Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, HOME, SWEET HOME WITH VARIATIONS: 2. ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE, by HENRY CUYLER BUNNER



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HOME, SWEET HOME WITH VARIATIONS: 2. ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: As sea-foam blown of the winds, as blossom of brine that is drifted
Last Line: Oh, give us a rest!
Subject(s): Payne, John Howard (1791-1852); Swinburne, Algernon Charles (1837-1909)


(As Algernon Charles Swinburne might have wrapped it up in variations.)
('Mid pleasures and palaces --)

As sea-foam blown of the winds, as blossom of brine that is drifted
Hither and you on the barren breast of the breeze,
Though we wander on gusts of a god's breath, shaken and shifted,
The salt of us stings and is sore for the sobbing seas.
For home's sake hungry at heart, we sicken in pillared porches
Of bliss made sick for a life that is barren of bliss,
For the place whereon is a light out of heaven that sears not nor scorches,
Nor elsewhere than this.

(An exile from home, splendor dazzles in vain --)

For here we know shall no gold thing glisten,
No bright thing burn, and no sweet thing shine;
Nor love lower never an ear to listen
To words that work in the heart like wine.
What time we are set from our land apart,
For pain of passion and hunger of heart,
Though we walk with exiles fame faints to christen,
Or sing at the Cytherean's shrine.

(Variation: An exile from home --)

Whether with him whose head
Of gods is honored,
With song made splendent in the sight of men --
Whose heart most sweetly stout,
From ravishing France cast out,
Being firstly hers, was hers most wholly then --
Or where on shining seas like wine
The dove's wings draw the dropping Erycine.
(Give me my lowly thatched cottage --)

For Joy finds Love grow bitter,
And spreads his wings to quit her,
At thought of birds that twitter
Beneath the roof-tree's straw --
Of birds that come for calling,
No fear or fright appalling,
When dews of dusk are falling,
Or daylight's draperies draw.

(Give me them, and the peace of mind --)

Give me these things then back, though the giving
Be at cost of earth's garner of gold;
There is no life without these worth living,
No treasure where these are not told.
For the heart give the hope that it knows not,
Give the balm for the burn of the breast --
For the soul and the mind that repose not,
Oh, give us a rest!





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