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There, self-involved, does Peter sit He kisses, kisses face and limb,-
Until no sign of life he makes, He kisses him a thousand times!
As if his mind were sinking deep
Through years that have been long asleep!
- This Peter sees, while in the shade The trance is past away—he wakes,
He stood beside the cottage door:
And Peter Bell, the ruffian wild,
Sobs loud, he sobs even like a child,
« Oh! God, I can endure no more!»
He lifts his head—and sees the Ass
Yet standing in the clear moonshine,
* When shall I be as good as thou?
Oh! would, poor beast, that I had now
A heart but half as good as thine !» —Here ends my Tale:—for in a trice
Arrived a neighbour with his horse;
Peter went forth with him straightway;.
And, with due care, ere break of day
Together they brought back the Corse.
—But He—who deviously hath sought
His Father through the lonesome woods,
Hath sought, proclaiming to the ear
Of night his inward grief and fear—
He comes—escaped from fields and floods;– And many years did this poor Ass,
Whom once it was my luck to see
With weary pace is drawing nigh— Cropping the shrubs of Leming-Lane,
He sees the Ass—and nothing living Help by his labour to maintain
Had ever such a fit of joy The Widow and her family.
As hath this little orphan Boy,
For he has no misgiving! And Peter Bell, who, till that night,
- Had been the wildest of his clan,
Towards the gentle Ass he springs, Forsook his crimes, repressed his folly,
And up about his neck he climbs; And, after ten months' melancholy,
In loving words he talks to him, Became a good and honest man.
TO ------. WRITTEN IN VERY EARLY YOUTh. Harry the feeling from the bosom thrown CALM is all nature as a resting wheel. In perfect shape whose beauty Time shall spare The Kine are couched upon the dewy grass; Though a breath made it, like a bubble blown The Horse alone, seen dimly as I pass, For summer pastime into wanton air; Is cropping audibly his later meal : Happy the thought best likened to a stone Dark is the ground; a slumber seems to steal Of the sea-beach, when, polished with nice care, O'er vale, and mountain, and the starless sky. Weins it discovers exquisite and rare, Now, in this blank of things, a harmony, which for the loss of that moist gleam atone Home-felt, and home-created, seems to heal That tempted first to gather it. O chief That grief for which the senses still supply of Friends! such feelings if I here present, Fresh food; for only then, when memory such thoughts, with others mixed less fortunate; Is hushed, am I at rest. My Friends' restrain Then smile into my heart a fond belief Those busy cares that would allay my pain : That Thou, if not with partial joy elate, Oh! leave me to myself; nor let me feel Receiv'st the gift for more than mild content! The officious touch that makes me droop again. Nuxs fret not at their convent's narrow room; ADMONITION, And Hermits are contented with their cells; And student, with their pensive citadel: *::::::::::::::::"...'...'... Maids at the wheel, the Weaver at his loom, the Country of the Lakes. Sit blithe and happy; Bees that soar for bloom, High as the highest Peak of Furness Fells, Yes, there is holy pleasure in thine eye! will murmur by the hour in foxglove bells : —The lovely Cottage in the guardian nook In truth, the prison, unto which we doom Hath stirred thee deeply; with its own dear brook, Ourselves, no prison is : and hence to me, Its own small pasture, almost its own sky! In sundry moods,'t was pastime to be bound But covet not the Abode;—forbear to sigh, within the Sonnet's scanty plot of ground: As many do, repining while they look; Pleased if some Souls (for such there needs must be) Intruders who would tear from Nature's book who have felt the weight of too much liberty, This precious leaf, with harsh impiety. Should find brief solace there, as I have found. Think what the Home must be if it were *. i
« Beloved Vale !” I said, “when I shall con
Those many records of my childish years,
Remembrance of myself and of my peers
Will press me down : to think of what is gone
Will be an awful thought, if life have one.”
But, when into the Vale I came, no fears
Distressed me; from mine eyes escaped no tears;
Deep thought, or awful vision, had I none.
By doubts and thousand petty fancies crost,
I stood of simple shame the blushing Thrall;
So narrow seemed the brooks, the fields so small.
A Juggler's balls old Time about him tossed;
I looked, I stared, I smiled, I laughed; and all
The weight of sadness was in wonder lost.
Pelion and Ossa flourish side by side,
Together in immortal books enrolled :
His ancient dower Olympus hath not sold;
And that inspiring ilill, which a did divide
Into two ample horns his forehead wide,”
Shines with poetic radiance as of old;
While not an English Mountain we behold
By the celestial Muses glorified.
Yet round our sea-girt shore they rise in crowds :
What was the great Parnassus' self to Thee,
Mount Skiddaw? In his natural sovereignty
Our British Hill is fairer far : He shrouds
His double front among Atlantic clouds,
And pours forth streams more sweet than Castaly.
Theae is a little unpretending Rill
Of limpid water, humbler far than aught
That ever among Men or Naiads sought
Notice or name!—It quivers down the hill,
Furrowing its shallow way with dubious will;
Yet to my mind this scanty Stream is brought
Oftener than Ganges or the Nile, a thought
of private recollection sweet and still!
Months perish with their moons; year treads on year;
But, faithful Emma, thou with me canst say
That, while ten thousand pleasures disappear,
And flies their memory fast almost as they,
The immortal Spirit of one happy day
Lingers beside that Rill, in vision clear.
lirn only Pilot the soft breeze the Boat
Lingers. But Fancy is well satisfied;
With keen-eyed Hope, with Memory, at her side,
And the glad Muse at liberty to uote
All that to each is precious, as we float
Gently along; regardiess who shall chide
If the Heavens smile, aud leave us free to glide,
Happy Associates breathing air remote
From trivial cares. But, Fancy and the Muse,
Why have I crowded this small Bark with you
And others of your kind, Ideal Crew :
While here sits One whose brightness owes its hues
To flesh and blood; no Goddess from above.
No fleeting Spirit, but my own true Love?
The fairest, brightest hues of ether fade:
The sweetest notes must terminate and die;
O Friend! thy flute has breathed a harmony
Softly resounded through this rocky glade:
Such strains of rapture as the Genius played
In his still haunt on Bagdad's summit high;
He who stood visible to Mirzah's eye,
Never before to human sight betrayed.
Lo, in the vale, the mists of evening spread'
The visionary Arches are not there,
Nor the green Islands, nor the shining Seas;
Yet sacred is to me this Mountain's head,
From which I have been lifted on the breeze
Of harmony, above all earthly care.
Praised be the Art whose subtle power could stay
Yon Cloud, and fix it in that glorious shape;
Nor would permit the thin smoke to escape.
Northose bright sunbeams to forsake the day:
Which stopped that Band of Travellers on their way,
Ere they were lost within the shady wood: -
And shewed the Bark upon tile glassy flood
For ever anchored in her sheltering Bay.
Soul-soothing Art' which Morning, Noon-tide, Even
Do serve with all their changeful pageantry;
Thou, with ambition modest yet sublime,
Here, for the sight of mortal man, hast given
To one brief inoment caught from fleeting time
The appropriate calm cf blest eternity.
“Why, Minstrel, these untuneful murmuriugs—
Dull, flagging notes that with each other jaro
* Think, gentle Lady, of a Harp so far
From its own Country, and forgive the strings--
A simple answer! but even so forth springs,
From the Castalian fountain of the heart,
The Poetry of Life, and all that Art
Divine of words quickening insensate Things.
From the submissive necks of guiltless Men
Stretched on the block, the glittering axe recoils;
Sun, Moon, and Stars, all struggle in the toils
Of mortal sympathy; what wonder then
If the poor Harp distempered music yields
To its sad Lord, far from his native Fields'
Aerial Rock—whose solitary brow
From this low threshold daily meets my sight,
When I step forth to hail the morning light;
Or quit the stars with lingering farewell–how
Shall Fancy pay to thee a grateful vow
How, with the Muse's aid, her love attest ?
By planting on thy naked head the crest
* See the vision of Mirzah, in the Spectator.
Like to a breeze from heaven.
Of an imperial Castle, which the plough
Of ruin shall not touch. Innocent scheme :
That doth presume no more than to supply
A grace the sinuous vale and roaring stream
Want, through neglect of hoar Antiquity.
Rise, then, ye votive Towers, and catch a gleam
of golden sunset, ere it fade and die!
0 centle Sleep; do they belong to thee,
These twinklings of oblivion? Thou dost love
To sit in meekness, like the brooding Dove,
A Captive never wishing to be free.
