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In Louisiana

by Albert Bigelow Paine, 1900

The long, gray moss that softly swings
   In solemn grandeur from the trees,
   Like mournful funeral draperies,—
A brown-winged bird that never sings.

A shallow, stagnant, inland sea,
   Where rank swamp grasses wave, and where
   A deadliness lurks in the air,—
A sere leaf falling silently.

The death-like calm on every hand,
   That one might deem it sin to break,
   So pure, so perfect,—these things make
The mournful beauty of this land.

Tags: grief

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