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THE LIBRARY

OF

THE UNIVERSITY
OF CALIFORNIA

LOS ANGELES



POEMS

OF
PAGANISM;

OR.

SONGS

OF

LIFE AND
LOVE,



This Work and all the

publications of tbe Rorburgbe press

are supplied to the Trade by

Messrs.

SIMPKIN, MARSHALL, HAMILTON, KENT & Co.,
Limited,

and may be obtained through any Bookseller.



POEMS OF PAGANISM;



OR,



SONGS OF LIFE AND LOVE.



" PAGANUS "

(L. CRANMER-BYNG.)




LONDON :

THE ROXBURGHE PRESS,

3, Victoria Street,

Westminster,

and
32, Charing Cross, S.W.

MDCCCXCV.



Pf?

D5"

"F




DEDICATION.



ffrienb
GEORGE BARLOW.

PHOEBUS! wherever thou lightest, joy fol-

lows;

Heart of man wakens to music, and
sings :

" Glad are the rays that are Phoebus Apollo's,
Golden the hours of delight that he
brings."

Strong-hearted, lyre-loving God of the morn-

ing,
Darkness and falsehood shall shudder and

flee,
Gloom-mantled crime at thy presence take

warning,

Earth wake from sleep at the vision of
thee.



6 DEDICATION.

God of the truth that shines clear in the day-
time,
Light of the soul that hath wandered in

night,

Phoebus, oh, hearken, thou God of love's May-
time,
Lord of love's seasonless summer delight !

Who is it comes with the sunlight above

him,

Holding the sun-smitten lyre in his hand,
Making the hearts of us listen and love

him,

Sending a thrill through the night-weary
land?

Who is it lightens the load of our yearning,
Shows us the sun of our darkened desire ?

Music so passionate, beautiful, burning,

Surely no mortal could wake from the
lyre!

" This is my servant. The lyre of my

giving

Trembles to tell the sad spirits that
sleep



DEDICATION. 7

Night-dreams are over now Phoebus is

living,

See ! the doomed darkness dies over the
deep."

God-gifted singer of truth and of passion
Truth that is dawning, and love that is

free

Fain were my poor little numbers to fashion
Song that should hallow both Phoebus and
thee.

Lacking the lyre, with the pipe that was

hidden

Deep in the soil by some shepherd of yore,
Made I the songs that I send thee unbidden.
Let them not trouble thee. Where the
streets roar ;

Where the loud market with thousands is

thronging ;
Where the gold Moloch rears proudly his

head ;

These will be silent, nor fill thee with longing
For the green meads, and the days that
are dead.



8 DEDICATION.

Only for song-time and summer these numbers,
Where trees are many and mortals are

few ;

Where in the forest Pan wakens from slumbers.
Take them. I leave them to Nature and
you.



CONTENTS.



PAGE

DEDICATION 5

A PATRIOT POET II

A PRAYER FOR PEACE 13

ALL THAT I HAVE . l6

AU REVOIR NOT ADIEU! 1 8

CHRISTIAN AND PAGAN 2O

CLOUD, WIND, AND RAIN 22

CONCERNING TRUTH AND ART . . . .24

CUPID'S SLEEP 27

DESPAIR 28

GOOD-BYE, LOVE! 3

HAUNTED 3 2

HEART OF STONE 34

HESITATION 35

HOMEWARD BOUND 37

IGNORANT ROSES 39

KOSSUTH, LOUIS 4

LIFE 41

LIFT THE LYRE 43

LINUS TO LYTERSES 44

LINKED TO THE PAST 45

LOST IDEALS 47

LOVE AND THE LARK 49

LOVE BEYOND LAW 5 r

LOVE, DEATH, AND SONG, IN THRACE . . -54

LOVE LAUGHS AT CASTE 5&

LOVE, MORN, AND MUSIC 58

LOVE'S SILENT SHRINE 59

9



io CONTENTS.

