Winter: My Secret by Christina Rossetti
Christina Rossetti
I tell my secret? No indeed, not I;
Perhaps some day, who knows?
But not today; it froze, and blows and snows,
And you’re too curious: fie!
You want to hear it? well:
Only, my secret’s mine, and I won’t tell.

Or, after all, perhaps there’s none:
Suppose there is no secret after all,
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Any by George Bowering
George Bowering
Fresh out of the icebox, this brain looks
the wrong way from time to time, and misses
the cat stepping by, Gerry on the screen
laboring to tell the nuances his pink matter
almost notices, he’s not my brother, not really
my close friend, just my necessary neighbor
on a bicycle going by like a whistle from
the lips of someone I trust. He has a peculiar
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What I Expected by Stephen Spender
Stephen Spender
What I expected, was
Thunder, fighting,
Long struggles with men
And climbing.
After continual straining
I should grow strong;
Then the rocks would shake
And I rest long.
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“God! How I hate you, you young cheerful men” by Arthur Graeme West
Arthur Graeme West
God! How I hate you, you young cheerful men,
Whose pious poetry blossoms on your graves

As soon as you are in them, nurtured up
By the salt of your corruption, and the tears
Of mothers, local vicars, college deans,
And flanked by prefaces and photographs
From all you minor poet friends—the fools—
Who paint their sentimental elegies
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Thanksgiving by Robert Nichols
Robert Nichols
Amazement fills my heart to-night,
Amaze and awful fears;
I am a ship that sees no light,
But blindly onward steers.

Flung toward heaven’s toppling rage,
Sunk between steep and steep,
A lost and wondrous fight I wage
With the embattled deep.

I neither know nor care at length
Where drives the storm about;
Only I summon all my strength
And swear to ride it out.

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A Song: Strephon, your breach of faith and trust by Laetitia Pilkington
Laetitia Pilkington
Strephon, your breach of faith and trust
Affords me no surprise;
A man who grateful was, or just,
Might make my wonder rise.

That heart to you so fondly tied,
With pleasure wore its chain,
But from your cold neglectful pride,
Found liberty again.

For this no wrath inflames my mind,
My thanks are due to thee;
Such thanks as gen'rous victors find,
Who set their captives free.
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In Trust by Thom Gunn
Thom Gunn
You go from me
In June for months on end
To study equanimity
Among high trees alone;
I go out with a new boyfriend
And stay all summer in the city where
Home mostly on my own
I watch the sunflowers flare.
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A Story Can Change Your Life by Peter Everwine
Peter Everwine
On the morning she became a young widow,
my grandmother, startled by a sudden shadow,
looked up from her work to see a hawk turn
her prized rooster into a cloud of feathers.
That same moment, halfway around the world
in a Minnesota mine, her husband died,
buried under a ton of rockfall.
She told me this story sixty years ago.
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Church Monuments by George Herbert
George Herbert
While that my soul repairs to her devotion,
Here I intomb my flesh, that it betimes
May take acquaintance of this heap of dust;
To which the blast of death's incessant motion,
Fed with the exhalation of our crimes,
Drives all at last. Therefore I gladly trust

My body to this school, that it may learn
To spell his elements, and find his birth
Written in dusty heraldry and lines ;
Which dissolution sure doth best discern,
Comparing dust with dust, and earth with earth.
These laugh at jet, and marble put for signs,

To sever the good fellowship of dust,
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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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The Southern Refugee by George Moses Horton
George Moses Horton
What sudden ill the world await,
From my dear residence I roam;
I must deplore the bitter fate,
To straggle from my native home.

The verdant willow droops her head,
And seems to bid a fare thee well;
The flowers with tears their fragrance shed,
Alas! their parting tale to tell.

’Tis like the loss of Paradise,
Or Eden’s garden left in gloom,
Where grief affords us no device;
Such is thy lot, my native home.

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The Two Armies by Henry Timrod
Henry Timrod
Two armies stand enrolled beneath
The banner with the starry wreath;
One, facing battle, blight and blast,
Through twice a hundred fields has passed;
Its deeds against a ruffian foe,
Steam, valley, hill, and mountain know,
Till every wind that sweeps the land
Goes, glory laden, from the strand.

