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Higher still, and higher,
The blue deep thou wingest,
And singing still dost soar, and soaring ever, singest.
In the golden lightening
Of the sunken sun,
O'er which clouds are brightening,
Thou dost float and run,
Like an unbodied joy whose race is just begun.
Teach us, sprite or bird,
What sweet thoughts are thine :
I have never heard
Praise of love or wine
That panted forth a flood of rapture so divine.
We look before and after,
And pine for what is not:
With some pain is fraught;
Our sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought.
Better than all measures
Of delight and sound,
That in books are found,
Thy skill to poet were, thou scorner of the ground!
Teach me half the gladness
That thy brain must know,
Such harmonious madness
From my lips would flow,
The world would listen then, as I am listening now!
WHO is't now we hear?
None but the lark so shrill and clear:
Now at heaven's gate she claps her wings,
I SEE before me the Gladiator lie;
He leans upon his hand-his manly brow
Ere ceased the inhuman shout which hailed the wretch who won.
He heard it, but he heeded not-his eyes
All this rushed with his blood-shall he expire
Shepherd. Yes, Mr. North-old age ought indeed to be treated with respect and reverence. That's a God's truth. The ancient grandame, seated at the ingle amang her children's children, wi' the Bible open on her knees, and lookin' solemn, almost severe, with her dim eyes, through specs shaded by gray hairs,-now and then brichtening up her faded countenance wi' a saintly smile, as she saftly lets fa' her shrivelled hand on the golden head o' some wee bit hafflin imp sittin' cowerin' by her knee, and half in love, half in fear, opening not his rosy lips—such an aged woman as that—for leddy I shall not ca' her, is indeed an object of respect and reverence; and beats there a heart within human bosom that would not rejoice wi' holy awe to lay the homage of its blessing at her feet? Noctes Ambrosianæ.
I HAVE lived long enough: my way of life
Curses, not loud but deep, mouth-honour, breath,
Which the poor heart would fain deny, but dare not.
YOUTH AND AGE.
CRABBED age and youth
Age like winter weather,
Youth is full of sport,
Age's breath is short,
Youth is nimble, age is lame:
Age is weak and cold,
Youth is wild, and age is tame:
Age, I do abhor thee;
Youth, I do adore thee;
O my Love, my Love is young!
Age, I do defy thee,
O sweet shepherd, hie thee,
For methinks thou stay'st too long.
WHEN dark December glooms the day,
And takes our autumn joys away;
When short and scant the sun-beam throws,
Upon the weary waste of snows,
A cold and profitless regard,
Like patron on a needy bard;
When sylvan occupation's done,
And o'er the chimney rests the gun,
When in his stall the impatient steed
Marmion-Introduction, Canto V.
Lo! Winter desolates the year.
Hence the loud city's busy throngs
Against the spiteful heaven conspire.
AKENSIDE. Ode on the Winter Solstice.
It is the day when he was born,
The time admits not flowers or leaves
Together, in the drifts that pass
To darken on the rolling brine
That breaks the coast. But fetch the wine, Arrange the board, and brim the glass.
TENNYSON. In Memoriam.
ILK happing bird, wee, helpless thing,
What comes o' thee? *
Where wilt thou cow'r thy chittering wing,
A WINTER PIECE.
So Zembla's rocks (the beauteous work of frost)
Till the bright mountains prop th' incumbent sky,
The gather'd winter of a thousand years.
POPE. Temple of Fame.
* A widow-bird sate mourning for her love
The frozen wind crept on above,
The freezing stream below.
There was no leaf upon the forest bare,
No flower upon the ground,
And little motion in the air
Except the mill-wheel's sound.