The mountains that infold,
In their wide sweep, the coloured landscape round,
Seem groups of giant kings, in purple and gold,
That guard the enchanted ground.
I roam the woods that
The upland, where the mingled splendours glow,
Where the gay company of trees look down
On the green fields below.
My steps are not alone
In these bright walks; the sweet south-west, at play,
Flies, rustling, where the painted leaves are strown
Along the winding way.
And far in heaven, the
The sun, that sends that gale to wander here,
Pours out on the fair earth his quiet smile,—
The sweetest of the year.
Where now the solemn
Verdure and gloom where many branches meet;
So grateful, when the noon of summer made
The valleys sick with heat?
Let in through all the
Come the strange rays; the forest depths are bright?
Their sunny-coloured foliage, in the breeze,
Twinkles, like beams of light.
The rivulet, late unseen,
Where bickering through the shrubs its waters run,
Shines with the image of its golden screen,
And glimmerings of the sun.
But ’neath yon
Lover to listening maid might breathe his flame,
Nor mark, within its roseate canopy,
Her blush of maiden shame.
Oh, Autumn! why so soon
Depart the hues that make thy forests glad;
Thy gentle wind and thy fair sunny noon,
And leave thee wild and sad!
Ah! ’twere a lot
For ever in thy coloured shades to stray;
Amid the kisses of the soft south-west
To rove and dream for aye;
And leave the vain low
That makes men mad—the tug for wealth and power,
The passions and the cares that wither life,
And waste its little hour.
They talk of short-lived pleasure—be it
Pain dies as quickly: stern, hard-featured pain
Expires, and lets her weary prisoner go.
The fiercest agonies have shortest reign;
And after dreams of horror, comes again
The welcome morning with its rays of peace;
Oblivion, softly wiping out the stain,
Makes the strong secret pangs of shame to cease:
Remorse is virtue’s root; its fair increase
Are fruits of innocence and blessedness:
Thus joy, o’erborne and bound, doth still release
His young limbs from the chains that round him press.
Weep not that the world changes—did it keep
A stable, changeless state, ’twere cause indeed to weep.