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Alfred Lord Tennyson (1809-1892)

The Princess: Come down, O Maid


              1      Come down, O maid, from yonder mountain height:
              2What pleasure lives in height (the shepherd sang)
              3In height and cold, the splendour of the hills?
              4But cease to move so near the Heavens, and cease
              5To glide a sunbeam by the blasted Pine,
              6To sit a star upon the sparkling spire;
              7And come, for Love is of the valley, come,
              8For Love is of the valley, come thou down
              9And find him; by the happy threshold, he,
            10Or hand in hand with Plenty in the maize,
            11Or red with spirted purple of the vats,
            12Or foxlike in the vine; nor cares to walk
            13With Death and Morning on the silver horns,
            14Nor wilt thou snare him in the white ravine,
            15Nor find him dropt upon the firths of ice,
            16That huddling slant in furrow-cloven falls
            17To roll the torrent out of dusky doors:
            18But follow; let the torrent dance thee down
            19To find him in the valley; let the wild
            20Lean-headed Eagles yelp alone, and leave
            21The monstrous ledges there to slope, and spill
            22Their thousand wreaths of dangling water-smoke,
            23That like a broken purpose waste in air:
            24So waste not thou; but come; for all the vales
            25Await thee; azure pillars of the hearth
            26Arise to thee; the children call, and I
            27Thy shepherd pipe, and sweet is every sound,
            28Sweeter thy voice, but every sound is sweet;
            29Myriads of rivulets hurrying thro' the lawn,
            30The moan of doves in immemorial elms,
            31And murmuring of innumerable bees.


Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: Alfred lord Tennyson, The Princess: A Medley (London: E. Moxen, 1847). PR 5571 A1 1847 Victoria College Library (Toronto). Alfred lord Tennyson, Works (London: Macmillan, 1891). tenn T366 A1 1891a Fisher Rare Book Library (Toronto).
First publication date: 1847
RPO poem editor: H. M. McLuhan
RP edition: 3RP 3.60.
Recent editing: 2:2002/2/14

Rhyme: unrhyming


Other poems by Alfred Lord Tennyson