The Lifting of the Mist

All the long day the vapours played
    At blindfold in the city streets,
Their elfin fingers caught and stayed
    The sunbeams, as they would their sheets
Into a filmy barricade
    ’Twixt earth and where the sunlight beats.

A vagrant band of mischiefs these,
    With wings of grey and cobweb gown;
They live along the edge of seas,
    And creeping out on foot of down,
They chase and frolic, frisk and tease
    At blind-man’s buff with all the town.

And when at eventide the sun
    Breaks with a glory through their grey,
The vapour-fairies, one by one,
Outspread their wings and float away
In clouds of colouring, that run
    Wine-like along the rim of day.

Athwart the beauty and the breast
    Of purpling airs they twirl and twist,
Then float away to some far rest,
    Leaving the skies all colour-kiss’t––
A glorious and a golden West
    That greets the Lifting of the Mist.

From Flint and Feather: The Complete Poems of E. Pauline Johnson (Tekahionwake) (The Musson Book Co., Limited, 1917) by Emily Pauline Johnson. This poem is in the public domain.