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THE BALLAD OF PROSE AND RHYME.

(BALLADE À DOUBLE REFRAIN.)

WHEN

THEN the ways are heavy with mire and rut,

In November fogs, in December snows, When the North Wind howls, and the doors are shut,

There is place and enough for the pains of prose ;

But whenever a scent from the whitethorn blows, And the jasmine-stars at the casement climb,

And a Rosalind-face at the lattice shows, Then hey!—for the ripple of laughing rhyme!

When the brain gets dry as an empty nut,

When the reason stands on its squarest toes, When the mind (like a beard) has a “formal cut,” —

There is place and enough for the pains of prose ;

But whenever the May-blood stirs and glows, And the young year draws to the “golden prime,”

And Sir Romeo sticks in his ear a rose,Then hey!—for the ripple of laughing rhyme !

In a theme where the thoughts have a pedant-strut,

In a changing quarrel of " Ayes” and “Noes,” In a starched procession of “ If” and “But,”

There is place and enough for the pains of prose ;

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But whenever a soft glance softer grows
And the light hours dance to the trysting-time,

And the secret is told “ that no one knows,”Then hey!—for the ripple of laughing rhyme !

ENVOY.

In the work-a-day world, --for its needs and woes,
There is place and enough for the pains of prose;
But whenever the May-bells clash and chime,
Then hey!—for the ripple of laughing rhyme !

1878.

O NAVIS."

(BALLADE.)

SHIP, to the roadstead rolled,

What dost thou ?-0, once more Regain the port. Behold !

Thy sides are bare of oar,

Thy tall mast wounded sore Of Africus, and see,

What shall thy spars restore ! Tempt not the tyrant sea !

What cable now will hold

When all drag out from shore ! What god canst thou, too bold,

In time of need implore !

Look ! for thy sails flap o'er, Thy stiff shrouds part and flee,

Fast-fast thy seams outpour,Tempt not the tyrant sea !

What though thy ribs of old

The pines of Pontus bore ! Not now to stern of gold

Men trust, or painted prore !

R

Thou, or thou count'st it store A toy of winds to be,

Shun thou the Cyclads' roar, Tempt not the tyrant sea !

ENVOY.

SHIP OF THE STATE, before

A care, and now to me
A hope in my heart's core,-

Tempt not the tyrant sea!

1883.

THE DANCE OF DEATH.

(CHANT ROYAL, AFTER HOLBEIN.)

" Contra vim MORTIS
Non est medicamen in hortis."

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E is the despots' Despot. All must bide,

Later or soon, the message of his might ; Princes and potentates their heads must hide, Touched by the awful sigil of his right; Beside the Kaiser he at eve doth wait And pours a potion in his cup of state ; The stately Queen his bidding must obey ; No keen-eyed Cardinal shall him affray; And to the Dame that wantoneth he saith“Let be, Sweet-heart, to junket and to play." There is no king more terrible than Death.

The lusty Lord, rejoicing in his pride,
He draweth down ; before the armed Knight
With jingling bridle-rein he still doth ride ;
He crosseth the strong Captain in the fight;
He beckons the grave Elder from debate ;
He hales the Abbot by his shaven pate,
Nor for the Abbess' wailing will delay;

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