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Semichorus I.

We, beyond heaven, are driven along:
Semichorus II.
Us the enchantments of earth retain:
Semichorus I.
Ceaseless, and rapid, and fierce, and free,
With the Spirits which build a new earth
and sea,

Listen too,

How every pause is filled with undernotes,

Clear, silver, icy, keen, awakening tones, And a heaven where yet heaven could Which pierce the sense, and live within never be.

the soul,

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Chorus of Hours and Spirits.
Break the dance, and scatter the song,
Let some depart, and some remain,
Wherever we fly we lead along
In leashes, like starbeams, soft yet
strong,

Ha! they are gone!

The clouds that are heavy with love's
sweet rain.
Panthea.
Ione.
From the past
Panthea. As the bare green hill
When some soft cloud vanishes into rain,
Laughs with a thousand drops of sunny

Yet feel you no delight
sweetness?

water

Panthea. 'Tis the deep music of the rolling world

Kindling within the strings of the waved air,

To the unpavilioned sky!

Ione.

New notes arise.

sound?

Eolian modulations.

Ione.

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By ebbing night into her western cave, When she upsprings from interlunar dreams,

O'er which is curved an orblike canopy Of gentle darkness, and the hills and woods

Distinctly seen through that dusk airy

veil,

Even whilst we speak

Regard like shapes in an enchanter's glass; What is that awful Its wheels are solid clouds, azure and

gold,

Such as ghosts dream dwell in the lampless deep,

Such as the genii of the thunderstorm
Pile on the floor of the illumined sea
When the sun rushes under it; they roll Yet each inter-transpicuous, and they
And move and grow as with an inward
wind;

whirl

Within it sits a winged infant, white
Its countenance, like the whiteness of
bright snow,

Its plumes are as feathers of sunny frost, Its limbs gleam white, through the windflowing folds

Over each other with a thousand motions,
Upon a thousand sightless axles spinning,
And with the force of self-destroying
swiftness,

Intensely, slowly, solemnly roll on,
Kindling with mingled sounds, and
many tones,

Intelligible words and music wild.
With mighty whirl the multitudinous
orb

Of its white robe, woof of ethereal pearl. Its hair is white, the brightness of white light

Scattered in strings; yet its two eyes are heavens

Of liquid darkness, which the Deity
Within seems pouring, as a storm is
poured

Of elemental subtlety, like light;
And the wild odour of the forest flowers,
The music of the living grass and air,
The emerald light of leaf-entangled beams
Round its intense yet self-conflicting
speed,

From jagged clouds, out of their arrowy
lashes,
Tempering the cold and radiant air
around,

Seem kneaded into one aërial mass

With fire that is not brightness; in its Which drowns the sense. Within the hand

orb itself,

It sways a quivering moonbeam, from
whose point

Pillowed upon its alabaster arms,
Like to a child o'erwearied with sweet

toil,

A guiding power directs the chariot's prow

On its own folded wings, and wavy hair, Over its wheeled clouds, which as they The Spirit of the Earth is laid asleep, roll And you can see its little lips are moving, Amid the changing light of their own smiles,

Grinds the bright brook into an azure mist

Over the grass, and flowers, and waves, wake sounds,

Sweet as a singing rain of silver dew. Panthea. And from the other open- Like one who talks of what he loves ing in the wood in dream.

Rushes, with loud and whirlwind har

mony,

Ione. 'Tis only mocking the orb's
harmony.
Panthea. And from a star upon its
forehead, shoot,

A sphere, which is as many thousand

spheres,

Solid as crystal, yet through all its mass Like swords of azure fire, or golden Flow, as through empty space, music and light:

spears

Ten thousand orbs involving and involved, l'urple and azure, white, and green, and golden,

Sphere within sphere; and every space between

Peopled with unimaginable shapes,

With tyrant-quelling myrtle overtwined,
Embleming heaven and earth united

now,

Vast beams like spokes of some invisible wheel

Which whirl as the orb whirls, swifter than thought,

288

Filling the abyss with sun-like lightnings, And serpents, bony chains, twisted
And perpendicular now, and now trans-

around

verse,

The iron crags, or within heaps of dust Pierce the dark soil, and as they pierce To which the tortuous strength of their last pangs

and pass,

Make bare the secrets of the earth's deep Had crushed the iron crags; and over heart;

these

Infinite mine of adamant and gold,
Valueless stones, and unimagined gems,
And caverns on crystalline columns
poised

