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Poem by William Cullen Bryant
It is a sultry day; the sun has drank The dew that lay upon the morning grass, There is no rustling in the lofty elm That canopies my dwelling, and its shade Scarce cools me. All is silent, save the faint And interrupted murmur of the bee, Settling on the sick flowers, and then again Instantly on the wing. The plants around Feel the too potent fervors; the tall maize Rolls up its long green leaves; the clover droops Its tender foliage, and declines its blooms. But far in the fierce sunshine tower the hills, With all their growth of woods, silent and stern, As if the scortching heat and dazzling light Were but an element they loved. Bright clouds, Motionless pillars of the brazen heaven;-- Their bases on the mountains--their white tops Shining in the far ether--fire the air With a reflected radiance, and make turn The gazerТs eye away. For me, I lie Languidly in the shade, where the thick turf, Yet virgin from the kisses of the sun, Retains some freshness, and I woo the wind That still delays its coming. Why so slow, Gentle and voluble spirit of the air? Oh, come and breathe upon the fainting earth Coolness and life. Is it that in his caves He hears me? See, on yonder woody ridge, The pine is bending his proud top, and now, Among the nearer groves, chesnut and oak Are tossing their green boughs about. He comes! Lo, where the grassy meadow runs in wives! The deep distressful silence of the scene Breaks up with mingling of unnumbered sounds And universal motion. He is come, Shaking a shower of blossoms from the shrubs, And bearing on the fragrance; and he brings Music of birds, and rustling of young boughs, And soun of swaying branches, and the voice Of distant waterfalls. All the green herbs Are stirring in his breath; a thousand flowers, By the road-side and the borders of the brook, Nod gaily to each other; glossy leaves Are twinkling in the sun, as if the dew Were on them yet, and silver waters break Into small waves and sparkle as he comes.
William Cullen Bryant
William Cullen Bryant's other poems:
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