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C.N. Douglas, comp.  Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical.  1917.
        A mechanic his labor will often discard
If the rate of his pay he dislikes;
But a clock,—and its case is uncommonly hard,—
Will continue to work though it strikes.
                                And soon
Their hushing dances languished to a stand,
Like midnight leaves when, as the Zephyrs swoon,
All on their drooping stems they sink unfanned.
        Boughs are daily rifled
  By the gusty thieves,
And the book of Nature
  Getteth short of leaves.
        Death has left on her,
Only the beautiful.
        “Good well-dress’d turtle beats them hollow—
It almost makes me wish, I vow,
To have two stomachs, like a cow!”
And, lo! as with the cud, an inward thrill
Upheaved his waistcoat and disturb’d his frill,
His mouth was oozing, and he work’d his jaw—
“I almost think that I could eat one raw.”
        How bless’d the heart that has a friend
A sympathizing ear to lend
To troubles too great to smother?
For as ale and porter, when flat, are restor’d
Till a sparkling, bubbling head they afford,
So sorrow is cheer’d by being pour’d
From one vessel into another.
          How widely its agencies vary,—
To save, to ruin, to curse, to bless,—
As even its minted coins express,
Now stamp’d with the image of good Queen Bess,
  And now of Bloody Mary.
        I remember, I remember,
  The house where I was born,
The little window where the sun
  Came peeping in at morn;
He never came a wink too soon,
  Nor brought too long a day,
But now, I often wish the night
  Had borne my breath away!
        I remember, I remember,
The fir-trees dark and high:
I used to think their slender tops
Were close against the sky;
It was a childish ignorance,
But now ’tis little joy
To know I’m farther off from heaven
Than when I was a boy.
        I remember, I remember
  The roses, red and white,
The violets, and the lily-cups,
  Those flowers made of light!
The lilacs, where the robin built,
  And where my brother set
The laburnum on his birthday—
  The tree is living yet.
        It’s very hard! Oh, Dick, my boy,
It’s very hard one can’t enjoy
  A little private spouting;
But sure as Lear or Hamlet lives,
Up comes our master, Bounce! and gives
  The tragic Muse a routing.
          My tears must stop, for every drop
Hinders needle and thread.
        No popular respect will I omit
To do the honour on this happy day,
When every loyal lover tasks his wit
His simple truth in studious rhymes to pay,
And to his mistress dear his hopes convey,
Rather thou knowest I would still outrun
All calendars with Love’s whose date alway
Thy bright eyes govern better than the Sun,—
For with thy favour was my life begun,
And still I reckon on from smiles to smiles,
And not by summers, for I thrive on none
But those thy cheerful countenance compiles;
Oh! if it be to choose and call thee mine,
Love, thou art every day my Valentine!
        Now, really, this appears the common case
Of putting too much Sabbath into Sunday—
But what is your opinion, Mrs. Grundy?
        O bed! O bed! delicious bed!
That heaven upon earth to the weary head.
        O God! that bread should be so dear,
  And flesh and blood so cheap!
        O, very gloomy is the House of Woe,
Where tears are falling while the bell is knelling,
With all the dark solemnities which show
That Death is in the dwelling!
O, very, very dreary is the room
Where Love, domestic Love, no longer nestles,
But smitten by the common stroke of doom,
The corpse lies on the trestles!
        Oh, happy, happy, thrice happy state,
When such a bright Planet governs the fate
Of a pair of united lovers!
’Tis theirs’ in spite of the Serpent’s hiss,
To enjoy the pure primeval kiss
With as much of the old original bliss
As mortality ever recovers!
        Oh, when I was a tiny boy
My days and nights were full of joy.
  My mates were blithe and kind!
No wonder that I sometimes sigh
And dash the teardrop from my eye
  To cast a look behind!
        One more Unfortunate
Weary of breath,
Rashly importunate,
Gone to her death.
        Peace and rest at length have come,
  All the day’s long toil is past;
And each heart is whispering, “Home,
  Home at last!”
        She stood breast-high amid the corn,
Clasp’d by the golden light of morn,
Like the sweetheart of the sun,
Who many a glowing kiss had won.
        Some dreams we have are nothing else but dreams,
Unnatural and full of contradictions;
Yet others of our most romantic schemes
Are something more than fictions.
