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Title: The Complete Poems of Sir Thomas Moore - Collected by Himself with Explanatory Notes
Author: Moore, Thomas
Language: English
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THE COMPLETE POEMS OF SIR THOMAS MOORE

COLLECTED BY HIMSELF

WITH EXPLANATORY NOTES




WITH A BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

BY WILLIAM M. ROSSETTI







THOMAS MOORE


Thomas Moore was born in Dublin on the 28th of May 1780. Both his parents
were Roman-Catholics; and he was, as a matter of course, brought up in the
same religion, and adhered to it--not perhaps with any extreme
zeal--throughout his life. His father was a decent tradesman, a grocer and
spirit-retailer--or "spirit-grocer," as the business is termed in Ireland.
Thomas received his schooling from Mr. Samuel Whyte, who had been
Sheridan's first preceptor, a man of more than average literary culture.
He encouraged a taste for acting among the boys: and Moore, naturally
intelligent and lively, became a favorite with his master, and a leader in
the dramatic recreations.

His aptitude for verse appeared at an early age. In 1790 he composed an
epilogue to a piece acted at the house of Lady Borrows, in Dublin; and in
his fourteenth year he wrote a sonnet to Mr. Whyte, which was published in
a Dublin magazine.

Like other Irish Roman-Catholics, galled by the hard and stiff collar of
Protestant ascendancy, the parents of Thomas Moore hailed the French
Revolution, and the prospects which it seemed to offer of some reflex
ameliorations. In 1792 the lad was taken by his father to a dinner in
honor of the Revolution; and he was soon launched upon a current of ideas
and associations which might have conducted a person of more
self-oblivious patriotism to the scaffold on which perished the friend of
his opening manhood, Robert Emmet. Trinity College, Dublin, having been
opened to Catholics by the Irish Parliament in 1793, Moore was entered
there as a student in the succeeding year. He became more proficient in
French and Italian than in the classic languages, and showed no turn for
Latin verses. Eventually, his political proclivities, and intimacy with
many of the chiefs of opposition, drew down upon him (after various
interrogations, in which he honorably refused to implicate his friends) a
severe admonition from the University authorities; but he had not joined
in any distinctly rebellious act and no more formidable results ensued to
him.

In 1793 Moore published in the _Anthologia Hibernica_ two pieces of verse;
and his budding talents became so far known as to earn him the proud
eminence of Laureate to the Gastronomic Club of Dalkey, near Dublin, in
1794. Through his acquaintance with Emmet, he joined the Oratorical
Society, and afterwards the more important Historical Society; and he
published _An Ode on Nothing, with Notes, by Trismegistus Rustifucius, D.
D._, which won a party success. About the same time he wrote articles for
_The Press_, a paper founded towards the end of 1797 by O'Connor, Addis,
Emmet, and others. He graduated at Trinity College in November, 1799.

The bar was the career which his parents, and especially his mother,
wished Thomas to pursue; neither of them had much faith in poetry or
literature as a resource for his subsistence. Accordingly, in 1799, he
crossed over into England, and studied in the Middle Temple; and he was
afterwards called to the bar, but literary pursuits withheld him from
practicing. He had brought with him from Ireland his translations from
Anacreon; and published these by subscription in 1800, dedicated to the
Prince Regent (then the illusory hope of political reformers), with no
inconsiderable success. Lord Moira, Lady Donegal, and other leaders of
fashionable society, took him up with friendly warmth, and he soon found
himself a well-accepted guest in the highest circles in London. No clever
young fellow--without any advantage of birth or of person, and with
intellectual attractions which seem to posterity to be of a rather
middling kind--ever won his way more easily or more cheaply into that
paradise of mean ambitions, the _beau monde_. Moore has not escaped
the stigma which attaches to almost all men who thus succeeded under the
like conditions--that of tuft-hunting and lowering compliances. He would
be a bold man who should affirm that there was absolutely no sort of
ground for the charge; or that Moore--fêted at Holland House, and
hovered-round by the fashionable of both sexes, the men picking up his
witticisms, and the women languishing over his songs--was capable of the
same sturdy self-reliance and simple adhesion to principle which might
possibly have been in him, and forthcoming from him, under different
conditions. Who shall touch pitch and not be defiled,--who treacle, and
not be sweetened? At the same time, it is easy to carry charges of this
kind too far, and not always through motives the purest and most exalted.
It may be said without unfairness on either side that the sort of talents
which Moore possessed brought him naturally into the society which he
frequented; that very possibly the world has got quite as much out of him
by that development of his faculties as by any other which they could have
been likely to receive; and that he repaid patronage in the coin of
amusement and of bland lenitives, rather than in that of obsequious
adulation. For we are not required nor permitted to suppose that there was
the stuff of a hero in "little Tom Moore;" or that the lapdog of the
drawing-room would under any circumstances have been the wolf-hound of the
public sheepfold. In the drawing-room he is a sleeker lapdog, and lies
upon more and choicelier-clothed laps than he would in "the two-pair
back;" and that is about all that needs to be said or speculated in such a
case. As a matter of fact, the demeanor of Moore among the socially great
seems to have been that of a man who respected his company, without
failing to respect himself also--any ill-natured caviling or ready-made
imputations to the contrary notwithstanding.

