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Poem by Sarah Orne Jewett
I. WHEN one with skillful fingers swift as wind Swept to and fro along the glittering keys, I said: I wish I were away from these Clattering and noisy players! but resigned Myself to listen, and I tried to seize Upon some meaning in the tune I heard. But in my ears the harsh notes rang and whirred; It was as if I listened carelessly Among a crowd of people coarse and rude, Who talked in shrillest tones of grudge or feud, Though only seldom one could catch a word. Even their voices were a bore to me; I pictured their dull faces, till released From such companions, when the music ceased. II. But when the second player struck a note And fingered softly out a gentle air-- It was like coming from that turmoil where I waited, to a light Venetian boat, Idly to glide among the shadows, there Where one may drift and dream; and suddenly One deep sweet voice sang such a song to me. I listened, and I followed far away-- No music ever sent me so astray,-- I never could call back the tale it told, But all the world seemed lost, as when, one day, I laid me down upon a high cliff's crest, Warm with the sunshine, there alone to rest, While far below the great waves shoreward rolled.
Sarah Orne Jewett
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