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By which the finer passages

of sense Are occupied; and the Soul, that would incline To listen, is prevented or deterred.


may it not be hoped, that, placed by Age In like removal tranquil though severe, We are not so removed for utter loss; But for some favour, suited to our need? What more than this, that we thereby should gain Fresh power to commune with the invisible world, And hear the mighty stream of tendency Uttering, for elevation of our thought, A clear sonorous voice, inaudible To the vast multitude; whose doom it is To run the giddy round of vain delight, Or fret and labour on the Plain below.

But, if to such sublime ascent the hopes
Of Man may rise, as to a welcome close
And termination of his mortal course,
Them only can such hope inspire whose minds
Have not been starved by absolute neglect ;
Nor bodies crushed by unremitting toil ;

To whom kind Nature, therefore, may afford
Proof of the sacred love she bears for all;
Whose birth-right Reason, therefore, may ensure.
For me, consulting what I feel within
In times when most existence with herself
Is satisfied, I cannot but believe,
That, far as kindly Nature hath free scope
And Reason's sway predominates, even so far,
Country, society, and time itself,

the Individual's bodily frame
And lays the generations low in dust,
Do, by the Almighty Ruler's grace, partake
Of one maternal spirit, bringing forth
And cherishing with ever-constant love,
That tires not, nor betrays. Our Life is turned
Out of her course, wherever Man is made
An offering, or a sacrifice, a tool
Or implement, a passive Thing employed
As a brute mean, without acknowledgment
Of common right or interest in the end;
Used or abused, as selfishness may prompt.
Say, what can follow for a rational Soul
Perverted thus, but weakness in all good,

And strength in evil? Hence an after-call
For chastisement, and custody, and bonds,
And oft-times Death, avenger of the past,
And the sole guardian in whose hands we dare
Entrust the future.—Not for these sad issues
Was Man created; but to obey the law
Of life, and hope, and action. And ’tis known
That when we stand upon our native soil,
Unelbowed by such objects as oppress
Our active



themselves become
Strong to subvert our noxious qualities :
They sweep away infection from the heart;
And, by the substitution of delight,
Suppress all evil; whence the Being moves
In beauty through the world ; and all who see
Bless him, rejoicing in his neighbourhood.”

“ Then,” said the Solitary, “ by what power Of language shall a feeling Heart express Her sorrow for that multitude in whom

We look for health from seeds that have been sown

In sickness and for increase in a power
That works but by extinction. On themselves

They cannot lean, nor turn to their own hearts
To know what they must do; their wisdom is
To look into the eyes of others, thence
To be instructed what they must avoid:
Or rather let us say, how least observed,
How with most quiet and most silent death,
With the least taint and injury to the air
The Oppressor breathes, their human Form divine,
And their immortal Soul, may waste away.”

The Sage rejoined, “ I thank you-you have spared My voice the utterance of a keen regret, A wide compassion which with you I share. When, heretofore, I placed before your sight A most familiar object of our days, A Little-one, subjected to the Arts Of modern ingenuity, and made The senseless member of a vast machine, Serving as doth a spindle or a wheel; Think not, that, pitying him, I could forget The rustic Boy, who walks the fields, untaught; The Slave of ignorance, and oft of want, And miserable hunger. Much too much

Of this unhappy lot, in early youth
We both have witnessed, lot which I myself
Shared, though in mild and merciful degree:
Yet was my mind to hindrances exposed,
Through which I struggled, not without distress
And sometimes injury, like a Sheep enthralled
Mid thorns and brambles; or a Bird that breaks
Through a strong net, and mounts upon the wind,
Though with her plumes impaired. If they, whose souls
Should open while they range the richer fields
Of merry England, are obstructed less
By indigence, their ignorance is not less
Nor less to be deplored. For who can doubt
That tens of thousands at this day exist
Such as the Boy you painted, lineal Heirs
Of those who once were Vassals of her soil,
Following its fortunes like the beasts or trees
Which it sustained. But no one takes delight
In this oppression; none are proud of it;
It bears no sounding name nor ever bore;
A standing grievance, an indigenous vice
Of every country under heaven. My thoughts
Were turned to evils that are new and chosen,

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