To a Boy Whistling

The smiling face of a happy boy
With its enchanted key
Is now unlocking in memory
My store of heartiest joy.

And my lost life again to-day,
In pleasant colors all aglow,
From rainbow tints, to pure white snow,
Is a panorama sliding away.

The whistled air of a simple tune
Eddies and whirls my thoughts around,
As fairy balloons of thistle-down
Sail through the air of June.

O happy boy with untaught grace!
What is there in the world to give
That can buy one hour of the life you live


To a Wave

Where were you yesterday? In Gulistan,
With roses and the frenzied nightingales?
Rather would I believe you shining ran
With peaceful floods, where the soft voice prevails
Of building doves in lordly trees set high,
Trees which enclose a home where love abides --
His love and hers, a passioned ecstasy;
Your tone has caught its echo and derides
My joyless lot, as face down pressed I lie
Upon the shifting sand, and hear the reeds
Voicing a thin, dissonant threnody
Unto the cliff and wind-tormented weeds.


To a soubrette

'Tis years, soubrette, since last we met;
And yet--ah, yet, how swift and tender
My thoughts go back in time's dull track
To you, sweet pink of female gender!
I shall not say--though others may--
That time all human joy enhances;
But the same old thrill comes to me still
With memories of your songs and dances.

Soubrettish ways these latter days
Invite my praise, but never get it;
I still am true to yours and you--
My record's made, I'll not upset it!
The pranks they play, the things they say--


To a Sea Shell

Friend of my chamber--O thou spiral shell
That murmurest of the ever-murmuring sea!
Repeating with eternal constancy
Whatever memories the wave can tell;
Whatever harmonies may rise and swell,
Whatever sadness in the deep may be--
They are the ocean's, and desired of thee;
Thou treasurest what thou dost love so well.
So all my heart is one voluted fold,
Shielding one face, and evermore it seems
Upon the threshold of the prying day,
Hid in the tangle of reluctant dreams;


To A Lady

O! had my Fate been join'd with thine,
As once this pledge appear'd a token,
These follies had not, then, been mine,
For, then, my peace had not been broken.

To thee, these early faults I owe,
To thee, the wise and old reproving:
They know my sins, but do not know
'Twas thine to break the bonds of loving.

For once my soul, like thine, was pure,
And all its rising fires could smother;
But, now, thy vows no more endure,
Bestow'd by thee upon another.


To A Beautiful Quaker

To a Beautiful Quaker

Sweet girl! though only once we met,
That meeting I shall ne'er forget;
And though we ne'er may meet again,
Remembrance will thy form retain.
I would not say, "I love," but still
My senses struggle with my will:
In vain, to drive thee from my breast,
My thoughts are more and more represt;
In vain I check the rising sighs,
Another to the last replies:
Perhaps this is not love, but yet
Our meeting I can ne'er forget.

What though we never silence broke,


Third Sunday After Epiphany

I marked a rainbow in the north,
What time the wild autumnal sun
From his dark veil at noon looked forth,
As glorying in his course half done,
Flinging soft radiance far and wide
Over the dusky heaven and bleak hill-side.

It was a gleam to Memory dear,
And as I walk and muse apart,
When all seems faithless round and drear,
I would revive it in my heart,
And watch how light can find its way
To regions farthest from the fount of day.

Light flashes in the gloomiest sky,


The stoddards

When I am in New York, I like to drop around at night,
To visit with my honest, genial friends, the Stoddards hight;
Their home in Fifteenth street is all so snug, and furnished so,
That, when I once get planted there, I don't know when to go;
A cosy cheerful refuge for the weary homesick guest,
Combining Yankee comforts with the freedom of the west.

The first thing you discover, as you maunder through the hall,
Is a curious little clock upon a bracket on the wall;
'T was made by Stoddard's father, and it's very, very old--


To -- -- --. Ulalume A Ballad

The skies they were ashen and sober;
The leaves they were crisped and sere-
The leaves they were withering and sere;
It was night in the lonesome October
Of my most immemorial year;
It was hard by the dim lake of Auber,
In the misty mid region of Weir-
It was down by the dank tarn of Auber,
In the ghoul-haunted woodland of Weir.

Here once, through an alley Titanic,
Of cypress, I roamed with my Soul-


Time XXI

And an astronomer said, "Master, what of Time?"

And he answered:

You would measure time the measureless and the immeasurable.

You would adjust your conduct and even direct the course of your spirit according to hours and seasons.

Of time you would make a stream upon whose bank you would sit and watch its flowing.

Yet the timeless in you is aware of life's timelessness,

And knows that yesterday is but today's memory and tomorrow is today's dream.


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