In contact, lo! the flint and steel,
By sharp and flame, the thought reveal
That he the metal, she the stone,
Had cherished secretly alone.

by Ambrose Bierce.

Love Reckons By Itself—alone

826

Love reckons by itself—alone—
"As large as I"—relate the Sun
To One who never felt it blaze—
Itself is all the like it has—

by Emily Dickinson.

Love Walked Alone.

Love walked alone.
The rocks cut her tender feet,
And the brambles tore her fair limbs.
There came a companion to her,
But, alas, he was no help,
For his name was heart's pain. .

by Stephen Crane.

There is another Loneliness

There is another Loneliness
That many die without -
Not want of friend occasions it
Or circumstances of Lot

But nature, sometimes, sometimes thought
And whoso it befall
Is richer than could be revealed
By mortal numeral

by Emily Dickinson.

In A Lonely Place

In a lonely place,
I encountered a sage
Who sat, all still,
Regarding a newspaper.
He accosted me:
'Sir, what is this? '
Then I saw that I was greater,
Aye, greater than this sage.
I answered him at once,
'Old, old man, it is the wisdom of the age.'
The sage looked upon me with admiration.

by Stephen Crane.

Alone, I Cannot Be

298

Alone, I cannot be—
For Hosts—do visit me—
Recordless Company—
Who baffle Key—

They have no Robes, nor Names—
No Almanacs—nor Climes—
But general Homes
Like Gnomes—

Their Coming, may be known
By Couriers within—
Their going—is not—
For they've never gone—

by Emily Dickinson.

Learning To Go Alone

Come, my darling, come away,
Take a pretty walk to-day;
Run along, and never fear,
I'll take care of baby dear:
Up and down with little feet,
That's the way to walk, my sweet.

Now it is so very near,
Soon she'll get to mother dear.
There she comes along at last:
Here's my finger, hold it fast:
Now one pretty little kiss,
After such a walk as this.

by Ann Taylor.

Burden-bearers are we all,
Great and small.
Burden-sharers be ye all,
Great and small!
Where another shares the load,
Two draw nearer God.
Yet there are burdens we can share with none,
Save God;
And paths remote where we must walk alone,
With God;
For lonely burden and for path apart-
Thank God!
If these but serve to bring the burdened heart
To God.

by William Arthur Dunkerley.

The waning moon was up; the stars
Were faint, and very few;
The vines about the window-sill
Were wet with falling dew;

A little cloud before the wind
Was drifting down the west;
I heard the moaning of the sea
In its unquiet rest;

Until, I know not from what grief,
Or thought of other years,
The hand I leaned upon was cold,
And wet with falling tears.

by Ina D. Coolbrith.

Speak Of The North! A Lonely Moor

Speak of the North! A lonely moor
Silent and dark and tractless swells,
The waves of some wild streamlet pour
Hurriedly through its ferny dells.

Profoundly still the twilight air,
Lifeless the landscape; so we deem
Till like a phantom gliding near
A stag bends down to drink the stream.

And far away a mountain zone,
A cold, white waste of snow-drifts lies,
And one star, large and soft and lone,
Silently lights the unclouded skies.

by Charlotte Brontë.

Earthly Parting

Had Heaven, to prayer of mine more kind,
But snapped my thread of Being first,
I know how, lingering here behind,
Thou wouldst have deemed thy lot the worst;
And how thou wouldst have shed the tear
Over my coldly silent bier.
But this, alas! might not be so,
And I remain to weep for Thee;
And still weep on, though well I know
Such parting is but life's decree;
That, doomed to leave, or left forlorn,
We must be mourned for, or must mourn.

by John Kenyon.

The night comes on with a hint of tears,
The in-borne fog with the in-born tide;
And the last faint crimson disappears
Where the sunset glory died.

And the wet blue hills in the mist are lost,
The skies grow gray in the daylight-wane,
And the waning moon, like a wan, white ghost,
Looks in at the window-pane;

A phantom light in the shifting wind,
A wandering specter of the sky-
As one, of all the stars un-kinned,
Apart and alone as I.

by Ina D. Coolbrith.

Song. Where Dost Thou Bide

WHERE dost thou bide, blessed soul of my love!
Is ether thy dwelling, O whisper me where!
Rapt in remembrance, while lonely I rove,
I gaze on bright clouds, and I fancy thee there.

Or to thy bower when musing I go,
I think, 't is thy voice that I hear in the breeze;
Softly it seems to speak peace to my woe,
And life once again for a moment can please.

