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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
England: Vols. I–IV. 1876–79.


Southampton Castle

By William Lisle Bowles (1762–1850)

THE MOONLIGHT is without, and I could lose

An hour to gaze, though taste and splendor here,

As in a lustrous fairy palace, reign!

Regardless of the lights that blaze within,

I look upon the wide and silent sea

That in the shadowy moonbeam sleeps.
How still,

Nor heard to murmur or to move, it lies;

Shining in Fancy’s eye, like the soft gleam,

The eve of pleasant yesterdays!
The clouds

Have all sunk westward, and the host of stars

Seem in their watches set as gazing on;

While night’s fair empress, sole and beautiful,

Holds her illustrious course through the mid heavens

Supreme, the spectacle, for such she looks,

Of gazing worlds!
How different is the scene

That lies beneath this archéd window’s height!

The town that murmured through the busy day

Is hushed; the roofs one solemn breadth of shade

Veils; but the towers, and taper spires above,

The pinnets and the gray embattled walls,

And masts that throng around the southern pier

Shine all distinct in light; and mark, remote

O’er yonder elms, St. Mary’s modest fane.