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The American Language Reprint Series

The American Language Reprint (ALR) series aims to compile the various word-lists, vocabularies and phrase books which were collected in the early years of North American settlement. The series begins with the languages and dialects of the Eastern Woodlands, with a primary emphasis on the Eastern Algonquian and Iroquoian families. We hope to progressively extend the geographical scope of the project to form a comprehensive linguistic record of native North America prior to the advent of modern linguistics.


ASPECTS OF THE PINES

Tall, somber, grim, against the morning sky
They rise, scarce touched by melancholy airs,
Which stir the fadeless foliage dreamfully,
As if from realms of mystical despairs.

Tall, somber, grim, they stand with dusky gleams
Brightening to gold within the woodland's core,
Beneath the gracious noontide's tranquil beams, -
But the weird winds of morning sigh no more.

A stillness, strange, divine, ineffable,
Broods round and o'er them in the wind's surcease,
And on each tinted copse and shimmering dell
Rests the mute rapture of deep hearted peace.

Last, sunset comes - the solemn joy and might
Borne from the West when cloudless day declines -
Low, flute-like breezes sweep the waves of light,
And, lifting dark green tresses of the pines,

Till every lock is luminous, gently float,
Fraught with hale odors up the heavens afar,
To faint when twilight on her virginal throat
Wears for a gem the tremulous vesper star.
Paul Hamilton Hayne [1830-1886]