherever its home be found ! 
, . . But. I cease, — for I hear, in the night to come, 
The cannon's blast, and the rebel drum. 

Shaking the firm-set English ground ! 

264 SONGS. 


The girl I love is lowly bom ; 

She is not rich, she is not fair ; 
And yet her presence is to me 

Like the breath of the morning air. 

'T is fresh with thoughts all innocent ; 

'T is fragrant with the words of love ; 
And her eyes shed blessings, like the Dawn 

Opening Heaven above. 

For these and other things I love 
The lowly, love-born child of earth : 

Scorn not : How many love for less 
Than a thousandth part her worth ! 


I AM the Queen anointed, — crowned ; 
My forehead is all with roses bound, 

But pale, all pale ! 
With rosemary boughs and slips of yew. 
With violets shrunk, and lilies, too, 

But pale, still pale ! 
I am the Bride whose arms are wound 
About my lover without a sound ; 
I whisper soft. 
And he flies aloft, 

But pale, all pale ! 

SONGS. 265 

Whatever I will, — whate'er I say, 
Wherever I look, — all things obey : 
From the iron clown to the kings of clay. 

My words ne'er fail : 
I wither the bud, and the passion bloom ; 
I strip the rose of her young perfume ; 
1 breathe — and the flower doth bear no fruit ; 
I come — and the singer's voice is mute ; 
The harp unstrung, and lost the lute : 

And trumpets wail 
My coming, although no battle 's near. 
And burst on the self-slain soldier's bier, 

And hill and dale 
And fountains lone, and the running river, 
Sea and sea-shore, 

Hard rocks, and mountains cold and hoar. 
From all their echoing peaks cry out for ever, 

" Hail ! hail ! hail ! " 

And now, pale youth, I come to thee. 

Whose home is under the willow-tree, 

And thou mayst dream 

Where it dips its hair in the fond, fond stream : 

But, arise ! — arise ! 
What can come of human sighs. 
Lover's sorrow, — weeping eyes, — 
When all that cometh quickly flies ? 
Arise, and leave thy buried bride, 
And come with me to tlie water's side, 


Where lilies gay- 
Lie sleeping on the shining tide, 
Which flies away 
Unto the ocean far and wide, 

Day after day ! 
The weeping stars will be ever o'er thee, 
And she thou lov'st is gone before thee, 

So, ne'er delay : 
The Past is lost, the Present lone. 
So we will fly to a world unknown ; 
And be as thou wishest, sad or gay. 
Through summer and spring, and winter day 
Come on ! We will seek thy wasted bride : 
Behold, — I am Death, the amorous-eyed, 

Who reign for aye ! 


"Without haste aiiJ without rest." 


They glide upon their endless way, 
For ever calm, for ever bright ; 

No blind hurry, no delay, 

Mark the Daughters of the Night 

They follow in the track of Day, 
In divine delight. 

SONGS. 267 

And, O, how still beneath the stars 

The once wild, noisy Earth doth lie ! 
As though she now forsook her jars, 

And caught the quiet of the sky. 
Pride sleeps ; and Love (with all his scars) 

In smiling dreams doth lie. 

Shine on, sweet orbed Souls, for aye, 

For ever calm, for ever bright: 
We ask not whither lies your way. 

Nor whence ye came, nor what your light. 
Be, still, — a dream throughout the day, 

A blessing through the night ! 


Without friends, and without money. 

Without power, without fame. 
Earth is but a bitter garden ; 

Life is but a losing game : 
There 's a heart within my bosom, 

(Ah, I know it, by its pain,) 
Swiftness should be in my sinews. 

And within my head — a brain. 

Tell me how, with these good servants. 
Song of mine, how we may fare ; 

268 SONGS. 

We have but a paltry lodging, 
'Neath this hedge, in open air. 

Fain would I behold a dinner ; 
But such visions now are rare : 

Peace ! I see the hawthorn banquet : 
Come ; we 'II join the sparrows there. 

What avail are sages, — muses. 

If they bring not comforts nigh ? 
Ha ! they force me upwards — onwards - 

Through the clouds — beyond the sky • 
Comets — planets — whirl around me — 

Storms and rains are rushing by, — 
Orb on orb gives out its music, — 

I am breathless — God, I die ! 


Hark, — to the sound ! 
Without a trump, without a drum. 
The wild-eyed, hungry Millions come. 
Along the echoing ground. 

From cellar and cave, from street and lane. 
Each from his separate place of pain, 
In a blackening stream. 
Come sick, and lame, and old, and poor, 
And all who can no more endure ; 
Like a demon's dream ! 



Starved children with their pauper sire, 
And laborers with their fronts of fire, 
In angry hum, 

And felons, hunted to their den, 
And all who shame the name of men. 
By millions come. 


The good, the bad, come hand in hand, 
Linked by that law which none withstand ; 
And at their head 

Flaps no proud banner, flaunting high, 
But a shout, sent upwards to the sky, 
Of " Bread ! — Bread ! " 

That word their ensign, — that the cause 
Which bids them burst the social laws, 
In wrath, in pain : 

That, the sole boon for lives of toil. 
Demand they from their natural soil : — 
O, not in vain ! 


One single year, and some who now 
Come forth, with oaths and haggard brow, 
Read prayer and psalm. 
In quiet homes ; their sole desire, 
Rude comforts near their cottage fire, 
And Sabbath calm. 

270 SONGS. 


But Hunger is an evil foe : 

It striketh Truth and Virtue low, 

And Pride elate : 

Wild Hunger, stripped of hope and fear ! 

It doth not weigh ; it will not hear ; 

It cannot wait. 


For mark, what comes : — To-night, the poor 

(All mad) will burst the rich man's door, 

And wine will run 

In floods, and rafters blazing bright 

Will paint the sky with crimson light, 

Fierce as the sun ; 


And plate carved round with quaint device, 
And cups all gold, will melt, like ice 
In Indian heat ! 

And queenly silks, from foreign lands. 
Will bear the stamps of bloody hands, 
And trampling feet : 


And Murder — from his hideous den 

Will come abroad and talk to men. 

Till creatures born 

For good, (whose hearts kind Pity nursed,) 

Will act the direst crimes they cursed. 

But yester-morn. 

SONGS. 271 


So, Wealth by Want will be o'erthrown. 
And Want be strong and guilty grown, 
Swollen out by blood. 
Sweet Peace ! who sitt'st aloft, sedate, 
Who bind'st the little to the great. 
Canst Thou not charm the serpent Hate ? 
And quell this feud ? 


Between the pomp of CrcEsus's state. 
And Irus, starved by sullen Fate, — 
'Tween " thee " and " me," — 
*Tween deadly Frost and scorching Sun, — 
The Thirty tyrants and the One, — 
Some space must be. 


Must the world quail to absolute kings. 
Or tyrant mobs, those meaner things, 
All nursed in gore, — 

Turk's bowstring, — Tartar's vile Ukase, — 
Grim Marat's bloody band, who pace 
From shore to shore } 


O God ! — Since our bad world began, 

Thus hath it been, — from man to man 

War, to the knife ! 

For bread — for gold — for words — for air ! 

Save us, O God ! and hear my prayer ! 

Save, save from shame, — from crime, — despair, 

Man's puny life ! 

272 SONGS. 


The Sun hath ridden into the sky, 
And the Night gone to her lair ; 

Yet all is asleep 

On the mighty Deep, 
And all in the calm, gray air. 

All seemeth as calm as an infeint's dream, 
As far as the eye may ken : 

But the cannon blast, 

That just now passed. 
Hath awakened ten thousand men. 

An order is blown from ship to ship ; 
All round and round it rings ; 

And each sailor is stirred 

By the warlike word, 
And his jacket he downwards flings. 


He strippeth his arms to his shoulders strong ; 
He girdeth his loins about ; 

And he answers the cry 

Of his foemen nigh. 
With a cheer and a noble shout. 

SONGS. 273 


What follows ? — a puff, and a flash of light, 
And the booming of a gun ; 

And a scream, that shoots 

To the heart's red roots, 
And we know that a fight 's begun. 


A thousand shot are at once let loose : 
Each flies from its brazen den, 

(Like the Plague's swift breath,) 

On its deed of death, 
And smites down a file of men. 


The guns in their thick-tongued thunder speak, 
And the frigates all rock and ride. 

And timbers crash, 

And the mad waves dash. 
Foaming all far and wide : 


And high as the skies run piercing cries. 
All telling one tale of woe, — 

That the struggle still. 

Between good and ill. 
Goes on, in the earth below. 


274 SONGS. 


Day pauses, in gloom, on his western road 
The Moon returns again : 

But, of all who looked bright, 

In the morning light. 
There are only a thousand men. 


Look up, at the brooding clouds on high ! 
Look up, at the awful sun ! 

And, behold, — the sea flood 

Is all red with blood : 
Hush ! — a battle is lost, — and won ! 



O, WHITHER are we driven, o'er the waters so free. 
With the vapors all around, and the breakers on our lee ? 
Not a light is in the sky, not a light is on the sea ! 

Ah, me ! ah, me ! 


We are hurried to our doom : O, how wild and how 

Are the billows on whose bosom we are beating along ; 
And the Tempest he is calling, (hark, how terrible his 


For thee ! for me ! 

SONGS. 275 


The thunder is awakened : He is talking to the Night: 
And see what cometh flooding down in cataracts of light ; 
'T is his paramour, the Lightning ; she withereth my 
sight ; 

Ah, me ! ah, me ! 


O, how the Storm doth follow us : and hearken to the 

He is round us ; he is over us ; he 's hurrying behind : 
He is tearing me (the maniac, so cruel and so blind,) 

From thee, from thee ! 


Stay, stay, I hear a sound amidst the washing of the tide : 
It glideth by our vessel, now, wherever we do glide ; 
'T is the whale — It is the shark ! ah, see, he turns upon 
his side : 

Let 's flee, let 's flee ! 


Ha ! the billows they are rising ; we are lifted up on 

We are all amongst the clouds : we are rushing from 

the sky, 
Down, down, into the waters — Ah, have pity ! for I die ; 

O, Sea ! Great Sea ! 
[ The boat strikes.] 

276 SONGS. 


There was freedom in the forest ; 

There was plenty on the plain ; 
Lusty peasants, noble heroes, 

In the time of Charlemagne : 
Right was right, and wrong was evil ; 

Truth was never then too plain ; 
All the heart came forth in music, 

In the time of Charlemagne. 


Every man was free to follow 

Bird, or wild beast to its den ; 
Every man maintained his quarrel 

With the sword and not the pen : 
Manly thoughts and simple habits 

Brought us health, and banished pain : 
We have changed, — (for worse or better ?) 

Since the time of Charlemagne. 

Beauty won her bloom from Nature ; 

Wives were constant, maidens true ; 
Men were bold, strong, clear, unbending. 

As the brave, bright steel they drew. 

SONGS. 277 

None did rise but by his merit ; 

None did sell his soul for gain ; 
Words did never hide man's meaning, 

In the time of Charlemagne. 


What a king ! He fought and vanquished 

Lombard, Saracen, Saxon, still 
Ruling every race he conquered 

With a deep, consummate skill. 
Once, alone, false Fortune checked him, — 

Once, on Roncesvalles' plain : 
Save that day, all else was cloudless 

Through the time of Charlemagne. 


But — he died ! and he was buried 

In his tomb of sculptured stone ; 
And they robed and placed his body 

Upright on his golden throne : 
With his sword, and with the Bible, 

Which through life he did maintain. 
All strewn o'er with gems and spices 

Sate the dead king Charlemagne ! 


Since his time, the world is altered : 

Yet, — let 's hope to see, again, 
All the sword's old valor, mingled 

With the wisdom of the pen : 

278 SONGS. 

Till those days shall come, dear Poets, 
Let us not perplex our brain ; 

But, content, love truth and valor. 
Though in time of Charlemagne. 


Winter cold is coming on ; 

No more calls the cuckoo : 

No more doth the music gush 

From the silver- throated thrush : 

No more now, at " evening pale," 

Singeth sad the nightingale ; 

Nor the blackbird on the lawn ; 

Nor the lark at dewy dawn : 

Time hath wove' his songs anew. 

No more young and dancing measures ; 

No more budding, flowery pleasures : 

All is over, — all forgot ; 

Save by me, who loved them not. 

Winter white is coming on ; 

And 1 love his coming : 

What, though winds the fields have shorn, • 

What, though earth is half forlorn, — 

Not a berry on the thorn, — 

Not an insect humming ; 


Pleasure never can be dead ; 

Beauty cannot hide her head ! 

Look ! in what fanteistic showers 

The snow flings down her feathered flowers, 

Or whirls about, in drunken glee. 

Kissing its love, the holly tree. 

Behold ! the Sun himself comes forth, 

And sends his beams from south to north, — 

To diamonds turns the winter rime. 

And lends a glory to the time ! 

Such days, when old friends meet together, 

Are worth a score of mere spring weather ; 

And hark ! — the merry bells awake ; 

They clamor blithely for our sake ! 

The clock is sounding from the tower, 

"Four," — "five," — 'tis now 's dinner-hour ! 

Come on, — I see his table spread, — 
The sherry, — the claret rosy red. 
The champagne sparkling in the light, — 
By Bacchus ! we '11 be wise to-night ! 




Do you still remember 

When you and I were young, 
How the merry cricket talked, 

How the throstle sung ? 
How above our spring-tide 

Azure heaven hung ? 
Ah ! the times were merry times, 

When you and I were young ! 

Speed was in my footsteps ; 

Hope was in mine eye ; 
And the soul of Poesy 

Was my dear ally. 
Earth was then as beautiful, — 

Ay, as is the sky, 
When I looked beside me. 

And saw — that you were nigh. 

If my dreams were sinful, 

God forgave the crime ; 
For I look with calmness 

Back upon my prime. 
Have you quite forgotten 

All that sunny time, 
When we whispered secrets — 

Not to be told in rhyme ? 

SONGS. 281 

Well, — our springs are over, 

(O, sweet days of yore !) 
Autumn wild surrounds us, 

And I see an aspect hoar, 
Like angry Winter, frowning 

From that twilight shore. 
Where our steps are hastening, — 

To return no more ! 

Mourn not : we inherited. 

With our gift of birth. 
Good and evil mingled, — 

Tears amidst our mirth. 
Thou shah be remembered, 

For thy gentle worth ; 
And I HI dream that regions 

Shine beyond the earth. 


Old December ! 

Art thou gone ? — then fare thee well ! 
Many a good do I remember 

Of thee, that I fain would tell ; 
Many a dream beyond all trouble ; 
Many a feast where beer did bubble ; 
Many a jolly beauty toasted ; 
Many a mighty turkey roasted ; 

282 SONGS. 

Laughing, quaffing, blusterous weather, 

(Winds and rain, a song together;) 

Friendship glowing, — wine a-flowing. 

Wit beyond the proser's knowing ! 

Ah, December! 

I remember 

Thee and thine, perhaps too well. 

Let the trim tea-totaller talk 

Of his May and April walk. 

All amongst the insipid flowers. 

Dawdling with the vacant Hours ; 

I — amidst the blazing night, 

Have seen vast and deep delight, — 

Pleeusure, such as left its traces 

On a thousand brightening faces, — 

Brightening at the touch of Truth, 

(Like Age remembering its own youth ;) 

For, be sure, — that noble Wine 

Is Truth ! — and, doubly thus, divine. 

Wine ! — It opes the heart's red sluices. 
Letting forth those generous juices, 
Which so fertilize our clay. 
That the Night transcends the Day : 
Virtues then spring up like flowers ; 
Joy comes gladdening all the hours ; 
Justice takes an aspect bland ; 
Friendship puts forth its kind hand : 
Every thing both great and good 
Is then confessed, and understood : 

SONGS. 283 

No more fear beside the flask ; 

No dull spite in wisdom's mask : 

No mean, simmering, simpering blushes : — 

The great Soul all-radiant rushes 

Forth, at once, on the social ground. 

And laugheth as the glass runs round. 

For these reeisons, old December ! 

(For these reasons, and some more 
Which I do not now remember,) 

I '11 still love thee, as of yore. 

When I knew no woes nor pains. 

And the blood ran racing through my veins, 

Stinging every nerve with pleasure, 

I could tread the merriest measure, 

Dancing till I met the Day ; 

And could drain my cup alway ; 

And could whisper — soft and low — 

Under the mystic mistletoe. 

So it was ; — and so, old friend, 

When this year shall near its end. 

If gray Age and Fate permit, 

I will face thee in thy wit, — 

In thy wit and wine arrayed. 

What care I how many a maid 

Laugheth in thy frosty train ; 

I will dare their worst, again. 

Let who will forsake the wine. 

At my right hand it shall shine 

284 SONGS. 

Like a blessing, — as, in truth, 
'T is to age as well as youth. 

Now, farewell ! and for my sake, 

Bid thy fellow Months be kind, 
And not a merry Spirit take, 

Nor one of true or gentle mind. 
In requital, — Friends, remember ! 

We will all assemble round. 

When next the winter strews the ground, 
And drink a health to old December ! 


" The Lunatic, the Lover, and the Poel." 


You bid me tell you, why I rise 

At midnight from my lonely bed, 
And search amongst the coming clouds. 

And talk as though I saw the dead : 
You speak of madness — of the moon — 

I 've heard such idle jeers before : 
Give me your patience for my tale. 

And you shall deem me mad no more. 

I was not born of noble race : 

I know a peasant was my sire ; 
But, from my mother's breast, I sucked 

The milk that filled my blood with fire. 

SONGS. 285 

I ran, as wild as doth the wolf, 

About the fields for many years : 
But, in my twentieth summer. Thought 

Sprang upwards, in a rain of tears. 


A sudden chance (if chance it were) 

Flung me across a marriage train ; 
And there I saw a wretched girl 

Forced onwards, while she wept in vain. 
I never saw so fair a thing : 

My eyes were hot within my head : 
I heard her scream — I saw her forced 

(By a brother) towards a brute — and wed. 


I sought the hills, — I sought the woods ; 

My heart was bursting in my breast : 
At lEist tears rushed in rivers forth, 

And, for a time, I felt at rest. 
Those tears ! they washed from off my eyes 

The cloudy film that on them lay ; 
And 1 awoke, and saw the light. 

And knew I did behold the Day. 


Till then, I had but been a beast, 

Had let mere savage will prevail ; 
Was ignorant — sullen — fierce ; till Love — 

(You have some fable, like my tale,) 

286 SONGS. 

Till Love flew forth and touched my heart : 
Then, all at once, my Spirit strong 

Swelled upwards, like a torrent dammed, 
And forced its furious way along. 


I read — I learned — I thought — I loved ! 

(For Love was all the motive then ;) 
And one, who was a friend, gave help. 

And I went forth and mixed with men : 
I talked with him they called her lord : 

I talked with Her — who was a bride 
Through fraud and force and rapine ; — God ! 

She spoke : — I think I could have died ! 


I heard her words : I saw her eyes. 

Where patient mingled with the sad : 
I felt her breath upon my cheek ; 

Its perfume did not drive me mad : 
I listened dumbly to her wrongs, — 

Imprisoned, struck, despised, deceived ; 
And, in my heart, I heard a voice 

Cry out " Revenge ! " — and I believed ! 


Still, Time wore on ; and efforts vain 
Were made to bend the Daemon's will ; 

To wean him from the wrong to right ; 
But he was base and cruel still. 

SONGS. 287 

Such deeds he did ! Romance hath bared 
The truth of many a hellish crime ; 

But never yet did Fiction dream 
Of half that I could tell in rhyme. 


Suffice it ; all things have an end. 

There is an end, where mortal pain 
Must stop, and can endure no more : 

This limit did we now attain : 
For Hope — sweet Patience — Virtue fled ! 

I did what she could never dare ; 
I cut the canker from her side ; 

And bore her off — to healthier air ! 


Far — far away ! She never knew 

That I had blood upon my breast : 
And yet, (although she loved me much,) 

I know not why, she could not rest. 
I strove to cheer her love, — to stir 

Her pride, — but, ah, she had no pride ! 
We loved each other ; — yet she pined : 

We loved each other ; — yet she died ! 


She died, as fading roses die, 

Although the warm and healing air 

Comes breathing forth and wraps them round : 
She died, despite my love and care. 

288 SONGS. 

I placed her, gently, in the lead ; 

I smoothed her hair, as it should be ; 
And drew a promise, — what she vowed 

Is a secret 'tween my soul and me ! 


She died ; and yet I have her still, — 

Carved, softly, in Carrara stone ; 
And in my chamber she abides, 

Sitting in silence, — all alone ; 
Alone, save when the midnight Moon 

Her calm and spotless bosom seeks : 
Then^ she unclasps her marble hands, 

And moves her marble lips, — and speaks ! 


And this is why I restless seem ; 

And this is why I always rise 
At midnight still throughout the year, 

And look for comfort in the skies : 
For then the angel of my heart 

Awakens from her sleep of stone ; 
And we exchange sweet hopes and thoughts, 

In words unto the earth unknown. 


Now, — tell me ; Am I mad ? — Who 's He 
That stares, and gibbers at me there ? 

J know him : — there 's his crooked claw ; 
His glittering eye ; his snaky hair : 


Begone ! — he 's gone. — Excuse me, Sir : 
These fellows often pinch my brain ; 

(I know full well who spurs them on ;) 
But — as you see — they tease in vain. 


Death, old fellow ! Have we then 

Come at last so near each other ? 
Well, — shake hands ; and be to me 

A quiet friend, a faithful brother. 

All those merry days are gone ; 

Gone whh cash, and health, old fellow ! 
When I read long days and nights. 

And sometimes (with a friend) got mellow. 

Newton ! Euclid ! fine old ghosts ! 

Noble books of old Greek learning ! 
Ah ! ye left huge aches behind ; 

Head and heart and brain all burning. 

How I toiled ! For one, now fled, 

I wore down the midnight taper. 
Laboring, — dreaming ; till one day 

I 'woke, and found my life — a vapor. 

Yet, 1 hoped (ah, laugh not now) 

For wealth, and health, and fame, — the bubble ! 

290 SONGS. 

So I climbed up Wisdom's steeps, 
And got a fall, boy, for my trouble. 

Now all 's over : No one helped, 

No one cheered my strong endeavor ; 

So I sank, and called on thee ; 

And Thou ''It be my friend for ever. 


You may boast of jewels, — coronets, — 

Ermine, — purple, — all you can : 
There is that within them nobler ; — 

Something that we call — A Man ! 
Something all the rest surpassing : 

As the flower is to the sod ; 
As to man is high archangel ; 

As is to archangel — God ! 

Running o'er with tears and weakness ; 

Flaming like a mountain fire ; 
Racked by hate and hateful passions ; 

Tossed about by wild desire ; 
There is, still, within him, (mingled 

"With each fault that dims or mars,) 
Truth, and Pity, — Virtue, — Courage, — 

Thoughts, — that fly beyond the stars ! 

You, who prize the book's poor paper 
Above its thoughts of joy and pain ; 


You who love the cloud's bright vapor 
More than its soul, — the blessing, rain ; 

Take the gems, the crowns, the erniine ; 

Use them nobly if you can : 
But give us — (in rags or purple). 

The true, warm, strong Heart of Man. 



Day broke : — The Morning of a mighty year 

Came forth, and smiled ; 
And, in its sunny arms (like waters clear) 

It bore — a child. 

Time flew : — Quick life along his arteries sang ; 

Love's pulses beat : 
And from his burning temples Thought outsprang. 

And Truth, complete. 

Time flew : — The brightness of a Poet's sight. 

Enlarged his eye ; 
And Strength and Courage knit his limbs for fight. 

To live, — or die. 


Time flew : — Sad Wisdom from ^his heart arose, 
And touched his brain ; 

292 SONGS. 

And he stood up, 'midst all a prophet's woes, 
And spoke, — in vain ! 


He spoke : — Men hearkened to his piercing cry, 

With smiles, with scorn ; 
But the dim Futtjre felt his threatenings nigh, 

And shook, — unborn ! 


He died : and race to race did still succeed ; 

And suns did shine ; 
And Centuries passed ; and still no eye could read 

His awful line. 


You mourn ? — Mourn not ; nor deem his history vain ; 

Nor vain his strife : 
To breathe, to feel, to hope, are worth the pain 

Of Death, and Life : 


And now, (as generations rise, and far 

Like vapors roll,) 
Some few begin to gaze, as on a star, 

And scan his scroll : 


And, in its mspiration, vaguely shown, 

We seem to trace 
The march of revolutions, come and flown ; 

And of man's race 

SONGS. 293 


The history. Amidst blots, of blood and tears, 

The verses run, 
Until we lose their light in distant years, 

And — all is done ! 


Sit near ! sit near ! I kiss thy lips. 
Ripe, richer than the crimson cherry. 

Girl, canst thou love me in eclipse ? 
Tell me, and bid my soul be merry. 

My light is dim, my fortune fled ; 

I 've nothing save the love I bear thee. 
Give back thy love, or I am dead ; — 

A word, — a look, — whilst I can hear thee. 

Sit nearer ! near ! I kiss thine eyes ; 

There, — where the white lids part asunder. 
I love thee, — dost thou hear my sighs .'' . 

Love thee beyond the world, thou wonder ? 

My life is spent. I 've nothing left 
To tender now, save love's soft duty ; 

Yet, gaze I, — of all else bereft, — 
And feed till death upon thy beauty. 

294 SONGS. 


Sleep ! — The ghostly winds are blowing : 
No moon abroad, — no star is glowing : 
The river is deep, and the tide is flowing 
To the land where you and I are going ! 

We are going afar. 

Beyond moon or star, 
To the land where the sinless angels are ! 

I lost my heart to your heartless sire, 
('T was melted away by his looks of fire ;) 
Forgot my God, and my father's ire, 
All for the sake of a man's desire ; 

But now we '11 go 

Where the waters flow, 
And make us a bed where none shall know. 

The world is cruel, — the world is untrue ; 
Our foes are many, our friends are few ; 
No work, no bread, however we sue ! 
What is there left for me to do, 
But fly, — fly 
From the cruel sky, 
And hide in the deepest deeps — and die ! 






Scene. — A Wilderness in Spain. The place is dark 
with trees ; and the ground hidden by fern and the 
entangled under grovjth of the forest. Various birds 
and animals are seen., scattered about. 


1 Raven. Look above thee, brother ! — Look ! 

Crow. Cousin, quit the wizard's book. 
Leave the adder to die alone : 
Study no more the thunder-stone : 
Quit the hemlock's seething must ; 
And Hell's black volcanic dust. 

1 Rav. Look above thee, — in the air! 
Crow. Ho, ho ! Is it not a vision rare } 

2 Rav. They hover, and hover. 
Now under, now over 


The cloud which is growing warm 
With the kindling light of the coming storm. 
Ci^ow. Hark, i' the air ! 

1 Rav. And the earth ! 

2 Rav. Ah, ha ! she starts at an evil birth. 
She heaves, she heaves. 

And the shaking leaves 

Grow parched, and the wind a sad music weaves. 

Crow. Look ! One has shot down like a star. 

2 Rav. But the other is soaring far, 
Like a Spirit that seeks the sun, 
When his errand below, in the dust, is done. 

1 Monkey. Mark the raven : note the rook ! 
What do Ihey with the Devil's book ? 

2 Mon. Stupid wretches ! 

1 Mon. And the crow ? 
What should such lumps of feathers know ? 
They 're fit for nought, 

In my poor thought, 

But to trick out a funeral raree-show. 

2 Mon. Peace, son ; they are but birds, you know 
They can't distinguish right from wrong. 

1 Mon. I '11 teach 'em to subtract ere long. 

2 Mon. We '11 try, some day, what can be done. 
In the mean time, 't is fit, my son, 

We from them get whate'er we can :, 

And much we may do, 

If we mind our cue. 

For a monkey is much on a par with man : 

There 's a difference 


Parrot. Ho ! I shall crack my side. 

2 Mon. Though few see 't, till we sit side by side. 
On the one hand, a man has a longer nose, 
And struts in clean linen, wherever he goes : 
But what has he like to the monkey's tail J 

Par. Ho, ho ! — Ho, ho ! 

2 Mon. Then he has n't such grace, 
Nor so fine a face : 
These things must be thrown in the opposite scale. 

Oicls. Hur-ruh ! — Hur-ruh ! [Distant thunder. 

Vulture. The tyrant Tempest is coming ! 
He strives to hold his breath : 
But I smell him, and hear him humming 
The beautiful, terrible tune of Death. 

Starling. Death ! — Death ! 

Snake. He is creeping amongst the leaves : 
He ruffles the moss and flowers : 
He is cunning ; but who deceives 
The snake in her watchful hours .' 

Dove. He cometh : yet I must stay ; 
For my lover will come, who is far away 
In the distant showers. 

Nightingale. And nothing shall force me fly ; 
For hither I came to die 
In the dark pine bowers. 

Rat. Dost hear 'em clatter ? Let 's run, let 's run ; 
The ruin (I feel it) has just begun. 
Save yourselves, brothers, and stay for none. 


[ Clouds gather overhead. — Chorus.] 

The sky is clothed in rain ; 

The clouds are big with thunder : 

And the hills all shake with a spasm pain ; 

For Spirits, above and under, 

Are shouting, — from steep to steep. 

All over the airy deep ; 

And thorough the caves and veins. 

Where Mammon the monarch reigns ; 

And witches are calling 

From wood to wood ; 

And comets are falling 

In swamp and flood ! 

Owls. Hur-ruh ! — Hur-ruh ! 

[A Shadow passes across.] 

A Voice. Make way ! 
And welcome the Spirit that floats this way : 
Do ye hear, my slaves ? 

Snake. O Master gray ! 

Thy servants are listening : they obey. 

[Chorus continues ] 

He comes ! He comes ! Rejoice, rejoice ! 
Great Forest, with all thy voice 1 

1 Voice. He comes ! 
The Master of mind and breath ; 
The Ghost that unlocketh the door of Death ; 


Who turneth the hinge of the coffin down ; 

Who laugheth at bauble and tinsel crown ; 

Who opens the lid, 

And shows what 's hid, 

Whether 't be king or a lowly clown. 

2 Voice. He comes ! 
Arise, and shake off your tears. 
Ashes and Oaks of a thousand years ! 

All Trees who have name, from Pine to Palm, 
Be quick and strip off your sunset calm. 
He comes, — with the evening pale ; 
Arise ! and bid the Magician hail ! 

3 Voice. He comes ! 
Elements sleeping, awake again ! 
Shout with your voices of wind and rain ! 
And Thou in the cloud. 

Alive and loud. 

Come forth on the back of the Hurricane ! 

Thunder and Tempest and Lightning pale. 

