I work in a strange business, and trust is a word that's not even in the vocabulary.
Cyder: Book I
-- -- Honos erit huic quoq; Pomo? Virg.
What Soil the Apple loves, what Care is due
To Orchats, timeliest when to press the Fruits,
Thy Gift, Pomona, in Miltonian Verse
Adventrous I presume to sing; of Verse
Nor skill'd, nor studious: But my Native Soil
Invites me, and the Theme as yet unsung.
Ye Ariconian Knights, and fairest Dames,
To whom propitious Heav'n these Blessings grants,
Attend my Layes; nor hence disdain to learn,
How Nature's Gifts may be improv'd by Art.
And thou, O Mostyn, whose Benevolence,
And Candor, oft experienc'd, Me vouchsaf'd
To knit in Friendship, growing still with Years,
Accept this Pledge of Gratitude and Love.
May it a lasting Monument remain
Of dear Respect; that, when this Body frail
Is moulder'd into Dust, and I become
As I had never been, late Times may know
I once was blest in such a matchless Friend.
Who-e'er expects his lab'ring Trees shou'd bend
With Fruitage, and a kindly Harvest yield,
Be this his first Concern; to find a Tract
Impervious to the Winds, begirt with Hills,
That intercept the Hyperborean Blasts
Tempestuous, and cold Eurus nipping Force,
Noxious to feeble Buds: But to the West
Let him free Entrance grant, let Zephyrs bland
Administer their tepid genial Airs;
Naught fear he from the West, whose gentle Warmth
Discloses well the Earth's all-teeming Womb,
Invigorating tender Seeds; whose Breath
Nurtures the Orange, and the Citron Groves,
Hesperian Fruits, and wafts their Odours sweet
Wide thro' the Air, and distant Shores perfumes.
Nor only do the Hills exclude the Winds:
But, when the blackning Clouds in sprinkling Show'rs
Distill, from the high Summits down the Rain
Runs trickling; with the fertile Moisture chear'd,
The Orchats smile; joyous the Farmers see
Their thriving Plants, and bless the heav'nly Dew.
Next, let the Planter, with Discretion meet,
The Force and Genius of each Soil explore;
To what adapted, what it shuns averse:
Without this necessary Care, in vain
He hopes an Apple-Vintage, and invokes
Pomona's Aid in vain. The miry Fields,
Rejoycing in rich Mold, most ample Fruit
Of beauteous Form produce; pleasing to Sight,
But to the Tongue inelegant and flat.
So Nature has decreed; so, oft we see
Men passing fair, in outward Lineaments
Elaborate; less, inwardly, exact.
Nor from the sable Ground expect Success,
Nor from cretaceous, stubborn and jejune:
The Must, of pallid Hue, declares the Soil
Devoid of Spirit; wretched He, that quaffs
Such wheyish Liquors; oft with Colic Pangs,
With pungent Colic Pangs distress'd, he'll roar,
And toss, and turn, and curse th' unwholsome Draught.
But, Farmer, look, where full-ear'd Sheaves of Rye
Grow wavy on the Tilth, that Soil select
For Apples; thence thy Industry shall gain
Ten-fold Reward; thy Garners, thence with Store
Surcharg'd, shall burst; thy Press with purest Juice
Shall flow, which, in revolving Years, may try
Thy feeble Feet, and bind thy fault'ring Tongue.
Such is the Kentchurch, such Dantzeyan Ground,
Such thine, O learned Brome, and Capel such,
Willisian Burlton, much-lov'd Geers his Marsh,
And Sutton-Acres, drench'd with Regal Blood
Of Ethelbert, when to th' unhallow'd Feast
Of Mercian Offa he invited came,
To treat of Spousals: Long connubial Joys
He promis'd to himself, allur'd by Fair
Elfrida's Beauty; but deluded dy'd
In height of Hopes -- Oh! hardest Fate, to fall
By Shew of Friendship, and pretended Love!
I nor advise, nor reprehend the Choice
Of Marcley-Hill; the Apple no where finds
A kinder Mold: Yet 'tis unsafe to trust
Deceitful Ground: Who knows but that, once more,
This Mount may journey, and, his present Site
Forsaking, to thy Neighbours Bounds transfer
The goodly Plants, affording Matter strange
For Law-Debates? If, therefore, thou incline
To deck this Rise with Fruits of various Tastes,
Fail not by frequent Vows t' implore Success;
Thus piteous Heav'n may fix the wand'ring Glebe.
But if (for Nature doth not share alike
Her Gifts) an happy Soil shou'd be with-held;
If a penurious Clay shou'd be thy Lot,
Or rough unweildy Earth, nor to the Plough,
Nor to the Cattle kind, with sandy Stones
And Gravel o'er-abounding, think it not
Beneath thy Toil; the sturdy Pear-tree here
Will rise luxuriant, and with toughest Root
Pierce the obstructing Grit, and restive Marle.
Thus naught is useless made; nor is there Land,
But what, or of it self, or else compell'd,
Affords Advantage. On the barren Heath
The Shepherd tends his Flock, that daily crop
Their verdant Dinner from the mossie Turf,
Sufficient; after them the Cackling Goose,
Close-grazer, finds wherewith to ease her Want.
What shou'd I more? Ev'n on the cliffy Height
Of Penmenmaur, and that Cloud-piercing Hill,
Plinlimmon, from afar the Traveller kens
Astonish'd, how the Goats their shrubby Brouze
Gnaw pendent; nor untrembling canst thou see,
How from a scraggy Rock, whose Prominence
Half overshades the Ocean, hardy Men,
Fearless of rending Winds, and dashing Waves,
Cut Sampire, to excite the squeamish Gust
Of pamper'd Luxury. Then, let thy Ground
Not lye unlabour'd; if the richest Stem
Refuse to thrive, yet who wou'd doubt to plant
Somewhat, that may to Human Use redound,
And Penury, the worst of Ills, remove?
There are, who, fondly studious of Increase,
Rich Foreign Mold on their ill-natur'd Land
Induce laborious, and with fatning Muck
Besmear the Roots; in vain! the nurseling Grove
Seems fair awhile, cherish'd with foster Earth:
But, when the alien Compost is exhaust,
It's native Poverty again prevails.
Tho' this Art fails, despond not; little Pains,
In a due Hour employ'd, great Profit yield.
Th' Industrious, when the Sun in Leo rides,
And darts his sultriest Beams, portending Drought,
Forgets not at the Foot of ev'ry Plant
To sink a circling Trench, and daily pour
A just Supply of alimental Streams,
Exhausted Sap recruiting; else, false Hopes
He cherishes, nor will his Fruit expect
Th' autumnal Season, but, in Summer's Pride,
When other Orchats smile, abortive fail.
Thus the great Light of Heav'n, that in his Course
Surveys and quickens all things, often proves
Noxious to planted Fields, and often Men
Perceive his Influence dire: sweltring they run
To Grots, and Caves, and the cool Umbrage seek
Of woven Arborets, and oft the Rills
Still streaming fresh revisit, to allay
Thirst inextinguishable: But if the Spring
Preceding shou'd be destitute of Rain,
Or Blast Septentrional with brushing Wings
Sweep up the smoaky Mists, and Vapours damp,
Then wo to Mortals! Titan then exerts
His Heat intense, and on our Vitals preys;
Then Maladies of various Kinds, and Names
Unknown, malignant Fevers, and that Foe
To blooming Beauty, which imprints the Face
Of fairest Nymph, and checks our growing Love,
Reign far and near; grim Death, in different Shapes,
Depopulates the Nations, thousands fall
His Victims, Youths, and Virgins, in their Flower,
Reluctant die, and sighing leave their Loves
Unfinish'd, by infectious Heav'n destroy'd.
Such Heats prevail'd, when fair Eliza, last
Of Winchcomb's Name (next Thee in Blood, and Worth,
O fairest St. John!) left this toilsome World
In Beauty's Prime, and sadden'd all the Year:
Nor cou'd her Virtues, nor repeated Vows
Of thousand Lovers, the relentless Hand
Of Death arrest; She with the Vulgar fell,
Only distinguish'd by this humble Verse.
But if it please the Sun's intemp'rate Force
To know, attend; whilst I of ancient Fame
The Annals trace, and image to thy Mind,
How our Fore-fathers, (luckless Men!) ingulft
By the wide yawning Earth, to Stygian Shades
Went quick, in one sad Sepulchre enclos'd.
In elder Days, e'er yet the Roman Bands
Victorious, this our Other World subdu'd,
A spacious City stood, with firmest Walls
Sure mounded, and with numerous Turrets crown'd,
Aerial Spires, and Citadels, the Seat
Of Kings, and Heroes resolute in War,
Fam'd Ariconium; uncontroul'd, and free,
'Till all-subduing Latian Arms prevail'd.
Then also, tho' to foreign Yoke submiss,
She undemolish'd stood, and even 'till now
Perhaps had stood, of ancient British Art
A pleasing Monument, not less admir'd
Than what from Attic, or Etruscan Hands
Arose; had not the Heav'nly Pow'rs averse
Decreed her final Doom: For now the Fields
Labour'd with Thirst, Aquarius had not shed
His wonted Show'rs, and Sirius parch'd with Heat
Solstitial the green Herb: Hence 'gan relax
The Ground's Contexture, hence Tartarean Dregs,
Sulphur, and nitrous Spume, enkindling fierce,
Bellow'd within their darksom Caves, by far
More dismal than the loud disploded Roar
Of brazen Enginry, that ceaseless storm
The Bastion of a well-built City, deem'd
Impregnable: Th' infernal Winds, 'till now
Closely imprison'd, by Titanian Warmth,
Dilating, and with unctuous Vapours fed,
Disdain'd their narrow Cells; and, their full Strength
Collecting, from beneath the solid Mass
Upheav'd, and all her Castles rooted deep
Shook from their lowest Seat; old Vaga's Stream,
Forc'd by the sudden Shock, her wonted Track
Forsook, and drew her humid Train aslope,
Crankling her Banks: And now the low'ring Sky,
And baleful Lightning, and the Thunder, Voice
Of angry Gods, that rattled solemn, dismaid
The sinking Hearts of Men. Where shou'd they turn
Distress'd? Whence seek for Aid? when from below
Hell threatens, and ev'n Fate supreme gives Signs
Of Wrath and Desolation? Vain were Vows,
And Plaints, and suppliant Hands, to Heav'n erect!
Yet some to Fanes repair'd, and humble Rites
Perform'd to Thor, and Woden, fabled Gods,
Who with their Vot'ries in one Ruin shar'd,
Crush'd, and o'erwhelm'd. Others, in frantick Mood,
Run howling thro' the Streets, their hideous Yells
Rend the dark Welkin; Horror stalks around,
Wild-staring, and, his sad Concomitant,
Despair, of abject Look: At ev'ry Gate
The thronging Populace with hasty Strides
Press furious, and, too eager of Escape,
Obstruct the easie Way; the rocking Town
Supplants their Footsteps; to, and fro, they reel
Astonish'd, as o'er-charg'd with Wine; when lo!
The Ground adust her riven Mouth disparts,
Horrible Chasm, profound! with swift Descent
Old Ariconium sinks, and all her Tribes,
Heroes, and Senators, down to the Realms
Of endless Night. Mean while, the loosen'd Winds
Infuriate, molten Rocks and flaming Globes
Hurl'd high above the Clouds; 'till, all their Force
Consum'd, her rav'nous Jaws th' Earth satiate clos'd.
Thus this fair City fell, of which the Name
Survives alone; nor is there found a Mark,
Whereby the curious Passenger may learn
Her ample Site, save Coins, and mould'ring Urns,
And huge unweildy Bones, lasting Remains
Of that Gigantic Race; which, as he breaks
The clotted Glebe, the Plowman haply finds,
Appall'd. Upon that treacherous Tract of Land,
She whilome stood; now Ceres, in her Prime,
Smiles fertile, and, with ruddiest Freight bedeckt,
The Apple-Tree, by our Fore-fathers Blood
Improv'd, that now recalls the devious Muse,
Urging her destin'd Labours to persue.
The Prudent will observe, what Passions reign
In various Plants (for not to Man alone,
But all the wide Creation, Nature gave
Love, and Aversion): Everlasting Hate
The Vine to Ivy bears, nor less abhors
The Coleworts Rankness; but, with amorous Twine,
Clasps the tall Elm: the Pæstan Rose unfolds
Her Bud, more lovely, near the fetid Leek,
(Crest of stout Britons,) and inhances thence
The Price of her celestial Scent: The Gourd,
And thirsty Cucumer, when they perceive
Th' approaching Olive, with Resentment fly
Her fatty Fibres, and with Tendrils creep
Diverse, detesting Contact; whilst the Fig
Contemns not Rue, nor Sage's humble Leaf,
Close neighbouring: The Herefordian Plant
Caresses freely the contiguous Peach,
Hazel, and weight-resisting Palm, and likes
T' approach the Quince, and th' Elder's pithy Stem;
Uneasie, seated by funereal Yeugh,
Or Walnut, (whose malignant Touch impairs
All generous Fruits), or near the bitter Dews
Of Cherries. Therefore, weigh the Habits well
Of Plants, how they associate best, nor let
Ill Neighbourhood corrupt thy hopeful Graffs.
Wouldst thou, thy Vats with gen'rous Juice should froth?
Respect thy Orchats; think not, that the Trees
Spontaneous will produce an wholsom Draught.
Let Art correct thy Breed; from Parent Bough
A Cyon meetly sever; after, force
A way into the Crabstock's close-wrought Grain
By Wedges, and within the living Wound
Enclose the Foster Twig; nor over-nice
Refuse with thy own Hands around to spread
The binding Clay: Ee'r-long their differing Veins
Unite, and kindly Nourishment convey
To the new Pupil; now he shoots his Arms
With quickest Growth; now shake the teeming Trunc,
Down rain th' impurpl'd Balls, ambrosial Fruit.
Whether the Wilding's Fibres are contriv'd
To draw th' Earth's purest Spirit, and resist
It's Feculence, which in more porous Stocks
Of Cyder-Plants finds Passage free, or else
The native Verjuice of the Crab, deriv'd
Thro' th' infix'd Graff, a grateful Mixture forms
Of tart and sweet; whatever be the Cause,
This doubtful Progeny by nicest Tastes
Expected best Acceptance finds, and pays
Largest Revenues to the Orchat-Lord.
Some think, the Quince and Apple wou'd combine
In happy Union; Others fitter deem
The Sloe-Stem bearing Sylvan Plums austere.
Who knows but Both may thrive? Howe'er, what loss
To try the Pow'rs of Both, and search how far
Two different Natures may concur to mix
In close Embraces, and strange Off-spring bear?
Thoul't find that Plants will frequent Changes try,
Undamag'd, and their marriageable Arms
Conjoin with others. So Silurian Plants
Admit the Peache's odoriferous Globe,
And Pears of sundry Forms; at diff'rent times
Adopted Plums will aliene Branches grace;
And Men have gather'd from the Hawthorn's Branch
Large Medlars, imitating regal Crowns.
Nor is it hard to beautifie each Month
With Files of particolour'd Fruits, that please
The Tongue, and View, at once. So Maro's Muse,
Thrice sacred Muse! commodious Precepts gives
Instructive to the Swains, not wholly bent
On what is gainful: Sometimes she diverts
From solid Counsels, shews the Force of Love
In savage Beasts; how Virgin Face divine
Attracts the hapless Youth thro' Storms, and Waves,
Alone, in deep of Night: Then she describes
The Scythian Winter, nor disdains to sing,
How under Ground the rude Riphæan Race
Mimic brisk Cyder with the Brakes Product wild;
Sloes pounded, Hips, and Servis' harshest Juice.
Let sage Experience teach thee all the Arts
Of Grafting, and In-Eyeing; when to lop
The flowing Branches; what Trees answer best
From Root, or Kernel: She will best the Hours
Of Harvest, and Seed-time declare; by Her
The diff'rent Qualities of things were found,
And secret Motions; how with heavy Bulk
Volatile Hermes, fluid and unmoist,
Mounts on the Wings of Air; to Her we owe
The Indian Weed, unknown to ancient Times,
Nature's choice Gift, whose acrimonious Fume
Extracts superfluous Juices, and refines
The Blood distemper'd from its noxious Salts;
Friend to the Spirits, which with Vapours bland
It gently mitigates, Companion fit
Of Pleasantry, and Wine; nor to the Bards
Unfriendly, when they to the vocal Shell
Warble melodious their well-labour'd Songs.
She found the polish'd Glass, whose small Convex
Enlarges to ten Millions of Degrees
The Mite, invisible else, of Nature's Hand
Least Animal; and shews, what Laws of Life
The Cheese-Inhabitants observe, and how
Fabrick their Mansions in the harden'd Milk,
Wonderful Artists! But the hidden Ways
Of Nature wouldst thou know? how first she frames
All things in Miniature? thy Specular Orb
Apply to well-dissected Kernels; lo!
Strange Forms arise, in each a little Plant
Unfolds its Boughs: observe the slender Threads
Of first-beginning Trees, their Roots, their Leaves,
In narrow Seeds describ'd; Thou'lt wond'ring say,
An inmate Orchat ev'ry Apple boasts.
Thus All things by Experience are display'd,
And Most improv'd. Then sedulously think
To meliorate thy Stock; no Way, or Rule
Be unassay'd; prevent the Morning Star
Assiduous, nor with the Western Sun
Surcease to work; lo! thoughtful of Thy Gain,
Not of my Own, I all the live-long Day
Consume in Meditation deep, recluse
From human Converse, nor, at shut of Eve,
Enjoy Repose; but oft at Midnight Lamp
Ply my brain-racking Studies, if by chance
Thee I may counsel right; and oft this Care
Disturbs me slumbring. Wilt thou then repine
To labour for thy Self? and rather chuse
To lye supinely, hoping, Heav'n will bless
Thy slighted Fruits, and give thee Bread unearn'd?
'Twill profit, when the Stork, sworn-Foe of Snakes,
Returns, to shew Compassion to thy Plants,
Fatigu'd with Breeding. Let the arched Knife
Well sharpen'd now assail the spreading Shades
Of Vegetables, and their thirsty Limbs
Dissever: for the genial Moisture, due
To Apples, otherwise mispends it self
In barren Twigs, and, for th' expected Crop,
Naught but vain Shoots, and empty Leaves abound.