In 1802 Moore produced his first volume of original verse, the _Poetical
Works of the late Thomas Little_ (an allusion to the author's remarkably
small stature), for which he received £60. There are in this volume some
erotic improprieties, not of a very serious kind either in intention or in
harmfulness, which Moore regretted in later years. Next year Lord Moira
procured him the post of Registrar to the Admiralty Court of Bermuda; he
embarked on the 25th of September, and reached his destination in January
1804. This work did not suit him much better than the business of the bar;
in March he withdrew from personal discharge of the duties: and, leaving a
substitute in his place, he made a tour in the United States and Canada.
He was presented to Jefferson, and felt impressed by his republican
simplicity. Such a quality, however, was not in Moore's line; and nothing
perhaps shows the essential smallness of his nature more clearly than the
fact that his visit to the United States, in their giant infancy, produced
in him no glow of admiration or aspiration, but only a recrudescence of
the commonest prejudices--the itch for picking little holes, the petty joy
of reporting them, and the puny self-pluming upon fancied or factitious
superiorities. If the washy liberal patriotism of Moore's very early years
had any vitality at all, such as would have qualified it for a harder
struggle than jeering at the Holy Alliance, and singing after-dinner songs
of national sentimentalism to the applause of Whig lords and ladies, this
American experience may beheld to have been its death-blow. He now saw
republicans face to face; and found that they were not for him, nor he for
them. He returned to England in 1806; and soon afterwards published his
_Odes and Epistles_, comprising many remarks, faithfully expressive of his
perceptions, on American society and manners.

The volume was tartly criticised in the _Edinburgh Review_ by Jeffrey, who
made some rather severe comments upon the improprieties chargeable to
Moore's early writings. The consequence was a challenge, and what would
have been a duel at Chalk Farm, but for unloaded pistols and police
interference. This _fiasco_ soon led to an amicable understanding between
Moore and Jeffrey; and a few years later, about the end of 1811, to a
friendship of closer intimacy between the Irish songster and his great
poetic contemporary Lord Byron. His lordship, in his youthful satire of
_English Bards and Scotch Reviewers_, had made fun of the unbloody duel.
This Moore resented, not so much as a mere matter of ridicule as because
it involved an ignoring or a denial of a counter-statement of the matter
put into print by himself. He accordingly wrote a letter to Byron on the
1st of January 1810, calculated to lead to further hostilities. But, as
the noble poet had then already for some months left England for his
prolonged tour on the Continent, the missive did not reach him; and a
little epistolary skirmishing, after his return in the following year,
terminated in a hearty reconciliation, and a very intimate cordiality,
almost deserving of the lofty name of friendship, on both sides.

Re-settled in London, and re-quartered upon the pleasant places of
fashion, Moore was once more a favorite at Holland House, Lansdowne House,
and Donington House, the residence of Lord Moira. His lordship obtained a
comfortable post to soothe the declining years of Moore's father, and held
out to the poet himself the prospect--which was not however realized--of
another snug berth for his own occupancy. The United Kingdom of Great
Britain and Ireland never received the benefit of the Irish patriot's
services in any public capacity at home--only through the hands of a
defaulting deputy in Bermuda: it did, however, at length give him the
money without the official money's-worth, for in 1835, under Lord
Melbourne's ministry, an annual literary pension of £300 was bestowed upon
the then elderly poet. Nor can it be said that Moore's worth to his party,
whether we regard him as political sharpshooter or as national lyrist,
deserved a less recognition from the Whigs: he had at one time, with
creditable independence, refused to be indebted to the Tories for an
appointment. Some obloquy has at times been cast upon him on account of
his sarcasms against the Prince Regent, which, however well merited on
public grounds, have been held to come with an ill grace from the man
whose first literary effort, the _Anacreon_, had been published under the
auspices of his Royal Highness as dedicatee, no doubt a practical
obligation of some moment to the writer. It does not appear, however, that
the obligation went much beyond this simple acceptance of the dedication:
Moore himself declared that the Regent's further civilities had consisted
simply in asking him twice to dinner, and admitting him, in 1811, to a
fête in honor of the regency.

