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SONG FROM PIPPA PASSES.'
GIVE her but a least excuse to love me !
If fortune fixed her as my lady there,
(“ Hist!"—said Kate the queen ; But “Oh,” cried the maiden, binding her tresses,
“'T is only a page that carols unseen, “ Crumbling your hounds their messes !”)
Is she wronged ?—To the rescue of her honour,
My heart !
Merely an earth to cleave, a sea to part.
(“Nay, list !”—bade Kate the queen ;
“”T is only a page that carols unseen,
She should never have looked at me if she meant I
should not love her! There are plenty . . men, you call such, I suppose
she may discover All her soul to, if she pleases, and yet leave much as she
found them : But I 'm not so, and she knew it when she fixed me,
glancing round them.
What? To fix me thus meant nothing? But I can't tell
(there's my weakness) What her look said :—no vile cant, sure, about "need
to strew the bleakness “Of some lone shore with its pearl-seed, that the sea
feels”-no “strange yearning “That such souls have, most to lavish where there 's
chance of least returning."
III Oh, we ’re sunk enough here, God knows ! but not quite
so sunk that moments, Sure tho' seldom, are denied us, when the spirit's true
endowments Stand out plainly from its false ones, and apprise it if
pursuing Or the right way or the wrong way, to its triumph or
There are flashes struck from midnights, there are fire
flames noondays kindle, Whereby piled-up honours perish, whereby swollen
ambitions dwindle, While just this or that poor impulse, which for once had
play unstified, Seems the sole work of a life-time that away the rest have
Doubt you if, in some such moment, as she fixed me, she
felt clearly, Ages past the soul existed, here an age 't is resting
And hence fleets again for ages : while the true end, sole
and single, It stops here for is, this love-way, with some other soul
Else it loses what it lived for, and eternally must lose it ;
Doubt you whether
Oh, observe ! Of course, next moment, the world's
honours, in derision, Trampled out the light for ever. Never fear but there 's
provision Of the devil's to quench knowledge, lest we walk the
earth in rapture ! - Making those who catch God's secret, just so much
more prize their capture !
Such am I : the secret 's mine now! She has lost me, I
have gained her ; Her soul 's mine : and thus, grown perfect, I shall pass
my life's remainder. Life will just hold out the proving both our powers,
alone and blended : And then, come next life quickly! This world's use will
have been ended.
AIX IN PROVENCE.
CHRIST God who savest man, save most
Of men Count Gismond who saved me!
Chose time and place and company
And doubtlessly, ere he could draw
All points to one, he must have schemed ! That miserable morning saw
Few half so happy as I seemed, While being dressed in queen's array To give our tourney prize away.
I thought they loved me, did me grace
To please themselves ; 't was all their deed God makes, or fair or foul, our face;
If showing mine so caused to bleed My cousins' hearts, they should have dropped A word, and straight the play had stopped.
They, too, so beauteous! Each a queen
By virtue of her brow and breast;
As I do. E'en when I was dressed,
But no : they let me laugh, and sing
My birthday song quite through, adjust The last rose in my garland, fling
A last look on the mirror, trust My arms to each an arm of theirs, And so descend the castle-stairs
And come out on the morning troop
Of merry friends who kissed my cheek,
Under the canopy-(a streak
And they could let me take my state
And foolish throne amid applause Of all come there to celebrate
My queen’s-day-Oh I think the cause Of much was, they forgot no crowd Makes up for parents in their shroud !
However that be, all eyes were bent
Upon me, when my cousins cast
The victor's crown, but ... there, 't will last
See! Gismond is at the gate, in talk
With his two boys : I can proceed.