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The buttercups across the field
Made sunshine rifts of splendor.
- A Silly Song [Buttercups]
O how grandly cometh Even,
Sitting on the mountain summit,
Purple-vestured, grave, and silent,
Watching o'er the dewy valleys,
Like a good king near his end.
- A Stream's Singing [Evening]
Sweet April-time--O cruel April-time!
Year after year returning, with a brow
Of promise, and red lips with longing paled,
And backward-hidden hands that clutch the joys
Of vanished springs, like flowers.
- April [April]
The irrevocable Hand
That opes the year's fair gate, doth ope and shut
The portals of our earthly destinies;
We walk through blindfold, and the noiseless doors
Close after us, forever.
- April [Destiny]
To-morrow is, ah, whose?
- Between Two Worlds [Tomorrow]
God rest ye, little children; let nothing you affright,
For Jesus Christ, your Saviour, was born this happy night;
Along the hills of Galilee the white flocks sleeping lay,
When Christ, the Child of Nazareth, was born on Christmas Day.
- Christmas Carol (st. 2) [Christmas]
Autumn to winter, winter into spring,
Spring into summer, summer into fall,--
So rolls the changing year, and so we change;
Motion so swift, we know not that we move.
- Immutable [Seasons]
With faces like dead lovers who died true.
- Indian Summer [Face]
"Get out o' Mr. Fletcher's road, ye idle, lounging, little--"
"Vagabond," I think the woman (Sally Walkins, once my nurse,) was going to say, but she changed her mind.
- John Halifax, Gentleman
[Books (First Lines)]
Lo! all life this truth declares,
Laborare est orare;
And the whole earth rings with prayers.
- Labour is Prayer (st. 4) [Labor]
Alone could teach this mortal how to die.
- Looking Death in the Face (l. 77)
A secret at home is like rocks under tide.
- Magnus and Morna (sc. 2) [Secrecy]
Drink, my jolly lads, drink with discerning,
Wedlock's a lane where there is no turning;
Never was owl more blind than a lover,
Drink and be merry, lads, half seas over.
- Magnus and Morna (sc. 3) [Matrimony]
Silence sweeter is than speech.
- Magnus and Morna (sc. 3) [Silence]
No rest--no dark.
Hour after hour that passionless bright face
Climbs up the desolate blue.
- Moon-Struck [Moon]
Loud wind, strong wind, sweeping o'er the mountains,
Fresh wind, free wind, blowing from the sea,
Pour forth thy vials like streams from airy mountains,
Draughts of life to me.
- North Wind [Wind]
Two hands upon the breast,
And labor's done;
Two pale feet cross'd in rest,
The race is won.
- Now and Afterwards [Death]
Into earth's lap does throw
Brown apples gay in a game of play,
As the equinoctials blow.
- October [Autumn]
Duty's a slave that keeps the keys,
But Love, the Master goes in and out
Of his goodly chambers with song and shout,
Just as he please--just as he please.
- Plighted [Love]
A slender young Blackbird built in a thorn-tree:
A spruce little fellow as ever could be;
His bill was so yellow, his feathers so black,
So long was his tail, and so glossy his back,
That good Mrs. B., who sat hatching her eggs,
And only just left them to stretch her poor legs,
And pick for a minute the worm she preferred,
Thought there never was seen such a beautiful bird.
- The Blackbird and the Rooks [Blackbirds]
Sing away, ay, sing away,
Merry little bird
Always gayest of the gay,
Though a woodland roundelay
You ne'er sung not heard;
Though your life from youth to age
Passes is a narrow cage.
- The Canary in his Cage [Canaries]
There never was night that had no morn.
- The Golden Gate [Night]
Hail, pallid crescent, hail!
Let me look on thee where thou sitt'st for aye
Like memory--ghastly in the glare of day,
But in the evening, light.
- The Moon in the Morning [Moon]
O, the mulberry-tree is of trees the queen!
Bare long after the rest are green;
But as the time steals onwards, while none perceives
Slowly she clothes herself with leaves--
Hides her fruit under them, hard to find.
. . . .
But by and by, when the flowers grow few
And the fruits are dwindling and small to view--
Out she comes in her matron grace
With the purple myriads of her race;
Full of plenty from root to crown,
Showering plenty her feet adown.
While far over head hang gorgeously
Large luscious berries of sanguine dye,
For the best grows highest, always highest,
Upon the mulberry-tree.
- The Mulberry Tree [Mulberry]
I took the wren's nest;--
Heaven forgive me!
Its merry architects so small
Had scarcely finished their wee hall,
That empty still, and nest and fair,
Hung idly in the summer air.
- The Wren's Nest [Wrens]
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