Archibald Lampman


White are the far-off plains, and white
    The fading forests grow;
The wind dies out along the height,
    And denser still the snow,
A gathering weight on roof and tree,
    Falls down scarce audibly.

The road before me smooths and fills
    Apace, and all about
The fences dwindle, and the hills
    Are blotted slowly out;
The naked trees loom spectrally
    Into the dim white sky.

The meadows and far-sheeted streams
    Lie still without a sound;
Like some soft minister of dreams
    The snow-fall hoods me round;
In wood and water, earth and air,
    A silence everywhere.

Save when at lonely intervals
    Some farmer's sleigh, urged on,
With rustling runners and sharp bells,
    Swings by me and is gone;
Or from the empty waste I hear
    A sound remote and clear;

The barking of a dog, or call
    To cattle, sharply pealed,
Borne echoing from some wayside stall
    Or barnyard far a-field;
Then all is silent, and the snow
    Falls, settling soft and slow.

The evening deepens, and the gray
    Folds closer earth and sky;
The world seems shrouded far away;
    Its noises sleep, and I,
As secret as yon buried stream,
    Plod dumbly on, and dream.

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