Amberley Wildbrooks

By this bright river bordering the mead
Beflagged by reed and rush and willow tree,
Where dragon-flies across the water lead
The wingèd rout of noonday revelry,
I stand ecstatic, silent, with a brain
Bemused, as stand bemused the tawny kine,
And hear high summer sink and lift again
And feel its spirit stealing into mine.

Here when in winter-time the wild brooks brimmed
And with their salty flood annulled the earth,
Till with a lake the dreaming Down was rimmed,
And wandering water-beauty came to birth
With floating birds, and the green icy sky,
And far the sun so pale and pitying shone;
Here on this bank, no less bemused, stood I
Until the winter's mood and mine were one.

Man is a dreamer, waking for a day,
Until the wild brooks of oblivion brim;
'Tis well his waking self should slip away,
And momentary dreaming comfort him;
For so he learns, before the long sleep comes,
That in himself revolves the starry scheme,
In him the winter's mute, the summer hums,
Just as it will be in the endless dream.
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