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The hard condition ; but that she would Boring a little auger-hole in fear, loose
Peep'd—but his eyes, before they had The people : therefore, as they loved her
their will, well,
Were shrivell'd into darkness in his head, From then till noon no foot should pace And dropt before him. So the Powers, the street,
who wait Noeye look down, she passing; but that all | On noble deeds, cancell'd a sense misused ; Should keep within, door shut, and And she, that knew not, pass'd : and all window barr'd.
at once, Then fled she to her inmost bower, With twelve great shocks of sound, the and there
shameless noon Unclasp'd the wedded eagles of her belt, was clash'd and hammer'd from a hundred The grim Earl's gift ; but ever at a breath
towers, She linger'd, looking like a summer moon One after one : but even then she gain'd Half-dipt in cloud : anon she shook her Her bower ; whence reissuing, robed and head,
crown'd, And shower'd the rippled ringlets to her To meet her lord, she took the tax away knee ;
And built herself an everlasting name. Unclad herself in haste ; adown the stair Stole on; and, like a creeping sunbeam, slid
THE DAY-DREAM. From pillar unto pillar, until she reach'd
PROLOGUE. The gateway; there she found her palfrey trapt
O LADY FLORA, let me speak : In purple blazon'd with armorial gold.
A pleasant hour has passed away Then she rode forth, clothed on with While, dreaming on your damask cheek, chastity :
The dewy sister-eyelids lay. The deep air listen'd round her as she rode,
As by the lattice you reclined, And all the low wind hardly breathed for
I went thro' many wayward moods fear.
To see you dreaming—and, behind, The little wide-mouth'd heads upon the
A summer crisp with shining woods. spout
And I too dream'd, until at last Had cunning eyes to see : the barking cur
Across my fancy, brooding warm, Made her cheek flame : her palfrey's foot- The reflex of a legend past, fall shot
And loosely settled into form. Light horrors thro' her pulses : the blind
And would you have the thought I had, walls
And see the vision that I saw, Were full of chinks and holes ; and Then take the broidery-frame, and add overhead
A crimson to the quaint Macaw, Fantasticgables, crowding, stared: but she and I will tell it. Turn your face, Not less thro'all bore up, till, last, she saw
Nor look with that too-earnest eyeThe white-flower'd elder-thicket from the The rhymes are dazzled from their place field
And order'd words asunder fly. Gleam thro' the Gothic archway in the
wall. Then she rode back, clothed on with THE SLEEPING PALACE.
chastity : And one low churl, compact of thankless earth,
THE varying year with blade and sheaf The fatal byword of all years to come,
Clothes and reclothes the happy plains,
Oh, to what uses shall we put
The wildweed-flower that simply blows? And is there any moral shut
Within the bosom of the rose ?
1. AND on her lover's arm she leant,
And round her waist she felt it fold, And far across the hills they went
In that new world which is the old : Across the hills, and far away
Beyond their utmost purple rim,
O love, for such another kiss ;'
O love, 'twas such as this and this.' And o'er them many a sliding star,
And many a merry wind was borne, And, stream'd thro' many a golden bar,
The twilight melted into morn.
But any man that walks the mead,
In bud or blade, or bloom, may find, According as his humours lead,
A meaning suited to his mind. And liberal applications lie
In Art like Nature, dearest friend ; So 'twere to cramp its use,
if I Should hook it to some useful end.
O eyes long laid in happy sleep!'
O happy sleep, that lightly fled !' O happy kiss, that woke thy sleep!'
O love, thy kiss would wake the dead ! And o'er them many a flowing range
Of vapour buoy'd the crescent-bark, And, rapt thro' many a rosy change,
The twilight died into the dark.
1. You shake your head. A random string
Your finer female sense offends. Well-were it not a pleasant thing
To fall asleep with all one's friends ; To pass with all our social ties
To silence from the paths of men ; And every hundred years to rise
And learn the world, and sleep again ; To sleep thro' terms of mighty wars,
And wake on science grown to more, On secrets of the brain, the stars,
As wild as aught of fairy lore ;
The Poet-forms of stronger hours,
The Federations and the Powers ; Titanic forces taking birth
In divers seasons, divers climes ; For we are Ancients of the earth,
And in the morning of the times.
"A hundred summers ! can it be?
And whithergoest thou, tell me where?' O seek my father's court with me,
For there are greater wonders there.' And o'er the hills, and far away
Beyond their utmost purple rim, Beyond the night, across the day,
Thro' all the world she follow'd him.
So sleeping, so aroused from sleep
Thro' sunny decads new and strange, Or gay quinquenniads would we reap
The flower and quintessence of change.
So, Lady Flora, take my lay,
And if you find no moral there, Go, look in any glass and say,
What moral is in being fair.
Ah, yet would I—and would I might !
So much your eyes my fancy takeBe still the first to leap to light
That I might kiss those eyes awake!
For, am I right, or am I wrong,
To choose your own you did not care ; You'd have my moral from the song,
And I will take my pleasure there : And, am I right or am I wrong,
My fancy, ranging thro' and thro', To search a meaning for the song,
Perforce will still revert to you ; Nor finds a closer truth than this
All-graceful head, so richly curld, And evermore a costly kiss
The prelude to some brighter world.
Embraced his Eve in happy hour,
In carol, every bud to flower, What eyes, like thine, have waken'd
hopes, What lips, like thine, so sweetly
join'd? Where on the double rosebud droops
The fulness of the pensive mind ; Which all too dearly self-involved,
Yet sleeps a dreamless sleep to me ; A sleep by kisses undissolved,
That lets thee neither hear nor see : But break it. In the name of wife, And in the rights that name may
give, Are clasp'd the moral of thy life,
And that for which I care to live.
My father left a park to me,
But it is wild and barren,
And waster than a warren :
It is not bad but good land, And in it is the germ of all
That grows within the woodland.
In days of old Amphion,
Nor cared for seed or scion !
And legs of trees were limber,
And fiddled in the timber ! 'Tis said he had a tuneful tongue,
Such happy intonation, Wherever he sat down and sung
He left a small plantation ; Wherever in a lonely grove
He set up his forlorn pipes,
And founder into hornpipes.
And, as tradition teaches,
Coquetting with young beeches ; And briony-vine and ivy-wreath
Ran forward to his rhyming,
Came little copses climbing.
The woodbine wreaths that bind her, And down the middle, buzz! she went
With all her bees behind her :
With cypress promenaded,
By rivers gallopaded.
Came yews, a dismal coterie ;
Poussetting with a sloe-tree :
So, Lady Flora, take my lay,
And, if you find a meaning there, O whisper to your glass, and say,
• What wonder, if he thinks me fair?' What wonder I was all unwise,
To shape the song for your delight Like long-tail'd birds of Paradise That float thro' Heaven, and cannot
light? Or old-world trains, upheld at court
By Cupid-boys of blooming hueBut take it earnest wed with sport,
And either sacred unto you.