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CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
C.N. Douglas, comp.  Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical.  1917.
 
L. E. Landon
 
        A blossom full of promise is life’s joy,
That never comes to fruit. Hope, for a time,
Suns the young floweret in its gladsome light,
And it looks flourishing—a little while—
’T is pass’d, we know not whither, but ’t is gone.
  1
        Alas! the praise given to the ear
Ne’er was nor ne’er can be sincere.
  2
                    Can that man be dead
Whose spiritual influence is upon his kind?
He lives in glory; and his speaking dust
Has more of life than half its breathing moulds.
  3
        Few save the poor feel for the poor;
  The rich know not how hard
It is to be of needful rest
  And needful food debarr’d:
They know not of the scanty meal,
  With small pale faces round;
No fire upon the cold damp hearth
  When snow is on the ground.
  4
                        I can pass days
Stretch’d in the shade of those old cedar trees,
Watching the sunshine like a blessing fall,—
The breeze like music wandering o’er the boughs,
Each tree a natural harp,—each different leaf
A different note, blent in one vast thanksgiving.
  5
        I gaze upon the thousand stars
  That fill the midnight sky;
And wish, so passionately wish,
  A light like theirs on high.
I have such eagerness of hope
  To benefit my kind;
I feel as if immortal power
  Were given to my mind.
  6
        I have no parting sigh to give,
So take my parting smile.
  7
        I never cast a flower away,
  A gift of one who car’d for me;
A flower—a faded flower,
  But it was done reluctantly.
  8
        I would give worlds, could I believe
  One-half that is profess’d me;
Affection! could I think it Thee,
  When Flattery has caress’d me.
  9
                        Oh! only those
Whose souls have felt this one idolatry,
Can tell how precious is the slightest thing
Affection gives and hallows! A dead flower
Will long be kept, remembrancer of looks
That made each leaf a treasure.
  10
        Oh, no! my heart can never be
  Again in lightest hopes the same;
The love that lingers there for thee
  Hath more of ashes than of flame.
  11
        Pure as the snow the summer sun—
Never at noon hath look’d upon—
Deep, as is the diamond wave,
Hidden in the desert cave—
Changeless, as the greenest leaves
Of the wreath the cypress weaves—
Hopeless, often, when most fond—
Without hope or fear beyond
Its own pale fidelity—
And this woman’s love can be.
  12
        So much to win, so much to lose,
No marvel that I fear to choose.
  13
        The apple blossoms’ shower of pearl,
  Though blent with rosier hue,
As beautiful as woman’s blush,
  As evanescent, too.
  14
        The dream on the pillow,
  That flits with the day,
The leaf of the willow
  A breath wears away;
The dust on the blossom,
  The spray on the sea;
Ay,—ask thine own bosom—
  Are emblems of thee.
  15
        The wind has a language, I would I could learn!
Sometimes ’tis soothing, and sometimes ’tis stern,
Sometimes it comes like a low sweet song,
And all things grow calm, as the sound floats along,
And the forest is lull’d by the dreamy strain,
And slumber sinks down on the wandering main,
And its crystal arms are folded in rest,
And the tall ship sleeps on its heaving breast.
  16
        These are the spiders of society;
They weave their petty webs of lies and sneers,
And lie themselves in ambush for the spoil,
The web seems fair, and glitters in the sun,
And the poor victim winds him in the toil
Before he dreams of danger or of death.
  17
        Violets!—deep-blue violets!
April’s loveliest coronets!
There are no flowers grow in the vale,
Kiss’d by the dew, woo’d by the gale,—
None by the dew of the twilight wet,
So sweet as the deep-blue violet.
  18
  A sealed book, at whose contents we tremble.  19
  A woman’s fame is the tomb of her happiness.  20
 
 
  Alas, we make a ladder of our thoughts, where angels step, but sleep ourselves at the foot; our high resolves look down upon our slumbering acts.  21
  And this is woman’s fate: all her affections are called into life by winning flatteries, and then thrown back upon themselves to perish; and her heart, her trusting heart, filled with weak tenderness, is left to bleed or break!  22
  Are we not like the actor of old times, who wore his mask so long his face took its likeness?  23
  Do anything but love; or if thou lovest and art a woman, hide thy love from him whom thou dost worship; never let him know how dear he is; flit like a bird before him; lead him from tree to tree, from flower to flower; but be not won, or thou wilt, like that bird, when caught and caged, be left to pine neglected and perish in forgetfulness.  24
  Down she bent her head upon an arm so white that tears seemed but the natural melting of its snow, touched by the flushed cheek’s crimson.  25
  Eyes that droop like summer flowers.  26
  Few, save the poor, feel for the poor.  27
  Had he not long read the heart’s hushed secret in the soft, dark eye, lighted at his approach, and on the cheek, coloring all crimson at his lightest look?  28
  Hope is love’s happiness, but not its life.  29
  Hopes and regrets are the sweetest links of existence.  30
  How Disappointment tracks the steps of Hope!  31
  How often, in this cold and bitter world, is the warm heart thrown back upon itself! Cold, careless, are we of another’s grief; we wrap ourselves in sullen selfishness.  32
  I do love violets; they tell the history of woman’s love.  33
  I will look on the stars and look on thee, and read the page of thy destiny.  34
  Music moves us, and we know not why; we feel the tears, but cannot trace their source. Is it the language of some other state, born of its memory? For what can wake the soul’s strong instinct of another world, like music?  35
  Music,—we love it for the buried hopes, the garnered memories, the tender feelings it can summon at a touch.  36
  My heart is its own grave!  37
  My tears are buried in my heart, like cave-locked fountains sleeping.  38
  Oh, only those whose souls have felt this one idolatry can tell how precious is the slightest thing affection gives and hallows.  39
  One of the greatest of all mental pleasures is to have our thoughts often divined: ever entered into with sympathy.  40
  Sneering springs out of the wish to deny; and wretched must that state of mind be that wishes to take refuge in doubt.  41
  Social life is filled with doubts and vain aspirings; solitude, when the imagination is dethroned, is turned to weariness and ennui.  42
  Society is like a large piece of frozen water; and skating well is the great art of social life.  43
  The heart’s hashed secret in the soft dark eye.  44
  The rich know not how hard it is to be of needful rest and needful food debarred.  45
  The stars are so far, far away!  46
  Thou know’st how fearless is my trust in thee.  47
  Thy voice is sweet as if it took its music from thy face.  48
  What is life? A gulf of troubled waters, where the soul, like a vexed bark, is tossed upon the waves of pain and pleasure by the wavering breath of passions.  49
 
 
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