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THE MOSQUE OF THE CALIPH
And the doom seemed to hang on the palace no longer,
Like a fountain it sprang when the sources feed stronger;
Shaft, turret, and spire leaped upward, diminished, Like the flames of a fire,-till the palace was finished!
Without price, without flaw. And it lay on the
Like a diadem dropped from an emperor's treasure; And the dome of pearl white and the pinnacles fleckless,
Flashed back to the light, like the gems in a necklace.
So the Caliph looked forth on the turret-tops gilded;
And he said in his pride, "Is my palace not builded?
Who is more great than I that his word can avail if My will is my will," said Abdallah the Caliph.
But lo! with the light he repented his scorning, For an earthquake had shattered the whole ere the morning;
Of the pearl-coloured dome there was left but a ruin,—
But an arch as a home for the ring-dove to coo in.
Shaft, turret, and spire-all were tumbled and crumbled;
And the soul of the Caliph within him was humbled;
And he bowed in the dust:-"There is none
great but Allah !
I will build Him a Mosque," said the Caliph Abdallah.
And the Caliph has gone to his fathers for ever, But the Mosque that he builded shines still by the river;
And the pilgrims up-stream to this day slacken sail if
They catch the first gleam of the "Mosque of the Caliph."
TOLL! Is it night, or daylight yet?
Somewhere the birds seem singing still,
But who tolls the Bell once more?
Who can it be?—the Bernardine,
This must be He who, legend saith,
Good-bye, old Bell! So let it be.
IN MANUS TUAS, DOMINE!
(IMITATED FROM THEOPHILE GAUTIER)
ES; when the ways oppose-
Fairer the work out-grows,
More potent far the spell.
O POET, then, forbear
The loosely sandalled verse,
Leave to the tyro's hand
The limp and shapeless style,
SCULPTOR, do thou discard
The yielding clay,—consign
To Paros marble hard
The beauty of thy line ;
Model thy Satyr's face
PAINTER, that still must mix
Thou in the furnace fix
The firm enamel's hue;
Let the smooth tile receive
Coiled in a wash of wine.
Enduring stays to us;
The Bust outlasts the throne,— The Coin, Tiberius;
Even the gods must go;
Not countless years o'erthrow,-
Paint, chisel, then, or write;
But, that the work surpass, With the hard fashion fight,With the resisting mass.