Eos: An Epic of the Dawn, and Other Poems

By Nicholas Flood Davin


 

A PRAIRIE DAWN—IN SUMMER.


 

A dull grey dawn was followed by a heaven
Of faint blue tint, with pillowy clouds rolled high
Against the concave. Soon the sun, a mass
O white and dazzling light was seen. Seen! No:
You look’d, and turn’d, and blinding shadows played
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Before your eyes. For he had stolen behind
Great steely belts of vapour; gave no sign
Save some few yellow-crimson touches near
The horizon pale, which proved no herald rays,
But legacies of his eclipsèd glory.
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The clouds grew brighter, shone more pearly-white;
The horses stood but half awake, nor fed;
Lazily, languidly they switched their tails.
Up from the prairie rose the myriad songs
Of birds. The bull-frog’s plaintive note was heard
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In pauses of the various melody.
The long legged night-hawk ran along the track
And uttered his harsh-grating cry. The air
Was cool and balmy, odorous with scent
Of grass and flower. I sat me down to read.
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My eyes I raised at intervals to watch
Put on a subtler polish the bright clouds.
Three Indians clad in cast-off clothes of whites,
All lank and dirty, listless, came and sat
A short way off. Towards seven the sun grew hot
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And made one long for branching bowery trees,
With their cool shadows and their murmuring leaves. [Page 131]