Poem: The Poet by Henry Halloran

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How little know the grov'lling mass,
   Immers'd in the pursuit of gain,
The heaven born visionings that pass,
   All glowing, through the poet's brain!

When Evening draws her twilight veil,
   When Cynthia, in her pensive car,
Uprises in the Past, to hail
   The Hesperian planet from afar;

When through the deep re-echoing vale
   The lonely bulbul thrills her note,
And, borne upon the evening gale,
   Angelic voices seem to float;--

'Tis then the poet loves to dwell
   Far from th' unhallow'd haunts of men:
How dear to him each shadowy dell--
   How dear each wild, terrific glen!

How dear the solitude of night
   To one whose thoughts are fix'd above--
How dear the visions of delight
   Thro' which his fancy loves to rove!

What tho' tho world has frown'd on him--  
   What tho' his early love was blighted
By penury's cold hand, and dim
   The torch his youthful fancy lighted?

What tho' the ceaseless flow of thought
   Has withered his once beauteous brow,
And sorrow to his cheek has brought
   A more than deadly paleness now?  

What though the sneer of sun-bask'd pride
   Has often stung his gentle breast?
And what tho' folly may deride,
   The heavenly flame it ne'er possess'd;--

And power neglect, and treach'ry wound,
   And Envy view with "jaundic'd eye"--
And Malice pour her poison round,
   And swell the tide of calumny?--    

Still, Genius! thy sacred home  
   'Midst mountain solitudes shall be;
There shall thy eagle spirit roam--
   There breathe thy deathless energy.

There shall thy deep mystenous tide
   Bear thoughts unknown to ancient lore,
And thy prophetic spirit glide
   Through realms unvisited before.    

Nor time nor space thy pow'r shall quell--
   Imagination's fields are thine--
Music resigns to thee her shell,
   And Thought its inexhausted mine!

First published in The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser, 8 October 1831

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