On A Beautiful Youth Struck Blind With Lightning

('Imitated from the Spanish'.)

SURE 'twas by Providence design'd,
Rather in pity, than in hate,
That he should be, like Cupid, blind,
To save him from Narcissus' fate.

by Oliver Goldsmith.

Prayer For Lightning

My corn is green with red tassels,
I am praying to the lightning to ripen my corn,
I am praying to the thunder which carries the lightning.
Corn is sweet where lightning has fallen.
I pray to the six-coloured clouds.

by Amy Lowell.

THE panther wind
Leaps out of the night,
The snake of lightning
Is twisting and white,
The lion of thunder
Roars—and we
Sit still and content
Under a tree—
We have met fate together
And love and pain,
Why should we fear
The wrath of the rain!

by Sara Teasdale.

Summer Lightning

Just now, as warm day faded from our sight
Hosts of archangels, fleet
On lighting-winged feet
Passed by, all glimmering in the busy night

Sweet angels, bringing no blinding truth to birth
Give us no messages
From heavenly palaces;
Leave us our dark trees and our starlight earth.

by Lesbia Harford.

Summer Lightning

Just now, as warm day faded from our sight
Hosts of archangels, fleet
On lighting-winged feet
Passed by, all glimmering in the busy night



Sweet angels, bringing no blinding truth to birth
Give us no messages
From heavenly palaces;
Leave us our dark trees and our starlight earth.

by Lesbia Harford.

Ruby wine is drunk by knaves,
Sugar spends to fatten slaves,
Rose and vine-leaf deck buffoons;
Thunder-clouds are Jove's festoons,
Drooping oft in wreaths of dread,
Lightning-knotted round his head;
The hero is not fed on sweets,
Daily his own heart he eats;
Chambers of the great are jails,
And head-winds right for royal sails.

by Ralph Waldo Emerson.

The Light Of The World

Now burn, new born to the world,
Doubled-naturéd name,
The heaven-flung, heart-fleshed, maiden-furled
Miracle-in-Mary-of-flame,
Mid -numbered He in three of the thunder-throne!
Not a dooms-day dazzle in his coming nor dark
as he came;
Kind, but royally reclaiming his own;
A released shower, let flash to the shire, not
a lightning of fire hard-hurled.

by Evelyn Underhill.

A Thunderstorm In Town

She wore a 'terra-cotta' dress,
And we stayed, because of the pelting storm,
Within the hansom's dry recess,
Though the horse had stopped; yea, motionless
We sat on, snug and warm.

Then the downpour ceased, to my sharp sad pain,
And the glass that had screened our forms before
Flew up, and out she sprang to her door:
I should have kissed her if the rain
Had lasted a minute more.

by Thomas Hardy.

Locked arm in arm they cross the way
The black boy and the white,
The golden splendor of the day
The sable pride of night.

From lowered blinds the dark folk stare
And here the fair folk talk,
Indignant that these two should dare
In unison to walk.

Oblivious to look and word
They pass, and see no wonder
That lightning brilliant as a sword
Should blaze the path of thunder.

by Countee Cullen.

Fragment: Wedded Souls

I am as a spirit who has dwelt
Within his heart of hearts, and I have felt
His feelings, and have thought his thoughts, and known
The inmost converse of his soul, the tone
Unheard but in the silence of his blood,
When all the pulses in their multitude
Image the trembling calm of summer seas.
I have unlocked the golden melodies
Of his deep soul, as with a master-key,
And loosened them and bathed myself therein--
Even as an eagle in a thunder-mist
Clothing his wings with lightning.

by Percy Bysshe Shelley.

The Flash At Midnight

The flash at midnight! - 'twas a light
That gave the blind a moment's sight
Then sank in tenfold gloom;
Loud, deep, and long, the thunder broke,
The deaf ear instantly awoke,
Then closed as in the tomb:
An angel might have passed my bed,
Sounded the trump of God, and fled.

So life appears; - a sudden birth,
A glance revealing heaven and earth
It is - and it is not!
So fame the poet's hope deceives,
Who sings for after time, and leaves
A name - to be forgot,
Life - is a lightning-flash of breath;
Fame - but a thunder clap at death.

by James Montgomery.

