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Hath drawn you to one centre. Be your days
Holy, and blest and blessing may ye live ! »
To me th' Eternal Wisdom hath dispens'd A different fortune and more different mind Me from the spot where first I sprang to light, Too soon transplanted, ere my soul had fix'd Its first domestic loves; and hence through Lifel Chasing chance-started Friendships. A brief while Some bave preserv'd me from Life's pelting ills ; But, like a Tree with leaves of feeble stem, If the clouds lasted, and a sudden breeze Ruffled the boughs, they on my head at once Dropt the collected shower; and some most false, False and fair foliag?d as the Manchineel, Have tempted me to slumber in their shade E'en mid the storm; then breathing subtlest damps, Mixt their own venom with the rain from Heaven, That I woke poison'd! But, all praise to Him , Who gives us all things, more have yielded me Permanent shelter, and beside one Friend, Beneath th' ¡mpervious.covert of one Oak, I've raised a lowly shed, and know the names
Of Husband and of Father; nor unhearing
Of that divine and nightly-whispering Voice,
Which from my childhood to maturer years
Spake to me of predestinated wreaths,
Bright with no fading colours !
My soul is sad, that I have roam'd through life
Still most a Stranger, most with naked heart
At mine own home and birth-place: chiefly then,
When I remember thee, my earliest Friend !
Thee, who did'st watch my boy-hood and my youth ;
Did'st trace my wanderings with a Father's eye ;
And boding evil yet still hoping good
Rebuk'd each fault, and over'all my woes
Sorrow'd in Silence! He who counts alone
The beatings of the solitary heart,
That Being knows, how I have lov’d'thee ever,
Lov'd as a brother, as a Son rever'd thee !
Oh! tis to me an ever new delight
To talk of thee and thine; or when the blast
Of the shrill winter, rattling our rude sash,
Endears the cleanly hearth and social bowl;
Or when as now, on some delicious eve,
We in our sweet sequester'd Orchard-Plot
Sit on the Tree crook'd earth-ward ; whose old boughs,
That hang above us in an arborous roof,
Stirr’d by the faint gale of departing May,
Send their loose blossoms slanting o'er our heads !
Nor dost not thou sometimes recall those hours,
When with the joy of hope thou gáv'st thine ear
To my wild firstling-lays. Since then my song
Hath sounded deeper notes, such as beseem
Or that sad wisdom, folly leaves behind ;
Or such as, tun'd to these tumultuous times,
Cope with the tempest's swell!
Which I have fram'd in many a various mood,
Accept, my Brother ! and (for some perchance
Will strike discordant on thy milder mind)
If aught of Error or intemperate Truth
Should meet thine ear, think thou that riper age
Will calm it down, and let they Love forgive it!
This Sycamore, oft musical with Bees --
Such Tents the Patriarchs lov'd! O long unharm'd
May all its aged Boughs o'er-canopy
The small round Basin, which this jutting stone
Keeps pure from falling leaves ! Long may the Spring,
Quietly as a sleeping Infant's breath,
Send up cold waters to the Traveller
With soft and even Pulse! Nor ever cease
Yon tiny Cone of Sand its soundless Dance,
Which at the Bottom, like a Fairy's Page,
As merry and no taller, dances still,
Nor wrinkles the smooth Surface of the Fount.
Here Twilight is and Coolness : here is Moss,
A soft Seat, and a deep and ample Shade.
Thou may'st toil far and find no second Tree.
Drink, Pilgrim, here! Here rest! and if thy Heart
Be innocent, here too shalt thou refresh
Thy Spirit, list’ning to some gentle Sound,
Or passing Gale or Hum of murmuring Bees !
'Tis true, Idooloclastes Satyrane!
(So call him, for so mingling Blame with Praise
And smiles with anxious looks, his earliest friends,
Masking his birth-name, wont to character
His wild-wood fancy and impetuous zeal,),
"Tis true that, passionate for ancient truths
And honoring with religious love the Great
Of elder times, he hated to excess,
With an unquiet and intolerant scorn,
The hollow puppets of an hollow Age,
Ever idolatrous, and changing ever
Its worthless Idols! Learning, Power, and Time,
(Too much of all) thus wasting in vain war
Of fervid colloquy. Sickness, tis true,
Whole years of weary da
weary days, besieged him close,
Even to the gates and inlets of his life!
But it is true, no less, that strenuous, firm,
And with a natural gladness, he maintained