Page images


the yew.


She whom I love is hard to catch and conquer, Boldly she sings, to the merry tune she Hard, but oh the glory of the winning were marches, she won!

16 Brave is her shape, and sweeter unpossess'd.

Sweeter, for she is what my heart first awaking When her mother tends her before the laugh- Whisper'd the world was; morning light is ing mirror,

she. Tying up her laces, looping up her hair, Love that so desires would fain keep her Often she thinks, were this wild thing wedded,

changeless; More love should I have, and much less care. Fain would fling the net, and fain have her When her mother tends her before the lighted

free. mirror, Loosening her laces, combing down her Happy happy time, when the white star hovers curls,

Low over dim fields fresh with bloomy dew, Often she thinks, were this wild thing wedded,

Near the face of dawn, that draws athwart the I should miss but one for many boys and

darkness, girls.

Threading it with colour, like yewberries 24

Thicker crowd the shades as the grave East Heartless she is as the shadow in the meadows

deepens Flying to the hills on a blue and breezy noon.

Glowing, and with crimson a long cloud

swells. No, she is athirst and drinking up her wonder: Earth to her is young as the slip of the new

Maiden still the morn is; and strange she is,

and secret ; moon. Deals she an unkindness, 'tis but her rapid

Strange her eyes; her cheeks are cold as cold sea-shells.

56 measure, Even as in a dance; and her smile can.heal no less :

, Like the swinging May-cloud that pelts the Sunrays, leaning on our southern hills and

lighting flowers with hailstones

Wild cloud-mountains that drag the hills Off a sunny border, she was made to bruise

along, and bless.

Oft ends the day of your shifting brilliant

laughter Lovely are the curves of the white owl sweep- Chill as a dull face frowning on a song. ing

Ay, but shows the South-West a rippleWavy in the dusk lit by one large star.

feather'd bosom Lone on the fir-branch, his rattle-note un- Blown to silver while the clouds are shaken varied,

and ascend Brooding o'er the gloom, spins the brown

Scaling the mid-heavens as they stream, there evejar.

comes a sunset

63 Darker grows the valley, more and more for

Rich, deep like love in beauty without end. getting : So were it with me if forgetting could be When at dawn she sighs, and like an infant will’d.

to the window Tell the grassy hollow that holds the bubbling Turns grave eyes craving light, released well-spring,

from dreams, Tell it to forget the source that keeps it Beautiful she looks, like a white water-lily fill'd.

40 Bursting out of bud in havens of the streams. When from bed she rises clothed from neck to

ankle Stepping down the hill with her fair com- In her long nightgown sweet as boughs of panions,

May, Arm in arm, all against the raying West, Beautiful she looks, like a tall garden-lily 71

Pure from the night, and splendid for the day. a bird similar to the whippoorwill




red rose,




Mother of the dews, dark eye-lash'd twilight, You, my wild one, you tell of honied field-rose,

Low-lidded twilight, o'er the valley's brim, Violet, blushing eglantine in life, and even Rounding on thy breast sings the dew- as they, delighted skylark,

They by the wayside are earnest of your goodClear as though the dew-drops had their ness, voice in him,

You are of life's, on the banks that line the Hidden where the rose-flush drinks the rayless way.

104 planet, Fountain-full he pours the spraying fountain-showers.

Peering at her chamber the white crowns the Let me hear her laughter, I would have her

Jasmine winds the porch with stars two-and Cool as dew in twilight, the lark above the three. flowers.

80 Parted is the window; she sleeps; the starry

jasmine All the girls are out with their baskets for the Breathes a falling breath that carries primrose;

thoughts of me. Up lanes, woods through, they troop in Sweeter unpossess’d, have I said of her my joyful bands.

sweetest? My sweet leads: she knows not why, but now Not while she sleeps: while she sleeps the she loiters,

jasmine breathes, Eyes the bent anemones, and hangs her Luring her to love; she sleeps; the starry hands.

jasmine Such a look will tell that the violets are peep- Bears me to her pillow under white rose

wreaths. Coming the rose: and unaware a cry Springs in her bosom for odours and for colour, Yellow with birdfoot-trefoil are the grassCovert and the nightingale; she knows not glades; why.

