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NUTTING.

It seems a day,
(I speak of one from many singled out)
One of those heavenly days which cannot die,
When forth I sallied from our Cottage-door*,
And with a wallet o'er

my

shoulder slung, A nutting crook in hand, I turned my steps Towards the distant woods, a Figure quaint, Tricked out in proud disguise of Beggar's weeds Put on for the occasion, by advice And exhortation of my frugal Dame. Motley accoutrement! of power to smile

* The house at which I was boarded during the time I was at School.

At thorns, and brakes, and brambles, and, in truth,
More ragged thau need was. Among the woods,
And o'er the pathless rocks, I forced my way
Until, at length, I came to one dear nook
Unvisited, where not a broken bough
Drooped with its withered leaves, ungracious sign
Of devastation, but the hazels rose
Tall and erect, with milk-white clusters hung,
A virgin scene!-A little while I stood,
Breathing with such suppression of the heart
As joy delights in ; and with wise restraint
Voluptuous, fearless of a rival, eyed
The banquet, or beneath the trees I sate
Among the flowers, and with the flowers I played;
A temper known to those, who, after long
And weary expectation, have been blessed
With sudden happiness beyond all hope.-
Perhaps it was a bower beneath whose leaves
The violets of five seasons re-appear
And fade, unseen by any human eye;

Where fairy water-breaks do murmur-on
For ever, and I saw the sparkling foam,
And with my cheek on one of those green stones
That, fleeced with moss, beneath the shady trees,
Lay round me, scattered like a flock of sheep,
I heard the murmur and the murmuring sound,
In that sweet mood when pleasure loves to pay
Tribute to ease; and, of its joy secure,
The heart luxuriates with indifferent things,
Wasting its kindliness on stocks and stones,
And on the vacant air. Then up I rose,
And dragged to earth both branch and bough, with

crash
And merciless ravage ; and the shady nook
Of hazels, and the green and mossy bower,
Deformed and sullied, patiently gave up
Their quiet being : and, unless I now
Confound my present feelings with the past,
Even then, when from the bower I turned away
Exulting, rich beyond the wealth of kings,

I felt a sense of pain when I beheld
The silent trees and the intruding sky.--

Then, dearest Maiden! move along these shades In gentleness of heart; with gentle hand Touch,--for there is a Spirit in the woods.

Three years

she

grew in sun and shower, Then Nature said, “ A lovelier flower On earth was never sown ; This Child I to myself will take ; She shall be mine, and I will make A Lady of my own.

Myself will to my darling be Both law and impulse; and with me The Girl, in rock and plain, In earth and heaven, in glade and bower, Shall feel an overseeing power To kindle or restrain.

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