Leap from your caverns and cry, — "All Hail ! " 



1 . — The Valley of Ladies. 

Neiph. Come on, come on. — A little further on. 
And we shall reach a place where we may pause. 
It is a meadow full of the early spring : 
Tall grass is there which dallies with the wind, 
And never-ending odorous lemon-trees ; 
Wild flowers in blossom, and sweet citron-buds, 
And princely cedars ; and the linden-boughs 
Make arched walks for love to whisper in. 
If you be tired, lie down, and you shall hear 
A river, which doth kiss irregular banks, 
Enchant your senses with a sleepy tune. 
If not, and merry blood doth stir your veins, 
The place hath still a fair and pleasant aspect : 
For, in the midst of this green meadow, springs 
A fountain of white marble ; o'er whose sides 
Run stories, graven by some cunning hand. 
Of pastoral life, and tipsy revelry. 
There will we, 'midst delicious cates, and wines 
Sparkling and amorous, and sweet instruments. 
Sing gentle mischief as the sun goes down. 
Quick ! but a few steps more, — 'round by this copse 
Of olives and young chestnuts, (to whose arms 
The vines seem clinging, like so many brides,) 
And you will reach 't. Ha ! — Stay ! — Look ! here it is. 


Fiamet. Pa, ha ! Ha, ha ! — Look ! how Philostratus 
Buries his forehead in the fresh green grass. 

Pamphilus. Hail, vernal spot ! We bear to thy em- 
Pleasures that ask for calm ; Love, and Delight ; 
Harmonious pulses where no evil dwells ; 
Smiles without treach'ry ; words all soft and true ; 
Music like morning, fresh and full of youth, 
And all else that belongs to gentleness. 

2. — An Ulilitarian. 

He is a slave to Science. He would pull 
Great Heaven to pieces ; and anatomize 
Each fragment of its crj'^stal battlements ; 
Weigh out its hymns ; divide its light, and class 
The radiant feathers of Archangels' wings. 
Do we not know, — doth he not know, that still 
Mysterious Wonder aye must reign above us ; 
Struggle howe'er we may ? Doth he not know 
That Adoration and great Wonder, (like 
Good deeds which bless the giver,) ever lift 
The Soul above the dust, and strengthen us ? 

3. — The Uses of Courage. 

Pity me not : I am not without joy. 

Within the shadow of a grand Despair, 

Proud thoughts abide ; which with their stately strength 

Maintain the Spirit in its resolute path. 


Be sure of this : brave men do not resign 
All Heaven with love. He who can walk alone 
Unto his grave, and (conquering his own heart) 
Force the black Future, till its seeming Void 
Grows populous with shapes, and yields to him, 
Its regions subject, is not without joy ; 
But like some warrior, who, the day being won, 
Strides on triumphant amidst heaps of slain ; 
All pain and wounds forgot. 

4. — Life everywhere. 

Call not these things inanimate, — the trees, 

The grass, the herbs, the flowers. A busy life 

Dwells in their seething limbs ; and, as soft blooms 

Unfold themselves unto the alluring Sun, 

Fond music, (which we hear not,) mystic odors, 

Accompany their soft confessions. Thus, 

One springs and fades, — then others come, — whilst 

Exhale from each unto the listening air. 
Telling through all its course, (from life to death, 
From verdant spring-time until autumn sere,) 
The same eternal story. 

5. — Fame the Offspring of Fortune. 

A. Had he but lived 
With Fortune for his mate, and such a stage 
To play his part on, as some spirits have had, 
He would have been 


B. A king ? 

A. A man! what else, 
King, Emperor, Tyrant, Shah, would matter not. 

He would have been — a Name ; such as of old 
Grew into Gods ! 

B. And so he died ? 

A. He died, 

And not a verse did honor him. His doom 
Was writ already ; and his star was cfilled 
— Oblivion ! 

6. — Love independent of Reason. 

Love follows not desert, but accident. 

We love — because we love : I know no more. 

'T is not great thoughts, nor noble qualities. 

Nor conduct pure, compel it. These rather challenge 

Our deep respect than Love : That sweet emotion 

Owes to our tender hearts its gentle force, 

And scorns all meaner reason. 

7. — A Jester ; from the antique. 

A. You 're merry, Lovelace ? 

L. I am always meriy. 

When I came sprawling into this brave world, 
My mother laughed, and could not feel her pains : 
The midwife tittered, and the nurse did smooth 
Her grave and wrinkled apron with a smile. 
I grinned ere I could talk ; reaped all my learning 


Out of a jest-book ; and, ere I was man, 
Was a felon by each law of gravity. 
When I do right, I laugh ; 't is self-approval : 
And when I 'm wrong, I laugh : it comforts me. 
I laugh at folly, much ; at wisdom, more : 
The first by common rule, the last because 
'T is my peculiar game ; and I note often, 
Beneath the shadow of a grave man's frown, 
A foolscap dancing, — nay, I hear the bells, 
And burst abroad in monstrous merriment. 

A. You are the wiser man. If I could see 
The Sun, as thou dost, through impervious clouds, 
I might be happier. As it is, I bear 
The grievous load of life, which poor men carry. 
As loosely as I may. 

L. What ails thee now ? 
Come, thou hast lost a kitten in the mumps ? 
Thy maid has cracked her garter ? Thou hast heard 
Thy pig is gone astray, and 's put i' the pound ? 
Not so ? Why then thy parsley-bed has failed ? 
There are no hopes of apples ? The last clutch 
Of chickens do not thrive as thou expect'st } 
Or else, some brown-skinned wench, whose eyebrows 

Has sworn a child to another, — and 't is thine .•• 

A. Peace, peace ! Wilt lend xhe a crown .? 

L. Bah ! Is that all ? 
Why, ay : I '11 do much more, for one like thee, 
Whom I would fain laugh out of poverty. 


8. — A Case of Witchcraft. 


When first she saw him, how her dark orbs drew 
His soul aside. Her voice (that sweet witch-music) 
Bound him in trance ; and so she floated round, 
Taking him prisoner with her golden hair ; — 

B. Almost a Parasite ? 

A. 'T was even so : 

She wound about him, with her leaves and thorns ; 
Hid him in roses, preyed upon his strength ; 
And so at last he perished. Peace be with him ! 

9. — Mesalliance. 

A. You ask, why am I sad } — Give ear to me : — 
When 1 was young, I was a fool, — and married. 
The girl I wed was like a bright June morning ; 
Fresh, fragrant, dewy-lipped, and azure-eyed, 

And floated onward with a cloud-like motion ; 
And when she owned her love for me, her cheek 
Out-blushed the burning sun at Midsummer. 

B. And yet you were a fool ? 

A. Ay, a mad fool. 

For, look, — she was more humble than the dust ; 
A peasant's daughter. I, who track my line 
Even unto fable, and am honor-bound 
To keep my golden lineage unalloyed. 
Did wrong to heroes and to kings, my sires, 
To mix their blood with baseness. 


10. — Resolution. 

Let us go forth and tread down fate together. 
We '11 be companions of the gusty winds ; 
Laugh loud at hunger ; conquer want ; out-curse 
The fierceness of the howling wilderness. 
Firm here ; or bolder onwards ; that 's our way. 
He who gives back a foot, gives vantage ground 
To whatsoever is his enemy. 

n . — Ascending Visions. 

A. Within yon antique rooms 
Great Powers abide, which guard this place from wrong ; 
The strength of Michael ; RafFaelle's angel grace ; 
Grave Titian's splendor ; Paolo's sunset dreams : 

And Deities, who once (so poets write) 

Dwelt on Olympus, from their heights come down, 

And sit all round in marble ! 

B. Let us go in. 

A. Stand here, and gaze thy fill on beauteous Art! 
— Now, look beyond, — beyond its deeds or dreams, 
And thou wilt see the Spirits of human power, 
Creators of the things which shine below. 
Pause not ! but let thine aspirations still 
Ascend : for wondrous regions lie beyond ; 
Whose mystic heights, whose darkness calm and holy. 
No star can penetrate. There dwells the Thought, — 


The Power, the Spirit of Good, from whence all else 
Derive their purpose and their origin. 

12.— The New Year. 

Time slips from under us. The Year is gone ! 

And now — what comes ? Hark to the headlong bells. 

Whose sudden cries shoot through the circling air, 

Like lightning through the dark. What birth is next ? 

The Year, — the new-bom Year ! Cold, weak, and pale. 

She enters on her round. No flowers awake 

To herald her : no winds start forth, to pipe 

Their Bacchanalian welcomes in her ear : 

But Silence and inanimate Nature lie 

In watch, awaiting her first look serene ; 

And, deep within her breast, what marvels sleep ; 

What deeds of good and ill ; what dreams, — desires, 

Flowers like the stars, and thoughts beyond the flowers ; 

Laughing delights, mute woes, passionate tears ; 

And kindness, human sunshine, softening all ! 

13. — Life and Death. 

A. You, in your fierce desire to vanquish me. 
Forget this truth : — The Gods who give us life, 
Give Its death also ! 

B. Both are good : — What better, 
After tempestuous hours, than deep repose ! 


14. — Autumn. 

The melancholy Autumn comes on us : 
Not red and stormy ; but in a shroud of rain, 
Weeping for Summer fled. The fields lie bare : 
The orchards stripped ; the gardener's pride is o'er : 
For all sweet-smelling flowers have lost their lives ; 
Greranium ; heliotrope : Even the rose, 
That was the queen of all the sunny year, — 
She, in whose perfumed halls the wild bee lingered, 
Lightening his toil with song, — is pale and dead ! 
So is 't with us : — Our spring is blown and gone : 
Our manly summer, o'er whose moments Love 
Threw lustre like the morning, fades at last ! 

15. — The Sorrow of an Heir. 

Duke. Great tidings have come hither, — from the 
The Duke is dead : — nay, something more than that : 
My Father 's dead ! — Well, — he was very old. 
The seasons were familiar with his pains : 
From vernal youth to wintry age, he saw 
The melancholy months pour out their ills ; 
And now, — the year 's at end ! These things are writ 
Down on unalterable brass. No tears ! 
What use in grieving ? Will my cries charm back 
The pale down-going Ghost which was my Sire, 
And seat it upright in his crimson chair ? — 
He has left us. Gray old man ! He was a bar 


'Tween me and power : yet, I beheld him not 
With an heir's loathing. Master of mine own, 
Within my stormy circle still I reigned, 
And left him to a throne. 

. . . Soh, — now for life ; 
(Death being forgot awhile). We must assume 
The sceptre of our sires, and take on us 
The golden burthen of a ducal crown. 
In place of petty thoughts and weak desires, 
We '11 seek Ambition in her high retreat, 
And take her for our mate. 'T is well that men. 
Who march on humble ground, should match with dust : 
But We, — whose homes are on the mountain tops. 
Whose thoughts beyond, — must breathe fit air, and hold 
Nothing beneath the stars in fellowship. 

16. — Unborn Flowers. 

Mow gentle is the sward ! Tread soft ! Perhaps 
A blue-eyed creature, whom the Spring forgot 
To sweeten, lies below. Perhaps she was 
Too frail to unfold her bloom ; so died i' the bud. 

17. — A Mother pleads to see her Children. 

Judge. You are accused 

M. Accused f say you, accused ? 

Why so were saints and martyrs : Nay (hear this) 
Christ was accused ! The only Son of God, — 
He was reviled and smitten : crowned with thorns, 


Nailed to the cross, — murdered ! Do you hear ? 

You judges of a mean and bloody law ? 

Who spell out, with cold tongues, accursed words, 

That freeze my soul. — Do you say, — dare you say. 

That I, — a mother, — ay, a fond one (back. 

You blinding tears !) 

Judge. The law 

M. I want not law. 

I ask for justice : — Such as Heaven doth teach 
Uato wise hearts, and man metes out to man : 
Such as doth keep the troubled world in quiet. 
I ask for justice : do I ask too much ? 
A Mother, — I demand to see the babes 
I bore in pain, and fed, and for some years 
(A few, too few !) guided as they should go, 
And taught them truth and gentle thoughts ; and now 
I ask to see them. God ! I ask 't of thee ; 
For man denies me. Ah ! God ! — Father ! Friend ! 
(I have no other;) from thine awful throne 
Hear my petition. Give my children to me : 
And other fortune, short of this, 1 '11 bear. 
And thank your grace for ever. 

18. — A Superstition. 

'T IS said, that in some land, I think in Spain, 

(Rising upon you like an awful dream,) 

A wondrous image stands. ' T is broad and gaunt ; 

Tall as a giant ;' with a stormy front ; 

And snaky hair, and large eyes all of stone ; 


And armed, or so it seems, from head to heel, 

With a crook'd falchion, and enormous casque, 

And mighty links of mail, which once were brass ; 

And spurs of marble, and marmoreal limbs ; 

All bent, like one who staggers. Full at the East 

It glares, like a defiance, lowering, bold ; 

And scorn still lurks about its steadfast eye ; 

And on its brow a lordly courage sits. 

— This statue, as 't is told, was once a king ; 

A fierce idolater ; who cursed the moon. 

And hated Heaven, yet owned some hellish sway : — 

A strange religion this ; and yet it was so. 

Well, — he was born a king, as I have said. 

And reigned o'er armed millions, without law. 

He sold brave men for beggar gold, and stained 

The innocent youth of virtue. He robbed altars ; 

Ate like Apicius ; drank, like Afric sands, 

Rivers of wine ; then fell to frenzy. At last, 

Swarming rebellions (like the Atlantic stirred 

To madness, by the bellowing of great storms) 

Rose up, and, lashed to wrath by horrid wrongs. 

Hunted the tyrant from his brazen throne, — 

Hunted him, like a wolf, from cave to cave ; 

Through rocks, and mountains, and deep perilous glens ; 

Day after day, night after night, until 

His soul burst out in curses. On one dull dawn, 

Which showed him lurking to relentless foes. 

He flung some terrible reproach at Heaven ; 

Laughed at its God, 't is said, and cursed the Sun : — 

Whereat the broad eye of the Day unclosed, 

And stared him into stone ! 


19. — A Page untranslalahle. 

I GAZE into her eyes : — But who can see 
Beyond the impenetrable stars ! I hear 
The music of her steps, and of her sighs, 
And of her presence, when she is most still : 
Yet something 'scapes me. I could sooner read 
The mysteries of the moon, when frenzy howls. 
Than her all-potent silence. 

20. — Twilight. 

I LOVE this light : 

'T is the old age of Day, methinks ; or haply 

The infancy of Night : pleasant it is. 

Shall we be dreaming ? — Hark ! The nightingale, 

Queen of all music, to her listening heart 

Speaks, and the woods are still. 

2\. — Exiles. 

Man. A LITTLE farther on. 

And thou shall find a safe, sad resting-place. 
It is a fallen palace, through whose gates, 
Arches, and flapping casements, the wild rain 
And gusty winds pour in. Long years ago. 
It was a mansion of a Count of Spain ; 
Who dealt with the dark Spirits, as 't is told. 
And met a sudden doom. I have heard that he 
Encountered his dusk master, as he sate 


At supper by himself one winter's night, 
And died in madness. 

Arm. Is the place so lonely ? 

M. Ay, is it. The stork hath left it ; and no thing 
Comes there, beside the snake ; save when, hard pressed 
By savage hunters, or relentless cold. 
The wild fox makes 't his dwelling through the night. 
And flies at morning. 

A. I am ready, now : 

Give me our boy, and I will carry him. 

