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BOOK THE FIFTH.
Farewell deep Valley, with thy one rude House,
Upon the side Of that green Slope, the outlet of the Vale, Lingering behind my Comrades, thus I breathed A parting tribute to a spot that seemed Like the fixed centre of a troubled World. And now, pursuing leisurely my way, How vain, thought I, it is by change of place To seek that comfort which the mind denies ; Yet trial and temptation oft are shunned Wisely; and by such tenor do we hold Frail Life's possessions, that even they whose fate Yields no peculiar reason of complaint Might, by the promise that is here, be won To steal from active duties, and embrace Obscurity, and calm forgetfulness. -Knowledge, methinks, in these disordered times, Should be allowed a privilege to have Her Anchorites, like Piety of old; Men, who, from faction sacred, and unstained By war, might, if so minded, turn aside Uncensured, and subsist, a scattered few Living to God and Nature, and content With that communion. Consecrated be
The Spots where such abide! But happier still
Acknowledgments of gratitude sincere Accompanied these musings :—fervent thanks For my own peaceful lot and happy choice; A choice that from the passions of the world Withdrew, and fixed me in a still retreat, Sheltered, but not to social duties lost, Secluded, but not buried; and with song Cheering my days, and with industrious thought, With the ever-welcome company of books
By virtuous friendship's soul-sustaining aid,
Thus occupied in mind I paced along,
Here did our pensive Host put forth his hand In sign of farewell. Nay,” the Old Man said, “ The fragrant Air its coolness still retains; The Herds and Flocks are yet abroad to crop The dewy grass ; you cannot leave us now, We must not part at this inviting hour.” To that injunction, earnestly expressed, He yielded, though reluctant; for his Mind Instinctively disposed him to retire To his own Covert; as a billow, heaved Upon the beach, rolls back into the Sea.
-So we descend; and winding round a rock
“ As, ʼmid some happy Valley of the Alps," Said I, “ once happy, ere tyrannic Power Wantonly breaking in upon the Swiss,
, Destroyed their unoffending Commonwealth, A popular equality doth seem Here to prevail; and yet a House of State Stands yonder, one beneath whose roof, methinks,