Abbildungen der Seite

And feeling hearts,— touch them but

rightly,— pour A thousand melodies unheard before!

[From Human Life.]

Age has now Stamped with its signet that ingenuous brow; And, 'mid his old hereditary trees, Trees he has climbed so oft, he sits and sees

His children's children playing round

his knees: Then happiest, youngest, when the

quoit is flung, When side by side the archers' bows

are strung; His to prescribe the place, adjudge

the prize, [energies Envying no more the young their Than they an old man when his

words are wise; His a delight how pure . . . without alloy; Strong in their strength, rejoicing in

their joy! (repay Now in their turn assisting, they The anxious cares of many and many

a day;

And now by those he loves relieved, restored,

His very wants and weaknesses afford A feeling of enjoyment. In his walks, Leaning on them, how oft he stops

and talks, While they look up! Their questions,

their replies, Fresh as the welling waters, round

him rise,

Gladdening his spirit; and, his theme the past,

How eloquent he is! His thoughts

flow fast; And, while his heart (oh, can the

heart grow old? False are the tales that in the world

are told!) Swells in his voice, he knows not

where to end; Like one discoursing of an absent


But there are moments which he calls his own. Then, never less alone than when alone,

Those whom he loved so long and

sees no more, Loved and still loves,— not dead,—

but gone before, He gathers round him; and revives

at will

scenes in his life,— that breathe enchantment still,—

That come not now at dreary intervals,—

But where a light as from the blessed falls,

A light such guests bring ever,—pure and holy,—

Lapping the soul in sweetest melancholy!

— Ah, then less willing (nor the

choice condemn) To live with others than to think of


[From The Pleasures of Memory.]

Thou first, best friend that heaven

assigns below To soothe and sweeten all the cares

we know; Whose glad suggestions still each

vain alarm, When nature fades and life forgets

to charm; Thee would the Muse invoke! — to

thee belong The sage's precept and the poet's


What softened views thy magic glass reveals,

When o'er the landscape time's meek

twilight steals I As when in ocean sinks the orb of


Long on the wave reflected lustres play;

Thy tempered gleams of happiness resigned

Glance on the darkened mirror of the mind.

Hail, memory, hail! in thy exhaustless mine

From age to age unnumbered treasures shine 1

Thought and her shadowy brood thy call obey,

And place and time are subject to thy sway!

Thy pleasures most we feel, when most alone;

The only pleasures we can call our own.

Lighter than air, hope's summer

visions die, If but a fleeting cloud obscure the


If but a beam of sober reason play, Lo, fancy's fairy frost-work melts away!

But can the wiles of art, the grasp of power

Snatch the rich relics of a well-spent hour?

These, when the trembling spirit wings her flight,

Pour round her path a stream of living light;

And gild those pure and perfect realms of rest,

Where virtue triumphs, and her sons are blest!

[From The Pleasures of Memory.]


The school's lone porch, with reverend mosses gray, Just tells the pensive pilgrim where it lay.

Mute is the bell that rung at peep of dawn,

Quickening my truant feet across the lawn;

Unheard the shout that rent the

noon-tide air, When the slow dial gave a pause to


Up springs, at every step, to claim a tear,

Some little friendship formed and cherished here;

And not the lightest leaf, but trembling teems

With golden visions and romantic dreams!

[From The Pleasures of Memory.)


Oft may the spirits of the dead descend

To watch the silent slumbers of a friend;

To hover round his evening walk unseen.

And hold sweet converse on the dusky green;

To hail the spot where first their * friendship grew,

And heaven and nature opened to their view!

Oft, when he trims his cheerful hearth, and sees

A smiling circle emulous to please;

There may these gentle guests delight to dwell,

And bless the scene they loved in life so well!

Christina Georgina Rossetti.


Does the road wind up-hill all the way? Yes, to the very end. Will the day's journey take the whole long day? From morn to night, my friend.

But is there for the night a restingplace?

A roof for when the slow dark hours begin. .. May not the darkness hide it from my face?

You cannot miss that inn.

Shall I meet other wayfarers at night 1

Those who have gone before. Then must I knock, or call when just in sight? They will not keep you standing at the door.

Shall I find comfort, travel-sore and weak?

Of labor you shall find the sum. Will there be beds for me and all who seek? Yea, beds for all who come.


Remember me when I am gone away,

Gone far away into the silent land; When you can no more hold me by the hand, Nor I half turn to go, yet turning stay. Remember me when no more day by day

You tell me of our future that you

planned; Only remember me; you understand [pray. It will be late to counsel then or Yet if you should forget me for a while

And afterwards remember, do not grieve: [leave For if the darkness and corruption A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,

Better by far you should forget and smile

Than that you should remember and be sad.


I Wonder if the sap is stirring yet. If wintry birds are dreaming of a mate,

If frozen snowdrops feel as yet the sun

And crocus fires are kindling one by

one; Sing, robin, sing; I still am sore in doubt concerning


I wonder if the springtide of this year

Will bring another spring both lost

and dear; If heart and spirit will find out their


Or if the world alone will bud and

sing: Sing, hope, to me; Sweet notes, my hope, soft notes for


The sap will surely quicken soon or late,

The tardiest bird will twitter to a mate;

So spring must dawn again with

warmth and bloom, Or in this world, or in the world to

come: Sing, voice of spring, Till I too blossom, and rejoice and



When I am dead, my dearest,

Sing no sad songs for me;
Plant thou no roses at my head,

Nor shady cypress tree:
Be the green grass above me

With showers and dewdrops wet; And if thou wilt, remember,

And if thou wilt, forget.

