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of us

Upon its own producer, forthwith

touch'd The whole enormous matter into life. Upon that very hour, our parentage, The Heavens and the Earth, were mani

fest : Then thou first-born, and we the giant

race. Found ourselves ruling new and beau

teous realms. Now comes the pain of truth, to whom

'tis pain ; O folly ! for to bear all naked truths, And to envisage circumstance, all calm, That is the top of sovereignty. Mark

well ! As Heaven and Earth are fairer, fairer

far Than Chaos and blank Darkness, though

once chiefs ; And as we show beyond that Heaven

and Earth In form 'and shape compact and beau

tiful, In will, in action free, companionship, And thousand other signs of purer life ; So on our heels a fresh perfection treads, A power more strong in beauty, born And fated to excel is, as we pass In glory that old Darkness : nor are we Thereby more conquer'd, than by us the

rule Of shapeless Chaos. Say, doth the dull

soil Quarrel with the proud forests it hath

fed, And feedeth still, more comely than

itself ? Can it deny the chiefdom of green

groves ? Or shall the tree be envious of the dove Because it cooeth, and hath snowy wings To wander wherewithal and find itsjoys ? We are such forest-trees, and our fair

boughs Have bred forth, not pale solitary doves, But eagles golden-feather’d, who do

tower Above us in their beauty, and must reign In right thereof; for 'tis the eternal law That first in beauty should be first in

might: Yea, by that law, another race may drive Our conquerors to mourn as we do now. Have ye beheld the young God of the

Seas, My dispossessor? Have ye seen his face? Have ye beheld his chariot, foam'd along

By noble winged creatures he hath

made ? I saw him on the calmed waters scud, With such a glow of beauty in his eyes, That it enforc'd me to bid sad farewell To all my empire: farewell sad I took, And hither came, to see how dolorous

fate Had wrought upon ye; and how I might

best Give consolation in this woe extreme. Receive the truth, and let it be your

balm.” Whether through poz'd conviction, or

disdain, They guarded silence, when Oceanus Left murmuring, what deepest thought

can tell ? But so it was, none answer'd for a

space, Save one whom none regarded, Cly.

mene ; And yet she answer'd not, only com

plain’d, With hectic lips, and eyes up-looking

mild, Thus wording timidly among the fierce : “O Father, I am here the simplest

voice, And all my knowledge is that joy is gone, And this thing woe crept in among our

hearts, There to remain for ever, as I fear : I would not bode of evil, if I thought So weak a creature could turn off the help Which by just right should come of

mighty Gods ; Yet let me tell my sorrow, let me tell Of what I heard, and how it made me

weep, And know that we had parted from all

hope. I stood upon a shore, a pleasant shore, Where a sweet clime was breathed from

a land Of fragrance, quietness, and trees, and

flowers. Full of calm joy it was, as I of grief ; Too full of joy and soft delicious

warmth ; So that I felt a movement in my heart To chide, and to reproach that solitude With songs of misery, music of our woes ; And sat me down, and took a mouthed

shell And murmur'd into it, and made me

lodyO melody no more! for while I sang,

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And with poor skill let pass into the

breeze The dull shell's echo, from a bowery

strand Just opposite, an island of the sea, There came enchantment with the shift

ing wind, That did both drown and keep alive my

ears. I threw my shell away upon the sand, Anda wave fill'd it, as my sense was fillid With that new blissful golden melody. A living death was in each gush of

sounds, Each family of rapturous hurried notes, That fell, one after one, yet all at once, Like pearl beads dropping sudden from

their string : And then another, then another strain, Each like a dove leaving its olive perch, W th music wing'd instead of silent

plumes, To hover round my head, and make me

sick Of joy and grief at once. Grief over

came, And I was stopping up my frantic ears, When, past all hindrance of my trem

bling hands, A voice came sweeter, sweeter than all

tune, And still it cried, Apollo! young

Apollo ! The morning-bright Apollol young

Apollo ! I fled, it follow'd me, and cried

Apollo!' O Father, and O Brethren, had ye felt Those pains of mine; O Saturn, hadst

thou felt, Ye would not call this too indulged

tongue Presumptuous, in thus venturing to be

heard.”

“ Or shall we listen to the over-wise,
Or to the over-foolish giant, Gods?
Not thunderbolt on thunderbolt, till all
That rebel Jove's whole armory were

spent, Not world on world upon these shoulders

piled, Could agonize me more than baby-words In midst of this dethronement horrible. Speak! roar! shout! yell! ye sleepy

Titans all. Do ye forget the blows, the buffets vile? Are ye not smitten by a youngling arm ? Dost thou forget, sham Monarch of the

