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HYMN TO THE NIGHT.
I HEARD the trailing garments of the Night
I saw her sable skirts all fringed with light
I felt her presence, by its spell of might,
The calm, majestic presence of the Night,
I heard the sounds of sorrow and delight,
That fill the haunted chambers of the Night,
From the cool cisterns of the midnight air
The fountain of perpetual peace flows there,-
O holy Night! from thee I learn to bear
What man has borne before!
Thou layest thy finger on the lips of Care,
Peace! Peace! Orestes-like I breathe this prayer!
The welcome, the thrice-prayed for, the most fair, The best-beloved Night!
A PSALM OF LIFE
WHAT THE HEART OF THE YOUNG MAN SAID TO THE PSALMIST.
TELL me not, in mournful numbers,
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave, Still, like muffled drums, are beating Funeral marches to the grave.
In the world's broad field of battle,
Trust no Future, howe'er pleasant!
Heart within, and God o'erhead!
Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
Footprints, that perhaps another,
Let us, then, be up and doing,
THE REAPER AND THE FLOWERS.
THERE is a Reaper, whose name is Death,
And, with his sickle keen,
reaps the bearded grain at a breath,
And the flowers that grow between.
"Shall I have nought that is fair?" saith he;
"Have nought but the bearded grain? Though the breath of these flowers is sweet to me, I will give them all back again."
He gazed at the flowers with tearful eyes,
He kissed their drooping leaves;
It was for the Lord of Paradise
He bound them in his sheaves.
"My Lord has need of these flowerets gay,"
The Reaper said, and smiled;
'Dear tokens of the earth are they,
Where He was once a child.
'They shall all bloom in fields of light,
And saints, upon their garments white,
And the mother gave, in tears and pain,
She knew she should find them all again
Oh, not in cruelty, not in wrath,
T was an angel visited the green earth,
THE LIGHT OF STARS
THE night is come, but not too soon;
All silently, the little moon
Drops down behind the sky.
There is no light in earth or heaven,
Is it the tender star of love?
The star of love and dreams?
And earnest thoughts within me ris,
Suspended in the evening skies,
O star of strength! I see thee stand And smile upon my pain;
Thou beckonest with thy mailèd hand, And I am strong again.
Within my breast there is no light,
The star of the unconquered will,
And thou, too, whosoe'er thou art,
Oh, fear not in a world like this,