Monday, 27 May 2019

Poetry Revisited: The Green Linnet by William Wordsworth

The Green Linnet

(from Poems. Volume I: 1807)

Beneath these fruit-tree boughs that shed
Their snow-white blossoms on my head,
With brightest sunshine round me spread
               Of spring's unclouded weather,
In this sequestered nook how sweet
To sit upon my orchard-seat!
               And birds and flowers once more to greet,
               My last year's friends together.

One have I marked, the happiest guest
In all this covert of the blest:
Hail to Thee, far above the rest
               In joy of voice and pinion!
Thou, Linnet! in thy green array,
Presiding Spirit here today,
               Dost lead the revels of the May;
               And this is thy dominion.

While bird, and butterflies, and flowers,
Make all one band of paramours,
Thou, ranging up and down the bowers,
               Art sole in thy employment:
A Life, a Presence like the Air,
Scattering thy gladness without care,
               Too blest with any one to pair;
               Thyself thy own enjoyment.

Amid yon tuft of hazel trees,
That twinkle to the gusty breeze,
Behold him perched in ecstasies,
               Yet seeming still to hover;
There! where the flutter of his wings
Upon his back and body flings
               Shadows and sunny glimmerings,
               That cover him all over.

My dazzled sight he oft deceives,
A Brother of the dancing leaves;
Then flits, and from the cottage eaves
               Pours forth his song in gushes;
As if by that exulting strain
He mocked and treated with disdain
               The voiceless Form he chose to feign,
               While fluttering in the bushes.

William Wordsworth (1770-1850)
English Romantic poet

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