88 Yellow with cinquefoil of the dew-grey leaf;

Yellow with stonecrop; the moss-mounds are

yellow; Kerchief'd head and chin she darts between Blue-neck'd the wheat sways, yellowing to her tulips,

the sheaf. Streaming like a willow grey in arrowy Green-yellow, bursts from the copse the laughrain :

ing yaffle ; 1 Some bend beaten cheek to gravel, and their Sharp as a sickle is the edge of shade and angel

shine : She will be; she lifts them, and on she Earth in her heart laughs looking at the speeds again.

heavens, Black the driving raincloud breasts the iron Thinking of the harvest: I look and think gateway:

of mine. She is forth to cheer a neighbour lacking

mirth. So when sky and grass met rolling dumb for This I may know: her dressing and unthunder

dressing Saw I once a white dove, sole light of earth. Such a change of light shows as when the

skies in sport Prim little scholars are the flowers of her Shift from cloud to moonlight; or edging over garden,

thunder Train'd to stand in rows, and asking if they Slips a ray of sun; or sweeping into port please.

White sails furl; or on the ocean borders I might love them well but for loving more the White sails lean along the waves leaping wild ones:

green. O my wild ones! they tell me more than these.

the green woodpecker

I 20



I 28

Visions of her shower before me, but from Nodding! O the girdle slack about the eyesight

waist ! Guarded she would be like the sun were she Slain are the poppies that shot their random


Quick amid the wheat-ears: wound about Front door and back of the moss'd old farm

the waist, house

Gather'd, see these brides of Earth one blush Open with the morn, and in a breezy link of ripeness !

159 Freshly sparkles garden to stripe-shadow'd O the nutbrown tresses nodding interlaced !

orchard, Green across a rill where on sand the min

Large and smoky red the sun's cold disk drops, nows wink.

Clipp'd by naked hills, on violet shaded Busy in the grass the early sun of summer

snow: Swarms, and the blackbird's mellow fluting Eastward large and still lights up a bower of notes

moonrise, Call my darling up with round and roguish Whence at her leisure steps the moon aglow. challenge:

Nightlong on black print-branches our beechQuaintest, richest carol of all the singing tree throats !

136 Gazes in this whiteness : nightlong could I.

Here may life on death or death on life be

painted. Cool was the woodside; cool as her white

Let me clasp her soul to know she cannot dairy

die !

168 Keeping sweet the cream-pan; and there

the boys from school, Cricketing below, rush'd brown and red with

Gossips count her faults; they scour a narrow sunshine;

chamber O the dark translucence of the deep-eyed

Where there is no window, read not heaven cool !

or her. Spying from the farm, herself she fetch'd a

“When she was a tiny,” one agèd woman pitcher

quavers, Full of milk, and tilted for each in turn the

Plucks at my heart and leads me by the ear. beak.

Faults she had once as she learn'd to run and Then a little fellow, mouth up and on tiptoe,

tumbled : Said, “I will kiss you”: she laugh'd and

Faults of feature some see, beauty not lean'd her cheek.



Yet, good gossips, beauty that makes holy Doves of the fir-wood walling high our red roof

Earth and air, may have faults from head Through the long noon coo, crooning

to feet.

176 through the coo. Loose droop the leaves, and down the sleepy roadway

Hither she comes; she comes to me;

she Sometimes pipes a chaffinch; loose droops

lingers, the blue.

Deepens her brown eyebrows, while in new Cows flap a slow tail knee-deep in the river,

surprise Breathless, given up to sun and gnat and fly. High rise the lashes in wonder of a stranger; Nowhere is she seen; and if I see her nowhere,

Yet am I the light and living of her eyes. Lightning may come, straight rains and Something friends have told her fills her heart tiger sky.

to brimming, 152

Nets her in her blushes, and wounds her,

and tames. O the golden sheaf, the rustling treasure

Sure of her haven, O like a dove alighting, armful !

Arms up, she dropp'd: our souls were in our O the nutbrown tresses nodding interlaced !

[ocr errors]

184 O the treasure-tresses one another over



[ocr errors]

Soon will she lie like a white frost sunrise. We've travelled times to this old common: Yellow oats and brown wheat, barley pale Often we've hung our pots in the gorse. as rye,

We've had a stirring life, old woman! Long since your sheaves have yielded to the You, and I, and the old


horse. thresher,

Races, and fairs, and royal occasions, Felt the girdle loosen'd, seen the tresses fly. Found us coming to their call : Soon will she lie like a blood-red sunset.

Now they'll miss us at our stations: Swift with the to-morrow, green-wing'd There's a Juggler outjuggles all ! 16

Spring! Sing from the South-west, bring her back the Up goes the lark, as if all were jolly! truants,

Over the duck-pond the willow shakes. Nightingale and swallow, song and dipping Easy to think that grieving's folly, wing.


