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Mists In Autumn

James Thomson 1700 (Port Glasgow) – 1748 (London)



Now, by the cool, declining year condescend,
Descend the copious exhalations, check'd,
As up the middle sky unseen they stole,
And roll the doubling fogs around the hill.
No more the mountain, horrid, vast, sublime,
Who pours a sweep of rivers from his sides,
And high between contending kingdoms rears
The rocky long division, fills the view
With great variety; but in a night
Of gath'ring vapour from the baffled sense
Sinks dark and dreary; thence expanding far,
The huge dusk gradual swallows up the plain:
Vanish the woods; the dim-seen river seems
Sullen and slow to roll the misty wave.
Ev'n in the height of noon, oppress'd, the sun
Sheds weak and blunt his wide-refracted ray,
Whence glaring oft with many a broaden'd orb
He frights the nations. Indistinct on earth,
Seen through the turbid air, beyond the life
Objects appear, and, wilder'd o'er the waste,
The shepherd stalks gigantic: till at last,
Wreath'd dun around in deeper circles, still
Successive closing, sits the gen'ral fog
Unbounded o'er the world, and, mingling thick,
A formless gray confusion covers all.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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James Thomson

James Thomson, who wrote under the pseudonym Bysshe Vanolis, was a Scottish Victorian-era poet famous primarily for the long poem The City of Dreadful Night, an expression of bleak pessimism in a dehumanized, uncaring urban environment. more…

All James Thomson poems | James Thomson Books

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