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He told of the magnolia, spread
Through dream and vision did she sink,
The Youth of green savannahs spake,
But, as you have before been told,
“How pleasant,” then he said, “it were The wind, the tempest roaring high, A fisher or a hunter there,
The tumult of a tropic sky, In sunshine or in slade,
Might well be dangerous food To wander with an easy mind;
For him, a youth to whom was given And build a household fire, and find So much of Earth, so much of Heaven, A home in every glade!
And such impetuous blood.
What days and what bright years! Ah Whatever in those climes he found
Did to his mind impart
The workings of his heart.
And yet he with no feign'd delight Yet sometimes milder hours she knew,
Did o'er the pebbles play.
Sometimes, most earnestly, he said, When Ruth three seasons thus had lain,
But of the Vagrant none took thought; When I, in confidence and pride, And where it liked her best she sought Had cross'd th’ Atlantic main.
Her shelter and her bread.
Meanwhile, as thus with him it fared, An innocent life, yet far astray!
Be broken down and old:
From damp, and rain, and cold.
God help thee, Ruth 1 - Such pains she If she is prest by want of food,
Repairs to a road-side;
The horsemen-travellers ride.
2 In this beautiful stanza, the author seemed to him that in the course and proexpresses the enthusiastic gladness with gress of this event allthe ancient holdings which he had himself hailed the French of oppression and wrong were to disapRevolution of 1789, which he confidently pear, and a golden age of universal peace regarded as the dawn of a new era of free to succeed. dom and happiness in the world. It
That oaten pipe of hers is mute,
For I have left my Father's roof,
In terror of the Czar.”
No second look she cast,
Embracing and embraced.
I, too, have pass'd her on the hills She led the Lady to a seat
Beside the glimmering fire,
Bathed duteously her wayworn feet, Such small machinery had she turn'd Prevented 3 each desire: Ere she had wept, ere she had mourn'd, The cricket chirp’d, the house-dog dozed, A young and happy Child.
And on that simple bed,
Where she in childhood had reposed, Farewell I and when thy days are told, Now rests her weary head. Ill-fated Ruth, in hallow'd mould Thy corpse shall buried be;
When she, whose couch had been the sod, For thee a funeral bell shall ring,
Whose curtain, pine or thorn, And all the congregation sing
Had breathed a sigh of thanks to God, A Christian psalm for thee. [1799. Who comforts the forlorn;
While over her the Matron bent
Sleep seal'd her eyes, and stole
And trouble from the soul.
Refresh'd, the Wanderer rose at morn,
And soon again was dight ENOUGH of rose-bud lips, and eyes In those unworthy vestments worn Like harebells bathed in dew;
Through long and perilous flight; Of cheek that with carnation vies, And “O beloved Nurse," she said, And veins of violet hue:
“My thanks with silent tears Earth wants not beauty that may scorn Have unto Heaven and you been paid : A likening to frail flowers;
Now listen to my fears!
Have you forgot” (and here she smiled)
“The babbling tlatteries Through Moscow's gates, with gold un- You lavish'd on me when a child
Stepp'd One at dead of night, [barrd, Disporting round your knees ? Whom such high beauty could not guard I was your lambkin, and your bird, From meditated blight;
Your star, your gem, your flower;
In many a cloudless hour!
The blossom you so fondly praised
Is come to bitter fruit;
Seven nights her course renew'd, I spurn'd his lawless suit,
You, Foster-father dear,
I may not tarry here!
3 Prevented in the old sense of antici.
pated. The usage is frequent in Shake“To put your love to dangerous proof
speare, as also in the Bible and PrayerI come,” said she, “from far;
I cannot bring to utter woo
The bold good Man his labour sped Your proved fidelity.”
At nature's pure command; “Dear Child, sweet Mistress, say not so! Heart-soothed, and busy as a wren, For you we both would die.”
While, in a hollow nook,
Above a murmuring brook.
