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Ballads and Lyrics of Socialism 1883-1908 . Nesbit, E. (Edith), 1858–1924.
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page: 51

At the Year’s End

  • FLUSHED with a crimson sunrise beauty,
  • The fair new year its promise gave;
  • Such dreams we had of love, of duty,
  • Of heights to scale, of foes to brave!
  • Oh, how hope’s fire our future lighted—
  • How much to do, how much to know,
  • Yet on its brink we shrank affrighted
  • A year ago.
  • And now the year is done—its pleasure
  • So brief, so bright—its hours of pain;
  • Some moments’ memories we treasure,
  • Some recollections loathe in vain.
  • Oh, for a brain where could not waken
  • Remembrances of purpose crossed,
  • Of trusts abandoned, aims forsaken,
  • And chances lost!
  • The changing seasons thrust upon us
  • Another year, fair‐faced and new;
  • What evil have the old years done us
  • That this in its turn will not do?
  • This, too, will die, and leave us grieving
  • For all the ills its arms enfold—
  • For faiths betrayed, for friends deceiving,
  • And love grown cold.
  • We have been fooled. The hopes that fooled us—
  • We know them now—have been a lie;
  • The star that led, the light that ruled us—
  • We scorn them, and we pass them by.
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  • Shut out hope’s light; past is the season
  • When rose‐red glow seemed good to see.
  • Look—by the cold white light of reason,
  • These things shall be:
  • A long, dim vista, blank and dreary—
  • The same hard failure, small success;
  • The same tired heart, the brain still weary
  • Of its intense self‐consciousness;
  • The old despair, the old repining,
  • And through the future’s deepest night,
  • Down life’s untrodden ways still shining,
  • The old hope’s light!
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