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John Bartlett (1820–1905). Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. 1919.

William Wordsworth 1770-1850 John Bartlett

    Oh, be wiser thou!
Instructed that true knowledge leads to love.
          Lines left upon a Seat in a Yew-tree.
    And homeless near a thousand homes I stood,
And near a thousand tables pined and wanted food.
          Guilt and Sorrow. Stanza 41.
    Action is transitory,—a step, a blow;
The motion of a muscle, this way or that.
          The Borderers. Act iii.
    Three sleepless nights I passed in sounding on,
Through words and things, a dim and perilous way. 1
          The Borderers. Act iv. Sc. 2.
    A simple child
That lightly draws its breath,
And feels its life in every limb,
What should it know of death?
          We are Seven.
    O Reader! had you in your mind
Such stores as silent thought can bring,
O gentle Reader! you would find
A tale in everything.
          Simon Lee.
    I ’ve heard of hearts unkind, kind deeds
With coldness still returning;
Alas! the gratitude of men
Hath oftener left me mourning.
          Simon Lee.
    In that sweet mood when pleasant thoughts
Bring sad thoughts to the mind.
          Lines written in Early Spring.
    And ’t is my faith, that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes.
          Lines written in Early Spring.
    Nor less I deem that there are Powers
Which of themselves our minds impress;
That we can feed this mind of ours
In a wise passiveness.
          Expostulation and Reply.
    Up! up! my friend, and quit your books,
Or surely you ’ll grow double!
Up! up! my friend, and clear your looks!
Why all this toil and trouble?
          The Tables Turned.
    Come forth into the light of things,
Let Nature be your teacher.
          The Tables Turned.
    One impulse from a vernal wood
May teach you more of man,
Of moral evil and of good,
Than all the sages can.
          The Tables Turned.
    The bane of all that dread the Devil.
          The Idiot Boy.
    Sensations sweet,
Felt in the blood, and felt along the heart.
          Lines completed a few miles above Tintern Abbey.
    That best portion of a good man’s life,—
His little, nameless, unremembered acts
Of kindness and of love.
          Lines completed a few miles above Tintern Abbey.
    That blessed mood,
In which the burden of the mystery,
In which the heavy and the weary weight
Of all this unintelligible world,
Is lightened.
          Lines completed a few miles above Tintern Abbey.
    The fretful stir
Unprofitable, and the fever of the world
Have hung upon the beatings of my heart.
          Lines completed a few miles above Tintern Abbey.
    The sounding cataract
Haunted me like a passion; the tall rock,
The mountain, and the deep and gloomy wood,
Their colours and their forms, were then to me
An appetite,—a feeling and a love,
That had no need of a remoter charm
By thoughts supplied, nor any interest
Unborrowed from the eye.
          Lines completed a few miles above Tintern Abbey.
    But hearing oftentimes
The still, sad music of humanity.
          Lines completed a few miles above Tintern Abbey.
    A sense sublime
Of something far more deeply interfused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean and the living air
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man,—
A motion and a spirit, that impels
All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
And rolls through all things.
          Lines completed a few miles above Tintern Abbey.
    Knowing that Nature never did betray
The heart that loved her.
          Lines completed a few miles above Tintern Abbey.
    Nor greetings where no kindness is, nor all
The dreary intercourse of daily life.
          Lines completed a few miles above Tintern Abbey.
    Men who can hear the Decalogue, and feel
To self-reproach.
          The Old Cumberland Beggar.
    As in the eye of Nature he has lived,
So in the eye of Nature let him die!
          The Old Cumberland Beggar.
    There ’s something in a flying horse,
There ’s something in a huge balloon.
          Peter Bell. Prologue. Stanza 1.
    The common growth of Mother Earth
Suffices me,—her tears, her mirth,
Her humblest mirth and tears.
          Peter Bell. Prologue. Stanza 27.
    Full twenty times was Peter feared,
For once that Peter was respected.
          Peter Bell. Part i. Stanza 3.
