A thought went up my mind to-day
That I have had before,
But did not finish,--some way back,
I could not fix the year,
Nor where it went, nor why it came
The second time to me,
Nor definitely what it was,
Have I the art to say.
But somewhere in my soul, I know
I've met the thing before;
It just reminded me--'t was all--
And came my way no more.
After Great Pain
After great pain, a formal feeling comes
The Nerves sit ceremonious, like Toombs
The stiff Heart questions was it He, that bore,
And Yesterday, or Centuries before?
The Feet, mechanical, go round
Of Ground, or Air, or Ought
A Wooden way
A Quartz contentment, like a stone
This is the Hour of Lead
Remembered, if outlived,
As Freezing persons recollect the Snow
First-Chill-then Stupor-then the letting go.
I Heard a Fly Buzz When I Died
I heard a fly buzz when I died;
The stillness round my form
Was like the stillness in the air
Between the heaves of storm.
The eyes beside had wrung them dry,
And breaths were gathering sure
For that last onset, when the king
Be witnessed in his power.
I willed my keepsakes, signed away
What portion of me I
Could make assignable, and then
There interposed a fly,
With blue, uncertain, stumbling buzz,
Between the light and me;
And then the windows failed, and then
I could not see to see.
I Never Hear the Word "Escape"
I never hear the word "escape"
Without a quicker blood,
A sudden expectation,
A flying attitude.
I never hear of prisons broad
By soldiers battered down,
But I tug childish at my bars, --
Only to fail again!
'T was just this time last year I died.
I know I heard the corn,
When I was carried by the farms,
It had the tassels on.
I thought how yellow it would look
When Richard went to mill;
And then I wanted to get out,
But something held my will.
I thought just how red apples wedged
The stubble's joints between;
And carts went stooping round the fields
To take the pumpkins in.
I wondered which would miss me least,
And when Thanksgiving came,
If father'd multiply the plates
To make an even sum.
And if my stocking hung too high,
Would it blur the Christmas glee,
That not a Santa Claus could reach
The altitude of me?
But this sort grieved myself, and so
I thought how it would be
When just this time, some perfect year,
Themselves should come to me.
You Left Me, Sweet, Two Legacies
You left me, sweet, two legacies,--
A legacy of love
A Heavenly Father would content,
Had He the offer of;
You left me boundaries of pain
Capacious as the sea,
Between eternity and time,
Your consciousness and me.