The streams through many a lilied row

Down-carolling to the crisped sea, Low-tinkled with a bell-like flow

Atween the blossoms, “We are free.'



Airy, fairy Lilian,

Flitting, fairy Lilian, When I ask her if she love me, Claps her tiny hands above me,

Laughing all she can ; She'll not tell me if she love me,

Cruel little Lilian.

Eyes not down-dropt nor over bright,

but fed With the clear-pointed flame of chas.

ity, Clear, without heat, undying, tended by Pure vestal thoughts in the trans

lucent fane Of her still spirit; locks not wide

dispread, Madonna-wise on either side her

head; Sweet lips whereon perpetually did

reign The summer calm of golden charity, Were fixed shadows of thy fixed mood,

Revered Isabel, the crown and head, The stately flower of female fortitude,

Of perfect wifehood and pure lowli



When my passion seeks

Pleasance in love-sighs,
She, looking thro' and thro' me
Thoroughly to undo me,

Smiling, never speaks :
So innocent-arch, so cunning-simple,
From beneath her gather'd wimple

Glancing with black-beaded eyes, Till the lightning laughters dimple

The baby-roses in her cheeks;
Then away she flies.


Prythee weep, May Lilian !

Gaiety without eclipse Wearieth me, May Lilian : Thro' my very heart it thrilleth

When from crimson-threaded lips Silver-treble laughter trilleth:

Prythee weep, May Lilian.

11. The intuitive decision of a bright And thorough-edged intellect to part Error from crime; a prudence to

withhold; The laws of marriage character'd in

gold Upon the blanched tablets of her heart; A love still burning upward, giving light To read those laws ; an accent very low In blandishment, but a most silver flow

Of subtle-paced counsel in distress, Right to the heart and brain, tho' un

descried, Winning its way with extreme gen.

tleness Thro’all the outworks of suspicious pride; A courage to endure and to obey ; A hate of gossip parlance, and of sway,

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Crown'd Isabel, thro' all her placid life, The queen of marriage, a most perfect wife.


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The mellow'd reflex of a winter moon;
A clear stream flowing with a muddy

Till in its onward current it absorbs
With swifter movement and in purer

light The vexed eddies of its wayward

brother : A leaning and upbearing parasite, Clothing the stem, which else had

fallen quite With cluster'd flower-bells and ambro

sial orbs Of rich fruit-bunches leaning on each

otherShadow forth thee :-the world hath

not another (Tho' all her fairest forms are types of

thee, And thou of God in thy great charity) Of such a finish'd chasten'd purity.

Upon the middle of the night,

Waking she heard the night-fowl crow: The cock sung out an hour ere light :

From the dark fen the oxen's low Came to her : without hope of change,

In sleep she seem'd to walk forlorn, Till cold winds woke the gray-eyed

morn About the lonely moated grange.

She only said, “ The day is dreary,

He cometh not,' she said ;
She said, 'I am aweary, aweary,

I would that I were dead !'


• Mariana in the moated grange.'

Measure for Measure.

With blackest moss the flower-plots

Were thickly crusted, one and all : The rusted nails fell from the knots

That held the pear to the gable-wall. The broken sheds look'd sad and strange:

L'nlifted was the clinking latch ; Weeded and worn the ancient thatch Upon the lonely moated grange.

She only said, My life is dreary,

He cometh not,' she said ;
She said, I am aweary, aweary,

I would that I were dead !'

About a stone-cast from the wall

A sluice with blacken'd waters slept, And o'er it many, round and small,

The cluster'd marish-mosses crept. Hard by a poplar shook alway,

All silver-green with gnarled bark :

For leagues no other tree did mark The level waste, the rounding gray.

She only said, “My life is dreary,

He cometh not,' she said ;
She said, 'I am aweary, aweary,

I would that I were dead!'

And ever when the moon was low,

And the shrill winds were up and away In the white curtain, to and fro,

She saw the gusty shadow sway. But when the moon was very low, And wild winds bound within their

cell, The shadow of the poplar fell Upon her bed, across her brow.

She only said, “The night is dreary,

He cometh not,' she said ;
She said, “I am aweary, aweary,

I would that I were dead !'


