Gleanings From The Past #50


Some Poem Extracts

Children dear, was it yesterday
We heard the sweet bells over the bay?
In the caverns where we lay,
Through the surf and through the swell,
The far-off sound of a silver bell?
Sand-strewn caverns, cool and deep,
Where the winds are all asleep;
Where the spent lights quiver and gleam,
Where the salt weed sways in the stream,
Where the sea-beasts, ranged all round,
Feed in the ooze of their pasture-ground;
Where the sea-snakes coil and twine,
Dry their mail and bask in the brine;
Where great whales come sailing by,
Sail and sail, with unshut eye,
Round the world forever and aye?
When did music come this way?
Children dear, was it yesterday?

— Matthew Arnold, “The Forsaken Merman”, Dover Beach and Other Poems, 1867

Go, ponder well and patiently,
Not knowing what your thought may yield,
But waiting for the mystery
Of what shall be revealed.

— Anon., “A Poem”, The Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 31, March 1873

The old days we remember,
How softly did they glide,
While all untouched by worldly care
We wandered side by side!
In those pleasant days, when the sun’s last rays,
Just lingered on the hill,
Or the moon’s pale light with the coming night
Shone o’er our pathway still.

— Lucy Hooper, “The Old Days We Remember”, The Complete Poetical Works of the Late Miss Lucy Hooper, 1848

Lost in Translation

When Sir Richard [Fanshawe], the ambassador of Charles II. to Spain, was travelling in that country in a carriage bearing two mottoes of his family — Dux Vitæ Ratio — In Cruce Victoria; a crowd of peasants gathered round the unusual sight of so many foreigners, in a town where they stopped for refreshment, and were very importunate with a priest, who happened to be amongst them, for an explanation
of the Latin. This, however, being beyond his skill, he informed them that the coach belonged to the Duke of Vitæ Ratio, who had done great things for the Cross.

— Anne Harrison Fanshawe, Memoirs of Lady Fanshawe, 1829

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My name Edmark M. Law. I work as a freelance writer, mainly writing about science and mathematics. I am an ardent hobbyist. I like to read, solve puzzles, play chess, make origami and play basketball. In addition, I dabble in magic, particularly card magic and other sleight-of-hand type magic. I live in Hong Kong. You can find me on Twitter` and Facebook. My email is

3 thoughts on “Gleanings From The Past #50

  1. This came to mind…
    …I have seen them riding seaward on the waves
    Combing the white hair of the waves blown back
    When the wind blows the water white and black.
    We have lingered in the chambers of the sea
    By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown
    Till human voices wake us, and we drown.


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