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Oh, that the free would stamp the impious name
Of King into the dust! or write it there, So that this blot upon the page of fame
Were as a serpent's path, which the light air Erases, and the flat sands close behind !
Ye the oracle have heard.
Lift the victory-flashing sword, And cut the snaky knots of this foul gordian
Into a mass, irrefragably firm,
The sound has poison in it, 'tis the sperm
Disdain not thou, at thine appointed term,
Oh, that the wise from their bright minds would
kindle Such lamps within the dome of this dim world, That the pale name of Priest might shrink and
dwindle Into the hell from which it first was hurled, A scoff of impious pride from fiends impure ;
Till human thoughts might kneel alone,
Each before the judgment-throne Of its own aweless soul, or of the power unknown! Oh, that the words which make the thoughts From which they spring, as clouds of glim
xv. 2 King, Boscombe MS. II .
mering dew From a white lake blot heaven's blue portraiture, Were stripped of their thin masks and various
hue And frowns and smiles and splendors not their
own, Till in the nakedness of false and true They stand before their Lord, each to receive
He who taught man to vanquish whatsoever
Can be between the cradle and the grave
If on his own high will, a willing slave,
What if earth can clothe and feed
Amplest millions at their need,
Driving on fiery wings to Nature's throne, Checks the great mother stooping to caress her
And cries: “Give me, thy child, dominion Over all height and depth ?” if Life can breed New wants, and wealth from those who toil and
groan Rend of thy gifts and hers a thousandfold for
xvii. 9 Oh, Shelley, 1820 || Or, Mrs. Shelley, 18391.
Beckons the sun from the Eoan wave,
Wisdom. I hear the pennons of her car Self-moving, like cloud charioted by flame;
Comes she not, and come ye not,
Rulers of eternal thought, To judge with solemn truth life's ill-apportioned lot? Blind Love, and equal Justice, and the Fame
Of what has been, the Hope of what will be ? O Liberty ! if such could be thy name Wert thou disjoined from these, or they from
thee If thine or theirs were treasures to be bought
By blood or tears, have not the wise and free Wept tears, and blood like tears ? — The solemn
Paused, and the Spirit of that mighty singing
To its abyss was suddenly withdrawn;
Its path athwart the thunder-smoke of dawn,
On the heavy sounding plain,
When the bolt has pierced its brain; As summer clouds dissolve unburdened of their
As a far taper fades with fading night,
As a brief insect dies with dying day, My song, its pinions disarrayed of might,
Drooped ; o'er it closed the echoes far away Of the great voice which did its flight sustain,
As waves which lately paved his watery way Hiss round a drowner's head in their tempes
I FEAR thy kisses, gentle maiden,
Thou needest not fear mine;
Ever to burden thine.
I fear thy mien, thy tones, thy motion,
Thou needest not fear mine;
With which I worship thine.
From her couch of snows
From cloud and from crag,
With many a jag,
She leapt down the rocks,
With her rainbow locks
Her steps paved with green
The downward ravine
And gliding and springing,
She went, ever singing,
In murmurs as soft as sleep;
The Earth seemed to love her,
And Heaven smiled above her, As she lingered towards the deep.
On his glacier cold,
And opened a chasm
spasm All Erymanthus shook.
And the black south wind
It concealed behind The urns of the silent snow,
And earthquake and thunder
Did rend in sunder The bars of the springs below.
The beard and the hair
Of the River-god were Seen through the torrent's sweep,
As he followed the light
Of the fleet nymph's flight To the brink of the Dorian deep.
And bid the deep hide me,
The loud Ocean heard,
To its blue depth stirred,
And under the water