Verse > William Wordsworth > Complete Poetical Works
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ON THE DETRACTION WHICH FOLLOWED THE PUBLICATION OF A CERTAIN POEM

          A BOOK came forth of late, called PETER BELL;
          Not negligent the style;--the matter?--good
          As aught that song records of Robin Hood;
          Or Roy, renowned through many a Scottish dell;
          But some (who brook those hackneyed themes full well,
          Nor heat, at Tam o' Shanter's name, their blood)
          Waxed wroth, and with foul claws, a harpy brood,
          On Bard and Hero clamorously fell.
          Heed not, wild Rover once through heath and glen,
          Who mad'st at length the better life thy choice,            10
          Heed not such onset! nay, if praise of men
          To thee appear not an unmeaning voice,
          Lift up that grey-haired forehead, and rejoice
          In the just tribute of thy Poet's pen!
                                                              1820.


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