PAGE

NATURE'S SADNESS [AFTER OLD ENGLISH] . . 62

PASSION'S PASTORAL 64

SLEEP, DEAR ! 66

SONG 68

SONNET 69

THEE ONLY 70

THE GUARDIAN OF THE FOUNT . . . .72

THE SEER 74

TO AN OLD-WORLD LOVE 77

TO L. G. A 80

TO NATURE 82

WHERE ARE YOU NOW? 84

THE BRIDE OF LIFE 86

CAROL NO MORE 88

BEYOND WORDS QO

OF HIS MUSE 91

THE LIGHT OF DEATH Q2

WHAT REMAINS 93

A FALLEN DEITY 94

ON READING "FROM DAWN TO SUNSET" . . 95

THE POET'S LEGACY 96

SUDDEN LIGHT 97

TO EURYDICE 99

THE MAIDEN'S VIGIL 100

FAREWELL! 101

WORLD WEARY 1O2

NO HEART BUT THINE ...... 103

SONG WITHOUT ECHO [FROM THE POLISH OF

MARIE KONOPNICKA] 104

SHOULD THEY ASK Io6

SLEEPER AND SENTINEL 1 07

LOVE'S WITNESS I08

VITA BREVIS 110

I/ENVOI. TO GEORGE BARLOW .III



A PATRIOT POET

O THE heart of England yearns
For a melody that burns,
For a young god from Olympus all the

morning's flush desire
In the chords that throb and quiver
As the sunlight on the river
From the hand that stirs to music all the
harp's imprisoned fire.



To a nation overwrought
In the wilderness of thought
O'er your pessimistic babble, little middlemen

of rhyme,

Down the years that damn and dull us
Pants the passion of Catullus,
Calls the seraph-soul of Shelley Byron's
rebel-heart sublime.



12 A PATRIOT POET.

You may persecute the brave,
Ply your scourge upon the slave,
But the blood of all the martyrs only swells

the tide of truth,
As it rolls serenely forward
To the billows beating shoreward,
And the sea and river mingle in the fiery lips
of youth.



God has written on your walls,
And the voice of freedom falls
On the ears of weary Titans as they dream

upon the soil.

And the world shall pause in wonder
As they rend their bonds asunder,
As the lyre's triumphant thunder sounds the
knell of sunless toil.



A PRAYER FOR PEACE

To the God of hapless beauty, to the Lord of

saddest song,
To the Guardian of that garden where all

broken hearts belong,
Of the poppy-sprinkled garden, where for ever

sets the sun,
Where lost lovers meet and mingle all their

spirit-life in one,
Where red passion strays a phantom of the

flame that flared and sped,
Where the dreamer lies a-dreaming of the

rapture that is dead,
Hear me, Lord, and dragon-watch o'er the

souls that peaceful dream,
With the walls of brass around them and the

ever-circling stream ;
For my heart is torn and bleeding, and the

soul of me is fain
For a cycle of the slumber that should ease

me of my pain.



14 A PRAYER FOR PEACE.

I have battled, I was beaten, and my captive

heart lies bound
By the sorrows that beset me, by the griefs

that gathered round.
I have sought the old-world shadows for their

silence that would keep,
For their sepulchres to save me from the

tossing, moaning deep :
But a voice cried : " On for ever ! Thou shalt

never know the shore,
Nor thy battered galley shelter from the

storms that are in store."
So I steered in desperation for the far-off

western waves,
For the garden of my vision, where love's

phantoms find their graves,
And the chill winds of religion howled around

my lonely soul,
And the mocking voice cried : "Onward !

Thou shalt never find the goal."
But I came to thee, great Guardian of the

broken hearts that lay
Where the noontide sun of passion fades to

crimson streams away,
Where two hearts are bound together in the

poppy-purpled sleep,



A PRAYER FOR PEACE. 15

And their sepulchres have saved them from

the tossing, moaning deep.
O thou guardian of the garden where lost

lovers lie and dream,
With the walls of brass around them and the

ever-circling stream,
Shall I never, never enter ? Shall my spirit

never rest
In the garden that lies dreaming in the

splendour of the West ?



ALL THAT I HAVE.

I CANNOT veil the past

Whose gloomy shadows cast
Their awful length of blackness on your life ;

But take this hand to guide

And steer you down the tide,
This loving breast to shield you through the
strife.

All that I have is yours

A passion that endures,
A heart to follow music unto truth,

A soul that cannot quail

From very shame to fail,
And all the deep devotedness of youth.

Faith is not mine to give :

Enough for me I live
To aid some fellow-being to the sun,

Whose mild and mellow rays

Shall light those happy days
When all our hopeless seeking shall be done.

16



ALL THAT I HAVE. 17

I may not faultless be,

Sin stains my purity,
And sorrow in my heart holds bitter feast ;

But love has power to save

From dark dishonour's grave
A soul that never herded with the beast.

Ah ! give me of that love,

That I may worthy prove,
And, hand in hand, redemption we will seek,

Through life's vast loneliness,

Through trouble and distress,
Till time has kissed the teardrops from your
cheek.



AU REVOIR NOT ADIEU!

Au REVOIR not Adieu ! For the thought

of our parting
Strikes chill on the heart that beats only

for you ;

Ere soul forsakes soul, into solitude starting,
By all that was love, Au Revoir not
Adieu !



Au Revoir not Adieu. As I clasp you and

kiss you
More true than a mistress, more tender

than wife
My heart cannot learn its sad lesson to miss

you,

To tear out the tendrils of love from my
life.

18



AU REVOIR NOT ADIEU! 19

Au Revoir not Adieu ! Like a knell that is

tolling,

The bell for departure rings agony dumb ;
And lips madly meet for some sweetness

consoling,

Some wish to conceal that the parting has
come.

Little girl, with your brown eyes of innocent

wonder,
Little rosebud so ruthlessly brought into

bloom,

The sword of adversity sweeps us asunder ;
But love, like a beacon, shall glow through
the gloom. '

Au Revoir not Adieu ! For a time we must

sever ;
But the grass has its green, and the sea has

its blue,
And you have my heart keep it, darling, for

ever :

Fate parts, love abides. Au Revoir not
Adieu !



CHRISTIAN AND PAGAN.

Christian,

TENDER and true she waits for you
In the beautiful burnished skies ;

Your darling waits at the jewelled gates
Of the garden of Paradise.

Pagan.

Alas ! my friend, and is this the end
Of a love that lived like ours :

To view one's own on a golden throne,
With a diadem of flowers ;

To hear her play on a harp alway ;

See nightgown frippery fold
About her waist ? Has Heaven no taste

For a woman of lovely mould ?



CHRISTIAN AND PAGAN. 21

And the songs I taught will they count for
aught,

Those wonderful heathen lays ?
No, no ! She'll hymn for an angel's whim,

Through the tedious golden days.

Each fond embrace is a dire disgrace,

With the eye of God above,
And the saints would blush, as His voice said :
" Hush !

Ye must put away your love."

Calm, cold, and pure, ye may endure ;

Yet passion shall pine with drouth
For love's fair form, and the kisses warm

Of her beautiful burning mouth.

No Heaven for me, but the dancing sea,

And the far-off Lydian shore ;
Where, hand in hand, in her own bright land,

We'll linger and love once more.

And she shall sing to the lute I bring,

And sorrow and care and pain
Shall pass away with the dying day,

And night shall return again.



22 CHRISTIAN AND PAGAN.

Then with the night comes lost delight :
Love lurks in each dreamy dale,

Whose eyes shall be the starry sea,
And whose voice the nightingale.



CLOUD, WIND, AND RAIN.

A MIST came out of the sea,
And a cloud fell over my heart :
But the mist and the cloud were part
Of a shadow that haunted me.

A moan went over the wave,
And cold on my spirit fell
The doom of a tolling bell,
And the thud of a closing grave.

Then rain swept under the skies,
And tears coursed over my cheek,
For the love that I vainly seek,
And the light of her dear lost eyes.

But night fled into the west,
And hope dawned out of my fears.
Love smiled upon sunlit tears,
And sorrow was fain to rest.



CONCERNING TRUTH AND ART.

TO ALL ORTHODOX.

THOUGH perchance no mortal numbers have

the power to wake from slumbers
All the silent spirits sleeping in the dark-
ness and the mist,
Still I'll sing the veiled stars gleaming, far

beyond your hopeless dreaming,
Who have followed marsh-lights streaming
to the doom ye daren't resist.

