Page:Littell's Living Age - Volume 128.djvu/780

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"When the gray twilight softly spreads
Her robe o'er earth and sky;
When the far mountains' shaggy heads
Are lost to human eye;

When the tired bird at eve hath sought
Sleep in the tuneless bower;
When the last bee wings homeward, fraught
With forage from the flower;

When the dark pinewood dimly shews
Its deepening tints of green;
When in the west with crimson glows
The sunset's closing scene —

I watch the glimmering shadows kiss
The threshold of the night,
And o'er my heart a soothing bliss
Falls in the waning light;

And grosser thoughts that sternly cling
To life's dull sober day.
Leave me, as swallows on the wing
Flit from our sight away.

And soft as ripple on the lake,
Within my bosom rise
Half-whispered yearnings, that awake
A thousand memories —

Sweet memories, that only come
To woo my waking dreams.
When twilight shrouds the woodlands dumb,
And slumbers on the streams —

Of faces that I loved of yore,
And songs the loved ones sang,
And children's voices — heard no more —
That through the greenwood rang.

O spirit treasures, ye are mine,
And to my heart belong,
Yet linger not till I repine,
Or sing a sadder song;

But leave me while I still have power
To catch the sunny glow
Wafted from memory's blissful bower —
The shrine of long ago.

Chambers' Journal.


You ask a song,
Such as of yore, an autumn's eventide,
Some blest boy-poet caroll'd, — and then died.
Nay, I have sung too long.

Say, shall I fling
A sigh to beauty at her window-pane?
I sang there once, might I not once again? —
Or tell me whom to sing.

The peer of peers?
Lord of the wealth that gives his time employ —
Time to possess, but hardly to enjoy —
He cannot need my tears.

The man of mind,
Or priest, who darkens what is clear as day?
I cannot sing them, yet I will not say
Such guides are wholly blind.

The orator?
He quiet lies where yon fresh hillock heaves;
'Twere well to sprinkle there those laurel-leaves
He won, — but never wore.

Or shall I twine
A cypress? Wreath of glory and of gloom, —
To march a gallant soldier to his doom,
Needs fuller voice than mine.

No lay have I,
No murmured measure meet for your delight,
No song of love and death, to make you quite
Forget that we must die.

Something is wrong, —
The world is over-wise; or, more's the pity,
These days are far too busy for a ditty,
Yet take it, — take my song.

Frederick Locker

"Come like shadows, so depart."
"Macbeth;" Act IV.

Across the inner sunlight of a soul
A shadow fell,
Whose ever-deepening gloom shut out the day,
And seemed to swell
Until the blackness of that midnight hour
What tongue could tell?

Faith's sun had set, — Hope's star forgot to shine.
But Love drew nigh.
Like some ill dream the mists of darkness fade
Before her eye.
And sun and star with clearer lustre grace
The morning sky.

Isabella M. Mortimer
Golden Hour.