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Red rubies should deck thy hands,

And diamonds should be thy dowerBut Fairies have broke their wands, And wishing has lost its power !

Hood.

Ode written in Mdccxlvi
How sleep the brave, who sink to rest,
By all their country's wishes bless'd !
When Spring, with dewy fingers cold,
Returns to deck their hallow'd mould,
She there shall dress a sweeter sod
Than Fancy's feet have ever trod.
By fairy hands their knell is rung ;
By forms unseen their dirge is sung ;
There Honour comes, a pilgrim gray,
To bless the turf that wraps their clay ;
And Freedom shall a while repair
To dwell a weeping hermit there !

W. COLLINS.

To Daffodils
FAIR Daffodils, we weep to see

You haste away so soon :
As yet the early-rising Sun
Has not attain'd his noon.

Stay, stay,
Until the hasting day

Has run
But to the even-song;
And, having pray'd together, we

Will go with you along.
We have short time to stay, as you,

We have as short a Spring ;
As quick a growth to meet decay,
As you, or any thing.

We die,
As your hours do, and dry

Away,
Like to the Summer's rain ;
Or as the pearls of morning's dew
Ne'er to be found again.

R. HERRICK.

The Solitary Reaper

BEHOLD her, single in the field,
Yon solitary Highland Lass !
Reaping and singing by herself ;
Stop here, or gently pass !
Alone she cuts and binds the grain,
And sings a melancholy strain ;
O listen! for the Vale profound
Is overflowing with the sound.
No Nightingale did ever chaunt
More welcome notes to weary

bands
Of travellers in some shady haunt,
Among Arabian sands :
A voice so thrilling ne'er was heard
In spring-time from the Cuckoo-bird,
Breaking the silence of the seas
Among the farthest Hebrides.
Will no one tell me what she sings ?-
Perhaps the plaintive numbers flow
For old, unhappy, far-off things,
And battles long ago :
Or is it some more humble lay,
Familiar matter of to-day ?
Some natural sorrow, loss, or pain,
That has been, and may be again ?
Whate'er the theme, the Maiden sang
As if her song could have no ending;
I saw her singing at her work,
And o'er the sickle bending ;-
I listened, motionless and still ;
And, as I mounted up the hill
The music in my heart I bore,
Long after it was heard no more.

WORDSWORTH.

To Blossoms Fair pledges of a fruitful tree,

Why do ye fall so fast ?

Your date is not so past ;
But you may stay yet here a while,
To blush and gently smile ;

And go at last.
What, were ye born to be

An hour or half's delight ;

And so to bid good-night?
'Twas pity Nature brought ye forth
Merely to show your worth,

And lose you quite.
But you are lovely leaves, where we

May read how soon things have

Their end, though ne'er so brave :
And after they have shown their pride,
Like you, a while : they glide
Into the grave.

R. HERRICK.

Proud Maisie

PROUD Maisie is in the wood,

Walking so early ;
Sweet Robin sits on the bush,

Singing so rarely.
• Tell me, thou bonny bird,

When shall I marry me?'-
• When six braw gentlemen

Kirkward shall carry ye.'
“Who makes the bridal bed,

Birdie, say truly ?!
“The grey-headed sexton

That delves the grave duly.
"The glow-worm o'er grave and stone

Shall light thee steady.
The owl from the steeple sing,
“Welcome, proud lady.”'

SIR W. SCOTT,

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Sleep

COME, Sleep! O Sleep, the certain knot of peace,

The baiting-place of wit, the balm of woe, The

poor man's wealth, the prisoner's release, Th'indifferent judge between the high and low ; With shield of proof shield me from out the press

Of those fierce darts Despair at me doth throw :
O make in me those civil wars to cease ;

I will good tribute pay, if thou do so.
Take thou of me smooth pillows, sweetest bed,

A chamber deaf of noise and blind of light,
A rosy garland and a weary head:

And if these things, as being thine in right, Move not thy heavy grace, thou shalt in me, Livelier than elsewhere, Stella's image see.

SIR PHILIP SIDNEY.

Hymn for the Dead
THAT day of wrath, that dreadful day,
When heaven and earth shall pass away!
What power shall be the sinner's stay?
How shall he meet that dreadful day ?
When, shrivelling like a parched scroll,
The flaming heavens together roll;
When louder yet, and yet more dread,
Swells the high trump that wakes the dead !
Oh! on that day, that wrathful day,
When man to judgment wakes from clay,
Be Thou the trembling sinner's stay,
Though heaven and earth shall pass away!

SIR W. SCOTT.

The Poplar Field
THE poplars are felld ; farewell to the shade,
And the whispering sound of the cool colonnade !
The winds play no longer and sing in the leaves,
Nor Ouse on his bosom their image receives.

Twelve years have elapsed since I last took a view
Of my favourite field, and the bank where they grew;
And now in the grass behold they are laid,
And the tree is my seat that once lent me a shade!
The blackbird has fled to another retreat,
Where the hazels afford him a screen from the heat,
And the scene where his melody charm’d me before
Resounds with his sweet flowing ditty no more.
My fugitive years are all hasting away,
And I must ere long lie as lowly as they,
With a turf on my breast, and a stone at my head,
Ere another such grove shall arise' in its stead.
'Tis a sight to engage me, if anything can,
To muse on the perishing pleasures of man ;
Short-lived as we are, our pleasures, I see
Have a still shorter date, and die sooner than we.

W. COWPER.

Winter

WHEN icicles hang by the wall,

And Dick the shepherd blows his nail,
And Tom bears logs into the hall,

And milk comes frozen home in pail,
When blood is nipt, and ways be foul,
Then nightly sings the staring owl,

Tuwhoo !
Tuwhit! tuwhoo ! A merry note !
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot.

When all around the wind doth blow,

And coughing drowns the parson's saw,
And birds sit brooding in the snow,

And Marian's nose looks red and raw,
When roasted crabs hiss in the bowl,
Then nightly sings the staring owl,

Tuwhoo !
Tuwhit! tuwhoo! A merry note !
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot.

SHAKESPEARE.

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