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BOOK EIGI TI.

RITROSPECT. – LOVE OF NATURE LEADING

TO LOVE OF MAN

RETROSPECT. — LOVE OF NATURE

LEADING TO LOVE OF MAN.

What sounds are those, Helvellyn, that are

heard Up to thy summit, through the depth of air Ascending, as if distance had the power To make the sounds more audible? What crowd Covers, or sprinkles o’er, yon village green? Crowd seems it, solitary hill ! to thee, Though but a little family of men, Shepherds and tillers of the ground, — betimes Assembled with their children and their wives, And here and there a stranger interspersed. They hold a rustic fair, a festival, Such as, on this side now, and now on that, Repeated through his tributary vales, Helvellyn, in the silence of his rest, Sees annually, if clouds towards either ocean Blown from their favorite resting-place, or mists Dissolved, have left him an unshrouded head. Delightful day it is for all who dwell

In this secluded glen, and eagerly
They give it welcome. Long ere heat of noon,
From byre or field the kine were brought; the

sheep
Are penned in cotes; the chaffering is begun.
The heifer lows, uneasy at the voice
Of a new master; bleat the flocks aloud.
Booths are there none; a stall or two is here;
A lame man or a blind, the one to beg,
The other to make music; hither, too,
From far, with basket, slung upon her arm,
Of hawker's wares, - books, pictures, combs, and

pins, Some aged woman finds her way again, Year after year, a punctual visitant ! There also stands a speech-maker by rote, Pulling the strings of his boxed raree-show; And in the lapse of many years may come Prouder itinerant, mountebank, or he Whose wonders in a covered wain lie hid. Rut one there is, the loveliest of them all, Some sweet lass of the valley, looking out For gains, and who that sees her would not buy? Fruits of her father's orchard are her wares, And with the ruddy produce she walks round Among the crowd, half pleased with, half ashamed Of her new office, blushing restlessly. The children now are rich, for the old to-day Are generous as the young; and, if content With looking on, some ancient wedded pair

Sit in the shade together, while they gaze,
* A cheerful smile unbends the wrinkled brow,
The days departed start again to life,
And all the scenes of childhood reappear,
Faint, but more tranquil, like the changing sun
To him who slept at noon and wakes at eve.”*
Thus gayety and cheerfulness prevail,
Spreading from young to old, from old to young,
And no one seems to want his share. — Immense
Is the recess, the circumambient world
Magnificent, by which they are embraced :
They move about upon the soft green turf:
How little they, they and their doings, seem,
And all that they can further or obstruct!
Through utter weakness pitiably dear,
As tender infants are: and yet how great!
For all things serve them: them the morning

light
Loves, as it glistens on the silent rocks ;
And them the silent rocks, which now from high
Look down upon them; the reposing clouds ;
The wild brooks prattling from invisible haunts;
And old IIelvellyn, conscious of the stir
Which animates this day their calm abode.

With deep devotion, Nature, did I feel, In that enormous City's turbulent world Of men and things; what benefit I owed

* See Note.

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