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827                                            A Garden Song

HERE in this sequester’d close
Bloom the hyacinth and rose,
Here beside the modest stock
Flaunts the flaring hollyhock;
Here, without a pang, one sees
Ranks, conditions, and degrees.
All the seasons run their race
In this quiet resting-place;
Peach and apricot and fig
Here will ripen and grow big;
Here is store and overplus,—
More had not Alcinoëus!
Here, in alleys cool and green,
Far ahead the thrush is seen;
Here along the southern wall
Keeps the bee his festival;
All is quiet else—afar
Sounds of toil and turmoil are.
Here be shadows large and long:
Here be spaces meet for song;
Grant, O garden-god, that I,
Now that none profane is nigh,—
Now that mood and moment please,—
Find the fair Pierides!

828                                              Urceus Exit


And it turn’d to a Sonnet
It began à la mode,
I intended an Ode;
But Rose cross’d the road
  In her latest new bonnet;
I intended an Ode;
  And it turn’d to a Sonnet.

829                                             Fame and Friendship

FAME is a food that dead men eat,—
I have no stomach for such meat.
In little light and narrow room,
They eat it in the silent tomb,
With no kind voice of comrade near
To bid the feaster be of cheer.
But Friendship is a nobler thing,—
Of Friendship it is good to sing.
For truly, when a man shall end,
He lives in memory of his friend,
Who does his better part recall
And of his fault make funeral.

830                                             In After Days


IN after days when grasses high
    O’er-top the stone where I shall lie,
    Though ill or well the world adjust
    My slender claim to honour’d dust,
I shall not question nor reply.
I shall not see the morning sky;
I shall not hear the night-wind sigh;
    I shall be mute, as all men must
       In after days!

But yet, now living, fain would I
That some one then should testify,
    Saying—‘He held his pen in trust
    To Art, not serving shame or lust.
Will none?—Then let my memory die
         In after days!


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