GOD help him! Ay, and let us help him, too,
Help him with our one hundred million minds
Molded to loyalty, so that he finds
The faith of the Republic pulsing through
All clashes of opinion, faith still true
To its divine young vision of mankind's
Freedom and brotherhood. May all the winds,
North, south, east, west, waft him our honor due!
For he is one who, when the tempest breaks
In shattering fury, wild with thunder-jars
And javelins of lightning that transform
All the familiar scene to horror, makes
A hush about him in the heart of storm,
Remembering the quiet of the stars.

by Katharine Lee Bates.

After The Storm

The storm is done--the lightning with its lust
To rend the unhallowed dome in ruin dire;
The purple heaps, from the rank chaos thrust
On sheets of fell and inauspicious fire;
The thunder bellowing loud on every bound;
The hissing bolt, so tossed as to complete
All permutations of Satanic sound;
The flood that opened heaven and ransomed it.
Benign now is that beatific blue.
The flame that fires the hill is now remote
From aught in evil. Clemency anew
--Crowns every leaf, and sings in every throat.
Shall, then, the rage of earth and heaven depart,
And not the rancour of the unsensing heart?

by William Baylebridge.

The Lively sparks that issue from those eyes


The lively sparks that issue from those eyes
Against the which ne vaileth no defence
Have pressed mine heart and done it none offence
With quaking pleasure more than once or twice.
Was never man could anything devise
The sunbeams to turn with so great vehemence
To daze man's sight, as by their bright presence
Dazed am I, much like unto the guise
Of one ystricken with dint of lightning,
Blinded with the stroke, erring here and there.
So call I for help, I not when ne where,
The pain of my fall patiently bearing.
For after the blaze, as is no wonder,
Of deadly ' Nay' hear I the fearful thunder.

by Sir Thomas Wyatt.

A moment the wild swallows like a flight
Of withered gust-caught leaves, serenely high,
Toss in the windrack up the muttering sky.
The leaves hang still. Above the weird twilight,
The hurrying centres of the storm unite
And spreading with huge trunk and rolling fringe,
Each wheeled upon its own tremendous hinge,
Tower darkening on. And now from heaven's height,
With the long roar of elm-trees swept and swayed,
And pelted waters, on the vanished plain
Plunges the blast. Behind the wild white flash
That splits abroad the pealing thunder-crash,
Over bleared fields and gardens disarrayed,
Column on column comes the drenching rain.

by Archibald Lampman.

The Wind Begun To Rock The Grass

The wind begun to rock the grass
With threatening tunes and low,--
He flung a menace at the earth,
A menace at the sky.

The leaves unhooked themselves from trees
And started all abroad;
The dust did scoop itself like hands
And throw away the road.

The wagons quickened on the streets,
The thunder hurried slow;
The lightning showed a yellow beak,
And then a livid claw.

The birds put up the bars to nests,
The cattle fled to barns;
There came one drop of giant rain,
And then, as if the hands

That held the dams had parted hold,
The waters wrecked the sky
But overlooked my father's house,
lust quartering a tree.

by Emily Dickinson.

The Shepherd’s Brow, Fronting Forked Lightning, Owns

The shepherd's brow, fronting forked lightning, owns
The horror and the havoc and the glory
Of it. Angels fall, they are towers, from heaven—a story
Of just, majestical, and giant groans.
But man—we, scaffold of score brittle bones;
Who breathe, from groundlong babyhood to hoary
Age gasp; whose breath is our memento mori—
What bass is our viol for tragic tones?
He! Hand to mouth he lives, and voids with shame;
And, blazoned in however bold the name,
Man Jack the man is, just; his mate a hussy.
And I that die these deaths, that feed this flame,
That … in smooth spoons spy life’s masque mirrored: tame
My tempests there, my fire and fever fussy.

by Gerard Manley Hopkins.

I thought I had forgotten,
But it all came back again
To-night with the first spring thunder
In a rush of rain.

I remembered a darkened doorway
Where we stood while the storm swept by,
Thunder gripping the earth
And lightning scrawled on the sky.

