Select Poems of Thomas Gray

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Harper & brothers, 1876 - English poetry - 143 pages
 

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Page 28 - Oft did the harvest to their sickle yield, Their furrow oft the stubborn glebe has broke: How jocund did they drive their team afield! How bowed the woods beneath their sturdy stroke!
Page 32 - Hampden, that with dauntless breast The little tyrant of his fields withstood ; Some mute inglorious Milton here may rest ; Some Cromwell, guiltless of his country's blood. Th' applause of listening senates to command, The threats of pain and ruin to despise, To scatter plenty o'er a smiling land, And read their history in a nation's eyes...
Page 30 - Nor Grandeur hear with a disdainful smile The short and simple annals of the Poor. The boast of heraldry, the pomp of power, And all that beauty, all that wealth e'er gave, Await alike th' inevitable hour: — The paths of glory lead but to the grave.
Page 62 - Fair laughs the morn, and soft the zephyr blows While proudly riding o'er the azure realm In gallant trim the gilded vessel goes; Youth on the prow, and pleasure at the helm; Regardless of the sweeping whirlwind's sway, That, hush'd in grim repose, expects his evening prey.
Page 82 - O'erhang his wavy bed: Now air is hush'd, save where the weak-eyed bat With short shrill shriek flits by on leathern wing, Or where the beetle winds His small but sullen horn, As oft he rises, 'midst the twilight path Against the pilgrim borne in heedless hum...
Page 18 - And all the air a solemn stillness holds, Save where the beetle wheels his droning flight...
Page 40 - THE EPITAPH. Here rests his head upon the lap of Earth, A Youth, to Fortune and to Fame unknown; Fair Science frown'd not on his humble birth, And Melancholy mark'd him for her own. Large was his bounty, and his soul sincere, Heaven did a recompense as largely send; He gave to Misery all he had, a tear — He gained from Heaven ('twas all he wish'd), a friend.
Page 17 - A stranger yet to pain! I feel the gales, that from ye blow, A momentary bliss bestow, As waving fresh their gladsome wing, My weary soul they seem to soothe, And redolent of joy and youth, To breathe a second spring.
Page 57 - This pencil take' (she said), 'whose colours clear Richly paint the vernal year: Thine, too, these golden keys, immortal Boy! This can unlock the gates of joy; Of horror that, and thrilling fears, Or ope the sacred source of sympathetic tears.
Page 30 - Death? perhaps in this neglected spot is laid some heart once pregnant with celestial fire ; hands, that the rod of empire might have swayed, or waked to ecstasy the living lyre.

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