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LONGFELLOW'S POEMS.

VOICES OF THE NIGHT.

Πότνια, πότνια νυξ,
υπνοδότειρα των πολυπόνων βροτών,

,
έρεβόθεν ίθι μόλε μόλε κατάπτερος
'Αγαμεμνόνιον έπι δόμον
υπό γάρ αλγέων, υπό τε συμφοράς

διοιχόμεθ', οίχόμεθα.-EURIPIDES.
PRELUDE.

Dreams that the soul of youth engage PLEASANT it was, when woods were

Ere Fancy has been quell'd;

Old legends of the monkish page,
green,

Traditions of the saint and sage,
And winds were soft and low,
To lie amid some sylvan scene,

Tales that have the rime of age,

And chronicles of Eld. Where, the long drooping boughs between,

And, loving still these quaint old themes, Shadows dark and sunlight sheen

Even in the city's throng Alternate come and go;

I feel the freshness of the streams,

That, crossed by shades and sunny Or where the denser grove receives

gleams, No sunlight from above,

Water the green land of dreams,
But the dark foliage interweaves

The holy land of song.
In one unbroken roof of leaves,
Underneath whose sloping eaves

Therefore, at Pentecost, which brings The shadows hardly move.

The spring, clothed like a bride,

When nestling buds unfold their wings, Beneath some patriarchal tree

And bishop's-caps have golden rings, I lay upon the ground;

Musing upon many things,
His hoary arms uplifted he,
And all the broad leaves over me

I sought the woodlands wide.
Clapped their little hands in glee,

The

green trees whispered low and mild ; With one continuous sound;

It was a sound of joy! A slumberous sound, -a sound that They were my playmates when a child

And rocked me in their arms so wild ! brings The feelings of a dream,

Still they looked at me and smiled,

As if I were a boy;
As of innumerable wings,
As, when a bell no longer swings, And ever whispered, mild and low,
Faint the hollow murmur rings

'Come, be a child once more !” O'er meadow, lake, and stream. And waved their long arms to and fro, And dreams of that which cannot die,

And beckoned solemnly and slow;
Oh, I could not choose but

go Bright visions, came to me,

Into the woodlands hoar;
As lapped in thought I used to lie,
And gaze into the summer sky,

Into the blithe and breathing air,
Where the sailing clouds went by,

Into the solemn wood, Like ships upon the sea;

Solemn and silent everywhere!

B

All solemn Voices of the Night, That can soothe thee, or affright,

Be these henceforth thy theme.”

Nature with folded hands seemed there, Kneeling at her evening prayer !

Like one in prayer I stood. Before me rose an avenue

Of tall and sombrous pines;
Abroad their fan-like branches grew,
And, where the sunshine darted through,
Spread a vapour soft and blue,

In long and sloping lines.
And, falling on my weary brain,

Like a fast-falling shower,
The dreams of youth came back again,
Low lispings of the summer rain,
Dropping on the ripened grain,

As once upon the flower.
Visions of childhood! Stay, oh stay!

Ye were so sweet and wild !
And distant voices seemed to say,
“It cannot be! They pass away!
Other themes demand thy lay;

Thou art no more a child !
“The land of Song within thee lies,

Watered by living springs; The lids of Fancy's

sleepless eyes Are gates unto that Paradise, Holy thoughts, like stars, arise,

Its clouds are angels' wings. “ Learn, that henceforth thy song shall

be,
Not mountains capped with snow,
Nor forests sounding like the sea,
Nor rivers flowing ceaselessly,
Where the woodlands bend to see

The bending heavens below.
“There is a forest where the din

Of iron branches sounds!
A mighty river roars between,
And whosoever looks therein,
Sees the heavens all black with sin,-

Sees not its depths, nor bounds.
Athwart the swinging branches cast,

Soft rays of sunshine pour;
Then comes the fearful wintry blast;
Our hopes, like withered leaves, fall fast;
Pallid lips say, “It is past !

We can return no more!'
Look, then, into thine heart, and

write!
Yes, into Life's deep stream!
All forms of sorrow and delight,

HYMN TO THE NIGHT.

'Ασπασίη, τρίλλιστος. I HEARD the trailing garments of the

Night Sweep through her marble halls! I saw her sable skirts all fringed with

light From the celestial walls ! I felt her presence by its spell of might,

Stoop o'er me from above; The calm, majestic presence of the

Night, As of the one I love. I heard the sounds of sorrow and delight,

The manifold, soft chimes, That fill the haunted chambers of the

Night, Like some old poet's rhymes. From the cool cisterns of the midnight

air My spirit drank repose; The fountain of perpetual peace flows

there, From those deep cisterns flows. O holy Night! from thee I learn to bear

What man has borne before : Thou layst thy finger on the lips of Care,

And they complain no more. Peace! Peace! Orestes-like I breathe

this prayer! Descend with broad-winged flight, The welcome, the thrice-prayed-for, the

most fair,
The best-beloved Night!

A PSALM OF LIFE. WHAT THE HEART OF THE YOUNG

MAN SAID TO THE PSALMIST. Tell me not, in mournful numbers,

“Life is but an empty dream!” For the soul is dead that slumbers,

And things are not what they seem.

