But now I pore o'er Virgil's glowing lines,
Where, famed in war, the great Æneas shines;
Where novel scenes around me seem to stand,
Lo! grim Alecto whirls the flaming brand.
Dire jarring tumult, death and battle rage,
Fierce armies close, and daring chiefs engage;
Mars thunders furious from his flying car,
And hoarse-toned clarions stir the raging war.
Nor with less splendor does his master-hand
Paint the blue skies, the ocean, and the land;
Majestic mountains rear their awful head,
Fair plains extend, and bloomy vales are spread.
The rugged cliff in threatening grandeur towers,
And joy sports smiling in Arcadian bowers;
In silent calm the expanded ocean sleeps,
Or boisterous whirlwinds toss the rising deeps;
Triumphant vessels o'er his rolling tide,
With painted prows and gaudy streamers, glide.
[Williamstown, March 1811]
No more the brumal tempest sheds
Its gathered stores in sleety showers,
Nor yet the vernal season spreads
Its verdant mantle gemmed with flowers,
But fettered stands the naked year,
And shivers in the chilling air,
And lingers, dubious, on the wing,
And often struggles to unclasp
Reluctant Winter's icy grasp
And greet the arms of spring--
Hemmed in with hills whose heads aspire,
Abrupt and rude and hung with woods,
Amid these vales, I touch the lyre
Where devious Hoosic rolls his flood-- 2
Dear vales! where every pleasure meets,
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Book title: The Letters of William Cullen Bryant. Volume: 1. Contributors: William Cullen Bryant II - Editor, Thomas G. Voss - Editor, William Cullen Bryant - Author. Publisher: Fordham University Press. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1975. Page number: 21.
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