Richard Cory - by Edward Arlington Robinson
Pan with Us - by Robert Frost
Evening Solace - by Charlotte Bronte
Lullaby - William Blake
Excerpt from Alice in Wonderland
- by Lewis Carrol
Whenever Richard Cory walked downtown
We people on the pavement looked at him:
He was a gentleman from soul to crown,
Clean favored and imperially slim.
And he was always quietly arrayed,
And he was always human when he talked;
But still, he fluttered pulses when he said,
"Good morning," and he glittered when he walked.
And he was rich -- yes, richer than a king --
And admirably schooled in every grace:
In fine, we thought he was everything
To make us wish we were in his place
So on we worked, and waited for the light,
And went without the meat, and cursed the bread;
And Richard Cory, one calm summer night,
Went home and put a bullet through his head.
Pan came out of the woods one day,--
His skin and his hair and his eyes were gray,
The gray of the moss of walls were they,--
And stood in the sun and looked his fill
At wooded valley and wooded hill.
He stood in the zephyr, pipes in hand,
On a height of naked pasture land;
In all the country he did command
He saw no smoke and he saw no roof.
That was well! and he stamped a hoof.
His heart knew peace, for none came here
To this lean feeding save once a year
Someone to salt the half-wild steer,
Or homespun children with clicking pails
Who see no little they tell no tales.
He tossed his pipes, too hard to teach
A new-world song, far out of reach,
For a sylvan sign that the blue jay's screech
And the whimper of hawks beside the sun
Were music enough for him, for one.
Times were changed from what they were:
Such pipes kept less of power to stir
The fruited bough of the juniper
And the fragile bluets clustered there
Than the merest aimless breath of air.
They were pipes of pagan mirth,
And the world had found new terms of worth.
He laid him down on the sun-burned earth
And raveled a flower and looked away--
Play? Play?--What should he play
THE human heart has hidden treasures,
In secret kept, in silence sealed;-
The thoughts, the hopes, the dreams, the pleasures,
Whose charms were broken if revealed.
And days may pass in gay confusion,
And nights in rosy riot fly,
While, lost in Fame's or Wealth's illusion,
The memory of the Past may die.
But, there are hours of lonely musing,
Such as in evening silence come,
When, soft as birds their pinions closing,
The heart's best feelings gather home.
Then in our souls there seems to languish
A tender grief that is not woe;
And thoughts that once wrung groans of anguish,
Now cause but some mild tears to flow.
And feelings, once as strong as passions,
Float softly back-a faded dream;
Our own sharp griefs and wild sensations,
The tale of others' sufferings seem.
Oh ! when the heart is freshly bleeding,
How longs it for that time to be,
When, through the mist of years receding,
Its woes but live in reverie !
And it can dwell on moonlight glimmer,
On evening shade and loneliness;
And, while the sky grows dim and dimmer,
Feel no untold and strange distress-
Only a deeper impulse given
By lonely hour and darkened room,
To solemn thoughts that soar to heaven,
Seeking a life and world to come.
O for a voice like thunder, and a tongue
To drown the throat of war! - When the senses
Are shaken, and the soul is driven to madness,
Who can stand? When the souls of the oppressed
Fight in the troubled air that rages, who can stand?
When the whirlwind of fury comes from the
Throne of God, when the frowns of his countenance
Drive the nations together, who can stand?
When Sin claps his broad wings over the battle,
And sails rejoicing in the flood of Death;
When souls are torn to everlasting fire,
And fiends of Hell rejoice upon the slain,
O who can stand? O who hath caused this?
O who can answer at the throne of God?
The Kings and Nobles of the Land have done it!
Hear it not, Heaven, thy Ministers have done it!
`When we were little,' the Mock Turtle went on at last,
calmly, though still sobbing a little now and then, `we went to
school in the sea. The master was an old Turtle--we used to call
`Why did you call him Tortoise, if he wasn't one?' Alice asked.
`We called him Tortoise because he taught us,'
said the Mock
Turtle angrily: `really you are very dull!'
`You ought to be ashamed of yourself for asking
such a simple
question,' added the Gryphon; and then they both sat silent and
looked at poor Alice, who felt ready to sink into the earth. At
last the Gryphon said to the Mock Turtle, `Drive on, old fellow!
Don't be all day about it!' and he went on in these words:
`Yes, we went to school in the sea, though you
`I never said I didn't!' interrupted Alice.
`You did,' said the Mock Turtle.
`Hold your tongue!' added the Gryphon, before Alice
again. The Mock Turtle went on.
`We had the best of educations--in fact, we went
`I'VE been to a day-school, too,' said Alice; `you
so proud as all that.'
`With extras?' asked the Mock Turtle a little anxiously.
`Yes,' said Alice, `we learned French and music.'
`And washing?' said the Mock Turtle.
`Certainly not!' said Alice indignantly.
`Ah! then yours wasn't a really good school,' said
Turtle in a tone of great relief. `Now at OURS they had at the
end of the bill, "French, music, AND WASHING--extra."'
`You couldn't have wanted it much,' said Alice;
`living at the
bottom of the sea.'
`I couldn't afford to learn it.' said the Mock
Turtle with a
sigh. `I only took the regular course.'
`What was that?' inquired Alice.
`Reeling and Writhing, of course, to begin with,'
Turtle replied; `and then the different branches of Arithmetic--
Ambition, Distraction, Uglification, and Derision.'
`I never heard of "Uglification,"' Alice ventured
to say. `What is
The Gryphon lifted up both its paws in surprise.
heard of uglifying!' it exclaimed. `You know what to beautify is,
`Yes,' said Alice doubtfully: `it means--to--make--anything--prettier.'
`Well, then,' the Gryphon went on, `if you don't
know what to
uglify is, you ARE a simpleton.'
Alice did not feel encouraged to ask any more questions
about it, "