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John Keats
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Extracts from an Opera
by John Keats (1818).

Daisy's Song

The sun, with his great eye,
Sees not so much as I;
And the moon, all silver-proud,
Might as well be in a cloud.

And O the spring—the spring!
I lead the life of a king!
Couch'd in the teeming grass,
I spy each pretty lass.

I look where no one dares,
And I stare where no one stares;
And when the night is nigh,
Lambs bleat my lullaby.

. . . . . .

Folly's Song

When wedding fiddles are a-playing,
                                  Huzza for folly O!
And when maidens go a-Maying,
                                  Huzza, &c.
When a milk-pail is upset,
                                  Huzza, &c.
And the clothes left in the wet,
                                  Huzza, &c.
When the barrel's set abroach,
                                  Huzza, &c.
When Kate Eyebrow keeps a coach,
                                  Huzza, &c.
When the pig is over-roasted,
                                  Huzza, &c.
And the cheese is over-toasted,
                                  Huzza, &c.
When Sir Snap is with his lawyer,
                                  Huzza, &c.
And Miss Chip has kiss'd the sawyer,
                                  Huzza, &c.

. . . . . .

Two Fragments

O! were I one of the Olympian twelve
Their godships should pass this into a law,—
That when a man doth set himself in toil
After some beauty veiled far away,
Each step he took should make his lady's hand
More soft, more white, and her fair cheek more fair.
And for each briar-berry he might eat
A kiss should bud upon the tree of love,
And pulp and ripen richer every hour,
To melt away upon the traveller's lips.
. . . . . .
Oh, I am frighten'd with most hateful thoughts!
Perhaps her voice is not a nightingale's,
Perhaps her teeth are not the fairest pearl;
Her eye-lashes may be, for aught I know,
Not longer than the May-fly's small fan-horns;
There may not be one dimple on her hand,
And freckles many; ah! a careless nurse,
In haste to teach the little thing to walk,
May have crumpt up a pair of Dian's legs,
And warpt the ivory of a Juno's neck.
. . . . . .


The stranger lighted from his steed,
    And ere he spake a word
He seized my lady's lily hand,
    And kiss'd it all unheard.

The stranger walk'd into the hall,
    And ere he spake a word
He kiss'd my lady's cherry lips,
    And kiss'd 'em all unheard.

The stranger walk'd into the bower.—
    By my lady first did go,—
Aye hand in hand into the bower
    Where my lord's roses blow.

My lady's maid had a silken scarf,
    And a golden ring had she,
And a kiss from the stranger, as off he went
    Again on his fair palfrey.

. . . . . .


Asleep! O sleep a little while, white pearl!
And let me kneel, and let me pray to thee,
And let me call Heaven's blessing on thine eyes,
And let me breathe into the happy air,
That doth enfold and touch thee all about,
Vows of my slavery, my giving up,
My sudden adoration, my great love!

PAGE 1 OF 1.

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AUTHOR: John Keats (1818).
TITLE OF WEBPAGE: PoeticSpace:Keats:Poems:ExtractsFromAnOpera:Page1
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