Not to be ended ! Ended bliss, And life that will not end in this ! My days go on, my days go on.


Why call we, then, the square-built monument,
The upright column, and the low-laid slab
Tokens of death, memorials of decay ?
Stand in this solemn, still assembly, man,
And learn thy proper nature ; for thou seest
In these shaped stones and lettered tables figures
Of life. Then be they to thy soul as those
Which he who talked on Sinai's mount with God
Brought to the old Judeans ; – types are these
of thine eternity.

I thank thee, Father,
That at this simple grave on which the dawn
Is breaking, emblem of that day which hath
No close, thou kindly unto my dark mind
Hast sent a sacred light, and that away
From this green hillock, whither I had come
In sorrow, thou art leading me in joy.

Breath freezes on my lips to moan :
As one alone, once not alone,
I sit and knock at Nature's door,
Heart-bare, heart-hungry, very poor,
Whose desolated days go on.


I knock and cry, — Undone, undone !
Is there no help, no comfort, — none !
No gleaning in the wide wheat-plains
Where others drive their loaded wains ?
My vacant days go on, go on.



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Now fades the glimmering landscape on the sight, He reigns above, he reigns alone ;

And all the air a solemn stillness holds,

Save where the beetle wheels his droning Alight, Systems burn out and leave his throne : Fair mists of seraphs melt and fall

And drowsy tinklings lull the distant folds ; Around him, changeless amid all,

Save that, from yonder ivy-mantled tower, Ancient of Days, whose days go on.

The moping owl does to the moon complain
Of such as, wandering near her secret bower,

Molest her ancient, solitary reign.
He reigns below, he reigns alone,
And, having life in love foregone

Beneath those rugged elms, that yew-tree's shade,
Beneath the crown of sovran thorns,

Where heaves the turf in many a mouldering He reigns the jealous God. Who mourns

heap, Or rules with him, while days go on?

Each in his narrow cell forever laid,

The rude forefathers of the hamlet sleep.
By anguish which made pale the sun,

The breezy call of incense-breathing morn,
I hear him charge his saints that none

The swallow twittering from the straw-built Among his creatures anywhere


The cock's shrill clarion, or the echoing horn, Blaspheme against him with despair, However darkly days go on.

No more shall rouse them from their lowly bed.

For them no more the blazing hearth shall burn,
Take from my head the thorn-wreath brown !

Or busy housewife ply her evening care ;
No mortal grief deserves that crown.

No children run to lisp their sire's return,

Or climb his knees the envied kiss to share.
O supreme Love, chief Misery,
The sharp regalia are for Thee

Oft did the harvest to their sickle yield,
Whose days eternally go on!

Their furrow oft the stubborn glebe has broke ;
How jocund did they drive their team afield !

How bowed the woods beneath their sturdy
For us, — whatever 's undergone,

Thou knowest, willest what is done.
Grief may be joy misunderstood ;

Let not ambition mock their useful toil,
Only the Good discerns the good,

Their homely joys, and destiny obscure;
I trust thee while my days go on.

Nor grandeur hear with a disdainful smile

The short and simple annals of the poor.
The boast of heraldry, the pomp


power, Whatever 's lost, it first was won :

And all that beauty, all that wealth e'er gave,
We will not struggle nor impugn.

Await alike the inevitable hour ;
Perhaps the cup was broken here,

The paths of glory lead but to the grave.
That Heaven's new wine might show more clear.
I praise thee while my days go on.

Nor you, ye proud, impute to these the fault,

If memory o'er their tomb no trophies raise,

Where, through the long-drawn aisle and fretted 1 praise thee while my days go on;

vault, I love thee while my days go on;

The pealing anthem swells the note of praise. Through dark and dearth, through fire and frost, With emptied arms and treasure lost,

Can stories


or animated bust, I thank thee while my days go on.

Back to its mansion call the fleeting breath? Can honor's voice provoke the silent dust,

Or flattery soothe the dull, cold ear of death! Perhaps in this neglected spot is laid

Some heart once pregnant with celestial fire ; ELEGY WRITTEN IN A COUNTRY Hands that the rod of empire might have swayed, CHURCHYARD.

Or waked to ecstasy the living lyre ; The curfew tolls the knell of parting day ;

But knowledge to their eyes her ample page, The lowing herd winds slowly o'er the lea, Rich with the spoils of time, did ne'er unroll ; The plonghman homeward plods his weary way, Chill penury repressed their nolle rage,

And leaves the world to darkness and to me. An froze the genial current of the sonl.





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Full many a gem of purest ray serene

For thee, who, mindful of the unhonored dead, The dark, unfathomed caves of ocean bear ; Dost in these lines their artless tale relate; Full many a flower is born to blush unseen, If chance, by lonely contemplation led,

And waste its sweetness on the desert air. Some kindred spirit shall inquire thy fate, Some village Hampden, that, with dauntless Haply some hoary-headed swain may say :

“Oft have we seen him, at the peep of dawn, The little tyrant of his fields withstood ;

Brushing with hasty steps the dews away, Some mute, inglorious Milton here may rest ; To meet the sun upon the upland lawn.

Some Cromwell, guiltless of his country's blood. The applause of listening senates to command,

“There at the foot of yonder nodding beech, The threats of pain and ruin to despise,

That wreathes its old, fantastic roots so high, To scatter plenty o'er a smiling land,

His listless length at noontide would he stretch, And read their history in a nation's eyes,

And pore upon the brook that babbles by. Their lot forbade ; nor circumscribed alone “Hard by yon wood, now smiling as in scorn, Their growing virtues, but their crimes con- Muttering his wayward fancies, he would rove; fined ;

Now drooping, woful-wan, like one forlorn, Forbade to wade through slaughter to a throne, Or crazed with care, or crossed in hopeless And shut the gates of mercy on mankind ;

love. The struggling pangs of conscious truth to hide,

“One morn I missed him on the customed hill, To quench the blushes of ingenuous shame,

Along the heath, and near his favorite tree; Or heap the shrine of luxury and pride

Another came, With incense kindled at the muse's flame.

nor yet beside the rill,

Nor up the lawn, nor at the wood was he ; Far from the madding crowd's ignoble strife, Their sober wishes never learned to stray ;

“The next, with dirges due, in sad array, Along the cool, sequestered vale of life

Slow through the church-way path we saw him They kept the noiseless tenor of their way.

borne ;

Approach and read (for thou canst read) the lay Yet even these bones from insult to protect,

Graved on the stone beneath yon aged thorn." Some frail memorial still erected nigh, With uncouth rhymes and shapeless sculpture

decked, Implores the passing tribute of a sigh. Here rests his head upon the lap of earth

A youth to fortune and to fame unknown; Their name, their years, spelt by the unlettered Fair science frowned not on his humble birth, muse,

And melancholy marked him for her own. The place of fame and elegy supply ; And many a holy text around she strews,

Large was his bounty, and his soul sincere ; That teach the rustic moralist to die.

Heaven did a recompense as largely send ; For who, to dumb forgetfulness a prey,

He gave to misery (all he had) a tear, This pleasing, anxious being e'er resigned, He gained from heaven ('t was all he wished) Left the warm precincts of the cheerful day,

friend. Nor cast one longing, lingering look behind ?

No further seek his merits to disclose, On some fond breast the parting soul relies,

Or draw his frailties from their dread abode, Some pious drops the closing eye requires ;

(There they alike in trembling bope repose,) E'en from the tomb the voice of Nature cries,

The bosom of his father and his God. E'en in our ashes live their wonted fires.



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The Hoof

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