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NOCTURNE

The silent world is sleeping,
And spirits hover nigh,
With downward pinions keeping
Our love from mortal eye,
Nor any ear of Earth can hear
The heart-beat and the sigh.


Now no more the twilight bird
Showers his triple notes around;
In the dewy paths is heard
No rude footfall's sound.
In the stillness I await
Thy coming late,
In the dusk would lay my heart
Close to thine own, and say how dear thou art!


O life! O rarest hour!
When the dark world onward rolls,
And the fiery planets drift,
Then from our commingled souls
Clouds of passion and of power,
Flames of incense, lift!


Come, for the world is turning
To meet the morning star!
Answer my spirit's yearning
And seek the arms that call thee from afar:
Let them close—ah, let them close
Around thee now, and lure thee to repose.

1878