A Dedication - To K.S.G

Fair Saxon, in my lover's creed,
My love were smaller than your meed,
And you might justly deem it slight,
As wanting truth as well as sight,
If, in that image which is shrined
Where thoughts are sacred, you could find
A single charm, or more or less,
Than you to all kind eyes possess.
To me, even in the happiest dreams,
Where, flushed with love's just dawning gleams,
My hopes their radiant wings unfurl,
You're but a simple English girl,
No fairer, grace for grace arrayed,
Than many a simple Southern maid;


A Curse for Kings

A curse upon each king who leads his state,
No matter what his plea, to this foul game,
And may it end his wicked dynasty,
And may he die in exile and black shame.

If there is vengeance in the Heaven of Heavens,
What punishment could Heaven devise for these
Who fill the rivers of the world with dead,
And turn their murderers loose on all the seas!

Put back the clock of time a thousand years,
And make our Europe, once the world's proud Queen,
A shrieking strumpet, furious fratricide,


A Country Life

A bird that I don't know,
Hunched on his light-pole like a scarecrow,
Looks sideways out into the wheat
The wind waves under the waves of heat.
The field is yellow as egg-bread dough
Except where (just as though they'd let
It live for looks) a locust billows
In leaf-green and shade-violet,
A standing mercy.
The bird calls twice, "Red clay, red clay";
Or else he's saying, "Directly, directly."
If someone came by I could ask,
Around here all of them must know --
And why they live so and die so --


A Christmas Carol

Welcome, sweet Christmas, blest be the morn
That Christ our Saviour was born!
Earth's Redeemer, to save us from all danger,
And, as the Holy Record tells, born in a manger.

Chorus --

Then ring, ring, Christmas bells,
Till your sweet music o'er the kingdom swells,
To warn the people to respect the morn
That Christ their Saviour was born.

The snow was on the ground when Christ was born,
And the Virgin Mary His mother felt very forlorn
As she lay in a horse's stall at a roadside inn,


A Child My Choice

Let folly praise that fancy loves, I praise and love that Child
Whose heart no thought, whose tongue no word, whose hand no deed defiled.

I praise Him most, I love Him best, all praise and love is His;
While Him I love, in Him I live, and cannot live amiss.

Love's sweetest mark, laud's highest theme, man's most desired light,
To love Him life, to leave Him death, to live in Him delight.

He mine by gift, I His by debt, thus each to other due;
First friend He was, best friend He is, all times will try Him true.


A Birthday Gift

No gift I bring but worship, and the love
Which all must bear to lovely souls and pure,
Those lights, that, when all else is dark, endure;
Stars in the night, to lift our eyes above;

To lift our eyes and hearts, and make us move
Less doubtful, though our journey be obscure,
Less fearful of its ending, being sure
That they watch over us, where'er we rove.

And though my gift itself have little worth,
Yet worth it gains from her to whom `tis given,
As a weak flower gets colour from the sun.


A ballad that we do not perish

Those who sailed at dawn
but will never return
left their trace on a wave--

a shell fell to the bottom of the sea
beautiful as lips turned to stone

those who walked on a sandy road
but could not reach the shuttered windows
though they already saw the roofs--

they have found shelter in a bell of air

but those who leave behind only
a room grown cold a few books
an empty inkwell white paper--

in truth they have not completely died
their whisper travels through thickets of wallpaper


And ask ye why these sad tears stream

'And ask ye why these sad tears stream?'

‘Te somnia nostra reducunt.’
OVID.

And ask ye why these sad tears stream?
Why these wan eyes are dim with weeping?
I had a dream–a lovely dream,
Of her that in the grave is sleeping.

I saw her as ’twas yesterday,
The bloom upon her cheek still glowing;
And round her play’d a golden ray,
And on her brows were gay flowers blowing.

With angel-hand she swept a lyre,
A garland red with roses bound it;


lollyby, lolly, lollyby

Last night, whiles that the curfew bell ben ringing,
I heard a moder to her dearie singing
"Lollyby, lolly, lollyby."
And presently that chylde did cease hys weeping,
And on his moder's breast did fall a-sleeping,
To "lolly, lolly, lollyby."

Faire ben the chylde unto his moder clinging,
But fairer yet the moder's gentle singing,--
"Lollyby, lolly, lollyby."
And angels came and kisst the dearie smiling
In dreems while him hys moder ben beguiling
With "lolly, lolly, lollyby!"


It was wrong to do this, said the angel

"It was wrong to do this," said the angel.
"You should live like a flower,
Holding malice like a puppy,
Waging war like a lambkin."

"Not so," quoth the man
Who had no fear of spirits;
"It is only wrong for angels
Who can live like the flowers,
Holding malice like the puppies,
Waging war like the lambkins."


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