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When the soft low came from the distant kine.
And when, in comely inn, on Amwell Hill,
A pilgrim from the stream, thou sattest still,—
Taking a dream of quiet, at thy fill,
Over the soft mist of a silent pipe,—
On old man's nothings contemplation-ripe.—
How wouldst thy heart gladden, when Madge drew
nigh, The stainless wench that never knew a sigh ; But knew a song, and sang it at thy call— A grass-green pastoral.
The cold Lea misseth thee—and seemeth now To flow with memory's wrinkles on its brow ; The steep of Tottenham feels thine antique loss, And sadness gloometh upon Waltham's Cross.
The pike rush boldly by—
Thou art not nigh ! Large yellow barbel at the bottom lie, And gaze upon the bait without a sigh, The armed perch starts its red fins—and cares Nought for the minnow, or the brandling snares;
Sport comes not with the day ;
Thou art away ! And we, poor things, with landing-nets and line, And rod, and bait,—but prowl, and poke, and pine.
How !—('tis beneath me, and beneath the joys Of a true angler—prone to be envy free.)