M. Not so : I 'm stouter, — nay, I feel no pain. 
He sleeps. Look on him, — little famished wretch ! 
Hunger disdains to tear him. Now, let 's on : 
This way, beneath the pines. There is no track ; 
But I have sported there in brighter days. 
And know the thickets. 

A. Ha! you stagger.' stay: 

Now, give me thy sweet burthen. 

M. Tush ! 't was chance ; 

A straggling root from yon old chestnut-tree. 
We '11 tread with greater care. 

A. I '11 sing to thee ; 

And cheer thee on our melancholy march. 
'T is said men fight the better when they hear 
Sweet music ; ay, endure fatigue and thirst. 
Hunger and such poor wants. If so, I '11 strain 
My throat until it shame the nightingale. 
But I '11 do thee some service. Listen then. [She sings. 

M. Go on : it cheers me. Well } 

A. I had forgot. 


The rest is sad : we Ml have 't another time. 

M. Now, now : — although 't be darker than our lot ; 
Let 's hear it. When we cannot feel the sun, 
Or hear the spring wind laugh, or babbling river, 
There 's music in the rain. 

22. — Friends in Death. 

E. In some lone cemetery. 

Distant from towns, (some wild, wood-girded spot. 
Ruined and full of graves, all very old. 
Over whose scarce-seen mounds the pine-tree sheds 
Its solemn fruit, as giving dust to dust,) 
He sleeps in quiet. Had he no friend ? O, yes : 
Pity which hates all noise, and Sorrow, like 
The enamoring marble that wraps virgin mould. 
And palest Silence, who will weep alone. 
And all sad friends of Death, were friends to him ! 

23. — A New Alceslis. 

Manuel. [Watching the body of Armida.] ... It 
may not be ! 
I watch in vain. At dawn, at noon, at eve. 
And ever through the mystic midnight hour, 
I watch by her, who was so late my bride ; 
Yet see no change. Midway, 'tween life and death. 
He stays ; the tinct still red upon her lip ; 
And a hue, like that the blush-rose wears, when June 
Bares her sweet breast to day, redeems her cheek 


From everlasting death : and yet, — she 's dead! 
I saw, (too well!) amidst my useless tears, 
Her life dissolve away : so, — though she lies 
As yet of no one beauty disarrayed. 
We '11 give her tender burial. Open, earth ! 

[Music. The following Incantation is heard.] 

Change ! — The clay is changing : 

The Spirit is through its chambers ranging ; 

And the blood begins to flow ! 
With his subtle and fiery breath, 

He is waking the streams below, 
And is flushing the face of Death. 
He hurries from vein to vein. 
Hither and thither, and baclt again. 
All over the tingling nerves. 
O'er muscles and bones, and never swenes ; 
And now — he is in the brain, 
With a sharp but a pleasant pain ! 

Awake, thou wonder of wonders. 

Thou beautiful, ghastly bride ; 
For the ground is shaken by thunders. 

And swells with a gloomy pride ; 
That the soul which so lately fled 

Should return on the wings of life, 
And escape from the ghostly dead ; 

And mingle again in the tearing strife ; 
Where Power and Sin, allied, 

Go triumphing still through the regions wide ; 


Where Hunger is left to die, 

And Grief, with the streaming eye, 

And Beauty and Youth, and Fear and Pain, 

Fall down at the Conqueror's feet, in vain. 

[She revives.] 

Man. Ha! — God! 

Arm. What seest thou ? — Manuel, dear Manuel ! 

Man. Speak ! earth-like, tomb-like ! — Speak ! a word, 
a word ; 
Low as the whisper of death. 

Arm. Dear Manuel ! 

Man. The music comes again. Like sighing cy- 
press, — 
Like organ dirges, heard midst tears and prayer, 
It floats about my brain : — But she is dead ! 

Arm. Have I slept long ? 

Man. A life ! — thy feet have trod 

The bubbling, burning waters, and come back 
From Hell, like Orpheus' lover, whom the gods 
Dashed into death once more. 

Ar7n. Thy reason 's troubled : 

Sit by me, and we 'II talk. 

Man. Darest thou betray 

The dumb, dark secrets thou hast learned below ? 
Beware ! their gods may stir : daemons may rise. 
Armed with revenge and hate ; and, passing the bound 
That doth divide us from the worlds of fire, 
Seize on thee for their own. Art thou not theii-s ? 
Their right } their prey ? their subject .'' O, if so. 


They '11 drag thee down to torment (o' that be sure) 
Though I stand strong beside thee. Look, she smiles. 

Arm. If thou 'rt unhappy, if thy dreams be wild, 
Thy heart in anger, or thine honor hurt. 
Come unto me. Am I not she who swore 
To love thee ever ? 

Man. Ay ; through life and death, — 

Through death, and through all dim eternity. 
Thou swor'st to follow me, — above, — below, — 
Forsaking all things. Heaven itself, if Love 
Might be o'er Time triumphant. 

Arm. And it is. 

Man. It is, it is. O heart, be calm ! she lives ! 

Arm. I live : I love. — I love ; what more should be .' 

Man. Nothing : the world 's complete. 

24. — Old Romance. 

Dost thou not love the golden antique time. 

When knights and heroes, for a lady's love. 

Would spear the dragon ? 

Or when Boccaccio's dames, now long ago. 

Lay laughing on the grass, hearing and telling 

Wild love adventures, witty, merry tales. 

That made the heart leap high ? And yet even they 

Would sadden amidst their flowers, when that some 

(Like a rose unfolded) was betrayed, which shewed 
What Love indeed was made of, — when the world — 
Chance — falsehood — danger tried its truth till death, 
And proved its hues unaltered. 


25. — An Agrarian Law. 

D. We will divide 
The treasures of the land amongst us all : 
Nature made all men equal. 

A. Soh ! what 's here ? 
Divide what we have earned by our hard labor ? 
Let all men share alike ? The idle take 

The industrious laborer's mite ? The drunkard swill 
The drink that we have bought with sober toil ? 
The robber come into our doors, and cry, 
" Half of your loaf is mine " ? — If we divide 
Our neighbor's goods to-day, why not divide 
Again to-morrow .' Will our wealth become 
Aught the more sacred, 'cause 't was plundered first .- 
Why may not one, to-morrow, come and claim 
What we have stol'n to-day ? How can we keep, 
Save by our strength of arm, the gold we get,* 
A week, — a day, — an hour ? How can we tell 
The very food we earn shall be our own. 
When we have ta'en another's ? 

B. That is true. 
D. All will be right, in future. 

A. Who will work. 

If what he earns be never safe } who 'II sow. 
That they who trade in plunder still may reap 
The corn he ought to gather ? One great end 
Of all Laws is Security : — That lost, 
A country doth become a robber's den. 
Bloody and base, where nought but bad men thrive. 


26. — Aggrandizement by the Passions. 

Tut, tut ! all 's vanity. Not I alone ; 
Ambition, Courage, Hate, Revenge, Despair, 
AH seem to exceed the measure of themselves, 
When each is lofty. Hast e'er heard the wind 
Run blustering through the forests, and make tremble 
The aspen and the birch ? Why, who would dream 
That 't was the selfsame air which fanned the flowers 
So delicately i' the spring .' Hast seen the sea 
Come swaggering on the land, till the land shook, 
And all the shores and echoing caverns lost 
Their dumbness in affright ^ Look well upon 't : 
'T is the same murmuring creature scarce surmounts 
The pebbles on our beach ; only, being wrought 
To madness by some wrong, or the moon's scorn, 
'T jumps from its calm, and scales the sky, to show 
^^'hat strength 't may have when angered. So it is 
With the Passions, which are all irregular. 
Bound by no limit, tending to no end. 
Unless to show how high the Spirit of man 
May soar beyond its puny dwelling-place. 

27. — Advice on Marriage. 

Never, boy, wed a wit. Man does not marry 
To poise his reason 'gainst a quarrelling tongue ; 
But for sweet idleness. Chose I a wife, 
I 'd have her, — perhaps fair, — certainly gentle ; 
True, if 't were possible ; and tender — oh ! 



As daylight when it melts in evening seas, 
The waves all dark with slumber. 

28. — Death in Youth. 

My brother 's dead ! He was a man to seize 
The eagle Greatness in its flight, and wear 
Its feather in his casque. He 's dead : — he died 
Young ; as the great will die ; as Summer dies, 
By drought and its own fevers burned to death. 

29. — Hopefulness of Love. 

Look, where she stands ! Hath the magician Love 
Touched her to stone ? No, no : she breathes, she 

moves : 
Beauty sits bravely in her glittering eye ; 
And passion stains her cheek. What thoughts are these. 
Unfolding like rose-flowers at dawn of day .? — 
Methinks she sees the sunny Future lie 
Basking before her. 

30. — Good in every Heart. 

Nature never made 
A heart all marble ; but, in 'ts fissures, sows 
The wild flower Love ; from whose rich seeds spring 

A world of mercies and sweet charities. 


31. — A Lover''s Memory. 

They call her beautiful : It may be so : 
All that I know is, when she leaves me, Dreams 
Rise up, and Visions, of some glory passed, 
Encompass me ; and I remember soon. 
How planet-struck I was when she was by ; 
Although I then saw nothing. 

32. — Polyphemus. 

J. This " Triumph " * by our friend is wanton soft : 
But there 's high matter in the sea-nymph's story. 
Which might become a painter's pencil well. 
He should have drawn the Cyclop, — as he sate 
Uplifted like a crag, and piped his songs 
Of Galatea to the watery shores. 
Some say that, Orpheus-like, he charmed dull stones. 
Made Ocean murmur, and the airy winds 
Took captive ; and 't is known, he sighed and sang 
The deathful ditties which belong to love ; 
And called on Galatea : — She, the while. 
Lay mute, and closed (if e'er she heard his strains) 
Her soul against his passion. Day by day 
He sang; and, like the mateless lark, called forth 
The dawn ; and underneath the burning noon 
Held fiery celebration ; and at eve. 
Fatigued by sorrow and wild song, he wept. 

• The Triumph of Galatea, by Raffaelle. 


33. — Parents'' Love : Value of Reproof. 

The love of parents hath a deep, still source ; 
And falleth like a flood upon their child. 
Sometimes the child is grateful : then his love 
Comes like the spray returning. — In this case, 
A father, full of truth, has checked his son ; 
Harshly, perhaps ; for many a benefit 
Puts on the visor of a stern reproof; 
But, O, within, (as roughest rinds conceal 
The tenderest kernels,) gentle thoughts abide ; 
Sweet meanings ; seeds that, if the soil be sure, 
Will br'uig forth fruits of wisdom. 

34. — Goodness comes without Parade. 

A. The Music, then, 

A rainbow of sweet sounds, did steal upon me. 
Arching my cloudy thoughts with brighter hopes. 

B. Is it not ever thus ? The gifts of Gods 
Come not in thunder, but all silent : — Thus 
Comes forth the Flower, and thus the summer Dawn 
With noiseless steps moves up the eastern sky. 
And brings us light and comfort. Thanks for all ! 

35. — Evening Music. 

Ja. I THOUGHT I heard my husband's footstep } No. 

Girl. 'T was but a deer crossing the path. 

Ja. You 're right ; 


My wish outran my judgment. Come, — a song : 
My heart is painful, and I cannot sleep. 
A song ! Let it be soft, yet nowise sad ; 
Some air that floats upon the edge of silence, 
But enters not its bound. The world 's at rest ! 
Why cannot I (poor watcher) lose my pains 
In sweet oblivion, like the happy world .? 

Girl. What shall I sing, madam ? 

Ja. Whate'er you will ; 

Some verse you love, girl. — Well, if I must choose, 
Let it be some such old, sweet household song 
As a mother, rocking her sick child to rest. 
Sings through the night. Or, — if you will, — recount 
How all wild thoughts and cares of feverish life 
Find refuge at last in sleep. See ! day is past, 
And night already here. 


Girl (sings). Day is over ; Night is here : 
Closed are the eye and ear 
In sleep, in sleep ! 
Pain is silent ; Toil reposes : 
Love is hid amongst his roses : 
Let the murmuring music creep 
Into silence, and remain 
Till the morning smiles again ! 
Neither moan, nor weep : 
Dreams, and all the race of Fear, 
Fade away, and disappear 
In the deepest deep ! 


Ja. Thanks, little one : You have a voice might grieve 
The nightingale, could she but hear you sing. 
Or, — was 't the theme ? Soft, gentlest, friendly Sleep ! 
Sweet holiday ! Of all earth's good the help, — 
Or origin : thyself a midnight Hymn, 
Which weary Nature, when her work is done. 
Breathes to the God of all ! 

36. — Fancy thrives in Darkness. 

In happy daylight, child, our fancy 's dull ; 
Quelled, dazzled by the sunshine. In the storm. 
And in the night, and on the turbulent sea, — 
When thunder and the winds wage war together. 
And, underneath, the vast black heaving Deep 
Bears up the sailor to the clouds, he sees. 
Far off, the beauty of his flowery home, 
Where, fenced by humble walls, his children sleep ; 
Their mother watching o'er. 

37. — Children. 

Sigh not for Children. Thou wilt love them much ; 
And Care will follow Love, and then Despair. 
First, one«will sicken ; then, another leave thee 
For the base world ; and he thou lov'st the most, — 
The light o' thy life, girl, will go out at last, 
Like fading starlight ; leaving thee, alone. 
To sordid thoughts and childless misery. 


39. — Pride of Birth. 

I WAS horn high. I did not spring from mire, 
Like the foul fungus : but, from airy heights. 
Descended with my branches, and let men 
Gather my golden fruits to comfort them. 

39. — A Discovery. Confidential Talk. 

A . You said you wished to trust some secret to me ? 

Y. Sit down, and let us talk. Is the door fast ? 

A. 'T is ne'er left open. I don't sleep o' nights 
With my throat bare for every knife that comes. 
No : I know better. 

Y. Ay ; you know there are some 

Will knock a man o' the head for half a dollar ; 
And dream that night the merrier } 

A. No, not so : 

Not for so little. 

Y. You interpret me 

Too literally. I meant for some small sum : 
A slight annuity, now ? 

A. Ha ! — well ? what then ? 

Y. Why, nothing, — nothing. We 've forgot the 

A. I heard a noise. 

Y. 'T was but the wind. — Now, listen. 

— Some years ago, before I went abroad — 
'T was on a winter's night : — The storm that had vexed 
The evening, now was hushed : The ground, late crisp 


With frost, grew soft ; and footsteps made no noise. 
'T was dark, pitch dark ; and not a sound was heard ; 
Save when some murderer, struggling with his dreams, 
Babbled of blood, or some child-robber groaned — 

A. S' Death, what 's all this ? Go to your tale at 

Y. Patience ! On such a night 1 lay awake, 
Amidst the silence : Midnight might be past ; 
When you and your late wife 

A. Your mother : well } 

Y. Crept nearer to the ashes, then nigh dead ; 
And, after words more stormy than the wind. 
Fell talking of old times. You — (look at me !) 
You spoke together, loosely, of some deed, 
Done years before ; of some rich man's desire 
To jump into his elder brother's seat. 
And lose some — reptile brat that troubled him. 
And then you whispered, (whilst your wife peered 

Shaking like Horror,) " Safe, 'gainst all the world " ! 
You swore (I hear your hoarse words now) you had 

The earth on " the body," and made all things sure. 
Then followed a strange fact (I had wellnigh laughed 
Right through the crevice, where I watched, unknown) ; 
'T was of a child, stolen from his home ; brought up 
In workhouse poverty ; and taken, at last. 
Into your house. Ha, ha ! — I hurried back 
Into my bed, and there laughed out my fill : 
The tale was so like my own. 


