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SI DESCENDERO IN INFERNUM, ADES.
O, WANDERING dim on the extremest edge
Of God's bright providence, whose spirits sigh Drearily in you, like the winter sedge
That shivers o'er the dead pool stiff and dry,
From the clear North of Duty, -
Of the supernal Beauty, —
With wilted flowers for offering laid across,
Whose hearts are as a little lane serene,
snows, Or in the summer blithe with lamb-cropped
green, Save the one track, where naught more rude is
Than the plump wain at even Bringing home four months' sunshine bound in
That ye can shut out heaven ?
Nor all unconscious, as that silent lane
Looking within myself, I note how thin
A plank of station, chance, or prosperous fate, Doth fence me from the clutching waves of sin ;
In my own heart I find the worst man's mate,
That opes to those abysses
Or felt a mother's kisses,
One band ye cannot break,—the force that clips
And grasps your circles to the central light;
Self-exiled to the farthest verge of night;
No sin hath e'er imbruted ;
By bigot feet polluted ;-
TO THE PAST.
WONDROUS and awful are thy silent halls,
O kingdom of the past !
Guarded by shadows vast,-
Earth worshipped once as deathless.
Half woman and half beast, The burnt-out torch within her mouldering
hands That once lit all the East; A dotard bleared and hoary, There sser crouches o'er the blackened brands
Of Asia's long-quenched glory.
Still as a city buried 'neath the sea,
Thy courts and temples stand;
Of saints and heroes grand,
Into Time's gnawing river.
Of their old godhead lorn,
Which they misdeem for morn;
In their unmonarched eyes says day is done
Without the hope of morrow.
The shapes that haunt thy gloom
Across the gulf of doom;
On the mirage's ocean.
And if sometimes a moaning wandereth
From out thy desolate halls,
Across our sunshine falls
To chase the misty terror.
Are silent now in dust,
Beneath some sudden gust;
From the world's garden banished.
Whatever of true life there was in thee
Leaps in our age's veins ;
And shake thine idle chains ;
Thy poets still are singing.
Float the green Fortunate Isles