"Not such the night whose stormy might" ["Evening at Chamouni"] [poem]
NOT such the night whose stormy might
Heroic Balmat 1 braved,
When, darkening on the Goûtéʼs height, 2
The tempest howled and raved.
Upon the mighty hill, forlorn,
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He stood alone amid the storm;
Watching the last day‐gleams decay,—
Supposing its returning ray
Should see him lying there asleep,
With Alpine snow for winding‐sheet.
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Methinks I see him, as he stood
Upon the ridge of snow;
The battering burst of winds above,—
The cloudy precipice below,—
Watching the dawn. With proud delight
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He saw that long, tempestuous night
Drive to the westward, and unfold
The ocean snow‐fields, upward rolled,
Bright with the morningʼs glance of gold.
It past away,—the tossing flood
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Of changing vapour, headlong riding;
And lo! the untrodden summit stood
Accessibly beside him.