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A BEGGAR through the world am I, -
From place to place I wander by.
Fill up my pilgrim's scrip for me,
For Christ's sweet sake and charity !
A little of thy steadfastness,
Rounded with leafy gracefulness,
Old oak, give me,
That the world's blasts may round me blow,
And I yield gently to and fro,
While my stout-hearted trunk below
And firm-set roots unshaken be.
Some of thụ stern, unyielding might,
Enduring still through day and night
Rude tempest-shock and withering blight,-
That I may keep at bay
The changeful April sky of chance
And the strong tide of circumstance,-
Give me, old granite gray
Some of thy pensiveness serene,
Some of thy never-dying green,
Put in this scrip of mine,-
That griefs may fall like snow-flakes light,
And deck me in a robe of white,
Ready to be an angel bright,-
O sweetly-mournful pine.
A little of thy merriment,
Of thy sparkling, light content,
Give me, my cheerful brook, —
That I may still be full of glee
And gladsomeness, where'er I be,
Though fickle fate hath prisoned me
In some neglected nook.
Ye have been very kind and good
To me, since I've been in the wood;
Ye have gone nigh to fill my heart;
But good-bye, kind friends, every one,
I've far to go ere set of sun;
Of all good things I would have part,
The day was high ere I could start,
And so my journey's scarce begun.
Heaven help me!, how could I forget
To beg of thee, dear violet !
Some of thy modesty,
That blossoms here as well, unseen,
As if before the world thou’dst been,
0, give, to strengthen me.
Not as all other women are
Is she that to my soul is dear;
Her glorious fancies come from far,
Beneath the silver evening-star,
And yet her heart is ever near.
Great feelings hath she of her own,
Which lesser souls may never know;
God giveth them to her alone,
And sweet they are as any tone
Wherewith the wind may choose to blow.
Yet in herself she dwelleth not,
Although no home were half so fair;
No simplest duty is forgot,
Life hath no dim and lowly spot
That doth not in her sunshine share.
She doeth little kindnesses,
Which most leave undone, or despise;
For naught that sets one heart at ease,
And giveth happiness or peace,
Is low-esteemed in her eyes.
She hath no scorn of common things,
And, though she seem of other birth,
Round us her heart entwines and clings,
And patiently she folds her wings
To tread the humble paths of earth.
Blessing she is : God made her so,
And deeds of weekday holiness
Fall from her noiseless as the snow,
Nor hath she ever chanced to know
That aught were easier than to bless.
She is most fair, and thereunto
Her life doth rightly harmonize ;
Feeling or thought that was not true
Ne'er made less beautiful the blue
Unclouded heaven of her eyes.
VIII. She is a woman: one in whom The spring-time of her childish years Hath never lost its fresh perfume, Though knowing well that life hath room For many blights and many tears.
I love her with a love as still
As a broad river's peaceful might,
Which, by high tower and lowly mill,
Goes wandering at its own will,
And yet doth ever flow aright.
And, on its full, deep breast serene,
Like quiet isles my duties lie;
It flows around them and between,
And makes them fresh and fair and green,
Sweet homes wherein to live and die.
UNTREMULOUS in the river clear,
Toward the sky's image, hangs the imaged bridge ;
So still the air that I can hear
The slender clarion of the unseen midge;
Out of the stillness, with a gathering creep, Like rising wind in leaves, which now decreases, Now lulls, now swells, and all the while increases,
The huddling trample of a drove of sheep Tilts the loose planks, and then as gradually ceases
In dust on the other side; life's emblem deep, A confused noise between two silences, Finding at last in dust precarious peace. On the wide marsh the purple-blossomed grasses
Soak up the sunshine; sleeps the brimming tide, Save when the wedge-shaped wake in silence passes
Of some slow water-rat, whose sinuous glide Wavers the long green sedge's shade from side
to side; But up the west, like a rock-shivered surge, Climbs a great cloud edged with sun-whitened
spray ; Huge whirls of foam boil toppling o'er its verge, And falling still it seems, and yet it climb:
Suddenly all the sky is hid
As with the shutting of a lid,
One by one great drops are falling
Doubtful and slow,
Down the pane they are crookedly crawling,
And the wind breathes low;
Slowly the circles widen on the river,