Such are the little memories of you;
They come and go, return and lie apart
From all main things of life; yet more than they,
With noiseless feet, they come and grip the heart.
Gay laughter leading quick and stormy tears,
Then smiles again and pulse of flying feet,
In breathless chase of fleeting gossamers,
Are memories so dear, so bitter-sweet.

No more are echoes of your flying feet.
Hard by, where Pike’s Peak rears its head in state,
The erstwhile rushing feet, with halting steps,
For health’s return in Denver watch and wait.
But love and memories of noiseless tread,
Where angels hovered once, all shining fair,
To tuck you in your little trundle bed,
Kneel nightly now in agony of prayer.

Love is a Flame

Love is a flame that burns with sacred fire, 
And fills the being up with sweet desire;
Yet, once the altar feels love’s fiery breath,
The heart must be a crucible till death.

Say love is life; and say it not amiss, 
That love is but a synonym for bliss.
Say what you will of love—in what refrain, 
But knows the heart, ‘tis but a word for pain.

Eternity

Rock me to sleep, ye waves, and drift my boat, 
With undulations soft, far out to sea; 
Perchance, where sky and wave wear one blue coat, 
My heart shall find some hidden rest remote. 
My spirit swoons, and all my senses cry
For ocean's breast and covering of the sky.
Rock me to sleep, ye waves, and, outward bound,
Just let me drift far out toil and care,
Where lapping of the waves shall be the sound
Which, mingled with the winds that gently bear
Me on between a peaceful sea and sky,
To make my soothing, slumberous lullaby.
Thus drifting on and on upon thy breast,
My heart shall go to sleep and rest, and rest. 

A Psyche of Spring

Thou gaily painted butterfly, exquisite thing, 
    A child of light and blending rainbow hues,
In loveliness a Psyche of the Spring,
   Companion for the rose and diamond dews;
'Tis thine, in sportive joy, from hour to hour, 
    To ride the breeze from flower to flower.

But thou wast once a worm of hueless dye.
   Now, seeing thee, gay thing, afloat in bliss,
I take new hope in thoughts of bye and bye,
   When I, as thou, have shed my chrysalis.
I dream now of eternal springs of light
   In which, as thou, I too may have my flight. 

Related Poems

Departed Days

Yes, dear departed, cherished days,
   Could Memory’s hand restore
Your morning light, your evening rays
   From Time’s gray urn once more,—
Then might this restless heart be still,
   This straining eye might close,
And Hope her fainting pinions fold,
   While the fair phantoms rose.

But, like a child in ocean’s arms,
   We strive against the stream,
Each moment farther from the shore
   Where life’s young fountains gleam;—
Each moment fainter wave the fields,
   And wider rolls the sea;
The mist grows dark,—the sun goes down,—
Day breaks,—and where are we?

A Violin at Dusk

Stumble to silence, all you uneasy things, 
That pack the day with bluster and with fret.
For here is music at each window set;
Here is a cup which drips with all the springs
That ever bud a cowslip flower; a roof
To shelter till the argent weathers break;
A candle with enough of light to make
My courage bright against each dark reproof. 
A hand’s width of clear gold, unraveled out
The rosy sky, the little moon appears;
As they were splashed upon the paling red,
Vast, blurred, the village poplars lift about. 
I think of young, lost things: of lilacs; tears;
I think of an old neighbor, long since dead. 

With Music

Dear, did we meet in some dim yesterday?
    I half remember how the birds were mute
    Among green leaves and tulip-tinted fruit,
And on the grass, beside a stream, we lay
In early twilight; faintly, far away,
    Came lovely sounds adrift from silver lute,
    With answered echoes of an airy flute,
While Twilight waited tiptoe, fain to stay.

Her violet eyes were sweet with mystery.
    You looked in mine, the music rose and fell
Like little, lisping laughter of the sea;
        Our souls were barks, wind-wafted from the shore—
     Gold cup, a rose, a ruby, who can tell?
         Soft—music ceases—I recall no more.