Power

P
Six Songs of Love, Constancy, Romance, Inconstancy, Truth, and Marriage by Letitia Elizabeth Landon
Letitia Elizabeth Landon
Oh! yet one smile, tho' dark may lower
Around thee clouds of woe and ill,
Let me yet feel that I have power,
Mid Fate's bleak storms, to soothe thee still.

Tho' sadness be upon thy brow,
Yet let it turn, dear love, to me,
I cannot bear that thou should'st know
Sorrow I do not share with thee.
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Spring and All: XIX This is the time of year by William Carlos Williams
William Carlos Williams
This is the time of year
when boys fifteen and seventeen
wear two horned lilac blossoms
in their caps — or over one ear

What is it that does this ?

It is a certain sort —
drivers for grocers or taxidrivers
white and colored —
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from The Book of the Dead: The Dam by Muriel Rukeyser
Muriel Rukeyser
All power is saved, having no end. Rises
in the green season, in the sudden season
the white the budded
and the lost.
Water celebrates, yielding continually
sheeted and fast in its overfall
slips down the rock, evades the pillars
building its colonnades, repairs
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Getting the Child to Bed by Allen Grossman
Allen Grossman
Getting the child to bed is awful work,
Committing that rage to sleep that will not sleep.
The lie rots in my throat saying, “O.K.
There is balm in Gilead. Go to bed.
Honey of generation has betrayed us both.”
And truly it is no wild surmise of darkness
Nor Pisgah purview of Canaan drowned in blood
But only my child saying its say in bed.
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The Kiss by Siegfried Sassoon
Siegfried Sassoon
To these I turn, in these I trust—
Brother Lead and Sister Steel.
To his blind power I make appeal,
I guard her beauty clean from rust.

He spins and burns and loves the air,
And splits a skull to win my praise;
But up the nobly marching days
She glitters naked, cold and fair.

Sweet Sister, grant your soldier this:
That in good fury he may feel
The body where he sets his heel
Quail from your downward darting kiss.
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Soldier: Twentieth Century by Isaac Rosenberg
Isaac Rosenberg
I love you, great new Titan!
Am I not you?
Napoleon and Caesar
Out of you grew.

Out of unthinkable torture,
Eyes kissed by death,
Won back to the world again,
Lost and won in a breath,

Cruel men are made immortal.
Out of your pain born,
They have stolen the sun's power
With their feet on your shoulders worn.

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Delia 47: Read in my face a volume of despairs by Samuel Daniel
Samuel Daniel
Read in my face a volume of despairs,
The wailing Iliads of my tragic woe,
Drawn with my blood and printed with my cares
Wrought by her hand, that I have honor'd so.
Who, whilst I burn, she sings at my soul's wrack,
Looking aloft from turret of her pride;
There my soul's tyrant joys her in the sack
Of her own seat, whereof I made her guide.
There do these smokes that from affliction rise,
Serve as an incense to a cruel Dame;
A sacrifice thrice grateful to her eyes,
Because their power serve to exact the same.
***Thus ruins she, to satisfy her will,
***The Temple where her name was honor'd still.
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Gullinge Sonnets 4: “The hardness of her heart and truth of mine” by John Davies
John Davies
The hardness of her heart and truth of mine
When the all-seeing eyes of heaven did see,
They straight concluded that by power divine
To other forms our hearts should turnèd be.
Then hers, as hard as flint, a flint became,
And mine, as true as steel, to steel was turned;
And then between our hearts sprang forth the flame
Of kindest love, which unextinguished burned.
And long the sacred lamp of mutual love
Incessantly did burn in glory bright,
Until my folly did her fury move
To recompense my service with despite;
And to put out with snuffers of her pride
The lamp of love which else had never died.
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Your World by Georgia Douglas Johnson
Georgia Douglas Johnson
Your world is as big as you make it.
I know, for I used to abide
In the narrowest nest in a corner,
My wings pressing close to my side.

But I sighted the distant horizon
Where the skyline encircled the sea
And I throbbed with a burning desire
To travel this immensity.