When swelling Buds their od'rous Foliage shed,
And gently harden into Fruit, the Wise
Spare not the little Off-springs, if they grow
Redundant; but the thronging Clusters thin
By kind Avulsion: else, the starv'ling Brood,
Void of sufficient Sustenance, will yield
A slender Autumn; which the niggard Soul
Too late shall weep, and curse his thrifty Hand,
That would not timely ease the pond'rous Boughs.
It much conduces, all the Cares to know
Of Gard'ning, how to scare nocturnal Thieves,
And how the little Race of Birds, that hop
From Spray to Spray, scooping the costliest Fruit
Insatiate, undisturb'd. Priapus' Form
Avails but little; rather guard each Row
With the false Terrors of a breathless Kite.
This done, the timorous Flock with swiftest Wing
Scud thro' the Air; their Fancy represents
His mortal Talons, and his rav'nous Beak
Destructive; glad to shun his hostile Gripe,
They quit their Thefts, and unfrequent the Fields.
Besides, the filthy Swine will oft invade
Thy firm Inclosure, and with delving Snout
The rooted Forest undermine: forthwith
Alloo thy furious Mastiff, bid him vex
The noxious Herd, and print upon their Ears
A sad Memorial of their past Offence.
The flagrant Procyon will not fail to bring
Large Shoals of slow House-bearing Snails, that creep
O'er the ripe Fruitage, paring slimy Tracts
In the sleek Rinds, and unprest Cyder drink.
No Art averts this Pest; on Thee it lyes,
With Morning and with Evening Hand to rid
The preying Reptiles; nor, if wise, wilt thou
Decline this Labour, which it self rewards
With pleasing Gain, whilst the warm Limbec draws
Salubrious Waters from the nocent Brood.
Myriads of Wasps now also clustering hang,
And drain a spurious Honey from thy Groves,
Their Winter Food; tho' oft repulst, again
They rally, undismay'd: but Fraud with ease
Ensnares the noisom Swarms; let ev'ry Bough
Bear frequent Vials, pregnant with the Dregs
Of Moyle, or Mum, or Treacle's viscous Juice;
They, by th' alluring Odor drawn, in haste
Fly to the dulcet Cates, and crouding sip
Their palatable Bane; joyful thou'lt see
The clammy Surface all o'er-strown with Tribes
Of greedy Insects, that with fruitless Toil
Flap filmy Pennons oft, to extricate
Their Feet, in liquid Shackles bound, 'till Death
Bereave them of their worthless Souls: Such doom
Waits Luxury, and lawless Love of Gain!
Howe'er thou maist forbid external Force,
Intestine Evils will prevail; damp Airs,
And rainy Winters, to the Centre pierce
Of firmest Fruits, and by unseen Decay
The proper Relish vitiate: then the Grub
Oft unobserv'd invades the vital Core,
Pernicious Tenant, and her secret Cave
Enlarges hourly, preying on the Pulp
Ceaseless; mean while the Apple's outward Form
Delectable the witless Swain beguiles,
'Till, with a writhen Mouth, and spattering Noise,
He tastes the bitter Morsel, and rejects
Disrelisht; not with less Surprize, then when
Embattled Troops with flowing Banners pass
Thro' flow'ry Meads delighted, nor distrust
The smiling Surface; whilst the cavern'd Ground,
With Grain incentive stor'd, by suddain Blaze
Bursts fatal, and involves the Hopes of War
In firy Whirles; full of victorious Thoughts,
Torn and dismembred, they aloft expire.
Now turn thine Eye to view Alcinous' Groves,
The Pride of the Phæacian Isle, from whence,
Sailing the Spaces of the boundless Deep,
To Ariconium pretious Fruits arriv'd:
The Pippin burnisht o'er with Gold, the Moile
Of sweetest hony'd Taste, the fair Permain,
Temper'd, like comliest Nymph, with red and white.
Salopian Acres flourish with a Growth
Peculiar, styl'd the Ottley: Be thou first
This Apple to transplant; if to the Name
It's Merit answers, no where shalt thou find
A Wine more priz'd, or laudable of Taste.
Nor does the Eliot least deserve thy Care,
Nor John-Apple, whose wither'd Rind, entrencht
With many a Furrow, aptly represents
Decrepid Age; nor that from Harvey nam'd,
Quick-relishing: Why should we sing the Thrift,
Codling, or Pomroy, or of pimpled Coat
The Russet, or the Cats-Head's weighty Orb,
Enormous in its Growth; for various Use
Tho' these are meet, tho' after full repast
Are oft requir'd, and crown the rich Desert?
What, tho' the Pear-Tree rival not the Worth,
Of Ariconian Products? yet her Freight
Is not contemn'd, yet her wide-branching Arms
Best screen thy Mansion from the fervent Dog
Adverse to Life; the wintry Hurricanes
In vain imploy their Roar, her Trunc unmov'd
Breaks the strong Onset, and controls their Rage.
Chiefly the Bosbury, whose large Increase,
Annual, in sumptuous Banquets claims Applause.
Thrice acceptable Bev'rage! could but Art
Subdue the floating Lee, Pomona's self
Would dread thy Praise, and shun the dubious Strife.
Be it thy Choice, when Summer-Heats annoy,
To sit beneath her leafy Canopy,
Quaffing rich Liquids: Oh! how sweet t' enjoy,
At once her Fruits, and hospitable Shade!
But how with equal Numbers shall we match
The Musk's surpassing Worth! that earliest gives
Sure hopes of racy Wine, and in its Youth,
Its tender Nonage, loads the spreading Boughs
With large and juicy Off-spring, that defies
The Vernal Nippings, and cold Syderal Blasts!
Yet let her to the Read-streak yield, that once
Was of the Sylvan Kind, unciviliz'd,
Of no Regard, 'till Scudamore's skilful Hand
Improv'd her, and by courtly Discipline
Taught her the savage Nature to forget:
Hence styl'd the Scudamorean Plant; whose Wine
Who-ever tastes, let him with grateful Heart
Respect that ancient loyal House, and wish
The noble Peer, that now transcends our Hopes
In early Worth, his Country's justest Pride,
Uninterrupted Joy, and Health entire.
Let every Tree in every Garden own
The Red-streak as supream; whose pulpous Fruit
With Gold irradiate, and Vermilian shines
Tempting, not fatal, as the Birth of that
Primæval interdicted Plant, that won
Fond Eve in hapless Hour to taste, and die.
This, of more bounteous Influence, inspires
Poetic Raptures, and the lowly Muse
Kindles to loftier Strains; even I perceive
Her sacred Virtue. See! the Numbers flow
Easie, whilst, chear'd with her nectareous Juice,
Hers, and my Country's Praises I exalt.
Hail Herefordian Plant, that dost disdain
All other Fields! Heav'n's sweetest Blessing, hail!
Be thou the copious Matter of my Song,
And Thy choice Nectar; on which always waits
Laughter, and Sport, and care-beguiling Wit,
And Friendship, chief Delight of Human Life.
What shou'd we wish for more? or why, in quest
Of Foreign Vintage, insincere, and mixt,
Traverse th' extreamest World? Why tempt the Rage
Of the rough Ocean? when our native Glebe
Imparts, from bounteous Womb, annual Recruits
Of Wine delectable, that far surmounts
Gallic, or Latin Grapes, or those that see
The setting Sun near Calpe's tow'ring Height.
Nor let the Rhodian, nor the Lesbian Vines
Vaunt their rich Must, nor let Tokay contend
For Sov'ranty; Phanæus self must bow
To th' Ariconian Vales: And shall we doubt
T' improve our vegetable Wealth, or let
The Soil lye idle, which, with fit Manure,
Will largest Usury repay, alone
Impower'd to supply what Nature asks
Frugal, or what nice Appetite requires?
The Meadows here, with bat'ning Ooze enrich'd,
Give Spirit to the Grass; three Cubits high
The jointed Herbage shoots; th' unfallow'd Glebe
Yearly o'ercomes the Granaries with Store
Of Golden Wheat, the Strength of Human Life.
Lo, on auxiliary Poles, the Hops
Ascending spiral, rang'd in meet Array!
Lo, how the Arable with Barley-Grain
Stands thick, o'er-shadow'd, to the thirsty Hind
Transporting Prospect! These, as modern Use
Ordains, infus'd, an Auburn Drink compose,
Wholesome, of deathless Fame. Here, to the Sight,
Apples of Price, and plenteous Sheaves of Corn,
Oft interlac'd occurr, and both imbibe
Fitting congenial Juice; so rich the Soil,
So much does fructuous Moisture o'er-abound!
Nor are the Hills unamiable, whose Tops
To Heav'n aspire, affording Prospect sweet
To Human Ken; nor at their Feet the Vales
Descending gently, where the lowing Herd
Chews verd'rous Pasture; nor the yellow Fields
Gaily' enterchang'd, with rich Variety
Pleasing, as when an Emerald green, enchas'd
In flamy Gold, from the bright Mass acquires
A nobler Hue, more delicate to Sight.
Next add the Sylvan Shades, and silent Groves,
(Haunt of the Druids) whence the Hearth is fed
With copious Fuel; whence the sturdy Oak,
A Prince's Refuge once, th' æternal Guard
Of England's Throne, by sweating Peasants fell'd,
Stems the vast Main, and bears tremendous War
To distant Nations, or with Sov'ran Sway
Aws the divided World to Peace and Love.
Why shou'd the Chalybes, or Bilboa boast
Their harden'd Iron; when our Mines produce
As perfect Martial Ore? Can Tmolus' Head
Vie with our Safron Odours? Or the Fleece
Bætic, or finest Tarentine, compare
With Lemster's silken Wool? Where shall we find
Men more undaunted, for their Country's Weal
More prodigal of Life? In ancient Days,
The Roman Legions, and great Cæsar found
Our Fathers no mean Foes: And Cressy Plains,
And Agincourt, deep-ting'd with Blood, confess
What the Silures Vigour unwithstood
Cou'd do in rigid Fight; and chiefly what
Brydges' wide-wasting Hand, first Garter'd Knight,
Puissant Author of great Chandois' Stemm,
High Chandois, that transmits Paternal Worth,
Prudence, and ancient Prowess, and Renown,
T' his Noble Off-spring. O thrice happy Peer!
That, blest with hoary Vigour, view'st Thy self
Fresh blooming in Thy Generous Son; whose Lips,
Flowing with nervous Eloquence exact,
Charm the wise Senate, and Attention win
In deepest Councils: Ariconium pleas'd,
Him, as her chosen Worthy, first salutes.
Him on th' Iberian, on the Gallic Shore,
Him hardy Britons bless; His faithful Hand
Conveys new Courage from afar, nor more
The General's Conduct, than His Care avails.
Thee also, Glorious Branch of Cecil's Line,
This Country claims; with Pride and Joy to Thee
Thy Alterennis calls: yet she endures
Patient Thy Absence, since Thy prudent Choice
Has fix'd Thee in the Muse's fairest Seat,
Where Aldrich reigns, and from his endless Store
Of universal Knowledge still supplies
His noble Care; He generous Thoughts instills
Of true Nobility, their Country's Love,
(Chief End of Life) and forms their ductile Minds
To Human Virtues: By His Genius led,
Thou soon in every Art preeminent
Shalt grace this Isle, and rise to Burleigh's Fame.
Hail high-born Peer! And Thou, great Nurse of Arts,
And Men, from whence conspicuous Patriots spring,
Hanmer, and Bromley; Thou, to whom with due
Respect Wintonia bows, and joyful owns
Thy mitred Off-spring; be for ever blest
With like Examples, and to future Times
Proficuous, such a Race of Men produce,
As, in the Cause of Virtue firm, may fix
Her Throne inviolate. Hear, ye Gods, this Vow
From One, the meanest in her numerous Train;
Tho' meanest, not least studious of her Praise.
Muse, raise thy Voice to Beaufort's spotless Fame,
To Beaufort, in a long Descent deriv'd
From Royal Ancestry, of Kingly Rights
Faithful Asserters: In Him centring meet
Their glorious Virtues, high Desert from Pride
Disjoin'd, unshaken Honour, and Contempt
Of strong Allurements. O Illustrious Prince!
O Thou of ancient Faith! Exulting, Thee,
In her fair List this happy Land inrolls.
Who can refuse a Tributary Verse
To Weymouth, firmest Friend of slighted Worth
In evil Days? whose hospitable Gate,
Unbarr'd to All, invites a numerous Train
Of daily Guests; whose Board, with Plenty crown'd,
Revives the Feast-rites old: Mean while His Care
Forgets not the afflicted, but content
In Acts of secret Goodness, shuns the Praise,
That sure attends. Permit me, bounteous Lord,
To blazon what tho' hid will beauteous shine;
And with Thy Name to dignifie my Song.
But who is He, that on the winding Stream
Of Vaga first drew vital Breath, and now
Approv'd in Anna's secret Councils sits,
Weighing the Sum of Things, with wise Forecast
Sollicitous of public Good? How large
His Mind, that comprehends what-e'er was known
To Old, or Present Time; yet not elate,
Not conscious of its Skill? What Praise deserves
His liberal Hand, that gathers but to give,
Preventing Suit? O not unthankful Muse,
Him lowly reverence, that first deign'd to hear
Thy Pipe, and skreen'd thee from opprobrious Tongues.
Acknowledge thy Own Harley, and his Name
Inscribe on ev'ry Bark; the wounded Plants
Will fast increase, faster thy just Respect.
Such are our Heroes, by their Virtues known,
Or Skill in Peace, and War: Of softer Mold
The Female Sex, with sweet attractive Airs
Subdue obdurate Hearts. The Travellers oft,
That view their matchless Forms with transient Glance,
Catch suddain Love, and sigh for Nymphs unknown,
Smit with the Magic of their Eyes: nor hath
The Dædal Hand of Nature only pour'd
Her Gifts of outward Grace; their Innocence
Unfeign'd, and Virtue most engaging, free
From Pride, or Artifice, long Joys afford
To th' honest Nuptial Bed, and in the Wane
Of Life, rebate the Miseries of Age.
And is there found a Wretch, so base of Mind,
That Woman's pow'rful Beauty dares condemn,
Exactest Work of Heav'n? He ill deserves
Or Love, or Pity; friendless let him see
Uneasie, tedious Days, despis'd, forlorn,
As Stain of Human Race: But may the Man,
That chearfully recounts the Females Praise
Find equal Love, and Love's untainted Sweets
Enjoy with Honour. O, ye Gods! might I
Elect my Fate, my happiest Choice should be
A fair, and modest Virgin, that invites
With Aspect chast, forbidding loose Desire,
Tenderly smiling; in whose Heav'nly Eye
Sits purest Love enthron'd: But if the Stars
Malignant, these my better Hopes oppose,
May I, at least, the sacred Pleasures know
Of strictest Amity; nor ever want
A Friend, with whom I mutually may share
Gladness, and Anguish, by kind Intercourse
Of Speech, and Offices. May in my Mind,
Indelible a grateful Sense remain
Of Favours undeserv'd! -- O Thou! from whom
Gladly both Rich, and Low seek Aid; most Wise
Interpreter of Right, whose gracious Voice
Breaths Equity, and curbs too rigid Law
With mild, impartial Reason; what Returns
Of Thanks are due to Thy Beneficence
Freely vouchsaft, when to the Gates of Death
I tended prone? If Thy indulgent Care
Had not preven'd, among unbody'd Shades
I now had wander'd; and these empty Thoughts
Of Apples perish'd: But, uprais'd by Thee,
I tune my Pipe afresh, each Night, and Day
Thy unexampled Goodness to extoll
Desirous; but nor Night, nor Day suffice
For that great Task; the highly Honour'd Name
Of Trevor must employ my willing Thoughts
Incessant, dwell for ever on my Tongue.
Let me be grateful, but let far from me
Be fawning Cringe, and false dissembling Look,
And servile Flattery, that harbours oft
In Courts, and gilded Roofs. Some loose the Bands
Of ancient Friendship, cancell Nature's Laws
For Pageantry, and tawdy Gugaws. Some
Renounce their Sires, oppose paternal Right
For Rule, and Power; and other's Realms invade,
With specious Shews of Love. This traiterous Wretch
Betrays his Sov'ran. Others, destitute
Of real Zeal, to ev'ry Altar bend,
By Lucre sway'd, and act the basest Things
To be styl'd Honourable: Th' Honest Man,
Simple of Heart, prefers inglorious Want
To ill-got Wealth; rather from Door to Door
A jocund Pilgrim, tho' distress'd, he' ll rove,
Than break his plighted Faith; nor Fear, nor Hope,
Will shock his stedfast Soul; rather debar'd
Each common Privilege, cut off from Hopes
Of meanest Gain, of present Goods despoil'd,
He'll bear the Marks of Infamy, contemn'd,
Unpity'd; yet his Mind, of Evil pure,
Supports him, and Intention free from Fraud.
If no Retinue with observant Eyes
Attend him, if he can't with Purple stain
Of cumbrous Vestments, labour'd o'er with Gold,
Dazle the Croud, and set them all agape;
Yet clad in homely Weeds, from Envy's Darts
Remote he lives, nor knows the nightly Pangs
Of Conscience, nor with Spectre's grisly Forms,
Dæmons, and injur'd Souls, at Close of Day
Annoy'd, sad interrupted Slumbers finds.
But (as a Child, whose inexperienc'd Age
Nor evil Purpose fears, nor knows,) enjoys
Night's sweet Refreshment, humid Sleep, sincere.
When Chaunticleer, with Clarion shrill, recalls
The tardy Day, he to his Labours hies
Gladsome, intent on somewhat that may ease
Unhealthy Mortals, and with curious Search
Examines all the Properties of Herbs,
Fossils, and Minerals, that th' embowell'd Earth
Displays, if by his Industry he can
Benefit Human Race: Or else his Thoughts
Are exercis'd with Speculations deep
Of Good, and Just, and Meet, and th' wholsome Rules
Of Temperance, and aught that may improve
The moral Life; not sedulous to rail,
Nor with envenom'd Tongue to blast the Fame
Of harmless Men, or secret Whispers spread,
'Mong faithful Friends, to breed Distrust, and Hate.
