Verse > Anthologies > Hunt and Lee, eds. > The Book of the Sonnet
Hunt and Lee, comps.  The Book of the Sonnet.  1867.
II. On Rembrandt, Occasioned by His Picture of Jacob’s Dream
By Washington Allston (1779–1843)
AS in that twilight, superstitious age,
When all beyond the narrow grasp of mind
Seemed fraught with meanings of supernal kind,
When e’en the learned philosophic sage,
Wont with the stars through boundless space to range,        5
Listened with reverence to the changeling’s tale;
E’en so, thou strangest of all beings strange!
E’en so thy visionary scenes I hail;
That, like the rambling of an idiot’s speech,
No image giving of a thing on earth,        10
Nor thought significant in reason’s reach,
Yet in their random shadowings give birth
To thoughts and things from other worlds that come,
And fill the soul, and strike the reason dumb.

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