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May scratch it, rash young man! Rise

up; for shame! Rhaicos. For shame I can not rise. O

pity me! I dare not sue for love but do not hate! Let me once more behold thee not once

more, But many days: let me love on

loved! I aimed too high: on my head the bolt 160 Falls back, and pierces to the very brain. Hamad. Go — rather go, than make

me say I love. Rhaicos. If happiness is immortality (And whence enjoy it else the gods

above?) I am immortal too: my vow is heard. 165 Hark! on the left — Nay, turn not from

me now, I claim my kiss. Hamad. Do

take

first, then claim? Do thus the seasons run their course with

them?

Rhaicos, although each morsel of the

bread Increased by chewing, and the meat grew

cold And tasteless to his palate, took

draught Of gold-bright wine, which, thirsty as he

was, He thought not of until his father filled The cup, averring water was amiss, But wine had been at all times poured on

kid, It was religion. He thus fortified 190 Said, not quite boldly, and not quite

abashed: “Father, that oak is Zeus's own; that oak Year after year will bring thee wealth

from wax And honey. There is one who fears the

gods And the gods love ... that one" (he

blushed, nor said What one) “has promised this, and may do

men

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more.

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Her lips were sealed, her head sank on

his breast. 'Tis said that laughs were heard within

the wood: But who should hear them? and whose

laughs ? and why? Savory was the smell, and long past

noon, Thallinos! in thy house; for marjoram, Basil and mint, and thyme and rosemary, Were sprinkled on the kid's well roasted

length, Awaiting Rhaicos. Home he came at last, Not hungry, but pretending hunger keen, With head and eyes just o'er the maple

plate. “Thou seest but badly, coming from the

sun, Boy Rhaicos!” said the father. “That

oak's bark Must have been tough, with little sap

between; It ought to run: but it and I are old.”

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And when her absence brought them out,

they pleased. Even among the fondest of them all, What mortal or immortal maid is more Content with giving happiness than pain?

215 One day he was returning from the wood Despondently. She pitied him, and said "Come back!” and twined her fingers in

the hem Above his shoulder. Then she led his

steps To a cool rill that ran o'er level sand Through lentisk and through oleander:

there Bathed she his feet, lifting them on her

lap When bathed, and drying them in both

her hands. He dared complain; for those who most

are loved Most dare it; but not harsh was his

complaint. "O thou inconstant!” said he; “if stern

law Bind thee, or will, stronger than stern

est law, O, let me know henceforward when to

hope The fruit of love that grows for me but

here." He spake; and plucked it from its pliant

stem. "Impatient Rhaicos! Why thus intercept The answer I would give? There is a bee Whom I have fed, a bee who knows my

thoughts And executes my wishes: I will send That messenger.

If

thou art false,

235 Drawn by another, own it not, but drive My bee away; then shall I know my

fate, And — for thou must be wretched

at thine. But often as my heart persuades to lay Its cares

on thine and throb itself to rest, Expect her with thee, whether it be morn

The nights had now grown longer, and

perhaps The hamadryads find them lone and

dull Among their woods: one did, alas! She

called Her faithful bee; 'twas when all bees

should sleep, And all did sleep but hers. She was sent

forth To bring that light which never wintry

blast Blows out, nor rain nor snow extinguishes,

255 The light that shines from loving eyes

upon Eyes that love back, till they can see no

more. Rhaicos was sitting at his father's

hearth. Between them stood the table,

not o'erspread With fruits which autumn now profusely bore,

260 Nor anise cakes, nor odorous wine; but

there The draft-board was expanded; at which

game Triumphant sat old Thallinos; the son Was puzzled, vexed, discomfited, dis

traught. A buzz was

at his ear: up went his hand, And it was heard no longer. The poor

bee Returned (but not until the morn shone

bright),

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ever

weep

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The chrysolites and rubies Bacchus brings SO THEN, I FEEL NOT DEEPLY! To crown the feast where swells the broad-veined brow,

(1853) Where maidens blush at what the minstrel So then, I feel not deeply! If I did, sings,

I should have seized the pen and pierced They who have coveted may covet now.

therewith The passive world! — And thus thou rea

sonest? Bring me, in cool alcove, the grape un

Well hast thou known the lover's, not so crushed,

well The peach of pulpy cheek and down

The poet's heart: while that heart bleeds, mature,

the hand

5 Where every voice (but bird's or child's)

Presses it close. Grief must run on and is hushed,

pass And every thought, like the brook nigh,

Into near Memory's more quiet shade runs pure.

Before it can compose itself in song.
He who is agonized and turns to show

His agony to those who sit around,
DEATH STANDS ABOVE ME

Seizes the pen in vain. Thought, fancy,

power, (1853)

Rush back into his bosom; all the strength Death stands above me, whispering low

Of genius can not draw them into light I know not what into my ear:

From under mastering Grief: but MemOf his strange language all I know

ory,

The Muse's mother, nurses, rears them Is, there is not a word of fear.

up, Informs, and keeps them with her all her

days. ON HIS SEVENTY-FIFTH BIRTHDAY

LATELY OUR SONGSTERS (1853)

LOITERED

(1863) I strove with none, for none was worth my strife;

Lately our songsters loitered in green Nature I loved, and next to Nature, lanes, Art;

Content to catch the ballads of the plains. I warmed both hands before the fire of I fancied I had strength enough to climb life,

A loftier station at no distant time, It sinks, and I am ready to depart. And might securely from intrusion doze 5

THERE ARE WHO SAY

(1863)

Upon the flowers through which Ilissus

flows: In those paie olive grounds all voices

cease, And from afar dust fills the paths of

Greece. My slumber broken and my doublet torn, I find the laurel also bears a thorn.

There are who say we are but dust:

We may be soon, but are not yet, Nor should be while in Love

trust And never what he taught forget.

we

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