Sought in the Atlantic Main

why should

they be

Of the individual mind that keeps her own
Inviolate retirement, subject there
To conscience only and the law supreme
Of that Intelligence which

governs all I sing :-“fit audience let me find though

few !"


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So prayed, more gaining than he asked,

the Bard In holiest mood. Urania, I shall need Thy guidance, or a greater Muse, if such Descend to earth or dwell in the highest heaven!

780 For I must tread on shadowy ground,

must sink Deep — and, aloft ascending, breathe in

worlds To which the heaven of heavens is but a

veil. All strength — all terror, single or in

bands, That ever

was put forth in personal form

785 Jehovah — with his thunder, and the choir Of shouting Angels, and the empyreal

thrones I pass

them unalarmed. Not Chaos, not The darkest pit of lowest Erebus, Nor aught of blinder vacancy, scooped out

790 By help of dreams can breed such fear

and awe As fall upon us often when we look Into our minds, into the Mind of Man My haunt, and the main region of my

song: Beauty living Presence of the earth,

795 Surpassing the most fair ideal Forms Which craft of delicate spirits hath com

posed From earth's materials — waits upon my

steps; Pitches her tents before me move, An hourly neighbor. Paradise, and groves

800 Elysian, Fortunate Fields like those of


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Have their authentic comment; that even

these Hearing, I be not downcast


When she I loved looked every day,
Fresh as a rose in June,
I to her cottage bent my way,
Beneath an evening moon.

or for





Descend, prophetic Spirit! that inspir'st

Upon the moon I fixed my eye, The human Soul of universal earth,

All over the wide lea;

10 Dreaming on things to come; and dost With quickening pace my horse drew nigh

Those paths so dear to me. possess A metropolitan temple in the hearts

And now we reached the orchard plot; Of mighty Poets; upon me bestow A gift of genuine insight; that my Song

And as we climbed the hill, With star-like virtue in its place may

The sinking moon to Lucy's cot

Came near and nearer still. shine, Shedding benignant influence, and secure

In one of those sweet dreams I slept, Itself from all malevolent effect

Kind Nature's gentlest boon! Of those mutations that extend their

And all the while my eyes I kept sway


On the descending moon. Throughout the nether sphere! - And if with this

My horse moved on; hoof after hoof I mix more lowly matter; with the thing He raised, and never stopped: Contemplated, describe the mind and man When down behind the cottage roof, Contemplating, and who and what he

At once, the bright moon dropped. The transitory being that beheld

What fond and wayward thought will This Vision when and where and how slide he lived;

Into a lover's head! -
Be not this labor useless. If such theme “Oh, mercy!” to myself I cried,
May sort with highest objects, then, dread "If Lucy should be dead!”

Whose gracious favor is the primal source She dwelt among the untrodden ways
Of all illumination, may my life

Beside the springs of Dove, Express the image of a better time, A maid whom there were none to praise, More wise desires, and simpler manners: And very few to love.







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Three years she grew in sun and shower,

A slumber did my spirit seal; Then Nature said, “A lovelier Aower

I had no human fears:

100 On earth was never sown; This child I to myself will take,

She seemed a thing that could not feel

The touch of earthly years.
She shall be mine, and I will make
A lady of my own.

No motion has she now, no force; “Myself will to my darling be

She neither hears nor sees; Both law and impulse: and with me

Rolled round in earth's diurnal course, 105 The girl, in rock and plain,

With rocks, and stones, and trees.
In earth and heaven, in glade and bower,
Shall feel an overseeing power
To kindle or restrain.

LUCY GRAY "She shall be sportive as the fawn

OR, SOLITUDE That wild with glee across the lawn

(1799) Or up the mountain springs; And hers shall be the breathing balm,

Oft I had heard of Lucy Gray: And hers the silence and the calm

And, when I crossed the wild,

I chanced to see at break of day Of mute insensate things.

The solitary child. "The floating clouds their state shall lend

No mate, no comrade Lucy knew; To her; for her the willow bend;

She dwelt on a wide mour, Nor shall she fail to see

The sweetest thing that ever grew Even in the motions of the storm

Beside a human door!
Grace that shall mould the maiden's form
By silent sympathy.

You yet may spy the fawn at play,

The hare upon the green;
“The stars of midnight shall be dear But the sweet face of Lucy Gray
To her; and she shall lean her ear

Will never more be seen.
In many a secret place
Where rivulets dance their wayward “Tonight will be a stormy night -

You to the town must go;
And beauty born of murmuring sound And take a lantern, Child, to light
Shall pass into her face.

Your mother through the snow.”







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The wretched parents all that night
Went shouting far and wide;
But there was neither sound nor sight 35
To serve them for a guide.



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The pastoral mountains front you, face to

face, But, courage! for around that boisterous

brook The mountains have all opened out them

selves, And made a hidden valley of their own. No habitation can be seen; but they Who journey thither find themselves alone With a few sheep, with rocks and stones,

and kites That overhead are sailing in the sky. It is in truth an utter solitude; Nor should I have made mention of this

dell But for one object which you might pass

by, Might see and notice not. Beside the

brook Appears a straggling heap of unhewn

stones! And to that simple object appertains A story – unenriched with strange events, Yet not unfit, I deem, for the fireside, Or for the summer shade. It was the



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Of those domestic tales that spake to me
Of shepherds, dwellers in the valleys, men
Whom I already loved; not verily
For their own sakes, but for the fields and

Where was their occupation and abode.
And hence this tale, while I was yet a boy
Careless of books, yet having felt the

power Of Nature, by the gentle agency Of natural objects, led me on to feel For passions that were not my own, and

think (At random and imperfectly indeed) On man, the heart of man, and human

life. Therefore, although it be a history Homely and rude, I will relate the

35 For the delight of a few natural hearts; And, with yet fonder feeling, for the sake Of youthful poets, who among these hills Will be my second self when I am gone.

"The winds are now devising work for

55 And, truly, at all times, the storm, that

drives The traveller to a shelter, summoned him Up to the mountains: he had been alone Amid the heart of many thousand mists, That came to him, and left him, on the heights.

60 So lived he till his eightieth year was past. And grossly that man errs, who should

suppose That the green valleys, and the streams

and rocks, Were things indifferent to the shepherd's

thoughts. Fields, where with cheerful spirits he had

breathed The common air; hills, which with vigor

ous step He had so often climbed; which had im

pressed So many incidents upon his mind Of hardship, skill or courage, joy or fear; Which, like book, preserved the

memory Of the dumb animals, whom he had saved, Had fed or sheltered, linking to such acts The certainty of honorable gain; Those fields, those hills—what could they

less ? had laid Strong hold on his affections, were to him

75 A pleasurable feeling of blind love, The pleasure which there is in life itself.







Upon the forest-side in Grasmere

Vale There dwelt a shepherd, Michael was his

name; An old man, stout of heart, and strong of

limb. His bodily frame had been from youth to

age Of an unusual strength: his mind was

keen, Intense, and frugal, apt for all affairs, 45 And in his shepherd's calling he

prompt And watchful more than ordinary men. Hence had he learned the meaning of all

winds, Of blasts of every tone; and, oftentimes, When others heeded not, he heard the

South Make subterraneous music, like the noise Of bagpipers on distant Highland hills. The shepherd, at such warning, of his

flock Bethought him, and he to himself would


His days had not been passed in single




His helpmate was a comely matron, old — Though younger than himself full twenty

years She was a woman of a stirring life, Whose heart was in her house: two wheels

she had Of antique form; this large, for spinning

wool; That small, for fax; and if one wheel

had rest It was because the other was at work.


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