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By this nis heart is lighter far ;
Or as the weakest things, if frost And, finding that he can account
Have stiffened them, maintain their post; So clearly for that crimson stain,
So he, beneath the gazing moon ! His evil spirit up again Does like an empty bucket mount. Meanwhile the pair have reached a spot
Where, sheltered by a rocky cove, And Peter is a deep logician
A little chapel stands alone, Who hath no lack of wit mercurial ; With greenest ivy overgrown, “Blood drops-leaves rustle--yet, " quoth And tufted with an ivy grove.
he, "This poor man never, but for me, Dying insensibly away Could have had Christian burial.
From human thoughts and purposes,
The building seems, wall, roof, and tower, " And, say the best you can, 'tis plain, To bow to some transforming power, That here hath been some wicked dealing ; And blend with the surrounding trees. No doubt the devil in me wrought; I'm not the man who could have thought Deep-sighing as he passed along, An ass like this was worth the stealing !" Quoth Peter, “In the shire of Fife,
'Mid such a ruin, following still So from his pocket Peter takes
From land to land a lawless will,
I married my sixth wife!"
And now is passing by an inn
Brimful of a carousing crew,
A stifling power compressed his frame,
As if confusing darkness came
For well did Peter know the sound;
The language of those drunken joys It suited Peter's present mood.
To him, a jovial soul, I ween,
But a few hours ago, had been
A gladsome and a welcome noise.
Now, turned adrift into the past,
He finds no solace in his course; In the dead earth beneath the road,
Like planet-stricken men of yore, Rolled audibly!—it swept along
He trembles, smitten to the core A muffled noise-a rumbling sound !
By strong compunction and remorse. "Twas by a troop of miners made, Plying with gunpowder their trade,
But, more than all, his heart is stung Some twenty fathoms under ground.
To think of one, almost a child ;
A sweet and playful Highland girl, Small cause of dire effect !—for, surely,
As light and beauteous as a squirrel,
As beauteous and as wild !
A lonely house her dwelling was, 'Twas Peter Bell the potter !
A cottage in a heathy dell;
And she put on her gown of green, But, as an oak in breathless air
And I ft her mother at sixteen, Will stand though to the centre hewn ; And followed Peter Bell.
But many good and pious thoughts Within, a fervent Methodist
“Repent! repent !" he cries aloud, To kirk she had been used to go,
“While yet ye may find mercy :-strive Twice every Sabbath-day.
To love the Lord with all your might,
Turn to Him, seek Him day and night! And, when she followed Peter Bell
And save your souls alive.
"Repent ! repent! though ye have gone Had pledged his troth before the altar To love her as his wedded wife.
Through paths of wickedness and woe,
And, though your sins be red as scarlet, A mother's hope is hers ;--but soon
They shall be white as snow !"
Even as he passed the door, these words She called her babe unborn.
Did plainly come to Peter's ears :
And they such joyful tidings were, For she had learned how Peter lived,
The joy was more than he could bear! And took it in most grievous part;
He melted into tears.
And fast they fell, a plenteous shower!
His nerves, his sinews seemed to melt; And now the spirits of the mind
Through all his iron frame was felt
A gentle, a relaxing power !
Each fibre of his frame was weak;
Weak all the animal within ;
But, in its helplessness, grew mild
An infant that has known no sin.
Meanwhile the persevering ass,
Turns up a narrow lane; his chest And stretched beneath the furze he sees
Against the yielding gate he pressed,
And quietly passed through.
Aná up the stony lane he goes ; "My mother ! oh, my mother !"
No ghost more softly ever trod ; The sweat pours down from Peter's face,
Among the stones and pebbles, he
Sets down his hoofs inaudibly,
As if with felt his hoofs were shod.
Along the lane the trusty ass
Had gone two hundred yards, not more ; Calm is the well-deserving brute,
When to a lonely house he came, His peace, hath no offence betrayed ;
He turned aside towards the same, But now, while down that slope he wends, And stopped before the door. A voice to Peter's ear ascends, Resounding from the woody glade: Thought Peter, 'tis the poor man's home!
