High waving heather 'neath stormy blasts bending,
Midnight and moonlight and bright shining stars;
Darkness and glory rejoicingly blending,
Each rising to heaven and heaven descending;
Man's spirit away from the drear dungeon sending,
Bursting the fetters and breaking the bars.
All down the mountain-sides wild forests lending
The mighty voice to the life-giving wind;
Rivers their banks in the jubilee bending,
Fast through the valleys a reckless course wending,
Wilder and deeper their waters extending,
Leaving a desolate desert behind.
Shining and lowering, and swelling and dying,
Changing for ever from midnight to noon;
Roaring like thunder, like soft music sighing,
Shadows on shadows advancing and flying;
Lightning-bright flashes the deep gloom defying,
Coming as swiftly and fading as soon.
Woods, you need not frown on me;
Spectral trees, that so dolefully
Shake your heads in the dreary sky,
You need not mock so bitterly.
December 13, 1836.