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Could eighteen years strike down no deeper There I behold a Nation:
root ?

The France which lies
But now thy vulture eye was turned on Between the Pyrenees and Rhine

Is the least part of France;
A shout from Paris, and thy crown falls off, I see her rather in the soul whose shine
Thy race has ceased to reign,

Burns through the craftsman's grimy And thou become a fugitive and scoff:

countenance, Slippery the feet that mount by stairs of In the new energy divine gold,

Of Toil's enfranchised glance. And weakest of all fences one of steel; Go and keep school again like him of old,

And if it be a dream, The Syracusan tyrant;- thou mayst feel If the great Future be the little Past Royal amid a birch-swayed commonweal ! 'Neath

a new mask, which drops and

shows at last VI

The same weird, mocking face to balk Not long can he be ruler who allows

and blast, His time to run before him; thou wast Yet, Muse, a gladder measure suits the naught

theme, Soon as the strip of gold about thy brows

And the Tyrtzean harp Was no more emblem of the People's Loves notes more resolute and sharp, thought:

Throbbing, as throbs the bosom, hot and Vain were thy bayonets against the foe

fast: Thou hadst to cope with; thou didst

Such visions are of morning, wage

Theirs is no vague forewarning, War not with Frenchmen merely; — no, The dreams which nations dream come true,

Thy strife was with the Spirit of the Age, And shape the world arew;
The invisible Spirit whose first breath di-

If this be a sleep,

Make it long, make it deep, Scattered thy frail endeavor,

O Father,who sendest the harvests men reap! And, like poor last year's leaves, whirled

While Labor so sleepeth,
thee and thine

His sorrow is gone,
Into the Dark forever !

No longer he weepeth,
But smileth and steepeth

His thoughts in the dawn;
Is here no triumph ? Nay, what though He heareth Hope yonder
The yellow blood of Trade meanwhile

Rain, lark-like, her fancies,

His dreaming hands wander Along its arteries a shrunken flow,

Mid heart's-ease and pansies; And the idle canvas droop around the “'T is a dream ! 'T is a vision !" shore ?

Shrieks Mammon aghast;
These do not make a state,

“ The day's broad derision
Nor keep it great;

Will chase it at last;
I think God made

Ye are mad, ye have taken
The earth for man, not trade;

A slumbering kraken And where each humblest human creature

For firm land of the Past !” Can stand, no more suspicious or afraid,

Ah ! if he awaken, Erect and kingly in his right of nature,

God shield us all then,
To heaven and earth knit with harmonious If this dream rudely shaken

Shall cheat him again !
Where I behold the exultation
Of manhood glowing in those eyes
That had been dark for ages,

Since first I heard our North-wind blow, Or only lit with bestial loves and Since first I saw Atlantic throw rages,

On our grim rocks his thunderous snow,


should pour


I loved thee, Freedom; as a boy

As their gods were, so their laws were;
The rattle of thy shield at Marathon

Thor the strong could reave and
Did with a Grecian joy

Through all my pulses run; So through many a peaceful inlet tore the
But I have learned to love thee now

Norseman's eager keel;
Without the helm upon thy gleaming brow, But a new law came when Christ came,
A maiden mild and undefiled

and not blameless, as before,
Like her who bore the world's redeeming Can we, paying him our lip-tithes, give our

lives and faiths to Thor. And surely never did thine altars glance With

purer fires than now in France; Law is holy: ay, but what law ? Is there While, in their clear white flashes,

nothing more divine Wrong's shadow, backward cast, Than the patched-up broils of Congress, Waves cowering o'er the ashes

venal, full of meat and wine ? Of the dead, blaspheming Past, Is there, say you, nothing higher ? Naught, O’er the shapes of fallen giants,

God save us ! that transcends His own unburied brood,

Laws of cotton texture, wove by vulgar
Whose dead hands clench defiance

men for vulgar ends?
At the overpowering Good:
And down the happy future runs a flood Did Jehovah ask their counsel, or submit
Of prophesying light;

to them a plan,
It shows an Earth no longer stained with Ere he filled with loves, hopes, longings,

this aspiring heart of man?
Blossom and fruit where now we see the bud For their edict does the soul wait, ere it
Of Brotherhood and Right.

