Charles Tennyson Turner


I dreamed I wrote an ode, and was not slack
To bring it where two mighty umpires dealt
The prize; but deep-mouthed Pindar bade me back,
And laughing Horace--like a boy I felt,
Who, idly thrumming on a single hair,
Stretched from his forehead, with his simple head
And child's ear close upon it, fancy-fed,
Conceits himself a harpist then and there;
I woke, and murmured o'er a humbler strain,
A sonnet--smiling at my classic dream--
But still I may misuse some honest theme,
Tinkling this idle outgrowth of my brain;
A hair amid the harpstrings! my weak words
May pass unheard among the rolling chords.

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