the tamarind tree?
A gallant knight.
In sunshine and in shadow,
Had journeyed long,
Singing a song,
In search of Eldorado.
But he grew old--
This knight so bold--
And o'er his heart a shadow
Fell as he found
No spot of ground
That looked like Eldorado.
And, as his strength
Failed him at length,
He met a pilgrim shadow--
"Shadow," said he,
"Where can it be--
This land of Eldorado?"
"Over the Mountains
Of the Moon,
Down the Valley of the Shadow,
Ride, boldly ride,"
The shade replied--
"If you seek for Eldorado!"
O! I care not that my earthly lot
Hath little of Earth in it,
That years of love have been forgot
In the fever of a minute:
I heed not that the desolate
Are happier, sweet, than I,
But that you meddle with my fate
Who am a passer by.
It _is_ not that my founts of bliss
Are gushing--strange! with tears--
Or that the thrill of a single kiss
Hath palsied many years--
'Tis not that the flowers of twenty springs
Which have wither'd as they rose
Lie dead on my heart-strings
With the weight of an age of snows.
Not that the grass--O! may it thrive!
On my grave is growing or grown--
But that, while I am dead yet alive
I cannot be, lady, alone.
_THE CONQUEROR WORM_
Lo! 'tis a gala night
Within the lonesome latter years!
An angel throng, bewinged, bedight
In veils, and drowned in tears,
Sit in a theatre, to see
A play of hopes and fears,
While the orchestra breathes fitfully
The music of the spheres.
Mimes, in the form of God on high,
Mutter and mumble low,
And hither and thither fly--
Mere puppets they, who come and go
At bidding of vast formless things
That shift the scenery to and fro,
Flapping from out their Condor wings
That motley drama--oh, be sure
It shall not be forgot!
With its Phantom chased for evermore,
By a crowd that seize it not,
Through a circle that ever returneth in
To the self-same spot,
And much of Madness, and more of Sin,
" [Illustration: 9015] Presently my soul grew stronger; Hesitating then no longer, "Sir," said I, "or Madam, truly Your forgiveness I implore; But the fact is I was napping, And so gently you came rapping, And so faintly you came tapping, Tapping at my chamber door, That I scarce was sure I heard you"-- Here I opened .Page 2
wide the door: Darkness there and nothing more.Page 3
" .Page 4
Nothing farther then he uttered; Not a feather then he fluttered-- Till I scarcely more than muttered, " Other friends have flown before-- On the morrow he will leave me, As my hopes have flown before.Page 5
" This I sat engaged in guessing, But no syllable expressing To the fowl whose fiery eyes now Burned into my bosom's core; This and more I sat divining, With my head at ease reclining On the cushion's velvet lining That the lamplight gloated o'er, But.Page 6
whose velvet violet lining, With the lamplight gloating o'er, _She_ shall press, ah, nevermore! [Illustration: 0026] [Illustration: 0027] Then methought the air grew denser, Perfumed from an unseen censer Swung by angels whose faint footfalls Tinkled on the tufted floor.Page 7
" And the Raven, never flitting, Still is sitting, still is sitting On the pallid bust of Pallas Just above my chamber door; And his eyes have all the seeming Of a demon's that is dreaming, .Page 8
And the lamplight o'er him streaming Throws his shadow on the floor, And my soul from out that shadow That lies floating on the floor Shall be lifted--nevermore! [Illustration: 0035].