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Lament who will the ribald line
Which tells his lapse from duty —
How kissed the maddening lips of wine, Or wanton ones of beauty
But think, while falls that shade between The erring one and heaven,
That he who loved like Magdalen,
Like her may be forgiven.
Not his the song whose thunderous chime Eternal echoes render
The mournful Tuscan's haunted rhyme, And Milton's starry splendor!
But who his human heart has laid
To nature's bosom nearer?
Who sweetened toil like him, or paid
To love a tribute dearer?
Through all his tuneful art how strong The human feeling gushes!
The very moonlight of his song
Is warm with smiles and blushes!
Give lettered pomp to teeth of Time,
ODE TO THE BARDS
John Keats was born in London, England, October 29, 1795, and died at Rome, Italy, February 23, 1821. This poem was written on the blank page before Beaumont and Fletcher's "The Fair Maid of the Inn."
ARDS of Passion and of Mirth,
Brows'd by none but Dian's fawns;
Thus ye live on high, and then
Bards of Passion and of Mirth,
TO THE SKYLARK
PERCY BYSSHE SHELLEY
Percy Bysshe Shelley was born in Field Place, Sussex, England, August 4, 1792, and was drowned in the Gulf of Spezia, July 8, 1822.
AIL to thee, blithe spirit!
Bird thou never wert,
That from heaven, or near it,
Pourest thy full heart
In profuse strains of unpremeditated art.
Higher still and higher,
From the earth thou springest,
Like a cloud of fire;
The blue deep thou wingest,
And singing still dost soar, and soaring ever singest.
In the golden lightning
Of the setting sun,
O'er which clouds are brightening,
Thou dost float and run;
Like an unbodied joy whose race is just begun.
The pale, purple even
Like a star of heaven,
In the broad daylight,
Thou art unseen, but yet I hear thy shrill delight.
Keen as are the arrows
Of that silver sphere,
Whose intense lamp narrows
In the white dawn clear,
Until we hardly see, we feel that it is there.
All the earth and air
From one lonely cloud
The moon rains out her beams, and heaven is over-
What thou art we know not;
What is most like thee?
From rainbow-clouds there flow not
Drops so bright to see,
As from thy presence showers a rain of melody.
Like a poet hidden
In the light of thought,
To sympathy with hopes and fears it heeded not:
Like a high-born maiden,
In a palace tower,
Soothing her love-laden
Soul in secret hour
With music sweet as love, which overflows her bower: