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Hail, bards of mightier grasp! on you
I chiefly call, the chosen few,

Who cast not off the acknowledged guide,
Who faltered not, nor turned aside;
Whose lofty genius could survive
Privation, under sorrow thrive ;
In whom the fiery muse revered
The symbol of a snow-white beard,
Bedewed with meditative tears
Dropped from the lenient cloud of years.

Brothers in soul! though distant times
Produced you nursed in various climes,
Ye, when the orb of life had waned,
A plenitude of love retained:
Hence, while in you each sad regret
By corresponding hope was met,
Ye lingered among human kind,
Sweet voices for the passing wind;
Departing sunbeams, loth to stop,
Though smiling on the last hill-top!
Such to the tender-hearted maid
Even ere her joys begin to fade;
Such, haply, to the rugged chief
By fortune crushed, or tamed by grief;
Appears, on Morven's lonely shore,
Dim-gleaming through imperfect lore,
The son of Fingal; such was blind
Maeonides of ampler mind;
Such Milton, to the fountain-head
Of glory by Urania led!

CAVE OF STAFFA

WE saw, but surely, in the motley crowd,
Not one of us has felt the far-famed sight;
How could we feel it? each the other's blight,
Hurried and hurrying, volatile and loud.

O for those motions only that invite
The ghost of Fingal to his tuneful cave
By the breeze entered, and wave after wave
Softly embosoming the timid light!

And by one votary who at will might stand
Gazing and take into his mind and heart,
With undistracted reverence, the effect

Of those proportions where the almighty hand
That made the worlds, the sovereign architect,
Has deigned to work as if with human art!

CAVE OF STAFFA

After the Crowd had departed.

THANKS for the lessons of this spot, fit school
For the presumptuous thoughts that would assign
Mechanic laws to agency divine;

And, measuring heaven by earth, would overrule
Infinite power. The pillared vestibule,
Expanding yet precise, the roof embowed,
Might seem designed to humble man, when proud
Of his best workmanship by plan and tool.
Down-bearing with his whole Atlantic weight
Of tide and tempest on the structure's base,
And flashing to that structure's topmost height,
Ocean has proved its strength, and of its grace
In calms is conscious, finding for his freight
Of softest music some responsive place.

FLOWERS ON THE TOP OF THE PILLARS AT THE ENTRANCE OF THE CAVE

HOPE smiled when your nativity was cast, Children of summer! Ye fresh flowers that brave What summer here escapes not, the fierce wave, And whole artillery of the western blast,

Battering the temple's front, its long-drawn nave
Smiting, as if each moment were their last.
But ye, bright flowers, on frieze and architrave
Survive, and once again the pile stands fast :
Calm as the universe, from specular towers
Of heaven contemplated by spirits pure
With mute astonishment, it stands sustained
Through every part in symmetry, to endure,
Unhurt, the assault of time with all his hours,
As the supreme artificer ordained.

IONA

Upon Landing.

How sad a welcome! To each voyager
Some ragged child holds up for sale a store
Of wave-worn pebbles, pleading on the shore
Where once came monk and nun with gentle stir,
Blessings to give, news ask, or suit prefer.
Yet is yon neat trim church a grateful speck
Of novelty amid the sacred wreck

Strewn far and wide. Think, proud philosopher!
Fallen though she be, this glory of the west,
Still on her sons the beams of mercy shine;
And "hopes, perhaps more heavenly bright than thine,
A grace by thee unsought and unpossest,
A faith more fixed, a rapture more divine
Shall gild their passage to eternal rest."

"THERE!" SAID A STRIPLING, POINTING WITH MEET PRIDE"

"THERE!" said a stripling, pointing with meet pride Towards a low roof with green trees half concealed, "Is Mosgiel farm; and that's the very field

Where Burns ploughed up the daisy." Far and wide

A plain below stretched seaward, while, descried
Above sea-clouds, the peaks of Arran rose;
And, by that simple notice, the repose
Of earth, sky, sea, and air, was vivified.
Beneath "the random bield of clod or stone"
Myriads of daisies have shone forth in flower
Near the lark's nest, and in their natural hour
Have passed away; less happy than the one
That, by the unwilling ploughshare, died to prove
The tender charm of poetry and love.

NUNNERY

THE floods are roused, and will not soon be weary;
Down from the Pennine Alps 1 how fiercely sweeps
CROGLIN, the stately Eden's tributary!

He raves, or through some moody passage creeps
Plotting new mischief; out again he leaps

Into broad light, and sends, through regions airy,
That voice which soothed the nuns while on the steeps
They knelt in prayer, or sang to blissful Mary.
That union ceased: then, cleaving easy walks
Through crags, and smoothing paths beset with danger,
Came studious taste; and many a pensive stranger
Dreams on the banks, and to the river talks.
What change shall happen next to Nunnery dell?
Canal, and viaduct, and railway, tell!

THE MONUMENT COMMONLY CALLED LONG MEG AND HER DAUGHTERS, NEAR THE RIVER EDEN

A WEIGHT of awe not easy to be borne,
Fell suddenly upon my spirit-cast

From the dread bosom of the unknown past,
When first I saw that family forlorn.

1 The chain of Crossfell.

Speak thou, whose massy strength and stature scorn
The power of years-pre-eminent, and placed
Apart, to overlook the circle vast-

Speak, giant-mother! tell it to the morn
While she dispels the cumbrous shades of night;
Let the moon hear, emerging from a cloud;
At whose behest uprose on British ground
That sisterhood, in hieroglyphic round
Forth-shadowing, some have deemed, the infinite
The inviolable God, that tames the proud!

CONCLUSION

MOST sweet it is with unuplifted eyes
To pace the ground, if path be there or none,
While a fair region round the traveller lies
Which he forbears again to look upon;
Pleased rather with some soft ideal scene,
The work of fancy, or some happy tone
Of meditation, slipping in between
The beauty coming and the beauty gone.
If thought and love desert us, from that day
Let us break off all commerce with the muse :
With thought and love companions of our way,
Whate'er the senses take or may refuse,

The mind's internal heaven shall shed her dews
Of inspiration on the humblest lay.

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