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Instead of whistling to the steeds of Time,
To make them jog on more merrily with life's burden, Like a dead weight thou hangest on the wheels. Thou art too young, too full of lusty health
To talk of dying.
Yet I fain would die!
To go through life, unloving and unloved;
And struggle after something we have not
And cannot love; the effort to be strong;
And like the Spartan boy, to smile, and smile,
While secret wounds do bleed beneath our cloaks;
Would I were with them!
the dead alone!
We shall all be soon.
It cannot be too soon; for I am weary
Of this bewildering masquerade of Life,
Where strangers walk as friends, and friends as strangers; Where whispers overheard betray false hearts;
And through the mazes of the crowd we chase
Some form of loveliness, that smiles and beckons,
And cheats us with fair words, only to leave us
A mockery and a jest; maddened, confused, -
Why seek to know?
Enjoy the merry shrove-tide of thy youth!
That were the wiser part. But Hope no longer
Yet thou shalt not perish.
The strength of thine own arm is thy salvation. Above thy head, through rifted clouds, there shines. A glorious star. Be patient. Trust thy star!
A PSALM OF LIFE.
WHAT THE HEART OF THE YOUNG MAN SAID TO. THE PSALMIST.
TELL me not, in mournful numbers,
'Life is but an empty dream!'
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal; 'Dust thou art, to dust returnest,' Was not spoken of the soul.
Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Funeral marches to the grave.
In the world's broad field of battle
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife.
Trust no Future, howe'er pleasant! Let the dead Past bury its dead! Act,act in the living Present!
Heart within, and God o'erhead !
Lives of great men all remind us We can make our lives sublime, And, departing, leave behind us Footprints on the sands of Time;
Footprints, that perhaps another,
Let us, then, be up and doing,
Still aching, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.
THE VILLAGE BLACKSMITH.
UNDER a spreading chestnut tree
With large and sinewy hands;
His hair is crisp, and black, and long,
His face is like the tan;
His brow is wet with honest sweat
He earns whatever he can,
And looks the whole world in the face,
For he owes not any man.
Week in and week out, from morn till night, You can hear his bellows blow;
You can hear him swing his heavy sledge,
Like a sexton ringing the village bell,
And children coming home from school
They love to see the flaming forge,
And catch the burning sparks that fly
Like the chaff from a threshing floor.