Puslapio vaizdai
[blocks in formation]

The reason o' the cause an' the wherefore

o'the why, Wi' mony anither riddle brings the tear

into my e'e. It's gey an' easy spierin', says the beggar

wife to me.

The king sat high on his charger,

He looked on the little men ; And the dwarfish and swarthy couple

Looked at the king again. Down by the shore he had them ;

And there on the giddy brink

“I will give you life, ye vermin,

For the secret of the drink.”

But now in vain is the torture,

Fire shall never avail :
Here dies in my bosom

The secret of Heather Ale."


TO S. R. C.


There stood the son and father

And they looked high and low; The heather was red around them,

The sea rumbled below. And up and spoke the father,

Shrill was his voice to hear : “I have a word in private,

A word for the royal ear. “Life is dear to the aged,

And honor a little thing ;
I would gladly sell the secret,”

Quoth the Pict to the King.
His voice was small as a sparrow's,

And shrill and wonderful clear : “ I would gladly sell my secret,

Only my son I fear.

“Blows the wind to-day, and the sun and

the rain are flying — Blows the wind on the moors to-day and

now, Where about the graves of the martyrs the

whaups are crying, My heart remembers how ! “Gray, recumbent tombs of the dead in

desert places, Standing stones on the vacant, red-wine

Hills of sheep, and the homes of the silent

vanished races
And winds austere and pure !

[blocks in formation]

“Be it granted me to behold you again in

Hills of home ! and I hear again the call
Hear about the graves of the martyrs the

pee-wees crying,
And hear no more at all.”

[blocks in formation]

UNDER the wide and starry sky,
Dig the grave and let me lie.
Glad did I live and gladly die,

And I laid me down with a will.

“ True was the word I told you :

Only my son I feared ;
For I doubt the sapling courage

That goes without the beard.

This be the verse you grave for me :
Here he lies where he longed to be ;
Home is the sailor, home from the sea,

And the hunter home from the hill.

Gleeson White A BALLADE OF PLAYING CARDS Diamond and club, the painted jade,

The light-heeled Jack, and beckoning To soothe a mad King's fevered brain

Called, to their royal cousin's aid, (So runs the legend), cards were Puppets of knave, and queen, and king.

made, When Gringonneur for Charles insane Grim fancy! that the playful train,

“ Diversely colored ” heart and spade, The quaint, grimacing cavalcade,

Nor if Death cometh soon, or lingering

slow, Send on ahead his herald of Despair.

Should wreck such ills where they obtain

The victims to their sorry trade,

The player cozened by the played ; Pasteboards supreme ; to this they bring

Both gallant buck and roystering blade, Puppets of knave, and queen, and king. From reckless play, what noble gain ?

One friend hard hit, the rest afraid To show their pleasure at his pain,

Such sympathy might well persuade

The cards in garish heaps displayed To join, with impish revelling,

And jeer as all his fortunes fade -
Puppets of knave, and queen, and king.

Prince ! after all, they are the shade,

The type of every earthly thing,
And we, through all life's masquerade,

Puppets of knave, and queen, and king.

On this gray life, Love lights with golden

glow; Refracted from The Source, his bright

wings throw Its glory round us, should Fate grant our prayer

- A little love!

A little ; 't is as much as we may bear,
For Love is compassed with such magic air
Who breathes it fully dies ; and, knowing

The Gods all wisely but a taste bestow
For little lives, - a little while they spare

A little love.



[blocks in formation]

She has a primrose at her breast,

I almost wish I were a Tory. I like the Radicals the best ; She has a primrose at her breast; Now is it chance she so is drest,

Or must I tell a story? She has a primrose at her

breast, I almost wish I were a Tory.

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]

A PARABLE OF THE SPIRIT I CAME in light that I might behold The shadow which shut me apart of old. Lo, it was lying robed in white, With the still palms crossed o'er a lily,

bright With salt rain of tears ; and everywhere

; Around lay blossoms that filled the air With perfume, snow of flowers that hid The snow of the silken coverlid With myrtle and orange bloom and store Of jasmine stars, and a wreath it wore Of stephanotis. Still it lay, For its time of travail had passed away. “Of old it was never so fair as this," I said, as I bent me down to kiss The cast swathing robe. “It is well that so I see it before I turn to go – Turn to depart that I may bless The love that has shown such tenderness.”

