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Thou that didst fashion forth this fragile cup,
Upon that day when Thou shalt

pour

therein The draught that must dissolve its substance thin,

Lift Thou my spirit up!

RETRIEVAL.

An inward counselor gave me this behest : “ Throw from thee what thou hast, and take a quest; Go forth a beggar, and with sweet address

Make suit for Happiness.”

The fervent voice I hastened to obey.
That which I had in hand I threw away,
Nor gave it thought, so longed I to possess

Far-dwelling Happiness.

I went a beggar meek, with craving hand ;
The bosom-prompter cried, “ Demand ! demand!”
Some laughed, some chid, to see how I did press

My suit for Happiness.

When life ran low and dear daylight grew late,
I turned me home; at my neglected gate
A palmer stood. “He waits (methought) to bless

With long-sought Happiness.”

The palmer smiled — through tears he smiled on me:
“Not so, fond beggar; I but save to thee
What thou didst cast away, nor more, nor less,
Thy Peace, not Happiness.”

THE LEADER.

HAIL to the leaders of men, the sovereigns by grace of

God, Who flinch not and fear not to venture where none be

fore them have trod ! As lightning unsheathed from the clouds to chasten the

pestilent air, As fire running swift through the sere-wood, their spirit

shall Heaven prepare.

Lo, the armed leader alone! But soon not single he

stands; Not quicker sown teeth of the dragon sprang up in

militant bands About the great founder of Thebes than rallying le

gions arise, And circle a leader of men, and lift his loved name to

the skies. Then, whereso he biddeth them strike, there draw they

the glittering blade, And whereso he biddeth them pause, the tide of the

battle is stayed ; The field being won, he teacheth how victors should temper their pride ;

THE LEADER.

93

The field being lost, how Truth and the Right beyond ravage

abide. Few are the leaders of men, yet many the liegemen

they draw; Fire of the courage in one, chill fear in a thousand shall

thaw! Still, as of old, Miltiades' trophies drive away sleep, Still at the parle of the trumpet hearts responsive shall

leap : Wherefore we follow our leaders, and well ! yet cannot

discern How they whom we follow exultant are also led in their

turn. But surely, unseen is their chieftain, no plume streaming white in their

van, Ah, surely, unseen is their chieftain, and ever a greater

than man! We e move as their watchword commands ; but a watch

word more potent they hear: The clang of the battle for us, for them music aerial

clear! (So he who drank poison at Athens still heard the

sweet voice of the law, As the wild Corybantes the flutes of their deity listened

in awe.)

They follow a deathless Idea, leader of leaders for

aye, That liveth, and wageth its strife, though we remain

but a day; That chooseth the man most fit, and setteth him fore

most in fray :

94

THE LEADER.

Hail to the leaders of men, who know and their leader

obey ! Yet we too, the liegemen, - we too, though our sight

exceed not a span, Follow a deathless Idea clothed in a puissant man.

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