1. CLEAR-HEADED friend, whose joyful

soorn, Edged with sharp laughter, cuts atwain

The knots that tangle human creeds, The wounding cords that bind and strain

The heart until it bleeds, Ray-fringed eyelids of the morn

Roof not a glance so keen as thine :

If aught of prophecy be mine,
Thou wilt not live in vain.


All day within the dreamy house,

The doors upon their hinges creak'd ; The blue fly sung in the pane ; the mouse Behind the mouldering wainscot

shriek'd, Or from the crevice peer'd about.

Old faces glimmer'd thro' the doors,

Old footsteps trod the upper floors, Old voices called her from without.

She only said, “My life is dreary,

He cometh not,' she said;
She said, “I am aweary, aweary,

I would that I were dead !'

Low-cowering shall the Sophist sit ;

Falsehood shall bare her plaited brow:

Fair-fronted Truth shall droop not now With shrilling shafts of subtle wit. Nor martyr-flames, nor trenchant swords

Can do away that ancient lie;

A gentler death shall Falsehood die, Shot thro' and thro' with cunning words.

Weak Truth a-leaning on her crutch,

Wan, wasted Truth in her utmost need,
Thy kingly intellect shall feed,

Until she be an athlete bold,
And weary with a finger's touch

Those writhed limbs of lightning speed; Like that strange angel which of old,

Until the breaking of the light, Wrestled with wandering Israel,

Past Yabbok brook the livelong night, And heaven's mazed signs stood still In the dim tract of Penuel.

The sparrow's chirrup on the roof,

The slow clock ticking, and the sound Which to the wooing wind aloof

The poplar made, did all confound Her sense; but most she loathed the

When the thick-moted sunbeam lay

Athwart the chambers, and the day Was sloping toward his western bower.

Then, said she, “I am very dreary,

He will not come,' she said ;
She wept, 'I am aweary, aweary,

Oh God, that I were dead !'


Thou art not steep'd in golden languors,

No tranced summer calm is thine, · Ever varying Madeline.

Thro'light and shadow thou dost range,

Sudden glances, sweet and strange, Delicious spites and darling angers,

And airy forms of flitting change.

Then in madness and in bliss, If my lips should dare to kiss Thy taper fingers amorously, Again thou blushest angerly ; And o'er black brows drops down A sudden-curved frown.



Smiling, frowning, evermore,
Thou art perfect in love-lore.
Revealings deep and clear are thine
Of wealthy smiles : but who may know
Whether smile or frown be fleeter ?
Whether smile or frown be sweeter,

Who may know?
Frowns perfect-sweet along the brow
Light-glooming over eyes divine,
Like little clouds sun-fringed, are thine,

Ever varying Madeline.
Thy smile and frown are not aloof

From one another,
Each to each is dearest brother ;
Hues of the silken sheeny woof
Momently shot into each other.

All the mystery is thine ;
Smiling, frowning, evermore,
Thou art perfect in love-lore,

Ever varying Madeline.

WHEN cats run home and light is come,

And dew is cold upon the ground,
And the far-off stream is dumb,

And the whirring sail goes round,
And the whirring sail goes round;

Alone and warming his five wits,
The white owl in the belfry sits.


When merry milkmaids click the latch,

And rarely smells the new-mown hay, And the cock hath sung beneath the

Twice or thrice his roundelay,
Twice or thrice his roundelay ;

Alone and warming his five wits,
The white owl in the belfry sits.




A subtle, sudden flame,
By veering passion fann’d,

About thee breaks and dances :
When I would kiss thy hand,
The flush of anger'd shame

O'erflows thy calmer glances, And o'er black brows drops down A sudden-curved frown : But when I turn away, Thou, willing me to stay, Wooest not, nor vainly wranglest ;

But, looking fixedly the while, All my bounding heart entanglest

In a golden-netted smile ;

Thy tuwhits are lull’d, I wot,

Thy tuwhoos of yesternight,
Which upon the dark afloat,

So took echo with delight,
So took echo with delight,

That her voice untuneful grown,
Wears all day a fainter tone.

I would mock thy chaunt anew

But I cannot mimick it ;

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