This tiresome night, O Sleep! thou art to me
A Fly, that up and down himself doth shove
Upon a fretful rivulet, now above
Now on the water vexed with mockery.
I have no pain that calls for patience, no ;
Hence an I cross and peevish as a child :
Am pleased by fits to have thee for my foe,
Yet ever willing to be reconciled :
0 gentle Creature! do not use me so,
But once and deeply let me be beguiled.
A riock of sheep that leisurely pass by,
One after one; the sound of rain, and bees
Murmuring; the fall of rivers, winds and seas,
Smooth fields, white sheets of water, and pure sky;
By turns have all been thought of; yet I lie
Sleepless, and soon the small bird's melodies
Must hear, hirst uttered from my orchard trees;
And the first Cuckoo's melancholy cry.
Even thus last night, and two nights more, I lay,
And could not win thce, Sleep! by any stealth :
So do not let ine wear to-night away :
Without Thee what is all the morning's wealth :
Come, blessed barrier betwixt day and day,
Dear mother of fresh thoughts and joyous health !
Fond words have oft been spoken to thee, Sleep !
And thou hast had thy store of tenderest names;
The very sweetest words that fancy frames,
When thankfulness of heart is strong and deep'
Dear bosom Child we call thee, that dost steep
In rich reward all suffering; Dalm that tames
All anguish; Saint that evil thoughts and aims
Takest away, and into souls dost creep,
Shall I alone,
I surely not a man ungently made,
Call thee worst Tyrant by which Flesh is crost?
Perverse, self-willed to own and to disown,
Mere Slave of them who never for thee prayed,
Still last to conne where thou art wanted most'
Tar Imperial Consort of the Fairy King owns not a sylvan bower; or gorgeous cell with emerald sloored, and with purpureal shell Ceilinged and roofed; that is so fair a thing
As this low structure—for the tasks of Spring
Prepared by one who loves the buoyant swell
Of the brisk waves, yet here consents to dwell;
And spreads in steadfast peace her brooding wing.
Words cannot paint the o'ershadowing yew-tree bough,
And dimly-gleaming Nest,--a hollow crown
Of Bolden leaves inlaid with silver down,
Fine as the Mother's softest plumes allow :
I taze—and almost wish to lay aside
Humanity, weak slave of cumbrous pride!
WRITTEN UPON A BLANK LEAF IN a THE COMPLETE ANGLER."
While flowing Rivers yield a blameless sport,
Shall live the name of Walton;–Sage benign'
Whose pen, the mysteries of the rod and line
Unfolding, did not fruitlessly exhort
To reverend watching of each still report
That Nature utters from her rural shrine.—
Aleek, nobly versed in simple discipline,
He found the longest summer day too short,
To his loved pastime given by sedgy Lee,
Or down the tempting maze of Shawford brook!
Fairer than life itself, in this sweet Book,
The cowslip bank and shady willow-tree,
And the fresh meads; where flowed, from every nook
Of his full bosom, gladsome Piety :
BA an of the Fleece, whose skilful Genius made
That Work a living landscape fair and bright;
Nor hallowed less with musical delight
Than those soft scenes through which thy Childhood
Those southern Tracts of Cambria, a deep embayed,
With green hills fenced, with Ocean's murmur lulled,”
Though hasty Fame hath many a chaplet culled
For worthless brows, while in the pensive shade
Of cold neglect she leaves thy head ungraced,
Yet pure and powerful minds, hearts meek and still,
A grateful few, shall love thy modest Lay,
Long as the Shepherd's bleating flock shall stray
O'er naked Snowdon's wide aerial waste;
Long as the thrush shall pipe on Grongar Hill!
ON THE DETRACTION WHICH FOLLOWED THE PUBLICATION OF A CERTAIN POEM.
See Milton's Sonnet, beginning . A Book was writ of late called ‘Tetrachordon.' "
A Book came forth of late, called « Peter Bell;" Not negligent the style;—the matter?—good As aught that song records of Robin Hood; Or Roy, renowned through many a Scottish dell; But some (who brook these hacknied themes full well, Nor heat, at Tam o'Shanter's name, their blood) waxed wroth, and with foul claws, a harpy brood, On Bard and Hero clamorously fell. heed not, wild Rover once through heath and glen, who mad'st at length the better life thy choice,