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TO THE CUCKOO.
O BLITHE new-comer! I have heard,
I hear thee and rejoice :
Or but a wandering voice ?
While I am lying on the grass,
Thy twofold shout I hear, That seems to fill the whole air's space
As loud far off as 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
A voice, a mystery;
The same whom in my schoolboy 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 long'd for, never seen!
And I can listen to thee yet
Can lie upon the plain
That golden time again.
O blessed bird ! the earth we pace.
Again appears to be
That is fit home for thee !
LONDON AT SUNRISE. 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 !
NATURE never did betray The heart that loved her; 'tis her privilege,
Through all the years of this our life, to lead
AN EQUATORIAL CALM.
The furrow follow'd free;
Into that silent sea.
Down dropt the breeze, the sails dropt down,
'Twas sad as sad could be ; And we did speak only to break
The silence of the sea !
All in a hot and copper sky
The bloody sun, at noon,
No bigger than the moon.
Day after day, day after day,
We stuck—nor breath nor motion ; As idle as a painted ship
Upon a painted ocean.
Water, water, everywhere,
And all the boards did shrink; Water, water, everywhere,
Nor any drop to drink.
The very deep did rot !_O Christ!
That ever this should be !
Upon the slimy sea.
About, about, in reel and rout
The death-fires danced at night; The water, like a witch's oils,
Burnt green, and blue, and white.
YE clouds! that far above me float and pause,
Whose pathless march no mortal may control !
Ye ocean-waves ! that, wheresoe'er ye roll, Yield homage only to eternal laws ! Ye woods ! that listen to the night-bird's singing,
Midway the smooth and perilous slope reclined, Save when your own imperious branches, swinging,
Have made a solemn music of the wind !
How oft, pursuing fancies holy,
Inspired beyond the guess of folly, By each rude shape and wild unconquerable sound ! O ye loud waves! and 0 ye forests high ! And 0 ye clouds that far above me soar'd! Thou rising sun ! thou blue rejoicing sky!
Yea, everything that is and will be free!
Bear witness for me, wheresoe'er ye be, With what deep worship I have still adored
The spirit of divinest Liberty.
Why sitt'st thou by that ruin'd hall,
Thou aged carle, so stern and gray ?
Or ponder how it pass'd away?