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SONG OF PROSERPINE,
WHILE GATHERING FLOWERS ON THE PLAIN OF ENNA. 1
SACRED Goddess, Mother Earth,
Thou from whose immortal bosom,
Leaf and blade, and bud and blossom,
If with muists of evening dew
Thou dost nourish these young flowers
Fairest children of the hours,
SUMMER AND WINTER.2
It was a bright and cheerful afternoon,
1 This poem was first given by Mrs. Shelley in the first edition of 1839.
? This fragment appeared in The Keepsake for 1829.
The river, and the corn-fields, and the reeds;
It was a winter such as when birds1 die
LINES TO A REVIEWER. 2
ALAS! good friend, what profit can you see
In vain would you assuage
1 In The Keepsake, do die ; but do was omitted from the editions of 1839.
? First given by Mrs. Shelley, as a sonnet, in the Posthumous Poems,
wherein, in the second line, we read an, instead of the a of later editions. The title Lines to a Reviewer occurs in the first edition of 1839.
ODE TO NAPLES. 1
EPODE? I. a.
I STOOD within the city disinterred ;3
And heard the autumnal leaves like light footfalls
Thrill through those roofless halls;
The listening soul in my suspended blood;
The isle-sustaining Ocean-flood,
Around me gleamed many a bright sepulchre
But every living lineament was clear
As in the sculptor's thought; and there The wreaths of stony myrtle, ivy and pine,
1 The Author has connected many recollections of his visit to Pompeii and Baiæ with the enthusiasm excited by the intelligence of the proclamation of a Constitutional Government at Naples. This has given a tinge of picturesque and descriptive imagery to the introductory Epodes which depicture these4 scenes, and some of the majestic feelings permanently connected with the scene of this animating event. (SHELLEY's Note.]
2 Mr. Swinburne seems to have expressed himself in a letter to Mr. Rossetti to the effect that the designation of the so-called epodes, and strophes and antistrophes, as given in editions previous to Mr. Rossetti's, is "chaotic to a degree," adding “ They are, as far as I can see, hopelessly muddled ; beyinning with an Epode (after-song!)” As the foregoing note is clearly Shelley's, and speaks of the "introductory Epodes," that solecism
is doubtless his; and I do not see much use in attempting to rename the various divisions, which are in all probability named according to Shelley's own intention. I therefore leave things as I find them in Mrs. Shelley's editions in this respect.
I presume the explanation “ Pompeii,” given here in a note, is Shelley's.
4 In the Posthumous Poems, these, — in the collected editions, the.
Like winter leaves o'ergrown by. moulded snow,
Seemed only not to move and grow
Weighed on their life; even as the Power divine
EPODE II. a.
Then gentle winds arose
With many a mingled close
And where the Baian ocean
Welters with airlike motion,
Floats o'er the Elysian realm,
No storm can overwhelm ;
Of the dead kings of Melody."
Of some ætherial host ;
Whilst from all the coast, Louder and louder, gathering round, there wandered
1 Homer and Virgil. (SHELLEY's Note.]
Over the oracular woods and divine sea
STROPHE a. 1.
Naples ! thou Heart of men which ever pantest
Naked, beneath the lidless eye of heaven! Elysian City which to calm inchantest
The mutinous air and sea : they round thee, even
As sleep round Love, are driven ! Metropolis of a ruined Paradise 1
Long lost, late won, and yet but half regained ! Bright Altar of the bloodless sacrifice,
Which armed Victory offers up unstained
To Love, the flower-enchained ! Thou which wert once, and then didst cease to be, Now art, and henceforth ever shalt be, free, If Hope, and Truth, and Justice can avail,
Hail, hail, all hail !
STROPHE B. 2.
Thou youngest giant birth
Which from the groaning earth
Last of the Intercessors !
Who 'gainst the Crowned Transgressors Pleadest before God's love! Arrayed in Wisdom's mail,
Wave thy lightning lance in mirth
Nor let thy high heart fail,
With hurried legions move!
1 Cf. Adonais, Stanza X:
Lost angel of a ruined Paradise !