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Hight Castalie: and (sureties of thy faith)

Of tides obedient to external force, That Pity and Simplicity stood by,

And currents self-determined, as might seem, And promised for thee, that thou shouldst renounce Or by some inner Power; of moments awful, The world's low cares and lying vanities,

Now in thy inner life, and now abroad, Stedfast and rooted in the heavenly Muse,

When Power stream'd from thee, and thy soul And wash'd and sanctified to Poesy:

received Yes—thou wert plunged, but with forgetful hand The light reflected, as a light bestow'dHeld, as by Thetis erst her warrior Son :

Of Fancies fair, and milder hours of youth, And with those recreant un baptized heels

Hy blean murmurs of poetic thought Thou ’rt flying from thy bounden ministeries- Industrious in its joy, in Vales and Glens So sore it seems and burthensome a task

Native or outland, Lakes and famous Hills! To weave unwithering flowers ! But take thou heed: Or on the lonely High-road, when the Stars For thou art vulnerable, wild-eyed Boy,

Were rising; or by secret Mountain-streams, And I have arrows* mystically dipp'd,

The Guides and the Companions of thy way! Such as may stop thy speed. Is thy Burns dead? And shall he die unwept, and sink to Earth

Of more than Fancy, of the Social Sense • Without the meed of one melodious tear?”

Distending wide, and Man beloved as Man, Thy Burns, and Nature's own beloved Bard,

Where France in all her towns lay vibrating Who to the “ Illustrioust of his native land

Like some becalmed bark beneath the burst • So properly did look for patronage."

Of Heaven's immediate thunder, when no cloud Ghost of Mæcenas ! hide thy blushing face! Is visible, or shadow on the Main. They snatch'd him from the Sickle and the Plow For thou wert there, thine own brows garlanded, To gauge Ale-Firkins.

Amid the tremor of a realm aglow,

Amid a mighty nation jubilant,
Oh! for shame return!

When from the general heart of human-kind
On a bleak rock, midway the Aonian Mount,

Hope sprang forth like a full-born Deity! There stands a lone and melancholy tree,

Of that dear Hope aflicted and struck down Whose aged branches in the midnight blast

So summond homeward, thenceforth calm and sure Make solemn music: pluck its darkest bough,

From the dread watch-tower of man's absolute Self, Ere yet the unwholesome night-dew be exhaled,

With light unwaning on her eyes, to look And weeping wreath it round thy Poet's tomb.

Far on-herself a glory to behold, Then in the outskirts, where pollutions grow,

The Angel of the vision! Then (last strain) Pick the rank henbane and the dusky flowers

Of Duty, chosen laws controlling choice, Of night-shade, or its red and tempting fruit. Action and Joy !- An orphic song indeed, These with stopp'd nostril and glove-guarded hand

A song divine of high and passionate thoughts, Knit in nice intertexture, so to twine

To their own music chanted!
The illustrious brow of Scotch Nobility.
1796.

O great Baru'
Ere yet that last strain dying awed the air,
With stedfast eye I view'd thee in the choir

Of ever-enduring men. The truly Great
TO A GENTLEMAN.

Have all one age, and from one visible space

Shed influence! They, both in power and act, COMPOSED ON THE NIGHT AFTER HIS RECITATION Are permanent, and Time is not with thein, OF A POEM ON THE GROWTH OF AN INDIVIDUAL Save as it worketh for them, they in it.

Nor less a sacred roil, than those of old,

And to be placed, as they, with gradual fame FRIEND of the Wise! and Teacher of the Good ! Among the archives of mankind, thy work Into my heart have I received that lay

Makes audible a linked lay of Truth, More than historic, that prophetic lay,

Of Truth profound a sweet continuous lay, Wherein (high theme by thee first sung aright) Not learnt, but native, her own natural notes' Of the foundations and the building up

Ah! as I listend with a heart forlorn, Of a Human Spirit thou hast dared to tell

The pulses of my being beat anew : What may be fold, lo ihe understanding mind And even as life returns upon the drown'd, Revealable ; and what within the mind,

Life's joy rekindling roused a throng of painsBy vital breathings secret as the soul

Keen Panys of Love, awakening as a babe Of vernal growth, oft quickens in the heart Turbulent, with an outcry in the heart ; Thoughts all too deep for words

