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gave

Branches they bore of that enchanted

CHORIC SONG. stem, Laden with flower and fruit, whereof they

THERE is sweet music here that softer falls To each, but whoso did receive of them, | Than petals from blown roses on the grass, And taste, to him the gushing of the wave Or night-dews on still waters between Far far away did seem to mourn and rave walls On alien shores ; and if his fellow spake, Of shadowy granite, in a gleaming pass ; His voice was thin, as voices from the Music that gentlier on the spirit lies, grave;

Than tir'd eyelids upon tir'd eyes ; And deep-asleep he seem'd, yet all awake, Music that brings sweet sleep down from And music in his ears his beating heart the blissful skies. did make.

Here are cool mosses deep,

And thro' the moss the ivies creep, They sat them down upon the yellow sand, and in the stream the long-leaved flowers Between the sun and moon upon the shore; weep, And sweet it was to dream of Father-land, And from the craggy ledge the poppy Of child, and wife, and slave ; but ever hangs in sleep.

more Most weary seem'd the sea, weary the oar,

II. Weary the wandering fields of barren foam. Why are we weigh'd upon with heaviness, Then some one said, “We will return And utterly consumed with sharp distress, no more" ;

While all things else have rest from And all at once they sang, “Our island weariness? home

All things have rest : why should we Is far beyond the wave ; we will no longer toil alone, roam.

| We only toil, who are the first of things,

care,

And make perpetual moan,

| Which will not leave the myrrh-bush on Still from one sorrow to another thrown : the height; Nor ever fold our wings,

To hear each other's whisper'd speech ; And cease from wanderings,

Eating the Lotos day by day, Nor steep our brows in slumber's holy To watch the crispingripples on the beach, balm ;

And tendercurving lines of creamy spray; Nor harken what the inner spirit sings, To lend our hearts and spirits wholly “There is no joy but calm !

To the influence of mild-minded melan. Why should we only toil, the roof and choly ; crown of things ?

To muse and brood and live again in

memory, III.

With those old faces of our infancy Lo! in the middle of the wood,

Heap'd over with a mound of grass, The folded leaf is wood from out the bud Two handluls of white dust, shut in an With winds upon the branch, and there

urn of brass ! Grows green and broad, and takes no

VI. Sun-steep'd at noon, and in the moon Dear is the memory of our wedded lives, Nightly dew-fed ; and turning yellow And dear the last embraces of our wives Falls, and floats adown the air.

And their warm tears : but all hath Lo! sweeten'd with the summer light,

suller'd change ; The full-juiced apple, waxing over For surely now our household hearths mellow,

are cold: Drops in a silent autumn night.

Oursons inheritus: our looks are strange: All its allotted length of days,

And we should come like glioststo trouble The flower ripens in its place,

joy. Ripens and fades, and falls, and hath no Or else the island princes over-bold toil,

Have eat our substance, and the minstrel Fast-rooted in the fruitful soil.

sings

Before them of the ten years' war in Troy, IV.

And our great deeds, as half-forgotten Hateful is the dark-blue sky,

things. Vaulted o'er the dark blue sea.

Is there confusion in the little isle ? Death is the end of life ; ah, why

Let what is broken so remain. Should life all labor be?

The Gods are hard to reconcile : Let us alone. Time driveth onward fast. | T is hard to settle order once again. And in a little while our lips are dumb. / There is confusion worse than death, Let us alone. What is it that will last ? | Trouble on trouble, pain on pain, All things are taken from us, and become / Long labor uinto aged breath, Portions and parcels of the dreadful Past. / Sorc task to hearts worn out by many Let us alone. What pleasure can we have

wars To war with evil ? İs there any peace And eyes grown dim with gazing on the In ever climbing up the climbing wave ? pilot-stars. All things have rest, and ripen toward

VII. In silence; ripen, fall and cease :

But, propt on beds of amaranth and mols, Give us loug rest or death, dark death, How sweet (while warm airs lull us, or dreamful ease.

blowing lowly)
With half-dropt eyelids still,

Beneath a heaven dark and holy, How sweet it were, hearing the downward To watch the long bright river drawing stream,

slowly With half-shut eyes ever to seem His waters from the purple hill Falling asleep in a half-cream!

To hear the dewy echoes calling To dream and dream, like yonder amber From cave to cuve thro' the thick-twined light,

vine

the grave

shade,

To watch theemerald-color'd water falling Resting weary limbs at last on beds of Thro' many a woy'n acanthus-wreath asphodel. divine !

Surely, surely, slumber is more sweet Only to hear and see the far-off sparkling than toil, the shore brine,

Than labor in the deep mid-ocean, wind Only to hear were sweet, stretch'd out and wave and oar; beneath the pine.

O rest ye, brother inariners, we will not

wander more. VII. The Lotos Blooms below the barren peak : The Lotos blows by every winding creek :/ A DREAM OF FAIR WOMEN. All day the wind breathes low with mellower tone:

I READ, before my eyelids dropt their Thro' every hollow cave and alley lone Round and round the spicy downs the The Legend of Good Women," long yellow Lotus-dust is blown.

ago We have had enough of action, and of Sung by the morning star of song, who motion we,

made Roll’d to starboard, rolld to larboard, His music heard below;

when the surge was seething free, Where the wallowing monsterspouted his Dan Chaucer, the first warbler, whose foam-fountains in the sea.

sweet breath Let us swear an oath, and keep it with Preluded those melodious bursts, an equal mind,

that fill In the hollow Lotos-land to live and lie The spacious times of great Elizabet” reclined

With sounds that echo still. On the hills like Gods together, careless of mankind.

