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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 139 pages of information about Goblin Market, The Prince's Progress, and Other Poems.

I cannot tell you what it was;
But this I know:  it did but pass. 10
It passed away with sunny May,
With all sweet things it passed away,
And left me old, and cold, and grey.


I looked for that which is not, nor can be,
  And hope deferred made my heart sick in truth: 
  But years must pass before a hope of youth
    Is resigned utterly.

I watched and waited with a steadfast will: 
  And though the object seemed to flee away
  That I so longed for, ever day by day
    I watched and waited still.

Sometimes I said:  This thing shall be no more;
  My expectation wearies and shall cease; 10
  I will resign it now and be at peace: 
    Yet never gave it o’er.

Sometimes I said:  It is an empty name
  I long for; to a name why should I give
  The peace of all the days I have to live?—­
    Yet gave it all the same.

Alas, thou foolish one! alike unfit
  For healthy joy and salutary pain: 
  Thou knowest the chase useless, and again
    Turnest to follow it. 20


    Oh, pleasant eventide! 
    Clouds on the western side
Grow grey and greyer hiding the warm sun: 
The bees and birds, their happy labours done,
    Seek their close nests and bide.

    Screened in the leafy wood
    The stock-doves sit and brood: 
The very squirrel leaps from bough to bough
But lazily; pauses; and settles now
    Where once he stored his food. 10

    One by one the flowers close,
    Lily and dewy rose
Shutting their tender petals from the moon: 
The grasshoppers are still; but not so soon
    Are still the noisy crows.

    The dormouse squats and eats
    Choice little dainty bits
Beneath the spreading roots of a broad lime;
Nibbling his fill he stops from time to time
    And listens where he sits. 20

    From far the lowings come
    Of cattle driven home: 
From farther still the wind brings fitfully
The vast continual murmur of the sea,
    Now loud, now almost dumb.

    The gnats whirl in the air,
    The evening gnats; and there
The owl opes broad his eyes and wings to sail
For prey; the bat wakes; and the shell-less snail
    Comes forth, clammy and bare. 30

    Hark! that’s the nightingale,
    Telling the selfsame tale
Her song told when this ancient earth was young: 
So echoes answered when her song was sung
    In the first wooded vale.

    We call it love and pain
    The passion of her strain;
And yet we little understand or know: 
Why should it not be rather joy that so
    Throbs in each throbbing vein? 40

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