Paul Laurence Dunbar
There is a heaven, for ever, day by day,
The upward longing of my soul doth tell me so.
There is a hell, I'm quite as sure; for pray
If there were not, where would my neighbours go?
Delight's Despair at setting
Is that Delight is less
Than the sufficing Longing
That so impoverish.
Mistaken oft has been
For the Authentic orbit
Of its Anterior Sun.
The joy that has no stem no core,
Nor seed that we can sow,
Is edible to longing.
But ablative to show.
By fundamental palates
Those products are preferred
Impregnable to transit
And patented by pod.
Longing is like the Seed
That wrestles in the Ground,
Believing if it intercede
It shall at length be found.
The Hour, and the Clime --
Each Circumstance unknown,
What Constancy must be achieved
Before it see the Sun!
"Go tell it" -- What a Message --
To whom -- is specified --
Not murmur -- not endearment --
But simply -- we -- obeyed --
Obeyed -- a Lure -- a Longing?
Oh Nature -- none of this --
To Law -- said sweet Thermopylae
I give my dying Kiss --
Rainer Maria Rilke
You don't survive in me
because of memories;
nor are you mine because
of a lovely longing's strength.
What does make you present
is the ardent detour
that a slow tenderness
traces in my blood.
I do not need
to see you appear;
being born sufficed for me
to lose you a little less.
William Butler Yeats
Through winter-time we call on spring,
And through the spring on summer call,
And when abounding hedges ring
Declare that winter's best of all;
And after that there s nothing good
Because the spring-time has not come -
Nor know that what disturbs our blood
Is but its longing for the tomb.
William Butler Yeats
Old fathers, great-grandfathers,
Rise as kindred should.
If ever lover's loneliness
Came where you stood,
Pray that Heaven protect us
That protect your blood.
The mountain throws a shadow,
Thin is the moon's horn;
What did we remember
Under the ragged thorn?
Dread has followed longing,
And our hearts are torn.
it comes like a convict
squeezing through bars
and is gone before
the promptest siren
it suddenly turns
in the ear or rides
the eye of a thought
i have it in a faint
taste or shudder
an ache like a spring
high in the mountains
it was once called love
and now a longing
for a song to be heard
that doesn't bear singing
You brothers, who are mine,
Poor people, near and far,
Longing for every star,
Dream of relief from pain,
You, stumbling dumb
At night, as pale stars break,
Lift your thin hands for some
Hope, and suffer, and wake,
Poor muddling commonplace,
You sailors who must live
Unstarred by hopelessness,
We share a single face.
Give me my welcome back.
The look of thee, what is it like
Hast thou a hand or Foot
Or Mansion of Identity
And what is thy Pursuit?
Thy fellows are they realms or Themes
Hast thou Delight or Fear
Or Longing -- and is that for us
Or values more severe?
Let change transfuse all other Traits
Enact all other Blame
But deign this least certificate --
That thou shalt be the same.
A E Housman
When the lad for longing sighs,
Mute and dull of cheer and pale,
If at death's own door he lies,
Maiden, you can heal his ail.
Lovers' ills are all to buy:
The wan look, the hollow tone,
The hung head, the sunken eye,
You can have them for your own.
Buy them, buy them: eve and morn
Lovers' ills are all to sell.
Then you can lie down forlorn;
But the lover will be well.
Not any more to be lacked --
Not any more to be known --
Denizen of Significance
For a span so worn --
Even Nature herself
Has forgot it is there --
Sedulous of her Multitudes
Notwithstanding Despair --
Of the Ones that pursued it
Suing it not to go
Some have solaced the longing
To accompany --
Some -- rescinded the Wrench --
Others -- Shall I say
Plated the residue of Adz
Through those old Grounds of memory,
The sauntering alone
Is a divine intemperance
A prudent man would shun.
Of liquors that are vended
'Tis easy to beware
But statutes do not meddle
With the internal bar.
Pernicious as the sunset
Permitting to pursue
But impotent to gather,
The tranquil perfidy
Alloys our firmer moments
With that severest gold
Convenient to the longing
But otherwise withheld.
Seems like a long time
Since the waiter took my order.
Grimy little luncheonette,
The snow falling outside.
Seems like it has grown darker
Since I last heard the kitchen door
Behind my back
Since I last noticed
Anyone pass on the street.
A glass of ice-water
Keeps me company
At this table I chose myself
And a longing,
On the conversation
Blue mountains lie beyond the north wall;
Round the city's eastern side flows the white water.
Here we part, friend, once forever.
You go ten thousand miles, drifting away
Like an unrooted water-grass.
Oh, the floating clouds and the thoughts of a wanderer!
Oh, the sunset and the longing of an old friend!
We ride away from each other, waving our hands,
While our horses neigh softly, softly . . . .
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
To an apple-woman's stall
Once some children nimbly ran;
Longing much to purchase all,
They with joyous haste began
Snatching up the piles there raised,
While with eager eyes they gazed
On the rosy fruit so nice;
But when they found out the price,
Down they threw the whole they'd got,
Just as if they were red hot.
* * * * *
The man who gratis will his goods supply
Will never find a lack of folks to buy!
John Greenleaf Whittier
Call him not heretic whose works attest
His faith in goodness by no creed confessed.
Whatever in love's name is truly done
To free the bound and lift the fallen one
Is done to Christ. Whoso in deed and word
Is not against Him labours for our Lord.
When he, who, sad and weary, longing sore
For love's sweet service sought the sisters' door
One saw the heavenly, one the human guest
But who shall say which loved the master best?
If you will receive God's words
And treasure all His commands
Being attentive to godly wisdom,
He'll be your shield from harm
If you raise your voice for understanding
And cry out for godly insight
Longing for godly direction,
Each and every day of your life,
And if you seek for God's wisdom
As for treasure that is hidden
Then you will know the fear of the Lord
And have His knowledge within.
Scripture Poem © Copyright Of M.S.Lowndes
Louisa May Alcott
Thistledown in prison sings:
Bright shines the summer sun,
Soft is the summer air;
Gayly the wood-birds sing,
Flowers are blooming fair.
But, deep in the dark, cold rock,
Sadly I dwell,
Longing for thee, dear friend,
Through sunlight and summer air
I have sought for thee long,
Guided by birds and flowers,
And now by thy song.
O'er hill and dell
Hither to comfort thee
There is a looker-on who sits behind my eyes. I seems he has seen
things in ages and worlds beyond memory's shore, and those
forgotten sights glisten on the grass and shiver on the leaves. He
has seen under new veils the face of the one beloved, in twilight
hours of many a nameless star. Therefore his sky seems to ache with
the pain of countless meetings and partings, and a longing pervades
this spring breeze, -the longing that is full of the whisper of
ages without beginning.
Bananas ripe and green, and ginger-root,
Cocoa in pods and alligator pears,
And tangerines and mangoes and grape fruit,
Fit for the highest prize at parish fairs,
Set in the window, bringing memories
Of fruit-trees laden by low-singing rills,
And dewy dawns, and mystical blue skies
In benediction over nun-like hills.
My eyes grew dim, and I could no more gaze;
A wave of longing through my body swept,
And, hungry for the old, familiar ways,
I turned aside and bowed my head and wept.