And Fears self-willid, that shunn'd the eye of Hopm

And Hope that scarce would know itself from Fear

Theme hard as high! Sense of past Youth, and Manhood come in vain of smiles spontaneous, and mysterious fears And Genius given, and knowledge won in vain The first-born they of Reason and twin-birth), And all which I had cull'd in wood-walks wild

And all which patient toil had reard, and all, regular; and even when at a considerable distance or high Commune with thee had open'd out-but flowers above us, we plainly hear the quill feathers ; their shafts and Strew'd on my corse, and borne upon my bier, Webs upon one another creak as the joints or working of a In the same coffin, for the self-same grave! resul in a tempestuous sea."

• Vide Pind. Olymp. iii. I. 156.
+ Verbatim from Buros's dedication of his Poems to the No-

That way no more! and ill beseems it me, milits and Gentry of the Caledonian Hunt.

Who came a welcomer in herald's guise.

MIXD

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Singing of Glory, and Futurity,

· Most musical, most melancholy” bird ! To wander back on such unhealthful road, A melancholy bird ? Oh! idle ihought! Plucking the poisons of self-harm! And ill In nature there is nothing melancholy. Such intertwine beseems triumphal wreaths But some night-wandering man, whose heart was Strew'd before thy advancing !

pierced

With the remembrance of a grievous wrong,

Nor do thou, Or slow distemper, or neglected love Sage Bard ! impair the memory of that hour (And so, poor Wretch! filled all things with himself Of my communion with thy nobler mind

And made all gentle sounds tell back the tale
By Pity or Grief, already felt too long !

Of his own sorrow), he and such as he,
Nor let my words import more blame than needs. First named these notes a melancholy strain.
The tumult rose and ceased : for Peace is nigh And many a poet echoes the conceit;
Where Wisdom's voice has found a listening heart. Poet who hath been building up the rhyme
Amid the howl of more than wintry storms,

When he had better far have stretch'd his limbs
The Halcyon hears the voice of vernal hours Beside a brook in mossy forest-dell,
Already on the wing.

By Sun or Moon-light, to the influxes

Of shapes and sounds and shifting elements
Eve following eve,

Surrendering his whole spirit, of his song
Dear tranquil time, when the sweet sense of Home And of his frame forgetful! so his fame
Is sweetest! moments for their own sake hail'd Should share in Nature's immortality,
And more desired, more precious for thy song, A venerable thing ! 'and so his song
In silenco listening, like a devout child,

Should make all Nature lovelier, and itself
My soul lay passive, by the various strain Be loved like Nature! But 't will not be so;
Driven as in surges now beneath the stars,

And youths and maidens most poetical, With momentary Stars of my own birth,

Who lose the deepening twilights of the spring Fair constellated Foam,* still darting off

In ball-rooms and hot theatres, they still, Into the darkness; now a tranquil sea,

Full of meek sympathy, must heave their sighs Outspread and bright, yet swelling to the Moon. O'er Philomela's pity-pleading strains.

And when-O Friend ! my comforter and guide : My friend, and thou, our Sister! we have learnt Strong in thyself, and powerful to give strength

A different lore: we may not thus profane Thy long sustained song finally closed,

Nature's sweet voices, always full of love And thy deep voice had ceased—yet thou thyself And joyance ! "T is the merry Nightingale Wert still before my eyes, and round us both

That crowds, and hurries, and precipitates That happy vision of beloved faces

With fast thick warble his delicious notes, Scarce conscious, and yet conscious of its close

As he were fearful that an April night I sate, my being blended in one thought

Would be too short for him to utter forth (Thought was it? or Aspiration ? or Resolve ?) His love-chant, and disburthen his full soul Absorbid, yet hanging still upon the sound

Of all its music!
And when I rose, I found myself in prayer.

And I know a grove
Of large extent, hard by a castle huge,
Which the great lord inhabits not; and so
This grove is wild with tangling underwood,

And the trim walks are broken up, and grass,
THE NIGHTINGALE :

Thin grass and king-cups grow within the paths

But never elsewhere in one place I knew
A CONVERSATION POEM ;

So many Nightingales ; and far and near,
WRITTEN IN APRIL, 1798.