I battered the cordons around me
And cradled my wings on the breeze,
Then soared to the uttermost reaches
With rapture, with power, with ease!
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In this short Life that only lasts an hour (1292) by Emily Dickinson
Emily Dickinson
In this short Life that only lasts an hour
How much - how little - is within our power
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Sonnet 139: O, call not me to justify the wrong by William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare
O, call not me to justify the wrong
That thy unkindness lays upon my heart;
Wound me not with thine eye but with thy tongue;
Use power with power, and slay me not by art.
Tell me thou lov’st elsewhere; but in my sight,
Dear heart, forbear to glance thine eye aside;
What need’st thou wound with cunning when thy might
Is more than my o’erpressed defense can bide?
Let me excuse thee: ah, my love well knows
Her pretty looks have been mine enemies;
And therefore from my face she turns my foes,
That they elsewhere might dart their injuries—
Yet do not so; but since I am near slain,
Kill me outright with looks and rid my pain.
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The Glass Bubbles by Samuel Greenberg
Samuel Greenberg
The motion of gathering loops of water
Must either burst or remain in a moment.
The violet colors through the glass
Throw up little swellings that appear
And spatter as soon as another strikes
And is born; so pure are they of colored
Hues, that we feel the absent strength
Of its power. When they begin they gather
Like sand on the beach: each bubble
Contains a complete eye of water.
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The Death of Lincoln by William Cullen Bryant
William Cullen Bryant
Oh, slow to smite and swift to spare,
Gentle and merciful and just!
Who, in the fear of God, didst bear
The sword of power, a nation’s trust!

In sorrow by thy bier we stand,
Amid the awe that hushes all,
And speak the anguish of a land
That shook with horror at thy fall.

Thy task is done; the bond are free:
We bear thee to an honored grave,
Whose proudest monument shall be
The broken fetters of the slave.

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Two Pastorals for Samuel Palmer at Shoreham, Kent by Jonathan Williams
Jonathan Williams
I. “If the Night Could Get Up & Walk”

I cannot put my hand into
a cabbage to turn
on the light, but

the moon moves over
the field of dark cabbage and an
exchange fills
all veins.
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Mutability "We are as clouds that veil the midnight moon" by Percy Bysshe Shelley
Percy Bysshe Shelley

I.
We are as clouds that veil the midnight moon;
How restlessly they speed and gleam and quiver,
Streaking the darkness radiantly! yet soon
Night closes round, and they are lost for ever:—

II.
Or like forgotten lyres whose dissonant strings
Give various response to each varying blast,
To whose frail frame no second motion brings
One mood or modulation like the last.

III.
We rest—a dream has power to poison sleep;
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The Kiss by Robert Graves
Robert Graves
Are you shaken, are you stirred
By a whisper of love,
Spellbound to a word
Does Time cease to move,
Till her calm grey eye
Expands to a sky
And the clouds of her hair
Like storms go by?

Then the lips that you have kissed
Turn to frost and fire,
And a white-steaming mist
Obscures desire:
So back to their birth
Fade water, air, earth,
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To the Swimmer by Countee Cullen
Countee Cullen
Now as I watch you, strong of arm and endurance, battling and struggling
With the waves that rush against you, ever with invincible strength returning
Into my heart, grown each day more tranquil and peaceful, comes a fierce longing
Of mind and soul that will not be appeased until, like you, I breast yon deep and boundless expanse of blue.

With an outward stroke of power intense your mighty arm goes forth,
Cleaving its way through waters that rise and roll, ever a ceaseless vigil keeping
Over the treasures beneath.

My heart goes out to you of dauntless courage and spirit indomitable,
And though my lips would speak, my spirit forbids me to ask,
“Is your heart as true as your arm?”

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Power by Audre Lorde
Audre Lorde
The difference between poetry and rhetoric
is being ready to kill
yourself
instead of your children.

I am trapped on a desert of raw gunshot wounds
and a dead child dragging his shattered black
face off the edge of my sleep
blood from his punctured cheeks and shoulders
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Thou Art My Lute by Paul Laurence Dunbar
Paul Laurence Dunbar
Thou art my lute, by thee I sing,—
My being is attuned to thee.
Thou settest all my words a-wing,
And meltest me to melody.

Thou art my life, by thee I live,
From thee proceed the joys I know;
Sweetheart, thy hand has power to give
The meed of love—the cup of woe.

Thou art my love, by thee I lead
My soul the paths of light along,
From vale to vale, from mead to mead,
And home it in the hills of song.

