Tag Archives: old

A precious — mouldering pleasure — ’tis –

A precious -- mouldering pleasure -- 'tis --A precious — mouldering pleasure — ’tis –
To meet an Antique Book –
In just the Dress his Century wore –
A privilege — I think –

His venerable Hand to take –
And warming in our own –
A passage back — or two — to make –
To Times when he — was young –

His quaint opinions — to inspect –
His thought to ascertain
On Themes concern our mutual mind –
The Literature of Man –

What interested Scholars — most –
What Competitions ran –
When Plato — was a Certainty –
And Sophocles — a Man –

When Sappho — was a living Girl –
And Beatrice wore
The Gown that Dante — deified –
Facts Centuries before

He traverses — familiar –
As One should come to Town –
And tell you all your Dreams — were true –
He lived — where Dreams were born –

His presence is Enchantment –
You beg him not to go –
Old Volume shake their Vellum Heads
And tantalize — just so –

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I felt my life with both my hands

I felt my life with both my handsI felt my life with both my hands
To see if it was there –
I held my spirit to the Glass,
To prove it possibler –

I turned my Being round and round
And paused at every pound
To ask the Owner’s name –
For doubt, that I should know the Sound –

I judged my features — jarred my hair –
I pushed my dimples by, and waited –
If they — twinkled back –
Conviction might, of me –

I told myself, “Take Courage, Friend –
That — was a former time –
But we might learn to like the Heaven,
As well as our Old Home!”

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Not probable — The barest Chance –

Not probable -- The barest Chance --When Night is almost done –
And Sunrise grows so near
That we can touch the Spaces –
It’s time to smooth the Hair –

And get the Dimples ready –
And wonder we could care
For that old — faded Midnight –
That frightened — but an Hour –

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‘Twas the old — road — through pain –

'Twas the old -- road -- through pain --‘Twas the old — road — through pain –
That unfrequented — one –
With many a turn — and thorn –
That stops — at Heaven –

This — was the Town — she passed –
There — where she — rested — last –
Then — stepped more fast –
The little tracks — close prest –
Then — not so swift –
Slow — slow — as feet did weary — grow –
Then — stopped — no other track!

Wait! Look! Her little Book –
The leaf — at love — turned back –
Her very Hat –
And this worn shoe just fits the track –
Herself — though — fled!

Another bed — a short one –
Women make — tonight –
In Chambers bright –
Too out of sight — though –
For our hoarse Good Night –
To touch her Head!

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Of all the Sounds despatched abroad

Of all the Sounds despatched abroadOf all the Sounds despatched abroad,
There’s not a Charge to me
Like that old measure in the Boughs –
That phraseless Melody –
The Wind does — working like a Hand,
Whose fingers Comb the Sky –
Then quiver down — with tufts of Tune –
Permitted Gods, and me –

Inheritance, it is, to us –
Beyond the Art to Earn –
Beyond the trait to take away
By Robber, since the Gain
Is gotten not of fingers –
And inner than the Bone –
Hid golden, for the whole of Days,
And even in the Urn,
I cannot vouch the merry Dust
Do not arise and play
In some odd fashion of its own,
Some quainter Holiday,
When Winds go round and round in Bands –
And thrum upon the door,
And Birds take places, overhead,
To bear them Orchestra.

I crave Him grace of Summer Boughs,
If such an Outcast be –
Who never heard that fleshless Chant –
Rise — solemn — on the Tree,
As if some Caravan of Sound
Off Deserts, in the Sky,
Had parted Rank,
Then knit, and swept –
In Seamless Company –

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I should have been too glad, I see –

I should have been too glad, I see --I should have been too glad, I see –
Too lifted — for the scant degree
Of Life’s penurious Round –
My little Circuit would have shamed
This new Circumference — have blamed –
The homelier time behind.

I should have been too saved — I see –
Too rescued — Fear too dim to me
That I could spell the Prayer
I knew so perfect — yesterday –
That Scalding One — Sabachthani –
Recited fluent — here –

Earth would have been too much — I see –
And Heaven — not enough for me –
I should have had the Joy
Without the Fear — to justify –
The Palm — without the Calvary –
So Savior — Crucify –
Defeat — whets Victory — they say –
The Reefs — in old Gethsemane –
Endear the Coast — beyond!
‘Tis Beggars — Banquets — can define –
‘Tis Parching — vitalizes Wine –
“Faith” bleats — to understand!

Like Some Old fashioned Miracle

Like Some Old fashioned MiracleLike Some Old fashioned Miracle
When Summertime is done –
Seems Summer’s Recollection
And the Affairs of June

As infinite Tradition
As Cinderella’s Bays –
Or Little John — of Lincoln Green –
Or Blue Beard’s Galleries –

Her Bees have a fictitious Hum –
Her Blossoms, like a Dream –
Elate us — till we almost weep –
So plausible — they seem –

Her Memories like Strains — Review –
When Orchestra is dumb –
The Violin in Baize replaced –
And Ear — and Heaven — numb –