Studious of Virtue, he no Life observes
Except his own, his own employs his Cares,
Large Subject! that he labours to refine
Daily, nor of his little Stock denies
Fit Alms to Lazars, merciful, and meek.
Thus sacred Virgil liv'd, from courtly Vice,
And Baits of pompous Rome secure; at Court
Still thoughtful of the rural honest Life,
And how t' improve his Grounds, and how himself:
Best Poet! fit Exemplar for the Tribe
Of Phœbus, nor less fit Mæonides,
Poor eyeless Pilgrim! and if after these,
If after these another I may name,
Thus tender Spencer liv'd, with mean Repast
Content, depress'd by Penury, and Pine
In foreign Realm: Yet not debas'd his Verse
By Fortune's Frowns. And had that Other Bard,
Oh, had but He that first ennobled Song
With holy Raptures, like his Abdiel been,
'Mong many faithless, strictly faithful found;
Unpity'd, he should not have wail'd his Orbs,
That roll'd in vain to find the piercing Ray,
And found no Dawn, by dim Suffusion veil'd!
But He -- However, let the Muse abstain,
Nor blast his Fame, from whom she learnt to sing
In much inferior Strains, grov'ling beneath
Th' Olympian Hill, on Plains, and Vales intent,
Mean Follower. There let her rest a-while,
Pleas'd with the fragrant Walks, and cool Retreat.
- quotes about apples
- quotes about Thanksgiving
- quotes about worry
- quotes about diversity
- quotes about harvest
- quotes about genealogy
- quotes about friendship
- quotes about nature
- quotes about language
Lazy laughing languid Jenny,
Fond of a kiss and fond of a guinea,
Whose head upon my knee to-night
Rests for a while, as if grown light
With all our dances and the sound
To which the wild tunes spun you round:
Fair Jenny mine, the thoughtless queen
Of kisses which the blush between
Could hardly make much daintier;
Whose eyes are as blue skies, whose hair
Is countless gold incomparable:
Fresh flower, scarce touched with signs that tell
Of Love's exuberant hotbed:—Nay,
Poor flower left torn since yesterday
Until to-morrow leave you bare;
Poor handful of bright spring-water
Flung in the whirlpool's shrieking face;
Poor shameful Jenny, full of grace
Thus with your head upon my knee;—
Whose person or whose purse may be
The lodestar of your reverie?
This room of yours, my Jenny, looks
A change from mine so full of books,
Whose serried ranks hold fast, forsooth,
So many captive hours of youth,—
The hours they thieve from day and night
To make one's cherished work come right,
And leave it wrong for all their theft,
Even as to-night my work was left:
Until I vowed that since my brain
And eyes of dancing seemed so fain,
My feet should have some dancing too:—
And thus it was I met with you.
Well, I suppose 'twas hard to part,
For here I am. And now, sweetheart,
You seem too tired to get to bed.
It was a careless life I led
When rooms like this were scarce so strange
Not long ago. What breeds the change,—
The many aims or the few years?
Because to-night it all appears
Something I do not know again.
The cloud's not danced out of my brain—
The cloud that made it turn and swim
While hour by hour the books grew dim.
Why, Jenny, as I watch you there,—
For all your wealth of loosened hair,
Your silk ungirdled and unlac'd
And warm sweets open to the waist,
All golden in the lamplight's gleam,—
You know not what a book you seem,
Half-read by lightning in a dream!
How should you know, my Jenny? Nay,
And I should be ashamed to say:—
Poor beauty, so well worth a kiss!
But while my thought runs on like this
With wasteful whims more than enough,
I wonder what you're thinking of.
If of myself you think at all,
What is the thought?—conjectural
On sorry matters best unsolved?—
Or inly is each grace revolved
To fit me with a lure?—or (sad
To think!) perhaps you're merely glad
That I'm not drunk or ruffianly
And let you rest upon my knee.
For sometimes, were the truth confess'd,
You're thankful for a little rest,—
Glad from the crush to rest within,
From the heart-sickness and the din
Where envy's voice at virtue's pitch
Mocks you because your gown is rich;
And from the pale girl's dumb rebuke,
Whose ill-clad grace and toil-worn look
Proclaim the strength that keeps her weak,
And other nights than yours bespeak;
And from the wise unchildish elf,
To schoolmate lesser than himself
Pointing you out, what thing you are:—
Yes, from the daily jeer and jar,
From shame and shame's outbraving too,
Is rest not sometimes sweet to you?—
But most from the hatefulness of man,
Who spares not to end what he began,
Whose acts are ill and his speech ill,
Who, having used you at his will,
Thrusts you aside, as when I dine
I serve the dishes and the wine.
Well, handsome Jenny mine, sit up:
I've filled our glasses, let us sup,
And do not let me think of you,
Lest shame of yours suffice for two.
What, still so tired? Well, well then, keep
Your head there, so you do not sleep;
But that the weariness may pass
And leave you merry, take this glass.
Ah! lazy lily hand, more bless'd
If ne'er in rings it had been dress'd
Nor ever by a glove conceal'd!
Behold the lilies of the field,
They toil not neither do they spin;
(So doth the ancient text begin,—
Not of such rest as one of these
Can share.) Another rest and ease
Along each summer-sated path
From its new lord the garden hath,
Than that whose spring in blessings ran
Which praised the bounteous husbandman,
Ere yet, in days of hankering breath,
The lilies sickened unto death.
What, Jenny, are your lilies dead?
Aye, and the snow-white leaves are spread
Like winter on the garden-bed.
But you had roses left in May,—
They were not gone too. Jenny, nay,
But must your roses die, and those
Their purfled buds that should unclose?
Even so; the leaves are curled apart,
Still red as from the broken heart,
And here's the naked stem of thorns.
Nay, nay, mere words. Here nothing warns
As yet of winter. Sickness here
Or want alone could waken fear,—
Nothing but passion wrings a tear.
Except when there may rise unsought
Haply at times a passing thought
Of the old days which seem to be
Much older than any history
That is written in any book;
When she would lie in fields and look
Along the ground through the blown grass
And wonder where the city was,
Far out of sight, whose broil and bale
They told her then for a child's tale.
Jenny, you know the city now.
A child can tell the tale there, how
Some things which are not yet enroll'd
In market-lists are bought and sold
Even till the early Sunday light,
When Saturday night is market-night
Everywhere, be it dry or wet,
And market-night in the Haymarket.
Our learned London children know,
Poor Jenny, all your pride and woe;
Have seen your lifted silken skirt
Advertise dainties through the dirt;
Have seen your coach-wheels splash rebuke
On virtue; and have learned your look
When, wealth and health slipped past, you stare
Along the streets alone, and there,
Round the long park, across the bridge,
The cold lamps at the pavement's edge
Wind on together and apart,
A fiery serpent for your heart.
Let the thoughts pass, an empty cloud!
Suppose I were to think aloud,—
What if to her all this were said?
Why, as a volume seldom read
Being opened halfway shuts again,
So might the pages of her brain
Be parted at such words, and thence
Close back upon the dusty sense.
For is there hue or shape defin'd
In Jenny's desecrated mind,
Where all contagious currents meet,
A Lethe of the middle street?
Nay, it reflects not any face,
Nor sound is in its sluggish pace,
But as they coil those eddies clot,
And night and day remember not.
Why, Jenny, you're asleep at last!—
Asleep, poor Jenny, hard and fast,—
So young and soft and tired; so fair,
With chin thus nestled in your hair,
Mouth quiet, eyelids almost blue
As if some sky of dreams shone through!
Just as another woman sleeps!
Enough to throw one's thoughts in heaps
Of doubt and horror,—what to say
Or think,—this awful secret sway,
The potter's power over the clay!
Of the same lump (it has been said)
For honour and dishonour made,
Two sister vessels. Here is one.
My cousin Nell is fond of fun,
And fond of dress, and change, and praise,
So mere a woman in her ways:
And if her sweet eyes rich in youth
Are like her lips that tell the truth,
My cousin Nell is fond of love.
And she's the girl I'm proudest of.
Who does not prize her, guard her well?
The love of change, in cousin Nell,
Shall find the best and hold it dear:
The unconquered mirth turn quieter
Not through her own, through others' woe:
The conscious pride of beauty glow
Beside another's pride in her,
One little part of all they share.
For Love himself shall ripen these
In a kind soil to just increase
Through years of fertilizing peace.
Of the same lump (as it is said)
For honour and dishonour made,
Two sister vessels. Here is one.
It makes a goblin of the sun.
So pure,—so fall'n! How dare to think
Of the first common kindred link?
Yet, Jenny, till the world shall burn
It seems that all things take their turn;
And who shall say but this fair tree
May need, in changes that may be,
Your children's children's charity?
Scorned then, no doubt, as you are scorn'd!
Shall no man hold his pride forewarn'd
Till in the end, the Day of Days,
At Judgment, one of his own race,
As frail and lost as you, shall rise,—
His daughter, with his mother's eyes?
How Jenny's clock ticks on the shelf!
Might not the dial scorn itself
That has such hours to register?
Yet as to me, even so to her
Are golden sun and silver moon,
In daily largesse of earth's boon,
Counted for life-coins to one tune.
And if, as blindfold fates are toss'd,
Through some one man this life be lost,
Shall soul not somehow pay for soul?
Fair shines the gilded aureole
In which our highest painters place
Some living woman's simple face.
And the stilled features thus descried
As Jenny's long throat droops aside,—
The shadows where the cheeks are thin,
And pure wide curve from ear to chin,—
With Raffael's, Leonardo's hand
To show them to men's souls, might stand,
Whole ages long, the whole world through,
For preachings of what God can do.
What has man done here? How atone,
Great God, for this which man has done?
And for the body and soul which by
Man's pitiless doom must now comply
With lifelong hell, what lullaby
Of sweet forgetful second birth
Remains? All dark. No sign on earth
What measure of God's rest endows
The many mansions of his house.
If but a woman's heart might see
Such erring heart unerringly
For once! But that can never be.
Like a rose shut in a book
In which pure women may not look,
For its base pages claim control
To crush the flower within the soul;
Where through each dead rose-leaf that clings,
Pale as transparent Psyche-wings,
To the vile text, are traced such things
As might make lady's cheek indeed
More than a living rose to read;
So nought save foolish foulness may
Watch with hard eyes the sure decay;
And so the life-blood of this rose,
Puddled with shameful knowledge, flows
Through leaves no chaste hand may unclose:
Yet still it keeps such faded show
Of when 'twas gathered long ago,
That the crushed petals' lovely grain,
The sweetness of the sanguine stain,
Seen of a woman's eyes, must make
Her pitiful heart, so prone to ache,
Love roses better for its sake:—
Only that this can never be:—
Even so unto her sex is she.
Yet, Jenny, looking long at you,
The woman almost fades from view.
A cipher of man's changeless sum
Of lust, past, present, and to come,
Is left. A riddle that one shrinks
To challenge from the scornful sphinx.
Like a toad within a stone
Seated while Time crumbles on;
Which sits there since the earth was curs'd
For Man's transgression at the first;
Which, living through all centuries,
Not once has seen the sun arise;
Whose life, to its cold circle charmed,
The earth's whole summers have not warmed;
Which always—whitherso the stone
Be flung—sits there, deaf, blind, alone;—
Aye, and shall not be driven out
Till that which shuts him round about
Break at the very Master's stroke,
And the dust thereof vanish as smoke,
And the seed of Man vanish as dust:—
Even so within this world is Lust.
Come, come, what use in thoughts like this?
Poor little Jenny, good to kiss,—
You'd not believe by what strange roads
Thought travels, when your beauty goads
A man to-night to think of toads!
Jenny, wake up…. Why, there's the dawn!
And there's an early waggon drawn
To market, and some sheep that jog
Bleating before a barking dog;
And the old streets come peering through
Another night that London knew;
And all as ghostlike as the lamps.
So on the wings of day decamps
My last night's frolic. Glooms begin
To shiver off as lights creep in
Past the gauze curtains half drawn-to,
And the lamp's doubled shade grows blue,—
Your lamp, my Jenny, kept alight,
Like a wise virgin's, all one night!
And in the alcove coolly spread
Glimmers with dawn your empty bed;
And yonder your fair face I see
Reflected lying on my knee,
Where teems with first foreshadowings
Your pier-glass scrawled with diamond rings:
And on your bosom all night worn
Yesterday's rose now droops forlorn,
But dies not yet this summer morn.
And now without, as if some word
Had called upon them that they heard,
The London sparrows far and nigh
Clamour together suddenly;
And Jenny's cage-bird grown awake
Here in their song his part must take,
Because here too the day doth break.
And somehow in myself the dawn
Among stirred clouds and veils withdrawn
Strikes greyly on her. Let her sleep.
But will it wake her if I heap
These cushions thus beneath her head
Where my knee was? No,—there's your bed,
My Jenny, while you dream. And there
I lay among your golden hair,
Perhaps the subject of your dreams,
These golden coins.
For still one deems
That Jenny's flattering sleep confers
New magic on the magic purse,—
Grim web, how clogged with shrivelled flies!
Between the threads fine fumes arise
And shape their pictures in the brain.
There roll no streets in glare and rain,
Nor flagrant man-swine whets his tusk;
But delicately sighs in musk
The homage of the dim boudoir;
Or like a palpitating star
Thrilled into song, the opera-night
Breathes faint in the quick pulse of light;
Or at the carriage-window shine
Rich wares for choice; or, free to dine,
Whirls through its hour of health (divine
For her) the concourse of the Park.
And though in the discounted dark
Her functions there and here are one,
Beneath the lamps and in the sun
There reigns at least the acknowledged belle
Apparelled beyond parallel.
Ah Jenny, yes, we know your dreams.
For even the Paphian Venus seems
A goddess o'er the realms of love,
When silver-shrined in shadowy grove:
Aye, or let offerings nicely plac'd
But hide Priapus to the waist,
And whoso looks on him shall see
An eligible deity.
Why, Jenny, waking here alone
May help you to remember one,
Though all the memory's long outworn
Of many a double-pillowed morn.
I think I see you when you wake,
And rub your eyes for me, and shake
My gold, in rising, from your hair,
A Danaë for a moment there.
Jenny, my love rang true! for still
Love at first sight is vague, until
That tinkling makes him audible.
And must I mock you to the last,
Ashamed of my own shame,—aghast
Because some thoughts not born amiss
Rose at a poor fair face like this?
Well, of such thoughts so much I know:
In my life, as in hers, they show,
By a far gleam which I may near,
A dark path I can strive to clear.
Only one kiss. Good-bye, my dear.
- quotes about roses
- quotes about poverty
- quotes about grey
- quotes about illness
- quotes about hours
- quotes about money
- quotes about kiss
- quotes about cooking
- quotes about past
"Where are the mourners," saith the Lord,
"That wait and tremble at my word,
That walk in darkness all the day?
Come, make my name your trust and stay.
["No works nor duties of your own
Can for the smallest sin atone
The robes that nature may provide
Will not your least pollutions hide.
"The softest couch that nature knows
Can give the conscience no repose;
Look to my righteousness and live;
Comfort and peace are mine to give.]
"Ye sons of pride, that kindle coals
With your own hands, to warm your souls
Walk in the light of your own fire,
Enjoy the sparks that ye desire:
"This is your portion at my hands;--
Hell waits you with her iron bands;
Ye shall lie down in sorrow there,
In death, in darkness, and despair."
I used to walk around like
Nothing could happen to me
Life is a gamble so i
Should live life more carefully
But all I know is that i
Control my own destiny
I used to look at others
Instead of me blaming me
Dont ask yourself why
Just look to the sky
Believe that soon youll see the other side
That through all the struggle
Theres a bright road
At the end of the tunnel
Now you should know
Whatever your dilemma may be
Life is worth it
Watch the tables turn
Yeah yeah yeah yeah
Whenever you feel troubled
With problems coming your way
Dont ever get discouraged
Theres always a better day
We all dont know the answers
Believe and trust when I say
That havin faith is always
The way to make things okay
Youve had your ups and downs but
It happened for a reason
Cause after april showers
There will come a change of season
So please dont give up now cuz
The suns shinin through the clouds
Its gonna be alright
Watch the tables turn
(watch the tables turn)
Watch the tables turn
(watch the tables turn)
Watch the tables turn
(watch the tables turn)
Watch the tables turn
(watch the tables turn)
Prayer Against The Spirit Of Lust
• Man is a slave to lust. I am the most high child of the Most High
God. I will never be a slave to lust, in the name of Jesus.
• I will not lust after anything, and my God will give me the grace to
do things according to His will, in the name of Jesus.
• I will be moderate in everything that I do, and my God will bring
balance in all things, in the name of Jesus.
• I will not lust after the things of this world but focus on things in
heaven, which are permanent, in the name of Jesus.
• My righteousness and my uprightness will deliver me. I will not be
caught lusting after things, in the name of Jesus.
• I will not lust in my heart to dishonor my body, the temple of the
Holy Spirit, in any way, in the name of Jesus.
• Heavenly Father, purify my thoughts and
let my ways be pleasing to You.
• I bind any spirit that may cause me to lust after things that will not
glorify the name of God in my life, in the name of Jesus.
• I bind any spirit that may cause an intense and excessive craving for
things that do not matter, in the name of Jesus.
• I bind any spirit that may cause an overwhelming desire to do things
that will make me sin against my Father God, in the name of Jesus.
• I come against every strong sexual desire, in the name of Jesus.
• I come against every wrong motive in doing things that may damage
my life, in the name of Jesus.
• I will not regret anything I do, for all of me and my thoughts are in
the hands of the Almighty God, in the name of Jesus.
THE MAGNIFICENT 333 PRAYERS 81
• I know, my Lord God, that You are able, and abundantly able, to
deliver those who trust in You, in the name of Jesus.
• I will not lust after things thereby falling into the trap set by the
enemy for me, in the name of Jesus.
• The grace to focus on things of God, grant it unto me, O Lord, in
the name of Jesus.
• The zeal to do things of God, grant unto me, O Lord, in the name
• The enthusiasm to hang around people of God, grant unto me, O
Lord, in the name of Jesus.
• Empower me not to lust after anything that does not matter and
that will not glorify Your name, in the name of Jesus.
