Around my ivy’d porch shall spring
Each fragrant flower that drinks the dew;
And Lucy, at her wheel, shall sing
In russet gown and apron blue.
The village-church, among the trees,
Where first our marriage-vows were giv’n,
With merry peals shall swell the breeze,
And point with taper spire to heav’n.
AN ITALIAN SONG.
Dear is my little native vale,
The ring-dove builds and murmurs there;
Close by my cot she tells her tale
To every passing villager.
The squirrel leaps from tree to tree,
And shells his nuts at liberty.
In orange-groves and myrtle-bowers,
That breathe a gale of fragrance round,
I charm the fairy-footed hours
With my lov’d lute’s romantic sound;
Or crowns of living laurel weave,
For those that win the race at eve.
The shepherd’s horn at break of day,
The ballet danc’d in twilight glade,
The canzonet and roundelay
Sung in the silent green-wood shade;
These simple joys, that never fail,
Shall bind me to my native vale.
TO THE GNAT.
When by the green-wood side, at summer eve,
Poetic visions charm my closing eye;
And fairy-scenes, that Fancy loves to weave,
Shift to wild notes of sweetest Minstrelsy;
’Tis thine to range in busy quest of prey,
Thy feathery antlers quivering with delight,
Brush from my lids the hues of heav’n away,
And all is Solitude, and all is Night!
—Ah now thy barbed shaft, relentless fly,
Unsheaths its terrors in the sultry air!
No guardian sylph, in golden panoply,
Lifts the broad shield, and points the glittering spear.
Now near and nearer rush thy whirring wings,
Thy dragon-scales still wet with human gore.
Hark, thy shrill horn its fearful laram flings!
—I wake in horror, and ‘dare sleep no more!’
Shepherd, or Huntsman, or worn Mariner,
Whate’er thou art, who wouldst allay thy thirst,
Drink and be glad. This cistern of white stone,
Arch’d, and o’erwrought with many a sacred verse,
This iron cup chain’d for the general use,
And these rude seats of earth within the grove,
Were giv’n by FATIMA. Borne hence a bride,
’Twas here she turn’d from her beloved sire,
To see his face no more. [Footnote 1] Oh, if thou canst,
(’Tis not far off) visit his tomb with flowers;
And may some pious hand with water fill
The two small cells scoop’d in the marble there,
That birds may come and drink upon his grave,
Making it holy! [Footnote 2] ---------
[Footnote 1: See an anecdote related by Pausanias. iii. 20.]
[Footnote 2: A Turkish superstition. See Clarke’s Travels, I. 546.]