His task accomplish'd to his mind,
The twain ere break of day “But whither would you, could you, flee ? Creep forth, and through the forest wind A poor Man's counsel take;
Their solitary way; The Holy Virgin gives to me
Few words they speak, nor dare to slack A thought for your dear sake:
Their pace from mile to mile, Rest, shielded by our Lady's grace,
Till they have cross'd the quaking marsh, And soon shall you be led
And reach'd the lonely Isle. Forth to a safe abiding-place,
The Sun above the pine-trees show'd Where never foot doth tread.”
A bright and cheerful face;
The promised hiding-place:
She sought in vain, the Woodman smiled; PART I.
No threshold could be seen,
Nor roof, nor window; - all seem'd wild THE dwelling of this faithful pair
As it had ever been. In a straggling village stood,For One who breathed unquiet air Advancing, you might guess an hour, A dangerous neighbourhood;
The front with such nice care
But in they enter'd are:
With branches intertwined,
So smooth was all within, air-proof, And there, sequester'd from the sight, And delicately lined:
Was spread a treacherous swamp, On which the noonday Sun shed light
And hearth was there, and maple dish, As from a lonely lamp;
And cups in seemly rows,
And couch, all ready to a wish
For nurture or repose;
And Heaven doth to her virtue grant Adorn'd, and shady boughs,
That here she may abide
In solitude, with every want The Woodman knew
By cautious love supplicd. for such the craft This Russian vassal plied
No queen, before a shouting crowd, That never fowler's gun, nor shaft
Led on in bridal state, Of archer, there was tried:
E'er struggled with a heart so proud, A sanctuary seem'd the spot
Entering her palace gate; From all intrusion free;
Rejoiced to bid the world farewell, And there he plann'd an artful Cot
No saintly anchoress For perfect secrecy.
E'er took possession of her cell
With deeper thankfulness.
5 Some obscurity here, perhaps; but the word if is construed with guess, and
is equivalent to whether; the sense thus 4 The meaning probably is, “Whither being, you might guess an hour whcther would you flee, if you could ?"
it be a house," &c.
“Father of all, upon Thy care
Upon her Island desolate;
And words, not breathed in vain,
Her silence to endear;
[ground Kneeling amid the wilderness
What birds she tamed, what flowers the When joy had pass'd away,
Sent forth, her peace to cheer.
To one mute Presence, above all,
Her soothed affections clung, The prayer is heard, the Saints have seen, A picture on the cabin wall Diffused through form and face,
By Russian usage hung, Resolves devotedly serene;
The Mother-maid, whose countenance That monumental grace
bright Of Faith, which doth all passions tame
With love abridged the day;
And, cómmuned with by taper light,
And, oft as either Guardian came,
The joy in that retreat
Might any common friendship shame,
So high their hearts would beat; 'Tis sung in ancient minstrelsy
And to the lone Recluse, whate'er That Phæbus wont to wear
They brought, each visiting The leaves of any pleasant tree
Was like the crowding of the year
With a new burst of Spring.
But, when she of her parents thought,
And, if with all things not enwrought,
That trouble still is ncar. Then did the Penitent adorn
Before her flight she had not dared His brow with laurel green;
Their constancy to prove; And ’mid his bright locks never shorn
Too much th' heroic Daughter fear'd No meaner leaf was seen;
The weakness of their love. And poets sage, through every age,
About their temples wound [Gods, Dark is the past to them, and dark The bay ; and conquerors thank'd the
The future still must be, With laurel chaplets crown'd.
Till pitying Saints conduct her bark
Into a safer sea;
Or gentle Nature close her eyes,
And set her Spirit free Of Beauty, that disdains to climb
From the altar of this sacrifice, Along forbidden ways;
In vestal purity. That scorns temptation; power defies
Where mutual love is not; And to the tomb for rescue flice
Yet, when above the forest glooms When life would be a blot.
The white swans southward passid,
High as the pitch of their swift plumes To this fair Votaress, a fate
Her fancy rode the blast; More mild doth Heaven ordain
And bore her toward the fields of France,
Her Father's native land,
To mingle in the rustic dance, 6 It may be well to note that bay and
The happiest of the band! laurel mean the same thing. Wordsworth probably had in mind a passage of The Facrie Queene, i. 1,9: “The laurell, meed of those beloved fields she oft of mightie conquerours and poets sage.” Had hcard her Father tell,