Hear but not heed, though wild and shrill,
The cries of faction transitory;
Cleave to your good, eschew your ill,
A Hundred Years and all is still—
When Old Age comes with muffled drums,
That beat to sleep our tired life’s story,
On thoughts of dying, (Rest is good!)
Like old snakes coiled i’ the sun, we brood—
I wandered through a careless world
Deceived when not deceiving,
And never gave an idle heart
The rapture of believing.
The smiles, the sighs, the glancing eyes,
Of many hundred comers
Swept by me, light as rose-leaves blown
From long-forgotten summers.
But never eyes so deep and bright
And loyal in their seeming,
And never smiles so full of light
Have shone upon my dreaming.
The looks and lips so gay and wise,
The thousand charms that wreathe them,
—Almost I dare believe that truth
Is safely shrined beneath them.
Ah! do they shine, those eyes of thine,
But for our own misleading?
The fresh young smile, so pure and fine,
Does it but mock our reading?
Then faith is fled, and trust is dead,
And unbelief grows duty,
If fraud can wield the triple arm
Of youth and wit and beauty.
Wisely a woman prefers to a lover a man who neglects
This one may love her some day, some day the lover will not.
There are three species of creatures who when they
seem coming are going,
When they seem going they come: Diplomates, women, and crabs.
Pleasures too hastily tasted grow sweeter in fond
As the pomegranate plucked green ripens far over the sea.
As the meek beasts in the Garden came flocking for
Adam to name them,
Men for a title to-day crawl to the feet of a king.
What is a first love worth, except to prepare for
What does the second love bring? Only regret for the first.
Health was wooed by the Romans in groves of the laurel
Happy and long are the lives brightened by glory and love.
Wine is like rain: when it falls on the mire
it but makes it the fouler,
But when it strikes the good soil wakes it to beauty and bloom.