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[From The Castle of Indolence.]

Oh, grievous folly! to heap up estate, Losing the days you see beneath the sun;

When, sudden, comes blind unrelenting fate,

And gives the untasted portion you

have won With ruthless toil, and many a wretch


To those who mock you, gone to

Pluto's reign, There with sad ghosts to pine, and

shadows dun: But sure it is of vanities most vain, To toil for what you here untoiling

may obtain.

[From The Castle of Indolence.]

But not e'en pleasure to excess is good:

What most elates, then sinks the

soul as low: When springtide joy pours in with

copious flood, The higher still the exulting billows


The further back again they flagging go,

And leave us grovelling on the dreary shore.

[From The Castle of Indolence.]


I CARE not, Fortune, what you me deny:

You cannot rob me of free Nature's grace;

You cannot shut the windows of the sky,

Through which Aurora shows her

brightening face; You cannot bar my constant feet to


The woods and lawns, by living

stream, at eve; Let health my nerves and finer fibres


And I their toys to the great children leave:

Of fancy, reason, virtue, nought can me bereave.

[From The Castle of Indolence.]


Had unambitious mortals minded nought,

But in loose joy their time to wear away;

Had they alone the lap of dalliance


Pleased on her pillow their dull heads to lay,

Rude nature's state had been our

state to-day; No cities e'er their towery fronts had


No arts had made us opulent and


With brother brutes the human race

had grazed; None e'er had soar'd to fame, none

honored been, none praised.

Great Homer's song had never fired

the breast To thirst of glory, and heroic


Sweet Hiiro's muse, sunk in inglorious rest.

Had silent slept amid the Mincian reeds:

The wits of modern time had told

their beads, The monkish legends been their only


Our Milton's Eden had lain wrapt in


Our Shakespeare strolled and laughed with Warwick swains,

Ne had my master Spenser eharm'd his Alulla's plains.

[From The Castle of Indolence.]


Ah! what avail the largest gifts of Heaven,

When drooping health and spirits go amiss?

How tasteless then whatever can be given?

Health is the vital principle of bliss.

And exercise of health. In proof of this,

Behold the wretch, who slugs his life away,

Soon swallowed in disease's sad abyss;

While he whom toil has braced, or

manly play, As light as air each limb, each thought

as clear as day.

Oh, who can speak the vigorous joys

of health! Unclogg'd the body, uncbscured the


The morning rises gay, with pleasing stealth,

The temperate evening falls serene and kind.

In health the wiser brutes true gladness find:

See! how the younglings frisk along the meads.

As May comes on, and wakes the balmy wind;

Rampant with life, their joy all joy exceeds;

Yet what but high-strung health this dancing pleasaunce breeds?


If those, who live in shepherd's bower,

Press not the rich and stately bed: The new-mown hay and breathing flower

A softer couch beneath them spread.

If those, who sit at shepherd's board, Soothe not their taste by wanton art;

They take what Nature's gifts afford, And take it with a cheerful heart.

If those who drain the shepherd's bowl,

No high and sparkling wines can boast,

With wholesome cups they cheer the soul,

And crown them with the village toast.

If those who join in shepherd's sport, Gay dancing on t he daisied ground,

Have not the splendor of a court: Yet love adorns the merry round.


When Britain first, at Heaven's command, Arose from out the azure main, This was the charter of the land, And guardian angels sung this strain:

Rule, Britannia, rule the waves;

Britons never will be slaves.

The nations, not so blessed as thee, Must, in their turns, to tyrants fall;

While thou shalt flourish great and free,

The dread and envy of them all.
Rule, etc.

Still more majestic shalt thou rise, More dreadful from each foreign stroke;

As the loud blast that tears the skies Serves but to root thy native oak. Rule, etc.

Thee haughty tyrants ne'er shall tame:

All their attempts to bend thee down

Will but arouse thy generous flame,
But work their woe, and thy re-
Kule, etc.

To thee belongs the rural reign;
Thy cities shall with commerce

All thine shall be the subject main: And every shore it circles thine. Kule, etc.

The Muses, still with freedom found,

Shall to thy happy coast repair: Blessed isle! with matchless beauty crowned, And manly hearts to guard the fair:

Rule, Britannia, rule the waves;

Britons never will be slaves.

Theodore Tilton.

From Thou and 7.l

For us, the almond-tree

Doth flourish now:

Its whitest bloom is on our brow.

Let others triumph as they may

And wear their garlands gay

Of olive, oak, or bay:

Our crown of glory is, instead,

The over head.

Our threescore years and ten.
That measure life to mortal men,
Have lingered to a longer length
By reason of our strength;
Yet, like a tale that hath been told,
they all have passed, and now, be-
We verily are old; —

Yea, old like Abraham, when he went,

With head down bent.

And mantle rent,

In dole for her who lay in death,

And to the Sons of Heth

The silver shekels gave

For Mamre's gloomy cave,

To be her grave; —

Or. older still, like him
Who, feeble not of limb,
With eyes not dim,
Upclimbeil. with staff in hand,
To where Mount Nebo cleft the sky,
And looked and saw the Promised

(Forbidden him from on high)
Till, with an unrecorded cry,
He laid him down to die.

So too, for us, the end is nigh.
Our mortal race is nearly run;
Our earthly toil is nearly done!
Ah, thou and I,

Who in the grave so soon shall lie.
Have little time to see the sun —
So little it is nearly none!

What then?

All hail, my love, good cheer!