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from Pamphilia to Amphilanthus: 19 by Lady Mary Wroth
Lady Mary Wroth
Come darkest night, becoming sorrow best;
Light; leave thy light; fitt for a lightsome soule;
Darknes doth truly sure with mee oprest
Whom absence power doth from mirthe controle:

The very trees with hanging heads condole
Sweet sommers parting, and of leaves distrest
In dying coulers make a griefe-full role;
Soe much (alas) to sorrow are they prest,

Thus of dead leaves her farewell carpett’s made:
Theyr fall, theyr branches, all theyr mournings prove;
With leavles, naked bodies, whose huese vade
From hopefull greene, to wither in theyr love,

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from The Countesse of Montgomery’s Urania: “Love peruse me, seeke, and finde” by Lady Mary Wroth
Lady Mary Wroth
Love peruse me, seeke, and finde
How each corner of my minde
Is a twine
Woven to shine.
Not a Webb ill made, foule fram’d,
Bastard not by Father nam’d,
Such in me
Cannot bee.
Deare behold me, you shall see
Faith the Hive, and love the Bee,
Which doe bring.
Gaine and sting.
Pray desect me, sinewes, vaines,
Hold, and loves life in those gaines;
Lying bare
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Rite by Henry Dumas
Henry Dumas
Vodu green clinching his waist,
obi purple ringing his neck,
Shango, God of the spirits,
whispering in his ear,
thunderlight stabbing the island
of blood rising from his skull.

Mojo bone in his fist
strikes the sun from his eye.
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On the Steps of the Jefferson Memorial by Linda Pastan
Linda Pastan
We invent our gods
the way the Greeks did,
in our own image—but magnified.
Athena, the very mother of wisdom,
squabbled with Poseidon
like any human sibling
until their furious tempers
made the sea writhe.
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Her Head by Joan Murray
Joan Murray
Near Ekuvukeni,
in Natal, South Africa,
a woman carries water on her head.
After a year of drought,
when one child in three is at risk of death,
she returns from a distant well,
carrying water on her head.

The pumpkins are gone,
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Considering the Snail by Thom Gunn
Thom Gunn
The snail pushes through a green
night, for the grass is heavy
with water and meets over
the bright path he makes, where rain
has darkened the earth’s dark. He
moves in a wood of desire,

pale antlers barely stirring
as he hunts. I cannot tell
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A Literalist by Robin Blaser
Robin Blaser
the root and mirror
of a plant
its shape
and power familiar
iris

the light is disturbed by
the boxwood leaves
shining
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Sophia Nichols, by Robin Blaser
Robin Blaser
the wind hits and returns it is easy to personify
a new place and language, but the new body stings

these men with green eyelids, drawing their worth,
it was rumoured, from Egypt, knew

the work is part of it a power arrived at the
same thirst

he borrowed a head for a day

but which head the phrases tremble in the other
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My Life had stood - a Loaded Gun (764) by Emily Dickinson
Emily Dickinson
My Life had stood - a Loaded Gun -
In Corners - till a Day
The Owner passed - identified -
And carried Me away -

And now We roam in Sovreign Woods -
And now We hunt the Doe -
And every time I speak for Him
The Mountains straight reply -
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To Madame Curie by Alice Moore Dunbar-Nelson
Alice Moore Dunbar-Nelson
Oft have I thrilled at deeds of high emprise,
And yearned to venture into realms unknown,
Thrice blessed she, I deemed, whom God had shown
How to achieve great deeds in woman’s guise.
Yet what discov’ry by expectant eyes
Of foreign shores, could vision half the throne
Full gained by her, whose power fully grown
Exceeds the conquerors of th’ uncharted skies?
So would I be this woman whom the world
Avows its benefactor; nobler far,
Than Sybil, Joan, Sappho, or Egypt’s queen.
In the alembic forged her shafts and hurled
At pain, diseases, waging a humane war;
Greater than this achievement, none, I ween.
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Love Letters by Josephine Delphine Henderson Heard
Josephine Delphine Henderson Heard
Dear Letters, Fond Letters,
Must I with you part?
You are such a source of joy
To my lonely heart.

Sweet Letters, Dear Letters,
What a tell you tell;
O, no power on earth can break
This strange mystic spell!

Dear Letters, Fond Letters,
You my secret know—
Don’t you tell it, any one—
Let it live and grow.

