Peradventure of old, some bard in Ionian Islands,
Walking alone by the sea, hearing the wash of the waves,
Learned the secret from them of the beautiful verse elegiac,
Breathing into his song motion and sound of the sea.
For as the wave of the sea, upheaving in long undulations,
Plunges loud on the sands, pauses, and turns, and retreats,
So the Hexameter, rising and singing, with cadence sonorous,
Falls; and in refluent rhythm back the Pentameter flows?
Not in his youth alone, but in age, may the heart
of the poet
Bloom into song, as the gorse blossoms in autumn and
Not in tenderness wanting, yet rough are the rhymes
of our poet;
Though it be Jacob's voice, Esau's, alas! are the hands.
Let us be grateful to writers for what is left
in the inkstand;
When to leave off is an art only attained by the few.
How can the Three be One? you ask me; I answer
Hail and snow and rain, are they not three, and yet
By the mirage uplifted the land floats vague in
Ships and the shadows of ships hang in the motionless
So by the art of the poet our common life is uplifted,
So, transfigured, the world floats in a luminous haze.
Like a French poem is Life; being only perfect
When with the masculine rhymes mingled the feminine
Down from the mountain descends the brooklet, rejoicing
Little it dreams of the mill hid in the valley
Glad with the joy of existence, the child goes singing and
Little dreaming what toils lie in the future concealed.
As the ink from our pen, so flow our thoughts and
When we begin to write, however sluggish before.
Like the Kingdom of Heaven, the Fountain of Youth
is within us;
If we seek it elsewhere, old shall we grow in the search.
If you would hit the mark, you must aim a little
Every arrow that flies feels the attraction of earth.
Wisely the Hebrews admit no Present tense in their
While we are speaking the word, it is is already the
In the twilight of age all things seem strange
As between daylight and dark ghost-like the landscape
Great is the art of beginning, but greater the
art is of ending;
Many a poem is marred by a superfluous verse.