Fragments from the " Christabel " Note-book

Thou issuest from a fissure in the rock
Compact into one individual stream,
A small short stream not longer than the blade
Of a child's coral, then, upon the face
Of the steep crag diffused, thou dost flow down
Wide, weak and glimmering, and so thin withal
Thy course is like the brushing of a breeze
Upon a calm smooth lake. A few bold drops
Are there, these starting regularly forth
Strike somewhere on the rocks and stones beneath
And are thy voice, for thou wert silent else.

The leaves stir not,
They all are steady as the cloudless sky;
How deep the Quiet: all is motionless,
As if the life of the vast world was hushed
Into a breathless dream.

Oh 'tis a joy divine on summer days
When not a breeze'is stirring, not a cloud,
To sit within some solitary wood,
Far in some lonely wood, and hear no sound
Which the heart does not make, or else so fit[s]
To its own temper that in external things
No longer seem internal difference
All melts away, and things that are without
Live in our minds as in their native home.

The clouds are standing still in the mid heavens;
A perfect quietness is in the air;
The ear hears not; and yet, I know not how,
More than the other senses does it hold
A manifest communion with the heart.

The sl[ender] dandelion bows his head
With graceful [motion?]; touched by the same breeze
The low geranium shivers wantonly.
Child art thou of the mountains, infant [stream?]
A Brother of the stormy breeze; these flowers
Are they not all thy neighbours? yet with thee
Do they maintain no visible fellowship,
Nor can I say that aught which they possess,
Of garb or colour is a gift of thine.

There is creation in the eye,
Nor less in all the other senses; powers
They are that colour, model, and combine
The things perceived with such an absolute
Essential energy that we may say
That those most godlike faculties of ours
At one and the same moment are the mind
And the mind's minister. In many a walk
At evening or by moonlight, or reclined
At midday upon beds of forest moss,
Have we to Nature and her impulses
Of our whole being made free gift, and when
Our trance had left us, oft have we, by aid
Of the impressions which it left behind,
Looked inward on ourselves, and learned, perhaps,
Something of what we are. Nor in those hours
Did we destroy [ ]
The original impression of delight,
But by such retrospect it was recalled
To yet a second and a second life,
While in this excitation of the [mind?]
A vivid pulse of sentiment and thought
Beat palpably within us, and all shades
Of consciousness were ours.

Long had I stood and looked into the west,
Where clouds and mountain tops and gleams of light,
Children of glory all [ ]
Made one society and seemed to be
Of the same nature; long I stood and looked,
But when my thoughts began to fail, I turned
Towards a grove, a spot which well I knew,
For oftentimes its sympathies had fallen
Like a refreshing dew upon my heart;
I stretch[ed] myself beneath the shade
And soon the stirring and inquisitive mind
Was laid asleep; the godlike senses gave
Short impulses of life that seemed to tell
Of our existence, and then passed away.

The moon is in the East, I see her not:
But to the summit of the arch of heaven
She whitens o'er the azure of the sky
With thin and milky gleams of visible light.
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