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AFTON WATER

Flow gently, sweet Afton, among thy green braes,
Flow gently, I 'll sing thee a song in thy praise;
My Mary's asleep by thy murmuring stream,
Flow gently, sweet Afton, disturb not her dream.

Thou stockdove whose echo resounds through the glen,
Ye wild whistling blackbirds in yon thorny den,
Thou green-crested lapwing, thy screaming forbear,
I charge you disturb not my slumbering fair.

How lofty, sweet Afton, thy neighboring hills,
Far mark'd with the courses of clear, winding rills!
There daily I wander as noon rises high,
My flocks and my Mary's sweet cot in my eye.

How pleasant thy banks and green valleys below,
Where wild in the woodlands the primroses blow!
There oft as mild evening weeps over the lea,
The sweet-scented birk shades my Mary and me.

Thy crystal stream, Afton, how lovely it glides,
And winds by the cot where my Mary resides!
How wanton thy waters her snowy feet lave,
As gathering sweet flowerets she stems thy clear wave!

Flow gently, sweet Afton, among thy green braes,
Flow gently, sweet river, the theme of my lays;
My Mary's asleep by thy murmuring stream,
Flow gently, sweet Afton, disturb not her dream.

Robert Burns.

O, SAW YE BONNIE LESLEY?

O, Saw ye bonnie Lesley

As she gaed o'er the border?
She's gane, like Alexander,

To spread her conquests farther.

To see her is to love her,

And love but her forever;
For nature made her what she is,

And ne'er made sic anither!

Thou art a queen, fair Lesley,

Thy subjects we, before thee;
Thou art divine, fair Lesley,

The hearts o' men adore thee.

The deil he could na scaith thee,
Or aught that wad belang thee;

He'd look into thy bonnie face,
And say, " I canna wrang thee l"

The Powers aboon will tent thee;

Misfortune sha' na steer thee;
Thou 'rt like themselves sae lovely

That ill they 'll ne'er let near thee.

Return again, fair Lesley,

Return to Caledonie!
That we may brag we hae a lass

There's nane again sae bonnie.

Robert Bukns.

FIRST LOVE

'T is sweet to hear, At midnight on the blue and moonlit deep,

The song and oar of Adria's gondolier,

By distance mellow'd, o'er the waters sweep;

'T is sweet to see the evening star appear;
'T is sweet to listen as the night-winds creep

From leaf to leaf; 't is sweet to view on high

The rainbow, based on ocean, span the sky.

'T is sweet to hear the watch-dog's honest bark
Bay deep-mouth'd welcome as we draw near home;

'T is sweet to know there is an eye will mark
Our coming, and look brighter when we come.

'T is sweet to be awakened by the lark,
Or lull'd by falling waters; sweet the hum

Of bees, the voice of girls, the song of birds,

The lisp of children, and their earliest words.

Sweet is the vintage, when the showering grapes

In Bacchanal profusion reel to earth,
Purple and gushing; sweet are our escapes

From civic revelry to rural mirth;
Sweet to the miser are his glittering heaps;

Sweet to the father is his first-born's birth;
Sweet is revenge, especially to women,
Pillage to soldiers, prize-money to seamen.

'T is sweet to win, no matter how, one's laurels,
By blood or ink; 't is sweet to put an end

To strife; 't is sometimes sweet to have our quarrels,
Particularly with a tiresome friend;

Sweet is old wine in bottles, ale in barrels;
Dear is the helpless creature we defend

Against the world; and dear the school-boy spot

We ne'er forget, though there we are forgot.

But sweeter still than this, than these, than all,
Is first and passionate love, — it stands alone,
Like Adam's recollection of his fall;

The tree of knowledge has been plucked, — all's known, — And life yields nothing further to recall

Worthy of this ambrosial sin, so shown,
No doubt in fable, as the unforgiven
Fire which Prometheus filch'd for us from heaven.

Lord Byron (Don Juan).