In wood and thicket, over the wide grove,

They answer and provoke each other's song, No cloud, no relic of the sunken day

With skirmish and capricious passagings, Distinguishes the West, 20 long thin slip

And murmurs musical and swift jug jug, Of sullen light, no obscure trembling hues. And one low piping sound more sweet than allCome, we will rest on this old moesy bridge ! Stirring the air with such a harmony, You see the glimmer of the stream beneath, That should you close your eyes, you might almoss But hear no murmuring : it flows silently, Forget it was not day! On moonlight bushes, O'er its soft bed of verdure. All is still,

Whose dewy leaflets are but half disclosed, A balmy night! and though the stars be dim, You may perchance behold them on the twigs, Yet let us think upon the vernal showers Their bright, bright eyes, their eyes both bright Taat gladden the green earth, and we shall find

and full, A pleasure in the dimness of the stars.

Glistening, while many a glow-worm in the shade And hark! the Nightingale begins its song, Lights up her love-torch.

" A beautiful white cloud of foam at momentary intervals † This passage in Milton possesses an excellence far superio coursed by the side of the vessel with a roar, and little stars to that of mere description. It is spoken in the character of the of flame danced and sparkled and went out in it: and every melancholy man, and has therefore a dramatic propriety. The now and then light detachments of this white cloud-like foam author makes this remark, to rescue bimself from the charge darted off from the vessel's side, each with its own small con- of having alluded with levity to a line in Milton: a charge than stellation, over the sea, and scoured out of sight like a Tartar which none could be more painful to him, except perhaps that troop over a wilderness."— The Friend, p. 220.

of having ridiculed his Bible.

A most gentle Maid, By its own moods interprets, everywhere Who dwelleth in her hospitable home

Echo or mirror seeking of itself, Hard by the castle, and at latest eve

And makes a toy of Thought. (Even like a lady yow'd and dedicate To something more than Nature in the grove)

But O! how oft, Glides through the pathways ; she knows all their How oft, at school, with most believing mind noies,

Presageful, have I gazed upon the bars, That gentle Maid! and oft a moment's space, To watch that fluttering stranger! and as oft What time the Moon was lost behind a cloud, With unclosed lids, already had I dreamt Haih heard a pause of silence; till the Moon Of my sweet birth-place, and the old church-toner Emerging, hath awaken'd earth and sky

Whose bells, the poor man's only music, rang With one sensation, and these wakeful Birds From morn to evening, all the hot Fair-day, Have all burst forth in choral minstrelsy,

So sweetly, that they stirr'd and haunted me As if some sudden gale had swept at once With a wild pleasure, falling on mine ear A hundred airy harps ! And she haih watch'd Most like articulate sounds of things to come! Many a Nightingale perch'd giddily

So gazed I, till the soothing things, I dreamt,
On blossomy twig still swinging from the breeze, Lull’d me to sleep, and sleep prolong'd my dreams :
And to that motion tune his wanton song

And so I brooded all the following morn,
Like tipsy joy that reels with tossing head. Awed by the stern preceptor's face, mine eye

Fix'd with mock study on my swimming book :
Farewell, O Warbler! till to-morrow eve, Save if the door half-open'd, and I snatch'd
And you, my friends ! farewell, a short farewell! A hasty glance, and still my heart leap'd up,
We have been loitering long and pleasantly, For still I hoped to see the stranger's face,
And now for our dear homes.-- That strain again? Townsman, or aunt, or sister more beloved,
Full fain it would delay me! My dear babe, My play-mate when we boih were clothed alike!
Who, capable of no articulate sound,
Mars all things with his imitative lisp,

Dear Babe, that sleepest cradled by my side, How he would place his hand beside his ear, Whose gentle breathings, heard in this deep calm, His liule hand, the small forefinger up,

Fill up the interspersed vacancies
And bid us listen! And I deem it wise

And momentary pauses of the thought!
'To make him Nature's Play-mate. He knows well My babe so beautiful! it thrills my heart
The evening-star; and once, when he awoke With tender gladness, thus to look at thee,
In most distressful mood (some inward pain

And think that thou shalt learn far other lore,
Had made up that strange thing, an infant's dream), And in far other scenes! For I was rear'd
I hurried with him to our orchard-plot,

