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WILLIAM CULLEN BRYANT.
I wander in a city, tranquil, fair,
I can but think, of all earth's joy 'twere best To sleep amid so much of beauty there,
Resigning all on Nature's tender breast, Far from the strife of worlds that do and dare!
O blest foreshadow of most perfect rest! O heights of God—the soul's eternal share!
O POET, crowned with song's supremest powers,
Who, in that realm from sin and death apart,
Dost link responsive to our yearning heart The Infinite with some stray chord of ours! As longing Nature greets the sky-born showers,
Bidding a barren earth in verdure start,
Oh, would that we by thine inspiring art Might weave thee garlands eloquent in flowers!
And June is here, - Interpeter, who fled,
Her halo still upon thy laureled head, Divinely bright while countless ages roll,
Thy pure eyes glow a June-day's ardent fire;
June symphonies awake within the lyre A June of transport to enthrall our soul!
HEART OF THE ROSE.
Who knows the inmost heart of the rose,
Treasure hidden of sun and dew? Knows ere the wizard Junes unclose
Its magical meaning, who? Ere the eager, lightsome wind doth woo, And waft its fragrance, -heart of the rose,
Art thou a dream? When fled to thine
Altho' in my heart thy beauty grows,
Purely my Love, and still more true, Not yet of thy deepest heart disclose,
Till I, of the longing view, May wear thee worthily, without rue; My June, -the fairest that Nature knows,
Thy presence holdeth love's rich wine, Around thyself my thoughts entwineSo sure to sweet support is grown,
Art thou a dream.
(Pressed in a favorite volume of the In Memoriam of
Thine absence ne'er to me is known,
Art thou a dream!
Is aught so sweet as is this faded rose ?
But for its fragrance I had passed it by.
Shrouded in damask, lost and left to die,
Her sorrow to a tender-hearted breeze. And in that self-same corner there mused I
All in a waste of thoughts like unto these: All glory in oblivion must lie,
All beauty know consuming earth and cease.
IN THE CEMETERY AT FRANKFORT.
I WANDER in a city, tranquil, fair,
Upon whose towers the sun's departing beam Bespeaks the sweet surcease of human care;
Below, the music of a winding stream; Above, bird songs in the rich, dreamy air,
And still above, blue heavens of which we dream, And souls of them who sleep the glory wear.
They sleep, to wake unfettered of the clay
Dear forms who bore unknown, life's better part And softly stole upon the heavenly way;
The brave, enshrined within a nation's heartAre they unmindful of our love to-day?
Each soul, well-rounded howso'er thou art, Eternity be good to thee, we pray!
And then that breeze love-blown sighed softly
near, Inside my window, tenderest breath that blows Rose of the ruin and the dust of here,
And minded me of that neglected rose; I found, I clasped it with a hungry cheer,
I buried it, a death that was a life, Atween the lines of this immortal song,
And be, to whomso reads, this meaning rise, This added grace, if aught so sweet belong
To earth or heav'n as is a faded life!
LUCIE C. HAGER.
The loving thoughts we shelter in the heart,
Upspringing there, the blades of good shall grow, Which kept by watchful care from weeds apart,
The evil thoughts which we too often sow,
Shall flourish, grow in strength, and soon increase,
And we in Life's last days the fruit shall see, Reward of life well spent, -eternal peace,
For “as our sowing, shall our reaping be.”
CHERISH THE FLOWERS.
The Frost-King lays his icy hand
Crushed by his grasp the flowers fade,
The leaflets wither in the glade, And over all the barren land
He holds supremacy.
UCIE CAROLINE HAGER was born in
Littleton, Mass., December 29th, 1853. Her parents were Robert Dunn Gilson and Lydia Gilson. There were nine children in the family, of whom Mrs. Hager was the youngest. Heavy and peculiar trials attended her childhood, which were calculated to expel poetic aspirations from a mind less delicately and sensitively organized, supplanting them by practical thoughts and tendencies, yet these circumstances deepened and intensified her poetical nature, while the mor practical side of her character was strongly developed. She had a thirst for knowledge and used all available means to satisfy it. Having entered the Normal School in Framingham, Mass., in 1875, she was recalled to her home during the first weeks of the school year, and her studies were exchanged for days of patient watching with the sick, or such employment as she could obtain near her home.
