A Week On The Concord And Merrimack Rivers By Henry David Thoreau

 -   All through
the Concord, Bedford, and Billerica meadows we had heard no
murmur from its stream, except where some tributary - Page 60
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All Through The Concord, Bedford, And Billerica Meadows We Had Heard No Murmur From Its Stream, Except Where Some Tributary Runnel Tumbled In, -

Some tumultuous little rill, Purling round its storied pebble, Tinkling to the selfsame tune, From September until June, Which no drought doth e'er enfeeble.

Silent flows the parent stream, And if rocks do lie below, Smothers with her waves the din, As it were a youthful sin, Just as still, and just as slow.

But now at length we heard this staid and primitive river rushing to her fall, like any rill. We here left its channel, just above the Billerica Falls, and entered the canal, which runs, or rather is conducted, six miles through the woods to the Merrimack, at Middlesex, and as we did not care to loiter in this part of our voyage, while one ran along the tow-path drawing the boat by a cord, the other kept it off the shore with a pole, so that we accomplished the whole distance in little more than an hour. This canal, which is the oldest in the country, and has even an antique look beside the more modern railroads, is fed by the Concord, so that we were still floating on its familiar waters. It is so much water which the river _lets_ for the advantage of commerce. There appeared some want of harmony in its scenery, since it was not of equal date with the woods and meadows through which it is led, and we missed the conciliatory influence of time on land and water; but in the lapse of ages, Nature will recover and indemnify herself, and gradually plant fit shrubs and flowers along its borders.

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