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English Poetry II: From Collins to Fitzgerald.
The Harvard Classics. 1909–14.

Percy Bysshe Shelley

497. Invocation

RARELY, rarely comest thou,

Spirit of Delight!

Wherefore hast thou left me now

Many a day and night?

Many a weary night and day

’Tis since thou art fled away.

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.

As a lizard with the shade

Of a trembling leaf,

Thou with sorrow art dismay’d;

Even the sighs of grief

Reproach thee, that thou art not near,

And reproach thou wilt not hear.

Let me set my mournful ditty

To a merry measure;—

Thou wilt never come for pity,

Thou wilt come for pleasure;—

Pity thou wilt cut away

Those cruel wings, and thou wilt stay.

I love all that thou lovest,

Spirit of Delight!

The fresh Earth in new leaves drest

And the starry night;

Autumn evening, and the morn

When the golden mists are born.

I love snow 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.

I love tranquil solitude,

And such society

As is quiet, wise, and good;

Between thee and me

What diff’rence? but thou dost possess

The things I seek, nor love them less.

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! O come!

Make once more my heart thy home!