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And not a voice was idle with the din
Meanwhile the precipices rang aloud;
The leafless trees and every icy crag
Tinkled like iron; while the distant hills
Into the tumult sent an alien sound

Of melancholy, not unnoticed, while the stars,
Eastward, were sparkling clear, and in the west
The orange sky of evening died away.

Not seldom from the uproar I retired
Into a silent bay,-or sportively

Glanced sideway, leaving the tumultuous throng
To cross the bright reflection of a star,

That gleamed upon the ice; and oftentimes,
When we had given our bodies to the wind,
And all the shadowy banks on either side

Came sweeping through the darkness, spinning still
The rapid line of motion, then at once
Have I, reclining back upon my heels,
Stopped short; yet still the solitary cliffs

Wheeled by me-even as if the earth had rolled
With visible motion her diurnal round!
Behind me did they stretch in solemn train,
Feebler and feebler, and I stood and watched
Till all was tranquil as a summer sea.

TO H. C.


O THOU! whose fancies from afar are brought;
Who of thy words dost make a mock apparel,
And fittest to unutterable thought

The breeze-like motion and the self-born carol;
Thou fairy voyager! that dost float

In such clear water, that thy boat

May rather seem

To brood on air than on an earthly stream;

Suspended in a stream as clear as sky,

Where earth and heaven do make one imagery ·

O blessed vision! happy child!

That art so exquisitely wild,

I think of thee with many fears

For what may be thy lot in future years.

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I thought of times when pain might be thy guest.

Lord of thy house and hospitality;

And grief, uneasy lover! never rest

But when she sate within the touch of thee.

Oh! too industrious folly!

Oh! vain and causeless melancholy!
Nature will either end thee quite;

Or, lengthening out thy season of delight,
Preserve for thee, by individual right,

A young lamb's heart among the full-grown flocks.
What hast thou to do with sorrow,

Or the injuries of to-morrow?

Thou art a dew-drop, which the morn brings forth,

Not framed to undergo unkindly shocks;

Or to be trailed along the soiling earth;


gem that glitters while it lives,

And no forewarning gives;

But, at the touch of wrong, without a strife
Slips in a moment out of life.



By persons resident in the country and attached to rural objects, many places will be found unnamed or of unknown names, where little incidents will have occurred, or feelings been experienced, which will have given to such places a private and peculiar interest. From a wish to give some sort of record to such incidents, or renew the gratification of such feelings, names have been given to places by the author and some of his friends, and the following poems written in consequence.


IT was an April morning: fresh and clear

The rivulet, delighting in its strength,

Ran with a young man's speed; and yet the voice

Of waters which the Winter had supplied

Was softened down into a vernal tone.

The spirit of enjoyment and desire,

And hopes and wishes, from all living things
Went circling, like a multitude of sounds.
The budding groves appeared as if in haste
To spur the steps of June; as if their shades
Of various green were hind'rances that stood
Between them and their object: yet, meanwhile,
There was such deep contentment in the air
That every naked ash, and tardy tree
Yet leafless, seemed as though the countenance
With which it looked on this delightful day
Were native to the Summer.-Up the brook
I roamed in the confusion of my heart,
Alive to all things and forgetting all.
At length I to a sudden turning came
In this continuous glen, where down a rock
The stream, so ardent in its course before,
Sent forth such sallies of glad sound, that all
Which I till then had heard, appeared the voice
Of common pleasure: beast and bird, the lamb,
The shepherd's dog, the linnet and the thrush
Vied with this waterfall, and made a song

Which. while I listened, seemed like the wild growth

Or like some natural produce of the air,

That could not cease to be. Green leaves were here;
But 'twas the foliage of the rocks, the birch,

The yew, the holly, and the bright green thorn,
With hanging islands of resplendent furze :
And on a summit, distant a short space,
By any who should look beyond the dell,
A single mountain cottage might be seen.
I gazed and gazed, and to myself I said,

"Our thoughts at least are ours; and this wild nook,
My EMMA, I will dedicate to thee."

-Soon did the spot become my other home,

My dwelling, and my out-of-doors abode.

And, of the shepherds who have seen me there,

To whom I sometimes in our idle talk

Have told this fancy, two or three, perhaps,

Years after we are gone and in our graves,

When they have cause to speak of this wild place,
May call it by the name of EMMA'S DELL.



you learned,

AMID the smoke of cities did you pass
Your time of early youth; and there
From years of quiet industry, to love
The living beings by your own fire-side,
With such a strong devotion, that your heart

Is slow towards the sympathies of them

Who look upon the hills with tenderness,

And make dear friendships with the streams and groves. Yet we, who are transgressors in this kind,

Dwelling retired in our simplicity

Among the woods and fields, we love you well,
Joanna and I guess, since you have been

So distant from us now for two long years,

That you will gladly listen to discourse
However trivial, if you thence are taught
That they, with whom you once were happy, talk
Familiarly of you and of old times.

While I was seated, now some ten days past,
Beneath those lofty firs, that overtop
Their ancient neighbour, the old steeple tower,
The vicar from his gloomy house hard by

Came forth to greet me; and when he had asked,
"How fares Joanna, that wild-hearted maid!
And when will she return to us?" he paused;
And, after short exchange of village news,
He with grave looks demanded, for what cause,
Reviving obsolete idolatry,

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I, like a Runic priest, in characters
Of formidable size had chisseled out
Some uncouth name upon the native rock,
Above the Rotha, by the forest side.
-Now, by those dear immunities of heart
Engendered betwixt malice and true love,
I was not loth to be so catechized,
And this was my reply:-" As it befel,
One Summer morning we had walked abroad
At break of day, Joanna and myself.

-"Twas that delightful season, when the broom,
Full-flowered, and visible on every steep,
Along the copses runs in veins of gold.
Our pathway led us on to Rotha's banks;
And when we came in front of that tall rock

Which looks towards the east, I there stopped short,
And traced the lofty barrier with my eye
From base to summit; such delight I found

To note in shrub and tree, in stone and flower,
That intermixture of delicious hues,

Along so vast a surface, all at once,

In one impression, by connecting force
Of their own beauty, imaged in the heart.
-When I had gazed perhaps two minutes' space,
Joanna, looking in my eyes, beheld

That ravishment of mine, and laughed aloud.
The rock, like something starting from a sleep,
Took up the lady's voice, and laughed again:
That ancient woman seated on Helm-Crag
Was ready with her cavern: Hammar-Scar,
And the tall steep of Silver-How, sent forth
A noise of laughter; southern Loughrigg heard.
And Fairfield answered with a mountain tone:
Helvellyn far into the clear blue sky
Carried the lady's voice,-old Skiddaw blew
His speaking trumpet ;-back out of the clouds
Of Glaramara southward came the voice;
And Kirkstone tossed it from his misty head.
-Now whether (said I to our cordial friend,
Who in the hey-day of astonishment
Smiled in my face) this were in simple truth
A work accomplished by the brotherhood
Of ancient mountains, or my ear was touched
With dreams and visionary impulses,
Is not for me to tell; but sure I am

That there was a loud uproar in the hills:

And, while we both were listening, to my side

The fair Joanna drew, as if she wished

To shelter from some object of her fear.

-And hence, long afterwards, when eighteen moons
Were wasted, as I chanced to walk alone
Beneath this rock, at sun-rise, on a calm
And silent morning, I sat down, and there,
In memory of affections old and true,

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