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Bright star! Would I were stedfast as thou art –

Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night

And watching, with eternal lids apart,

Like nature’s patient, sleepless eremite,

The moving waters at their priestlike task

Of pure ablution round earth’s human shores,

Or gazing on the new soft-fallen mask

Of snow upon the mountains and the moors;

No-yet still steadfast, still unchangeable,

Pillowed upon my fair love’s ripening breast,

To feel for ever its soft fall and swell,

Awake for ever in a sweet unrest,

Still, still to hear her tender-taken breath,

And so live ever – or else swoon to death.

 

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