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Poems eBook

Denis Florence MacCarthy
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 151 pages of information about Poems.

Yet not to thine eternal resting-place
Shalt thou retire alone—­nor couldst thou wish
Couch more magnificent.  Thou shalt lie down
With patriarchs of the infant world—­with kings,
The powerful of the earth—­the wise, the good,
Fair forms, and hoary seers of ages past,
All in one mighty sepulchre.—­The hills
Rock-ribbed and ancient as the sun,—­the vales
Stretching in pensive quietness between;
The venerable woods—­rivers that move
In majesty, and the complaining brooks
That make the meadows green; and, poured round all,
Old ocean’s gray and melancholy waste,—­
Are but the solemn decorations all
Of the great tomb of man.  The golden sun,
The planets, all the infinite host of heaven,
Are shining on the sad abodes of death,
Through the still lapse of ages.  All that tread
The globe are but a handful to the tribes
That slumber in its bosom.—­Take the wings
Of morning—­and the Barcan desert pierce,
Or lose thyself in the continuous woods
Where rolls the Oregon, and hears no sound,
Save his own dashings—­yet—­the dead are there: 
And millions in those solitudes, since first
The flight of years began, have laid them down
In their last sleep—­the dead reign there alone. 
So shalt thou rest—–­and what, if thou withdraw
Unheeded by the living, and no friend
Take note of thy departure?  All that breathe
Will share thy destiny.  The gay will laugh
When thou art gone, the solemn brood of care
Plod on, and each one as before will chase
His favourite phantom; yet all these shall leave
Their mirth and their employments, and shall come,
And make their bed with thee.  As the long train
Of ages glide away, the sons of men,
The youth in life’s green spring, and he who goes
In the full strength of years, matron, and maid,
And the sweet babe, and the gray-headed man,—­
Shall one by one be gathered to thy side,
By those, who in their turn shall follow them.

So live, that when thy summons comes to join
The innumerable caravan, that moves
To that mysterious realm, where each shall take
His chamber in the silent halls of death,
Thou go not like the quarry-slave at night,
Scourged to his dungeon, but, sustained and soothed
By an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave,
Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch
About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams.

THE YELLOW VIOLET.

When beechen buds begin to swell,
  And woods the blue-bird’s warble know,
The yellow violet’s modest bell
  Peeps from the last year’s leaves below.

Ere russet fields their green resume,
  Sweet flower, I love, in forest bare,
To meet thee, when thy faint perfume
  Alone is in the virgin air.

Of all her train, the hands of Spring
  First plant thee in the watery mould,
And I have seen thee blossoming
  Beside the snow-bank’s edges cold.

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