Page images


For, in mere weeds, and stones, and springs,
He found a healing power profuse.

Men granted that his speech was wise,
But, when a glance they caught

Of his slim grace and woman's eyes,

They laughed, and called him good-for-naught.

Yet after he was dead and gone,

And e'en his memory dim,
Earth seemed more sweet to live upon,
More full of love, because of him.

And day by day more holy grew
Each spot where he had trod,

Till after-poets only knew
Their firstborn brother as a god.


Ir is a mere wild rosebud,

Quite sallow now, and dry,
Yet there's something wondrous in it,
Some gleams of days gone by,—
Dear sights and sounds that are to me
The fingerposts of memory,
And stir my heart's blood far below
Its short-lived waves of joy and woe.

Lips must fade and roses wither,

All sweet times be o'er,

They only smile, and, murmuring "Thither!"

Stay with us no more:

And yet ofttimes a look or smile,
Forgotten in a kiss's while,

Years after from the dark will start,
And flash across the trembling heart.

Thou hast given me many roses,

But never one, like this, O'erfloods both sense and spirit

With such a deep, wild bliss; We must have instincts that glean up Sparse drops of this life in the cup, Whose taste shall give us all that we Can prove of immortality.

Earth's stablest things are shadows,
And, in the life to come,
Haply some chance-saved trifle

May tell of this old home :

As now sometimes we seem to find,

In a dark crevice of the mind,

Some relic, which, long pondered o'er, Hints faintly at a life before.


He spoke of Burns: men rude and rough Pressed round to hear the praise of one Whose heart was made of manly, simple stuff,

As homespun as their own.

And, when he read, they forward leaned,
Drinking, with thirsty hearts and ears,

His brook-like songs whom glory never weaned
From humble smiles and tears.

Slowly there grew a tender awe,
Sun-like, o'er faces brown and hard,

As if in him who read they felt and saw
Some presence of the bard.

It was a sight for sin and wrong
And slavish tyranny to see,
A sight to make our faith more pure
In high humanity.

I thought, these men will carry hence
Promptings their former life above,

And something of a finer reverence
For beauty, truth, and love.

and strong

God scatters love on every side,
Freely among his children all,

And always hearts are lying open wide,
Wherein some grains may fall.

There is no wind but soweth seeds
Of a more true and open life,

Which burst, unlooked-for, into high-souled deeds,

With wayside beauty rife.

« PreviousContinue »