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TO A LADY, WITH A GUITAR
Ariel to Miranda :Take
This slave of Music, for the sake
Of him who is the slave of thee;
And teach it all the harmony
In which thou canst, and only thou,

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Make the delighted spirit glow,
Till joy denies itself again
And, too intense, is turn'd to pain.
For by permission and command
Of thine own Prince Ferdinand,

10 Poor Ariel sends this silent token Of more than ever can be spoken ; Your guardian spirit, Ariel, who From life to life must still pursue Your happiness; for thus alone Can Ariel ever find his own. From Prospero's enchanted cell, As the mighty verses tell, To the throne of Naples he Lit you o'er the trackless sea,

20 Flitting on, your prow before, Like a living meteor. When you die, the silent Moon In her interlunar swoon Is not sadder in her cell Than deserted Ariel. When you live again on earth, Like an unseen star of birth Ariel guides you o’er the sea Of life from your nativity.

30 Many changes have been run Since Ferdinand and you begun Your course of love, and Ariel still Has tracked your steps and served your will. Now in humbler, happier lot,

35 This is all remember'd not;

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And now, alas ! the poor sprite is
Imprisoned for some fault of his
In a body like a grave;
From you he only dares to crave,
For his service and his sorrow,
A smile to-day, a song to-morrow.

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The artist who this idol wrought
To echo all harmonious thought,
Felled a tree, while on the steep
The woods were in their winter sleep,
Rocked in that repose divine
On the wind-swept Apennine ;
And dreaming, some of Autumn past,
And some of Spring approaching fast,
And some of April buds and showers,
And some of songs in July bowers,
And all of love ; and so this tree, -
O that such our death may be !
Died in sleep, and felt no pain,
To live in happier form again :
From which, beneath Heaven's fairest star,
The artist wrought this loved Guitar;
And taught it justly to reply
To all who question skilfully
In language gentle as thine own;
Whispering in enamoured tone
Sweet oracles of woods and dells,
And summer winds in sylvan cells ;
-For it had learnt all harmonies
Of the plains and of the skies,
Of the forests and the mountains,
And the many-voicéd fountains ;
The clearest echoes of the hills,
The softest notes of falling rills,
The melodies of birds and bees,
The murmuring of summer seas,
And pattering rain, and breathing dew,
And airs of evening ; and it knew
That seldom-heard mysterious sound 75

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Which, driven on its diurnal round,
As it floats through boundless day,
Our world enkindles on its way :

-All this it knows, but will not tell
To those who cannot question well

80 The Spirit that inhabits it ; It talks according to the wit Of its companions ; and no more Is heard than has been felt before By those who tempt it to betray

85 These secrets of an elder day. But, sweetly as its answers will Flatter hands of perfect skill, It keeps its highest holiest tone For our beloved friend alone.

90 P. B. SHELLEY.

253

THE DAFFODILS I wandered lonely as a cloud

That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,

A host, of golden daffodils,
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

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Continuous as the stars that shine

And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line

Along the margin of a bay :
Ten thousand saw I at a glance
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

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The waves beside them danced, but they

Out-did the sparkling waves in glee : A Poet could not but be gay

In such a jocund company ! I gazed-and gazed—but little thought What wealth the show to me had brought :

For oft, when on my couch I lie

In vacant or in pensive mood, 20 They flash upon that inward eye

.Which is the bliss of solitude ;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.

W. WORDSWORTH.

254

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TO THE DAISY
With little here to do or see
Of things that in the great world be,
Daisy ! again I talk to thee,

For thou art worthy,
Thou unassuming Commonplace
Of Nature, with that homely face,
And yet with something of a grace

Which love makes for thee !
Oft on the dappled turf at ease
I sit and play with similes,
Loose types of things through all degrees,

Thoughts of thy raising ;
And many a fond and idle name
I give to thee, for praise or blame,
As is the humour of the game,

While I am gazing.
A nun demure, of lowly port;
Or sprightly maiden, of Love's court,
In thy simplicity the sport

Of all temptations ;
A queen in crown of rubies drest;
A starveling in a scanty vest;
Are all, as seems to suit thee best,

Thy appellations.
A little Cyclops, with one eye
Staring to threaten and defy,
That thought comes next-and instantly

The freak is over,

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The shape will vanish, and behold !
A silver shield with boss of gold

30 That spreads itself, some fairy bold

In fight to cover.
I see thee glittering from afar-
And then thou art a pretty star,
Not quite so fair as many are

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In heaven above thee !
Yet like a star, with glittering crest,
Self-poised in air thou seem'st to rest ;-
May peace come never to his nest
Who shall reprove thee !

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Sweet Flower ! for by that name at last
When all my reveries are past
I call thee, and to that cleave fast,

Sweet silent creature !
That breath'st with me in sun and air, 45
Do thou, as thou art wont, repair
My heart with gladness, and a share
Of thy meek nature !

W. WORDSWORTH.

255

ODE TO AUTUMN Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,

Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun ; Conspiring with him how to load and bless With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves

run ; To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees, And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core ;

To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells With a sweet kernel ; to set budding more, And still more, later flowers for the bees, Until they think warm days will never cease ; .10

For Summer has o'erbrimm'd their clammy

cells.

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