William Wordsworth

Memorials Of A Tour In Scotland

Too frail to keep the lofty vow That must have followed when his brow Was wreathed "The Vision" tells us how With holly spray, He faltered, drifted to and fro, And passed away. Well might such thoughts, dear Sister, throng Our minds when, lingering all too long, Over the grave of Burns we hung In social grief Indulged as if it were a wrong To seek relief. But, leaving each unquiet theme Where gentlest judgments may misdeem, And prompt to welcome every gleam Of good and fair, Let us beside this limpid Stream Breathe hopeful air. Enough of sorrow, wreck, and blight; Think rather of those moments bright When to the consciousness of right His course was true, When Wisdom prospered in his sight And virtue grew. Yes, freely let our hearts expand, Freely as in youth's season bland, When side by side, his Book in hand, We wont to stray, Our pleasure varying at command Of each sweet Lay. How oft inspired must he have trod These pathways, yon far-stretching road! There lurks his home; in that Abode, With mirth elate, Or in his nobly-pensive mood, The Rustic sate. Proud thoughts that Image overawes, Before it humbly let us pause, And ask of Nature, from what cause And by what rules She trained her Burns to win applause That shames the Schools. Through busiest street and loneliest glen Are felt the flashes of his pen; He rules 'mid winter snows, and when Bees fill their hives; Deep in the general heart of men His power survives. What need of fields in some far clime Where Heroes, Sages, Bards sublime, And all that fetched the flowing rhyme From genuine springs, Shall dwell together till old Time Folds up his wings? Sweet Mercy! to the gates of Heaven This Minstrel lead, his sins forgiven; The rueful conflict, the heart riven With vain endeavour, And memory of Earth's bitter leaven, Effaced for ever. But why to Him confine the prayer, When kindred thoughts and yearnings bear On the frail heart the purest share With all that live? The best of what we do and are, Just God, forgive!

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