Peaceful our valley, fair and green,
And beautiful her cottages,
Each in its nook, its sheltered hold,
Or underneath its tuft of trees.
Many and beautiful they are;
But there is one that I love best,
A lowly shed in truth it is,
A brother of the rest.
Yet when I sit on rock or hill
Down-looking on the valley fair,
That cottage with its clustering trees
Summons my heart; it settles there.
Others there are whose small domain
Of fertile fields and hedgerows green
Might more seduce a wanderer's mind
To wish that there his home had been.
Such wish be his! I blame him not;
My fancies they perchance are wild,
I love that house because it is
The very mountains' child.
Fields hath it of its own green fields,
But they are craggy, steep and bare,
Their fence is of the mountain stone,
And moss and lichen flourish there.
And when the storm comes from the north
It lingers near that pastoral spot,
And, piping through the mossy walls,
It seems delighted with its lot.
And let it take its own delight,
And let it range the pastures bare,
Until it reach that nest of trees,—
It may not enter there!
A green unfading grove it is,
Skirted with many a lesser tree —
Hazel and holly, beech and oak,
A bright and flourishing company!
Precious the shelter of those trees!
They screen the cottage that I love,
The sunshine pierces to the roof,
And the tall pine-trees tower above.