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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
England: Vols. I–IV. 1876–79.


Sonnet Written on Skiddaw, During a Tempest

By John Wilson (1720–1789)

IT was a dreadful day, when late I passed

O’er thy dim vastness, Skiddaw! Mist and cloud

Each subject fell obscured, and rushing blast

To thee made darling music, wild and loud,

Thou Mountain Monarch! Rain in torrents played,

As when at sea a wave is borne to heaven,

A watery spire, then on the crew dismayed

Of reeling ship with downward wrath is driven.

I could have thought that every living form

Had fled, or perished in that savage storm,

So desolate the day. To me were given

Peace, calmness, joy; then to myself I said,

Can grief, time, chance, or elements control

Man’s chartered pride, the liberty of soul?