Farewell to such a world! Too long I press
The crowded pavement with unwilling feet.
Pity makes pride, and hate breeds hatefulness,
And both are poisons. In the forest, sweet
The shade, the peace! Immensity, that seems
To drown the human life of doubts and dreams.
Far off the massive portals of the wood,
Buttressed with shadow, misty-blue, serene,
Waited my coming. Speedily I stood
Where the dun wall rose roofed in plumy green.
Dare one go in? — Glance backward! Dusk as night
Each column, fringed with sprays of amber light.
Let me, along this fallen bole, at rest,
Turn to the cool, dim roof my glowing face.
Delicious dark on weary eyelids prest!
Enormous solitude of silent space,
But for a low and thunderous ocean sound,
Too far to hear, felt thrilling through the ground.
No stir nor call the sacred hush profanes;
Save when from some bare tree-top, far on high,
Fierce disputations of the clamorous cranes
Fall muffled, as from out the upper sky.
So still, one dreads to wake the dreaming air,
Breaks a twig softly, moves the foot with care.
The hollow dome is green with empty shade,
Struck through with slanted shafts of afternoon;
Aloft, a little rift of blue is made,
Where slips a ghost that last night was the moon;
Beside its pearl a sea-cloud stays its wing,
Beneath a tilted hawk is balancing.