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Self-Mastery by Henrietta Cordelia Ray
Henrietta Cordelia Ray
To catch the spirit in its wayward flight
Through mazes manifold, what task supreme!
For when to floods has grown the quiet stream,
Much human skill must aid its rage to fight;
And when wild winds invade the solemn night,
Seems not man’s vaunted power but a dream?
And still more futile, ay, we e’en must deem
This quest to tame the soul, and guide aright
Its restless wanderings, – to lure it back
To shoals of calm. Full many a moan and sigh
Attend the strife; till, effort merged in prayer,
Oft uttered, clung to – when of strength the lack
Seems direst – brings the answer to our cry:
A gift from Him who lifts our ev’ry care.

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To Shakespeare by Frances Anne Kemble
Frances Anne Kemble
Oft, when my lips I open to rehearse
Thy wondrous spell of wisdom, and of power,
And that my voice, and thy immortal verse,
On listening ears, and hearts, I mingled pour,
I shrink dismayed – and awful doth appear
The vain presumption of my own weak deed;
Thy glorious spirit seems to mine so near,
That suddenly I tremble as I read –
Thee an invisible auditor I fear:
Oh, if it might be so, my master dear!
With what beseeching would I pray to thee,
To make me equal to my noble task,
Succor from thee, how humbly would I ask,
Thy worthiest works to utter worthily.

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A Poem for Children with Thoughts on Death by Jupiter Hammon
Jupiter Hammon
I

O Ye young and thoughtless youth,
Come seek the living God,
The scriptures are a sacred truth,
Ye must believe the word.
Eccl. xii. 1.

II

Tis God alone can make you wise,
His wisdom’s from above,
He fills the soul with sweet supplies
By his redeeming love.
Prov. iv. 7.
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Leda and the Swan by William Butler Yeats
William Butler Yeats
A sudden blow: the great wings beating still
Above the staggering girl, her thighs caressed
By the dark webs, her nape caught in his bill,
He holds her helpless breast upon his breast.

How can those terrified vague fingers push
The feathered glory from her loosening thighs?
And how can body, laid in that white rush,
But feel the strange heart beating where it lies?
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Remember by Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes
Remember
The days of bondage—
And remembering—
Do not stand still.
Go to the highest hill
And look down upon the town
Where you are yet a slave.
Look down upon any town in Carolina
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Amoretti XXX: My Love is like to ice, and I to fire by Edmund Spenser
Edmund Spenser
My Love is like to ice, and I to fire:
How comes it then that this her cold so great
Is not dissolved through my so hot desire,
But harder grows the more I her entreat?
Or how comes it that my exceeding heat
Is not allayed by her heart-frozen cold,
But that I burn much more in boiling sweat,
And feel my flames augmented manifold?
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Angellica’s Lament by Aphra Behn
Aphra Behn
Had I remained in innocent security,
I should have thought all men were born my slaves,
And worn my power like lightning in my eyes,
To have destroyed at pleasure when offended.
—But when love held the mirror, the undeceiving glass
Reflected all the weakness of my soul, and made me know
My richest treasure being lost, my honour,
All the remaining spoil could not be worth
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Cassandra by H.D.
H.D.
O Hymen king.

Hymen, O Hymen king,
what bitter thing is this?
what shaft, tearing my heart?
what scar, what light, what fire
searing my eye-balls and my eyes with flame?
nameless, O spoken name,
king, lord, speak blameless Hymen.
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A Fable by Matthew Prior
Matthew Prior
In Aesop’s tales an honest wretch we find,
Whose years and comforts equally declined;
He in two wives had two domestic ills,
For different age they had, and different wills;
One plucked his black hairs out, and one his gray,
The man for quietness did both obey,
Till all his parish saw his head quite bare,
And thought he wanted brains as well as hair.

