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Still glides the Stream, and shall for ever glide;

The Form remains, the Function never dies;

While we, the brave, the mighty, and the wise,
We Men, who in our morn of youth defied
The elements, must vanish;—be it so!

Enough, if something from our hands have power
To live, and act, and serve the future hour;
And if, as toward the silent tomb we go, [dower,

Through love, through hope, and faith's transcendent
We feel that we are greater than we know.

410 COMPOSED AT NEIDPATH CASTLE, THE PROPERTY OF

LORD QUEENSBERRY

(1803]
DEGENERATE Douglas! oh, the unworthy lord!
Whom mere despite of heart could so far please
And love of havoc, (for with such disease
Fame taxes him,) that he could send forth word

To level with the dust a noble horde,
A brotherhood of venerable trees,
Leaving an ancient dome, and towers like these,
Beggar'd and outraged !-Many hearts deplored

The fate of those old trees; and oft with pain
The traveller at this day will stop and gaze
On wrongs, which Nature scarcely seems to heed:
For shelter'd places, bosoms, nooks, and bays,
And the pure mountains, and the gentle Tweed,
And the green silent pastures, yet remain.

411

ADMONITION TO A TRAVELLER Yes, there is holy pleasure in thine eye! -The lovely cottage in the guardian nook Hath stirr'd thee deeply; with its own dear brook, Its own small pasture, almost its own sky!

But covet not the abode; O do not sigh
As many do, repining while they look;
Intruders who would tear from Nature's book
This precious leaf with harsh impiety:

-Think what the home must be if it were thine, Even thine, though few thy wants !-Roof, window, door, The very flowers are sacred to the Poor,

The roses to the porch which they entwine:
Yea, all that now enchants thee, from the day
On which it should be touch'd would melt away!

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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've thought of all by turns, and still I 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, blesséd barrier between day and day,
Dear mother of fresh thoughts and joyous health

413

THE SONNET

Nuns fret not at their convent's narrow room;
And hermits are contented with their cells;

And students with their pensive citadels;
Maids at the wheel, the weaver at his loom,

Sit blithe and happy; bees that soar for bloom,

High as the highest peak of Furness-fells,

Will murmur by the hour in foxglove bells: In truth the prison, unto which we doom Ourselves, no prison is: and hence for me,

In sundry moods, 'twas pastime to be bound

Within the Sonnet's scanty plot of ground; Pleased if some souls (for such there needs must be) Who have felt the weight of too much liberty,

Should find brief solace there, as I have found.

II

SCORN not the Sonnet; Critic, you have frown'd,
Mindless of its just honours; with this key

Shakespeare 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 Camöens sooth'd 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, call'd 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!

WILLIAM LISLE BOWLES

[1762-1850] 414

DOVER CLIFFS On these white cliffs, that calm above the flood Uplift their shadowy heads, and at their feet Scarce hear the surge that has for ages beat, Sure many a lonely wanderer has stood; And while the distant murmur met his ear, And o'er the distant billows the still eve Sailed slow, has thought of all his heart must leave

To-morrow; of the friends he loved most dear;
Of social scenes from which he wept to part.
But if, like me, he knew how fruitless all
The thoughts that would full fain the past recall;
Soon would he quell the risings of his heart,
And brave the wild winds and unhearing tide,
The world his country, and his God his guide.

SAMUEL TAYLOR COLERIDGE

[1772-1834]
THE RIME OF THE ANCIENT MARINER

415

IN SEVEN PARTS

ARGUMENT.—How a Ship having passed the Line was driven by storms to the cold Country towards the South Pole; and how from thence she made her course to the tropical Latitude of the Great Pacific Ocean; and of the strange things that befell; and in what inanner the Ancyent Marinere came back to his own Country. [1798.]

Part I An ancient

It is an ancient Mariner, Mariner And he stoppeth one of three. meeteth three Gallants" By thy long grey beard and glittering eye, bidden to a

Now wherefore stopp'st thou me?
wedding-feast,
and detain-

“The Bridegroom's doors are opened wide,
And I am next of kin;
The guests are met, the feast is set:
May'st hear the merry din.”

eth one

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He holds him with his skinny hand,

There was a ship,” quoth he.

“Hold off! unhand me, grey-beard loon!" The Wedding. Eftsoons his hand dropt he. Guest is spellbound by the

He holds him with his glittering eyeeye of the old seafaring man, The Wedding-Guest stood still, and con

And listens like a three years' child: strained to hear his tale

The Mariner hath his will.

The Wedding-Guest sat on a stone:
He cannot choose but hear;
And thus spake on that ancient man,
The bright-eyed Mariner.

“The ship was cheered, the harbour cleared,
Merrily did we drop
Below the kirk, below the hill,
Below the lighthouse top.

The sun came up upon the left,
Out of the sea came he!
And he shone bright, and on the right
Went down into the sea.

The Mariner
tells how the
ship sailed
southward
with a good
wind and fair
weather, till
it reached
the line

“Higher and higher every day,
Till over the mast at noon,”
The Wedding-Guest here beat his breast,
For he heard the loud bassoon.

The bride hath paced into the hall,
Red as a rose is she;
Nodding their heads before her goes
The merry minstrelsy.

The Wedding Guest heareth the bridal music; but the Mariner continueth his tale

The Wedding-Guest he beat his breast,
Yet he cannot choose but hear;
And thus spake on that ancient man,
The bright-eyed Mariner.

And now the Storm-blast came, and he
Was tyrannous and strong:
He struck with his o'ertaking wings,
And chased us south along.

The ship driven by a storm toward the south pole

“With sloping masts and dipping prow,
As who pursued with yell and blow
Still treads the shadow of his foe,

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