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William Wordsworth
Complete Poetical Works

INSCRIPTIONS

III

Where the second quarry now is, as you pass from Rydal to Grasmere, there was formerly a length of smooth rock that sloped towards the road, on the right hand. I used to call it Tadpole Slope, from having frequently observed there the water-bubbles gliding under the ice, exactly in the shape of that creature.

HAST thou seen, with flash incessant,
Bubbles gliding under ice,
Bodied forth and evanescent,
No one knows by what device?

Such are thoughts!--A wind-swept meadow
Mimicking a troubled sea,
Such is life; and death a shadow
From the rock eternity!