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That stern yet kindly Spirit, who constrains The Savoyard to quit his naked rocks, The free-born Swiss to leave his narrow vales, (Spirit attached to regions mountainous Like their own stedfast clouds) did now impel His restless mind to look abroad with hope. -An irksome drudgery seems it to plod on, Through hot and dusty ways, or pelting storm, A vagrant Merchant under a heavy load Bent as he moves, and needing frequent rest; Yet do such travellers find their own delight; And their hard service, deemed debasing now, Gained merited respect in simpler times; When squire, and priest, and they who round them

dwelt In rustic sequestration-all dependent Upon the Pedlar's toil-supplied their wants, Or pleased their fancies, with the wares he brought. Not ignorant was the Youth that still no few Of his adventurous countrymen were led By perseverance in this track of life To competence and ease :—to him it offered Attractions manifold ;-and this he chose. -His Parents on the enterprise bestowed Their farewell benediction, but with hearts Foreboding evil. From his native hills He wandered far; much did he see of men, Their manners, their enjoyments, and pursuits, Their passions and their feelings ; chiefly those Essential and eternal in the heart, That, 'mid the simpler forms of rural life, Exist more simple in their elements, And speak a plainer language. In the woods, A lone Enthusiast, and among the fields, Itinerant in this labour, he had passed The better portion of his time; and there Spontaneously had his affections thriven Amid the bounties of the year, the peace

And liberty of nature ; there he kept
In solitude and solitary thought
His mind in a just equipoise of love.
Serene it was, unclouded by the cares
Of ordinary life; unvexed, unwarped
By partial bondage. In his steady course,
No piteous revolutions had he felt,
No wild varieties of joy and grief.
Unoccupied by sorrow of its own,
His heart lay open; and, by nature tuned
And constant disposition of his thoughts
To sympathy with man, he was alive
To all that was enjoyed where'er he went,
And all that was endured ; for, in himself
Happy, and quiet in his cheerfulness,
He had no painful pressure from without
That made him turn aside from wretchedness
With coward fears. He could afford to suffer
With those whom he saw suffer. Hence it came
That in our best experience he was rich,
And in the wisdom of our daily life.
For hence, minutely, in his various rounds,
He had observed the progress and decay
Of many minds, of minds and bodies too ;
The history of many families;
How they had prospered; how they were o’erthrown
By passion or mischance, or such misrule
Among the unthinking masters of the earth
As makes the nations groan.

This active course
He followed till provision for his wants
Had been obtained ;—the Wanderer then resolved
To pass the remnant of his days, untasked
With needless services, from hardship free.
His calling laid aside, he lived at ease:
But still he loved to pace the public roads
And the wild paths; and, by the summer's warmth
Invited, often would he leave his home

And journey far, revisiting the scenes
That to his memory were most endeared.
- Vigorous in health, of hopeful spirits, undamped
By worldly-mindedness or anxious care ;
Observant, studious, thoughtful, and refreshed
By knowledge gathered up from day to day ;
Thus had he lived a long and innocent life.

The Scottish Church, both on himself and those With whom from childhood he grew up, had held The strong hand of her purity; and still Had watched him with an unrelenting eye. This he remembered in his riper age With gratitude, and reverential thoughts. But by the native vigour of his mind, By his habitual wanderings out of doors, By loneliness, and goodness, and kind works, Whate'er, in docile childhood or in youth, He had imbibed of fear or darker thought Was melted all away; so true was this, That sometimes his religion seemed to me Self-taught, as of a dreamer in the woods ; Who to the model of his own pure heart Shaped his belief, as grace divine inspired, * And human reason dictated with awe. -And surely never did there live on earth A man of kindlier nature. The rough sports And teasing ways of children vexed not him ; Indulgent listener was he to the tongue Of garrulous age ; nor did the sick man's tale, To his fraternal sympathy addressed, Obtain reluctant hearing.

Plain his garb ; Such as might suit a rustic Sire, prepared For sabbath duties; yet he was a man Whom no one could have passed without remark. Active and nervous was his gait; his limbs And his whole figure breathed intelligence.

Time had compressed the freshness of his cheek
Into a narrower circle of deep red,
But had not tamed his eye ; that, under brows
Shaggy and grey, had meanings which it brought
From years of youth ; which, like a Being made
Of many Beings, he had wondrous skill
To blend with knowledge of the years to come,
Human, or such as lie beyond the grave.

So was He framed; and such his course of life Who now, with no appendage but a staff, The prized memorial of relinquished toils, Upon that cottage-bench reposed his limbs, Screened from the sun. Supine the Wanderer lay, His eyes as if in drowsiness half shut, The shadows of the breezy elms above Dappling his face. He had not heard the sound Of my approaching steps, and in the shade Unnoticed did I stand some minutes' space. At length I hailed him, seeing that his hat Was moist with water-drops, as if the brim Had newly scooped a running stream. He rose, And ere our lively greeting into peace Had settled, “'Tis,” said I, “ a burning day: My lips are parched with thirst, but you, it seems, Have somewhere found relief." He, at the word, Pointing towards a sweet-briar, bade me climb The fence where that aspiring shrub looked out Upon the public way. It was a plot Of garden ground run wild, its matted weeds Marked with the steps of those, whom, as they passed, The gooseberry trees that shot in long lank slips, Or currants, hanging from their leafless stems, In scanty strings, had tempted to o’erleap The broken wall. I looked around, and there, Where two tall hedge-rows of thick alder boughs Joined in a cold damp nook, espied a well

Shrouded with willow-flowers and plumy fern.
My thirst I slaked, and, from the cheerless spot
Withdrawing, straightway to the shade returned
Where sate the old Man on the cottage-bench;
And, while, beside him, with uncovered head,
I yet was standing, freely to respire,
And cool my temples in the fanning air,
Thus did he speak. “I see around me here
Things which you cannot see: we die, my Friend,
Nor we alone, but that which each man loved
And prized in his peculiar nook of earth
Dies with him, or is changed ; and very soon
Even of the good is no memorial left.
- The Poets, in their elegies and songs
Lamenting the departed, call the groves,
They call upon the hills and streams to mourni,
And senseless rocks ; nor idly; for they speak,
In these their invocations, with a voice
Obedient to the strong creative power
Of human passion. Sympathies there are
More tranquil, yet perhaps of kindred birth,
That steal upon the meditative mind,
And grow with thought. Beside yon spring I stood,
And eyed its waters till we seemed to feel
One sadness, they and I. For them a bond
Of brotherhood is broken : time has been
When, every day, the touch of human hand
Dislodged the natural sleep that binds them up
In mortal stillness; and they ministered
To human comfort. Stooping down to drink,
Upon the slimy foot-stone I espied
The useless fragment of a wooden bowl,
Green with the moss of years, and subject only
To the soft handling of the elements :
There let it lie-how foolish are such thoughts !
Forgive them ;-never-never did my steps
Approach this door but she who dwelt within
A daughter's welcome gave me, and I loved her

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