In the great city, pent ’mid cloisters dim,
And he beheld the Moon, and, hush'd at once, And saw nought lovely but the sky and stars.
Sospends his sobs, and laughs mosi silently, But thou, my babe! shalt wander like a breeze
While his fair eyes, that swam with undropp'd tears By lakes and sandy shores, beneath the crags
Did gliter in the yellow moon-beam! Well- of ancient mountain, and beneath the clouds,
It is a father's tale : But if that Heaven Which image in their bulk both lakes and shores
Should give me life, his childhood shall grow up And mountain crags : so shalt thou see and hear
Familiar with these songs, that with the night The lovely shapes and sounds intelligible
He may associate joy | Once more, farewell, Of that eternal language, which thy God
Sweet Nightingale! Once more, my friends! farewell. Utters, who from eternity doth teach

Himself in all, and all things in himself.
Great universal Teacher! he shall mould

Thy spirit, and by giving make it ask.
* FROST AT MIDNIGHT.

Therefore all seasons shall be sweet to thee,

Whether the summer clothe the general earth Che Frost performs its secret ministry, ('nhelp'd by any wind. The owlet's cry

With greenness, or the redbreast sit and sing

Betwixt the tufts of snow on the bare branch Came loud--and hark, again! loud as before.

Of mossy apple-tree, while the nigh thatch The inmates of my cottage, all at rest,

Smokes in the sun-thaw; whether the eave-drops Have left me to that solitude, which suits

fall Abstruser musings: save that at my side My cradled infant slumbers peacefully.

Ileard only in the trances of the blast,

Or if the secret ministry of frost
Tia calm indeed! so calm, that it disturbs

Shall hang them up in silent icicles,
And veres meditation with its strange
And extreme silentness. Sea, hill, and wood,

Quietly shining to the quiet Moon.
This populous village! Sea, and hill, and wood,
With all the numberless goings on of life,
Inaudible as dreams! the thin blue flame
Lies on my low burnt fire, and quivers not;

TO A FRIEND.
Only that film, which flutter'd on the grate,
Sull Autiers there, the sole unquiet thing.

TOGETHER WITH AN UNFINISHED POEM
Methinks, its motion in this hush of nature
Gives it dim sympathies with me who live, Thus far my scanty brain hath built the rhyme
Making it a companionable form,

Elaborate and swelling: yet the heart Whose puny flaps and freaks the idling Spirit Not owns it. From thy spirit-breathing powers

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I ask not now, my friend! the aiding verse,
Tedious to thee, and from my anxious thought
Of dissonant mood. In fancy (well I know)
From business wand'ring far and local cares,
Thou creepest round a dear-loved Sister's bed
With noiseless step, and watchest the faint look,
Soothing each pang with fond solicitude,
And tenderest tones medicinal of love.
I too a Sister had, an only Sister-
She loved me dearly, and I doled on her!
To her I pour’d forth all my puny sorrows
(As a sick patient in his nurse's arms),
And of the heart those hidden maladies
That shrink ashamed from even Friendship's eye.
Oh! I have woke at midnight, and have wept
Because she WAS NOT !—Cheerily, dear Charles !
Thou thy best friend shalt cherish many a year:
Such warm presages feel I of high Hope.
For not uninterested the dear maid
I've view'd- her soul affectionate yet wise,
Her polish'd wit as mild as lambent glories,
That play around a sainted infant's head.
He knows (the Spirit that in secret sees,
Of whose omniscient and all-spreading Love
Aught to implore* were impotence of mind)
That my mute thoughts are sad before his throne,
Prepared, when he his healing ray vouchsafes,
To pour forth thanksgiving with lifted heart,
And praise Him Gracious with a Brother's joy!

December, 1794.