HOW DO I LOVE THEE?

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways:

I love thee to the depth and breath and height

My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight

For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.

I love thee to the level of each day's

Most quiet need, by sun and candlelight.

I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;

I love thee purely, as they turn from praise.

I love thee with the passion put to use

In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.

I love thee with a love I seemed to lose

With my lost saints, — I love thee with the breath,

Smiles, tears, of all my life ! — and, if God choose,

I shall but love thee better after death.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning

ASK ME NO MORE

Ask me no more: the moon may draw the sea;

The cloud may stoop from heaven and take the shape
With fold to fold, of mountain or of cape;

But, O too fond, when have I answered thee?
Ask me no more.

Ask me no more : what answer should I give?
I love not hollow cheek or faded eye:
Yet, O my friend, I will not have thee die!

Ask me no more, lest I should bid thee live;
Ask me no more.

Ask me no more: thy fate and mine are sealed:
I strove against the stream, and all in vain:
Let the great river take me to the main:
No more, dear love, for at a touch I yield;
Ask me no more.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson (The Princess).

AE FOND KISS BEFORE WE PART

V Ae fond kiss, and then we sever;
Ae fareweel, alas, forever!
Deep in heart-wrung tears I 'll pledge thee;
Warring sighs and groans I 'll wage thee.
Who shall say that fortune grieves him,
While the star of hope she leaves him?
Me, nae cheerfu' twinkle lights me;
Dark despair around benights me.

I 'll ne'er blame my partial fancy —
Naething could resist my Nancy;
But to see her was to love her,
Love but her, and love forever.
Had we never loved sae kindly,
Had we never loved sae blindly,
Never met — or never parted,
We had ne'er been broken-hearted.

Fare thee weel, thou first and fairest!
Fare thee weel, thou best and dearest!
Thine be ilka joy and treasure,
Peace, enjoyment, love, and pleasure!
Ae fond kiss, and then we sever;
Ae fareweel, alas, forever!
Deep in heart-wrung tears I 'll pledge thee,
Warring sighs and groans I 'll wage thee!

Robert Burns.

THE DEPARTURE

And on her lover's arm she leant,

And round her waist she felt it fold; And far across the hills they went

In that new world which is the old. Across the hills, and far away

Beyond their utmost purple rim, And deep into the dying day,

The happy princess follow'd him.

"I'd sleep another hundred years,
O love, for such another kiss ;''
"O, wake forever, love," she hears,
"O love, 't was such as this and this ;"
And o'er them many a silding star,

And many a merry wind was borne,
And, stream'd through many a golden bar,
The twilight melted into morn.

"O eyes long laid in happy sleep!"
"O happy sleep, that lightly fled!"
"O happy kiss, that woke thy sleep!"
"O love, thy kiss would wake the dead!"
And o'er them many a flowing range

Of vapor buoy'd the crescent bark;
And, rapt through many a rosy change,
The twilight died into the dark.

A hundred summers! can it be?
And whither goest thou, tell me where?
"O, seek my father's court with me,
For there are greater wonders there.''
And o'er the hills, and far away

Beyond their utmost purple rim,
Beyond the night, across the day,
Through all the world she follow'd him.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson (The Day-Dream).

ADIEU

Let time and chance combine, combine,

Let time and chance combine;
The fairest love from heaven above,

That love of yours was mine
My dear,

That love of yours was mine.

The past is fled and gone, and gone,

The past is fled and gone;
If naught but pain to me remain,

I 'll fare in memory on,
My dear,

I 'll fare in memory on.

The saddest tears must fall, must fall,

The saddest tears must fall;
In weal or woe, in this world below,

I love you ever and all,
My dear,

I love you ever and all.

A long road full of pain, of pain,

A long road full of pain;
One soul, one heart, sworn ne'er to part, —
We ne'er can meet again,

My dear,
We ne'er can meet again.

Hard fate will not allow, allow,
Hard fate will not allow;

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