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ODE TO THE MOON.
MOTHER of light! how fairly dost thou go
Where hunter never climb'd, — secure from dread?
Of that mild presence! and how many wrought! Wondrous and bright,
Upon the silver light,
Chasing fair figures with the artist, Thought!
What art thou like?
Sometimes I see thee ride
A far-bound galley on its perilous way,
Whilst breezy waves toss up their silvery spray; Sometimes behold thee glide,
Cluster'd by all thy family of stars,
Like a lone widow, through the welkin wide,
Till in some Latmian cave I see thee creep,
Leaving thy splendour at the jagged porch!
Oh, thou art beautiful, howe'er it be !
And he, the veriest Pagan, that first fram'd
A silver idol, and ne'er worshipp'd thee!
Casting their dappled shadows at my feet;
I will be grateful for that simple boon,
In many a thoughtful verse and anthem sweet,
I was thy wooer on my little bed,
To see thee flood the heaven with milky light,
Their burnish'd helms, and crowns, and corslets bright,
And ever thou didst spill in winding streams
Sparkles and midnight gleams,
For fishes to new gloss their argent scales!
Why sighs?-why creeping tears?- why clasped hands?—
Is it to count the boy's expended dow'r?
That fairies since have broke their gifted wands?
Than ever I have found
On sunny garden-plot, or moss-grown tow'r,
Why should I grieve for this? - O I must yearn, Whilst Time, conspirator with Memory,
Keeps his cold ashes in an ancient urn,
Richly emboss'd with childhood's revelry,
With leaves and cluster'd fruits, and flow'rs eterne, (Eternal to the world, though not to me,)
Aye there will those brave sports and blossoms be,
Less than the pallid primrose to the Moon,
So let it be: Before I liv'd to sigh,
WELCOME, dear Heart, and a most kind good-morrow;
Here are red roses, gather'd at thy cheeks, -
Dost love sweet Hyacinth? Its scented leaf
Curls manifold, all love's delights blow double:
"Tis said this flow'ret is inscribed with grief,
But let that hint of a forgotten trouble.
I pluck'd the Primrose at night's dewy noon;
And here are Sun-flowers, amorous of light!