swing round to the pole
Of the true, the free, the God-willed, all

that makes it be a soul ?
PRAISEST Law, friend? We, too, love it Law is holy; but not your law, ye who
much as they that love it best;

keep the tablets whole 'T is the deep, august foundation, whereon While dash the Law to pieces, shatter it Peace and Justice rest;

in life and soul; On the rock primeval, hidden in the Past Bearing up the Ark is lightsome, golden its bases be,

A pis bid within, Block by block the endeavoring Ages built While we Levites share the offerings, richer it up to what we see.

by the people's sin. But dig down: the Old unbury; thou shalt Give to Cæsar what is Cæsar's ? yes, but find on every stone

tell me, if you can, That each Age hath carved the symbol of Is this superscription Cæsar's here upon what god to them was known,

our brother man ? Ugly shapes and brutish sometimes, but Is not here some other's image, dark and the fairest that they knew;

sullied though it be, If their sight were dim and earthward, yet In this fellow-soul that worships, struggles their hope and aim were true.

Godward even as we ? Surely as the unconscious needle feels the It was not to such a future that the May. far-off loadstar draw,

flower's prow was turned, So strives every gracious nature to at-one Not to such a faith the martyrs clung, exitself with law;

ulting as they burned; And the elder Saints and Sages laid their Not by such laws are men fashioned, earpious framework right

nest, simple, valiant, great By a theocratic instinct covered from the In the household virtues whereon rests the people's sight.

unconquerable state.


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Ah ! there is a higher gospel, overhead the And in palace-chambers lofty and rare God-roof springs,

They lodged him, and served him with And each glad, obedient planet like a kingly fare.

golden shuttle sings Through the web whichTime is weaving Great organs surged through arches dim in his never-resting loom,

Their jubilant floods in praise of him; Weaving seasons many - colored, bringing And in church, and palace, and judgmentprophecy to doom.


He saw his own image high over all. Think you Truth a farthing rushlight, to

be pinched out when you will But still, wherever his steps they led, With your deft official fingers, and your The Lord in sorrow bent down bis head, politicians' skill ?

And from under the heavy foundation, Is your God a wooden fetish, to be hidden

stones, out of sight

The son of Mary heard bitter groans. That his block eyes may not see you do the thing that is not right?

And in church, and palace, and judgment


He marked great fissures that rent the wall,
And opened wider and yet more wide
As the living foundation heaved and sighed.

But the Destinies think not so; to their

judgment-chamber lone
Comes no noise of popular clamor, there

Fame's trumpet is not blown;
Your majorities they reck not; that you

grant, but then you say
That you differ with them somewhat,

which is stronger, you or they ? Patient are they as the insects that build

islands in the deep; They hurl not the bolted thunder, but their

silent way they keep; Where they have been that we know;

where empires towered that were

not just; Lo! the skulking wild fox scratches in a

little heap of dust.

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“O Lord and Master, not ours the guilt,
We build but as our fathers built;
Behold thine images, how they stand,
Sovereign and sole, through all our land.
“ Our task is hard, with sword and flame
To hold thine earth forever the same,
And with sharp crooks of steel to keep
Still, as thou leftest them, thy sheep.'
Then Christ sought out an artisan,
A low-browed, stunted, haggard man,
And a motherless girl, whose fingers thin
Pushed from her faintly want and sin.

Then said the chief priests, and rulers, and

kings, “ Behold, now, the Giver of all good things; Go to, let us welcome with pomp and state Him who alone is mighty and great.”

With carpets of gold the ground they

spread Wherever the Son of Man should tread,

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And, bright as Noah saw it, yet

For you the arching rainbow glows,

A sight in Paradise denied
WRITTEN FOR THE CELEBRATION OF THE To unfallen Adam and his bride.