• Lust is to live unguided to Satan’s strain. This will never be my
portion, in the name of Jesus.
• Forever I am delivered from the Spirit of LUST, in the name of God
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. In the name of Jesus Christ,
I pray with thanksgiving. Amen.
Anastasia & Sandman
The brow of a horse in that moment when
The horse is drinking water so deeply from a trough
It seems to inhale the water, is holy.
I refuse to explain.
When the horse had gone the water in the trough,
All through the empty summer,
Went on reflecting clouds & stars.
The horse cropping grass in a field,
And the fly buzzing around its eyes, are more real
Than the mist in one corner of the field.
Or the angel hidden in the mist, for that matter.
Members of the Committee on the Ineffable,
Let me illustrate this with a story, & ask you all
To rest your heads on the table, cushioned,
If you wish, in your hands, &, if you want,
Comforted by a small carton of milk
To drink from, as you once did, long ago,
When there was only a curriculum of beach grass,
When the University of Flies was only a distant humming.
In Romania, after the war, Stalin confiscated
The horses that had been used to work the fields.
"You won't need horses now," Stalin said, cupping
His hand to his ear, "Can't you hear the tractors
Coming in the distance? I hear them already."
The crowd in the Callea Victoria listened closely
But no one heard anything. In the distance
There was only the faint glow of a few clouds.
And the horses were led into boxcars & emerged
As the dimly remembered meals of flesh
That fed the starving Poles
During that famine, & part of the next one--
In which even words grew thin & transparent,
Like the pale wings of ants that flew
Out of the oldest houses, & slowly
What had been real in words began to be replaced
By what was not real, by the not exactly real.
"Well, not exactly, but. . ." became the preferred
Administrative phrasing so that the man
Standing with his hat in his hands would not guess
That the phrasing of a few words had already swept
The earth from beneath his feet. "That horse I had,
He was more real than any angel,
The housefly, when I had a house, was real too,"
Is what the man thought.
Yet it wasn't more than a few months
Before the man began to wonder, talking
To himself out loud before the others,
"Was the horse real? Was the house real?"
An angel flew in and out of the high window
In the factory where the man worked, his hands
Numb with cold. He hated the window & the light
Entering the window & he hated the angel.
Because the angel could not be carved into meat
Or dumped into the ossuary & become part
Of the landfill at the edge of town,
It therefore could not acquire a soul,
And resembled in significance nothing more
Than a light summer dress when the body has gone.
The man survived because, after a while,
He shut up about it.
Stalin had a deep understanding of the kulaks,
Their sense of marginalization & belief in the land;
That is why he killed them all.
Members of the Committee on Solitude, consider
Our own impoverishment & the progress of that famine,
In which, now, it is becoming impossible
To feel anything when we contemplate the burial,
Alive, in a two-hour period, of hundreds of people.
Who were not clichés, who did not know they would be
The illegible blank of the past that lives in each
Of us, even in some guy watering his lawn
On a summer night. Consider
The death of Stalin & the slow, uninterrupted
Evolution of the horse, a species no one,
Not even Stalin, could extinguish, almost as if
What could not be altered was something
Noble in the look of its face, something
Incapable of treachery.
Then imagine, in your planning proposals,
The exact moment in the future when an angel
Might alight & crawl like a fly into the ear of a horse,
And then, eventually, into the brain of a horse,
And imagine further that the angel in the brain
Of this horse is, for the horse cropping grass
In the field, largely irrelevant, a mist in the corner
Of the field, something that disappears,
The horse thinks, when weight is passed through it,
Something that will not even carry the weight
Of its own father
On its back, the horse decides, & so demonstrates
This by swishing at a fly with its tail, by continuing
To graze as the dusk comes on & almost until it is night.
Old contrivers, daydreamers, walking chemistry sets,
Exhausted chimneysweeps of the spaces
Between words, where the Holy Ghost tastes just
Like the dust it is made of,
Let's tear up our lecture notes & throw them out
Let's do it right now before wisdom descends upon us
Like a spiderweb over a burned-out theater marquee,
Because what's the use?
I keep going to meetings where no one's there,
And contributing to the discussion;
And besides, behind the angel hissing in its mist
Is a gate that leads only into another field,
Another outcropping of stones & withered grass, where
A horse named Sandman & a horse named Anastasia
Used to stand at the fence & watch the traffic pass.
Where there were outdoor concerts once, in summer,
Under the missing & innumerable stars.
The First Amendment is not an altar on which we must sacrifice our children, families, and community standards. Obscene material that is not protected by the First Amendment can and must be prohibited.
You say it's a sin
How can love be a sin?
She is my life
She is my pride and joy
I love her and she loves me
You say it's wrond
I say it's love
You tell me to change
If i change for you then i'm no longer your baby girl
If i change for you then
I will be lying to my myself
I'm sorry but i can't do that
Yes, i love you
That's not even in the question
You have to accept me and let go
Before you lose me forever
If you keep pushing
I won't be around for long
I try to see where your coming from,
but everytime i do
It doesn't make any sense to me
How can you say that this isn't love?
Daddy, i havne't lost my mind
I found love
I only wish you could be happy for me
I wish you could understand this,
and if you can't
Then i'm sorry, but i must go
Arrogance of a Poet
Reading, reading, reading aloud,
Out to an audience or a large crowd,
A lovely poem, simple like this,
Rhyming couplets, O what a bliss,
Next a succulent simile,
Like this, like that or just like me.
Alliteration, simile all in one,
The Sun looked down, thinking well done!
Woah, personification, the touch of skill
But ofcourse, I can still
Go further and further with these thoughts,
Enjambment used, eat my shorts!
My skill unmatched, the audience applaud,
Score,10/10, definitely assured.
But still this skill was not enough,
They believed my poem was still a rough
Copy or a draft, not the final one,
A poem to impress, that could have won.
And so I wander back, like a whale
To feed my young poems a treacherous tale,
To which they will, rebel and fight
For why did that poem not set alight
The crowd with all its great talent,
But I will not, never, relent
In making you poems walk into fame,
And there goes my poetic technique again...
I'd Buy That For A Dollar
Chicken can be bought
From just about anyone
Everything is by the numbers
And can be delivered
Right to the front door
It’s a maverick of a idea
A plan conceived in liberty
Not intended to be exploited or excused
Can there be too much freedom?
Some would have it as true
“Freedom ought to have it’s limits” says W
And most don’t even care
Caught in the quicksand of nostalgia
Lost in time
Like Walt Disney
Freedom is isolation
Marketed to death
Choking the life out
Those that desire?
Somewhere with a monitor
And a finger
Clutching onto freedom
One click at a time
For many reasons
For the same things
And no one
Holds a door open
Not even for
But by process
One can always change
Or record it
And watch it tomorrow
Sit or lay together
And eyes, ears and nose candy
And the sleep is the same
down there on the avenue.
She hauled out onto the crag faced wrackles
Gasping from the strain for a moment
From her seawind lungs
From the topsail stay the sound of her voice
Spilled across the seaward haul
Whispering of lost men drug across her tethers and timbers
Of souls burned by love's needle sharp indentations
There in the parlors of opium crazed artists
Lips purloined and pinned with gold and diamond smiles
And ink blacked meaning
Seawitches and hearts pierced on arms marked forever
But that was not her name and something then it became
That was not her voice the one which called him to her bed
Where he lay breathless and dizzy
His ears ringing from her songs and whispers
And promises of further pleasure.
It was not her voice now as she pleaded for his heart
The heart which had been pierced by her name.
. He listened now to another bird which soared aloft
On perfumed winds and warm fair spirits who would not demand soul for payment
Or want their voices discerned from longing's seabird laughter
That was the voice he heeded not one upon the shore or burned into his skin
From that chorus of groaning flesh and bedboards on seaboards set by rent
And linen came other voices, small insistent voices which could not be stilled
By liquor or promises
The Cloud Chorus
Hither, come hither, ye Clouds renowned, and unveil yourselves
Come, though ye dwell on the sacred crests of Olympian snow,
Or whether ye dance with the Nereid Choir in the gardens clear,
Or whether your golden urns are dipped in Nile's overflow,
Or whether you dwell by Maeotis mere
Or the snows of Mimas, arise! appear!
And hearken to us, and accept our gifts ere ye rise and go.
THE CLOUDS SING
Immortal Clouds from the echoing shore
Of the father of streams from the sounding sea,
Dewy and fleet, let us rise and soar;
Dewy and gleaming and fleet are we!
Let us look on the tree-clad mountain-crest,
On the sacred earth where the fruits rejoice,
On the waters that murmur east and west,
On the tumbling sea with his moaning voice.
For unwearied glitters the Eye of the Air,
And the bright rays gleam;
Then cast we our shadows of mist, and fare
In our deathless shapes to glance everywhere
From the height of the heaven, on the land and air,
And the Ocean Stream.
Let us on, ye Maidens that bring the Rain,
Let us gaze on Pallas's citadel,
In the country of Cecrops fair and dear,
The mystic land of the holy cell,
Where the Rites unspoken securely dwell,
And the gifts of the gods that know not stain,
And a people of mortals that know not fear.
For the temples tall and the statues fair,
And the feasts of the gods are holiest there;
The feasts of Immortals, the chaplets of flowers,
And the Bromian mirth at the coming of spring,
And the musical voices that fill the hours,
And the dancing feet of the maids that sing!
MAKING CHANGES - Lyrics
Runnin through the memories of
The days of then
Spendin time together
Not a care each day
I wonder why I ever let that slip away
Dancin neath the stars
We were the best of friends
More in love with you
I never could have been
I can't forget your face
Oh what’s a man to do
Just give me one more chance
And babe I promise you
Not gonna be the one I’ve been anymore
Not gonna do the things I’ve done before
Not gonna say the words that cut to the heart
Not gonna sit and watch it all fall apart
I’m makin changes, changes
Change is over due
Startin off anew
Yeah makin changes, changes
Change is what I need
Changes in life…
Changes in me
Heal broken wings
I wanna see you fly again
Fix open seams
In a heart that’s on the mend
I’ll swallow my pride
Roll back the years
And smile again
And try to be the man
I used to be back then
Let’s turn another page…
Let’s start a bran new day…
I’ll take your hand in mine
Look in your eyes and finally say
Not gonna be the one I’ve been anymore
Not gonna do the things I’ve done before
Not gonna say the words that cut to the heart
Not gonna sit and watch it all fall apart
I’m makin chaaaaaaaaanges
(Changes, changes, change is over due)
I’m makin chaaaaaaaaanges
(Changes, changes, startin off anew)
I’m makin chaaaaaaaaanges
(Changes, changes, change is what I need)
Changes in life…
Changes in me
I’m makin chaaaaaaaaanges
(Not gonna be the one I’ve been anymore)
I’m makin chaaaaaaaaanges
(Not gonna do the things I’ve done before)
I’m makin chaaaaaaaaanges
(Changes, changes, change is what I need)
Changes in life…
Changes in me
There Is A New Door In My House
There is a new 'door' in the little boy's house,
Where there was not one before,
A new 'cat shaped' hole' in the kitchen,
a new 'cat sized' hole in the door.
'But what about locks and bolts? ' the little boy asked,
Tugging at his my mum's loose apron strings.
'To keep out ghosts and scary monsters',
'and all those horrible night time things.'
'We don't need locks' the boy's mum said,
'Its only cats that can get through'.
'But what about 'cat' sized monsters,
or ghosts of that size too? '
'Go to bed now', the boy's mum said,
'What are you worrying for? '
'It's ghosts and scary monsters mum
that would fit nicely through that door? '
He went up the stairs to his room,
And tried to get to sleep,
But was thinking of ghosts and scary monsters,
Not happy jumping sheep.
'Tap, Tap', he woke, that noise (he thought) ,
It came up from the ground floor! ,
A tap, tap, tap, at the cat flap,
A noise from the cat shaped door.
A shiver ran stright down the little boy's spine,
Is it monster or a ghost?
Shaking, he crept straight down the stairs thinking 'what would scare me most? '
He crawled right up to the cat flap,
To see what was at the door,
Was it the ghosts or scary monsters,
The boy was thinking of before?
He peered into the gloom of the flap,
He strained his eyes to see,
'What might it have been that made that Tap, ,
Waiting out there for me? '.
'Tap, Tap... Tap, Tap...
Again, the noise from the flap,
Tap, Tap from the cat sized door,
Two green and bulbous eyes were there,
That were not there before.
The boy sat still, afraid to move,
Chilled straight down to his core,
The eyes began to peer at him,
Straight through the cat shaped door.
Tap.. Tap.., Tap, Tap..
That sound again, just like the tap before.
What if this thing, can fit straight through,
The cat sized and unlocked door?
Slowly, the cat flap began to open,
Sweat rolled off the boy's cold brow,
Those round green eyes were now inside,
When a sound was heard....
Don’t tell me
I never did
It wasn’t the sky or the stars-
Jut too many moons ago
Not ever after
I tried to find myself
And all you did was to
Take my thoughts into your wretched hands and
As if they were malleable metal
You twisted them as they were like wire
Somewhere lost along the way and
Tossed about in an ice storm-
Life, love and war-
All incompatible as
Rain under fire
Burning in hell’s incinerator as
I would take children and
Cut them into tiny pieces and
Grind them up in my broken down
Too dysfunctional was
My lifestyle, lost memories of the not too
Faraway past and the
Never ending battle that rages in the
Firing zone in the back of my mind,
Lest everywhere I look all I can see
Is more mistrust of the people who live in this
Crazy mixed up world,
Somewhere along the way
I lost myself
Only yesterday, I believe
I had found myself
On that pathway out of the confusion,
So I thought at least,
But even hours later than the event
I find myself
Tearing my heart out,
Wanting to injure myself and
Everyone else- so
Please don’t tell me that
I never did-
I never meant to
Harm anyone not even myself and
Now that the stars are falling and the moon
Is hidden behind a mass of fog, clouds and billows of smoke
Coming out of nowhere-
I never did,
I only told them that I had,
Too many moons ago and
Now I am counting the stars
One by one as they fall
Upon the rood of time and
I cannot capture any given moment
Only because this world has
Been none but a liar to me-
So set fire to your soul in hell’s incinerator-
That is where every one belongs-
Except for myself-
I did nothing wrong and
God is certainly not infallible although
So many believe-
I never did-
I only told them,
It was all a lie
A misfortune, and a
Coming out of nowhere and
Damned to an afterlife that
Is not attuned to the reality of a prayer or
Death by fate of a
Never ending incurable disease- although-
Self-harm is the only way out of this turmoil-
Loudening thoughts in my head have ordered me to
Find relief in a knife to my wrist and
They told me that I never did but
I will as
I count each star only after
Bring the lost back to the right path
Desert rose with the silence voice
Whispering in the calm scented air
Mesmerizing, captivating, a guidance
Perfume sight for blinded eyes, in the sandy breeze
Trails the hopes to find way home
Back to the place of attraction
The hidden ambitious land
In the Secret garden of oasis
Trusted voice with hidden beauty
Miles away, spraying your spirit to the air
Taste the mist of fumes, language of mystery
The fragrance essence, invisible guide within the air
Natural elixir to heal mirages curse
Revealing there are the illusion images
Awakening sanity, miraculously sober
We'll see the truth of the truth
Disperse sweetest fumes, a silky touch
Now the land hypnotized under your spirit
Soften your soul with blossom smiles
Preserve your beauty with innocent fair
Thorns be ultimate sword, guard your pride
Protect life from harmful touch of enemy eyes
Unveil us the secret of life
As the only softness will survive when life is so hard
Soft as water, gentleness not easily broken, a lesson
The smell of you may call thousands souls back
Among of them most will care, a little will scare
You dont cry when the evil hands break you a part
After all you lead them safe from lost
Brokenness they made,
But your fragrance lingering in hands
Haunting them back
Rare persona... in you desert rose
In the sandy ocean, you devote for better life,
Amazing grace based on your strongest will
Days without rain while the sun vapor the strength
Resistant but beauty even the land is burning thee
Root of hopes now stronger to find water deeper
True charisma, exist in you, desert rose
Comrades by twinkling stars and moon smiles
The night seems brighter by your whispering melody
Lullabying desert with sweet enchanting fragrance
Lay in frozen curse, stay strong to stand all night long
Strong stormy sand, covering your remark
Change the hills, dust on your body,
Thirst of the better life
Standing still there,
Your smile intact in the layers,
The bud never broken before bloom
Like us you not strong for all time
One day your smiles will broken, by a hand or storm
One by one the petals depart till all gone
All petals lost, follow the wind journey in a far distance
Flying, kissing the sand and fall to the ground
Finally you vapored and dried but wont surrender
That's not over as the fume wont decay
Never stop to give up for any reason, no way
Fragrance soul cant be defeated, killed in any way
Blessing gift in the desert
Your immortal spirit back revisited
Here in secret garden of oasis
With devotion for better life, desert rose keep survive
Broken will replaced, come new buds, each will bloom
Smile again, the beauty with enchanting fumes
Lead the lost back home again
You rose once, and will rise one more time
Share your glory till the summit of sand hill
Desert Rose, the soul perfume of serenity
Live your life with strong, soul's spirit truly
: : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : :
About Desert Rose:
Why rose? (Rose come from word rise, haha, beauty n great fumes)
Not like other roses, this rose live in oasis
The smell is a voice, silence with sounds
Center in the desert, the spirit within is stronger like the smell it has
In our life there's obstacles and illusion around us
Just like the desert rose, the nature guidance of life
facing the mirages, a lot of illusion that fool our mind
or the hardness when people broken your soul or even
When surrounding inhibit your freedom...
I learn from desert rose to keep soul and spirit win
The smell will show where to go, back to oasis the where they came from
In windy, sandy breeze we cant see clearly..more than that the scenery in desert
all look the same, a field of sand, where to go? ? ? like blind people
to find a way alone without a stick, if we be like a desert rose
the undying spirit and soul, we will have opportunity to finish.
