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AN ADDRESS TO THE NIGHTINGALE (FROM ARISTOPHANES), by                     Poet's Biography
First Line: O dear one, with tawny wings
Last Line: Even the throne-room of god it shall fill!
Alternate Author Name(s): Duclaux, Madame Emile; Darmesteter, Mary; Robinson, A. Mary F.
Subject(s): Aristophanes (450-388 B.c.); Birds; Dramatists; Nightingales; Plays & Playwrights


O DEAR one, with tawny wings,
Dearest of singing things,
Whose hymns my company have been,
Thou art come, thou art found, thou art seen!
Bid, with the music of thy voice,
Sweet-sounding rustler, the heart rejoice;
Ah! louder, louder, louder sing,
Flute out the language of the spring;
Nay, let those low notes rest,
Oh! my nightingale, nightingale, carol thine anapaest!

Come, my companion, cease from thy slumbers,
Pour out thy holy and musical numbers,
Sing and lament with a sweet throat divine,
Itys of many tears, thy son and mine!
Cry out, and quiver, and shake, dusky throat,
Throb with the thrill of thy liquidest note.
Through the wide country and mournfully through
Leafy-haired branches and boughs of the yew,
Widens and rises the echo until
Even the throne-room of God it shall fill.

Then, when Apollo, the bright-locked, hath heard,
Lo, he shall answer thine elegy, bird,
Playing his ivory seven-stringed lyre,
Standing a God in the high Gods' quire.
Ay, bird, not he alone:
Hark! from immortal throats arise
Diviner threnodies
That sound and swoon in a celestial moan
And answer back thine own.

Come, my companion, cease from thy slumbers,
Pour out thy holy and musical numbers,
Sing and lament with a sweet throat divine,
Itys of many tears, thy son and mine!
Cry out, and quiver, and shake, dusky throat,
Throb with the thrill of thy liquidest note.
Through the wide country and mournfully through
Leafy-haired branches and boughs of the yew,
Widens and rises the echo, until
Even the throne-room of God it shall fill!





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