Among the Millet and Other Poems eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 92 pages of information about Among the Millet and Other Poems.

Gold is but the juggling rod
Of a false usurping god,
Graven long ago in hell
With a sombre stony spell,
Working in the world forever. 
Hate is not so strong to sever
Beating human heart from heart. 
Soul from soul we shrink and part,
And no longer hail each other
With the ancient name of brother
Give the simple poet gold,
And his song will die of cold. 
He must walk with men that reel
On the rugged path, and feel
Every sacred soul that is
Beating very near to his. 
Simple, human, careless, free,
As God made him, he must be: 
For the sweetest song of bird
Is the hidden tenor heard
In the dusk, an even-flush,
From the forest’s inner hush,
Of the simple hermit thrush.

What do poets want with love? 
  Flowers that shiver out of hand,
And the fervid fruits that prove
  Only bitter broken sand?

Poets speak of passion best,
When their dreams are undistressed,
And the sweetest songs are sung,
E’er the inner heart is stung. 
Let them dream; ’tis better so;
Ever dream, but never know. 
If the their spirits once have drained
All that goblet crimson-stained,
Finding what they dreamed divine,
Only earthly sluggish wine,
Sooner will the warm lips pale,
And the flawless voices fail,
Sooner come the drooping wing,
And the afterdays that bring,
No such songs as did the spring.


Once idly in his hall king Olave sat
  Pondering, and with his dagger whittled chips;
  And one draw near to him with austere lips,
Saying “To-morrow is Monday,” and at that
The king said nothing, but held forth his flat
  Broad palm, and bending on his mighty hips,
  Took up and mutely laid thereon the slips
Of scattered wood, as on a hearth, and gat
From off the embers near, a burning brand. 
  Kindling the pile with this, the dreaming Dane
Sat silent with his eyes set and his bland
  Proud mouth, tight-woven, smiling drawn with pain,
  Watching the fierce fire flare, and wax, and wane,
Hiss and burn down upon his shrivelled hand.


The King’s son walks in the garden fair—­
  Oh, the maiden’s heart is merry! 
He little knows for his toil and care,
That the bride is gone and the bower is bare. 
  Put on garments of white, my maidens!

The sun shines bright through the casement high—­
  Oh, the maiden’s heart is merry! 
The little handmaid, with a laughing eye,
Looks down on the king’s son, strolling by. 
  Put on garments of white, my maidens!

“He little knows that the bride is gone,
  And the Earl knows little as he;
She is fled with her lover afar last night
  And the King’s son is left to me.”

And back to her chamber with velvety step
  The little handmaid did glide,
And a gold key took from her bosom sweet,
  And opened the great chests wide.

Project Gutenberg
Among the Millet and Other Poems from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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