The desert rose perfume signal the hope that the destination to go
the spirit should never die and if it die we will forever lost
in hopelessness...Even people keep you down and down
no matter what you give to them, the smell of fragrance cant
be killed by sword, and the smell is the spirit...devotee for better life
Once again, nature taught me about life...Rose symbol of beauty and fumes
we must be soft but not easily broken, if broken revive the new hope
Thanks for reading_Unwritten Soul
Next Rise from the Ashes poem collection
3: Burning Goodbye
4: Night whisperer
5: Rise from ashes
6: Ethereal Broken
7: Estranged in Mirage
Joseph’s Dreams and Reuben's Brethren [A Recital in Six Chapters]
I cannot blame old Israel yet,
For I am not a sage—
I shall not know until I get
The son of my old age.
The mysteries of this Vale of Tears
We will perchance explain
When we have lived a thousand years
And died and come again.
No doubt old Jacob acted mean
Towards his father’s son;
But other hands were none too clean,
When all is said and done.
There were some things that had to be
In those old days, ’tis true—
But with old Jacob’s history
This tale has nought to do.
(They had to keep the birth-rate up,
And populate the land—
They did it, too, by simple means
That we can’t understand.
The Patriarchs’ way of fixing things
Would make an awful row,
And Sarah’s plain, straightforward plan
Would never answer now.)
his is a tale of simple men
And one precocious boy—
A spoilt kid, and, as usual,
His father’s hope and joy
(It mostly is the way in which
The younger sons behave
That brings the old man’s grey hairs down
In sorrow to the grave.)
Old Jacob loved the whelp, and made,
While meaning to be kind,
A coat of many colours that
Would strike a nigger blind!
It struck the brethren green, ’twas said—
I’d take a pinch of salt
Their coats had coloured patches too—
But that was not their fault.
Young Joseph had a soft thing on,
And, humbugged from his birth,
You may depend he worked the thing
For all that it was worth.
And that he grafted not but crowed,
You don’t need to be told,
And he was mighty cocky, with
His “Lo!” and his “Behold!”
He took in all his brothers said,
And went and told his Dad,
And then, when someone split on him,
No wonder they were mad.
But still he wasn’t satisfied,
And it would almost seem
He itched to rile his brethren, for
He went and dreamed a dream,
And told it to his brothers straight
(So Genesis believes):—
“Lo! we were working in the field,
And we were binding sheaves,
And my sheaf rose and stood upright,
And, straightway, for a sign,
Your sheaves came round about and made
Obeisance to mine!”
The brethren stared and made comment
In words that were not mild,
And when the meaning dawned on them
You bet that they were wild!
And Joseph left those angry men
To boil and blow off steam,
And ambled, chuckling, home agen
To dream another dream.
“Behold! I’ve dreamed a dream once more!”
He told ’em, frank and free—
“The sun, moon, and eleven stars
Have likewise bowed to me!”
(Perhaps Astronomy has changed
Since Joseph saw the light,
But I have wondered what the sun
Was doing out at night.)
And when they dropped!—you never heard,
In sheds or shanty bars,
Such awful language as escaped
From those eleven stars.
You know how Jacob-Israel loved
His hopeful youngest pup;
But, when he heard the latest dream,
It shook the old man up.
But Joseph talked his father round,
Who humoured every whim
(Perhaps old Jacob half-believed
They would bow down to him):
But, anyway, as always was,
He backed the youngest son,
And sent the others with the sheep
Out to the Check-’em run.
Now Jacob, with that wondrous tact
That doting parents show,
Or, anxious for his sons out back,
Sent, of all others, Joe!
To see if it was well with them
(And they were not asleep),
With one eye on his brothers’ camp,
And one eye on the sheep.
He drew a blank on Check-’em run—
Got bushed, too, you’ll be bound.
A certain cove—there’s always one—
Saw Joseph mooning round.
He asked him how it came to pass,
And what it was about,
And said, “They’re trav-lin’ now for grass
In Doothen—further out.”
He also muttered, “Strike me blue!”
While staring at the clothes—
He’d never seen a jackaroo
With such a coat as Joe’s.
He set the nameless on the track,
And scratched his head to think,
But gave it best, and, riding back,
Said firmly, “Strike me pink!”
’Twas blazing hot in Doothen then,
The sweat ran down in streams—
It melted out the memory
Of even Joseph’s dreams!
They’d had some trouble with the sheep,
Some Arabs and a “shirk”—
It was a favourable time
For Joe to get to work.
They saw him coming, “afar off”—
In this case, you might note,
Their eyesight wasn’t wonderful,
Considering the coat.
And what with sheep, and dust, and flies,
And damned shirks in the swim
With sheep stealers, the brethren were
For absenteeing him.
And, add to that, he scared the kine
With his infernal coat—
They trampled on the sheep and swine
And startled every goat.
The brethren had to round up then
As fast as ass could go,
And when they got to camp agen
They’d fixed it up for Joe.
Save poor old Rube—he had the blight,
But, grafting all the same,
He only looked on family rows
As just a blooming shame.
Like many an easy-going man,
He had a cunning soul.
He said, “We will not kill the kid,
But shove him in a hole,
And leave him there to dream o’ things”—
There’s not the slightest doubt
He meant to slip round after dark
And pull the youngster out,
And fill his gourd and tucker-bag,
And tell him “Not to mind”,
And start him on the back-track with
A gentle kick behind.
Some ’Tothersider prospectors
Had been there poking round;
You may depend that Reuben knew
’Twas “dry and shallow ground”.
They dropped young Joseph in a hole—
The giddy little goat—
And left him there, to cool his heels,
Without his overcoat.
(Don’t think that Moses, such a whale
On dry facts, thought it wet
To say, when they’d chucked Joseph in,
It was an empty pit!
So many things are preached and said
Where’er the Bible is
To prove that Moses never read
The “proofs” of Genesis.)
But let’s get on. While having grub,
A brethren sniffed and “seen”
Some Ishmaelites pass through the scrub—
Or O-asses, I mean.
They’d been right out to Gilead—
A rather longish trip—
For camel-loads of balm, and myrrh,
And spicery for ’Gyp.
(I’ve often seen the Afghans pass
With camel strings out back,
And thought ’twas somewhat similar
On that old Bible track.
I don’t know much of balm and myrrh,
Whatever they may be,
But e’en when sheepskins were not there,
I’ve smelt the spicery.)
It was the same in Canaan then
As it is here to-day:
A sudden thought jerked Judah up
For “brofit “ straight away.
The brethren got on one end too
When Judah jumped and said,
“We’ll sell the kid for what he brings!
He’s no good when he’s dead.”
And, to be short, they being Jews—
The “chosing” of the earth—
They sold him to the Ishmaelites
For more than twice his worth.
(Some Midianitish auctioneers
Were also on the job.)
’Twas “twenty bits of silver”, which
I s’pose was twenty bob.
So they most comfortably got
Young Joseph off their hands,
For Ishmael never bothered much
About receipts or brands.
(They spake not of his dreams and cheek,
His laziness, or “skite”;
No doubt they thought the Ishmaelites
Would see to that all right.)
Then Reuben came; he’d been around
To watch the sheep a bit,
And on his way back to the camp
He slipped round by the pit
To give young Joe a drink. He stared,
And, thinking Joe was dead,
He rent his gown like mad, and ran
For ashes for his head.
(As if that would do any good!
I only know that I
Cannot afford to rend my clothes
When my relations die.
I don’t suppose they would come back,
Or that the world would care,
If I went howling for a year
With ashes in my hair.)
You say he counted on a new
Rig-out? Yes? And you know
That Jacob tore his garment too,
So that old cock won’t crow.
Look here! You keep your smart remarks
Till after I am gone.
I won’t have Reuben silver-tailed—
Nor Pharaoh, later on.
The brethren humbugged Reuben well,
For fear he’d take the track,
And sneak in on the Ishmaelites,
And steal young Joseph back,
Or fight it out if he was caught,
And die—as it might be—
Or, at the best, go down with Joe
And into slavery.
Young Simeon slipped into the scrub,
To where the coat was hid,
And Judah stayed and wept with Rube,
While Levi killed a kid.
So they fixed up the wild-beast yarn,
And Hebrews sadly note—
Considering the price of cloth—
They had to spoil the coat.
(There was a yam about old Rube
That all true men despise,
Spread by his father’s concubines—
A vicious strumpet’s lies.
But I believe old Moses was,
As we are, well aware
That Reuben stood in this last scene
The central figure there.)
I feel for poor old Israel’s grief,
Believing all the same
(And not with atheist unbelief)
That Jacob was to blame.
’Twas ever so, and shall be done,
While one fond fool has breath—
Fond folly drives the youngest son
To ruin and to death.
The caravan went jogging on
To Pharaoh’s royal town,
But Genesis gives no account
Of Joseph’s journey down.
I wouldn’t be surprised to hear
He found it pretty rough,
But there’s a bare chance that his hide,
As well as cheek, was tough.
I see them toiling through the heat,
In patches and in dirt,
With sand-grooved sandals on their feet,
And slaves without a shirt—
The dust-caked thirst, the burning ground,
The mad and maddening flies,
That gathered like black goggles round
The piccaninnies’ eyes.
The Ishmaelites had tempers brief,
And whips of hide and gut,
And sometimes, p’raps, for Hagar’s sake,
Gave Joe an extra cut.
When, fainting by the way, he felt
The stimulating touch,
I have no doubt he often wished
He hadn’t dreamed so much.
He didn’t dream much on that trip,
Although he thought a lot.
However, they got down to ’Gyp
In good time, where he got
A wash and rest—he needed both—
And in the old slave-yard
Was sold to Captain Potiphar,
Of Pharaoh’s body-guard.
I PAUSE to state that later on
(And it seems worth the halt)
Smart Judah gat into a mess,
Though it was not his fault.
And I would only like to say,
In this most thankless task,
Wives sell to husbands every day,
And that without a mask.
But, what with family rows and drought,
And blessed women too,
The fathers of terrestrial tribes
Had quite enough to do.
They had to graft both day and night,
With no rest, save the last,
For when they were not grafting they
Were populating fast.
The Captain was a casual man,
But seemed a shrewd one too;
He got young Joseph’s measure soon,
And saw what he could do.
The Lord was with Joe, Moses said—
I know that Joe had pluck—
But I believe ’twas mostly check,
And his infernal luck.
The Captain made him manager,
And found that this arrangement paid—
That much at least is clear.
And what with merchants, clerks, and slaves,
Joe led a busy life,
With one eye on the maid-servants,
And “Jeames” and Potty’s wife.
The Captain seemed a casual man,
And “’Gyp” was on the glide:
There was a growing tendency
To live and let things slide.
He left all things in Joseph’s hands—
According to old Mose—
And knew not what he had besides
His tucker and his clothes.
I guess he had a shrewd idea,
For it is now, as then—
The world most often makes mistakes
With easy-going men.
The Captain often went away
For quietness and rest,
And, maybe, for some other things—
Well, Potiphar knew best.
Perhaps the missus knew it too—
At least, she should have known—
And Joe was handsome, strange, and new,
And she was much alone.
It seems a funny business now,
But I was never there—
Perhaps so long as cheques came in
The Captain didn’t care.
’Tis strange that Moses, such a whale
On details out of joint,
Should always come, in such a case,
So bluntly to the point.
He says Joe had a goodly form—
Or person it should be—
He says that she cast eyes on Joe,
And she said, “Lie with me.”
It took young Joseph sudden like.
He’d heard, while on the run,
Of other women who could lie,
And in more ways than one;
Of men who had been gaoled or hanged—
As they are here to-day—
(Likewise of lovers who were banged),
And so he edged away.
She never moved, and so he stayed
While she was there to hear,
For his infernal vanity
Was stronger than his fear.
He bragged his opportunity,
His strength, and godliness:
“There is no greater in the house
Than I.” (She made him less.)
’Twas cant to brag of purity
And right in that household,
For what was he if not a slave,
And basely bought and sold?
Unmanly for a man to treat
A love-starved woman so,
And cowardly to humiliate
A spirit thrust so low.
She knew that Joseph was a spy
On her and all the rest,
And this, with his outspoken “scorn”,
Made reasons manifest.
She had her passions (don’t be shocked,
For you have yours, no doubt),
And meant to take young Joseph down
And pay her husband out.
He was a slave, and bought and sold,
And I will say right here
His preaching was too manifold
And glib to be sincere,
When youth and “looks” turn goody-good—
You’ll see it at a glance—
They have one eye to woman’s help
And both on the main chance.
Now, had old Rube been in his place
(All honour to his name),
I’ll swear he would have taken things
Exactly as they came,
And kept it dark—or fought it out,
As the ungodly can—
But, whatsoe’er he might have done,
He would have been a man!
Howbeit, the missus stuck to Joe,
Vindictive, vicious, grim,
And bore his sermons and rebuffs
Until she cornered him. . . .
He left his garment in her hand,
And gat him out of that. . . .
About the merits of the case
I’ll say no more—that’s flat.
(He knew all right what she was at,
And Potiphar was out,
He went alone into the house
When no one was about.
He may have been half-drunk or mad,
He certainly was blind,
To run no further than the yard,
And leave his coat behind!)
But, seeing how our laws are fixed,
If I get in such dirt,
I’ll straightway get me out of that
If—I’ve to leave my shirt.
But I will keep the running up,
If I have common-sense,
Nor stop this side of Jericho
To think of my defence.
Joe should have streaked for Suez straight,
And tried his luck in flight
For Canaan, where they looked on things
In quite another light.
Old Jacob had experience,
And he’d have stuck to Joe.
He was a match for women’s lies
That flabbergast us so.
The missus told the self-same tale,
And in the self-same way,
As our enfranchised females do
In police courts every day.
Too cowardly to breathe a breath
Against the vilest rip,
We send straight men to gaol or death,
Just as they did in ’Gyp.
Now, Potiphar was wondrous mild—
Suspiciously, to say
The least. He didn’t operate
On Joseph straight away.
Perhaps he knew his wife no less
Than Joe, yet had regard
For his own peace and quietness—
So Joe got two years’ hard.
The Lord was with him, Moses said,
Yet his luck didn’t fail,
For he got on the right side of
The governor of the gaol.
Perhaps he’d heard of Mrs P.,
And cases like to Joe’s,
And knew as much of woman’s work
As anybody knows.
He made Joe super-lag—a sort
(The easy-going tendency
In Egypt seemed ingrained)—
Left everything in Joseph’s hands,
Except, maybe, the keys;
And thereafter he let things slide,
And smoked his pipe in peace.
Now Pharaoh had some trouble with
His butler and his cook,
But Pharaoh seemed most lenient
With asses bought to book—
He didn’t cut the weak end off
Each absent-minded wretch,
But mostly sent the idiots up
To “chokey” for a “stretch”.
They found themselves in Joseph’s care,
And it would almost seem
They’d got wind of his weaknesses,
For each one dreamed a dream.
“They dreamed a dream; both of them. Each
Man his dream in one night:
Each man according to his dream”
(And his own dream)—that’s right.
Next morning they made up their “mugs”,
And Joseph, passing through,
Asked them if they were feeling cronk,
And why they looked so blue?
They told him they had dreamed two dreams
(One each), and any dunce
Can understand how such remarks
Would int’rest Joe at once.
And there was no interpreter,
They said—and that was why
Joe said that that belonged to God—
But he would have a try.
I’ve noticed this with “Christians” since,
And often thought it odd—
They cannot keep their hands from things
They say belong to God.
The butler dreamed—or, anyway,
He said so (understand)—
He’d made some wine in Pharaoh’s cup,
And placed it in his hand—
And Pharaoh placed the wine inside,
I s’pose. But, anyways,
There were three branches in the dream,
Which were, of course, three days.
The butler might have one again,
And Joseph, going strong,
By evil chance get wind of it,
And diagnose it wrong!
The cook had been the butler’s mate,
And he thought (was it odd?)
That nightmare students such as Joe
Were safer far in quod.
He did repent him of his fault—
Though it was rather late—
For Pharaoh’s dreams had called a halt,
A reason of some weight.
The butler hoped to score, but ’twas
A risky thing to do,
And you will wonder, later on,
If Joe “forgat” him too.
’Twas plain to any fool, so Joe
Said: “Yet within three days
Shall Pharaoh lift thine head up, and
Restore thee to thy place.
Thou shalt deliver Pharaoh’s cup
Into his hand once more.
(And he shall drink the liquor down
Just as it was before.)
“But promise, when thou art all right,
And nothing is amiss,
To speak to Pharaoh of my case,
And get me out of this.
For I was kidnapped, likewise gaoled,
For nothing that I know.”
(And, granting his celibacy,
’Twould seem that that was so.)
The cook, he was a godless cook,
But quietly he stood,
’Til Joseph’s inspiration came—
And he saw it was good.
And then his dream he did unfold,
All straight and unrehearsed
(Without a “Lo!” or a “Behold!”
Or windmill business first):
“I’d three old baskets on me ’ed—
Now I ain’t tellin’ lies!—
The top ’un full of fancy bread
An’ pork ’n’ kidney pies.
I didn’t bother looking up,
For it was blazin’ ’ot—
There come a flock of crimson crows
And scoffed the bleedin’ lot.”
The cook he was a clever cook,
But he’d been on the spree—
He put the case as man to man,
And put it frank and free.
He patted Joseph on the back,
Told him to go ahead,
And Joseph met the cook half way,
And (man to man) he said:
“Within three days shall Pharaoh lift
Thine head from off of thee,
And he shall hang thee by the heels
To the most handy tree.
A flock of crows shall pick thy bones
(And, to be trebly sure,
His slaves shall pound them up with stones
And use them for manure).”
The butler passed an anxious night—
He wanted matters fixed—
For what if Joe’s prescriptions should
By some fool chance get mixed?
The cook—who was a careless cook—
Wrote scoff words on the wall,
But, when the time was up, he wished
He hadn’t dreamed at all.
And Pharaoh gave a feast—he’d got
Another chef this trip—
And his old butler he restored
Unto his butlership;
But hanged the cook. And after that—
Or this is how it seems—
The butler straight away forgat
Young Joseph and his dreams.
And maybe he was wise, for all
That anybody knows,
He’d seen the headless baker hanged,
And picked clean by the crows.
It struck him, too, when looking back
While calm and free from cares,
That Joseph had an off hand way
Of fixing up nightmares.
The gaol did Joseph little good,
Except by starts and fits,
But saved old Egypt for a while,
And brightened up his wits.
And, lest you thought me most unjust
In matters lately gone,
You read and know how holy Joe
Sold Egypt later on.