The life of Moore for several years ensuing is one of literary success and
social brilliancy, varied by his marrying in 1811, Miss Bessy Dyke, a lady
who made an excellent and devoted wife, and to whom he was very
affectionately attached, although the attractions and amenities of the
fashionable world caused from time to time considerable inroads upon his
domesticity. After a while, he removed from London, with his wife and
young family, to Mayfield Cottage, near Ashbourne, Derbyshire--a somewhat
lonely site. His _Irish Melodies_, the work by which he will continue best
known, had their origin in 1797, when his attention was drawn to a
publication named _Bunting's Irish Melodies_, for which he occasionally
wrote the words. In 1807 he entered into a definite agreement with Mr.
Power on this subject, in combination with Sir J. Stevenson, who undertook
to compose the accompaniments. The work was prolonged up to the year 1834;
and contributed very materially to Moore's comfort in money matters and
his general prominence--as his own singing of the Melodies in good society
kept up his sentimental and patriotic prestige, and his personal
lionizing, in a remarkable degree. He played on the piano, and sang with
taste, though in a style resembling recitative, and not with any great
power of voice: in speaking, his voice had a certain tendency to
hoarseness, but its quality became flute-like in singing. In 1811 he made
another essay in the musical province; writing, at the request of the
manager of the Lyceum Theatre, an operetta named _M.P., or the
Bluestocking_. It was the reverse of a stage-success; and Moore, in
collecting his poems, excluded this work, save as regards some of the
songs comprised in it. In 1808 had appeared anonymously, the poems of
_Intolerance and Corruption_, followed in 1809 by _The Sceptic_.
_Intercepted Letters, or The Twopenny Postbag, by Thomas Brown the
Younger_, came out in 1812: it was a huge success, and very intelligibly
such, going through fourteen editions in one year. In the same year the
project of writing an oriental poem--a class of work greatly in vogue now
that Byron was inventing Giaours and Corsairs--was seriously entertained
by Moore. This project took shape in _Lalla Rookh_, written chiefly at
Mayfield Cottage--a performance for which Mr. Longman the publisher paid
the extremely large sum of £3150 in advance: its publication hung over
till 1817. The poem has been translated into all sorts of languages,
including Persian, and is said to have found many admirers among its
oriental readers. Whatever may be thought of its poetic merits--and I for
one disclaim any scintilla of enthusiasm--or of its power in vitalizing
the _disjecta membra_ of orientalism, the stock-in-trade of the Asiatic
curiosity-shop, there is no doubt that Moore worked very conscientiously
upon this undertaking: he read up to any extent,--wrote, talked, and
perhaps thought, Islamically--and he trips up his reader with some
allusion verse after verse, tumbling him to the bottom of the page, with
its quagmire of explanatory footnotes. In 1815 appeared the _National
Airs_; in 1816, _Sacred Songs, Duets, and Trios_, the music composed and
selected by Stevenson and Moore; in 1818, _The Fudge Family in Paris_,
again a great hit. This work was composed in Paris, which capital Moore
had been visiting in company with his friend Samuel Rogers the poet.

The easily earned money and easily discharged duties of the appointment in
Bermuda began now to weigh heavy on Moore. Defalcations of his deputy, to
the extent of £6000, were discovered, for which the nominal holder of the
post was liable. Moore declined offers of assistance; and, pending a legal
decision on the matter, he had found it apposite to revisit the Continent.
In France, Lord John (the late Earl) Russell was his travelling companion:
they went on together through Switzerland, and parted at Milan. Moore
then, on the 8th of October 1819, joined in Venice his friend Byron, who
had been absent from England since 1816. The poets met in the best of
humor, and on terms of hearty good-fellowship--Moore staying with Byron
for five or six days. On taking leave of him, Byron presented the Irish
lyrist with the MS. of his autobiographical memoirs stipulating that they
should not be published till after the donor's death: at a later date he
became anxious that they should remain wholly unpublished. Moore sold the
MS. in 1831 to Murray for £2100, after some negotiations with Longman, and
consigned it to the publisher's hands. In 1824 the news arrived of Byron's
death. Mr. (afterwards Sir Wilmot) Horton on the part of Lady Byron, Mr.
Luttrell on that of Moore, Colonel Doyle on that of Mrs. Leigh, Lord
Byron's half-sister, and Mr. Hobhouse (afterwards Lord Broughton) as a
friend and executor of the deceased poet, consulted on the subject.
Hobhouse was strong in urging the suppression of the Memoirs. The result
was that Murray, setting aside considerations of profit, burned the MS.
(some principal portions of which nevertheless exist in print, in other
forms of publication); and Moore immediately afterwards, also in a
disinterested spirit, repaid him the purchase-money of £2100. It was quite
fair that Moore should be reimbursed this large sum by some of the persons
in whose behoof he had made the sacrifice, this was not neglected.

