Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Southward Ho! A Spell of Sunshine >> Chapter XI >> Page 178

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Page 178

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription the bosom of protecting mountains, she unfolds to the embrace
of the sun the most prolific beauties. Her charms are of a sort
to inspire the most perfect idylls, and to mature the mind for
contemplation, and to enliven the affections for enjoyment. A
dream of peace, sheltered by the wings of security, seems to
hallow her loveliness in the sight of blue mountains, and the
smiling heavens. On every hand spread out favorite places for
retreat and pleasure, the most grateful of all, in which life suf-
fers no provocations inconsistent with mental revery, and where
the daily necessities harmonize pleasantly with the most nutri-
tious fancies. Here the farmer may become the poet ; here soli-
tude may yield proper occasion for thought : and thought, enli-
vened by the picturesque, may rise to a constant enjoyment of
imagination. There is no scene so uniform as to induce monot-
ony or weariness. Green fields terminate in gentle heights,
heights are rendered musical with companionable voices, by the
perpetual murmur of rills and waterfalls. The eye that rests
upon the rock is charmed away by the sunny shadows that chase
each other, in perpetual sport, over valleys and sloping lawns ;
and the heart feels that here, if it be not the case, it should be,
that the spirit of man may be as divine as the region in which
he finds his abode. That the heart is not here sufficiently sub-
dued to appreciate justly its possessions of nature that the
tastes have not here sufficiently refined, in. accordance with the
sweetness, simplicity, beauty and sincerity of the place�is only
due to the freshness of the scene and the newness of society. In
proportion as the sense awakens to what it enjoys�as the
means of life increase, and as prosperity leads to leisure, will
be the improvement, mentally and spiritually, of a region, which
only needs to be justly known, in all its charms and treasures.
Time will bring about the necessary improvement. As it is, the
scene is one where the heart, already matured, and the tastes
already cultivated, may find a thousand abodes, in which life
may pass away as a long and grateful sunny day, lapsing
sweetly into sleep at last, in a couch hung with purple, and un-
der a sky of blue, draped with the loveliest hues and colors of a
peaceful sunset."
Somehow, we got back to the Eastern Shore," which we
had already left behind us, both in ship and story. One of the