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William Wordsworth

Ernest De Selincourt (ed.), The Poetical Works of William Wordsworth, Vol. 2: Poems Founded on the Affections; Poems on the Naming of Places; Poems of the Fancy; Poems of the Imagination (Second Edition)

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Editor’s NoteEditor’s NoteIVAIREY-FORCE VALLEY

[Composed Sept. 1835.—Published 1842.]

  • 1          ————Not a breath of air
  • 2Ruffles the bosom of this leafy glen.
  • 3From the brook's margin, wide around, the trees
  • Critical Apparatus4Are steadfast as the rocks; the brook itself,
  • 5Old as the hills that feed it from afar,
  • 6Doth rather deepen than disturb the calm
  • 7Where all things else are still and motionless.
  • 8And yet, even now, a little breeze, perchance
  • 9Escaped from boisterous winds that rage without,
  • 10Has entered, by the sturdy oaks unfelt,
  • 11But to its gentle touch how sensitive
  • 12Is the light ash! that, pendent from the brow
  • 13Of yon dim cave, in seeming silence makes
  • 14A soft eye-music of slow-waving boughs,
  • 15Powerful almost as vocal harmony
  • 16To stay the wanderer's steps and soothe his thoughts.

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Editor’s Note
p. 209. IV. Airey-Force Valley. The W. Museum has several MSS. of this poem: one of them, in the hand of Dora W., gives its date as Sept. 1836. For correct date, Sept. 1835, v. M.L.R., vol. 35.
Aira Force, which is also the scene of W.'s poem The Somnambulist, is on the western shore of Ullswater, about half-way between the head and foot of the lake.
Critical Apparatus
IV. 4/5 Following, in patient solitude, a course MSS.
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