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Duns Scotus's Oxford

Oxford-General View from Magdalen Tower


Tower city and branch between towers;
Cuckoo-echoing, bell-swarméd, lark-charméd, rook-racked,
    river-rounded;
The dapple-eared lily below thee; that country and town did
Once encounter in, here coped and poiséd powers;

Thou hast a base and brackish skirt there, sours
That neighbour-nature thy grey beauty is grounded
Best it; graceless growth, thou hast confounded
Rural rural keeping-folk, flocks, and flowers.

Yet ah! This air I gather and I release
He lived on; these weeds and waters, these walls are what
He haunted who of all men most sways my sprits to peace;

Of realty the rarest-veinéd unraveller; a not
Rivalled insight, be rival Italy of Greece;
Who fired France for Mary without spot.