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We sallied forth together; found the tools
Which the neglected veteran had dropped,
But through all quarters looked for him in vain.
We shouted-but no answer! Darkness fell
Without remission of the blast or shower,
And fears for our own safety drove us home.

I, who weep little, did, I will confess,
The moment I was seated here alone,
Honour my little cell with some few tears
Which anger and resentment could not dry.
All night the storm endured; and, soon as help
Had been collected from the neighbouring vale,
With morning we renewed our quest: the wind
Was fallen, the rain abated, but the hills
Lay shrouded in impenetrable mist;
And long and hopelessly we sought in vain :
"Till, chancing on that lofty ridge to pass
A heap of ruin-almost without walls

And wholly without roof (the bleached remains
Of a small chapel, where, in ancient time,
The peasants of these lonely valleys used
To meet for worship on that central height)——
We there espied the object of our search,
Lying full three parts buried among tufts
Of heath-plant, under and above him strewn,
To baffle, as he might, the watery storm:
And there we found him breathing peaceably,
Snug as a child that hides itself in sport
'Mid a green hay-cock in a sunny field.
We spake he made reply, but would not stir
At our entreaty; less from want of power
Than apprehension and bewildering thoughts.

So was he lifted gently from the ground, And with their freight homeward the shepherds


Through the dull mist, I following-when a step,
A single step, that freed me from the skirts
Of the blind vapour, opened to my view
Glory beyond all glory ever seen

By waking sense or by the dreaming soul!
The appearance, instantaneously disclosed,
Was of a mighty city-boldly say
A wilderness of building, sinking far
And self-withdrawn into a boundless depth,
Far sinking into splendor-without end!
Fabric it seemed of diamond and of gold,
With alabaster domes, and silver spires,
And blazing terrace upon terrace, high
Uplifted; here, serene pavilions bright,
In avenues disposed; there, towers begirt
With battlements that on their restless fronts
Bore stars-illumination of all gems!

By earthly nature had the effect been wrought
Upon the dark materials of the storm
Now pacified; on them, and on the coves
And mountain-steeps and summits, whereunto
The vapours had receded, taking there
Their station under a cerulean sky.
Oh, 'twas an unimaginable sight!

Clouds, mists, streams, watery rocks and emerald turf,

Clouds of all tincture, rocks and sapphire sky,
Confused, commingled, mutually inflamed,
Molten together, and composing thus,
Each lost in each, that marvellous array
Of temple, palace, citadel, and huge
Fantastic pomp of structure without name,
In fleecy folds voluminous, enwrapped
Right in the midst, where interspace appeared
Of open court, an object like a throne
Under a shining canopy of state
Stood fixed; and fixed resemblances were seen
To implements of ordinary use,

But vast in size, in substance glorified;
Such as by Hebrew Prophets were beheld
In vision-forms uncouth of mightiest power
For admiration and mysterious awe.
This little Vale, a dwelling-place of Man,
Lay low beneath my feet; 'twas visible-
I saw not, but I felt that it was there.
That which I saw was the revealed abode
Of Spirits in beatitude: my heart
Swelled in my breast. I have been dead,' I


And now I live! Oh! wherefore do I live? And with that pang I prayed to be no more!-But I forget our Charge, as utterly

I then forgot him:-there I stood and gazed:
The apparition faded not away,
And I descended.

Having reached the house,
I found its rescued inmate safely lodged,
And in serene possession of himself,
Beside a fire whose genial warmth seemed met
By a faint shining from the heart, a gleam
Of comfort, spread over his pallid face.
Great show of joy the housewife made, and truly
Was glad to find her conscience set at ease;
And not less glad, for sake of her good name,
That the poor Sufferer had escaped with E5a.
But, though he seemed at first to have received
No harm, and uncomplaining as before
Went through his usual tasks, a silent charge
Soon showed itself: he lingered three short


And from the cottage hath been borne to-day,

So ends my dolorous tale, and glad I am That it is ended." At these words he turnedAnd, with blithe air of open fellowship, Brought from the cupboard wine and stouter cheer, Like one who would be merry. Seeing this,

My grey-haired Friend said courteously-" Nay, nay,

You have regaled us as a hermit ought;
Now let us forth into the sun!"-Our Host
Rose, though reluctantly, and forth we went.

