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It is freighted with all I have ever sought: With the hopes that eluded my eager hand; The deeds I have dreamed, but never wrought; The perfect poems my thought has planned.
And there on the deck, looking out o'er the main, Are the forms of the lost ones who went away: I wait on the cliffs till I see them again,
And count all the days of my weary delay.
And sometimes I fear they will never come back; For, when the wind rises and all the waves roar, I fancy them driven in pitiless wrack
And torn on the rocks of some desolate shore.
But, when the storm lulls, I see it anew,
Each spar standing out against a clear sky, Her prow pointing homeward, her compass still true,
And cleaving the waves as she tosses them by. And so I wait on, day in and day out,
Till I look on my home-coming, beautiful barge, Gold-rigged in the sun, with song and with shout, Glide up with wide wings to the sandy marge.
THE WEED-GROWN PATH.
BETWEEN two hearts a pathway led, Oft trod in joyous days;
And, many a time, they each one said, "So shall it be always!"
The morning hours went singing by,
So near, that snatches of a song
And subtle thoughts the whole day long
So smooth the pathway grew at last
Could never come, when no more passed
A whisper of suspicion blew
One day, none knew from where;
And each one close the casement drew; A chill was in the air.
And now the path with weeds is grown,
In each house sitteth one alone;
I HOLD in my hand an oak as great
As storm ever wrenched at or chopper fell; Gnarled trunk, wide bough and leafy freight, All closely packed in an acorn-shell.
My fingers clasp a harvest sheaf,
With heavy gold head and twisted zone;
I look out where the drifted snow
Lies cold and glist'ning 'neath the moon, And know there sleeps, the crust below, The blossom-browed, green-slippered June. In yon dry pear-branch, stiff and cold, A bud lies hid away from sight That, 'neath the Spring's kiss, shall unfold Dawn-tinted blossoms streaked with light. The boughs that writhe in the sighing storm, 'Neath frowning skies and pelting sleet, Shall droop with sunny burdens warm When long days with soft breezes meet. I hold a home upon my knee,— A laughing child with sunny eyes: She grows a maiden fair to see, And then a chastened matron wise. A prince goes limping past my door, But find him no keen critic can. The neighbors call him old and poor, But he 's God's courtier, rough old man. From out a life of work and care,
Of crosses heavy and burdens sore, A soul may bloom to beauty rare That shall not fade forevermore.
A BLOCK OF MARBLE.
WHITE possibility! Before thee now,
With chisel and with mallet in my hand,
A raging Fury, with her flaming brand?
Who melteth with her eyes the hearts of men? Or, better yet, I'll make a Victory, Whose upward look shall rouse men from despair, Discouraged souls thrill with new hope again, And give them strength to breathe a nobler air.
AFTER the noisy day, with rush and roar,
Trust all to her strong arms and watchful care,
We drift into the dark all unafraid,
For all the eternal forces are aware
My boyhood chased the butterfly,
Or, when the shower was gone, Sought treasures at the rainbow's end, That lured me, wandering on.
I caught nor bow nor butterfly,
But in the chase I found myself
In later years I've chased the good,
The beautiful and true;
Mirage-like forms which take no shape, They flit as I pursue.
But, while the endless chase I run,
I grow in life divine:
I miss the ideals that I seek,
But God himself is mine.
THE OLD PROBLEM.
SHE had just one wee bird in her nest,
And she loved it, oh, so dear!
She cooed o'er it, sang to it, brooded its rest, And kept it from shadow of fear.
I saw the nest empty: the mother apart
The earth's oldest problem oppressed her dumb
Accusing the world of its wrong.
THE MYSTIC HOPE.
WHAT is this mystic, wondrous hope in me,
When not one star from out the darkness born Gives promise of the coming of the morn;
When all life seems a pathless mystery
Through which the weary eyes no way can see; When illness comes and life grows most forlorn, Still dares to laugh the last dread threat to scorn And proudly cries, Death is not, shall not be?
I wonder at myself! Tell me, O Death,
If that thou rul'st the earth: if "dust to dust" Shall be the end of love and hope and strife, From what rare land is blown this living breath That shapes itself to whispers of strong trust, And tells the lie-if 'tis a lie-of life?
HARLES MACKAY, LL. D., member of a High
1814, and removed in infancy to London. While in Belgium, completing his education, he was a witness of the revolution of 1830. In 1834 he published a small volume of poems which led to his introduction to the editor of the Morning Chronicle, and he became connected with that paper. He remained on the paper about nine years, in the meantime publishing" The Hope of the World, and Other Poems." He was editor of the Glasgow Argus in 1844-47. In 1846 the Glasgow University conferred the degree of LL.D. upon him. Mr. Mackay wrote for the Daily News a series of poems, "Voices From the Crowd," afterwards published in separate form. He has always been an active writer, publishing poems, novels, works on language, etc. For some years he contributed leading articles to the Illustrated London News, and he established the London Review in 1860. Dr. Mackay resided in New York from 1862 until 1865, and always had a warm appreciation of the American people. In a letter to the editor of THE MAGAZINE OF POETRY, written a few weeks previous to his death, he said: "The Americans appreciate poetry more than the English, who are the most prosaic people under the sun and think that all verse must be poetry, and deluge the newspapers and magazines with rhymed rubbish, hateful to Gods and men. Your journal will be successful." Mr. Mackay died last December at the age of seventy-five.
