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Nuns fret not at their Convent's narrow room;
And Hermits are contented with their Cells;
And Students with their pensive Citadels:
Maids at the Wheel, the Weaver at his Loom,
Sit blithe and happy; Bees that soar for bloom,
High as the highest Peak of Furness Fells,
Will murmur by the hour in Foxglove bells :
In truth, the prison, unto which we doom
Ourselves, no prison is: and hence to me,
In sundry moods, 'twas pastime to be bound
Within the Sonnet's scanty plot of ground:
Pleas'd if some Souls (for such there needs must be)
Who have felt the weight of too much liberty,
Should find short solace there, as I have found.




How sweet it is, when mother Fancy rocks

The wayward brain, to saunter through a wood!

An old place, full of many a lovely brood,

Tall trees, green arbours, and ground flowers in flocks;

And Wild rose tiptoe upon hawthorn stocks,

Like to a bonny Lass, who plays her pranks

At Wakes and Fairs with wandering Mountebanks,

When she stands cresting the Clown's head, and mocks

The crowd beneath her. Verily I think,

Such place to me is sometimes like a dream

Or map of the whole world: thoughts, link by link,

Enter through ears and eyesight, with such gleam

Of all things, that at last in fear I shrink,

And leap at once from the delicious stream.

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