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130
HARVEST, ETC.


HARVEST.

With throbbing heart and tearful eye
I watched the spring-time fleeting by.

I saw the snowdrop at its birth
Felled, by spears of rain, to earth;

The iris burst her emerald sheath,
And shew the amethyst beneath;

The painted tulip fade and close
Before the glory of the rose;

And now, down fields of sunburnt grass
I see the withering rose-leaves pass;

And, night by night, and day by day,
The life of summer ebbs away,

I see the granaries overflow,
The mellowing orchards bending low,

God! my heart in awe and fear
Looks back upon thy perfect year.

Thy bounty covers all the lands;
I lift in prayer my empty hands.

Of all the summer of my life
My harvest is but sin and strife.

Oh! could these tears, like April rain,
Make moist my heart's hard soil again,

And stir the seeds which Thou didst sow,
Oh! never should they cease to flow.

Could prayer but melt this ice away,
Oh! never would I cease to pray,

Till thou in mercy, Lord, didst bring
Into my soul a second spring.

Oh! then what rich reward and sweet
To lay its harvest at Thy feet!

Katherine Saunders.
Good Words.




NOBODY!

Left there, nobody's daughter,
Child of disgrace and shame, —
Nobody ever taught her
A mother's sweet, saving name:

Nobody ever caring
Whether she stood or fell,
And men (are they men?) ensnaring
With the arts and the gold of hell!

Stitching with ceaseless labor,
To earn her pitiful bread;
Begging a crust of a neighbor,
And getting a curse instead!

All through the long, hot summer,
All through the cold, dark time,
With fingers that numb and number
Grow white as the frost's white rime.

Nobody ever conceiving
The throb of that warm, young life,
Nobody ever believing
The strain of that terrible strife!

Nobody kind words pouring
In that orphan-heart's sad ear;
But all of us all ignoring
What lies at our doors, so near!

O sister! down in the alley,
Pale, with the downcast eye,
Dark and drear is the valley,
But the stars shine forth on high.

Nobody here may love thee,
Or care if thou stand or fall;
But the great, good God above thee,
He watches and cares for all.

Spectator.




EXILED.

No more thy face to see;
I sometimes idly wonder if it be
As present unto any as to me, —
A star for distance clearer!

Parted by land and tide:
In gleams that fade, in shadows that abide,
Along the mountain's ever-varying side,
Thy footstep draweth nearer.

The white snow falls in flakes
On glazing waters; but thy memory makes
A home for me amid these alien lakes,
More warm as days grow drearer.

Say, dearest, — that for me
Art as a link uniting land and sea,
Time, distance, life and death, — can any be
That, clasping hold thee nearer?

C. M. Gemmer (Gerda Fay)
Argosy.




BLUE EYES.

Blue! 'tis the hue of heaven, — the domain
Of Cynthia, - the bright palace of the sun,
The tent of Hesperus and all his train,
The bosomer of clouds, gold, grey, and dun.

Blue, 'tis the life of waters, — ocean,
With all his tributary streams, pools numberless,
May rage and foam and fret, but never can
Subside, if not to dark-blue nativeness.

Blue! gentle cousin to the forest green;
Married to green in all the sweetest flowers, —
Forget-me-not; the bluebell; and that queen
Of secrecy, the violet. — What strange powers

Hast thou, as a mere shadow! but how great
When in an eye thou art alive with fate!

Athenæum.
Sonnet by Keats.