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C.N. Douglas, comp.  Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical.  1917.
 
Barry Cornwall
 
        A thousand miles from land are we,
Tossing about on the roaring sea—
From billow to bounding billow cast,
Like fleecy snow on the stormy blast:
The sails are scattered abroad, like weeds;
The strong masts shake, like quivering reeds;
The mighty cables, and iron chains,
The hull, which all earthly strength disdains—
They strain and they crack, and hearts like stone
Their natural hard proud strength disown.
  1
        All round the room my silent servants wait,
My friends in every season, bright and dim.
  2
        Enter upon thy paths, O year!
Thy paths, which all who breathe must tread,
Which lead the Living to the Dead,
I enter; for it is my doom
To tread thy labyrinthine gloom;
To note who round me watch and wait;
To love a few; perhaps to hate;
And do all duties of my fate.
  3
        Gamaun is a dainty steed,
Strong, black, and of a noble breed,
Full of fire, and full of bone,
With all his line of fathers known;
Fine his nose, his nostrils thin,
But blown abroad by the pride within;
His mane is like a river flowing,
And his eyes like embers glowing
In the darkness of the night,
And his pace as swift as light.
  4
        Not the rich viol, trump, cymbal, nor horn,
Guitar, nor cittern, nor the pining flute,
Are half so sweet as tender human words.
  5
        The sea! the sea! the open sea!
The blue, the fresh, the ever free!
Without a mark, without a bound,
It runneth the earth’s wide region round,
It plays with the clouds; it mocks the skies,
Or like a cradled creature lies.
  6
        The sweetest noise on earth, a woman’s tongue;
A string which hath no discord.
  7
        There’s not a wind but whispers of thy name;
And not a flow’r that grows beneath the moon,
But in its hues and fragrance tells a tale
Of thee, my love.
  8
  A single star is rising in the east, and from afar sheds a most tremulous lustre; silent Night doth wear it like a jewel on her brow.  9
  Death is the tyrant of the imagination. His reign is in solitude and darkness, in tombs and prisons, over weak hearts and seething brains. He lives, without shape or sound, a phantasm, inaccessible to sight or touch—a ghastly and terrible apprehension.  10
  Despair doth strike as deep a furrow in the brain as mischief or remorse.  11
  Half the ills we hoard within our hearts are ills because we hoard them.  12
  Her voice is soft; not shrill and like the lark’s, but tenderer, graver, almost hoarse at times! As though the earnestness of love prevailed and quelled all shriller music.  13
  How silent are the winds!  14
  I never was on the dull, tame shore, but I loved the great sea more and more.  15
  I scarcely know how it is, but the deaths of children seem to me always less premature than those of older persons. Not that they are in fact so, but it is because they themselves have little or no relation to time or maturity.  16
  Love can take what shape he pleases; and when once begun his fiery inroad in the soul, how vain the after knowledge which his presence gives! We weep or rave; but still he lives, and lives master and lord, amidst pride and tears and pain.  17
  O human beauty, what a dream art thou, that we should cast our life and hopes away on thee!  18
  The progress from infancy to boyhood is imperceptible. In that long dawn of the mind we take but little heed. The years pass by us, one by one, little distinguishable from each other. But when the intellectual sun of our life is risen, we take due note of joy and sorrow.  19
  The sweet dew that lingered in her eye for pity’s sake was—like an exhalation in the sun—dried and absorbed by love.  20
 
 
  Where are Shakespeare’s imagination, Bacon’s learning, Galileo’s dream? Where is the sweet fancy of Sidney, the airy spirit of Fletcher, and Milton’s thought severe? Methinks such things should not die and dissipate, when a hair can live for centuries, and a brick of Egypt will last three thousand years. I am content to believe that the mind of man survives, somehow or other, his clay.  21
  Women are so gentle, so affectionate, so true in sorrow, so untired and untiring! but the leaf withers not sooner, and tropic light fades not more abruptly.  22
 
 
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