He listens-not a sound is heard Though clamorous as a hunter's horn Save from the trickling household rill, Re-echoed from a naked rock,
But, stepping o'er the cottage-sill, Tis from the tabernacle-List!
Forthwith a little girl appeared.
She to the meeting-house was bound Beside the woman Peter stands :
Had never felt before.
At length, by Peter's arm sustained, Heard plainly by the wretched mother- The woman rises from the groundHer joy was like a deep affright;
"Oh, mercy ! something must be done,And forth she rushed into the light, My little Rachel, you must run, -And saw it was another !
Some willing neighbour must be found. And instantly, upon the earth,
Make haste-my little Rachel—do, Beneath the full moon shining bright, The first you meet with—bid him come, — Close to the ass's feet she fell ;
Ask him to lend his horse 10-nightAt the same moment Peter Bell
And this good man, whom Heaven requite, Dismounts in most unhappy plight. Will help to bring the body home." What could he do?–The woman lay Away goes Rachel, weeping loud ;Breathless and motionless ; the mind An infant, waked by her distress, Of Peter sadly was confused ;
Makes in the house a piteous cry, But, though to such demands unused, And Peter hears the mother sigh, And helpless almost as the blind,
“Seven are they, and all fatherless !" He raised her up, and while he held And now is Peter taught to feel Her body propped against his knee, That man's heart is a holy thing; The woman waked--and when she spied And Nature, through a world of death, The poor ass standing by her side
Breathes into him a second breath, She moaned most bitterly.
More searching than the breath of spring. "Oh! God be praised---my heart's at ease- Upon a stone the woman sits For he is dead-I know it well !"
In agony of silent griefAt this she wept a bitter flood ;
From his own thoughts did Peter start ; And, in the best way that he could, He longs to press her to his heart, His tale did Peter tell.
From love that cannot find relief.
But roused, as if through every limb
And to the pillow gives her burning hesda
With his hands pressed against his brow, In which he had been drowned.
His elbows on his tremulous knees. A piercing look the sufferer cast
There, self-involved, does Peter sit Upon the beast that near her stands ; Until no sign of life he makes, She sees 'tis he, that 'tis the same; As if his mind were sinking deep She calls the poor ass by his name, Through years that have been long asleep! And wrings, and wrings her hands. The trance is past away-he wakes, – “Oh, wretched loss—untimely stroke ! He lifts his head-and sees the ass If he had died upon his bed !
Yet standing in the clear moonshine. He knew not one forewarning pain, "When shall I be as good as thou ? He never will come home again“ Oh! would, poor beast, that I had now Is dead--for ever dead I".
A heart but half as good as thine !"
But he—who deviously hath sought Sobs loud, he sobs even like a child,
Here ends my tale :-for in a trice
Peter went forth with him straightway ; With weary pace is drawing nigh- And, with due care, ere break of day He sees the ass—and nothing living Together they brought back the corse. Had ever such a fit of joy As hath this little orphan boy, For he has no misgiving !
And many years did this poor ass,
Whom once it was my luck to see Towards the gentle ass he springs,
Cropping the shrubs of Leming Lane, And up about his neck he climbs ;
Help by his labour to maintain
The widow and her family.
And Peter Bell, who, till that night,
Had been the wildest of his clan, Tois Peter sees, while in the shade Forsook his crimes, repressed his foll He stood beside the cottage door :
And after ten months' melancholy, And Peter Bell, the ruffian wild,
Became a good and honest man.
