Still Bertha waited on the cliff,
To catch the gleam of a coming sail
And the distant whisper of the gale,

Winging the unforgotten home;
And hope at her yearning heart would knock,
When a sunbeam on a far-off rock

Married a wreath of wandering foam.

Was it well? you ask - (nay, was it ill?) – Who sat last year by the old man's hearth;The sun had passed below the earth,

And the first star locked its western gate, When Bertha entered his darkening home, And smiling said, 'He does not come,

But, dearest father, we still can wait!'


HOPES on hopes from the bosom sever,
But the heart hopes on, unchanging ever;
Wave after wave breaks on the shore,
But the sea is deep as it was before.

That the billows heave with a ceaseless motion
Is the very life of the throbbing ocean;
And hopes that from day to day upstart
Are the swelling wave-beats of the heart.
From the German of RÜCKERT.

My hopes retire, my wishes as before
Struggle to find their resting-place, in vain :
The ebbing sea thus beats against the shore;
The shore repels it; it returns again.




I PAUSED at early morn to trace
My name upon the sand,

Nor cared to think how soon the race
Of leaping waters would efface
The record of my hand.

But now the broad'ning blue expanse
Rolls higher up the shore;

Farther the curling waves advance,
Their smiles of light, their wreathed dance
Are nearer than before.

And now,

alas that human pride
So slight a thing may quell!

With yonder words beneath the tide,
I feel that all I've wrought beside
May disappear as well.

And dare I deem that all this strife
Of thoughts within my soul,
These hopes with which my heart is rife,
These longings for a glorious life,

Will find a better goal?

Oh, coward! when the trumpet's call

Is sounding in thy heart, Pause not to basely reckon all The risks to triumph or to fall, But forth and act thy part!

I know not if the bearded grain
Or barren stalks await

Mine autumn hours. Yet not in vain
The toil, though God the fruits restrain
Or grant the harvest late.

Oh Love, that askest but to be!

Oh Faith, that will not die!

Life, courage, strength, ye are to me, While all things change, and fade, and flee, In ocean, earth, and sky.


My life is like a stroll upon the beach,
As near the ocean's edge as I can go;
My tardy steps its waves sometimes o'erreach,
Sometimes I stay to let them overflow.

My sole employment 'tis, and scrupulous care To set my gains beyond the reach of tides, Each smoother pebble and each shell more rare, Which ocean kindly to my hand confides.

I have but few companions on the shore,

They scorn the strand who sail upon the sea ; Yet oft I think the ocean they've sailed o'er, Is deeper known upon the strand to me.

The middle sea contains no crimson dulse,

Its deeper waves cast up no pearls to view, Along the shore my hand is on its pulse,

And I converse with many a shipwrecked crew.


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