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Sunrays, leaning on our southern hills

and lighting Wild cloud-mountains that drag the

hills along, Oft ends the day of your shifting brilliant

laughter Chill as a dull face frowning on a song. Ay, but shows the South-West a ripple

feathered bosom Blown to silver while the clouds are

shaken and ascend Scaling the mid-heavens as they stream,

there comes a sunset Rich, deep like love in beauty without

end.

All the girls are out with their baskets

for the primrose; Up lanes, woods through, they troop

in joyful bands. My sweet leads: she knows not why, but

now she loiters, Eyes the bent anemones, and hangs

her hands. Such a look will tell that the violets are

peeping, Coming the rose: and unaware a cry Springs in her bosom for odours and for

colour, Covert and the nightingale; she knows

not why.

*

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Jasmine winds the porch with stars two

and three. Parted is the window; she sleeps; the

starry jasmine Breathes a falling breath that carries

thoughts of me. Sweeter unpossessed, have I said of her

my sweetest? Not while she sleeps: while she sleeps

the jasmine breathes, Luring her to love; she sleeps; the starry

jasmine Bears me to her pillow under white

rose-wreaths.

Front door and back of the mossed old

farmhouse Open with the morn, and in a breezy

link Freshly sparkles garden to stripe-shad

owed orchard, Green across a rill where on sand the

minnows wink. Busy in the grass the early sun of summer Swarms, and the blackbird's mellow

fluting notes Call my darling up with round and ro

guish challenge: Quaintest, richest carol of all the sing

ing throats!

*

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snow:

Cool was the woodside; cool as her white Large and smoky red the sun's cold disk dairy

drops, Keeping sweet the cream-pan; and Clipped by naked hills, on violet shaded

there the boys from school, Cricketing below, rushed brown and red Eastward large and still lights up a bower with sunshine;

of moonrise, O the dark translucence of the deep- Whence at her leisure steps the moon eyed cool !

aglow. Spying from the farm, herself she fetched Nightlong on black print-branches our a pitcher

beech-tree Full of milk, and tilted for each in turn Gazes in this whiteness: nightlong the beak,

could I. Then a little fellow, mouth up and on tip- Here may life on death or death on life toe,

be painted. Said, "I will kiss you'': she laughed and Let me clasp her soul to know she canleaned her cheek.

not die!

Doves of the fir-wood walling high our

red roof Through the long noon coo, crooning Gossips count her faults; they scour a through the coo.

narrow chamber Loose droop the leaves, and down the

Where there is no window, read not sleepy roadway

heaven or her. Sometimes pipes a chaffinch; loose

“When she was a tiny,” one aged woman droops the blue.

quavers, Cows flap a slow tail knee-deep in the

Plucks at my heart and leads me by

river,

the ear.

Breathless, given up to sun and gnat

and fly. Nowhere is she seen; and if I see her

nowhere, Lightning may come, straight rains

and tiger sky.

Faults she had once as she learnt to run

and tumbled : Faults of feature some see, beauty not

complete. Yet, good gossips, beauty that makes holy Earth and air, may have faults from

head to feet.

*

*

Hither she comes; she comes to me;

she lingers, O the golden sheaf, the rustling treasure- Deepens her brown eyebrows, while armful !

in new surprise O the nutbrown tresses nodding inter- High rise the lashes in wonder of a stranlaced !

ger; O the treasure-tresses one another over Yet am I the light and living of her Nodding! O the girdle slack about

eyes. the waist!

Something friends have told her fills her Slain are the poppies that shot their ran

heart to brimming, dom scarlet

Nets her in her blushes, and wounds her, Quick amid the wheatears: wound

and tames. about the waist,

Sure of her haven, O like a dove alighting, Gathered, see these brides of Earth one Arms up, she dropped: our souls were blush of ripeness,

in our names. O the nutbrown tresses nodding inter

laced!

*

Soon will she lie like a white frost sunrise.

THE LARK ASCENDING Yellow oats and brown wheat, barley pale as rye,

He rises and begins to round, Long since your sheeves have yielded to He drops the silver chain of sound, the thresher,

Of many links without a break,
Felt the girdle loosened, seen the tresses In chirrup, whistle, slur, and shake,
fly.

All intervolved and spreading wide,
Soon will she lie like a blood-red sunset. Like water-dimples down a tide
Swift with the to-morrow, green-winged Where ripple ripple overcurls
Spring!

And eddy into eddy whirls;
Sing from the South-West, bring her back

A press of hurried notes that run the truants,

So fleet they scarce are more than one, Nightingale and swallow, song and Yet changeingly the trills repeat dipping wing.

