« PreviousContinue »
By seeing all the special—own no rule
But their full vision of the moment's worth.
'Tis so God governs, using wicked men-
Nay, scheming fiends, to work his purposes.
Particular lies may speak a general truth.
The Prior. -o
A man 's a man; But when you see a king, you see the work Of many thousand men.-Blasco.
They talk of vermin ; but, sirs, vermin large
Were made to eat the small, or else to eat
The noxious rubbish.—Blasco.
Next to a missing thrust, what irks me most
Is a neat well-aimed stroke that kills your man,
Yet ends in mischief.—Lorenzo.
Pooh, thou ’rt a poet, crazed with finding words
May stick to things and seem like qualities.
No pebble is a pebble in thy hands :
'Tis a moon out of work, a barren egg,
Or twenty things that no man sees but thee.
END OF THE SPANISH GYPSY.'
JUBAL, Lamech's son,
That mortal frame wherein was first begun
The immortal life of song.
To the far woods he wandered, listening,
And heard the birds their little stories sing
In notes whose rise and fall seem melted speech -
Melted with tears, smiles, glances—that can reach
More quickly through our frame's deep-winding night,
And without thought raise thought's best fruit, delight.
It was at evening, When shadows lengthen from each westward thing, When imminence of change makes sense more fine And light seems holier in its grand decline. The fruit-trees wore their studded coronal, Earth and her children were at festival,
Glowing as with one heart and one consent-
Thought, love, trees, rocks, in sweet warm radiance
blent. . . . .
The sun had sunk, but music still was there,
And when this ceased, still triumph filled the air :
It seemed the stars were shining with delight
And that no night was ever like this night.
All clung with praise to Jubal : some besought
That he would teach them his new skill ; some caught,
Swiftly as smiles are caught in looks that meet,
The tone's melodic change and rhythmic beat :
'Twas easy following where invention trod-
All eyes can see when light flows out from God.
And thus did Jubal to his race reveal
Music their larger soul, where woe and weal
Filling the resonant chords, the song, the dance,
Moved with a wider-winged utterance.
Now many a lyre was fashioned, many a song
Raised echoes new, old echoes to prolong.
That true heaven, the recovered past,
The dear small Known amid the Unknown vast.
The future, that bright land which swims In western glory, isles and streams and bays, Where hidden pleasures float in golden haze.
Man's life was spacious in the early world :
It paused, like some slow ship with sail unfurled
Waiting in seas by scarce a wavelet curled ;
Beheld the slow star-paces of the skies,
And grew from strength to strength through centuries ;
Saw infant trees fill out their giant limbs,
And heard a thousand times the sweet birds' marriage
Things new made, Usurping sense, make old things shrink and fade And seem ashamed to meet the staring day.
The soul without still helps the soul within,
And its deft magic ends what we begin.
Strong passion's daring sees not aught to dare.
And a new spirit from that hour (the hour when
Death first appeared among them) came o’er The race of Cain : soft idlesse was no more, But even the sunshine had a heart of care, Smiling with hidden dread-a mother fair Who folding to her breast a dying child Beams with feigned joy that but makes sadness mild.