Earth has not anything to show more fair:
Dull would he be of soul who could pass by
A sight so touching in its majesty:
This City now doth like a garment wear
The beauty of the morning: silent, bare,
Ships, towers, domes, theatres and temples lie;
Open unto the fields, and to the sky –
All bright and glittering in the smokeless air.
Never did sun more beautifully steep
In his first splendour valley, rock, or hill;
Ne’er saw I, never felt, a calm so deep!
The river glideth at his own sweet will;
Dear God! The very houses seem asleep;
And all that mighty heart is lying still!
After the awful events in London last week, I found myself slightly comforted by re-reading this poem, so just thought I’d share it. Over two hundred years old, it still seems to capture the enduring, timeless strength of a great city.