Let us peer forward through the dusk of years
And force the silent future to reveal
Her store of garnered joys; we may not kneel
For ever, and entreat our bliss with tears.
Somewhere on this drear earth the sunshine lies,
Somewhere the air breathes Heaven-blown harmonies.
Some day when you and I have fully learned
Our waiting-lesson, wondering, hand in hand
We shall gaze out upon an unknown land,
Our thoughts and our desires forever turned
From our old griefs, as swallows, home warding,
Sweep ever southward with unwearied wing.
We shall fare forth, comrades for evermore.
Though the ill-omened bird Time loves to bear
Has brushed this cheek and left an impress there
I shall be fierce and dauntless as of yore,
Free as a bird o'er the wide world to rove,
And strong and fearless, O my Love, to love.
What have we now? The haunting, vague unrest
Of incompleted measures; and we dream
Vainly, of the Musician and His theme,
How the great Master in a day most blest
Shall strike some mighty chords in harmony,
And make an end, and set the music free!
We snatch from Fate our moments of delight,
Few as, in April hours, the wooing calls
Of orioles, or when the twilight falls
First o'er the forest ere the approach of night
The eyes of evening; - and Love's song is sung
But once, Dear Heart, but once, and we are young.
Over the seas together, you and I,
'Neath blue Italian skies, or on the hills
Of storied Greece, - where the warm sunlight fills
Spain's mellow vineyards, - wandering reverently
O'er the green plains of Palestine, - our days
A golden holiday in Old World ways.
Yet would we linger not by southern shores;
The bracing breath of Scandinavian snows
Would draw us from our dreams. The North wind blows
Upon thy cheek, my Norseman, and the roars
Of the wild Baltic sound within my ears
When to my dreams thy stalwart form appears.
This will the future bring. See! Thou hast given
From out the fulness of thy strength and will
This courage to me. Though the rugged hill
Looms high, and fronts our vision, yet our heaven
(I see it when I sleep) with portals wide
And shining towers, gleams on the farther side.