The other, with a narrower scope,
Yet led by not less grand a hope,
Hath won, perhaps, as proud a place,
And wears its fame with meeker grace.
Wives march beneath its glittering sign,
Fond mothers swell the lovely line,
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To fight aloud is very brave - (138) by Emily Dickinson
Emily Dickinson
To fight aloud, is very brave -
But gallanter, I know
Who charge within the bosom
The Calvalry of Wo -

Who win, and nations do not see -
Who fall - and none observe -
Whose dying eyes, no Country
Regards with patriot love -
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Truth by Geoffrey Chaucer
Geoffrey Chaucer
Fle fro the pres, and dwelle with sothefastnesse,
Suffise thin owen thing, thei it be smal;
For hord hath hate, and clymbyng tykelnesse,
Prees hath envye, and wele blent overal.
Savour no more thanne the byhove schal;
Reule weel thiself, that other folk canst reede;
And trouthe schal delyvere, it is no drede.

Tempest the nought al croked to redresse,
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Dilemma by Anthony Hecht
Anthony Hecht

“Dark and amusing he is, this handsome gallant,
Of chamois-polished charm,
Athlete and dancer of uncommon talent—
Is there cause for alarm
In his smooth demeanor, the proud tilt of his chin,
This cavaliere servente, this Harlequin?

“Gentle and kindly this other, ardent but shy,
With an intelligence
Who would not glory to be guided by—
And would it not make sense
To trust in someone so devoted, so
Worshipful as this tender, pale Pierrot?

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from Pamphilia to Amphilanthus: 4 by Lady Mary Wroth
Lady Mary Wroth
When I beeheld the Image of my deere
With greedy lookes mine eyes would that way bend,
Fear, and desire did inwardly contend;
Feare to bee mark’d, desire to drawe still neere,

And in my soule a speritt wowld apeer,
Which boldnes waranted, and did pretend
To bee my genius, yett I durst nott lend
My eyes in trust wher others seemed soe cleere,

Then did I search from whence this danger ’rose,
If such unworthynes in mee did rest
As my sterv’d eyes must nott with sight bee blest;
When jealousie her poyson did disclose;

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Ravens Hiding in a Shoe by Robert Bly
Robert Bly
There is something men and women living in houses
Don’t understand. The old alchemists standing
Near their stoves hinted at it a thousand times.

Ravens at night hide in an old woman’s shoe.
A four-year-old speaks some ancient language.
We have lived our own death a thousand times.

Each sentence we speak to friends means the opposite
As well. Each time we say, “I trust in God,” it means
God has already abandoned us a thousand times.

Mothers again and again have knelt in church
In wartime asking God to protect their sons,
And their prayers were refused a thousand times.
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Tempus fugit by Samuel Menashe
Samuel Menashe
For John Thornton Fellow fugitive
Forgive yourself
And me thereby
Thus we can live
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The Man with Night Sweats by Thom Gunn
Thom Gunn
I wake up cold, I who
Prospered through dreams of heat
Wake to their residue,
Sweat, and a clinging sheet.

My flesh was its own shield:
Where it was gashed, it healed.

I grew as I explored
The body I could trust
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Faith by Frances Anne Kemble
Frances Anne Kemble
Better trust all, and be deceived,
And weep that trust, and that deceiving;
Than doubt one heart, that, if believed,
Had blessed one’s life with true believing.

Oh, in this mocking world, too fast
The doubting fiend o’ertakes our youth!
Better be cheated to the last,
Than lose the blessèd hope of truth.

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Q & A by Kenneth Fearing
Kenneth Fearing
Where analgesia may be found to ease the infinite, minute scars of the day;
What final interlude will result, picked bit by bit from the morning's hurry, the lunch-hour boredom, the fevers of the night;
Why this one is cherished by the gods, and that one not;
How to win, and win again, and again, staking wit alone against a sea of time;
Which man to trust and, once found, how far—

Will not be found in Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John,
Nor Blackstone, nor Gray's, nor Dun & Bradstreet, nor Freud, nor Marx,
Nor the sage of the evening news, nor the corner astrologist, nor in any poet,
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I Am the Only Being Whose Doom by Emily Brontë
Emily Brontë
I am the only being whose doom
No tongue would ask, no eye would mourn;
I never caused a thought of gloom,
A smile of joy, since I was born.

