Alcyone

by Archibald Lampman


 

 

INTER VIAS


 

íTis a land where no hurricane falls,
But the infinite azure regards
Its waters for ever, its walls
Of granite, its limitless swards;
Where the fens to their innermost pool                                        5
With the chorus of May are aring,
And the glades are wind-winnowed and cool
    With perpetual spring;

Where folded and half withdrawn
The delicate wind-flowers blow,                                                 10
And the bloodroot kindles at dawn
Her spiritual taper of snow;
Where the limits are met and spanned
By a waste that no husbandman tills,
And the earth-old pine forests stand                                         15
    In the hollows of hills.

íTis the land that our babies behold,
Deep gazing when none are aware;
And the great-hearted seers of old
And the poets have known it, and there                                   20
Made halt by the well-heads of truth
On their difficult pilgrimage
From the rose-ruddy gardens of youth
    To the summits of age.

Now too, as of old, it is sweet                                                  25
With a presence remote and serene;
Still its byways are pressed by the feet
Of the mother immortal, its queen:
The huntress whose tresses, flung free,
And her fillets of gold, upon earth,                                           30
They only have honour to see
    Who are dreamers from birth.

In her calm and her beauty supreme,
They have found her at dawn or at eve,
By the marge of some motionless stream,                            35
Or where shadows rebuild or unweave
In a murmurous alley of pine,
Looking upward in silent surprise,
A figure, slow-moving, divine,
    With inscrutable eyes.                                                          40