On its alabaster altar stood
A vessel with sacrificial blood.
Incense of sweet unselfishness
Rose ever, a pillar of light to bless
That fair pure place with its flower-sweet

fume. Dimmed was that shrine by no cloud of

gloom, But bright shone that pillar which rose

above On her earthly jewels with its lambent

love. So I knew that any gift of mine Was naught by her treasure of love divine, Flowing freely down ; but a flower I lent That would bloom in her bosom with sweet

content, 'T was forget-me-not. “ Though poor,” I

said, “Mid her blossoms of living love, the dead Would yet be loved, and I will that she Keep this, and render it back to me." I knew how my blossom would live and

grow, As I kissed it once ere I turned to go ;

Turned to go to my cousin Kate —
She who was rival to me of late,
Jealous, unhappy, but in the end
Nursed me and tended me like a friend.
I searched her heart, and soon I found
A plot of mine in her garden ground;
Flowers were there which had ripened seed,
But among them many a yellow weed.
Still, I saw with a gladdened eye
The weeds were pining and like to die,
Whilst heartsease throve, and sprigs of

So I passed to my mother's side,
Where she lay sleepless and weary-eyed ;
Glided within, that I might see
The chamber her love had reserved for



It was wide and warm, and furnished forth
With the best she had, with gifts of worth,
Anxious watchings and tears and prayers
And ministrations of many years,
I bent me down o'er her wrinkled brow
And kissed it smooth, as I whispered low
Comfort and hope for her daughter dear,
Till my whisper drew forth the healing

Last, I kissed her to slumber deep,
Kissed her to quiet rest and sleep.
I passed to my sister's heart, and there
I heard sweet notes of her soaring prayer ;
And, joining therewith, found the fair

white shrine That her love had set apart as mine.

Watered well with remorseful dew.
So I bent down and rooted out
Nettles of envy, and round about
Cleared the ground that the flowers might

Live and blossom and grow and thrive.
Lastly, I drew with cords of love
A thistle of pride naught else might move,
Pressed her forehead and swiftly passed —
For I kept my best gifts to the last —
Treasures of comfort and hope to cheer
The heart which my own had held most


I dreamed of the bliss that I should feel When that opened heart should to me



Its fulness, before but dimly seen,

For no gift of mine of love or care As I lifted its veils and entered in

Might live in that pestilential air ; Entered, and saw with mute amaze

Still, for the love of dreams bygone, How squalid and narrow was the place. I could not leave him quite alone, Still, I fancied, perchance for me

So I planted cypress to warn of ath. The best of that which is here may be. It might live, and its keen balsamic breath Searching in dusk, I forced my way

Would wither these fungi one by one, To the secret place where my chamber Giving entrance, perchance, to some ray of

lay, Choked with the sordid piles o’erthrown Of a miser's dust which had been my own, Then I departed, earth's lesson o'er. Till but little space for me remained, Never henceforth shall I enter more ; All being filthy and weather-stained; And the thought was mine of former Whilst evil fungi, spawn of lust,

dread Pushed through the rotten floor, and And former longings, and so I said, thrust

“ Blind I was when my dearest wish Unsightly growths in that evil space, Was ever to dwell in a home like this." And vanity pressed in the crowded space Knew, as I went forth to my rest, Till room was scanty for me to tread. My prayer was a child's, and God knew I gazed shadowed a moment before I fled,



Eric Mackap


O BONNIE bird, that in the brake, exultant,

dost prepare thee, As poets do whose thoughts are true, for

wings that will upbear thee Oh! tell me, tell me, bonnie bird,

Canst thou not pipe of hope deferred ? Or canst thou sing of naught but Spring

among the golden meadows?

Thou art the minion of the sun that rises

in his splendor,
And canst not spare for Dian fair the songs

that should attend her.
The moon, so sad and silver-pale,

Is mistress of the nightingale ;
And thou wilt sing on hill and dale no

ditties in the darkness.

For Queen and King thou wilt not spare

one note of thine outpouring ;
And thou 'rt as free as breezes be on Na-

ture's velvet flooring.
The daisy, with its hood undone,

The grass, the sunlight, and the sun —
These are the joys, thou holy one, that pay

thee for thy singing.

Methinks a bard (and thou art one) should

suit his song to sorrow,
And tell of pain, as well as gain, that waits

us on the morrow;
But thou art not a prophet, thou,
If naught but joy can touch thee now;
If, in thy heart, thou hast no vow that

speaks of Nature's anguish.
Oh! I have held my sorrows dear, and

felt, though poor and slighted, The songs we love are those we hear when

love is unrequited ; But thou art still the slave of dawn,

And canst not sing till night be gone, Till o'er the pathway of the fawn the sun

beams shine and quiver.

Oh, hush! Oh, hush ! how wild a gush of

rapture in the distance A roll of rhymes, a toll of chimes, a cry

love's assistance ;
A sound that wells from happy throats,

A flood of song where beauty floats,
And where our thoughts, like golden boats,

do seem to cross a river.

« AnkstesnisTęsti »