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Behold, one faith endureth still –
Let factions rail and creeds contend –
God’s mercy was, and is, and will
Be with us, foe and friend.


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Which I wish to remark,
And my language is plain,
That for ways that are dark
And for tricks that are vain,
The heathen Chinee is peculiar,
Which the same I would rise to explain.

Ah Sin was his name;
And I shall not deny,
In regard to the same,
What that name might imply;
But his smile it was pensive and childlike,
As I frequent remarked to Bill Nye.

It was August the third,
And quite soft was the skies;
Which it might be inferred
That Ah Sin was likewise;
Yet he played it that day upon William
And me in a way I despise.

Which we had a small game,
And Ah Sin took a hand:
It was euchre. The same
He did not understand;
But he smiled as he sat by the table,
With the smile that was childlike and bland.

Yet the cards they were stocked
In a way that I grieve,
And my feelings were shocked
At the state of Nye’s sleeve,
Which was stuffed full of aces and bowers,
And the same with intent to deceive.

But the hands that were played
By that heathen Chinee,
And the points that he made,
Were quite frightful to see, —
Till at last he put down a right bower,
Which the same Nye had dealt unto me.

Then I looked up at Nye,
And he gazed upon me;
And he rose with a sigh,
And said, “Can this be?
We are ruined by Chinese cheap labor,” —
And he went for that heathen Chinee.

In the scene that ensued
I did not take a hand,
But the floor it was strewed
Like the leaves on the strand
With the cards that Ah Sin had been hiding,
In the game “he did not understand.”

In his sleeves, which were long,
He had twenty-four packs, —
Which was coming it strong,
Yet I state but the facts;
And we found on his nails, which were taper,
What is frequent in tapers, — that’s wax.

Which is why I remark,
And my language is plain,
That for ways that are dark
And for tricks that are vain,
The heathen Chinee is peculiar, —
Which the same I am free to maintain.


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I’ve created a new page whose title you can see at the top of my blog:
What Readers Say.  It consists of quotes by readers about some poems I’ve written and links to those poems.  They enjoyed them so you might, too.
Here’s the link for my Facebook and Twitter friends:


(I may post this occasionally.)

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Thus I lift the sash, so long
Shut against the flight of song;
All too late for vain excuse, –
Lo, my captive rhymes are loose! 

Rhymes that, flitting through my brain,
Beat against my window-pane,
Some with gayly colored wings,
Some, alas! with venomed stings. 

Shall they bask in sunny rays?
Shall they feed on sugared praise?
Shall they stick with tangled feet
On the critic’s poisoned sheet? 

Are the outside winds too rough?
Is the world not wide enough?
Go, my winged verse, and try, –
Go like Uncle Toby’s fly!


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The fragile flowers, in their beauty,
Are never seen as vain.
In breezes soft, they stand, their duty:
That we, might pleasure, gain. 

The sweet young thing who is a cutie,
And stands long at a pane,
Stays pure. But shift might make her snooty:
The mirror makes one vain.


© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2016.



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Sorrow like a ceaseless rain
Beats upon my heart.
People twist and scream in pain, –
Dawn will find them still again;
This has neither wax nor wane,
Neither stop nor start.

People dress and go to town;
I sit in my chair.
All my thoughts are slow and brown:
Standing up or sitting down
Little matters, or what gown
Or what shoes I wear.

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Unthrifty loveliness, why dost thou spend
Upon thyself thy beauty’s legacy?
Nature’s bequest gives nothing, but doth lend,
And, being frank, she lends to those are free.
Then, beauteous niggard, why dost thou abuse
The bounteous largess given thee to give?
Profitless usurer, why dost thou use
So great a sum of sums, yet canst not live?
For, having traffic with thyself alone,
Thou of thyself thy sweet self dost deceive.
Then, how, when nature calls thee to be gone,
What acceptable audit canst thou leave?
Thy unus’d beauty must be tomb’d with thee,
Which, used, lives th’ executor to be.


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John Sedgwick, to his frightened men,
“Why dodge a single bee?
What will you do in battle, boys,
When swarms come after thee?” 

“At this range, e’en an elephant
Would certainly be missed.
Why think ye then your rosy cheek
Could possibly be kissed?” 

And he sat tall upon his mount
To prove what he had said,
Until the sniper shot at him
And Sedgwick fell down, dead.


The ironic death of Major General John Sedgwick
of the Union army came on May 9, 1864 at the
Battle of Spotsylvania Court House in Virginia. 



© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2016.

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For all time, and in every place,
In every nation, every race,
To wed was man and woman’s place.

Just where is marriage now defined? –
Except in whate’er comes to mind
From whate’er lusts that will men blind.


© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2016.

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Who, mid the grasses of the field
That spring beneath our careless feet,
First found the shining stems that yield
The grains of life-sustaining wheat: 

Who first, upon the furrowed land,
Strewed the bright grains to sprout, and grow,
And ripen for the reaper’s hand –
We know not, and we cannot know. 

But well we know the hand that brought
And scattered, far as sight can reach,
The seeds of free and living thought
On the broad field of modern speech. 

Mid the white hills that round us lie,
We cherish that Great Sower’s fame,
And, as we pile the sheaves on high,
With awe we utter Dante’s name. 

Six centuries, since the poet’s birth,
Have come and flitted o’er our sphere:
The richest harvest reaped on earth
Crowns the last century’s closing year.

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