Her weather prophets were as good
As ours are, every bit,
But Pharaoh took to dreaming dreams,
And made a mess of it.
(And but for that—I do not care
What anybody thinks—
I’d not have lost my overcoat,
And watch and chain, and links.)
Now Joseph’s and the prisoners’ dreams
Were plain as dreams could be,
And more especially Pharaoh’s dreams,
As far as I can see—
The same man who invented them
Could well have read them too,
But any third-rate showman knows
That that would never do.
There must be “Lo’s”, “Beholds”, and “Yets”,
And “It must come to pass”,
’Til floods are gone, and tanks are dry,
And there’s no crops nor grass.
And “Likewise”, “Alsoes”, “Says unto”,
And countless weary “Ands”,
Until Japan sends Chinamen
To irrigate the lands.
And Pharaoh must take off his ring
(The one from off his hand),
To put upon Joe’s little fin,
That all might understand.
And they must ride in chariots,
Have banquets everywhere,
And launch trips up the Hawkesbury,
To see Australia there.
(I dreamed last night that cattle fed
Along the river flats,
They bore the brands of all the States,
And looked like “Queensland fats”.
And lo! a mob of strangers came,
All bones, from horn to heel,
But they had nostrils breathing flame,
And they had horns of steel.
I dreamed that seven sheep were shorn
That went by seven tracks,
And strove to live the winter through
With sackcloth on their backs.
And lo! I dreamed, from east and west
There came two blades of heat—
One blackened all the towns like fire,
Like drought one burnt the wheat.
A black slave and a white slave laid
A golden carpet down,
And yellow guards stood round about,
And he that came was brown.
Men slaved beneath the whip in pits,
Who now slave willingly—
They sold their birthright for a “score”.
Now read those dreams for me!)
But Joseph fixed up Pharaoh’s dreams
As quick as I can tell—
And, for Australia’s sake, I wish
That mine were fixed as well,
And nationalized from trusts and rings
And shady covenants;
But—we have thirteen little kings
Of thirteen Parliaments.
The years of plenty soon run out,
And, from the cricket score,
We’ll turn to face the years of drought
And might-be years of war.
With neither money, men, nor guns,
With nothing but despair—
But I get tired of printing truths
For use—no matter where.
Joe said to seek a wise man out,
And Pharaoh took the Jew—
Adventurers fix up our dreams,
And we elect them too.
I mean no slur on any tribe
(My best friend was a Yid),
But we let boodlers shape our ends,
And just as Pharaoh did.
But Joseph did spy out the land,
If not for his own good
(He only boodled on the grand,
It must be understood).
He made a corner first in wheat,
And did it thoroughly—
No “trust” has ever seen since then
So great a shark as he.
And when the fearful famine came,
And corn was in demand,
He grabbed, in God’s and Pharaoh’s name,
The money, stock, and land.
(He knew the drought was very bad
In Canaan; crops were gone;
But never once inquired how his
Old Dad was getting on.)
And after many barren years
Of spirit-breaking work,
I see the brethren journeying down
From Canaan’s West-o’-Bourke
And into Egypt to buy corn—
As, at this very hour,
My brethren toil through blazing heat
The weary miles for flour.
’Twas noble of our Joseph then,
The Governor of the land,
To bait those weary, simple men,
With “monies” in their hand;
To gratify his secret spite,
As only cowards can;
And preen his blasted vanity,
And strike through Benjamin.
He put a cup in Benny’s sack,
And sent them on their way,
And sent the Pleece to bring ’em back
Before they’d gone a day.
The constable was well aware
Of Joseph’s little plan,
And most indignant when he caught
The wretched caravan.
He yelped: “Have such things come to pass?
Howld hard there! Jerk ’em up!
Put down yer packs from every ass,
And fork out Phairey’s cup!
It makes me sick, upon my soul,
The gratichood of man!
Ye had the feast, and then ye shtole
His silver billy-can.”
They swore that they had seen no cup,
And after each had sworn
They said the sandstorm coming up
Would simply spoil the corn.
They begged that he would wait until
They reached the nearest barn.
He said, “O that’s a wind that shook
The barley sort of yarn!
“(Now I’m no sergeant, understand—
Ye needn’t call me that—
Oi want no sugar wid me sand
Whin Joseph smells a rat.)
Take down yer sacks from off yer backs—
The other asses too—
And rip the neck of every sack—
The boys will see yer through.”
The cup was found in Benjamin’s,
As all the world’s aware—
The constable seemed most surprised,
Because he’d put it there.
“A greenhorn raised on asses’ milk!
Well, this beats all I know!”
And then, when he had cautioned them,
He took the gang in tow.
And when they started out to rend
Their turbans and their skirts,
He said, “Ye drunken lunatics,
Ye needn’t tear yer shirts—
Ye’re goin’ where there’s ladies now,
So keep yer shirts on, mind.
(The Guvnor got in trouble wanst
For leavin’ his behind.)”
And Joseph gaoled and frightened them.
(The “feast” was not amiss:
It showed him most magnanimous
With all that wasn’t his.)
He took some extra graveyard pulls
At his old Dad’s grey hairs,
’Til Judah spoke up like a man—
And spoke up unawares.
Then Joseph said that he was Joe,
With Egypt in his clutch—
You will not be surprised to know
It didn’t cheer them much.
And when he saw they were afraid,
And bowed beneath the rod,
He summoned snuffle to his aid,
And put it all on God.
And now the brethren understood,
With keen regret, no doubt,
That sin is seldom any good
Unless it’s carried out.
For after that heart-breaking trip
Across the scorching sands
They found themselves in Joseph’s grip,
With Benny on their hands.
(Poor Reuben, to persuade his dad
To let the youngster come,
Had left his own sons’ lives in pledge
For Benjamin, at home.
But life is made of many fires
And countless frying-pans—
As fast as we get rid of Joe’s
We’re plagued by Benjamin’s.)
Joe had a use for them, so he
Bade them to have no fear.
He said to them, “It was not you,
But God, who sent me here.
He sent me on to save your lives;
He hath sent you to me,
To see to you and all your wives,
And your posterity.
“The Lord God hath exalted me,
And made me His right hand—
A father unto Pharaoh, and
A ruler in the land,
And likewise lord of Egypt”—
He said a few things more,
And then he got to business straight—
I’ve heard such cant before.
Those who have read will understand
I never mean to scoff,
But I hate all hypocrisy
And blasted showing-off.
How cunningly our holy Joe
Fixed up his tribe’s affairs
For his own ends, and sprang the job
On Pharaoh unawares.
“The fame was heard in Pharaoh’s house,”
Where peace and kindness thrived,
Saying, “Joseph’s brethren are come”
(Joe’s brothers have arrived).
And Pharaoh heard, and was well pleased,
For he was white all through.
(And Moses says, without remark,
It pleased the servants too.)
But Pharaoh promptly put an end
To Joseph’s mummery.
He said, “Send waggons up, and bid
Thy people come to me.
Thou art commanded! Furnish them
With money and with food;
And say that I will give them land,
And see that it is good.”
And Jacob’s sons chucked up their runs
With blessings short and grim,
And Jacob took the stock and gear
And all his seed with him.
They sent the family tree ahead,
And Pharaoh read that same
(They found him very tired, ’twas said,
And misty when they came).
And Pharaoh unto Joseph spake
Most kind, though wearily:
“Thy father and thy brethren all
Are now come unto thee;
And Egypt is before thee now,
So in the best land make
Thy father and thy brethren dwell—
The land of Goshen take;
“And there, unhindered, let them thrive,
In comfort let them dwell,
Apart and free. My people love
All shepherds none too well—
But if thou knowest amongst them men
Of proved activity,
Then make them rulers over all
My flocks and herds for me.”
They brought five brethren unto him,
And he was very kind—
Perhaps he looked those brethren through,
And saw what lay behind.
His head he rested on his hand,
And smoothed his careworn brow,
He gazed on Israel thoughtfully,
And asked, “How old art thou?”
And Jacob told him, and was touched.
He said his days were few
And evil. They had not attained
To those his father knew.
But Jacob only had himself,
And no one else, to thank
If Joe had given his grey hairs
A second graveyard yank.
I think that Pharaoh was a man
Who always understood,
But was content to stand aside
If for his people’s good,
And seem not missed the while. He knew
His merits—and no pride—
And ’twas a grievous day for Jew
And Gentile when he died.
You know the rest of Joseph’s tale,
And well the poor Egyptians knew—
House agent on the grand old scale,
He boodled till the land was blue.
He squeezed them tight, and bled them white—
. . . . .
Until a Pharaoh came in sight
Who didn’t know him from a crow.
The Patriarchs, right back from Dad
To where the line begins,
Were great at passing “blessings” on,
Together with their sins.
Old Noah was about the first—
Cursed Ham till all was blue,
But ’twas with some effect he cursed,
And with good reason too.
And when the time had come to pass
For Jacob to be gone,
He polished up his father’s sins
And calmly passed them on.
He called his twelve sons round his bed
(Lest some good might befall),
He called his twelve sons to be blessed,
And cursed them, one and all
Save Joseph; and the rest had cause
To curse him ere they got
The English, who have every day
More cause to damn the lot.
And if they crossed the Red Sea now,
I guess we’d let them go,
With “Satan hurry Kohenstein”
And “God speed Ikey Mo!”
And lest my Jewish friends be wroth—
As they won’t be with me—
I’ll say that there is Jewish blood
In my posterity.
This verse, I trust, shall profit him
When he has ceased to grow—
My firstborn, who was known as “Jim”,
But whose true name is “Joe”.
I’ve written much that is to blame,
But I have only sought to show
That hearts of men were just the same
Some forty centuries ago.
All kindness comes with woman’s love—
That which she claims is due to her—
Not man! not man! but God above
Dare judge the wife of Potiphar.
And Jacob shall be ever blind
To reason and posterity,
In that “fond folly” of mankind
That is born of impotency.
No parents’ love or parents’ wealth
Shall ever fairly portioned be,
Faith shall not come, except by stealth,
Nor justice in one family.
And Joseph proved unto this hour—
Just what he was in Holy Writ—
A selfish tyrant in his power,
And, up or down, a hypocrite.
And Joseph still, whate’er befall,
But gives his place to Benjamin,
And Reuben bears the brunt of all,
Though Judah does the best he can.
The hearts of men shall never change
While one man dies and one is born,
We journey yet, though ways seem strange,
Down into Egypt to buy corn.
Some prosper there, and they forget;
And some go down, and are forgot;
And Pride and Self betray us yet,
Till Pharaohs rise that know us not.
But kindliness shall live for aye,
And, though we well our fate deserve,
Samaritans shall pass that way,
And kings like Pharaoh rule to serve.
We’re fighting out of Egypt’s track—
And, ah! the fight is ever grand—
Although, in Canaan or Out Back,
We never reach the Promised Land.
Tales Of A Wayside Inn : Part 3. The Student's Tale; Emma and Eginhard
When Alcuin taught the sons of Charlemagne,
In the free schools of Aix, how kings should reign,
And with them taught the children of the poor
How subjects should be patient and endure,
He touched the lips of some, as best befit,
With honey from the hives of Holy Writ;
Others intoxicated with the wine
Of ancient history, sweet but less divine;
Some with the wholesome fruits of grammar fed;
Others with mysteries of the stars o'er-head,
That hang suspended in the vaulted sky
Like lamps in some fair palace vast and high.
In sooth, it was a pleasant sight to see
That Saxon monk, with hood and rosary,
With inkhorn at his belt, and pen and book,
And mingled lore and reverence in his look,
Or hear the cloister and the court repeat
The measured footfalls of his sandaled feet,
Or watch him with the pupils of his school,
Gentle of speech, but absolute of rule.
Among them, always earliest in his place.
Was Eginhard, a youth of Frankish race,
Whose face was bright with flashes that forerun
The splendors of a yet unrisen sun.
To him all things were possible, and seemed
Not what he had accomplished, but had dreamed,
And what were tasks to others were his play,
The pastime of an idle holiday.
Smaragdo, Abbot of St. Michael's, said,
With many a shrug and shaking of the head,
Surely some demon must possess the lad,
Who showed more wit than ever schoolboy had,
And learned his Trivium thus without the rod;
But Alcuin said it was the grace of God.
Thus he grew up, in Logic point-device,
Perfect in Grammar, and in Rhetoric nice;
Science of Numbers, Geometric art,
And lore of Stars, and Music knew by heart;
A Minnesinger, long before the times
Of those who sang their love in Suabian rhymes.
The Emperor, when he heard this good report
Of Eginhard much buzzed about the court,
Said to himself, 'This stripling seems to be
Purposely sent into the world for me;
He shall become my scribe, and shall be schooled
In all the arts whereby the world is ruled.'
Thus did the gentle Eginhard attain
To honor in the court of Charlemagne;
Became the sovereign's favorite, his right hand,
So that his fame was great in all the land,
And all men loved him for his modest grace
And comeliness of figure and of face.
An inmate of the palace, yet recluse,
A man of books, yet sacred from abuse
Among the armed knights with spur on heel,
The tramp of horses and the clang of steel;
And as the Emperor promised he was schooled
In all the arts by which the world is ruled.
But the one art supreme, whose law is fate,
The Emperor never dreamed of till too late.
Home from her convent to the palace came
The lovely Princess Emma, whose sweet name,
Whispered by seneschal or sung by bard,
Had often touched the soul of Eginhard.
He saw her from his window, as in state
She came, by knights attended through the gate;
He saw her at the banquet of that day,
Fresh as the morn, and beautiful as May;
He saw her in the garden, as she strayed
Among the flowers of summer with her maid,
And said to him, 'O Eginhard, disclose
The meaning and the mystery of the rose';
And trembling he made answer: 'In good sooth,
Its mystery is love, its meaning youth!'
How can I tell the signals and the signs
By which one heart another heart divines?
How can I tell the many thousand ways
By which it keeps the secret it betrays?
O mystery of love! O strange romance!
Among the Peers and Paladins of France,
Shining in steel, and prancing on gay steeds,
Noble by birth, yet nobler by great deeds,
The Princess Emma had no words nor looks
But for this clerk, this man of thought and books.
The summer passed, the autumn came; the stalks
Of lilies blackened in the garden walks;
The leaves fell, russet-golden and blood-red,
Love-letters thought the poet fancy-led,
Or Jove descending in a shower of gold
Into the lap of Danaë of old;
For poets cherish many a strange conceit,
And love transmutes all nature by its heat.
No more the garden lessons, nor the dark
And hurried meetings in the twilight park;
But now the studious lamp, and the delights
Of firesides in the silent winter nights,
And watching from his window hour by hour
The light that burned in Princess Emma's tower.
At length one night, while musing by the fire,
O'ercome at last by his insane desire,--
For what will reckless love not do and dare??
He crossed the court, and climbed the winding stair,
With some feigned message in the Emperor's name;
But when he to the lady's presence came
He knelt down at her feet, until she laid
Her hand upon him, like a naked blade,
And whispered in his ear: 'Arise, Sir Knight,
To my heart's level, O my heart's delight.'
And there he lingered till the crowing cock,
The Alectryon of the farmyard and the flock,
Sang his aubade with lusty voice and clear,
To tell the sleeping world that dawn was near.
And then they parted; but at parting, lo!
They saw the palace courtyard white with snow,
And, placid as a nun, the moon on high
Gazing from cloudy cloisters of the sky.
'Alas!' he said, 'how hide the fatal line
Of footprints leading from thy door to mine,
And none returning!' Ah, he little knew
What woman's wit, when put to proof, can do!
That night the Emperor, sleepless with the cares
And troubles that attend on state affairs,
Had risen before the dawn, and musing gazed
Into the silent night, as one amazed
To see the calm that reigned o'er all supreme,
When his own reign was but a troubled dream.
The moon lit up the gables capped with snow,
And the white roofs, and half the court below,
And he beheld a form, that seemed to cower
Beneath a burden, come from Emma's tower,--
A woman, who upon her shoulders bore
Clerk Eginhard to his own private door,
And then returned in haste, but still essayed
To tread the footprints she herself had made;
And as she passed across the lighted space,
The Emperor saw his daughter Emma's face!
He started not; he did not speak or moan,
But seemed as one who hath been turned to stone;
And stood there like a statue, nor awoke
Out of his trance of pain, till morning broke,
Till the stars faded, and the moon went down,
And o'er the towers and steeples of the town
Came the gray daylight; then the sun, who took
The empire of the world with sovereign look,
Suffusing with a soft and golden glow
All the dead landscape in its shroud of snow,
Touching with flame the tapering chapel spires,
Windows and roofs, and smoke of household fires,
And kindling park and palace as he came;
The stork's nest on the chimney seemed in flame.
And thus he stood till Eginhard appeared,
Demure and modest with his comely beard
And flowing flaxen tresses, come to ask,
As was his wont, the day's appointed task.
The Emperor looked upon him with a smile,
And gently said: 'My son, wait yet awhile;
This hour my council meets upon some great
And very urgent business of the state.
Come back within the hour. On thy return
The work appointed for thee shalt thou learn.?
Having dismissed this gallant Troubadour,
He summoned straight his council, and secure
And steadfast in his purpose, from the throne
All the adventure of the night made known;
Then asked for sentence; and with eager breath
Some answered banishment, and others death.
Then spake the king: 'Your sentence is not mine;
Life is the gift of God, and is divine;
Nor from these palace walls shall one depart
Who carries such a secret in his heart;
My better judgment points another way.
Good Alcuin, I remember how one day
When my Pepino asked you, 'What are men?'
You wrote upon his tablets with your pen,
'Guests of the grave and travellers that pass!'
This being true of all men, we, alas!
Being all fashioned of the selfsame dust,
Let us be merciful as well as just;
This passing traveller, who hath stolen away
The brightest jewel of my crown to-day,
Shall of himself the precious gem restore;
By giving it, I make it mine once more.
Over those fatal footprints I will throw
My ermine mantle like another snow.'
Then Eginhard was summoned to the hall,
And entered, and in presence of them all,
The Emperor said: 'My son, for thou to me
Hast been a son, and evermore shalt be,
Long hast thou served thy sovereign, and thy zeal
Pleads to me with importunate appeal,
While I have been forgetful to requite
Thy service and affection as was right.
