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I do not know ; nor will I vainly question
Those pages of the mystic book which hold

The story still untold,
But without rash conjecture or suggestion
Turn its last leaves in reverence and good heed,

Until “The End” I read.


BURN, O evening hearth

, and waken

Pleasant visions, as of old ! Though the house by winds be shaken,

Safe I keep this room of gold !

Ah, no longer wizard Fancy

Builds her castles in the air Luring me by necromancy

Up the never-ending stair

But, instead, she builds me bridges

Over many a dark ravine, Where beneath the gusty ridges

Cataracts dash and roar unseen.


The Bridge of Oloud.

And I cross them, little heeding

Blast of wind or torrent's roar, As I follow the receding

Footsteps that have gone before.

Naught avails the imploring gesture,

Naught avails the cry of pain ! When I touch the flying vesture,

'Tis the gray robe of the rain.

Baffled I return, and leaning

O'er the parapets of cloud,
Watch the mist that intervening

Wraps the valley in its shroud.

And the sounds of life ascending

Faintly, vaguely, meet the ear, Murmur of bells and voices blending

With the rush of waters near.

The Bridge of Cloud.


Well I know what there lies hidden,

Every tower and town and farm, And again the land forbidden

Reassumes its vanished charm,

Well I know the secret places,

And the nests in hedge and tree; At what doors are friendly faces,

In what hearts are thoughts of me.

Through the mist and darkness sinking,

Blown by wind and beaten by shower, Down I fling the thought I'm thinking,

Down I toss this Alpine flower.



MAY 23, 1864.


OW beautiful it was, that one bright day

In the long week of rain ! Though all its splendour could not chase away

The omnipresent pain.

The lovely town was white with apple-blooms,

And the great elms o'erhead
Dark shadows wove on their aërial looms,

Shot through with golden thread.

Across the meadows, by the gray old manse,

The historic river flowed ;

I was as one who wanders in a trance,

Unconscious of his road.

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