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The Fish turns into a Man, and then into a Spirit, and again speaks:
Indulge thy smiling scorn, if smiling still, O man! and loathe, but with a sort of
love: 30 For difference must its use by difference prove, And, in sweet clang, the spheres with music fill.
One of the spirits am I, that at his will Live in whate'er has life — fish, eagle,
dove — No hate, no pride, beneath nought, nor above, – 35
A visitor of the rounds of God's sweet skill.
Man's life is warm, glad, sad, 'twixt loves and graves, Boundless in hope, honored with pangs austere, Heaven-gazing; and his angel-wings he craves: The fish is swift, small-needing, vague yet clear, 40 A cold, sweet, silver life, wrapped in round waves, Quickened with touches of transporting fear. JOHN KEATS (1795-182 I) HOW MANY BARDS
How many bards gild the lapses of time!
A few of them have ever been the food |
Of my delighted fancy, — I could brood Over their beauties, earthly, or sublime.
And often, when I sit me down to rhyme, 5
These will in throngs before my mind intrude:
But no confusion, no disturbance rude
Do they occasion; 'tis a pleasing chime.
So the unnumbered sounds that evening store :
The songs of birds, the whisp'ring of the
leaves, 10 The voice of waters, the great bell that heaves With solemn sound, - and thousand others more,
That distance of recognizánce bereaves, – Make pleasing music, and not wild uproar.
ON FIRST LOOKING INTO CHAPMAN'S HOMER
(1815) Much have I travelled in the realms of gold, And many goodly states and kingdoms seen;
Round many western islands have I been
He stared at the Pacific — and all his men
Looked at each other with a wild surmise —
Silent, upon a peak in Darien.
O SOLITUDE (1816)
O solitude! if I must with thee dwell,
Of Hecate leaves them their old shadowy sound. Often 'tis in such gentle temper found 5 That scarcely will the very smallest shell Be moved for days from where it sometime fell, When last the winds of heaven were unbound. Oh ye! who have your eye-balls vexed and
tired, Feast them upon the wideness of the Sea; 10 Oh ye! whose ears are dinned with uproar rude,
Or fed too much with cloying melody –
Sit ye near some old cavern's mouth, and brood
Until ye start, as if the sea-nymphs quired!
From ENDYMION, BOOK FIRST (1817)
* A thing of beauty is a joy for ever: Its loveliness increases; it will never Pass into nothingness; but still will keep A bower quiet for us, and a sleep Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing. 5 Therefore, on every morrow, are we wreathing A flowery band to bind us to the earth, Spite of despondence, of the inhuman dearth Of noble natures, of the gloomy days, Of all the unhealthy and o'er-darkened ways 10 Made for our searching: yes, in spite of all, Some shape of beauty moves away the pall From our dark spirits. Such the sun, the
, moon, f Trees old and young, sprouting a shady boon
For simple sheep; and such are daffodils 15
With the green world they live in; and clear rills
That for themselves a cooling covert make
'Gainst the hot season; the mid-forest brake,
Rich with a sprinkling of fair musk-rose
blooms: And such too is the grandeur of the dooms 20
We have imagined for the mighty dead;
Nor do we merely feel these essences 25
For one short hour; no, even as the trees That whisper round a temple become soon Dear as the temple's self, so does the
moon, The passion poesy, glories infinite, Haunt us till they become a cheering
light 30 Unto our souls, and bound to us so fast That, whether there be shine, or gloom
o'ercast, They alway must be with us, or we die.
Therefore, ’tis with full happiness that I Will trace the story of Endymion. 35 The very music of the name has gone Into my being, and each pleasant scene Is growing fresh before me as the green Of our own valleys: so I will begin Now while I cannot hear the city's din; 40 Now while the early budders are just new, And run in mazes of the youngest hue About old forests; while the willow trails Its delicate amber; and the dairy pails Bring home increase of milk. And, as the
year 45 Grows lush in juicy stalks, I'll smoothly steer
My little boat, for many quiet hours, With streams that deepen freshly into bowers. . * / Many and many a verse I hope to write Before the daisies, vermeil rimmed and
white, 50 Hide in deep herbage; and ere yet the bees Hum about globes of clover and sweet peas,
I must be near the middle of my story.
O thou, whose mighty palace roof doth hang From jagged trunks, and overshadoweth Eternal whispers, glooms, the birth, life, death Of unseen flowers in heavy peacefulness; 235 Who lov'st to see the hamadryads dress Their ruffled locks where meeting hazels darken; And through whole solemn hours dost sit and hearken The dreary melody of bedded reeds, In desolate places, where dank moisture breeds 240 The pipy hemlock to strange overgrowth, – Be thinking thee how melancholy loth Thou wast to lose fair Syrinx — do thou now, By thy love's milky brow, By all the trembling mazes that she ran, 245 Hear us, great Pan'
il O thou, for whose soul-soothing quiet, turtles Passion their voices cooingly 'mong myrtles,
What time thou wanderest at eventide Through sunny meadows that outskirt the side 250
Of thine enmossed realms: O thou, to whom Broad-leaved fig trees even now foredoom Their ripened fruitage; yellow-girted bees Their golden honeycombs; our village leas Their fairest-blossomed beans and poppied
The chuckling linnet its five young unborn,
To sing for thee; low creeping strawberries
Their summer coolness; pent up butterflies
Their freckled wings; yea, the fresh-budding year
All its completions — be quickly near, 260 By every wind that nods the mountain pine, O forester divine! III Thou, to whom every fawn and satyr flies For willing service: whether to surprise The squatted hare while in half-sleeping fit; 265 Or upward ragged precipices flit To save poor lambkins from the eagle's maw ; Or by mysterious enticement draw Bewildered shepherds to their path again; Or to. tread breathless round the frothy main 270 And gather up all fancifullest shells For thee to tumble into naiads' cells, And, being hidden, laugh at their outpeeping; Or to delight thee with fantastic leaping, The while they pelt each other on the crown 275 With silvery oak-apples, and fir-cones brown — By all the echoes that about thee ring, Hear us, O satyr king!
When snouted wild-boars routing tender
corn Anger our huntsman: breather round our farms, To keep off mildews, and all weather harms: Strange ministrant of undescribed sounds, 285 That come a-swooning over hollow grounds,
And wither drearily on barren moors: Dread opener of the mysterious doors Leading to universal knowledge – see,
Great son of Dryope, 290 The many that are come to pay their Vows
With leaves about their brows!
Be still the unimaginable lodge For solitary thinkings; such as dodge
Conception to the very bourne of heaven, 295
Then leave the naked brain: be still the leaven
That, spreading in this dull and clodded earth,
Gives it a touch ethereal,- a new birth:
screen With uplift hands our foreheads, lowly bending, And, giving out a shout most heaven-rending, Conjure thee to receive our humble paean, 305
Upon thy Mount Lycean!
IN A DREAR-NIGHTED DECEMBER (1817)
In a drear-nighted December,