You’re a man in each outward sense, I trow,
With the stamp of a god on your peerless brow.
You hold my hand in your thrilling clasp,
And my heart grows weak in your subtle grasp,
Till I blush in the light of your tender eyes,
And dream of a far-of paradise—
Almost forgetting that ever from there
Another was turned in her bleak despair.
But the wrinkles will grow, and the roses go—
I will answer you, love, my love, you know,
When the roses go.
* * * * *
With odds all against him, struggling to gain,
From fortune a name, with life to maintain,
Toiling in sunshine, toiling in rain,
Never waiting a blessing Heaven-sent,
Working and winning his way as he went—
Whether he starved, or sumptuously fared,
Nobody knew and nobody cared.
With success-crowned effort that fate had defied,
That wrought out from fortune what favor denied,
Standing aloof from the world in his pride;
The niche he has carved on fame’s slippery wall
Friends are proclaiming with heraldry-call.
His Croesus-bright scepter has magical sway,
Yester’s indifference solicits to-day.
His daring his triumph, how daily he fares,
Every one knows, and anxiously cares.
So daintily fair,
Thy rose-hued lips,
Thy soft, flowing hair,
Sweet, winning face,
The charms that thou wearest
A palace might grace;
And yet thy bright beauty
May wreck and despair.
Beware! oh, beware!
There are flattering tongues
That ’twere death to believe,
And loves who woo
But to win and deceive;
For innocent feet
There is many a snare.
Beware! oh, beware!
Close on my heart was resting
A sunny golden head,
As the dim gray of the twilight
Crept round with noiseless tread.
“Tell me a ’tory, mamma,”
The blue-eyed baby said,
“About some itty birdie
In za itty birdie bed.
“’Bout fen oo was itty
An’ze mens was walkin’ hay
An’ found free ittie birdies
Wiz za muzzer don away.”
“Some other time, my darling;
Mamma’s tired now.”
A shade of disappointment
Swept over the baby’s brow.
The dear blue eyes grew misty;
O, lips that lived to blame,
That kissed and whispered “sometime”—
That “sometime” never came.
Again, the dim, gray twilight
Creeps round with noiseless tread,
But on my heart is resting
No sunny golden head.
No sweet voice pleads with mamma
“Tell me a ’tory” now,
And only death can take away
The shadow on my brow.