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THERE is a light in thy blue eyes,
Like an eternal morn,
That dulls not, nor is worn,
From thee I learn all gentleness,
From thee I learn all truth ;
My spirit garners youth,
O, happy soul ! O, happy heart !
O, happy dreams of mine!
Within so charmed a shrine,
THERE is not in this life of ours
One bliss unmixed with fears ;
The hope that wakes our deepest powers
A face of sadness wears,
And the dew that showers our dearest flowers
Is the bitter dew of tears.
Fame waiteth long, and lingereth
Through weary nights and morns, And evermore the shadow Death
With mocking finger scorns That underneath the laurel-wreath
Should be a wreath of thorns.
The laurel-leaves are cool and green,
But the thorns are hot and sharp ; Lean Hunger grins and stares between
The poet and his harp, Though of Love's sunny sheen his woof have been,
Grim Want thrusts in the warp.
And if, beyond this darksome clime,
Some fair star Hope may see,
Of its golden infancy, —
Not always is to be ;
Yet would the true soul rather choose
A home where sorrow is,
Its life's supremest bliss, –
O'er cloudy spheres like this,
The want, the sorrow,
and the pain, That are Love's right to cure, The sunshine bursting after rain,
The gladness insecure, That makes us fain strong hearts to gain,
To do and to endure.
High natures must be thunder-scarred
With many a searing wrong ;
Sucks gifts of deepest song;
Wax the soul's sinews strong.
Dear Patience, too, is born of woe,
Patience, that opes the gate
Up to each nobler state,
Smooths the bent brows of Fate.