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All are gone away and past !
So it is; yet let us sing Honor to the old bow-string ! Honor to the bugle-horn! Honor to the woods unshorn! Honor to the Lincoln green! Honor to the archer keen ! Honor to tight Little John, And the horse he rode
! Honor to bold Robin Hood, Sleeping in the underwood! Honor to Maid Marian, And to all the Sherwood clan ! Though their days have hurried by, Let us two a burden try.
TO MY BROTHER GEORGE.
Many the wonders I this day have seen :
The sun, when first he kist away the tears
That fill’d the eyes of Morn;—the laurel'd peers Who from the feathery gold of evening lean ;The Ocean with its vastness, its blue green,
Its ships, its rocks, its caves, its hopes, its fears,
Its voice mysterious, which whoso hears Must think on what will be, and what has been. E'en now, dear George, while this for you I write,
Cynthia is from her silken curtains peeping So scantly, that it seems her bridal night,
And she her half-discover'd revels keeping. But what, without the social thought of thee, Would be the wonders of the sky and sea ?
HAD I a man's fair form, then might my sighs
Be echoed swiftly through that ivory shell
Thine ear, and find thy gentle heart; so well Would passion arm me for the enterprise :
But ah! I am no knight whose foeman dies;
No cuirass glistens on my bosom's swell;
I am no happy shepherd of the dell
Sweeter by far than Hybla's honey'd roses
When steep'd in dew rich to intoxication.
And when the moon her pallid face discloses,
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 foxglove 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.
How many bards gild the lapses of time!
A few of them have ever been the food
Over their beauties, earthly, or sublime :
These will in throngs before my mind intrude :
But no confusion, no disturbance rude
The songs of birds——the whispering of the leaves-
With solemn sound, and thousand others more, That distance of recognizance bereaves,
Make pleasing music, and not wild uproar.
TO A FRIEND WHO SENT ME SOME ROSES.
As late I rambled in the happy fields,
What time the skylark 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 ; ’t was the first that threw
Its sweets upon the summer: graceful it grew As is the wand that
Titania wields. And, as I feasted on its fragrancy,
I thought the garden-rose it far excell'd; But when, O Wells! thy roses came to me,
My sense with their deliciousness was spellid: Soft voices had they, that with tender plea
Whisper'd of peace, and truth, and friendliness unquell’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.
WRITTEN ON THE DAY THAT MR. LEIGH HUNT LEFT PRISON.
What though, for showing truth to flatter'd state,
Kind Hunt was shut in prison, yet has he,
In his immortal spirit, been as free
Think you he naught but prison-walls did see,
Till, so unwilling, thou unturn'dst the key ?
Culling enchanted flowers; and he flew
To regions of his own his genius true
When thou art dead, and all thy wretched crew ?