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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Africa: Vol. XXIV. 1876–79.

The Barbary States: Atlas, the Mountain

The Mountain Streams

By Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792–1822)

(From The Witch of Atlas)

AND down the streams which clove those mountains vast

Around their inland islets, and amid

The panther-peopled forests, whose shade cast

Darkness and odors, and a pleasure hid

In melancholy gloom, the pinnace past;

By many a star-surrounded pyramid

Of icy crag cleaving the purple sky,

And caverns yawning round unfathomably.

The silver noon into that winding dell,

With slanted gleam athwart the forest tops,

Tempered like golden evening, feebly fell;

A green and glowing light, like that which drops

From folded lilies in which glowworms dwell,

When earth over her face night’s mantle wraps;

Between the severed mountains lay on high

Over the stream, a narrow rift of sky.


And ever down the prone vale, like a cloud

Upon a stream of wind, the pinnace went:

Now lingering on the pools, in which abode

The calm and darkness of the deep content

In which they paused; now o’er the shallow road

Of white and dancing waters all besprent

With sands and polished pebbles: mortal boat

In such a shallow rapid could not float.