The Complete Poetical Works of James Russell Lowell

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The complete works from the 1844 Poems to Heartsease and Rue published in 1888 are critically introduced.
 

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Page 107 - And what is so rare as a day in June? Then, if ever, come perfect days; Then heaven tries the earth if it be in tune, And over it softly her warm ear lays...
Page 67 - Truth forever on the scaffold, Wrong forever on the throne,— Yet that scaffold sways the future, and, behind the dim unknown, Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own.
Page 68 - Then to side with Truth is noble when we share her wretched crust, Ere her cause bring fame and profit, and 'tis prosperous to be just ; Then it is the brave man chooses, while the coward stands aside, Doubting in his abject spirit, till his Lord is crucified, And the multitude make virtue of the faith they had denied.
Page 107 - We sit in the warm shade and feel right well How the sap creeps up and the blossoms swell, We may shut our eyes, but we cannot help knowing That skies are clear and grass is growing. The breeze comes whispering in our ear That dandelions are blossoming near. That maize has sprouted, that streams are flowing. That the river is bluer than the sky, That the robin is plastering his house hard by...
Page 292 - THE snow had begun in the gloaming, And busily all the night Had been heaping field and highway With a silence deep and white. Every pine and fir and hemlock Wore ermine too dear for an earl, And the poorest twig on the elm-tree Was ridged inch deep with pearl.
Page 110 - The Holy Supper is kept, indeed, In whatso we share with another's need; Not what we give, but what we share, ! For the gift without the giver is bare; Who gives himself with his alms feeds three, Himself, his hungering neighbor, and me.
Page 106 - Gives hope and fervor, nearer draws his theme, First guessed by faint auroral flushes sent Along the wavering vista of his dream. Not only around our infancy Doth heaven with all its splendors lie ; Daily, with souls that cringe and plot, We Sinais climb and know it not.
Page 55 - MEN ! whose boast it is that ye Come of fathers brave and free, If there breathe on earth a slave, Are ye truly free and brave ? If ye do not feel the chain, When it works a brother's pain, Are ye not base slaves indeed, Slaves unworthy to be freed ? Women!
Page 109 - There was never a leaf on bush or tree, The bare boughs rattled shudderingly ; The river was dumb and could not speak, For the weaver Winter its shroud had spun ; A single crow on the tree-top bleak From his shining feathers shed off the cold sun...
Page 108 - In his gilded mail, that flamed so bright It seemed the dark castle had gathered all Those shafts the fierce sun had shot over its wall In his siege of three hundred summers long...

About the author (1924)

James Russell Lowell (February 22, 1819 - August 12, 1891) was an American Romantic poet, critic, editor, and diplomat. He is associated with the Fireside Poets, a group of New England writers. But Lowell's real strengths as a writer are better found in his prose essays than in his verse. A man great in literary learning (he was professor of belles-lettres at Harvard College for many years), wise and passionate in his commitments, he was a great upholder of tradition and value. His essays on the great writers of England and Europe still endure, distinguished not only by their astute insights into the literary classics of Western culture, but also by their spectacular style and stunning wit. Lowell graduated from Harvard College in 1838 and went on to earn a law degree from Harvard Law School. He published his first collection of poetry in 1841. Nor was Lowell merely a dweller in an ivory tower. In his youth, he worked passionately for the cause of abolition, risking his literary reputation for a principle that he saw as absolute. In his middle years, he was founding editor of the Atlantic Monthly and guided it during its early years toward its enormous success. In his final years, this great example of American character and style represented the United States first as minister to Spain (1877--80), and afterwards to Great Britain (1880--85). Lowell was married twice: First to the poet Mary White Lowell, who died of tuberculosis, and second to Frances Dunlap. He died on August 12, 1891, at his home, Elmwood. He was buried in Mount Auburn Cemetery.

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