Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895
Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895.  1895.
To the Lakes
William Wilfred Campbell (1861–1918)
  WITH purple glow at even,
    With crimson waves at dawn,
  Cool bending blue of heaven,
    O blue lakes pulsing on;
Lone haunts of wilding creatures dead to wrong;        5
    Your trance of mystic beauty
    Is wove into my song.
  I know no gladder dreaming
    In all the haunts of men,
  I know no silent seeming        10
    Like to your shore and fen;
No world of restful beauty like your world
    Of curvèd shores and waters,
    In sunlight vapors furled.
  I pass and repass under        15
    Your depths of peaceful blue;
  You dream your wild, hushed wonder
    Mine aching heart into;
And all the care and unrest pass away
    Like night’s gray, haunted shadows        20
    At the red birth of day.
  You lie in moon-white splendor
    Beneath the northern sky,
  Your voices soft and tender
    In dream-worlds fade and die,        25
In whispering beaches, haunted bays and capes,
    Where mists of dawn and midnight
    Drift past in spectral shapes.
  Beside your far north beaches
    Come late the quickening spring;        30
  With soft, voluptuous speeches
    The summer, lingering,
Fans with hot winds your breast so still and wide,
    Where June, with trancéd silence,
    Drifts over shore and tide.        35
  Beneath great crags the larches,
    By some lone, northern bay,
  Bend, as the strong wind marches
    Out of the dull, north day,
Horning along the borders of the night,        40
    With icèd, chopping waters
    Out in the shivering light.
  Here the white winter’s fingers
    Tip with dull fires the dawn,
  Where the pale morning lingers        45
    By stretches bleak and wan;
Kindling the icèd capes with heatless glow,
    That renders cold and colder
    Lone waters, rocks and snow.
  Here in the glad September,        50
    When all the woods are red
  And gold, and hearts remember
    The long days that are dead;
And all the world is mantled in a haze;
    And the wind, a mad musician,        55
    Melodious makes the days;
  And the nights are still, and slumber
    Holds all the frosty ground,
  And the white stars whose number
    In God’s great books are found,        60
Gird with pale flames the spangled, frosty sky;
    By white, moon-curvèd beaches
    The haunted hours go by.


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