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Through no disturbance of my soul,
Or strong compunction in me wrought,
I supplicate for thy control;
But in the quietness of thought:
Me this unchartered freedom tires;
I feel the weight of chance-desires:
My hopes no more must change their name,
I long for a repose that ever is the same. to
Stern Lawgiver! yet thou dost wear
To humbler functions, awful Power!
TO A SKY-LARK
Up with me! up with me into the clouds!
For thy song, Lark, is strong;
Lift me, guide me till I find
I have walked through wildernesses dreary
There is madness about thee, and joy divine
In that song of thine;
Lift me, guide me high and high
To thy banqueting-place in the sky.
Joyous as morning
With a soul as strong as a mountain river
Alas! my journey, rugged and uneven, Through prickly moors or dusty ways must wind;
But hearing thee, or others of thy kind,
TO A SKY-LARK
Ethereal minstrel! pilgrim of the sky!
Leave to the nightingale her shady wood;
INTIMATIONS OP IMMORTALITY FROM RECOLLECTIONS OF EARLY CHILDHOOD*
There was a time when meadow, grove, and stream,
The earth, and every common sight,
• "To that dream-like vividness and splendour which Invest objects of sight in childhood, every one, I believe, if he would look back, could bear testimony, and I need not dwell upon it here; but having In the poem regarded it as presumptive evidence of a prior state of existence. I think it right to protest against a conclusion, which has given pain to some good and pious persons, that I meant to inculcate such a belief. It is far too shadowy a notion to be recommended to faith, as more than an element In our instincts of immortality... A pre-exlstent state has entered Into the popular creeds of many nations; and, among all persons acquainted with classic literature, is known as an ingredient In Platonic philosophy."—Extract from Wordsworth's note. Compare Henry Vaughan's The Retreat, p. 223.
The Rainbow comes and goes, 10 And lovely is the Rose, The Moon doth with delight Look round her when the heavens are bare; Waters on a starry night Are beautiful and fair; The sunshine is a glorious birth; But yet I know, where'er I go, That there hath past away a glory from the earth.
Now, while the birds thus sing a joyous song,
And I again am strong: The cataracts blow their trumpets from the steep;
No more shall grief of mine the season wrong; I hear the Echoes through the mountains throng, The Winds come to me from the fields of sleep, And all the earth is gay;
Land and sea 30 Give themselves up to jollity,
And with the heart of May Doth every Beast keep holiday;— Thou Child of Joy, Shout round me, let me hear thy shouts, thou happy Shepherd-boy!
Ye blessed Creatures, I have heard the call
Ye to each other make; I see
My heart is at your festival, 40
My head hath its coronal, The fulness of your bliss, I feel—I feel it all.
Oh evil day! if I were sullen
While Earth herself is adorning,
And the Children are culling
In a thousand valleys far and wide,
Fresh flowers; while the sun shines warni. And the Babe leaps up on his Mother's arm:—
I hear, I hear, with joy I hear! 51
—But there's a Tree, of many, one, A single Field which I have looked upon, Both of them speak of something that is gone:
The Pansy at my feet
Doth the same tale repeat:
Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:
The Soul that rises with us, our life's Star, 60
Hath had elsewhere its setting,
Not in entire forgetfulness,
And not in utter nakedness,
From God, who is our home:
Upon the growing Boy,
He sees it in his joy; 71 The Youth, who daily farther from the east
Must travel, still is Nature's Priest,
And by the vision splendid
Is on his way attended;
Earth fills her lap with pleasures of her own;
Yearnings she hath in her own natural kind,
And, even with something of a Mother's mind,
To make her Foster-child, her Inmate Man,
And that imperial palace whence he came.
Behold the Child among his new-born blisses,
A wedding or a festival,
A mourning or a funeral;
And this hath now his heart,
And unto this he frames his song:
But it will not be long 100
Ere this be thrown aside.
And with new joy and pride
With all the Persons, down to palsied Age,
As if his whole vocation
Were endless imitatior
Thou, whoso exterior semblance doth belie
Thy Soul's immensity; 110 Thou best Philosopher, who yet dost keep Thy heritage, thou Eye among the blind, That, deaf and silent, read'st the eternal deep, Haunted for ever by the eternal mind,— Mighty Prophet! Seer blest! On whom those truths do rest, Which we are toiling all our lives to find, Jn darkness lost, the darkness of the grave; Thou, over whom thy Immortality Broods like the Day, a Master o'er a Slave, 120 A Presence which is not to be put by; Thou little Child, yet glorious in the might Of heaven-born freedom on thy being's height, Why with such earnest pains dost thou provoke The years to bring the inevitable yoke, Thus blindly with thy blessedness at strife t Full soon thy Soul shall have her earthly freight, And custom lie upon thee with a weight, Heavy as frost, and deep almost as life!
O joy! that in our embers 130
Is something that doth live,
That nature yet remembers
What was so fugitive! The thought of our past years in me doth breed Perpetual benediction; not indeed For that which is most worthy to be blest— Delight and liberty, the simple creed Of Childhood, whether busy or at rest, With new-fledged hope still fluttering in his breast:—
Not for these I raise 1*0 The song of thanks and praise; But for those obstinate questionings Of sense and outward things, Fallings from us, vanishings; Blank misgivings of a Creature Moving about in worlds not realized, High inBtincts before which our mortal Nature Did tremble like a guilty Thing surprised: But for those first affections, Those shadowy recollections, 160 Which, be they what they may, Are yet the fountain light of all our day, Are yet a master light of all our seeing;
Uphold us, cherish, and have power to make Our noisy years seem moments in the being Of the eternal Silence: truths that wake,
To perish never; Which neither listlessness, nor mad endeavour,
Nor Man nor Boy, Nor all that is at enmity with joy, 160 Can utterly abolish or destroy!
