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ON A FADED VIOLET

The music of his home :-unwonted

fears Fell on the pale oppressors of our race, And Faith and Custom and low.

thoughted cares, Like thunder-stricken dragons, for a

space Left the torn human heart, their food

and dwelling place. Truth's deathless yoice pauses among

mankind ! If there must be no response to my

cryIf men must rise and stamp, with fury

blind, On his pure name who loves them

thou and I, Sweet friend ! can look from our

tranquillity Like lamps into the world's tempestuous

night, Two tranquil stars, while clouds are

passing by Which wrap them from the foundering

seaman's sight, That burn from year to year with unextinguished light.

1817. 1818.

The odor from the flower is gone

Which like thy kisses breathed on me; The color from the flower is flown

Which glowed of thee and only thee! A shrivelled, lifeless, vacant form,

It lies on my abandoned breast,
And mocks the heart which yet is warm,

With cold and silent rest.
I weep,-my tears revive it not !

I sigh,-it breathes no more on me ;
Its mute and uncomplaining lot
Is such as mine should be.

1818. 1821.

LINES WRITTEN AMONG THE

EUGANEAN HILLS

OZYMANDIAS

a

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 shattered visage lies, whose

frown, And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold

command, Tell that its sculptor well those passions

read Which yet survive, stamped on these

lifeless things, The hand that mocked 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.

1817. 1818.

MANY a green isle needs must be
In the deep wide sea of misery,
Or the mariner, worn and wan,
Never thus could voyage on
Day and night, and night and day,
Drifting on his dreary way,
With the solid darkness black
Closing round his vessel's track;
Whilst above the sunless sky,

with clouds angs heavily,
And behind the tempest fleet
Hurries on with lightning feet,
Riving sail, and cord, and plank,
Till the ship has almost drank
Death from the o'er-brimming deep;
And sinks down, down, like that sleep
When the dreamer seems to be
Weltering through eternity ;
And the dim low line before
Of a dark and distant shore
Still recedes, as ever still
Longing with divided will,
But no power to seek or shun,
He is ever drifted on
O'er the unreposing wave
To the haven of the grave.
What, if there no friends will greet;
What, if there no heart will meet
His with love's impatient beat;
Wander wheresoe'er he may,
Can he dream before that day
To find refuge from distress
In friendship's smile, in love's caress!
Then 'twill wreak him little woe
Whe er such there be or no :
Senseless is the breast, and cold,
Which relenting love would fold ;
Bloodless are the veins and chill

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Which the pulse of pain did fill;
Every little living nerve
That from bitter words did swerve
Round the tortured lips and brow,
Are like sapless leaflets now
Frozen upon December's bough.
On the beach of a northern sea
Which tempests shake eternally,
As once the wretch there lay to sleep,
Lies a solitary lieap,
One white skull and seven dry bones,
On the margin of the stones,
Where a few gray rushes stand,
Boundaries of the sea and land :
Nor is heard one voice of wail
But the sea-mews, as they sail
O'er the billows of the gale ;
Or the whirlwind up and down
Howling, like a slaughtered town,
When a king in glory rides
Through the pomp of fratricides :
Those unburied bones around
There is many a mournful sound;
There is no lament for him,
Like a sunless vapor, dim,
Who once clothed with life and thought
What now moves nor murmurs not.
Ay, many flowering islands lie
In the waters of wide Agony :
To such a one this mor

was led
My bark by soft winds piloted :
'Mid the mountains Euganean
I stood listening to the pæan,
With which the legioned rooks did hail
The sun's uprise majestical ;
Gathering round with wings all hoar,
Thro' the dewy mist they soar
Like gray shades, till the eastern heaven
Bursts, and then, as clouds of even,
Flecked with fire and azure, lie
In the unfathomable sky,
So their plumes of purple grain,
Starred with drops of golden rain,
Gleam above the sunlight woods,
As in silent multitudes
On the morning's fitful gale
Thro' the broken mist they sail,
And the vapors cloven and gleaming
Follow down the dark steep streaming,
Till all is bright, and clear, and still,
Round the solitary hill.
Beneath is spread like a green sea
The waveless plain of Lombardy,
Bounded by the vaporous air,
Islanded by cities fair;
Underneath day's azure eyes
Ocean's nursling, Venice lies,

