AMONG THE SAND-HILLS.
From the ocean half a rood, To the sand-hills long and low Ever and anon I go, Hide from me the gleaming flood, Only listen to his flow.
To those billowy curls of sand
Little of delight is lent,—
As it were a yellow tent Here and there by some wild hand Pitched, and overgrown with bent; Some few buds, like golden beads, Cut in stars on leaves that shine Greenly, and a fragrance fine Of the ocean's delicate weeds, Of his foam'd and silver wine.
But the place is music-haunted, Let there blow what wind soever ; Now as by a stately river A monotonous requiem's chanted, Now you hear great pine woods shiver.
Frequent when the tides are low, Creep for hours, sweet sleepy hums, But when in the spring-tide comes, Then the silver trumpets blow And the waters beat like drains; And the Atlantic's roll full often, Muffled by the sand-hills round, Seems a mighty city's sound, Which the night-time serves to soften, By the waker's pillow drown'd ; Seems a salvo—state, or battle's— Through the purple mountain gape, Heard by peasants; or, perhaps, Seems a wheel that rolls or rattles ; Seems an eagle wing that flaps ; Seems a clap of thunder, caught By the mountain pines, and tuned To a marvellous gentle sound, Wailings, where despair is not, Quieting the heart's deep wound.
Still, what winds there blow soever, Wet or shine, by sun or star, When white horses plunge afar, When the pallid froth lines shiver, When the waters quiet are,.
On the sand-hills when waves boom, Or with ripples scarce at all Tumble, nor so much as crawl, Ever do we know of whom Cometh up the rise and fall.
Need is none to see the shipe, None to mark the mid-sea jet, Softening into violet, While those old pre-Adamite lips To the heaps beyond are set.
Al we see not the great foam That beyond us strangely rolls, Whose white winged ships are souls, Sailing from the port called Home, When the signal bell, Death, tolls.
Ah I we see no silver shimmer, And we catch no hue divine, Of the purpling hyaline, From the heaving and the glimmer, Life's sands bound us with their line But by sounds unearthly driven Through life's sand-hills, we may be Sure that a diviner sea Floweth to our hearts from heaven, Ebbeth to eternity. Boulogne.