in thee we float,
And lose the lonely note
Of self in thy celestial-ordered strain,
Until at last we find
The life to love resigned
In harmony of joy restored again;
And songs that cheered our mortal days
Break on the shore of light in endless hymns of praise.
December, 1901—May, 1903—May, 1916.
MASTER OF MUSIC
(In memory of Theodore Thomas, 1905)
Glory architect, glory of painter,
and sculptor, and bard,
Living forever in temple and picture and statue and song,—
Look how the world with the lights that they lit is illumined and
Brief was the flame of their life, but the lamps of their art burn
Where is the Master of Music, and
how has he vanished away?
Where is the work that he wrought with his wonderful art in the air?
Gone,—it is gone like the glow on the cloud at the close of the day!
The Master has finished his work and the glory of music is—where?
Once, at the wave of his wand, all
the billows of musical sound
Followed his will, as the sea was ruled by the prophet of old:
Now that his hand is relaxed, and his rod has dropped to the ground,
Silent and dark are the shores where the marvellous harmonies rolled!
Nay, but not silent the hearts that were
filled by that life-giving sea;
Deeper and purer forever the tides of their being will roll,
Grateful and joyful, O Master, because they have listened to thee;
The glory of music endures in the depths of the human soul.
THE PIPES O’ PAN
Great Nature had a million words,
In tongues of trees and songs of birds,
But none to breathe the heart of man,
Till Music filled the pipes o’ Pan.
TO A YOUNG GIRL SINGING
Oh, what do you know of the song, my dear,
And how have you made it your own?
You have caught the turn of the melody clear,
And you give it again with a golden tone,
Till the wonder-word and the wedded note
Are flowing out of your beautiful throat
With a liquid charm for every ear:
And they talk of your art,—but for you alone
The song is a thing, unheard, unknown;
You only have learned it by rote.
But when you have lived for awhile, my
I think you will learn it anew!
For a joy will come, or a grief, or a fear,
That will alter the look of the world for you;
And the lyric you learned as a bit of art,
Will wake to life as a wonderful part
Of the love you feel so deep and true;
And the thrill of a laugh or the throb of a tear,
Will come with your song to all who hear;
For then you will know it by heart.