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To him appeal was made as to a judge ;
Such intercourse I witnessed, while we roved, Now as his choice directed, now as mine; Or both, with equal readiness of will,
Our course submitting to the changeful breeze
Had three times called us to renew our walk,
Set off, and to our ken appearing fair
The wealthy, the luxurious, by the stress Of business roused, or pleasure, ere their time, May roll in chariots, or provoke the hoofs Of the fleet coursers they bestride, to raise From earth the dust of morning, slow to rise; And they, if blest with health and hearts at ease, Shall lack not their enjoyment:—but how faint Compared with ours! who, pacing side by side, Could, with an eye of leisure, look on all
That we beheld; and lend the listening sense
Mount slowly, sun! that we may journey long, By this dark hill protected from thy beams! Such is the summer pilgrim's frequent wish But quickly from among our morning thoughts. 'Twas chased away: for, toward the western side Of the broad vale, casting a casual glance, We saw a throng of people ;-wherefore met? Blithe notes of music, suddenly let loose On the thrilled ear, and flags uprising, yield Prompt answer; they proclaim the annual Wake, Which the bright season favors.-Tabor and pipe In purpose join to hasten or reprove The laggard Rustic; and repay with boons Of merriment a party-colored knot, Already formed upon the village-green. -Beyond the limits of the shadow cast By the broad hill, glistened upon our sight That gay assemblage. Round them and above, Glitter, with dark recesses interposed, Casement, and cottage-roof, and stems of trees Half-veiled in vapory cloud, the silver steam Of dews fast melting on their leafy boughs By the strong sunbeams smitten. Like a mast Of gold, the Maypole shines; as if the rays Of morning, aided by exhaling dew, With gladsome influence could re-animate The faded garlands dangling from its sides.
Said I, "The music and the sprightly scene Invite us; shall we quit our road, and join These festive matins ?"-He replied, “Not loth To linger I would here with you partake, Not one hour merely, but till evening's close, The simple pastimes of the day and place. By the fleet Racers, ere the sun be set, The turf of yon large pasture will be skimmed ; There, too, the lusty Wrestlers shall contend: But know we not that he, who intermits The appointed task and duties of the day, Untunes full oft the pleasures of the day; Checking the finer spirits that refuse To flow, when purposes are lightly changed? A length of journey yet remains untraced : Let us proceed." Then, pointing with his staff Raised toward those craggy summits, his intent He thus imparted :—
In a spot that lies Among yon mountain fastnesses concealed, You will receive, before the hour of noon, Good recompense, I hope, for this day's toil, From sight of One who lives secluded there, Lonesome and lost of whom, and whose past life, (Not to forestall such knowledge as may be More faithfully collected from himself) This brief communication shall suffice.
Though now sojourning there, he, like myself, Sprang from a stock of lowly parentage Among the wilds of Scotland, in a tract Where many a sheltered and well-tended plant, Bears, on the humblest ground of social life,
Blossoms of piety and innocence.
Such grateful promises his youth displayed:
Filled with vague hopes, he undertook the charge
Cheered by the Highland bagpipe, as they marched
Of social vanity, he walked the world,
For this fair Bride, most rich in gifts of mind, Nor sparingly endowed with worldly wealth, His office he relinquished; and retired From the world's notice to à rural home. Youth's season yet with him was scarcely past, And she was in youth's prime. How free their love, How full their joy! "Till, pitiable doom! In the short course of one undreaded year, Death blasted all. Death suddenly o'erthrew Two lovely Children-all that they possessed!
The Mother followed :--miserably bare
A happy service; for he was sincere
That righteous cause (such power hath freedom) bound,
For one hostility, in friendly league,