If this be phrensy alone, 't is so dear,
That long may the pleasing delusion be nigh;
Still Ellen's voice in the breeze may I hear,
Still see in bright clouds the kind beams of her eye!

by Amelia Opie.

The Loneliness One Dare Not Sound

777

The Loneliness One dare not sound—
And would as soon surmise
As in its Grave go plumbing
To ascertain the size—

The Loneliness whose worst alarm
Is lest itself should see—
And perish from before itself
For just a scrutiny—

The Horror not to be surveyed—
But skirted in the Dark—
With Consciousness suspended—
And Being under Lock—

I fear me this—is Loneliness—
The Maker of the soul
Its Caverns and its Corridors
Illuminate—or seal—

by Emily Dickinson.

'Twas A Long Parting&Mdash;But The Time

625

'Twas a long Parting—but the time
For Interview—had Come—
Before the Judgment Seat of God—
The last—and second time

These Fleshless Lovers met—
A Heaven in a Gaze—
A Heaven of Heavens—the Privilege
Of one another's Eyes—

No Lifetime—on Them—
Appareled as the new
Unborn—except They had beheld—
Born infiniter—now—

Was Bridal—e'er like This?
A Paradise—the Host—
And Cherubim—and Seraphim—
The unobtrusive Guest—

by Emily Dickinson.

A Thought For A Lonely Death-Bed

IF God compel thee to this destiny,
To die alone, with none beside thy bed
To ruffle round with sobs thy last word said
And mark with tears the pulses ebb from thee,--
Pray then alone, ' O Christ, come tenderly !
By thy forsaken Sonship in the red
Drear wine-press,--by the wilderness out-spread,--
And the lone garden where thine agony
Fell bloody from thy brow,--by all of those
Permitted desolations, comfort mine !
No earthly friend being near me, interpose
No deathly angel 'twixt my face aud thine,
But stoop Thyself to gather my life's rose,
And smile away my mortal to Divine ! '

by Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

This is the maiden Solitude, too fair
For mortal eyes to gaze on--she who dwells
In the lone valley where the water wells
Clear from the marble, where the mountain air
Is resinous with pines, and white peaks bare
Their unpolluted bosoms to the stars,
And holy Reverence the passage bars
To meaner souls who seek to enter there;
Only the worshipper at Nature's shrine
May find that maiden waiting to be won,
With broad calm brow and meek eyes of the dove,
May drink the rarer ether all divine,
And, earthly toils and earthly troubles done,
May win the longed-for sweetness of her love.

by James Lister Cuthbertson.

On The Death Of Anne Brontë

THERE 's little joy in life for me,
And little terror in the grave ;
I 've lived the parting hour to see
Of one I would have died to save.

Calmly to watch the failing breath,
Wishing each sigh might be the last ;
Longing to see the shade of death
O'er those belovèd features cast.

The cloud, the stillness that must part
The darling of my life from me ;
And then to thank God from my heart,
To thank Him well and fervently ;

Although I knew that we had lost
The hope and glory of our life ;
And now, benighted, tempest-tossed,
Must bear alone the weary strife.

by Charlotte Brontë.

Farewell! I breathe that wonted prayer,
But oh! though countless leagues divide
Our gaze, our grasp, they shall not tear
My soul, my spirit, from thy side.
Waking or sleeping, thou shalt own
My fervour hovers round thee still;
And when thou deem'st thyself alone,
My whispers shall the silence fill.

And as, in summer's ardent days,
The sun withdraws not all his light,
But, long past setting, twilight rays,
Lingering, illumine half the night;
So shall our Love's enduring glow
Through lonely hours its radiance pour,
O'er our dark lot some comfort throw,
Until we blend and burn once more.

by Alfred Austin.

Sonnet Xix. The Lady’s Sonnet. Twilight.

I KNOW not why I chose to seem so cold
At parting from you; for since you are gone
I see you still — I hear each word, each tone;
And what I hid from you I wish were told.
I, who was proud and shy, seem now too bold
To write these lines — and yet must write to own
I would unsay my words, now I'm alone.
From my dark window out upon the wold
I look. 'Twas through yon pathway to the west
I watched you going, while the sunset light
Went with you — and a shadow seemed to fall
Upon my heart. And now I cannot rest
Till I have written; for I said, 'To-night
I'll send your answer.' Now I've told you all.

by Christopher Pearse Cranch.

