“every where the trace of men”
                        —William Cullen Bryant

In Thomas Cole’s The Catskills and Lake George,
that set on scenic Catskill Creek, New York,
in 1845, trees are orange,
dark and light green, and reddish brown; they form
a core with large, gray rocks around the calm,
reflective waters showing mountains pale
and purple in the distance. This quiet psalm
invites the viewer to its lovely vale.
A single soul upon the shore holds to
his floating boat beneath an open sky
dotted with pink-tinged clouds in soft white-blue,
his, th’ only tension placed before the eye,
besides a faint and far-off swirl of smoke,
an indicator of some local folk.

 

Featured Image: Thomas Cole (1801-1848) The Catskills and Lake George, Catskill Creek, N.Y., 1845, Oil on canvas. New-York Historical Society, The Robert L. Stuart Collection, S-157

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