A Contrast

By Thomas Durfee

Once, in an old and lonely
Farm-house by the sea,
I went to rest with only
Myself for company.
No star the darkness brightened;
Alow the welkin bowed;
It blew, it rained, it lightened,
It thundered long and loud.
The tempest drove the billows
Upon the rocky shore,
And, nestled in my pillows,
I heard them plunge and roar.
The windows creaked and rattled,
The chimney puffed and moaned,
The stout old elms, that battled
Out in the court-yard, groaned.
I dozed while yet I listened;
And lo! the next I knew,
The golden sunshine glistened,
And everything was new.
The cock was crowing clearly,
Cluck-clucked the happy hen,
The robin carolled cheerly,
And sweetly chirped the wren.
I rose with glad emotion
And up the window threw;
Before me heaved the ocean
Its sparkling waters blue.
The skies were soft and tender;
And lovely to be seen.
Impearled with dewy splendor,
The land lay fresh and green.
I breathed an air Elysian;
I thrilled with pure delight;
And nothing but a vision
Seemed that black yester-night.

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