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Poem by Emma Lazarus
Gray earth, gray mist, gray sky: Through vapors hurrying by, Larger than wont, on high Floats the horned, yellow moon. Chill airs are faintly stirred, And far away is heard, Of some fresh-awakened bird, The querulous, shrill tune. The dark mist hides the face Of the dim land: no trace Of rock or river's place In the thick air is drawn; But dripping grass smells sweet, And rustling branches meet, And sounding water greet The slow, sure, sacred dawn. Past is the long black night, With its keen lightnings white, Thunder and floods: new light The glimmering low east streaks. The dense clouds part: between Their jagged rents are seen Pale reaches blue and green, As the mirk curtain breaks. Above the shadowy world, Still more and more unfurled, The gathered mists upcurled Like phantoms melt and pass. In clear-obscure revealed, Brown wood, gray stream, dark field: Fresh, healthy odors yield Wet furrows, flowers, and grass. The sudden, splendid gleam Of one thin, golden beam Shoots from the feathered rim Of yon hill crowned with woods. Down its embowered side, As living waters slide, So the great morning tide Follows in sunny floods. From bush and hedge and tree Joy, unrestrained and free, Breaks forth in melody, Twitter and chirp and song: Alive the festal air With gauze-winged creatures fair, That flicker everywhere, Dart, poise, and flash along. The shining mists are gone, Slight films of gold swift-blown Before the strong, bright sun Or the deep-colored sky: A world of life and glow Sparkles and basks below, Where the soft meads a-row, Hoary with dew-fall, lie. Does not the morn break thus, Swift, bright, victorious, With new skies cleared for us, Over the soul storm-tost? Her night was long and deep, Strange visions vexed her sleep, Strange sorrows bade her weep: Her faith in dawn was lost. No halt, no rest for her, The immortal wanderer From sphere to higher sphere, Toward the pure source of day. The new light shames her fears, Her faithlessness, her tears, As the new sun appears To light her godlike way.
Emma Lazarus's other poems:
English Poetry. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org