Like a pillar of opal glory
Lit through with many a gem—
“Why, look at him now,” said Rory,
“He has turned to a faery like them!”
The elfin kings ascending
Leaped up from the thrones of might,
And one with another blending
They vanished in air and light.
The rill to its bed came splashing
With rocks on the top of that:
The children awoke with a flashing
Of wonder, “What were we at?”
They groped through the reeds and clover—
“What funny old markings: look here,
They have scrawled the rocks all over:
It’s just where the door was: how queer!”
—September 15, 1896
They sat with hearts untroubled,
The clear sky sparkled above,
And an ancient wisdom bubbled
From the lips of a youthful love.
They read in a coloured history
Of Egypt and of the Nile,
And half it seemed a mystery,
Familiar, half, the while.
Till living out of the story
Grew old Egyptian men,
And a shadow looked forth Rory
And said, “We meet again!”
And over Aileen a maiden
Looked back through the ages dim:
She laughed, and her eyes were laden
With an old-time love for him.
In a mist came temples thronging
With sphinxes seen in a row,
And the rest of the day was a longing
For their homes of long ago.
“We’d go there if they’d let us,”
They said with wounded pride:
“They never think when they pet us
We are old like that inside.”
There was some one round them straying
The whole of the long day through,
Who seemed to say, “I am playing
At hide-and-seek with you.”
And one thing after another
Was whispered out of the air,
How God was a big kind brother
Whose home was in everywhere.
His light like a smile come glancing
From the cool, cool winds as they pass;
From the flowers in heaven dancing
And the stars that shine in the grass,
And the clouds in deep blue wreathing,
And most from the mountains tall,
But God like a wind goes breathing
A heart-light of gold in all.
It grows like a tree and pushes
Its way through the inner gloom,
And flowers in quick little rushes
Of love to a magic bloom.
And no one need sigh now or sorrow
Whenever the heart-light flies,
For it comes again on some morrow
And nobody ever dies.
The heart of the Wise was beating
In the children’s heart that day,
And many a thought came fleeting,
And fancies solemn and gay.