Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > America
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
America: Vols. XXV–XXIX.  1876–79.
New England: Seaconnet Point, R. I.
Storm on Saugonnet
George S. Burleigh (1821–1903)
ROUND and red in a golden haze
  Had the sun gone up from his eastern bed
  For days and days, and as round and red
The sun had gone down for days and days.
The windless hills were bathed in the gold        5
  Of their own autumnal atmosphere,—
  The thousand hues of the parting year
In their banners of glory mixed, fold on fold.
Round and red in the midnight sky
  The lone moon rode with never a star,—        10
  The bronzed right wheel of her noiseless car
With a broad tire girdling her throne on high.
Then came the storm with its signal drum,
  All night we heard on the eastern shore
  The steady booming and muffled roar        15
Of the great waves’ tramp ere the winds had come!
They came with the morning! the lurid glow
  Of the sunrise into black ashes burned;
  The torn clouds whirled, overturned and turned,
Wrung till they streamed with a torrent’s flow.        20
With the measured march of a mighty host
  The ground-swell came, with wave upon wave,
  On the red Saugonnet rocks they drave,
And scattered their foam over leagues of coast.
Out of the Infinite, up from the smoke        25
  Of the watery Gehenna the wild waves rose,
  Lashed into wrath by invisible foes,
On the crags of the headland their fury broke.
Spectral and dim over sunk Cuttywow
  The white spray hung, but ye heard no shock,        30
  For the liquid thunder on red Wall Rock
Crushed out all sound with its deafening blow.
From the granite jaws of the Clump, the foam
  Of a maniac wrath was drifted, white,
  Snowed on the blast with the snowy flight        35
Of the screaming gulls driven out from home.
In the swirl of the Hopper the waves were ground
  To impalpable dust; the Ridge Rock roared
  To the crash of a new Niagara poured
Right up the crags with a slippery bound!        40
Over Brenton’s Reef where the west hung black,
  O’er the cloudy bar of the Cormorant Rocks,
  The white seas hurried in huddling flocks
With the wolf-winds howling along their track.
They came and went in a wavering mist,        45
  The phantoms that hung on the skirts of the blast;
  While the nearer Cliff his defiance cast;
Maddening the seas with his granite fist.
Far inland the moan of the tempest told
  What war was waged on the crumbling crags,        50
  How the charging billows were torn on jags
Of the Island Cliff as they backward rolled.
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