A peopled labyrinth of walls,
Amphitrite's destined halls,
Which her hoary sire now paves
With his blue and beaming waves.
Lo! the sun upsprings behind,
Broad, red, radiant, half reclined
On the level quivering line
Of the waters crystalline ;
And before that chasm of light,
As within a furnace bright,
Column, tower, and dome, and spire,
Shine like obelisks of fire,
Pointing with inconstant motion
From the altar of dark ocean
To the sapphire-tinted skies ;
As the flames of sacrifice
From the marble shrines did rise,
As to pierce the dome of gold
Where Apollo spoke of old.
Sun-girt City, thou hast been
Ocean's child, and then his qucen ;
Now is come a darker day,
And thou soon must be his prey,
If the power that raised thee here
Hallow so thy watery bier,
A less drear ruin then than now,
With thy conquest-branded brow
Stooping to the slave of slaves
From thy throne, among the waves
Wilt thou be, when the sea-mew
Flies, as once before it flew,
O'er thine isles depopulate,
And all is in its ancient state,
Save where many a palace gate
With green sea-flowers overgrown
Like a rock of ocean's own,
Topples o'er the abandoned sea
As the tides change sullenly.
The fisher on his watery way,
Wandering at the close of day,
Will spread his sail and seize his oar
Till he pass the gloomy shore,
Lest thy dead should, from their sleep
Bursting o'er the starlight deep,
Lead a rapid masque of death
O'er the waters of his path.

Those who alone thy towers behold
Quivering through aërial gold,
As I now behold them here,
Would imagine not they were
Sepulchres, where human forms,
Like pollution-nourished worms
To the corpse of greatness cling,
Murdered, and now mouldering:
But if Freedom should awake
In her omnipotence, and shake
From the Celtic Anarch's hold

From the sea a mist has spread,
And the beams of morn lie dead
On the towers of Venice now,
Like its glory long ago.
By the skirts of that gray cloud
Many-domèd Padua proud
Stands, a peopled solitude,
'Mid the harvest-shining plain,
Where the peasant heaps his grain
In the garner of his foe,
And the milk-white oxen slow
With the purple vintage strain,
Heaped upon the creaking wain,
That the brutal Celt may swill
Drunken sleep with savage will;
And the sickle to the sword
Lies unchanged, though many a lord,
Like weed whose shade is poison,
Overgrows this region's foison,
Sheaves of whom are ripe to come
To destruction's harvest home:
Men must reap the things they sow,
Force from force must ever flow,
Or worse ; but 'tis a bitter woe
That love or reason cannot change
The despot's rage, the slave's revenge.

a

All the keys of dungeons cold,
Where a hundred cities lie
Chained like thee, ingloriously,
Thou and all thy sister band
Might adorn this sunny land,
Twining memories of old time
With new virtues more sublime ;
If not, perish thou and they,
Clouds which stain truth's rising day
By her sun consumed away,
Earth can spare ye : while like flowers,
In the waste of years and hours,
From your dust new nations spring
With more kindly blossoming.
Perish-let there only be
Floating o'er thy hearthless sea
As the garment of thy sky
Clothes the world immortally:
One remembrance, more sublime
Than the tattered pall of time,
Which scarce hides thy visage wan ;-
That a tempest-cleaving Swan'
Of the songs of Albion,
Driven from his ancestral streams
By the might of evil dreams,
Found a nest in thee; and Ocean
Welcomed him with such emotion
That its joy grew his, and sprung
From his lips like music flung
O'er a mighty thunder-fit
Chastening terror :-what though yet
Poesy's unfailing River,
Which thro' Albion winds for ever
Lashing with melodious wave
Many a sacred Poet's grave,
Mourn its latest nursling fled ?
What though thou with all thy dead
Scarce can for this fame repay
Aught thine own? oh, rather say,
Though thy sins and slaveries foul
Overcloud a sunlike soul ?-
As the ghost of Homer clings
Round Scamander's wasting springa ;
As divinest Shakespere's might
Fills Avon and the world with light
Like omniscient power which he
Imaged 'mid mortality ;
As the love from Petrarch's urn,
Yet amid yon hills doth burn,
A quenchless lamp by which the heart
Sees things unearthly ;-so thou art
Mighty spirit-so shall be
The City that did refuge thee.
Lo, the sun floats up the sky
Like thought-winged Liberty,
Till the universal light
Seems to level plain and height;