WATER INTO THE CITY OF BOSTON When Winter held me in his grip,

You seized and sent me o'er the wave, The public system of water works in Boston Ungrateful! in a prison-ship; dates from October 25, 1848, when with much But I forgive, not long a slave, ceremony the water of Lake Cochituate, for

For, soon as summer south-winds blew, merly called Long Pond, was turned into the

Homeward I fled, disguised as dew. reservoir which then occupied the site of the present extension of the State House, and a

For countless services I'm fit, stream was conducted into the Frog Pond on Boston Common, where the pressure gave head

Of use, of pleasure, and of gain, to a fine jet. Besides the Ode, a selection was But lightly from all bonds I fit, gung from the oratorio of Elijah, and addresses Nor lose my mirth, nor feel a stain; were made by the mayor and the chairman of From mill and wash-tub I escape, the water commissioners.

And take in heaven my proper sbape. My name is Water: I have sped

So, free myself, to-day, elate Through strange, dark ways, untried I come from far o'er hill and mead, before,

And here, Cochituate's envoy, wait By pure desire of friendship led,

To be your blithesome Ganymede, Cochituate's ambassador;

And brim your cups with nectar true He sends four royal gifts by me:

That never will make slaves of you. Long life, health, peace, and purity.

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They came three thousand miles, and died, But each day brings less summer cheer, To keep the Past upon its throne;

Crimps more our ineffectual spring, Unheard, beyond the ocean tide,

And something earlier every year Their English mother made her moan. Our singing birds take wing. The turf that covers them no thrill

As less the olden glow abides, Sends up to fire the heart and brain;

And less the chillier heart aspires, No stronger purpose nerves the will, With drift-wood beached in past springNo hope renews its youth again:

tides From farm to farm the Concord glides, We light our sullen fires. And trails my fancy with its flow; O'erhead the balanced hen-hawk slides, By the pinched rushlight's starving beam Twinned in the river's heaven below.

We cower and strain our wasted sight,

To stitch youth's shroud up, seam by seam, But go, whose Bay State bosom stirs,

In the long arctic night.
Proud of thy birth and neighbor's right,
Where sleep the heroic villagers

It was not so — we once were young
Borne red and stiff from Concord fight; When Spring, to womanly Summer tumn-
Thought Reuben, snatching down his


ing, Or Seth, as ebbed the life away,

Her dew-drops on each grass-blade strung, What earthquake rifts would shoot and run In the red sunrise burning. World-wide from that short April fray ?

We trusted then, aspired, believed What then? With heart and hand they That earth could be remade to-morrow; wrought,

Ah, why be ever undeceived ?
According to their village light;

Why give up faith for sorrow ?
'T was for the Future that they fought,
Their rustic faith in what was right. O thou, whose days are yet all spring,
Upon earth's tragic stage they burst

Faith, blighted one, is past retrieving; Unsummoned, in the humble sock;

Experience is a dumb, dead thing; Theirs the fifth act; the curtain first

T'he victory 's in believing.
Rose long ago on Charles's block.

Their graves have voices; if they threw
Dice charged with fates beyond their ken, In a letter to Mr. Norton,

written June 29, Yet to their instincts they were true, 1859, Mr. Lowell refers to English comments And had the genius to be men.

on the Austro-Italian war, then in its early Fine privilege of Freedom's host,

stages, and alludes to a quotation which Mr. Of humblest soldiers for the Right !

Bright had made from his writings. Age after age ye hold your post,

he says, " I fear he thinks me too much of a Your graves send courage forth, and

Quaker. In my Poems there are some verses

on “Freedom' written in '48 or '49. They might.

ended thus as originally written. I left the verses out only because I did not think them

good, - not because I did not like the sentiment. TO

I have strength of mind enough not to change

a word — though I see how much better I WE, too, have autumns, when our leaves might make it.” He then copies the lines

Drop loosely through the dampened air, which below are separated from the poem by When all our good seems bound in sheaves,

a long dash, and adds: “I think it must have And we stand reaped and bare.

been written in 1848, for I remember that, as I first composed it, it had 'Fair Italy' instead

of ‘Humanity.'" Our seasons have no fixed returns,

Without our will they come and go; ARE we, then, wholly fallen ? Can it be At noon our sudden summer burns,

That thou, North wind, that from thy Ere sunset all is snow.

mountains bringest


“ But,”

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