Each night, this adroit young lady Lies among sheets Shredded fine as snowflakes Until dream takes her body From bed to strict tryouts In tightrope acrobatics. Nightly she balances Cat-clever on perilous wire In a gigantic hall, Footing her delicate dances To whipcrack and roar Which speak her maestro's will. Gilded, coming correct Across that sultry air, She steps, halts, hung In dead center of her act As great weights drop all about her And commence to swing. Lessoned thus, the girl Parries the lunge and menace Of every pendulum; By deft duck and twirl She draws applause; bright harness Bites keen into each brave limb Then, this tough stint done, she curtsies And serenely plummets down To traverse glass floor And get safe home; but, turning with trained eyes, Tiger-tamer and grinning clown Squat, bowling black balls at her. Tall trucks roll in With a thunder like lions; all aims And lumbering moves
- by Bessie Rayner Parkes58
Sweet melody amidst the moving spheres Breaks forth, a solemn and entrancing sound, A harmony whereof the earth's green hills Give but the faintest echo; yet is there A music everywhere, and concert sweet! All birds which sing amidst the forest deep Till the flowers listen with unfolded bells; All winds that murmur over summer grass, Or curl the waves upon the pebbly shore; Chiefly all earnest human voices rais'd In charity and for the cause of truth, Mingle together in one sacred chord, And float, a grateful incense, up to God.
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