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Careless of thy neighbourhood,
Ill befall the yellow flowers,
Prophet of delight and mirth,
To the Small Celandine.
A CHILD OF THE SPRING.
BENEATH these fruit-tree boughs that shed
Of Spring's unclouded weather,
In this sequester'd nook how sweet
My last year's friends together.
One have I mark'd, the happiest guest
In joy of voice and pinion.
And this is thy dominion.
While birds, and butterflies, and flowers
Art sole in thy employment;
Thyself thy own enjoyment.
Upon yon tuft of hazel trees,
Yet seeming still to hover:
That cover him all over !
While thus before my eyes he gleams,
When in a moment forth he teems
His little song in gushes :
To the Green Linnet.
She was a phantom of delight
I saw her upon nearer view,
And now I
eye serene The very pulse of the machine ; A being breathing thoughtful breath, A traveller betwixt life and death; The reason firm, the temperate will, Endurance, foresight, strength, and skill: A perfect woman, nobly plann'd, To warn, to comfort, and command And yet a spirit still, and bright With something of an angel light.
PRINCIPAL WORKS :— The Lay of the Last Minstrel, 1805, the first of a style of poetry quite new and original. It met with immediate success.
- Marmion, 1808, the most ambitious of all his poetic tales.— The Lady of the Lake, 1810, the crowning point of the fame and popularity of the author.— The Vision of Don Roderick, 1813--Rokeby, and The Bride of Triermain, 1814—The Lord of the Isles, 1815. Besides these and his numerous well-known novels, he published some dramatic pieces which, however, did not add to his fame. Besides inferiority in merit, the diminished popularity which attended the later poetic productions of Scott was doubtless owing to the appearance of a new and still more brilliant favourite. In 1812 Childe Harold, in part at least, had already blazed upon the admiring world: and this brilliant effort had been followed up in rapid succession by the Giaour, the Bride of Abydos, &c. Of all the poems of Scott few, it may be taken for granted, will hesitate to give the palm to The Lady of the Lake. The plan of the romance, the graphic descriptive scenes of Highland life and manners, their clangatherings, the picturesque pictures of natural scenery, and not least the introduction of some exquisite lyrics at intervals between the narrative parts, combine to give a peculiar interest and charm to that poem.
Scott is the poet par excellence, of chivalry. In graphic description of the manners of feudal times, of tournaments, knightly-combats, and their fair patronesses, &c., whether in his poetic or prose fiction, he is probably without a rival. He had deeply studied, and was thoroughly appreciative of the spirit of, the old national ballads; and hence it is that his incidental lyrical or ballad pieces are often amongst his happiest productions. The perfect clearness and transparency of his style is one of his distinguishing features; and it was further aided by his peculiar versification. Coleridge had exemplified the fitness of the octosyllabic measure for romantic narrative poetry, and parts of his Christabel having been recited to Scott, he adopted its wild rhythm and harmony, joining to it some of the abruptness and irregularity of the old ballad metre. In his hands it became a powerful and flexible instrument, whether for light narrative and pure description, or for scenes of