"Me Thinks This Heart..."

Me thinks this heart should rest awhile
So stilly round the evening falls
The veiled sun sheds no parting smile
Nor mirth nor music wakes my Halls

I have sat lonely all the day
Watching the drizzly mist descend
And first conceal the hills in grey
And then along the valleys wend

And I have sat and watched the trees
And the sad flowers how drear they blow
Those flowers were formed to feel the breeze
Wave their light leaves in summer's glow

Yet their lives passed in gloomy woe
And hopeless comes its dark decline
And I lament because I know
That cold departure pictures mine

by Emily Jane Brontë.

Sonnet Vii. To Solitude

O Solitude! if I must with thee dwell,
Let it not be among the jumbled heap
Of murky buildings: climb with me the steep,—
Nature's observatory—whence the dell,
In flowery slopes, its river's crystal swell,
May seem a span; let me thy vigils keep
'Mongst boughs pavilioned, where the deer's swift leap
Startles the wild bee from the foxglove bell.
But though I'll gladly trace these scenes with thee,
Yet the sweet converse of an innocent mind,
Whose words are images of thoughts refined,
Is my soul's pleasure; and it sure must be
Almost the highest bliss of human-kind,
When to thy haunts two kindred spirits flee.

by John Keats.

Sonnet Xxii. By The Same. To Solitude.

OH, Solitude! to thy sequester'd vale
I come to hide my sorrow and my tears,
And to thy echoes tell the mournful tale
Which scarce I trust to pitying Friendship's ears.
Amidst thy wild-woods, and untrodden glades,
No sounds but those of melancholy move;
And the low winds that die among thy shades,
Seem like soft Pity's sighs for hopeless love.
And sure some story of despair and pain,
In yon deep copse, thy murm'ring doves relate;
And, Hark! methinks in that long plaintive strain,
Thine own sweet songstress weeps my wayward fate;
Ah, Nymph! that fate assist me to endure,
And bear awhile--what death alone can cure!

by Charlotte Smith.

Did You Ever Stand In A Cavern's Mouth

590

Did you ever stand in a Cavern's Mouth—
Widths out of the Sun—
And look—and shudder, and block your breath—
And deem to be alone

In such a place, what horror,
How Goblin it would be—
And fly, as 'twere pursuing you?
Then Loneliness—looks so—

Did you ever look in a Cannon's face—
Between whose Yellow eye—
And yours—the Judgment intervened—
The Question of "To die"—

Extemporizing in your ear
As cool as Satyr's Drums—
If you remember, and were saved—
It's liker so—it seems—

by Emily Dickinson.

O Solitude! If I Must With Thee Dwell

O Solitude! if I must with thee dwell,
Let it not be among the jumbled heap
Of murky buildings: climb with me the steep,—
Nature's observatory—whence the dell,
In flowery slopes, its river's crystal swell,
May seem a span; let me thy vigils keep
'Mongst boughs pavilioned, where the deer's swift leap
Startles the wild bee from the foxglove bell.
But though I'll gladly trace these scenes with thee,
Yet the sweet converse of an innocent mind,
Whose words are images of thoughts refined,
Is my soul's pleasure; and it sure must be
Almost the highest bliss of human-kind,
When to thy haunts two kindred spirits flee.

by John Keats.

In the garden that I know,
Only palest blossoms blow.

There the lily, purest nun,
Hides her white face from the sun,

And the maiden rose-bud stirs
In a garment fair as hers.

One shy bird, with folded wings,
Sits within the leaves and sings;

Sits and sings the daylight long,
Just a patient plaintive song.

Other gardens greet the spring
With a blaze of blossoming;

Other song-birds, piping clear:
Chorus from the branches near:

But my blossoms, palest known,
Bloom for me and me alone;

And my birdling, sad and lonely,
Sings for me, and for me only.

by Ina D. Coolbrith.

The Voice Of Ocean

A cry went through the darkness; and the moon,
Hurrying through storm, gazed with a ghastly face,
Then cloaked herself in scud: the merman race
Of surges ceased; and then th' Aeolian croon
Of the wild siren, Wind, within the shrouds
Sunk to a sigh. The ocean in that place
Seemed listening; haunted, for a moment's space,
By something dread that cried against the clouds.
Mystery and night; and with them fog and rain:
And then that cry again as if the deep
Uttered its loneliness in one dark word:
Her horror of herself; her Titan pain;
Her monsters; and the dead that she must keep,
Has kept, alone, for centuries, unheard.

by Madison Julius Cawein.