A. Stay here, a moment. 

Y. No, by my soul ; not I. You shall not pass. 
Look ! I have pistols in my belt. You know 
I am not a man to trifle. 

A. Would you kill 

Your father ? 

Y. Ha, ha, ha ! Am I a fool ? 

Did you not say " the "child " wore on its throat 
A mark ? Look ? — What am I ? I am the child : 
And I will know my parentage. 

A. Be calm. 

Y. Dost think — had I not done a foolish thing, 
That I 'd have slept so long upon this tale ? 
Not I, by Hell. I was compelled to starve 
Ten years abroad, to cheat our cursed laws : 
But time has run ; and they who might have thrust me, 
A culprit, out to the burning colonies, 
Can do 't no more. Their power is dead : Dost mark } 
And now I come upon you, and will ungrave 
The bloody secret. I tcill know the worst. 
If you speak fairly, all may still go well : 
If not, 1 '11 straight before some magistrate, 
And make my oath against you. 

A. Ha, ha, ha ! 

You have been dreaming. 

Y. We will search — a field ! 

And we will know whose purse now feeds your wants. 
You were not born to live on others' toil : 
But, bred a servant, — what has raised you thus .'' 
Look on me ? Who am I? Do I not know 


That creatures, whom some wrong (as damnable 
As mine) hath crushed in youth, though hid in rags, 
Have felt their spirits mount up to the clouds. 
And forced their way to fortune : — So will I. 
Confess ; or I am gone. 

A. Give me a day. 

Y. I will not give an hour. This minute 's thine. 
To yield, or dare : — the next belongs to Fate. 

40. — Constancy in Crime. 

Sir Ph. Fellow, look on me. Dost thou think I 
A spot upon my soul, risked fame, and hired 
A well-paid ruffian to achieve this deed. 
But to draw back .'' Know better. It is done : 
And shall not be repented. Shouldst thou dare 
To babble but a word of what is past. 
Count on your death. 'T will be a patriot deed. 
To hire a villain's knife to kill a villain : 
There 'II be a rogue the less. Think well upon it. 

Bra. You will not be so bloody } 

Sir Ph. Think upon it. 

I 'm here, high seated, firmly seated, too. 
But if a foot be stirred, why, I shall think 
A robber comes ; — 

Bra. And then ? 

Sir Ph. Then he '11 be — shot ; 

And no time lost i' the doing. Think upon it. 


41. — Popular Commotions. 

About this time the Trumpet talked of war. 
On which, I set my books in decent order ; 
Took leave of friends ; bequeathed a gift or two ; 
And, though till then I had battled but with words, 
I buckled on my sword like other men, 
And plunged in action. 'T was called " civil " war. 
The people were abroad, — like a mighty fleet 
Wrenched from its moorings, by some sudden storm ; 
Tossed to and fro, — past counsel, — blind and deaf 
To all things, save the roaring hurricane. 

42. — Battles. 

Then all bad Passions mingled in the strife : 
Hate, with closed lips and cold, unaltered eye. 
Defied his enemy : Black Revenge rushed forth : 
And Envy with his hidden knife came on. 
Stealing behind his prey. This way and that, 
(Scared by the trumpet or the sullen drum,) 
Fled Beauty, mocked by Vice ; and helpless Age ; 
And timorous Youth . whilst Murder, with hot eyes, 
Spent bredth, and staggering through the slippery 

Paused for a while, and with red dripping fingers 
Wiped from his sweating brow his cloud of hair, 
And reckoned his harvest 'round. 


43. — Animal Love. 

Rod. What kind of witch was this ? 

Mor. Um — ph ! You may see 

Her like in some old picture. Look ! — 1' the distance 
Are skies of deepest blue : Near, overhead, 
Hang clouds of cool, green leaves, and tendrils heavy 
With bloomy grapes : Beneath, Nymphs or Bacchantes, 
With pulpy lips, and glances full of heat. 
Sporting about, (careless of Fauns hard by,) 
Their rich, brown, burnished skins, kissed by the Sun, 
And naked in the merry vintage-time. 
Well, — such was she : and I — I loved her, 'faith. 
As I should, then, have loved some luscious peach, — 

Rod. How.? 

Mor. I must needs confess it, uncle Roderick : 

Her large, luxurious bosom and bold eyes 
Shot fire upon my flesh and maddened me. 
Reproach me not : I was a foolish boy, 
(A fool,) and cast body and soul away 
In those love-squandering days. Noic, — I am man ; 
And have man's reason, man's maturer taste. 
Instead of languid rooms and rose-fed air, 
I front the roaring Boreas where he blows : 
In place of dances, I look out for wars ; 
Converse on battles ; mark how squadrons wheel ; 
And hope to live out life in nobleness. 


44. — Wisdom^ a Problem. 

I CAME into the world as others do ; 

Life quickening in my limbs, the burning blood 

Racing through every vein and artery ; 

Free, vigorous, healthy ; turned to passionate themes, 

And born for pleasure. I grew up — a man, 

My spirit ripening as my limbs waxed strong ; 

I read, marked, hoarded ; heaped up word on word, 

And thought on thought ; and, when severer years 

Banished bright Hope and quelled my April laugh, 

And hung the Future round with clouds of care. 

Men dreamed that I was wise. Alas ! I lost 

The fruit of wisdom, — joy. I smiled, indeed. 

As, day by day, I reckoned up my gains, 

And learned how I had toiled, as sage men do. 

Accumulating riches for no end : — 

But still I was called wise, and that sufficed. 

Now, look upon me ! Didst thou ever see 

Old Age, girl ? Look upon him, — face to face ! 

Observe, how white and withered is his skin : 

How his lean limbs go tottering : how his tongue 

Stammers forth sadness ! From his eyes the light 

Of love and intellect is quenched and gone : 

And every thing about him, body and mind, 

Tells a foul tale of Time. 


45. — Comfort in Nature. 

Art sick ? — art sad } — art angry with the world } 
Do all friends fail thee ? Why, then, give thyself 
Unto the forests and the ambrosial fields : 
Commerce with them, and with the eternal sky. 
Despair not, fellow. He who casts himself 
On Nature's fair, full bosom, and draws food, 
Drinks from a fountain that is never dry. 
The Poet haunts there : Youth that ne'er grows old 
Dwells with her and her flowers ; and Beauty sleeps 
In her most green recesses, to be found 
By all who seek her truly. 

46. — Mute Confession. 

Dost thou deny it ? I have seen thee look 

Into the sunny region of his hair ; 

And gaze upon his brow. O, shut thy lips ! 

I want no words : thou dost confess it now. 

There, — on thy painted cheeks and glittering eyes, 

The story 's writ : — Be silent ; all is well. 

Al. — ALily. 

A. She is not fresh in color, like the rose ; 
Nor bright like morning. On her cheek there lies 
Such paleness as becomes the maiden moon, 
When clouds are threatening, and the angry storm 
Mutters of death to come. 


B. She is not dead ? 

A. Death could not kill her: he but kissed her cheek, 
And made 't a little paler. So, she lives. 
And fades, — and fades ; and in the end, (as day 
Dies into evening,) she '11 some summer night 
Shrink and be seen no more. 

48. — Uninspired Music. 

These should be inspiration still in Art ; 

Raising the artist's toil, and sweetening it. 

These ponderous labors yield me no delight. 

I am not learned in Music ; yet I know 

That the Art whose skill must mean to move the soul, 

And echo Nature, should be true to it. 

Now Nature's voice is not like this vast strain, 

Monotonously grand : Some sounds there are 

In dignity below the thunder; some 

Tender as Love ; some gay as bridal thoughts ; 

Some stern as justice ; others, more serene. 

Which (mute by day) awake when Evening wakes, 

And soothe the setting sun with harmony. 

49. — Fellowship. 

A. Now, fellow } 

B. Fellow me not. 

A. How now, good friend 

Are we not fellows } Do not morn and eve 
Bring the same hunger to our scanty boards .'' 


Come not warm Summer, bleak December's cold, 
Darkness and dreaming sleep, to both, — alike? 
In what strange transit of the laboring moon 
Wast thou sent forth, that thou shouldst soar beyond 
The regular flight of men ? — Give me thy hand. 

50. — The Rise of a Favorite. 

Ten years ago I knew this favorite ; 
And we were friends : such friends as young men are, 
Who 're bound together by some wild pursuit. 
But we fell off at last, when I grew grave, 
And turned to study : he, being then, indeed, 
Ambitious, but not winged with soaring thoughts. 
Clung to some genius rising. He became 
A Courtier ; laid in wait for princes' smiles ; 
Talked soft to noble dames ; flattered rich men ; 
And so, by dint of such poor palace tricks, 
Surmounted his low birthright, and at last 
Sprang on the back of Fortune. 

... I, too, rose ; 
And fell, alas ! Yet, wherefore should I grieve ? 
What difference is there 'twixt the now and then ? 
The sun shines on me as 't was wont to do ; 
My strength the same, my appetite ; my body 
Throws down as large a shadow. Is my voice shriller ? 
My eye less quick ? or any natural power 
More dull than when I stood second to none, 
Except an ungrateful master .' 


51. — Fale of the Daring. 

Fame and an early death : that is the doom 

Of all who greatly dare. I do not speak 

Of mea who have with cautious footsteps trod 

The way to the heights of power ; but such as plunged 

At once into renown, and gave their blood 

For reverence from unborn posterity. 

52. — A Father''s Anger. 

Hear me, — Gods ! 
You, who give fathers' curses, give me now 
A curse that has no mercy, — stunning, vast, 
And deeper than despair ! Now let me crush 
The heart out of a base, ungrateful child ! 

God, O God ! I was so fond of her ! 
She was my only one. The world was else 

A blank, — a Hell ! dark, barren, hopeless, pitiless ! 
And now — she 's gone ! 

Come hither. You are bereft 
(You say) of fortune — health — life's light — men's 

And swear you have endured some mighty loss } 

1 laugh at you. Turn here, and look on me. 
I had — a world ; and I have lost it all ! 
All, — not an atom left, — or shred of joy, 
No hope, no resignation, — only death ! 



53. — Good never ceases. 

A. I CANNOT bring him back ; — for he is dead. 
1 cannot re-illuminate his clay : 

The Spirit, which once shone through it like flame, 
And soared up to the brain and said, Be wise. 
Is flown beyond the stars ! With him departed 
The beauty of the world, — truth, — genius, — all 
That lent this orb its lustre. 

B. You are young ; 

And years will bring you calm. Meantime, take com- 
Think not that all of good has passed away : 
There is no hour but hath its noble deed : 
Each minute is rich in worth, — heroic thoughts, 
High, gentle, generous acts : — All that Time lacks 
Is — an historian ! 

54. — The Limit of a Hero. 

Nothing may now be done. Our fellows, here, 
Slumber in ignorant night. One man, albeit 
He should rise star-like and so set, can shew 
Only the course of his own luminous orb. 
Some impulse he may lend, indeed ; yet he 
Is master but of his sole destiny. 
To bear a people sunwards, there must be 
Time and just laws, commerce and useful arts 
(Civilization being expressed in these) ; 
For from such sources gentle manners flow ; 


And leisure, wherein Thought doth dwell and thrive, 
A Spirit of many names, — as Science, Art, 
And Meditation, which doth lead to truth. 

55 — A Prophet. 

Man. The melancholy prophet, — there he sits ; 
Dark-eyed, deep-browed, deep-thoughted ; tranquil, too. 
As though his terrible oracles did not sound 
Damnation to the land, and overturn. 
I hear his voice ; 

Like Darkness murmuring forth her eastern song, — 
Ruin to wealth, and punishment to pride, 
Its awful burthen. Twenty years ago 
I knew this man. I did not think he held 
So large a mind, nor such grave, earnest soul. 
(I do repent in ashes.) He was then 
Simply a scholar ; and (as I fancy) felt 
The place he trod on was too low for him ; 
Or else, he scorned the sordid crowds he met ; 
Or had ambition ; or desired to breathe 
His Soul upon the world, and brighten it. 
Whate'er he was, he is a man to lead 
The true and nobler Spirits in his train ; 
Amongst the rest — myself ; a humble man 
Who, as yet, have but the wish to serve for truth. 


56. — A Sceptic in Happiness. 

A. Look on her. Is she not most beautiful > 
Most happy, too ? for rank, and youth, and heahh, 
Are hers ; and suppliant Fortune waits to ask 
Where lies her choice. Can you foresee what Earth 
Has more to yield ? 

B. Methinks a " more " might be. 

A. I know not what. Look, how the sunny smiles. 
Like golden meshes, wind about her brow ! 

How airily, yet with what state, she walks ! 
Your eyes are dim to-day. 

B. I see, I see. 

The rose grows on her cheek : — is there no thorn } 

57. — False Worship. 

Y. With what respect 

Yon burgher bows to you. 

A. He is a fool : 

He ducks unto my purse, which will not open ; 
Passing you by, whom radiant youth and love. 
And hope and health, (the kingly wine of life,) 
And earnest thoughts of noble deeds to come. 
Sustain and strengthen. Yet, be not too proud : 
For dreams are fading. As you sit beside 
The stream that flows into oblivion. 
Gathering the golden pebbles from its banks, 
Summer will pass, and Autumn, moaning low, 
(And you will hear them not ;) and suddenly 


Down like a curse December's frost will fall, 

And strip your strength away, and shrivel you up. 

Until you grow the weakly thing that I am. 

I cheat men of respect. What have I ? — Gold ! 

The God of pauper spirits : nought beside. 

Give me your pity : but respect yourself; 

And strive to earn what ought to force respect. 

58. — The Test of Love. 

Loves she ? She loves not : she hath never loved. 
Her walk is easy ; her discourse is neat : 
She sigheth not ; her smile has mirth in it : 
Her gaze is firm, untroubled, cloudless, cold : 
No fear makes pale her cheek : No hopeless pain 
Lies there ; nor hope, half-hidden : No sweet trouble 
Stains it with beauty like the rose's leaf: — 
But all is free as air, as fresh as youth. 
As clear from care as untouched innocence. 

59. — A Truism. 

See, — Morning, in the East, unbinds her hair. 

Loosening its lustre on the dewy ground. 

And springs upon her blue aerial way ! 

Thus we spring lightly onward ; but, when Night 

Flows in upon the ocean of the sky, — 

Or when, in sullen mood, Orion turns 

His starry shoulder from the lowering world, 

We seem to obey the Spirit of the Time, 


Forsaking our own God-given strength, and bend 
The slaves o' the season. 

60. — Silence. 

You err : I am resigned. I yield due praise 

Unto your bellowing orator. And yet — 

How grand is Silence ! In her tranquil deeps 

What mighty things are born ! — Thought, Beauty, 

All Good ; — bright Thought, which springeth forth, at 

Like sudden sunrise ; Faith, the angel-eyed. 
Who takes her rest beside the heart of man. 
Serene and still ; eternal Beauty, crowned 
With flowers, that with the changing seasons change ; 
And Good of all kinds. Whilst the babbling verse 
Of the vain poet frets its restless way. 
In stately strength the Sage's mind flows on. 
Making no noise : — and so, when clamorous crowds 
Rush forth, — or tedious wits 'waken the senate- 
house, — 
Or some fierce actor stamps upon his stage, — 
With what a gentle foot doth silent Time 
Steal on his everlasting journey ! 