The passing motor busses swayed,
For the street was a river of rain,
Lashed into little golden waves
In the lamp light's stain.

With the wild spring rain and thunder
My heart was wild and gay;
Your eyes said more to me that night
Than your lips would ever say. . . .

I thought I had forgotten,
But it all came back again
To-night with the first spring thunder
In a rush of rain.

by Sara Teasdale.

I

Above the fresh ruffles of the surf
Bright striped urchins flay each other with sand.
They have contrived a conquest for shell shucks,
And their fingers crumble fragments of baked weed
Gaily digging and scattering.

And in answer to their treble interjections
The sun beats lightning on the waves,
The waves fold thunder on the sand;
And could they hear me I would tell them:

O brilliant kids, frisk with your dog,
Fondle your shells and sticks, bleached
By time and the elements; but there is a line
You must not cross nor ever trust beyond it
Spry cordage of your bodies to caresses
Too lichen-faithful from too wide a breast.
The bottom of the sea is cruel.

by Harold Hart Crane.

Low clouds, the lightning veins and cleaves,
Torn from the forest of the storm,
Sweep westward like enormous leaves
O'er field and farm.

And in the west, on burning skies,
Their wrath is quenched, their hate is hushed,
And deep their drifted thunder lies
With splendor flushed.

The black turns gray, the gray turns gold;
And, seaed in deeps of radiant rose,
Summits of fire, manifold
They now repose.

What dreams they bring! what thoughts reveal!
That have their source in loveliness,
Through which the doubts I often feel
Grow less and less.

Through which I see that other night,
That cloud called Death, transformed of Love
To flame, and pointing with its light
To life above.

by Madison Julius Cawein.

WHAT moves that lonely man is not the boom
Of waves that break agains the cliff so strong;
Nor roar of thunder, when that travelling voice
Is caught by rocks that carry far along.

'Tis not the groan of oak tree i its prime,
When lightning strikes its solid heart to dust;
Nor frozen pond when, melted by the sun,
It suddenly doth break its sparkling crust.

What moves that man is when the blind bat taps
His window when he sits alone at night;
Or when the small bird sounds like some great beast
Among the dead, dry leaves so fraiil and light.

Or when the moths on his night-pillow beat
Such heavy blows he fears they'll break his bones;
Or when a mouse inside the papered walls,
Comes like a tiger crunching through the stones.

by William Henry Davies.

On Lyce - An Elderly Lady

Ye nymphs whom starry rays invest,
By flattering poets given,
Who shine, by lavish lovers dress'd,
In all the pomp of heaven.

Engross not all the beams on high,
Which gild a lover's lays,
But as your sister of the sky,
Let Lyce share the praise.

Her silver locks display the moon,
Her brows a cloudy show,
Striped rainbows round her eyes are seen,
And showers from either flow.

Her teeth the night with darkness dyes,
She's starr'd with pimples o'er;
Her tongue like nimble lightning plies,
And can with thunder roar.

But some, Zelinda, while I sing,
Deny my Lyce shines;
And all the pen of Cupid's wing
Attack my gentle lines.

Yet spite of fair Zelinda's eye,
And all her bards express,
My Lyce makes as good a sky,
And I but flatter less.

by Samuel Johnson.

Struck, Was I, Not Yet By Lightning

925

Struck, was I, not yet by Lightning—
Lightning—lets away
Power to perceive His Process
With Vitality.

Maimed—was I—yet not by Venture—
Stone of stolid Boy—
Nor a Sportsman's Peradventure—
Who mine Enemy?

Robbed—was I—intact to Bandit—
All my Mansion torn—
Sun—withdrawn to Recognition—
Furthest shining—done—

Yet was not the foe—of any—
Not the smallest Bird
In the nearest Orchard dwelling
Be of Me—afraid.

Most—I love the Cause that slew Me.
Often as I die
Its beloved Recognition
Holds a Sun on Me—

Best—at Setting—as is Nature's—
Neither witnessed Rise
Till the infinite Aurora
In the other's eyes.

by Emily Dickinson.