I shall not see the shadows,

I shall not feel the rain;
I shall not hear the nightingale

Sing on, as if in pain:
And dreaming through the twilight

That doth not rise nor set, Haply I may remember,

And haply may forget.


Some are laughing, some are weeping;

She is sleeping, only sleeping. Round her rest wild flowers are creeping;

There the wind is heaping, heaping,
Sweetest sweets of summer's keeping,
By the cornfields ripe for reaping.

There are lilies, and there blushes
The deep rose, and there the thrushes
Sing till latest sunlight flushes
In the west; a fresh wind brushes
Through the leaves while evening

There by day the lark is singing
And the grass and weeds are spring-

There by night the bat is winging; There for ever winds are bringing Far-off chimes of church-bells ringing.

Night and morning, noon and even.
Their sound fills her dreams with

The long strife at length is striven:
Till her grave-bands shall be riven,
Such is the good portion given
To her soul at rest and shriven.


Pardon the faults in me,
For the love of years ago:
I must drift across the sea,
I must sink into the snow,
I must die.

You can bask in this sun,
You can drink wine, and eat:
I must gird myself and run,
Though with unready feet:
I must die.

Blank sea to sail upon,
Cold bed to sleep in:
While you clasp I must be gone
For all your weeping:
I must die.

A kiss for one friend,
And a word for two, —
Good-bye: —

A lock that you must send,
A kindness you must do:
I must die.

Not a word for you,
Not a lock or kiss,
We, one, must part in two;
Verily death is this:
I must die.

AT HOME. When I was dead, my spirit turned To seek the much-frequented house;

I passed the door, and saw my friends Feasting beneath green orange boughs;

From hand to hand they pushed the wine,

They sucked the pulp of plum and peach;

They sang, they jested, and they
For each was loved of each.

I listened to their honest chat:
Said one: "To-morrow we shall be

Plod plod along the featureless sands, And coasting miles and miles of sea."

Said one: "Before the turn of tide We will achieve the eyrie-seat."

Said one: "To-morrow shall be like To-day, but much more sweet."

"To-morrow," said they, strong with hope,

And dwelt upon the pleasant way: "To-morrow," cried they one and all,

While no one spoke of yesterday. Their life stood full at blessed noon;

I, only I, had passed away: "To-morrow and to-day" they cried:

I was of yesterday.

I shivered comfortless, but cast

No chill across the tablecloth; I all-forgotten shivered, sad

To stay, and yet to part how loth: I passed from the familiar room,

I who from love had passed away, Like the remembrance of a guest

That tarrieth but a day.

Dante Gabriel Rossetti.


Consider the sea's listless chime: Time's self it is, made audible, — The murmur of the earth's own shell,

Secret continuance sublime Is the era's end. Our sight may pass

No furlong farther. Since time was,

This sound hath told the lapse of time.

No quiet which is death's, — it hath The mournfulness of ancient life, Enduring always at dull strife.

As the world's heart of rest and wrath,

Its painful pulse is on the sands. Lost utterly, the whole sky stands Gray and not known along its path.

Listen alone beside the sea,
Listen alone among the woods;
Those voices of twin solitudes
Shall have one sound alike to thee.
Hark where the murmurs of

thronged men
Surge and sink back and surge

Still the one voice of wave and tree.

Gather a shell from the strewn beach, And listen at its lips; they sigh The same desire and mystery,

The echo of the whole sea's speech, And all mankind is thus at heart Not anything but what thou art;

And earth, sea, man, are all in each.


The blessed damozel leaned out
From the gold bar of heaven;

Her eyes were deeper than the depth
Of waters stilled at even;

She had three lilies in her hand, And the stars in her hair were seven.

Her robe, ungirt from clasp to hem,
No wrought flowers did adorn,

But a white rose of Mary's gift,
For service meetly worn;

Her hair that lay along her back
Was yellow like ripe corn.

Herseemed she scarce had been a day

One of God's choristers;
The wonder was not yet quite gone

From that still look of hers:
Albeit, to them she left, her day

Had counted as ten years.

It was the rampart of God's house
That she was standing on;

By God built over the sheer depth
The which is Space begun;

So high, that looking downward thence

She scarce could see the sun.

It lies in heaven, across the flood

Of ether, as a bridge. Beneath, the tides of day and night

With flame and darkness ridge The void, as low as where this earth

Spins like a fretful midge.

Around her, lovers, newly met
'Mid deathless love's acclaims

Spoke evermore among themselves
Their heart-remembered names;

And the souls mounting up to God
Went by her like thin flames;

And still she bowed herself and stooped

Out of the circling charm; Until her bosom must have made

The bar she leaned on warm, And the lilies lay as if asleep

Along her bended arm.

From the fixed place of heaven she saw

Time like a pulse shake fierce Through all the worlds. Her gaze still strove Within the gulf to pierce

« ZurückWeiter »