    A primrose by a river’s brim
A yellow primrose was to him,
And it was nothing more.
          Peter Bell. Part i. Stanza 12.
    The soft blue sky did never melt
Into his heart; he never felt
The witchery of the soft blue sky!
          Peter Bell. Part i. Stanza 15.
    On a fair prospect some have looked,
And felt, as I have heard them say,
As if the moving time had been
A thing as steadfast as the scene
On which they gazed themselves away.
          Peter Bell. Part i. Stanza 16.
    As if the man had fixed his face,
In many a solitary place,
Against the wind and open sky!
          Peter Bell. Part i. Stanza 16.  2
    One of those heavenly days that cannot die.
    She dwelt among the untrodden ways
  Beside the springs of Dove,—
A maid whom there were none to praise
  And very few to love.
          She dwelt among the untrodden ways.
    A violet by a mossy stone
  Half hidden from the eye;
Fair as a star, when only one
  Is shining in the sky.
          She dwelt among the untrodden ways.
    She lived unknown, and few could know
  When Lucy ceased to be;
But she is in her grave, and oh
  The difference to me!
          She dwelt among the untrodden ways.
    The stars of midnight shall be dear
To her; and she shall lean her ear
  In many a secret place
Where rivulets dance their wayward round,
And beauty born of murmuring sound
  Shall pass into her face.
          Three years she grew in Sun and Shower.
    May no rude hand deface it,
And its forlorn hic jacet!
          Ellen Irwin.
    She gave me eyes, she gave me ears;
And humble cares, and delicate fears;
A heart, the fountain of sweet tears;
  And love and thought and joy.
          The Sparrow’s Nest.
    The child is father of the man. 3
          My heart leaps up when I behold.
        The cattle are grazing,
    Their heads never raising;
There are forty feeding like one!
          The Cock is crowing.
    Sweet childish days, that were as long
As twenty days are now.
          To a Butterfly. I ’ve watched you now a full half-hour.
    Often have I sighed to measure
By myself a lonely pleasure,—
Sighed to think I read a book,
Only read, perhaps, by me.
          To the Small Celandine.
    As high as we have mounted in delight,
In our dejection do we sink as low.
          Resolution and Independence. Stanza 4.
    But how can he expect that others should
Build for him, sow for him, and at his call
Love him, who for himself will take no heed at all?
          Resolution and Independence. Stanza 6.
    I thought of Chatterton, the marvellous boy,
The sleepless soul that perished in his pride;
Of him who walked in glory and in joy,
Following his plough, along the mountain-side.
By our own spirits we are deified;
We Poets in our youth begin in gladness,
But thereof come in the end despondency and madness.
          Resolution and Independence. Stanza 7.
    That heareth not the loud winds when they call,
And moveth all together, if it moves at all.
          Resolution and Independence. Stanza 11.
    Choice word and measured phrase above the reach
Of ordinary men.
          Resolution and Independence. Stanza 14.
    And mighty poets in their misery dead.
          Resolution and Independence. Stanza 17.
    Ne’er saw I, never felt, a calm so deep!
The river glideth at his own sweet will;
Dear God! the very houses seem asleep;
And all that mighty heart is lying still!
          Earth has not anything to show more fair.
    The holy time is quiet as a nun
Breathless with adoration.
          It is a beauteous Evening.
    Men are we, and must grieve when even the shade
Of that which once was great is passed away.
          On the Extinction of the Venetian Republic.
    Thou has left behind
Powers that will work for thee,—air, earth, and skies!
There ’s not a breathing of the common wind
That will forget thee; thou hast great allies;
Thy friends are exultations, agonies,
And love, and man’s unconquerable mind. 4
          To Toussaint L’Ouverture.
    One that would peep and botanize
Upon his mother’s grave.
          A Poet’s Epitaph. Stanza 5.
    He murmurs near the running brooks
A music sweeter than their own.
          A Poet’s Epitaph. Stanza 10.
    And you must love him, ere to you
He will seem worthy of your love.
          A Poet’s Epitaph. Stanza 11.
