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That oaten pipe of hers is mute,
Or thrown away; but with a flute
Her loneliness she cheers :
This flute, made of a hemlock stalk,
At evening in his homeward walk
The Quantock woodman hears.

I, too, have passed her on the hills
Setting her little water-mills
By spouts and fountains wild-
Such small machinery as she turned
Ere she had wept, ere she had mourned,
A young and happy child !

Farewell ! and when thy days are told,
Ill-fated Ruth! in hallow'd mould
Thy corpse shall buried be;
For thee a funeral bell shall ring,
And all the congregation sing
A Christian psalm for thee.


My heart leaps up when I behold

A rainbow in the sky :
So was it when my life began;

So is it now I am a man ;
So be it when I shall grow old,

Or let me die !
The child is father of the man ;
And I could wish my days to be
Bound each to each by natural piety.


Or, Solitude.

OFT I had heard of Lucy Gray:
And, when I crossed the wild,
I chanced to see at break of day
The solitary child.

No mate, no comrade, Lucy knew;
She dwelt on a wide moor,
— The sweetest thing that ever grew
Beside a human door!

You yet may spy the fawn at play,
The hare upon the green ;
But the sweet face of Lucy Gray
Will never more be seen.

To-night will be a stormy night-
You to the town must go;
And take a lantern, child, to light
Your mother through the snow.

"That, father, will I gladly do ! 'Tis scarcely afternoonThe minster-clock has just struck two, And yonder is the moon.”

At this the father raised his hook
And snapped a faggot band ;
He plied his work;—and Lucy took
The lantern in her hand.

Not blither is the mountain roe;
With many a wanton stroke
Her feet disperse the powdery snow,
That rises up like smoke.

The storm came on before its time :
She wandered up and down ;
And many a hill did Lucy climb;
But never reached the town.

The wretched parents all that night,
Went shouting far and wide ;
But there was neither sound nor sight
To serve them for a guide.

At daybreak on a hill they stood
That overlook'd the moor;
And thence they saw the bridge of wood,
A furlong from the door.

They wept-and, turning homeward, cried, “In heaven we all shall meet !”

-When in the snow the mother spied The print of Lucy's feet.

Half breathless from the steep hill's edge They tracked the footmarks small ;

And through the broken hawthorn hedge, And by the long stone wall;

And then an open field they crossed :
The marks were still the same;
They tracked them on, nor ever lost;
And to the bridge they came.

They followed from the snowy bank
Those footmarks one by one,
Into the middle of the plank ;
And further there were none !

- Yet some maintain that to this day
She is a living child ;
That you may see sweet Lucy Gray
Upon the lonesome wild.

O'er rough and smooth she trips along
And never looks behind ;
And sings a solitary song
That whistles in the wind.

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