Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

Ye Gerii! to his covert speed;

But oft, in lonely rooms, and 'mid the din I nd wake him with such gentle beed

Of towns and cities, I have owed to them, As may attune his soul to meet the dower

lo hours of weariness, sensations sweet, Bestowed on this transcendent hour!

Felt in the blood, and felt along the heart;

And passing even into my purer mind, Such hues from their celestial Urn

With tranquil restoration :—feclings 100 Were wopi 10 strear before my eye,

Of unremembered pleasure : such, perhaps, Where'er it wandered in the morn

As have no slight or trivial influence Of blissful infancy.

On that best portion of a good man's life, This glimpse of glory, why rencwed ?

llis little, nameless, unremembered acts Xay, rather speak with gratitude;

Of kindness and of love. Nor less, I trust, For, if a vestige of those gleams

To them I may have owed another gift,
Survived, t was only in my dreams.

Of aspect more sublime; that blessed mood,
Dread Power! whom peace and calmness serve In which the burthen of the mystery,
No less than Nature's tlarcatening voice,

In which the heavy and the weary weight
If auglit unworthy be my choice,

Of all this unintelligible world, from Ture if I would swerve,

Is lightened :-that serene and blessed mood, Oh, let iby grace remind me of the light

In which the affections gently lead us on,Full early lost, and fruitlessly deplored;

Until, the breath of this corporeal frame Which, at this moment, on my waking sight

And even the motion of our human blood ppears to shine, by miracle restored!

Almost suspended, we are laid asleep Jly soul, though yet confined to earth,

In body, and become a living soul : Rejoices in a second birth;

While with an eye made quiet by the power -T is past, the visionary splendour fades;

Of harmony, and the deep power of joy, And night approaches with her shades.

We see into the life of things.

If thuis
i.-The multiplication of mountain-ridges, described, at the
Comencement of ibe third stanza of this one, as a kind of Jacob's Be but a vain belief, yet, oh! how oft,
Ladder, leading to leaven, is produced either by watery vapours, !n darkness, and amid the many shapes
ar soony haze ;-in ibe frezent instance, by the latter ciuse. Allu- of joyless daylight; when the fretful stir
*00# 10 the Ode entitled Jotimations of Immortality,“ pervado the
last saura of the foregoing Poum.

Unprofitable, and thic fever of the world,
llave hunupon the beatings of my heart,

llow oft, in spirit, have I turned to thee,
LINES,

O sylvan Wye! Thou wanderer thro' the woods,

llow often bas my spirit turned to thee! | COMPOSED A FEW MILES ABOVE TINTERN ABBEY, ON REVISITIXG THE BANKS OF THE WYE DURING A TOUR.

And now, with gleams of half-extinguished thought, JULY 13, 1798.

With many recognitions dim and faint,

And somewhat of a sad perplexity, Fird years have past; five summers, with the length

The Picture of the mind revives again : Of five long winters! and again I hear

While here I stand, not only with the sense These waters, rolling from their mountain-springs

Of present pleasure, but with pleasing thoughts With a sweet inlaud murmur. '--Once again

That in this moment there is life and food Do I behold these sleep and lofty cliffs,

For future That ou a wild secluded scene impress

years.

And so I dare to hope,

Though changed, no doubt, froin wbat I was when first Thoughts of more deep seclusion; and connect The landscape with the quiet of the sky.

I came among these hills; when like a roe

I bounded o'er the mountains, by the sides The day is come wben I again repose

Of the deep rivers, and the lonely streams, llere, under this dark sycamore, and view

Wherever nature led : more like a man
These plots of cottage-ground, these orchard-lufts,
Which at this season, with their uuripe fruits,

Flying froin something that lie dreads, than one Are clad in one green hue, and lose themselves

Who sought the thing he loved. For nature then

(The coarser pleasures of my boyish days, Among the woods and copses, nor disturb The wild green landscape. Once again I see

And their glad animal movements all gone by)

To me was all in all.— I cannot paint These hedge-rows, bardly hedge-rows, little lines

What then I was. The sounding cataract Of sportive wood run wild ; these pastoral farms,

Haunted me like a passion: the tall rock, freen to the very door; and wreaths of smoke

The mountain, and the deep and gloomy wood,
Sent up, in silence, from amoug the trees!

Their colours and their forms, were then to me
With some uncertain notice, as might seem,
OF

An appetite: a feeling and a love, vagrant Dwellers in the houseless woods,

That bad no need of a remoter charm,
Or of some llermit's cave, where by bis fire
| The Heumit sits aloue.

By thought supplied, or any interest
These beauteons Forms,

Uuborrowed from the eye. That time is past,

And all its aching joys are now no more, Through a long absence, liave not been to me

And all its dizzy raptures. Not for this As is a landscape to a blind man's cyc:

Paint I, oor mourn nor murmur; other gifts 'The river is not affected by the tides a few miles above Tin

Have followed, for such loss, I would believe,
Abundant recompense.

For I have learned

That on the banks of this delightful stream
We stood together; and that I, so long
A worshipper of Nature, hither came,
Unwearied in that service: rather say
With warmer love, oh! with far deeper zeal
Of holier love. Nor wilt thou then forget,
That after many wanderings, many years
Of absence, these steep woods and lofty cliffs,
And this green pastoral landscape, were to me
More dear, both for themselves and for thy sake!

PETER BELL, A TALE.

What 's in a Name?

Brutus will start a Spirit as soon as Cæsar!

To look on nature, not as in the lour
Of thoughtless youth; but hearing oftentimes
The still, sad music of humanity,
Nor harsh nor grating, though of ample power
To chasten and subdue. And I have felt
A presence that disturbs me with the joy
Of elevated thoughts; a sense sublime
Of something far more deeply interfused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean and the living air,
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man :
A motion and a spirit, that impels
All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
And rolls through all things. Therefore am I still
A lover of the meadows and the woods,
And mountains; ard of all that we behold
From this green earth; of all the mighty world
Of eye and ear, both what they half create,
And what perceive; well pleased to recognize
lo nature and the language of the sense,
The anchor of my purest thoughts, the nurse,
The guide, the guardian of my heart, and soul
Of all my moral being.

Nor perchance,
If I were not thus taught, should I the more
Suffer my genial spirits to decay:
For thou art with me, here upon the banks
Of this fair river ; thou, my dearest Friend,
My dear, dear Friend, and in thy voice I catch
The language of my former heart, and read
My former pleasures in the shooting lights
Of thy wild eyes. Oh! yet a little while
May I behold in thee what I was once,
My dear, dear Sister! and this prayer I make,
Knowing that Nature never did betray
The heart that loved her; 't is her privilege,
Through all the years of this our life, to lead
From joy to joy: for she can so inform
The mind that is within us, so impress
With quietness and beauty, and so feed
With lofty thouylıts, that neither evil congues,
Rash judgments, nor the sneers of selfish men,
Nor greetings where no kindness is, nor all
The dreary intercourse of daily life,
Shall c'er prevail against us, or disturb
Our cheerful faith, that all which we behold
Is full of blessings. Therefore let the moon
Shine on thee in thy solitary walk;
And let the misty mountain winds be free
To blow against thee: and, in after years,
When these wild ecstasies shall be matured
Into a sober pleasure, when thy mind
Shall be a mansion for all lovely forms,
Thy memory be as a dwelling-place
For alt sweet sounds and harmonies; oh! then,
If solitude, or fear, or pain, or grief,
Should be thy portion, with what healing thoughts
Of tender joy wilt thou remember me,
And these my exhortations! Nor, perchance,
If I should be where I no more can hear
Thy voice, por catch from thy wild eyes these gleams
Of past existence, wilt thou then forget

TO ROBERT SOUTHEY, ESQ., P. L.

etc, etc, MY DEAR FRIEND, The Tale of Peter Bell, which I now introduce to your notice, and to that of the Public, has, in its Manuscript state, nearly survived its minority ;- for it first saw the light in the summer of 1798. During this long interval, pains liave been taken at different times to make the production Jess unworthy of a favourable reception : or, rather, to fit it for filling permanently a station, hosever humble, in the Literature of my Country. This has, indeed, been the aim of all my endeavours in Poetry, which, you know, have been sufficiently laborious to prove that I deem the Art not lightly to be approached; and that the attainment of excellence in it. may laudably be made the principal object of intelleecual pursuit by any man, who, with reasonable consideration of circumstances, has faith in his owa impulses.

The Poem of Peter Bell, as the Prologue will shew, was composed under a belief that the luagioation not only does not require for its exercise the intervention of supernatural agency, but that, though such agency be excluded, the faculty may be called forth as imperiously, and for kindred results of pleasure, by incidents, within the compass of poetic probabiliiy, in the humblest departments of daily life. Since that Prologue was written, you have exhibited most splendid effects of judicious daring, in the opposite and usual course, Let this acknowledgment make my peace with the lovers of the supernatural; and I am persuaded it will be admitted, that to you, as a Master in that province of the art, the following Tale, whether from contrast or congruity, is not an unappropriate offering. Accept it, then, as a public testimony of affectionate admiration from one with whose name yours has been often coupled (to use your own words) for evil and for good, and believe me to be, with earnest wishes that life and Joealth may be granted you to complete the many imporlant works in which you are engaged, and with haigla respect,

Most faithfully yours,

WILLIAM WORDSWORTII,

* Thisline has a close resemblance to an admirable line of Young, Rydal Mount, April 7, 1819. ibu exact expression of which I cannot recollect,

[blocks in formation]

« Haste! and above Siberian snows We'll sport amid the boreal morning, Will mingle will ber lustres, gliding Among the stars, the stars now hiding, And now the stars adorning.

«I know the secrets of a land
Where buinan foot did never stray;
Fair is that land as evening skies,
And cool, -though in the depul it lies
Of burning Africa.

The Crab—the Scorpion-and the Bull-
We pry among them all have shot
Higha o'er the red-haired race of Mars,
Covered from top to toe with scars;
Such company I like it not!
The towns in Saturn are decayed,
And melancholy Spectres throng them;
The Pleiads, that appear to kiss
Each other in the vast abyss,
With joy I sail among them!
Swift Mercury resounds with mirth,
Great Jove is full of stately bowers;
But these, and all that they contain,
What are they to that tiny grajo,
That little Earth of ours ?
Then back to Earth, the dear green Earth;
Whole aces if I bere should roam,
The world for my remarks and me
Would not a whit the better be;
I've left my heart at home.

« Or we 'll into the realm of Faery,
Among the lovely shades of things,
The shadowy forms of mountains bare,
And streams, and bowers, and ladies fair,
The shades of palaces and kings!

« Or, if you thirst with hardy zeal
Less quiet regions to explore,
Prompt voyage shall to you reveal
How earth aod heaven are caught to feel
The might of magic lore!»

« My lite vagrant Form of light,
My gay and beautiful Canoe,
Well have you played your friendly part;
As kindly take what from my heart
Experience forces--then adieu!

« Temptation lurks among your words;
But, while these pleasures 're pursuing
Without impediment or let,
My radiant Pinnace, you forget
What on the earth is doing.

« There was a time when all mankind
Did listen with a faith sincere
To tuneful tongues in mystery versed;
Then Poets fearlessly rehearseil
The wonders of a wild career,

«Go-(but the world 's a sleepy world,
And 't is, I fear, an age too late :)
Take with you some ambitious Youth;
For, restless Wanderer! I, in truth,
Am all unfit to be your mate.

« Long have I loved what I behold,
The night that calms, the day that cheers :
The common growth of mother earth
Suffices me-her tears, her mirth,
Her humblest mirth and tears.

« The dragon's wing, the magic ring,
I shall not covet for my dower,
If I along that lowly way
With sympathetic heart may stray,
And with a soul of power.

« These giren, what more need I desire
To stir-10 soothe-or clevate?
What nobler marvels than the mind
May in life's daily prospect find,
May find or there create?

« A polent wand doth Sorrow wield; What spell so strong as guilty Fear! Repentance is a tender Sprite; If aught on carth have heavenly might, 'T is lodged within her silent tear.

« But grant my wishes, let us now
Descend from this ethereal height;
Then take thy way, adventurous Skiff,
More daring far than Hippogriff,
And be thy own delight!

« To the stone-table in my garden,
Loved haunt of many a summer hour,
The Squire is come;- his daughter Bess
Beside him in the cool recess
Sits blooming like a flower.

«With these are many more convened;
They know not I have been so far-
I see them there, in number nine,
Bencath the spreading Weymouth pine-
I see them-there they are!

« There sits the Vicar and his Dame;
And there my good friend, Slephen Otter;
And, ere the light of evening fail,
To them I must relate the Tale
Of Peter Bell the Potter.»

off flew my sparkling Boat in scorn,
Spurning her freight with indigoation!
And I, as well as I was able,
On two poor legs, towr'd my stone-table
Limped on with some vexation.

« O, here he is!» cried little Bess-
She saw me at the garden door,
« We've waited anxiously and long,"
They cried, and all around me throng,
Full nine of them or more!

« Reproach me not-your fears be still-
Be thankful we again have met;
Resume, my friends! within the shade
Your seats, and quickly shall be paid
The well-remembered debt.»

I spake with faltering voice, like one
Not wholly rescued from the pale
Of a wild dream, or worse illusion;
But, straight, to cover my confusion,
Degan the promised Tale.

PART

All by the moonlight river side
Groaned the poor Beast--alas: in vain;
The staff was raised to loftier height,
And the blows fell with heavier weight
As Peter struck-and struck again.

Like winds that lash the waves, or smile
The woods, autumnal foliage thinning-
« Hold!» said the Squire, « I pray you, hold!
Who Peter was let that be told,
And start from the beginnings

--« A Potter, 'Sir, he was by trade >>
Said I, becoming quite collected;
« And wheresoever lie appeared,
Full twenty times was Peler feared
For once that Peter was respected.

Ilc, two-and-thirty years or more,
Had been a wild and woodland rover;
Had beard the Atlantic surges roar
Ou farthest Cornwall's rocky shore,
And trod the cliffs of Dover.

And lie had seen Caernarvon's towers,
And well he knew the spire of Sarum i
And he had been where Lincola bell
Flings o'er the fen its ponderous knell,

Ils far-renowned alarum! ' In the dialect of the North, a bawker of earthen-ware is tha") designated.

[blocks in formation]
« AnteriorContinuar »