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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow: Selected Works

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Woods in Winter

Additional Information
  • Year Published: 0
  • Language: English
  • Country of Origin: United States of America
  • Source: Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  • Readability:
    • Flesch–Kincaid Level: 8.0
  • Word Count: 210

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When winter winds are piercing chill,
   And through the hawthorn blows the gale,
With solemn feet I tread the hill,
   That overbrows the lonely vale.

O’er the bare upland, and away
   Through the long reach of desert woods,
The embracing sunbeams chastely play,
   And gladden these deep solitudes.

Where, twisted round the barren oak,
   The summer vine in beauty clung,
And summer winds the stillness broke,
   The crystal icicle is hung.

Where, from their frozen urns, mute springs
   Pour out the river’s gradual tide,
Shrilly the skater’s iron rings,
   And voices fill the woodland side.

Alas! how changed from the fair scene,
   When birds sang out their mellow lay,
And winds were soft, and woods were green,
   And the song ceased not with the day!

But still wild music is abroad,
   Pale, desert woods! within your crowd;
And gathering winds, in hoarse accord,
   Amid the vocal reeds pipe loud.

Chill airs and wintry winds! my ear
   Has grown familiar with your song;
I hear it in the opening year,
   I listen, and it cheers me long.