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Adown behind the woodland,
In glory sank the sun,
And o'er the rippling waters
A farewell halo flung.
And we almost heard the rustle
Of the curtains in the west,
As their gorgeous folds were lifted,
To wrap his couch of rest.


The lazy, floating cloudlets,
In their journey paused awhile,
To bathe them in the glory
Of the sunset's parting smile;
While the waveless sea of ether,
He left in blushes still,
'Neath the parting kiss he gave it,
As he sank behind the hill.


The fair, light-winged breezes,
Stole the whisp'ring waters o'er,
And woke a quivering anthem
'Mong the poplars on the shore.
There in a thrilling silence,
That none had dared to break,
Each drew a memory painting
On that sunset on the lake.


The moist eye, as we listened
To the wave wash at our feet.
Told better far than language,
The thoughts we could not speak.
The waters slept, and dreaming
At their beauty-haunted side,
We lingered till the moonlight
Flung its sheen upon the tide.


Then, as the bells of evening,
With a distant, dreamy chime,
To the dashing of the waters
Were softly keeping time,
We turned away--but ever
The olden chord will wake,
As comes the memory whisper,
Of that sunset on the lake.