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To the small wooden isle, where, their work to


They from morning to even take whatever is given ;

And many a blithe day they have past.

In sight of the spires,

All alive with the fires

Of the sun going down to his rest,

In the broad open eye of the solitary sky,

They dance, there are three, as jocund as free, While they dance on the calm river's breast.

Man and Maidens wheel,

They themselves make the reel,

And their music 's a prey which they seize

It plays not for them,

what matter? 't is theirs;

And if they had care, it has scattered their cares, While they dance, crying, "Long as ye please."

They dance not for me,

Yet mine is their glee!

Thus pleasure is spread through the earth
In stray gifts to be claimed by whoever shall find
Thus a rich loving-kindness, redundantly kind,
Moves all nature to gladness and mirth.

The showers of the Spring

Rouse the birds, and they sing;

If the wind do but stir for his proper delight,

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Each leaf, that and this, his neighbor will kiss ; Each wave, one and t'other, speeds after his brother: They are happy, for that is their right!





A PILGRIM, when the summer day
Had closed upon his

weary way,

A lodging begged beneath a castle's roof;
But him the haughty Warder spurned;
And from the gate the Pilgrim turned,
To seek such covert as the field

Or heath-besprinkled copse might yield,
Or lofty wood, shower-proof.

He paced along; and, pensively,

Halting beneath a shady tree,

Whose moss-grown root might serve for couch or


Fixed on a Star his upward eye;

Then from the tenant of the sky

He turned, and watched, with kindred look,

A Glowworm, in a dusky nook,

Apparent at his feet.

The murmur of a neighboring stream
Induced a soft and slumbrous dream,

A pregnant dream, within whose shadowy bounds He recognized the earth-born Star,

And that which glittered from afar


And (strange to witness!) from the frame
Of the ethereal Orb there came

Intelligible sounds.

Much did it taunt the humble Light,

That now, when day was fled, and night

Hushed the dark earth, fast closing weary eyes,

A very reptile could presume

To show her taper in the gloom,

As if in rivalship with one

Who sat a ruler on his throne

Erected in the skies.

"Exalted Star!" the Worm replied,
"Abate this unbecoming pride,
Or with a less uneasy lustre shine;
Thou shrink'st as momently thy rays
Are mastered by the breathing haze;
While neither mist, nor thickest cloud
That shapes in heaven its murky shroud,
Hath power to injure mine.

"But not for this do I aspire

To match the spark of local fire,

That at my will burns on the dewy lawn,

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With thy acknowledged glories; - No!
Yet, thus upbraided, I may show

What favors do attend me here,
Till, like thyself, I disappear
Before the purple dawn."

When this in modest guise was said,
Across the welkin seemed to spread

A boding sound for aught but sleep unfit!
Hills quaked, the rivers backward ran;
That Star, so proud of late, looked wan;
And reeled with visionary stir

In the blue depth, like Lucifer

Cast headlong to the pit!

Fire raged: and, when the spangled floor

Of ancient ether was no more,

New heavens succeeded, by the dream brought


And all the happy Souls that rode

Transfigured through that fresh abode

Had heretofore, in humble trust,

Shone meekly 'mid their native dust,

The Glowworms of the earth!


This knowledge, from an Angel's voice
Proceeding, made the heart rejoice
Of him who slept upon the open
Waking at morn he murmured not;
And, till life's journey closed, the spot

Was to the Pilgrim's soul endeared,

Where by that dream he had been cheered
Beneath the shady tree.




As often as I murmur here

My half-formed melodies,

Straight from her osier mansion near
The Turtledove replies :
Though silent as a leaf before,
The captive promptly coos;
Is it to teach her own soft lore,
Or second my weak Muse?

I rather think, the gentle Dove
Is murmuring a reproof,
Displeased that I from lays of love
Have dared to keep aloof;
That I, a Bard of hill and dale,
Have carolled, fancy free,

As if nor dove nor nightingale
Had heart or voice for me.

If such thy meaning, O forbear,
Sweet Bird! to do me wrong;

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