    The harvest of a quiet eye,
That broods and sleeps on his own heart.
          A Poet’s Epitaph. Stanza 13.
    Yet sometimes, when the secret cup
Of still and serious thought went round,
It seemed as if he drank it up,
He felt with spirit so profound.
    My eyes are dim with childish tears,
My heart is idly stirred,
For the same sound is in my ears
Which in those days I heard.
          The Fountain.
    A happy youth, and their old age
Is beautiful and free.
          The Fountain.
    And often, glad no more,
We wear a face of joy because
We have been glad of yore.
          The Fountain.
    The sweetest thing that ever grew
Beside a human door.
          Lucy Gray. Stanza 2.
        A youth to whom was given
So much of earth, so much of heaven.
    Until a man might travel twelve stout miles,
Or reap an acre of his neighbor’s corn.
          The Brothers.
    Something between a hindrance and a help.
    Drink, pretty creature, drink!
          The Pet Lamb.
    Lady of the Mere,
Sole-sitting by the shores of old romance.
          A narrow Girdle of rough Stones and Crags.
    And he is oft the wisest man
  Who is not wise at all.
          The Oak and the Broom.
    “A jolly place,” said he, “in times of old!
But something ails it now: the spot is cursed.”
          Hart-leap Well. Part ii.
    Hunt half a day for a forgotten dream.
          Hart-leap Well. Part ii.
    Never to blend our pleasure or our pride
With sorrow of the meanest thing that feels.
          Hart-leap Well. Part ii.
    Plain living and high thinking are no more.
The homely beauty of the good old cause
Is gone; our peace, our fearful innocence,
And pure religion breathing household laws.
          O, Friend! I know not which way I must look.
    Milton! thou should’st be living at this hour:
England hath need of thee!
     .     .     .     .     .     .
Thy soul was like a star, and dwelt apart:
So didst thou travel on life’s common way
In cheerful godliness.
          London, 1802.
    We must be free or die who speak the tongue
That Shakespeare spake, the faith and morals hold
Which Milton held.
          It is not to be thought of.
    A noticeable man, with large gray eyes.
          Stanzas written in Thomson’s Castle of Indolence.
    We meet thee, like a pleasant thought,
When such are wanted.
          To the Daisy.
    The poet’s darling.
          To the Daisy.
    Thou unassuming commonplace
Of Nature.
          To the same Flower.
    Oft on the dappled turf at ease
I sit, and play with similes,
Loose type of things through all degrees.
          To the same Flower.
    Sweet Mercy! to the gates of heaven
This minstrel lead, his sins forgiven;
The rueful conflict, the heart riven
  With vain endeavour,
And memory of Earth’s bitter leaven
  Effaced forever.
          Thoughts suggested on the Banks of the Nith.
    The best of what we do and are,
Just God, forgive!
          Thoughts suggested on the Banks of the Nith.
    For old, unhappy, far-off things,
And battles long ago.
          The Solitary Reaper.
    Some natural sorrow, loss, or pain
That has been, and may be again.
          The Solitary Reaper.
    The music in my heart I bore
Long after it was heard no more.
          The Solitary Reaper.
    Yon foaming flood seems motionless as ice;
Its dizzy turbulence eludes the eye,
Frozen by distance.
          Address to Kilchurn Castle.
    A famous man is Robin Hood,
The English ballad-singer’s joy.
          Rob Roy’s Grave.
        Because the good old rule
Sufficeth them,—the simple plan,
That they should take who have the power,
    And they should keep who can.
          Rob Roy’s Grave.
    The Eagle, he was lord above,
  And Rob was lord below.
          Rob Roy’s Grave.
    A brotherhood of venerable trees.
          Sonnet composed at ———— Castle.
    Let beeves and home-bred kine partake
The sweets of Burn-mill meadow;
The swan on still St. Mary’s Lake
Float double, swan and shadow!
          Yarrow Unvisited.
    Every gift of noble origin
Is breathed upon by Hope’s perpetual breath.
