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That should you close your eyes, you might almost Forget it was not day!
A most gentle maid Who dwelleth in her hospitable home Hard by the Castle, and at latest eve, (Even like a Lady vow'd and dedicate To something more than nature in the grove) Glides thro' the pathways; she knows all their notes, That gentle Maid! and oft, a moment's space, What time the moon was lost behind a cloud, Hath heard a pause of silence: till the Moon Emerging, hath awaken'd earth and sky With one sensation, and those wakeful Birds Have all burst forth in choral minstrelsy, As if one quick and sudden Gale had swept An hundred airy harps! And she hath watch'd Many a Nightingale perch giddily On blosmy twig still swinging from the breeze,
And to that motion tune his wanton song,
Farewell, O Warbler! till to-morrow eve, And you, my friends! farewell, a short farewell!We have been loitering long and pleasantly, And now for our dear homes.—That strain again!Full fain it would delay me !—My dear Babe, Who, capable of no articulate sound, Mars all things with his imitative lisp, How he would place his hand beside his ear, His little hand, the small forefinger up, And bid us listen! And I deem it wise To make him Nature's playmate. He knows well The evening star: and once when he awoke In most distressful mood (some inward pain Had made up that strange thing, an infant's dream) I hurried with him to our orchard plot, And he beholds the moon, and hush'd at once
Suspends his sobs, and laughs most silently, While his lair eyes that swam with undropt tears Did glitter in the yellow moon-beam! Well— It is a father's tale. But if that Heaven Should give me life, his childhood shall grow up Familiar with these songs, that with the night He may associate Joy! Once more farewell, Sweet Nightingale! once more, my friends! farewell. LINES
Written token sailing in a Boat
How rich the wave, in front, imprest