In secret pleasure, secret tears,
This changeful life has slipped away,
As friendless after eighteen years,
As lone as on my natal day.
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Warning from a Visitor in the Control Tower by Calvin Thomas Jr.
Calvin Thomas Jr.
To airmen crossing and communicant
With orders of this field, no landing here
But by the grace of God; no postulant
Piloting earthward should abuse his fear:
Trust in the instruments which fall their round,
Tonight the only ceiling is the ground;
Zero, from nothing into nothing made,
Signifies all of altitude that stayed.
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For the Old Gnostics by Robert Bly
Robert Bly
The Fathers put their trust in the end of the world
And they were wrong.The Gnostics were right and not
Right.Dragons copulate with their knobby tails.
Some somnolent wealth rises unconcerned,
Over there!In the world!Ponderous stubborn
Sorrow weighs down the flying Gospels.
Some enormous obstacle blocks our way.
The untempered soul grumbles in empty light.
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Zebra by C. K. Williams
C. K. Williams
Kids once carried tin soldiers in their pockets as charms
against being afraid, but how trust soldiers these days
not to load up, aim, blast the pants off your legs?

I have a key-chain zebra I bought at the Thanksgiving fair.
How do I know she won't kick, or bite at my crotch?
Because she's been murdered, machine-gunned: she's dead.

Also, she's a she: even so crudely carved, you can tell
by the sway of her belly a foal's inside her.
Even murdered mothers don't hurt people, do they?

And how know she's murdered? Isn't everything murdered?
Some dictator's thugs, some rebels, some poachers;
some drought, world-drought, world-rot, pollution, extinction.
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Light Shining out of Darkness by William Cowper
William Cowper
God moves in a mysterious way,
His wonders to perform;
He plants his footsteps in the sea,
And rides upon the storm.

Deep in unfathomable mines
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Death by George Herbert
George Herbert
Death, thou wast once an uncouth hideous thing,
Nothing but bones,
The sad effect of sadder groans:
Thy mouth was open, but thou couldst not sing.

For we considered thee as at some six
Or ten years hence,
After the loss of life and sense,
Flesh being turned to dust, and bones to sticks.

We looked on this side of thee, shooting short;
Where we did find
The shells of fledge souls left behind,
Dry dust, which sheds no tears, but may extort.

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Epitaph by Katherine Philips
Katherine Philips
On her Son H.P. at St. Syth’s Church where her body also lies interred What on Earth deserves our trust?
Youth and Beauty both are dust.
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The Evening-Watch: A Dialogue by Henry Vaughan
Henry Vaughan

Farewell! I go to sleep; but when
The day-star springs, I’ll wake again.


Go, sleep in peace; and when thou liest
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For Freckle-Faced Gerald by Etheridge Knight
Etheridge Knight
Now you take ol Rufus. He beat drums,
was free and funky under the arms,
fucked white girls, jumped off a bridge
(and thought nothing of the sacrilege),
he copped out—and he was over twenty-one.

Take Gerald. Sixteen years hadn’t even done
a good job on his voice. He didn’t even know
how to talk tough, or how to hide the glow
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In Time of Plague Adieu, farewell, earth’s bliss by Thomas Nashe
Thomas Nashe
Adieu, farewell, earth’s bliss;
This world uncertain is;
Fond are life’s lustful joys;
Death proves them all but toys;
None from his darts can fly;
I am sick, I must die.
Lord, have mercy on us!

Rich men, trust not in wealth,
Gold cannot buy you health;
Physic himself must fade.
All things to end are made,
The plague full swift goes by;
I am sick, I must die.
Lord, have mercy on us!
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The March into Virginia Ending in the First Manassas (July, 1861) by Herman Melville
Herman Melville
Did all the lets and bars appear
To every just or larger end,
Whence should come the trust and cheer?
Youth must its ignorant impulse lend—
Age finds place in the rear.
All wars are boyish, and are fought by boys,
The champions and enthusiasts of the state:
Turbid ardors and vain joys
Not barrenly abate—
Stimulants to the power mature,
Preparatives of fate.

Who here forecasteth the event?
What heart but spurns at precedent
And warnings of the wise,
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from Merlin and Vivien by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
In Love, if Love be Love, if Love be ours,
Faith and unfaith can ne’er be equal powers:
Unfaith in aught is want of faith in all.

It is the little rift within the lute,
That by and by will make the music mute,
And ever widening slowly silence all.
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My Autograph by Susanna Moodie
Susanna Moodie
What—write my name!
How vain the feeble trust,
To be remembered
When the hand is dust—
Grieve rather that the talents freely given
Were used for earth—not treasured up for Heaven!
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Nature, That Washed Her Hands in Milk by Sir Walter Ralegh
Sir Walter Ralegh
Nature, that washed her hands in milk,
And had forgot to dry them,
Instead of earth took snow and silk,
At love’s request to try them,
If she a mistress could compose
To please love’s fancy out of those.

