Verse > Anthologies > Higginson and Bigelow, eds. > American Sonnets
Higginson and Bigelow, comps.  American Sonnets.  1891.
My Shadow’s Stature
By John James Piatt (1835–1917)
WHENE’ER, in morning airs, I walk abroad,
Breasting upon the hills the buoyant wind,
Up from the vale my shadow climbs behind,
An earth-born giant climbing towards his god;
Against the sun, on heights before untrod,        5
I stand: faint glorified, but undefined,
Far down the slope in misty meadows blind,
I see my ghostly follower slowly plod.
“O stature of my shade,” I muse and sigh,
“How great art thou, how small am I the while!”        10
Then the vague giant blandly answers, “True,
But though thou art small thy head is in the sky,
Crown’d with the sun and all the Heaven’s smile—
My head is in the shade and valley too.”

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