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Is nothing of that radiant pomp so good as we have

here? Or gives a thing but small delight that never can be

dear? The silver moon with all her vales, and hills of

mightiest fame, Doth she betray us when they're seen ? or are they

but a name?

Or is it rather that Conceit rapacious is and strong, And bounty never yields so much but it seems to do

her wrong? Or is it, that when human Souls a journey long have

had And are returned into themselves, they cannot but be

sad ?

Or must we be constrained to think that these

Spectators rude, Poor in estate, of manners base, men of the multitude, Have souls which never yet have risen, and therefore

prostrate lie ? No, no, this cannot be;-men thirst for power and

majesty!

Does, then, a deep and earnest thought the blissful

mind employ Of him who gazes, or has gazed ? a grave and steady

joy, That doth reject all show of pride, admits no outward

sign, Because not of this noisy world, but silent and diyine!

Whatever be the cause, 'tis sure that they who pry

and pore

Seem to meet with little gain, seem less happy than

before: One after One they take their turn, nor have I one

espied That doth not slackly go away, as if dissatisfied.

1806.

XVI.

WRITTEN IN MARCH,

WHILE RESTING ON THE BRIDGE AT THE FOOT OF BROTHER'S WATER.

[EXTEMPORE. This little poem was a favorite with Joanna Baillie.]

THE Cock is crowing,
The stream is flowing,
The small birds twitter,

The lake doth glitter,
The green field sleeps in the sun ;

The oldest and youngest
Are at work with the strongest;
The cattle are grazing,

Their heads never raising ;
There are forty feeding like one!

Like an army defeated
The snow bath retreated,
And now doth fare ill
On the top of the bare hill ;

LYRE! THOUGH SUCH POWER DO IN THY MAGIC LIVE. 117

The Ploughboy is whooping—anon-anon:

There's joy in the mountains ;
There's life in the fountains;
Small clouds are sailing,

Blue sky prevailing;
The rain is over and gone !

1801.

XVII.

LYRE! though such power do in thy magic live

As might from India's farthest plain
Recal the not unwilling Maid,

Assist me to detain

The lovely Fugitive: Check with thy notes the impulse which, betrayed By her sweet farewell looks, I longed to aid. Here let me gaze enrapt upon

that

eye,
The impregnable and awe-inspiring fort
Of contemplation, the calm port
By reason fenced from winds that sigh
Among the restless sails of vanity.
But if no wish be hers that we should part,
A humbler bliss would satisfy my heart.

Where all things are so fair,
Enough by her dear side to breathe the air

Of this Elysian weather; And, on or in, or near, the brook, espy Shade upon the sunshine lying

Faint and somewhat pensively; And downward Image gaily vying

With its upright living tree

Mid silver clouds, and openings of blue sky
As soft almost and deep as her cerulean eye.

Nor less the joy with many a glance
Cast up the Stream or down at her beseeching,
To mark its eddying foam-balls prettily distrest
By ever-changing shape and want of rest;

Or wateh, with mutual teaching,
The current as it plays
In flashing leaps and stealthy creeps

Adown a rocky maze;
Or note (translucent summer's happiest chance !)
In the slope-channel floored with pebbles bright,
Stones of all hues, gem emulous of gem,
So vivid that they take from keenest sight
The liquid veil that seeks not to hide them.

XVIII.

BEGGARS.

[WRITTEN at Town-end, Grasmere. Met, and described to me by

my Sister, near the quarry at the head of Rydal lake, a place still a chosen resort of vagrants travelling with their families.]

SHE had a tall man's height or more;
Her face from summer's noontide heat
No bonnet shaded, but she wore
A mantle, to her very feet
Descending with a graceful flow,
And on her head a cap as white as new-fallen snow.

bad seen

Her skin was of Egyptian brown:
Haughty, as if her

eye
Its own light to a distance thrown,
She towered, fit person for a Queen
To lead those ancient Amazonian files;
Or ruling Bandit's wife among the Grecian isles.

Advancing, forth she stretched her hand
And begged an alms with doleful plea
That ceased not; on our English land
Such

woes, I knew, could never be; And yet a boon I gave her, for the creature Was beautiful to see—a weed of glorious feature.

I left her, and pursued my way;
And soon before me did espy
A pair of little Boys at play,
Chasing a crimson butterfly;
The taller followed with his hat in band,
Wreathed round with yellow flowers the gayest of

the land.

The other wore a rimless crown
With leaves of laurel stuck about;
And, while both followed up and down,
Each whooping with a merry shout,
In their fraternal features I could trace
Unquestionable lines of that wild Suppliant's face,

Yet they, so blithe of heart, seemed fit
For finest tasks of earth or air:
Wings let them have, and they might flit
Precursors to Aurora's car,

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