Around, the stillness deepened; then the grain
Went wild with wind; and every briery lane
Was swept with dust; and then, tempestuous black,
Hillward the tempest heaved a monster back,
That on the thunder leaned as on a cane;
And on huge shoulders bore a cloudy pack,
That gullied gold from many a lightning-crack:
One big drop splashed and wrinkled down the pane,
And then field, hill, and wood were lost in rain.

At last, through clouds,-as from a cavern hewn.
Into night's heart,-the sun burst angry roon;
And every cedar, with its weight of wet,
Against the sunset's fiery splendor set,
Frightened to beauty, seemed with rubies strewn:
Then in drenched gardens, like sweet phantoms met,
Dim odors rose of pink and mignonette;
And in the east a confidence, that soon
Grew to the calm assurance of the moon.

by Madison Julius Cawein.

Fear no more the heat o' the sun;
Nor the furious winter's rages,
Thou thy worldly task hast done,
Home art gone, and ta'en thy wages;
Golden lads and girls all must,
As chimney sweepers come to dust.

Fear no more the frown of the great,
Thou art past the tyrant's stroke:
Care no more to clothe and eat;
To thee the reed is as the oak:
The sceptre, learning, physic, must
All follow this, and come to dust.

Fear no more the lightning-flash,
Nor the all-dread thunder-stone;
Fear not slander, censure rash;
Thou hast finished joy and moan;
All lovers young, all lovers must
Consign to thee, and come to dust.

No exorciser harm thee!
Nor no witchcraft charm thee!
Ghost unlaid forbear thee!
Nothing ill come near thee!
Quiet consummation have;
And renowned be thy grave!

by William Shakespeare.

The Knight's Pledge

The tedious night at length hath pass’d;
To horse! to horse! we’ll ride as fast
As ever bird did fly.
Ha! but the morning air is chill;
Frau Wirthin, one last goblet fill,
We’ll drain it ere we die!
Thou youthful grass, why look’st so green?
Soon dyed in blood of mine I ween,
With damask rose thou’lt vie.
The goblet here! with sword in hand
I pledge thee first, my Fatherland,
Oh! blessed for thee to die!
Again our mailed hands raise the cup:
Freedom, to thee we drink it up.
Low may that coward lie
Who fails to pledge, with heart and hand,
The freedom of our glorious Land
Her Freedom, ere we die!
Our wives—but, ah! the glass is clear,
The cannon thunders—grasp the spear,
We’ll pledge them in a sigh.
Now, on the Foe like thunder crash!
We’ll scathe them as a lightning flash,
And conquer, though we die!

by Lady Jane Wilde.

WITH a whirl of thoughts oppress’d,
I sunk from reverie to rest.
A horrid vision seized my head,
I saw the graves give up their dead!
Jove, arm’d with terrors, bursts the skies,
And thunder roars and lightning flies!
Amazed, confused, its fate unknown,
The world stands trembling at his throne!
While each pale sinner hung his head,
Jove, nodding, shook the heavens, and said:
“Offending race of human kind,
By nature, reason, learning, blind;
You who, through frailty, stepp’d aside;
And you, who never fell from pride:
You who in different sects were shamm’d,
And come to see each other damn’d;
(So some folk told you, but they knew
No more of Jove’s designs than you
—The world’s mad business now is o’er,
And I resent these pranks no more.
—I to such blockheads set my wit!
I damn such fools!—Go, go, you’re bit.”

by Jonathan Swift.

Over heaven clouds are drifted;
In the trees the wind-witch cries;
By her sieve the rain is sifted,
And the clouds at times are rifted
By her mad broom as she flies.
Love, there's lightning in the skies,
Swift, as, in your face uplifted,
Leaps the heart-thought to your eyes.
Little face, where I can trace
Dreams for which those eyes are pages,
Whose young magic here assuages
All the heart-storm and alarm.

II.

Now the thunder tramples slowly,
Like a king, down heaven's arc;
And the clouds, like armies wholly
Vanquished, break; and, white as moly,
Sweeps the queen moon on the dark.
Love, a bird wakes; is't the lark?
Sweet as in your bosom holy
Sings the heart that now I hark.
All my soul that song makes whole,
That young song I hear it singing,
Calm and peace for ever bringing
To my heart's storm and alarm.

by Madison Julius Cawein.

