ONLY a cloud,—far off it seemed to me
No habitable city, — when, behold,
Came gradual distinctions in the fold
Of tremulous vapor shadowing things to be :
Forms whether of wave or air rose silently
O’er quiet lanes of water, caught the gold
Of the Italian sunset, and thus rolled
The veil from off the Bride of the Blue Sea.
Alas, the irrecoverable dream!
Cathedral, palace, all things, all too soon
Melted like faces in a troubled stream,
And, looking backward over the lagoon,
I saw the phantom city faintly gleam
As mist blown seaward underneath the moon.
Samuel V. Cole.