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Would frown, if I should stay
Where memories mock and jeer!
But I would come away
To dwell with you, my dear ; Through unknown worlds to stray,
Or sleep ; nor hope, nor fear, Nor dream beneath the clay
Of all our days that were.
TO THE SPIRIT OF POETRY ALL things are changed save thee, - thou
art the same, Only perchance more dear, as one friend
grows When other friends have turn'd away. Who
knows With what strange joy thou didst my life
inflame Before I took upon my lips the name Which vows me to thy service ? Come
thou close ; For to thy feet to-day my being flows, As when, a boy, for comforting I came. Thou, whose transfiguring touch makes
speech divine, Whose eyes are deeper than deep seas or
skies, Warm with thy fire this heart, these lips of
mine, Lighten the darkness with thy luminous
eyes, Till all the quivering air about me shine, And I have gain'd my spirit's Paradise.
Rest here, at last,
Thy race is run,
Thy soul had sight
To see by day, by night, Strange phantoms pass. Thy restless heart In few glad things had part, But dwelt alone,
And night and day,
In the old way, Made the old moan.
IF YOU WERE HERE
A SONG IN WINTER
But here is rest
O LOVE, if you were here
This dreary, weary day,
Found some sweet word to say, Then hardly would seem drear
These skies of wintry gray. But you are far away,
How far from me, my dear! What cheer can warm the day?
My heart is chill with fear, Pierced through with swift dismay ;
A thought has turn'd Life sere : If you from far
away Should come not back, my dear ; If I no more might lay
My hand on yours, nor hear That voice, now sad, now gay,
Caress my listening ear ; If you from far away
Should come no more, my dear, Then with what dire dismay
Year joined to hostile year
Thy feet that went,
About thy room,
With its deep-seated gloom, Or through the street.
Death gives them ease ;
One thing alone
Death leaves thee of thine own, Thy starless night.
DRAMATISTS AND PLAYWRIGHTS
(See also: Robert BROWNING, BUCHANAN, LADY CURRIE, LORD DE TABLEY,
SWINBURNE, LORD TENNYSON)
Tom Taplor FROM “THE FOOL'S REVENGE” Upon your brow - you promis'd, the last
time, THE JESTER AND HIS DAUGHTER It never should come when we were to
gether. SCENE. - A room in the house of BERTUCCIO.
You know, when you 're sad, I'm sad too. [BERTUCCIO stands for a moment fondly con Ber.
My bird ! templating FIORDELISA. He steps forward. I'm selfish even with thee - let dark Ber. My own!
thoughts come, Fio. [Turning suddenly, and flinging That thy sweet voice may chase them, as herself into his arms with a cry of
The blessed church-bells drive the demons Ber. (Embracing her tenderly.] Closer,
off. closer yet !
Fio. If I but knew the reason of your Let me feel those soft arms about
sadness, This dear cheek on my heart! No-do Then I might comfort you ; but I know not stir
nothing It does me so much good! I am so Not even your name. happy
I'd have no name for thee These minutes are worth years !
In the convent at Cesena, Ber. Let me look at thee, darling Where I was rear'd, they us'd to call me why, thou growest
orphan. More and more beautiful! Thou ’rt happy | I thought I had no father, till you came. here ?
And then they needed not to say I had one; Hast all that thou desirest - thy lute My own heart told me that. thy flowers ?
I often think She loves her poor old father ? — Bless- I had done well to have left thee there, in
ings on thee I know thou dost - but tell me so.
Of that still cloister. But it was too hard ! Fio.
My empty heart so hunger'd for my child, I love you very much! I am so happy For those dear eyes that look no scorn for When you are with me. Why do you
me, come so late,
That voice that speaks respect and tenderAnd go so soon? Why not stay always
ness, here ?
Even for me!- My dove — my lilyBer. Why not! Why not! Oh, if I
flower could! To live
My only stay in life !- 0 God! I thank Where there's no mocking, and no being
thee mock'd :
That thou hast left me this at least ! No laughter, but what's innocent; no
[He weeps. mirth
Dear father! That leaves an after bitterness like gall. You 're crying now - you must not cry — Fio. Now, you are sad ! There's that
you must not black ugly cloud
I cannot bear to see you cry.
I love you
Let be! Ber. That 's well. I grieve that thou 'T were better than to see me laugh.
shouldst live so close. Fio.
But wherefore ? But if thou knewest what poison 's in the You say you are so happy here, and yet
air, You never come but to weep bitter tears. What evil walks the streets ; how innocence And I can but weep, too, — not knowing Is a temptation, beauty but a bait why.
For desperate desires ! no man, I hope, Why are you sad? Oh, tell me — tell me Has spoken to thee? all !
Only one. Ber. I cannot. In this house I am thy
Ha ! who ?
Fio. I know not — 't was against my will. Out of it, what I am boots not to say ;
Ber. Hated, perhaps, or envied fear'd, I hope,
No answer ? By many — scorn’d by more - and lov'd Fio.
No-I fled. by none.
He follow'd you ? In this one innocent corner of the world Fio. A gracious lady gave me kind proI would but be to thee a father
And bade her train guard me safe home. August and sacred !
Oh, father, Fio.
And you are so, father. If you had seen how good she was, how Ber. I love thee with a love strong as the hate
She sooth'd my fears,
for I was sore I bear for all but thee. Come, sit beside afraid, me,
I'm sure you 'd love her. With thy pure hand in mine and tell me
learn her name?
Fio. I ask'd it, first, to set it in my "I love you,” and “I love you,” — only
And then that you might pray for her. so !- thy smile is passing Ber. Her name? [Aside.] I pray ! sweet !
