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And this place our forefathers made for man!
This is the process of our love and wisdom
To each poor brother who offends against us-
Most innocent, perhaps—and what if guilty?
Is this the only cure? Merciful God !
Each pore and natural outlet shrivell’d up
By ignorance and parching poverty,
His energies roll back upon his heart,
And stagnate and corrupt; till changed to poison,
They break out on him, like a loathsome plague spot.
Then we call in our pamper'd mountebanks
And this is their best cure ! uncomforted.
And friendless solitude, groaning and tears,
And savage faces, at the clanking hour,
Seen through the steams and vapour of his dungeon,
By the lamp's dismal twilight ! So he lies
Circled with evil, till his
soul Unmoulds its essence, hopelessly deformed By sights of ever more deformity!
With other ministrations thou, O nature !
Healest thy wandering and distempered child :
Thou pourest on him thy soft influences,
Thy sunny hues, fair forms, and breathing sweets,
Thy melodies of woods, and winds, and waters,
Till he relent; and can no more endure
To be a jarring and a dissonant thing,
Amid this general dance and minstrelsy;
But, bursting into tears, wins back his way,
His angry spirit healed and harmonized
By the benignant touch of love and beauty.
In the sweet shire of Cardigan,
Not far from pleasant Ivor-hall,
An old man dwells, a little man,
I've heard he once was tall.
Of years he has upon his back,
No doubt, a burthen weighty ;
he is three score and ten,
But others say he's eighty.
A long blue livery-coat has he,
That's fair behind, and fair before ;
Yet, meet him where you will, you see
At once that he is poor.
Full five and twenty years he lived
A running huntsman merry ;
And, though he has but one eye left,
His cheek is like a cherry.
No man like him the horn could sound,
And no man was so full of glee;
To say the least, four counties round
Had heard of Simon Lee ;
His master's dead, and no one now
Dwells in the hall of Ivor;
Men, dogs, and horses, all are dead;
He is the sole survivor.
His hunting feats have him bereft
Of his right eye, as you may see :
And then, what limbs those feats have left
old Simon Lee !
He has no son, he has no child,
His wife, an aged woman,
Lives with him, near the waterfall,
Upon the village common.
And he is lean and he is sick,
His dwindled body's half awry,
His ancles they are swoln and thick ;
His legs are thin and dry.
When he was young he little knew
Of husbandry or tillage ;
And now he's forced to work, though weak,
-The weakest in the village.