He Has Seen Nearly All
The Recent Volcanic Phenomena, But Says That These Cones Present The
Most "Infernal" Appearance He Has Ever Witnessed.
We returned for a
last look at Halemaumau, but the smoke was so dense, and the sulphur
fumes so stifling, that, as in a fearful dream, we only heard the
thunder of its hidden surges.
I write thunder, and one speaks of
the lashing of its waves; but these are words pertaining to the
familiar earth, and have no place in connection with Kilauea. The
breaking lava has a voice all its own, full of compressed fury. Its
sound, motion, and aspect are all infernal. Hellish, is the only
We are dwelling on a cooled crust all over Southern Hawaii, the
whole region is recent lava, and between this and the sea there are
several distinct lines of craters thirty miles long, all of which at
some time or other have vomited forth the innumerable lava streams
which streak the whole country in the districts of Kau, Puna, and
Hilo. In fact, Hawaii is a great slag. There is something very
solemn in the position of this crater-house: with smoke and steam
coming out of every pore of the ground, and in front the huge
crater, which to-night lights all the sky. My second visit has
produced a far deeper impression even than the first, and one of awe
and terror solely.
Kilauea is altogether different from the European volcanoes which
send lava and stones into the air in fierce sudden spasms, and then
subside into harmlessness.
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