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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
America: Vols. XXV–XXIX. 1876–79.

Introductory to Western States

A Mirage of the West

By John James Piatt (1835–1917)

Land in Cloud

ABOVE the sunken sun the clouds are fired

With a dark splendor: the enchanted hour

Works momentary miracles in the sky;

Weird shadows take from fancy what they lack

For semblance, and I see a boundless plain,

A mist of sun and sheaves in boundless air,

Gigantic shapes of reapers moving slow

In some new harvest: so I can but dream

Of my great Land, that takes its morning star

Out of the dusky evening of the east,

My Land, that lifted into vision gleams

Misty and vast, a boundless plain afar

(Like yonder fading fantasy of cloud),

With shadowy reapers moving, vague and slow,

In some wide harvest of the days to be,—

A mist of sun and sheaves in boundless air!