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Alfred Domett

A Glee For Winter

HENCE, rude Winter! crabbed old fellow,
Never merry, never mellow!
Well-a-day! in rain and snow
What will keep one’s heart aglow?
Groups of kinsmen, old and young,
Oldest they old friends among;
Groups of friends, so old and true
That they seem our kinsmen too;
These all merry all together
Charm away chill Winter weather.

What will kill this dull old fellow?
Ale that ’s bright, and wine that ’s mellow!
Dear old songs for ever new;
Some true love, and laughter too;
Pleasant wit, and harmless fun,
And a dance when day is done.
Music, friends so true and tried,
Whisper’d love by warm fireside,
Mirth at all times all together,

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A Christmas Hymn

IT was the calm and silent night!
Seven hundred years and fifty-three
Had Rome been growing up to might,
And now was Queen of land and sea.
No sound was heard of clashing wars;
Peace brooded o’er the hush’d domain;
Apollo, Pallas, Jove and Mars,
Held undisturb’d their ancient reign,
In the solemn midnight
Centuries ago.

’T was in the calm and silent night!
The senator of haughty Rome
Impatient urged his chariot’s flight,
From lordly revel rolling home.
Triumphal arches gleaming swell
His breast with thoughts of boundless sway;
What reck’d the Roman what befell
A paltry province far away,
In the solemn midnight

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A Maori Girl's Song

"Alas, and well-a-day! they are talking of me still:
By the tingling of my nostril, I fear they are talking ill;
Poor hapless I -- poor little I -- so many mouths to fill --
   And all for this strange feeling -- O, this sad, sweet pain!

"O! senseless heart -- O simple! to yearn so, and to pine
For one so far above me, confest o'er all to shine,
For one a hundred dote upon, who never can be mine!
   O, 'tis a foolish feeling -- all this fond, sweet pain!

"When I was quite a child -- not so many moons ago --
A happy little maiden -- O, then it was not so;
Like a sunny-dancing wavelet then I sparkled to and fro;
   And I never had this feeling -- O, this sad, sweet pain!

"I think it must be owing to the idle life I lead
In the dreamy house for ever that this new bosom-weed
Has sprouted up and spread its shoots till it troubles me indeed
   With a restless, weary feeling -- such a sad, sweet pain!

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An Invitation

Well! if Truth be all welcomed with hardy reliance,
All the lovely unfoldings of luminous Science,
   All that Logic can prove or disprove be avowed:
Is there room for no faith -- though such Evil intrude --
In the dominance still of a Spirit of Good?
Is there room for no hope -- such a handbreadth we scan --
In the permanence yet of the Spirit of Man? --
   May we bless the far seeker, nor blame the fine dreamer?
   Leave Reason her radiance -- Doubt her due cloud;
   Nor their Rainbows enshroud? --

From our Life of realities -- hard -- shallow-hearted,
Has Romance -- has all glory idyllic departed --
   From the workaday World all the wonderment flown?
Well, but what if there gleamed, in an Age cold as this,
The divinest of Poets' ideal of bliss?
Yea, an Eden could lurk in this Empire of ours,
With the loneliest love in the loveliest bowers? --
   In an era so rapid with railway and steamer,
   And with Pan and the Dryads like Raphael gone --

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