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XXXIX.
INVOCATION TO SPRING.

Come with bows bent and with emptying of quivers,

Maiden most perfect, lady of light,
With a noise of winds and many rivers,

With a clamour of waters and with might;
Bind on thy sandals, 0 thou most fleet,
Over the splendour and speed of thy feet;
For the faint east quickens, the wan west shivers,

Round the feet of the day and the feet of the night.

Where shall we find her, how shall we sing to her,

Fold our hands round her knees, and cling?
O that man's heart were as fire and could spring to her,

Fire, or the strength of the streams that spring!
For the stars and the winds are unto her
As raiment, as songs of the harp-player;
For the risen stars and the fallen cling to her,

And the south west wind and the west-wind sing.

For winter's rains and ruins are over,

And all the season of snow and sins ; The days dividing lover and lover,

The light that loses, the night that wins ; And time remembered is grief forgotten, And frosts are slain and flowers begotten, And in green underwood and cover

Blossom by blossom the spring begins.

A. C. Swinburne.

A MAYTIME WISH.

I would the world could see thee as I behold thee, May
With eyes like sapphires gleaming thro' the orchards by the way,
With the campion and the crowfoot on thy daisy-jewelled vest,
And a wreath of apple blossoms dropping down upon thy breast

I would all eyes could see thee, as I belold thee now,
With the woodruff and the blue bell, and the lily on thy brow;
With thy kirtle richly purfled with the gorse's golden boss,
And the orchis and the violet, the primrose and the moss.

I would all ears could listen to thy merry-making, May,
Could listen as I listen to thy happy roundelay;
Then a louder song would greet us from thy orchestra of leaves,
For fewer birds would break their hearts because of little thieves.

A form of life and beauty, I see thee, lovely May,
Breathing balm upon the meadows from each sweetly scented

spray; From the lilac and the hawthorn, and the furze upon the down, And the wall-flower by the wayside in its dress of cottage-brown.

Would you see her as I see her, you must be where I have been, Where the oak-tree and the elm-tree and the beechen tree are

seen; Where the bright and silvery poplars in their leafy beauty shine, And the bees are quaffing deeply from their chalices of wine.

You must linger as I linger, in the shadow of each nook,
You must listen as I listen to the prattle of the brook ;
You must woo her as I woo her, with a bosom full of love,
And the maid will stand before you like a vision from above.

Edward Capern.

XLI.

SPRING IN ENGLAND.

Oh, to be in England
Now that April's there,
And whoever wakes in England
Sees, some morning, unaware,
That the lowest boughs and the brush-wood sheaf
Round the elm-tree bole are in tiny leaf,
While the chaffinch sings on the orchard bough
In England-now!

And after April when May follows,
And the whitethroat builds, and all the swallows !
Hark, where my blossomed pear-tree in the hedge
Leans to the field and scatters on the clover
Blossoms and dewdrops—at the bent spray's edge-
Thats the wise thrush; he sings each song twice over,
Lest you should think he never could recapture
The first fine careless rapture!
And though the fields look rough with hoary dew,
All will be gay when noontide wakes anew
The buttercups, the little childrens' dower,
-Far brighter than this gaudy melon-flower!

Robert Browning. XLII.

THE MAGIC LAND.

By woodland belt, by ocean bar,

The full south breeze our foreheads fann'd, And, under many a yellow star,

We dropped into the Magic Land.

There, every sound and every sight

Means more than sight or sound elsewhere; Each twilight star a two-fold light;

Each rose a double redness, there.

By ocean bar, by woodland belt,

Our silent course a syren led, Till dark in dawn began to melt,

Through the wild wizard-work o'er head.

We watched, toward the land of dreams,

The fair moon draw the murmuring main ; A single thread of silver beams

Was made the monster’s rippling chain.

We heard far off the syren's song;

We caught the gleam of sea-maid's hair. The glimmering isles and rocks among,

We moved thro' sparkling purple air.

Then morning rose, and smote from far,

Her elfin harps o'er land and sea; And woodland belt, and ocean bar,

To one sweet note, sighed—“Italy.!"

Robert Bulwer Lytton. (Owen Meredith.)

XLIII.
THE SUNBEAM.

Thou art no lingerer in monarch's hall-
A joy thou art and a wealth to all!
A bearer of hope unto land and sea,
Sunbeam! what gift hath the world like thee?

Thou art walking the billow, and ocean smiles ;
Thou hast touched with glory his thousand isles ;
Thou hast lit up the ships and the feathery foam,
And gladdened the sailor, like words from home.

To the solemn depths of the forest shades,
Thou art streaming on thro' their green arcades;
And the quivering leaves that have caught thy glow,
Like fireflies glance to the pools below.

Thou tak'st thro' the dim church aisle thy way,
And its pillars from twilight flash forth to day,
And its high pale tombs with their trophies old,
Are bathed in a flood as of molten gold.

And thou turnest not from the humblest grave,
Where a flower to the sighing winds may wave;
Thou scatterest its gloom like the dreams of rest,
Thou sleepest in love on its grassy breast.

Sunbeam of summer! oh, what is like thee?
Hope of the wilderness, joy of the sea !--
One thing is like thee to mortals given,
The faith touching all things with hues of heaven!

Mrs. Hemans.

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