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TO SLEEP

A FLOCK of sheep that leisurely pass by,
One after one; the sound of rain, and bees
Murmuring; the fall of rivers, winds and seas,
Smooth fields, white sheets of water, and pure sky;
I have thought of all by turns, and yet do lie
Sleepless! and soon the small birds' melodies
Must hear, first utter'd from my orchard trees;
And the first cuckoo's melancholy cry.
Even thus last night, and two nights more, I lay,
And could not win thee, Sleep! by any stealth:
So do not let me wear to-night away:
Without Thee what is all the morning's wealth?
Come, blessed barrier between day and day,
Dear mother of fresh thoughts and joyous health!

URPRISED by joy—impatient as the Wind J I turn'd to share the transport-Oh! with whom But Thee, deep buried in the silent tomb, That spot which no vicissitude can find? Love, faithful love, recall'd thee to my mind But how could I forget Thee? Through what power, Even for the least division of an hour, Have I been so beguiled as to be blind To my most grievous loss?—That thought's return Was the worst pang that sorrow ever bore, Save one, one only, when I stood forlorn, Knowing my heart's best treasure was no more; That neither present time, nor years unborn Could to my sight that heavenly face restore.

THE world is too much with us: late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers:
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
This Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gather'd now like sleeping flowers;
For this, for every thing, we are out of tune;
It moves us not.—Great God! I'd rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn:
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.

CORN not the Sonnet; Critic, you have frown'd, J Mindless of its just honours; with this key Shakspeare unlock'd his heart; the melody Of this small lute gave ease to Petrarch's wound; A thousand times this pipe did Tasso sound; With it Camoens soothed an exile's grief; The Sonnet glitter'd a gay myrtle leaf Amid the cypress with which Dante crown'd His visionary brow: a glow-worm lamp, It cheer'd mild Spenser, callid from Faery-land To struggle through dark ways; and, when a damp Fell round the path of Milton, in his hand The Thing became a trumpet; whence he blew Soul-animating strains-alas, too few!

LONDON, 1802

MILTON', thou shouldst be living at this hour:
England hath need of thee: she is a fen
Of stagnant waters: altar, sword, and pen,
Fireside, the heroic wealth of hall and bower,
Have forfeited their ancient English dower
Of inward happiness. We are selfish men;
Oh! raise us up, return to us again;
And give us manners, virtue, freedom, power.
Thy soul was like a Star, and dwelt apart:
Thou hadst a voice whose sound was like the sea:
Pure as the naked heavens, majestic, free,
So didst thou travel on life's common way,
In cheerful godliness; and yet thy heart
The lowliest duties on herself did lay.

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