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" He's sweetest friend, or hardest foe,

Best angel, or worst devil ;
I either hate or . . love him so,

I can't be merely civil !

“ You trust a woman who puts forth,

Her blossoms thick as summer's ?
You .hink she dreams what love is worth,

Who casts it to new-comers ?

“ Such love 's a cowslip-ball to fling,

A moment's pretty pastime;
I give . . all me, if anything,

The first time and the last time.

“ Dear neighbour of the trellised ouse,

A man should murmur never,
Though treated worse than dog or mouse,

Till doted on for ever ! ”

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She was not as pretty as women I know,
And yet all your best made of sunshine and snow
Drop to shade, melt to nought in the long-trodden ways,
While she 's still remembered on warm and cold days—

My Kate.
Her air had a meaning, her movements a grace ;
You turned from the fairest to gaze on her face :
And when you had once seen her forehead and mouth,
You saw as distinctly her soul and her truth

My Kate. Such a blue inner light from her eyelids outbroke, You looked at her silence and fancied she spoke :

When she did, so peculiar yet soft was the tone,
Though the loudest spoke also, you heard her alone-

My Kåte.
I doubt if she said to you much that could act
As a thought or suggestion : she did not attract
In the sense of the brilliant or wise : I infer
'T was her thinking of others, made you think of her-

My Kate. She never found fault with you, never implied Your wrong by her right; and yet men at her side Grew nobler, girls purer, as through the whole town The children were gladder that pulled at her gown-

My Kate. None knelt at her feet confessed lovers in thrall; They knelt more to God than they used,—that was all ; If you praised her as charming, some asked what you

meant, But the charm of her presence was felt when she went

My Kate. The weak and the gentle, the ribald and rude, She took as she found them, and did them all good : It always was so with her : see what you have ! She has made the grass greener even here . . ith her grave

My Kate. My dear one !-when thou wast alive with the rest, I held thee the sweetest and loved thee the best : And now thou art dead, shall I not take thy part As thy smiles used to do for thyself, my sweet Heart

My Kate ?




SWEET, thou hast trod on a heart.

Pass! there's a world full of men And women as fair as thou art

Must do such things now and then.
Thou only hast stepped unaware,—

Malice, not one can impute ;
And why should a heart have been there

In the way of a fair woman's foot ?
It was not a stone that could trip,

Nor was it a thorn that could rend : Put up thy proud underlip !

'Twas merely the heart of a friend. And yet peradventure one day

Thou, sitting alone at the glass, Remarking the bloom gone away,

Where the smile in its dimplement was, And seeking around thee in vain

From hundreds who flattered before, Such a word as, “ Oh, not in the main

Do I hold thee less precious, but more !” Thou 'lt sigh, very like, on thy part,

« Of all I have known or can know, I wish I had only that Heart

I trod upon ages ago !”


I HAVE a smiling face, she said,

I have a jest for all I meet,
I have a garland for my head

And all its flowers are sweet,-
And so you call me gay, she said.


Grief taught to me this smile, she said,

And Wrong did teach this jesting bold; These flowers were plucked from garden-bed

While a death-chime was tolled
And what now will you say ? she said.
Behind no prison-grate, she said,

Which slurs the sunshine half a mile,
Live captives so uncomforted

As souls behind a smile.
God's pity let us pray, she said.
I know my face is bright, she said, -

Such brightness dying suns diffuse :
I bear upon my forehead shed

The sign of what I lose,
The ending of my day, she said.


If I dared leave this smile, she said,

And take a moan upon my mouth,
And tie a cypress round my head,

And let my tears run smooth,
It were the happier way, she said.
And since that must not be, she said,

I fain your bitter world would leave.
How calmly, calmly, smile the dead,

Who do not, therefore, grieve ! The yea of Heaven is yea, she said.

But in your bitter world, she said,

Face-joy's a costly mask to wear ;
'T is bought with pangs long nourished,

And rounded to despair :
Grief's earnest makes life's play, she said.

Ye weep for those who weep? she said-

Ah fools ! I bid you pass them by.

Go, weep for those whose hearts have bled

What time their eyes were dry. Whom sadder can I say? she said.

A YEAR'S SPINNING. He listened at the porch that day,

To hear the wheel go on, and on ; And then it stopped, ran back away,

While through the door he brought the sun:

But now my spinning is all done. He sat beside me, with an oath

That love ne'er ended, once begun : I smiled-believing for us both,

What was the truth for only one.

And now my spinning is all done. My mother cursed me that I heard A young man's wooing as I

spun : Thanks, cruel mother, for that word,

For I have, since, a harder known !

And now my spinning is all done.
I thought-o God !--my first-born's cry

Both voices to mine ear would drown:
I listened in mine agony-

It was the silence made me groan ! And now my spinning is all done. Bury me twixt

my mother's

grave (Who cursed me on her death-bed lone) And my dead baby's (God it save !)

Who, not to bless me, would not moan.

And now my spinning is all done. A stone upon my heart and head,

But no name written on the stone !

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