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Images in the Valley. Another Recess in it entered and described.-Wanderer's sensations.-Solitary's excited by the same objects-Contrast between these.-Despondency of the Solitary gently reproved.-Conversation exhibiting the Solitary's past and present opinions and feelings, till he enters upon his own History at length-llis domestic felicity-Afflictions.-Dejection. -Roused by the French Revolution-Disappointment and disgust.-Voyage to America-Disappointment and disgust pursue him.-His return.-His languor and depression of mind, from want of faith in the great truths of Religion, and want of confidence in the virtue of Mankind.

A HUMMING BEE—a little tinkling rill—
A pair of falcons wheeling on the wing,
la clamorous agitation, round the crest
Of a tall rock, their airy citadel-

By each and all of these the pensive ear

Was greeted, in the silence that ensued,

When through the cottage-threshold we had passed,

And, deep within that lonesome valley, stood ¡Once more beneath the concave of a blue And cloudless sky.-Anon exclaimed our Host, Triumphantly dispersing with the taunt The shade of discontent which on his brow Had gathered, "Ye have left my cell,—but see How Nature hems you in with friendly arms! And by her help ye are my prisoners still. But which way shall I lead you?-how contrive, in spot so parsimoniously endowed,

That the brief hours, which yet remain, may reap Some recompense of knowledge or delight?"

saying, round he looked, as if perplexed; And, to remove those doubts, my grey-haired


Shall we take this pathway for our guide? Leard it winds, as if, in summer heats, I's lite had first been fashioned by the flock Serg a place of refuge at the root

yon black Yew-tree, whose protruded boughs In the silver bosom of the crag,

From which she draws her meagre sustenance.
There in commodious shelter may we rest.
Or let us trace this streamlet to its source;
Feebly it tinkles with an earthy sound,
And a few steps may bring us to the spot [herbs,
Where, haply, crowned with flowerets and green
The mountain infant to the sun comes forth,
Like human life from darkness."-A quick turn
Through a strait passage of encumbered ground,
Proved that such hope was vain :-for now we stood
Shut out from prospect of the open vale,
And saw the water, that composed this rill,
Descending, disembodied, and diffused
O'er the smooth surface of an ample crag,
Lofty, and steep, and naked as a tower.

All further progress here was barred;—And who,
Thought I, if master of a vacant hour,
Here would not linger, willingly detained!
Whether to such wild objects he were led
When copious rains have magnified the stream
Into a loud and white-robed waterfall,
Or introduced at this more quiet time.

Upon a semicirque of turf-clad ground,
The hidden nook discovered to our view
A mass of rock, resembling, as it lay
Right at the foot of that moist precipice,
A stranded ship, with keel upturned, that rests
Fearless of winds and waves. Three several stones
Stood near, of smaller size, and not unlike
To monumental pillars: and, from these
Some little space disjoined, a pair were seen,
That with united shoulders bore aloft
A fragment, like an altar, flat and smooth:
Barren the tablet, yet thereon appeared
A tall and shining holly, that had found
A hospitable chink, and stood upright,
As if inserted by some human hand
In mockery, to wither in the sun,
Or lay its beauty flat before a breeze,

The first that entered. But no breeze did now
Find entrance;-high or low appeared no trace

Of motion, save the water that descended, Diffused adown that barrier of steep rock, And softly creeping, like a breath of air, Such as is sometimes seen, and hardly seen, To brush the still breast of a crystal lake.

"Behold a cabinet for sages built,
Which kings might envy!"-Praise to this effect
Broke from the happy old Man's reverend lip;
Who to the Solitary turned, and said,
"In sooth, with love's familiar privilege,
You have decried the wealth which is your own.
Among these rocks and stones, methinks, I see
More than the heedless impress that belongs
To lonely nature's casual work: they bear
A semblance strange of power intelligent,
And of design not wholly worn away.
Boldest of plants that ever faced the wind,
How gracefully that slender shrub looks forth
From its fantastic birth-place! And I own,
Some shadowy intimations haunt me here,
That in these shows a chronicle survives
Of purposes akin to those of Man,

But wrought with mightier arm than now prevails.
-Voiceless the stream descends into the gulf
With timid lapse;-and lo! while in this strait
I stand-the chasm of sky above my head
Is heaven's profoundest azure; no domain
For fickle, short-lived clouds to occupy,
Or to pass through; but rather an abyss
In which the everlasting stars abide;

And whose soft gloom, and boundless depth, might tempt

The curious eye to look for them by day.
-Hail Contemplation! from the stately towers,
Reared by the industrious hand of human art
To lift thee high above the misty air
And turbulence of murmuring cities vast;
From academic groves, that have for thee
Been planted, hither come and find a lodge
To which thou mayst resort for holier peace,-
From whose calm centre thou, through height or


Mayst penetrate, wherever truth shall lead ;
Measuring through all degrees, until the scale
Of time and conscious nature disappear,
Lost in unsearchable eternity!"

A pause ensued; and with minuter care
We scanned the various features of the scene:
And soon the Tenant of that lonely vale
With courteous voice thus spake-

"I should have grieved Hereafter, not escaping self-reproach,

If from my poor retirement ye had gone
Leaving this nook unvisited: but, in sooth,
Your unexpected presence had so roused
My spirits, that they were bent on enterprise;
And, like an ardent hunter, I forgot,
Or, shall I say?-disdained, the game that lurks
At my own door. The shapes before our eyes
And their arrangement, doubtless must be deemed
The sport of Nature, aided by blind Chance
Rudely to mock the works of toiling Man.
And hence, this upright shaft of unhewn stone,
From Fancy, willing to set off her stores
By sounding titles, hath acquired the name
Of Pompey's pillar; that I gravely style
My Theban obelisk; and, there, behold
A Druid cromlech!-thus I entertain
The antiquarian humour, and am pleased
To skim along the surfaces of things,
Beguiling harmlessly the listless hours.
But if the spirit be oppressed by sense
Of instability, revolt, decay,

And change, and emptiness, these freaks of Nature
And her blind helper Chance, do then suffice
To quicken, and to aggravate-to feed
Pity and scorn, and melancholy pride,

Not less than that huge Pile (from some abyss
Of mortal power unquestionably sprung)
Whose hoary diadem of pendent rocks
Confines the shrill-voiced whirlwind, round and

Eddying within its vast circumference,
On Sarum's naked plain-than pyramid
Of Egypt, unsubverted, undissolved-
Or Syria's marble ruins towering high
Above the sandy desert, in the light
Of sun or moon.-Forgive me, if I say
That an appearance which hath raised your minds
To an exalted pitch (the self-same cause
Different effect producing) is for me
Fraught rather with depression than delight,
Though shame it were, could I not look around,
By the reflection of your pleasure, pleased.
Yet happier in my judgment, even than you
With your bright transports fairly may be deemed,
The wandering Herbalist,-who, clear alike
From vain, and, that worse evil, vexing thoughes
Casts, if he ever chance to enter here,
Upon these uncouth Forms a slight regard
Of transitory interest, and peeps round
For some rare floweret of the hills, or plant
Of craggy fountain; what he hopes for vs.
Or learns, at least, that 'tis not to be won:
Then, keen and eager, as a fine-nosed hound
By soul-engrossing instinct driven along

Through wood or open field, the harmless Man
Departs, intent upon his onward quest !—
Nor is that Fellow-wanderer, so deem I,
Less to be envied, (you may trace him oft
By scars which his activity has left

