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ELIZABETH BARRETT BROWNING.

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Ah you, you care for rhymes;
So here be rhymes to pore on

I've been told
These are not idle, as so many are,
But set hearts beating pure as well as fast.

FROM QUEENS' GARDENS.

WORK.

WHAT

AT are we set on earth for? Say, to toil

Nor seek to leave thy tending of the vines, For all the heat o' the day, till it declines, And Death's mild curfew shall from work assoil. God did anoint thee with His odorous oil, To wrestle, not to reign; and He assigns All thy tears over, like pure crystallines, For younger fellow-workers of the soil To wear for amulets. So others shall Take patience, labor, to their heart and hand, From thy hand, and thy heart, and thy brave cheer, And God's grace fructify through thee to all. The least flower, with a brimming cup, may stand And share its dew-drop with another near.

COMFORT.

SPEAH
PEAK low to me, my Saviour, low and sweet

From out the hallelujahs, sweet and low,
Lest I should fear and fall, and miss Thee so

Who art not missed by any that entreat.
Speak to me as to Mary at Thy feet;
And if no precious gums my hands bestow,
Let my tears drop like amber, while I go
In search of Thy divinest Voice complete
In humanest affection — thus, in sooth,
To lose the sense of losing! As a child,
Whose song-bird seeks the wood for evermore,
Is sung to in its stead by Mother's mouth;
Till, sinking on her breast, love-reconciled,
He sleeps the faster that he wept before.

CONSOLATION.

A
LL are not taken ! there are left behind

Living Beloveds, tender looks to bring,
And make the daylight still a happy thing,
And tender voices, to make soft the wind.
But if it were not so, if I could find
No love in all the world for comforting,
Nor any path but hollowly did ring,
Where “dust to dust” the love from life disjoined —
And if before those sepulchres unmoving
I stood alone (as some forsaken lamb
Goes bleating up the moors in weary dearth),
Crying, “Where are ye, O my loved and loving?”.
I know a Voice would sound,“ Daughter, I AM.
Can I suffice for Heaven, and not for earth ? "

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TEARS.

13

IRREPARABLENESS.

HAVE been in the meadows all the day,

And gathered there the nosegay that you see; Singing within myself as bird or bee, When such do field-work on a morn of May: But now I look upon my flowers, decay Hath met them in my hands, more fatally Because more warmly clasped; and sobs are free To come instead of songs. What do you say, Sweet counsellors, dear friends ? — that I should go Back straightway to the fields, and gather more? Another, sooth, may do it, – but not I: My heart is very tired, my strength is low; My hands are full of blossoms plucked before, Held dead within them till myself shall die.

TEARS.

THANK God, bless God, all ye who suffer not

More grief than ye can weep for. That is wellThat is light grieving ! lighter, none befell, Since Adam forfeited the primal lot. Tears ! what are tears? The babe weeps in its cot, The mother singing; at her marriage-bell, The bride weeps; and before the oracle Of high-faned hills, the poet hath forgot That moisture on his cheeks. Thank God for grace, Whoever weeps : albeit, as some have done,

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