Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

JAMES RUSSELL LOWELL.

BORN: CAMBRIDGE, MASS., FEB. 22, 1819. This poet, essayist and critic graduated at Harvard, and for more than twenty years was professor of belles-lettres in that coilege. In 1877 he was appointed minister of Spain, and

LONGING.
Of all the myriad moods of mind

That through the soul come thronging, What one was e'er so dear, so kind,

So beautiful, as Longing?
The thing we long for, that we are

For one transcendent moment,
Before the present, poor and bare,

Can make its sneering comment.
Still through our paltry stir and strife

Glow down the wished ideal,
And Longing molds in clay what Life

Carves in the marble real.
To let the new life in, we know,

Desire must ope the portal;
Perhaps the Longing to be so
Helps make the soul immortal.

[graphic]

EXTRACTS. Earth's noblest thing, a woman perfected.

Be noble, and the nobleness that lies
In other men, sleeping, but never dead,
Will rise in majesty to meet thine own.

New occasions teach new duties; time makes

ancient good uncouth; They must upward still and onward who would

keep abreast of truth.

But better far it is to speak

One simple word which now and then Shall waken their free nature in the weak

And friendless sons of men.

JAMES RUSSELL LOWELL. three years later he was transferred to the English court.

Mr. Lowell's best poems are: The Present Crisis, Sir Launfal, A Glance Behind the Curtain, under the Willows, A Fable of Critics, Commemoration Ode, Longing and The Changeling. His chief pruse works are: Among My Books, and My Study Windows.

The busy world shoves angrily aside
The man who stands with arms akimbo set
Until occasion tell him what to do,
And he who waits to have his task marked out
Shall die and leave his errand unfulfilled.

ALADDIN.

No man is born into the world whose work
Is not born with him; there is always work
And tools to work withal, for those who will,
And blessed are the horny hands of toil.

Get but the truth once uttered, and 'tis like A star new-born that drops into its place, And which, once circling in its placid round Not all the tumult of the earth can shake.

When I was a beggarly boy,

And lived in a cellar damp, I had not a friend nor a toy,

But I had Aladdin's lamp; When I could not sleep for cold,

I had fire enough in my brain,
And builded, with roofs of gold,

My beautiful castles in Spain!
Since then I have toiled day and night,

I have money and power good store, But I'd give all my lamps of silver bright,

For the one that is mine no more; Take, Fortune, whatever you choose.

You gave, and may snatch again; I have nothing 'twould pain me to lose,

For I own no more castles in Spain!

And I honor the man who is willing to sink Half his present repute for the freedom to

think, And when he has thought, be his cause strong

or weak, Will risk t'other half for the freedom to speak, Caring naught for what vengeance the mob

has in store, Let that mob be the upper ten thousand or

lower.

Life is a leaf of paper white

Climbs to a soul in grass and flowers;
Whereon each one of us may write

The flush of life may well be seen
His word or two, and then comes night; Thrilling back over hills and valleys;
Greatly begin! Though thou hast time The cowslip startles in meadows green,
But for a line, be that sublime!

The buttercup catches the sun in its chalice; Not failure, but low aim, is crime.

And there's never a leaf nor a blade too mean

To be some happy creature's palace.

The little bird sits at his door in the sun, THE VISION OF SIR LAUNFAL.

Atilt like a blossom among the leaves, NOTE.— The following extract is the prelude

And lets his illumined being o'errun to Part First of The Vision of Sir Launfal, one

With the deluge of summer it receives; of the bost of Lowell's efforts as a poet. The

His mate feels the eggs beneath her wings, poem appcared in 1848, and it has done much

And the heart in her dumb breast flutters and to establish the reputation of its author as

sings; one of the most scholarly of American poets.

He sings to the wide world, and she to her

nest, Over his keys the musing organist,

In the nice ear of Nature which song is the best? Beginning doubtfully and far away, First lets his fingers wander as they list,

Now is the high tide of the year, And builds a bridge from Dreamland for his And whatever of life hath ebbed away lay.

Comes flooding back with a ripply cheer, Then, as the touch of his loved instrument Into every bare inlet and creek and bay: Gives hope and fervor, nearer draws his Now the heart is so full that a drop overfills it, theme,

We are happy now because God wills it; First guessed by faint auroral flushed sent No matter how barren the past may have been, Along the wavering vista of his dream. "Tis enough for us now that the leaves are |

green. Not only around our infancy

We sit in the warm shade and feel right well Doth heaven with all its splendors lie.

How the sap creeps up and the blossoms swell, Daily, with souls that cringe and plot,

We may shut our eyes, but we cannot help We Sinais climb, and know it not.

knowing Over our manhood bend the skies;

That skies are clear and grass is growing. Against our fallen and traitor lives The great winds utter prophecies;

The breeze comes whispering in our ear With our faint hearts the mountain strives; That dandelions are blossoming near, Its arms outstretched, the druid wood

That maize has sprouted, that streams are Waits with its benedicite;

flowing, And to our age's drowsy blood

That the river is bluer than the sky, Still shouts the inspiring sea.

