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less unreal than any other English poet—if we except perhaps Ramsay,—who has tried this form of composition. He, again like Wordsworth, must be read in selections, if he is to be read with unmixed enjoyment; but in his best passages-and they are not few—he will send to the listener wafts of pure and delightful music as the young figure steps across the moors,
δοχμιάν δια κλιτύων
W. T. ARNOLD.
Marina and the river-god.
The fall of her did make the god below,
Starting, to wonder whence that noise should grow:
Whether some ruder clown in spite did fling
A lamb, untimely fall'n, into his spring :
And if it were, he solemnly then swore
His spring should flow some other way: no more
Should it in wanton manner e'er be seen
To writhe in knots, or give a gown of green
Unto their meadows, nor be seen to play,
Nor drive the rushy-mills, that in his way
The shepherds made : but rather for their lot
Send them red water that their sheep should rot.
And with such moorish springs embrace their field
That it should nought but moss and rushes yield.
Upon each hillock where the merry boy
Sits piping in the shades his notes of joy,
He'd show his anger by some flood at hand
And turn the same into a running sand.
Thus spake the god : but when as in the water
The corpse came sinking down, he spied the matter,
And catching softly in his arms the maid
He brought her up, and having gently laid
Her on his bank, did presently command
Those waters in her to come forth : at hand
They straight came gushing out, and did contest
Which chiefly should obey their god's behest.
This done, her then pale lips he straight did ope
And from his silver hair let fall a drop
Into her mouth, of such an excellence,
That called back life, which grieved to part from thence
Being for troth assur'd that than this one
She ne'er possess'd a fairer mansion.
Then did the god her body forwards steep,
And cast her for a while into a sleep;
Sitting still by her did his full view take
Of nature's master-piece. Here for her sake
My pipe in silence as of right shall mourn,
Till from the watering we again return.
The scented grove. Then walked they to a grove but near at hand, Where fiery Titan had but small command, Because the leaves conspiring kept his beams, For fear of hurting, when he's in extremes, The under-flowers, which did enrich the ground With sweeter scents than in Arabia found. The earth doth yield, which they through pores exhale, Earth's best of odours, th’ aromatical : Like to that smell which oft our sense descries Within a field which long unplowed lies, Somewhat before the setting of the sun ; And where the rainbow in the horizon Doth pitch her tips : or as when in the prime, The earth being troubled with a drought long time, The hand of heaven his spongy clouds doth strain, And throws into her lap a shower of rain ; She sendeth up, conceived from the sun, A sweet perfume and exhalation. Not all the ointments brought from Delos isle ; Nor from the confines of seven-headed Nile ; Nor that brought whence Phenicians have abodes, Nor Cyprus' wild vine-flowers, nor that of Rhodes, Nor roses' oil from Naples, Capua, Saffron confected in Cilicia; Nor that of quinces nor of marjoram That ever from the isle of Coos came. Nor these, nor any else, though ne'er so rare, Could with this place for sweetest smells compare.
As when a maid taught from her mother wing,
To tune her voice unto a silver string,
When she should run, she rests ; rests when should run,
And ends her lesson having now begun :
Now misseth she her stop, then in her song,
And doing of her best she still is wrong,
Begins again, and yet again strikes false,
Then in a chafe forsakes her virginals,
And yet within an hour she tries, anew,
That with her daily pains, Art's chiefest due,
She gains that charining skill : and can no less
Tame the fierce walkers of the wilderness,
Than that Eagrian harpist, for whose lay,
Tigers with hunger pined and left their prey.
So Riot, when he gan to climb the hill,
Here maketh haste and there long standeth still,
Now getteth up a step, then falls again,
Yet not despairing all his nerves doth strain
To clamber up anew, then slide his feet,
And down he comes : but gives not over yet,
For, with the maid, he hopes a time will be
When merit shall be linked with industry.
The hunted squirrel.
Then as a nimble squirrel from the wood,
Ranging the hedges for his filbert-food,
Sits pertly on a bough his brown nuts cracking,
And from the shell the sweet white kernel taking,
Till with their crooks and bags a sort of boys,
To share with him, come with so great a noise
That he is forced to leave a nut nigh broke,
And for his life leap to a neighbour oak,
Thence to a beech, thence to a row of ashes ;
Whilst through the quagmires and red water plashes
The boys run dabbling thorough thick and thin,
One tears his hose, another breaks his shin,
This, torn and tatter'd, hath with much ado
Got by the briars; and that hath lost his shoe:
This drops his band ; that headlong falls for haste ;
Another cries behind for being last :
With sticks and stones, and many a sounding hollow,
The little fool with no small sport they follow,
Whilst he from tree to tree, from spray to spray,
Gets to the wood, and hides him in his dray.
A metamorphosis. And as a lovely maiden, pure and chaste, With naked ivory neck and gown unlaced, Within her chamber, when the day is filed, Makes poor her garments to enrich her bed : First, puts she off her lily-silken gown, That shrinks for sorrow as she lays it down ; And with her arms graceth a waistcoat fine, Embracing her as it would ne'er untwine. Her flaxen hair, ensnaring the beholders, She next permits to wave about her shoulders, And though she cast it back, the silken slips Still forward steal, and hang upon her lips : Whereat she sweetly angry, with her laces Binds up the wanton locks in curious traces, Whilst, twisting with her joints, each hair long lingers As loth to be enchained but with her fingers. Then on her head a dressing like a crown; Her breasts all bare, her kirtle slipping down, And all things off which rightly ever be Called the foul-fair marks of our misery, Except her last, which enviously doth seize her Lest any eye partake with it in pleasure,