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The plain was grassy, wild and bare,
Wide, wild, and open to the air,
Which had built up everywhere

An under-roof of doleful gray.
With an inner voice the river ran,
Adown it floated a dying swan,

And loudly did lament.
It was the middle of the day.
Ever the weary wind went on,

And took the reed-tops as it went.


Some blue peaks in the distance rose,
And white against the cold-white sky,
Shone out their crowning snows,

One willow over the river wept,
And shook the wave as the wind did sigh ,
Above in the wind was the swallow,

Chasing itself at its own wild will,
And far thro' the marish green and still

The tangled water-courses slept,
Shot over with purple, and green, and yellow.


The wild swan's death-hymn took the soul
Of that waste place with joy
Hidden in sorrow : at first to the ear
The warble was low, and full and clear ;
And floating about the under-sky,
Prevailing in weakness, the coronach stole
Sometimes afar, and sometimes anear ;
But anon her awful jubilant voice,
With a music strange and manifold,
Flow'd forth on a carol free and bold;
As when a mighty people rejoice
With shawms, and with cymbals, and harps of gold,
And the tumult of their acclaim is roll'd
Thro’ the open gates of the city afar,
To the shepherd who watcheth the evening star.
And the creeping mosses and clambering weeds,
And the willow-branches hoar and dank,
And the wavy swell of the soughing reeds,
And the wave-worn horns of the echoing bank,
And the silvery marish-flowers that throng
The desolate creeks and pools among,
Were flooded over with eddying song.



Now is done thy long day's work;
Fold thy palms across thy breast,
Fold thine arms, turn to thy rest.

Let them rave.
Shadows of the silver birk
Sweep the green that folds thy grave.

Let them rave.


Thee nor carketh care nor slander ;
Nothing but the small cold worm
Fretteth thine enshrouded form.

Let them
Light and shadow wander
O'er the green that folds thy grave.



Let them rave.



Thcu wilt not turn upon thy bed;
Chaunteth not the brooding bee
Sweeter tones than calumny?

Let them rave.
Thou wilt never raise thine head
From the green that folds thy grave.

Let them rave.


Crocodiles wept tears for thee;
The woodbine and eglatere
Drip sweeter dews than traitor's tear,

Let them rave.
Rain makes music in the tree
O’er the green that folds thy grave.

Let them rave.


Round thee blow, self-pleached deep,
Bramble-roses, faint and pale,
And long purples of the dale.

Let them rave.
These in


creep Thro' the green that folds thy grave.

Let them rave.


The gold-eyed kingcups fine ;
The frail bluebell peereth over
Rare broidry of the purple clover.

Let them rave.
Kings have no such couch as thine,
As the green that folds thy grave.

Let them rave.


Wild words wander here and there :
God's great gift of speech abused
Makes thy memory confused :

But let them rave.
The balm-cricket carols clear
In the green that folds thy grave.

Let them rave.

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