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Life is real! Life is earnest!

And the grave is not its goal; Dust thou art, to dust returnest,

Was not spoken of the soul. Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,

Is our destined end or way; But to act, that each to-morrow

Find us farther than to-day. Art is long, and Time is fleeting, And our hearts, though stout and

brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating

Funeral marches to the grave.
In the world's broad field of battle,

In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!

Be a hero in the strife!
Trust no Future, howe'er pleasant !

Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act,-act in the living Present !

Heart within, and God o'erhead! Lives of great men all remind us

We can make our lives sublime, And, departing, leave behind us

Footprints on the sands of time;
Footprints, that perhaps another,

Sailing o'er life's solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,

Seeing, shall take heart again.
Let us, then, be up and doing,

With a heart for any fate; Still achieving, still pursuing,

Learn to labour and to wait.

And earnest thoughts within me rise,

When I behold afar, Suspended in the evening skies,

The shield of that red star. O star of strength! I see thee stand

And smile upon my pain;
Thou beckonest with thy mailèd hand,

And I am strong again.,
Within my breast there is no light,

But the cold light of stars;
I give the first watch of the night

To the red planet Mars.
The star of the unconquered will,

He rises in my breast,
Serene, and resolute, and still,

And calm, and self-possessed. And thou, too, whosoe'er thou art,

That readest this brief psalm,
As one by one thy hopes depart,

Be resolute and calm.
O fear not in a world like this,

And thou shalt know ere long,
Know how sublime a thing it is

To suffer and be strong.

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THE LIGHT OF STARS. The night is come, but not too soon;

And sinking silently,
All silently, the little moon

Drops down behind the sky. There is no light in earth or heaven,

But the cold light of stars; And the first watch of night is given

To the red planet Mars. Is it the tender star of love?

The star of love and dreams? O no! from that blue tent above,

A hero's armour gleams.

THE REAPER AND THE

FLOWERS. THERE is a Reaper, whose name is

Death, And, with his sickle keen, He reaps the bearded grain at a breath, And the flowers that

grow between. Shall I have nought that is fair !”

saith he; “Have nought but the bearded grain? Though the breath of these flowers is

sweet to me, I will give them all back again.” He gazed at the flowers with tearful

eyes, He kissed their drooping leaves; It was for the Lord of Paradise

He bound them in his sheaves. “My Lord has need of these flowerets

gay,”
The Reaper said, and smiled;
Dear tokens of the earth are they,
Where he was once a child.

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They shall all bloom in fields of light, Uttered not, yet comprehended, Transplanted by my care,

Is the spirit's voiceless prayer, i And saints, upon their garments white, Soft rebukes, in blessings ended, These sacred blossoms wear.

Breathing from her lips of air. And the mother gave, in tears and pain, O, though oft depressed and lonely, The flowers she most did love;

All my fears are laid aside,
She knew she should find them all again If I but remember only
In the fields of light above.

Such as these have lived and died ! 0, not in cruelty, not in wrath,

The Reaper came that day; 'Twas an angel visited the green earth,

FLOWERS. And took the flowers away.

SPAKE full well, in language quaint and

olden,

One who dwelleth by the castled FOOTSTEPS OF ANGELS.

Rhine,

When he called the flowers, so blue When the hours of Day are numbered,

and golden, And the voices of the Night

Stars, that in earth's firmament do Wake the better soul, that slumbered,

shine. To a holy, calm delight;

Stars they are, wherein we read our Ere the evening lamps are lighted,

history, And, like phantoms grim and tall,

As astrologers and seers of eld; Shadows from the fitful fire-light

Yet not wrapped about with awful Dance upon the parlour wall

mystery, Then the forms of the departed

Like the burning stars, which they Enter at the open door;

beheld. The beloved, the true-hearted, Come to visit me once more;

Wondrous truths, and manifold as

wondrous, He, the young and strong, who cherished God hath written in those stars above; Noble longings for the strife,

But not less in the bright flowerets By the roadside fell and perished,

under us Weary with the march of life!

Stands the revelation of his love. They, the holy ones and weakly,

Bright and glorious is that revelation Who the cross of suffering bore,

Written all over this great world of Folded their pale hands so meekly,

ours ; Spake with us on earth no more!

Making evident our own creation,

In these stars of earth,--these golden And with them the Being Beauteous,

flowers. Who unto my youth was given, More than all things else to love me,

And the Poet, faithful and far-seeing, And is now a saint in heaven.

Sees, alike in stars and flowers, a part

Of the self-same, universal being, With a slow and noiseless footstep

Which is throbbing in his brain and Comes that messenger divine,

heart. Takes the vacant chair beside me, Lays her gentle hand in mine.

Gorgeous flowerets in the sunlight

shining, And she sits and gazes at me

Blossoms flaunting in the eye of day, With those deep and tender eyes, Tremulous leaves, with soft and silver Like the stars, so still and saint-like,

lining, Looking downward from the skies. Buds that open only to decay ;

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