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up in the high Hall-garden I see her pass like a light;

But sorrow seize me if ever that light be my leading star!


When have I bow'd to her father, the wrinkled head of the race?

met her to-day with her brother, but not to her brother I bow'd;

I bow'd to his lady-sister as she rode by on the


But the fire of a foolish pride flash'd over her beautiful face.

O child, you wrong your beauty, believe it, in being so proud;

Your father has wealth well-gotten, and I am nameless and poor.


I keep but a man and a maid, ever ready to slander and steal;

I know it, and smile a hard-set smile, like a stoic, or


A wiser epicurean, and let the world have its


For nature is one with rapine, a harm no preacher can heal;

The Mayfly is torn by the swallow, the sparrow spear'd by the shrike,

And the whole little wood where I sit is a world of plunder and prey.


We are puppets, Man in his pride, and Beauty fair in her flower;

Do we move ourselves, or are moved by an unseen hand at a game

That pushes us off from the board, and others ever


Ah yet, we cannot be kind to each other here for an hour;

We whisper, and hint, and chuckle, and grin at a brother's shame;

However we brave it out, we men are a little

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A monstrous eft was of old the Lord and Master of


For him did his high sun flame, and his river billowing ran,

And he felt himself in his force to be Nature's crowning race.

As nine months go to the shaping an infant ripe for his birth,

So many a million of ages have gone to the making

of man :

He now is first, but is he the last? is he not too



The man of science himself is fonder of glory, and vain,

An eye well-practised in nature, a spirit bounded and poor;

The passionate heart of the poet is whirl'd into folly and vice.

I would not marvel at either, but keep a temperate


For not to desire or admire, if a man could learn it,

were more

Than to walk all day like the sultan of old in a garden of spice.




For the drift of the Maker is dark, an Isis hid by the veil.

Who knows the ways of the world, how God will bring them about?

Our planet is one, the suns are many, the world is wide.

Shall I weep if a Poland fall? shall I shriek if a Hungary fail?

Or an infant civilization be ruled with rod or with knout?

I have not made the world, and He that made it will guide.


Be mine a philosopher's life in the quiet woodland


Where if I cannot be gay let a passionless peace be

my lot,

Far off from the clamor of liars belied in the hubbub

of lies;

From the long-neck'd geese of the world that are ever hissing dispraise

Because their natures are little, and, whether he heed it or not,

Where each man walks with his head in a cloud of

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And most of all would I flee from the cruel madness

of love,

The honey of poison-flowers and all the measureless


Ah Maud, you milk-white fawn, you are all unmeet

for a wife.

Your mother is mute in her grave as her image in marble above;

Your father is ever in London, you wander about at your will;

You have but fed on the roses, and lain in the lilies of life.


A VOICE by the cedar tree,

In the meadow under the Hall!

She is singing an air that is known to me,
A passionate ballad gallant and gay,
A martial song like a trumpet's call !
Singing alone in the morning of life,
In the happy morning of life and of May,
Singing of men that in battle array,
Ready in heart and ready in hand,
March with banner and bugle and fife
To the death, for their native land.


Maud with her exquisite face,

And wild voice pealing up to the sunny sky,
And feet like sunny gems on an English green,
Maud in the light of her youth and her grace,
Singing of Death, and of Honor that cannot die,
Till I well could weep for a time so sordid and mean
And myself so languid and base.

Silence, beautiful voice!


Be still, for you only trouble the mind
With a joy in which I cannot rejoice,
A glory I shall not find.

Still! I will hear you no more,

For your sweetness hardly leaves me a choice
But to move to the meadow and fall before
Her feet on the meadow grass, and adore,
Not her, who is neither courtly nor kind,
Not her, not her, but a voice.



MORNING arises stormy and pale,
No sun, but a wannish glare

In fold upon fold of hueless cloud,
And the budded peaks of the wood are bow'd
Caught and cuff'd by the gale:

I had fancied it would be fair.


Whom but Maud should I meet
Last night, when the sunset burn'd
On the blossom'd gable-ends
At the head of the village street,
Whom but Maud should I meet?

And she touch'd my hand with a smile so sweet
She made me divine amends

For a courtesy not return'd.


And thus a delicate spark

Of glowing and growing light

Thro' the livelong hours of the dark

Kept itself warm in the heart of my dreams,

Ready to burst in a color'd flame;

Till at last when the morning came

In a cloud, it faded, and seems
But an ashen-gray delight.


What if with her sunny hair,
And smile as sunny as cold,
She meant to weave me a snare
Of some coquettish deceit,
Cleopatra-like as of old

To entangle me when we met

To have her lion roll in a silken net

And fawn at a victor's feet.

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