          These Times strike Monied Worldlings.
    A remnant of uneasy light.
          The Matron of Jedborough.
    Oh for a single hour of that Dundee
Who on that day the word of onset gave! 5
          Sonnet, in the Pass of Killicranky.
    O Cuckoo! shall I call thee bird,
Or but a wandering voice?
          To the Cuckoo.
    She was a phantom of delight
When first she gleamed upon my sight,
A lovely apparition, sent
To be a moment’s ornament;
Her eyes as stars of twilight fair,
Like twilights too her dusky hair,
But all things else about her drawn
From May-time and the cheerful dawn.
          She was a Phantom of Delight.
    A creature not too bright or good
For human nature’s daily food;
For transient sorrows, simple wiles,
Praise, blame, love, kisses, tears, and smiles.
          She was a Phantom of Delight.
    The reason firm, the temperate will,
Endurance, foresight, strength, and skill;
A perfect woman, nobly planned,
To warn, to comfort, and command.
          She was a Phantom of Delight.
    That inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude.
          I wandered lonely.
    To be a Prodigal’s favourite,—then, worse truth,
A Miser’s pensioner,—behold our lot!
          The Small Celandine.
    Stern Daughter of the Voice of God! 6
          Ode to Duty.
    A light to guide, a rod
To check the erring, and reprove.
          Ode to Duty.
    Give unto me, made lowly wise,
The spirit of self-sacrifice;
The confidence of reason give,
And in the light of truth thy bondman let me live!
          Ode to Duty.
    The light that never was, on sea or land;
The consecration, and the Poet’s dream.
          Suggested by a Picture of Peele Castle in a Storm. Stanza 4.
    Shalt show us how divine a thing
A woman may be made.
          To a Young Lady. Dear Child of Nature.
    But an old age serene and bright,
And lovely as a Lapland night,
  Shall lead thee to thy grave.
          To a Young Lady. Dear Child of Nature.
    Where the statue stood
Of Newton, with his prism and silent face,
The marble index of a mind forever
Voyaging through strange seas of thought alone.
          The Prelude.Book iii.
    Another morn
Risen on mid-noon. 7
          The Prelude.Book vi.
    Bliss was it in that dawn to be alive,
But to be young was very heaven!
          The Prelude.Book xi.
    The budding rose above the rose full blown.
          The Prelude.Book xi.
    There is
One great society alone on earth:
The noble living and the noble dead.
          The Prelude.Book xi.
    Who, doomed to go in company with Pain
And Fear and Bloodshed,—miserable train!—
Turns his necessity to glorious gain.
          Character of the Happy Warrior.
    Controls them and subdues, transmutes, bereaves
Of their bad influence, and their good receives.
          Character of the Happy Warrior.
    But who, if he be called upon to face
Some awful moment to which Heaven has joined
Great issues, good or bad for humankind,
Is happy as a lover.
          Character of the Happy Warrior.
    And through the heat of conflict keeps the law
In calmness made, and sees what he foresaw.
          Character of the Happy Warrior.
    Whom neither shape of danger can dismay,
Nor thought of tender happiness betray.
          Character of the Happy Warrior.
    Like,—but oh how different!
          Yes, it was the Mountain Echo.
    The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers:
Little we see in Nature that is ours.
          Miscellaneous Sonnets. Part i. xxxiii.
    Great God! I ’d rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn,
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea,
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.
          Miscellaneous Sonnets. Part i. xxxiii.
    Maidens withering on the stalk. 8
          Personal Talk. Stanza 1.
    Sweetest melodies
Are those that are by distance made more sweet. 9
          Personal Talk. Stanza 2.
    Dreams, books, are each a world; and books, we know,
Are a substantial world, both pure and good.
Round these, with tendrils strong as flesh and blood,
Our pastime and our happiness will grow.
          Personal Talk. Stanza 3.
    The gentle Lady married to the Moor,
And heavenly Una with her milk-white lamb.
          Personal Talk. Stanza 3.
