Слике страница

They would whirl you down like a sprig

of kelp, Beyond all reach of hope or help ;

And such in a storm is Appledore.

VI. 'T is the sight of a lifetime to behold The great shorn sun as you see it now, Across eight miles of undulant gold That widens landward, weltered and

rolled, With freaks of shadow and crimson

stains ; To see the solid mountain brow As it notches the disk, and gains and


And over its crown you will see arise,
Against a background of slaty skies,
A row of pillars still and white,
That glimmer, and then are out of

sight, As if the moon should suddenly kiss, While you crossed the gusty desert

by night, The long colonnades of Persepolis ; Look southward for White Island light, The lantern stands ninety feet o'er

the tide ; There is first a half-mile of tumult and

fight, Of dash and roar and tumble and fright, And surging bewilderment wild and

wide, Where the breakers struggle left and

right, Then a mile or more of rushing sea, And then the light-house slim and lone; And whenever the weight of ocean is

thrown Full and fair on White Island head,

A great mist-jotun you will see

Lifting himself up silently High and huge o'er the light-house top, With hands of wavering spray out

spread, Groping after the little tower, That seems to shrink and shorten and

cower, Till the monster's arms of a sudden

drop, And silently and fruitlessly

He sinks again into the sea. You, meanwhile, where drenched you

stand, Awaken once more to the rush and

roar, And on the rock-point tighten your

hand, As you turn and see a valley deep,

That was not there a moment before, Suck rattling down between you and a

heap Of toppling billow, whose instant fall Must sink the whole island once for

all, Or watch the silenter, stealthier seas Feeling their way to you more and

more ; If they once should clutch you high as

the knees,

Until there comes, you scarce know

when, A tremble of fire o'er the parted lips Of cloud and mountain, which van

ishes. then From the body of day the sun-soul

slips And the face of earth darkens ; but no'y

the strips Of western vapor, straight and thin, From which the horizon's swervings

win A grace of contrast, take fire and burn Like splinters of touchwood, whose

edges a mould Of ashes o'erfeathers ; northward turn For an instant, and let your eye grow

cold On Agamenticus, and when once more You look, 't is as if the land-breeze,

growing, From the smouldering brands the film

were blowing, And brightening them down to the very

core ; Yet they momently cool and dampen

and deaden, The crimson turns golden, the gold

turns leaden, Hardening into one black bar O’er which, from the hollow heaven

afar, Shoots a splinter of light like diamond, Half seen, half fancied ; by and by Beyond whatever is most beyond In the uttermost waste of desert sky, Grows a star; And over it, visible spirit of dew,


I TREASURE in secret some long, fine

hair Of tenderest brown, but so inwardly

golden I half used to fancy the sunshine there, So shy, so shifting, so waywardly rare, Was only caught for the moment and

holden While I could say Dearest ! and kiss

it, and then In pity let go to the summer again. I twisted this magic in gossamer strings

Over a wind-harp's Delphian hollow; Then called to the idle breeze that

swings All day in the pine-tops, and clings, and

sings 'Mid the musical leaves, and said, “O,

follow The will of those tears that deepen my

words, And fly to my window to waken these


mi, stir not, speak not, hold your

breath, Or surely the miracle vanisheth, The new moon, tranced in unspeakable

blue ! No frail illusion; this were true, Ra her, to call it the canoe Ho lowed out of a single pearl, That floats us from the Present's whirl Back to those beings which were ours, When wishes were winged things like

powers ! Call it not light, that mystery tender, Which broods upon the brooding ocean, That flush of ecstasied surrender To indefinable emotion, That glory, mellower than a mist Of pearl dissolved with amethyst, Which rims Square Rock, like what

they paint Of nitigated heavenly splendor Round the stern forehead of a Saint ! No nore a vision, reddened, largened, The moon dips toward her mountain

nest, And, fringing it with palest argent, Slow sheathes herself behind the mar

gent Of thit long cloud-bar in the West, Whose nether edge, erelong, you see The slvery chrism in turn anoint, And then the tiniest rosy point Touched doubtfully and timidly Into the dark blue's chilly strip, As some mute, wondering thing below, Awakened by the thrilling glow, Might, looking up, see Dian dip One lucent foot's delaying tip In Latnian fountains long ago. Knew you what silence was before? Here is no startle of dreaming bird That sings in his sleep, or strives to sing; Here is no sough of branches stirred, Nor nase of any living thing, Such a one hears by night on shore ; Only, row and then, a sigh, With fickle intervals between, Sometines far, and sometimes nigh, Such a: Andromeda might have heard, And fancied the huge sea-beast unseen Turning in sleep; it is the sea That welters and wavers uneasily Round the lonely reefs of Appledore.

