Page:Oxford Book of English Verse 1250-1918.djvu/941

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MATTHEW ARNOLD

Drop by, and leave its seeker still untired; Out of the heed of mortals he is gone, He wends unfollow'd, he must house alone;

Yet on he fares, by his own heart inspired.

Thou too, O Thyrsis, on like quest wert bound, Thou wanderedst with me for a little hour,

Men gave thee nothing, but this happy quest, If men estcem'd thce feeble, gave thce power,

If men procured thee trouble, gave thee rest.

And this rude Cumner ground, Its fir-topped Hurst, its farms, its quiet fields,

Here cam'st thou in thy jocund youthful time,

Here was thine height of strength, thy golden prime, And still the haunt beloved a virtue yields.

What though the music of thy rustic flute Kept not for long its happy, country tone,

Lost it too soon, and learnt a stormy note Of men contention-tost, of men who groan,

Which task'd thy pipe too sore, and tired thy throat

It fail'd, and thou wast mute, Yet hadst thou always visions of our light,

And long with men of care thou couldst not stay,

And soon thy foot resumed its wandering way, Left human haunt, and on alone till night.

Too rare, too rare, grow now my visits here! 'Mid city-noise, not, as with thee of yore,

Thyrsis, in reach of sheep-bells is my home! Then through the great town's harsh, heart- weary ing roar, Let in thy voice a whisper often come, To chase fatigue and fear:

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