That the robin is plastering his house hard by:

And if the breeze kept the good news back, Earth gets its price for what earth gives us:

For other couriers we should not lack; The beggar is taxed for a corner to die in,

We could guess it all by yon beifer's lowing; The priest hath his fee who comes and shrives

And hark! how clear bold Chanticleer, us,

Warmed with the new wine of the year, We bargain for the graves we lie in;

Tells all in his lusty crowing! At the devil's booth are all things sold, Each ounce of dross cost its ounce of gold: Joy comes, grief goes, we know not how; For a cap and bells our lives we pay;

Everything is happy now, Bubbles we buy with a whole soul's tasking; Everything is upward striving; 'Tis heaven alone that is given away,

'Tis as easy now for the heart to be true 'Tis only God may be had for the asking. As for grass to be green or skies to be blueNo price is set on the lavish summer;

'Tis the natural way of living. June may be had by the poorest comer,

Who knows whither the clouds have fled? And what is so rare as a day in June?

In the unscarred heaven they leave no wake; Then, if ever, come perfect days;

And the eyes forget the tears they have shed, Then heaven tries the earth if it be in tune, The heart forgets its sorrow and ache; And over it softly her warm ear lays;

The soul partakes the season's youth, Whether we look or whether we listen,

And the sulphurous rifts of passion and woe We hear life murmur or see it glisten;

Lie deep 'neath a silence pure and smooth, Every clod feels a stir of might,

Like burned-out craters healed with snow. An instinct within it that reaches and towers, What wonder if Sir Launfal now And, groping blindly above it for light

Remembered the keeping of his vow?

MRS. MARIA B. LINDESAY.

BORN IN ENGLAND, JAN. 1, 1862. MRS. LIXDESAY is known more as a Christian poet, and her poems have appeared in the

She spoke, as though of holy things,
.. 'Tis some good angel, - without wings.”
He turned him to his work again
With more of pleasure than of pain,
And labored on, with hopes and fears,
For seven more long weary years;
And feeling he had done his best,
He once again applied the test.
The child he called unto him now,
Looked on it once with thoughtful brow,
And worshiping with reverent face
The beauty of its wondrous grace,
Bent all abashed, her infant head,
And, .. It is Jesus Christ," she said.

[graphic]

CHRIST'S HUMANITY. 0! Babe upon thy mother's breast, In our weak garb of suffering drest, So lowly, yet so wondrous nigh That angels might not pass thee by, And wise men came from distant lands, With kingly offerings in their hands; What dreams prophetic, strange and old Thy heritage and work foretold! 0! Child within the temple's court, Where priest and prophet wisdom sought, And thy young lips first ope' to tell, The message that they knew so well; O! Man upon the upward way Beneath the heat and toil of day, With weary feet and tender frame, Yet ever, always, just the same: Mighty to heal, lowly and mild, Yet grand in justice, undefiled, And blending with a god-like love Thy life work with Thy place above! O! Savior at the awful close, Forsook by friends, beset by foes Before the vengeful bar arraign'd With brow and garments crimson-stained, Amidst the mob, whose only cry, In thirsty voice was, Crucify!'

MRS. MARIA B. LINDESAY Chicago Living Church and other prominent periodicals. She now resides with her husband in Asheville, N. C.

THE SCULPTOR'S TEST. Within his studio, one bright day, A massive block of marble lay, So wondrous pure, so spotless white It seemed to fill the room with light, And woo his genius to dare And try to form a Being there. Spurr'd by the one inspiring thought, From day to day he patient wrought, From week to week, from year to year Till fourteen of them pictured there, And be all doubt if 'twas his best, And trembling much, applied the test. He called a child, a little child All innocent and undefiled, And pointing to the figure there, In its pure beauty grand and fair, He bade her mark it long and well, And who she thought it was to tell. He watched her with a beating heart, Nor could he check a fearsome start, When the bright eyes had wandered o'er His work, and viewed it yet once more,

LIFE. How beautiful is Life! When the first streak

Touches the sunrise hills, of dawning And all the glint and glow of early morning

The wide east fills.
How beautiful is life! At noontide's hour

When, glowing like the sun,
Man's widening pathway lit with wondrous

Is mapped and run. (power, How beautiful is life! When eventide

Steals softly on,
And sunset's gates are flining open wide

Till day is done.
How beautiful is life! When mystic night

Disrobes her starry breast, Gleaming with other world's far distant light,

And man must rest.

AMARALA MARTIN. BORN: NEW CALEDONIA, ILL., MAY 2, 1837. MRS. MARTIN has had an active pen in various reforms, including the suffrage question among many others. Her husband died in 1887, leaving her in good circumstances Her writings have appeared in the leading period

My loved one and I, but a few years ago,
Built a home-nest with rivers and blossoms

aglow,
And time, like a sunbeam, came in through

our door, And left in his blessings, our sweet nestlings,

four, But, when we were happy as happy could be, Death, reaching his hand for our darlings,

stole three, The fourth spread her wings and flew off with

her mate, And the home-nest's deserted and desolate. 0, poor, parent-birdies! you've no song to

sing,
Since your brood rest not 'neath the soft

mother-wing;
And you daily wait for their chirping and song
As the voiceless summer-time passes along,
So wait we for footsteps we never more hear,
Since none of our tender young fledgelings

are near-
Too close to the earth have our best treasures

lain, Let us build higher up if we build again!