Embow'rs me from noon's sultry influence !
For, like that nameless riv'let stealing by,
Your modest verse, to musing Quiet dear,
Is rich with tints heaven-borrow'd : the charm'd eye
Shall gaze undazzled there, and love the soften'd sky,
Circling the base of the Poetic mount
A stream there is, which rolls in lazy flow
Its coal-black waters from Oblivion's fount :
The vapor-poison'd birds, that fly too low,
Fall with dead swoop, and to the bottom go.
Escaped that heavy stream on pinion feet,
Beneath the Mountain's lofty-frowning brow,
Ere aught of perilous ascent you meet,
A mead of mildest charm delays th' unlab'ring feet
Not there the cloud-climb'd rock, sublime and fast,
That like some giant-king, o'erglooms the hill;
Nor there the pine-grove to the midnight blast
Makes solemn music! But th' unceasing rill
To the soft wren or lark's descending trill
Murmurs sweet under-song 'mid jasmin bowers.
In this same pleasant meadow, at your will,
I ween, you wander'd—there collecting flow'r

Of sober tint, and herbs of med'cinable powers!
There for the monarch-murder'd Soldier's tomb
You wove th' unfinish'd wreath of saddest hues; *
And to that holier chaplett added bloom,
Besprinkling it with Jordan's cleansing dews.
But lo! your Hendersont awakes the Muse-
His spirit beckon'd from the mountain's height!
You left the plain and spar'd 'mid richer views'
So Nature mourn'd, when sank the first day's light,
With stars, unseen before, spangling her robe of

night!
Still soar, my friend, those richer views among,
Strong, rapid, fervent flashing Fancy's beam!

Virtue and Truth shall love your gentler song'; But Poesy demands th' impassion'd theme : Waked by Heaven's silent dews at eve's mild gleam, What balmy sweets Pomona breathes around! But if the vext air rush a stormy stream, Or Autumn's shrill gust moan in plaintive sound, With fruits and flowers she loads the tempest

honor'd ground.

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THE HOUR WHEN WE SHALL MEET AGAIN.

COMPOSED DURING ILLNESS AND IN ABSENCE.

DIM hour! that sleep'st on pillowing clouds" afar,
O rise and yoke the turtles to thy car!
Bend o'er the traces, blame each lingering dove,
And give me to the bosom of my love!
My gentle love, caressing and carest,
With heaving heart shall cradle me to rest ;
Shed the warm tear-drop from her smiling eyes,
Lull with fond woe, and med'cine me with sighs :
While finely-flushing float her kisses meek,
Like melted rubies, o'er my pallid cheek.
Chillid by the night, the drooping rose of May
Mourns the long absence of the lovely day;
Young Day, returning at her promised hour,
Weeps o'er the sorrows of her fav'rite flower ;
Weeps the soft dew, the balmy gale she sighs,
And darts a trembling lustre from her eyes.
New life and joy th' expanding flow’ret feels :
His pitying Mistress mourns, and mourning heals !

IV. ODES AND MISCELLANEOUS POEMS

THE THREE GRAVES. A FRAGMENT OF A SEXTON'S TALE.

[The Author has published the following humble fragment LINES TO JOSEPH COTTLE.

encouraged by the decisive recommendation of more than one

of our most celebrated living Poets. The language was inMy honor'd friend! whose verse concise, yet clear, tended to be dramatic; that is, suited to the narrator: and the Tunes to smooth melody unconquer'd sense,

metre corresponds to the homeliness of the diction. It is there

fore presented as the fragment, not of a Poem, but of a com May your fame fadeless live, as “never-sere"

mon Ballad-tale. Whether this is sufficient to justify the adop The ivy wreathes yon oak, whose broad defence tion of such a style, in any metrical composition not profesi

edly ludicrous, the Author is himself in some doubt. At all * I utterly recant the sentiment contained in the lines

events, it is not presented as Poetry, and it is in no way cob

nected with the Author's judgment concerning Poetic diction. Of whose omniscient and all-spreading love

Its merits, if any, are exclusively Psychological. The story Aught to implore were impotence of mind, it being written in Scripture, “ Ask, and it shall be given you," and my human reason being moreover convinced of the pro

*War, a Fragment. † John the Baptist, a Poer. priety of offering petitions as well as thanksgivings to the Deity. Monody on John Henderson.