The Countess Malatesta. Thy mother used to smile so once – O God ! Ber. [Aside.] Count Malatesta's wife I cannot bear it. Do not smile it wakes
protect my child ! Memories that tear my heart-strings. Do
You have not seen her since ? not look
No, though she urged me So like thy mother, or I shall go mad ! So hard to come to her; and ask'd my Fio. Oh, tell me of my mother !
name ; Ber. (Shuddering.]
No, no, no ! And who my parents were ; and where I Fio. She's dead ?
liv'd. Ber. Yes.
Ber. You did not tell her ? Fio. You were with her when she died? Fio.
Who my parents were ? Ber. No!- leave the dead alone - talk How could I, when I must not know myof thyself
self? Thy life here. Thou heed'st well my cau
Ber. Patience, my darling; trust thy tion, girl,
father's love, Not to go out by day, nor show thyself
That there is reason for this mystery !
The time may come when we may live in
But that cannot be here nor now ! 'Tis so hard to be shut up here alone
When what I live for
Has been achiev'd !
What you live for ? I never go forth or come in alone.
Smile on me
Fio. Oh, do not look so, father!
There 's danger in the cup his fingers Ber.
clutch : You ask'd me of your mother; it is time But bid me not forswear revenge. No You should know why all questioning of
word ! her
Thou know'st now why I mew thee up so Racks me to madness. Look upon me,
close ; child ;
Keep thee out of the streets ; shut thee
days Lov'd me, I think, most for my misery ; All men are lawless. 'Tis because I fear Thy mother, like thee — just so pure To lose thee, as I lost thy mother. sweet.
Father, I was a public notary in Cesena ;
I 'll pray for her. Our life was humble, but so happy : thou Ber. Do — and for me ; good night! Wert in thy cradle then, and many a
Fio. Oh, not so soon with all these night
sad, dark thoughts, Thy mother and I sate hand in hand to These bitter memories.
love : Watching thine innocent smiles, and build I'll touch my lute for you, and sing to
it. Long plans of joy to come !
Music, you know, chases all evil angels. Fio.
Alas! she died ! Ber. I must go : 't is grave business Ber. Died! There are deaths 't is com
calls me hencefort to look back on :
[Aside] T is time that I was at my post. Hers was not such a death. A devil came
- My own, Across our quiet life, and mark'd her Sleep in thine innocence. Good ! Good beauty,
night! And lusted for her ; and when she scorn'd Fio. But let me see you to the outer his offers,
door. Because he was a noble, great and strong, Ber. Not a step further, then. God He bore her from my side — by force
guard this place, and after
That here my flower may grow, safe from I never saw her more : they brought me the blight
Of look or word impure, – holy thing That she was dead !
Consecrate to my service and my love! Fio.
Ah me !
(FROM "PUNCH')) If e'er they came, – they brought one haunting purpose,
You lay a wreath on murder'd Lincoln's That since has shap'd my life, to have
bier, revenge !
You, who with mocking pencil wont to Revenge upon her wronger and his order ;
trace, Revenge in kind ; to quit him — wife for Broad for the self-complaisant British wife !
sneer, Fio. Father, 't is not for me to question His length of shambling limb, his fur
row'd face, But think ! — revenge belongeth not to man,
His gaunt, gnarld hands, his unkempt, God's attribute — usurp it not !
bristling hair, Ber. Preach abstinence to him that dies His garb uncouth, his bearing ill at ease, of hunger ;
His lack of all we prize as debonair, Tell the poor wretch who perishes of thirst Of power or will to shine, of art to please;
with you ;
You, whose smart pen back'd up the pencil's As in his peasant boyhood he had plied laugh,
His warfare with rude Nature's thwartJudging each step as though the way ing mights,
were plain; Reckless, so it could point its paragraph, The unclear'd forest, the unbroken soil, Of chief's perplexity, or people's pain, — The iron bark that turns the lumberer's
axe, Beside this corpse, that bears for winding- The rapid that o'erbears the boatman's sheet
toil, The Stars and Stripes he liv'd to rear The prairie hiding the maz'd wanderer's anew,
tracks, Between the mourners at his head and feet, Say, scurrile jester, is there room for The ambush'd Indian, and the prowling you ?
Such were the deeds that help'd his Yes : he had liv'd to shame me from my
youth to train : sneer,
Rough culture, but such trees large fruit To lame my pencil and confute my pen ;
may bear, To make me own this hind of princes peer, If but their stocks be of right girth and This rail-splitter a true-born king of grain.
So he grew up, a destin'd work to do, My shallow judgment I had learn’d to rue, And liv'd to do it ; four long-suffering
Noting how to occasion's height he rose; How his quaint wit made home-truth seem Ill fate, ill feeling, ill report liv'd through, more true ;
And then he heard the hisses change to How, iron-like, his temper grew by cheers, blows;
The taunts to tribute, the abuse to praise, How humble, yet how hopeful he could And took both with the same unwaver
ing mood, How in good fortune and in ill the same ; Till, as he came on light from darkling Nor bitter in success, nor boastful he,
days, Thirsty for gold, nor feverish for fame. And seem'd to touch the goal from where
he stood, He went about his work, — such work as few
A felon hand, between the goal and him, Ever had laid on head and heart and Reach'd from behind his back, a trigger hand,
prest, As one who knows, where there's a task And those perplex'd and patient eyes were to do,
dim, Man's honest will must Heaven's good Those gaunt, long-laboring limbs were grace command;
laid to rest. Who trusts the strength will with the bur The words of mercy were upon his lips,
Forgiveness in his heart and on his That God makes instruments to work
pen, his will,
When this vile murderer brought swift If but that will we can arrive to know,
eclipse Nor tamper with the weights of good To thoughts of peace on earth, good will and ill.
So he went forth to battle, on the side
The Old World and the New, from sea to
sea, Utter one voice of sympathy and shame.