    Blessings be with them, and eternal praise,
Who gave us nobler loves, and nobler cares!—
The Poets, who on earth have made us heirs
Of truth and pure delight by heavenly lays.
          Personal Talk. Stanza 4.
    A power is passing from the earth.
          Lines on the expected Dissolution of Mr. Fox.
    The rainbow comes and goes,
And lovely is the rose.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 2.
        The sunshine is a glorious birth;
    But yet I know, where’er I go,
That there hath passed away a glory from the earth.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 2.
    Where is it now, the glory and the dream?
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 5.
    Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:
The soul that rises with us, our life’s star,
    Hath had elsewhere its setting,
      And cometh from afar.
    Not in entire forgetfulness,
    And not in utter nakedness,
But trailing clouds of glory, do we come
    From God, who is our home:
Heaven lies about us in our infancy.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 5.
    At length the man perceives it die away,
And fade into the light of common day.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 5.
    The thought of our past years in me doth breed
Perpetual benediction.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 9.
              Those obstinate questionings
    Of sense and outward things,
    Fallings from us, vanishings,
    Blank misgivings of a creature
Moving about in worlds not realized,
High instincts before which our mortal nature
Did tremble like a guilty thing surprised.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 9.
    Truths that wake,
To perish never.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 9.
        Though inland far we be,
Our souls have sight of that immortal sea
    Which brought us hither.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 9.
    Though nothing can bring back the hour
Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 10.
    In years that bring the philosophic mind.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 10.
    The clouds that gather round the setting sun
Do take a sober colouring from an eye
That hath kept watch o’er man’s mortality.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 11.
    To me the meanest flower that blows can give
Thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears.
          Intimations of Immortality. Stanza 11.
    Two voices are there: one is of the sea,
One of the mountains,—each a mighty voice.
          Thought of a Briton on the Subjugation of Switzerland.
    Earth helped him with the cry of blood. 10
          Song at the Feast of Broughton Castle.
    The silence that is in the starry sky.
    The monumental pomp of age
Was with this goodly personage;
A stature undepressed in size,
Unbent, which rather seemed to rise
In open victory o’er the weight
Of seventy years, to loftier height.
          The White Doe of Rylstone. Canto iii.
    “What is good for a bootless bene?”
With these dark words begins my tale;
And their meaning is, Whence can comfort spring
When prayer is of no avail?
          Force of Prayer.
    A few strong instincts, and a few plain rules.
          Alas! what boots the long laborious Quest?
    Of blessed consolations in distress.
          Preface to the Excursion. (Edition, 1814.)
    The vision and the faculty divine;
Yet wanting the accomplishment of verse.
          The Excursion.Book i.
    The imperfect offices of prayer and praise.
          The Excursion.Book i.
    That mighty orb of song,
The divine Milton.
          The Excursion.Book i.
    The good die first, 11
And they whose hearts are dry as summer dust
Burn to the socket.
          The Excursion.Book i.
    This dull product of a scoffer’s pen.
          The Excursion.Book ii.
    With battlements that on their restless fronts
Bore stars.
          The Excursion.Book ii.
    Wisdom is ofttimes nearer when we stoop
Than when we soar.
          The Excursion.Book iii.
    Wrongs unredressed, or insults unavenged.
          The Excursion.Book iii.
    Monastic brotherhood, upon rock
          The Excursion.Book iii.
    The intellectual power, through words and things,
Went sounding on a dim and perilous way! 12
          The Excursion.Book iii.
    Society became my glittering bride,
And airy hopes my children.
          The Excursion.Book iii.
    And the most difficult of tasks to keep
Heights which the soul is competent to gain.
          The Excursion.Book iv.
    There is a luxury in self-dispraise;
And inward self-disparagement affords
To meditative spleen a grateful feast.
          The Excursion.Book iv.
    Recognizes ever and anon
The breeze of Nature stirring in his soul.
          The Excursion.Book iv.
    Pan himself,
The simple shepherd’s awe-inspiring god!
          The Excursion.Book iv.
