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• Then to the wilderness I fled.There among Alpine snows And pastoral huts I hid my head, And sought and found repose. • It was not yet the appointed hour. Sad, patient, and resign'd, I watch'd the crocus fade and flower, I felt the sun and wind.
“ The day I lived in was not mine,
· Down came the storm! In ruins fell
Upon them plies the race of man
Ye live,' I cried, ' ye work and plan, And know not ye are sever'd !
*Poor fragments of a broken world Whereon men pitch their tent! Why were ye too to death not hurld When your world's day was spent ? * · That glow of central fire is done Which with its
sing flame Knit all your parts, and kept you one-But ye, ye are the same!
The past, its mask of union on, Had ceased to live and thrive. The past, its mask of union gone, Say, is it more alive? *** Your creeds are dead, your rites are
dead, Your social order too! Where tarries he, the Power who said : See, I make all things new ? "The millions suffer still, and grieve, And what can helpers heal With old-world cures men half believe For woes they wholly feel ?
* And yet men have such need of joy ! But joy whose grounds are true; And joy that should all hearts employ As when the past was new.
'Ah, not the emotion of that past, Its
common hope, were vain ! Some new such hope must dawn at last, Or man must toss in pain.
** (If Paris that brief flight allow)
Despair not thou as I despaird,
LIST OF REFERENCES
* Collected Works, with Preface and Notes by W. M. Rossetti, 2 volumes, Ellis & Elvey, London (The standard edition; issued in America by Roberts Bros.) Poems, Siddal Edition, 7 volumes, 1900-1901. Poems, Handy Volume Edition, 2 volumes, Little, Brown & Co. Family Letters, edited with Memoir by W. M. Rossetti, 1895. Letters to William Allingham, 1854–1870, edited by G. B. Hill, 1897. For other Letters, Journals, etc., see the first three titles below.
BIOGRAPHY AND REMINISCENCES * ROSSETTI (W. M.), Ruskin, Rossetti, and Pre-Raphaelitism, 1899; Pre-Raphaelite Diaries and Letters, 1900; Rossetti Papers 1862-1870, a Compilation, 1903. (These three books bring the story of Rossetti's life, and the publication of his papers, down to 1870.) CAINE (T. H.), Recollections of Rossetti, 1882. STEPHENS (F. G.), Dante Gabriel Rossetti (dealing with Rossetti chiefly as a painter). SHARP (W.), Dante Gabriel Rossetti : a Record and Study, 1882. NICHOLSON (P. W.), Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Poet and Painter, 1886. * KNIGHT (Joseph), Life of Dante Gabriel Rossetti (Great Writers Series), 1887. WOOD (ESTHER), Dante
Wood Rossetti and the Pre-Raphaelite Movement, 1894. CARY (E. L.), The
. Rossettis, 1900. MARILLIER (H. C.), Record of Rossetti, 1901. BENSON (A. C.), Rossetti (English Men of Letters Series), 1904. See also J. II. Ingram's Life of Oliver Madox Brown; Anne Gilchrist: Her Life and Writings; and Percy H. Bate's History of the Pre-Raphaelite Movement.
CRITICISM BUCHANAN (R.), The Fleshly School of Poetry, and other Phenomena of the Day, 1872 (originally in the Contemporary Review, October, 1871). Rossetti (D). G.), The Stealthy School of Criticism (originally in the Athenaeum, December 16, 1871; now in his Collected Works). IAMILTON (W.), The Æsthetic Movement in England, 1882 (also contains an answer to Buchanan's attack). DAWSON (W. J.), Makers of Modern Englishı.
Dawson FORMAN (H. B.), Our Living Poets. * MABIE (H. W), Essays in Literary Interpretation. *MYERS (F. W. H.), Essays Modern: Rossetti and the Religion of Beauty. NENCIONI (E.), Letteratura inglese. ** PATER (W.), Appreciations. OLIPHANT (Margaret), Victorian Age of Literature. ParMORE (C.), Principle in Art. SARRAZIN (G.), Poètes modernes de l'Angleterre. SCUDDER (V. D.), Life of the Spirit. SHARP (A.), Victorian Poets. * STEDMAN (E. C.), Victorian Poets. ** SWINBURNE, Essays and Studies. ROSSETTI
MY SISTER'S SLEEPX SHE fell asleep on Christmas Eve :
At length the long-ungranted shade Of weary eyelids overweigh'd The pain nought else might yet relieve. Our mother, who had leaned all day
Over the bed from chime to chine,
Then raised herself for the first time, And as she sat her down, did pray. Her little work-table was spread
With work to finish. For the glare
Made by her candle, she had care To work some distance from the bed.
