William Wordsworth


NOW couch thyself where, heard with fear afar,

Thunders through echoing pines the headlong Aar;

Or rather stay to taste the mild delights

Of pensive Underwalden’s pastoral heights.

Is there who mid these awful wilds has seen

The native Genii walk the mountain green?

Or heard, while other worlds their charms reveal,

Soft music o’er the aerial summit steal?

While o’er the desert, answering every close,

Rich steam of sweetest perfume comes and goes.

And sure there is a secret Power that reigns

Here, where no trace of man the spot profanes,

Naught but the châlets, flat and bare, on high

Suspended mid the quiet of the sky;

Or distant herds that pasturing upward creep,

And, not untended, climb the dangerous steep.

How still! no irreligious sound or sight

Rouses the soul from her severe delight.

An idle voice the sabbath region fills

Of deep that calls to deep across the hills,

And with that voice accords the soothing sound

Of drowsy bells, forever tinkling round;

Faint wail of eagle melting into blue

Beneath the cliffs, and pine-wood’s steady sugh;

The solitary heifer’s deepened low;

Or rumbling, heard remote, of falling snow.

All motions, sounds, and voices, far and nigh,

Blend in a music of tranquillity;

Save when, a stranger seen below, the boy

Shouts from the echoing hills with savage joy.