The Moral

The parties, henpecked William, are thy wives,
The hairs they pluck are thy prerogatives;
Tories thy person hate, the Whigs thy power,
Though much thou yieldest, still they tug for more,
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from Hero and Leander: "It lies not in our power to love or hate" by Christopher Marlowe
Christopher Marlowe
It lies not in our power to love or hate,
For will in us is overruled by fate.
When two are stripped, long ere the course begin,
We wish that one should lose, the other win;
And one especially do we affect
Of two gold ingots, like in each respect:
The reason no man knows; let it suffice
What we behold is censured by our eyes.
Where both deliberate, the love is slight:
Who ever loved, that loved not at first sight?
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Little Elegy by Elinor Wylie
Elinor Wylie
Withouten you
No rose can grow;
No leaf be green
If never seen
Your sweetest face;
No bird have grace
Or power to sing;
Or anything
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Magnificat in Little by Léonie Adams
Léonie Adams
I was enriched, not casting after marvels,
But as one walking in a usual place,
Without desert but common eyes and ears,
No recourse but to hear, power but to see,
Got to love you of grace.

Subtle musicians, that could body wind,
Or contrive strings to anguish, in conceit
Random and artless strung a branch with bells,
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National Insecurity by Tomas Tranströmer
Tomas Tranströmer
The Under Secretary leans forward and draws an X
and her ear-drops dangle like swords of Damocles.

As a mottled butterfly is invisible against the ground
so the demon merges with the opened newspaper.

A helmet worn by no one has taken power.
The mother-turtle flees flying under the water.
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One's-Self I Sing by Walt Whitman
Walt Whitman
One’s-Self I sing, a simple separate person,
Yet utter the word Democratic, the word En-Masse.

Of physiology from top to toe I sing,
Not physiognomy alone nor brain alone is worthy for the Muse, I say the Form complete is worthier far,
The Female equally with the Male I sing.

Of Life immense in passion, pulse, and power,
Cheerful, for freest action form’d under the laws divine,
The Modern Man I sing.
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The Passions that we Fought with and Subdued by Trumbull Stickney
Trumbull Stickney
The passions that we fought with and subdued
Never quite die. In some maimed serpent’s coil
They lurk, ready to spring and vindicate
That power was once our torture and our lord.
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Perpetuum Mobile by Marin Sorescu
Marin Sorescu
Between people’s
ideals
and their realization
there is always
a greater drop
than in the highest
of waterfalls.

This potential gradient
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Pillow Talk by John Fuller
John Fuller
Wondered Knob-Cracker at Stout-Heart:
‘Are you timed by your will, does your pulse
List credit, ready to slam like a till?
Can you keep it up?’

Growled Beard Splitter to Smug:
‘Your forces delay, bibbing at Northern walls
While snow drives rifts between, barring the way.
I am sufficient.’
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Sonnet by James Weldon Johnson
James Weldon Johnson
My heart be brave, and do not falter so,
Nor utter more that deep, despairing wail.
Thy way is very dark and drear I know,
But do not let thy strength and courage fail;
For certain as the raven-winged night
Is followed by the bright and blushing morn,
Thy coming morrow will be clear and bright;
’Tis darkest when the night is furthest worn.
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Sonnet 65: Since brass, nor stone, nor earth, nor boundless sea by William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare
Since brass, nor stone, nor earth, nor boundless sea
But sad mortality o’er-sways their power,
How with this rage shall beauty hold a plea,
Whose action is no stronger than a flower?
O, how shall summer’s honey breath hold out
Against the wrackful siege of batt’ring days,
When rocks impregnable are not so stout,
Nor gates of steel so strong, but time decays?
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Sonnet 1: Dost see how unregarded now by Sir John Suckling
Sir John Suckling
Dost see how unregarded now
That piece of beauty passes?
There was a time when I did vow
To that alone;
But mark the fate of faces;
The red and white works now no more on me
Than if it could not charm, or I not see.
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Sonnet: I Scarcely Grieve by Henry Timrod
Henry Timrod
I scarcely grieve, O Nature! at the lot
That pent my life within a city’s bounds,
And shut me from thy sweetest sights and sounds.
Perhaps I had not learned, if some lone cot
Had nursed a dreamy childhood, what the mart
Taught me amid its turmoil; so my youth
Had missed full many a stern but wholesome truth.
Here, too, O Nature! in this haunt of Art,
Thy power is on me, and I own thy thrall.
There is no unimpressive spot on earth!
The beauty of the stars is over all,
And Day and Darkness visit every hearth.
Clouds do not scorn us: yonder factory’s smoke
Looked like a golden mist when morning broke.
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Surprised by Joy by William Wordsworth
William Wordsworth
Surprised by joy—impatient as the Wind
I turned to share the transport—Oh! with whom
But Thee, long buried in the silent Tomb,
That spot which no vicissitude can find?
Love, faithful love, recalled thee to my mind—
But how could I forget thee?—Through what power,
Even for the least division of an hour,
Have I been so beguiled as to be blind
To my most grievous loss!—That thought’s return
Was the worst pang that sorrow ever bore,
Save one, one only, when I stood forlorn,
Knowing my heart’s best treasure was no more;
That neither present time, nor years unborn
Could to my sight that heavenly face restore.

