Charles Harpur

Dawn and Sunrise in the Snowy Mountains

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A few thin strips of fleecy cloud lies long
And motionless above the eastern steeps,
Like shreds of silver lace: till suddenly,
Out from the flushing centre to the ends
On either hand, their lustrous layers become
Dipt all in crimson streaked with pink and gold;
And then, at last, are edged as with a band
Of crystal fire. And now, even long before
The Sun himself is seen, off tow'rds the west
A range of mighty summits, more and more,
Blaze, each like a huge cresset, in the keen
Clear atmosphere. As if the Spirit of Light,
Advancing swiftly thence, and eastward still,
Kept kindling them in quick succession; - till
The universal company of cones
And pyramidal peaks, stand burning all
With rosy fires, like a wide ranging circle
Of God-great altars, - and even so announce
The Sun that now, with a vast flash, is seen
Pushing his rim above yon central height.

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Charles Harpur