Her eyes he would should be of light,
A violet breath, and lips of jelly;
Her hair not black, nor overbright,
And of the softest down her belly;
As for her inside he’d have it
Only of wantonness and wit.

At love’s entreaty such a one
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Night Piece by Ben Belitt
Ben Belitt
Rise, cleanly trust, divided star,
And spend that delicate fraud upon the night—
A lover’s instance moving mindful air
To make its peace in dedicated light

Whose look is charnel. Lusters, intent and blind,
Give darkness downward with a glow like sheaves—
A gleaner’s pittance withered in the bind
That keeps the summer godhead of the leaves
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Ode by Henry Timrod
Henry Timrod
Sung on the occasion of decorating the graves of the Confederate dead, at Magnolia Cemetery, Charleston, S. C., 1866 Sleep sweetly in your humble graves,
Sleep, martyrs of a fallen cause!—
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On a Dead Child by Robert Bridges
Robert Bridges
Perfect little body, without fault or stain on thee,
With promise of strength and manhood full and fair!
Though cold and stark and bare,
The bloom and the charm of life doth awhile remain on thee.

Thy mother’s treasure wert thou;—alas! no longer
To visit her heart with wondrous joy; to be
Thy father’s pride;—ah, he
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A Psalm of Freudian Life by Franklin Pierce Adams
Franklin Pierce Adams
Tell me not in mormonful numbers
“Life is but an empty dream!”
To a student of the slumbers
Things are never what they seem.

Life is yearning and suppression;
Life is that to be enjoyed;
Puritanical discretion
Was not spoke by Dr. Freud.

Deep enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way;
But to dream, that each to-morrow
Finds us Freudier than to-day.

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Recessional by Rudyard Kipling
Rudyard Kipling
1897 God of our fathers, known of old,
Lord of our far-flung battle-line,
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Requiem for the Plantagenet Kings by Geoffrey Hill
Geoffrey Hill
For whom the possessed sea littered, on both shores,
Ruinous arms; being fired, and for good,
To sound the constitution of just wars,
Men, in their eloquent fashion, understood.

Relieved of soul, the dropping-back of dust,
Their usage, pride, admitted within doors;
At home, under caved chantries, set in trust,
With well-dressed alabaster and proved spurs
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A Rhapsody of a Southern Winter Night by Henry Timrod
Henry Timrod
Oh! dost thou flatter falsely, Hope?
The day hath scarcely passed that saw thy birth,
Yet thy white wings are plumed to all their scope,
And hour by hour thine eyes have gathered light,
And grown so large and bright,
That my whole future life unfolds what seems,
Beneath their gentle beams,
A path that leads athwart some guiltless earth,
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Sonnet 138: When my love swears that she is made of truth by William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare
When my love swears that she is made of truth,
I do believe her, though I know she lies,
That she might think me some untutored youth,
Unlearnèd in the world’s false subtleties.
Thus vainly thinking that she thinks me young,
Although she knows my days are past the best,
Simply I credit her false-speaking tongue:
On both sides thus is simple truth suppressed.
But wherefore says she not she is unjust?
And wherefore say not I that I am old?
Oh, love’s best habit is in seeming trust,
And age in love loves not to have years told.
Therefore I lie with her and she with me,
And in our faults by lies we flattered be.
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Tides by Helen Hunt Jackson
Helen Hunt Jackson
O patient shore, that canst not go to meet
Thy love, the restless sea, how comfortest
Thou all thy loneliness? Art thou at rest,
When, loosing his strong arms from round thy feet,
He turns away? Know’st thou, however sweet
That other shore may be, that to thy breast
He must return? And when in sterner test
He folds thee to a heart which does not beat,
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Why Nobody Pets the Lion at the Zoo by John Ciardi
John Ciardi
The morning that the world began
The Lion growled a growl at Man.

And I suspect the Lion might
(If he’d been closer) have tried a bite.

I think that’s as it ought to be
And not as it was taught to me.

I think the Lion has a right
To growl a growl and bite a bite.
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“Womanhood, wanton, ye want” by John Skelton
John Skelton
Womanhood, wanton, ye want:
Your meddling, mistress, is mannerless;
Plenty of ill, of goodness scant,
Ye rail at riot, reckless:
To praise your port it is needless;
For all your draff yet and your dregs,
As well borne as ye full oft time begs.

