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    <strong>THE NIGHTINGALE;A VERSATIONAL POEM, WRITTEN IN APRIL, 1798.</strong>

    No cloud, no relique of the sunken day

    Distinguishes the West, no long thin slip

    Of sullen Light, no obscure trembling hues.

    e, we will rest on this old mossy Bridge!

    You see the glimmer of the stream beh,

    But hear no murmuring: it ?ows silently

    Oer its soft bed of verdure. All is still,

    A balmy night! and tho the stars be dim,

    Yet let us think upon the vernal showers

    That gladden the greeh, and we shall ?nd

    A pleasure in the dimness of the stars.

    And hark! the Nightingale begins its song,

    &quot;Most musical, most melancholy&quot;[1] Bird!

    A melancholy Bird? O idle thought!

    In nature there is nothing melancholy.

    --But some night-wandering Man, whose heart iercd

    With the remembrance of a grievous wrong,

    Or slow distemper lected love,

    (And so, poor Wretch! ?lld all things with himself

    And made all gentle sounds tell back the tale

    Of his own sorrows) he and such as he

    First namd these notes a melancholy strain;

    And many a poet echoes the ceit,

    Poet, who hath been building up the rhyme

    When he had better far have stretchd his limbs

    Beside a brook in mossy forest-dell

    By sun or moonlight, to the in?uxes

    Of shapes and sounds and shifting elements

    Surrendering his whole spirit, of his song

    And of his fame fetful! so his fame

    Should share in natures immortality,

    A venerable thing! and so his song

    Should make all nature lovelier, and itself

    Be lovd, like nature!--But twill not be so;

    And youths and maidens most poetical

    Who lose the deepning twilights of the spring

    In ball-rooms and hot theatres, they still

    Full of meek sympathy must heave their sighs

    Oer Philomelas pity-pleading strains.

    My Friend, and my Friends Sister! we have learnt

    A different lore: we may not thus profane

    Natures sweet voices always full of love

    And joyais the merry Nightingale

    That crowds, and hurries, and precipitates

    With fast thick warble his delicious notes,

    As he were fearful, that an April night

    Would be too short for him to utter forth

    His love-t, and disburthen his full soul

    Of all its musid<dfn></dfn> I know a grove

    Of large extent, hard by a castle huge

    Which the great lord inhabits not: and so

    This grove is wild with tangling underwood,

    And the trim walks are broken up, and grass,

    Thin grass and king-cups grow withihs.

    But never elsewhere in one place I knew

    So many Nightingales: and far and near

    In wood and thicket over the wide grove

    They ansrovoke each others songs--

    With s<samp>藏书网</samp>kirmish and capricious passagings,

    And murmurs musical and swift jug jug

    And one low piping sound more sweet than all--

    Stirring the air with su harmony,

    That should you close your eyes, you might almost

    Fet it was not day! On moonlight bushes,

    Whose dewy lea?ts a>藏书网</a>re but half disclosd,

    You may perce behold them owigs,

    Their bright, bright eyes, their eyes both bright and full,

    Glistning, while many a glow-worm in the shade

    Lights up her love-torch.

    A most gentle maid

    Who dwelleth in her hospitable home

    Hard by the Castle, and at latest eve,

    (Even like a Lady vowd and dedicate

    To something more than nature in the grove)

    Glides thro the pathways; she knows all their notes,

    That gentle Maid! and oft, a moments <s></s>space,

    What time the moon was lost behind a cloud,

    Hath heard a pause of sileill the Moon

    Emerging, hath awakeh and sky

    With oion, and those wakeful Birds

    Have all burst forth in choral minstrelsy,

    As if one quid sudden Gale had swept

    An hundred airy harps! And she hath watchd

    Many a Nightingale perch giddily

    On blosmy twig still swinging from the breeze,

    And to that motion tune his wanton song,

    Like tipsy Joy that reels with tossing head.

    Farewell, O Warbler! till to-morrow eve,

    And you, my friends! farewell, a short farewell!

    We have been l long and pleasantly,

    And now for our dear homes.--That strain again!

    Full fain it would delay me!--My dear Babe,

    Who, capable of no articulate sound,

    Mars all things with his imitative lisp,

    How he would place his hand beside his ear,

    His little hand, the small fer up,

    And bid us listen! And I deem it wise

    To make him Natures playmate. He knows well

    The evening star: and once when he awoke

    In most distressful mood (some inain

    Had made up that strahing, an infants dream)

    I hurried with him to our orchard plot,

    And he beholds the moon, and hushd at once

    Suspends his sobs, and laughs most silently,

    While his fair eyes that swam with undropt tears

    Did glitter in the yellow moon-beam! Well--

    It is a fathers tale. But if that Heaven

    Should give me life, his childhood shall grow up

    Familiar with these songs, that with the night

    He may associate Joy! Once more farewell,

    Sweet Nightingale! once more, my friends! farewell.

    <span style="cray">[1] &quot;_Most musical, most melancholy_.&quot; This passage in Miltonpossesses an excellence far superior to that of meredescription: it is spoken in the character of the melanan, and has therefore a _dramatic_ propriety. The Author makesthis remark, to rescue himself from the charge of havingalluded with levity to a line in Milton: a charge than whie could be more painful to him, except perhaps that ofhaving ridiculed his Bible.</span>

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