I saw the young Morn in her beauty unfolding
Her radiant wings by the portals of Night,
And from the dark threshold her vesture upholding,
Her silver gray vesture, all dripping with light.
Dim shades of the darkness still hovered around her,
As pensive thoughts cling round a heart full of joy;
Yet the exquisite girdle of shadows that bound her
But softened the splendor it could not destroy.
As a wild Moorish lover in fondness adorning,
With one matchless gem, some fair, golden-haired girl,
I saw Night clasp on the rich zone of the Morning
The star of the east like an orient pearl.
Far along the horizon, her footsteps were breaking
The clouds, as she passed, with a pathway of beams,
And a drowsy perfume from those black poppies shaking,
That grow round the mystical palace of dreams.
When, quick she flung open its wide jetty portals,
And forth came those visions fantastic and light,
Whose fragrant wings, fanning the slumber of mortals,
Dissolve the enchantments and spells of the night.
And then, half reluctant, the Night seemed retreating,
Half mournfully, too, as if spurned from her side.
And pale grew his cheek, as, with warm kisses greeting,
The Sultan of day called the Morning his bride.
For lo! the rich gift of her darker-browed lover,
That fair pearly star, at his feet she cast down,
And, like a proud woman coquetting, bent over
And blushed, as she knelt for the Sun's golden crown.
Then from nature's great choir an anthem came swelling,
And flowery censers the earthly breeze swung,
While moments of sunshine the young Morn was telling,
As rich, perfumed beads in her rosary strung.
To the courts of his azure-roofed temples ascending,
Like a high-priest of heaven, I saw the Sun greet
The earth with his blessing; a devotee bending,
The beautiful earth seemed to kneel at his feet.