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Amid yon tuft of hazel irees,
That twinkle to the gusty breeze,
Behold him perch'd in ecstasies,

Yet seeming still to hover ;
There! where the flutter of his wings
Upon his back and body flings
Shadows and sunny glimmerings,

That cover him all over.
My dazzled sight he oft deceives-
A Brother of the dancing leaves ;
Then flits, and from the cottage-eaves

Pours forth his song in gushes;
As if by that exulting strain
He mocked and treated with disdain
The voiceless Form he chose to feign,
While fluttering in the bushes.






O blithe new-comer! I have heard,

I hear thee and rejoice :
O Cuckoo ! shall I call thee Bird,

Or but a wandering Voice ?
While I am lying on the grass

Thy twofold shout I hear ; From hill to hill it seems to pass,

At once far off and near. Though babbling only to the vale

Of sunshine and of flowers,
Thou bringest unto me a tale

Of visionary hours.
Thrice welcome, darling of the Spring !

Even yet thou art to me
No bird, but an invisible thing,

A voice, a mystery ;


15 20

The same whom in my school-boy days

I listen’d to ; that Cry
Which made me look a thousand ways

In bush, and tree, and sky.
To seek thee did I often rove

Through woods and on the green ;
And thou wert still a hope, a love ;

Still longed for, never seen.
And I can listen to thee yet ;

Can lie upon the plain
And listen, till I do beget

That golden time again.
O blesséd Bird ! the earth we pace
Again appears to be

An unsubstantial, fairy place,
That is fit home for Thee !




ODE TO A NIGHTINGALE My heart aches, and a drowsy numbness pains

My sense, as though of hemlock I had drunk, Or emptied some dull opiate to the drains

One minute past, and Lethe-wards had sunk:
'Tis not through envy of thy happy lot,
But being too happy in thine happiness,
That thou, light-wingéd Dryad of the trees,

In some melodious plot
Of beechen green, and shadows numberless,

Singest of summer in full-throated ease.
O for a draught of vintage ! that hath been

Cool'd a long age in the deep-delvéd earth, Tasting of Flora and the country green,

Dance, and Provençal song, and sunburnt mirth! O for a beaker full of the warm South,

Full of the true, the blushful Hippocrene,


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With beaded bubbles winking at the brim,
And purple-stainéd mouth;

18 That I might drink, and leave the world unseen,

And with thee fade away into the forest dim : Fade far away, dissolve, and quite forget

What thou among the leaves hast never known, The weariness, the fever, and the fret

Here, where men sit and hear each other groan ; Where palsy shakes a few, sad, last grey hairs, Where youth grows pale, and spectre-thin, and dies; Where but to think is to be full of sorrow

And leaden-eyed despairs ; Where Beauty cannot keep her lustrous eyes,

Or new Love pine at them beyond to-morrow. Away! away! for I will fly to thee,

Not charioted by Bacchus and his pards, But on the viewless wings of Poesy,

Though the dull brain perplexes and retards : Already with thee! tender is the night, And haply the Queen-Moon is on her throne, Cluster'd around by all her starry Fays ;

But here there is no light, Save what from heaven is with the breezes blown Through verdurous glooms and winding

mossy ways. I cannot see what flowers are at my feet,

Nor what soft incense hangs upon the boughs, But, in embalméd darkness, guess each sweet

Wherewith the seasonable month endows
The grass, the thicket, and the fruit-tree wild ;
White hawthorn, and the pastoral eglantine ;
Fast-fading violets cover'd up in leaves ;

And mid-May's eldest child
The coming musk-rose, full of dewy wine,

The murmurous haunt of flies on summer eves. Darkling I listen ; and, for many a time

I have been half in love with easeful Death, Call’d him soft names in many a muséd rhyme,

To take into the air my quiet breath ;





Now more than ever seems it rich to die,
To cease upon the midnight with no pain,
While thou art pouring forth thy soul abroad

In such an ecstasy !
Still wouldst thou sing, and I have ears in vain-

To thy high requiem become a sod.


Thou wast not born for death, immortal Bird !

No hungry generations tread thee down ; The voice I hear this passing night was heard

In ancient days by emperor and clown : Perhaps the self-same song that found a path 65 Through the sad heart of Ruth, when, sick for

She stood in tears amid the alien corn ;

The same that oft-times hath Charm'd magic casements, opening on the foam

Of perilous seas, in faery lands forlorn.



Forlorn ! the very word is like a bell

To toll me back from thee to my sole self ! Adieu ! the fancy cannot cheat so well

As she is famed to do, deceiving elf. Adieu ! adieu ! thy plaintive anthem fades Past the near meadows, over the still stream, Up the hill-side ; and now 'tis buried deep

In the next valley-glades : Was it a vision, or a waking dream ? Fled is that music :-do I wake or sleep ? 80




SEPT. 3, 1802
Earth has not anything to show more fair :

Dull would he be of soul who could pass by

A sight so touching in its majesty : This City now doth like a garment wear


The beauty of the morning : silent, bare,

Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie

Open unto the fields, and to the sky, All bright and glittering in the smokeless air.


Never did sun more beautifully steep

In his first splendour valley, rock, or hill ; Ne'er saw I, never felt, a calm so deep !

The river glideth at his own sweet will : Dear God! the very houses seem asleep ; And all that mighty heart is lying still !




I met a traveller from an antique land

Who said : Two vast and trunkless legs of stone Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,

Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown


And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command

Tell that its sculptor well those passions read Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things,

The hand that mock'd them and the heart that

fed ;


And on the pedestal these words appear : My name is Ozymandias, king of kings : Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair !'


Nothing beside remains. Round the decay

Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare, The lone and level sands stretch far away.


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