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Through the heaven's wide pathless way,
And oft, as if her head she bowed,
Stooping through a fleecy cloud.
Oft, on a plat of rising ground,
I hear the far-off curfew sound,
Over some wide-watered shore,
Swinging slow with sullen roar;
Or, if the air will not permit,
Some still removed place will fit,
Where glowing embers through the room
Teach light to counterfeit a gloom,
Far from all resort of mirth,
Save the cricket on the hearth,
Or the Bellman's drowsy charm
To bless the doors from nightly harm.
Or let my lamp, at midnight hour,
Be seen in some high lonely tower,
Where I may oft outwatch the Bear,
With thrice-great Hermes, or unsphere
The spirit of Plato, to unfold
What worlds or what vast regions hold
The immortal mind that hath forsook
Her mansion in this fleshly nook ;
And of those Dæmons that are found
In fire, air, flood, or underground,
Whose power hath a true consent
With planet or with element.
Sometime let gorgeous Tragedy
In sceptred pall come sweeping by,
Presenting Thebs, or Pelops' line,
Or the tale of Troy divine,
Or what (though rare) of later age
Ennobled hath the buskined stage.
But, O sad Virgin! that thy power
Might raise Musæus from his bower;
Or bid the soul of Orpheus sing
Such notes as, warbled to the string,
Drew iron tears down Pluto's cheek,
And made Hell grant what Love did seek;
Or call up him that left half-told
The story of Cambuscan bold, Of Camball, and of Algarsife, And who had Canace to wife, That owned the virtuous ring and glass, And of the wondrous horse of brass On which the Tartar King did ride; And if aught else great Bards beside In sage and solemn tunes have sung, Of turneys, and of trophies hung, Of forests, and inchantments drear, Where more is meant than meets the ear. Thus, Night, oft see me in thy pale career, Till civil-suited Morn appear, Not tricked and frounced, as she wont With the Attic boy to hunt, But kerchieft in a comely cloud, While rocking winds are piping loud, Or ushered with a shower still, When the gust hath blown his fill, Ending on the rustling leaves, With minute drops from off the eaves. And, when the sun begins to fling His flaring beams, me, Goddess, bring To arched walks of twilight groves, And shadows brown, that Sylvan loves, Of pine, or monumental oak, Where the rude axe with heaved stroke Was never heard the Nymphs to daunt, Or fright them from their hallowed haunt. There, in close covert, by some brook, Where no profaner eye may look, Hide me from Day's garish eye, While the bee with honeyed thigh, That at her flowery work doth sing, And the waters murmuring, With such consort as they keep, Entice the dewy-feathered Sleep. And let some strange mysterious dream, Wave at his wings in airy stream, Of lively portraiture displayed,
Softly on my eyelids laid.
And as I wake, sweet music breathe
Above, about, or underneath,
Sent by some Spirit to mortals good,
Or the unseen Genius of the wood.
But let my due feet never fail
To walk the studious cloister's pale,
And love the high embowed roof,
With antick pillars massy proof,
And storied windows richly dight,
Casting a dim religious light.
There let the pealing organ blow,
To the full voiced Quire below,
In service high and anthems clear,
As may with sweetness, through mine ear,
Dissolve me into ecs es,
And bring all Heaven before mine eyes.
And may at last my weary age
Find out the peaceful hermitage,
The hairy gown and mossy cell,
Where I may sit and rightly spell,
Of every star that Heaven doth shew,
And every hearb that sips the dew;
Till old experience do attain
To something like prophetic strain.
These pleasures, Melancholy, give,
And I with thee will choose to live.
SONNET TO THE NIGHTINGALE
(1632-33) O NIGHTINGALE that on yon blooming spray Warblest at eve, when all the woods are still, Thou with fresh hopes the Lover's heart dost fill, While the jolly Hours lead on propitious May. Thy liquid notes that close the eye of Day, First heard before the shallow cuckoo's bill, Portend success in love. O if Jove's will Have linked that amorous power to thy soft lay,
Fly, envious Time, till tho
Call on the lazy leaden-ste
Whose speed is but the h
And glut thyself with wha
Which is no more than wh
And merely mortal dross:
So little is our loss,
So little is thy gain!
For, whenas each thing ba
And, last of all, thy gr
Then long eternity shall
With an individual kiss,
And joy shall overtake ti
When everything that is
presented to the Countess Dowager of
some Noble Persons of her Family; who
in pastoral habit, moving toward the seat
hs and Shepherds, look!
n blaze of majesty
h we from hence descry,
to be mistook?
is is she
our vows and wishes bend:
solemn search hath end.
at her high worth to raise
erst so lavish and profuse,
justly now accuse
action from her praise:
than half we find expressed;
; bid conceal the rest.
what radiant state she spreads, 'cle round her shining throne ing her beams like silver threads: is, this is she alone, iting like a Goddess bright 1 the centre of her light.
rht she the wise Latona be,
the towered Cybele,
other of a hundred gods?
no dares not give her odds:
Who had thought this clime had held
A deity so unparalleled ?
ime forward, the GENIUS OF THE WOOD appears, and,
turning toward them, speaks.
Canv, gentle Swains, for, though in this