If I cannot climb the mountains, let me seek

secluded fountains,
Where the naiads lurk and listen to the

waters as they fall,
Weaving webs of fancy round me, where the

old-world magic found me,
Where love's flowery fetters bound me, too
ethereal to pall.
24



CONCERNING TRUTH AND ART. 25

Though ye drive me to perdition in the zeal

of superstition,
Tis your Master that ye martyr in each

sacerdotal soul.
From your Golgothas descending, follow not

with spite unending

Hearts their sunward journey wending,
thoughts no poet can control.

'Tis some awful power that plays us on this

mournful stage ; arrays us,
Some in rags and some in purple, for the

parts we fill untried,
To a scene for ever shifting, to a curtain ever

lifting,

On our flotsam spirits drifting into darkness
deified.

God made singer to discover, with the keen

eye of a lover,
All the cherished hidden secrets only

Nature's darlings know;
What bright rapture burns and blushes by

the gurgling tide that gushes
Down deep inlets among rushes when the
springtime blossoms blow.



26 CONCERNING TRUTH AND ART.

Art is sweet, but never, maiden, where the

dells with dreams are laden ;
Darkness loves red roses better than the

day loves roses white ;
All the sense of sweetly sinning, life's old

drama new beginning,
Love triumphant, passion winning, wait the
dark wings of the night.

Drooping heart, let all disown thee ; let each

passing bigot stone thee ;
Let their demon malice dog thee through

the ever-circling shade.
Music's star shines fair above thee ; loyal souls

shall learn to love thee ;
Persecution only prove thee fearless soldier
undismayed.

Yes ! if one sad soul might hear me, if my

music might endear me
To some lonely hero, fighting, grandly

conscious of his doom !
He shall clasp my hand for ever, though vast

leagues of ocean sever,
Though these mortal eyes may never see
the sunrise gild the gloom.



CUPID'S SLEEP.

SMOTHERED in roses, drenched in dew,
Sleep-flushed eyelids heavily pressed,
Half revealed, half hidden from view,
Cupid lies on the earth's green breast,
With a gush of notes from a thousand throats
For a lullaby, breathed o'er his dainty nest.

Hour by hour, in the dim moonlight,
Arrows had flashed from his deadly bow ;
And now he slumbers and dreams of night,
Red Eve and her passionate after-glow,
Of all the grace of a tell-tale face,
And the warm, wild words that are whispered
low.



DESPAIR.

SHE has left me the weight of a secret un-
spoken
A love half revealed in her sorrow-kissed

eyes.
Down the night of despair goes a heart that is

broken

To the hell of lost hope, where the worm
never dies.

She has sped from the sphere of my being for

ever;
She has left but a trail on the cloud-ridden

track ;
But if pride had not parted, no shadow could

sever,

And the heart she has trampled would
welcome her back.

38



DESPAIR. 29

Though I stretch out vain hands to a form

that evades me,

And pine for a voice that is utterly still,
Yet only in dreams her dear image upbraids

me,

And the hand of remorse on my bosom
falls chill.

Can the power that united us cleave us

asunder

The forces that lured us, so suddenly part ?
'Tis the soul answers " No " on the echoing

thunder ;

But the moan of despair sweeps a desolate
heart.



GOOD-BYE, LOVE!

SINCE I cannot compel you to love me
I will take to the forest my pain,

Where the green leaves of summer above me
Will banish the thought of disdain.

I will pour out my musical sorrow
To nature, than beauty more kind,

And my lute shall from ^olus borrow
The lilt of his wandering wind.

If I cannot compel you to render

The love I had died to possess,
I shall still find the nightingale tender,

Still welcome the moonbeam's caress.

In my heart just a shadow of sadness,
On my lips just the ghost of a sigh,

With a tear for the tremors of madness,
Sweet star of love's morning, good-bye !
30



GOOD-BYE, LOVE! 31

On my lips just the ghost of a sigh, love,
In my heart just a shadow of pain,

With a tear for our parting, good-bye, love !
Good-bye, little soul of disdain !



HAUNTED.

THERE'S a burden I cannot banish
In the long, lone hours of grief ;

It recedes, but will never vanish ;
It saddens, but brings relief;

It sighs o'er the sunken ashes
Of days that are past recall,

And loud the wind it lashes
Round fancy's funeral hall.

As I follow, entranced, and listen,

The meaning I half divine
Of the dews that in dark eyes glisten,

And spangle the night in mine.

