Rural Morning (I)

Soon as the twilight through the distant mist
In silver hemmings skirts the purple east,
Ere yet the sun unveils his smiles to view
And dries the morning's chilly robes of dew,
Young Hodge the horse-boy, with a soodly gait,
Slow climbs the stile, or opes the creaky gate,
With willow switch and halter by his side
Prepared for Dobbin, whom he means to ride;
The only tune he knows still whistling oer,
And humming scraps his father sung before,
As "Wantley Dragon," and the "Magic Rose,"
The whole of music that his village knows,
Which wild remembrance, in each little town,
From mouth to mouth through ages handles down.

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The Village Minstrel


And dear to him the rural sports of May,
When each cot-threshold mounts its hailing bough,
And ruddy milkmaids weave their garlands gay,
Upon the green to crown the earliest cow;
When mirth and pleasure wear a joyful brow;
And join the tumult with unbounded glee
The humble tenants of the pail and plough:
He lov'd "old sports," by them reviv'd, to see,
But never car'd to join in their rude revelry
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A fragment...

The linnet stopt her song to clean
Her spreading wings of yellow green
And turn his head as liking well
To smooth the dropples as they fell

One scarce could keep one's path aright
From gazing upward at the sight

The boys for wet are forced to pass
The cuckoo flowers among the grass
To hasten on as well they may
For hedge or tree or stack of hay
Where they for shelter can abide
Safe seated by its sloping side
That by the blackthorn thicket cowers
A shelter in the strongest showers
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Meet Me in the Green Glen

Love, meet me in the green glen,
Beside the tall elm tree,
Where the sweet briar smells so sweet agen;
There come with me,
Meet me in the green glen.

Meet me at the sunset
Down in the green glen,
Where we've often met
By hawthorn tree and foxes' den,
Meet me in the green glen.

Meet me in the green glen,
By sweet briar bushes there;
Meet me by your own sen,
Where the wild thyme blossoms fair.
Meet me in the green glen.

Meet me by the sweet briar,
By the mole hill swelling there;
When the West glows like a fire
God's crimson bed is there.
Meet me in the green glen.
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The Vixen

Among the taller wood with ivy hung,
The old fox plays and dances round her young.
She snuffs and barks if any passes bye
And swings her tail and turns prepared to fly.
The horseman hurries bye, she bolts to see,
And turns agen, from danger never free.
If any stands she runs among the poles
And barks and snaps and drives them in the holes.
The shepherd sees them and the boy goes bye
And gets a stick and progs the hole to try.
They get all still and lie in safety sure
And out again when every thing's secure
And start and snap at blackbirds bouncing bye
To fight and catch the great white butterfly.
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The Soldier

Home furthest off grows dearer from the way;
And when the army in the Indias lay
Friends' letters coming from his native place
Were like old neighbours with their country face.
And every opportunity that came
Opened the sheet to gaze upon the name
Of that loved village where he left his sheep
For more contented peaceful folk to keep;
And friendly faces absent many a year
Would from such letters in his mind appear.
And when his pockets, chafing through the case,
Wore it quite out ere others took the place,
Right loath to be of company bereft
He kept the fragments while a bit was left.
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