WOULD I WERE FREE AS ARE MY DREAMS
Would I were free as are my dreams,
Sequestered from the garish crowd
To glide by banks of quiet streams
Cooled by the shadow-drifting cloud!
Free to shake off this weary weight
Of human sin, and rest instead
On Nature's heart inviolate--
All summer singing o'er my head!
There would I never disembark,
Nay, only graze the flowery shore
To pluck a rose beneath the lark,
Then go my liquid way once more,
And watch, far off, the drowsy lines
Of herded cattle crop and pass,
The vintagers among the vines,
The mowers in the dewy grass;
And nothing would I drink or eat
Save heaven's clear sunlight and the spring
Of earth's own welling waters sweet,
That never make the pulses sting.