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Sonnets.

AUTUMN.
Thou comest, Autumn, heralded by the rain,

With banners, by great gales incessant fanned,
Brighter than brightest silks of Samarcand,

And stately oxen harnessed to thy wain!
Thou standest, like imperial Charlemagne, *

Upon thy bridge of gold; thy royal hand
Outstretched with benedictions o'er the land,

Blessing the farms through all thy vast domain.
Thy shield is the red harvest moon suspended

So long beneath the heaven's o'erhanging eaves ;

Thy steps are by the farmer's prayers attended;
Like flames upon an altar shine the sheaves;

And, following thee, in thy ovation splendid,
Thine almoner, the wind, scatters the golden leaves !

GIOTTO'S TOWER.
How many lives, made beautiful and sweet

By self-devotion and by self-restraint,
Whose pleasure is to run without complaint

On unknown errands of the Paraclete,
Wanting the reverence of unshodden feet,

Fail of the nimbus which the artists paint
Around the shining forehead of the saint,

And are in their completeness incomplete !
In the old Tuscan town stands Giotto's tower,

The lily of Florence blossoming in stone,

A vision, a delight, and a desire,
The builder's perfect and centennial flower,

That in the night of ages bloomed alone,

But wanting still the glory of the spire. Charlemagne may be called by pre-eminence the monarch of farmers. According to the German tradition, in seasons of great abundance bis spirit crosses the Rhine on a golden bridge at Bingen, and blesses the cornfields and the vineyards.

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Like a fair lady at her casement shines

The Evening Star, the star of love and rest." The Evening Star.

DANTE.
TUSCAN, that wanderest through the realms of gloom,

With thoughtful pace, and sad majestic eyes,
Stern thoughts and awful from thy soul arise,

Like Farinata from his fiery tomb.
Thy sacred song is like the trump of doom ;

Yet in thy heart what human sympathies,
What soft compassion glows, as in the skies

The tender stars their clouded lamps relume!
Methinks I see thee stand, with pallid cheeks,

By Fra Hilario in his diocese,

As up the convent-walls, in golden streaks.
The ascending sunbeams mark the day's decrease;

And, as he asks what there the stranger seeks,
Thy voice along the cloisters whispers, “ Peace!"

TO-MORROW.

'Tis late at night, and in the realm of sleep

My little lambs are folded like the flocks;
From room to room I hear the wakeful clocks

Challenge the passing hour, like guards that keep Their solitary watch on tower and steep;

Far off I hear the crowing of the cocks,
And through the opening door that time unlocks

Feel the fresh breathing of To-morrow creep.
To-morrow! the mysterious, unknown guest,

Who cries to me: “Remember Barmecide,

And tremble to be happy with the rest."
And I make answer: “I am satisfied;

I dare not ask; I know not what is best ;
God hath already said what shall betide.”

THE EVENING STAR.
Lo! in the painted oriel of the West,

Whose panes the sunken sun incarnadines,
Like a fair lady at her casement shines

The Evening Star, the star of love and rest!
And then anon she doth herself divest

Of all her radiant garments, and reclines
Behind the sombre screen of yonder pines,
With slumber and soft dreams of love oppressed.

O my beloved, my sweet Hesperus!

My morning and my evening star of love

My best and gentlest lady! even thus,
As that fair planet in the sky above,

Dost thou retire unto thy rest at night,
And from thy darkened window fades the light.

DIVINA COMMEDIA.

1.
OFT have I seen at some cathedral door

A labourer, pausing in the dust and heat,
Lay down his burden, and with reverent feet

Enter, and cross himself, and on the floor
Kneel to repeat his paternoster o'er;

Far off the noises of the world retreat.
The loud vociferations of the street

Become an undistinguishable roar.
So, as I enter here from day to day,

And leave my burden at this minster gate,

Kneeling in prayer, and not ashamed to pray,
The tumult of the time disconsolate

To inarticulate murmurs dies away,
While the eternal ages watch and wait

II.
How strange the sculptures that adorn these towers!

This crowd of statues, in whose folded sleeves
Birds build their nests; while canopied with leaves

Parvis and portal bloom like trellised bowers,
And the vast minster seems a cross of flowers !

But fiends and dragons on the gargoyled eaves
Watch the dead Christ between the living thieves,

And, underneath, the traitor Judas lowers !
Ah! from what agonies of heart and brain,

What exultations trampling on despair,

What tenderness, what tears, what hate of wrong, What passionate outcry of a soul in pain,

Uprose this poem of the earth and air,
This mediæval miracle of song!

III.
I ENTER, and I see thee in the gloom

Of the long aisles, O poet saturnine!
And strive to make my steps keep pace with thine.

The air is filled with some unknown perfume;
The congregation of the dead make room

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