    I have seen
A curious child, who dwelt upon a tract
Of inland ground, applying to his ear
The convolutions of a smooth-lipped shell,
To which, in silence hushed, his very soul
Listened intensely; and his countenance soon
Brightened with joy, for from within were heard
Murmurings, whereby the monitor expressed
Mysterious union with his native sea. 13
          The Excursion.Book iv.
    So build we up the being that we are.
          The Excursion.Book iv.
    One in whom persuasion and belief
Had ripened into faith, and faith become
A passionate intuition.
          The Excursion.Book iv.
    Spires whose “silent finger points to heaven.” 14
          The Excursion.Book vi.
    Ah, what a warning for a thoughtless man,
Could field or grove, could any spot of earth,
Show to his eye an image of the pangs
Which it hath witnessed,—render back an echo
Of the sad steps by which it hath been trod!
          The Excursion.Book vi.
    And when the stream
Which overflowed the soul was passed away,
A consciousness remained that it had left
Deposited upon the silent shore
Of memory images and precious thoughts
That shall not die, and cannot be destroyed.
          The Excursion.Book vii.
    Wisdom married to immortal verse. 15
          The Excursion.Book vii.
    A man he seems of cheerful yesterdays
And confident to-morrows.
          The Excursion.Book vii.
    The primal duties shine aloft, like stars;
The charities that soothe and heal and bless
Are scattered at the feet of man like flowers.
          The Excursion.Book ix.
    By happy chance we saw
A twofold image: on a grassy bank
A snow-white ram, and in the crystal flood
Another and the same! 16
          The Excursion.Book ix.
    The gods approve
The depth, and not the tumult, of the soul.
    Mightier far
Than strength of nerve or sinew, or the sway
Of magic potent over sun and star,
Is Love, though oft to agony distrest,
And though his favorite seat be feeble woman’s breast.
    Elysian beauty, melancholy grace,
Brought from a pensive though a happy place.
    He spake of love, such love as spirits feel
In worlds whose course is equable and pure;
No fears to beat away, no strife to heal,—
The past unsighed for, and the future sure.
    Of all that is most beauteous, imaged there
In happier beauty; more pellucid streams,
An ampler ether, a diviner air,
And fields invested with purpureal gleams.
    Yet tears to human suffering are due;
And mortal hopes defeated and o’erthrown
Are mourned by man, and not by man alone.
    But shapes that come not at an earthly call
Will not depart when mortal voices bid.
    But thou that didst appear so fair
  To fond imagination,
Dost rival in the light of day
  Her delicate creation.
          Yarrow Visited.
    ’T is hers to pluck the amaranthine flower
Of faith, and round the sufferer’s temples bind
Wreaths that endure affliction’s heaviest shower,
And do not shrink from sorrow’s keenest wind.
          Weak is the Will of Man.
    We bow our heads before Thee, and we laud
And magnify thy name Almighty God!
But man is thy most awful instrument
In working out a pure intent.
          Ode. Imagination before Content.
    Sad fancies do we then affect,
In luxury of disrespect
To our own prodigal excess
Of too familiar happiness.
          Ode to Lycoris.
    That kill the bloom before its time,
And blanch, without the owner’s crime,
The most resplendent hair.
          Lament of Mary Queen of Scots.
    The sightless Milton, with his hair
Around his placid temples curled;
And Shakespeare at his side,—a freight,
If clay could think and mind were weight,
For him who bore the world!
          The Italian Itinerant.
    Meek Nature’s evening comment on the shows
That for oblivion take their daily birth
From all the fuming vanities of earth.
          Sky-Prospect from the Plain of France.
    Turning, for them who pass, the common dust
Of servile opportunity to gold.
          Desultory Stanza.
Learned and wise, hath perished utterly,
Nor leaves her speech one word to aid the sigh
That would lament her.
          Ecclesiastical Sonnets. Part i. xxv.Missions and Travels.