But now the hour is come, when I, thy Lord,
Will crown thy love with such supreme reward,
A gift so precious kings have striven in vain
To win it from the hands of Charlemagne.'
Then sprang the portals of the chamber wide,
And Princess Emma entered, in the pride
Of birth and beauty, that in part o'er-came
The conscious terror and the blush of shame.
And the good Emperor rose up from his throne,
And taking her white hand within his own
Placed it in Eginhard's, and said: 'My son
This is the gift thy constant zeal hath won;
Thus I repay the royal debt I owe,
And cover up the footprints in the snow.'
Sword Blades And Poppy Seed
A drifting, April, twilight sky,
A wind which blew the puddles dry,
And slapped the river into waves
That ran and hid among the staves
Of an old wharf. A watery light
Touched bleak the granite bridge, and white
Without the slightest tinge of gold,
The city shivered in the cold.
All day my thoughts had lain as dead,
Unborn and bursting in my head.
From time to time I wrote a word
Which lines and circles overscored.
My table seemed a graveyard, full
Of coffins waiting burial.
I seized these vile abortions, tore
Them into jagged bits, and swore
To be the dupe of hope no more.
Into the evening straight I went,
Starved of a day's accomplishment.
Unnoticing, I wandered where
The city gave a space for air,
And on the bridge's parapet
I leant, while pallidly there set
A dim, discouraged, worn-out sun.
Behind me, where the tramways run,
Blossomed bright lights, I turned to leave,
When someone plucked me by the sleeve.
'Your pardon, Sir, but I should be
Most grateful could you lend to me
A carfare, I have lost my purse.'
The voice was clear, concise, and terse.
I turned and met the quiet gaze
Of strange eyes flashing through the haze.
The man was old and slightly bent,
Under his cloak some instrument
Disarranged its stately line,
He rested on his cane a fine
And nervous hand, an almandine
Smouldered with dull-red flames, sanguine
It burned in twisted gold, upon
His finger. Like some Spanish don,
Conferring favours even when
Asking an alms, he bowed again
And waited. But my pockets proved
Empty, in vain I poked and shoved,
No hidden penny lurking there
Greeted my search. 'Sir, I declare
I have no money, pray forgive,
But let me take you where you live.'
And so we plodded through the mire
Where street lamps cast a wavering fire.
I took no note of where we went,
His talk became the element
Wherein my being swam, content.
It flashed like rapiers in the night
Lit by uncertain candle-light,
When on some moon-forsaken sward
A quarrel dies upon a sword.
It hacked and carved like a cutlass blade,
And the noise in the air the broad words made
Was the cry of the wind at a window-pane
On an Autumn night of sobbing rain.
Then it would run like a steady stream
Under pinnacled bridges where minarets gleam,
Or lap the air like the lapping tide
Where a marble staircase lifts its wide
Green-spotted steps to a garden gate,
And a waning moon is sinking straight
Down to a black and ominous sea,
While a nightingale sings in a lemon tree.
I walked as though some opiate
Had stung and dulled my brain, a state
Acute and slumbrous. It grew late.
We stopped, a house stood silent, dark.
The old man scratched a match, the spark
Lit up the keyhole of a door,
We entered straight upon a floor
White with finest powdered sand
Carefully sifted, one might stand
Muddy and dripping, and yet no trace
Would stain the boards of this kitchen-place.
From the chimney, red eyes sparked the gloom,
And a cricket's chirp filled all the room.
My host threw pine-cones on the fire
And crimson and scarlet glowed the pyre
Wrapped in the golden flame's desire.
The chamber opened like an eye,
As a half-melted cloud in a Summer sky
The soul of the house stood guessed, and shy
It peered at the stranger warily.
A little shop with its various ware
Spread on shelves with nicest care.
Pitchers, and jars, and jugs, and pots,
Pipkins, and mugs, and many lots
Of lacquered canisters, black and gold,
Like those in which Chinese tea is sold.
Chests, and puncheons, kegs, and flasks,
Goblets, chalices, firkins, and casks.
In a corner three ancient amphorae leaned
Against the wall, like ships careened.
There was dusky blue of Wedgewood ware,
The carved, white figures fluttering there
Like leaves adrift upon the air.
Classic in touch, but emasculate,
The Greek soul grown effeminate.
The factory of Sevres had lent
Elegant boxes with ornament
Culled from gardens where fountains splashed
And golden carp in the shadows flashed,
Nuzzling for crumbs under lily-pads,
Which ladies threw as the last of fads.
Eggshell trays where gay beaux knelt,
Hand on heart, and daintily spelt
Their love in flowers, brittle and bright,
Artificial and fragile, which told aright
The vows of an eighteenth-century knight.
The cruder tones of old Dutch jugs
Glared from one shelf, where Toby mugs
Endlessly drank the foaming ale,
Its froth grown dusty, awaiting sale.
The glancing light of the burning wood
Played over a group of jars which stood
On a distant shelf, it seemed the sky
Had lent the half-tones of his blazonry
To paint these porcelains with unknown hues
Of reds dyed purple and greens turned blues,
Of lustres with so evanescent a sheen
Their colours are felt, but never seen.
Strange winged dragons writhe about
These vases, poisoned venoms spout,
Impregnate with old Chinese charms;
Sealed urns containing mortal harms,
They fill the mind with thoughts impure,
Pestilent drippings from the ure
Of vicious thinkings. 'Ah, I see,'
Said I, 'you deal in pottery.'
The old man turned and looked at me.
Shook his head gently. 'No,' said he.
Then from under his cloak he took the thing
Which I had wondered to see him bring
Guarded so carefully from sight.
As he laid it down it flashed in the light,
A Toledo blade, with basket hilt,
Damascened with arabesques of gilt,
Or rather gold, and tempered so
It could cut a floating thread at a blow.
The old man smiled, 'It has no sheath,
'Twas a little careless to have it beneath
My cloak, for a jostle to my arm
Would have resulted in serious harm.
But it was so fine, I could not wait,
So I brought it with me despite its state.'
'An amateur of arms,' I thought,
'Bringing home a prize which he has bought.'
'You care for this sort of thing, Dear Sir?'
'Not in the way which you infer.
I need them in business, that is all.'
And he pointed his finger at the wall.
Then I saw what I had not noticed before.
The walls were hung with at least five score
Of swords and daggers of every size
Which nations of militant men could devise.
Poisoned spears from tropic seas,
That natives, under banana trees,
Smear with the juice of some deadly snake.
Blood-dipped arrows, which savages make
And tip with feathers, orange and green,
A quivering death, in harlequin sheen.
High up, a fan of glancing steel
Was formed of claymores in a wheel.
Jewelled swords worn at kings' levees
Were suspended next midshipmen's dirks, and these
Elbowed stilettos come from Spain,
Chased with some splendid Hidalgo's name.
There were Samurai swords from old Japan,
And scimitars from Hindoostan,
While the blade of a Turkish yataghan
Made a waving streak of vitreous white
Upon the wall, in the firelight.
Foils with buttons broken or lost
Lay heaped on a chair, among them tossed
The boarding-pike of a privateer.
Against the chimney leaned a queer
Two-handed weapon, with edges dull
As though from hacking on a skull.
The rusted blood corroded it still.
My host took up a paper spill
From a heap which lay in an earthen bowl,
And lighted it at a burning coal.
At either end of the table, tall
Wax candles were placed, each in a small,
And slim, and burnished candlestick
Of pewter. The old man lit each wick,
And the room leapt more obviously
Upon my mind, and I could see
What the flickering fire had hid from me.
Above the chimney's yawning throat,
Shoulder high, like the dark wainscote,
Was a mantelshelf of polished oak
Blackened with the pungent smoke
Of firelit nights; a Cromwell clock
Of tarnished brass stood like a rock
In the midst of a heaving, turbulent sea
Of every sort of cutlery.
There lay knives sharpened to any use,
The keenest lancet, and the obtuse
And blunted pruning bill-hook; blades
Of razors, scalpels, shears; cascades
Of penknives, with handles of mother-of-pearl,
And scythes, and sickles, and scissors; a whirl
Of points and edges, and underneath
Shot the gleam of a saw with bristling teeth.
My head grew dizzy, I seemed to hear
A battle-cry from somewhere near,
The clash of arms, and the squeal of balls,
And the echoless thud when a dead man falls.
A smoky cloud had veiled the room,
Shot through with lurid glares; the gloom
Pounded with shouts and dying groans,
With the drip of blood on cold, hard stones.
Sabres and lances in streaks of light
Gleamed through the smoke, and at my right
A creese, like a licking serpent's tongue,
Glittered an instant, while it stung.
Streams, and points, and lines of fire!
The livid steel, which man's desire
Had forged and welded, burned white and cold.
Every blade which man could mould,
Which could cut, or slash, or cleave, or rip,
Or pierce, or thrust, or carve, or strip,
Or gash, or chop, or puncture, or tear,
Or slice, or hack, they all were there.
Nerveless and shaking, round and round,
I stared at the walls and at the ground,
Till the room spun like a whipping top,
And a stern voice in my ear said, 'Stop!
I sell no tools for murderers here.
Of what are you thinking! Please clear
Your mind of such imaginings.
Sit down. I will tell you of these things.'
He pushed me into a great chair
Of russet leather, poked a flare
Of tumbling flame, with the old long sword,
Up the chimney; but said no word.
Slowly he walked to a distant shelf,
And brought back a crock of finest delf.
He rested a moment a blue-veined hand
Upon the cover, then cut a band
Of paper, pasted neatly round,
Opened and poured. A sliding sound
Came from beneath his old white hands,
And I saw a little heap of sands,
Black and smooth. What could they be:
'Pepper,' I thought. He looked at me.
'What you see is poppy seed.
Lethean dreams for those in need.'
He took up the grains with a gentle hand
And sifted them slowly like hour-glass sand.
On his old white finger the almandine
Shot out its rays, incarnadine.
'Visions for those too tired to sleep.
These seeds cast a film over eyes which weep.
No single soul in the world could dwell,
Without these poppy-seeds I sell.'
For a moment he played with the shining stuff,
Passing it through his fingers. Enough
At last, he poured it back into
The china jar of Holland blue,
Which he carefully carried to its place.
Then, with a smile on his aged face,
He drew up a chair to the open space
'Twixt table and chimney. 'Without preface,
Young man, I will say that what you see
Is not the puzzle you take it to be.'
'But surely, Sir, there is something strange
In a shop with goods at so wide a range
Each from the other, as swords and seeds.
Your neighbours must have greatly differing needs.'
'My neighbours,' he said, and he stroked his chin,
'Live everywhere from here to Pekin.
But you are wrong, my sort of goods
Is but one thing in all its moods.'
He took a shagreen letter case
From his pocket, and with charming grace
Offered me a printed card.
I read the legend, 'Ephraim Bard.
Dealer in Words.' And that was all.
I stared at the letters, whimsical
Indeed, or was it merely a jest.
He answered my unasked request:
'All books are either dreams or swords,
You can cut, or you can drug, with words.
My firm is a very ancient house,
The entries on my books would rouse
Your wonder, perhaps incredulity.
I inherited from an ancestry
Stretching remotely back and far,
This business, and my clients are
As were those of my grandfather's days,
Writers of books, and poems, and plays.
My swords are tempered for every speech,
For fencing wit, or to carve a breach
Through old abuses the world condones.
In another room are my grindstones and hones,
For whetting razors and putting a point
On daggers, sometimes I even anoint
The blades with a subtle poison, so
A twofold result may follow the blow.
These are purchased by men who feel
The need of stabbing society's heel,
Which egotism has brought them to think
Is set on their necks. I have foils to pink
An adversary to quaint reply,
And I have customers who buy
Scalpels with which to dissect the brains
And hearts of men. Ultramundanes
Even demand some finer kinds
To open their own souls and minds.
But the other half of my business deals
With visions and fancies. Under seals,
Sorted, and placed in vessels here,
I keep the seeds of an atmosphere.
Each jar contains a different kind
Of poppy seed. From farthest Ind
Come the purple flowers, opium filled,
From which the weirdest myths are distilled;
My orient porcelains contain them all.
Those Lowestoft pitchers against the wall
Hold a lighter kind of bright conceit;
And those old Saxe vases, out of the heat
On that lowest shelf beside the door,
Have a sort of Ideal, 'couleur d'or'.
Every castle of the air
Sleeps in the fine black grains, and there
Are seeds for every romance, or light
Whiff of a dream for a summer night.
I supply to every want and taste.'
'Twas slowly said, in no great haste
He seemed to push his wares, but I
Dumfounded listened. By and by
A log on the fire broke in two.
He looked up quickly, 'Sir, and you?'
I groped for something I should say;
Amazement held me numb. 'To-day
You sweated at a fruitless task.'
He spoke for me, 'What do you ask?
How can I serve you?' 'My kind host,
My penniless state was not a boast;
I have no money with me.' He smiled.
'Not for that money I beguiled
You here; you paid me in advance.'
Again I felt as though a trance
Had dimmed my faculties. Again
He spoke, and this time to explain.
'The money I demand is Life,
Your nervous force, your joy, your strife!'
What infamous proposal now
Was made me with so calm a brow?
Bursting through my lethargy,
Indignantly I hurled the cry:
'Is this a nightmare, or am I
Drunk with some infernal wine?
I am no Faust, and what is mine
Is what I call my soul! Old Man!
Devil or Ghost! Your hellish plan
Revolts me. Let me go.' 'My child,'
And the old tones were very mild,
'I have no wish to barter souls;
My traffic does not ask such tolls.
I am no devil; is there one?
Surely the age of fear is gone.
We live within a daylight world
Lit by the sun, where winds unfurled
Sweep clouds to scatter pattering rain,
And then blow back the sun again.
I sell my fancies, or my swords,
To those who care far more for words,
Ideas, of which they are the sign,
Than any other life-design.
Who buy of me must simply pay
Their whole existence quite away:
Their strength, their manhood, and their prime,
Their hours from morning till the time
When evening comes on tiptoe feet,
And losing life, think it complete;
Must miss what other men count being,
To gain the gift of deeper seeing;
Must spurn all ease, all hindering love,
All which could hold or bind; must prove
The farthest boundaries of thought,
And shun no end which these have brought;
Then die in satisfaction, knowing
That what was sown was worth the sowing.
I claim for all the goods I sell
That they will serve their purpose well,
And though you perish, they will live.
Full measure for your pay I give.
To-day you worked, you thought, in vain.
What since has happened is the train
Your toiling brought. I spoke to you
For my share of the bargain, due.'
'My life! And is that all you crave
In pay? What even childhood gave!
I have been dedicate from youth.
Before my God I speak the truth!'
Fatigue, excitement of the past
Few hours broke me down at last.
All day I had forgot to eat,
My nerves betrayed me, lacking meat.
I bowed my head and felt the storm
Plough shattering through my prostrate form.
The tearless sobs tore at my heart.
My host withdrew himself apart;
Busied among his crockery,
He paid no farther heed to me.
Exhausted, spent, I huddled there,
Within the arms of the old carved chair.
A long half-hour dragged away,
And then I heard a kind voice say,
'The day will soon be dawning, when
You must begin to work again.
Here are the things which you require.'
By the fading light of the dying fire,
And by the guttering candle's flare,
I saw the old man standing there.
He handed me a packet, tied
With crimson tape, and sealed. 'Inside
Are seeds of many differing flowers,
To occupy your utmost powers
Of storied vision, and these swords
Are the finest which my shop affords.
Go home and use them; do not spare
Yourself; let that be all your care.
Whatever you have means to buy
Be very sure I can supply.'
He slowly walked to the window, flung
It open, and in the grey air rung
The sound of distant matin bells.
I took my parcels. Then, as tells
An ancient mumbling monk his beads,
I tried to thank for his courteous deeds
My strange old friend. 'Nay, do not talk,'
He urged me, 'you have a long walk
Before you. Good-by and Good-day!'
And gently sped upon my way
I stumbled out in the morning hush,
As down the empty street a flush
Ran level from the rising sun.
Another day was just begun.
THE FRANK COURTSHIP.
Grave Jonas Kindred, Sybil Kindred's sire,
Was six feet high, and look'd six inches higher;
Erect, morose, determined, solemn, slow,
Who knew the man could never cease to know:
His faithful spouse, when Jonas was not by,
Had a firm presence and a steady eye;
But with her husband dropp'd her look and tone,
And Jonas ruled unquestion'd and alone.
He read, and oft would quote the sacred words,
How pious husbands of their wives were lords;
Sarah called Abraham Lord! and who could be,
So Jonas thought, a greater man than he?
Himself he view'd with undisguised respect,
And never pardon'd freedom or neglect.
They had one daughter, and this favourite child
Had oft the father of his spleen beguiled;
Soothed by attention from her early years,
She gained all wishes by her smiles or tears;
But Sybil then was in that playful time,
When contradiction is not held a crime;
When parents yield their children idle praise
For faults corrected in their after days.
Peace in the sober house of Jonas dwelt,
Where each his duty and his station felt:
Yet not that peace some favour'd mortals find,
In equal views and harmony of mind;
Not the soft peace that blesses those who love,
Where all with one consent in union move;
But it was that which one superior will
Commands, by making all inferiors still;
Who bids all murmurs, all objections, cease,
And with imperious voice announces--Peace!
They were, to wit, a remnant of that crew,
Who, as their foes maintain, their Sovereign slew;
An independent race, precise, correct,
Who ever married in the kindred sect:
No son or daughter of their order wed
A friend to England's king who lost his head;
Cromwell was still their Saint, and when they met,
They mourn'd that Saints were not our rulers yet.
Fix'd were their habits; they arose betimes,
Then pray'd their hour, and sang their party-
Their meals were plenteous, regular and plain;
The trade of Jonas brought him constant gain;
Vender of hops and malt, of coals and corn -
And, like his father, he was merchant born:
Neat was their house; each table, chair, and stool,
Stood in its place, or moving moved by rule;
No lively print or picture graced the room;
A plain brown paper lent its decent gloom;
But here the eye, in glancing round, survey'd
A small recess that seem'd for china made;
Such pleasing pictures seem'd this pencill'd ware,
That few would search for nobler objects there -
Yet, turn'd by chosen friends, and there appear'd
His stern, strong features, whom they all revered;
For there in lofty air was seen to stand
The bold Protector of the conquer'd land;
Drawn in that look with which he wept and swore,
Turn'd out the Members, and made fast the door,
Ridding the House of every knave and drone,
Forced, though it grieved his soul, to rule alone.
