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POEMS WRITTEN IN 1821

DIRGE FOR THE YEAR

I

ORPHAN hours, the year is dead,

Come and sigh, come and weep!
Merry hours, smile instead,

For the year is but asleep.
See, it smiles as it is sleeping,
Mocking your untimely weeping.

II

As an earthquake rocks a corse

In its coffin in the clay,
So White Winter, that rough nurse,

Rocks the death-cold year to-day;
Solemn hours! wail aloud
For your mother in her shroud.

III
As the wild air stirs and sways

The tree-swung cradle of a child,
So the breath of these rude days
Rocks the year :

be calm and mild, Dirge for the Year. Published by Mrs. Shelley, 1824, and dated January 1, 1821.

ii. 4 death-cold, Mrs. Shelley, 1824 || dead-cold, Mrs. Shelley,

Trembling hours ; she will arise
With new love within her

eyes.

IV January gray is here,

Like a sexton by her grave ; February bears the bier,

March with grief doth howl and rave, And April weeps - but, О ye hours ! Follow with May's fairest flowers.

TIME

UNFATHOMABLE Sea! whose waves are years,

Ocean of Time, whose waters of deep woe Are brackish with the salt of human tears ! Thou shoreless flood, which in thy ebb and

flow Claspest the limits of mortality,

And sick of prey, yet howling on for more, Vomitest thy wrecks on its inhospitable shore; Treacherous in calm, and terrible in storm,

Who shall put forth on thee,
Unfathomable Sea ?

Time. Published by Mrs. Shelley, 1824.

FROM THE ARABIC

AN IMITATION

I
My faint spirit was sitting in the light

Of thy looks, my love;
It panted for thee like the hind at noon

For the brooks, my love. .
Thy barb, whose hoofs outspeed the tempest's flight,

Bore thee far from me;
My heart, for my weak feet were weary soon,

Did companion thee.

II

Ah! fleeter far than fleetest storm or steed,

Or the death they bear, The heart which tender thought clothes like a

dove

With the wings of care ;
In the battle, in the darkness, in the need,

Shall mine cling to thee,
Nor claim one smile for all the comfort, love,

It may bring to thee.

SONG

I

RARELY, rarely, comest thou,

Spirit of Delight!

From the Arabic. Published by Mrs. Shelley, 1824.
Song. Published by Mrs. Shelley, 1824.

Wherefore hast thou left me now

Many a day and night? Many a weary night and day 'Tis since thou art fled away.

II

How shall ever one like me

Win thee back again?
With the joyous and the free

Thou wilt scoff at pain.
Spirit false! thou hast forgot
All but those who need thee not.

III
As a lizard with the shade

Of a trembling leaf,
Thou with sorrow art dismayed;

Even the sighs of grief
Reproach thee, that thou art not near,
And reproach thou wilt not hear.

IV

Let me set my mournful ditty

To a merry measure;
Thou wilt never come for pity,

Thou wilt come for pleasure;
Pity then will cut away
Those cruel wings, and thou wilt stay.

V

I love all that thou lovest,

Spirit of Delight! The fresh Earth in new leaves dressed,

And the starry night;

Autumn evening, and the morn
When the golden mists are born.

I love snow,

VI

and all the forms
Of the radiant frost;
I love waves, and winds, and storms,

Everything almost
Which is Nature's, and may be
Untainted by man's misery.

VII

I love tranquil solitude,

And such society
As is quiet, wise, and good ;

Between thee and me
What difference? but thou dost possess
The things I seek, not love them less.

VIII

I love Love though he has wings,

And like light can flee,
But above all other things,

Spirit, I love thee.
Thou art love and life! Oh, come,
Make once more my heart thy home.

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