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To feel as I used to feel, Before I knew the woes of want

And the walk that costs a meal !

“Oh! but for one short hour!

A respite however brief !
No blessed leisure for Love or Hope,

But only time for Grief !
A little weeping would ease my heart,

But in their briny bed
My tears must stop, for every drop

Hinders needle and thread!”
With fingers weary and worn,

With eyelids heavy and red,
A woman sat in unwomanly rags,
Plying her needle and thread

Stitch! stitch! stitch!
In poverty, hunger, and dirt,
And still with a voice of dolorous pitch,
Would that its tone could reach the Rich !

She sang this “Song of the Shirt !”


Vital spark of heavenly flame,
Quit, oh quit this mortal frame;
Trembling, hoping, lingering, flying –
Oh, the pain, the bliss of dying !
Cease, fond Nature, cease thy strife,
And let me languish into life.
Hark! they whisper; angels say,
Sister spirit, come away!
What is this absorbs me quite ?
Steals my senses, shuts my sight,
Drowns my spirit, draws my breath ?
Tell me, my soul, can this be death?
The world recedes ; it disappears !
Heaven opens on my eyes ! my ears

With sounds seraphic ring :
Lend, lend your wings ! I mount ! I ly!
O grave ! where is thy victory?

O death ! where is thy sting?


Mrs. Browning.
Help me, God — help me, man! I am low, I am weak -
Death loosens my sinews and creeps in my veins;
My body is cleft by these wedges of pains,

From my spirit's serene;
And I feel the externe and insensate creep in

On my organized clay.
I sob not, nor shriek,

Yet I faint fast away!
I am strong in the spirit, — deep-thoughted, clear-eyed, -
I could walk, step for step, with an angel beside,

On the Heaven-heights of Truth! —

Oh! the soul keeps its youth
But the body faints sore, it is tired in the race,
It sinks from the chariot ere reaching the goal;

It is weak, it is cold,

The rein drops from its hold –
It sinks back with the death in its face!

On, chariot, -on, soul, -
Ye are all the more fleet -
Be alone at the goal

Of the strange and the sweet !
Love us, God! - love us, man! We believe, we achievo

Let us love, let us live,
For the acts correspond –

We are glorious — and DIE !
And again on the knee of a mild Mystery

That smiles with a change,

Here we lie!

Thou art sweet, thou art strange!


“I will invite thee, from thy envious herse
To rise, and 'bout the world thy beams to spread,
That we may see there's brightness in the dead.”Hab ngton.
It is a place where poets crowned

May feel the heart's decaying —
It is a place where happy saints
May weep amid their praying –

Yet let the grief and humbleness,

As low as silence, languish; . Earth surely now may give her calm

To whom she gave her anguish.

O poets! from a maniac's tongue

Was poured the deathless singing !
O Christians! at your cross of hope

A hopeless hand was clinging!
O men! this man, in brotherhood,

Your weary paths beguiling,
Groaned inly while he taught you peace,

And died while ye were smiling!

And now, what time


read Through dimming tears his story – How discord on the music fell,

And darkness on the glory And how, when one by one, sweet sounds

And wandering lights departed, He wore no less a loving face,

Because so broken-hearted

He shall be strong to sanctify

The poet's high vocation,
And bow the meekest Christian down

In meeker adoration :
Nor ever shall he be in praise,

By wise or good forsaken;
Named softly, as the household name

Of one whom God hath taken!

With sadness that is calm, not gloom,

I learn to think upon him ;
With meekness that is gratefulness,

On God whose Heaven hath won him – Who suffered once the madness-cloud,

Toward His love to blind him; But gently led the blind along

Where breath and bird could find him;

And wrought within his shattered brain,

Such quick poetic senses,
As hills have language for, and stars,

Harmonious influences !

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Deserted! who hath dreamt that when

The cross in darkness rested,
Upon the victim's hidden face

No love was manifested ?
What frantic hands outstretched have e'er

Th’atoning drops averted —
What tears have washed them from the soul

That one should be deserted ?

Deserted! God could separate

From His own essence rather:
And Adam's sins have swept between

The righteous Son and Father
Yea! once, Immanuel's orphaned cry

His universe hath shaken
It went up single, echoless,

“My God, I am forsaken!”

It went up from the Holy's lips

Amid his lost creation,
That of the lost, no son should use

Those words of desolation;
That, earth's worst phrenzies, marring hope,

Should mar not hope's fruition;
And I, on Cowper's grave, should see

His rapture, in a vision !

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I wait and watch: before my eyes

Methinks the night grows thin and gray;
I wait and watch the eastern skies
To see the golden spears uprise

Beneath the oriflamme of day!

Like one wnose limbs are bound in trance

I hear the day sounds swell and grow,
And see across the twilight glance,
Troop after troop, in swift advance,

The shining ones with plumes of snow!

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