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Matthew Arnold

Philomela

HARK! ah, the Nightingale!
The tawny-throated!
Hark! from that moonlit cedar what a burst!
What triumph! hark—what pain!

O Wanderer from a Grecian shore,
Still, after many years, in distant lands,
Still nourishing in thy bewilder'd brain
That wild, unquench'd, deep-sunken, old-world pain—
    Say, will it never heal?
And can this fragrant lawn
With its cool trees, and night,
And the sweet, tranquil Thames,
And moonshine, and the dew,
To thy rack'd heart and brain
    Afford no balm?

    Dost thou to-night behold
Here, through the moonlight on this English grass,
The unfriendly palace in the Thracian wild?
    Dost thou again peruse
With hot cheeks and sear'd eyes
The too clear web, and thy dumb Sister's shame?
    Dost thou once more assay
Thy flight, and feel come over thee,
Poor Fugitive, the feathery change
Once more, and once more seem to make resound
With love and hate, triumph and agony,
Lone Daulis, and the high Cephissian vale?
        Listen, Eugenia—
How thick the bursts come crowding through the leaves!
    Again—thou hearest!
Eternal Passion!
Eternal Pain!

 
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About the poet
Matthew Arnold
 
By the same poet
Dover Beach
The Scholar-Gipsy
The Forsaken Merman
The Song of Callicles
To Marguerite
Requiescat
Shakespeare
 
Related books
Matthew Arnold at amazon.com


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