Verse > William Wordsworth > Complete Poetical Works
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ECCLESIASTICAL SONNETS

IN SERIES, 1821-22.

XXXVI. AN INTERDICT

          REALMS quake by turns: proud Arbitress of grace,
          The Church, by mandate shadowing forth the power
          She arrogates o'er heaven's eternal door,
          Closes the gates of every sacred place.
          Straight from the sun and tainted air's embrace
          All sacred things are covered: cheerful morn
          Grows sad as night--no seemly garb is worn,
          Nor is a face allowed to meet a face
          With natural smiles of greeting. Bells are dumb;
          Ditches are graves--funereal rites denied;                  10
          And in the churchyard he must take his bride
          Who dares be wedded! Fancies thickly come
          Into the pensive heart ill fortified,
          And comfortless despairs the soul benumb.


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