How could I help but mine the shapeless hours
above pied valleys cloaked in pine and flowers,
dwarfed by wrinkled amaranthine mountains,
morphed by nourishment on milk of fountains?
Cascades of vapor splashed with such a sound
you would have thought it thundered underground.
I yearned to see the russet dusk begin.
But soon the sunlight burned my face’s skin.
Then I was forced to quit the lonely height
and banish nature’s temple from my sight.
Whenever too at dinner we should meet,
so ravenous however much I eat
and drunken on the wine of every view,
I find I cannot stop glancing at you.
If I am caught, is this game lost or won?
The mystery, God knows, is half the fun.
Each time I steal a look, I know I’ve won.
But take care staring too long at the sun.
Experience has made it understood
that Nature is more beautiful than good.