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The invisible Spirit whose first breath
divine Scattered thy frail endeavor, And, like poor last year's leaves,
whirled thee and thine Into the Dark forever !
though The yellow blood of Trade meanwhile
should pour Along its arteries a shrunken flow, And the idle canvas droop around the
I think God made
ture Can stand, no more suspicious or
afraid, Erect and kingly in his right of nature, To heaven and earth knit with harmo
That had been dark for ages, –
The France which lies
Is the least part of France ;
Of Toil's enfranchised glance.
Throbbing, as throbs the bosom, hot
and fast :
Theirs is no vague forewarning, The dreams which nations dream corne
If this be a sleep,
Make it long, make it deep, O Father, who sendest ihe harvests
men reap !
His sorrow is gone,
His thoughts in the dawn;
Rain, lark-like, her fancies,
'Mid heart's-ease and pansies; “'Tis a dream ! 'Tis a vision !”
Shrieks Mammon aghast;
Will chase it at last;
For firm land of the Past!”
God shield us all then,
snow, I loved thee, Freedom ; as a boy The rattle of thy shield at Marathon
Did with a Grecian joy
Through all my pulses run; But I have learned to love thee now Without the helm upon thy gleaming
brow, A maiden mild and undefiled Like her who bore the world's redeem.
ing child ;
Wrong's shadow, backward cast,
Of the dead, blaspheming Past,
VIII. And if it be a dream, If the great Future be the little Past 'Neath a new mask, which drops and
shows at last The same weird, mocking face to
balk and blast, Yet, Muse, a gladder measure suits the
theme, And the Tyrtæan harp Loves notes more resolute and
O'er the shapes of fallen giants,
His own unburied brood, Whose dead hands clench defiance
At the overpowering Good : And down the happy future runs a flood
Of prophesying light : It shows an Earth no longer stained
with blood, Blossom and fruit where now we see the
bud Of Brotherhood and Right.
PRAISEST Law, friend? We, too, love
it much as they that love it best ; 'Tis the deep, august foundation, where
on Peace and Justice rest ; On the rock primeval, hidden in the
Past its bases be, Block by block the endeavoring Ages
built it up to what we see.
But dig down : the Old unbury; thou
shalt find on every stone That each Age hath carved the symbol
o what god to them was known. Ugly shapes and brutish sometimes,
but the fairest that they knew ; If their sight were dim and earthward,
yet their hope and aim were true.
Law is holy : ay, but what law? Is
there nothing more divine Than the patched-up broils of Con
gress, - venal, full of meat and
wine? Is there, say you, nothing higher?
Naught, God save us! that tran
scends Laws of cotton texture, wove by vulgar
men for vulgar ends? Did Jehovah ask their counsel, or sub
mit to them a plan, Ere he filled with loves, hopes, long.
ings, this aspiring heart of man? For their edict does the soul wait, ere it
swing round to the pole of the true, the free, the God-willed,
all that makes it be a soul? Law is holy: but not your law, ye who
keep the tablets whole While ye dash the Law to pieces, shat
ter it in life and soul; Bearing up the Ark is lightsome, golden
Apis hid within, While we Levites share the offerings,
richer by the people's sin. Give to Cæsar what is Cæsar's? yes,
but tell me, if you can, Is this superscription Cæsar's here upon
our brother man? Is not here some other's image, dark
and sullied though it be, In this fellow-soul that worships, strug
gles Godward even as we? It was not to such a future that the May
flower's prow was turned ; Not to such a faith the martyrs clung,
exulting as they burned ; Not by such laws are men fashioned,
earnest, simple, valiant, great In the household virtues whereon rests
the unconquerable state. Ah! there is a higher gospel, overhead
the God-roof springs, And each glad, obedient planet like a
golden shuttle sings Through the web which Time is weav
ing in his never-resting loom, Weaving seasons many-colored, hring:
ing prophecy to doom.
Surely as the unconscious needle feels
the far-off loadstar draw, So strives every gracious nature to
at-one itself with law; And the elder Saints and Sages laid
their pious framework right By a theocratic instinct covered from
the people's sight.
As their gods were, so their laws were ;
Thor the strong could reave and
steal, So through many a peaceful inlet tore
the Norseman's eager keel ; But a new law came when Christ came,
and not blameless, as before, Lan we, paying him our lip-tithes, give
our lives and faiths to Thor.
