MEMORIALS OF A TOUR IN SCOTLAND
While my Fellow-traveller and I were walking by the side of Loch
Ketterine, one fine evening after sunset, in our road to a Hut
where, in the course of our Tour, we had been hospitably
entertained some weeks before, we met, in one of the loneliest
parts of that solitary region, two well-dressed Women, one of whom
said to us, by way of greeting, "What, you are stepping westward?"
"What, you are stepping westward?"--"Yea."
--'Twould be a 'wildish' destiny,
If we, who thus together roam
In a strange Land, and far from home,
Were in this place the guests of Chance:
Yet who would stop, or fear to advance,
Though home or shelter he had none,
With such a sky to lead him on?
The dewy ground was dark and cold;
Behind, all gloomy to behold;
And stepping westward seemed to be
A kind of 'heavenly' destiny:
I liked the greeting; 'twas a sound
Of something without place or bound;
And seemed to give me spiritual right
To travel through that region bright.
The voice was soft, and she who spake
Was walking by her native lake:
The salutation had to me
The very sound of courtesy:
Its power was felt; and while my eye
Was fixed upon the glowing Sky,
The echo of the voice enwrought
A human sweetness with the thought
Of travelling through the world that lay
Before me in my endless way.