Wake Not For The World-Heard Thunder

Wake not for the world-heard thunder,
Nor the chimes that earthquakes toll;
Stars may plot in heaven with planet,
Lightning rive the rock of granite,
Tempest tread the oakwood under,
Fear not you for flesh or soul;
Marching, fighting, victory past,
Stretch your limbs in peace at last.

Stir not for the soldier's drilling,
Nor the fever nothing cures;
Throb of drum and timbal's rattle
Call but men alive to battle,
And the fife with death-notes filling
Screams for blood--but not for yours.
Times enough you bled your best;
Sleep on now, and take your rest.

Sleep, my lad; the French have landed,
London's burning, Windsor's down.
Clasp your cloak of earth about you;
We must man the ditch without you,
March unled and fight short-handed,
Charge to fall and swim to drown.
Duty, friendship, bravery o'er,
Sleep away, lad; wake no more.

by Alfred Edward Housman.

From childhood's hour I have not been
As others were; I have not seen
As others saw; I could not bring
My passions from a common spring.
From the same source I have not taken
My sorrow; I could not awaken
My heart to joy at the same tone;
And all I loved, I loved alone.
Then- in my childhood, in the dawn
Of a most stormy life- was drawn
From every depth of good and ill
The mystery which binds me still:
From the torrent, or the fountain,
From the red cliff of the mountain,
From the sun that round me rolled
In its autumn tint of gold,
From the lightning in the sky
As it passed me flying by,
From the thunder and the storm,
And the cloud that took the form
(When the rest of Heaven was blue)
Of a demon in my view.

by Edgar Allan Poe.

Fragment, Or The Triumph Of Conscience

'Twas dead of the night when I sate in my dwelling,
One glimmering lamp was expiring and low,--
Around the dark tide of the tempest was swelling,
Along the wild mountains night-ravens were yelling,
They bodingly presaged destruction and woe!

'Twas then that I started, the wild storm was howling,
Nought was seen, save the lightning that danced on the sky,
Above me the crash of the thunder was rolling,
And low, chilling murmurs the blast wafted by.--

My heart sank within me, unheeded the jar
Of the battling clouds on the mountain-tops broke,
Unheeded the thunder-peal crashed in mine ear,
This heart hard as iron was stranger to fear,
But conscience in low noiseless whispering spoke.
’Twas then that her form on the whirlwind uprearing,
The dark ghost of the murdered Victoria strode,
Her right hand a blood reeking dagger was bearing,
She swiftly advanced to my lonesome abode.--
I wildly then called on the tempest to bear me!
...
...

by Percy Bysshe Shelley.

The Tree Of Rivelin

The lightning, like an Arab, cross'd
The moon's dark path on high,
And wild on Rivelin writhed and toss'd
The stars and troubled sky,
Where lone the tree of ages grew,
With branches wide and tall;
Ah! who, when such a tempest blew,
Could hear his stormy fall?
But now the skies, the stars are still,
The blue wave sleeps again,
And heath and moss, by rock and rill,
Are whispering, in disdain,
That Rivelin's side is desolate,
Her giant in the dust!
Beware, O Power! for God is great,
O Guilt! for God is just!
And boast not, Pride! while millions pine,
That wealth secures thy home;
The storm that shakes all hearths but thine
Is not the storm to come.
The tremor of the stars is pale,
The dead clod quakes with fear,
The worm slinks down, o'er hill and vale,
When God in wroth draws near.
But if the Upas will not bend
Beneath the frown of Heaven,
A whisper cometh, which shall rend
What thunder hath not riven.

by Ebenezer Elliott.

We have sent him seeds of the melon's core,
And nailed a warning upon his door:
By the Ku Klux laws we can do no more.

Down in the hollow, 'mid crib and stack,
The roof of his low-porched house looms black;
Not a line of light at the door-sill's crack.

Yet arm and mount! and mask and ride!
The hounds can sense though the fox may hide!
And for a word too much men oft have died.