Hence in a season of calm weather
Though inland far we be,
Which brought us hither,
Can in a moment travel thither, And sec the Children sport upon the shore, And hear the mighty waters rolling evermore.
Then sing, ye Birds, sing, sing a joyous song!
And let the young Lambs bound 170
As to the tabor's sound 1
Ye that pipe and ye that play,
Ye that through your hearts to-day
Feel the gladness of the May! What though the radiance which was once so bright
Be now forever taken from my sight,
Though nothing can bring back the hour
Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower;
In years that bring the philosophic mind.
And O, ye Fountains, Meadows, Hills, and
Forebode not any severing of our loves!
Even more than when I tripped lightly as they;
Is lovely yet;
COMPOSED UPON WESTMINSTER
Earth has not anything to show more fair:
This City now iloth, 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!
IT IS A BEAUTEOUS EVENING,
It is a beauteous evening, calm and free,
If thou appear untouched by solemn thought,
ON THE EXTINCTION OF THE
Once did She hold the gorgeous east in fee;
Of that which once was great, is passed away.
1 Wordsworth's sister, Dorothy.
2 See Luke xvl, 22.
• Venice threw off the yoke of the Eastern Empire as early as 800 and remained a republic or an oligarchy until conquered by Napoleon In 1707. At one time Rhe had extensive possessions and colonies In the Levant.
tThe ancient Doges annually, on Ascension Day. threw a ring Into the Adriatic In formal token of this espousal, or of perpetual dominion.
Milton! thou should'st be living at this hour:
Pure as the naked heavens, majestic, free,
THE WORLD IS TOO MUCH WITH US
The world is too much with us; late and soon,
I thought of Thee, my partner and my guide,
To live, and act, and serve the future hour;
t Written In despondency over the Inert attitude of England toward the hopes and Ideals of the revolutionists and the opponents of Napoleon.
i The conclusion of a series of sonnets to the river Duddon.
SAMUEL TAYLOR COLERIDGE (1772-1834)
In Xanadu i did Kubla Khan*
Down to a sunless sea.
But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slanted
Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover 1
As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing,
A mighty fountain momently was forced:
The shadow of the dome of pleasure
Floated midway on the waves;
Where was heard the mingled measure
From the fountain and the caves.
A damsel with a dulcimer
In a vision once I saw:
It was an Abyssinian maid,
And on her dulcimer she played, 40
• Coleridge says this poem was composed when he had fallen asleep Just after reading from Marco Polo In Purchat's Pilgrimage how "In Xandu did Cublal Can build a stately palace," etc. There were more lines which he failed to record. Charles Lamb spoke of the poem as "a vision which he [Coleridge] repeats so enchantlngly that It Irradiates ana brings heaven and elyslan bowers Into my parlour when he sings or says It."
i A region In Tartary. . 2 Kubla the Cham, or
Singing of Mount Abora.
Could I revive within me
Her symphony and song, To such a deep delight 'twould win me, That with music loud and long, I would build that dome in air, That sunny dome! those eaves of ice! And all who heard should see them there, And all should cry, Beware! Beware! His flashing eyes, his floating hair! 60 Weave a circle round him thrice, And close your eyes with holy dread, For he on honey-dew hath fed, And drunk the milk of Paradise.
THE RIME OF THE ANCIENT MARINEBt
IN SEVEN PARTS
How a Ship having passed the Line was driven by Storms to the cold Country towards the South Pole; and how from thence she made her course to the Tropical Latitude of the Great Pacific Ocean; and of the strange things that befell; and In what manner the Ancyent Marlnere came back to bis own Country.
It is an ancient Mariner,
And he stoppeth one of three.
"By thy long gray beard and glittering eye.
Now wherefore stopp'st thou met
1-12. An ancient Mariner meeteth three Gallants bidden to a wedding-feast, and detalneth one.
t From the publication, in 1798, of the Lyrical Ballads, the Joint production of Coleridge and Wordsworth, may be dated very definitely the recognition of the new spirit in Kngllsb literature which Is commonly spoken of as the Romantic Revival. See Eng. Lit.. pp. 232-235. Coleridge, In the fourteenth chapter of his Biographia Literaria, writes of the occasion of the Lyrical Ballad* as follows:
"During the first year that Mr. Wordsworth and I were neighbours, our conversations turned frequently on the two cardinal points of poetry, the power of exciting the sympathy of the reader by a faithful adherence to the truth of nature, and the power of giving the interest of novelty by the modifying colours of the imagination. The sudden cbarm. which accidents of light and shade, which moonlight or sunset, diffused over a known and familiar landscape, appeared to represent the practicability of combining both. These are the poetry of nature. The thought suggested itself (to which of us I do not recollect) that a series of poems might be composed of two sorts. In the one, the Incidents and agents were to be. in part at least, supernatural: and the excellence aimed at was to consist In the Interesting of the affections by the dramatic truth of such emotions as would naturally accompany such situations, supposing them real. And real In this sense they have been to every human being who. from whatever source of delusion, has at any time believed