And linger ringing while they fleet,
Sweet to the quick o' the ear, and dear

To her beyond the handmaid ear,
Soft new beech-leaves, up to beamy Who sits beside our inner springs,
April

Too often dry for this he brings, Spreading bough on bough a primrose Which seems the very jet of earth. mountain, you

At sight of sun, her music's mirth, Lucid in the moon, raise lilies to the sky- As up he wings the spiral stair, fields,

A song of light, and pierces air Youngest green transfused in silver

With fountain ardour, fountain play, shining through:

To reach the shining tops of day, Fairer than the lily, than the wild white

And drink in everything discerned cherry:

An ecstasy to music turned, Fair as in image my seraph love ap- Impelled by what his happy bill pears

Disperses; drinking, showering still, Borne to me by dreams when dawn is

Unthinking save that he may give at my eyelids :

His voice the outlet, there to live Fair as in the flesh she swims to me on

Renewed in endless notes of glee,
tears.

So thirsty of his voice is he,
For all to hear and all to know
That he is joy, awake, aglow,
The tumult of the heart to hear

Through pureness filtered crystal-clear, Could I find a place to be alone with And know the pleasure sprinkled bright heaven,

By simple singing of delight, I would speak my heart out: heaven Shrill, irreflective, unrestrained, is my need.

Rapt, ringing, on the jet sustained Every woodland tree is flushing like the Without a break, without a fall, dogwood,

Sweet-silvery, sheer lyrical, Flashing like the whitebeam, swaying Perennial, quavering up the chord like the reed,

Like myriad dews of sunny sward Flushing like the dogwood crimson in That trembling into fulness shine, October;

And sparkle dropping argentine; Streaming like the flag-reed South- Such wooing as the ear receives West blown;

From zephyr caught in choric leaves Flashing as in gusts the sudden-lighted Of aspens when their chattering net whitebeam:

Is flushed to white with shivers wet; All seem to know what is for heaven And such the water-spirit's chime alone.

On mountain heights in morning's prime,

*

*

*

*

Too freshly sweet to seem excess,
Too animate to need a stress;
But wider over many heads
The starry voice ascending spreads,
Awakening, as it waxes thin,
The best in us to him akin;
And every face to watch him raised,
Puts on the light of children praised,
So rich our human pleasure ripes
When sweetness on sincereness pipes,
Though nought be promised from the seas,
But only a soft-ruffling breeze
Sweep glittering on a still content,
Serenity in ravishment.

Whose lives, by many a battle-dint Defaced, and grinding wheels on flint, Yield substance, though they sing not,

sweet
For song our highest heaven to greet :
Whom heavenly singing gives us new,
Enspheres them brilliant in our blue,
From firmest base to farthest leap,
Because their love of Earth is deep,
And they are warriors in accord
With life to serve, and pass reward,
So touching purest and so heard
In the brain's reflex of yon bird :
Wherefore their soul in me, or mine,
Through self-forgetfulness divine,
In them, that song aloft maintains,
To fill the sky and thrill the plains
With showerings drawn from human

stores,
As he to silence nearer soars,
Extends the world at wings and dome,
More spacious making more our home,
Till lost on his aërial rings
In light, and then the fancy sings.

THE WOODS OF WESTERMAIN

For singing till his heaven fills,
'Tis love of earth that he instils,
And ever winging up and up,
Our valley is his golden cup,
And he the wine which overflows
To lift us with him as he goes :
The woods and brooks, the sheep and kine,
He is, the hills, the human line,
The meadows green, the fallows brown,
The dreams of labour in the town;
He sings the sap, the quickened veins;

The wedding song of sun and rains
He is, the dance of children, thanks
Of sowers, shout of primrose-banks,
And eye of violets while they breathe;
All these the circling song will wreathe,
And you shall hear the herb and tree,
The better heart of men shall see,
Shall feel celestially, as long
As you crave nothing save the song.
Was never voice of ours could say
Our inmost in the sweetest way,
Like yonder voice aloft, and link
All hearers in the song they drink.
Our wisdom speaks from failing blood,
Our passion is too full in flood,
We want the key of his wild note
Of truthful in a tuneful throat,
The song seraphically free
Of taint of personality,
So pure that it salutes the suns
The voice of one for millions,
In whom the millions rejoice
For giving their one spirit voice.

I
ENTER these enchanted woods,

You who dare.
Nothing harms beneath the leaves
More than waves a swimmer cleaves.
Toss
your

heart up with the lark, Foot at peace with mouse and worm,

Fair you fare.
Only at dread of dark
Quaver, and they quit their form:
Thousand eyeballs under hoods

Have you by the hair.
Enter these enchanted woods,

You who dare.

II

Here the snake across your path
Stretches in his golden bath :
Mossy-footed squirrels leap
Soft as winnowing plumes of Sleep:
Yaffles on a chuckle skim
Low to laugh from branches dim:
Up the pine, where sits the star,
Rattles deep the moth-winged jar.

Yet men have we, whom we revere, Now names, and men still housing here,

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