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To hear me? Let me go : take back thy
gift : Why should a man desire in any way To vary from the kindly race of men, Or pass beyond the goal of ordinance Where all should pause, as is most meet
for all ?
The woods decay, the woods decay and
fall, The vapours weep their burthen to the
ground, Man comes and tills the field and lies
beneath, And after many a summer dies the swan. Me only cruel immortality Consumes : I wither slowly in thine arms, Here at the quiet limit of the world, A white-hair'd shadow roaming like a
dream The ever-silent spaces of the East, Far-folded mists, and gleaming halls of
A soft air fans the cloud apart ; there
comes A glimpse of that dark world where I was
born. Once more the old mysterious glimmer
steals From thy pure brows, and from thy
shoulders pure, And bosom beating with a heart renew'd. Thy cheek begins to redden thro' the
gloom, Thy sweet eyes brighten slowly close to
mine, Ere yet they blind the stars, and the wild
team Which love thee, yearning for thy yoke,
arise, And shake the darkness from their
loosen'd manes, And beat the twilight into flakes of fire.
Alas! for this gray shadow, once a
manSo glorious in his beauty and thy choice, Who madest him thy chosen, that he
seem'd To his great heart none other than a God ! I ask'd thee, 'Give me immortality.' Then didst thou grant mine asking with a
smile, Like wealthy men who care not how they
give. But thy strong Hours indignant work'd
their wills, And beat me down and marr'd and wasted
me, And tho' they could not end me, left me
maim'd To dwell in presence of immortal youth, Immortal age beside immortal youth, And all I was, in ashes. Can thy love, Thy beauty, make amends, tho' even now, Close over us, the silver star, thy guide, Shines in those tremulous eyes that fill
Lo! ever thus thou growest beautiful In silence, then before thine answer given Departest, and thy tears are on my cheek.
Why wilt thou ever scare me with thy
tears, And make me tremble lest a saying learnt, In days far-off, on that dark earth, be
true? • The Gods themselves cannot recall their
Ay me! ay me! with what another
COMRADES, leave me here a little, while as yet ’tis early morn : Leave me here, and when you want me, sound upon the bugle horn.
'Tis the place, and all around it, as of old, the curlews call, Dreary gleams about the moorland flying over Locksley Hall ;
Locksley Hall, that in the distance overlooks the sandy tracts,
Many a night from yonder ivied casement, ere I went to rest,
Many a night I saw the Pleiads, rising thro' the mellow shade,
Here about the beach I wanderd, nourishing a youth sublime
When the centuries behind me like a fruitful land reposed;
When I dipt into the future far as human eye could see ;
In the Spring a fuller crimson comes upon the robin's breast ;
In the Spring a livelier iris changes on the burnish'd dove ;
Then her cheek was pale and thinner than should be for one so young, And her eyes on all my motions with a mute observance hung.
And I said, “My cousin Amy, speak, and speak the truth to me,
On her pallid cheek and forehead came a colour and a light,
And she turn'd-her bosom shaken with a sudden storm of sighs—
Saying, “I have bid my feelings, fearing they should do me wrong;' Saying, “Dost thou love me, cousin ?' weeping, “I have loved thee long.'
Love took up the glass of Time, and turn'd it in his glowing hands;
Love took up the harp of Life, and smote on all the chords with might; Smote the chord of Self, that, trembling, pass’d in music out of sight.
Many a morning on the moorland did we hear the copses ring,
Many an evening by the waters did we watch the stately ships,
O my cousin, shallow-hearted ! O my Amy, mine no more !
Falser than all fancy fathoms, falser than all songs have sung,
Is it well to wish thee happy? -having known me—to decline
Yet it shall be : thou shalt lower to his level day by day,
Ile will hold thee, when his passion shall have spent its novel force,
What is this? his eyes are heavy : think not they are glazed with wine. Go to him : it is thy duty : kiss him : take his hand in thine.
It may be my lord is weary, that his brain is overwrought
He will answer to the purpose, easy things to understand-
Better thou and I were lying, hidden from the heart's disgrace,
Cursed be the social wants that sin against the strength of youth !
Cursed be the sickly forms that err from honest Nature's rule !
Well—'tis well that I should bluster !-Hadst thou less unworthy provedWould to God-for I had loved thee more than ever wife was loved.
Am I mad, that I should cherish that which bears but bitter fruit ?
Never, tho' my mortal summers to such length of years should come
Where is comfort ? in division of the records of the mind ?
I remember one that perish'd : sweetly did she speak and move :
Can I think of her as dead, and love her for the love she bore ?
Comfort? comfort scorn’d of devils ! this is truth the poet sings,
Drug thy memories, lest thou learn it, lest thy heart be put to proof,
Like a dog, he hunts in dreams, and thou art staring at the wall,
Then a hand shall pass before thee, pointing to his drunken sleep,
Thou shalt hear the ‘Never, never,' whisper'd by the phantom years, And a song from out the distance in the ringing of thine ears;
And an eye shall vex thee, looking ancient kindness on thy pain.
Nay, but Nature brings thee solace; for a tender voice will cry.
O, the child too clothes the father with a dearness not his due.
O, I see thee old and formal, fitted to thy petty part,
• They were dangerous guides the feelings-she herself was not exempt -
Every gate is throng'd with suitors, all the markets overflow.
I had been content to perish, falling on the foeman's ground,
But the jingling of the guinea helps the hurt that Honour feels,
Can I but relive in sadness? I will turn that earlier page.
Make me feel the wild pulsation that I felt before the strife,
Yearning for the large excitement that the coming years would yield, Eager-hearted as a boy when first he leaves his father's field,
And at night along the dusky highway near and nearer drawn,
And his spirit leaps within him to be gone before him then,