The world is great: the birds all fly from me,
The stars are golden fruit upon a tree
All out of reach: my little sister went,
And I am lonely.

The world is great: I tried to mount the hill
Above the pines, where the light lies so still,
But it rose higher: little Lisa went
And I am lonely.

The world is great: the wind comes rushing by.
I wonder where it comes from; sea birds cry
And hurt my heart: my little sister went,
And I am lonely.

The world is great: the people laugh and talk,
And make loud holiday: how fast they walk!
I'm lame, they push me: little Lisa went,
And I am lonely.

by George Eliot.

The American Mercury

Thwarted your dreams'?
Withheld the fruits of hope?
The fruits of wit?
Of toil?
Of strength?
Of pain?
Has it blasted all
And left you chill,
Afraid,
Alone,
Yet facing still
A darker path
That must be trod
Alone?
Take hands with all who live
To left,
To right,
Or,
Make a gloomy choice of feiv
And with them sit
In some lone, sheltered place
Asking of each his story.
Or, better yet,
Or, best,
In silence sit
Harking the hopeless beat
Of each one's lonely heart
And wait,
Or dream,
Trusting a common misery to make soft
Or dull
The gorgon story
Of the human soul

by Theodore Dreiser.

O SOUL on God's high seas! the way is strange and long,
Yet fling your pennons out, and spread your canvas strong;
For though to mortal eyes so small a craft you seem,
The highest star in heaven doth lend you guiding gleam.

O soul on God's high seas! look to your course with care,
Fear most when winds are kind and skies are blue and fair.
Your helm must sway at touch of no hand save your own–
The soul that sails on God's high seas must sail alone.

O soul on God's high seas! sail on with steady aim,
Unmoved by wind of praise, untouched by seas of blame.
Beyond the lonely ways, beyond the guiding star,
There stretches out the strand and golden harbour bar.

by Jean Blewett.

O soul on God's high seas! the way is strange and long,
Yet fling your pennons out, and spread your canvas strong;
For though to mortal eyes so small a craft you seem,
The highest star in heaven cloth lend you guiding gleam.

O soul on God's high seas! look to your course with care,
Fear most when winds are kind and skies are blue and fair.
Your helm must sway at touch of no hand save your own-
The soul that sails on God's high seas must sail alone.

O soul on God's high seas! sail on with steady aim,
Unmoved by winds of praise, untouched by seas of blame.
Beyond the lonely ways, beyond the guiding star,
There stretches out the strand and golden harbor bar.

by Jean Blewett.


O Solitude! if I must with thee dwell,
Let it not be among the jumbled heap
Of murky buildings; climb with me the steep, --
Nature's observatory -- whence the dell,
Its flowery slopes, its river's crystal swell,
May seem a span; let me thy vigils keep
'Mongst boughs pavilion'd, where the deer's swift leap
Startles the wild bee from the foxglove bell.
But though I'll gladly trace these scenes with thee,
Yet the sweet converse of an innocent mind,
Whose words are images of thoughts refin'd,
Is my soul's pleasure; and it sure must be
Almost the highest bliss of human-kind,
When to thy haunts two kindred spirits flee.

by John Keats.

.


Is thy heart weary of unfeeling men,
And chilled with the world's ice? Then come with me,
And I will bring thee to a pleasant glen
Lovely and lonely. There we'll sit, unviewed
By scoffing eye; and let our hearts beat free
With their own mutual throb. For wild and rude
The access is, and none will there intrude,
To poison our free thoughts, and mar our solitude!
Such scenes move not their feelings--for they hold
No fellowship with nature's loneliness;
The frozen wave reflects not back the gold
And crimson flushes of the sunset hour;
The rock lies cold in sunshine--not the power
Of heaven's bright orb can clothe its barrenness.


.

by Joseph Rodman Drake.

Happy the man, whose wish and care
A few paternal acres bound,
Content to breathe his native air
In his own ground.

Whose herds with milk, whose fields with bread,
Whose flocks supply him with attire;
Whose trees in summer yield shade,
In winter, fire.

Blest, who can unconcern'dly find
Hours, days, and years, slide soft away
In health of body, peace of mind,
Quiet by day.

Sound sleep by night; study and ease
Together mixed; sweet recreation,
And innocence, which most does please
With meditation.

