I rose at night, and visited
The Cave of the Unborn:
And crowding shapes surrounded me
For tidings of the life to be,
Who long had prayed the silent Head
To haste its advent morn.
Their eyes were lit with artless trust,
Hope thrilled their every tone;
"A scene the loveliest, is it not?
A pure delight, a beauty-spot
Where all is gentle, true and just,
And darkness is unknown?"
My heart was anguished for their sake,
I could not frame a word;
And they descried my sunken face,
And seemed to read therein, and trace
The news that pity would not break,
Nor truth leave unaverred.
And as I silently retired
I turned and watched them still,
And they came helter-skelter out,
Driven forward like a rabble rout
Into the world they had so desired
By the all-immanent Will.
Posted by Arborfield at 7:56 am
I was the midmost of my world
When first I frisked me free,
For though within its circuit gleamed
But a small company,
And I was immature, they seemed
To bend their looks on me.
She was the midmost of my world
When I went further forth,
And hence it was that, whether I turned
To south, east, west, or north,
Beams of an all-day Polestar burned
From that new axe of earth.
Where now is midmost in my world?
I trace it not at all:
No midmost shows it here, or there,
When wistful voices call
"We are fain! We are fain!" from everywhere
On Earth's bewildering ball!
Posted by Arborfield at 6:18 am
Tabitha dressed for her wedding:-
"Tabby, why look so sad?"
"--O I feel a great gloominess spreading, spreading,
Instead of supremely glad! . . .
"I called on Carry last night,
And he came whilst I was there,
Not knowing I'd called. So I kept out of sight,
And I heard what he said to her:
"'--Ah, I'd far liefer marry
YOU, Dear, to-morrow!' he said,
'But that cannot be.'--O I'd give him to Carry,
And willingly see them wed,
"But how can I do it when
His baby will soon be born?
After that I hope I may die. And then
She can have him. I shall not mourn!'
Posted by Arborfield at 7:20 am
I thought you a fire
On Heron-Plantation Hill,
Dealing out mischief the most dire
To the chattels of men of hire
There in their vill.
But by and by
You turned a yellow-green,
Like a large glow-worm in the sky;
And then I could descry
Your mood and mien.
How well I know
Your furtive feminine shape!
As if reluctantly you show
You nude of cloud, and but by favour throw
Aside its drape . . .
-- How many a year
Have you kept pace with me,
Wan Woman of the waste up there,
Behind a hedge, or the bare
Bough of a tree!
No novelty are you,
O Lady of all my time,
Veering unbid into my view
Whether I near Death's mew,
Or Life's top cyme!
Posted by Arborfield at 4:56 am