Ah, love, let us be true To one another! for the world, which seems To lie before us like a land of dreams, So various, so beautiful, so new, Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light, Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain; And we are here as on a darkling plain Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight, Where ignorant armies clash by night.
But often, in the world’s most crowded streets,But often, in the din of strife,There rises an unspeakable desireAfter the knowledge of our buried life;A thirst to spend our fire and restless forceIn tracking out our true, original course;A longing to inquireInto the mystery of this heart which beatsSo wild, so deep in us—to knowWhence our lives come and where they go.
Weary of myself, and sick of asking What I am, and what I ought to be, At this vessel's prow I stand, which bears me Forwards, forwards, o'er the starlit sea.
Only--but this is rare--When a beloved hand is laid in ours,When, jaded with the rush and glareOf the interminable hours, Our eyes can in another's eyes read clear,When our world-deafen'd earIs by the tones of a loved voice caress'd--A bolt is shot back somewhere in our breast,And a lost pulse of feeling stirs again.The eye sinks inward, and the heart lies plain,And what we mean, we say, and what we would, we know.A man becomes aware of his life's flow,And hears its winding murmur; and he seesThe meadows where it glides, the sun, the breeze.
Come to me in my dreams, and thenBy day I shall be well again!For so the night will more than payThe hopeless longings of the day.
But often, in the world's most crowded streets,But often, in the din of strife,There rises an unspeakable desireAfter the knowledge of our buried life;A thirst to spend our fire and restless forceIn tracking out our true, original course.
Up the still, glistening beaches,Up the creeks we will hie,Over banks of bright seaweedThe ebb-tide leaves dry.We will gaze, from the sand-hills,At the white, sleeping town;At the church on the hill-side—And then come back down.Singing: There dwells a loved one,But cruel is she!She left lonely for everThe kings of the sea.(from poem 'The Forsaken Merman')
Alas, is even Love too weak to unlock the heart and let it speak? Are even lovers powerless to reveal To one another what indeed they feel?
The sea is calm tonight.The tide is full, the moon lies fairUpon the straits;- on the French coast the lightGleams and is gone; the cliffs of England stand,glimmering and vast, out in the tranquil bay.
For rigorous teachers seized my youth,And purged its faith, and trimmed its fire,Showed me the high, white star of Truth,There bade me gaze, and there aspire.Even now their whispers pierce the gloom'What dost thou in this living tomb?
It is so small a thing to have enjoyed the sun, to have lived light in the spring, to have loved, to have thought, to have done.
The nice sense of measure is certainly not one of Nature's gifts to her English children ... we have all of us yielded to infatuation at some moment of our lives.