Why so coy and full of scorn?
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You Say, Columbus with his Argosies by Trumbull Stickney
Trumbull Stickney
You say, Columbus with his argosies
Who rash and greedy took the screaming main
And vanished out before the hurricane
Into the sunset after merchandise,
Then under western palms with simple eyes
Trafficked and robbed and triumphed home again:
You say this is the glory of the brain
And human life no other use than this?
I then do answering say to you: The line
Of wizards and of saviours, keeping trust
In that which made them pensive and divine,
Passes before us like a cloud of dust.
What were they? Actors, ill and mad with wine,
And all their language babble and disgust.
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Ars Amoris by J. V. Cunningham
J. V. Cunningham
Speak to her heart!
That manic force
When wits depart
Forbids remorse.

Dream with her dreaming
Until her lust
Seems to her seeming
An act of trust!
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A Complaint by William Wordsworth
William Wordsworth
There is a change—and I am poor;
Your love hath been, nor long ago,
A fountain at my fond heart's door,
Whose only business was to flow;
And flow it did; not taking heed
Of its own bounty, or my need.

What happy moments did I count!
Blest was I then all bliss above!
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Credo by Robert Creeley
Robert Creeley
Creo que si ... I believe
it will rain
tomorrow ... I believe
the son of a bitch

is going into the river ...
I believe All men are
created equal—By your
leave a leafy
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Half an Hour by Jean Valentine
Jean Valentine
Hurt, hurtful, snake-charmed,
struck white together half an hour we tear
through the half-dark after

some sweet core,
under, over gravity,
some white shore ...

spin, hidden one, spin,
trusted to me! laugh sore tooth
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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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The House of Life: 66. The Heart of the Night by Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Dante Gabriel Rossetti
From child to youth; from youth to arduous man;
From lethargy to fever of the heart;
From faithful life to dream-dower'd days apart;
From trust to doubt; from doubt to brink of ban;—
Thus much of change in one swift cycle ran
Till now. Alas, the soul!—how soon must she
Accept her primal immortality,—
The flesh resume its dust whence it began?
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In Memoriam A. H. H. OBIIT MDCCCXXXIII: 116 by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Is it, then, regret for buried time
That keenlier in sweet April wakes,
And meets the year, and gives and takes
The colours of the crescent prime?

Not all: the songs, the stirring air,
The life re-orient out of dust,
Cry thro' the sense to hearten trust
In that which made the world so fair.

Not all regret: the face will shine
Upon me, while I muse alone;
And that dear voice, I once have known,
Still speak to me of me and mine:

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In Memoriam A. H. H. OBIIT MDCCCXXXIII: 118 by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Contemplate all this work of Time,
The giant labouring in his youth;
Nor dream of human love and truth,
As dying Nature's earth and lime;

But trust that those we call the dead
Are breathers of an ampler day
For ever nobler ends. They say,
The solid earth whereon we tread

In tracts of fluent heat began,
And grew to seeming-random forms,
The seeming prey of cyclic storms,
Till at the last arose the man;

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In Memoriam A. H. H. OBIIT MDCCCXXXIII: 54 by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Oh, yet we trust that somehow good
Will be the final end of ill,
To pangs of nature, sins of will,
Defects of doubt, and taints of blood;

That nothing walks with aimless feet;
That not one life shall be destroy'd,
Or cast as rubbish to the void,
When God hath made the pile complete;

That not a worm is cloven in vain;
That not a moth with vain desire
Is shrivell'd in a fruitless fire,
Or but subserves another's gain.

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In Memoriam A. H. H. OBIIT MDCCCXXXIII: 55 by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
The wish, that of the living whole
No life may fail beyond the grave,
Derives it not from what we have
The likest God within the soul?

Are God and Nature then at strife,
That Nature lends such evil dreams?
So careful of the type she seems,
So careless of the single life;

That I, considering everywhere
Her secret meaning in her deeds,
And finding that of fifty seeds
She often brings but one to bear,

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In Memoriam A. H. H. OBIIT MDCCCXXXIII: Prelude by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Strong Son of God, immortal Love,
Whom we, that have not seen thy face,
By faith, and faith alone, embrace,
Believing where we cannot prove;

Thine are these orbs of light and shade;
Thou madest Life in man and brute;
Thou madest Death; and lo, thy foot
Is on the skull which thou hast made.

Thou wilt not leave us in the dust:
Thou madest man, he knows not why,
He thinks he was not made to die;
And thou hast made him: thou art just.

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The Knight's Tomb by Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Where is the grave of Sir Arthur O'Kellyn?
Where may the grave of that good man be?—
By the side of a spring, on the breast of Helvellyn,
Under the twigs of a young birch tree!
The oak that in summer was sweet to hear,
And rustled its leaves in the fall of the year,
And whistled and roared in the winter alone,
Is gone,—and the birch in its stead is grown.—
The Knight's bones are dust,
And his good sword rust;—
His soul is with the saints, I trust.

