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Song from My Heart

Song in my heart,
Speak to me,
Sing me your sweet melody.

The days been hard,
Evenings long,
Sing me tonight a joyous song.

So many times
When all hope was gone,
I listened to your cry, a painful mourn-

But now all is serene,
The night is still-
Hum to me softly, if you will.

Oh song from my heart,
Music within me,
Sing me a song filled with melody.

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John Dryden

The Hind and the Panther: Part I (excerpts)

A milk-white Hind, immortal and unchang'd,
Fed on the lawns, and in the forest rang'd;
Without unspotted, innocent within,
She fear'd no danger, for she knew no sin.
Yet had she oft been chas'd with horns and hounds
And Scythian shafts; and many winged wounds
Aim'd at her heart; was often forc'd to fly,
And doom'd to death, though fated not to die.

Not so her young; for their unequal line
Was hero's make, half human, half divine.
Their earthly mold obnoxious was to fate,
Th' immortal part assum'd immortal state.
Of these a slaughter'd army lay in blood,
Extended o'er the Caledonian wood,
Their native walk; whose vocal blood arose,
And cried for pardon on their perjur'd foes.
Their fate was fruitful, and the sanguine seed,
Endued with souls, increas'd the sacred breed.
So captive Israel multiplied in chains,
A numerous exile, and enjoy'd her pains.
With grief and gladness mix'd, their mother view'd
Her martyr'd offspring, and their race renew'd;
Their corps to perish, but their kind to last,
So much the deathless plant the dying fruit surpass'd.

Panting and pensive now she rang'd alone,
And wander'd in the kingdoms, once her own.
The common hunt, tho' from their rage restrain'd
By sov'reign pow'r, her company disdain'd;
Grinn'd as they pass'd, and with a glaring eye
Gave gloomy signs of secret enmity.
'T is true, she bounded by, and tripp'd so light,
They had not time to take a steady sight,
For Truth has such a face and such a mien,
As to be lov'd needs only to be seen.

The bloody Bear, an Independent beast,
Unlick'd to form, in groans her hate express'd.
Among the timorous kind the Quaking Hare
Profess'd neutrality, but would not swear.
Next her the buffoon Ape, as atheists use,
Mimick'd all sects, and had his own to choose:
Still when the Lion look'd, his knees he bent,
And paid at church a courtier's compliment.

The bristled Baptist Boar, impure as he,
(But whiten'd with the foam of sanctity,)
With fat pollutions fill'd the sacred place,
And mountains levell'd in his furious race:
So first rebellion founded was in grace.
But since the mighty ravage which he made
In German forests had his guilt betray'd,
With broken tusks, and with a borrow'd name,
He shunn'd the vengeance, and conceal'd the shame;
So lurk'd in sects unseen. With greater guile
False Reynard fed on consecrated spoil:
The graceless beast by Athanasius first
Was chas'd from Nice; then, by Socinus nurs'd,
His impious race their blasphemy renew'd,
And nature's King through nature's optics view'd.
Revers'd, they view'd him lessen'd to their eye,
Nor in an infant could a God descry:
New swarming sects to this obliquely tend,
Hence they began, and here they all will end.

What weight of ancient witness can prevail,
If private reason hold the public scale?
But, gracious God, how well dost thou provide
For erring judgments an unerring guide!
Thy throne is darkness in th' abyss of light,
A blaze of glory that forbids the sight.
O teach me to believe Thee thus conceal'd,
And search no farther than Thyself reveal'd;
But her alone for my director take,
Whom Thou hast promis'd never to forsake!
My thoughtless youth was wing'd with vain desires,
My manhood, long misled by wand'ring fires,
Follow'd false lights; and when their glimpse was gone,
My pride struck out new sparkles of her own.
Such was I, such by nature still I am,
Be thine the glory, and be mine the shame.
Good life be now my task: my doubts are done:
(What more could fright my faith, than Three in One?)
Can I believe eternal God could lie
Disguis'd in mortal mould and infancy?
That the great Maker of the world could die?
And after that trust my imperfect sense
Which calls in question his omnipotence?
Can I my reason to my faith compel,
And shall my sight, and touch, and taste rebel?
Superior faculties are set aside,
Shall their subservient organs be my guide?
Then let the moon usurp the rule of day,
And winking tapers show the sun his way;
For what my senses can themselves perceive,
I need no revelation to believe.

...
The Panther, sure the noblest, next the Hind,
And fairest creature of the spotted kind;
Oh, could her inborn stains be wash'd away,
She were too good to be a beast of prey!
How can I praise, or blame, and not offend,
Or how divide the frailty from the friend!
Her faults and virtues lie so mix'd that she
Nor wholly stands condemn'd, nor wholly free.
Then, like her injur'd Lion, let me speak;
He cannot bend her, and he would not break.
Unkind already, and estrang'd in part,
The Wolf begins to share her wand'ring heart.
Though' unpolluted yet with actual ill,
She half commits, who sins but in her will.
If, as our dreaming Platonists report,
There could be spirits of a middle sort,
Too black for heav'n, and yet too white for hell,
Who just dropp'd halfway down, nor lower fell;
So pois'd, so gently she descends from high,
It seems a soft dismission from the sky.
...

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Byron

There Was A Time, I Need Not Name

There was a time, I need not name,
Since it will ne'er forgotten be,
When all our feelings were the same
As still my soul hath been to thee.

And from that hour when first thy tongue
Confess'd a love which equall'd mine,
Though many a grief my heart hath wrung,
Unknown, and thus unfelt, by thine,

None, none hath sunk so deep as this---
To think how all that love hath flown;
Transient as every faithless kiss,
But transient in thy breast alone.

And yet my heart some solace knew,
When late I heard thy lips declare,
In accents once imagined true,
Remembrance of the days that were.

Yes! my adored, yet most unkind!
Though thou wilt never love again,
To me 'tis doubly sweet to find
Remembrance of that love remain.

Yes! 'tis a glorious thought to me,
Nor longer shall my soul repine,
Whate'er thou art or e'er shalt be,
Thou hast been dearly, solely mine.

