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And when sunset may breathe, from the lit sea beneath,
It ardours of rest and love, And the crimson pall of eve may fall
From the depth of heaven above, With wings folded I rest, on mine airy nest,
As still as a brooding dove.
That orbed maiden, with white fire laden,
Whom mortals call the moon, Glides glimmering o’er my fleece-like floor,
By the midnight breezes strewn;
Which only the angels hear,
The stars peep behind her and peer;
Like a swarm of golden bees,
Till the calm rivers, lakes, and seas,
Are each paved with the moon and these.
I bind the sun's throne with a burning zone,
And the moon's with a girdle of pearl ;
When the whirlwinds my banners unfurl.
Over a torrent sea,
The mountains its coluinns be.
With hurricane, fire, and snow,
When the powers of the air are chained to my chair,
Is the million-coloured bow;
While the moist earth was laughing below.
I am the daughter of earth and water,
And the nursling of the sky;
I change, but I cannot die.
The pavilion of heaven is bare,
Build up the blue dome of air, I silently laugh at my own cenotaph.
And out of the caverns of rain, Like a child from the womb, like a ghost from the tomb, I arise and unbuild it again.
LINES WRITTEN IN THE VALE OF CHAMOUNI.
The fields, the lakes, the forests, and the streams,
All things that move and breathe, with toil and sound,
Mont Blanc yet gleams on high :—the power is there, The still and solemn power of many sights And many sounds, and much of life and death. In the calm darkness of the moonless nights, In the lone glare of day, the snows descend Upon that mountain; none beholds them there, Nor when the flakes burn in the sinking sun, Or the star-beams dart through them :-winds contend Silently there, and heap the snow with breath Rapid and strong, but silently! Its home The voiceless lightning in these solitudes Keeps innocently, and like vapour broods Over the snow. The secret strength of things Which governs thought, and to the infinite dome Of heaven is as a law, inhabits thee! And what wert thou, and earth, and stars, and sea, If to the human mind's imaginings Silence and solitude were vacancy?
Hail to thee, blithe spirit !
Bird thou never wert,
Pourest thy full heart
Higher still and higher,
From the earth thou springest,
The blue deep thou wingest,
In the golden lightning
Of the sunken sun,
Thou dost float and run,
The pale purple even
Melts around thy flight;
In the broad daylight,
Keen as are the arrows
Of that silver sphere,
In the white dawn clear,
All the earth and air
With thy voice is loud,
From one lonely cloud
What thou art, we know not;
What is most like thee;
Drops so bright to see,
Like a poet hidden
In the light of thought,