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Sorrows mingled with contents, prepare
Rest for care;
Love only reigns in death; though art
Can find no comfort for A BROKEN HEART.
JOHN FORD.-[From "The Broken Heart."]
THIS Common field, this little brook,
What is there hidden in these two,
That I so often on them look-
Oftener than on the heavens blue?
No beauty lies upon the field;
Small music doth the river yield;
And yet I look, and look again,
With something of a pleasant pain.
'T is thirty—can it be thirty years
Since last I stood upon this plank,
Which o'er the brook its figure rears,
And watched the pebbles as they sank?
How white the stream! I still remember
Its margin glassed by hoar December,
And how the sun fell on the snow:
Ah! can it be so long ago?
It cometh back;-So blithe, so bright,
It hurries to my eager ken,
As though but one short winter's night
Had darkened o'er the world since then;
It is the same clear dazzling scene:-
Perhaps the grass is scarce as green;
Perhaps the river's troubled voice
Doth not so plainly say—" Rejoice."
Yet Nature surely never ranges,
Ne'er quits her gay and flowery crown;
But, ever joyful, merely changes
The primrose for the thistle-down.
"T is we alone who, waxing old,
Look on her with an aspect cold,
Dissolve her in our burning tears,
Or clothe her with the mists of years!
Then, why should not the grass be green?
And why should not the river's song
-as they both have been
When I was here an urchin strong?
Ah, true-too true! I see the sun
Through thirty wintry years hath run,
For grave eyes, mirrored in the brook,
Usurp the urchin's laughing look!
So be it! I have lost,- and won!
For, once, the past was poor to me; The future dim; and though the sun
Shed life and strength, and I was free, I felt not-knew no grateful pleasure: All seemed but as the common measure: But Now-the experienced Spirit old Turns all the leaden past to gold!
Home-thoughts, from Abroad.
OH! to be in England
Now that April's there,
And whoever wakes in England
Sees, some morning, unaware,
That the lowest boughs and the brush-wood sheaf
Round the elm-tree bole are in tiny leaf,
While the chaffinch sings on the orchard bough
And after April, when May follows,
And the whitethroat builds, and all the swallows-
Hark! where my blossomed pear-tree in the hedge
Leans to the field and scatters on the clover
Blossoms and dewdrops-at the bent spray's edge-
That's the wise thrush; he sings each song twice over,
Lest you should think he never could recapture
The first fine careless rapture!
And though the fields look rough with hoary dew,
All will be gay when noontide wakes anew
The buttercups, the little children's dower,
-Far brighter than this gaudy melon-flower!
My heart aches, and a drowsy numbness pains
My sense, as though of hemlock I had drunk,
Or emptied some dull opiate to the drains
One minute past, and Lethe-wards had sunk ;
"T is not through envy of thy happy lot,
But being too happy in thy happiness-
That thou, light-winged Dryad of the trees,
In some melodious plot
Of beechen green, and shadows numberless,
Singest of summer in full-throated ease.
O for a draught of vintage, that hath been
Cooled a long age in the deep-delved earth,
Tasting of Flora and the country-green,
Dance, and Provencal song, and sun-burnt mirth !
O for a beaker full of the warm South,
Full of the true, the blushful Hippocrene,
With beaded bubbles winking at the brim,
And purple-stained mouth;
That I might drink, and leave the world unseen,
And with thee fade away into the forest dim :
Fade far away, dissolve, and quite forget
What thou among the leaves hast never known, The weariness, the fever, and the fret
Here, where men sit and hear each other groan;
Where palsy shakes a few, sad, last grey hairs,
Where youth grows pale, and spectre-thin, and dies;
Where but to think is to be full of sorrow
And leaden-eyed despairs;
Where Beauty cannot keep her lustrous eyes,
Or new Love pine at them beyond to-morrow.
Away! away! for I will fly to thee,
Not charioted by Bacchus and his pards, But on the viewless wings of Poesy,
Though the dull brain perplexes and retards: Already with thee! tender is the night,
And haply the Queen-Moon is on her throne,
Clustered around by all her starry Fays;
But here there is no light,
Save what from heaven is with the breezes blown
Through verdurous glooms and winding mossy ways.
I cannot see what flowers are at my feet,
Nor what soft incense hangs upon the boughs,
But, in embalmed darkness, guess each sweet
Wherewith the seasonable month endows