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STOP, let me have the truth of that!

Is that all true ? I say, the day Ten years ago when both of us

Met on a morning, friends — as thus We meet this evening, friends or what?

Did you — because I took your arm

And sillily smiled, “A mass of brass That sea looks, blazing underneath!”

While up the cliff-road edged with heath, We took the turns nor came to harm

Did you consider “ Now makes twice

That I have seen her, walked and talked With this poor, pretty, thoughtful thing,

Whose worth I weigh: she tries to sing ; Draws, hopes in time the eye grows nice;

“ Reads verse and thinks she understands ; .

Loves all, at any rate, that's great, Good, beautiful ; but much as we

Down at the Bath-house love the sea, Who breathe its salt and bruise its sands :

5. . “ While ... do but follow the fishing-gull

That flaps and floats from wave to cave ! There's the sea-lover, fair my friend !

What then? Be patient, mark and mend ! Had you the making of your scull ?”


And did you, when we faced the church

With spire and sad slate roof, aloof From human fellowship so far,

Where a few graveyard crosses are, And garlands for the swallows' perch, —

Did you determine, as we stepped "

O’er the lone stone fence, “ Let me get Her for myself, and what's the earth

With all its art, verse, music, worth — Compared with love, found, gained, and kept?


“Schumann 's our music-maker now;

Has his march-movement youth and mouth ? Ingres 's the modern man that paints ;

Which will lean on me, of his saints ? Heine for songs ; for kisses, how ?”


And did you, when we entered, reached

The votive frigate, soft aloft Riding on air this hundred years,

Safe-smiling at old hopes and fears, – Did you draw profit while she preached ?


Resolving “Fools we wise men grow!

Yes, I could easily blurt out curt Some question that might find reply

As prompt in her stopped lips, dropped eye, And rush of red to cheek and brow:

11. “ Thus were a match made, sure and fast,

'Mid the blue weed-flowers round the mound Where, issuing, we shall stand and stay

For one more look at Baths and bay, Sands, sea-gulls, and the old church last


“ A match 'twixt me, bent, wigged, and lamed,

Famous, however, for verse and worse,
Sure of the Fortieth spare Arm-chair

When gout and glory seat me there,
So, one whose love-freaks pass unblamed, -


“ And this young beauty, round and sound

As a mountain-apple, youth and truth With loves and doves, at all events

With money in the Three per Cents; Whose choice of me would seem profound:

14. “She might take me as I take her.

Perfect the hour would pass, alas ! Climb high, love high, what matter? Feet, feelings, must descend the hill:

An hour's perfection can't recur.


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