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Houghton, Arthur Boyd: Happiness (2)


BECAUSE the Few with signal virtue crowned,
The heights and pinnacles of human mind,
Sadder and wearier than the rest are found,
Wish not thy Soul less wise or less refined.
True that the small delights which every day
Cheer and distract the pilgrim are not theirs ;
True that, though free from Passion's lawless sway,
A loftier being brings severer cares.
Yet they have special pleasures, even Mirth,
By those undreamt-of who have only trod
Life's valley smooth ; and if the rolling earth
To their nice ear have many a painful tone,
They know, Man does not live by Joy alone,
But by the presence of the power of God.


A SPLENDOUR amid glooms, a sunny thread
Woven into a tapestry of cloud,
A merry child a-playing with the shroud
That lies upon a breathless mother's bed,
A garland on the front of one new-wed,
Trembling and weeping while her troth is vowed,
A schoolboy's laugh that rises light and loud
In licensed freedom from ungentle dread ;
These are ensamples of the Happiness
For which our nature fits us ; More and Less
Are parts of all things to the mortal given,
Of Love, Joy, Truth, and Beauty. Perfect Light
Would dazzle, not illuminate our sight,
From Earth it is enough to glimpse at Heaven.

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