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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Asia: Vols. XXI–XXIII. 1876–79.

Syria: Esdraelon, Plain of

Plain of Esdraelon

By Nicholas Michell (1807–1880)

(From Ruins of Many Lands)

ESDRAELON’S plain still boasts its myrtle bowers,

Golden with corn, or carpeted with flowers:

How like a sainted mind that seeks the skies,

Crowned with a glory, Tabor’s tops arise!

From base to summit groves are waving green,

While many a hoary ruin peeps between.

Here mouldered church and fallen convent show

How warm was zeal a thousand years ago;

In yon stone cell the hermit knelt to pray,

And passed in dreams his martyr life away.

Jasmine’s white bells and henna’s yellow bloom

Breathe out their sweets till rocks e’en drink perfume;

In viewless clouds those odors mount the air,

And Tabor stands like some rich altar there.