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SONGS OF LIFE AND LABOUR.
A PSALM OF LIFE.
WHAT THE HEART OF THE YOUNG MAN SAID TO
ELL me not, in mournful numbers,
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
Life is real! Life is earnest !
And the grave is not its goal;
Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
In the world's broad field of battle,
Trust no Future, howe'er pleasant!
Heart within, and God o'erhead!
Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
Footprints on the sands of time;
Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o'er life's solemn main,
Let us, then, be up and doing,
H. W. LONGFELLOW, 1807
ODE TO DUTY.
STERN daughter of the Voice of God!
When empty terrors overawe;
And calm'st the weary strife of frail humanity!
There are who seek not if thine eye
May joy be theirs while life shall last!
And thou, if they should totter, teach them to stand fast!
Serene shall be our days and bright,
And happy shall our nature be,
And blest are they who in the main
Yet find that other strength, according to their need.
I, loving freedom, and untried;
The task imposed, from day to day;
Through no disturbance of my soul,
Or strong compunction in me wrought,
But in the quietness of thought:
I feel the weight of chance desires :
My hopes no more must change their name,
I long for a repose which ever is the same.
Stern lawgiver! yet thou dost wear
Flowers laugh before thee on their beds
Thou dost preserve the stars from wrong;
To humbler functions, awful power!
Give unto me, made lowly wise,
And in the light of truth thy bondsman let me live!
INCENTIVES TO LIFE-ACTION.
SEE how the day beameth brightly before us!
Enter the treasuries pleasure uncloses—
List! how she thrills in the nightingale's lay! Breathe! she is wafting thee sweets from the roses; Feel! she is cool in the rivulet's play;
Taste from the grape and the nectarine gushing Flows the red rill in the beams of the sunGreen in the hills, in the flower-groves blushing, Look! she is always and everywhere one.