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"Yet stay, fair lady, rest awhile

Beneath this cloister wall;

The cold wind through the hawthorn blows, And drizzly rain doth fall."

"O, stay me not, thou holy friar,
O, stay me not, I pray!

No drizzly rain that falls on me
Can wash my fault away."

"Yet stay, fair lady, turn again,
And dry those pearly tears;
For see, beneath this gown of gray,
Thy own truelove appears!

"Here, forced by grief and hopeless love, These holy weeds I sought,

And here, amid these lonely walls,

To end my days I thought.

"But haply,

for my year of

Is not yet passed away,—

grace

Might I still hope to win thy love,

No longer would I stay."

"Now farewell grief, and welcome joy
Once more unto my heart;

For since I've found thee, lovely youth,
We never more will part.'

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268

TO THE MEMORY OF ISABEL SOUTHEY

SONNET ON HIS BLINDNESS. Milton.

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WHEN I consider how my light is spent
Ere half my days, in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodged with me useless (though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest he returning chide),
"Doth God exact day-labor, light denied?
I fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies, "God doth not need
Either man's work or his own gifts; who best
Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best: his state
Is kingly; thousands at his bidding speed,
And post o'er land and ocean without rest:
They also serve who only stand and wait."

TO THE MEMORY OF ISABEL SOUTHEY. — Mrs. Southey.

'Tis ever thus, - 't is ever thus, when Hope hath built a bower

Like that of Eden, wreathed about with every thornless flower,

To dwell therein securely, the self-deceiver's trust, A whirlwind from the desert comes, and "all is in the dust."

'Tis ever thus,

-'t is ever thus, that, when the poor

heart clings

With all its finest tendrils, with all its flexile rings,

That goodly thing it cleaveth to, so fondly and so fast, Is struck to earth by lightning, or shattered by the blast.

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't is ever thus, with beams of mor

With looks too bright and beautiful for such a worl 1

as this;

One moment round about us their angel lightnings

play,

Then down the veil of darkness drops, and all hath passed away.

'T is ever thus,

-'t is ever thus, with sounds toc

sweet for earth,

Seraphic sounds, that float away (borne heavenward) in their birth;

The golden shell is broken, the silver chord is mute, The sweet bells all are silent, and hushed the lovely

lute.

"T is ever thus, — 't is ever thus, with all that 's best below,

The dearest, noblest, loveliest, are always first to go; The bird that sings the sweetest, the pine that crowns the rock,

The glory of the garden, the flower of the flock.

'T is ever thus,

't is ever thus, with creatures heavenly fair,

Too finely framed to 'bide the brunt more earthly creatures bear;

A little while they dwell with us, blest ministers of

love,

Then spread the wings we had not seen, and seek their home above.

270

EMPLOYMENT

EMPLOYMENT.- George Herbert.

IF, as a flower doth spread and die,
Thou wouldst extend me to some good,
Before I were by frost's extremity
Nipt in the bud,—

The sweetness and the praise were thine; But the extension and the room, Which in thy garland I should fill, were mine At thy great doom.

For as thou dost impart thy grace,
The greater shall our glory be.

The measure of our joys is in this place,
The stuff with thee.

Let me not languish, then, and spend
A life as barren to thy praise
As is the dust, to which that life doth tend,
But with delays.

All things are busy; only I

Neither bring honey with the bees, Nor flowers to make that, nor the husbandry To water these.

I am no link of thy great chain,
But all my company is as a weed.
Lord, place me in thy concert, give one strain
To my poor reed.

THE ISLES OF GREECE. - Byron.

THE isles of Greece! the isles of Greece !
Where burning Sappho loved and sung,·
Where grew the arts of war and peace,
Where Delos rose and Phoebus sprung!
Eternal summer gilds them yet,
But all, except their sun, is set.

The Scian and the Teian Muse,
The hero's harp, the lover's lute,
Have found the fame your shores refuse;
Their place of birth alone is mute
To sounds which echo farther west
Than
your sires' "Islands of the Blest."

The mountains look on Marathon,
And Marathon looks on the sea;
And musing there an hour alone,

I dreamed that Greece might still be free; For, standing on the Persians' grave, I could not deem myself a slave.

A king sat on the rocky brow

Which looks o'er sea-born Salamis ; And ships, by thousands, lay below, And men in nations;

all were his!

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He counted them at break of day,
And when the sun set, where were they?

And where are they? and where art thou,
My country? On thy voiceless shore
The heroic lay is tuneless now,
The heroic bosom beats no more!

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