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Ah! the mystical seed, it has grown,
it has spread! — But the sharp star-points they are
piercing my brow, And the rosy home-faces grow livid
In the terrible color the fire-blossoms shed —
lam reaping my harvest in now!
The horrible color — the color of flame!
The hot sun has overflowed from his
broken urn — O thou pitiless sky! wilt thou show
me my shame? While the cursed gold clings to my
fingers like name — And glitters only to burn!
How pleasant it is that always
Some one to pet and caress you,
Some one to call you a baby,
To laugh at you when you're wise;
Some one to care when you're sorry,
When life has begun to be weary,
To know, like the little children,
The path cannot be so lonely.
The golden gates are the nearer,
— I can think of nothing sadder Than to feel, when days are few,
There's nobody left to lean on,
The younger ones may be tender
To the feeble steps and slow; But they can't talk the old times over —
Alas! how should they know!
'Tisa romance to them —a wonder You were ever a child at play;
But the dear ones waiting in Heaven
I know that the great All-Father
Keep only child-like hearted —
I Cannot love thee, but I hold thee dear —
Thou must not stay — I cannot bid thee go!
I am so lonely, and the end draws near —
Ah, love me still, but do not tell me so!
'Tis but a little longer — keep thy faith!
Though love's last rapture I shall never know, I fain would trust thee even unto death;
Ah, love me still, but do not tell
I am so poor I have no self to give, And less than all I will not offer, no!
I die, but not for thee — fain would I live —
Ay! love me still, but do not tell me so!
Like a strange flower that blossoms in the night, And dies at dawn, love faded long ago —
Born in a dream it perished with the light —
Lov'st thou me still? Ah, do not tell me so!
Let me imagine that thou art my friend —
No less — no more I ask for here below!
Be patient with me even to the end— Loving me still, thou wilt not tell me so!
Those words were sweet once—never more again! — I thought my dream had vanished, let it go! I dreamed of joy — I woke, it turned to pain— [so! Ah, love me still, but never tell me
I cannot lose thee yet, so near to heaven!
There with diviner love all souls shall glow;
There is no marriage bond, no vows are given — Thou'lt love me still, nor need to tell me so!
Ah! I am selfish, asking even this — I cannot love thee, nor yet bid thee go!
To utter love is nigh love's dearest bliss —
Thou lov'st me still, and dost not tell me so!
Hymn To The Flowers.
Dat-stars! that ope your eyes with morn to twinkle From rainbow galaxies of earth's creation,
And dew-drops on her lonely altars sprinkle
As a libation!
Ye matin worshippers! who bending lowly
Before the uprisen sun — God's liilless eye— [holy Throw from your chalices a sweet and Incense on high!
Ye bright mosaics! that with storied beauty
The floor of Nature's temple tessellatc,
What numerous emblems of instructive duty
Your forms create!
'Neath cloistered boughs, each floral bell that swingeth And tolls its perfume on the passing air,
Makes sabbath in the fields, and ever ringeth
A call to prayer.
Not to the domes where crumbling arch and column Attest the feebleness of mortal hand,
But to that fane, most catholic and solemn,
Which God hath planned;
To that cathedral, boundless as our wonder.
Whose quenchless lamps the sun and moon supply — Its choir, the winds and waves ; its organ, thunder;
Its dome the sky.
There—as in solitude and shade I wander
Through the green aisles, or, stretched upon the sod, Awed by the silence, reverently ponder
The ways of God —
Your voiceless lips, O flowers, are living preachers, Each cup a pulpit, and each leaf a book,
Supplying to my fancy, numerous teachers
From loneliest nook.
Floral apostles! that in dewy splendor
"Weep without woe, and blush without a crime," O may I deeply learn, and ne'er surrender,
Your lore sublime!
"Thou wert not, Solomon! in all thy glory.
Arrayed," the lilies cry, "in robes like ours; How vain your grandeur! Ah, how transitory
Are human flowers!"
In the sweet-scented pictures, Heavenly Artist! With which thou paintest Nature's wide-spread hall, What a delightful lesson thou impartest
Of love to all.
Not useless are ye, flowers! though made for pleasure: Blooming o'er field and wave, by day and night, from every source your sanction bids me treasure
Ephemeral sages! what instructors hoary
For such a world of thought could furnish scope? Each fading calyx a memento mori, Yet fount of hope.
Posthumous glories! angel-like collection!
Upraised from seed or bulb interred in earth,
Ye are to me a type of resurrection, And second birth.
Were I, O God, in churchless lands remaining, Far from all voice of teachers or divines.
My soul would find in flowers of thy ordaining.
Priests, sermons, shrines!
ADDRESS TO A MUMMY.
And thou hast walked about, (how strange a story!) In Thebes's streets three thousand years ago,
When the Memnonium was in all its glory,
And Time had not begun to overthrow
Those temples, palaces, and piles stupendous,
Of which the very ruins are tremendous.