            Stitch! stitch! stitch!
  In poverty, hunger, and dirt,
And still with a voice of dolorous pitch,
Would that its tone could reach the Rich,
She sang this “Song of the Shirt!”
                    Such a blush
In the midst of brown was born,
Like red poppies grown with corn.
        Sweet are the little brooks that ran
O’er pebbles glancing in the sun,
    Singing in soothing tones.
        The history of humankind to trace
Since Eve, the first of dupes, our doom unriddled,
A certain portion of the human race
Has certainly a taste for being diddled.
Witness the famous Mississippi dreams!
A rage that time seems only to redouble—
The banks, joint stocks, and all the flimsy schemes,
For rolling in Pactolian streams
That cost our modern rogues so little trouble
No matter what, to pasture cows on stubble
To twist sea-sand into a solid rope,
To make French bricks and fancy bread of rubble,
Or light with gas the whole celestial cope—
Only propose to blow a bubble,
And Lord! what hundreds will subscribe for soap!
        The lily is all in white, like a saint,
And so is no mate for me.
        The year’s in the wane;
  There is nothing adorning;
The night has no eve,
  And the day has no morning;
  Cold winter gives warning!
        Those eyes that were so bright, love,
  Have now a dimmer shine;
But what they’ve lost in light, love,
  Is what they gave to mine.
And still those orbs reflect, love,
  The beams of former hours,
That ripen’d all my joys, love,
  And tinted all my flowers.
        ’Tis a stern and a startling thing to think
How often mortality stands on the brink
Of its grave without any misgiving;
And yet in this slippery world of strife,
In the stir of human bustle so rife,
There are daily sounds to tell us that Life
Is dying, and Death is living!
        ’Tis like the birthday of the world,
When earth was born in bloom;
The light is made of many dyes,
The air is all perfume:
There’s crimson buds, and white and blue,
The very rainbow showers
Have turned to blossoms where they fell,
And sown the earth with flowers.
        ’Tis strange how like a very dunce,
Man, with his bumps upon his sconce,
Has lived so long, and yet no knowledge he
Has had, till lately, of Phrenology—
A science that by simple dint of
Head-combing he should find a hint of,
When scratching o’er those little pole-hills
The faculties throw up like mole hills.
        When he is forsaken,
Withered and shaken,
What can an old man do but die?
        Where is the pride of Summer,—the green prime,—
  The many, many leaves all twinkling?—three
On the mossed elm; three on the naked lime
Trembling,—and one upon the old oak tree!
Where is the Dryad’s immortality?
        Whoe’er has gone thro’ London street,
Has seen a butcher gazing at his meat,
            And how he keeps
            Gloating upon a sheep’s
Of bullock’s personals, as if his own;
            How he admires his halves
            And quarters—and his calves,
As if in truth upon his own legs grown.
  Alas for the rarity of Christian charity under the sun.  37
  Apothegms form a short cut to much knowledge.  38
  Bright and yellow, hard and cold.  39
  Comfort and indolence are cronies.  40
  Coquetry is the champagne of love.  41
  Experience enables me to depose to the comfort and blessing that literature can prove in seasons of sickness and sorrow.  42
  Fuss is the froth of business.  43
  How bravely autumn paints upon the sky the gorgeous fame of summer which is fled!  44
  Of all the know-nothing persons in this world, commend us to the man who has “never known a day’s illness.” He is a moral dunce, one who has lost the greatest lesson in life; who has skipped the finest lecture in that great school of humanity, the sick-chamber.  45
  The biggest bore of all is he who is overflowing with congratulations.  46
  The fir-trees dark and high; I used to think their slender tops were close against the sky.  47
  The violet is a nun.  48
  There is a silence which hath been no sound; there is a silence which no sound may be—in the cold grave.  49
  There is not a string attuned to mirth but has its chord of melancholy.  50
  To attempt to advise conceited people is like whistling against the wind.  51
  We thought her dying while she slept, and sleeping when she died.  52
  Well for the drones of the social hive that there are bees of an industrious turn, willing, for an infinitesimal share of the honey, to undertake the labor of its fabrication.  53
  What is mind? No matter. What is matter? Never mind. What is the soul? It is immaterial.  54
  Whilst breezy waves toss up their silvery spray.  55

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