English Poet, Wife of Robert Browning
Elizabeth Browning, fully Elizabeth Barrett Browning
English Poet, Wife of Robert Browning
Worn, gray olive-woods, which seem the fittest foliage for a dream.
Yes, I answered you last night, No, this morning, Sir, I say. Colours seen by candle-light, will not look the same by day.
Yet half the beast is the great god Pan, to laugh, as he sits by the river, making a poet out of a man. The true gods sigh for the cost and the pain-- for the reed that grows never more again as a reed with the reeds of the river.
Yet here's eglantine, here's ivy!--take them as I used to do thy flowers, and keep them where they shall not pine. Instruct thine eyes to keep their colours true, and tell thy soul their roots are left in mine.
Yet, love, mere love, is beautiful indeed and worthy of acceptation. Fire is bright, let temple burn, or flax; an equal light leaps in the flame from cedar-plank or weed: and love is fire. And when I say at need I love thee ... mark! ... I love thee -- in thy sight I stand transfigured, glorified aright, with conscience of the new rays that proceed out of my face toward thine. There's nothing low in love, when love the lowest: meanest creatures who love God, God accepts while loving so. And what I feel, across the inferior features of what I am, doth flash itself, and show how that great work of Love enhances Nature's.
You believe in God, for your part?--that He who makes can make good things from ill things, best from worst, as men plant tulips upon dunghills when they wish them finest.
You forget too much that every creature, female as the male, stands single in responsible act and thought, as also in birth and death.
You smell a rose through a fence: if two should smell it, what matter?
You take a pink, you dig about its roots and water it, and so improve it to a garden-pink, but will not change it to a heliotrope.
You were made perfectly to be loved - and surely I have loved you, in the idea of you, my whole life long.
With stammering lips and insufficient sound I strive and struggle to deliver right the music of my nature.
Women know the way to rear up children (to be just); they know a simple, merry, tender knack of tying sashes, fitting baby-shoes, and stringing pretty words that make no sense, and kissing full sense into empty words; which things are corals to cut life upon, although such trifles.
World's use is cold, world's love is vain, world's cruelty is bitter bane; but pain is not the fruit of pain.
I know--is all the mourner saith, knowledge by suffering entereth; and Life is perfected by Death.
I would build a cloudy House for my thoughts to live in; when for earth too fancy-loose and too low for Heaven! Hush! I talk my dream aloud - I build it bright to see, - I build it on the moonlit cloud, to which I looked with thee.
Large, musing eyes, neither joyous nor sorry.
My letters! all dead paper, mute and white! And yet they seem alive and quivering against my tremulous hands which loose the string and let them drop down on my knee to-night. This said, -- he wished to have me in his sight once, as a friend: this fixed a day in spring to come and touch my hand ... a simple thing, Yet I wept for it! -- this... the paper's light... said, Dear I love thee; and I sank and quailed as if God's future thundered on my past. This said, I am thine -- and so its ink has paled with lying at my heart that beat too fast. And this ... O Love, thy words have ill availed if, what this said, I dared repeat at last!
Oh, the little birds sang east, and the little birds sang west.
Sing, seraph with the glory! heaven is high. Sing, poet with the sorrow! earth is low. The universe's inward voices cry "Amen" to either song of joy and woe. Sing, seraph, poet! sing on equally!
The child's heart curseth deeper in the silence than the strong man in his wrath.
The man, most man, works best for men: and, if most man indeed, he gets his manhood plainest from his soul.