These set he in the midst of them,
hem, For fear of defilement, "Lo, here,"
said he, “The images ye have made of me!"
WRITTEN FOR THE CELEBRATION
THE INTRODUCTION OF THE COCHITUATE WATER INTO THE CITY OF BOSTON
A sight in Paradise denied
You seized and sent me o'er the wave, Ungrateful! in a prison-ship:
But I forgive, not long a slave, For, soon as summer south-winds blew, Homeward I fled, disguised as dew. For countless services I 'm fit,
Of use, of pleasure, and of gain, But lightly from all bonds I flit,
Nor lose my mirth, nor feel a stain; From mill and wash-tub I escape, And take in heaven my proper shape. So, free myself, to-day, elate
I come from far o'er hill and mead, And here, Cochituate's envoywait
To be your blithesome Ganymede, And brim your cups with nectar true That never will make slaves of you.
My name is Water: I have sped Through strange, dark ways, untried
For flowers and fruits and all their kin, Her crystal vintage, from of yore
Stored in old Earth's selectest bin, Flora's Falernian ripe, since God The wine-press of the deluge trod. In that far isle whence, iron-willed, The New World's sires their bark
unmoored, The fairies' acorn-cups I filled
Upon the toadstool's silver board, And, 'neath Herne's oak, for Shake
speare's sight, Strewed moss and grass with diamonds
SUGGESTED BY THE GRAVES OF TWO
ENGLISH SOLDIERS ON CONCORD BATTLE-GROUND.
The same good blood that now refills The dotard Orient's shrunken veins, The same whose vigor westward thrills, Bursting Nevada's silver chains, Poured here upon the April grass, Freckled with red the herbage new ; On reeled the battle's trampling mass, Back to the ash the bluebird fiew.
No fairies in the Mayflower came,
And, lightsome as I sparkle here, For Mother Bay State, busy dame, I've toiled and drudged this many a
year, Throbbed in her engines' iron veins, Twirled myriad spindles for her gains. i, too, can weave : the warp I set Through which the sun his shuttle
throws, And, bright as Noah saw it, yet for you the arching rainbow glows,
Poured here in vain;- that sturdy blood Was meant to make the earth more
green, But in a higher, gentler mood Than broke this April noon serene ; Twogravesare here: to mark the place, At head and foot, an unhewn stone, O'er which the herald lichens trace The blazon of Oblivion.
These men were brave enough, and true To the hired soldier's bull-dog creed : What brought them here they never
When all our good secus brand in
sheaves, And we stand reaped and bare.
Our seasons have no fixed returns,
Without our will they come and go; At noon our sudden summer burns,
Ere sunset all is snow.
They fought as suits the English breed; They came three thousand miles, and
died, To keep the Past upon its throne; Unheard, beyond the ocean tide, Their English mother made her moan. The turf that covers them no thrill Sends up to fire the heart and brain ; No stronger purpose nerves the will, No hope renews its youth again : From farm to farm the Concord glides, And trails my fancy with its flow; O’erhead the balanced hen-hawk slides, Twinned in the river's heaven below. But go, whose Bay State bosom stirs, Proud of thy birth and neighbor's right, Where sleep the heroic villagers Borne red and stiff from Concord fight; Thought Reuben, snatching down his
gun, Or Seth, as ebbed the life away, What earthquake rifts would shoot and World-wide from that short April fray? What then? With heart and hand they
wrought, According to their village light ; "T was for the Future that they fought, Their rustic faith in what was right. Upon earth's tragic stage they burst Unsummoned, in the humble sock; Theirs the fifth act; the curtain first Rose long ago on Charles's block. Their graves have voices; if they threw Dice charged with fates beyond their
ken, Yet to their instincts they were true, And had the genius to be men. Fine privilege of Freedom's host, Of even foot-soldiers for the Right ! For centuries dead, ye are not lost, Your graves send courage forth, and
But each day brings less summer cheer,
Crimps more our ineffectual spring, And something earlier every year
Our singing birds take wing. As less the olden glow abides,
And less the chillier heart aspires, With drift-wood beached in past spring.
tides We light our sullen fires. By the pinched rushlight's starving
beam We cower and strain our wasted sight, To stitch youth's shroud up, seam by
seam, In the long arctic night. It was not so we once were young When Spring, to womanly Summer
turning, Her dew-drops on each grass-blade
strung, In the red sunrise burning. We trusted then, aspired, believed
That earth could be remade to-mor