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Build to-day, then, strong and sure,
Thus alone can we attain
To those turrets, where the eye
And one boundless reach of sky.
SAND OF THE DESERT IN AN HOUR GLASS.
A HANDFUL of red sand, from the hot clime
Within this glass becomes the spy of Time,
How many weary centuries has it been
Perhaps the camels of the Ishmaelite
When into Egypt from the patriarch's sight
Perhaps the feet of Moses, burnt and bare,
Or Pharaoh's flashing wheels into the air
Or Mary, with the Christ of Nazareth
Whose pilgrimage of hope and love and faith
SAND OF THE DESERT.
Or anchorites beneath Engaddi's palms
And singing slow their old Armenian psalms
Or caravans, that from Bassora's gate
Or Mecca's pilgrims, confident of Fate,
These have passed over it, or may have passed! Now in this crystal tower
Imprisoned by some curious hand at last,
And as I these narrow walls expand;--
And borne aloft by the sustaining blast,
And onward, and across the setting sun,
The column and its broader shadow run,
The vision vanishes! These walls again
Shut out the hot, immeasurable plain;
BIRDS OF PASSAGE.
BLACK shadows fall
And from the realms
Of the shadowy elms
A tide-like darkness overwhelms
But the night is fair,
A warm, soft, vapor fills the air,
And above, in the light
Swift birds of passage wing their flight Through the dewy atmosphere.
I hear the beat
Of their pinions fleet,
As from the land of snow and sleet
I hear the cry
Of their voices high
O, say not so!
Those sounds that flow
THE OPEN WINDOW
They are the throngs
Murmurs of pleasures, and pains, and wrongs,
This is the cry
From their distant flight
THE OPEN WINDOW.
THE old house by the lindens
I saw the nursery windows
The large Newfoundland house-dog
They walked not under the lindens,
The birds sang in the branches,
Will be heard in dreams alone!
And the boy that walked beside me,
KING WITLAF'S DRINKING-HORN.
WITLAF, a king of the Saxons,
Ere yet his last he breathed,
That, whenever they sat at their revels,
And breathe a prayer for his soul.
So sat they once at Christmas,
They drank to the soul of Witlaf,
They drank to Christ the Lord,
They drank to the Saints and Martyrs