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Poems by Alice M. Walser in “The Bouquet”

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Portrait of Alice Walser in “The Bouquet”

Alice Walser, wife of George Walser, founder of Liberal, Missouri, contributed two poems to his volume of poetry, The Bouquet.

PIMPERNEL

LANGUAGE : — CHANGE

Can I tide this world of danger,

‘Mid temptations, storms and strife;

Can I walk the path forever
As your true and faithful wife

Can I feed a heart so tender
As the one your bosom bears;

Will my love for thee grow stronger
As I walk this world of cares?

In the spring time of our wooing

Hope wears but a golden gleam:

Will it change as we are going

Down life’s long and troubl’d stream?

As the cares of life encumber
Us with duties hard to bear;

Will our hearts be young and tender,
As we feel to day they are ?

I can trust your fond devotion;

1 can trust the heart you bear;
But will my first fond emotion

Ever stronger, stronger wear?

Will I be a fond companion.

Through life’s long and trying range:
Will I honor my dominion;

Or like Pimpernel, will I change?

In my hour of threaten’d danger:

Spirit friends I trust to you;
Guide me that I may not wander;

Let my heart be always true.

Fill my mind with thoughts of beauty;

Fill my heart with love, I crave;
Let me walk the paths of duty;

To a peaceful, honor ‘d grave.

IMPOMOEA, OR MAN-OF-THE-WORLD

Language: — LOVE ON THE WANE

When your love begins to wane,
I will feel a poignant pain; — –
My own heart will tell me so;
Spare your words, for I shall know.

By the half averted eyes;
By the breast that no more sighs;
By the rapture I shall miss
Through thy strangely alter’d kiss.

By the arms that do infold;
By that chill that is untold;
By the absence of that glow; —
I shall know love, I shall know.

Bitter will that stinging be;
Worse than words expressed to me;
Worse than sighs of utter’d pain;
When your love begins to wane.

Though it come not from your tongue;
Though you think my heart unstung; —
When your love begins to go,
I will know dear, I will know.

* * * * * * * * *

In the rear of the book is given the following description of the pimpernel.

The pimpernel, or anagallis is a genus of annual and biennial
plants; they are universal favorites for planting in the beds of flower
gardens. They are propagated by seeds or by cuttings. The name
is derived from anageleo, to laugh. The Pimpernal is fabled as
having the power to drive away gloom and despondency. It does
not unfold its petals until eight o’clock in the morning and then
closes them again towards noon; from this habit it has gained the
cognomen of “the poor man’s hour glass. “It is also sometimes
called the “Shepherd’s Warning,” from the fact that it closes its
petals on the approach of rain.

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