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And nought untunes that infant's voice; a trace
Of fretful temper sullies not her cheek;
Prompt, lively, self-sufficing, yet so meek
That one enrapt with gazing on her face,
Which even the placid innocence of death
Could scarcely make more placid, heaven more bright,
Might learn to picture, for the eye of faith,
The Virgin, as she shone with kindred light;
A nursling couched upon her mother's knee,
Beneath some shady palm of Galilee.

TO ROTHĄ ROTHA, my spiritual child! this head was gray When at the sacred font for thee I stood; Pledged till thou reach the verge of womanhood, And shalt become thy own sufficient stay: Too late, I feel, sweet orphan! was the day For steadfast hope the contract to fulfil: Yet shall my blessing hover o'er thee still, Embodied in the music of this lay, Breathed forth beside the peaceful mountain stream Whose murmur soothed thy languid mother's ear After her throes, this stream of name more dear Since thou dost bear it-a memorial theme For others; for thy future self a spell To summon fancies out of time's dark cell.

- TO Such age how beautiful! O lady bright, Whose mortal lineaments seem all refined By favouring nature and a saintly mind To something purer and more exquisite Than flesh and blood; whene'er thou meet’st my sight, When I behold thy blanched unwithered cheek,

Thy temples fringed with locks of gleaming white,
And head that droops because the soul is meek,
Thee with the welcome snowdrop I compare,
That child of winter, prompting thoughts that climb
From desolation towards the genial prime;
Or with the moon conquering earth's misty air,

And filling more and more with crystal light · As pensive evening deepens into night.

In my mind's eye a temple, like a cloud
Slowly surmounting some invidious hill,
Rose out of darkness: the bright work stood still,
And might of its own beauty have been proud,
But it was fashioned and to God was vowed
By virtues that diffused, in every part,
Spirit divine through forms of human art :
Faith had her arch-her arch when winds blow loud,
Into the consciousness of safety thrilled;
And Love her towers of dread foundation laid
Under the grave of things; Hope had her spire
Star-high, and pointing still to something higher;
Trembling I gazed, but heard a voice--it said,
“Hell gates are powerless phantoms when we build.”

TO —
If these brief records, by the Muses' art
Produced as lonely Nature or the strife
That animates the scenes of public life
Inspired, may in thy leisure claim a part;
And if these transcripts of the private heart
Have gained a sanction from thy falling tears,
Then I repent not: but my soul hath fears
Breathed from eternity; for as a dart

Cleaves the blank air, life flies: now every day
Is but a glimmering spoke in the swift wheel
Of the revolving week. Away, away,
All fitful cares, all transitory zeal;
So timely grace the immortal wing may heal,
And honour rest upon the senseless clay.

MUTABILITY. From low to high doth dissolution climb, And sinks from high to low, along a scale Of awful notes, whose concord shall not fail A musical but melancholy chime, Which they can hear who meddle not with crime, Nor avarice, nor over-anxious care. Truth fails not; but her outward forms that bear The longest date do melt like frosty rime, That in the morning whitened hill and plain And is no more; drop like the tower sublime Of yesterday, which royally did wear Its crown of weeds, but could not even sustain Some casual shout that broke the silent air, Or the unimaginable touch of time.

PERSUASION. “Man's life is like a sparrow,* mighty king! That, stealing in while by the fire you sit Housed with rejoicing friends, is seen to flit Safe from the storm, in comfort tarrying. Here did it enter--there, on hasty wing Flies out, and passes on from cold to cold; But whence it came we know not, nor behold Whither it goes. Even such that transient thing,

See the original of this speech in Bede.

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