The stern still smile each friend approving gave,
Then turn'd the view, and all again were grave.
There stood a clock, though small the owner's
For habit told when all things should proceed;
Few their amusements, but when friends appear'd,
They with the world's distress their spirits
The nation's guilt, that would not long endure
The reign of men so modest and so pure:
Their town was large, and seldom pass'd a day
But some had fail'd, and others gone astray;
Clerks had absconded, wives eloped, girls flown
To Gretna-Green, or sons rebellious grown;
Quarrels and fires arose;--and it was plain
The times were bad; the Saints had ceased to reign!
A few yet lived, to languish and to mourn
For good old manners never to return.
Jonas had sisters, and of these was one
Who lost a husband and an only son:
Twelve months her sables she in sorrow wore,
And mourn'd so long that she could mourn no more.
Distant from Jonas, and from all her race,
She now resided in a lively place;
There, by the sect unseen, at whist she play'd,
Nor was of churchman or their church afraid:
If much of this the graver brother heard,
He something censured, but he little fear'd;
He knew her rich and frugal; for the rest,
He felt no care, or, if he felt, suppress'd:
Nor for companion when she ask'd her Niece,
Had he suspicions that disturb'd his peace;
Frugal and rich, these virtues as a charm
Preserved the thoughtful man from all alarm;
An infant yet, she soon would home return,
Nor stay the manners of the world to learn;
Meantime his boys would all his care engross,
And be his comforts if he felt the loss.
The sprightly Sybil, pleased and unconfined,
Felt the pure pleasure of the op'ning mind:
All here was gay and cheerful--all at home
Unvaried quiet and unruffled gloom:
There were no changes, and amusements few; -
Here all was varied, wonderful, and new;
There were plain meals, plain dresses, and grave
Here, gay companions and amusing books;
And the young Beauty soon began to taste
The light vocations of the scene she graced.
A man of business feels it as a crime
On calls domestic to consume his time;
Yet this grave man had not so cold a heart,
But with his daughter he was grieved to part:
And he demanded that in every year
The Aunt and Niece should at his house appear.
'Yes! we must go, my child, and by our dress
A grave conformity of mind express;
Must sing at meeting, and from cards refrain,
The more t'enjoy when we return again.'
Thus spake the Aunt, and the discerning child
Was pleased to learn how fathers are beguiled.
Her artful part the young dissembler took,
And from the matron caught th' approving look:
When thrice the friends had met, excuse was sent
For more delay, and Jonas was content;
Till a tall maiden by her sire was seen,
In all the bloom and beauty of sixteen;
He gazed admiring;--she, with visage prim,
Glanced an arch look of gravity on him;
For she was gay at heart, but wore disguise,
And stood a vestal in her father's eyes:
Pure, pensive, simple, sad; the damsel's heart,
When Jonas praised, reproved her for the part.
For Sybil, fond of pleasure, gay and light,
Had still a secret bias to the right;
Vain as she was--and flattery made her vain -
Her simulation gave her bosom pain.
Again return'd, the Matron and the Niece
Found the late quiet gave their joy increase;
The aunt infirm, no more her visits paid,
But still with her sojourn'd the favourite maid.
Letters were sent when franks could be procured,
And when they could not, silence was endured;
All were in health, and if they older grew,
It seem'd a fact that none among them knew;
The aunt and niece still led a pleasant life,
And quiet days had Jonas and his wife.
Near him a Widow dwelt of worthy fame,
Like his her manners, and her creed the same;
The wealth her husband left, her care retain'd
For one tall Youth, and widow she remain'd;
His love respectful all her care repaid,
Her wishes watch'd, and her commands obey'd.
Sober he was and grave from early youth,
Mindful of forms, but more intent on truth:
In a light drab he uniformly dress'd,
And look serene th' unruffled mind express'd;
A hat with ample verge his brows o'erspread,
And his brown locks curl'd graceful on his head;
Yet might observers in his speaking eye
Some observation, some acuteness spy;
The friendly thought it keen, the treacherous
deem'd it sly.
Yet not a crime could foe or friend detect,
His actions all were, like his speech, correct;
And they who jested on a mind so sound,
Upon his virtues must their laughter found;
Chaste, sober, solemn, and devout they named
Him who was thus, and not of this ashamed.
Such were the virtues Jonas found in one
In whom he warmly wish'd to find a son:
Three years had pass'd since he had Sybil seen;
But she was doubtless what she once had been,
Lovely and mild, obedient and discreet;
The pair must love whenever they should meet;
Then ere the widow or her son should choose
Some happier maid, he would explain his views:
Now she, like him, was politic and shrewd,
With strong desire of lawful gain embued;
To all he said, she bow'd with much respect,
Pleased to comply, yet seeming to reject;
Cool and yet eager, each admired the strength
Of the opponent, and agreed at length:
As a drawn battle shows to each a force,
Powerful as his, he honours it of course;
So in these neighbours, each the power discern'd,
And gave the praise that was to each return'd.
Jonas now ask'd his daughter--and the Aunt,
Though loth to lose her, was obliged to grant: -
But would not Sybil to the matron cling,
And fear to leave the shelter of her wing?
No! in the young there lives a love of change,
And to the easy they prefer the strange!
Then, too, the joys she once pursued with zeal,
From whist and visits sprung, she ceased to feel:
When with the matrons Sybil first sat down,
To cut for partners and to stake her crown,
This to the youthful maid preferment seem'd,
Who thought what woman she was then esteem'd;
But in few years, when she perceived, indeed,
The real woman to the girl succeed,
No longer tricks and honours fill'd her mind,
But other feelings, not so well defined;
She then reluctant grew, and thought it hard
To sit and ponder o'er an ugly card;
Rather the nut-tree shade the nymph preferr'd,
Pleased with the pensive gloom and evening bird;
Thither, from company retired, she took
The silent walk, or read the fav'rite book.
The father's letter, sudden, short, and kind,
Awaked her wonder, and disturb'd her mind;
She found new dreams upon her fancy seize,
Wild roving thoughts and endless reveries.
The parting came;--and when the Aunt perceived
The tears of Sybil, and how much she grieved -
To love for her that tender grief she laid,
That various, soft, contending passions made.
When Sybil rested in her father's arms,
His pride exulted in a daughter's charms;
A maid accomplish'd he was pleased to find,
Nor seem'd the form more lovely than the mind:
But when the fit of pride and fondness fled,
He saw his judgment by his hopes misled;
High were the lady's spirits, far more free
Her mode of speaking than a maid's should be;
Too much, as Jonas thought, she seem'd to know,
And all her knowledge was disposed to show;
'Too gay her dress, like theirs who idly dote
On a young coxcomb or a coxcomb's coat;
In foolish spirits when our friends appear,
And vainly grave when not a man is near.'
Thus Jonas, adding to his sorrow blame,
And terms disdainful to a Sister's name:
'The sinful wretch has by her arts denied
The ductile spirit of my darling child.'
'The maid is virtuous,' said the dame--Quoth he,
'Let her give proof, by acting virtuously:
Is it in gaping when the Elders pray?
In reading nonsense half a summer's day?
In those mock forms that she delights to trace,
Or her loud laughs in Hezekiah's face?
She--O Susannah!--to the world belongs;
She loves the follies of its idle throngs,
And reads soft tales of love, and sings love's
But, as our friend is yet delay'd in town,
We must prepare her till the Youth comes down:
You shall advise the maiden; I will threat;
Her fears and hopes may yield us comfort yet.'
Now the grave father took the lass aside,
Demanding sternly, 'Wilt thou be a bride?'
She answer'd, calling up an air sedate,
'I have not vow'd against the holy state.'
'No folly, Sybil,' said the parent; 'know
What to their parents virtuous maidens owe:
A worthy, wealthy youth, whom I approve,
Must thou prepare to honour and to love.
Formal to thee his air and dress may seem,
But the good youth is worthy of esteem:
Shouldst thou with rudeness treat him; of disdain
Should he with justice or of slight complain,
Or of one taunting speech give certain proof,
Girl! I reject thee from my sober roof.'
'My aunt,' said Sybil,' will with pride protect
One whom a father can for this reject;
Nor shall a formal, rigid, soul-less boy
My manners alter, or my views destroy!'
Jonas then lifted up his hands on high,
And, utt'ring something 'twixt a groan and sigh,
Left the determined maid, her doubtful mother by.
'Hear me,' she said; 'incline thy heart, my
And fix thy fancy on a man so mild:
Thy father, Sybil, never could be moved
By one who loved him, or by one he loved.
Union like ours is but a bargain made
By slave and tyrant--he will be obey'd;
Then calls the quiet, comfort--but thy Youth
Is mild by nature, and as frank as truth.'
'But will he love?' said Sybil; 'I am told
That these mild creatures are by nature cold.'
'Alas!' the matron answer'd, 'much I dread
That dangerous love by which the young are led!
That love is earthy; you the creature prize,
And trust your feelings and believe your eyes:
Can eyes and feelings inward worth descry?
No! my fair daughter, on our choice rely!
Your love, like that display'd upon the stage,
Indulged is folly, and opposed is rage; -
More prudent love our sober couples show,
All that to mortal beings, mortals owe;
All flesh is grass--before you give a heart,
Remember, Sybil, that in death you part;
And should your husband die before your love,
What needless anguish must a widow prove!
No! my fair child, let all such visions cease;
Yield but esteem, and only try for peace.'
'I must be loved,' said Sybil; 'I must see
The man in terrors who aspires to me;
At my forbidding frown his heart must ache,
His tongue must falter, and his frame must shake:
And if I grant him at my feet to kneel,
What trembling, fearful pleasure must he feel;
Nay, such the raptures that my smiles inspire,
That reason's self must for a time retire.'
'Alas! for good Josiah,' said the dame,
'These wicked thoughts would fill his soul with
He kneel and tremble at a thing of dust!
He cannot, child:'--the Child replied, 'He must.'
They ceased: the matron left her with a frown;
So Jonas met her when the Youth came down:
'Behold,' said he, 'thy future spouse attends;
Receive him, daughter, as the best of friends;
Observe, respect him--humble be each word,
That welcomes home thy husband and thy lord.'
Forewarn'd, thought Sybil, with a bitter smile,
I shall prepare my manner and my style.
Ere yet Josiah enter'd on his task,
The father met him--'Deign to wear a mask
A few dull days, Josiah--but a few -
It is our duty, and the sex's due;
I wore it once, and every grateful wife
Repays it with obedience through her life:
Have no regard to Sybil's dress, have none
To her pert language, to her flippant tone:
Henceforward thou shalt rule unquestion'd and
And she thy pleasure in thy looks shall seek -
How she shall dress, and whether she may speak.'
A sober smile returned the Youth, and said,
'Can I cause fear, who am myself afraid?'
Sybil, meantime, sat thoughtful in her room,
And often wonder'd--'Will the creature come?
Nothing shall tempt, shall force me to bestow
My hand upon him,--yet I wish to know.'
The door unclosed, and she beheld her sire
Lead in the Youth, then hasten to retire;
'Daughter, my friend--my daughter, friend,' he
And gave a meaning look, and stepp'd aside:
That look contained a mingled threat and prayer,
'Do take him, child,--offend him if you dare.'
The couple gazed--were silent, and the maid
Look'd in his face, to make the man afraid;
The man, unmoved, upon the maiden cast
A steady view--so salutation pass'd:
But in this instant Sybil's eye had seen
The tall fair person, and the still staid mien;
The glow that temp'rance o'er the cheek had spread,
Where the soft down half veil'd the purest red;
And the serene deportment that proclaim'd
A heart unspotted, and a life unblamed:
But then with these she saw attire too plain,
The pale brown coat, though worn without a stain;
The formal air, and something of the pride
That indicates the wealth it seems to hide;
And looks that were not, she conceived, exempt
From a proud pity, or a sly contempt.
Josiah's eyes had their employment too,
Engaged and soften'd by so bright a view;
A fair and meaning face, an eye of fire,
That check'd the bold, and made the free retire:
But then with these he marked the studied dress
And lofty air, that scorn or pride express;
With that insidious look, that seem'd to hide
In an affected smile the scorn and pride;
And if his mind the virgin's meaning caught,
He saw a foe with treacherous purpose fraught -
Captive the heart to take, and to reject it,
Silent they sat--thought Sybil, that he seeks
Something, no doubt; I wonder if he speaks:
Scarcely she wonder'd, when these accents fell
Slow in her ear--'Fair maiden, art thou well?'
'Art thou physician?' she replied; 'my hand,
My pulse, at least, shall be at thy command.'
She said--and saw, surprised, Josiah kneel,
And gave his lips the offer'd pulse to feel;
The rosy colour rising in her cheek,
Seem'd that surprise unmix'd with wrath to speak;
Then sternness she assumed, and--'Doctor, tell;
Thy words cannot alarm me--am I well?'
'Thou art,' said he; 'and yet thy dress so
I do conceive, some danger must excite:'
'In whom?' said Sybil, with a look demure:
'In more,' said he, 'than I expect to cure; -
I, in thy light luxuriant robe behold
Want and excess, abounding and yet cold;
Here needed, there display'd, in many a wanton
Both health and beauty, learned authors show,
From a just medium in our clothing flow.'
'Proceed, good doctor; if so great my need,
What is thy fee? Good doctor! pray proceed.'
'Large is my fee, fair lady, but I take
None till some progress in my cure I make:
Thou hast disease, fair maiden; thou art vain;
Within that face sit insult and disdain;
Thou art enamour'd of thyself; my art
Can see the naughty malice of thy heart:
With a strong pleasure would thy bosom move,
Were I to own thy power, and ask thy love;
And such thy beauty, damsel, that I might,
But for thy pride, feel danger in thy sight,
And lose my present peace in dreams of vain
'And can thy patients,' said the nymph 'endure
Physic like this? and will it work a cure?'
'Such is my hope, fair damsel; thou, I find,
Hast the true tokens of a noble mind;
But the world wins thee, Sybil, and thy joys
Are placed in trifles, fashions, follies, toys;
Thou hast sought pleasure in the world around,
That in thine own pure bosom should be found;
Did all that world admire thee, praise and love,
Could it the least of nature's pains remove?
Could it for errors, follies, sins atone,
Or give the comfort, thoughtful and alone?
It has, believe me, maid, no power to charm
Thy soul from sorrow, or thy flesh from harm:
Turn then, fair creature, from a world of sin,
And seek the jewel happiness within.'
'Speak'st thou at meeting?' said the nymph; 'thy
Is that of mortal very prone to teach;
But wouldst thou, doctor, from the patient learn
Thine own disease?--the cure is thy concern.'
'Yea, with good will.'--'Then know 'tis thy
That, for a sinner, thou'rt too much a saint;
Hast too much show of the sedate and pure,
And without cause art formal and demure:
This makes a man unsocial, unpolite;
Odious when wrong, and insolent if right.
Thou mayst be good, but why should goodness be
Wrapt in a garb of such formality?
Thy person well might please a damsel's eye,
In decent habit with a scarlet dye;
But, jest apart--what virtue canst thou trace
In that broad brim that hides thy sober face?
Does that long-skirted drab, that over-nice
And formal clothing, prove a scorn of vice?
Then for thine accent--what in sound can be
So void of grace as dull monotony?
Love has a thousand varied notes to move
The human heart: --thou mayest not speak of love
Till thou hast cast thy formal ways aside,
And those becoming youth and nature tried:
Not till exterior freedom, spirit, ease,
Prove it thy study and delight to please;
Not till these follies meet thy just disdain,
While yet thy virtues and thy worth remain.'
'This is severe!--Oh! maiden wilt not thou
Something for habits, manners, modes, allow?' -
'Yes! but allowing much, I much require,
In my behalf, for manners, modes, attire!'
'True, lovely Sybil; and, this point agreed,
Let me to those of greater weight proceed:
Thy father!'--'Nay,' she quickly interposed,
'Good doctor, here our conference is closed!'
Then left the Youth, who, lost in his retreat,
Pass'd the good matron on her garden-seat;
His looks were troubled, and his air, once mild
And calm, was hurried: --'My audacious child!'
Exclaim'd the dame, 'I read what she has done
In thy displeasure--Ah! the thoughtless one:
But yet, Josiah, to my stern good man
Speak of the maid as mildly as you can:
Can you not seem to woo a little while
The daughter's will, the father to beguile?
So that his wrath in time may wear away;
Will you preserve our peace, Josiah? say.'
'Yes! my good neighbour,' said the gentle youth,
'Rely securely on my care and truth;
And should thy comfort with my efforts cease,
And only then,--perpetual is thy peace.'
The dame had doubts: she well his virtues knew,
His deeds were friendly, and his words were true:
'But to address this vixen is a task
He is ashamed to take, and I to ask.'
Soon as the father from Josiah learn'd
What pass'd with Sybil, he the truth discern'd.
'He loves,' the man exclaim'd, 'he loves, 'tis
The thoughtless girl, and shall he love in vain?
She may be stubborn, but she shall be tried,
Born as she is of wilfulness and pride.'
With anger fraught, but willing to persuade,
The wrathful father met the smiling maid:
'Sybil,' said he, 'I long, and yet I dread
To know thy conduct--hath Josiah fled?
And, grieved and fretted by thy scornful air,
For his lost peace, betaken him to prayer?
Couldst thou his pure and modest mind distress
By vile remarks upon his speech, address,
Attire, and voice?'--'All this I must confess.'
'Unhappy child! what labour will it cost
To win him back!'--'I do not think him lost.'
'Courts he then (trifler!) insult and disdain?' -
'No; but from these he courts me to refrain.'
'Then hear me, Sybil: should Josiah leave
Thy father's house?'--'My father's child would
'That is of grace, and if he come again
To speak of love?'--'I might from grief refrain.'
'Then wilt thou, daughter, our design embrace?' -
'Can I resist it, if it be of Grace?'
'Dear child in three plain words thy mind express:
Wilt thou have this good youth?'--'Dear Father!