Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > An American Anthology, 1787–1900
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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  An American Anthology, 1787–1900.  1900.
 
353. In a Copy of Omar Khayyám
 
By James Russell Lowell
 
 
THESE pearls of thought in Persian gulfs were bred,
Each softly lucent as a rounded moon;
The diver Omar plucked them from their bed,
Fitzgerald strung them on an English thread.
 
Fit rosary for a queen, in shape and hue,        5
When Contemplation tells her pensive beads
Of mortal thoughts, forever old and new.
Fit for a queen? Why, surely then for you!
 
The moral? Where Doubt’s eddies toss and twirl
Faith’s slender shallop till her footing reel,        10
Plunge: if you find not peace beneath the whirl,
Groping, you may like Omar grasp a pearl.
 

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