With vegetable silver overspread;
Wells of unfathomed fire, and water
springs

Whence the great sea, even as a child
is fed,

Whose vapours clothe earth's monarch
mountain-tops
With kingly, ermine snow.
flash on

And make appear the melancholy ruins
Of cancelled cycles; anchors, beaks of
ships;

Planks turned to marble; quivers, helms, Be not!
and spears,
And gorgon-
wheels

-headed targes,

and the

The beams

The jagged alligator, and the might
Of earth-convulsing behemoth, which

once

Were monarch beasts, and on the slimy shores,

And weed-overgrown continents of earth,
Increased and multiplied like summer

worms

On an abandoned corpse, till the blue globe

Wrapt deluge round it like a cloke, and they

Yelled, gasped, and were abolished; or some God

Whose throne was in a comet, past, and cried,

And like my words they were

no more.

Of scythed chariots, and the emblazonry
Of trophies, standards, and armorial

beasts,

Round which death laughed, sepulchred The vaporous exultation not to be conemblems

fined!

Of dead destruction, ruin within ruin!
The wrecks beside of many a city vast,
Whose population which the earth grew

The Earth.

The joy, the triumph, the delight, the madness!

Ha ha! the animation of delight
Which wraps me, like an atmos
phere of light,

And bears me as a cloud is borne by
its own wind.
The Moon.
Brother mine, calm wanderer,
Happy globe of land and air,

Their statues, homes and fanes; pro- Some Spirit is darted like a beam from
digious shapes

thee,

Huddled in gray annihilation, split,
Jammed in the hard, black deep; and
over these,

The anatomies of unknown winged

things,

And fishes which were isles of living
scale,

over

Was mortal, but not human; see, they
lie,

The boundless, overflowing, bursting gladness,

Their monstrous works, and uncouth

skeletons,

Which penetrates my frozen frame, And passes with the warmth of flame, With love, and odour, and deep melody Through me, through me! The Earth.

Ha ha! the caverns of my hollow mountains,

My cloven fire-crags, sound-exulting fountains

Laugh with a vast and inextinguishable laughter.

The oceans, and the deserts, and the abysses,

And the deep air's unmeasured wildernesses,

Answer from all their clouds and billows, echoing after.

They cry aloud as I do. Sceptred

curse,

Who all our green and azure uni

verse

stones,

And splinter and knead down my children's bones,

All I bring forth, to one void mass battering and blending.

Until each crag-like tower, and storied column,

move:

Threatenedst to muffle round with black destruction, sending

Music is in the sea and air, Winged clouds soar here and there, A solid cloud to rain hot thunder- Dark with the rain new buds are dream

ing of:

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Is loosened into living fountains, My solid oceans flow, and sing, and shine:

A spirit from my heart bursts forth,
It clothes with unexpected birth
My cold bare bosom: Oh! it must be
thine

On mine, on mine!

Gazing on thee I feel, I know
Green stalks burst forth, and bright
flowers grow,

And living shapes upon my bosom

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This true fair world of things, a sea A spirit ill to guide, but mighty to obey, reflecting love; Is as a tempest-winged ship, whose

Which over all his kind as the sun's

helm

heaven

Gliding o'er ocean, smooth, serene,
and even

Darting from starry depths radiance and life, doth move,

awhile

It is a spirit, then, weeps on her child restored.

All things confess his strength.
Through the cold mass

Leave Man, even as a leprous child
is left,

Of marble and of colour his dreams pass;

Who follows a sick beast to some warm cleft

Of rocks, through which the might of healing springs is poured; Then when it wanders home with rosy smile, Unconscious, and its mother fears Of thoughts and forms, which else senseless and shapeless were.

Bright threads whence mothers weave the robes their children wear; Language is a perpetual orphic song, Which rules with Dædal harmony a throng

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Labour, and pain, and grief, in life's green grove Sport like tame beasts, none knew how gentle they could be!

Love rules, through waves which dare not overwhelm,

Forcing life's wildest shores to own its sovereign sway.

His will, with all mean passions, bad delights,

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The Earth.

As the dissolving warmth of dawn may fold

A half unfrozen dew-globe, green,

and gold,

And selfish cares, its trembling And crystalline, till it becomes a winged

satellites,

mist,

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