Waves, Thy scalding in the seas ? What, have

I rous'd Your spleens with so few simple words

as these? O joy! for now I see ye are not lost : O joy! for now I see a thousand eyes Wide glaring for revenge !”-As this he

said, He lifted up his stature vast, and stood, Still without intermission speaking thus: “ Now ye are flames, I'll tell you how

to burn, And purge the ether of our enemies ; How to feed fierce the crooked stings of

fire, And singe away the swollen clouds of

Jove, Stilling that puny essence in its tent. 0 let him feel the evil he hath done ; For though I scorn Oceanus's lore, Much pain have I for more than loss of

realms : The days of peace and slumberous calm

are fled ; Those days, all innocent of scathing war, When all the fair Existences of heaven Came open-eyed to guess what we would

speak :That was before our brows were taught

to frown, Before our lips knew else but solemn

sounds; That was before we knew the winged

thing, Victory, might be lost, or might be won. And be ye mindful that Hyperion, Our brightest brother, still is undis.

gracedHyperion, lo! his radiance is here ! ”

All eyes were on Enceladus's face, And they beheld, while still Hyperion's

name Flew from his lips up to the vaulted rocks,

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So far her voice flow'd on, like timo

rous brook That, lingering along a pebbled coast, Doth fear to meet the sea : but sea it

met, And shudder'd; for the overwhelming

voice Of huge Enceladus swallow'd it in wrath: The ponderous syllables, like sullen

waves

In the half glutted hollows of reef-rocks, Came booming thus, while still upon his arm

(contempt. He lean'd; not rising, from supreme

Saturn sat near the Mother of the Gods, In whose face was no joy, though all the

Gods Gave from their hollow throats the name

of "Saturn ! ”

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In pale and silver silence they remain'd,
Till suddenly a splendor, like the morn,
Pervaded all the beetling gloomy steeps,
All the sad spaces of oblivion,
And every gulf, and every chasm old,
And every height, and every sullen

depth, Voiceless, or hoarse with loud tormented

streams : And all the everlasting cataracts, And all the headlong torrents far and

near, Mantled before in darkness and huge

shade, Now saw the light and made it terrible. It was Hyperion-a granite peak His bright feet touch'd, and there he

stay'd to view The misery his brilliance had betray'd To the most hateful seeing of itself. Golden his hair of short Numidian curl, Regal his shape majestic, a vast shade In midst of his own brightness, like the

bulk Of Memnon's image at the set of sun To one who travels froin the dusking

East : Sighs, too, as mournful as that Memnon's harp

[tive He utter'd, while his hands contemplaHe press'd together, and in silence

stood. Despondence seiz'd again the fallen Gods At sight of the dejected King of Day, And many hid their faces from the

light: But fierce Enceladus sent forth his eyes Among the brotherhood ; and, at their

glare, Oprose läpetus, and Creüs too, And Phorcus, sea-born, and together

strode To where he towered on his eminence. There those four shouted forth old

Saturn's name; Hyperion from the peak loud answered,

" Saturn !"

BOOK III Thus in alternate uproar and sad peace, Amazed were those Titans utterly. () leave them, Muse! O leave them to

their woes; For thou art weak to sing such tumults

dire : A solitary sorrow best befits Thy lips, and antheming a lonely grief. Leave them, O Muse! for thiou anon wilt

find Many a fallen old Divinity Wandering in vain about bewildered

shores. Meantime touch piously the Delphic

harp, And not a wind of hearen but will

breathe In aid soft warble from the Dorian flute; For lo ! 'tis for the Father of all verse. Flush every thing that hath a vermeil

hue, Let the rose glow intense and warm the

air, And let the clouds of even and of morn Float in voluptuous fleeces o'er the hills; Let the red wine within the goblet boil, Cold as a bubbling well ; let faint-lipp'd

shells, On sands, or in great deeps, vermilion

turn Through all their labyrinths; and let the

maid Blush keenly, as with some warm kiss

surpris’d. Chief isle of the embowered Cyclades, Rejoice, 0 Delos, with thine olives

green, And poplars, and lawn-shading palms,

and beech, In which the zephyr breathes the loud

est song, And hazels thick, dark-stemm'd beneath

the shade : Apollo is once more the golden theme! Where was he, when the Giant of the

Sun Stood bright, amid the sorrow of his

peers ? Together had be left his mother fair And his twin-sister sleeping in thei:

bower,

recess,

And in the morning twilight wandered What sorrow thou canst feel; for I am forth

sad Beside the osiers of a rivulet,

When thou dost shed a tear: explain Full ankle-deep in lilies of the vale.

thy griefs The nightingale had ceas'd, and a few To one who in this lonely isle hath been stars

The watcher of thy sleep and hours of Were lingering in the heavens, while the

life, thrush

From the young day when first thy inBegan calm-throated. Throughout all

fant hand the isle

Pluck'd witless the weak flowers, till There was no covert, no retired cave

thine arm Unhaunted by the murmurous noise of Could bend that bow heroic to all times. waves,

Show thy heart's secret to an ancient Though scarcely heard in many a green

Power

Who hath forsaken old and sacred He listen'd, and he wępt, and his bright

thrones tears

For prophecies of thee, and for the sake Went trickling down the golden bow he Of loveliness new born.”- Apollo then, held.

With sudden scrutiny and gloomless eyes, Thus with half-shut suffused eyes he Thus answer'd, while his white melodistood,

ous throat While from beneath some cumbrous Throbb’d with the syllables.-" Mne. boughs hard by

mosyne! With solemn step an awful Goddess Thy name is on my tongue, I know not came,

how; And there was purport in her looks for Why should I tell thee what thou so him,

well seest? Which he with eager guess began to read Why should I strive to show what from Perplex'd, the while melodiously he

thy lips said :

Would come no mystery? For me, dark, “ How cam'st thou over the unfooted

dark, sea ?

And painful vile oblivion seals my eyes : Or hath that antique mien and robed I strive to search wherefore I am so sad, form

Until a melancholy numbs my limbs ; Mov'd in these vales invisible till now? And then upon the grass I sit, and moan, Sure I have heard those vestments Like one who once had wings.-0 why sweeping o'er

should I The fallen leaves, when I have sat alone Feel curs d and thwarted, when the In cool mid-forest. Surely I have traced

liegeless air The rustle of those ample skirts about Yields to my step aspirant? why These grassy solitudes, and seen the

should I flowers

Spurn the green turf as bateful to my Lift up their heads, as still the whisper

feet? pass'd.

(fore, Goddess benign, point forth some unGoddess ! I have beheld those eyes be

known thing : And their eternal calm, and all that face, Are there not other regions than this Or I have dream’d. Yes," said the

isle ? supreme shape,

What are the stars? There is the sun, “ Thou hast dream'd of me; and awak

the sun !

And the most patient brilliance of the Didst find a lyre all golden by thy side,

mioon ! Whose strings touch'd by thy fingers, And stars by thousands! Point me out

all the vast Unwearied ear of the whole universe To any one particular beauteous star, Listen'd in pain and pleasure at the birth And I will fit into it with my lyre, or such new tuneful wonder. Ist not And make its silvery splendor pant with strange

bliss. That thou shouldst weep, so gifted ? I have heard the cloudy thunder : Tell me, youth,

Where is power ?

99

ing up,

the way

O what can ail thee, knight-at-arms !

So haggard and so woe-begone ? The squirrel's granary is full,

And the harvest's done.

I see a lily on thy brow

With anguish moist and fever dew, And on thy cheeks a fading rose

Fast withereth too.

me.

I met a lady in the meads,

Full beautiful-- a faery's child,
Her hair was long, her foot was light,

And her eyes were wild.
I made a garland for her head,

And bracelets too, and fragrant zone; She look'd at me as she did love,

And made sweet moan.

Whose hand, whose essence, what

divinity Makes this alarum in the elements, While I here idle listen on the shore In fearless yet in aching ignorance? O tell me, lonely Goddess, by thy harp, That waileth every morn and eventide, Tell me why thus I rave, about these

groves! Mute thou remainest-Mute! yet I can

read A wondrous lesson in thy silent face: Knowledge enormous makes a God of Names, deeds, gray legends, dire events,

rebellions, Majesties, sovran voices, agonies, Creations and destroyings, all at once Pour into the wide hollows of my brain, And deify me, as if some blithe wine Or bright elixir peerless I had drunk, And so become immortal.”—Thus the

God, While his enkindled eyes, with level

glance Beneath his white soft temples, steadfast

kept Trembling with light upon Mnemosyne. Soon wild commotions shook him, and

made flush All the immortal fairness of his limbs ; Most like the struggle at the gate of

death ; Or liker still to one who should take

leave Of pale immortal death, and with a

pang As hot as death's is chill, with fierce

convulse Die into life: so young Apollo anguislid; His very hair, bis golden tresses famed Kept undulation round his eager neck. During the pain Mnemosyne upheld Her arms as one who prophesied.–At

length Apollo shriek'd ;--and lo! from all his

limbs Celestial

I set her on my pacing steed,

And nothing else saw all day long. For sidelong would she bend, and sing

A faery's song.
She found me roots of relish sweet,

And honey wild, and manna dew, And sure in language strange she said

“I love thee true.”

She took me to her elfin grot,
And there she wept, and sigh'd full

sore,
And there I shut her wild wild eyes

With kisses four.

And there she lulled me asleep.

And there I dream'd-Ah! woe betide! The latest dream I ever dream'd

On the cold hill's side.

I saw pale kings and princes too,
Pale warriors, death-pale were they

all ; Thev cried_“ La Belle Dame sans Merci

Hath thee in thrall !”

*

*

September, 1818September, 1819. 1820.

I saw their starv'd lips in the gloam,

With horrid warning gaped wide, And I awoke and found me here,

On the cold hill's side.

LA BELLE DAME SANS MERCI

BALLAD

What can ail thee, knight-at-arms,

Alone and palely loitering! The sedge has wither'd from the lake,

And no birds sing.

And this is why I sojourn here,

Alone and palely loitering, Though the sedge is wither'd from the

lake And no birds sing.

1819. May 10, 1820.

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