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Theodicy by Czeslaw Milosz
Czeslaw Milosz
No, it won’t do, my sweet theologians.
Desire will not save the morality of God.
If he created beings able to choose between good and evil,
And they chose, and the world lies in iniquity,
Nevertheless, there is pain, and the undeserved torture of creatures,
Which would find its explanation only by assuming
The existence of an archetypal Paradise
And a pre-human downfall so grave
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To - by Sarah Helen Whitman
Sarah Helen Whitman
Vainly my heart had with thy sorceries striven:
It had no refuge from thy love,—no Heaven
But in thy fatal presence;—from afar
It owned thy power and trembled like a star
O’erfraught with light and splendor. Could I deem
How dark a shadow should obscure its beam?—
Could I believe that pain could ever dwell
Where thy bright presence cast its blissful spell?
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To the King on his Navy by Edmund Waller
Edmund Waller
Where’er thy navy spreads her canvas wings,
Homage to thee, and peace to all, she brings:
The French and Spaniard, when thy flags appear,
Forget their hatred, and consent to fear.
So Jove from Ida did both hosts survey,
And when he pleas’d to thunder, part the fray.
Ships heretofore in seas like fishes sped,
The mightiest still upon the smallest fed:
Thou on the deep imposest nobler laws,
And by that justice hast remov’d the cause
Of those rude tempests, which, for rapine sent,
Too oft, alas, involv’d the innocent.
Now shall the ocean, as thy Thames, be free
From both those fates, of storms and piracy.
But we most happy, who can fear no force
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The Window, at the Moment of Flame by Alicia Ostriker
Alicia Ostriker
And all this while I have been playing with toys
A toy power station a toy automobile a house of blocks

And all this while far off in other lands
Thousands and thousands, millions and millions—

You know—you see the pictures
Women carrying their bony infants

Men sobbing over graves
Buildings sculpted by explosion
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Astrophil and Stella 7: When Nature made her chief work, Stella's eyes by Sir Philip Sidney
Sir Philip Sidney
When Nature made her chief work, Stella's eyes,
In colour black why wrapt she beams so bright?
Would she in beamy black, like painter wise,
Frame daintiest lustre, mix'd of shades and light?
Or did she else that sober hue devise,
In object best to knit and strength our sight;
Lest, if no veil these brave gleams did disguise,
They, sunlike, should more dazzle than delight?
Or would she her miraculous power show,
That, whereas black seems beauty's contrary,
She even in black doth make all beauties flow?
Both so, and thus,she,minding Love should be
Plac'd ever there, gave him this mourning weed
To honour all their deaths who for her bleed.
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41
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Disdain Returned by Thomas Carew
Thomas Carew
He that loves a rosy cheek,
Or a coral lip admires,
Or from star-like eyes doth seek
Fuel to maintain his fires;
As old Time makes these decay,
So his flames must waste away.

But a smooth and steadfast mind,
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40
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Family by Josephine Miles
Josephine Miles
When you swim in the surf off Seal Rocks, and your family
Sits in the sand
Eating potato salad, and the undertow
Comes which takes you out away down
To loss of breath loss of play and the power of play
Holler, say
Help, help, help. Hello, they will say,
Come back here for some potato salad.
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42
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For Futures by Josephine Miles
Josephine Miles
When the lights come on at five o'clock on street corners
That is Evolution by the bureau of power,
That is a fine mechanic dealing in futures:
For the sky is wide and warm upon that hour.
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39
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The Higher Pantheism by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
The sun, the moon, the stars, the seas, the hills and the plains,-
Are not these, O Soul, the Vision of Him who reigns?

Is not the Vision He, tho' He be not that which He seems?
Dreams are true while they last, and do we not live in dreams?

