« ПредишнаНапред »
Oh! not in cruelty, not in wrath,
The Reaper came that day: 'Twas an angel visited the green earth,
And took the flowers away.
FOOTSTEPS OF ANGELS. WHEN the hours of day are numbered,
And the voices of the night
To a holy, calm delight;
And, like phantoms grim and tall,
Dance upon the parlor-wall, —
Enter at the open door :
He, the young and strong, who cherished
Noble longings for the strite, By the roadside fell and perislied,
Weary with the march of life.
They, the holy ones and weakly,
Who the cross of suffering bore, Folded their pale hands so meekly!
Spake with us on earth no more!
And with them the being beauteous,
Who unto my youth was given More than all things else to love me,
And is now a saint in heaven.
With a slow and noiseless footstep
Comes that messenger divine, Takes the vacant chair beside me,
Lays her gentle hand in mine. And she sits and gazes at me
With those deep and tender eyes, Like the stars, so still and saint-like,
Looking downward from the skies.
Uttered not, yet comprehended,
Is the spirit's voiceless prayer; Soft rebukes, in blessings ended,
Breathing from her lips of air.
Oh! though oft depressed and lonely,
All my tears are laid aside
Such as these have lived and died.
THE BELEAGUERED CITY.
I HAVE read, in some old, marvelous tale,
Some legend strange and vague, That a midnight host of specters pale
Beleaguered the walls of Prague.
Beside the Moldau's rushing stream,
With the wan moon overhead, There stood, as in an awful dream,
The army of the dead.
White as a sea-fog landward bound,
The spectral camp was seen; And with a sorrowful, deep sound,
The river flowed between.
No other voice nor sound was there,
No drum, nor sentry's pace :
As clouds with clouds embrace.
But, when the old cathedral-bell
Proclaimed the morning praver, The white pavilions rose and tell
On the alarmèd air.
Down the broad valley fast and far
The troubled army fled :
The ghastly host was dead.
I have read, in the marvelous heart of man,
That strange and mystic scroll, –
Beleaguer the human soul.
Encamped beside Life's rushing stream,
In Fancy's misty light,
Portentous through the night.
Upon its midnight battle-ground
The spectral camp is seen ;
Flows the River of Lite between.
No other voice nor sound is there
In the army of the grave;
But the rushing of Life's wave.
And, when the solemn and deep church-bell
Entreats the soul to pray,
The shadows sweep away.
Down the broad Vale of Tears afar
The spectral camp is fled : Faith shineth as a morning-star;
Our ghastly fears are dead.
MAIDEN with the meek, brown eyes,
Thou whose locks outshine the sun,
Standing with reluctant feet
Gazing with a timid glance
Deep and still, that gliding stream
Then why pause with indecision,
Seest thou shadows sailing by,
Hear'st thou voices on the shore,
O thou child of many prayers !
Like the swell of some sweet tune,
Childhood is the bough where slumbered
Bear a lily in thy hand :
Bear, through sorrow, wrong, and ruth,
Oh! that dew, like balm, shall steal
And that smile, like sunshine, dart
The shades of night were falling fast
His brow was sad ; his eye beneath
In happy homes he saw the light
“ Try not the pass !” the old man said; “ Dark lowers the tempest overhead; The roaring torrent is deep and wide!” And loud that clarion voice replied,
“ Excelsior ! ”
“ Oh, stay," the maiden said, “and rest
“ Beware the pine-tree's withered branch!
At break of day, as heavenward
A traveler by the faithful hound
“ Excelsior !”
There in the twilight cold and gray,
THE BUILDING OF THE SHIP.