[graphic]

MYRTLE MOORE. 0, darling, innocent baby-girl! Your rose-flushen cheeks and your brow of

pearl, And your lips with musical words apart Make a captive of my womanly heart. 'Though I was a stranger you beckoned me,

And showered your kisses most trustingly; AMARALA MARTIN.

And I almost thought your earnest eyes, icals of America. She has written two books,

Read the sorrowful thoughts I'd fain disguise. which have received quite a wide circulation. You so reminded me, Myrtle Moore, Mrs. Martin's best poems are yet unpublish Of my own fair darling whose gone before," ed; one of which is a story of some length.

That I feared to see you shrink and start, In person she is a little below medium height,

From the sudden pain of my mother-heart. with brown hair and eyes, and now lives with her family in Cairo, Ill.

My little one's prattlings were like your own,
And my soul lists yet for their loving tone;

'Though on the white slab of a household joy, THE DESERTED NEST.

Is carved -- .. Mamma's baby and papa's boy." In the dewy woodbine all fragrant with sweet, The rose-bud kisses you gave to me, Two little wrens made a nest, dainty and I will keep all fresh in my memory; neat;

But hide yourself from my longing eyes, And songs of delight did they joyfully sing Lest, hopeless, I covet so sweet a prize. When four birdies peeped from the mother

Oh! cling to your parents, Myrtle Moore, wren's wing.

Nor cast one glance towards Heaven's door; But, when they were happy as happy could be,

Lest the angels know you are one of them, A child reached their birdlings and took of

And add to their jewels another gem. them, three, The fourth made a wee, pretty home of her May your heart be ever as pure as now, own,

And time ne'er shadow your cloudless brow; And the nest in the vine swings empty and May Heaven upon you its blessings pour, lone.

| Beautiful, dove-eyed Myrtle Moore!

MILLIE E. NOECKER. BORN: KENDALLVILLE, IND., SEPT. 14, 1862. Niss NOECKER has written for some of the leading periodicals for the past ten years; among wbich might be mentioned the Metholist Advocate, Fort Wayne News and the

You will try to ease your conscience,

And to lull your Soul to sleep.
But too late," will be your answer,

You refused their last request,
But to make amends to conscience,

You will then forgive in death. What is love, when life is ended?

What's forgiveness in death! Arms that clasped thee once are folded,

Lips of smiles for e'er bereft!

[graphic]

FORGOTTEN.
Oh! how soon we are forgotten,

In this busy world of ours,
If our paths were only strewn,

Not with thorns, but sweetest flowers. All our life long, we'd be happy,

We would never more be sad, Scores of friends would then surround us,

Friends by thousands we would have. But when thorns thus sorely wound us;

And the pains thus pierce our hearts,
Quickly those proclaiming friendship,

Hasten from us to depart.
Oft we see the truest friendship,

Fade like dewdrops from our view,
For alas! this world soon wearies

Of the old friends, and wants new. But how sweet in deepest sorrow,

Is a tried, true, loyal friend; Tho' the world would scorn, condemn us, Faithful they'd be to the end.

MILLIE E. NOECKER. Brakeman's Journal. In person she is a iittle below the medium height. Millie is a great admirer of poetry, and takes great pleasure in ber literary work.

FORGIVE.
We hear them saying, here and there,

I can ne'er forgive a wrong!
Think well each one, before you speak,

Does all blame on one belong!
You think a sin you can't forgive!

Who is free from every sin? | The day will come, when you think not,

Then you'll say, “ what might have been." | And when beside your bed you kneel,

Asking Jesus to forgive,
Do you expect his tender love,

When a wrong you'd not forgive?
Loving bearts oft drift asunder,

By these words, . I'll not forgive,"
When by loving words and reason,

You in sweetest joy might live.
Soon beside the unforgiven
You will stand in deepest grief,

A LEAP IN THE DARK. A leap in the dark, oh! what's beyond,

The matrimonial brink?
Will the paths to tread be rocks of love!

Or sands in which to sink?
Will there be a sun of Love to shine,

Along life's weary way!
Or the Sun of Love, forever set,

On our wedding day?
Ah! who can see o'er the brink of time

And tell us, what is there?
It may be joy, or it may be pain,

Be comfort or despair!
If a Bride was sure her Lover would

Crown her queen of his heart,
She'd gladly place her hand in his, and

Take the leap in the dark.

Tho' you try, you can't forget me,

Strive as hard as e'er you might, For remember after twilight

Comes the dark'ning of the night; Yes, a night so dark and dreary,

E'en the stars cannot shine through; Then with mingled joy and sorrow,

You'll think of her who loved you true.

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »