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The depths of that green solitude
Its torrents could not tame, Though stillness lay, with eve's last smile, Round those calm fountains of the Nile.
Night came with stars :across his soul
There swept a sudden change,
A shadow dark and strange,
No more than this !-what seem'd it now
First by that spring to stand ?
Bath'd his own mountain land !
They call’d him back to many a glade,
His childhood's haunt of play, Where brightly through the beechen shade
Their waters glanc'd away ; They calld him, with their sounding waves, Back to his fathers' hills and graves.
But darkly mingling with the thought
Of each familiar scene,
With all that lay between;
Where was the glow of power and pride ?
The spirit born to roam ?
With yearnings for his home;
He wept—the stars of Afric's heaven
Beheld his bursting tears,
The meed of toiling years.
* The arrival of Bruce at what he considered to be the source of the Nile, was followed almost immediately by feelings thus suddenly fluctuating from triumph to despondence. See his Travels in Abyssinia.
THE VAUDOIS VALLEYS.
Yes, thou hast met the sun's last smile,
From the haunted hills of Rome; By many a bright Ægean isle,
Thou hast seen the billows foam :
From the silence of the Pyramid
Thou hast watch'd the solemn flow Of the Nile, that with its waters hid
The ancient realm below:
Thy heart hath burn'd as shepherds sung
Some wild and warlike strain, Where the Moorish horn once proudly rung
Through the pealing hills of Spain :
And o'er the lonely Grecian streams
Thou bast heard the laurels moan, With a sound yet murmuring in thy dreams
Of the glory that is gone.
But go thou to the pastoral vales
Of the Alpine mountains old,
By the wind's deep whispers told !
Go, if thou lov'st the soil to tread,
Where man hath nobly striven, And life, like incense, hath been shed,
An offering unto Heaven.
For o'er the snows, and round the pines,
Hath swept a noble flood;
Hath been the martyr's blood!
A spirit, stronger than the sword,
And loftier than despair,
Breathes in the generous air.
A memory clings to every steep
Of long-enduring faith, And the sounding streams glad record keep
Of courage unto death.
Ask of the peasant where his sires
For truth and freedom bled,
Where lay the holy dead;
And he will tell thee, all around,
On fount, and turf, and stone,
Their ashes have been sown !
Go, when the sabbath bell is heard *
Up through the wilds to float,
To gladness by the note ;
When forth, along their thousand rills,
The mountain people come,
* See “Gilly's Researches amongst the Mountains of Piedmont," for an interesting description of a sabbath day in the upper regions of the Vaudois. The inhabitants of these Protestant valleys, who, like the Swiss, repair with their flocks and herds, to the summits of the hills during the summer, are followed thither by their pastors, and at that season of the year, assembled on the sacred day, to worship in the open air.