Without, there was a cold moon up,
Of winter radiance sheer and thin;
The hollow halo it was in Was like an icy crystal cup. Through the small room, with subtle
sound Of flame, by vents the fireshine drove
And reddened. In its dim alcove The mirror shed a clearness round. I had been sitting up some nights, And my tired mind felt weak and
blank ; Like a sharp strengthening wine it
drank The stillness and the broken lights.
Because we were in Christmas Is Though it would still be long till mr Just then in the room over us
There was a pushing back of chair
As some who had sat unawares So late, now heard the hour, and it's With anxious softly-stepping haste Our mother went where Margaret kr Fearing the sounds o'erhead-skiva
they Have broken her long watched-fur ress She stooped an instant, calm, s.
And all her features seemed in piin With woe, and her eyes gazed ai!
yearned. For my part. I but hid my face, And held my breath, and spoke
word : There was none spoken; but I beari The silence for a little space. Our mother bowed herself and wept: And both my arms feil, and I san. God knows I knew that she k
dead." And there, all white, my sister slept. Then kneeling, upon Christmas mert
A little after twelve o'clock We said, ere the first quarter strol "Christ's blessing on the newly two
Twelve struck. That sound, by dwin
dling year's Heard in each hour, crept off; and
then The ruled silence spread again, Like water that a pebble stirs.
THE BLESSED DAMOZEL
Our mother rose from where she sat:
Her needles, as she laid them down,
Met lightly, and her silken gown Settled: no other noise than that.
The blessed damozel leaned out
From the gold bar of Heaven: Her eyes were deeper than the depth
Of waters stilled at even:
And the stars in her hair were sete
“Glory unto the Newly Born!"
So, as said angels, she did say ;
Her robe, ungirt from clasp to hem,
No wrought flowers did adors,
(Ah sweet! Even now, in that bird's
song, Strove not her accents there, Fain to be harkened? When those bells
Possessed the mid-day air,
Down all the echoing stair ?)
“I wish that he were come to me,
For he will come," she said. “ Have I not prayed in Heaven ?--on
earth, Lord, Lord, has he not pray'd ? Are not two prayers a perfect strength ?
And shall I feel afraid ?
But a white rose of Mary's gift,
For service meetly worn;
Was yellow like ripe corn.
One of God's choristers;
From that still look of hers;
Had counted as ten years. (To one, it is ten years of years.
Yet now, and in this place,
Feli all about my face.
The whole year sets apace.)
That she was standing on;
The which is Space begun :
She scarce could see the sun.
With flame and darkness ridge
Spins like a fretful midge
Mid deathless love's acclaims, Spoke evermore among themselves
Their heart-remembered names ; And the souls mounting up to God
Went by her like thin flames.
Out of the circling charm ;
The bar she leaned on warm,
Along her bended arm. From the fixed place of Heaven she saw
Time like a pulse shake fierce Through all the worlds. Her gaze still
strove Within the gulf to pierce Its path ; and now she spoke as when
The stars sang in their spheres. The sun was gone now; the curled moon
Was like a little feather Fluttering far down the gulf; and now
She spoke through the still weather. Her voice was like the voice the stars
Had when they sang together.
“ When round his head the aureole
To the deep wells of light;
And bathe there in God's sight. “We two will stand beside that shrine,
Occult, withheld, untrod,
With prayer sent up to God;
Each like a little cloud.
“We two will lie i' the shadow of
That living mystic tree Within whose secret growth the Dove
Is sometimes felt to be, While every leaf that His plumes touch
Saith His Name audibly. “And I myself will teach to him,
I myself, lying so, The songs I sing bere ; which his voice
Shall pause in, hushed and slow, And find some knowledge at each pause,
Or some new thing to know." (Alas! Vetwo, wetwo, thou say'st !
Yea, one wast thou with me
To endless unity
Was but its love for thee?) “We two," she said, “will seek the
groves Where the lady Mary is, With her five handmaidens, whose
names Are five sweet symphonies, Cecily, Gertrude, Magdalen,
Margaret and Rosalys.