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And a breastplate made of daisies,

Closely fitting, leaf on leaf.
Periwinkles interlaced

Drawn for belt about the waist;
While the brown bees, humming praises,

Shot their arrows round the chief.

And who knows, (I sometimes wondered,)

If the disembodied soul
Of old Hector, once of Troy,

Might not take a dreary joy
Here to enter—if it thundered,

Rolling up the thunder-roll ?


Rolling this way from Troy-ruin,

In this body rude and rife
Just to enter, and take rest
'Neath the daisies of the breast-
They, with tender roots, renewing

His heroic heart to life?

Who could know? I sometimes started

At a motion or a sound!
Did his mouth speak-naming Troy,

Did the pulse of the Strong-hearted

Make the daisies tremble-round?
VOL. II.—7


It was hard to answer, often :

But the birds sang in the tree-
But the little birds sang bold

In the pear-tree green and old,
And my terror seemed to soften

Through the courage of their glee.

Oh, the birds, the tree, the ruddy

And white blossoms, sleek with rain!
Oh, my garden, rich with pansies !

Oh, my childhood's bright romances! All revive, like Hector's body,

And I see them stir again!

And despite life's changes—chances,

And despite the deathbell's toll,
They press on me in full seeming!
Help, some angel! stay this dreaming!
As the birds sang in the branches,

Sing God's patience through my soul!

That no dreamer, no neglecter

Of the present's work unsped,
I may wake up and be doing,

Life's heroic ends pursuing,
Though my past is dead as Hector,

And though Hector is twice dead.


SLEEP on, baby, on the floor,

Tired of all the playing!
Sleep with smile the sweeter for

That, you dropped away in!
On your curls' full roundness, stand

Golden lights serenely. One cheek, pushed out by the hand,

Folds the dimple inly. Little head and little foot

Heavy laid for pleasure, Underneath the lids half shut,

Slants the shining azure.Open-soul in noonday sun,

So, you lie and slumber! Nothing evil having done,

Nothing can encumber.


I, who cannot sleep as well,

Shall I sigh to view you?
Or sigh further to foretell

All that may undo you?
Nay, keep smiling, little child,

Ere the sorrow neareth.
I will smile too! patience mild

Pleasure's token weareth.

Nay, keep sleeping before loss.

I shall sleep, though losing! As by cradle, so by cross,

Sure is the reposing.

III. And God knows who sees us twain

Child at childish leisure, I am near as tired of pain

As you seem of pleasure. Very soon too, by His grace

Gently wrapt around me, Shall I show as calm a face,

Shall I sleep as soundly. Differing in this, that you

Clasp your playthings, sleeping, While my hand shall drop the few

Given to my keeping. Differing in this, that I

Sleeping shall be colder, And in waking presently,

Brighter to beholder. Differing in this beside

(Sleeper, have you heard me? Do you move, and open wide

Eyes of wonder toward me?) That while you I thus recall

From your sleep, I solely, Me from mine an angel shall,

With reveille holy.

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HARKEN, harken!
The rapid river carrieth
Many noises underneath

The hoary ocean:
Teaching his solemnity
Sounds of inland life and glee.
Learnt beside the waving tree,
When the winds in summer prank

Toss the shades from bank to bank,
And the quick rains, in emotion
Which rather gladdens earth than grieves,
Count and visibly rehearse
The pulses of the universe
Upon the summer leaves-
Learnt among the lilies straight,
When they bow them to the weight
Of many bees whose hidden hum
Seemeth from themselves to come-
Learnt among the grasses green,
Where the rustling mice are seen
By the gleaming, as they run,
Of their quick eyes in the sun;
And lazy sheep are browzing through,
With their noses trailed in dew;

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