O LAND of Promise! from what Pisgah's height

Can I behold thy stretch of peaceful bowers,
Thy golden harvests flowing out of sight,
Thy nestled homes and sun-illumined towers ?

Gazing upon the sunset's high-heaped gold,
Its crags of opal and of chrysolite,
Its deeps on deeps of glory, that unfold

Still brightening abysses,

And blazing precipices,
Whence but a scanty leap it seems to heaven,

Sometimes a glimpse is given
Of thy more gorgeous realm, thy more unstinted


O Land of Quiet! to thy shore the surf

Of the perturbed Present rolls and sleeps ; Our storms breathe soft as June upon thy turf

And lure out blossoms ; to thy bosom leaps, As to a mother's, the o’erwearied heart, Hearing far off and dim the toiling mart, The hurrying feet, the curses without number,

And, circled with the glow Elysian,

Of thine exulting vision, Out of its very cares woos charms for peace and


To thee the Earth lifts up her fettered hands

And cries for vengeance; with a pitying smile Thou blessest her, and she forgets her bands,

And her old woe-worn face a little while

Grows young

and noble; unto thee the Oppressor Looks, and is dumb with awe;

The eternal law, Which makes the crime its own blindfold redresser, Shadows his heart with perilous foreboding,

And he can see the grim-eyed Doom

From out the trembling gloom
Its silent-footed steeds toward his palace goading.
What promises hast thou for Poets' eyes,

Aweary of the turmoil and the wrong!
To all their hopes what overjoyed replies !

What undreamed ecstasies for blissful song ! Thy happy plains no war-trump's brawling clangor

Disturbs, and fools the poor to hate the poor; The humble glares not on the high with anger;

Love leaves no grudge at less, no greed for more; In vain strives Self the godlike sense to smother;

From the soul's deeps

It throbs and leaps ; The noble 'neath foul rags beholds his long-lost


To thee the Martyr looketh, and his fires

Unlock their fangs and leave his spirit free; To thee the Poet ʼmid his toil aspires,

And grief and hunger climb about his knee, Welcome as children; thou upholdest

The lone Inventor by his demon haunted ; The Prophet cries to thee when hearts are coldest,

And, gazing o'er the midnight's bleak abyss,

Sees the drowsed soul awaken at thy kiss, And stretch its happy arms and leap up disen


Thou bringest vengeance, but so loving-kindly

The guilty thinks it pity; taught by thee,


Fierce tyrants drop the scourges wherewith blindly

Their own souls they were scarring; conquerors With horror in their hands the accursed spear

That tore the meek One's side on Calvary, And from their trophies shrink with ghastly fear;

Thou, too, art the Forgiver,
The beauty of man's soul to man revealing;

The arrows from thy quiver
Pierce Error's guilty heart, but only pierce for


O, whither, whither, glory-winged dreams, From out Life's sweat and turmoil would ye bear

me ?

Shut, gates of Fancy, on your golden gleams,

This agony of hopeless contrast spare me ! Fade, cheating glow, and leave me to my night!

He is a coward, who would borrow

A charm against the present sorrow From the vague Future's promise of delight: As life's alarums nearer roll,

The ancestral buckler calls,

Self-clanging from the walls In the high temple of the soul; Where are most sorrows, there the poet's sphere is,

To feed the soul with patience,

To heal its desolations With words of unshorn truth, with love that never HEBE


I saw the twinkle of white feet,
I saw the flash of robes descending ;

Before her ran an influence fleet,
That bowed my heart like barley bending.

in bare fields, the searching bees Pilot to blooms beyond our finding,

It led me on, by sweet degrees Joy's simple honey-cells unbinding.

Those Graces were that seemed grim Fates; With nearer love the sky leaned o'er me;

The long-sought Secret's golden gates On musical hinges swung before me.

I saw the brimmed bowl in her grasp Thrilling with godhood ; like a lover

I sprang the proffered life to clasp ;The beaker fell; the luck was over.

The Earth has drunk the vintage up;
What boots it patch the goblet's splinters ?

Can Summer fill the icy cup,
Whose treacherous crystal is but Winter's ?

O spendthrift, haste ! await the Gods ;
Their nectar crowns the lips of Patience;

Haste scatters on unthankful sods
The immortal gift in vain libations.

Coy Hebe flies from those that woo,
And shuns the hands would seize upon her;

Follow thy life, and she will sue
To pour for thee the cup of honour.


I WENT to seek for Christ,

And Nature seemed so fair That first the woods and fields my youth enticed,

And I was sure to find him there :

The temple I forsook,

And to the solitude
Allegiance paid; but Winter came and shook

The crown and purple from my wood; His snows, like desert sands, with scornful drift,

Besieged the columned aisle and palace-gate; My Thebes, cut deep with many a solemn rift,

But epitaphed her own sepulchred state: Then I remembered whom I went to seek, And blessed blunt Winter for his counsel bleak.

Back to the world I turned,

For Christ, I said, is King ;
So the cramped alley and the hut I spurned,

As far beneath his sojourning :

'Mid power and wealth I sought,

But found no trace of him, And all the costly offerings I had brought With sudden rust and mould


dim : I found his tomb, indeed, where, by their laws,

All must on stated days themselves imprison, Mocking with bread a dead creed's grinning jaws,

Witless how long the life had thence arisen ;
Due sacrifice to this they set apart,
Prizing it more than Christ's own living heart.

So from my feet the dust
Of the proud World I shook ;

« ElőzőTovább »