Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, STANZAS, by JOHN GARDINER CALKINS BRAINARD

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STANZAS, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: On the lake of young life is a fairy boat
Last Line: And holy the haven they find at last.
Subject(s): Fairies; Boats; Love; Truth; Elves

ON the lake of young life is a fairy boat,
Like the sweet new moon in a summer sky;
Through a calm of brightness it seems to float,
And in light and beauty its course to ply.
As sudden as a cricket's spring
Its feathery paddles dip the seas,
As gayly as the hum-bird's wing
Its sails arrest the scented breeze;
And pinions bright and streamers gay
Flutter above the diamond spray,
As the keel cuts its wimpling way.
A little boy-- they call him Love --
With dimpled cheek and sunny brow,
And pinions like a nestling dove,
Sits laughing on the fairy prow.
And one as rosy bright as he,
Bearing his torch of purest light,
With more of joy and less of glee,
Trims the gay bark, and shapes aright
The course, as they distance to weather and lee
The scud of the sky, and the foam of the sea.
Two forms are their lading, two hearts are their care,
And precious the charge that they joy to convey;
The young and the happy, the brave and the fair,
Have sped on their journey, how blithely away!
But as the moon, which shone but now
A silver streak of heavenly light,
With added glory on her brow
Now nobly walks the queen of night--
And firmly moves, though clouds arise,
By storm and tempest fiercely driven,
Shrouding the blue and starry skies,
And darkening all the lights of heaven--
Thus sped the boat; each wale became
Of strong and more enduring frame,
And sternly to the sweeping blast
Stood out the tall and gallant mast.
That boy has strength and courage high
And manhood lights with thought his eye;
And he, the pilot, sits demure
In dignity, serene, secure.
Yes, all have left their brightness now,
A brighter hope is on each brow;
No fancied chart, of fairy bays
And elfin isles, direct their ways --
A heavenly guide sits kindly there,
Directing the course of the brave and the fair;
In yon blessed place be their anchor cast,
And holy the haven they find at last.

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