The clouds blow heavy toward the moon.
The edge of the storm will reach it soon.
The kildee cries and the lonesome loon.

The clouds shall flush with a wilder glare
Than the lightning makes with its angled flare,
When the Ku Klux verdict is given there.

In the pause of the thunder rolling low,
A rifle's answer-who shall know
From the wind's fierce hurl and the rain's black blow?

Only the signature, written grim
At the end of the message brought to him-
A hempen rope and a twisted limb.

So arm and mount! and mask and ride!
The hounds can sense though the fox may hide!-
For a word too much men oft have died.

by Madison Julius Cawein.

Tales Of A Wayside Inn : Part 1. The Musician's Tale; The Saga Of King Olaf I. -- The Challenge Of Thor

I am the God Thor,
I am the War God,
I am the Thunderer!
Here in my Northland,
My fastness and fortress,
Reign I forever!

Here amid icebergs
Rule I the nations;
This is my hammer,
Miölner the mighty;
Giants and sorcerers
Cannot withstand it!

These are the gauntlets
Wherewith I wield it,
And hurl it afar off;
This is my girdle;
Whenever I brace it,
Strength is redoubled!

The light thou beholdest
Stream through the heavens,
In flashes of crimson,
Is but my red beard
Blown by the night-wind,
Affrighting the nations!

Jove is my brother;
Mine eyes are the lightning;
The wheels of my chariot
Roll in the thunder,
The blows of my hammer
Ring in the earthquake!

Force rules the world still,
Has ruled it, shall rule it;
Meekness is weakness,
Strength is triumphant,
Over the whole earth
Still is it Thor's-Day!

Thou art a God too,
O Galilean!
And thus single-handed
Unto the combat,
Gauntlet or Gospel,
Here I defy thee!

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

The Challenge Of Thor

I am the God Thor,
I am the War God,
I am the Thunderer!
Here in my Northland,
My fastness and fortress,
Reign I forever!
Here amid icebergs
Rule I the nations;
This is my hammer,
Miölner the mighty;
Giants and sorcerers
Cannot withstand it!

These are the gauntlets
Wherewith I wield it,
And hurl it afar off;
This is my girdle;
Whenever I brace it,
Strength is redoubled!

The light thou beholdest
Stream through the heavens,
In flashes of crimson,
Is but my red beard
Blown by the night-wind,
Affrighting the nations!
Jove is my brother;
Mine eyes are the lightning;
The wheels of my chariot
Roll in the thunder,
The blows of my hammer
Ring in the earthquake!

Force rules the world still,
Has ruled it, shall rule it;
Meekness is weakness,
Strength is triumphant,
Over the whole earth
Still is it Thor's Day!

Thou art a God too,
O Galilean!
And thus singled-handed
Unto the combat,
Gauntlet or Gospel,
Here I defy thee!

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

The Four Elements.

The Fire, Air, Earth and water did contest
Which was the strongest, noblest and the best,
Who was of greatest use and might'est force;
In placide Terms they thought now to discourse,
That in due order each her turn should speak;
But enmity this amity did break
All would be chief, and all scorn'd to be under
Whence issu'd winds & rains, lightning & thunder
The quaking earth did groan, the Sky lookt black
The Fire, the forced Air, in sunder crack;
The sea did threat the heav'ns, the heavn's the earth,
All looked like a Chaos or new birth:
Fire broyled Earth, & scorched Earth it choaked
Both by their darings, water so provoked
That roaring in it came, and with its source
Soon made the Combatants abate their force
The rumbling hissing, puffing was so great
The worlds confusion, it did seem to threat
Till gentle Air, Contention so abated
That betwixt hot and cold, she arbitrated
The others difference, being less did cease
All storms now laid, and they in perfect peace
That Fire should first begin, the rest consent,
The noblest and most active Element.

by Anne Bradstreet.

To The Man-Of-War-Bird

THOU who hast slept all night upon the storm,
Waking renew'd on thy prodigious pinions,
(Burst the wild storm? above it thou ascended'st,
And rested on the sky, thy slave that cradled thee,)
Now a blue point, far, far in heaven floating,
As to the light emerging here on deck I watch thee,
(Myself a speck, a point on the world's floating vast.)

