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Some little I've seen of blind boisterous works
By Christian disturbers more savage than Turks,
Spirits busy to do and undo :
At remembrance whereof my blood sometimes will flag ;
Then, light-hearted boys, to the top of the crag,
And I'll build up a giant with you.
The dew was falling fast, the stars began to blink ;
I heard a voice; it said, “Drink, pretty creature, drink!”
And, looking o'er the hedge, before me I espied
A snow-white mountain lamb with a maiden at its side.
No other sheep was near, the lamb was all alone,
And by a slender cord was tethered to a stone ;
With one knee on the grass did the little maiden kneel,
While to that mountain lamb she gave its evening meal.
The lamb, while from her hand he thus his supper took,
Seemed to feast with head and ears: and his tail with
pleasure shook. “Drink, pretty creature, drink,” she said in such a tone That I almost received her heart into iny own. •
'Twas little Barbara Lewthwaite, a child of beauty rare !
I watched them with delight, they were a lovely pair.
Now with her empty can the maiden turned away:
But ere ten yards were gone her footsteps did she stay.
Towards the lamb she looked; and from that shady place
I unobserved could see the workings of her face :
If Nature to her tongue could measured numbers bring,
Thus, thought I, to her lamb that little maid might sing:
“What ails thee, young one? what? Why pull so at
thy cord ? Is it not well with thee? well both for bed and board? Thy plot of grass is soft, and green as grass can be ; Rest, little young one, rest; what is 't that aileth thee? “What is it thou would'st seek? What is wanting to thy
heart? Thy limbs, are they not strong? And beautiful thou art : This grass is tender grass; these flowers they have no
peers ; And that green corn all day is rustling in thy ears ! “If the sun be shining hot, do but stretch thy woollen
chain, This beech is standing by, its covert thou canst gain; For rain and mountain storms! the like thou need'st not
fearThe rain and storm are things that scarcely can come
“Rest, little young one, rest; thou hast forgot the day When my father found thee first in places far away, Many flocks were on the hills, but thou wert owned by
none, And thy mother from thy side for evermore was gone. “He took thee in his arms, and in pity brought thee
home. A blessed day for thee! then whither wouldst thou roam? A faithsul nurse thou hast; the dam that did thee yean Upon the mountain tops no kinder could have been. “Thou know'st that twice a day I have brought thee in
this can Fresh water from the brook, as clear as ever ran;
And twice in the day, when the ground is wet with dew,
I bring thee draughts of milk, warm milk it is and new.
“Thy limbs will shortly be twice as stout as they are now,
Then I'll yoke thee to my cart like a pony in the plough;
My playmate thou shalt be; and when the wind is cold
Our hearth shall be thy bed, our house shall be thy fold.
“It will not, will not rest !-poor creature, can it be
That 'tis thy mother's heart which is working so in thee?
Things that I know not of belike to thee are dear,
And dreams of things which thou canst neither see nor
Alas, the mountain tops that look so green and fair! I've heard of fearful winds and darkness that come there; The little brooks that seem all pastime and all play, When they are angry roar like lions for their prey.
“Here thou need'st not dread the raven in the sky; Night and day thou art safe,-our cottage is hard by. Why bleat so after me? Why pull so at thy chain ? Sleep-and at break of day I will come to thee again!”
As homeward through the lane I went with lazy feet,
This song to myself did I oftentimes repeat;
And it seemed, as I retraced the ballad line by line,
That but half of it was hers, and one half of it was
Again, and once again, did I repeat the song ; “Nay,” said I, more than half to the damsel must
belong, For she looked with such a look, and she spake with
such a tone, That I almost received her heart into my own."
The valley rings with mirth and joy;
Among the hills the echoes play
A never, never, ending song,
To welcome in the May.
The magpie chatters with delight;
The mountain raven's youngling brood
Have left the mother and the nest;
And they go rambling east and west
In search of their own food;
Or through the glittering vapours dart
In very wantonness of heart.
Beneath a rock
Two boys are sitting in the sun;
Boys that have had no work to do,
Or work that now is done.
On pipes of sycamore they play
The fragments of a Christmas hymn;
Or with that plant which in our dale
We call stag-horn, or fox's tail,
Their rusty hats they trim;
And thus, as happy as the day,
Those shepherds wear the time away.
Along the river's stony marge
The sand-lark chants a joyous song;
The thrush is busy in the wood,
And carols loud and strong.
A thousand lambs are on the rocks,
All newly born: both earth and sky
Keep jubilee; and more than all,
Those boys with their green coronal;
They never hear the cry,
That plaintive cry! which up the hill
Comes from the depth of Dungeon-Ghyll.
Said Walter, leaping from the ground,
Down to the
yew We'll for our whistles run a race." --Away the shepherds flew. They leapt, they ran, and when they came Right opposite to Dungeon-Ghyll, Seeing that he should lose the prize, “Stop!” to his comrade Walter criesJames stopped with no good will: Said Walter then, “Your task is here, 'Twill baffle you for half a year.
“Cross, if you dare, where I shall cross-
Come on, and in my footsteps tread!”
The other took him at his word,
And followed as he led.
It was a spot which you may see
If ever you to Langdale go;
Into a chasm a mighty block
Hath fallen, and made a bridge of rock:
The gulf is deep below;
And in a basin black and small
Receives a lofty waterfall.
With staff in hand, across the cleft
The challenger pursued his march;
And now, all eyes and feet, hath gained
The middle of the arch.
When list! he hears a piteous moan-