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The Long Love that in my Thought doth Harbour by Sir Thomas Wyatt
Sir Thomas Wyatt
The longë love that in my thought doth harbour
And in mine hert doth keep his residence,
Into my face presseth with bold pretence
And therein campeth, spreading his banner.
She that me learneth to love and suffer
And will that my trust and lustës negligence
Be rayned by reason, shame, and reverence,
With his hardiness taketh displeasure.
Wherewithall unto the hert's forest he fleeth,
Leaving his enterprise with pain and cry,
And there him hideth and not appeareth.
What may I do when my master feareth
But in the field with him to live and die?
For good is the life ending faithfully.

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Much in Little by Yvor Winters
Yvor Winters
Amid the iris and the rose,
The honeysuckle and the bay,
The wild earth for a moment goes
In dust or weed another way.

Small though its corner be, the weed
Will yet intrude its creeping beard;
The harsh blade and the hairy seed
Recall the brutal earth we feared.
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A Psalm of Life by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
What The Heart Of The Young Man Said To The Psalmist. Tell me not, in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.
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A Satirical Elegy on the Death of a Late Famous General by Jonathan Swift
Jonathan Swift
His Grace! impossible! what dead!
Of old age too, and in his bed!
And could that mighty warrior fall?
And so inglorious, after all!
Well, since he’s gone, no matter how,
The last loud trump must wake him now:
And, trust me, as the noise grows stronger,
He’d wish to sleep a little longer.
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Sir Gawaine and the Green Knight by Yvor Winters
Yvor Winters
Reptilian green the wrinkled throat,
Green as a bough of yew the beard;
He bent his head, and so I smote;
Then for a thought my vision cleared.

The head dropped clean; he rose and walked;
He fixed his fingers in the hair;
The head was unabashed and talked;
I understood what I must dare.
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Sonnet 129: Th'expense of spirit in a waste of shame by William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare
Th' expense of spirit in a waste of shame
Is lust in action; and till action, lust
Is perjured, murd'rous, bloody, full of blame,
Savage, extreme, rude, cruel, not to trust,
Enjoyed no sooner but despisèd straight,
Past reason hunted; and, no sooner had
Past reason hated as a swallowed bait
On purpose laid to make the taker mad;
Mad in pursuit and in possession so,
Had, having, and in quest to have, extreme;
A bliss in proof and proved, a very woe;
Before, a joy proposed; behind, a dream.
All this the world well knows; yet none knows well
To shun the heaven that leads men to this hell.
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Sonnet 23: Methought I saw my late espoused saint by John Milton
John Milton
Methought I saw my late espoused saint
Brought to me, like Alcestis, from the grave,
Whom Jove's great son to her glad husband gave,
Rescu'd from death by force, though pale and faint.
Mine, as whom wash'd from spot of child-bed taint
Purification in the old Law did save,
And such as yet once more I trust to have
Full sight of her in Heaven without restraint,
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The Temper (I) by George Herbert
George Herbert
How should I praise thee, Lord! How should my rhymes
Gladly engrave thy love in steel,
If what my soul doth feel sometimes,
My soul might ever feel!

Although there were some forty heav'ns, or more,
Sometimes I peer above them all;
Sometimes I hardly reach a score;
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To Certain Critics by Countee Cullen
Countee Cullen
Then call me traitor if you must,
Shout treason and default!
Say I betray a sacred trust
Aching beyond this vault.
I’ll bear your censure as your praise,
For never shall the clan
Confine my singing to its ways
Beyond the ways of man.
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Untitled Poem “Why feel guilty because the death of a lover causes lust?” by Alan Dugan
Alan Dugan
Why feel guilty because the death of a lover causes lust?
It is only an animal urge to perpetuate the species,
but if I do not inhibit my imagination and dreams
I can see your skull smiling up at me from underground
and your bones loosely arranged in the missionary position.
This is not an incapacitating vision except at night,
and not a will of constancy, nor an irrevocable trust,
so I take on a woman with a mouth like an open wound.
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Dismantling the House by Stephen Dunn
Stephen Dunn
Rent a flatbed with a winch.
With the right leverage
anything can be hoisted, driven off.

Or the man with a Bobcat comes in,
then the hauler with his enormous truck.
A leveler or a lawyer does the rest;

experts always are willing to help.
The structure was old, rotten in spots.
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