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From “The Odes of Anacreon”. Ode 50
When wine I quaff, before my eyes Dreams of poetic glory rise; And freshened by the goblet's dews, My soul invokes the heavenly Muse, When wine I drink, all sorrow's o'er; I think of doubts and fears no more; But scatter to the railing wind Each gloomy phantom of the mind. When I drink wine, the ethereal boy, Bacchus himself, partakes my joy; And while we dance through vernal bowers, Whose every breath comes fresh from flowers, In wine he makes my senses swim, Till the gale breathes of naught but him! Again I drink,--and, lo, there seems A calmer light to fill my dreams; The lately ruffled wreath I spread With steadier hand around my head; Then take the lyre, and sing "how blest The life of him who lives at rest!" But then comes witching wine again, With glorious woman in its train; And, while rich perfumes round me rise, That seem the breath of woman's sighs, Bright shapes, of every hue and form. Upon my kindling fancy swarm, Till the whole world of beauty seems To crowd into my dazzled dreams! When thus I drink, my heart refines, And rises as the cup declines; Rises in the genial flow, That none but social spirits know, When, with young revellers, round the bowl, The old themselves grow young in soul! Oh, when I drink, true joy is mine, There's bliss in every drop of wine. All other blessings I have known, I scarcely dared to call my own; But this the Fates can ne'er destroy, Till death o'ershadows all my joy.
Thomas Moore's other poems:
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