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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The Song Of Hiawatha XIII: Blessing The Cornfields

Sing, O Song of Hiawatha,
Of the happy days that followed,
In the land of the Ojibways,
In the pleasant land and peaceful!
Sing the mysteries of Mondamin,
Sing the Blessing of the Cornfields!
Buried was the bloody hatchet,
Buried was the dreadful war-club,
Buried were all warlike weapons,
And the war-cry was forgotten.
There was peace among the nations;
Unmolested roved the hunters,
Built the birch canoe for sailing,
Caught the fish in lake and river,
Shot the deer and trapped the beaver;
Unmolested worked the women,
Made their sugar from the maple,
Gathered wild rice in the meadows,
Dressed the skins of deer and beaver.
All around the happy village
Stood the maize-fields, green and shining,
Waved the green plumes of Mondamin,
Waved his soft and sunny tresses,
Filling all the land with plenty.
`T was the women who in Spring-time
Planted the broad fields and fruitful,
Buried in the earth Mondamin;
`T was the women who in Autumn
Stripped the yellow husks of harvest,
Stripped the garments from Mondamin,
Even as Hiawatha taught them.
Once, when all the maize was planted,
Hiawatha, wise and thoughtful,
Spake and said to Minnehaha,
To his wife, the Laughing Water:
'You shall bless to-night the cornfields,
Draw a magic circle round them,
To protect them from destruction,
Blast of mildew, blight of insect,
Wagemin, the thief of cornfields,
Paimosaid, who steals the maize-ear
'In the night, when all Is silence,'
In the night, when all Is darkness,
When the Spirit of Sleep, Nepahwin,
Shuts the doors of all the wigwams,
So that not an ear can hear you,
So that not an eye can see you,
Rise up from your bed in silence,
Lay aside your garments wholly,
Walk around the fields you planted,
Round the borders of the cornfields,
Covered by your tresses only,
Robed with darkness as a garment.
'Thus the fields shall be more fruitful,
And the passing of your footsteps
Draw a magic circle round them,
So that neither blight nor mildew,
Neither burrowing worm nor insect,
Shall pass o'er the magic circle;
Not the dragon-fly, Kwo-ne-she,
Nor the spider, Subbekashe,
Nor the grasshopper, Pah-puk-keena;
Nor the mighty caterpillar,
Way-muk-kwana, with the bear-skin,
King of all the caterpillars!'
On the tree-tops near the cornfields
Sat the hungry crows and ravens,
Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens,
With his band of black marauders.
And they laughed at Hiawatha,
Till the tree-tops shook with laughter,
With their melancholy laughter,
At the words of Hiawatha.
'Hear him!' said they; 'hear the Wise Man,
Hear the plots of Hiawatha!'
When the noiseless night descended
Broad and dark o'er field and forest,
When the mournful Wawonaissa
Sorrowing sang among the hemlocks,
And the Spirit of Sleep, Nepahwin,
Shut the doors of all the wigwams,
From her bed rose Laughing Water,
Laid aside her garments wholly,
And with darkness clothed and guarded,
Unashamed and unaffrighted,
Walked securely round the cornfields,
Drew the sacred, magic circle
Of her footprints round the cornfields.
No one but the Midnight only
Saw her beauty in the darkness,
No one but the Wawonaissa
Heard the panting of her bosom
Guskewau, the darkness, wrapped her
Closely in his sacred mantle,
So that none might see her beauty,
So that none might boast, 'I saw her!'
On the morrow, as the day dawned,
Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens,
Gathered all his black marauders,
Crows and blackbirds, jays and ravens,
Clamorous on the dusky tree-tops,
And descended, fast and fearless,
On the fields of Hiawatha,
On the grave of the Mondamin.
'We will drag Mondamin,' said they,
'From the grave where he is buried,
Spite of all the magic circles
Laughing Water draws around it,
Spite of all the sacred footprints
Minnehaha stamps upon it!'
But the wary Hiawatha,
Ever thoughtful, careful, watchful,
Had o'erheard the scornful laughter
When they mocked him from the tree-tops.
'Kaw!' he said, 'my friends the ravens!
Kahgahgee, my King of Ravens!
I will teach you all a lesson
That shall not be soon forgotten!'
He had risen before the daybreak,
He had spread o'er all the cornfields
Snares to catch the black marauders,
And was lying now in ambush
In the neighboring grove of pine-trees,
Waiting for the crows and blackbirds,
Waiting for the jays and ravens.
Soon they came with caw and clamor,
Rush of wings and cry of voices,
To their work of devastation,
Settling down upon the cornfields,
Delving deep with beak and talon,
For the body of Mondamin.
And with all their craft and cunning,
All their skill in wiles of warfare,
They perceived no danger near them,
Till their claws became entangled,
Till they found themselves imprisoned
In the snares of Hiawatha.
From his place of ambush came he,
Striding terrible among them,
And so awful was his aspect
That the bravest quailed with terror.
Without mercy he destroyed them
Right and left, by tens and twenties,
And their wretched, lifeless bodies
Hung aloft on poles for scarecrows
Round the consecrated cornfields,
As a signal of his vengeance,
As a warning to marauders.
Only Kahgahgee, the leader,
Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens,
He alone was spared among them
As a hostage for his people.
With his prisoner-string he bound him,
Led him captive to his wigwam,
Tied him fast with cords of elm-bark
To the ridge-pole of his wigwam.
'Kahgahgee, my raven!' said he,
'You the leader of the robbers,
You the plotter of this mischief,
The contriver of this outrage,
I will keep you, I will hold you,
As a hostage for your people,
As a pledge of good behavior!'
And he left him, grim and sulky,
Sitting in the morning sunshine
On the summit of the wigwam,
Croaking fiercely his displeasure,
Flapping his great sable pinions,
Vainly struggling for his freedom,
Vainly calling on his people!
Summer passed, and Shawondasee
Breathed his sighs o'er all the landscape,
From the South-land sent his ardor,
Wafted kisses warm and tender;
And the maize-field grew and ripened,
Till it stood in all the splendor
Of its garments green and yellow,
Of its tassels and its plumage,
And the maize-ears full and shining
Gleamed from bursting sheaths of verdure.
Then Nokomis, the old woman,
Spake, and said to Minnehaha:
`T is the Moon when, leaves are falling;
All the wild rice has been gathered,
And the maize is ripe and ready;
Let us gather in the harvest,
Let us wrestle with Mondamin,
Strip him of his plumes and tassels,
Of his garments green and yellow!'
And the merry Laughing Water
Went rejoicing from the wigwam,
With Nokomis, old and wrinkled,
And they called the women round them,
Called the young men and the maidens,
To the harvest of the cornfields,
To the husking of the maize-ear.
On the border of the forest,
Underneath the fragrant pine-trees,
Sat the old men and the warriors
Smoking in the pleasant shadow.
In uninterrupted silence
Looked they at the gamesome labor
Of the young men and the women;
Listened to their noisy talking,
To their laughter and their singing,
Heard them chattering like the magpies,
Heard them laughing like the blue-jays,
Heard them singing like the robins.
And whene'er some lucky maiden
Found a red ear in the husking,
Found a maize-ear red as blood is,
'Nushka!' cried they all together,
'Nushka! you shall have a sweetheart,
You shall have a handsome husband!'
'Ugh!' the old men all responded
From their seats beneath the pine-trees.
And whene'er a youth or maiden
Found a crooked ear in husking,
Found a maize-ear in the husking
Blighted, mildewed, or misshapen,
Then they laughed and sang together,
Crept and limped about the cornfields,
Mimicked in their gait and gestures
Some old man, bent almost double,
Singing singly or together:
'Wagemin, the thief of cornfields!
Paimosaid, who steals the maize-ear!'
Till the cornfields rang with laughter,
Till from Hiawatha's wigwam
Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens,
Screamed and quivered in his anger,
And from all the neighboring tree-tops
Cawed and croaked the black marauders.
'Ugh!' the old men all responded,
From their seats beneath the pine-trees!

