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

Switzerland: Pilatus, the Mountain

Mount Pilate

By Sir Edwin Arnold (1832–1904)

HE riseth alone,—alone and proud

From the shore of an emerald sea;

His crest hath a shroud of the crimson cloud,

For a king of the Alps is he;

Standing alone as a king should stand,

With his foot on the fields of his own broad land.

And never a storm from the stores of the north

Comes sweeping along the sky,

But it emptieth forth the first of its wrath

On the crags of that mountain high;

And the voice of those crags has a tale to tell

That the heart of the hearer shall treasure well.

A tale of a brow that was bound with gold,

And a heart that was bowed with sin;

Of a fierce deed told of the days of old

That might never sweet mercy win,

Of legions in steel that were waiting by

For the death of the God who could never die.

Of a dear kind face that its kindness kept

Dabbled with blood of its own;

Of a lady who leapt from the sleep she slept

To plead at a judgment throne;

Of a cross, and a cry, and a night at noon,

And the sun and the earth at a sickly swoon.

But climb the crags when the storm has rule,

And the spirit that rides the blast,

And hark to his howl as he sweeps the pool

Where the Roman groaned his last;

And to thee shall the tongue of the tempest tell

A record too sad for the poet’s shell.