Early Visions

Farewell , bright visions of my lonely hours,
Gay dreams of buoyant hope, a long farewell!
No room for me in Hymen's holy bowers:
I have no part in Love's delightful spell.

Still must I hold alone my weary course,
No tender arm upon mine arm to lean;
No kind and loving eye, whose gentle force
From selfish grief my wayward heart might wean.

Deep in the windings of a bowery dale,
(A spot where angels might delight to roam,)
Haunt of each sun-bright hue, each fragrant gale,
Presumptuous fancy built my pastoral home.

And many a flower adorn'd the low-roof'd hall,
And round the half-hidden casement cluster'd fair,
And hard beside the ivy-mantled wall,
In holiest beauty rose the House of Prayer.

The sound of rivulets was not far away,
Of soft rains rustling on the dewy eaves;
Or of that mimic shower when west winds play
At random in the trembling poplar-leaves.

Birds, lambs, and children made our vocal quire,
With here and there a village roundelay; —
Such tones as careless flung from Nature's lyre,
Best help two faithful hearts to love and pray.

No louder sound might our sweet rest annoy,
Save that companion of our twilight hours,
Sobering with thoughts of heaven our earthly joy,
The church-bell's voice went round our quiet bowers.

Nor seem'd the holy invitation vain; —
Duly at morn and eve (so spake my dream)
From rest, or labour done, a rustic train,
Pursued the churchway path beside the stream.
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