When the band's firm as driven stakes!

Ay, when we're strong, and braced, and Soft new beech-leaves, up to beamy April

manful, Spreading bough on bough a primrose Life's a sweet fiddle: but we're a batch mountain, you

Born to become the Great Juggler's han 'sul: Lucid in the moon, raise lilies to the skyfields, Balls he shies up, and is safe to catch. 24 Youngest green transfused in silver shining through:

Here's where the lads of the village cricket: Fairer than the lily, than the wild white I was a lad not wide from here: cherry:

Couldn't I whip off the balet from the Fair as in image my seraph love appears

wicket? Borne to me by dreams when dawn is at my Like an old world those days appear! eye-lids:

199 Donkey, sheep, geese and thatched ale-house Fair as in the flesh she swims to me on tears.

I know them!
They are old friends of my halts, and seem,

Somehow, as if kind thanks I owe them: 31
Could I find a place to be alone with heaven, Juggling don't hinder the heart's esteem.
I would speak my heart out: he

Juggling's no sin, for we must have victual: Every woodland tree is flushing like the dog- Nature allows us to bait for the fool. wood,

Holding one's own makes us juggle no little; Flashing like the whitebeam,' swaying like But, to increase it, hard juggling's the rule. the reed.

You that are sneering at my profession, Flushing like the dogwood crimson in October;

Haven't you juggled a vast amount? Streaming like the flag-reed South-west There's the Prime Minister, in one Session, blown;

Juggles more games than my sins'll count. Flashing as in gusts the sudden-lighted whitebeam:

207 I've murdered insects with mock thunder: All seem to know what is for heaven alone.

Conscience, for thai, in men don't quail.

I've made bread from the bump of wonder: JUGGLING JERRY

That's my business, and there's my tale.

Fashion and rank all praised the professor: Pitch here the tent, while the old horse grazes :

Ay! and I've had my smile from the Queen: By the old hedge-side we'll halt a stage.

Bravo, Jerry! she meant: God bless her! It's nigh my last above the daisies :

Ain't this a sermon on that scene?
My next leaf'll be man's blank page.
Yes, my old girl! and it's no use crying:

I've studied men from my topsy-turvy
Juggler, constable, king, must bow.

Close, and, I reckon, rather true. One that outjuggles all's been spying

Some are fine fellows: some, right scurvy: Long to have me, and he has me now.

Most, a dash between the two.

8 1 a European tree with white flowers and orange- 1 the cross-piece on cricket wicket; Jerry red fruits

means he was a good bowler

is my




[blocks in formation]

Maimed, beggared, grey; seeking an alms;

with nod Of palsy doing task of thanks for bread;

Upon the stature of a god, He whom the Gods have struck bends low his


It's past parsons to console us:

No, nor no doctor fetch for me: I can die without my bolus;

Two of a trade, lass, never agree! Parson and Doctor ! - don't they love rarely,

Fighting the devil in other men's fields ! Stand up yourself and match him fairly: Then see how the rascal yields !

72 I, lass, have lived no gipsy, flaunting

Finery while his poor helpmate grubs : Coin I've stored, and you won't be wanting:

You sha'n't beg from the troughs and tubs. Nobly you've stuck to me, though in his

kitchen Many a Marquis would hail you Cook ! Palaces you could have ruled and grown rich

in, But your old Jerry you never forsook. 80

[blocks in formation]

Hand up the chirper!" ripe ale winks in it;

Let's have comfort and be at peace. Once a stout draught made me light as a linnet.

Cheer up! the Lord must have his lease. May be — for none see in that black hollow

It's just a place where we're held in pawn, And, when the Great Juggler makes as

swallow, It's just the sword-trick – I ain't quite gone.


A crazy beggar grateful for a meal
Has ever of himself a world to say.
For them he is an ancient wheel

19 Spinning a knotted thread the livelong day.


He cannot, nor do they, the tale connect;
For never singer in the land has been

Who him for theme did not reject : Spurned of the hoof that sprang the Hippo


Yonder came smells of the gorse, so nutty,

Gold-like and warm : it's the prime of May. Better than mortar, brick, and putty,

Is God's house on a blowing day. Lean me more up the mound; now I feel it :

All the old heath-smells! Ain't it strange? There's the world laughing, as if to conceal it !

But He's by us, juggling the change. 96

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]
« EelmineJätka »