Lyrics of Earth

by Archibald Lampman





White are the far-off plains, and white
    The fading forests grow;
The wind dies out along the height,
    And denser still the snow,
A gathering weight on roof and tree,                                           5
    Falls down scarce audibly.

The road before me smooths and fills
    Apace, and all about
The fences dwindle, and the hills
    Are blotted slowly out;                                                            10
The naked trees loom spectrally
    Into the dim white sky.

The meadows and far-sheeted streams
    Lie still without a sound;
Like some soft minister of dreams                                          15
    The snow-fall hoods me round;
In wood and water, earth and air,
    A silence everywhere.

Save when at lonely intervals
    Some farmerís sleigh, urged on,                                         20
With rustling runners and sharp bells,
    Swings by me and is gone;
Or from the empty waste I hear
    A sound remote and clear;

The barking of a dog, or call                                                    25
    To cattle, sharply pealed,
Borne echoing from some wayside stall
    Or barnyard far a-field;
Then all is silent, and the snow
    Falls, settling soft and slow.                                                 30

The evening deepens, and the gray
    Folds closer earth and sky;
The world seems shrouded far away;
    Its noises sleep, and I,
As secret as yon buried stream,                                             35
    Plod dumbly on, and dream.