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Think how ye prospered, thou and thine,

Amid the unviolated grove
Housed near the growing Primrose-tuft

In foresight, or in love.

1833.

XXVIII.

LOVE LIES BLEEDING.

[It has been said that the English, though their country has

produced so many great poets, is now the most unpoetical nation in Europe. It is probably true ; for they have more temptation to become so than any other European people. Trade, commerce, and manufactures, physical science, and mechanic arts, out of which so much wealth has arisen, have made our countrymen infinitely less sensible to movements of imagination and fancy than were our forefathers in their simple state of society. How touching and beautiful were, in most instances, the names they gave to our indigenous flowers, or any other they were familiarly acquainted with !- Every month for many years have we been importing plants and flowers from all quarters of the globe, many of which are spread through our gardens, and some perhaps likely to be met with on the few Commons which we have left. Will their botanical names ever be displaced by plain English appellations, which will bring them home to our hearts by connexion with our joys and sorrows ? It can never be, unless society treads back her steps towards those simplicities which have been banished by the undue influence of towns spreading and spreading in every direction, so that city-life with every generation takes more and more the lead of rural. Among the ancients, villages were reckoned the seats of barbarism. Refinement, for the most part false, increases the desire to accumulate wealth ; and while theories of political economy are boastfully pleading for the practice, inhumanity pervades all our dealings in buying and selling. This selfishness wars against disinterested imagination in all directions, and, evils coming round in a circle, barbarism spreads in every quarter of our island. Oh, for the reign of justice, and then the humblest man among us would have more power and dignity

in and about him than the highest have now !] You call it, “Love lies bleeding,"—80 you may, Though the red Flower, not prostrate, only droops, As we have seen it here from day to day, From month to month, life passing not away: A flower how rich in sadness ! Even thus stoops, (Sentient by Grecian sculpture's marvellous power) Thus leans, with hanging brow and body bent Earthward in uncomplaining languishment, The dying Gladiator. So, sad Flower! ('Tis Fancy guides me willing to be led, Though by a slender thread,) So drooped Adonis bathed in sanguine dew Of his death-wound, when he from innocent air The gentlest breath of resignation drew; While Venus in a passion of despair Rent, weeping over him, her golden hair Spangled with drops of that celestial shower. She suffered, as Immortals sometimes do; But

pangs more lasting far, that Lover knew Who first, weighed down by scorn, in some lone bower Did press this semblance of unpitied smart Into the service of his constant heart, His own dejection, downcast Flower! could share With thine, and gave the mournful name which thou

wilt ever bear.

XXIX.

COMPANION TO THE FOREGOING.

NEVER enlivened with the liveliest ray
That fosters growth or checks or cheers decay,
Nor by the heaviest rain-drops more deprest,
This Flower, that first appeared as summer's guest,
Preserves her beauty mid autumnal leaves
And to her mournful habits fondly cleaves.
When files of stateliest plants have ceased to bloom,
One after one submitting to their doom,
When her coevals: each and all are fled,
What keeps her thus reclined upon her lonesome bed?

The old mythologists, more impress’d than we
Of this late day by character in tree
Or herb, that claimed peculiar sympathy,
Or by the silent lapse of fountain clear,
Or with the language of the viewless air
By bird or beast made vocal, sought a cause
To solve the mystery, not in Nature's laws
But in Man's fortunes. Hence a thousand tales
Sung to the plaintive lyre in Grecian vales.
Nor doubt that something of their spirit swayed
The fancy-stricken Youth or heart-sick Maid,
Who, while each stood companionless and eyed
This undeparting Flower in crimson dyed,
Thought of a wound which death is slow to cure,
A fate that has endured and will endure,
And; patience coveting yet passion feeding,
Called the dejected Lingerer, Love lies bleeding.

XXX.

RURAL ILLUSIONS.

[WRITTEN at Rydal Mount. Observed a hundred times in the

grounds there.]

SYLPH was it ? or a Bird more bright

Than those of fabulous stock ?
A second darted by ;-and lo!

Another of the flock,
Through sunshine flitting from the bough

To nestle in the rock.
Transient deception! a gay freak

Of April's mimicries !
Those brilliant strangers, hailed with joy

Among the budding trees,
Proved last year's leaves, pushed from the spray

To frolic on the breeze.

Maternal Flora ! show thy face,

And let thy hand be seen,
Thy hand here sprinkling tiny flowers,
That, as they touch the

green, Take root (so seems it) and look up

In honour of their Queen.
Yet, sooth, those little starry specks,

That not in vain aspired
To be confounded with live growths,

Most dainty, most admired,
Were only blossoms dropt from twigs

Of their own offspring tired.

Not such the World's illusive shows;

Her wingless flutterings,
Her blossoms which, though shed, outbrave

The floweret as it springs,
For the undeceived, smile as they may,

Are melancholy things :
But gentle Nature plays her part

With ever-varying wiles,
And transient feignings with plain truth

So well she reconciles,
That those fond Idlers most are pleased
Whom oftenest she beguiles.

1832.

XXXI.

THE KITTEN AND FALLING LEAVES.

[Seen at Town-end, Grasmere. The elder-bush has long since dis

appeared : it hung over the wall near the Cottage ; and the Kitten continued to leap up, catching the leaves as here described. The infant was Dora.]

That way look, my Infant, lo!
What a pretty baby-show!
See the Kitten on the wall,
Sporting with the leaves that fall,
Withered leaves-one-two-and three-
From the lofty elder-tree !
Through the calm and frosty air
Of this morning bright and fair,
Eddying round and round they sink
Softly, slowly: one might think,

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