6.Daffodils (I wandered lonely as a cloud) by WILLIAM WORDSWORTH
I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.
The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:(
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed–and gazed–but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:
For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.
5.Upon an Honest Man’s Fortune, by JOHN FLETCHER
YOU that can look through Heaven, and tell the stars,
Observe their kind conjunctions, and their wars;
Find out new lights, and give them where you please,
To those men honours, pleasures, to those ease;
You that are God’s surveyors, and can shew
How far, and when, and why the wind doth blow;
Know all the charges of the dreadful thunder,
And when it will shoot over, or fall under;
Tell me, by all your art I conjure ye,
Yes, and by truth, what shall become of me?
Find out my star, if each one, as you say,
Have his peculiar angel, and his way;
Observe my fate, next fall into your dreams,
Sweep clean your houses, and new-line your schemes,
Then say your worst! Or have I none at all?
Or, is it burnt out lately? or did fall?
Or, am I poor? not able, no full flame?
My star, like me, unworthy of a name?
Is it, your art can only work on those
That deal with dangers, dignities, and clothes?
With love, or new opinions? You all lie!
A fish-wife hath a fate, and so have I;
But far above your finding! He that gives,
Out of his providence, to all that lives,
And no man knows his treasure, no, not you;
He that made Egypt blind, from whence you grew
Scabby and lousy, that the world might see
Your calculations are as blind as ye;
He that made all the stars you daily read,
And from thence filch a knowledge how to feed,
Hath hid this from you; your conjectures all
Are drunken things, not how, but when they fall:
Man is his own star, and the soul that can
Render an honest and a perfect man,
Commands all light, all influence, all fate;
Nothing to him falls early, or too late.
Our acts our angels are, or good or ill,
Our fatal shadows that walk by us still;
And when the stars are labouring, we believe
It is not that they govern, but they grieve
For stubborn ignorance; all things that are
Made for our general uses, are at war,
Even we among ourselves; and from the strife.
OH, MAN! thou image of thy Maker’s good,
What canst thou fear, when breath’d into thy blood
His spirit is, that built thee? what dull sense
Makes thee suspect, in need, that Providence,
Who made the morning, and who placed the light
Guide to thy labours; who call’d up the night,
And bid her fall upon thee like sweet showers
In hollow murmurs, to lock up thy powers;
Who gave thee knowledge, who so trusted thee,
To let thee grow so near himself, the tree;
Must he then be distrusted! shall his frame
Discourse with him, why thus and thus I am?
He made the angels thine, thy fellows all,
Nay, even thy servants, when devotions call.
Oh, canst thou be so stupid then, so dim,
To seek a saving influence, and lose him?
Can stars protect thee? or can poverty,
Which is the light to Heaven, put out his eye?
He is my star, in him all truth I find,
All influence, all fate I and when my mind
Is furnish’d with his fullness, my poor story
Shall out-live all their age, and all their glory!
The hand of danger cannot fall amiss,
When I know what, and in whose power it is:
Nor want, the curse of man, shall make me groan;
A holy hermit is a mind alone.
Doth not experience teach us, all we can,
To work ourselves into a glorious man?
Love’s but an exhalation to best eyes,
The matter spent, and then the fool’s fire dies!
Were I in love, and could that bright star bring
Encrease to wealth, honour, and every thing;
Were she as perfect good as we can aim,
The first was so, and yet she lost the game.
My mistress, then, be Knowledge and fair Truth!
So I enjoy all beauty and all youth.
And though to Time her lights and laws she lends,
She knows no age that to corruption bends:
Friends’ promises may lead me to believe,
But he that is his own friend, knows to live;
Affliction, when I know it is but this,
A deep allay, whereby man tougher is
To bear the hammer, and, the deeper, still
We still arise more image of his will;
Sickness, an humorous cloud ‘twixt us and light,
And death, at longest, but another night!
Man is his own star, and that soul that can
Be honest, is the only perfect man.
It seemed that out of the battle I escaped
Down some profound dull tunnel, long since scooped
Through granites which Titanic wars had groined.
Yet also there encumbered sleepers groaned,
Too fast in thought or death to be bestirred.
Then, as I probed them, one sprang up, and stared
With piteous recognition in fixed eyes,
Lifting distressful hands as if to bless.
And by his smile, I knew that sullen hall;
By his dead smile I knew we stood in Hell.