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When You Meet a Man from Your Own Home Town

Sing, O Muse, in treble clef,
A little song of the A.E.F.,
And pardon me, please, if I give vent
To something akin to sentiment.
But we have our moments Over Here
When we want to cry and we want to cheer;
And the hurrah feeling will not down
When you meet a man from your own home town.

It's many a lonesome, longsome day
Since you embarked from the U.S.A.,
And you met some men--it's a great big war--
From towns that you never had known before;
And you landed here, and your rest camp mate
Was a man from some strange and distant state.
Liked him? Yes; but you wanted to see
A man from the town where you used to be.

And then you went, by design or chance,
All over the well-known map of France;
And you yearned with a yearn that grew and grew
To talk with a man from the burg you knew.
And some lugubrious morn when
Your morale is batting about .110,
"Where are you from?" and you make reply,
And the O.D. warrior says, "So am I."

The universe wears a smiling face
As you spill your talk of the old home place;
You talk of the streets, and the home town jokes,
And you find that you know each other's folks;
And you haven't any more woes at all
Ad you both decide that the world is small--
A statement adding to its renown
When you meet a man from your own home town.

You may be among the enlisted men,
You may be a Lieut. or a Major-Gen.;
Your home may be up in the Chilkoot Pass,
In Denver, Col., or in Pittsfield, Mass.;
You may have come from Chicago, Ill.,
Buffalo, Portland, or Louisville--
But there's nothing, I'm gambling, can keep you down,
When you meet a man from your own home town.

* * * * *

If you want to know why I wrote this pome,
Well . . . I've just had a talk with a guy from home.

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With French to Kimberley

The Boers were down on Kimberley with siege and Maxim gun;
The Boers were down on Kimberley, their numbers ten to one!
Faint were the hopes the British had to make the struggle good --
Defenceless in an open plain the Diamond City stood.
They built them forts with bags of sand, they fought from roof and wall,
They flashed a message to the south, "Help! or the town must fall!"
Then down our ranks the order ran to march at dawn of day,
And French was off to Kimberley to drive the Boers away.
He made no march along the line; he made no front attack
Upon those Magersfontein heights that held the Seaforths back;
But eastward over pathless plains, by open veldt and vley.
Across the front of Cronje's force his troopers held their way.
The springbuck, feeding on the flats where Modder River runs,
Were startled by his horses' hoofs, the rumble of his guns.
The Dutchman's spies that watched his march from every rocky wall
Rode back in haste: "He marches East! He threatens Jacobsdal!"
Then north he wheeled as wheels a hawk, and showed to their dismay
That French was off to Kimberley to drive the Boers away.

His column was five thousand strong -- all mounted men -- and guns:
There met, beneath the world-wide flag, the world-wide Empire's sons;
They came to prove to all the earth that kinship conquers space,
And those who fight the British Isles must fight the British race!
From far New Zealand's flax and fern, from cold Canadian snows,
From Queensland plains, where hot as fire the summer sunshine glows --
And in front the Lancers rode that New South Wales had sent:
With easy stride across the plain their long, lean Walers went.
Unknown, untried, those squadrons were, but proudly out they drew
Beside the English regiments that fought at Waterloo.
From every coast, from every clime, they met in proud array
To go with French to Kimberley to drive the Boers away.

He crossed the Reit and fought his way towards the Modder bank.
The foemen closed behind his march, and hung upon the flank.
The long, dry grass was all ablaze (and fierce the veldt fire runs);
He fought them through a wall of flame that blazed around the guns!
Then limbered up and drove at speed, though horses fell and died;
We might not halt for man nor beast on that wild, daring ride.
Black with the smoke and parched with thirst, we pressed the livelong day
Our headlong march to Kimberley to drive the Boers away.

We reached the drift at fall of night, and camped across the ford.
Next day from all the hills around the Dutchman's cannon roared.
A narrow pass ran through the hills, with guns on either side;
The boldest man might well turn pale before that pass he tried,
For, if the first attack should fail, then every hope was gone:
Bur French looked once, and only once, and then he siad, "Push on!"
The gunners plied their guns amain; the hail of shrapnel flew;
With rifle fire and lancer charge their squadrons back we threw;
And through the pass between the hills we swept in furious fray,
And French was through to Kimberley to drive the Boers away.

Ay, French was through to Kimberley! And ere the day was done
We saw the Diamond City stand, lit by the evening sun:
Above the town the heliograph hung like an eye of flame:
Around the town the foemen camped -- they knew not that we came;
But soon they saw us, rank on rank; they heard our squadrons' tread;
In panic fear they left their tents, in hopeless rout they fled --
And French rode into Kimberley; the people cheered amain,
The women came with tear-stained eyes to touch his bridle rein,
The starving children lined the streets to raise a feeble cheer,
The bells rang out a joyous peal to say "Relief is here!"
Ay! we that saw that stirring march are proud that we can say
We went with French to Kimberley to drive the Boers away.

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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Blessing The Cornfields

