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[256] Along the gray abutment's wall
     The idle shad-net dries;
The toll-man in his cobbler's stall
     Sits smoking with closed eyes.

You hear the pier's low undertone
     Of waves that chafe and gnaw;
You start,—a skipper's horn is blown
     To raise the creaking draw.

At times a blacksmith's anvil sounds
     With slow and sluggard beat,
Or stage-coach on its dusty rounds
     Wakes up the staring street.

A place for idle eyes and ears,
     A cobwebbed nook of dreams;
Left by the stream whose waves are years
     The stranded village seems.

And there, like other moss and rust,
     The native dweller clings,
And keeps, in uninquiring trust,
     The old, dull round of things.

The fisher drops his patient lines,
     The farmer sows his grain,
Content to hear the murmuring pines
     Instead of railroad-train.

Go where, along the tangled steep
     That slopes against the west,
The hamlet's buried idlers sleep
     In still profounder rest.

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