Beside our roads and pathways, though, thank

This covert nook reports not of his hand)
He who with pocket-hammer smites the edge
Of luckless rock or prominent stone, disguised
In weather-stains or crusted o'er by Nature
With her first growths, detaching by the stroke
A chip or splinter-to resolve his doubts;
And, with that ready answer satisfied,

The substance classes by some barbarous name,
And hurries on; or from the fragments picks
His specimen, if but haply interveined
With sparkling mineral, or should crystal cube
Lark in its celle-and thinks himself enriched,
Wealthier, and doubtless wiser, than before!
Intrusted safely each to his pursuit,
Earnest alike, let both from hill to hill
Range; if it please them, speed from clime to clime;
The mind is full-and free from pain their pastime."

"Then," said I, interposing, "One is near,
Who cannot but possess in your esteem
Place worthier still of envy. May I name,
Without offence, that fair-faced cottage-boy?
Dame Nature's pupil of the lowest form,
Youngest apprentice in the school of art!
Him, as we entered from the open glen,
You might have noticed, busily engaged,
| Heart, soul, and hands,—in mending the defects
Left in the fabric of a leaky dam

Raised for enabling this penurious stream
To turn a slender mill (that new-made plaything)
For his delight-the happiest he of all !”

"Far happiest," answered the desponding Man, *II, such as now he is, he might remain ! th! what avails imagination high

Or question deep? what profits all that earth,
Or heaven's blue vault, is suffered to put forth
Of impulse or allurement, for the Soul
To quit the beaten track of life, and soar
Far as she finds a yielding element
ls past or future; far as she can go
Through time or space-if neither in the one,
Nar in the other region, nor in aught
That Fancy, dreaming o'er the map of things,
fiath placed beyond these penetrable bounds,
Words of assurance can be heard; if nowhere
A habitation, for consummate good,

Or for progressive virtue, by the search
Can be attained, a better sanctuary
From doubt and sorrow, than the senseless grave?"

"Is this," the grey-haired Wanderer mildly sa, "The voice, which we so lately overheard, To that same child, addressing tenderly The consolations of a hopeful mind?

His body is at rest, his soul in heaven.'
These were your words; and, verily, methinks
Wisdom is oft-times nearer when we stoop
Than when we soar."-

The Other, not displeased,
Promptly replied-"My notion is the same.
And I, without reluctance, could decline
All act of inquisition whence we rise,

And what, when breath hath ceased, we may be


Here are we, in a bright and breathing world.
Our origin, what matters it? In lack
Of worthier explanation, say at once
With the American (a thought which suits
The place where now we stand) that certain men
Leapt out together from a rocky cave;
And these were the first parents of mankind:
Or, if a different image be recalled

By the warm sunshine, and the jocund voice
Of insects chirping out their careless lives
On these soft beds of thyme-besprinkled turf,
Choose, with the gay Athenian, a conceit

As sound-blithe race! whose mantles were be


With golden grasshoppers, in sign that they
Had sprung, like those bright creatures, from the

Whereon their endless generations dwelt.
But stop!-these theoretic fancies jar
On serious minds: then, as the Hindoos draw
Their holy Ganges from a skiey fount,
Even so deduce the stream of human life
From seats of power divine; and hope, or trust,
That our existence winds her stately course
Beneath the sun, like Ganges, to make part
Of a living ocean; or, to sink engulfed,
Like Niger, in impenetrable sands

And utter darkness: thought which may be faced,
Though comfortless!-

Not of myself I speak ; Such acquiescence neither doth imply, In me, a meekly-bending spirit soothed By natural piety; nor a lofty mind, By philosophic discipline prepared For calm subjection to acknowledged law; Pleased to have been, contented not to be.

