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God help you, sailors, at your need !

Spare the curse !
For some ships, safe in port indeed,

Rot and rust,

Run to dust,
All through worms i' the wood, which crept,
Gnawed our hearts out while we slept :

That is worse!

Who lived here before us two ?

Old-world pairs !
Did a woman ever — would I knew!-

Watch the man

With whom began Love's voyage full-sail, — (now, gnash your teeth!) When planks start, open hell beneath

Unawares ?




The swallow has set her six young on the rail,

And looks sea-ward :
The water is in stripes like a snake, olive-pale

To the leeward, —
On the weather-side, black, spotted white with the wind :
“ Good fortune departs, and disaster 's behind,” —
Hark, the wind with its wants and its infinite wail !

Our fig-tree, that leaned for the saltness, has furled

Her five fingers,
Each leaf like a hand opened wide to the world

Where there lingers
No glint of the gold, Summer sent for her sake: -
How the vines writhe in rows, each impaled on its

stake! My heart shrivels up, and my spirit shrinks curled.

Yet here are we two; we have love, house enough,

With the field there,
This house of four rooms, that field red and rough,

Though it yield there,
For the rabbit that robs, scarce a blade or a bent ;
If a magpie alight now, it seems an event ;
And they both will be gone at November's rebuff.

But why must cold spread ? but wherefore bring change

To the spirit,
God meant should mate His with an infinite range,

And inherit
His power to put life in the darkness and cold?
Oh, live and love worthily, bear and be bold !
Whom Summer made friends of, let Winter estrange!



I WILL be quiet and talk with you,

And reason why you are wrong:
You wanted my love — is that much true ?
And so I did love, so I do:

What has come of it all along ?

I took you — how could I otherwise ?

For a world to me, and more ;
For all, love greatens and glorifies
Till God's a-glow, to the loving eyes,

In what was mere earth before.

3. Yes, earth, — yes, mere ignoble earth!

Now do I mis-state, mistake? Do I wrong your weakness and call it worth? Expect all harvest, dread no dearth,

Seal my sense up for your sake?

Oh, love, love, no, love ! not so, indeed !

You were just weak earth, I knew :
With much in you waste, with many a weed,
And plenty of passions run to seed,

But a little good grain too.


And such as you were, I took you for mine:

Did not you find me yours,
To watch the olive and wait the vine,
And wonder when rivers of oil and wine

Would flow, as the Pook assures ?

6. Well, and if none of these good things came,

What did the failure prove ? The man was my whole world, all the same, With his flowers to praise, or his weeds to blame,

And, either or both, to love.

Yet this turns now to a fault — there ! there !

That I do love, watch too long,
And wait too well, and weary and wear;
And 't is all an old story, and my despair

Fit subject for some new song :

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