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SIR LAUNCELOT AND QUEEN GUINEVERE.

207

Sometimes the sparhawk, wheel'd along,
Hush'd all the groves from fear of wrong:

By grassy capes with fuller sound
In curves the yellowing river ran,
And drooping chestnut-buds began
To spread into the perfect fan,

Above the teeming ground.

Then, in the boyhood of the year,
Sir Launcelot and Queen Guinevere
Rode thro' the coverts of the deer,
With blissful treble ringing clear.

She seem'd a part of joyous Spring :
A gown of grass-green silk she wore,
Buckled with golden clasps before ;
A light-green tuft of plumes she bore

Closed in a golden ring.

Now on some twisted ivy-net,
Now by some tinkling rivulet,
On mosses thick with violet,
Her cream-white mule his pastern set:

And now more fleet she skimm’d the plains

208

SIR LAUNCELOT AND QUEEN GUINEVERE.

Than she whose elfin prancer springs
By night to eery warblings,
When all the glimmering moorland rings

With jingling bridle-reins.

As she fled fast thro' sun and shade,
The happy winds upon her play'd,
Blowing the ringlet from the braid:
She look'd so lovely, as she sway'd

The rein with dainty finger-tips,
A man had given all other bliss,
And all his worldly worth for this,
To waste his whole heart in one kiss

Upon her perfect lips.

A FAREWELL.

Flow down, cold rivulet, to the sea,

Thy tribute wave deliver;
No more by thee my steps shall be,

For ever and for ever.

Flow, softly flow, by lawn and lea,

A rivulet then a river:
No where by thee my steps shall be,

For ever and for ever.

But here will sigh thine alder tree,

And here thine aspen shiver;
And here by thee will hum the bee,
For ever and for ever.

14

VOL. II.

A hundred suns will stream on thee,

A thousand moons will quiver; But not by thee my steps shall be,

For ever and for ever.

THE BEGGAR MAID.

Her arms across her breast she laid ;

She was more fair than words can say : Bare-footed came the beggar maid

Before the king Cophetua.
In robe and crown the king stept down,

To meet and greet her on her way: “ It is no wonder,” said the lords,

“ She is more beautiful than day.”

As shines the moon in clouded skies,

She in her poor attire was seen; One praised her ankles, one her eyes,

One her dark hair and lovesome mien.

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