Sing, O Song of Hiawatha,
Of the happy days that followed,
In the land of the Ojibways,
In the pleasant land and peaceful!
Sing the mysteries of Mondamin,
Sing the Blessing of the Cornfields!
Buried was the bloody hatchet,
Buried was the dreadful war-club,
Buried were all warlike weapons,
And the war-cry was forgotten.
There was peace among the nations;
Unmolested roved the hunters,
Built the birch canoe for sailing,
Caught the fish in lake and river,
Shot the deer and trapped the beaver;
Unmolested worked the women,
Made their sugar from the maple,
Gathered wild rice in the meadows,
Dressed the skins of deer and beaver.
All around the happy village
Stood the maize-fields, green and shining,
Waved the green plumes of Mondamin,
Waved his soft and sunny tresses,
Filling all the land with plenty.
`T was the women who in Spring-time
Planted the broad fields and fruitful,
Buried in the earth Mondamin;
`T was the women who in Autumn
Stripped the yellow husks of harvest,
Stripped the garments from Mondamin,
Even as Hiawatha taught them.
Once, when all the maize was planted,
Hiawatha, wise and thoughtful,
Spake and said to Minnehaha,
To his wife, the Laughing Water:
"You shall bless to-night the cornfields,
Draw a magic circle round them,
To protect them from destruction,
Blast of mildew, blight of insect,
Wagemin, the thief of cornfields,
Paimosaid, who steals the maize-ear
"In the night, when all Is silence,'
In the night, when all Is darkness,
When the Spirit of Sleep, Nepahwin,
Shuts the doors of all the wigwams,
So that not an ear can hear you,
So that not an eye can see you,
Rise up from your bed in silence,
Lay aside your garments wholly,
Walk around the fields you planted,
Round the borders of the cornfields,
Covered by your tresses only,
Robed with darkness as a garment.
"Thus the fields shall be more fruitful,
And the passing of your footsteps
Draw a magic circle round them,
So that neither blight nor mildew,
Neither burrowing worm nor insect,
Shall pass o'er the magic circle;
Not the dragon-fly, Kwo-ne-she,
Nor the spider, Subbekashe,
Nor the grasshopper, Pah-puk-keena;
Nor the mighty caterpillar,
Way-muk-kwana, with the bear-skin,
King of all the caterpillars!"
On the tree-tops near the cornfields
Sat the hungry crows and ravens,
Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens,
With his band of black marauders.
And they laughed at Hiawatha,
Till the tree-tops shook with laughter,
With their melancholy laughter,
At the words of Hiawatha.
"Hear him!" said they; "hear the Wise Man,
Hear the plots of Hiawatha!"
When the noiseless night descended
Broad and dark o'er field and forest,
When the mournful Wawonaissa
Sorrowing sang among the hemlocks,
And the Spirit of Sleep, Nepahwin,
Shut the doors of all the wigwams,
From her bed rose Laughing Water,
Laid aside her garments wholly,
And with darkness clothed and guarded,
Unashamed and unaffrighted,
Walked securely round the cornfields,
Drew the sacred, magic circle
Of her footprints round the cornfields.
No one but the Midnight only
Saw her beauty in the darkness,
No one but the Wawonaissa
Heard the panting of her bosom
Guskewau, the darkness, wrapped her
Closely in his sacred mantle,
So that none might see her beauty,
So that none might boast, "I saw her!"
On the morrow, as the day dawned,
Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens,
Gathered all his black marauders,
Crows and blackbirds, jays and ravens,
Clamorous on the dusky tree-tops,
And descended, fast and fearless,
On the fields of Hiawatha,
On the grave of the Mondamin.
"We will drag Mondamin," said they,
"From the grave where he is buried,
Spite of all the magic circles
Laughing Water draws around it,
Spite of all the sacred footprints
Minnehaha stamps upon it!"
But the wary Hiawatha,
Ever thoughtful, careful, watchful,
Had o'erheard the scornful laughter
When they mocked him from the tree-tops.
"Kaw!" he said, "my friends the ravens!
Kahgahgee, my King of Ravens!
I will teach you all a lesson
That shall not be soon forgotten!"
He had risen before the daybreak,
He had spread o'er all the cornfields
Snares to catch the black marauders,
And was lying now in ambush
In the neighboring grove of pine-trees,
Waiting for the crows and blackbirds,
Waiting for the jays and ravens.
Soon they came with caw and clamor,
Rush of wings and cry of voices,
To their work of devastation,
Settling down upon the cornfields,
Delving deep with beak and talon,
For the body of Mondamin.
And with all their craft and cunning,
All their skill in wiles of warfare,
They perceived no danger near them,
Till their claws became entangled,
Till they found themselves imprisoned
In the snares of Hiawatha.
From his place of ambush came he,
Striding terrible among them,
And so awful was his aspect
That the bravest quailed with terror.
Without mercy he destroyed them
Right and left, by tens and twenties,
And their wretched, lifeless bodies
Hung aloft on poles for scarecrows
Round the consecrated cornfields,
As a signal of his vengeance,
As a warning to marauders.
Only Kahgahgee, the leader,
Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens,
He alone was spared among them
As a hostage for his people.
With his prisoner-string he bound him,
Led him captive to his wigwam,
Tied him fast with cords of elm-bark
To the ridge-pole of his wigwam.
"Kahgahgee, my raven!" said he,
"You the leader of the robbers,
You the plotter of this mischief,
The contriver of this outrage,
I will keep you, I will hold you,
As a hostage for your people,
As a pledge of good behavior!"
And he left him, grim and sulky,
Sitting in the morning sunshine
On the summit of the wigwam,
Croaking fiercely his displeasure,
Flapping his great sable pinions,
Vainly struggling for his freedom,
Vainly calling on his people!
Summer passed, and Shawondasee
Breathed his sighs o'er all the landscape,
From the South-land sent his ardor,
Wafted kisses warm and tender;
And the maize-field grew and ripened,
Till it stood in all the splendor
Of its garments green and yellow,
Of its tassels and its plumage,
And the maize-ears full and shining
Gleamed from bursting sheaths of verdure.
Then Nokomis, the old woman,
Spake, and said to Minnehaha:
`T is the Moon when, leaves are falling;
All the wild rice has been gathered,
And the maize is ripe and ready;
Let us gather in the harvest,
Let us wrestle with Mondamin,
Strip him of his plumes and tassels,
Of his garments green and yellow!"
And the merry Laughing Water
Went rejoicing from the wigwam,
With Nokomis, old and wrinkled,
And they called the women round them,
Called the young men and the maidens,
To the harvest of the cornfields,
To the husking of the maize-ear.
On the border of the forest,
Underneath the fragrant pine-trees,
Sat the old men and the warriors
Smoking in the pleasant shadow.
In uninterrupted silence
Looked they at the gamesome labor
Of the young men and the women;
Listened to their noisy talking,
To their laughter and their singing,
Heard them chattering like the magpies,
Heard them laughing like the blue-jays,
Heard them singing like the robins.
And whene'er some lucky maiden
Found a red ear in the husking,
Found a maize-ear red as blood is,
"Nushka!" cried they all together,
"Nushka! you shall have a sweetheart,
You shall have a handsome husband!"
"Ugh!" the old men all responded
From their seats beneath the pine-trees.
And whene'er a youth or maiden
Found a crooked ear in husking,
Found a maize-ear in the husking
Blighted, mildewed, or misshapen,
Then they laughed and sang together,
Crept and limped about the cornfields,
Mimicked in their gait and gestures
Some old man, bent almost double,
Singing singly or together:
"Wagemin, the thief of cornfields!
Paimosaid, who steals the maize-ear!"
Till the cornfields rang with laughter,
Till from Hiawatha's wigwam
Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens,
Screamed and quivered in his anger,
And from all the neighboring tree-tops
Cawed and croaked the black marauders.
"Ugh!" the old men all responded,
From their seats beneath the pine-trees!