Such palms I boast not ;-no! to me, who find,
Reviewing my past way, much to condemn,
Little to praise, and nothing to regret,
(Save some remembrances of dream-like joys
That scarcely seem to have belonged to me)
If I must take my choice between the pair
That rule alternately the weary hours,
Night is than day more acceptable; sleep
Doth, in my estimate of good, appear

A better state than waking; death than sleep:
Feelingly sweet is stillness after storm,
Though under covert of the wormy ground!

Yet be it said, in justice to myself,
That in more genial times, when I was free
To explore the destiny of human kind
(Not as an intellectual game pursued
With curious subtilty, from wish to cheat
Irksome sensations; but by love of truth
Urged on, or haply by intense delight

In feeding thought, wherever thought could feed)
I did not rank with those (too dull or nice,
For to my judgment such they then appeared,
Or too aspiring, thankless at the best)
Who, in this frame of human life, perceive
An object whereunto their souls are tied
In discontented wedlock; nor did e'er,

"Through the long year in constant quiet bound,
Night hushed as night, and day serene as day!'
-But why this tedious record?-Age, we know,
Is garrulous; and solitude is apt

To anticipate the privilege of Age.
From far ye come; and surely with a hope
Of better entertainment:-let us hence!"

Loth to forsake the spot, and still more loth To be diverted from our present theme,

said, "My thoughts, agreeing, Sir, with yours
Would push this censure farther;-for, if smiks
Of scornful pity be the just reward
Of Poesy thus courteously employed
In framing models to improve the scheme
Of Man's existence, and recast the world,
Why should not grave Philosophy be styled,
Herself, a dreamer of a kindred stock,
A dreamer yet more spiritless and dull?
Yes, shall the fine immunities she boasts
Establish sounder titles of esteem

For her, who (all too timid and reserved
For onset, for resistance too inert,
Too weak for suffering, and for hope too tame)
Placed, among flowery gardens curtained roun
With world-excluding groves, the brotherhood
Of soft Epicureans, taught-if they

From me, those dark impervious shades, that hang The ends of being would secure, and win

Upon the region whither we are bound,
Exclude a power to enjoy the vital beams
Of present sunshine.-Deities that float
On wings, angelic Spirits! I could muse

O'er what from eldest time we have been told
Of your bright forms and glorious faculties,
And with the imagination rest content,
Not wishing more; repining not to tread
The little sinuous path of earthly care,
By flowers embellished, and by springs refreshed.
~~' Blow winds of autumn!-let your chilling breath
Take the live herbage from the mead, and strip
The shady forest of its green attire,-
And let the bursting clouds to fury rouse
"The gentle brooks!-Your desolating sway,
'Sheds,' I exclaimed, 'no sadness upon me,
And no disorder in your rage I find
"What dignity, what beauty, in this change
From mild to angry, and from sad to gay,
Alternate and revolving! How benign,
"How rich in animation and delight,
"How bountiful these elements-compared
With aught, as more desirable and fair,
Devised by fancy for the golden age;
'Or the perpetual warbling that prevails
In Arcady, beneath unaltered skies,

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The crown of wisdom-to yield up their souls To a voluptuous unconcern, preferring Tranquillity to all things. Or is she,"

I cried, "more worthy of regard, the Power, Who, for the sake of sterner quiet, closel The Stoic's heart against the vain approach Of admiration, and all sense of joy!"

His countenance gave notice that my zeal
Accorded little with his present mind;

I ceased, and he resumed.-"Ah! gentle Sir,
Slight, if you will, the means; but spare to sligh:
The end of those, who did, by system, rank,
As the prime object of a wise man's aim,
Security from shock of accident,
Release from fear; and cherished peaceful day
For their own sakes, as mortal life's chief good
And only reasonable felicity.

What motive drew, what impulse, I would ask,
Through a long course of later ages, drove,
The hermit to his cell in forest wide;
Or what detained him, till his closing eyes
Took their last farewell of the sun and stars,
Fast anchored in the desert-Not be
Dread of the persecuting sword, remorse,
Wrongs unredressed, or insults navezged

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