A SEA of shade; with hollow heights above, Where floats the redwood's airy roof away, Whose feathery lace the drowsy breezes move, And softly through the azure windows play. No nearer stir than yon white cloud astray, No closer sound than sob of distant dove. I only live as the deep forest's swoon Dreams me amid its dream; for all things fade, Nor pulse of mine disturbs the unconscious noon. Even love and hope are still—albeit they made My heart beat yesterday—in slumber laid, Like yon dim ghost that last night was the moon. Only the bending grass, grown gray and sear, Nods now and then, where at my feet it swings, Pleased that another like itself is here, Unseen among the mighty forest things— Another fruitless life, that fading clings To earth and autumn days in doubt and fear. Dream on, O wood! O wind, stay in thy west, Nor wake the shadowy spirit of the fern, Asleep along the fallen pine-tree's breast! That, till the sun go down, and nightstars burn, And the chill dawn-breath from the sea return, Tired earth may taste heaven's honey-dew of rest.
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