The Last Smile – John Ruskin

She sat beside me yesterday
With lip and eye, so blandly smiling,
So full of soul, of life, of light,
So sweetly my lorn heart beguiling
That she had almost made me gay
Had almost charmed the thought away
(Which, like the poisoned desert wind,
Came sick and heavy o’er my mind)
That memory soon mine all would be,
And she would smile no more for me.

Night – John Ruskin

Faint from the bell the ghastly echoes fall,
That grates within the grey cathedral tower;
Let me not enter through the portal tall,
Lest the strange spirit of the moonless hour
Should give life to those pale people, who
Lie in their fretted niches, two and two,
Each with his head on pillowy stone reposed,
And his hands lifted, and his eyelids closed.

From many a moldering oriel, as to flout,
Its pale, grave brow of ivy-tressed stone,
Comes the incongruous laugh, and revel shout-
Above, some solitary casement, thrown
Wide-open to the wavering night wind,
Admits its chill, so deathful, yet so kind,
Unto the fevered brow and fiery eye
Of one, whose night hour passeth sleeplessly.

Ye melancholy chambers! I could shun
The darkness of your silence, with such fear,
As places where slow murder has been done,
How many noble spirits have died here
Withering away in yearnings to aspire
Gnawed by mocked hope-devoured by their own fire!
Methinks the grave must feel a colder bed
To spirits such as these, then unto common dead.

The Pagans – Zachary Zuccaro

Eager anticipation of the upcoming adventure
a journey into foreign lands
filled with undiscovered species
and unseen wonders.

A dragon and a phoenix
perch on a mountain
above the king.
Seven living creatures
with seven eyes and seven wings
sit in a circle
upon seven beryl thrones.

Forty trumpets are sounded
twenty sacrifices offered.
Thirteen priests in scarlet robes
approach the altar
stained with the blood
of a newborn child,
a supplication to the gods
to bring rain to the land.

Hydrangea – Zachary Zuccaro

A hydrangea grows by the pond
and sprinkles its petals over the ground.

The sparrow sings on a maple tree
and offers her feathers to the whims of the wind.

Bluegill jumps from the water
and returns its body to the world from whence it came.

Wisdom And Knowledge – Zachary Zuccaro

Much emphasis is placed on knowledge and memory,
intelligence is worshipped and information is mankind’s god.
Yet these too are trivial and shall turn to dust.
People cling to memories yet these too are mortal
and shall fade with age and die with death.
No, what is immortal, and is important
does not age, does not die, and is rarely sought.

Wisdom and love are the fruit of the soul
and these do not age but grow with time.
Yet these treasures are ignored and mocked.

Many people believe they possess wisdom,
yet they do not seek it.
Many covet love, and wish it for themselves,
yet are reluctant to give it,
sharing it only with close friends and family.

Wisdom and love are the food of the soul
yet people stuff their souls with hatred and ignorance,
and while their bodies live healthy and well,
souls suffer and starve.
Wisdom often comes with age but
wisdom does not come from age.
Indeed, there are children who are wise
and elders who are fools.

No, knowledge and wisdom are enemies.
Knowledge is of the world and for the world,
wisdom is of the soul and for the soul.
Knowledge is nothing more than trivial facts
that help make us feel good about ourselves,
but wisdom is true understanding of life and what is life.

Only when one has wisdom, rather than knowledge,
can one truly understand the purpose of dying,
and more importantly, the purpose for living.

Mist – Henry David Thoreau

Low-anchored cloud,
Newfoundland air,
Fountainhead and source of rivers,
Dew-cloth, dream drapery,
And napkin spread by fays;
Drifting meadow of the air,
Where bloom the desired banks and violets,
And in the whose fenny labyrinth
The bittern booms and heron wades;
Spirit of the lake and seas and rivers,
Bear only perfumes and the scent
Of healing herbs to just men’s fields!

The Moon – Henry David Thoreau

The full-orbed moon with unchanged ray
Mounts up the eastern sky,
Not doomed to these short nights for aye,
But shining steadily.

She does not wane, but my fortune,
Which her rays do not bless,
My wayward path declineth soon,
But she shines not the less.

And if she faintly glimmers here,
And paled is her light,
Yet alway in her proper sphere
She’s mistress of the night.

