Imatges de pÓgina

And half in hope, and half in fright,
The Lady closed her eyes so bright.


At first all deadly shapes were driven
Tumultuously across her sleep,
And o'er the vast cope of bending heaven
All ghastly-visaged clouds did sweep,
And the Lady ever looked to spy
If the golden sun shone forth on high.


And as towards the east she turned,
She saw aloft in the morning air,
Which now with hues of sunrise burned,
great black Anchor rising there;
And wherever the Lady turned her eyes,
It hung before her in the skies.


The sky was blue as the summer sea,
The depths were cloudless overhead,
The air was calm as it could be,

There was no sight or sound of dread,

But that black Anchor floating still
Over the piny eastern hill.


The Lady grew sick with a weight of fear,
To see that Anchor ever hanging,
And veiled her eyes; she then did hear

The sound as of a dim low clanging,
And looked abroad if she might know
Was it aught else, or but the flow
Of the blood in her own veins, to and fro.


There was a mist in the sunless air,

Which shook as it were with an earthquake's


But the very weeds that blossomed there

Were moveless, and each mighty rock
Stood on its basis steadfastly;
The Anchor was seen no more on high.


But piled around, with summits hid
In lines of cloud at intervals,

Stood many a mountain pyramid

Among whose everlasting walls Two mighty cities shone, and ever Through the red mist their domes did quiver.


On two dread mountains, from whose crest,
Might seem, the eagle, for her brood,
Would ne'er have hung her dizzy nest,

Those tower-encircled cities stood.
A vision strange such towers to see,
Sculptured and wrought so gorgeously,
Where human art could never be.


And columns framed of marble white,
And giant fanes, dome over dome
Piled, and triumphant gates, all bright

With workmanship, which could not come

From touch of mortal instrument,
Shot o'er the vales, or lustre lent
From its own shapes magnificent.


But still the Lady heard that clang
Filling the wide air far away;
And still the mist whose light did hang
Among the mountains shook alway,
So that the Lady's heart beat fast,

As half in joy, and half aghast,
On those high domes her look she cast.


Sudden, from out that city sprung

A light that made the earth grow red; Two flames that each with quivering tongue Licked its high domes, and overhead Among those mighty towers and fanes Dropped fire, as a volcano rains Its sulphurous ruin on the plains.


And hark! a rush as if the deep

Had burst its bonds; she looked be


And saw over the western steep
A raging flood descend, and wind
Through that wide vale; she felt no fear,
But said within herself, 'Tis clear
These towers are Nature's own, and she
To save them has sent forth the sea.


And now those raging billows came

Where that fair Lady sate, and she Was borne towards the showering flame

By the wild waves heaped tumultuously, And on a little plank, the flow

Of the whirlpool bore her to and fro.


The flames were fiercely vomited
From every tower and every dome,
And dreary light did widely shed

O'er that vast flood's suspended foam, Beneath the smoke which hung its night On the stained cope of heaven's light.

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