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As once I walked contemplative
In dirty Dublin street,
I chanced, by good luck or by bad,
A lounging friend to meet;
He asked me how I was, and I
Said, I was very well,
And begged he'd be so good as how
He was himself, to tell:
"I do not know, I cannot say,"
My friend, he answered me,
"He is a wise man knows himself;
In that we all agree."
“Yes, to be sure,” said I, and bowed,
And went upon my way;
And every time I 'm asked since then,
“How do?" think of that day,
And wish so wise were all my friends,
And I myself so wise,
Not to provoke with questions vain,
As idle, vain replies.
Show me the man that how he is,
Or how he is not, knows;
And I 'll show thee the stream that up
Its native hill-side flows.
Walking from BEILSTEIN to HEIMRIED (WÜRTTEMBERG), July 22, 1861.
BELINDA from the glass turns wroth away,
Which shows her beauty's premature decay:
Where is the reader who a second look
E’er casts upon a plain, truth-speaking book?
“Ha! false glass," Belinda cries,
And the tear starts to her eyes,
“I am not, if truth were told,
Half so ugly or so old.”
Into shivers, as she spoke,
With her hand the wroth maid broke
Her too faithful glass and true:
So, be sure, they 'll do to you,
My too faithful book and true,
Call you false, and, in a rage,
Tear or blot or burn your page,
And to hide their well earned shame,
Vilify your author's name.
Let them do it if they will;
Mé, these times, they cannot kill,
Cannot burn me at the stake,
And truth’s martyr of me make:
So they 'li wreak their wrath on you,
My too faithful book and true.
Walking from NECKARELZ to MUDAU (WüRTTEMBERG), July 30, 1861.
An air balloon, it seemed, or diving-bell,
Or skiff whose sails the wind with gentle swell
Before it puffed; but 'twas my Emmeline,
Rigged, for the first time, out, in crinoline.
"Fool!” to myself cried I, as from a dream
Wakening alarmed, “few things are what they seem.” Walking from NECKARELZ to MUDAU (WÜRTTEMBERG), July 30, 1861.
FOR THE AUTHOR'S SIX PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE HEROIC TIMES.
Behold a new pump to the Mantuan spring!
Fill up your cups, ye thirsty, with the clear,
Fast-gushing lymph, and drink and be refreshed,
And thank with grateful heart the diligent
Pumpborer's leathern hand, and arm robust,
And sweat in the early morning hour, unseen
Save by the rising sun and soaring lark.
Drink, and be glad, as sparkling bright a draught
As ever welled from the Maeonian fount,
Or old, blind puritan's yet holier spring.
Drink deep and drain the cup – there are no lees. LOBENSTEIN (REUSS), Sept. 14, 1861.
UP to the ears, I have heard it said,
A man may be in love,
But that he may up to the eyes,
My business 'tis to prove.
A man may be so deep in love
It covers both his eyes,
Else why is Cupid painted blind?
Answer me that, ye wise.
Now if a man may be in love
Deep over both his eyes,
Up to the eyes that he may be,
Need not, I think, surprise.
Up to the eyes, I have been in love,
Up to the ears, I have been;
Over both eyes and ears in love,
An odd time I have been seen;
Over both eyes and ears, but not
Until today quite drowned,
Able to touch, until today,
With tippy-toes the ground.
The why I know, but shall I tell
Or leave the world to guess?
Out with it! out! – I met today,
Today first time, my Bess.
Casa CARTONI AI CAVALLEGGIERI, LEGHORN, Jan. 14, 1862.
KNOW thine own self, the wise man said of old,
And many a time the advice has been re-echoed:
Know thine own self. But I say: if thou 'rt wise,
What need hast thou to know it? if a fool,
What whit less fool art thou because thou know'st it?
So study others, friend, and not thyself;
Cleave to the wise fast, and eschew the fool,
And leave 't to others so to do by thee.
CASA CARTONI AI CAVALLEGGIERI, LEGHORN, Nov. 21, 1861.
I HAVE three friends who read my books
And love both them and me,
Baumgarten one, Alonzo two,
My Sophy, she makes three.
I wish they all were here yet no,
I were too happy then;
Such perfect bliss is not on earth,
Nor for the sons of men.
Enough for me the human lot
Of mingled bliss and woe;
Enough of bliss to see one come;
Of pain, to see one go.