Thus let me live, unseen, unknown;
Thus unlamented let me die;
Steal from the world, and not a stone
Tell where I lie.

by Alexander Pope.

The kiss, dear maid! thy lip has left
Shall never part from mine,
Till happier hours restore the gift
Untainted back to thine.

Thy parting glance, which fondly beams,
An equal love may see:
The tear that from thing eyelid streams
Can weep no change in me.

I ask no pledge to make me blest
In gazing when alone;
Nor one memorial for a breast,
Whose thoughts are all thine own.

Nor need I write to tell the tale
My pen were doubly weak:
Oh! what can idle words avail,
Unless the heart could speak?

By day or night, in weal or woe,
That heart, no longer free,
Must bear the love it cannot show,
And silent ache for thee.

March 1811.

by George Gordon Byron.

One summer's morning I heard a lark
Singing to heaven, a sweet-throated bird;
One winter's night I was glad in the dark
Because of the wondrous song I had heard.

The joy of life, I have heard you say,
Is my love, my laughter, my smiles and tears;
When I have gone on the long, strange way,
Let these stay with you through all the years-

These be the lark's song. What is love worth
That cannot crowd, in the time that's given
To two like us on this gray old earth,
Such bliss as will last till we reach heaven?

Dear one, think oft of the full, glad years,
And, thinking of them, forget to weep.
Whisper: 'Remembrance holds no tears!'
And kiss my mouth when I fall on sleep.

by Jean Blewett.

Stanzas To A Hindoo Air

Oh! my lonely--lonely--lonely--Pillow!
Where is my lover? where is my lover?
Is it his bark which my dreary dreams discover?
Far--far away! and alone along the billow?

Oh! my lonely-lonely-lonely-Pil­low!
Why must my head ache where his gentle brow lay?
How the long night flags lovelessly and slowly,
And my head droops over thee like the willow!

Oh! thou, my sad and solitary Pillow!
Send me kind dreams to keep my heart from breaking,
In return for the tears I shed upon thee waking;
Let me not die till he comes back o'er the billow.

Then if thou wilt--no more my lonely Pillow,
In one embrace let these arms again enfold him,
And then expire of the joy-but to behold him!
Oh! my lone bosom!-oh! my lonely Pillow!

by George Gordon Byron.

I Loved Thee, Atthis, In The Long Ago

(Sappho XXIII)
I loved thee, Atthis, in the long ago,
When the great oleanders were in flower
In the broad herded meadows full of sun.
And we would often at the fall of dusk
Wander together by the silver stream,
When the soft grass-heads were all wet with dew
And purple-miste d in the fading light.
And joy I knew and sorrow at thy voice,
And the superb magnificence of love,—
The loneliness that saddens solitude,
And the sweet speech that makes it durable,—
The bitter longing and the keen desire,
The sweet companionshi p through quiet days
In the slow ample beauty of the world,
And the unutterable glad release
Within the temple of the holy night.
O Atthis, how I loved thee long ago
In that fair perished summer by the sea!

by Bliss William Carman.

Solitude: An Ode

I.
How happy he, who free from care
The rage of courts, and noise of towns;
Contented breaths his native air,
In his own grounds.

II.
Whose herds with milk, whose fields with bread,
Whose flocks supply him with attire,
Whose trees in summer yield him shade,
In winter fire.

III.
Blest! who can unconcern'dly find
Hours, days, and years slide swift away,
In health of body, peace of mind,
Quiet by day,

IV.
Sound sleep by night; study and ease
Together mix'd; sweet recreation,
And innocence, which most does please,
With meditation.

V.
Thus let me live, unheard, unknown;
Thus unlamented let me dye;
Steal from the world, and not a stone
Tell where I lye.

by Alexander Pope.

A Debtor To Mercy Alone

A debtor to mercy alone, of covenant mercy I sing;
Nor fear, with Thy righteousness on, my person and off’ring to bring.
The terrors of law and of God with me can have nothing to do;
My Savior’s obedience and blood hide all my transgressions from view.

The work which His goodness began, the arm of His strength will complete;
His promise is Yea and Amen, and never was forfeited yet.
Things future, nor things that are now, nor all things below or above,
Can make Him His purpose forgo, or sever my soul from His love.

My name from the palms of His hands eternity will not erase;
Impressed on His heart it remains, in marks of indelible grace.
Yes, I to the end shall endure, as sure as the earnest is giv’n;
More happy, but not more secure, the glorified spirits in heav’n.

by Augustus Montague Toplady.

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