61. — A Conqueror^ s Account of Himself. 

Nap. The good of France and mine are mixed. I am 
The leaf of laurel on her tree, — no more : 


One of her sons. I stand, indeed, the First, 

Because necessity will have a man 

To front the aspect of alanning times. 

Still am I one o' the people. I claim not 

A line stretched backwards beyond Nimrod's reign ; 

Nor call on Caesar, or Semiramis, 

To answer for a weak or daring son. 

I am — myself; the first, — perhaps the last 

Of all my race who won or wore a crown. 

Yet have I ambition still ; for I would feel 

My soldiers' tears raining upon my grave ; 

And have, on lasting brass, my nobler deeds 

Thus written : — " Here lies Napoleon, Emperor ; 

Who rose by courage, and the peopJe''s vnU, 

Up to a throne : — He won a hundred battles, — 

At Areola, at Rivoli, at Marengo, 

At Austerlitz, at Jena, and by the snows 

Of Moscow, and the Libyan pyramids : 

He cut (like Hannibal) the white Alps through: 

Learning he raised ; built public roads and fountains ; 

And made one eqiml Law for all the land.'''* 

62. — Parish Law-givers. 

Jul. I MUST dissent from this. Nothing so bad 
As these close, paltry, parish governments ; 
Wherein some butcher Caesar rules the realm, — 
Or publican, with quart in hand, gives law, — 
Or tailor, talking by the yard, deludes 
His stitching and beer-vanquished auditors. 


Look on their deeds ! They do abhor the rich ; 
And scorn the poor : between which two, they ride 
Triumphant in their puny ohgarchy. 
If we must bend to tyranny, let it be grand ! 
I spit upon a slave who serves a slave. 
Besides, — in these times, no One man can keep 
The despot's summit ; save in barbarous realms. 
Our danger is " confederacy " : Bands of rich. 
Or bands of poor, who join their wits for ill, 
And tyrannize above the good and meek. 

63. — Kindness is Power. 

A CoNQt7EROR is Kindness ; far beyond 
The armed Victor, who doth thundering preach 
Civilization with the cannon's tongue. 
Woe-bought delights, and bloody benefits. 
A gentle word begets a gentle thought ; 
Drawing the sting from malice. Better thus. 
Than bruise with hate the ignorant Serpent's head ; 
Who knoweth nothing till you teach it him. 

64 — Soldier's Love. 

Cousin, I wear 
This bluntness as a shield. But when you come. 
Straightway I strip my bull-hide armor off. 
And bare my heart before you. Should you kill me, 
Why so ; I '11 die more loyally than the fool 
Who whispers of love through tears. I never weep. 


Sometimes I shake, indeed, as oaks rent down 
Shake in the blast ; but not a groan comes forth, 
To tell what pain dwells inwards. Pity me ! 
Love me, sweet cousin ! If thou 'It lend me a grain 
Of that same precious heart, I '11 pay thee back 
With tons of trouble. 

65. — A PoeVs Reply. 

Jeer me no more. What would you have ? Speak out ! 
You bid me " Dare ! " Well, then, I dare ! What 

more ? 
You bid me fear : You dread lest other men 
" Shall write their fame in lightning; shall stand forth, 
Laurelled with glory, whilst I lie i' the dark." 
In God's name, is there not wide room for all ? 
I envy no man ; and no man I fear. 
Let them go on. Some day, / Ul burst abroad ; 
And take a flight, as the wild eagles do. 
When from the summit of some giddiest crag 
They plunge into the immeasurable air. 
And dare all things, and never turn aside. 
Nor shrink, nor stop, nor close their orbs, until 
They rest upon the chariot of the Sun ! 





66. — A Murderer reproaches his Employer; — the 

Sir Philip. You come o' the sudden ? 

Brand. Ay, Sir, — unannounced. 

As doth the wind, or raging waters, when 
They burst their bonds, and on the hearths of men 
Rush down with cries of ruin ! 

Sir Philip. You are learned : 

What is 't you want ? 

Brand. Sir, the philosopher's stone, — 

Justice ; long sought, ne'er found. I 've kept sad watch, 
In hopes your pity would dissolve at last. 
And flow upon us : But your heart is steel, 
(Hard, cold, thrice-tempered in an orphan's tears,) 
And will not melt, nor bend. 

Sir Philip. Where doth this lead ? 

Brand. I '11 tell you, so you 've patience. — Let us 


Our thoughts hack through the crimes of thirty years, 

And we shall see each other as we were ; 

Both young, and one imprudent. I — (let loose 

By manhood from the bondage of my youth,) 

Plunged into riot : You, more wise, lent out 

Your wisdom to great men, who paid you back 

(With something better than tlie courtier's coin) 

With place and profit ; on which helps you rose 

To greatness. Then, — a sudden tempest wrecked 

The vessel where your fortunes lay embayed. 

And hurled you down to your ancient poverty. 

— Tired of the toil of rising, and long used 

To silken pleasures, you could not put on 

Your youthful habits ; but, with discontent 

(The villain's sword) walked thoughtful up and down. 

Seeking some wretch still needier than yourself. 

And came on — me ! I was — ('t was my black hour !) 

So closely knit to every basest grief. 

So famished, and in such frightful beggary, 

That I have quarrelled with the houseless cur 

For scraps the stomach sickens at. You saw this ; 

And (though you had before refused my wants) 

Proffered — I know not what : 't was wealth, — 't was 

(For from my bones the lean and traitorous flesh 
Had fled, and left a desperate skeleton ;) 
And ready was I to do aught 'gainst earth, 
Nay, 'gainst high Heaven, — if 't were but for a meal ! 
But, what 's all this } You know 't, as well as I. 
You had a dying brother, — he a son, 


Whose life eclipsed and hid you from the light : — 
'T was but a little blood, and all was over ! 
You tempted, and — I fell. 

Sir Philip. Why, you were then 

A murderer, ready made. What cant is this ? 
Were you not paid 7 Your bones well armed with flesh ? 
That flesh apparelled like a gentleman ? 
Dog that you are, why, — when all 's fairly done, 
The bargain consummate, the coin paid down, 
And you still fattening at my yearly cost, — 
VV' hy do you come, and with your diseased tongue 
Howl at bright Fortune .'' Will you starve again ? 
Shrink into bone ? Swear yourself out aloud 
The butcher of a child? Wilt hang.? Wilt kneel, — 
And let the scoffing crowd spit scorn upon thee .'' 
What is 't you ask .' What end do you propose, — 
That thus, with insolent, useless, base remorse, 
You beard me in my house, and bid me shake 
Your vulgar hand in bloody fellowship ? 

67. — A Man without Repentance. 

I DO not grieve that I am here alone ; 
Nor grieve I for what 's done. Could I now will 
That Time might tread his weary footsteps back, 
And earth grow bright again, I would not have 't. 
What use ? What end ? My soul again would welcome 
Her terrible choice : Again would I, undismayed, 
Wed my dark fortune, — live in ghastly dreams ; 
Rather than bear the weight of beggary, 


The curse of hunger, — toil, contempt, and shame, 
And die, at last, — a felon, or a slave. 

68. — A Jew''s Use for Riches. 

Jew. My Lord, 1 live here in perpetual fear ; 
My only friend being gold. Five times already 
I 've bought this wintered body from the flames ; 
As oft, repeals from exile. Scorn I endure, 
And hatred bear, from all. Were I but poor, 
I should be trod on like the common dust, 
Gibbeted, tortured ; — I must keep my gold ! 
It is my arms, — my shield. The Christian wolves 
Would worry me, did I not cast them down 
The yellow bait, which bids them say, " Dog, — Jew ! 
Live, till we come to-morrow ! " 

Rod. You could lend 

Count Gomez on his bond — how much I know not — 
But twenty times the weight I ask of thee. 

Jew. He 's an Inquisitor, (doth no one hear?) 

Hath power; — can help me, crush me. When they 

drag me. 
Blindfold and shaking, through the horrid dark, 
'T is sweet, as I go down the dungeon steps. 
And through the long, cold, silent, vaulted places, 
To think I have a friend who 's judge to-night, 
W^hom gold has bought, and gold can ever buy. 
So, when I 'm questioned, I reply with tears. 
And humble prayers, and swear I 've made a vow 
To give in Christian alms a thousand ducats, 
And straight — my cords are loosened ! 


69. — Consolation in Poverty. 

Arm. Why do we murmur ? Are we poor ? What 's 
that ? 
'T is but to breathe the air of industry ; 
To use sweet exercise from morn till eve, — 
Earn health, content, rude strength, and appetite ; 
And, when Night draws her curtains round us, sleep 
Through all the unbroken silence. 

Man. Thou 'rt a sweet comforter. 'T is not so bad, 
Methinks, to toil before the eye of day. 

Arm. If there be angels watching 

Man. They shall see 

I will dig lustily. 

Ar7n. They shall see, too, 

We '11 not repine, because we have no longer 
A little leisure that we lost in dreams ! 

70. — The same subject. 

Man. If we had never known each other, sweet, 
We both might have been happy. 

Arm. Think not thus. 

It was the unerring sense of happiness 
That led us gently to each other's arms ; 
A prophecy more sure than hope can be ; 
And we obeyed it. 

Man. Therefore are we here, 

Starving, — half-dead, — despairing ! 


Arm. Loving, too : 

Thou must not forget that. 

Man. O sweet, sweet woman ! 

Never ! The subtle world will find its road 
Into the deeps o' the heart. It is a worm. 
Winding its way through every obstacle, — 
Grief, joy, dark fortune, — till it finds the core, 
And there — ill luck ! — it preys. 

71. — The Exultation of an Heir. 

Jac. He sleeps upon his marble pillow, now. 
Pale as a peasant. 

Giul. O, a million times 

I give thee joy. 

Jac. Aj, Giulio, I am heir 

To lordships, mansions, forests, parks, and gems. 
He had three mighty manors in Castile ; 
Two broad estates in Leon ; two amidst 
The mulberry-trees of Murcia, and huge chests 
Crammed full of ingots, dug by naked slaves 
Who famished on coarse bread. Besides all these, 
There bloom plantations in the East, whose fruits 
Are pearls, and spice, and princely diamonds ; 
And in Brazil Pactolus floods, ne'er dumb, 
Whose waves all talk in gold ! 


72. — Love. 

A. The tide of love sets from me ! 

B. Pshaw ! 't may turn. 
Love 's not a petty stream, runs all one way ; 

But like the Ocean, — deep, and vast, and swayed 
By Phantasy, its moon ! This hour it rolls 
Inward upon a rough and barren beach ; 
To-morrow far away. Dost thou despair 
'T will ever reach thee ? O, there 's none so bcise, 
But have Uieir worshippers. Dost thou not know 
The corse which one unmannered wave rejects, 
The next will ravish. Thou mayst see it borne 
Far out from sight of land, and there 't will ride 
Triumphant on the shoulders of the main ; 
All winds and billows making music for 't, 
As though 't were the Jove of waters ! 

73. — Revenge. 

My Revenge 
Was born in laughter (as our highest delights 
Oft blush at first through t^rs) ; — but 't will endure, — 
Like oaks which, bom in May, seem slight and weak, 
But having a score of winters on their heads, 
Grow strong and rugged, — so doth my Revenge ! 
Nought shall impoverish it. The bounteous years 
Shall lend their seasons and apparel it. 
And, lest its roots should e'er be loosed by pity, 
We '11 water it well with blood ! 


74. — A Blush. 

Look, look ! The summer rises in her cheeks. 
A blush, as hot as June, comes flooding o'er 
Her too proud paleness. Burning modesty 
Warms all her brow, and Beauty, quite abashed. 
Droops her twin stars to earthward. 

75. — A Buit. 

A. Yon fellow is a fool, Sir : he indeed 
Doth not profess so much ; but 't is his trade. 
His calling, to be the butt of other men. 

He thrives by 't. You may kick him : — but, to-morrow, 

Be sure he 'U borrow money ! If you cast 

A jibe upon him that would shame a dog. 

He '11 ask what time you dine. A laugh to him 

Is worth a supper; and a blow — 't is wealth ! 

To look at these things philosophically 

B. At present were misplaced : — Dost mean so 

much ? 
A. Pardon me, Sir. The air of folly best 
Doth nourish in the cynic keenest thoughts : 
Dwells he 'midst men of sense his spirit dies, 
Having no food for his fierce scorn to live on. 

76. — Specimen of Courtiers. 

A. Didst ever see such a bundle of base weeds ? 

B. Dost think there 's one of all this useless tribe 
Is worth a real } 


A. Not one ; and yet the varlels 
Demand a lawyer's fee in brave pistoles, 

Ere they will serve you. Look on him who bows ! 
Satin-faced villain ! — for his help he asks 
A double bribe, with twice as soft a tongue 
As he who talks plain Spanish. 

B. Who is that ? 

A. That frothy thing ? — a blank, Sir : but the next, — 
Whose acid visage wrinkles into frowns, 

Gains favor of the Duke (who dreads his jibes) 

By slandering all who 're honest. He perhaps 

May do us some sour service. Do not dream 

He 's not a knave because he frowns on you ; 

For that 's his fashion. He will purse a bribe 

As readily as he who 's bathed in smiles. 

They 're villains both, — born, bred ; even-paced 

rogues ; 
The difference lies in the manner ; nothing more. 

77. — Account of a Boaster. 

B. Sir, he 's a fellow 
To take the Devil by the sinister horn. 
And twirl him like a top. Some years ago, 

He needs must fly this honest, wholesome country, 
To snifl" bad air in France. 'T was there (he swore 't !) 
He slew a regiment ; and — with his eyes — 
Murdered a world of women ! Thence he went 
To Rome ; and for some threepence did propose 
To drink up brimming Tiber till 't was dry. 


A. And did he do 't ? 

B. Egad, Sir, I can 't tell you: 
But I lean much to doubt : for spite o' the bet, — 

I 've heard that still the river's bed runs moist, 
And Rome does not lack water. 

78. — A Bridal Couple. 

Knit up thy spirit ! Men should go faced in brass. 

In these high unabashed bridal times. 

Observe thou when the virgin wife dawns forth. 

Like blushing morning ; — Ha ! look where she comes. 

In sweetness like the hawthorn buds unblown ; 

While the proud bridegroom, like the month of May, 

Steps on 'midst flowers. 

79. — A Mature Taste. 

Jac. It is not every man prefers an apple ; 
For some like best the crab. 'T is thus with thee. 

Rod. Well, well ! I own I do not care for women 
Whose kiss is like a peach. Give me a touch 
O' the austere flavor. Too much sweet will spoil 
The daintiest dish. That taste is immature, 
And young, which feeds, like flies, on treacle, cousin : 
Salt, spice, hot flavors, suit the learned tongue ; 
And such a one is mine. 


80. — The Schoolmaster abroad. 

Caraf. I am the bard 

Man. Peace, peace ! I know you well. 

1 've heard your verses, by the hour. Sir, twanged 
To rascal viols, through rogues' noses, — pah ! 
Just at my hour of sleep. I '11 have thee hanged 
For scurvy rhymes. Thou 'st spread a plaigue so foul, 
So foolish, that our women learn to spell ; 
Nay, kings decipher ; and our lords are mad 
Until they can write nonsense. Till thou cam'st. 
We were all pure in happy ignorance, — 
Content, — with love, sport, wine; and thought of 

Save what should be for dinner. 