Veins it discovers exquisite and rare,
Which for the loss of that moist gleam atone
Such thoughts, with others mixed less forThough a breath made it like a bubble blown tunate; For summer pastime into wanton air ; Then smile into my heart a fond belief Happy the thought best likened to a stone That thou, if not with partial joy elate, of the sea-beach, when, polished with Receiv'st the gift for more than mild connice care,
Nuns fret not at their convent's narrow Who have felt the weight of too much 10om;
liberty, And hermits are contented with their cells; Should find brief solace there, as I have And students with their pensive citadels : found. Maids at the wheel, the weaver at his loom, Sit blithe and happy; bees that soar for
WRITTEN IN VERY EARLY YOUTH. bloom, High as the highest peak of Furness Fells, Calm is all nature as a resting wheel. will murmur by the hour in foxglove bells: The kine are couched upon the dewy grass ; In truth, the prison, unto which we doom The horse alone, seen dimly as I pass, Ourselves, no prison is : and hence to me, Is cropping audibly his later meal. (steal In sundry moods, 'twas pastime to be bound Dark is the ground ; a slumber seems to Within the sonnet's scanty plot of ground O'er vale, and mountain, and the starlesssky. Pleased if some souls (for such there needs Now, in this blank of things, a harmony. must be)
Home-felt, and home-created, scems to heal
That grief for which the senses still supply And that inspiring hill which "did divide Fresh food ; for only then, when memory Into two ample horns his forehead wide," Is hushed, am I at rest. My friends! Shines with poetic radiance as of old ; restrain
While not an English mountain we behold Those busy cares that would allay my pain : By the celestial muses glorified. crowds : Oh ! leave me to myself; nor let me feel Yet round our sea-girt shore they rise in The officious touch that makes me droop What was the great Parnassus' self to thee, again.
Mount Skiddaw? In his natural sovereignty
Our British hill is fairer far: he shrouds ADMONITION.
His double front among Atlantic clouds, Intended more particularly for the perusal of And pours forth streams more sweet than
those who may have happened to be ena- Castaly. moured of some beautiful place of retreat, in
the country of the lakes. WELL. mayst thou balt, and gaze with THERE is a little unpretending rill brightened eye!
Of limpid water, humbler far than aught The lovely cottage in the guardian nook
That ever among men or naiads sought Hath stirred thee deeply: with its own Notice or name - It quivers down the hill, dear brook,
Furrowing its shallow way with dubious Its own small pasture, almost its own sky!
[brought But covet not the abode :-forbear to sigh, Oftener than Ganges or the Nile, a thought
Yet to my mind this scanty stream is As many do, repining while they look ; Intruders who would tear from nature's Of private recollection sweet and still ! book
Months perish with their moons ;year treads This precious leaf, with harsh impiety.
on year; Think what the home must be if it were But, faithful Emma, thou with me canst thin.,
(pear, Even thine, though few thy wants ! Roof, That, while ten thousand pleasures disapThe very flowers are sacred to the poor,
And flies their memory fast almost as they, The roses to the porch which they entwine: The immortal spirit of one happy day Yea, all, that now enchants thee, from the Lingers beside that rill, in vision clear. day
saway. On which it should be touched would melt HER only pilot the soft breeze the boat
Lingers, but fancy is well satisfied ; (side, "BELOVED vale !" I said, “when I shall With keen-eyed hope, with memory, at her
And the glad muse at liberty to note Those many records of my childish years,
All that to each is precious, as we float Remembrance of myself and of my peers
Gently along ; regardless who shall chide Will press me down : to think of what is If the heavens smile, and leave us free to gone
glide, Will be an awful thought, if life have one." Happy associates breathing air remote But, when into the vale I came, no fears
From trivial cares. But, fancy and the muse, Distressed me; from mine eyes escaped no Why have I crowded this small bark with you tears ;
And others of your kind, ideal crew ! Deep thought, or awful vision, had I none.
While here sits one whose brightness owes By doubts and thousand petty fancies
Toflesh and blood ; no goddess from above, | stood of simple shame the blushing thrall ;
No fleeting spirit, but my own true love ? So narrow seemed the brooks, the fields so The fairest, brightest hues of ether fade :
small. A juggler's balls old time about him tossed ; The sweetest notes must terminate and die; I looked. I stared, I smiled, I laughed : O friend ! thy flute has breathed a harmony and all
Softly resounded through this rocky glade : The weight of sadness was in wonder lost. Such strains of rapture as the genius played
In his still haunt on Bagdad's summit high ;* Pelion and Ossa flourish side by side,
He who stood visible to Mirza's eye, Together in immortal books enrolled : His ancient dower Olympus hath not sold; * See the Vision of Mirza, in the Spectatet.