William Wordsworth

To May

Though many suns have risen and set Since thou, blithe May, wert born, And Bards, who hailed thee, may forget Thy gift, thy beauty scorn; There are who to a birthday strain Confine not harp and voice, But evermore throughout thy reign Are grateful and rejoice! Delicious odor! music sweet, Too sweet to pass away! Oh for a deathless song to meet The soul's desire---a lay That, when a thousand year are told, Should praise thee, genial Power! Through summer heat, autumnal cold, And winter's dreariest hour. Earth, sea, thy presence feel---nor less, If yon ethereal blue With its soft smile the truth express, The heavens have felt it too. The inmost heart of man if glad Partakes a livelier cheer; And eye that cannot but be sad Let fall a brightened tear. Since thy return, through days and weeks Of hope that grew by stealth, How many wan and faded cheeks Have kindled into health! The Old, by thee revived, have said, "Another year is ours;" And wayworn Wanderers, poorly fed, Have smiled upon thy flowers. Who tripping lisps a merry song Amid his playful peers? The tender Infant who was long A prisoner of fond fears; But now, when every sharp-edged blast Is quiet in its sheath, His Mother leaves him free to taste Earth's sweetness in thy breath. Thy help is with the weed that creeps Along the humblest ground; No cliff so bare but on its steeps Thy favors may be found; But most on some peculiar nook That our own hands have drest, Thou and thy train are proud to look, And seem to love it best. And yet how pleased we wander forth When May is whispering, "Come! "Choose from the bowers of virgin earth The happiest for your home; HeavenÕs bounteous love through me is spread From sunshine, clouds, winds, waves, Drops on the mouldering turret's head, And on your turf-clad graves!" Such greeting heard, away with sighs For lilies that must fade, Or ' the rathe primrose as it dies Forsaken' in the shade! Vernal fruitions and desires Are linked in endless chase; While, as one kindly growth retires, Another takes its place. And what if thou, sweet May, hast known Mishap by worm and blight; If expectations newly blown Have perished in thy sight; If loves and joys, while up they sprung, Were caught as in a snare; Such is the lot of all the young, However bright and fair. Lo! Streams that April could not check Are patient of thy rule; Gurgling in foamy water-break, Loitering in glassy pool: By thee, thee only, could be sent Such gentle mists as glide, Curling with unconfirmed intent, On that green mountain's side. How delicate the leafy veil Through which yon house of God Gleams 'mid the peace of this deep dale By few but shepherds trod! And lowly huts, near beaten ways, No sooner stand attired In thy fresh wreaths, than they for praise Peep forth, and are admired. Season of fancy and of hope, Permit not for one hour, A blossom from thy crown to drop, Nor add to it a flower! Keep, lovely May, as if by touch Of self restraining art, This modest charm of not too much, Part seen, imagined part!

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