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Whilst all the stars that round her burn,
And all the planets in their turn,
Confirm the tidings as they roll,
And spread the truth from pole to pole.
What though in solemn silence, all
Move round this dark, terrestrial ball ?
What though no real voice nor sound
Amidst their radiant orbs be found ?
In Reason's ear they all rejoice,
And utter forth a glorious voice,
Forever singing as they shine:
“ The hand that made us is divine!”
A FRAGMENT of a rainbow bright
Through the moist air I see,
All dark and damp on yonder height,
All bright and clear to me.
An hour ago the storm was here,
The gleam was far behind,
So will our joys and grief appear,
When earth has ceased to blind.
Grief will be joy if on its edge
Fall soft that holiest ray,
Joy will be grief if no faint pledge
Be there of heavenly day.
THE frugal snail, with forecast of repose,
Carries his house with him where'er he goes ;
Peeps out, — and if there comes a shower of rain,
Retreats to his small domicile again.
Touch but a tip of him, a horn — 'tis well,
He curls up in his sanctuary shell.
He's his own landlord, his own tenant; stay
Long as he will, he dreads no Quarter Day.
Himself he boards and lodges; both invites
And feasts himself; sleeps with himself o' nights.
He spares the upholsterer trouble to procure
Chattels; himself is his own furniture,
And his sole riches. Wheresoe'er he roam, —
Knock when you will, — he's sure to be at home.
A LION cub, of sordid mind,
Avoided all the lion kind;
Fond of applause, he sought the beasts
Of vulgar and ignoble feasts;
With asses all his time he spent,
Their club's perpetual president.
He caught their manners, looks, and airs;
An ass in everything but ears !
If e'er his Highness meant a joke,
They grinn'd applause before he spoke;
But at each word what shouts of praise ;
“Goodness! how natural he brays !”
Elate with flattery and conceit,
He seeks his royal sire's retreat ;
Forward and fond to show his parts,
His Highness brays; the lion starts.
“Puppy! that curs'd vociferation
Betrays thy life and conversation :
Coxcombs, an ever-noisy race,
Are trumpets of their own disgrace.'
“Why so severe ?” the cub replies ; “Our senate always held me wise!”
“How weak is pride,” returns the sire: “ All fools are vain when fools admire! But know, what stupid asses prize, Lions and noble beasts despise.”
TIGER, tiger, burning bright
In the forest of the night!
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry ?
In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the ardor of thine eyes ?
On what wings dare he aspire –
What the hand dare seize the fire ?
And what shoulder, and what art
Could twist the sinews of thy heart ?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand form'd thy dread feet ?
What the hammer, what the chain,
In what furnace was thy brain ?
Did God smile his work to see ?
Did He who made the lamb make thee?
THE KITTEN AND FALLING LEAVES.
SEE the kitten on the wall,
Sporting with the leaves that fall,
Withered leaves one-two -- and three-
From the lofty elder tree !
Through the calm and frosty air
Of this morning bright and fair,
Eddying round and round they sink
Softly, slowly: one might think
From the motions that are made,
Every little leaf conveyed
Sylph or fairy hither tending,
To this lower world descending,
Each invisible and mute,
In his wavering parachute.
But the kitten, how she starts,
Crouches, stretches, paws, and darts !
First at one, and then its fellow,
Just as light and just as yellow ;
There are many now
Now they stop and there are none :
What intenseness of desire
In her upward eye of fire !
With a tiger-leap, half-way
Now she meets the coming prey,
Lets it go as fast, and then
Has it in her power again :
Now she works with three or four,
Like an Indian conjuror;
Quick as he in feats of art,
Far beyond in joy of heart.
Oh, to be in England
Now that April's there,
And whoever wakes in England
Sees, some morning, unaware,
That the lowest boughs and the brushwood sheaf
Round the elm-tree bole are in tiny leaf,
While the chaffinch sings on the orchard bough
In England — now!