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which must be supposed to have been narrated in the first and second parts, is as follows,

Edward, a young farmer, meets, at the house of Ellen, her bosom friend, Mary, and commences an acquaintance, which ends in a mutual attachment. With her consent, and by the advice of their common friend Ellen, he announces his hopes and intentions to Mary's Mother, a widow-woman bordering on ber fortieth year, and from constant health, the possession of a competent property, and from having had no other children bat Mary and another daughter (the Father died in their infaf*), retaining, for the greater part, her personal attractions and comeliness of appearance; but a woman of low education and violent temper. The answer which she at once returned to Edward's application was remarkablem"Well, Edward ! you are a handsome young fellow, and you shall have my Daughter." From this time all their wooing passed under the Mother's eye; and, in fine, she became herself enamoured of her future Son-in-law, and practised every art, both of endearment and of calumpy, to transfer his affections from her daughter to herself. (The outlines of the Tale are positive facts, and of no very distant date, though the author has purposely altered the Dames and the scene of action, as well as invented the characters of the parties and the detail of the incidents.) Edward, howeret, though perplexed by her strange detraction from her daughter's good qualities, yet in the innocence of his own heart still mistaking her increasing fondness for motherly affection she, at length overcome by her miserable passion, after much abuse of Mary's temper and moral tendencies, exclaimed with violent ernotion—"Edward! indeed, indeed, she is not fit for you-she has not a heart to love you as you deserve. It is I that love you! Marry me, Edward! and I will this very day settle all my property on you."- The Lover's eyes were now opened, and thus taken by surprise, whether from the effect of the horror which he felt, acting as it were hysterically on his dervous system, or that at the first moment he lost the sense of the proposal in the feeling of its strangeness and absurdity, he floog her from him and burst into a fit of laughter. Irritated by this almost to frenzy, the woman fell on her knees, and in a Joud voice that approached to a scream, she prayed for a Curse both on him and on her own Child. Mary happened to be in the room directly above them, beard Edward's.laugh and her Mother's blasphemous prayer, and fainted away. He, hearing the fall, rao up stairs, and taking her in his arms, carried her off to Ellen's home; and after some fruitless attempts on her part toward a reconciliation with her Mother, she was married to him.-And here the third part of the Tale begins.

I was not led to choose this story from any partiality to tragie, much less to monstrous events (though at the time that I composed the verses, somewhat more than twelve years ago, I was less averse to such subjects than at present), but from finding in it a striking proof of the possible effect on the imagination, from an idea violently and suddenly impressed on it. I had been reading Bryan Edwards's account of the effect of the Osy Witchcraft on the Negroes in the West Indies, and Heame's deeply interesting Anecdotes of similar workings on the imagination of the Copper Indians (those of my readers who bave it in their power will be well repaid for the trouble of referring to those works for the passages alluded to), and I conceived the design of showing that instances of this kind are not Deculiar to savage or barbarous tribes, and of illustrating the mode in which the mind is affected in these cases, and the progress and symptoms of the morbid action on the fancy from the teginning.

(The Tale is supposed to be narratoil by an old Sexton, in a country church-yard, to a Traveller whose curiosity had been awakened by the appearance of three graves, close by each other, to two only of which there were grave-stones. On the first of these were the name, and dates, as usual: on the second, bo name, but only a date, and the words, The Mercy of God is infinie.

And o'er the church-path they return'd

I saw poor Mary's back, Just as she stepp'd beneath the boughs

Into the mossy track.

Her feet upon the mossy track

The married maiden set: That moment-I have heard her say

She wish'd she could forget.

The shade o'erflush'd her limbs with heat

Then came a chill like death: And when the merry bells rang out,

They seem'd to stop her breath.

Beneath the foulest Mother's curse

No child could ever thrive: A Mother is a Mother still,

The holiest thing alive.

So five month's passid : the Mother still

Would never heal the strife; But Edward was a loving man,

And Mary a fond wife.

"My sister may not visit us,

My mother says her nay: O Edward ! you are all to me, I wish for your sake I could be

More lifesome and more gay.

“I'm dull and sad ! indeed, indeed

I know I have no reason! Perhaps I am not well in health,

And 't is a gloomy season." 'Twas a drizzly time-no ice, no snow!

And on the few fine days She stirr'd not out, lest she might meet

Her Mother in her ways. But Ellen, spite of miry ways

And weather dark and dreary, Trudged every day to Edward's house, And made them all more cheery.

55

PART IL

THE grapes upon the vicar's wall

Were ripe as ripe could be ; And yellow leaves in sun and wind

Were falling from the tree.

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