Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > Switzerland
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Switzerland and Austria: Vol. XVI.  1876–79.
Switzerland: St. Bernard, the Mountain
Song on Saint Bernard
Thomas Buchanan Read (1822–1872)
O, IT is a pleasure rare
  Ever to be climbing so,
Winding upward through the air,
  Till the cloud is left below!
Upward and forever round        5
  On the stairway of the stream,
With the motion and the sound
  Of processions in a dream:
While the world below all this
  Lies a fathomless abyss.        10
Freedom singeth ever here,
  Where her sandals print the snow,
And to her the pines are dear,
  Freely rocking to and fro;
Swinging oft like stately ships,        15
  Where the billowy tempests sport;
Or, as when the anchor slips
  Down the dreamy wave in port,
Standing silent as they list
  Where the zephyrs furl the mist.        20
Here the well-springs drop their pearls,
  All to Freedom’s music strung;
And the brooks, like mountain girls,
  Sing the songs of Freedom’s tongue.
And the great hills, stem and stanch,        25
  Guard her valleys and her lakes,
And the rolling avalanche
  Blocks the path the invader makes,
While her eagle, like a flag,
  Floats in triumph o’er the crag!        30

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