Ah ! they tell of love's billows breaking

The barriers man has set,
Of passion from dream awaking,

Wild yearning, and vain regret

12



HAUNTED. 33

And I still hear the music rolling,
And shudder between the bars,

Though her knell they have long ceased

tolling,
And her soul's beyond the stars.



HEART OF STONE.

IN my heart a tune is ringing
That some strolling bard was singing
When the chill of parting came,
Breathing a beloved name ;
And the blinding tears fell fast
For the passion of the past.

Down the stricken night it waileth,
Till the demon darkness paleth,
And the weary watcher slips
Into dream with parted lips
Pallid face of wan despair,
And the moonbeams in his hair.

Mournful numbers, madness bringing,
In my breast your burden flinging,

Tell me, shall I never see

One whose love is life to me ?

Heart of grief, be heart of stone !

You must bear the cross alone.

34



HESITATION.

SHALL I pause on the brink for a moment to

shiver,

To peer into gloom that is dark as the grave ?
Or, scornful of self, launch my barque on the

river,
Cast care to the current, and trust to the wave ?

thou God, of this shuddering spirit the giver ;
What light for the lonely, what hope for the

slave ?

1 made me a palace of wonder and pleasure,
A garden of flowers in a land of delight ;

Each fount overflowed with song's infinite

measure ;
Mirth mellowed the day; love enchanted

the night :
All that passion could give of her tenderest

treasure

Was mine till the stars in their season took
flight.

35



36 HESITATION.

But frail are love's walls, and his palace must

crumble,
His garden grow weeds, and each fountain

fall dumb ;

Man's babels of bliss are predestined to tumble,
And the depths of remorse are there any

can plumb?
The tempest sweeps light o'er the lowly and

humble,

But the passionate heart in its pride must
succumb.

The light of my soul is it honour or glory ?
The star of my song is it wealth or

renown ?
What way leads to truth not encrimsoned

and gory ?
What guerdon of valour, save martyrdom's

crown ?

All ends are the same in life's pitiful story :
The peerless and brave in the battle go
down.



HOMEWARD BOUND.

GOOD-BYE ! good-bye to the hopes that were

reared and shattered :
A last farewell to the hours whose life was

flame.
Time never restores the blossoms his breath

has scattered :

The stars still gleam, but their beauty is
not the same.

The anchor's up, and our ship goes sweeping

seaward ;

Her white keel severs the shuddering, wine-
dark ways ;
But the billows of banished bliss come rolling

me-ward,

And bear me back to the haven of happier
days.

37



38 HOMEWARD BOUND.

The past lies fair, with its vistas of light behind

me
Like some brief shadow of dream from a

poppy-land ;
But bloomless garlands of sunless hope now

bind me,

And memory leaves but the touch of a
darling hand.

In my far-off, sea-caressed home fond hearts

are pleading :
There are crowns to weave, there are visions

of sunlit skies ;

But the fairest dream is ever the dream re-
ceding,

And the sweetest love is ever the love that
flies.



IGNORANT ROSES.

BLUE Plymouth waters woo my sweet,
Green Devon woodlands love her,

Red poppies meet her pretty feet,
Brown branches wave above her.

Gold sunbeams, shattered in her hair,

But glorify gold tresses,
And roses swear she is so fair

They pine for her caresses.

Ah ! roses red, how can ye know

The rapture of my lady ?
For love lies low where zephyrs blow

In dream-dells cool and shady.

What wist ye of the nodding night,
The thrill of moonlit kisses,

When, out of sight, love's warm delight
Mates all your modest misses ?

39



LOUIS KOSSUTH.

WHO will mourn the undying dead

Gone into darkness, garlanded,

Fame's tender trophies around his head ?

Who will mourn for a nation's night ;
Weep for the woes of trampled right,
Sunless sorrow, and starless might ?

Stained, bedewed with the blood of strife,
Freedom flashed on the hero life ;
Lured his spirit when storms were rife.

Time unites what the sword may sever
Death may come, but oblivion never :
Louis Kossuth lives on for ever.



LIFE.

OH, earth and sky, I live ! for love compelling
Has rilled the thirsty inlets of my soul.