Speak! for thou long enough hast acted dummy; Thou hast a tongue — come — let us hear its tune; Thou'rt standing on thy legs, above ground, mummy! Revisiting the glimpses of the moon —
Not like thin ghosts or disembodied
creatures, But with thy bones, and flesh, and
limbs, and features.
Tell us — for doubtless thou canst recollect — To whom should we assign the Sphinx's fame? Was Cheops or Cephrenes architect Of either Pyramid that bears his name?
Is Pompey's Pillar really a misnomer? Had Thebes a hundred gates, as sung by Homer?
Perhaps thou wert a mason, and forbidden
By oath to tell the secret of thy trade —
Then say what secret melody was hidden
In Memnon's statue, which at sunrise played;
Perhaps thou wert a priest — if so, my struggles
Are vain, for priestcraft never owns its juggles.
Perhaps that very hand, now pinioned flat, ha hob-a-nobbed with Pharaoh, glass to glass;
Or dropped a half-penny in Homer's hat:
Or doffed thine own, to let Queen Dido pass;
Or held, by Solomon's own invitation, A torch at the great Temple's dedication.
I need not ask thee if that hand, when armed. M any Roman soldier mauled and knuckled; For thou wert dead, and buried, and embalmed, Ere Romulus and Remus had been suckled;
Antiquity appears to have begun Long after thy primeval race was run.
Thou could'st develop — if that withered tongue Might tell us what those sightless orbs have seen —
How the world looked when it was fresh and young, And the great Deluge still had left it green; (pages
Or was it then so old that history's
Contained no record of its early ages?
Still silent, incommunicative elf! Art sworn to secrecy? then keep thy vows; But prythee tell us something of thyself — Reveal the secrets of thy prisonhouse;
Since in the world of spirits thou
hast slumbered — What hast thou seen — what strange
Since first thy form was in this box
extended We have, above ground, seen some
strange mutations; The Roman empire has begun and
New worlds have risen—we have
lost old nations: And countless kings have into dust
been humbled, While not a fragment of thy flesh has
Didst thou not hear the pother o'er
And shook the Pyramids with fear
and wonder, When the gigantic Memnon fell
If the tomb's secrets may not be confessed,
The nature of thy private life unfold:
A heart has throbbed beneath that
leathern breast, And tears adown that dusky cheek
have rolled; Have children climbed those knees
and kissed that face; What was thy name and station, age
Statue of flesh! Immortal of the
Imperishable type of evanescence! Posthumous man, who quit' st thy narrow bed, And standest undecayed within our presence! Thou wilt hear nothing till the Judgment morning, When the great trump shall thrill thee with its warning.
Why should this worthless tegument endure.
If its undying guest be lost forever?
Oh! let us keep the soul embalmed
and pure In living virtue— that when both
must sever. Although corruption may our frame
consume, The immortal spirit in the skies may
May Riley Smith.
If, sitting with this little worn-out shoe
And scarlet stocking lying on my knee,
I knew his little feet had pattered through
The pearl-set gates that lie 'twixt heaven and me, I should be reconciled and happy too, and look with glad eyes toward the jasper sea.
If, in the morning, when the song of birds.
Reminds me of lost music far more sweet,
I listened for his pretty broken words. And for the music of his dimpled feet,
I could be almost happy, though I heard
No answer, and I saw his vacant seat.
I could be glad if, when the day is done.
Aml all its cares and heart-aches laid away, [sun, I could look westward to the hidden And, with a heart full of sweet yearnings, say — "To-night I'm nearer to my little one By just the travel of a single day."
If he were dead, I should not sit today
And stain with tears the wee sock
on my knee; I should not kiss the tiny shoe and say, "Bring back again my little boy
I should be patient, knowing it was
But oh! to know the feet, once pure
The hands that should have battled for the right Have been wrung crimson in the clasp of sin! And should he knock at Heaven's gate to-night, I fear my boy could hardly enter in.
Sometime, when all life's lessons have been learned, And sun and stars forevermore have set,
The things which our weak judgments here have spurned, The things o'er which we grieved with lashes wet,
Will flash before us out of life's dark night,
As stars shine most in deeper tints of blue;
And we shall see how all God's plans are right.
And how what seemed reproof was love most true.
And we shall see how, while we frown and sigh, God's plans go on as best for you and me;
How, when we called, He heeded not our cry,
Because His wisdom to the end could see. And e'en as prudent parents disallow
Too much of sweet to craving babyhood.
So God, perhaps, is keeping from us now
Life's sweetest things, because it seemeth good.
And if, sometimes, commingled with
life's wine. We find the wormwood, and rebel
and shrink, Be sure a wiser hand than yours or
Pours out the potion for our lips to drink;