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Best Famous Alfred Austin Poems

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Written by Alfred Austin | Create an image from this poem

At His Grave

 LEAVE me a little while alone, 
Here at his grave that still is strown 
With crumbling flower and wreath; 
The laughing rivulet leaps and falls, 
The thrush exults, the cuckoo calls, 
And he lies hush’d beneath.
With myrtle cross and crown of rose, And every lowlier flower that blows, His new-made couch is dress’d; Primrose and cowslip, hyacinth wild, Gather’d by monarch, peasant, child, A nation’s grief attest.
I stood not with the mournful crowd That hither came when round his shroud Pious farewells were said.
In the fam’d city that he sav’d, By minaret crown’d, by billow lav’d, I heard that he was dead.
Now o’er his tomb at last I bend, No greeting get, no greeting tend, Who never came before Unto his presence, but I took, From word or gesture, tone or look, Some wisdom from his door.
And must I now unanswer’d wait, And, though a suppliant at the gate, No sound my ears rejoice? Listen! Yes, even as I stand, I feel the pressure of his hand, The comfort of his voice.
How poor were Fame, did grief confess That death can make a great life less, Or end the help it gave! Our wreaths may fade, our flowers may wane, But his well-ripen’d deeds remain, Untouch’d, above his grave.
Let this, too, soothe our widow’d minds; Silenced are the opprobrious winds Whene’er the sun goes down; And free henceforth from noonday noise, He at a tranquil height enjoys The starlight of renown.
Thus hence we something more may take Than sterile grief, than formless ache, Or vainly utter’d vow; Death hath bestow’d what life withheld And he round whom detraction swell’d Hath peace with honor now.
The open jeer, the covert taunt, The falsehood coin’d in factious haunt, These loving gifts reprove.
They never were but thwarted sound Of ebbing waves that bluster round A rock that will not move.
And now the idle roar rolls off, Hush’d is the gibe and sham’d the scoff, Repress’d the envious gird; Since death, the looking-glass of life, Clear’d of the misty breath of strife, Reflects his face unblurr’d.
From callow youth to mellow age, Men turn the leaf and scan the page, And note, with smart of loss, How wit to wisdom did mature, How duty burn’d ambition pure, And purged away the dross.
Youth is self-love; our manhood lends Its heart to pleasure, mistress, friends, So that when age steals nigh, How few find any worthier aim Than to protract a flickering flame, Whose oil hath long run dry! But he, unwitting youth once flown, With England’s greatness link’d his own, And, steadfast to that part, Held praise and blame but fitful sound, And in the love of country found Full solace for his heart.
Now in an English grave he lies: With flowers that tell of English skies And mind of English air, A grateful sovereign decks his bed, And hither long with pilgrim tread Will English feet repair.
Yet not beside his grave alone We seek the glance, the touch, the tone; His home is nigh,—but there, See from the hearth his figure fled, The pen unrais’d, the page unread, Untenanted the chair! Vainly the beechen boughs have made A fresh green canopy of shade, Vainly the peacocks stray; While Carlo, with despondent gait, Wonders how long affairs of State Will keep his lord away.
Here most we miss the guide, the friend; Back to the churchyard let me wend, And, by the posied mound, Lingering where late stood worthier feet, Wish that some voice, more strong, more sweet, A loftier dirge would sound.
At least I bring not tardy flowers: Votive to him life’s budding powers, Such as they were, I gave— He not rejecting, so I may Perhaps these poor faint spices lay, Unchidden, on his grave!

Written by Alfred Austin | Create an image from this poem

Loves Blindness

 Now do I know that Love is blind, for I 
Can see no beauty on this beauteous earth, 
No life, no light, no hopefulness, no mirth, 
Pleasure nor purpose, when thou art not nigh.
Thy absence exiles sunshine from the sky, Seres Spring's maturity, checks Summer's birth, Leaves linnet's pipe as sad as plover's cry, And makes me in abundance find but dearth.
But when thy feet flutter the dark, and thou With orient eyes dawnest on my distress, Suddenly sings a bird on every bough, The heavens expand, the earth grows less and less, The ground is buoyant as the ether now, And all looks lovely in thy loveliness.
Written by Alfred Austin | Create an image from this poem

The Haymakers' Song

 HERE’S to him that grows it, 
Drink, lads, drink! 
That lays it in and mows it, 
Clink, jugs, clink! 
To him that mows and makes it, 
That scatters it and shakes it, 
That turns, and teds, and rakes it, 
Clink, jugs, clink! 

Now here ’s to him that stacks it, 
Drink, lads, drink!
That thrashes and that tacks it, 
Clink, jugs, clink! 
That cuts it out for eating, 
When March-dropp’d lambs are bleating, 
And the slate-blue clouds are sleeting,
Drink, lads, drink! 

And here ’s to thane and yeoman, 
Drink, lads, drink! 
To horseman and to bowman, 
Clink, jugs, clink!
To lofty and to low man, 
Who bears a grudge to no man, 
But flinches from no foeman, 
Drink, lads, drink!
Written by Alfred Austin | Create an image from this poem


 SHE wanders in the April woods, 
That glisten with the fallen shower; 
She leans her face against the buds, 
She stops, she stoops, she plucks a flower.
She feels the ferment of the hour: She broodeth when the ringdove broods; The sun and flying clouds have power Upon her cheek and changing moods.
She cannot think she is alone, As o’er her senses warmly steal Floods of unrest she fears to own, And almost dreads to feel.
Among the summer woodlands wide Anew she roams, no more alone; The joy she fear’d is at her side, Spring’s blushing secret now is known.
The primrose and its mates have flown, The thrush’s ringing note hath died; But glancing eye and glowing tone Fall on her from her god, her guide.
She knows not, asks not, what the goal, She only feels she moves towards bliss, And yields her pure unquestioning soul To touch and fondling kiss.
And still she haunts those woodland ways, Though all fond fancy finds there now To mind of spring or summer days, Are sodden trunk and songless bough.
The past sits widow’d on her brow, Homeward she wends with wintry gaze, To walls that house a hollow vow, To hearth where love hath ceas’d to blaze: Watches the clammy twilight wane, With grief too fix’d for woe or tear; And, with her forehead ’gainst the pane, Envies the dying year.