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I SAW two little dark-green leaves
Lifting the light mould at their birth, and then
Gazed like a star into the morning light.
With which the purple velvet flower was fed
Changing bright fancy to sweet sentiment,
Soft melodies, as sweet as April rain
On silent leaves, and sang those words in which
Of maids deserted in the olden time,
And weep like a soft cloud in April's bosom
So that perhaps it dreamed that Spring was come,
And crept abroad into the moonlight air,
And loosened all its limbs, as, noon by noon,
The sun averted less his oblique beam.
And the plant died not in the frost?
And went out of the lattice which I left
And down the slope of moss and through the tufts
And there its fruit lay like a sleeping lizard
One half lay floating on the fountain wave,
Among the snowy water-lily buds.
Its shape was such as summer melody
To some light cloud bound from the golden dawn
In hue and form that it had been a mirror
Of all the hues and forms around it and
TO A SKYLARK.
HAIL to thee, blithe spirit!
Bird thou never wert,
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 sunken sun,
O'er which clouds are brightning,
Thou dost float and run;
Like an unbodied joy whose race is just begun.
The pale purple even
Melts around thy flight;
Like a star of heaven,
In the broad day-light
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
With thy voice is loud,
As, when night is bare,
From one lonely cloud
The moon rains out her beams, and heaven is overflowed.
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,
Till the world is wrought!
To sympathy with hopes and fears it heeded not:
Like a high-born maiden
In a palace tower,
Soul in secret hour
With music sweet as love, which overflows her bower :
Like a glow-worm golden
In a dell of dew,
Its aërial hue
Among the flowers and grass, which screen it from the view: