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How shouldst thou prove aught else but dear and
To me, who from thy lakes and mountain-hills,
Thy clouds, thy quiet dales, thy rocks and seas,
Have drunk in all my intellectual life,
All sweet sensations, all ennobling thoughts,
All adoration of the God in Nature,
All lovely and all honourable things,
Whatever makes this mortal spirit feel
The joy and greatness of its future being?
There lives nor form nor feeling in my soul
Unborrow'd from my country. O divine
And beauteous island! thou hast been my sole
And most magnificent temple, in the which
I walk with awe, and sing my stately songs,
Loving the God that made me!

May my fears,

My filial fears, be vain! and may the vaunts
And menace of the vengeful enemy
Pass like the gust, that roar'd and died away
In the distant tree: which heard, and only heard
In this low dell, bow'd not the delicate grass.
But now the gentle dew-fall sends abroad
The fruit-like perfume of the golden furze:
The light has left the summit of the hill,
Though still a sunny gleam lies beautiful
Aslant the ivied beacon. Now farewell,
Farewell, awhile, O soft and silent spot!

On the green sheep-track, up the heathy hill,
Homeward I wind my way; and, lo! recall'd
From bodings that have well nigh wearied me,
I find myself upon the brow, and pause
Startled! And after lonely sojourning
In such a quiet and surrounded nook,

This burst of prospect, here the shadowy Main,
Dim tinted, there the mighty majesty
Of that huge amphitheatre of rich
And elmy fields, seems like society-
Conversing with the mind, and giving it
A livelier impulse and a dance of thought!
And now, beloved Stowey! I behold
Thy church-tower, and, methinks, the four huge elms
Clustering, which mark the mansion of my friend;
And close behind them, hidden from my view,
Is my own lowly cottage, where my babe
And my babe's mother dwell in peace! With light
And quicken'd footsteps thitherward I tend,
Remembering thee, O green and silent dell!

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Sisters! I from Ireland came!
Hedge and corn-fields all on flame,
I triumph'd o'er the setting Sun!
And all the while the work was done,
On as I strode with my huge strides,
I flung back my head and I held my sides,
It was so rare a piece of fun
To see the swelter'd cattle run
With uncouth gallop through the night,
Scared by the red and noisy light!
By the light of his own blazing cot
Was many a naked rebel shot:

The house-stream met the flame and hiss'd,
While crash! fell in the roof, I wist,

On some of those old bed-rid nurses,
That deal in discontent and curses.

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They shall tear him limb from limb!


O thankless beldames and untrue!
And is this all that you can do
For him, who did so much for you?
Ninety months he, by my troth!
Hath richly cater'd for you both;
And in an hour would you repay

An eight years' work?-Away! away!
I alone am faithful! I

Cling to him everlastingly.


All thoughts, all passions, all delights,
Whatever stirs this mortal frame,
Are all but ministers of Love,

And feed his sacred flame.

Oft in my waking dreams do I
Live o'er again that happy hour,
When midway on the mount I lay,
Beside the ruin'd tower.

The moonshine, stealing o'er the scene,
Had blended with the lights of eve;
And she was there, my hope, my joy,
My own dear Genevieve!

She leant against the armed man,
The statue of the armed knight;
She stood and listen'd to my lay,

Amid the lingering light.

Few sorrows hath she of her own,
My hope! my joy! my Genevieve!
She loves me best, whene'er I sing

The songs that make her grieve.

I play'd a soft and doleful air,
I sang an old and moving story-
An old rude song, that suited well
That ruin wild and hoary.

She listen'd with a flitting blush,
With downcast eyes and modest grace,
For well she knew, I could not chuse
But gaze upon her face.

I told her of the Knight that wore
Upon his shield a burning brand;
And that for ten long years he woo'd
The Lady of the Land.

I told her how he pin'd; and ah!
The deep, the low, the pleading tone
With which I sang another's love,

Interpreted my own.

She listen'd with a flitting blush,
With downcast eyes, and modest grace;
And she forgave me, that I gazed

Too fondly on her face!

But when I told the cruel scorn

That craz'd that bold and lovely Knight,
And that he cross'd the mountain-woods,
Nor rested day nor night;

That sometimes from the savage den,
And sometimes from the darksome shade,
And sometimes starting up at once

In green and sunny glade,

There came and look'd him in the face
An angel beautiful and bright;
And that he knew it was a fiend,

This miserable Knight!

And that unknowing what he did,
He leap'd amid a murderous band,
And sav'd from outrage worse than death
The Lady of the Land!

And how she wept, and claspt his knees;
And how she tended him in vain-
And ever strove to expiate

The scorn that crazed his brain.
And that she nursed him in a cave;
And how his madness went away,
When on the yellow forest-leaves

A dying man he lay.

His dying words-but when I reach'd
That tenderest strain of all the ditty,
My faultering voice and pausing harp
Disturb'd her soul with pity!

All impulses of soul and sense

Had thrill'd my guileless Genevieve;
The music, and the doleful tale,

The rich and balmy eve;

And hopes, and fears that kindle hope,
An undistinguishable throng,
And gentle wishes long subdued,

Subdued and cherish'd long!

She wept with pity and delight,
She blush'd with love, and virgin-shame;
And like the murmur of a dream,

I heard her breathe my name.
Her bosom heav'd—she stept aside,
As conscious of my look she stept-
Then suddenly, with timorous eye
She fled to me and wept.

She half enclosed me with her arms,
She press'd me with a meek embrace;
And bending back her head, look'd up,
And gazed upon my face.
"Twas partly Love, and partly Fear,
And partly 'twas a bashful art,
That I might rather feel, than see,
The swelling of her heart.

I calm'd her fears, and she was calm,
And told her love with virgin-pride.
And so I won my Genevieve,

My bright and beauteous bride.



A simple child

That lightly draws its breath,
And feels its life in every limb,
What should it know of death?
I met a little cottage girl:

She was eight years old, she said;
Her hair was thick with many a curl
That clustered round her head.

She had a rustic, woodland air,
And she was wildly clad;
Her eyes were fair, and very fair;
-Her beauty made me glad.

"Sisters and brothers, little maid,
How many may you be?"

"How many? Seven in all," she said,
And wondering looked at me.

"And where are they? I pray you tell."
She answered, "Seven are we;
And two of us at Conway dwell,
And two are gone to sea.
Two of us in the church-yard lie,
My sister and my brother;
And, in the church-yard cottage, I
Dwell near them with my mother."

"You say that two at Conway dwell,
And two are gone to sea,

Yet ye are seven !-I pray you tell,
Sweet maid, how this may be?"
Then did the little maid reply,
"Seven boys and girls are we;
Two of us in the church-yard lie,
Beneath the church-yard tree."
"You run about, my little maid,
Your limbs they are alive;

If two are in the church-yard laid,
Then ye are only five."

"Their graves are green, they may be seen,” The little maid replied,

"Twelve steps or more from my mother's door, And they are side by side.

My stockings there I often knit,
My kerchief there I hem;

And there upon the ground I sit-
I sit and sing to them.

And often after sun-set, sir,
When it is light and fair,
I take my little porringer,
And eat my supper there.

The first that died was little Jane;
In bed she moaning lay,

Till God released her of her pain;
And then she went away.

So in the church-yard she was laid;
And all the summer dry,

Together round her grave we played,
My brother John and I.

And when the ground was white with snow,
And I could run and slide,

My brother John was forced to go,
And he lies by her side."

"How many are you then," said I,

"If they two are in Heaven?"

The little maiden did reply,

"O master! we are seven."

"But they are dead; those two are dead! Their spirits are in Heaven!" 'Twas throwing words away: for still The little maid would have her will, And said, "Nay, we are Seven!"

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Towards the lamb she looked; and from that shady place

I, unobserved, could see the workings of her face: If Nature to her tongue could measured numbers bring, [sing. Thus, thought I, to her lamb that little maid might

"What ails thee, young one? What? Why pull [board

so at thy cord?

Is it not well with thee? Well both for bed and Thy plot of grass is soft, and green as grass can be ; Rest, little young one, rest; what is't that aileth thee?

"What is it thou wouldst seek? What is wanting to thy heart?

[art: Thy limbs, are they not strong? And beautiful thou This grass is tender grass; these flowers they have no peers;

And that green corn, all day, is rustling in thy ears!

"If the sun be shining hot, do but stretch thy woollen chain,

This beech is standing by, its covert thou canst gain; For rain and mountain storms! the like thou need'st [come here

not fearThe rain and storm are things which scarcely can "Rest, little young one, rest; thou hast forgot the day When my father found thee first in places far away: Many flocks were on the hills, but thou wert owned by none;

And thy mother from thy side for evermore was gone. "He took thee in his arms, and in pity brought thee home: [roam?

A blessed day for thee! then whither wouldst thou A faithful nurse thou hast; the dam that did thee yean

Upon the mountain tops no kinder could have been. "Thou know'st that twice a-day I have brought thee in this can

Fresh water from the brook, as clear as ever ran; And twice in the day, when the ground is wet with dew,


I bring thee draughts of milk, warm milk it is, and

"Thy limbs will shortly be twice as stout as they [plough;

are now,

Then I'll yoke thee to my cart like a pony in the My playmate thou shalt be; and when the wind is cold [fold.

Our hearth shall be thy bed, our house shall be thy

"It will not, will not rest!-poor creature, can it be That 'tis thy mother's heart which is working so in thee?

Things that I know not of belike to thee are dear, And dreams of things which thou canst neither see nor hear.

"Alas, the mountain tops that look so green and fair! I've heard of fearful winds and darkness that come there;

The little brooks that seem all pastime and all play, When they are angry, roar like lions for their prey.

"Here thou need'st not dread the raven in the sky; Night and day thou art safe,-our cottage is hard by. Why bleat so after me? Why pull so at thy chain? Sleep-and at break of day I will come to thee again!"

-As homeward through the lane I went with lazy This song to myself did I oftentimes repeat; [feet, And it seemed, as I retraced the ballad line by line, That but half of it was hers, and one half of it was mine.

Again, and once again did I repeat the song; "Nay," said I, "more than half to the damsel must belong, [such a tone, For she looked with such a look, and she spake with That I almost received her heart into my own.”




The valley rings with mirth and joy;
Among the hills the echoes play
A never, never ending song,
To welcome in the May:

The magpie chatters with delight;
The mountain raven's youngling brood
Have left the mother and the nest;
And they go rambling east and west
In search of their own food;
Or through the glittering vapours dart
In very wantonness of heart.


Beneath a rock, upon the grass, Two boys are sitting in the sun; It seems they have no work to do Or that their work is done. On pipes of sycamore they play The fragments of a Christmas hymn; Or with that plant which in our dale We call stag-horn, or fox's tail, Their rusty hats they trim: And thus, as happy as the day, Those shepherds wear the time away.


Along the river's stony marge
The sand-lark chaunts a joyous song;
The thrush is busy in the wood,
And carols loud and strong.
A thousand lambs are on the rocks,
All newly born! both earth and sky
Keep jubilee; and more than all,
Those boys with their green coronal;
They never hear the cry,

That plaintive cry! which up the hill
Comes from the depth of Dungeon Ghyll.

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