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Its tender foliage, and declines its blooms.
But far, in the fierce sunshine, tower the hills,
With all their growth of woods, silent and stern;
As if the scorching heat and dazzling light
Were but an element they loved. Bright clouds,
Motionless pillars of the brazen heaven,-
Their bases on the mountains--their white tops
Shining in the far ether-fire the air
With a reflected radiance, and make turn
The gazer's eyes away. For me, I lie
Languidly in the shade, where the thick turf,
Yet virgin with the kisses of the sun,
Retains some freshness, and I woo the wind
That still delays his coming. Why so slow,
Gentle and voluble spirit of the air?
Oh, come and breathe upon the fainting earth
Coolness and life. Is it that in his caves
He hears me? See, on yonder woody ridge,
The pine is bending his proud top, and now
Among the nearer groves, chestnut and oal
Are tossing their green boughs about. He comes!
Lo, where the grassy meadow runs in waves!
The deep distressful silence of the scene
Breaks up with mingling of unnumbered sounds
And universal motion. He is come,
Shaking a shower of blossoms from the shrubs,
And bearing on their fragrance; and he brings
Music of birds, and rustling of young boughs,
And sound of swaying branches, and the voice
Of distant waterfalls. All the green herbs
Are stirring in his breath; a thousand flowers,
By the road-side and the borders of the brook,
Nod gayly to each other; glossy leaves
Are twinkling in the sun, as if the dew
Were on them yet, and silver waters break
Into small waves and sparkle as he comes.
AN INDIAN AT THE BURIAL PLACE OF HIS FATHERS.
IT is the spot I came to seek,
My fathers' ancient burial place
Ere from these vales, ashamed and weak,
Withdrew our wasted race.
It is the spot-I know it well
Of which our old traditions tell.
For here the upland bank sends out
A ridge toward the river side;
I know the shaggy hills about,
The meadows smooth and wide, The plains, that, toward the southern sky, Fenced east and west by mountains lie.
A white man gazing on the scene,
Would say a lovely spot was here,
And praise the lawns so fresh and green,
Between the hills so sheer.
I like it not-I would the plain
Lay in its tall old groves again.
The sheep are on the slopes around,
The cattle in the meadows feed,
And laborers turn the crumbling ground,
Or drop the yellow seed,
And prancing steeds, in trappings gay,
Whirl the bright chariot o'er the way.
Methinks it were a nobler sight
To see these vales in woods arrayed,
Their summits in the golden light,
Their trunks in grateful shade, And herds of deer, that bounding go O'er hills and prostrate trees below.
And then to mark the lord of all,
The forest hero, trained to wars, Quivered and plumed, and lithe and tall, And seamed with glorious scars, Walk forth, amid his reign, to dare The wolf, and grapple with the bear.
This bank, in which the dead were laid, Was sacred when its soil was ours; Hither the silent Indian maid
Brought wreaths of beads and flowers And the gay chief and gifted seer Worshipped the God of thunders here.