A Gift

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My gift would find thee fast asleep,
And arise a dream in thee;
A violet sky o'er the roll and sweep
Of a purple and pallid sea;
And a crescent moon from my sky should creep
In the golden dream to thee.

Thou shouldst lay thee down, and sadly list
To the wail of our cold birth-time;
And build thee a temple, glory-kissed,
In the heart of the sunny clime;
Its columns should rise in a music-mist,
And its roofs in a spirit-rhyme.

Its pillars the solemn hills should bind
'Neath arches of starry deeps;
Its floor the earth all veined and lined;
Its organ the ocean-sweeps;
And, swung in the hands of the grey-robed wind,
Its censers the blossom-heaps.

And 'tis almost done; for in this my rhyme,
Thanks to thy mirror-soul,
Thou wilt see the mountains, and hear the chime
Of the waters after the roll;
And the stars of my sky thy sky will climb,
And with heaven roof in the whole.


(1864)




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