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Hymn on Solitude


Hail, mildly-pleasing Solitude,
Companion of the wise and good;
But from whose holy, piercing eye
The herd of fools and villains Hy.
Oh! how I love with thee to walk
And listen to thy whisper'd talk,
Thine is the balmy breath of morn,
Just as the dew-bent rose is born;
And while meridian fervors beat,
Thine is the woodland dumb retreat;10
But chief when evening scenes decay
And the faint landscape swims away,
Thine is the doubtful soft decline,
And that best hour of musing thine.

Descending angels bless thy train
The virtues of the sage, and swain;
Plain innocence in white array'd,
Before thee lifts her fearless head:
Religions beams around thee shine,
And clear thy glooms with light divine:20
About thee sports sweet Liberty;
And wrapt Urania sings to thee.

Oh! let me pierce thy secret cell!
And in thy deep recesses dwell.
Perhaps from Norwood's oak-clad hill.
When meditation has her fill,
I just may cast my careless eyes
Where London's spiry turrets rise;
Think of its crimes, its cares, its pains,
Then shield me in the woods again.30


Thomson.