Nov 13, 2009

family history

Here's a poem from my great, great, great, great uncle Archibald Lampman, who was said to be the "finest 19th-century English-language poet."
I think he's pretty cool.

Winter Evening:
Westward the sunset is waning slow,
A far torn flame on the silent snow
And dies, as the vast night waxes higher,
In scattering lines of stormy fire.

The piled clouds are sinking dreary and dun

On the red wild track of the setting sun
Westward the fierce winds gather and fleet
Mightily down the frozen street.

Like the work of the painter's hand are pressed

On the pale clear brow of the yellow west,
The pointed spires and the dark and still
Towers of the town on the western hill.

Far through the firmament, misty fair,

Veiled and dimmed with their golden hair,
The moon and her chorus of sweet stars whirl
In their white torn mantles of cloudy pearl.

The hard snow shrieks on the beaten street —

Under the tread of the hurrying feet,
Sharp and shrill, like a thing in pain,
Bound in the winter's Titan chain.

Westward away the wan day sinks;

I see, as I pass, through the shutter chinks
The bright ruddy lips of children prate
Round the red warm hearth and the blazing grate.

Ah, bright bitter winter, I love thee still

For thy strong bright wine to the strong man's will:
For thy stormy days of tempest and moil,
And thy calm sweet peace that follows toil;

For thy bright white snow and the silver chime

Of bells that gladden the bitter time;
For the laughing lips and the children at play
And the long mirthful hours that sweeten day

For more, check out the
Poems of Archibald Lampman.


Angela said...

What a wonderful reminder of how words can paint a picture.

Your great-great-great-great uncle was a true wordsmith.


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