Brathay’s bed above the force
Are dull when plucked, laid out and dry, but shine
Under the crag-stream’s course.
The whole broad dale at Elter Water’s strewn
With spring’s flood-leavings
And the upturned ash and birch-tree ruin
Tell of unseen heavings.
Out of the hill came the water, stripping the stone,
And lushing up the dale,
Around the ice-old mounds, the under-bone
Of the sleeper of a forgotten tale.
The soft and hard are side by side and felt
By every walker strolling down to see
The water turn to steam,
The clear become opaque,
The straight begin to bend,
The sure become unsure,
At Skelwith Force, where glaciations melt
And obstacles sudden slip free.