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from Me You Will Get Love

I want you to believe,
From me you will get love.
I will even repeat it,
If needed to hear.
Whispered close.
Or Loud and clear.

'From me you will get love.
From me you will get love.'

For so long I have wished,
For the right one to give it.
For so long in the giving...
The wrong ones misunderstood.
And me and my love,
Was shoved away and dismissed.

From me I give this.
Since you have been my gift.
And I recognize it to behold.
To cherish what I have been blessed with...
To receive in the sharing.
And in the sharing of what love is!

I want you to believe,
From me you will get love.
I will even repeat it,
If needed to hear.
Whispered close.
Or loud enough to know it is clear.

'FROM ME YOU WILL GET LOVE.
FROM ME YOU WILL GET LOVE.
FROM ME YOU WILL GET LOVE.'

Every second.
Every hour.
Everyday throughout the year.

'From me you will get love.
From me you will get love.
From me you will get love.
From me you will get...
LOVE! '

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Hometown Hero

Words and music: paul dean, bryan adams, todd carney, taylor rhodes
Were gonna break away
The engines hot and running
Well take this nowhere town
And turn it into something
Were gonna lose control
And set the wheels in motion
Well, were stoking our claims
Yeah, theyll remember our names
Going down in a blaze of glory
Going out in a flash of light
You know it goes with the territory
When you run the night
You wont to be a hometown hero
And nothings standing in your way
Take it all the way from zero
Never fade away
Now you and I can make it happen
Show you what its all about
Well take the night
And turn it inside out... yeah... inside out
They say that eagles dare
While others only follow
Youve got to raise the stakes
And bet against tomorrow
Storm the barricade
And cross that line of fire
When the damage is done
You know, the legend lives on
Going down in a blaze of glory
Going out in a flash of light
You know it goes with the territory
When you run the night
You want to be a hometown hero
And nothings standing in your way
Take it all the way from zero
Never fade away
Now you and I can make it happen
Show you what its all about
Well take the night
And turn it inside out... look out
(solo)
You want to be a hometown hero
Nothings standing in your way
Take it all the way from zero
Never fade away
Now you and I can moke it happen
Well show you what its all about
Well take the night
And turn it inside out... oh yeah
Well, you want to be a hometown hero
Well turn it inside out
You want to be a hometown hero
Well turn it inside out
You want to be a hometown hero
Yeah

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When all else fails

When all else fails,
Look down the tunnel.
See there's a light,
Shining there,
For you.

When all else fails,
Search the darkness.
For there's always,
A pinpoint
Sparkling there.

When all else fails,
Peer into the gloom,
I'm sure,
There's a spark
Of something new.

© 2012

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Dying of non-expression

discuss me flat
carpets and a doormat
fill me fridge
buy me chairs
fix all repairs
love me so much
take me to lunch
let me get it straight
i am not great
not grateful at all
regardless of chairs
repairs and all the cares
when my hosts are gone
i just want to be alone
guess i'm my best
household guest
deep in the night
turning on the light
and finally begin
to write

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You will stay in my heart - Original by Rabindranath Tagore

Babe you will stay in my heart so bright
As if a lovely quiet moonlit night!

My life and youthfulness
My world of truthfulness
You will fill with glory like the night
Babe you will stay in my heart so bright!

Your lonely eyes will stay awake to see me!
Part of dress will cover up my body!

My shame, pain and sorrow
Dreams that shape tomorrow
You will fill with sweet smell like the night
Babe you will stay in my heart so bright!

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Forget Everything You Thought You Knew

Forget everything you thought you knew.
Forget it all.
Wipe it clean.
An absent mind till the end of time.
No more pain, let it fade.
Today is not yesterday.

Forget everything you thought you knew.
Forget it all.
Memories erased.
Scars healed.
Such a sad face.
Smile and turn it all around.
Such a sweet sound.
The heart racing.

Forget everything you thought you knew.
Forget it all.
Tear down that wall.
Make it crumble.
Make it fall.
Be careful not to stumble.
When all is lost something new can always be found.
Don't be scared for you will not drowned.

Forget everything you thought you knew.
Forget it all.
Start moving forward.
Faster and faster.
Marching upon the sands of time.
Your life defined by your every movement,
your words spoken.
So symbolic.
Meanings behind meanings.
Metaphorically speaking.
This is the way, please enjoy your stay.

Forget everything you thought you knew.
Forget all.
Passing by with a disguise.
A change for the better.
Here my unwritten letter.
Crumbled and flying into the sky.
Don't ask why Just Forget everything you thought you knew.

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The Assessment

The Assessment


My copy pen fell to the floor I bent down to pick it up
now I feel dizzy. I came to this country, decades ago
to write, many pens have fallen on the floor- although
I do not write with a pen but use a word processor.
A pen is a crutch and to make droll shapes on sheets
of paper; a thousands sheets filled with doodles while
waiting to write something sensible on the processor;
a mad publisher has shown interest in them.
Twenty years feels a very long time, twenty more and
I’ll be ninety bet I will not be able to pick up a pen from
the floor then. Now I wake up in the night and a steady
hum tells me I have wasted my time scrawling, a book
of scribble how is that for an epitaph?

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Azrael

Long ago - in another life
I was innocent - just a child
Transformed my brain into an evil thing
Now Im a creature of the night
Im a shadow in the darkness and Im watching you
Though you cant see me I am always at your side
When Im on your heels - you see how it feels
To sense the curse of azrael
In the night - Ill come to you
Your life belongs to me
I wake you up - you stare at me
Im the last thing that youll ever see
The panic in your eyes that I have hungered for
Shows me you have realised the truth
Death comes to the dying - and before your eyes grow dim
The last word on your lips is azrael
I will destroy your dreams
I will destroy your mind
I will destroy your soul
And then Ill take your life
Sometimes I remember the life I had before
I asked myself was it just a dream
When I close my eyes I see an ocean flowing blood
And in my sleep I hear those fearful screams
So lock your doors - remove the keys
I doesnt matter if you leave or stay
Wherever you go Ill be expecting you
Your resistance is the spice that I crave
When you imagine theres a movement in the shadows
The light around you is weakens more and more
Prepare for the arrival of the uninvited guest
The angel of the darkness - azrael
I will destroy your dreams
I will destroy your mind
I will destroy your soul
And then Ill take your life, ...