Earth, these solid stars, this weight of body and limb,
Are they not sign and symbol of thy division from Him?
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48
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The Hold-fast by George Herbert
George Herbert

I threaten'd to observe the strict decree
Of my dear God with all my power and might;
But I was told by one it could not be;
Yet I might trust in God to be my light.
"Then will I trust," said I, "in Him alone."
"Nay, e'en to trust in Him was also His:
We must confess that nothing is our own."
"Then I confess that He my succour is."
"But to have nought is ours, not to confess
That we have nought." I stood amaz'd at this,
Much troubled, till I heard a friend express
That all things were more ours by being His;
What Adam had, and forfeited for all,
Christ keepeth now, who cannot fail or fall.
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39
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The House of Life: 41. Through Death to Love by Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Like labour-laden moonclouds faint to flee
From winds that sweep the winter-bitten wold,—
Like multiform circumfluence manifold
Of night's flood-tide,—like terrors that agree
Of hoarse-tongued fire and inarticulate sea,—
Even such, within some glass dimm'd by our breath,
Our hearts discern wild images of Death,
Shadows and shoals that edge eternity.
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31
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Love Armed by Aphra Behn
Aphra Behn
Song from Abdelazar Love in Fantastic Triumph sat,
Whilst Bleeding Hearts around him flowed,
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32
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On the Departure of Sir Walter Scott from Abbotsford, for Naples by William Wordsworth
William Wordsworth

A trouble, not of clouds, or weeping rain,
Nor of the setting sun's pathetic light
Engendered, hangs o'er Eildon's triple height:
Spirits of Power, assembled there, complain
For kindred Power departing from their sight;
While Tweed, best pleased in chanting a blithe strain,
Saddens his voice again, and yet again.
Lift up your hearts, ye Mourners! for the might
Of the whole world's good wishes with him goes;
Blessings and prayers in nobler retinue
Than sceptred king or laurelled conqueror knows,
Follow this wondrous Potentate. Be true,
Ye winds of ocean, and the midland sea,
Wafting your Charge to soft Parthenope!
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42
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The Power of Armies is a Visible Thing by William Wordsworth
William Wordsworth

The power of Armies is a visible thing,
Formal and circumscribed in time and space;
But who the limits of that power shall trace
Which a brave People into light can bring
Or hide, at will,—for freedom combating
By just revenge inflamed? No foot may chase,
No eye can follow, to a fatal place
That power, that spirit, whether on the wing
Like the strong wind, or sleeping like the wind
Within its awful caves.—From year to year
Springs this indigenous produce far and near;
No craft this subtle element can bind,
Rising like water from the soil, to find
In every nook a lip that it may cheer.
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38
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Sonnet 94: They that have power to hurt and will do none by William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare
They that have power to hurt and will do none,
That do not do the thing they most do show,
Who, moving others, are themselves as stone,
Unmoved, cold, and to temptation slow:
They rightly do inherit heaven's graces
And husband nature's riches from expense;
They are the lords and owners of their faces,
Others but stewards of their excellence.
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39
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To The Indifferent Women by Charlotte Anna Perkins Gilman
Charlotte Anna Perkins Gilman
A Sestina You who are happy in a thousand homes,
Or overworked therein, to a dumb peace;
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39
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The Virgin by William Wordsworth
William Wordsworth

Mother! whose virgin bosom was uncrost
With the least shade of thought to sin allied.
Woman! above all women glorified,
Our tainted nature's solitary boast;
Purer than foam on central ocean tost;
Brighter than eastern skies at daybreak strewn
With fancied roses, than the unblemished moon
Before her wane begins on heaven's blue coast;
Thy image falls to earth. Yet some, I ween,
Not unforgiven the suppliant knee might bend,
As to a visible Power, in which did blend
All that was mixed and reconciled in thee
Of mother's love with maiden purity,
Of high with low, celestial with terrene!
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When I have Fears That I May Cease to Be by John Keats
John Keats
When I have fears that I may cease to be
Before my pen has gleaned my teeming brain,
Before high-pilèd books, in charactery,
Hold like rich garners the full ripened grain;
When I behold, upon the night’s starred face,
Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance,
And think that I may never live to trace
Their shadows with the magic hand of chance;
And when I feel, fair creature of an hour,
That I shall never look upon thee more,
Never have relish in the faery power
Of unreflecting love—then on the shore
Of the wide world I stand alone, and think
Till love and fame to nothingness do sink.
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37
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