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I fasted for some forty days on bread and buttermilk,
For passing round the bottle with girls in rags or silk,
In country shawl or Paris cloak, had put my wits astray,
And what's the good of women, for all that they can say
William Butler Yeats
Auguries Of Innocence
To see a world in a grain of sand
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour.
WHAT does it all mean anyway,
Noise of cannon and boom of gun,
Deafening, colorful fire display
Starting in with the rising sun?
Edgar Albert Guest
In All Ways A Woman
In my young years I took pride in the fact that luck was called a lady. In fact, there were so few public acknowledgments of the female presence that I felt personally honored whenever nature and large ships were referred to as feminine. But as I matured, I began to resent being considered a sister to a changeling as fickle as luck, as aloof as an ocean, and as frivolous as nature. The phrase 'A woman always has the right to change her mind' played so aptly into the negative image of the female that I made myself a victim to an unwavering decision. Even if I made an inane and stupid choice, I stuck by it rather than 'be like a woman and change my mind.'
Being a woman is hard work. Not without joy and even ecstasy, but still relentless, unending work. Becoming an old female may require only being born with certain genitalia, inheriting long-living genes and the fortune not to be run over by an out-of-control truck, but to become and remain a woman command the existence and employment of genius.
Get off your downy cots of ease,
There's work that must be done.
Great danger's riding on the seas.
The storm is coming on.
Edgar Albert Guest
AMONG deep woods is the dismantled scite
Of an old Abbey, where the chaunted rite,
By twice ten brethren of the monkish cowl,
Was duly sung; and requiems for the soul
IN yonder red-brick mansion, tight and square,
Just at the town's commencement, lives the mayor.
Some yards of shining gravel, fenced with box,
Lead to the painted portal--where one knocks :
Endymion: Book Iii
There are who lord it o'er their fellow-men
With most prevailing tinsel: who unpen
Their baaing vanities, to browse away
The comfortable green and juicy hay
Endymion: Book Iv
Muse of my native land! loftiest Muse!
O first-born on the mountains! by the hues
Of heaven on the spiritual air begot:
Long didst thou sit alone in northern grot,
Oh you who are shy of the popular eye,
(Though most of us seek to survive it)
Just think of the goldfish who wanted to die
Because she could never be private.
A Statue Of Figwood
For yon oaken avenue, swain, you must steer,
Where a statue of figwood, you'll see, has been set:
It has never been barked, has three legs and no ear;
But I think there is life in the patriarch yet.
Jon Corelis Theocritus
Some one ('tis hardly new) has oddly said
The color of a trumpet's blare is red;
And Joseph Emmett thinks the crimson shame
On woman's cheek a trumpet-note of fame.
Fragment Of 'the Castle Builder.'
To-night I'll have my friar -- let me think
About my room, -- I'll have it in the pink;
It should be rich and sombre, and the moon,
Just in its mid-life in the midst of June,
Far in a wild, unknown to public view,
From youth to age a rev'rend hermit grew;
The moss his bed, the cave his humble cell,
His food the fruits, his drink the crystal well:
O why your good deeds with such pride do you scan,
And why that self-satisfied smile
At the shilling you gave to the poor working man,
That lifted you over the stile?
Thy forests, Windsor! and thy green retreats,
At once the Monarch's and the Muse's seats,
Invite my lays. Be present, sylvan maids!
Unlock your springs, and open all your shades.
Ye injur'd fields, ye once were gay,
When nature's hand display'd
Long waving rows of willows grey,
And clumps of hawthorn shade;
The Elder Brother.
Centrick, in London noise, and London follies,
Proud Covent Garden blooms, in smoky glory;
For chairmen, coffee-rooms, piazzas, dollies,
Cabbages, and comedians, fame'd in story!
The corner of the tavern is my altar, where I pray
At dawn, the mantra of the Old Magi, I say.
Fear not if the harp plays not at sun's morning ascent
My morning cry of repentance is the music I play.
Shams Al-din Hafiz Shirazi
The Deserted Village
Sweet Auburn! loveliest village of the plain,
Where health and plenty cheered the labouring swain,
Where smiling spring its earliest visits paid,
And parting summer's lingering blooms delayed:
Sketches In The Exhibition
What various objects strike with various force,
Achilles, Hebe, and Sir Watkin's horse!
Here summer scenes, there Pentland's stormy ridge,
Lords, ladies, Noah's ark, and Cranford bridge!
William Lisle Bowles
This day (the year I dare not tell)
Apollo play'd the midwife's part;
Into the world Corinna fell,
And he endued her with his art.
Love will expire--the gay, the happy dream
Will turn to scorn, indiff'rence, or esteem:
When o'er the aged lion steals
The instinct of approaching death,
Whose numbing grasp he vaguely feels
In trembling limbs and labored breath,
John L. Stoddard
The Patchwork Quilt
Here is this patchwork quilt I've made
Of patterned silks and old brocade,
Small faded rags in memory rich
Sewn each to each with feather stitch,
This Garden does not take my eyes,
Though here you show how art of men
Can purchase Nature at a price
Would stock old Paradise again.
Why should man's high aspiring mind
Burn in him with so proud a breath,
When all his haughty views can find
In this world yields to death?
Childhood, A Poem: Part I
Pictured in memory's mellowing glass, how sweet
Our infant days, our infant joys, to greet;
To roam in fancy in each cherish'd scene,
The village churchyard, and the village green,
Henry Kirk White
Beauty deserves the homage of the muse:
Shall mine, rebellious, the dear theme refuse?
No; while my breast respires the vital air,
Wholly I am devoted to the fair.
I HOLD the finest picture-books
Are woods an' fields an' runnin' brooks;
An' when the month o' May has done
Her paintin', an' the mornin' sun
Edgar Albert Guest
There, Robert, you have killed that fly,
And should you thousand ages try
The life you've taken to supply,
You could not do it.