« PreviousContinue »
ELIZABETH BARRETT BROWNING.
“Ah you, you care for rhymes;
I've been told
FROM QUEENS' GARDENS.
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.
From out the hallelujahs, sweet and low,
Who art not missed by any that entreat.
Living Beloveds, tender looks to bring,
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.
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,