Jeanne d’arc

Jeanne d'arc

14 JOAN of ARC
” A blessed spot ! oh, How my soul enjoy’d
Its holy quietness, with what delight,
Escaping humankind, I hastened there
To solitude and freedom ! Thitherward
On a spring eve I had betaken me,
And there I sat, and mark’d the deep red clouds
Gather before the wind, the rising wind,
Whose sudden gusts, each wilder than the last,
Seem’d as they rock’d my senses. Soon the niglit
Darken’d around, and the large rain-drops fell
Heavy; anon with tempest rage the storm
Howl’d o’er the wood. Methought the heavy rain
Fell with a grateful coolness on my head,
And the hoarse dash of waters, and the rush
Of winds that mingled with the loadest roar.
Made a wild music. On a rock I sat.
The glory of the tempest fill’d my soul.
And when the thunders peal’d, and the long flash
Hung durable in heaven, and to mine eye
Spread the grey forest, all remembrance left
My mind, annihilate was every thought,
A most full quietness of strange delight;
Suspended all my powers; I seem’d as though.
Dissolved into the scene.
33 ” The forms of worship in mine earlier years
Waked my young mind to artificial awe,
And made me fear my God. Warm with the glow
Of health and exercise, whene’er I pass’d
The threshold of the house of prayer, I felt
A cold damp chill me; I beheld the flame
That with a pale and feeble glimmering
Dimmed the Moonlight ; I heard the solemn mass.
And with strange feelings and mysterious dread
Telling my beads, gave to the mystic prayers
Devoutest meaning. Often when I saw
The pictured flames writhe round a penanced soul,
Have I retired, and knelt before the cross
And wept for grace, and trembled and believed
A God of Terrors. But in riper years,
When as my soul grew strong in solitude,
I saw the eternal energy pervade
The boundless range of nature, with the sun
Pour life and radiance from his flamy path,
And on the lowliest flower, a violet of the field
The kindly dew-drops shed. And then I felt
That He who form’d this goodly frame of things
Must needs be good, and with a Father’s name
I call’d on Him, and from my burthen’d heart
Pour’d out the yearnings of unmingled love.
Methinks it is not strange, then, that I fled
The house of prayer, and made the lonely grove
My temple, at the foot of some old oak
Watching the little tribes that had their world
Within its mossy bark; or laid me down
Beside the rivulet, whose murmuring
Was silence to my soul, and mark’d the swarm
Whose light-edged shadows on the bedded sand
Mirror’d their mazy sports ; the insect hum,
The flow of waters, and the song of birds
Making most holy music to mine ear:
Ob! was it strange, if for such scenes as these,
Such deep devoutness, such intense delight
Of quiet adoration, I forsook
The house of worship ?

http://archive.org/stream/joanofarcballads00sout/joanofarcballads00sout_djvu.txt

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~ by meanderingsofthemuse on June 10, 2012.

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