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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Spain, Portugal, Belgium, and Holland: Vols. XIV–XV. 1876–79.

Spain: Guadarrama, the Mountains

Guadarrama Pass

By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–1882)

(From The Spanish Student, Act III. Scene VI)

VICTORIAN.This is the highest point. Here let us rest.

See, Preciosa, see how all about us

Kneeling, like hooded friars, the misty mountains

Receive the benediction of the sun!

O glorious sight!

PRECIOSA.Most beautiful indeed!

HYPOLITO.Most wonderful!

VICT.And in the vale below,

Where yonder steeples flash like lifted halberds,

San Ildefonso, from its noisy belfries,

Sends up a salutation to the morn,

As if an army smote their brazen shields,

And shouted victory!

PREC.And which way lies Segovia?

VICT.At a great distance yonder.

Dost thou not see it?

PREC.No. I do not see it.

VICT.The merest flaw that dents the horizon’s edge.

There, yonder!

HYP.’T is a notable old town,

Boasting an ancient Roman aqueduct,

And an Alcázar, builded by the Moors,

Wherein, you may remember, poor Gil Blas

Was fed on Pan del Rey. O, many a time

Out of its grated windows have I looked

Hundreds of feet plumb down to the Eresma,

That, like a serpent through the valley creeping,

Glides at its foot.