Lines Written In The Highlands After A Visit To Burns's Country Poem Rhyme Scheme and Analysis


There is a charm in footing slow across a silent plainA
Where patriot battle has been fought where glory had the gainA
There is a pleasure on the heath where Druids old have beenB
Where mantles grey have rustled by and swept the nettles greenC
There is a joy in every spot made known by times of oldD
New to the feet although each tale a hundred times be toldD
There is a deeper joy than all more solemn in the heartE
More parching to the tongue than all of more divine a smartE
When weary steps forget themselves upon a pleasant turfF
Upon hot sand or flinty road or sea shore iron scurfF
Toward the castle or the cot where long ago was bornG
One who was great through mortal days and died of fame unshornG
Light heather bells may tremble then but they are far awayH
Wood lark may sing from sandy fern the Sun may hear this layH
Runnels may kiss the grass on shelves and shallows clearI
But their low voices are not heard though come on travels drearI
Blood red the Sun may set behind the black mountain peaksJ
Blue tides may sluice and drench their time in caves and weedy creeksJ
Eagles may seem to sleep wing side upon the airI
Ring dove may fly convuls'd across to some high cedar'd lairI
But the forgotten eye is still fast lidded to the groundK
As Palmer's that with weariness mid desert shrine hath foundK
At such a time the soul's a child in childhood is the brainG
Forgotten is the worldly heart alone it beats in vainG
Aye if a madman could have leave to pass a healthful dayH
To tell his forehead's swoon and faint when first began decayH
He might make tremble many a one whose spirit had gone forthL
To find a Bard's low cradle place about the silent NorthL
Scanty the hour and few the steps because a longer stayH
Would bar return and make a man forget his mortal wayH
O horrible to lose the sight of well remember'd faceM
Of Brother's eyes of Sister's brow constant to every placeM
Filling the air as on we move with portraiture intenseN
More warm than those heroic tints that pain a painter's senseN
When shapes of old come striding by and visages of oldD
Locks shining black hair scanty grey and passions manifoldD
No no that horror cannot be for at the cable's lengthO
Man feels the gentle anchor pull and gladdens in its strengthO
One hour half idiot he stands by mossy waterfallP
But in the very next he reads his soul's memorialQ
He reads it on the mountain's height where chance he may sit downG
Upon rough marble diadem that hill's eternal crownG
Yet be his anchor e'er so fast room is there for a prayerI
That man may never lose his mind on mountains black and bareI
That he may stray league after league some great birth place to findR
And keep his vision clear from speck his inward sight unblindR

John Keats


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