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“That germ of kindness in the womb
Of mercy caught, did not expire: Outlives my guilt, outlives
my doom, And friends me in the pit of fire.
“Once every year, when carols wake
On earth the Christmas night's repose, Arising from the sinners' lake,
I journey to these healing snows. “I stanch with ice my burning breast,
With silence balm my whirling brain. O Brandan! to this hour of rest
That Joppan leper's ease was pain.” Tears started to Saint Brandan's eyes;
He bowed his head, he breathed a prayer Then looked, and lo, the frosty skies !
The iceberg, and no Judas there !
SONNET: ON FIRST LOOKING INTO
Much have I travelled in the realms of gold,
Yet did I never breathe its pure serene
PERCY BYSSHE SHELLEY.
HERE pause : these graves are all too young as yet
To have outgrown the sorrow which consigned Its charge to each ; and if the seal is set,
Here, on one fountain of a mourning mind,
Break it not thou! too surely shalt thou find Thine own well full, if thou returnest home,
Of tears and gall. From the world's bitter wind Seek shelter in the shadow of the tomb. What Adonais is, why fear we to become ?
The One remains, the many change and pass ;
Heaven's light forever shines, Earth's shadows fly; Life, like a dome of many-colored glass,
Stains the white radiance of Eternity,
Until Death tramples it to fragments. — Die, If thou wouldst be with that which thou dost seek!
Follow where all is fled ! — Rome's azure sky,
Flowers, ruins, statues, music, words are weak
Thy hopes are gone before : from all things here They have departed; thou shouldst now depart !
A light is past from the revolving year,
And man, and woman; and what still is dear Attracts to crush, repels to make thee wither.
The soft sky smiles, — the low wind whispers near: 'Tis Adonais calls ! oh, hasten thither, No more let Life divide what Death can join together.
That light whose smile kindles the Universe,
That Beauty in which all things work and move, That Benediction which the eclipsing Curse
Of birth can quench not, that sustaining Love
Which through the web of being blindly wove
Burns bright or dim, as each are mirrors of
Descends on me; my spirit's bark is driven
Whose sails were never to the tempest given ;
The massy earth and spherèd skies are riven! I am borne darkly, fearfully afar;
Whilst burning through the inmost veil of Heaven, The soul of Adonais, like a star, Beacons from the abode where the Eternal are.
WHEN maidens such as Hester die,
With vain endeavor.
A month or more hath she been dead,
And her together.
A springy motion in her gait,
That flushed her spirit;
She did inherit.
Her parents held the Quaker rule
Nature had blessed her.
A waking eye, a prying mind,
Ye could not Hester.
My sprightly neighbor gone before
Some summer morning,
When from thy cheerful eyes, a ray
A sweet forewarning?
in sun and shower ; Then Nature said, “ A lovelier flower
On earth was never sown;
A lady of my own.
“Myself will to my darling be
The girl, in rock and plain,
To kindle or restrain.
“ The floating clouds their state shall lend To her; for her the willow bend:
Nor shall she fail to see,