Lays: 1


Mellow fades the glow of even;
Cool the shadow round the spring:
Clouds, by Autumn breezes driven,
Stream along the amber heaven,
Bright and clear as spirit's wing.
From the holy shrine of feeling,
Kindled by departing day,
Blessed visions flit away, —
Through the pictured forest stealing,
Round the magic mountain play.

Melting with the blue afar,
Lightly tipped with golden flame,
Flashing like the regal star,
Sky-o'ercrowned, ascends the car,
Bent around the course of fame.
Far it sweeps in dazzling light;
Fire-winged coursers urge the wheel;
Echoes wide the ringing steel: —
Who can tell the full delight,
Tell the joy the champions feel?

Soft its dreamy shade diffusing,
Twilight streams athwart the grove,
Fills the soul with silent musing,
Till in devious trances losing
All its thoughts, it sinks in love.
Soft and still as moonlit ocean,
Silver-mirrored, deep and clear,
Hidden music pulsing near,
Glides it, with unconscious motion,
Far away to holier sphere.

Startled by the instant flash,
Breaks the flower-enwoven dream; —
Thunder rends with deadening crash;
Winds the mingling branches lash;
Bursts the storm, like wintry stream.
Where is now the musing soul?
Nerved to meet the raging war,
Stern it mounts its iron car:
Swift the crushing chariots roll,
Fierce his steeds the warrior bear.

Far away the pausing thunder
Echoes from remotest hill;
Faint the rain-drop patters under
Loaded leaves that bend asunder,
As with trickling streams they fill.
So the still, small voice of feeling,
'Mid the din of inward strife,
To the heart with passion rife,
Mild as zephyr whispers healing,
Breathes, and wakes the soul to life.
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