by Percy Bysshe Shelley
To -
Mutability

Song

Published by Mrs. Shelley, "Posthumous Poems", 1824. There is a transcript in the Harvard manuscript book.

 1. Rarely, rarely, comest thou, Spirit of Delight! Wherefore hast thou left me now Many a day and night? Many a weary night and day  'Tis since thou art fled away. 
 2. How shall ever one like me Win thee back again? With the joyous and the free Thou wilt scoff at pain.  Spirit false! thou hast forgot All but those who need thee not. 
 3. As a lizard with the shade Of a trembling leaf, Thou with sorrow art dismayed;  Even the sighs of grief Reproach thee, that thou art not near, And reproach thou wilt not hear. 
 4. Let me set my mournful ditty To a merry measure;  Thou wilt never come for pity, Thou wilt come for pleasure; Pity then will cut away Those cruel wings, and thou wilt stay. 
 5. I love all that thou lovest,  Spirit of Delight! The fresh Earth in new leaves dressed, And the starry night; Autumn evening, and the morn When the golden mists are born.  
 6. I love snow, and all the forms Of the radiant frost; I love waves, and winds, and storms, Everything almost Which is Nature's, and may be  Untainted by man's misery. 
 7. I love tranquil solitude, And such society As is quiet, wise, and good Between thee and me  What difference? but thou dost possess The things I seek, not love them less. 
 8. I love Love-though he has wings, And like light can flee, But above all other things,  Spirit, I love thee- Thou art love and life! Oh, come, Make once more my heart thy home.