Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > France
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
France: Vols. IX–X.  1876–79.
Robert Southey (1774–1843)
(From Joan of Arc)

                            AMID these wilds
Often to summer pasture have I driven
The flock; and well I know these woodland wilds,
And every bosomed vale and valley stream
Is dear to memory. I have laid me down        5
Beside yon valley stream, that up the ascent
Scarce sends the sound of waters now, and watched
The beck roll glittering to the noontide sun,
And listened to its ceaseless murmuring,
Till all was hushed and tranquil in my soul,        10
Filled with a strange and undefined delight
That passed across the mind like summer clouds
Over the vale at eve; their fleeting hues
The traveller cannot trace with memory’s eye,
Yet he remembers well how fair they were,        15
How beautiful.
                In solitude and peace
Here I grew up, amid the loveliest scenes
Of unpolluted nature. Sweet it was,
As the white mists of morning rolled away,
To see the upland’s wooded heights appear        20
Dark in the early dawn, and mark the slope
With gorse-flowers glowing, as the sun illumed
Their golden glory with his deepening light;
Pleasant at noon beside the vocal brook
To lay me down, and watch the floating clouds,        25
And shape to fancy’s wild similitudes
Their ever-varying forms; and O, how sweet!
To drive my flock at evening to the fold,
And hasten to our little hut, and hear
The voice of kindness bid me welcome home.        30

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