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And every still star overhead
Seemed an eye that knew we were but dead.
And the hours passed; till the noble's son
"O farewell, friend, for I can no more!" "Christ take thee!" I moaned; and his life was o'er.
Three hundred souls were all lost but one,
At last the morning rose on the sea
Sore numbed I was in my sheepskin coat;
The sun was high o'er the eastern brim
That day I told my tale to a priest,
And with the priest I thence did fare
We spoke with the King's high chamberlain,
And round us ever there crowded fast
And who so bold that might tell the thing
The King had watched with a heart sore stirred
And still to all his court would he say, "What keeps my son so long away?"
And they said: "The ports lie far and wide
"And England's cliffs are not more white Than her women are, and scarce so light Her skies as their eyes are blue and bright;
"And in some port that he reached from France The Prince has lingered for his pleasaùnce."
But once the King asked: "What distant cry
And one said: "With suchlike shouts, pardie!
And one: "Who knows not the shrieking quest When the sea-mew misses its young from the nest?"
'Twas thus till now they had soothed his dread, Albeit they knew not what they said:
But who should speak to-day of the thing
Then pondering much they found a way,
And the King sat with a heart sore stirred,
'Twas then through the hall the King was 'ware Of a little boy with golden hair,
As bright as the golden poppy is
That the beach breeds for the surf to kiss:
Yet pale his cheek as the thorn in Spring,
Nothing heard but his foot through the hall,
And the King wondered, and said, “Alack!
"Why, sweet heart, do you pace through the hall As though my court were a funeral?"
Then lowly knelt the child at the dais,
"O wherefore black, O King, ye may say, For white is the hue of death to-day.
"Your son and all his fellowship
King Henry fell as a man struck dead;
There's many an hour must needs beguile
Full many a lordly hour, full fain
But this King never smiled again.
Jiriczek, Englische Dichter.
By none but me can the tale be told,
(Lands are swayed by a King on a throne.)
[Poems, an Offering to Lancashire 1863.]
I HAVE been here before,
But when or how I cannot tell:
I know the grass beyond the door,
The sighing sound, the lights around the shore.
You have been mine before,
How long ago I may not know:
Some veil did fall,-I knew it all of yore.
Has this been thus before?
And shall not thus time's eddying flight Still with our lives our love restore
In death's despite,
And day and night yield one delight once more?
A LITTLE WHILE.
A LITTLE While a little love
The hour yet bears for thee and me
If still our heaven be lit above.
Thou merely, at the day's last sigh,
And deemed its speech mine own.
A little while a little love
The scattering autumn hoards for us
We hear the flood-tides seek the sea,
A little while a little love
May yet be ours who have not said
LEAVES and rain and the days of the year, (Water-willow and wellaway,)
All these fall, and my soul gives ear, And she is hence who once was here. (With a wind blown night and day.)
Ah! but now, for a secret sign,
(The willow's wan and the water white,) In the held breath of the day's decline Her very face seemed pressed to mine. (With a wind blown day and night.)