    As thou these ashes, little brook, wilt bear
Into the Avon, Avon to the tide
Of Severn, Severn to the narrow seas,
Into main ocean they, this deed accursed
An emblem yields to friends and enemies
How the bold teacher’s doctrine, sanctified
By truth, shall spread, throughout the world dispersed. 17
          Ecclesiastical Sonnets. Part ii. xvii.To Wickliffe.
    The feather, whence the pen
Was shaped that traced the lives of these good men,
Dropped from an angel’s wing. 18
          Ecclesiastical Sonnets. Part iii. v.Walton’s Book of Lives.
    Meek Walton’s heavenly memory.
          Ecclesiastical Sonnets. Part iii. v.Walton’s Book of Lives.
    But who would force the soul tilts with a straw
Against a champion cased in adamant.
          Ecclesiastical Sonnets. Part iii. vii.Persecution of the Scottish Covenanters.
    Where music dwells
Lingering and wandering on as loth to die,
Like thoughts whose very sweetness yieldeth proof
That they were born for immortality.
          Ecclesiastical Sonnets. Part iii. xliii.Inside of King’s Chapel, Cambridge.
    Or shipwrecked, kindles on the coast
False fires, that others may be lost.
          To the Lady Fleming.
    But hushed be every thought that springs
From out the bitterness of things.
          Elegiac Stanzas. Addressed to Sir G. H. B.
    To the solid ground
Of Nature trusts the mind that builds for aye.
          A Volant Tribe of Bards on Earth.
    Soft is the music that would charm forever;
The flower of sweetest smell is shy and lowly.
          Not Love, not War.
    True beauty dwells in deep retreats,
  Whose veil is unremoved
Till heart with heart in concord beats,
  And the lover is beloved.
          To ———. Let other Bards of Angels sing.
    Type of the wise who soar but never roam,
True to the kindred points of heaven and home.
          To a Skylark.
    A Briton even in love should be
A subject, not a slave!
          Ere with Cold Beads of Midnight Dew.
    Scorn not the sonnet. Critic, you have frowned,
Mindless of its just honours; with this key
Shakespeare unlocked his heart. 19
          Scorn not the Sonnet.
    And when a damp
Fell round the path of Milton, in his hand
The thing became a trumpet; whence he blew
Soul-animating strains,—alas! too few.
          Scorn not the Sonnet.
    But he is risen, a later star of dawn.
          A Morning Exercise.
    Bright gem instinct with music, vocal spark.
          A Morning Exercise.
    When his veering gait
And every motion of his starry train
Seem governed by a strain
Of music, audible to him alone.
          The Triad.
    Alas! how little can a moment show
Of an eye where feeling plays
In ten thousand dewy rays:
A face o’er which a thousand shadows go!
          The Triad.
    Stern Winter loves a dirge-like sound.
          On the Power of Sound. xii.
    The bosom-weight, your stubborn gift,
That no philosophy can lift.
    Nature’s old felicities.
          The Trosachs.
    Myriads of daisies have shone forth in flower
Near the lark’s nest, and in their natural hour
Have passed away; less happy than the one
That by the unwilling ploughshare died to prove
The tender charm of poetry and love.
          Poems composed during a Tour in the Summer of 1833.xxxvii.
    Small service is true service while it lasts.
Of humblest friends, bright creature! scorn not one:
The daisy, by the shadow that it casts,
Protects the lingering dewdrop from the sun.
          To a Child. Written in her Album.
    Since every mortal power of Coleridge
Was frozen at its marvellous source,
The rapt one, of the godlike forehead,
The heaven-eyed creature sleeps in earth:
And Lamb, the frolic and the gentle,
Has vanished from his lonely hearth.
          Extempore Effusion upon the Death of James Hogg.
    How fast has brother followed brother,
From sunshine to the sunless land!
          Extempore Effusion upon the Death of James Hogg.
    Those old credulities, to Nature dear,
Shall they no longer bloom upon the stock
Of history?
          Memorials of a Tour in Italy. iv.
    How does the meadow-flower its bloom unfold?
