To the Old Gods

O YE, who rode the gales of Sicily,
Sandalled with flame,
Spread on the pirate winds; o ye who broke
No wind-flower as ye came--
Though Pelion shivered when the thunder spoke
The gods' decree!--

Into the twilight of the ancient days
Have not ye flown!--
Ye, whom the happy Greeks inspired hand
Struck from the frenzied stone:
That, ye withdrawn, your images should stand
To take their praise.

Smeared into clay, and frozen into stone!
Ye, that do now


To the Obelisk

DURING THE GREAT FROST, 1881.


Thou sign-post of the Desert! Obelisk,
Once fronting in thy monumental pride
Egypt's fierce sun, that blazing far and wide,
Sheared her of tree and herb, till like a disk
Her waste stretched shadowless, and fraught with risk
To those who with their beasts of burden hied
Across the seas of sand until they spied
Thy pillar, and their flagging hearts grew brisk:

Now reared beside out Thames so wintry grey,
Where blocks of ice drift with the drifting stream,


To The God of Pain

UNWILLING priestess in thy cruel fane,
Long hast thou held me, pitiless god of Pain,
Bound to thy worship by reluctant vows,
My tired breast girt with suffering, and my brows
Anointed with perpetual weariness.
Long have I borne thy service, through the stress
Of rigorous years, sad days and slumberless nights,
Performing thine inexorable rites.


For thy dark altars, balm nor milk nor rice,
But mine own soul thou'st ta'en for sacrifice:

All the rich honey of my youth's desire,


To the Comet of 1843

Thy purpose, heavenly stranger, who may tell
But Him, who linked thee to the starry whole?
Wherefore, in this our darkness, be it ours
To must upon thee in thy high career,
As of some wandering symphony from amidst
Those highest stellar harmonies that track
Through infinite space and the great rounds of time
The mighty marches of creation.
Behold, how high thou travellest in heaven!
Myriads of wondering human spirits here,
Duly each night with upturned looks seek out
The mystery of thy advent.


To the Chief Musician upon Nabla A Tyndallic Ode

I.

I come from fields of fractured ice,
Whose wounds are cured by squeezing,
Melting they cool, but in a trice,
Get warm again by freezing.
Here, in the frosty air, the sprays
With fernlike hoar-frost bristle,
There, liquid stars their watery rays
Shoot through the solid crystal.


II.

I come from empyrean fires --
From microscopic spaces,
Where molecules with fierce desires,
Shiver in hot embraces.
The atoms clash, the spectra flash,
Projected on the screen,


To Songs At the Marriage Of The Lord Fauconberg And The Lady Mary Cromwell

song Fauc1

First.

[Chorus. Endymion. Luna.]

Chorus.
Th' Astrologers own Eyes are set,
And even Wolves the Sheep forget;
Only this Shepherd, late and soon,
Upon this Hill outwakes the Moon.
Heark how he sings, with sad delight,
Thorough the clear and silent Night.

Endymion
Cynthia, O Cynthia, turn thine Ear,
nor scorn Endymions plaints to hear.
As we our Flocks, so you command
The fleecy Clouds with silver wand.

Cynthia


To S. M. A Young African Painter, On Seeing His Works

TO show the lab'ring bosom's deep intent,
And thought in living characters to paint,
When first thy pencil did those beauties give,
And breathing figures learnt from thee to live,
How did those prospects give my soul delight,
A new creation rushing on my sight?
Still, wond'rous youth! each noble path pursue,
On deathless glories fix thine ardent view:
Still may the painter's and the poet's fire
To aid thy pencil, and thy verse conspire!
And may the charms of each seraphic theme
Conduct thy footsteps to immortal fame!


To Romance

Parent of golden dreams, Romance!
Auspicious Queen of childish joys,
Who lead'st along, in airy dance,
Thy votive train of girls and boys;
At length, in spells no longer bound,
I break the fetters of my youth;
No more I tread thy mystic round,
But leave thy realms for those of Truth.

And yet 'tis hard to quit the dreams
Which haunt the unsuspicious soul,
Where every nymph a goddess seems,
Whose eyes through rays immortal roll;
While Fancy holds her boundless reign,


To Rinaldo

SOFT is the balmy breath of May,
When from the op'ning lids of day
Meek twilight steals; and from its wings
Translucent pearls of ether flings.
MILD is the chaste Moon's languid eye,
When gliding down the dappled sky
She feebly lifts her spangled bow,
Around her glitt'ring darts to throw.­
SWEET are the aromatic bowers,
When Night sends forth refreshing showers
O'er every thirsty fainting bud,
That drinks with joy the grateful flood.
Yet, can the deeply wounded Mind,


You Gote-heard Gods

Strephon.

You Gote-heard Gods, that loue the grassie mountaines,
You Nimphes that haunt the springs in pleasant vallies,
You Satyrs ioyde with free and quiet forests,
Vouchsafe your silent eares to playning musique,
Which to my woes giues still an early morning;
And drawes the dolor on till wery euening.

Klaius.

O Mercurie, foregoer to the euening,
O heauenlie huntresse of the sauage mountaines,
O louelie starre, entitled of the morning,
While that my voice doth fill these wofull vallies,


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