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Without a breeze, a wing, a cloud; the sun
Sole in the firmament, but in the deep
Redoubled; where the circle of the sea,
Invisible with calmness, seem'd to lie
Within the hollow of a lower heaven.


I was a Spirit in the midst of these,

eye, ear, thought; existence was enjoyment;
Light was an element of life, and air
The clothing of my incorporeal form,-
A form impalpable to mortal touch,

And volatile as fragrance from the flower,
Or music in the woodlands. What the soul
Can make itself at pleasure, that I was;
A child in feeling and imagination,
Learning new lessons still, as Nature wrought
Her wonders in my presence. All I saw,
(Like Adam when he walk'd in Paradise,)
I knew and named by secret intuition.
Actor, spectator, sufferer, each in turn,

I ranged, explored, reflected. Now I sail'd,
And now I soar'd; anon expanding, seem'd
Diffused into immensity, yet bound

Within a space too narrow for desire;

The mind, the mind perpetual themes must task, Perpetual power impel, and hope allure.

I and the silent sun were here alone,

But not companions; high and bright he held
His course; I gazed with admiration on him,
There all communion ended; and I sigh'd,
In loneliness unutterable sigh'd,

To feel myself a wanderer without aim,
An exile amid splendid desolation,

A prisoner with infinity surrounded.

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The sun descended, dipp'd, and disappear'd; Then sky and sea were all the universe,

And I the only being in existence !

So thought I, and the thought, like ice and fire,

Went freezing, burning, withering, thrilling through


Annihilation then had been deliverance,

While that eternity of solitude

Lay on my heart, hard struggling to break free,
As from a dream, when mountains press the sleeper

Darkness, meanwhile, disguised in twilight, crept
O'er air and ocean; drearier gloom involved
My fainting senses, till a sudden ray

Of pensile lustre sparkled from the west;
I flew to meet it, but drew never nearer,
While, vanishing and re-appearing oft,
At length it trembled out into a star.
My soul revived, and could I then have wept,
(Methought I did) with tears of fond delight,
How had I hail'd the gentle apparition,

As second life to me; so sweetly welcome
The faintest semblance of society,

Though but a point to rest the eye upon,

To him who hath been utterly bereaved!

Star after star, from some unseen abyss, Came through the sky, like thoughts into the mind, We know not whence; till all the firmament Was throng'd with constellations, and the sea Strown with their images. Amidst a sphere Of twinkling lights, like living eyes, that look'd At once on me from every side, I stood, (Motion and rest with me were mere volition,) Myself perhaps a star among the rest!

But here again I found no fellowship;

Sight could not reach, nor keenest thought conceive
Their nature or their offices. To me

They were but what they seem'd, and yet I felt
They must be more; the mind hath no horizon,

It looks beyond the eye, and seeks for mind
In all it sees, or all it sees o'erruling.

Low in the east, ere long, the morning dawn Shot upward, onward, and around the pole,

With arrowy glimpses traversing the shade. Night's train, as they had kindled one by one, Now one by one withdrew, reversing order, Where those that came the latest, earliest went : Day rose triumphant, and again to me

Sky, sun, and sea were all the universe;

But ah! the glory had departed, and I long'd

For some untried vicissitude : it came.

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A breeze sprang up, and with careering wing Play'd like an unseen being on the water.

Slowly from slumber 'woke the unwilling main, Curling and murmuring, till the infant waves Leap'd on his lap, and laugh'd in air and sunshine: Then all was bright and beautiful emotion,

And sweet accordance of susurrant sounds.

I felt the gay delirium of the scene;

I felt the breeze and billow chase each other,

Like bounding pulses in my human veins:

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