Because the lovely little flower is free
Down to its root, and in that freedom bold.
          A Poet! He hath put his Heart to School.
    Minds that have nothing to confer
  Find little to perceive.
          Yes, Thou art Fair.
Note 1.
The intellectual power, through words and things,
Went sounding on a dim and perilous way!
The Excursion, book iii. [back]
Note 2.
The original edition (London, 1819, 8vo) had the following as the fourth stanza from the end of Part i., which was omitted in all subsequent editions:—

Is it a party in a parlour?
Crammed just as they on earth were crammed,—
Some sipping punch, some sipping tea,
But, as you by their faces see,
All silent and all damned. [back]
Note 3.
See Milton, Quotation 207. [back]
Note 4.
See Gray, Quotation 15. [back]
Note 5.
It was on this occasion [the failure in energy of Lord Mar at the battle of Sheriffmuir] that Gordon of Glenbucket made the celebrated exclamation, “Oh for an hour of Dundee!”—Mahon: History of England, vol. i. p. 184.

Oh for one hour of blind old Dandolo,
The octogenarian chief, Byzantium’s conquering foe!
Lord Byron: Childe Harold, canto iv. stanza 12. [back]
Note 6.
See Milton, Quotation 185. [back]
Note 7.
See Milton, Quotation 132. [back]
Note 8.
See Shakespeare, Quotation 1. [back]
Note 9.
See Collins, Quotation 8. [back]
Note 10.
This line is from Sir John Beaumont’s “Battle of Bosworth Field.” [back]
Note 11.
Heaven gives its favourites—early death.—Lord Byron: Childe Harold, canto iv. stanza 102. Also Don Juan, canto iv. stanza 12.

Quem Di diligunt
Adolescens moritur
(He whom the gods favor dies in youth).
Plautus: Bacchides, act iv. sc. 7. [back]
Note 12.
See Quotation 4. [back]
Note 13.
But I have sinuous shell of pearly hue;
. . . . .
Shake one, and it awakens; then apply
Its polisht lips to your attentive ear,
And it remembers its august abodes,
And murmurs as the ocean murmurs there.
Walter Savage Landor: Gebir, book v. [back]
Note 14.
An instinctive taste teaches men to build their churches in flat countries with spire steeples, which, as they cannot be referred to any other object, point as with silent finger to the sky and stars.—Samuel Taylor Coleridge: The Friend, No. 14. [back]
Note 15.
See Milton, Quotation 297. [back]
Note 16.
Another and the same.—Darwin: The Botanic Garden. [back]
Note 17.
In obedience to the order of the Council of Constance (1415), the remains of Wickliffe were exhumed and burned to ashes, and these cast into the Swift, a neighbouring brook running hard by; and “thus this brook hath conveyed his ashes into Avon, Avon into Severn, Severn into the narrow seas, they into the main ocean. And thus the ashes of Wickliffe are the emblem of his doctrine, which now is dispersed all the world over.”—Thomas Fuller: Church History, sect. ii. book iv. paragraph 53.

What Heraclitus would not laugh, or what Democritus would not weep?… For though they digged up his body, burned his bones, and drowned his ashes, yet the word of God and truth of his doctrine, with the fruit and success thereof, they could not burn.—Fox: Book of Martyrs, vol. i. p. 606 (edition, 1611).

“Some prophet of that day said,—
“‘The Avon to the Severn runs,
The Severn to the sea;
And Wickliffe’s dust shall spread abroad
Wide as the waters be.’”
Daniel Webster: Address before the Sons of New Hampshire, 1849.

These lines are similarly quoted by the Rev. John Cumming in the “Voices of the Dead.” [back]
Note 18.
The pen wherewith thou dost so heavenly sing
Made of a quill from an angel’s wing.
Henry Constable: Sonnet.

Whose noble praise
Deserves a quill pluckt from an angel’s wing.
Dorothy Berry: Sonnet. [back]
Note 19.
With this same key
Shakespeare unlocked his heart.
Robert Browning: House. [back]