Far, far at sea,
After the night's fierce drifts have strewn the shores with wrecks,
With re-appearing day as now so happy and serene, 10
The rosy and elastic dawn, the flashing sun,
The limpid spread of air cerulean,
Thou also re-appearest.

Thou born to match the gale, (thou art all wings,)
To cope with heaven and earth and sea and hurricane,
Thou ship of air that never furl'st thy sails,
Days, even weeks untired and onward, through spaces, realms gyrating,
At dusk that look'st on Senegal, at morn America,
That sport'st amid the lightning-flash and thunder-cloud,
In them, in thy experience, had'st thou my soul, 20
What joys! what joys were thine!

by Walt Whitman.

From Lightning And Tempest

The spring-wind pass'd through the forest, and whispered low in the leaves,
And the cedar toss'd her head, and the oak stood firm in his pride ;
The spring-wind pass'd through the town, through the housetops, casements, and eaves,
And whisper'd low in the hearts of the men, and the men replied,
Singing—'Let us rejoice in the light
Of our glory, and beauty, and might ;
Let us follow our own devices, and foster our own desires.
As firm as our oaks in our pride, as our cedars fair in our sight,
We stand like the trees of the forest that brave the frosts and the fires.'

The storm went forth to the forest, the plague went forth to the town,
And the men fell down to the plague, as the trees fell down to the gale ;
And their bloom was a ghastly pallor, and their smile was a ghastly frown,
And the song of their hearts was changed to a wild, disconsolate wail,
Crying—'God ! we have sinn'd, we have sinn'd,
We are bruised, we are shorn, we are thinn'd,
Our strength is turn'd to derision, our pride laid low in the dust,
Our cedars are cleft by Thy lightnings, our oaks are strew'd by Thy wind,
And we fall on our faces seeking Thine aid, though Thy wrath is just.'

by Adam Lindsay Gordon.

The Great Minimum

It is something to have wept as we have wept,
It is something to have done as we have done,
It is something to have watched when all men slept,
And seen the stars which never see the sun.

It is something to have smelt the mystic rose,
Although it break and leave the thorny rods,
It is something to have hungered once as those
Must hunger who have ate the bread of gods.

To have seen you and your unforgotten face,
Brave as a blast of trumpets for the fray,
Pure as white lilies in a watery space,
It were something, though you went from me today.

To have known the things that from the weak are
furled,
Perilous ancient passions, strange and high;
It is something to be wiser then the world,
It is something to be older then the sky.

In a time of sceptic moths and cynic rusts,
And fattened lives that of their sweetness tire
In a world of flying loves and fading lusts,
It is something to be sure of a desire.

Lo, blessed are our ears for they have heard;
Yea, blessed are our eyes for they have seen:
Let the thunder break on man and beast and bird
And the lightning. It is something to have been.

by Gilbert Keith Chesterton.

Tales Of A Wayside Inn : Part 3. Interlude I.

'O Edrehi, forbear to-night
Your ghostly legends of affright,
And let the Talmud rest in peace;
Spare us your dismal tales of death
That almost take away one's breath;
So doing, may your tribe increase.'

Thus the Sicilian said; then went
And on the spinet's rattling keys
Played Marianina, like a breeze
From Naples and the Southern seas,
That brings us the delicious scent
Of citron and of orange trees,
And memories of soft days of ease
At Capri and Amalfi spent.

'Not so,' the eager Poet said;
'At least, not so before I tell
The story of my Azrael,
An angel mortal as ourselves,
Which in an ancient tome I found
Upon a convent's dusty shelves,
Chained with an iron chain, and bound
In parchment, and with clasps of brass,
Lest from its prison, some dark day,
It might be stolen or steal away,
While the good friars were singing mass.

'It is a tale of Charlemagne,
When like a thunder-cloud, that lowers
And sweeps from mountain-crest to coast,
With lightning flaming through its showers,
He swept across the Lombard plain,
Beleaguering with his warlike train
Pavia, the country's pride and boast,
The City of the Hundred Towers.'

Thus heralded the tale began,
And thus in sober measure ran.

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

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