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As late I rambled in the happy fields,
What time the sky-lark shakes the tremulous dew
From his lush clover covert ;--when anew Adventurous knights take up their dinted shields : I saw the sweetest flower wild nature yields,
A fresh-blown musk-rose ; 'twas the first that threw
Its sweets upon the summer: graceful it grew
I thought the garden-rose it far excell’d;
My sense with their deliciousness was spell’d: Soft voices had they, that with tender plea
Whisper'd of peace, and truth, and friendliness unequall'd.
TO G. A. W.
NYMPH of the downward smile and sidelong glance !
In what diviner moments of the day
Art thou most lovely? when gone far astray
Of sober thought? Or when starting away,
With careless robe to meet the morning ray,
And so remain, because thou listenest:
That I can never tell what mood is best,
Trips it before Apollo than the rest.
O SOLITUDE! if I must with thee dwell,
Let it not be among the jumbled heap
Of murky buildings : climb with me the steep,—
May seem a span ; let me thy vigils keep
’Mongst boughs pavilion’d, where the deer's swift leap Startles the wild bee from the fox-glove bell.
But though I'll gladly trace these scenes with thee, Yet the sweet converse of an innocent mind, Whose words are images of thoughts refined,
Is my soul's pleasure ; and it sure must be Almost the highest bliss of human-kind,
When to thy haunts two kindred spirits flee.
TO MY BROTHERS.
SMALL, busy flames play through the fresh-laid coals,
And their faint cracklings o'er our silence creep
Like whispers of the household gods that keep
Your eyes are fix'd, as in poetic sleep,
Upon the lore so voluble and deep,
That thus it passes smoothly, quietly :
May we together pass, and calmly try What are this world's true joys,-ere the great Voice
From its fair face shall bid our spirits fly.
ON FIRST LOOKING INTO CHAPMAN'S HOMER.
MUCH have I travelld in the realms of gold,
And many goodly states and kingdoms seen;
Round many western islands have I been
That deep-brow'd Homer ruled as his demesne :
Yet did I never breathe its pure serene Till I heard Chapman speak out loud and bold : Then felt I like some watcher of the skies
When a new planet swims into his ken; Or like stout Cortez when with eagle eyes
He stared at the Pacific-and all his men Look'd at each other with a wild surmise
Silent, upon a peak in Darien.