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At A Time When All Of My Hope Seemed Gone

At a time when all of my hope seemed gone
in darkness Your love brought me new light
when the weight of life was heavier than stone
You made every morning a time of hope and bright
and still You remain the only One
whose blessings and sacrifice shatters the night

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Wisdom From Above

The Word of God is so very clear, yet, so many men have no fear,
Within their hearts, of The Lord, and so God’s Word goes ignored;
A fear that begins wisdom for all, men everywhere great and small,
Wisdom which opens eyes to see, Truths from the Lord of Eternity.

The Lord revealed Himself to Israel, revealing His Purpose and Will,
And today the Lord’s Revelation, is available to every single nation,
For God spoke through His Son, not just to Israel, but to everyone,
God’s Son was revealed to all men, in a world that was condemned.

My friend, this day as in ages past, only Heavenly Wisdom will last,
A wisdom, which you will receive, when God’s Truth you do believe,
The Wisdom from The Lord above, greater than what men speak of,
Far surpassing the wisdom of men, that, Christ Jesus will condemn.

With this Wisdom, you will heed, the words of Truth which you read,
And as the Spirit opens your eyes, worldly wisdom you will despise,
Embracing Truths of God’s Word, over empty wisdom you’ve heard,
As The Spirit of God does impart, Truth and Wisdom into your heart.

Man’s worldly wisdom my friend, God makes foolishness in the end,
As God frustrates their empty ways, for The Lord’s Glory and Praise;
This all begins through Godly fear, of The Lord, Who is so very near,
And God’s Wisdom, you will see, leads a heart to New Life, Eternally.

(Copyright ©05/2010)

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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The Blind Girl Of Castel-Cuille. (From The Gascon of Jasmin)

At the foot of the mountain height
Where is perched Castel Cuille,
When the apple, the plum, and the almond tree
In the plain below were growing white,
This is the song one might perceive
On a Wednesday morn of Saint Joseph's Eve:

'The roads should blossom, the roads should bloom,
So fair a bride shall leave her home!
Should blossom and bloom with garlands gay,
So fair a bride shall pass to-day!'

This old Te Deum, rustic rites attending,
Seemed from the clouds descending;
When lo! a merry company
Of rosy village girls, clean as the eye,
Each one with her attendant swain,
Came to the cliff, all singing the same strain;
Resembling there, so near unto the sky,
Rejoicing angels, that kind Heaven has sent
For their delight and our encouragement.
Together blending,
And soon descending
The narrow sweep
Of the hillside steep,
They wind aslant
Towards Saint Amant,
Through leafy alleys
Of verdurous valleys
With merry sallies
Singing their chant:

'The roads should blossom, the roads should bloom,
So fair a bride shall leave her home!
Should blossom and bloom with garlands gay,
So fair a bride shall pass to-day!

It is Baptiste, and his affianced maiden,
With garlands for the bridal laden!

The sky was blue; without one cloud of gloom,
The sun of March was shining brightly,
And to the air the freshening wind gave lightly
Its breathings of perfume.

When one beholds the dusky hedges blossom,
A rustic bridal, oh! how sweet it is!
To sounds of joyous melodies,
That touch with tenderness the trembling bosom,
A band of maidens
Gayly frolicking,
A band of youngsters
Wildly rollicking!
Kissing,
Caressing,
With fingers pressing,
Till in the veriest
Madness of mirth, as they dance,
They retreat and advance,
Trying whose laugh shall be loudest and merriest;
While the bride, with roguish eyes,
Sporting with them, now escapes and cries:
'Those who catch me
Married verily
This year shall be!'

And all pursue with eager haste,
And all attain what they pursue,
And touch her pretty apron fresh and new,
And the linen kirtle round her waist.

Meanwhile, whence comes it that among
These youthful maidens fresh and fair,
So joyous, with such laughing air,
Baptiste stands sighing, with silent tongue?
And yet the bride is fair and young!
Is it Saint Joseph would say to us all,
That love, o'er-hasty, precedeth a fall?
O no! for a maiden frail, I trow,
Never bore so lofty a brow!
What lovers! they give not a single caress!
To see them so careless and cold to-day,
These are grand people, one would say.
What ails Baptiste? what grief doth him oppress?

It is, that half-way up the hill,
In yon cottage, by whose walls
Stand the cart-house and the stalls,
Dwelleth the blind orphan still,
Daughter of a veteran old;
And you must know, one year ago,
That Margaret, the young and tender,
Was the village pride and splendor,
And Baptiste her lover bold.
Love, the deceiver, them ensnared;
For them the altar was prepared;
But alas! the summer's blight,
The dread disease that none can stay,
The pestilence that walks by night,
Took the young bride's sight away.

All at the father's stern command was changed;
Their peace was gone, but not their love estranged.
Wearied at home, erelong the lover fled;
Returned but three short days ago,
The golden chain they round him throw,
He is enticed, and onward led
To marry Angela, and yet
Is thinking ever of Margaret.

Then suddenly a maiden cried,
'Anna, Theresa, Mary, Kate!
Here comes the cripple Jane!' And by a fountain's side
A woman, bent and gray with years,
Under the mulberry-trees appears,
And all towards her run, as fleet
As had they wings upon their feet.

It is that Jane, the cripple Jane,
Is a soothsayer, wary and kind.
She telleth fortunes, and none complain.
She promises one a village swain,
Another a happy wedding-day,
And the bride a lovely boy straightway.
All comes to pass as she avers;
She never deceives, she never errs.

But for this once the village seer
Wears a countenance severe,
And from beneath her eyebrows thin and white
Her two eyes flash like cannons bright
Aimed at the bridegroom in waistcoat blue,
Who, like a statue, stands in view;
Changing color as well he might,
When the beldame wrinkled and gray
Takes the young bride by the hand,
And, with the tip of her reedy wand
Making the sign of the cross, doth say:--
'Thoughtless Angela, beware!
Lest, when thou weddest this false bridegroom,
Thou diggest for thyself a tomb!'
And she was silent; and the maidens fair
Saw from each eye escape a swollen tear;
But on a little streamlet silver-clear,
What are two drops of turbid rain?
Saddened a moment, the bridal train
Resumed the dance and song again;
The bridegroom only was pale with fear;--
And down green alleys
Of verdurous valleys,
With merry sallies,
They sang the refrain:--

'The roads should blossom, the roads should bloom,
So fair a bride shall leave her home!
Should blossom and bloom with garlands gay,
So fair a bride shall pass to-day!'