[blocks in formation]

Then from deep in the past, as seemed

to me, The strings gathered sorrow and sang

forsaken, "One lover still waits 'neath the green

wood tree, But 't is dark," and they shuddered,

“ where lieth she Dark and cold ! Forever must one

be taken?But I groaned, “Oharp of all ruth

bereft, This Scripture is sadder, - the other




There murmured, as if one strove to

speak, And tears came instead; then the sad

tones wandered And faltered among the uncertain

chords In a troubled doubt between sorrow and

words; At last with themselves they ques

tioned and pondered, “Hereafter? - who knoweth ?” and so

they sighed Down the long steps that lead to silence

and died.


STILL thirteen years : 't is autumnnow

On field and hill, in heart and bain ; The naked trees at evening sough; The leaf to the forsaken bough

Sighs not, — “We meet again !" Two watched yon oriole's peident

dome, That now is void, and dank withrain, And one, - O, hope more frail than

foam ! The bird to his deserted home

Sings not, —“We meet again !" The loath gate swings with rusty reak; Once, parting there, we played at

pain : There came a parting, when the reak And fading lips essayed to speal Vainly,

, -"We meet again !” Somewhere is comfort, somewhere faith,

Though thou in outer dark renain ; One sweet sad voice ennobles death, And still, for eighteen centuriessaith

Softly, — Ye meet again ! ”
If earth another grave must ber,

Yet heaven hath won a sweete strain,
And something whispers my depair,
That, from an orient chamber there,
Floats down,
“ We meet agan



The little gate was reached at last,

Half hid in lilacs down the lane; She pushed it wide, and, as she past, A wistful look she backward cast,

And said, -"Auf wiedersehen!

With hand on latch, a vision white

Lingered reluctant, and again Half doubting if she did aright, Soft as the dews that fell that night,

She said, Auf wiedersehen!

The lamp's clear gleam flits up the stair;

I linger in delicious pain ; Ah, in that chamber, whose rich air To breathe in thought I scarcely dare, Thinks she,

Auf wiedersehen!'


T is thirteen years ; once more I press

The turf that silences the lane;
I hear the restle of her dress,
I smell the lilacs, and — ah, yes,

I hear Auf wiedersehen!

Yes, faith is a goodly anchor ;
When skies are sweet as a psal,
At the bows it lolls so stalwart
In bluff, broad-shouldered caln.
And when over breakers to le:ward
The tattered surges are hurleg,
It may keep our head to the tempest,
With its grip on the base of tle world
But, after the shipwreck, tell ne
What help in its iron thews,
Still true to the broken hawse',
Deep down among sea-weed and ooze?

Sweet piece of bashful maiden art !
The English words had seemed too

fain, But these — they drew us heart to heart, Yet held us tenderly apart ;

She said, “ Auf wiedersehen!

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]


Pine in the distance,
Patient through sun or rain,
Meeting with graceful persistence,
With yielding but rooted resistance,
The northwind's wrench and strain,
No memory of past existence
Brings thee pain;
Right for the zenith heading,
Friendly with heat or cold,
Thine arms to the influence spreading
Of the heavens, just from of old,
Thou only aspirest the more,
Unregretful the old leaves shedding
That fringed thee with music before,
And deeper thy roots embedding
In the grace and the beauty of yore;
Thou sigh'st not, “ Alas, I am older,
The green of last summer is sear!
But loftier, hopefuller, bolder,
Wins broader horizons each year.
To me 't is not cheer thou art singing :
There's a sound of the sea,
O mournful tree,
In thy boughs

forever clinging, And the far-off roar

BIÖRN'S BECKONERS. Now Biörn, the son of H ulf, had ill

days Because the heart within him seethed

with blood That would not be allayed with any

toil, Whether of war or hunting or the oar, But was anhungered for some joy uno

tried : For the brain grew not weary with the

limbs, But, while they slept, still hammered

like a Troll, Bujlding all night a bridge of solid

dream Between him and some purpose of his

soul, Or will to find a purpose.

With the dawn The sleep-laid timbers, crumbled to

soft mist, Denied all foothold. But the dream

remained, And every night with yellow-bearded

kings His sleep was haunted, — mighty men

of old,

« ПретходнаНастави »