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Essays, Sketches and Illustrations of bygone Sussex

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POEMS OF SUSSEX PLACES.
125
Instinctive homage, and in times beyond
The power of thought to reach, bard after bard
Shall sing thy glory, Beatific Sea !
South Downs.
The breezy South Downs, which form so remarkable a feature in the Sussex landscape, have not passed unsung. Of several sonnets referring to their beauty, by Charlotte Smith, we take this :—
Ah, hills beloved ! where once a happy child,
Your beechen shades, "your turf, your flowers, among,"
I wove your bluebells into garlands wild,
And woke your echoes with my artless song.
Ah ! hills beloved ! your turf, your flowers, remain ;
But can they peace to this sad breast restore,
For one poor moment sooth the sense of pain,
And teach a broken heart to throb no more ?
And you, Aruna ! in the vale below, As to the sea your limpid waves you bear, Can you one kind Lethean cup bestow. To drink a long oblivion to my care ?
Ah no !—when all, e'en hope's last ray is gone, There's no oblivion but in death alone !
A later poet, Mr. Joseph Ellis, has also felt their exhilaration (Caesar in Egypt and other poems, 1885, p. 172).
A song to thee, O Nature ! whilst the hills Render my senses fullest sympathy;
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