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The gentlest Shade that walked Elysian Plains
Might sometimes covet dissoluble chains;
Even for the Tenants of the Zone that lies
Beyond the stars, celestial Paradise,
Methinks 'twould heighten joy, to overleap
At will the crystal battlements, and peep
Into some other region, though less fair,
To see how things are made and managed there:
Change for the worse might please, incursion bold
Into the tracts of darkness and of cold;
O'er Limbo lake with aëry flight to steer,
And on the verge of Chaos hang in fear.
Such animation often do I find,
Power in my breast, wings growing in my
Then, when some rock or hill is overpast,
Perchance without one look behind me cast,
Some barrier with which Nature, from the birth
Of things, has fenced this fairest spot on earth.
O pleasant transit, Grasmere! to resign
Such happy fields, abodes so calm as thine;
Not like an outcast with himself at strife;
The slave of business, time, or care for life,
But moved by choice; or, if constrained in part,
Yet still with Nature's freedom at the heart;
To cull contentment upon wildest shores,
And luxuries extract from bleakest moors;
With prompt embrace all beauty to enfold,
And having rights in all that we behold.
Then why these lingering steps ? A bright adieu,
For a brief absence, proves that love is true;
Ne’er can the way be irksome or forlorn
That winds into itself for sweet return.
TO THE SONS OF BURNS, AFTER VISITING THE GRAVE OF THEIR FATHER. “ The Poet's grave is in a corner of the churchyard. We looked at it with
“melancholy and painful reflections, repeating to each other his own
“Is there a man whose judgment clear,' &c.”
Extract from the Journal of my Fellow-traveller.
'Mid crowded Obelisks and Urns
I sought the untimely grave of Burns;
Sons of the Bard, my heart still mourns
With sorrow true;
And more would grieve, but that it turns
Trembling to you!
Through twilight shades of good and ill
Ye now are panting up life's hill,
And more than common strength and skill
Must ye display,
would give the better will
Its lawful sway.
Hath Nature strung your nerves to bear
Intemperance with less harm, beware!
But if the Poet's wit ye share,
Like him can speed
The social hour for tenfold care
There will be need.
Even honest Men delight will take
To spare your failings for his sake,
Will flatter you,
and fool and rake
Your steps pursue ;
And of your Father's name will make
A snare for you.
Far from their noisy haunts retire,
And add your voices to the quire
That sanctify the cottage fire
With service meet;
There seek the genius of your Sire,
His spirit greet;
Or where, 'mid “ lonely heights and hows,"
He paid to Nature tuneful vows;
Or wiped his honourable brows
Bedewed with toil,
While reapers strove, or busy ploughs
Upturned the soil;
His judgment with benignant ray
Shall guide, his fancy cheer, your way;
But ne'er to a seductive lay:
Let faith be given;
Nor deem that “ light which leads astray,
Is light from Heaven.”
Let no mean hope your souls enslave;
Be independent, generous, brave;
Your Father such example gave,
And such revere;
But be admonished by his grave,
And think, and fear!
Fair Ellen Irwin, when she sate
Upon the Braes of Kirtle,
Was lovely as a Grecian Maid
Adorned with wreaths of myrtle ;
Young Adam Bruce beside her lay,
And there did they beguile the day.
With love and gentle speeches,
Beneath the budding beeches.