Friendship – Henry David Thoreau

I think awhile of Love, and while I think,
Love is to be a world,
Sole meat and sweetest drink,
And close connecting link
Tween heaven and earth.

I only know it is, not how or why,
My greatest happiness;
However hard I try,
Not if I were to die,
Can I explain?

I fain would ask my friend how it can be,
But when the time arrives,
Then Love is more lovely
Than anything to me,
And so I’m dumb.

For if the truth were known, Love cannot speak,
But only thinks and does;
Though surely out ’twill leak
Without the help of Greek,
Or any tongue.

A man may love the truth and practice it,
The beauty he may admire,
And goodness not omit,
As much as may befit
To reverence.

But only when these three together meet,
As they always incline,
And make one soul the seat,
And favorite retreat,
Of loveliness;

When under kindred shape, like loves and hates
And a kindred nature,
Proclaim us to be mates,
Exposed to equal fates

And each may other help, and service do,
Drawing Love’s bands tighter,
Service he ne’er shall rue
While one and one make two,
And two are one;

In such case only doth man fully prove
Fully as a man can do,
What power there is in Love
His inmost soul to move

Two sturdy oaks I mean, which side by side,
Withstand the winter’s storm,
And spite of wind and tide,
Grow up the meadow’s pride,
For both are strong

Above they barely touch  but undermined
Down to their deepest source,
Admiring you shall find
Their roots are intertwined

Smoke – Henry David Thoreau

Light-winged Smoke, Icarian bird,
Melting thy pinions in thy upward flight,
Lark without song, and messenger of dawn
Circling above the hamlets as they nest;
Or else, departing dream, and shadowy form
Of midnight vision, gathering up thy skirts;
By night star-veiling, and by day
Darkening the light and blotting out the sun;
Go thou my incense upward from this hearth,
And ask the gods to pardon this clear flame.

Henry David Thoreau

The fable, which is naturally and truly composed, so as to satisfy the imagination, ere it addresses the understanding, beautiful though strange as a wild-flower, is to the wise man an apothegm, and admits of his most generous interpretation.

Lau Anjuli Tin Baar Jal Ko – Madhav Prasad Ghimire

सेलायो उनको चिता र दिनको ज्वाला निभ्यो पश्चिम
यो छाया–छविको डुब्यो दिन, डुब्यो रङ्गीन त्यो जीवन
थोत्रो देवल, शून्यसान दुनियाँ, सारा अँध्यारोतिर
जाऊ हे सखि ! साँझको शिखरको पारी उज्यालोतिर

बत्ती यो घरबाट बल्छ अहिले सङ्घारमा दख्खिन
बाल्थिन् यै घरभित्र बत्ति घरकी लक्ष्मी उनी क्वै दिन
हे वैवस्वत ! बत्ति यो शहरमा तिम्रो लगी जोडिद्यौ
उल्टीद्यौ सब अन्धकार उनको बाटो तिमी छोेडिद्यौ

छायारुप लिएर शून्य घरमा आई नच्याऊ अब
हाम्रा आँसु नहेर, निष्ठुर बनी माया चुँडाल्द्यौ सब
हल्का प्वाँख उचाल, झार भुइँमै धूलो र मैलो जति
जाऊ सुन्दर शान्त देश, पुतली ! हे ज्योतिकी सन्तति !

लाऊ अञ्जुलि तीन बार जलको, खाएर जाऊ सखी !
यौटा फुल चुँडेर दिन्छु दिलको लाएर जाउः सखी !
आँसू आज पुछेर दुःख सब यो बिर्सेर जाऊ सखी !
मान्छेको घर अन्धकार छ भनी सम्झेर जाऊ सखी !

