THE QUESTION - William Shakespeare Poems


Poems » william shakespeare » the question


  I dreamed that, as I wandered by the way,
      Bare Winter suddenly was changed to Spring,
And gentle odours led my steps astray,
      Mixed with a sound of waters murmuring
Along a shelving bank of turf, which lay
      Under a copse, and hardly dared to fling
Its green arms round the bosom of the stream,
But kissed it and then fled, as thou mightest in dream.

  There grew pied wind-flowers and violets,
      Daisies, those pearled Arcturi of the earth,
The constellated flower that never sets;
      Faint oxlips; tender bluebells, at whose birth
The sod scarce heaved; and that tall flower that wets--
      Like a child, half in tenderness and mirth--
Its mother's face with Heaven's collected tears,
When the low wind, its playmate's voice, it hears.

  And in the warm hedge grew lush eglantine,
      Green cowbind and the moonlight-coloured may,
And cherry-blossoms, and white cups, whose wine
      Was the bright dew, yet drained not by the day;
And wild roses, and ivy serpentine,
      With its dark buds and leaves, wandering astray;
And flowers azure, black, and streaked with gold,
Fairer than any wakened eyes behold.

  And nearer to the river's trembling edge
      There grew broad flag-flowers, purple pranked with white,
And starry river buds among the sedge,
      And floating water-lilies, broad and bright,
Which lit the oak that overhung the hedge
      With moonlight beams of their own watery light;
And bulrushes, and reeds of such deep green
As soothed the dazzled eye with sober sheen.

  Methought that of these visionary flowers
      I made a nosegay, bound in such a way
That the same hues, which in their natural bowers
      Were mingled or opposed, the like array
Kept these imprisoned children of the Hours
      Within my hand,--and then, elate and gay,
I hastened to the spot whence I had come,
That I might there present it!--Oh! to whom?