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Filled is Life s goblet to the brim And tho

Filled is Life's goblet to the brim
And though my eyes with tears are dim
I see its sparkling bubbles swim
And chant a melancholy hymn
With solemn voice and slow.

No purple flowers no garlands green
Conceal the goblet's shade or sheen
Nor maddening draughts of Hippocrene
Like gleams of sunshine flash between
Thick leaves of mistletoe.

This goblet wrought with curious art
Is filled with waters that upstart
When the deep fountains of the heart
By strong convulsions rent apart
Are running all to waste.

And as it mantling passes round
With fennel is it wreathed and crowned
Whose seed and foliage sun imbrowned
Are in its waters steeped and drowned
And give a bitter taste.

Above the lowly plants it towers
The fennel with its yellow flowers
And in an earlier age than ours
Was gifted with the wondrous powers
Lost vision to restore.

It gave new strength and fearless mood
And gladiators fierce and rude
Mingled it in their daily food
And he who battled and subdued
A wreath of fennel wore.

Then in Life's goblet freely press
The leaves that give it bitterness
Nor prize the colored waters less
For in thy darkness and distress
New light and strength they give!

And he who has not learned to know
How false its sparkling buhbles show
How bitter are the drops of woe
With which its brim may overflow
He has not learned to live.

The prayer of Ajax was for light
Through all that dark and desperate fight
The blackness of that noonday night
He asked but the return of sight
To see his foeman's face.

Let our unceasing earnest prayer
Be too for light for strength to bear
Our portion of the weight of care
That crushes into dumb despair
One half the human race.

O suffering sad humanity!
O ye afflicted one who lie
Steeped to the lips in misery
Longing and yet afraid to die
Patient though sorely tried !

I pledge you in this cup of grief
Where floats the fennel's bitter leaf !
The Battle of our Life is briet
The alarm the struggle the relief
Then sleep we side by side..

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