Anthology of Modern Slavonic Literature in Prose and Verse/The City Afar
THE CITY AFAR.
Down yonder, 'mid hills in a shimmering bend
Lo, the city afar.
Pale village and woodland before it extend,
Where tintings of meadow and pasturage blend,
The city gleams faintly afar.
Nor dwelling, nor yard—but in shadows of night,
Something glides through the mist.
As if listless o'er many a goul in its plight,
As if weary o'er many a vision of might,
O'er the city lies dimly the mist.
Live vapours of toiling and passionate cries
Weave a darkening pall.
Dust and smoke and the specks and the shadows that rise,
And numberless hearts with their throbbings and sighs,
Aloft weave a darkening pall.
'Twixt the din of the city's unrest and my gaze
It is spread evermore.
And its load nor the morn nor the noon can upraise,
Gaols, churches and courtyards, meseems, are but haze,—
In the farness they merge evermore.
But sometimes at sunset an arrowy ray
Stabs the mist for a flash.
And amid the night's darkness, then fading away,
The city afar with its dreams of dismay
Is revealed to the gaze for a flash.