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Poem by Charles Lamb


Lines Addressed from London, to Sara and S.T.C. at Bristol, in the Summer of 1796


Was it so hard a thing? I did but ask
A fleeting holiday, a little week.
What if the jaded steer who all day long
Had borne the heat and burthen of the plough,
When evening came, and her sweet cooling hour,
Should seek to wander in a neighbour copse,
Where greener herbage waved, or clearer streams
Invited him to slake his burning thirst?
The man were crabbed who should say him nay,
The man were churlish who should drive him thence.

A blessing light upon your worthy heads,
Ye hospitable pair! I may not come
To catch, on Clifden's heights, the summer gale;
I may not come to taste the Avon wave;
Or, with mine eye intent on Redcliffe towers,
To muse in tears on that mysterious youth,
Cruelly slighted, who, in evil hour,
Shaped his adventurous course to London walls!
Complaint, be gone! and, ominous thoughts, away!
Take up, my song, take up a merrier strain;
For yet again, and lo! from Avon's vales,
Another minstrel cometh. Youth endeared,
God and good angels guide thee on thy road,
And gentler fortunes wait the friends I love.



Charles Lamb


Charles Lamb's other poems:
  1. Incorrect Speaking
  2. Love, Death, and Reputation
  3. Wasps in a Garden
  4. Beauty and the Beast
  5. Blindness


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