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His strong arms, the figure sustain'd them not: 'twas as empty

E'en as a windworn cloud, or a phantom of irrelevant sleep.

On the level bosom of this vale more thickly the tall trees Grow, an' aneath quivering poplars and whispering alders Lethe's dreamy river throu' peaceful scenery windeth. Whereby now flitted in vast swarms many people of all lands, As when in early summer 'honey-bees on a flowery pasture Pill the blossoms, hurrying to' an' fro,-innumerous are they, Revisiting the ravish'd lily cups, while all the meadow hums.

Æneas was turn'd to the sight, and marvelling inquired, 710
Say, sir, what the river that there i' the vale-bottom I see?
And who they that thickly along its bank have assembled ?'
Then Lord Anchises, 'The spirits for whom a second life
And body are destined ar' arriving thirsty to Lethe,
And here drink th' unmindful draught from wells of oblivyon.
My heart greatly desired of this very thing to acquaint thee,
Yea, and show-thee the men to-be-born, our glory her'after,
So to gladden thine heart where now thy voyaging endeth.'
'Must it then be-believ'd, my sire, that a soul which attaineth
Elysium will again submit to her old body-burden? 720
Is this well? what hap can awake such dire longing in them?'
'I will tell thee', O son, nor keep thy wonder awaiting,'
Answereth Anchises, and all expoundeth in order.
'Know first that the heavens, and th' Earth, and space fluid
or void,

Night's pallid orb, day's Sun, and all his starry coævals,
Are by one spirit inly quickened, and, mingling in each part,
Mind informs the matter, nature's complexity ruling.
Thence the living creatures, man, brute, and ev'ry feather'd
fowl,

And what breedeth in Ocean aneath her surface of argent :
Their seed knoweth a fiery vigour, 'tis of airy divine birth, 730
In so far as unimpeded by an alien evil,

Nor dull'd by the body's framework condemn'd to corruption. Hence the desires and vain tremblings that assail them, unable

Poems in Classical Prosody

Darkly prison'd to arise to celestial exaltation;

Nor when death summoneth them anon earth-life to

relinquish,

Can they in all discard their stain, nor wholly away with
Mortality's plaguespots. It must-be that, O, many wild graffs
Deeply at 'heart engrain'd have rooted strangely upon them:
Wherefore must suffering purge them, yea, Justice atone them
With penalties heavy as their guilt: some purify exposed 740
Hung to the viewless winds, or others long watery searchings
Low i' the deep wash clean, some bathe in fiery renewal :
Each cometh unto his own retribution,—if after in ample
Elysium we attain, but a few, to the fair Happy Woodland,
Yet slow time still worketh on us to remove the defilement,
Till it hath eaten away the acquir'd dross, leaving again free
That first fiery vigour, the celestial virtue of our life.
All whom here thou seest, hav' accomplished purification:
Unto the stream of Lethe a god their company calleth,
That forgetful of old failure, pain & disappointment,
They may again into' earthly bodies with glad courage enter.'

*

750

Twín be the gates o' the house of sleep: as fable opineth 893
One is of horn, and thence for a true dream outlet is easy:
Fair the other, shining perfected of ivory carven ;
But false are the visions that thereby find passage upward.
Soon then as Anchises had spok'n, he-led the Sibyl forth
And his son, and both dismisst from th' ivory portal.

FINIS

INDEX

INDEX OF FIRST LINES

A cottage built of native stone

A coy inquisitive spirit

After long sleep when Psyche first awoke

Again with pleasant green

Ah heavenly joy

Ah, what a change

All earthly beauty hath one cause

All women born

A man that sees by chance

Among the meadows.

And truly need there was.
An effigy of brass

Angel spirits of sleep.

An idle June day

A poppy grows upon the shore.

Ariel, O,-my angel, my own
A single lamp there stood
A song of my heart

Assemble, all ye maidens

At dead of unseen night

A thousand times hath in my heart's behoof
At times with hurried hoofs

Awake, my heart, to be loved

A winter's night with the snow about

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Away now, lovely Muse

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