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النشر الإلكتروني

The vivid flashes of his spoken words.

And let him grieve who cannot choose but grieve
From the most gentle creature nursed in fields That he hath been an Elm without his Vine,
Had been derived the name he bore—a name, And her bright dower of clustering charities,
Wherever christian altars have been raised, That, round his trunk and branches, might have clung
Hallowed to meekness and to innocence;

Enriching and adorning. Unto thee,
And if in him meekness at times gave way, Not so enriched, not so adorned, to thee
Provoked out of herself by troubles strange, Was given (say rather thou of later birth
Many and strange, that hung about his life ; Wert given to her) a Sister—'tis a word
Still, at the centre of his being, lodged

Timidly uttered, for she lives, the meek,
A soul by resignation sanctified:

The self-restraining, and the ever-kind;
And if too often, self-reproached, he felt

In whom thy reason and intelligent heart
That innocence belongs not to our kind,

Found-for all interests, hopes, and tender cares,
A power that never ceased to abide in him, All softening, humanising, hallowing powers,
Charity, ʼmid the multitude of sins

Whether withheld, or for her sake unsought-
That she can cover, left not his exposed

More than sufficient recompence!
To an unforgiving judgment from just Heaven.

Her love 0, he was good, if e'er a good Man lived !

(What weakness prompts the voice to tell it here!)

Was as the love of mothers; and when years,
From a reflecting mind and sorrowing heart Lifting the boy to man's estate, had called
Those simple lines flowed with an earnest wish, The long-protected to assume the part
Though but a doubting hope, that they might serve Of a protector, the first filial tie
Fitly to guard the precious dust of him

Was undissolved ; and, in or out of sight,
Whose virtues called them forth. That aim is Remained imperishably interwoven
missed;

With life itself. Thus, ʼmid a shifting world,
For much that truth most urgently required Did they together testify of time
Had from a faltering pen been asked in vain : And season's difference-a double tree
Yet, haply, on the printed page received,

With two collateral stems sprung from one root ;
The imperfect record, there, may stand unblamed Such were they—such thro’life they might have been
As long as verse of mine shall breathe the air In union, in partition only such ;
Of memory, or see the light of love.

Otherwise wrought the will of the Most High ;

Yet, thro' all visitations and all trials,
Thou wert a scorner of the fields, my Friend, Still they were faithful; like two vessels launched
But more in show than truth; and from the fields, From the same beach one ocean to explore
And from the mountains, to thy rural grave

With mutual help, and sailing—to their league
Transported, my soothed spirit hovers o'er True, as inexorable winds, or bars
Its green untrodden turf, and blowing flowers; Floating or fixed of polar ice, allow.
And taking up a voice shall speak (tho’ still
Awed by the theme's peculiar sanctity

But turn we rather, let my spirit turn
Which words less free presumed not even to touch) With thine, O silent and invisible Friend!
Of that fraternal love, whose heaven-lit lamp

To those dear intervals, nor rare nor brief,
From infancy, through manhood, to the last When reunited, and by choice withdrawn
Of threescore years, and to thy latest hour,

From miscellaneous converse, ye were taught
Burnt on with ever-strengthening light, enshrined That the remembrance of foregone distress,
Within thy bosom.

And the worse fear of future ill (which oft
Wonderful' hath been Doth hang around it, as a sickly child
The love established between man and man, Upon its mother) may be both alike
• Passing the love of women ;' and between Disarmed of power to unsettle present good
Man and his help-mate in fast wedlock joined So prized, and things inward and outward held
Through God, is raised a spirit and soul of love In such an even balance, that the heart
Without whose blissful influence Paradise

Acknowledges God's grace, his mercy feels,
Had been no Paradise ; and earth were now And in its depth of gratitude is still.
A waste where creatures bearing human form,
Direst of savage beasts, would roam in fear, O gift divine of quiet sequestration !
Joyless and comfortless. Our days glide on ; The hermit, exercised in prayer and praise,

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The mighty Minstrel breathes no longer,
Mid mouldering ruins low he lies;
And death upon the braes of Yarrow,
Has closed the Shepherd-poet's eyes :
Nor has the rolling year twice measured,
From sign to sign, its stedfast course,
Since every mortal power of Coleridge
Was frozen at its marvellous source ;

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The 'rapt One, of the godlike forehead,
The heaven-eyed creature sleeps in earth :
And Lamb, the frolic and the gentle,
Has vanished from his lonely hearth.
Like clouds that rake the mountain-summits,
Or waves that own no curbing hand,
How fast has brother followed brother,
From sunshine to the sunless land !

Shall Southey feed upon your precious lore,
To works that ne'er shall forfeit their renost,
Adding immortal labours of his own-
Whether he traced historic truth, with zeal
For the State's guidance, or the Church's weal
Or Fancy, disciplined by studious art,
Inform’d his pen, or wisdom of the heart,
Or judgments sanctioned in the Patriot's mind
By reverence for the rights of all mankind.
Wide were his aims, yet in no human breast
Could private feelings meet for holier rest

.
His joys, his griefs, have vanished like a cloud
From Skiddaw's top; but he to heaven was vowed
Through his industrious life, and Christian faith
Calmed in his soul the fear of change and death

Yet I, whose lids from infant slumber
Were earlier raised, remain to hear
A timid voice, that asks in whispers,
“Who next will drop and disappear ?”

* See Note.

ODE.

INTIMATIONS OF IMMORTALITY FROM RECOLLECTIONS OF EARLY CHILDHOOD.

The Child is Father of the Man ;
And I could wish my days to be
Bound each to each by natural piety.

See page 54.

IV.

THERE was a time when meadow, grove, and stream, The earth, and every common sight,

To me did seem

Apparelled in celestial light, The glory and the freshness of a dream. It is not now as it hath been of yore;

Turn whereso'er I may,

By night or day, The things which I have seen I now can see no more.

II.

The Rainbow comes and goes,
And lovely is the Rose,

The Moon doth with delight
Look round her when the heavens are bare,

Waters on a starry night

Are beautiful and fair;
The sunshine is a glorious birth;

But yet I know, where'er I go,
That there hath past away a glory from the earth.

Ye blessed Creatures, I have heard the call

Ye to each other make; I see
The heavens laugh with you in your jubilee;
My heart is at your festival,

My head hath its coronal,
The fulness of your bliss, I feel—I feel it all.

Oh evil day! if I were sullen
While Earth herself is adorning,

This sweet May-morning,
And the Children are culling

On every side,
In a thousand valleys far and wide,

Fresh flowers; while the sun shines warm, And the Babe leaps up on his Mother's arm :

I hear, I hear, with joy I hear !

But there's a Tree, of many, one,
A single Field which I have looked upon,
Both of them speak of something that is gone :

The Pansy at my feet

Doth the same tale repeat : Whither is fled the visionary gleam? Where is it now, the glory and the dream ?

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V.

Now, while the birds thus sing a joyous song,
And while the young lambs bound

As to the tabor's sound,
To me alone there came a thought of grief:
A timely utterance gave that thought relief,

And I again am strong:
The cataracts blow their trumpets from the steep ;
No more shall grief of mine the season wrong;
I hear the Echoes through the mountains throng,
The Winds come to me from the fields of sleep,

And all the earth is gay;

Land and sea
Give themselves up to jollity,

And with the heart of May
Doth every Beast keep holiday;-

Thou Child of Joy,
Shout round me, let me hear thy shouts, thou happy

Shepherd-boy!

Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting :
The Soul that rises with us, our life's Star,

Hath had elsewhere its setting,

And cometh from afar:
Not in entire forgetfulness,

And not in utter nakedness,
But trailing clouds of glory do we come

From God, who is our home : Heaven lies about us in our infancy ! Shades of the prison-house begin to close

Upon the growing Boy,
But He beholds the light, and whence it flows,

He sees it in his joy;
The Youth, who daily farther from the east

Must travel, still is Nature's Priest,

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And by the vision splendid

Is on his way attended; At length the Man perceives it die away, And fade into the light of common day.

Broods like the Day, a Master o'er a Slave,
A Presence which is not to be put by;
Thou little Child, yet glorious in the might
Of heaven-born freedom on thy being's height,
Why with such earnest pains dost thou provoke
The years to bring the inevitable yoke,
Thus blindly with thy blessedness at strife ?
Full soon thy Soul shall have her earthly freight,
And custom lie upon thee with a weight,
Heavy as frost, and deep almost as life!

VI.

Earth fills her lap with pleasures of her own; Yearnings she hath in her own natural kind, And, even with something of a Mother's mind,

And no unworthy aim,

The homely Nurse doth all she can To make her Foster-child, her Inmate Man,

Forget the glories he hath known, And that imperial palace whence he came.

IX.

VII.

Behold the Child among his new-born blisses,
A six years' Darling of a pigmy size !
See, where 'mid work of his own hand he lies,
Fretted by sallies of his mother's kisses,
With light upon him from his father's eyes !
See, at his feet, some little plan or chart,
Some fragment from his dream of human life,
Shaped by himself with newly-learned art;

A wedding or a festival,
A mourning or a funeral;

And this hath now his heart,
And unto this he frames his song :

Then will he fit his tongue
To dialogues of business, love, or strife ;

But it will not be long
Ere this be thrown aside,

And with new joy and pride
The little Actor cons another part;
Filling from time to time his . humorous stage'
With all the Persons, down to palsied Age,
That Life brings with her in her equipage ;

As if his whole vocation
Were endless imitation.

O joy! that in our embers
Is something that doth live,
That nature yet remembers

What was so fugitive!
The thought of our past years in me doth breed
Perpetual benediction : not indeed
For that which is most worthy to be blest ;
Delight and liberty, the simple creed
Of Childhood, whether busy or at rest,
With new-fledged hope still fluttering in his

breast :

Not for these I raise

The song of thanks and praise ;
But for those obstinate questionings
Of sense and outward things,
Fallings from us, vanishings ;

Blank misgivings of a Creature
Moving about in worlds not realised,
High instincts before which our mortal Nature
Did tremble like a guilty Thing surprised :

But for those first affections,

Those shadowy recollections,

Which, be they what they may, Are yet the fountain light of all our day, Are yet a master light of all our seeing ;

Uphold us, cherish, and have power to make
Our noisy years seem moments in the being
Of the eternal Silence: truths that wake,

To perish never;
Which neither listlessness, nor mad endeavour,

Nor Man nor Boy,
Nor all that is at enmity with joy,
Can utterly abolish or destroy!

Hence in a season of calm weather

Though inland far we be,
Our Souls have sight of that immortal sea

Which brought us hither,

Can in a moment travel thither,
And see the Children sport upon the shore,
And hear the mighty waters rolling evermore.

VIII.

Thou, whose exterior semblance doth belie

Thy Soul's immensity ; Thou best Philosopher, who yet dost keep Thy heritage, thou Eye among the blind, That, deaf and silent, read'st the eternal deep, Haunted for ever by the eternal mind,

Mighty Prophet! Seer blest !

On whom those truths do rest, Which we are toiling all our lives to find, In darkness lost, the darkness of the grave ; Thou, over whom thy Immortality

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Then sing, ye Birds, sing, sing a joyous song! And 0, ye Fountains, Meadows, Hills, and Groves,
And let the young Lambs bound

Forebode not any severing of our loves !
As to the tabor's sound !

Yet in my heart of hearts I feel your might;
We in thought will join your throng,

I only have relinquished one delight
Ye that pipe and ye that play,

To live beneath your more habitual sway.
Ye that through your hearts to-day I love the Brooks which down their channels fret,
Feel the gladness of the May!

Even more than when I tripped lightly as they ;
What though the radiance which was once so bright The innocent brightness of a new-born Day
Be now for ever taken from my sight,

Is lovely yet;
Though nothing can bring back the hour The Clouds that gather round the setting sun
Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower; Do take a sober colouring from an eye
We will grieve not, rather find

That hath kept watch o'er man's mortality;
Strength in what remains behind ; Another race hath been, and other palms are won.
In the primal sympathy

Thanks to the human heart by which we live,
Which having been must ever be; Thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears,
In the soothing thoughts that spring To me the meanest flower that blows can give
Out of human suffering ;

Thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears.
In the faith that looks through death,
In years that bring the philosophic mind.

1803–6.

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