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Only this have I done through the centuries past, Only this can I do through the years."

"O wave, keep your tenderness all for the sea;
I have work which you know not to do;
You cannot mount up to the stars with me,
And I may not come down to you."

But love has no choice; and the constant wave,
A worshiper early and late,

Still kisses the hem of his ever-green robe,
And whispers in patience, "I wait."


He kissed me-and I know 'twas wrong,
For he was neither kith nor kin.

Need one do penance very long
For such a tiny little sin?

He pressed my hand-that wasn't right!
Why will men have such wicked ways?
It wasn't for a minute, quite,

But in it there were days and days!

There's mischief in the moon, I know;
I'm positive I saw her wink
When I requested him to go;

I meant it, too, I almost think.


But, after all, I'm not to blame,

He took the kiss! I do think men Are quite without the sense of shame! I wonder when he'll come again?


By studying my lady's eyes

I've grown so learned day by day, So Machiavelian in this wise,

That when I send her flowers, I say

To each small flower (no matter what-
Geranium, pink, or tuberose,

Syringa, or forget-me-not,

Or voilet) before it goes:

"Be not triumphant, little flower,
When on her haughty heart you lie,
But modestly enjoy your hour;
She'll weary of you by and by."


I have seen her, with her golden hair,
And her exquisite primrose face,
And the violet in her eyes;

And my heart received its own despair-
The thrall of a hopeless grace,

And the knowledge of how youth dies.


Live hair afloat with snakes of gold,
And a throat as white as snow,

And a stately figure and foot,

And that faint, pink smile, so sweet and cold, Like a wood-anemone cloud below

The shade of an ilex root.

And her delicate, milk-white hand in mine, And her pensive voice in my ear,

And her eyes downcast as we speak.

I am filled with a rapture vague and fine,
For there has fallen a sparkling tear
Over her soft pale cheek.

And I know that all is hopeless now,
And that which might have been,
Had she only waited a year or two,
Is turned to a wild regret, I know,

Which will haunt us both, whatever the scene,
And whatever the path we go.

Meanwhile, for one moment, hand in hand,
We gaze on each other's eyes,

And the red moon rises above us.

We linger in love with the lovely land-
Italy, with its yearning skies,

And its wild, white stars above us.




By the merest chance, in the twilight gloom
In the orchard path he met me-

In the tall, wet grass, with its faint perfume-
And I tried to pass, but he made no room.
Oh, I tried, but he would not let me.
So I stood and blushed till the grass grew red,
With my face bent down above it;

While he took my hand, as he whisp'ring said—
(How the clover lifted each pink, sweet head,
To listen to all that my lover said!

Oh, the clover in bloom-I love it!)

In the high wet grass went the path to hide,
And the low wet leaves hung over;


But I could not pass upon either side,

For I found myself, when I vainly tried,

In the arms of my steadfast lover;

And he held me there, and he raised my head, While he closed the path before me;

And he looked down into my eyes and said—

(How the leaves bent down from the boughs


To listen to all that my lover said!

Oh, the leaves hanging lowly o'er me!)

Had he moved aside but a little way,
I could surely then have passed him;

And he knew I never could wish to stay,
And would not have heard what he had to say,
Could I only aside have cast him.

It was almost dark, and the moments sped,
And the searching night wind found us;
But he drew me nearer, and softly said-
(How the pure, sweet wind grew still instead,
To listen to all that my lover said!

Oh, the whispering wind around us!)

I am sure he knew, when he held me fast,
That I must be all unwilling,

For I tried to go, and I would have passed,
As the night was come with its dew at last,
And the sky with its stars was filling;

But he clasped me close when I would have fled,
And he made me hear his story;

And his soul came out from his lips and said— (How the stars crept out, where the white moon led,

To listen to all that my lover said!

Oh, the moon and the stars in glory!)

I know that the grass and the leaves will not tell, And I'm sure that the wind—precious rover— Will carry his secret so safely and well

That no being shall ever discover

One word of the many that rapidly fell
From the eager lips of my lover.

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