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A prime Enchantress—to assist the work,
Which then was going forward in her name!
Not favoured spots alone, but the whole earth
The beauty wore of promise—that which sets
(To take an image which was felt no doubt
Among the bowers of paradise itself)
The budding rose above the rose full blown.
What Temper at the prospect did not wake
To happiness unthought of? The inert
Were roused, and lively Natures rapt away!
They who had fed their childhood upon dreams,
The play-fellows of fancy, who had made
All powers of swiftness, subtilty and strength
Their ministers,—who in lordly wise had stirred
Among the grandest objects of the sense,
And dealt with whatsoever they found there
As if they had within some lurking right
To wield it;—they, too, who of gentle mood
Had watched all gentle motions, and to these
Had fitted their own thoughts, schemers more mild,
And in the region of their peaceful selves;—
Now was it that both found, the Meek and Lofty,
Did both find helpers to their heart's desire;
And stuff at hand, plastic as they could wish!
Were called upon to exercise their skill,
Not in Utopia, subterraneous Fields,
Or some secreted Island, heaven knows where!
But in the very world, which is the world
Of all of us,—the place where in the end
We find our happiness, or not at all!
It is no Spirit who from Heaven hath flown, And is descending on his embassy;Nor Traveller gone from Earth the Heavens to espy!'Tis Hesperus—there he stands with glittering crown, First admonition that the sun is down, For yet it is broad day-light!—clouds pass by;A few are near him still—and now the sky, He hath it to himself—'tis all his own. O most ambitious Star! an inquest wrought Within me when I recognised thy light;A moment I was startled at the sight:And, while I gazed, there came to me a thought That even I beyond my natural race Might step as thou dost now :—might one day trace Some ground not mine; and, strong her strength above, My Soul, an Apparition in the place, Tread there, with steps that no one shall reprove!
Composed a few Miles above Tintern Abbey, on revisiting the Banks of the Wye during a Tour.
July 13, 1798.
Five years have passed; five summers, with the length
Of five long winters! and again I hear
These waters, rolling from their mountain-springs
With a sweet inland murmur*.—Once again
Do I behold these steep and lofty cliffs,
Which on a wild secluded scene impress
Thoughts of more deep seclusion; and connect
The landscape with the quiet of the sky.
The day is come when I again repose
Here, under this dark sycamore, and view
These plots of cottage-ground, these orchard-tufts,
* The river is not affected by the tides a few miles above Tintern.
Which, at this season, with their unripe fruits,
Are clad in one green hue, and lose themselves
Among the woods and copses, nor disturb
The wild green landscape. Once again I see
These hedge-rows, hardly hedge-rows, little lines
Of sportive wood run wild; these pastoral farms
Green to the very door; and wreaths of smoke
Sent up, in silence, from among the trees;
With some uncertain notice, as might seem,
Of vagrant Dwellers in the houseless woods,
Or of some Hermit's cave, where by his fire
The Hermit sits alone.
Though absent long,
These forms of beauty have not been to me
As is a landscape to a blind man's eye:
But oft, in lonely rooms, and mid the din
Of towns and cities, I have owed to them,
In hours of weariness, sensations sweet,
Felt in the blood, and felt along the heart;
And passing even into my purer mind,
With tranquil restoration:—feelings too
Of unremembered pleasure: such, perhaps,
As may have had no trivial influence
On that best portion of a good man's life,