Of all the songs which poets sing The ones which are most sweet Are those which at close intervals A low refrain repeat; Some tender word, some syllable, Over and over, ever and ever, While the song lasts, Altering never, Music if sung, music if said, Subtle like some golden thread A shuttle casts, In and out on a fabric red, Till it glows all through With the golden hue. Oh! of all the songs sung, No songs are so sweet As the songs with refrains, Which repeat and repeat.
Of all the lives lived, No life is so sweet, As the life where one thought, In refrain doth repeat, Over and over, ever and ever, Till the life ends, Altering never, Joy which is felt, but is not said, Subtler than any golden thread Which the shuttle sends In and out in a fabric red, Till it glows all through With a golden hue. Oh! of all the lives lived, Can be no life so sweet, As the life where one thought In refrain doth repeat,
"Now name for me a thought To make life so sweet, A thought of such joy Its refrain to repeat." Oh! foolish to ask me. Ever, ever Who loveth believes, But telleth never. It might be a name, just a name not said, But in every thought; like a golden thread Which the shuttle weaves In and out on a fabric red, Till it glows all through With a golden hue. Oh! of all sweet lives, Who can tell how sweet Is the life which one name In refrain doth repeat?