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And o'er the vast cope of bending heaven
All ghastly visaged clouds did sweep;
And as towards the east she turned,
She saw aloft in the morning air, Which now with hues of sunrise burned
A great black Anchor rising there ; And wherever the Lady turned her eyes It hung before her in the skies.
The sky was blue as the suinmer sea,
The depths were cloudless over head,
There was no sight nor sound of dread,
The Lady grew sick with a weight of fear,
To see that Anchor ever hanging,
The sound as of a dim low clanging,
There was a mist in the sunless air,
Which shook as it were with an earthquake's shock, But the very weeds that blossomed there
Were moveless, and each mighty rock
But piled around, with summits hid
In lines of cloud at intervals, Stood many a mountain pyramid
Among whose everlasting walls Two mighty cities shone, and ever Through the red mist their domes whose quiver.
On two dread mountains, from whose crest,
Might seem, the eagle for her brood Would ne'er bave hung her dizzy nest,
Those tower-encircled cities stood. A vision strange such towers to see, Sculptured and wrought so gorgeously, Where human art could never be.
And columns framed of marble white,
And giant fanes, dome over dome
With workmanship, which could not come
But still the Lady heard that clang
Filling the wide air far away;
Among the mountains shook alway,
Sudden from out that city sprung
A light that made the earth grow red; Two flames that each with quivering tongue
Licked its biglı domes, and over head
Among those mighty towers and fares
And hark! a rush, as if the deep
Had burst its bonds; she looked behind,
A raging flood descend, and wind
And now those raging billows came
Where that fair Lady sate, and she
The waves were fiercely vomited
From every tower and every dome, And dreary light did widely shed
O'er that vast flood's suspended foam, Beneath the smoke which hung its night On the stained cope of heaven's light.
The plank whereon that Lady sate
Was driven through the chasms, about and about, Between the peaks so desolate
Of the drowning mountain, in and out,
At last her plank an eddy crost,
And bore her to the city's wall,
It might the stoutest heart appal
The eddy whirled her round and round
Before a gorgeous gate, which stood Piercing the clouds of smoke which bound
Its aery arch with light like blood; She looked on that gate of marble clear With wonder that extinguished fear.
For it was filled with sculptures rarest,
Of forms most beautiful and strange, Like nothing human, but the fairest
Of winged shapes, whose legions range Throughout the sleep of those who are, Like this same Lady, good and fair.
And as she looked, still lovelier grew
Those marble forms;ấthe sculptor sure
Of his own mind did there endure
Slie looked, the flames were dim, the flood
Grew tranquil as a woodland river Winding through hills in solitude;
Those marble shapes then seemed to quiver, And their fair limbs to float in motion, Like weeds unfolding in the ocean.
And their lips moved; one seemed to speak,
When suddenly the mountain crackt, And through the chasin the flood did break
With an earth-uplifting cataract: The statues gave a joyous scream, And on its wings the pale thin dream Lifted the Lady from the stream.
The dizzy flight of that phantom pale
Waked the fair Lady from her sleep,
Of her dark eyes the dream did creep,
Lines written in the Vale of Chamouni.
Tue everlasting universe of things