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How many bards gild the lapses of time!

 How many bards gild the lapses of time!
A few of them have ever been the food
Of my delighted fancy,--I could brood
Over their beauties, earthly, or sublime:
And often, when I sit me down to rhyme,
These will in throngs before my mind intrude:
But no confusion, no disturbance rude
Do they occasion; 'tis a pleasing chime.
So the unnumber'd sounds that evening store;
The songs of birds--the whisp'ring of the leaves--
The voice of waters--the great bell that heaves
With solemn sound,--and thousand others more,
That distance of recognizance bereaves,
Make pleasing music, and not wild uproar.