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“ Possess'd my soul, till at the break of day “ I slept ; nor did my heated brain repose “ Even then, for visions, sent, as I believe, “ From the Most High, arose. A high-tower'd town “ Hemm'd in and girt with enemies, I saw, “ Where Famine on a heap of carcases, “ Half envious of the unutterable feast, “ Mark'd the gorged raven clog his beak with gore. “ I turn'd me then to the besieger's camp, “ And there was revelry: the loud lewd laugh “ Burst on mine ear, and I beheld the chiefs “ Sit at their feast, and plan the work of death. . “ My soul grew sick within me; I look’d up, “ Reproaching Heaven, .. lo !from the clouds an arm “ As of the avenging Angel was put forth, “ And from his hand a sword, like lightning, fell.
“ From that night I could feel my burthen'd soul “ Heaving beneath incumbent Deity. “ I sate in silence, musing on the days
« To come, unheeding and unseeing all “ Around me, in that dreaminess of thought “ When every bodily sense is as it slept, “ And the mind alone is wakeful. I have heard “ Strange voices in the evening wind; strange forms “ Dimly discover'd throng'd the twilight air. “ The neighbours wonder'd at the sudden change, “ And call’d me crazed; and my dear Uncle, too, “ Would sit and gaze upon me wistfully, . “ A heaviness upon his aged brow, ... . “ And in his eye such trouble, that my heart “ Sometimes misgave me. I had told him all “ The mighty future labouring in my breast, “ But that the hour methought not yet was come.
• At length I heard of Orleans, by the foe “ Wall’d in from human succour; there all thoughts, “ All hopes were turn'd; that bulwark once beat down, “ All was the invaders. Now my troubled soul “ Grew more disturb’d, and, shunning every eye, “ I loved to wander where the forest shade
“ Frown'd deepest ; there on mightiest deeds to brood “ Of shadowý vastness, such as made my heart * Throb loud: anon I paused, and in a state “ Of half expectance, listen'd to the wind.
“ There is a fountain in the forest call’d “ The Fountain of the Fairies : when a child “ With a delightful wonder I have heard « Tales of the Elfin tribe who on its banks “ Hold midnight revelry. An ancient oak, 6. The goodliest of the forest, grows beside ; " Alone it stands, upon a green grass plat, 66 By the woods bounded like some little isle. “ It ever hath been deem'd their favourite tree; “ They love to lie and rock upon its leaves, i “ And bask in moonshine. Here the Woodman leads “ His boy, and, showing him the green-sward mark'd “ With darker circléts, says their midnight dance “ Hath trac'd the ring, and bids him spare the tree. “ Fancy had cast a spell upon the place,
“ And made it holy; and the villagers “ Would say that never evil thing approach'd “ Unpunish'd there. Thestrange and fearful pleasure “ Which fill'd me by that solitary spring, “ Ceased not in riper years ; and now it woke “ Deeper delight and more mysterious awe.
“ Lonely the forest spring: a rocky hill “ Rises beside it, and an aged yew • Bursts from the rifted crag that overbrows “ The waters ; cavern'd there unseen and slow “ And silently they well. The adder's tongue, “ Rich with the wrinkles of its glossy green, “ Hangs down its long lank leaves, whose wavy dip “ Just breaks the tranquil surface. Ancient woods “ Bosom the quiet beauties of the place, “ Nor ever sound profanes it, save such sounds “ As Silence loves to hear, the passing wind, " Or the low murmuring of the stream scarce heard. “ A blessed spot! oh how my soul enjoy'd “ Its holy quietness, with what delight “ Escaping from mankind I hasten'd there “ To solitude and freedom ! thitherward “ On a spring eve I had betaken me, “ And there I sate, and mark’d the deep red clouds “ Gather before the wind.. the rising wind, “ Whose sudden gusts, each wilder than the last, “ Appear’d to rock my senses. Soon the night “ Darken’d around, and the large rain drops fell “ Heavy; anon tempestuously the gale “ Howl'd o'er the wood. Methought the heavy rain “ Fell with a grateful coolness on my head, “ And the hoarse dash of waters, and the rush “ Of winds that mingled with the forest roar, “ Made a wild music. On a rock I sat ; “ The glory of the tempest fill’d my soul ; “ And when the thunders peal’d, and the long flash “ Hung durable in heaven, and on my sight “Spread thegrayforest, memory, thought, were gone,