With a thousand fears that vision’s face was grained;
Yet no blood reached there from the upper ground,
And no guns thumped, or down the flues made moan.
‘Strange, friend,’ I said, ‘Here is no cause to mourn.’
‘None,’ said the other, ‘Save the undone years,
The hopelessness. Whatever hope is yours,
Was my life also; I went hunting wild
After the wildest beauty in the world,
Which lies not calm in eyes, or braided hair,
But mocks the steady running of the hour,
And if it grieves, grieves richlier than here.
For by my glee might many men have laughed,
And of my weeping something has been left,
Which must die now. I mean the truth untold,
The pity of war, the pity war distilled.
Now men will go content with what we spoiled.
Or, discontent, boil bloody, and be spilled.
They will be swift with swiftness of the tigress,
None will break ranks, though nations trek from progress.
Courage was mine, and I had mystery;
Wisdom was mine, and I had mastery;
To miss the march of this retreating world
Into vain citadels that are not walled.
Then, when much blood had clogged their chariot-wheels
I would go up and wash them from sweet wells,
Even with truths that lie too deep for taint.
I would have poured my spirit without stint
But not through wounds; not on the cess of war.
Foreheads of men have bled where no wounds were.
I am the enemy you killed, my friend.
I knew you in this dark; for so you frowned
Yesterday through me as you jabbed and killed.
I parried; but my hands were loath and cold.
Let us sleep now .
3.The Negro Speaks Of Rivers by LANGSTON HUGHES
I’ve known rivers:
I’ve known rivers ancient as the world and older than the
flow of human blood in human veins.
My soul has grown deep like the rivers.
I bathed in the Euphrates when dawns were young.
I built my hut near the Congo and it lulled me to sleep.
I looked upon the Nile and raised the pyramids above it.
I heard the singing of the Mississippi when Abe Lincoln
went down to New Orleans, and I’ve seen its muddy
bosom turn all golden in the sunset.
I’ve known rivers:
Ancient, dusky rivers.
My soul has grown deep like the rivers.
2. The Soul’s Errand by SIR WALTER RALEIGH (English soldier and statesman, 1554?–1618, just before his execution)
GO, Soul, the body’s guest,
Upon a thankless errand;
Fear not to touch the best;
The truth shall be thy warrant:
Go, since I needs must die, 5
And give them all the lie.
Go tell the Court it glows
And shines like rotten wood;
Go tell the Church it shows
What’s good, but does no good: 10
If Court and Church reply
Give Court and Church the lie.
Tell Potentates they live
Acting, but oh! their actions;
Not loved, unless they give, 15
Nor strong but by their factions:
If Potentates reply,
Give Potentates the lie.
Tell men of high condition,
That rule affairs of state, 20
Their purpose is ambition;
Their practice only hate:
And if they do reply,
Then give them all the lie.…
Tell Physic of her boldness; 25
Tell Skill it is pretension;
Tell Charity of coldness;
Tell Law it is contention:
And if they yield reply,
Then give them all the lie.… 30
So when thou hast, as I
Commanded thee, done blabbing;
Although to give the lie
Deserves no less than stabbing:
Yet stab at thee who will, 35
No stab the Soul can kill.
1.The Sun Rising by JOHN DONNE
Busy old fool, unruly Sun,
Why dost thou thus,
Through windows, and through curtains, call on
Must to thy motions lovers’ seasons run?
Saucy pedantic wretch, go chide
Late schoolboys, and sour prentices,
Go tell court-huntsmen that the king will ride,
Call country ants to harvest offices,
Love, all alike, no season knows, nor clime,
Nor hours, days, months, which are the rags of
Thy beams, so reverend and strong
Why shouldst thou think?
I could eclipse and cloud them with a wink,
But that I would not lose her sight so long:
If her eyes have not blinded thine,
Look, and tomorrow late, tell me
Whether both the’Indias of spice and mine
Be where thou leftst them, or lie here with me.
Ask for those kings whom thou saw’st yesterday,
And thou shalt hear: ‘All here in one bed lay.’
She’is all states, and all princes I,
Nothing else is.
Princes do but play us; compar’d to this,
All honour’s mimic, all wealth alchemy.
Thou, sun, art half as happy’as we,
In that the world’s contracted thus;
Thine age asks ease, and since thy duties be
To warm the world, that’s done in warming us.
Shine here to us, and thou art everywhere;
This bed thy centre is, these walls, thy sphere.