All which could hold or bind; must prove

The farthest boundaries of thought,

And shun no end which these have brought;

Then die in satisfaction, knowing

That what was sown was worth the sowing.

I claim for all the goods I sell

That they will serve their purpose well,

And though you perish, they will live.

Full measure for your pay I give.

To-day you worked, you thought, in vain.

What since has happened is the train

Your toiling brought. I spoke to you

For my share of the bargain, due."

"My life! And is that all you crave

In pay? What even childhood gave!

I have been dedicate from youth.

Before my God I speak the truth!"

Fatigue, excitement of the past

Few hours broke me down at last.

All day I had forgot to eat,

My nerves betrayed me, lacking meat.

I bowed my head and felt the storm

Plough shattering through my prostrate form.

The tearless sobs tore at my heart.

My host withdrew himself apart;

Busied among his crockery,

He paid no farther heed to me.

Exhausted, spent, I huddled there,

Within the arms of the old carved chair.

A long half-hour dragged away,

And then I heard a kind voice say,

"The day will soon be dawning, when

You must begin to work again.

Here are the things which you require."

By the fading light of the dying fire,

And by the guttering candle's flare,

I saw the old man standing there.

He handed me a packet, tied

With crimson tape, and sealed. "Inside

Are seeds of many differing flowers,

To occupy your utmost powers

Of storied vision, and these swords

Are the finest which my shop affords.

Go home and use them; do not spare

Yourself; let that be all your care.

Whatever you have means to buy

Be very sure I can supply."

He slowly walked to the window, flung

It open, and in the grey air rung

The sound of distant matin bells.

I took my parcels. Then, as tells

An ancient mumbling monk his beads,

I tried to thank for his courteous deeds

My strange old friend. "Nay, do not talk,"

He urged me, "you have a long walk

Before you. Good-by and Good-day!"

And gently sped upon my way

I stumbled out in the morning hush,

As down the empty street a flush

Ran level from the rising sun.

Another day was just begun.

SWORD BLADES

The Captured Goddess

Over the housetops,

Above the rotating chimney-pots,

I have seen a shiver of amethyst,

And blue and cinnamon have flickered

A moment,

At the far end of a dusty street.

Through sheeted rain

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