II.
And by suffering worn and weary,
But beautiful as some fair angel yet,
Thus lamented Margaret,
In her cottage lone and dreary;--

'He has arrived! arrived at last!
Yet Jane has named him not these three days past;
Arrived! yet keeps aloof so far!
And knows that of my night he is the star!
Knows that long months I wait alone, benighted,
And count the moments since he went away!
Come! keep the promise of that happier day,
That I may keep the faith to thee I plighted!
What joy have I without thee? what delight?
Grief wastes my life, and makes it misery;
Day for the others ever, but for me
Forever night! forever night!
When he is gone 't is dark! my soul is sad!
I suffer! O my God! come, make me glad.
When he is near, no thoughts of day intrude;
Day has blue heavens, but Baptiste has blue eyes!
Within them shines for me a heaven of love,
A heaven all happiness, like that above,
No more of grief! no more of lassitude!
Earth I forget,--and heaven, and all distresses,
When seated by my side my hand he presses;
But when alone, remember all!
Where is Baptiste? he hears not when I call!
A branch of ivy, dying on the ground,
I need some bough to twine around!
In pity come! be to my suffering kind!
True love, they say, in grief doth more abound!
What then--when one is blind?

'Who knows? perhaps I am forsaken!
Ah! woe is me! then bear me to my grave!
O God! what thoughts within me waken!
Away! he will return! I do but rave!
He will return! I need not fear!
He swore it by our Saviour dear;
He could not come at his own will;
Is weary, or perhaps is ill!
Perhaps his heart, in this disguise,
Prepares for me some sweet surprise!
But some one comes! Though blind, my heart can see!
And that deceives me not! 't is he! 't is he!'

And the door ajar is set,
And poor, confiding Margaret
Rises, with outstretched arms, but sightless eyes;
'T is only Paul, her brother, who thus cries:--
'Angela the bride has passed!
I saw the wedding guests go by;
Tell me, my sister, why were we not asked?
For all are there but you and I!'

'Angela married! and not send
To tell her secret unto me!
O, speak! who may the bridegroom be?'
'My sister, 't is Baptiste, thy friend!'

A cry the blind girl gave, but nothing said;
A milky whiteness spreads upon her cheeks;
An icy hand, as heavy as lead,
Descending, as her brother speaks,
Upon her heart, that has ceased to beat,
Suspends awhile its life and heat.
She stands beside the boy, now sore distressed,
A wax Madonna as a peasant dressed.

At length, the bridal song again
Brings her back to her sorrow and pain.

'Hark! the joyous airs are ringing!
Sister, dost thou hear them singing?
How merrily they laugh and jest!
Would we were bidden with the rest!
I would don my hose of homespun gray,
And my doublet of linen striped and gay;
Perhaps they will come; for they do not wed
Till to-morrow at seven o'clock, it is said!'

'I know it!' answered Margaret;
Whom the vision, with aspect black as jet,
Mastered again; and its hand of ice
Held her heart crushed, as in a vice!
'Paul, be not sad! 'T is a holiday;
To-morrow put on thy doublet gay!
But leave me now for a while alone.'
Away, with a hop and a jump, went Paul,
And, as he whistled along the hall,
Entered Jane, the crippled crone.

'Holy Virgin! what dreadful heat!
I am faint, and weary, and out of breath!
But thou art cold,--art chill as death;
My little friend! what ails thee, sweet?'
'Nothing! I heard them singing home the bride;
And, as I listened to the song,
I thought my turn would come erelong,
Thou knowest it is at Whitsuntide.
Thy cards forsooth can never lie,
To me such joy they prophesy,
Thy skill shall be vaunted far and wide
When they behold him at my side.
And poor Baptiste, what sayest thou?
It must seem long to him;--methinks I see him now!'
Jane, shuddering, her hand doth press:
'Thy love I cannot all approve;
We must not trust too much to happiness;--
Go, pray to God, that thou mayst love him less!'
'The more I pray, the more I love!
It is no sin, for God is on my side!'
It was enough; and Jane no more replied.

Now to all hope her heart is barred and cold;
But to deceive the beldame old
She takes a sweet, contented air;
Speak of foul weather or of fair,
At every word the maiden smiles!
Thus the beguiler she beguiles;
So that, departing at the evening's close,
She says, 'She may be saved! she nothing knows!'

Poor Jane, the cunning sorceress!
Now that thou wouldst, thou art no prophetess!
This morning, in the fulness of thy heart,
Thou wast so, far beyond thine art!

III.
Now rings the bell, nine times reverberating,
And the white daybreak, stealing up the sky,
Sees in two cottages two maidens waiting,
How differently!

Queen of a day, by flatterers caressed,
The one puts on her cross and crown,
Decks with a huge bouquet her breast,
And flaunting, fluttering up and down,
Looks at herself, and cannot rest,
The other, blind, within her little room,
Has neither crown nor flower's perfume;
But in their stead for something gropes apart,
That in a drawer's recess doth lie,
And, 'neath her bodice of bright scarlet dye,
Convulsive clasps it to her heart.

The one, fantastic, light as air,
'Mid kisses ringing,
And joyous singing,
Forgets to say her morning prayer!

The other, with cold drops upon her brow,
Joins her two hands, and kneels upon the floor,
And whispers, as her brother opes the door,
'O God! forgive me now!'

And then the orphan, young and blind,
Conducted by her brother's hand,
Towards the church, through paths unscanned,
With tranquil air, her way doth wind.
Odors of laurel, making her faint and pale,
Round her at times exhale,
And in the sky as yet no sunny ray,
But brumal vapors gray.

Near that castle, fair to see,
Crowded with sculptures old, in every part,
Marvels of nature and of art,
And proud of its name of high degree,
A little chapel, almost bare
At the base of the rock, is builded there;
All glorious that it lifts aloof,
Above each jealous cottage roof,
Its sacred summit, swept by autumn gales,
And its blackened steeple high in air,
Round which the osprey screams and sails.

'Paul, lay thy noisy rattle by!'
Thus Margaret said. 'Where are we? we ascend!'
'Yes; seest thou not our journey's end?
Hearest not the osprey from the belfry cry?
The hideous bird, that brings ill luck, we know!
Dost thou remember when our father said,
The night we watched beside his bed,
'O daughter, I am weak and low;
Take care of Paul; I feel that I am dying!'
And thou, and he, and I, all fell to crying?
Then on the roof the osprey screamed aloud;
And here they brought our father in his shroud.
There is his grave; there stands the cross we set;
Why dost thou clasp me so, dear Margaret?
Come in! The bride will be here soon:
Thou tremblest! O my God! thou art going to swoon!'

She could no more,--the blind girl, weak and weary!
A voice seemed crying from that grave so dreary,
'What wouldst thou do, my daughter?'--and she started,
And quick recoiled, aghast, faint-hearted;
But Paul, impatient, urges evermore
Her steps towards the open door;
And when, beneath her feet, the unhappy maid
Crushes the laurel near the house immortal,
And with her head, as Paul talks on again,
Touches the crown of filigrane
Suspended from the low-arched portal,
No more restrained, no more afraid,
She walks, as for a feast arrayed,
And in the ancient chapel's sombre night
They both are lost to sight.

