Ode to Memory.

Come forth, I charge thee, arise,1
Thou of the many tongues, the myriad eyes !2
Though comest not with shows of flaunting
Unto mine inner eye,4
Divinest memory !5
Thou wert not nursed by the waterfall,6
Which ever sounds and shines7
A pillar of white light upon the wall8
Of purple cliffs, aloof descried,9
Come from the woods that belt the gray
The seven elms, the poplars four11
That stand beside my father’s door,12
And chiefly from the brook that loves13
To purl o’er matted cress and ribbed sand,14
Or dimple in the dark of rushy coves,15
Drawing into his narrow earthen urn,16
In every elbow and turn,17
The filter’d tribute of the rough woodland.18
O ! hither lead thy feet !19
Pour round mine ears the livelong bleat20
Of the thick-fleeced sheep from wattled folds,21
Upon the ridged wolds,22
When the first matin-song hath waked loud23
Over the dark dewy earth forlorn,24
What time the amber morn25
Forth gushes from beneath a lowhung cloud.26
Large doweries doth the raptured eye27
To the young spirit present28
When first she is wed ;29
And like a bride of old30
In triumph led,31
With music and sweet showers32
Of festal flowers,33
Unto the dwelling she must sway.34
Well hast thou done, great artist Memory,35
In setting round thy first experiment36
With royal framework of wrought gold ;37
Needs must thou dearly love thy first essay,38
And foremost in thy various gallery39
Place it, where sweetest sunlight falls40
Upon the storied walls,41
For the discovery42
And newness of thine art so pleased thee,43
That all which thou hast drawn of fairest44
Or boldest since, but lightly weighs45
With thee unto the love thou bearest46
The firstborn of thy genius. Artist-like,47
Ever retiring thou dost gaze48
On the prime labour of thine early days :49
No matter what the sketch might be ;50
Whether the high field on the bushless Pike,51
Or even a sandbuilt ridge52
Of heaped hills that mound the sea,53
Overblown with murmurs harsh,54
Or even a lowly cottage, whence we see55
Sketch’d wide and wild the waste enormous
Where from the frequent bridge,57
Emblems or glimpses of eternity,58
The trenched waters run from sky to sky ;59
Or a garden bower’d close60
With pleached alleys of the trailing rose,61
Long alleys falling down to twilight grots,62
Or opening upon level plots63
Of crowned lilies, standing near64
Purplespiked lavender :65
Whither in after life retired66
From brawling storms,67
From weary wind,68
With youthful fancy reinspired,69
We may hold converse with all forms70
Of the many-sided mind,71
The few whom passion hath not blinded,72
Subtle-thoughted, myriad-minded.73
My friend, with thee to live alone,74
Methinks were better than to own75
A crown, a sceptre, and a throne.76
O strengthen me, enlighten me !77
I faint in this obscurity,78
Thou dewy dawn of memory.79