I feel the fount of song within me welling,
And passion's frenzied billows slip control.

For one fair woman's eyes, divinely tender,
Mirrored in mine, have blinded them with

love ;

Then rose my sun, my angel, my defender,
Where calumny with lonely weakness
strove.

I, who caressed the withered wanton Anguish,
Supped off a sigh, and drained no toast but

tears,
Doomed in the dungeons of despair to

languish,

Counting each hour a myriad mournful
years



42 LIFE.

I, whom the Levite left with pious loathing,
Wounded and well-nigh perished from the

drouth,

Waken to life, whom love, with pity clothing,
Heals with the countless kisses of her
mouth.



LIFT THE LYRE.

LIFT the lyre from failing fingers
Ere the hand is cold and set ;

Still the fire of music lingers

Where the strings with tears are wet.

You who loved him softly taking,
Place it on his peaceful breast ;

Nevermore the silence breaking
Lord and lyre shall take their rest.

Do not mourn the dead musician ;

Stay the tears ye idly shed.
Deep in poppy-bloom Elysian

Let him lay his weary head.

Only weep for words unspoken,
Sigh but for the songs unsung.

Death salutes him by this token
Whom the Gods love perish young.

43



LINUS TO LYTERSES.

WHAT of the past, Lyterses ?

What of the gathered years ?
Time, with his tender mercies,

Leaves not a stain of tears.

Where are the joys that bound us ?

Where are the songs we sung?
Where the warm hands that crowned us

Kings, when the world was young ?

Weary of life immortal

Linus in languor nods,
Dreaming of death's dream-portal,

Panting to sleep with gods.

Go, little gush of verses,

Over Time's barren bars :
Whisper to lone Lyterses,

" Linus still seeks the stars."



LINKED TO THE PAST.

OUR roots strike deep into the soil of time,
The loam of perished ages holds us fast,
And though with heavenward glance we soar

sublime,

We cannot wholly rid us of the past
Still superstition croons, though Faith be

gone,
And timid Conscience mumbles sadly on.

For dim ancestral spectres dog our ways,
Live in each varied mood, each passing

thought.
From the drear store-house of their garnered

days
Faint hopes, forgotten fears, old joys, en-

wrought

Into the living brain, can often teach
A grander lesson than the parsons preach.

45



46 LINKED TO THE PAST.

We wear the robes of dead humanity ;

The cerements of our Fathers wrap us round ;

We cannot 'scape them, though we vainly try.

Dull matter weighs upon us : we are bound

By links of ancient virtue, former sin,

And perished deeds pursue their course within.

The fool abhors his earthly tenement,
And pines for hell in hopes of future bliss,
Raising of blood and tears a monument
A lasting token lest Jehovah miss
His glut of Christian gore. Why shun the

sod,
Poor fool, when soul and matter meet in

God?



LOST IDEALS.

YOUTH fades, but the star that we loved and

vowed to follow
And seek till the long night sank upon

darkened eyes
Has this, too, left us alone in the hateful

hollow

Where mute despair on the bosom of mad-
ness lies ?

Is there no faith in the far-off light that made

us
The hero souls that we seemed when the

years were young ?

Will no dim gleam of our glorious trust up-
braid us ?

No memory rise and rebuke till the heart
is wrung?

47



48 LOST IDEALS.

One star soon fails ; but the lesson its beauty

taught us,
Shall this, too, fail when the current of life

runs slack ;
When tyrannous Time and his henchman,

Care, have sought us,

And doubt's wan face ever peers o'er the
waters black?

The tiller slips from the stiffened hand that

guided
Hope's buoyant barque in her course

through the moonless sea,
And the shuddering coward steers into port

who prided

His soul in its scorn of the waves, in the
will of the free.

Still, far away, down the dark -browed night

is streaming
* Truth's burning star in its glory and

grandeur lone ;
It kindles the young, it colours e'en childhood's

dreaming,
But old men sleep, and forget that it ever

shone.



LOVE AND THE LARK.

O YOU so fair, whose glorious hair,
Bright aureole, beams above you,

Your beauty fires a thousand lyres
Whose masters madly love you.

O you so sweet, whose tiny feet
Made glad the gloom around me,

Though none came near the darkness drear


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