आऊन् पुष्पविमान पुण्यबलले निस्केर आकाशमा
हाँसी क्यै वरदान द्यौ रहरको, जाऊ सखी ! बैँसमा
लैजाओ अमरावती शहरमा हे स्वर्गका देवता !
ताराका सँग हाँस है, अब तिमी नौ लाखमा एउटा

हाँस्यौ, प्यार गर्यो, बिगार गरिनौ कैल्यै कसैको यहाँ
यो चारै दिनमा पनी गरिसक्यौ जो गर्नुपर्ने यहाँ
केही बाँकि भए म गर्छु सँगिनी ! ज्यूँदै छु आधा अब
तिम्रो खेल समाप्त भो सब, तिमी विश्राम लेऊ अब

मट्टीलाइ फुकेर प्राण बिउँझ्यौ हे फुलकी वासना !
हाँस्यौ घाम र जूनको मनि यहाँ हे स्वर्गकी सिर्जना !
देवी ! जोबनमै गयौ, मलिन यो मट्टी बिसाईकन
हाम्रै जीत छ प्यार चार दिनको पायौ महापावन

टाढा निर्मल मौन शान्त गहिरो आनन्दले दीपित
तिम्रो शाश्वत धामभित्र भवको पर्दा खसाली सुत
एकै बार जहाँ सुतेर कहिल्यै पर्दैन है ब्यूँझन
बल्छन् बाहिर जून्किरीसित जहाँ नौलाख तारागण

Madhav Prasad Ghimire – Birsi Birsi Sakinna

लीला माइतका भुलेर घरका धन्दा तिमीले गर्यो
आमाको ममता भुलेर कसरी माया मलाई गर्यो
छातीबाट झिकेर प्राणसरिका छोरी मलाई दियौ
हेरी आखिर घाटबाट रसिला आँखा ममा चिम्लियौ

‘ख्वै छोरीहरु छन् कता, म त गएँ, ख्वै माइती छन् कहाँ !
प्यारा ! यति रहेछ भेट, टुहुरी हेरेर बस्नु यहाँ !’
धोको यत्ति कहेर के हृदयले उल्टीरहेकी थियौ
हेरी आखिर घाटबाट रसिला आँखा ममा चिम्लियौ

मैले सोधिनँ, अन्त्यकाल कुनमा धोको अडेको थियो
मैले रोइनँ, प्राण जान कतिको बाधा परेको थियो
हेरेँ टुल्टुल खाली, दीन मुखमा हेरीरहेकी थियौ
हेरी आखिर घाटबाट रसिला आँखा ममा चिम्लियौ

आँसू झर्न सकेन खालि रसिला आँखा लिएकी थियौ
बाक्लो फुट्न सकेन खालि दिलको भाषा भनेकी थियौ
मेरो ध्यान गरी मभित्र कसरी आत्मा मिलाईदियौ
हेरी आखिर घाटबाट रसिला आँखा ममा चिम्लियौ

गथ्र्यौँ दम्पति मृत्युका पनि कुरा माया र सन्तोषमा
भन्थ्यौ– मैँ पहिले मरुँ हजुरको प्यारो यही काखमा !
साँच्चै भाग्यवती सती हृदयकी सच्चा ! मलाई जित्यौ
हेरी आखिर घाटबाट रसिला आँखा ममा चिम्लियौ

तिम्रो पाप थिएन, चार दिनको चोला थियो कञ्चन
तिम्रो धर्म थियो, सुन्यौ दिनभरी श्रीकृष्णको कीर्तन
राती शीतल मेघको मनि महानिद्रा सजीलै लियौ
हेरी आखिर घाटबाट रसिला आँखा ममा चिम्लियौ

तिम्रो रुप र माधुरी धमिलिँदै जाला कुनै कालमा
जानेछन् अनि बिर्र्सदै गुन पनी यो बैगुनी विश्वमा
बिर्सि बिर्सिसकिन्न किन्तु कहिल्यै जो यो अनौठो गर्यो
हेरी आखिर घाटबाट रसिला आँखा ममा चिम्लियौ

Baalaaji Dekhyan – Bhanubhakta Acharya

यति दिन पछि मैले आज बालाजि देख्याँ,
पृथिवि तलभरीमा स्वर्ग हो जानि लेख्याँ।
वरिपरि लहरामा झूलि बस्न्या चरा छन्,
मधुर वचन बोली मन् लिँदा क्या सुरा छन्।।१।।

याँहाँ बसेर कविता यदि गर्न पाऊँ,
यस्देखि सोख अरु थोक म के चिताऊँ।
उस्माथि झन् असल सुन्दरि एक् नचाऊँ,
खैंचेर इन्द्रकन स्वर्ग यहीं बनाऊँ।।२।।