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Who did so sweetly Death's sad taste convey,
Yet sugaring the suspicion.
Farewell, dear flowers! sweetly your time ye spent,
Fit, while ye lived, for smell or ornament,
And after death for cures.
I follow straight, without complaints or grief;
Since, if my scent be good, I care not if
It be as short as yours.
George Herbert [1593-1633]
THOU must be true thyself,
If thou the truth wouldst teach;
Think truly, and thy thoughts
Speak truly, and each word of thine
Shall be a fruitful seed;
Live truly, and thy life shall be
A great and noble creed.
Horatius Bonar [1808-1889]
WHY fear to-morrow, timid heart?
We only need to do our part
The past is written! Close the book
But live to-day-to-day.
'Tis this one hour that God has given; His Now we must obey;
And it will make our earth his heaven
To live to-day-to-day.
Lydia Avery Coonley Ward [1845
THE VALLEY OF VAIN VERSES
THE grief that is but feigning,
The love that is but passion
The doubt that is but fashion;
Henry Van Dyke [1852
LORD, for the erring thought
For ignorant hopes that were
For all loss of seeming good:
Quicken our gratitude!
William Dean Howells [1837
THE LADY POVERTY
THE Lady Poverty was fair:
Or-almost worse, if worse can beShe scolds in parlors; dusts and trims, Watches and counts. Oh, is this she Whom Francis met, whose step was free, Who with Obedience caroled hymns, In Umbria walked with Chastity?
Where is her ladyhood? Not here,
And slender landscape and austere.
Alice Meynell [1853
THE LADY POVERTY
I MET her on the Umbrian Hills,
Her hair unbound, her feet unshod;
As one whom secret glory fills
She walked-alone with God.
I met her in the city street;
Oh, how changed was her aspect then!
With heavy eyes and weary feet
She walked alone-with men.
Jacob Fischer [18
THE PRAYER OF BEATEN MEN
From "The House of Broken Swords "
WE are the fallen, who, with helpless faces
Felt the hoof's beat, and heard the rattling traces
We are the fallen, who by ramparts gory,
Awaiting death, heard the far shouts begin,
We were but men. Always our eyes were holden,
Give us our own; and though in realms eternal
Ay, grant our ears to hear the foolish praising
THE LAST WORD
CREEP into thy narrow bed,
Let the long contention cease!
They out-talked thee, hissed thee, tore thee?
Better men fared thus before thee;
Charge once more, then, and be dumb!
Find thy body by the wall!
Matthew Arnold [1822-1888]
From "He and She"
I SING the hymn of the conquered, who fell in the Battle of Life,
The hymn of the wounded, the beaten, who died overwhelmed in the strife;
Not the jubilant song of the victors, for whom the resounding acclaim
Of nations was lifted in chorus, whose brows wore the chaplet of fame,
But the hymn of the low and the humble, the weary, the broken in heart,
Who strove and who failed, acting bravely a silent and desperate part;
Whose youth bore no flower on its branches, whose hopes burned in ashes away,
From whose hands slipped the prize they had grasped at, who stood at the dying of day
With the wreck of their life all around them, unpitied, unheeded, alone,
With Death swooping down o'er their failure, and all but their faith overthrown,
While the voice of the world shouts its chorus-its pæan for
those who have won;
While the trumpet is sounding triumphant and high to the breeze and the sun