81. — Nothing perfect. 

Scorn not our verse, because it might soar higher. 

What 's perfect on poor earth ? Is not the bird 

At whose sweet song the forests ache with love, 

Shorn of all beauty ? Is the bittern's cry 

As merry as the lark's ? the lark's as soft 

As the lost cuckoo's ? Nay, the lion hath 

His fault ? and the elephant, (though sage as wisdom,) 

May grieve he lack the velvet of the pard. 


82. — Remonstrance. 

The Heavens themselves, 
Which throw their shadows on the floor o' the earth, 
Show, in their nature, blackness : Storms and rains 
Chequer the glory of their brightest hours. 
How then canst thou, who walk'st 'neath changeful skies, 
E'er hope for cloudless fortune } 

83. — The Intellect strengthened by Study. 

A. If I do this, what further can I do .'' 

B. Why, more than ever. Every task thou dost 
Brings strength and capability to act. 

He who doth climb the difficult mountain's top. 
Will the next day outstrip an idler man. 
Dip thy young brain in wise men's deep discourse, — 
In books, which, though they freeze thy wit awhile. 
Will knit thee, i' the end, with wisdom. 

84. — Taste in Vice. 

He is too hard for such sweet pleasures, Sir. 
None ever relish (even the raciest) vice, 
'Less they 've a little virtue. 'T is the sense 
Oi wrong that sends the tingling blood abroad. 
They who do ill, yet feel no preference for 't. 
Do it in base and tasteless ignorance. 
Sin should be seen to blush through Virtue's cheeks, 
Mingling the rose and lily. 


85. — A Rich Man. 

Rich ? ask'st thou if he 's rich ? Observe me, Sir ! 
His money-bags are torpid, — they 're so full ! 
Crammed, glutton-like, with lumps of spendthrift gold, 
They swell their sides and sleep ! 

86. — Sadness avoided by the Wealthy. 

A. "What will I wear" when I do visit the Duke ? 
Why, black, — the color of my fortunes, — black. 

B. Tush ! thou shouldst go all gay and bridegroom- 

like ; 
Smiling in gold. 

C. The lady. Sir, speaks well. 
Men of a pampered lot care not to look 

On aught that 's mournful. They recoil from woe. 
As sickly natures from the sight of pain. 
They want the healthy, sinewy spirit, that makes 
Endurance pleasant like to exercise. 

87. — Loss of Strength. 

When I was young, I was as hot as wrath. 

Swift, like the wind, and thoughtless. My hair fell 

In coal-black curls upon my brawny neck, 

And sunshine filled my eyes. My voice was clear ; 

But stern as storms are, when they scare the sea ! 

Now — now — look on me ! Couldst thou think despair 

Could so deform, and with remorseless showers 


Wash all my strength away ? I, who could once 
Strike dead the hydra, — split the oak, — now cannot 
Outwrestle the summer urchin in his play ! 

88. — Questions to one restored from Death. 

Sit down beside me, — thou, who hast left so lately 

The calm, dark regions, for this fretful world, — 

Come back to sorrow, like the unthinking bird 

Who seeks once more its cage ! Sit down beside me ; 

And tell me what dim dreams have fallen on thee. 

And what blank aspects and unbodied things 

Thou met'st, in thy pale march ! Didst thou not see 

The — Dead? Methinks, I saw them, once! Some 

were there 
By their own serpent passions stung to death ; 
Some whom too little love, or too much care. 
Made white as winter ; pining skeletons. 
Whom hunger turned to stone ; mad parents, — O, 
Who watched, for aye, some little corse — in vain ; 
A ghastly brotherhood, who hung together. 
Knit firm by misery or some common wrong ! 

89. — The Grave. 

'T IS fenced all round with fears, like triple brass : 
Rocks of despair stand round it : Seas of woe 
Shut out that region from the sunny world ; 
And diabolic Ghosts, (whose care it is, 
And penalty, to keep that silent land 


Untroubled until Doom,) like ghastly giants. 
Stand armed beside rebellious bones, and scare 
The restless back to slumber. 

90. — Knowledge. 

A. What 's knowledge ? 

B. Sorrow, — sorrow : little else. 
All the black units which make up the amount 

Of human life, (sad sum of deeds and thoughts !) 
Together joined, form knowledge. The great marks, 
Which guide us onwards through tempestuous seas, 
Are beacons, currents, rocks. The sunny places 
Teach nothing, save that now and then we sink. 
By trusting what looks fair. The gibbet there 
Blurts out a lesson ; and the clamorous blast. 
That shakes yon rattling felon in his chains, 
Screams forth a dismal moral. 

91.—^ Poor Man. 

Had I been born a stone, I might have been 

Free from that curse, — a heart : but I bear in me 

A throbbing devil, who will never sleep. 

I am possessed ! Care, Care, — the cruel pain 

Which children bring upon the parents' soul. 

Eats into mine, corrodes, and cankers it. 

You laugh — "7 do not starve " — not yet, not yet : 

But wait to-morrow ! Famine will be here. 

In the mean time, we've still grim Care, (whose tooth 


Is like the tiger's, — sharp,) lest dreams should fall 
And shadow us with sweet forgetfulness. 

92. — A Constant Soldier. 

Ay, still he loves 
The lion-tressed Bellona, like a bride ; 
Woos her with blows ; and when his limbs all sweat 
With struggling through the iron ranks of war, 
Down doth he tumble on the tired ground. 
Wipes his red forehead ; cries, " How brave is this ! ' 
And dreams all night of bloody victory ! 

93. — The Heathen Deities. 

Their Gods ! What were their Gods ? 

There 's Mars, — all bloody-haired ; and Hercules, 

Whose soul was in his sinews ; Pluto, blacker 

Than his own hell ; Vulcan, who shook his horns 

At every limp he took ! Great Bacchus rode 

Upon a barrel ; and in a cockle-shell 

Neptune kept state. Then, Mercury — was a thief; 

Juno — a shrew ; Pallas — a prude, at best ; 

And Venus walked the clouds in search of lovers ! 

Only great Jove, the lord and thunderer. 

Sate in the circle of his starry power*, 

And frowned " I will ! " to all. 


94. — Might and Right. 

Rod. The lawful Right ? The " lawful ! " What 
is that ? 
But I will tell thee. Might is Right ; and when 
'T is written in red letters, " This is law ! " 
Then might is law, and law is wise and right. 
Who doubts ? We '11 hang him by the statute, — straight ! 
S'death, there 's no use in strength of limbs or brain, 
If they help not who owns them. When you catch 
A trout, who has the right, and who the law ? 
Why, you, — who are the strong. If he could rise. 
And shake his tail against your lawful right. 
He 'd say, — " All this is 'gainst our marine laws ! 
" You rascals on dry land invade our realms, 
" By wrong, and by no law. You send abroad 
*' No proclamations ; prove no injuries ; 
" Quote no good reasons ; no specific code ; 
" But straight, when you desire some trout to eat, 
"You pounce upon us with your hell-barbed hooks, 
" And treat us worse than we were Africans. 
" We '11 not endure 't ! " 

Count. Ha, ha, ha ! 

Rod. Right, Count ! Right ! 

You give th' old answer — (" Might is Right ") — laugh 

At their remonstrance, and have, sans remorse, 
The speaker grilled for supper. 


95, — Unions dangerous. 

F. His wit is duller than a priest's discourse ; 
And she seems coldly honest. 

Gin. True ! what then ? 

What seemeth nitre near the cannon's mouth ? 
Cold, cold. What the charred wood ? Why, dull as 

Yet, — married to each other, they will flame 
Damnation through a land, and make it Hell. 

96. — Death stationary. 

Should we look on him now, he would be young ; 
Paler than stone, perhaps, — but young as when 
No twice two hundred years had wintered him. 
Life 't is alone grows old : Immortal Death 
Takes no step nearer to the goal of Time : 
One cold, brief tread, a sigh, and then to sleep : — 
Magic ne'er moves him further. 

97. — A Lover'' s Likeness. 

Her walk is like the wind ; her smile more sweet 

Than sunshine, when it gilds the buds of May. 

Rare words she has, and merry, like the lark ; 

And songs, — which were too sweet, but that sometimes 

They droop and sadden like the pining flute ; 

And then her eyes, (soft planets,) lose their light 


In bashful rain, o'er which her cloudy hair 
Hangs, like the night, protecting. 

98. — Another. 

The blessings of the skies all wait about her : 
Health, Grace, inimitable Beauty, wreathed 
Round every motion : — On her lip, the rose 
Has left its sweetness, (for what bee to kiss ?) 
And from the darkening Heaven of her eyes, 
A starry Spirit looks out : — Can it be Love ? 

99. — Music. 

Now Music feedeth on the silent air, — 
Like Ocean, who upon the moonlight shores 
Of lone Sigseum steals with murmuring noise, — 
Devouring the bright sands and purple slopes, 
And so, content, retires : — Yet music leaves 
Her soul upon the silence, and our hearts 
Hear, and for ever hoard those golden sounds. 
And reproduce them sweet in after hours. 

100. — The Town. 

The Town ! what is there in the Town, to lure 
Our household dreams away from the fresh flowers ? 
Is not the Town a monster, ravenous ? 
Fierce ? hydra-headed ? fed by peasants' strength ? 
Decked out with plunder of the fields? along 


Whose limbs of stone, and marble arteries, 
Innumerous emmets crawl, till they sink down 
Dead with excess of feasting ? 

101. — Specimen of a Cavalier. 

Her father leaned, from th' first, to Cromwell's side, 

And was a rank and stem republican : 

But mine was a Cavalier, — one of those Spirits 

Born in all ages for the help of thrones ; 

A careless fellow, somewhat poor in virtue. 

Whose blazing honor lit a stormy life. 

That spent its latest puff in loyalty. 

He followed the first Charles, and fought at Worcester : 

Faced death and danger ; saw his master die ; 

And after sought his son. He was the life 

O' the banished court ; laughed, danced, and played 

o' the cittern ; 
And, when he died, left me a handsome sword ; 
Two suits of silk, a sentence for the king 
(In my behalf) ; and then set out on his journey. 
To make good friends with Heaven's courtiers. 

102. — A Publican and his Customers. 

We publicans, Sir, ever lived on the edge 
Of other secrets. 'T is our stock in trade, 
To know what 's doing in our neighbor's house, 
And deal 't out with our liquor. Some few rogues 
With sun-scorched cheeks come here, 't is true, for 


But to calm their stomachs with plain provender : 

But choice Spirits love to mingle with their wine 

Novelties, — scandal ! Rather than be dumb, 

They '11 gossip of themselves. There 's Justice Bolster 

Discharges him of all his wealth of words 

Here, Sir, — in this poor room ! There 's not a case 

Of note, but he 's its master. From the thoughts 

Of ministers to actions at the assize, — 

From a 'scaped murderer to a vagrant cat, — 

Nought can escape. O, Sir, he is a jewel ; 

And doth absorb my beer like summer sand ! 

103. — A new retruchio. 

Do I not know 
That gentle blood (press 't down howe'er you will) 
VVill mount and make the world look gravely at it. 
Dost deem that aught can hide in beggar rags 
A heart so bold as mine } Have I not seen 
The sea come tumbling on our heads, and laughed .'' 
The lightnings on the line singe ships to ashes ? 
Heard the wolves howling on my track ? and felt 
That cannibals clustered round my hiding-place .* 
Have I not stood on Etna, when she shot 
Her fiery rivers 'gainst the affrighted clouds } 
And dream'st thou aught of common danger now 
Shall daunt me from my way ! 



104. — Death. 

A. Who, save Man, 
E'er reckons on to-morrow ? or dreads death ? 

B. Death ! what is Death, — at whose pale picture men 
Shake, and the blood grows cold ? Is he one thing ? 
Dream ? Substance ? Shadow ? or is Death more 

vague, — 
Made up of many fears, which band together 
And overthrow the soul ? — Give me reply ! 
Is Death so terrible ? Why, we do know 
Philosophy, Religion, Fame, Revenge, 
Despair, Ambition, Shame, all conquer it. 
The Soldier who doth face it every day, — 
The feathered Savage, and the Sailor, tossing 
All night upon the loose, uncertain deep. 
Laugh it to scorn. The fish, the bird, the brute, 
(Though each doth apprehend the sense of pain,) 
Never dread death. It is a weakness bred 
Only in man. Methinks, if we build up 
Our proud Distinction, sole supremacy. 
Upon so slight foundation as our fears, 
Our fame may totter. 

105. — Night Thoughts. 

T IS night, — still night ! The murmuring world lies 

still ! 
All things which are lie still and whisper not : 
The owl, the bat, the clock which strikes the hour, 


And summons forgetful man to think of Heaven, 

The midnight cricket on the ashy hearth, 

Are quiet, — dumb ! Hope, Fear, lie drown'd in dreams ; 

And conscience, calmer than a baby's breath. 

Murders the heart no more. Who goes ? 'T is nought, — 

Save the bird Echo, who comes back to me, 

Afraid o' the silence. Love ! art thou asleep ? 

Rose o' the night, on whom the soft dew lies, — 

Here come I, Sweet, mocking the nightingale, 

To sing of endless love, passionate pain, 

And wishes that know no rest ! 

106. — Mute SorroiD the most poicerful. 

Let not thy tale tell but of stormy sorrows ! 

She — who was late a maid, but now doth lie 

In Hymen's bosom like a rose grown pale, 

A sad, sweet, wedded wife — why is she left 

Out of the story ? Are good deeds, — great griefs, 

That live, but ne'er complain, — nought.-* What are 

tears ? 
Remorse, — deceit, — at best weak water drops, 
Which wash out the bloom of sorrow. 

}07. — Flowers. 

We have left, behind us, 
The riches of the meadows, — and now come 
To visit the virgin Primrose where she dwells, 
'Midst harebells and the wild-wood hyacinths. 


'T is here she keeps her court. Dost see yon bank 
The sun is kissing ? Near, — go near ! for there, 
('Neath those broad leaves, amidst yon stragghnj 

Immaculate odors from the violet 
Spring up for ever ! Like sweet thoughts that come 
Winged from the maiden fancy, and fly off 
In music to the skies, and there are lost, 
These ever-steaming odors seek the sun, 
And fade in the light he scatters. 

108. — A Lover''s Irresolution. 

My heart is mad : — why not my brain ? O witch ! 

That flaming Hymen now would quench his torch. 

Or Hate, betwixt thy fool and thee, would set 

Double divorce for ever ! Shall I go ? 

I cannot quit her : but, like men who mock 

The voice of thunder, tarry until — I die ! 

Shall I not go ? — I will not ; though the tongues 

Of chiding virtue rail me straight to stone. 

Here will I stand, — a statue, fixed and firm, 

Before the fiery altar of my love, 

Both worshipper and martyr. 

109. — Useless Fear. 

O. There is a gloomy prophet at my ear : 
He whispers, — sad and low. 

F. Tush ! Shake him off. 


The shadow that each ill sends forward, ever 
Is larger than the ill. When that the thing 
You dread comes near, and you can measure it, 
Tlien ruffle up thy Courage, — till it stands 
'Tween thee and danger, like a champion ! 
Wait, till the peril come ; then boldly look at 't. 

1 10. — A transient Thought. 

Sometimes a dark Thought crossed 
My fancy, like the sullen bat that flies 
Athwart the melancholy moon at eve. 

111. — Reproof lo one who has no ear. 

