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RARELY, rarely, comest thou,

Spirit of Delight !
Wherefore hast thou left me now

Many a day and night?
Many a weary night and day
'Tis since thou art fled away.

How shall ever one like me

Win thee back again?
With the joyous and the free

Thou wilt scoff at pain.
Spirit false ! thou hast forgot
All but those who need thee not.


As a lizard with the shade

Of a trembling leaf,
Thou with sorrow art dismayed ;

Even the sighs of grief
Reproach thee, that thou art not near,
And reproach thou wilt not hear.

Let me set my mournful ditty

To a merry measure,
Thou wilt never come for pity,

Thou wilt come for pleasure.
Pity then will cut away
Those cruel wings, and thou wilt stay.


I love all that thou lovest,

Spirit of Delight !
The fresh Earth in new leaves drest,

And the starry night;
Autumn evening, and the morn
When the golden mists are born.


I love snow, and all the forms

Of the radiant frost;
I love waves, and winds, and storms.

Every thing almost
Which is Nature's, and may be
Untainted by man's misery.


I love tranquil solitude,
And such society

As is quiet, wise and good;

Between thee and me What difference? but thou dost possess The things I seek, not love them less.


I love Love — though he has wings,

And like light can flee,
But above all other things,

Spirit, I love thee
Thou art love and life! O come,
Make once more my heart thy home.


Music, when soft voices die,
Vibrates in the memory
Odours, when sweet violets sicken,
Live within the sense they quicken.
Rose leaves, when the rose is dead,
Are heaped for the beloved's bed;
And so thy thoughts, when thou art gone,
Love itself shall slumber on.



THE flower that smiles to-day

To-morrow dies; All that we wish to stay

Tempts and then flies. What is this world's delight? Lightning that mocks the night,

Brief even as bright.


Virtue, how frail it is !

Friendship how rare ! Love, how it sells poor bliss

For proud despair ! But we, though soon they fall, Survive their joy, and all

Which ours we call.


Whilst skies are blue and bright,

Whilst flowers are gay, Whilst eyes that change ere night

Make glad the day;

Whilst yet the calm hours creep,
Dream thou — and from thy sleep

Then wake to weep.



Nor happiness, nor majesty, nor fame,
Nor peace, nor strength, nor skill in arms or arts,
Shepherd those herds whom tyranny makes tame;
Verse echoes not one beating of their hearts,
History is but the shadow of their shame,
Art veils her glass, or from the pageant starts
As to oblivion their blind millions fleet,
Staining that Heaven with obscene imagery
Of their own likeness. What are numbers knit
By force or custom ? Man who man would be,
Must rule the empire of himself; in it
Must be supreme, establishing his throne
On vanquished will, quelling the anarchy
Of hopes and fears, being himself alone.

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