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But now for gold we plot and plan ;
Apollo's self might pass unheard,
Or find the night-jar's note preferred ; Not so it fared, when time began,
With pipe and flute !
A GAGE D'AMOUR
miraris ? - HORACE, iii, 8. CHARLES, - for it seems you wish to
With trembling fingers,
Of perfume lingers.
Laugh, if you like. The boy in me,-
revived to see The fresh young smile that shone when
Of old, was tender.
As young, or slender.
Of childish pleasure.
And Gladstone's measure.
Friend of my youth, severe as true,
the train your thoughts pursue ; But this my state is nowise due
To indigestion ;
Your cynic question.
Well, well, the wisest bend to Fate.
Its wonted station.
How steadfastly she worked at it !
How lovingly had drest With all her would-be-mother's wit
That little rosy nest !
How longingly she'd hung on it!
It sometimes seemed, she said, There lay beneath its coverlet
A little sleeping head.
He came at last, the tiny guest,
Ere bleak December fled ; That rosy nest he never prest ...
Her coffin was his bed.
THE FORGOTTEN GRAVE
You may see him pass by the little
“ Grande Place," And the tiny “Hôtel-de-Ville ; He smiles as he goes to the fleuriste Rose,
And the pompier Théophile. He turns, as a rule, through the “ Marché”
cool, Where the noisy fish-wives call ; And his compliment pays to the “belle
Thérèse," As she knits in her dusky stall. There's a letter to drop at the locksmith's
shop, And Toto, the locksmith's niece, Has jubilant hopes, for the Curé gropes
In his tails for a pain d'épice. There's a little dispute with a merchant of
fruit, Who is said to be heterodox, That will ended be with a “ Ma foi, oui ! ”
And a pinch from the Cure's box. There is also a word that no one heard
To the furrier's daughter Lou ; And a pale cheek fed with a flickering
red, And a “Bon Dieu garde M'sieu'!” But a grander way for the Sous-Préfet,
And a bow for Ma'am'selle Anne ; And a mock “off-hat” to the Notary's
cat, And a nod to the Sacristan :
For ever through life the Curé goes
With a smile on his kind old face With his coat worn bare, and his strag
gling bair, And his green umbrella-case.
THE CURÉ'S PROGRESS
MONSIEUR the Curé down the street
Comes with his kind old face, With his coat worn bare, and his strag
gling hair, And his green umbrella-case.
Si viellesse pouvait ! SCENE. — A small neat Room. In a high Voltaire Chair sits a white-haired old Gentleman.
MONSIEUR VIEUXBOIS. BABETTE.
M. VIEUXBOIS [turning querulously). Day of my life! Where can she get ? Babette ! I say! Babette ! - Babette !
BABETTE [entering hurriedly]. Coming, M'sieu'! If M'sieu' speaks So loud, he won't be well for weeks !
M. VIEUXBOIS. Where have you been ?
Why, M'sieu' knows : April ! . . . Ville-d'Avray!... Ma'am’selle Rose !
[Lifting her apron to her eyes.
Where's the draught ?
[She gives him a cup. Now I shall sleep, I think, Babette ; Sing me your Norman chansonnette.
(Ere I was dead),
Came to my Bed ;
Crowned on the Head.
M. VIEUXBOIS [drowsily]. She an Angel Once she
laughed . What, was I dreaming ?
Where's the draught ? BABETTE (showing the empty cup]. The draught, M'sieu' ?
How I forget!
Stark in the Snow;
Long, – long ago;
How could she know?
M. VIEUXBOIS (murmuring).
And O!... the sky so blue !
Wistful and mild ;
One was a Child :
Bent down and smiled !
How I forget!
ON A FAN
THAT BELONGED TO THE MARQUISE DE
CHICKEN-SKIN, delicate, white,
Painted by Carlo Vanloo, Loves in a riot of light,
Roses and vaporous blue ;
Hark to the dainty frou-frou !
Eyes that could melt as the dew,-
Thronging the Eil de Beuf through, Courtiers as butterflies bright,
Beauties that Fragonard drew,
Talon-rouge, falbala, queue,
- to a man,
Hung on this toy, voyez-vous !
For thee the scent of new-turned mould, The bee-hives, and the murmuring pine, O Singer of the field and fold !
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 !
Thou, or thou count'st it store A toy of winds to be,
Shun thon the Cyclads' roar,Tempt not the tyrant sea !
Thou sang'st the simple feasts of old, —
Ship of the State, before
A care, and now to me
Tempt not the tyrant sea !
“O FONS BANDUSIÆ"
TO A GREEK GIRL WITH breath of thyme and bees that hum, Across the years you seem to come,
Across the years with nymph-like head,
And wind-blown brows unfilleted ; A girlish shape that slips the bud
In lines of unspoiled symmetry; A girlish shape that stirs the blood
With pulse of Spring, Autonoë !
O BABBLING Spring, than glass more clear, Worthy of wreath and cup sincere,
To-morrow shall a kid be thine
Painter, that still must mix
But transient tints anew, Thou in the furnace fix
The firm enamel's hue ;
Let the smooth tile receive
Thy dove-drawn Erycine ; Thy Sirens blue at eve
Coiled in a wash of wine.
Where'er you pass, - where'er you go,
where'er you pass, There comes a gladness on the grass ; You bring blithe airs where'er you tread, Blithe airs that blow from down and
Not wholly dead ! — Autonoë !
How sweet beneath the chestnut's shade
With you to weave a basket-braid ; To watch across the stricken chords
Your rosy-twinkling fingers flee ;
With woodland pipe, Autonoë !
I sit and fill my painful reams,
And see you only in my dreams ; A vision, like Alcestis, brought
From under-lands of Memory,A dream of Form in days of Thought,
A dream, - a dream, Autonoë !
ARS VICTRIX IMITATED FROM THÉOPHILE GAUTIER YES ; when the ways oppose
When the hard means rebel, Fairer the work out-grows,
More potent far the spell. O Poet, then, forbear
The loosely-sandalled verse, Choose rather thou to wear
The buskin - strait and terse ;
THE ladies of St. James's
Go swinging to the play ; Their footmen run before them,
With “Stand by! Clear the way !” But Phyllida, my Phyllida !
She takes her buckled shoon, When we go out a-courting
Beneath the harvest moon.
Leave to the tiro's hand
The limp and shapeless style ; See that thy form demand
The labor of the file.
The ladies of St. James's
Wear satin on their backs ; They sit all night at Ombre,
With candles all of wax : But Phyllida, my Phyllida !
She dons her russet gown, And runs to gather May dew
Before the world is down.
Sculptor, do thou discard
The yielding clay,– consign To Paros marble hard
The beauty of thy line ;
Model thy Satyr's face
For bronze of Syracuse ; In the veined agate trace
The profile of thy Muse.