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The murmur of the earth's own shell.
Secret continuance sublime

Is the sea's end: our sight may pass
No furlong further. Since time was,
This sound hath told the lapse of time.

No quiet, which is death's, it hath
The mournfulness of ancient life,
Enduring always at dull strife.
As the world's heart of rest and wrath,
Its painful pulse is in the sands.
Last utterly, the whole sky stands,
Grey and not known, along its path.
Listen alone beside the sea,

Listen alone among the woods;
Those voices of twin solitudes

Shall have one sound alike to thee:

Hark where the murmurs of thronged men
Surge and sink back and surge again,-
Still the one voice of wave and tree.

Gather a shell from the strown beach
And listen at its lips: they sigh
The same desire and mystery,
The echo of the whole sea's speech.
And all mankind is thus at heart
Not anything but what thou art:
And Earth, Sea, Man, are all in each.

SISTER HELEN.

["The Dusseldorf Artists' Annual, English Edition", 1853. "May have been written in 1851 or early in 1852." Memoir pg. 166.] "WHY did you melt your waxen man,

Sister Helen? To-day is the third since you began."

"The time was long, yet the time ran,
Little brother."

(O Mother, Mary Mother, Three days to-day, between Hell and Heaven!)

"But if you have done your work aright, Sister Helen, You'll let me play, for you said I might." "Be very still in your play to-night,

Little brother."

(0 Mother, Mary Mother, Third night, to-night, between Hell and Heaven!)

"You said it must melt ere vesper-bell, Sister Helen; If now it be molten, all is well." "Even so, nay, peace! you cannot tell, Little brother." (0 Mother, Mary Mother, O what is this, between Hell and Heaven?)

"Oh the waxen knave was plump to-day,
Sister Helen;
How like dead folk he has dropped away!"
"Nay now, of the dead what can you say,
Little brother?"

(0 Mother, Mary Mother, What of the dead, between Hell and Heaven?)

"See, see, the sunken pile of wood,

Sister Helen, Shines through the thinned wax red as blood!" "Nay now, when looked you yet on blood, Little brother?"

(0 Mother, Mary Mother, How pale she is, between Hell and Heaven!)

"Now close your eyes, for they're sick and sore,
Sister Helen,
And I'll play without the gallery door."
"Aye, let me rest,-I'll lie on the floor,
Little brother."

(O Mother, Mary Mother, What rest to-night, between Hell and Heaven?)

"Here high up in the balcony,

Sister Helen,
The moon flies face to face with me."
"Aye, look and say whatever you see,
Little brother."

(O Mother, Mary Mother, What sight to-night, between Hell and Heaven?)

"Outside it's merry in the wind's wake,
Sister Helen;
In the shaken trees the chill stars shake."
"Hush, heard you a horse-tread as you spake,
Little brother?"

(0 Mother, Mary Mother, What sound to-night, between Hell and Heaven?)

"I hear a horse-tread, and I see,

Sister Helen, Three horsemen that ride terribly." "Little brother, whence come the three,

Little brother?"

(O Mother, Mary Mother, Whence should they come, between Hell and Heaven?)

"They come by the hill-verge from Boyne Bar, Sister Helen,

And one draws nigh, but two are afar."

"Look, look, do you know them who they are, Little brother?"

(0 Mother, Mary Mother, Who should they be, between Hell and Heaven?)

"Oh, it's Keith of Eastholm rides so fast, Sister Helen, For I know the white mane on the blast.' "The hour has come, has come at last, Little brother!" (0 Mother, Mary Mother, Her hour at last, between Hell and Heaven!)

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"He has made a sign and called Halloo! Sister Helen, And he says that he would speak with you." "Oh tell him I fear the frozen dew,

Little brother."

(0 Mother, Mary Mother, Why laughs she thus, between Hell and Heaven?)

"The wind is loud, but I hear him cry, Sister Helen,

That Keith of Ewern's like to die." "And he and thou, and thou and I,

Little brother."

(O Mother, Mary Mother, And they and we, between Hell and Heaven!)

"Three days ago, on his marriage-morn,
Sister Helen,
He sickened, and lies since then forlorn."
"For bridegroom's side is the bride a thorn,
Little brother?"

(0 Mother, Mary Mother, Cold bridal cheer, between Hell and Heaven!)

"Three days and nights he has lain abed,
Sister Helen,
And he prays in torment to be dead."
"The thing may chance, if he have prayed,
Little brother!"

(0 Mother, Mary Mother, If he have prayed, between Hell and Heaven!)

"But he has not ceased to cry to-day,
Sister Helen,
That you should take your curse away."
"My prayer was heard, he need but pray,

Little brother!"

(0 Mother, Mary Mother, Shall God not hear, between Hell and Heaven?)

"But he says, till you take back your ban, Sister Helen, His soul would pass, yet never can.' "Nay then, shall I slay a living man, Little brother?" (O Mother, Mary Mother, A living soul, between Hell and Heaven!)

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"But he calls for ever on your name, Sister Helen, And says that he melts before a flame." "My heart for his pleasure fared the same, Little brother."

(0 Mother, Mary Mother, Fire at the heart, between Hell and Heaven!)

"Here's Keith of Westholm riding fast, Sister Helen, For I know the white plume on the blast."

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