Verse > William Wordsworth > Complete Poetical Works
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YARROW REVISITED, AND OTHER POEMS

COMPOSED (TWO EXCEPTED) DURING A TOUR IN SCOTLAND AND ON THE ENGLISH BORDER, IN THE AUTUMN OF 1831.

X. IN THE SOUND OF MULL

          TRADITION, be thou mute! Oblivion, throw
          Thy veil in mercy o'er the records, hung
          Round strath and mountain, stamped by the ancient tongue
          On rock and ruin darkening as we go,--
          Spots where a word, ghostlike, survives to show
          What crimes from hate, or desperate love, have sprung;
          From honour misconceived, or fancied wrong,
          What feuds, not quenched but fed by mutual woe.
          Yet, though a wild vindictive Race, untamed
          By civil arts and labours of the pen,                       10
          Could gentleness be scorned by those fierce Men,
          Who, to spread wide the reverence they claimed
          For patriarchal occupations, named
          Yon towering Peaks, "Shepherds of Etive Glen?"


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