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For thou canst place me near my love,
Canst fold in visionary bliss,

And let me think I steal a kiss.

O hear our prayer,

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When young-ey'd Spring profusely throws. From her green lap the pink and rose; When the soft. turtle of the dale To Summer tells her tender tale, When Autumn cooling caverns seeks, And stains with wine his jolly cheeks When Winter like poor pilgrim old, Shakes his silver beard with cold, At ev'ry season let my ear Thy solemn whispers, Fancy, hear.. O warm enthusiastic maid, Without thy pow'rful vital aid That breathes an energy divine, That gives a soul to ev'ry line; Ne'er may I strive with lips profane. To utter an unhallow'd strain 9: Nor dare to touch the sacred string, Save when with smiles thou bid'st me sing.. O hither come From thy lamented Shakespear's tomb,, On which thou lov'st to sit at eve, Musing o'er thy darling grave; O Queen of numbers once again. Animate some chosen swain, Who fill'd with unexhausted fire May boldly strike the sounding lyre. May rise above the rhyming throng And with some new unequall'd song O'er all our list❜ning passions reign, O'erwhelm our souls with joy and pain;, With terror shake, with pity move,. Rouse with revenge, or melt with love. O deign t' attend his evening walk,. With him in groves and grottoes talk:. Teach him to scorn with frigid art Feebly to touch th' enraptur'd heart;, Like lightning let his mighty verse The bosom's inmost foldings pierce ::

With native beanties win applause,
Beyond cold critic's studied laws:
O let each Muse's fame increase.
O bid Britannia rival Greece.


L' Allegro.

HENCE loathed Melancholy,


Of Cerberus, and blackest midnight born, In Stygian cave forlorn

Mongst horrid shapes, and shrieks, and sighs unholy,

Find out some uncouth cell,

Where brooding darkness spreads his jealous wings,

And the night raven sings;

There under ebon shades and low brow'd rocks,

As ragged as thy locks,

In dark Cimmerian desert ever dwell.
But come, thou goddess fair and free,
In heav'n yclep'd' Euphrosyne,
And by men, heart-easing Mirth,
Whom lovely Venus at a birth
With two sister Graces more
To ivy-crowned Bacchus bore?
Or whether (as some sages sing)
The frolic wind that breathes the spring,
Zephyr with Aurora playing,

As he met her once a Maying,

There on beds of violets blue,

And fresh-blown roses wash'd in dew,
Fill'd her with thee a daughter fair,
So buxom blithe, and debonair.

Haste thee, Nymph! and bring with thee

Jest and youthful Jollity,

Quips and Cranks, and wanton Wiles,
Nods, and Becks and wreathed Smiles,,
Such as hang on Hebe's cheek,
And love to live in dimple sleek;

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Sport that wrinkled Care derides
And Laughter holding both his sides
Come, and trip it as you go
On the light fantastic toe,

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And in thy right hand lead with thee
The mountain Nymph, sweet Liberty;
And if I give thee honour due,
Mirth, admit me of thy crew

To live with her, and live with thee,
In unreproved pleasures free;
To hear the lark begin his flight,
And singing startle the dull night
From his watch-tower in the skies,
Till the dappled dawn doth rise;
Then to come in spite of sorrow,
And at my window bid good-morrow
Through the sweet-briar, or the vine,
Or the twisted eglantine:

While the cock with lively din
Scatters the rear of darkness thin,
And to the stack or the barn-door
Stoutly struts his dames before,
Oft list'ning how the hounds and horn
Cheerly rouse the slumb'ring morn,
From the side of some hoar hill,
Through the high wood echoing shrill a
Some time walking not unseen
By hedge-row elms, on hillocks green,
Right against the eastern gate,
Where the great sun begins his state,
Rob'd in flames, and amber light,
The clouds in thousand liveries dight;
While the ploughman near at hand
Whistles o'er the furrow'd land,
And the milk-maid singeth blithe,
And the mower whets his scythe,
And every shepherd tells his tale
Under the hawthorn in the dale.

Straight mine eye hath caught new pleasures, Whilst the landscape round it measures,

Russet lawns, and fallows gray,.

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Where the nibbling flocks do stray;
Mountains on whose barren breast
The labouring clouds do often rest,
Meadows trim with daisies pied,
Shallow brooks, and rivers wide;
Towers and battlements it sees
Bosom'd high in tufted trees
Where perhaps some beauty lies,
The Cynosure of neighbouring eyes.
Hard by, a cottage chimney smokes
From betwixt two aged oaks,
Where Corydon and Thyrsis met,
Are at their savoury dinner set
Of herbs and other country messes,
Which the neat-handed Phillis dresses;
And then in haste her bow'r she leaves,
With Thestylis to bind the sheaves;
Or if the earlier season lead,

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To the tann'd hay-cock in the mead.
Sometimes with secure delight
The upland hamlets will invite,
When the merry bells ring round,
And the jocund rebecks sound
To many a youth, and many a maid,
Dancing in the chequer'd shade;
And young and old come forth to play
On a sunshine holiḍay,

Till the live-long day-light fail
Then to the spicy nut-brown ale,
With stories told of many a feat
How fairy Mab the junkets eat;
She was pinch'd and pull'd, she said,
And he by friar's lanthorn led;
Tells how the drudging Goblin sweat
To earn his cream-bowl duly set
When in one night, ere glimpse of morn
His shadowy flail had thresh'd the corn
That ten day labourers could not end;
Then lies him down the lubber fiend,
And stretch'd out all the chimney's length,
Basks at the fire his hairy strength,

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And crop-full, out of doors he flings,
Ere the first cock his mattin rings.
Thus done the tales, to bed they creep,
By whispering winds soon lull'd asleep.
Tow'red cities please us then,
And the busy hum of men,

Where throngs of knights and barons bold
In weeds of peace high triumphs hold,
With store of ladies, whose bright eyes
Rain influence, and judge the prize
Of wit, or arms, while both contend
To win her grace, whom all commend:
There let Hymen oft appear

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In saffron robe with taper clear
And Pomp, and Feast, and Revelry,
With Mask and antique Pageantry,
Such sights as youthful poets dream,
On summer eves by haunted stream.
Then to the well-trod stage anon,
If Jonson's learned sock be on,
Or sweetest Shakespeare, Fancy's child,
Warble his native wood-notes wild.

And ever against eating cares

Lap me in soft Lydian airs
Married to immortal verse,


Such as the melting soul may pierce,
In notes, with many a winding bout
Of linked sweetness long drawn out,
With wanton heed, and giddy cunning,
The melting voice through mazes running.
Untwisting all the chains that tie
The hidden souls of Harmony :
That Orpheus' self may heave his head.
From golden slumber on a bed

Of heapt Elysian flowers, and hear
Such strains, as would have won the ear
Of Pluto, to have quite set free.
His half-regain'd Eurydice.

These delights if thou canst give,
Mirth, with thee I mean to live.


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