The Feast of the Virgins and Other Poems eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 375 pages of information about The Feast of the Virgins and Other Poems.

“I greet you, noble lords and peers;
I greet you, lovely dames. 
O heaven begemmed with golden spheres! 
Who knows your noble names? 
In hall of splendor so sublime,
Close ye, mine eyes—­’tis not the time
To gaze in idle wonder.”

The gray-haired minstrel closed his eyes;
He struck his wildest air;
Brave faces glowed like sunset skies;
Cast down their eyes the fair. 
The king well pleased with the minstrel’s song,
Sent the little page through the wondering throng
A chain of gold to bear him.

“O give not me the chain of gold;
Award it to thy braves,
Before whose faces fierce and bold
Quail foes when battle raves;
Or give it thy chancellor of state,
And let him wear its golden weight
With his official burdens.

“I sing, I sing as the wild birds sing
That in the forest dwell;
The songs that from my bosom spring
Alone reward me well: 
But may I ask that page of thine
To bring me one good cup of wine
In golden goblet sparkling?”

He took the cup; he drank it all: 
“O soothing nectar thine! 
Thrice bless’d the highly favored hall
Where flows such glorious wine: 
If thou farest well, then think of me,
And thank thy God, as I thank thee
For this inspiring goblet.”


[From the German of Schiller.]

Men talk and dream of better days—­
  Of a golden time to come;
Toward a happy and shining goal
  They run with a ceaseless hum. 
The world grows old and grows young again,
Still hope of the better is bright to men.

Hope leads us in at the gate of life;
  She crowns the boyish head;
Her bright lamp lures the stalwart youth,
  Nor burns out with the gray-haired dead;
For the grave closes over his trouble and care,
But see—­on the grave—­Hope is planted there!

’Tis not an empty and flattering deceit,
  Begot in a foolish brain;
For the heart speaks loud with its ceaseless throbs,
  “We are not born in vain”;
And the words that out of the heart-throbs roll,
They cannot deceive the hoping soul.


Misce stultitiam consiliis brevem.—­Horace.

    Mrs. McNair
    Was tall and fair;
  Mrs. McNair was slim;
She had flashing black eyes and raven hair; But a very remarkably modest air; And her only care was for Mr. McNair;
  She was exceedingly fond of him.

    He sold “notions” and lace
    With wonderful grace,
And kept everything neatly displayed in its place: 
The red, curly hair on his head and his face
    He always persisted
    Should be oiled and twisted;
He was the sleekest young husband that ever existed.

    Precisely at four
    He would leave his store;
And Mr. McNair with his modest bride
Seated snugly and lovingly by his side,
    On the rural Broadway,
    Every pleasant day,
In his spick-span carriage would rattle away.

Project Gutenberg
The Feast of the Virgins and Other Poems from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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