To reach the top you strove;
You only saw brown earth that backward swept
Beneath your feet;
Above--beyond--the slim path dodged and leapt,
Than you a thousand times more fleet,
To lose itself in yon high-clinging grove.
High up, a mountain spring
Tossed its clear crystal freely down to you,
With silken shiver,
Shattered on every jagged rock anew,
You only said, "Ah, here's a river;
I'll quench my thirst; 'twill aid my laboring."
A free wind from the crown
Of other distant hills swept by and stirred
The waiting trees;
With pleasant quivers of surprise they heard
That you were near; you said, "The breeze
Is good for climbing. Hope it won't die down."
Why, when the day was cool
On some poised cliff could you not pause, and there
With grateful eye
Scan the walled reaches of the valley fair;
Or see unfathomable sky
Gaze back from an unfathomed mountain pool?
Thought you through pressing clouds the open sky to gain?
Drenched is the summit with close mists and sleet-sharp rain!