A Lovers' Quarrel

We two were lovers, the Sea and I;
We plighted our troth ‘neath a summer sky.

And all through the riotous ardent weather
We dreamed, and loved, and rejoiced together.
* * *
At times my lover would rage and storm.
I said: ‘No matter, his heart is warm.’

Whatever his humour, I loved his ways,
And so we lived though the golden days.

I know not the manner it came about,
But in the autumn we two fell out.

Yet this I know – ‘twas the fault of the Sea,


A Leaf

Somebody said, in the crowd, last eve,
That you were married, or soon to be.
I have not thought of you, I believe,
Since last we parted. Let me see:
Five long Summers have passed since then –
Each has been pleasant in its own way –
And you are but one of a dozen men
Who have played the suitor a Summer day.

But, nevertheless, when I heard your name,
Coupled with some one’s, not my own,
There burned in my bosom a sudden flame,
That carried me back to the day that is flown.


A Fatal Impress

A little leaf just in the forest's edge,
All summer long, had listened to the wooing
Of amorous brids that flew across the hedge,
Singing their blithe sweet songs for her undoing.
So many were the flattering things they told her,
The parent tree seemed quite too small to hold her.

At last one lonesome day she saw them fly
Across the fields behind the coquette summer,
They passed her with a laughing light good-bye,
When from the north, there strode a strange new comer;


A Song of the Road

O I will walk with you, my lad, whichever way you fare,
You'll have me, too, the side o' you, with heart as light as air;
No care for where the road you take's a-leadin' anywhere,--
It can but be a joyful ja'nt whilst you journey there.
The road you take's the path o' love, an' that's the bridth o' two--
An' I will walk with you, my lad -- O I will walk with you.

Ho! I will walk with you, my lad,
Be weather black or blue
Or roadsides frost or dew, my lad --
O I will walk with you.


A Noon Interval

A deep, delicious hush in earth and sky --
A gracious lull--since, from its wakening,
The morn has been a feverish, restless thing
In which the pulse of Summer ran too high
And riotous, as though its heart went nigh
To bursting with delights past uttering:
Now--as an o'erjoyed child may cease to sing
All falteringly at play, with drowsy eye
Draining the pictures of a fairy-tale
To brim his dreams with--there comes o'er the day
A loathful silence wherein all sounds fail


A something in a summer's Day

122

A something in a summer's Day
As slow her flambeaux burn away
Which solemnizes me.

A something in a summer's noon—
A depth—an Azure—a perfume—
Transcending ecstasy.

And still within a summer's night
A something so transporting bright
I clap my hands to see—

Then veil my too inspecting face
Lets such a subtle—shimmering grace
Flutter too far for me—

The wizard fingers never rest—
The purple brook within the breast
Still chafes it narrow bed—


A fuzzy fellow, without feet

173

A fuzzy fellow, without feet,
Yet doth exceeding run!
Of velvet, is his Countenance,
And his Complexion, dun!

Sometime, he dwelleth in the grass!
Sometime, upon a bough,
From which he doth descend in plush
Upon the Passer-by!

All this in summer.
But when winds alarm the Forest Folk,
He taketh Damask Residence—
And struts in sewing silk!

Then, finer than a Lady,
Emerges in the spring!
A Feather on each shoulder!
You'd scarce recognize him!


A Song for the Night

O the Night, the Night, the solemn Night,
   When Earth is bound with her silent zone,
And the spangled sky seems a temple wide,
   Where the star-tribes kneel at the Godhead's throne;
O the Night, the Night, the wizard Night,
   When the garish reign of day is o'er,
And the myriad barques of the dream-elves come
   In a brightsome fleet from Slumber's shore!
   O the Night for me,
   When blithe and free,
Go the zephyr-hounds on their airy chase;
   When the moon is high
   In the dewy sky,


A Snake Yarn

"You talk of snakes," said Jack the Rat,
"But blow me, one hot summer,
I seen a thing that knocked me flat -
Fourteen foot long or more than that,
It was a reg'lar hummer!
Lay right along a sort of bog,
Just like a log!

"The ugly thing was lyin' there
And not a sign o' movin',
Give any man a nasty scare;
Seen nothin' like it anywhere
Since I first started drovin'.
And yet it didn't scare my dog.
Looked like a log!

"I had to cross that bog, yer see,


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