At length the bell,
With booming sound,
Sends forth, resounding round.
Its hymeneal peal o'er rock and down the dell.
It is broad day, with sunshine and with rain;
And yet the guests delay not long,
For soon arrives the bridal train,
And with it brings the village throng.

In sooth, deceit maketh no mortal gay,
For lo! Baptiste on this triumphant day,
Mute as an idiot, sad as yester-morning,
Thinks only of the beldame's words of warning.

And Angela thinks of her cross, I wis;
To be a bride is all! The pretty lisper
Feels her heart swell to hear all round her whisper,
'How beautiful! how beautiful she is!'.

But she must calm that giddy head,
For already the Mass is said;
At the holy table stands the priest;
The wedding ring is blessed; Baptiste receives it;
Ere on the finger of the bride he leaves it,
He must pronounce one word at least!
'T is spoken; and sudden at the grooms-man's side
''T is he!' a well-known voice has cried.
And while the wedding guests all hold their breath,
Opes the confessional, and the blind girl, see!
'Baptiste,' she said, 'since thou hast wished my death,
As holy water be my blood for thee!'
And calmly in the air a knife suspended!
Doubtless her guardian angel near attended,
For anguish did its work so well,
That, ere the fatal stroke descended,
Lifeless she fell!

At eve instead of bridal verse,
The De Profundis filled the air;
Decked with flowers a simple hearse
To the churchyard forth they bear;
Village girls in robes of snow
Follow, weeping as they go;
Nowhere was a smile that day,
No, ah no! for each one seemed to say:--

'The road should mourn and be veiled in gloom,
So fair a corpse shall leave its home!
Should mourn and should weep, ah, well-away!
So fair a corpse shall pass to-day!'

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Mr Fitzmickle Has A Test Match Fright

Mr Fitzmickle, the martinet,
Stern lord of his house and kin,
Is a small, bald man, and a cricket fan
Since the night he listened in
On his young son's set one winter morn.
Now his Test complex grows tireless;
But his small, meek wife tends a lonely life,
And the small son mourns his wireless.

Mr Fitzmickle, the martinet,
Was met at his door last night
By the low-voiced maid whose eye betrayed
A state of chronic fright,
And Mary stammered in nervous tones
'Mum-Madam's took a chill, sir.'
Fitzmickle gasped, 'What's that?' he asked,
Said Mary, 'Madam's ill, sir.'

Mr Fitzmickle, the martinet,
Clutched at his brow and groaned,
His face grew white in the evening light,
'Oh, this is the end!' he moaned.
'All hope has gone!' But Mary said,
'Please, sir; don't look so sad, sir.
A 'eadache's wot the missus got.
Don't fret. She ain't that bad, sir.'

Mr Fitzmickle, the martinet,
Glared, as his voice came back
Glared at the maid, 'You mumbling jade!
Wretch! You deserve the sack!'
'But, sir -' 'Enough! Can't you speak plain?
'Madam?'' He raved like a madman,
'Out of my sight! . . . Lord! What a fright!
I thought that you said 'Bradman'!'

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All I Ask Of Thee (A Pact With God)

A fate worse than death-that's what this has been to me;
When, I wonder, will I begin to see
The fruits of both my faith and its persistence? !
Ironically, tragedy taught me strength-its insistence
That only those who possess it shall prevail;
When I have needed same, it has been there, without fail-
Trust me, I have needed much, to be drawn,
Just to get to the next day, when I thought all hope was gone.
'That which does not kill you, makes you stronger'-
Indeed, yet, how very much longer
May I depend upon my strength and fortitude! ?
When will faith and a positive attitude
Be enough to overcome nepotism and deceit-
Enough to bring about iniquity's inglorious defeat! ?

Was my death a means to foreshadow, or a new beginning-
Was this a means to mark the day, when I start winning?
The reason is not very clear to me,
It's a enigmatice miracle that I am still here, to be
A voice for those unable to speak, -
Strength, for those who may be too meak!
Whatever the purpose for which I was spared,
I may never know-only that You cared
Enough about me, to allow me this higher purpose;
Now, I must prove that I deserve this
Empyrean proffer, of a life, wholly-renewed;
It all starts with my positive attitude,
Coupled with knowledge of my life's importance,
As well as my righteousness and its adamance;
God's purpose for me, I slowly learn;
Deservedness of this new-life gift, I slowly earn.
'Heavenly Father, I am ever-obliged and humbled
For the second chance You have given-though I have stumbled.
Only You know I deserve this second chance, most rare-
My recompense to You for same-my soul, lain bare,
The truth of my heart, and the devotion of my mind-
All duteous, in pursuit of that for which You left me behind;
All I ask of Thee is that You continue to love, protect, and guide me,
Remain where You have always been my whole life-beside me! '

-Maurice Harris,13 March 2011

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My Heart Was Filled With Your Words

The curtain rose on the stage, and I saw you standing there.
The lights above were shining down upon your ink black hair.
My heart proudly skipped a beat when you looked into my eyes,
and I felt myself tremble then for what I felt arise.

The women all about me were whispering sweet and low
of how much you looked like a prince within the stage-light glow.
I secretly smiled to myself, warmed by their devotion,
unseen in the shadowed curve that circled like the ocean.

I gazed upon you as the host introduced you by name.
I felt my temperature rise as though a heated flame.
Walking over to the mike, you quick-coughed to clear your throat.
All the room was silent then as you spoke the words you wrote.

paris elegy
by larry jaffe

her reflection
forever imprinted
in the looking glass
despite her leaving
for pigalle
he missed her terribly
they skated on
the thin ice of decadence
for so long it seemed
like second nature
to seek danger
in his safe autocratic fashion
nevertheless he denied nothing
and faced her empty mirror
every day his face in his hands
cushioning the blow of her loss
the seine no longer romantic hideaway
they tell me they see through your gossamer wings
and you cannot fly

The crazy winds of cheer and applause filtered through the room.
I was lost inside of love, the lull of passion in bloom.
You gave a bow and thanked the crowd, then waved your hands good-night.
You stepped off the stage and came to me to my heart's delight.

My breath was held inside of me like quiet little bells,
like the leaves floating on the face of deep and silent wells.
You placed your hand under my chin and looked into my eyes,
and I felt myself tremble then for what I felt arise.

My love was reaching out to you like hands across the Seine;
and all at once, I knew my wings would lift to fly again.
The night, the world, and two bright stars glisten over the sea.
It is the secret passageway we find in poetry.

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