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For scenes like this : an empire stern hast thou;
And it hath furrow'd that large front: yet now,
As newly come of heaven, dost thou sit
To blend and interknit
Subdued majesty with this glad time.
O shell-born King sublime!
We lay our hearts before thee evermore—
We sing, and we adore!
"Breathe softly, flutes; Be tender of your strings, ye soothing lutes; Nor be the trumpet heard! O vain, O vain! Not flowers budding in an April rain, Nor breath of sleeping dove, nor river's flow— No, nor the ^Eolian twang of Love's own bow, Can mingle music fit for the soft ear Of goddess Cytherea!
Yet deign, white Queen of Beauty, thy fair eyes
Was heard no more
Of Doris, and the Aegean seer, her spouse—
The palace whirls
Lo! while slow carried through the pitying crowd,
The youth at once arose: a placid lake
Muse of my native land! loftiest Muse!
O first-born on the mountains! By the hues
Long didst thou sit alone in northern pot,
While yet our England was a wolfish den;
Before our forests heard the talk of men;
Before the first of Druids was a child ;—
Long didst thou sit amid our regions wild,
Rapt in a deep prophetic solitude.
There came an eastern voice of solemn mood :—
Yet wast thou patient. Then sang forth the Nine,
Apollo's garland :—yet didst thou divine
Such home-bred glory, that they cried in vain,
"Come hither, Sister of the Island!" Plain
Spake fair Ausonia ; and once more she spake
A higher summons :—still didst thou betake
Thee to thy native hopes. O thou hast won
A full accomplishment ! The thing is done,
Which undone, these our latter days had risen
On barren souls. Great Muse, thou know'st what prison
Of flesh and bone, curbs, and confines, and frets
Our spirits' wings: despondency besets
Our pillows ; and the fresh to-morrow morn
Seems to give forth its light in very scorn
Of our dull, uninspired, snail-paced lives.
Long have I said, how happy he who shrives
To thee! But then I thought on poets gone,
And could not pray :—nor can I now—so on
I move to the end in lowliness of heart.
"Ah, woe is me ! that I should fondly part
Endymion to heaven's airy dome
"Is no one near to help me? No fair dawn
Thou, Carian lord, hadst better have been tost
"O for Hermes' wand,
And thou, old forest, hold ye this for true,
Upon a bough
And so he groan'd, as one by beauty slain.
O pardon me, for I am full of grief—
Grief born of thee, young angel ! fairest thief!
I was to top the heavens. Dear maid, sith
Will in a few short hours be nothing to me,