While my Fellow-traveller and I were walking by the side of
Loch Ketterine, one fine evening after sun-set, 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; 10
And stepping westward seem'd to be
A kind of _heavenly_ destiny;
I liked the greeting; 'twas a sound
Of something without place or bound;
And seem'd 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: 20
It's 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.
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