Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, HOME, by LETITIA ELIZABETH LANDON

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First Line: I left my home; - 'twas in a little vale
Last Line: Alas! For the green valley!
Alternate Author Name(s): L. E. L.; Maclean, Letitia
Subject(s): Home

I LEFT my home; -- 'twas in a little vale,
Shelter'd from snow-storms by the stately pines;
A small clear river wander'd quietly,
Its smooth waves only cut by the light barks
Of fishers, and but darken'd by the shade
The willows flung, when to the southern wind
They threw their long green tresses. On the slope
Were five or six white cottages, whose roofs
Reach'd not to the laburnum's height, whose boughs
Shook over them bright showers of golden bloom.
Sweet silence reign'd around: -- no other sound
Came on the air, than when the shepherd made
The reed-pipe rudely musical, or notes
From the wild birds, or children in their play
Sending forth shouts of laughter. Strangers came
Rarely or never near the lonely place....
I went into far countries. Years pass'd by,
But still that vale in silent beauty dwelt
Within my memory. Home I came at last.
I stood upon a mountain height, and look'd
Into the vale below; and smoke arose,
And heavy sounds; and through the thick dim air
Shot blacken'd turrets, and brick walls, and roofs
Of the red tile. I enter'd in the streets:
There were ten thousand hurrying to and fro;
And masted vessels stood upon the river,
And barges sullied the once dew-clear stream.
Where were the willows, where the cottages?
I sought my home; I sought, and found a city, --
Alas! for the green valley!

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