The Woods

I love to roam the woods
Oft patted by the boughs
That meet from either side
& form an arch of leaves
Till hidden as it where from all the world
I stand & muse upon the pleasant scene

I seem to be myself
The only one that treads
The earth at such a time
So vacant is the mass
That spreads around me one hugh sea of leaves
& intertwining grains of thickest shades

No human eye is visible
No human sound attracts
The ear—but musing solitude
One unembodied thought
Thinks the heart into stillness as the world
Was left behind for somthing green & new

& lonely—& Ive thought
In such a spot to build
An hermitage or hut
With books & leisure left
How sweet t'would be but then again
I've turned to my old home & felt it vain

Yet sure a hut close thatched
Chafed by oerleaning boughs
In such a place when night
Dark on the crowd of trees
Found us locked in beside a blazing fire
Might give us happiness & pleasing fears

Fear books can give us
When we read strange tales
Of dwellers in the depths
Of earths untrodden shades
Where woods surround lone huts impassable
& nought lives near them but the hope of heaven

The Midsummer Cushion
ed. Kelsey Thornton and Anne Tibble
(Ashington and Manchester: Mid-NAG and Carcanet, 1979)

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