Her first poems appeared at that time. With such private instruction as her country home afforded, she again took up her studies, becoming in time a successful teacher of country schools and later a book-keeper. In October, 1882, her marriage to Mr. Simon B. Hager occurred. She has one child, a boy. Most of her poems have appeared over the name “Lucie C. Gilson."
She has also written a number of short prose stories. Her estimate of her own work is modest in the extreme and she has done little to bring herself before the public. Mrs. Hager has recently written and published a very interesting history of the town in which she resides, Roxborough, a New England Town and its People.”
J. M. R.
But in my sunny windows bloom
While heliotrope, whose fragrance sweet
My every entrance seems to greet, In spite of all the outer gloom
In modest beauty grows.
So, if we cherish in the heart
The world's dread frown can never blight,
Or cast a shadow o'er the light That bids the wintry gloom depart,
The light from heaven above.
YONDER from a vine-clad dwelling,
Strains of music softly come, Like to angel voices, swelling
On the night air; “Almost Home.”
SOWING AND REAPING.
In spring we plough the field and till the soil,
And sow the tiny seeds on either hand, And soon, repaying, as it were, our toil,
The blades of green begin to clothe the land.
“Almost Home!” The brooklet fleetly,
Glideth o'er its bed of stone; And it seems to murmur sweetly
To my sad heart, “Almost home.”
Then carefully we work, we watch, we wait,
While nourished by the summer sun and rain, Till ’neath the autumn skies with hearts elate,
We gather in at last the ripened grain.
Dark the valley lies before me,
“Can I enter it?" I moan; “Hush!" the night winds whisper o'er me,
“Courage take, thou'rt Almost Home."
And so, if we, in Life's fair autumn days,
Would garner in the fruit of loving deeds, Of Christian word and work, in all our ways,
We must in early springtime sow the seeds.
“Though no earthly ray may brighten
The dark vale thou tread'st alone, Yet His love the gloom shall lighten
Till is gained thy Heavenly Home."
Sometimes in the earth-strife, weary,
Cheered not by kind look or tone, We forget Life's journey, dreary,
Leadeth daily nearer Home.
We forget no crown is given
Him who doth the cross disown; Brighter, that for which we've striven,
When at last we're gathered Home.
Sweet the rest enjoyed at even,
When the laborer's toil is done, Sweeter far the rest of Heaven,
When the Father calls, “Come Home."
One short year ago and round me
Friendship bound her silken thread; O'er my shadowy way her radiance
Like a living glory spread. And the rocky path and thorny
Smoother grew beneath my feet, And beside it, just beyond me,
Bloomed hope's flowerets, fair and sweet. But the springtime merged in summer,
And the autumn days drew near; And the heavens grew dark and threatening,
And the leaves fell brown and sere. Winter came, and o'er life's landscape
Fell a mantle cold and white,
Shut forever from my sight.
That the winter stole away,
Changeless come to cheer each day.
“Almost Home!” O, Father guide me
Upward till I reach Thy throne; From earth's bitter tempests hide me,
Take my hand and lead me home.
HERE AND THERE.
A LITTLE weeping over glad hopes perished,
A little laying down of work begun, A little giving up of treasure cherished,
A little mourning o'er the task undone.
In Him who ever doeth what is best,
Which else would bear us farther from our rest.
Glad sunshine clothes the world to-day,
The sunny heavens so high,
That floods the cloudless sky.
And there beside the quiet crystal river,
'Mid pastures green and fair shall we repose; No tears shall dim the eyes nor sorrow ever
Shall enter there nor aught of human woes; The Savior's presence makes the whole land
glorious, And there at last, we'll see Him face to face, When over all these earthly things victorious
We enter into Heaven, our dwelling place.
So earthly friends are near to-day,
If friends ne'er passed us by,
That rists the clouded sky.
On a brown and sheltered hillside,
'Neath the trees with leaflets sere, 'Mid the mosses and the litchens,
In the morning of the year, While the wind of early springtime
Through the pine grove sobs and grieves, Gathered we the pale sweet flowers
From their nest beneath the leaves.
Waxen, spotless as the snow;
As they were a year ago.
The grey old hills,
The rocks and rills,
- Work for God.