Keep back thy unshed tear!

Not thou nor I

Shall mourn or sigh.

Nay now, we twain —

Old man, old wife.

The few days that remain —

Let us make merry — let us laugh! —

For now at length we quaff

The last, best wine of life. —

The very last — the very best,

The double cup of love and rest.

What though the groaning world declare

That life is but a load of care ? —
A burden wearisome to bear ? —
That as we journey down the years,
The path is through a vale of tears F-..
Yet we who have the burden borne,
And travelled until travel-worn,
Forget the weight upon the back,
Forget the long and weary track,

And sit remembering here to-day
How we were children at our play: —

And half in doze, at idle ease,
Before the hearth-fire's dying brands,
With elbows on our trembling knees,
With chin between our wrinkled

We sail unnavigable seas, —
We roam impenetrable lands, —
We leap from clime to clime, —
We conquer space and time.

And, howsoever strange it seems,
The dearest of our drowsy dreams
Is of that billow-beaten shore
Where, in our childish days of yore,
We piled the salty sands
Into a palace that still stands! —
Not where it first arose,
Not where the wild wind blows,
Not by the ocean's roar, —
(For, long ago, those turrets fell
Beneath that billowy swell),—
But, down within the heart's deep

Our tumbled tower we oft restore
And ever build it o'er and o'er!

We have one palace more, —
Not made with hands, —
Nor have our feet yet entered at its

It lieth not behind us, but beforeI

Dear love, our pilgrimage is thither

And there shall have its ending!

Ah, though the rapturous vision
allures us to a Land Elysian,
Yet aged are our feet, and slow,
And not in haste to go.

Life still hath many joys to give,
Whereof the sweetest is — to live.

Then fear we death? Not so!
Or do we tremble? No!
Nor do we even grieve!
And yet a gentle sigh we heave,
And unto Him who fixes fate, —
Without whose sovereign leave,

Down-whispered from on high,
Not even the daisy dares to die,—
We, jointly, thou and I,
Implore a little longer date, —
A little term of kind reprieve, —
A little lease till by and by!

May it be Heaven's decree, —

Here, now, to thee and me, —

That, for a season still,

The eye shall not grow dim;

That, for a few more days,

The ear cease not to hear the hymn

Which the tongue utters to His

praise; That, for a little while, The heart faint not, nor fail; For even the wintry sun is bright, And cheering to our aged sight; Yea. though the frosts prevail, Yet even the icy air, The frozen plain, the leafless wood Still keep the earth as fresh and


As when from Heaven, He called it good!

O final Summoner of the soul!
Grant, of thy pitying grace,
That, for a little longer space,
The pitcher at the fountain's rim
Be shattered not, but still kept

whole, —
Still overflowing at the brim!
If but a year, if but a day,
Thy lifted hand, O stay!
Loose Thou not yet, O Lord,
The silver cord!

Break Thou not yet the golden bowl!

[From Thou and /.l

"thou and I!"
The voice no longer said;
But two white stones, instead,
Above the twain, long dead,
Still utter, each to each,
The same familiar speech,
"Thou and II". -


Not spoken to the passer-by.
But just as if, beneath the grass.
Deep under foot of all who pass,
The sleeping dust should wake to say,
Each to its fellow-clay,
Each in the same old way,
"Thou and I!"

And each to either should reply, —

(Tomb murmuring unto tomb,

Stone answering unto stone,

Yet not with sound of human moan,

Nor breath of mortal sight.

But voiceless as the dead's dumb

cry.) — "Thou and I!"

"The spirit and the body part, Yet love abideth, heart to heart.

"O silent comrade of my rest, With hands here crossed upon thy breast,

I know thee who thou art!

0 marble brow,

Here pillowed next to mine,

I know the soul divine That tenanted thy shrine!

"For. though above us, green and

The yew-trees grow.
And churchyard ravens fly,
And mourners come and go,
Yet thou and I,

Who dust to dust lie here below,
Still one another know!

"Yea, thee I know — it still is thou;

And me thou know'st— it still is I;

True lovers once, true lovers now! —

The same old vow.

The same old thrill.

The same old love between us still!

"The gloomy grave hath frosts that kill,

But love is chilled not with their chill.

"Love's flame —

Consuming, unconsumed —

In breasts that breathe — in hearts

entombed — Is fed by life and death the same!

"Love's spark

Is brightest when love's house is dark!

"Love's shroud —

That wraps its bosom round —

Must crumble in the charnel ground,

Till all the long white winding-sheet

Shall drop to dust from head to feet:

But love's strong cord,

The eternal tie.

The immortal bond that binds

Love's twain immortal minds; —

This silken knot

Shall never rot —

Nor moulder in the mouldy mound —
Nor mildew — nor decay —
Nor fall apart — nor drop away —
Nor ever be unbound!

"Love's dust.

Whatever grave it fill,

Though buried deep, is deathless still!

Love hath no death, and cannot die!

This love is ours, as here we lie, —

Thou and 1!"


In the balmy April weather,

My love, you know,

When the corn began to grow, What walks we took together, What sighs we breathed together, What vows we pledged together,

In the days of long ago!

In the golden summer weather,

My love, you know,

When the mowers went to mow, What home we built together, What babes we watched together, What plans we planned together,

While the skies were all aglow!

In the rainy autumn weather,

My love, you know.

When the winds began to blow, What tears we shed together, What mounds we heaped together, What hopes we lost together,

When we laid our darlings low

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