Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Switzerland and Austria: Vol. XVI. 1876–79.

Introductory to Switzerland


By Rose Terry Cooke (1827–1892)

THE STRANGER wandering in the Switzer’s land,

Before its awful mountain-tops afraid,—

Who yet, with patient toil, hath gained his stand

On the bare summit where all life is stayed;

Sees far, far down, beneath his blood-dimmed eyes,

Another country, golden to the shore,

Where a new passion and new hopes arise,

Where Southern blooms unfold forevermore.

And I, lone sitting by the twilight blaze,

Think of another wanderer in the snows,

And on more perilous mountain-tops I gaze

Than ever frowned above the vine and rose.

Yet courage, soul! nor hold thy strength in vain,

In hope o’ercome the steeps God set for thee,

For past the Alpine summits of great pain

Lieth thine Italy.