Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 2.djvu/391

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CANTO IV.]
349
CHILDE HAROLD’S PILGRIMAGE.

XXVIII.

A single star is at her side, and reigns
With her o'er half the lovely heaven; but still
Yon sunny Sea heaves brightly, and remains
Rolled o'er the peak of the far Rhætian hill,
As Day and Night contending were, until
Nature reclaimed her order:—gently flows
The deep-dyed Brenta,[1] where their hues instil
The odorous purple of a new-born rose,
Which streams upon her stream, and glassed within it glows,


    Italian sky; yet it is but a literal and hardly sufficient delineation of an August evening (the eighteenth), as contemplated in one of many rides along the banks of the Brenta, near La Mira.

    [Compare Shelley's Julian and Maddalo (Poetical Works, 1895, i. 343)—

    "How beautiful is sunset, when the glow
    Of Heaven descends upon a land like thee,
    Thou Paradise of exiles, Italy!
      · · · · ·We stood
    Looking upon the evening, and the flood,
    Which lay between the city and the shore,
    Paved with the image of the sky ... the hoar
    And aëry Alps towards the north appeared,
    Thro' mist, an heaven-sustaining bulwark reared
    Between the East and West; and half the sky
    Was roofed with clouds of rich emblazonry,
    Dark purple at the zenith, which still grew
    Down the steep West into a wondrous hue,
    Brighter than burning gold."]

  1. [The Brenta rises in Tyrol, and flowing past Padua falls into the Lagoon at Fusina. Mira, or La Mira, where Byron "colonized" in the summer of 1817, and again in 1819, is on the Brenta, some six or seven miles inland from the Lagoon.]