L. I SEE small difference 

'Tween one sound and its next. All seem a-kin. 
And run on the same feet, ever. 

I. Peace ! Thou want'st 

One heavenly sense, and speak'st in ignorance. 
Scest thou no differing shadows, which divide 
The rose and poppy ? 'T is the same with sounds. 
There 's not a minute in the round of time. 
But 's hinged with different music. In that small space, 
Between the thought and its swift utterance, — 
Ere silence buds to sound, — the angels listening 
Hear infinite varieties of song ! 
And they who turn the lightning-rapid spheres 
Have flown an evening's journey ! 


1 12. — Grief fantastical. 

Nothing can vie with Sorrow in excess : 
Hope 's gay, and Fear is strange, and Joy grows wild ; 
Yet each hath shows of reason. Grief alone 
Amidst her pomp is high fantastical. 

113. — Dreams. 

A. Dream is the Soul of Sleep ; and, when it strays 
From its dark caverns in the inmost brain, 

Then Sleep is dead : — But it returns, and then 
The corpse awakens, — lives, — is bom again 

B. Then dream must be some God 

A. r faith, I know not. 

'T is a strange fellow in a night-cap. Sir, 
And at times a very wild somnambulist. 

1 14. — Age double-sighted. 

Let no one judge the worth of life, save he 

Whose head is white with time. The ^''outhful Spirit, 

Set on the edge o' the world, hath but one sight. 

And looks for beauty in the years to come ; 

But Age, like double-fronted Janus, gazes 

All ways, and ponders wisely on the past. 


115. — Philosophers human. 

You brag, methinks, somewhat too much, of late, 
Of your lamp-lit philosophy. One bite 
Of a mad cat — (no more than kills a tailor,) 
Will put an end to 't, and your dreams together. 

116. — Kings. 

. . . Methinks 
There 's something lonely in the state of kings ! 
None dare come near them. As the eagle, poised 
Upon his sightless throne in upper air, 
Scares gentler birds away, so kings (cut off 
From human kindred, by the curse of power) 
Are shunned and live alone. Who dare come near 
The region of a king ? There is a wall 
(Invisible, indeed, yet strong and high) 
Which fences kings from close approach of men. 
They live respected — O, that cheat, " respect " ! 
As if the homage which abases others 
Could comfort him that has 't. Alone, — alone ! 
Prisoned in ermine and a velvet chair. 
Shut out from hope, (the height being all attained,) 
Yet touched by terrors, — what can soothe a king .'' 

117. — Revenge. 

Let loose your strength, blasts of the burning zone ! 
Join all, and scorch him with a blistering plague ! 


Rain damps upon his bones ! Scald all his brain, 
Till he go mad. Stay, — stop ! I '11 have him bound 
Fast to a frozen rock, till piercing winds 
Stiffen his heart to ice. He shall endure 
The terrible extremes of cold and fire, 
For he himself was ever pitiless. 

118. — Picture of a Hypochondriac. 

There sits he, with his arms across his heart, 
And melancholy eye-lids like the Dawn, 
When she (the sun being yet unseen) doth gaze 
Coldly upon the wet and frozen flowers. 

119. — Infirmity lies in the Mind. 

We do what we desire. 'T is not the sinews 
Fail when we falter, but the infirm thought. 
Thus the bald Roman, who trod down the world, 
Unto his shuddering pilot cried, — '•'•Wliat fearl 
Thou carriest Ccesar ! " — Dare, — and it is done ! 

120. — An Ancient Pile. 

Look straight before you. Thus, as now you see it. 
Yon pile hath stood, in all its stony strength. 
Through centuries forgotten. Ruinous Time, 
The outrageous Thunder, and all wasting storms 
Have striven to drag it down ; yet, still it stands, 
Enduring like a Truth, from age to age. 


121. — The Exaggeration of GrieJ. 

A. And this is all a fiction ? 

B. Ay, 't is thus 
Men shadow out the truth when they are sad. 
They say but ill. who tell us that Grief speaks 
In household phrases. Friend, she is a queen, 
Pale Tragedy by name, who sears our brain. 
Until it fashions forth fantastic shapes. 
Unnatural to the eye which hath no tears. 

But, seen through those, are true like other things 
Which misty distance veils and magnifies. 

122 — A Princess's Dishonor. 

She was a princess, — but she fell ; and now 
Her shame goes blushing through a line of kings ! 

123. — A Desperate Man. 

You walk by day : 
/ with the negro. Night ! — When all is dark. 
The sick moon absent, and the stars all hid, 
We curse together, — curee all shades of men, 
Like brothers in one great calamity. 
Am I not shorn of beams ? Is not my fate 
Black ? starless .' sunless ? When warm airs come down 
From heaven, what know I of the flowery times .' 
What of abundant harvest hours ? — nought, nought ! 
I 'm cold ; I 'm hard. The wolf, who has no mate, 


And scarce a meal, and 's forced to howl all night 
His hunger to Siberian snows, doth live 
In a world too bleak for pity : — So do I. 
/ am a wolf, who prowl all night for prey, 
Desperate, remorseless ! 

124. — Suitable Music. 

A. Thoxj lov'dst this light and dancing music once ? 

B. That was when earth was quiet ; now 't is mad. 
Light music fits light times : — But, when wild Ocean 
Goes bellowing to the moon, or flings her hair, 

All white with wrath, upon the moaning sands, — 
AVhen winds come muttering, and the thickening Night 
Grows solemn with alarm, as from its den 
Some Earthquake, dragon-eyed, lifting its head. 
Looks reddening on us from the inner world, — 
Then love I mighty music ! 

125. — A Tender Voice. 

Her voice is soft ; not shrill and like the lark's, 
But tenderer, — graver, — almost hoarse at times ; 
As though the earnestness of love prevailed, 
And quelled all shriller music. 

126. — A Fancy. 

I 'vE sometimes thought that I could shoot me down 
Unto the muddy bottoms of tlie sea, 


And hold my breath there, — till, 'midst stones and shells, 
And jewels yet unborn, and riches sleeping, 
I tore up fortune by her golden hair, 
And grew a God on earth. 

127. — A Young Man's Opinion of Age. 

Bid me not trust her hoary parent's smile ! 

I cannot ; for I read foul falsehoods there. 

O Guzman ! Pity never wore gray hairs ; 

But died in 'ts youth ! — Trust not a furrowed brow : 

For Time digs pits where hate and cunning sleep ; 

And sixty winter winds can ne'er pass by. 

And leave the heart still warm. Age is a grave ; 

Where Kindness, and quelled Passion, and mute Love, 

Lie, hand in hand, cold, — dead, — perhaps forgotten ! 

128. — A Sceptic in Virtue. 

Our blood will bear no lesson. All men know 

That Job was patient, — that adulterous Sin 

Writes Hell upon our foreheads, — that thieves' necks 

Are forfeit to the grave and frowning Law : 

Yet who is chaste, unless his veins be cold ^ 

Who calm, if tempted ? Who that wants, is honest ? 

Who lives, from mitred Pope to ragged monk, 

That 's virtuous all for virtue ? Tush, not one. 

The mild and passionate are the same in this. 

Sometimes a lure more potent bids man swerve 

From the first sin, and turn to darker thoughts : 


Sometimes he doth delay the accomplishment, — 
But that 's for weightier pleasure ; or he 's driven 
Back, by pale fear or cunning policy ; 
But ne'er bribed by poor Virtue. 

129. — Slander of Women. 

Giul. They say the devil Snake did tempt the 
Woman 1 

But — ha, ha ! — who — who tempted /jiwi to tempt ? 

Give me good answer there ! Why, '/ was the Woman ! 

The Fiend had somewhat which did stir his blood, 

(If blood he had.) some sting, — some appetite. 

The love of evil ? Well, what caused the love ? 

What was 't that first begot the insane touch. 

Which crept amidst his bright and rancorous scales ? 

What sight ? or sound } or dream ? 'T was she — the 
Woman ! 

Still doth she act the serpent with our hearts : 

Still doth she twine her 'round our hopes ; and kill. 

With venomous looks, and words as sharp as death, 

All the world's pleasure ! 

Jac. They are constant to us 

Gitd. They are as constant to their changing blood. 

As the wild billow to the mounting moon ! 

No further. They come on, swelliiig with ruin, 

And overtake the quiet soul of man. 


130. — No Love to be despised. 

lol. I LAUGH at thy base verse. 

Jul. That is not well. 

You should have mercy on my desperate pain. 
Disdain'st thou > Well, — so be it ! I will love 
Through all misfortune ; even through thy disdain. 
I 've striven — for years — against this frightful woe, 
Though thou didst never know 't. The lonely Night 
Has seen me wander 'midst her silent hours, 
Darker than they, with my too great despair ; 
And the poor rhymes, which thou dost scorn so much, 
Were dug out of my heart ! — ay, forced, at times. 
Through burning, blinding tears ! Dost thou despise 
A love like this J A lady should not scorn 
One soul that loves her, howe'er lowly it be. 
Love is an offering of the whole heart, Madam, 
A sacrifice of all that poor life hath ; 
And he who gives his " all," whate'er that be. 
Gives greatly, — and deserveth no one's scorn! 

131. — A Lover of Sentiment. 

Giul. She 's proud ; but she 's a woman, and shall be 
Thine own — dost hear ? — thine own ! 

Jac. Estremaduran ! 

If now thou mock'st me, thou hadst better pull 
The burning sky upon thee ! 

Giul. Listen to me. 

She 's not (proud as she seems) all arrogance. 


I know that she at times will sigh, — and weep ; 
Tangle blue love-knots ; and sing out, by night, 
The painfuUest ditties — ha, ha, ha ! 

Jac. Great lady ! 

Canst thou be sad ? — then I forgive thee all ! 

Giul. Immedicable fool ! Sickness can 't cure thee. 

Jac. O Giulio, Giulio ! while a sand is falling, 
We turn from hate to pity. I, who late 
Abhorred the crimsoning pride upon her cheek, 
Now read in it a different history. 
Urge me no more. Henceforth I am her friend. 

132.—^ Protegi. 

A. I HAVE a worm, a little, petted thing. 
Which I rear up. I see 't not ; yet I know 
'T is ashy like the adder, and has fangs. 
Seldom it sleeps, and then it dreams of food ; 
So gnaws for ever. I have fed this worm 
With mine own heart, like the fond pelican. 

B. Smother it. Count : 't is a misshapen child. 
Which may beget new monsters. 

A. 1 will let 

My heart's stream out upon it, some loud night, 
When winds grow clamorous, and rough Nature knits 
Our resolution up to deeds of daring. 


133. — The General Law. 

All things which live and are, love quiet hours. 
Sometimes, indeed, the waves, caught up by storms, 
Kiss Heaven and murmur, but they straight retire. 
Sometimes, the red and busy Earthquake lifts 
His head above the hills and looks on us. 
Sometimes a star drops. Sometimes Heaven itself 
Grows dark, and loses its celestial blue. 
But calm returneth. Thus doth man (made fit 
To league with Fortune in her varying moods) 
Rise on the wings of fear, or grow love-mad, 
Yet sinks at last to earth, and dreams in quiet. 

134.—^ Bold Man. 

Fear ? 
I know not Fear. It is a ghost that haunts 
The timid heart. 'T is a dream, which waking men 
Should scorn and put aside. A girl — a child — 
A thing that was a man, — (but now is grown 
A shaking palsy, winter-white with age,) — 
These may bow down to Fear : but I am — man ! 
The image of the Gods who know not fear, — 
Far from the cradle, farther from the grave ! 

135. — A Brother. 

When the Sun walks upon the blue sea-waters, 
Smiling tlie shadows from yon purple hills, 


We pace this shore, — I and my brother here. 

Good Gerald. We arise with the shrill lark. 

And both unbind our brows from sullen dreams ; 

And then doth my dear Brother, who hath worn 

His cheek all pallid with perpetual thought. 

Enrich me with sweet words ; and oft a smile 

Will stray amidst his lessons, as he marks 

New wonder paint my cheek, or fondly reads, 

Upon the burning page of my black eyes. 

The truth reflected which he casts on me : — 

For he is like the Sun, — giving me light ; 

Pouring into the caves of my young brain 

Knowledge from his bright fountains ! Thus it is 

I drink in the starry truth. Science and Art, 

And Learning pale, all crown my thoughts with flowers ; 

And Music waiteth on me, sad and sweet ; 

And great Imagination, for my sake, 

Lets loose her dreams, and bids her wonders flow 

By me, — until I talk in poetry ! 

136. — An Epitaph. 

Mark, when he died, his tombs, his epitaphs ! 
Men did not pluck the ostrich for his sake ; 
Nor dye 't in sable. No black steeds were there, 
Caparisoned in woe ; no hired crowds ; 
No hearse, wherein the crumbling clay (imprisoned 
Like ammunition in a tumbril) rolled 
Rattling along the street, and silenced grief; 
No arch whereon the bloody laurel hung ; 


No Stone ; no gilded verse ; — poor common shows ! 
But teare, and tearful words, and sighs as deep 
As sorrow is, — these were his epitaphs ! 
Thus, (fitly graced,) he lieth now, inumed 
In hearts that loved him, on whose tender sides 
Are graved his many virtues. When they perish, — 
He 's lost ! — and so 't should be. The poet's name 
And hero's — on the brazen book of Time, 
Are writ in sunbeams, by Fame's loving hand ; 
But none record the household virtues there. 
These better sleep (when all dear friends are fled) 
In endless and serene oblivion ! 

137. — We love one different from ourselves. 

Giul. I HTTNGER for her, and am all athirst ! 
Her scorn affronts me, and doth make me mad. 
Mine eyes — these eyes, are wet with heavy drops ! 
Would'st think me such a fool ? 

Ferd. If she disdain thee, 

Love, and be quiet, coz. 

Giul. How? What? Be still? 

Dost think I am a wild beast tamed by wrongs ? 
If one, I am the hyaena ! — for he sheds tears, 
And bites the while he 's howling: — but I 'm quiet ! 

Ferd. I thought thou lov'dst a rose-cheek'd girl, and 
merry ; 
A laugher of sixteen summers ; such there are : 
But she is paler than a primrose morning, 
When Winter weds with Spring ! 


Giul. 'T is all the better. 

It is my nature to abhor in others 
That lightness which doth please me in myself. 
I love not mine own parallel. The old giants, 
Who stood as tall as trees, loved little women, 
Or there 's no truth in fable. Thus do I : 
I love a sober face, a modest eye, 
A step demure, a mien as grave as virtue. 

138. — Salisfaclion in a Blow. 

Giul. You say, " We '11 have no blood." Then let us 
His throat with poison. I know rogues who deal in 
Black aconite, and such like lazy drinks ; 
But one sells a quicker juice, whereof a drop 
Will kill — in a breath — a giant ! 

Ferd. That is good. 

Giul. Yet steel is surer : and a blow (while 't sends 
Life through our limbs, like a swift race) doth calm 
The turbulent spirits, and gives time for vengeance. 
I hate to see the brute I hate fall dead 
Without a struggle. Let 's kill him like men. 
And stand up freshened from the exercise ! 

139. — A Lady drowned. 

Is she dead ? . . . 
Why so shall I be, — ere these Autumn blasts 
Have blown on the beard of Winter. Is she dead .' 


Ay, she is dead, — quite dead ! The wild Sea kissed her 
With its cold white lips, and then — put her to sleep : 
She has a sand pillow, and a water sheet, 
And never turns her. head or knows 't is morning ! 



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