Sir Thomas Noon Talfourd

IV: View Of The Valley Of Reading

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FROM TILEHURST, AT THE CLOSE OF THE SAME ELECTION

Too long have I regarded thee, fair vale,
But as a scene of struggle which denies
All pensive joy; and now with childhood's eyes
In old tranquillity, I bid thee hail;
And welcome to my soul thy own sweet gale,
Which wakes from loveliest woods the melodies
Of long-lost fancy--Never may there fail
Within thy circlet, spirits born to rise
In honour--whether won by freedom rude
In her old Spartan majesty, or wrought
With partial, yet no base regard, to brood
O'er usages by time with sweetness fraught;
Be thou their glory-tinted solitude,
The cradle and the home of generous thought!

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Sir Thomas Noon Talfourd