1 Byron.

Padua, thou within whose walls
Those mute guests at festivals,
Son and Mother, Death and Sin,
Played at dice for Ezzelin,
Till Death cried, “I win, I win!”
And Sin cursed to lose the wager,
But Death promised, to assuage her,
That he would petition for
Her to be made Vice-Emperor,
When the destined years were o'er,
Over all between the Po
And the eastern Alpine snow,
Under the mighty Austrian.
Sin smiled so as Sin only can,
And since that time, ay, long before,
Both have ruled from shore to shore,
That incestuous pair, who follow
Tyrants as the sun the swallow,
As Repentance follows Crime,
And as changes follow Time.
In thine halls the lamp of learning,
Padua, now no more is burning ;
Like a meteor, whose wild way
Is lost over the grave of day,
It gleams betrayed and to betray:
Once remotest nations came
To adore that sacred flame,
When it lit not many a bearth
On this cold and gloomy earth :
Now new fires from antique light
Spring beneath the wide world's might;
Almost seems to minister
Half the crimson light she brings
From the sunset's radiant springs:
And the soft dreams of the morn
(Which like winged winds had borne
To that silent isle, which lies
'Mid remembered agonies,
The frail bark of this lone being)
Pass, to other sufferers fleeing,
And its ancient pilot, Pain,
Sits beside the helm again.

But their spark lies dead in thee,
Trampled out by tyranny.
As the Norway woodman quells,
In the depth of piny dells,
One light fame among the brakes,
While the boundless forest shakes,
And its mighty trunks are torn
By the fire thus lowly born:
The spark beneath his feet is dead,
He starts to see the flames it fed
Howling through the darkened sky
With a myriad tongues victoriously,
And sinks down in fear : so thou,
O Tyranny, beholdest now
Light around thee, and thou hearest
The loud flames asceud, and fearest :
Grovel on the earth ; ay, hide
In the dust thy purple pride !
Noon descends around me now:
'Tis the noon of autumn's glow,
When a soft and purple mist
Like a vaporous amethyst,
Or an air-dissolved star
Mingling light and fragrance, far
From the curved horizon's bound
To the point of heaven's profound,
Fills the overflowing sky;
And the plains that silent lie
Underneath, the leaves unsodden
Where the infant frost has trodden
With his morning-winged feet,
Whose bright print is gleaming yet ;
And the red and golden vines,
Piercing with their trellised lines
The rough, dark-skirted wilderness ;
The dun and bladed grass no less,
Pointing from this hoary tower
In the windless air; the flower
Glimmering at my feet; the line
Of the olive-sandalled Apennine,
In the south dimly islanded ;
And the Alps, whose snows are spread
High between the clouds and sun;
And of living things each one ;
And my spirit which so long
Darkened this swift stream of song,
Interpenetrated lie
By the glory of the sky:
Be it love, light, harmony,
Odor or the soul of all
Which from heaven like dew doth fall,
Or the mind which feeds this verse
Peopling the lone universe.
Noon descends, and after noon
Autumn's evening meets me soon,
Leading the infantine moon,
And that one star, which to her

Other flowering isles must be
In the sea of life and agony :
Other spirits float and fee
O’er that gulf : even now, perhaps,
On some rock the wild wave wraps,
With folded wings they waiting sit
For my bark, to pilot it
To some calm and blooming cove,
Where for me, and those I love,
May a windless bower be built,
Far from passion, pain, and guilt,
In a dell 'mid lawny hills,
Which the wild sea-murmur fills,
And soft sunshine, and the sound
Of old forests echoing round,
And the light and smell divine
Of all flowers that breathe and shine:
We may live so happy there,
That the spirits of the air,
Envying us, may even entice
To our healing paradise
The polluting multitude;
But their rage would be subdued
By that clime divine and calm,
And the winds whose wings rain balm
On the uplifted soul, and leaves
Under which the bright sea heaves ;
While each breathless interval
In their whisperings musical
The inspired soul supplies
With its own deep melodies,
And the love which heals all strife
Circling, like the breath of life,
All things in that sweet abode
With its own mild brotherhood :
They, not it, would change ; and soon
Every sprite beneath the moon
Would repent its envy vain,
And the earth grow young again.

October, 1818. 1819.

STANZAS

WRITTEN IN DEJECTION, NEAR NAPLES The sun is warm, the sky is clear,

The waves are dancing fast and bright Blue isles and snowy mountains wear

The purple noon's transparent might,

The breath of the moist earth is light, Around its unexpanded buds ;

Like many a voice of one delight, The winds, the birds, the ocean floods, The City's voice itself is soft like Soli

tude's.

I see the Deep's untrampled floor
With green and purple seaweeds

strown; I see the waves upon the shore, Like light dissolved in star-showers,

tlurown: I sit upon the sands alone, The lightning of the noontide ocean

Is flashing round me, and a tone Arises from its measured motion, How sweet! did any heart now share in

my emotion. Alas! I have nor hope nor health,

Nor peace within nor calm around,
Nor that content surpassing wealth

The sage in meditation found,
And walked with inward glory

crownedNor tame, nor power, nor love, nor leis

ure. Others I see whom these surroundSmiling they live, and call life pleas

ure;To me that cup has been dealt in another

SONNET: ENGLAND IN 1819 An old, mad, blind, despised, and dying

king, Princes, the dregs of their dull race,

who flow Through public scorn,-mud from a

muddy spring,– Rulers who neither see, nor feel, nor

know, But leech-like to their fainting country

cling, Till they drop, blind in blood, without a

blow,A people starved and stabbed in the

untilled field, An army, which liberticide and prey Makes as a two-edged sword to all who

wield Golden and sanguine law's which tempt

and slay ; Religion Christless, Godless--a book

sealed ; A Senate,--Time's worst statute unre

pealed, Are graves, from which a glorious

Phantom may Burst, to illumine our tempestuous day.

1819. 1839.

ODE TO THE WEST WIND 1

measure.

Yet now despair itself is mild,

Even as the winds and waters are ;
I could lie down like a tired child,

And weep away the life of care
Which I have borne and yet must

bear, Till death like sleep might steal on me,

And I might feel in the warm air My cheek grow cold, and hear the sea Breathe o'er my dying brain its last

monotony. Some might lament that I were cold,

As I, when this sweet day is gone, Which my lost heart, too soon grown

old,
Insults with this untimely moan;

They might lament--for I am one Whom men love not, -and yet regret,

Unlike this day, which, when the sun Shall on its stainless glory set, Will linger, though enjoyed, like joy in memory yet.

1818, 1824,

1 O WILD West Wind, thou breath of

Autumn's being, Thou, from whose unseen presence the

leaves dead Are driven, like ghosts from an en

chanter fleeing, Yellow, and black, and pale, and hectio

red, Pestilence-stricken multitudes: Othou, Who chariotest to their dark wintry bed The winged seeds, where they lie cold

and low, 1 This poem was conceived and chiefy written in a wood that skirts the Arno, near Florence, and on a day when that tempestuous wind, whose temperature is at once mild and animat. ing, was collecting the vapors which pour own the autumnal rains. They began, as I foresaw, at sunset with a violent tempest of hail and rain, attended by that magnificent thunder and light. ning peculiar to the Cisalpine regions.

The phenomenon alluded to at the conclusion of the third stanza is well known to naturalists. The vegetation at the bottom of the sea, of rivers, and of lakes, sympathizes with that of the land in the change of seasons, and is conse. quently influenced by the winds which announce it. (Shelley's note.)

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