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There was a Boy; ye knew him well, ye Cliffs
Vnd islands of Winander ! — many a time,
\.t evening, when the earliest stars began To move along the edges of the hills, Rising or setting, would he stand alone,
ieneath the trees, or by the glimmering lake;
A.nd there, with fingers interwoven, both hands Pressed closely palm to palm and to his mouth
LJplifted, he, as through an instrument, Blew mimic hootings to the silent owls, That they might answer him.— And they would shout
Across the watery vale, and shout again,
Listening, a gentle shock of mild surprise
Has carried far into his heart the voice
Of mountain torrents; or the visible scene
Would enter unawares into his mind
With all its solemn imagery, its rocks,
Its woods, and that uncertain heaven, received
Into the bosom of the steady lake.
This Boy was taken from his Mates, and died
Upon a slope above the village-school;And there, along that bank, when I have passed
On her First Ascent to the Summit of HelceUyn.
Inmate of a mountain Dwelling,
Potent was the spell that bound thee In the moment of dismay, While blue Ether's arms, flung round thee, Stilled the pantings of dismay.
Lo! the dwindled woods and meadows!What a vast abyss is there!Lo! the clouds, the solemn shadows, And the glistenings — heavenly fair!
And a record of commotion Which a thousand ridges yield; Ridge, and gulph, and distant ocean Gleaming like a silver shield!
— Take thy flight; — possess, inherit
Or survey the bright dominions
Thine are all the choral fountains
To Niphate's top invited,
For the power of hills is on thee,
0 Blithe New-comer! I have heard,
1 hear thee and rejoice:
0 Cuckoo! shall I call thee Bird,
While I am lying on the grass,
1 hear thee babbling to the Vale
Thrice welcome, Darling of the Spring!
Even yet thou art to me
No Bird; but an invisible Thing,
A voice, a mystery.