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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 ;
linger in delicious pain : Ah, in that chamber, whose rich air To breathe in thought I scarcely dare,
Thinks she, --"Auf wiedersehen! ”
'Tis thirteen years; once more I press
The turf that silences the lane;
I hear the rustle of her dress,
I smell the lilacs, and-ah, yes,
I hear “ Auf wiedersehen !”
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 !”
STILL thirteen years 'tis autumn now
On field and hill, in heart and brain :
The naked trees at evening sough ;
The leaf to the forsaken bough
Sighs not, -—“We meet again !”
Two watched yon oriole's pendent dome,
That now is void, and dank with rain, And one, -0, hope more frail than foam ! The bird to his deserted home
Sings not, -“We meet again !"
The loath gate swings with rusty creak;
Once, parting we played at pain;
There came a parting, when the weak
And fading lips essayed to speak
Vainly—“We meet again!"
Somewhere is comfort, somewhere faith
Though thou in outer dark remain ;
One sweet sad voice ennobles death,
And still, for eighteen centuries saith
Softly, —“Ye meet again !.”
If earth another grave must bear,
Yet heaven hath won a sweeter strain, And something whispers my despair, That, from an orient chamber there,
Floats down, “We meet again !
Yes, faith is a goodly anchor ;
When skies are sweet as a psalm,
At the bows it lolls so stalwart,
In bluff, broad-shouldered calm.
And when over breakers to leeward
The tattered surges are hurled,
It may keep our head to the tempest,
With its grip on the base of the world
But, after the shipwreck, tell me
What help in its iron thews,
Still true to the broken hawser,
Deep down among sea-weed and ooze?
In the breaking gulfs of sorrow,
When the helpless feet stretch out
And find in the deeps of darkness
No footing so solid as doubt,
Then better one spar of Memory
One broken plank of the Past,
That our human heart may cling to,
Though hopeless of shore at last !
To the spirit its splendid conjectures,
To the flesh its sweet despair,
Its tears o'er the thin-worn locket
With its anguish of deathless hair !
Immortal? I feel it and know it,
Who doubts it of such as she ?
But that is the pang's very secret, —
Immortal away from me.
There's a narrow ridge in the graveyard
Would scarce stay a child in his race,
But to me and my thought it is wider
Than the star-sown vague of Space.
Your logic, my friend, is perfect,
Your morals most drearily true;
But, since the earth clashed on her coffin,
I keep hearing that, and not you.
Console if you will, I can bear it ;
'Tis a well-meant alms of breath;
But not all the preaching since Adam
Has made Death other than Death,
It is pagan; but wait till you feel it, -
That jar of our earth, that dull shock
When the ploughshare of deeper passion
Tears down to our primitive rock.
Communion in spirit! Forgive me,
But 1, who am earthly and weak,
Would give all my incomes from dreamland
For a touch of her hand on my cheek.
That little shoe in the corner,
So worn and wrinkled and brown,
With its emptiness confutes you,
And argues your wisdom down.
THE DEAD HOUSE.
Here once my step was quickened,
Here beckoned the opening door,
And welcome thrilled from the threshold
To the foot it had known before.
A glow came forth to meet me
From the flame that laughed in the grate, And shadows adance on the ceiling,
Danced blither with mine for a mate. “I claim you, old friend,” yawned the arm-chair,
“This corner, you know, is your seat ;" “Rest your slippers on me," beamed the fender,
“I brighten at touch of your feet.' • We know the practised finger,
Said the books, " that seems like brain ;" And the shy page rustled the secret
It had kept till I came again.
Sang the pillow, “My down once quivered
On nightingales' throats that flew Through moonlit gardens of Hafiz
To gather quaint dreams for you.” Ah me, where the Past sowed heart's-ease,
The Present plucks rue for us men! I come back : that scar unhealing
Was not in the churchyard then.
But, I think, the house is unaltered,
I will go and beg to look
At the rooms that were once familiar
To my life as its bed to a brook.
Unaltered! Alas for the sameness
That makes the change but more ! 'Tis a dead man I see in the mirrors,
'Tis his tread that chills the floor! To learn such a simple lesson,
Need I go to Paris and Rome, That the many make the household,
But only one the home?
'Twas just a womanly presence,
An influence unexprest,
But a rose she had worn, on my grave-sod
Were more than long lise with the rest ! 'Twas a smile, 'twas a garment's rustle,
'Twas nothing that I can phrase, But the whole dumb dwelling grew conscious,
And put on her looks and ways.
Were it mine I would close the shutters,
Like lids when the life is fled,
And the funeral fire should wind it,
This corpse of a home that is dead. For it died that autumn morning
When she, its soul, was borne To lie all dark on the hillside
That looks over woodland and corn.
PINE in the distance,
Patient through sun and 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 seer !”
But loftier, hopefuller, bolder,
Wins broader horizons each year.
To me 'tis not cheer thou art singing :
There's a sound of the sea,
O mournful tree,
In thy boughs for ever clinging,
And the far-off roar
Of waves on the shore
A shattered vessel flinging.
As thou musest still of the ocean
On which thou must float at last,
And seem'st to foreknow
The shipwreck's woe
And the sailor wrenched from the broken mast,
Do I, in this vague emotion,
This sadness that will not pass,
Though the air throbs with wings,
And the field laughs and sings,
Do I forbode, alas !
The ship-building longer and wearier,
The voyage's struggle and strise,
And then the darker and drearier
Wreck of a broken life?
BIORN'S BECKONERS. Now Biörn, the son of Heriulf, had ill days Because the heart within him seethed with blood