Mr. Eric Mackay, a son of Charles Mackay, is a poet of much promise. He is the author of "LoveLetters of a Violinist."
O'ER the loose strings of the Eolian harp
I. A. K.
Float the wild melodies like straws on streams; Songs without words, but full of thought and meanings,
Though evanescent all as fancy's dreams.
Songs of soft sadness, as if sorrowing angels
I hear them at my casement half asleep,
And fancy fashions them into a hymn,
THE VOICE OF THE TIME. DAY unto day utters speechBe wise, O, ye nations! and hear What yesterday telleth to-day, What to-day to the morrow will preach. A change cometh over our sphere, And the old goeth down to decay. A new light hath dawned on the darkness of yore, And men shall be slaves and oppressors no more.
Hark to the throbbing of thought
In the breast of the wakening world:
No more in his slavery dumb, And to-morrow will break from the fetters that bind,
And lift a bold arm for the rights of mankind.
Hark to the voice of the time!
The multitude think for themselves,
He reads when his labor is done,
But yesterday thought was confined;
Now, free as the midsummer wind,
It sports its adventurous breath, And round the wide universe goes; The mist and the cloud from its pathway are curled,
And glimpses of glory illumine the world.
The voice of opinion has grown:
'Twas yesterday changeful and weak, Like the voice of a boy ere his prime; To-day it has taken the tone
Of an orator worthy to speak,
Who knows the demands of his time, And to-morrow will sound in oppression's cold ear Like the trump of the seraph to startle our sphere.
Be wise, oh, ye rulers of earth! And shut not your ears to his voice, Nor allow it to warn you in vain: True Freedom of yesterday's birth Will march on its way and rejoice, And never be conquered again. The day has a tongue, aye, the hours utter speech, Wise, wise will ye be if ye learn what they teach.
WHAT MIGHT BE DONE.
WHAT might be done if men were wiseWhat glorious deeds, my suffering brother, Would they unite
In Love and Right,
And cease their scorn of one another!
Oppression's heart might be imbued
To each man born,
Be free as warmth in summer weather.
The meanest wretch that ever trod,
And share the teeming world to-morrow. What might be done? This might be done, And more than this, my suffering brotherMore than the tongue E'er said or sung,
If men were wise and loved each other.
TO THE WEST! TO THE WEST!
To the West! to the West! to the land of the free,
To the West! to the West! where the rivers that flow
Are broad as the kingdoms and empires of old;
To the West! to the West! there is wealth to be won,
The bold independence that labor shall buy,
CHEER, BOYS! CHEER!
CHEER, boys! cheer! no more of idle sorrow!
Courage, true hearts, shall bear us on our way! Hope points before and shows the bright tomorrow,
Let us forget the darkness of to-day! So farewell, England! Much as we may love thee, We'll dry the tears that we have shed before; Why should we weep to sail in search of fortune? So farewell, England! farewell evermore!
Cheer, boys! cheer! for England, mother England!
Cheer, boys! cheer! the willing strong right hand!
Cheer, boys! cheer! there's work for honest labor
Cheer, boys! cheer!—in the new and happy land!
Cheer, boys! cheer! the steady breeze is blowing,
But there shall plenty smile upon our pain,
Cheer, boys! cheer! united heart and hand! Cheer, boys! cheer! there's wealth for honest labor
Cheer, boys! cheer!-in the new and happy land!
OLD Tubal Cain was a man of might
In the days when earth was young; By the fierce red light of his furnace bright The strokes of his hammer rung;
And he lifted high his brawny hand
On the iron glowing clear, Till the sparks rushed out in scarlet showers, As he fashioned the sword and spear. And he sang-" Hurra for my handiwork! Hurra for the Spear and Sword! Hurra for the hand that shall wield them well, For he shall be King and Lord!"
To Tubal Cain came many a one,
As he wrought by his roaring fire,
And he made them weapons sharp and strong,
But a sudden change came o'er his heart
And Tubal Cain was filled with pain
For the evil he had done;
He saw that men, with rage and hate,
Made war upon their kind,
That the land was red with the blood they shed
The spear and the sword for men whose joy
THE GOOD TIME COMING.
We may not live to see the day,
But thought's a weapon stronger;
There's a good time coming, boys,
A good time coming:
The pen shall supersede the sword,
There's a good time coming, boys,
A good time coming:
War in all men's eyes shall be
A monster of iniquity
In the good time coming: