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If to a rock from rains he fly,
Or, some bright day of April sky,
Imprisoned by hot sunshine lie

Near the green holly,
And wearily at length should fare ;
He needs but look about, and there
Thou art !-a friend at hand, to scare

His melancholy:

A hundred times, by rock or bower,
Ere thus I have lain couched an hour,
Have I derived from thy sweet power

Some apprehension ;
Some steady love; some brief delight ;
Some memory that had taken flight;
Some chime of fancy wrong or right;

Or stray invention.

If stately passions in me burn,
And one chance look to Thee should turn,
I drink out of an humbler urn

A lowlier pleasure ;
The homely sympathy that heeds
The common life, our nature breeds ;
A wisdom fitted to the needs'

Of hearts at leisure.

Fresh-smitten by the morning ray,
When thou art up, alert and gay,
Then, cheerful Flower ! my spirits play

With kindred gladness :
And when, at dusk, by dews opprest
Thou sink 'st, the image of thy rest
Hath often eased my pensive breast

Of careful sadness.

And all day long I number yet,
All seasons through, another debt,
Which I, wherever thou art met,

To thee am owing;
An instinct call it, a blind sense ;
A happy, genial influence,
Coming one knows not how, nor whence,

Nor whither going.

Child of the Year! that round dost run Thy pleasant course, -when day's begun As ready to salute the sun

As lark or leveret, Thy long-lost praise * thou shalt regain ; Nor be less dear to future men Than in old time ;-thou not in vain

Art Nature's favourite.


* See, in Chaucer and the elder Poets, the honours formerly paid to this flower.



With little here to do or see
Of things that in the great world be,
Yet once again I talk to thee,

For thou art worthy,
Thou unassuming Common-place
Of Nature, with that homely face,
And yet with something of a grace,

Which Love makes for thee!

Oft on the dappled turf at ease
I sit, and play with similies,
Loose types of things through all degrees,

Thoughts of thy raising :
And many a fond and idle name
I give to thee, for praise or blame,
As is the humour of the game,

While I am gazing.

A nun demure of lowly port;
Or sprightly maiden, of Love's court,
In thy simplicity the sport

Of all temptations ;

queen in crown of rubies drest ; A starveling in a scanty vest; Are all, as seems to suit thee best,

Thy appellations.

A little cyclops, with one eye
Staring to threaten and defy,
That thought comes next—and instantly
The freak is

The shape will vanish—and behold
A silver shield with boss of gold,
That spreads itself, some faery bold

In fight to cover !

I see thee glittering from afar-
And then thou art a pretty star ;
Not quite so fair as many are

In heaven above thee !
Yet like a star, with glittering crest,
Self-poised in air thou seem'st to rest ;-
May peace come never to his nest,

Who shall reprove thee !

Bright Flower! for by that name at last,
When all my reveries are past,
I call thee, and to that cleave fast,

Sweet silent creature !
That breath’st with me in sun and air,
Do thou, as thou art wont, repair
My heart with gladness, and a share

Of thy meek nature !




BENEATH these fruit-tree boughs that shed
Their snow-white blossoms on my head,
With brightest sunshine round me spread

Of spring's unclouded weather,
In this sequestered nook how sweet
To sit upon my orchard-seat !
And birds and flowers once more to greet,

My last year's friends together.

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