« PreviousContinue »
Glaring, and passionate looks, and swept away
dreams! Yours came but from the breaking of a glass, And mine but from the crying of a child.”
“ Child ? No!” said he, “but this tide's roar,
and his, Our Boanerges, with his threats of doom, And loud-lung’d Antibabylonianisms (Although I grant but little music there) Went both to make your dream: but were there
such A music, harmonizing our wild cries, Sphere music such as that you dream'd about, Why, that would make our passions far too like The discord dear to the musician. NoOne shriek of hate would jar all hymns of heaven: True Devils with no ear, they howl in tune With nothing but the Devil !”
" True indeed ! One of our town, but later by an hour Here than ourselves, spoke with me on the shore. While you were running down the sands, and made The dimpled flounce of the sea-furbelow flap, Good man, to please the child : she brought strange
I would not tell you then to spoil your day,
« Dead ? who is dead ?'
“ The man your eye pursued. A little after you had parted with him, He suddenly dropt dead of heart disease.”
“ Dead ? he ? of heart disease? what heart had he To die of? dead ?”
“Ah, dearest, if there be A devil in man, there is an angel too, And if he did that wrong you charge him with, His angel broke his heart. But your rough voice (You spoke so loud) has roused the child again. Sleep, little birdie, sleep! will she not sleep Without her little birdie ?' well then, sleep, And I will sing you · birdie.””
Saying this, The woman half turn'd round from him she loved, Left him one hand, and reaching through the night Her other, found (for it was close beside) And half embraced the basket cradle-head: With one soft arm, which like the pliant bough That moving moves the nest and nestling, sway'd The cradle, while she sang this baby song.
What does little birdie say
What does little baby say,
Till the little limbs are stronger.
56 She sleeps : let us too, let all evil, sleep.
Then the man,
“ Thanks, my love,” she said, “ Your own will be the sweeter,” and they slept.
Ay me! ay me! the woods decay and fall,
Alas! for this gray shadow, once a man So glorious in his beaucy and thy choice, Who madest him thy chosen, that he seem'd To his great heart none other than a God! I ask'd thee, “ Give me immortality.” Then didst thou grant mine asking with a smile, Like wealthy men who care not how they give. But thy strong Hours indignant work'd their wills,
And beat me down and marr'd and wasted me,
A soft air fans the cloud apart; there comes A glimpse of that dark world where I was born. Once more the old mysterious glimmer steals From thy pure brows, and from thy shoulders pure, And bosom beating with a heart renew’d. Thy cheek begins to redden thro' the gloom, Thy sweet eyes brighten slowly close to mine, Ere yet they blind the stars, and that wild team Which love thee, yearning for thy yoke, arise, And shake the darkness from their loosen'd manes, And beat the twilight into flakes of fire.
Lo! ever thus thou growest beautiful
Why wilt thou ever scare me with thy tears, And make me tremble lest a saying learnt, In days far-off, on that dark earth, be true ? s6 The Gods themselves cannot recall their gifts.”
Ay me! ay me! with what another heart
The dim curls kindle into sunny rings,
Yet hold me not forever in thine East : How can my nature longer mix with thine ? Coldly thy rosy shadows bathe me, cold Are all thy lights, and cold my wrinkled feet Upon thy glimmering thresholds, when the steam Floats up from those dim fields about the homes Of happy men that have the power to die, And grassy barrows of the happier dead. Release me, and restore me to the ground; Thou seëst all things, thou wilt see my grave: Thou wilt renew thy beauty morn by morn ; I earth in earth forget these empty courts, And thee returning on thy silver wheels.