Monday, 7 November 2016

Poetry Revisited: Moonlight by Caroline Woolmer Leakey


(from Lyra Australis, or Attempts to Sing in a Strange Land: 1854)

Shine on, thou lovely moon, shine ever!
     While, like a playful child and shy,
Yon restless, struggling, leaping river
     From what it loveth best doth fly;

While are thy brightest beams o'er dancing
     Its fairy flow of molten glass,
It now to meet thee seems advancing,
     Then straightway hideth in the grass.

Faint stars, the chastened pride of even,
     It is such joy to see you blink;
As though ye still in your blue heaven
     Kindly of mortal man did think.

Oh! happy stars, ye seem to tremble,
     As with an unexpressed delight;
Why do ye thus your bliss dissemble?—
     Ye are the very joys of night.

The day may come with sun and flowers,
     With pleasant voices all around,
Like gilded garlands bring her hours,
     All ushered in to tuneful sound,

And beams, as though the orb of glory
     Were beaten into golden bars;—
The day may have a prouder story,
     But Night, she hath her moon and stars!

Caroline Woolmer Leakey (1827-1881)
English poet and novelist


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