And, for a while, the knowledge of his art For they lie beside their nectar, and the Held me above the subject, as strong bolts are hurl'd

gales Far below them in the valleys, and the Hold swollen clouds from raining, tho' clouds are lightly curl'd

my heart, Round their golden houses, girdled with Brimful of those wild tales,

the gleaming world : Where they smile in secret, looking over Charged both mine eyes with tears. In wasted lands,

every land Blight and famine, plague and earth. I saw, wherever light illumineth,

quake, roaring deeps and fiery | Beauty and anguish walking hand in hand sands,

The downward slope to death. Clanging fights, and flaming towns, and

sinking ships, and praying hands. Those far-renowned brides of ancient song But they smile, they find a music centred Peopled the hollow dark, like burnin a doleful song

ing stars, Steaming up, a lamentation andan ancient And I heard sounds of insult, shame, and tale of wrong,

wrong, Like a tale of little meaning tho' the And trumpets blown for wars ;

words are strong; Chanted from an ill-used race of men that And clattering flints batter'd with clang. cleave the soil,

ing hoofs : Sow the seed, and reap the harvest with And 1 saw crowds in columnd sancenduring toil,

tuaries; Storing yearly little dues of wheat, and And forms that pass'd at windows and

on roofs Till they perish and they suffer ---- some, Of marble palaces ;

't is whisper'd -- down in hell Suffer endless anguish, others in Elysian Corpses across the threshold ; heroes tall valleys dwell,

Dislodging pinnacle and parapet

wine and oil ;

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Upon the tortoise creeping to the wall; Ranges of glimmering vaults with iron Lances in ambush set;

grates,

And hushed seraglios. And high shrine-doors burst thro' with heated blasts

So shape chased shape as swift as, when That run before the fluttering tongues to land of fire;

Bluster the winds and tides the selfWhite surf wind-scatter'd over sails and

same way, masts,

| Crisp foam-fakes scud along the level And ever climbing higher ;

sand,

Torn from the fringe of spray. Squadrons and squares of men in brazen plates,

| 1 started once, or seem'd to start in pain, Scaffolds, still sheets of water, divers Resolved on noble things, and strove woes,

to speak,

As when a great thought strikes along The smell of violets, hidden in the green, the brain,

Pour'd back into my empty soul and And flushes all the cheek.

frame

The times when I remember to have been And once my arm was lifted to hew down Joyful and free from blame.

A cavalier from off his saddle-bow, That bore a lady from a leaguer'd town: And from within me a clear under-tone And then, I know not how,

Thrill'd thro' mine ears in that un.

blissful clime, All those sharp fancies, by down-lapsing “ Pass freely thro': the wood is all thinc thought

own, Stream'd onward, lost their edges, Until the end of time.”

and did creep Rolld on each other, rounded, smooth'd, A

+147 At length I saw a lady within call,

Stiller than chisell’d marble, standand brought Into the gulfs of sleep.

ing there;

A daughter of the gods, divinely tall, At last inethought that I had wander'd far! And most divinely fair.

In an old wood : fresh-wash'd in Her loveliness with shame and with surcoolest dew

prise The maiden splendors of the morning star

Froze my swift speech : she turning Shook in the stedfast blue.

on my face

The star-like sorrows of immortal eyes, Enormouselmtree-boles did stoopand lean

Spoke slowly in her place.
Upon the dusky brush wood under-
neath

“I had great beauty : ask thou not my Their broad curved branches, fledger

name : with clearest green,

No one can be more wise than destiny.
New from its silken sheath. | Many drew swords and died. Where'er

I came
The dim red morn had died, her journey I brought calamity.”

done, And with dead lips smiled at the “No marvel, sovereign lady : in fair field twilight plain,

Myself for such a face had boldly Half-fall'n across the threshold of the sun, died," Never to rise again.

I answer'd free ; and turning I appeal'd

To one that stood beside. There was no motion in the dumb dead air, .

Not any song of bird or sound of rill? But she, with sick and scornful looks Gross darkness of the inner sepulchre

averse, Is not so deadly still

To her full height her stately stature

draws ; As that wide forest. Growths of jasmine | “My youth,” she said, “was blasted turn'd

with a curse : Their humid arms festooning tree to

This woman was the cause. tree,

| “I was cut off from hope in that sad place, And at the root thro' lush green grasses

Which yet to name my spirit loathes burn'd

and fears : The red anemone.

My father held his hand upon his face ;

I, blinded with my tears, I knew the flowers, I knew the leaves, I knew

“Still strove to speak : my voice was The tearful glimmer of the languid thick with sighs dawn

As in a dream. Dimly I could descry On those long, rank, dark wood-walks The stern black-bearded kings with drench'd in dew,

wolfish eyes, Leading from lawn to lawn.

Waiting to see me die.

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