GONE, gone from us! and shall we


Those sibyl-leaves of destiny,
Those calm eyes, nevermore?

Those deep, dark eyes so warm and bright,

Wherein the fortunes of the man
Lay slumbering in prophetic light,
In characters a child might scan?
So bright, and gone forth utterly!
O stern word-Nevermore !

The stars of those two gentle eyes Will shine no more on earth; Quenched are the hopes that had their birth,

As we watched them slowly rise,
Stars of a mother's fate;

And she would read them o'er and o'er,
Pondering as she sate,

Over their dear astrology,

Which she had conned and conned before,

Deeming she needs must read aright
What was writ so passing bright.
And yet, alas! she knew not why,
Her voice would falter in its song,
And tears would slide from out her eye,
Silent, as they were doing wrong.
O stern word-Nevermore !

The tongue that scarce had learned
to claim

An entrance to a mother's heart
By that dear talisman, a mother's name,
Sleeps all forgetful of its art!
I loved to see the infant soul
(How mighty in the weakness
Of its untutored meekness !)
Peep timidly from out its nest,

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As the airy gossamere, Floating in the sunlight clear, Where'er it toucheth clingeth tightly, Round glossy leaf or stump unsightly, So from his spirit wandered out Tendrils spreading all about, Knitting all things to its thrall With a perfect love of all: O stern word - Nevermore !

He did but float a little way
Adown the stream of time,
With dreamy eyes watching the ripples

Or hearkening their fairy chime;
His slender sail

Ne'er felt the gale;

He did but float a little way,
And, putting to the shore
While yet 't was early day,
Went calmly on his way,
To dwell with us no more!
No jarring did he feel,

No grating on his vessel's keel;
A strip of silver sand

Mingled the waters with the land
Where he was seen no more:
O stern word - Nevermore !

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Come and rest thee! O come hither
Come to this peaceful home of ours,
Where evermore

The low west-wind creeps panting up the shore

To be at rest among the flowers;
Full of rest, the green moss lifts,
As the dark waves of the sea
Draw in and out of rocky rifts,
Calling solemnly to thee
With voices deep and hollow,—
"To the shore

Follow! O, follow!

To be at rest forevermore !
Forevermore !

Look how the gray old Ocean From the depth of his heart rejoices, Heaving with a gentle motion, When he hears our restful voices; List how he sings in an undertone, Chiming with our melody;

And all sweet sounds of earth and air
Melt into one low voice alone,
That murmurs over the weary sea,
And seems to sing from everywhere,
"Here mayst thou harbor peacefully,
Here mayst thou rest from the aching


Turn thy curved prow ashore, And in our green isle rest forevermore ! Forevermore ! "

And Echo half wakes in the wooded


And, to her heart so calm and deep, Murmurs over in her sleep, Doubtfully pausing and murmuring still "Evermore !

Thus, on Life's weary sea,
Heareth the marinere
Voices sweet, from far and near,
Ever singing low and clear,
Ever singing longingly.

Is it not better here to be,
Than to be toiling late and soon?
In the dreary night to see
Nothing but the blood-red moon
Go up and down into the sea,
Or, in the loneliness of day,

To see the still seals only
Solemnly lift their faces gray,
Making it yet more lonely?
Is it not better, than to hear


Only the sliding of the wave Beneath the plank, and feel so near A cold and lonely grave,

A restless grave, where thou shalt lie
Even in death unquietly?

Look down beneath thy wave-worn bark,

Lean over the side and see

The leaden eye of the sidelong shark Upturned patiently,

Ever waiting there for thee: Look down and see those shapeless forms,

Which ever keep their dreamless sleep

Far down within the gloomy deep, And only stir themselves in storms, Rising like islands from beneath, And snorting through the angry spray, As the frail vessel perisheth In the whirls of their unwieldy play; Look down! Look down! Upon the seaweed, slimy and dark, That waves its arms so lank and brown, Beckoning for thee!

Look down beneath thy wave-worn bark

Into the cold depth of the sea!

Look down! Look down!

Thus, on Life's lonely sea,
Heareth the marinere

Voices sad, from far and near,
Ever singing full of fear,
Ever singing drearfully.

Here all is pleasant as a dream: The wind scarce shaketh down the dew, The green grass floweth like a stream Into the ocean's blue;

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