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The Lady of Shalott Alfred Lord Tennyson On either side the river lie Only reapers, reaping early, But in her web she still delights Long fields of barley and of rye, In among the bearded barley To weave the mirror's magic sights, That clothe the wold and meet the sky; Hear a song that echoes cheerly For often through the silent nights And through the field the road run by From the river winding clearly; A funeral, with plumes and lights To many-tower'd Camelot; Down to tower'd Camelot; And music, went to Camelot; And up and down the people go, And by the moon the reaper weary, Or when the Moon was overhead, Gazing where the lilies blow Piling sheaves in uplands airy, Came two young lovers lately wed. Round an island there below, Listening, whispers, " 'Tis the fairy "I am half sick of shadows," said The island of Shalott. The Lady of Shalott." The Lady of Shalott. Willows whiten, aspens quiver, There she weaves by night and day A bow-shot from her bower-eaves, Little breezes dusk and shiver A magic web with colours gay. He rode between the barley sheaves, Through the wave that runs for ever She has heard a whisper say, The sun came dazzling thro' the leaves, By the island in the river A curse is on her if she stay And flamed upon the brazen greaves Flowing down to Camelot. To look down to Camelot. Of bold Sir Lancelot. Four grey walls, and four grey towers, She knows not what the curse may be, A red-cross knight for ever kneel'd Overlook a space of flowers, And so she weaveth steadily, To a lady in his shield, And the silent isle imbowers And little other care hath she, That sparkled on the yellow field, The Lady of Shalott. The Lady of Shalott. Beside remote Shalott. By the margin, willow veil'd, And moving through a mirror clear The gemmy bridle glitter'd free, Slide the heavy barges trail'd That hangs before her all the year, Like to some branch of stars we see By slow horses; and unhail'd Shadows of the world appear. Hung in the golden Galaxy. The shallop flitteth silken-sail'd There she sees the highway near The bridle bells rang merrily Skimming down to Camelot: Winding down to Camelot; As he rode down to Camelot: But who hath seen her wave her hand? There the river eddy whirls, And from his blazon'd baldric slung Or at the casement seen her stand? And there the surly village churls, A mighty silver bugle hung, Or is she known in all the land, And the red cloaks of market girls And as he rode his armor rung The Lady of Shalott? Pass onward from Shalott. Beside remote Shalott. Sometimes a troop of damsels glad, An abbot on an ambling pad, Sometimes a curly shepherd lad, Or long-hair'd page in crimson clad Goes by to tower'd Camelot; And sometimes through the mirror blue The knights come riding two and two. She hath no loyal Knight and true, The Lady of Shalott. All in the blue unclouded weather In the stormy east-wind straining, Heard a carol, mournful, holy, Thick-jewell'd shone the saddle- The pale yellow woods were waning, Chanted loudly, chanted lowly, leather, The broad stream in his banks complaining. Till her blood was frozen slowly, The helmet and the helmet-feather Heavily the low sky raining And her eyes were darkened wholly, Burn'd like one burning flame Over tower'd Camelot; Turn'd to tower'd Camelot. together, Down she came and found a boat For ere she reach'd upon the tide As he rode down to Camelot. Beneath a willow left afloat, The first house by the water-side, As often thro' the purple night, And around about the prow she wrote Singing in her song she died, Below the starry clusters bright, The Lady of Shalott. The Lady of Shalott. Some bearded meteor, burning bright, And down the river's dim expanse Under tower and balcony, Moves over still Shalott. Like some bold seer in a trance, By garden-wall and gallery, Seeing all his own mischance -- A gleaming shape she floated by, His broad clear brow in sunlight With a glassy countenance Dead-pale between the houses high, glow'd; Did she look to Camelot. Silent into Camelot. On burnish'd hooves his war-horse And at the closing of the day Out upon the wharfs they came, trode; She loosed the chain, and down she lay; Knight and Burgher, Lord and Dame, From underneath his helmet flow'd The broad stream bore her far away, And around the prow they read her His coal-black curls as on he rode, The Lady of Shalott. name, As he rode down to Camelot. The Lady of Shalott. From the bank and from the river Lying, robed in snowy white He flashed into the crystal mirror, That loosely flew to left and right -- Who is this? And what is here? "Tirra lirra," by the river The leaves upon her falling light -- And in the lighted palace near Sang Sir Lancelot. Thro' the noises of the night, Died the sound of royal cheer; She floated down to Camelot: And they crossed themselves for fear, She left the web, she left the loom, And as the boat-head wound along All the Knights at Camelot; She made three paces through the The willowy hills and fields among, But Lancelot mused a little space room, They heard her singing her last song, He said, "She has a lovely face; She saw the water-lily bloom, The Lady of Shalott. God in his mercy lend her grace, She saw the helmet and the plume, The Lady of Shalott." She look'd down to Camelot. Out flew the web and floated wide; The mirror crack'd from side to side; "The curse is come upon me," cried The Lady of Shalott.
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