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And the Poet, faithful and far-seeing
Sees, alike in stars and flowers, a part Of the self-same universal being,
Which is throbbing in his brain and heart. Gorgeous flowerets in the sunlight shining,
Blossoms flaunting in the eye of day,
Buds that open only to decay ;
Flaunting gayly in the golden light;
Tender wishes, blossoming at night! These in flowers and men are more than seeming:
Workings are they of the self-some power, Which the Poet, in no idle dreaming,
Seeth in himself and in the flowers. Everywhere about us are they glowing,
Some like stars, to tell us Spring is born ; Others, their blue eyes with tears o'erflowing,
Stand like Ruth amid the golden corn; Not alone in Spring's armorial bearing,
And in Summer's green-emblazoned field, But in arms of brave old Autumn's wearing,
In the centre of his brazen shield ; Not alone in meadows and green alleys,
On the mountain-top, and by the brink Of sequestered pools in woodland valleys,
Where the slaves of Nature stoop to drink; Not alone in her vast dome of glory,
Not on graves of birds and beasts alone, But in old cathedrals, high and hoary,
On the tombs of heroes, carved in stone; In the cottage of the rudest peasant,
In ancestral homes, whose crumbling towers, Speaking of the Past unto the Present,
Tell us of the ancient Games of Flowers ; In all places, then, and in all seasons,
Flowers expand their light and soul-like wings, Teaching us, by most persuasive reasons,
How akin they are to human things And with childlike, credulous affection
We behold their tender buds expand ; Emblems of our own great resurrection,
Emblems of the bright and better land.
THE BELEAGUERED CITY.
I HAVE read, in some old marvellous tale,
Some legend strange and vague, That a midnight host of spectres pala
Beleagured the walls of Prague. Beside the Moldau's rushing stream,
With the wan moon overhead,
The army of the dead.
The spectral camp was seen,
The river flowed between.
No drum, nor sentry's pace;
As clouds with clouds embrace.
Proclaimed the morning prayer,
On the alarmed air.
The troubled army iled :
The ghastly host was dead.
man, That strange and mystic scroll, That an army of phantoms vast and wan,
Beleaguer the human soul.
In Fancy's misty light,
Portentous through the night.
seen, And, with a sorrowful, deep sound,
Flows the River of Life between.
In the army of the grave;
But the rushing of Life's wave.
Entreats the soul to pray,
Down the broad Vale of Tears afar
The spectral camp is filed ; Faith shineth as a morning-star,
Our ghostly fears are dead.
MIDNIGHT MASS FOR THE DYING YEAR. YES, the Year is growing old,
And his eye is pale and bleared !
Solemnly and slow;
A sound of woe!
The winds, like anthems, roll;
Tell their beads in drops of rain,
All in vain !
There he stands in the foul weather,
The foolish, fond Old Year,
A king,-a king!
Bids the old man rejoice!
Gentle and low.
To the voice gentle and low
Do not laugh at me!"
Cold in his arms it lies;
No mist or stain !
Then, too, the Old Year dieth,
And the forests utter a moan, Like the voice of one that crieth In the wilderness alone,
" Vex not his ghost !" Then comes, with an awful roar,
Gathering and sounding on,
Sweep the red leaves away!
And be swept away!
There shall be a darker day;
These poems were written for the most part during my college life, and all
of them before the age of nineteen. Some have found their way into schools, and seem to be successful. Others lead a vagabond and precarious existence in the corners of newspapers; or have changed their names and run away to seek their fortunes beyond the sea. I say, with the Bishop of Avranches, on a similar occasion, "I cannot be displeased to see these children of mine, which I have neglected, and almost exposed, brought from their wanderings in lanes and alleys, and safely lodged, in order to go forth into the world together in a more decorous garb.”
AN APRIL DAY.
WHEN the warm sun that brings
The first flower of the plain,
I love the season well,
The coming-on of storms.
From the earth's loosened mould
Phe drooping tree revives.
The softly.warbled song
The forest openings.
When the bright sunset fills
And wide the upland glows.
And when the eve is born,
And twinkles many a star.
Inverted in the tide,