To resume. Bidding adieu to Byron at Venice, Moore went on to Rome with
the sculptor Chantrey and the portrait-painter Jackson. His tour supplied
the materials for the _Rhymes on the Road_, published, as being extracted
from the journal of a travelling member of the Pococurante Society, in
1820, along with the _Fables for the Holy Alliance_. Lawrence, Turner, and
Eastlake, were also much with Moore in Rome: and here he made acquaintance
with Canova. Hence he returned to Paris, and made that city his home up to
1822, expecting the outcome of the Bermuda affair. He also resided partly
at Butte Goaslin, near Sèvres, with a rich and hospitable Spanish family
named Villamil. The debt of £6000 was eventually reduced to £750: both the
Marquis of Lansdowne and Lord John Russell pressed Moore with their
friendly offers, and the advance which he at last accepted was soon repaid
out of the profits of the _Loves of the Angels_--which poem, chiefly
written in Paris, was published in 1823. The prose tale of _The Epicurean_
was composed about the same time, but did not issue from the press till
1827: the _Memoirs of Captain Rock_ in 1824. He had been under an
engagement to a bookseller to write a _Life of Sheridan_. During his stay
in France the want of documents withheld him from proceeding with this
work: but he ultimately took it up, and brought it out in 1825. It was not
availed to give Moore any reputation as a biographer, though the reader in
search of amusement will pick out of it something to suit him. George the
Fourth is credited with having made a neat _bon mot_ upon this book. Some
one having remarked to him that "Moore had been murdering Sheridan,"--
"No," replied his sacred majesty, "but he has certainly attempted his
life." A later biographical performance, published in 1830, and one of
more enduring interest to posterity, was the _Life of Byron_. This is a
very fascinating book; but more--which is indeed a matter of course--in
virtue of the lavish amount of Byron's own writing which it embodies than,
on account of the Memoir-compiler's doings. However, there is a
considerable share of good feeling in the book, as well as matter of
permanent value from the personal knowledge that Moore had of Byron; and
the avoidance of "posing" and of dealing with the subject for purposes of
effect, in the case of a man whose career and genius lent themselves so
insidiously to such a treatment, is highly creditable to the biographer's
good sense and taste. The _Life of Byron_ succeeded, in the list of
Moore's writings, a _History of Ireland_, contributed in 1827 to
_Lardner's Cyclopaedia_, and the _Travels of an Irishman in Search of a
Religion_, published in the same year: and was followed by a _Life of Lord
Edward Fitzgerald_, issued in 1881. This, supplemented by some minor
productions, closes the sufficiently long list of writings of an
industrious literary life.

In his latter years Moore resided at Sloperton Cottage, near Devizes in
Wiltshire, Where he was near the refined social circle of Lord Lansdowne
at Bowood, as well as the lettered home of the Rev. Mr. Bowles at
Bremhill. Domestic sorrows clouded his otherwise cheerful and comfortable
retirement. One of his sons died in the French military service in
Algeria; another of consumption in 1842. For some years before his own
death, which occurred on the 25th of February 1853, his mental powers had
collapsed. He sleeps in Bromham Cemetery, in the neighborhood of
Sloperton.

Moore had a very fair share of learning, as well as steady application,
greatly as he sacrificed to the graces of life, and especially of "good
society." His face was not perhaps much more impressive in its contour
than his diminutive figure. His eyes, however, were dark and fine; his
forehead bony, and with what a phrenologist would recognize as large bumps
of wit; the mouth pleasingly dimpled. His manner and talk were bright,
abounding rather in lively anecdote and point than in wit and humor,
strictly so called. To term him amiable according to any standard, and
estimable too as men of an unheroic fibre go, is no more than his due.

No doubt the world has already seen the most brilliant days of Moore's
poetry. Its fascinations are manifestly of the more temporary sort: partly
through fleetingness of subject-matter and evanescence of allusion (as in
the clever and still readable satirical poems); partly through the aroma
of sentimental patriotism, hardly strong enough in stamina to make the
compositions national, or to maintain their high level of popularity after
the lyrist himself has long been at rest; partly through the essentially
commonplace sources and forms of inspiration which belong to his more
elaborate and ambitious works. No poetical reader of the present day is
the poorer for knowing absolutely nothing of _Lalla Rookh_ or the _Loves
of the Angels_. What then will be the hold or the claim of these writings
upon a reader of the twenty-first century? If we expect the satirical
compositions, choice in a different way, the best things of Moore are to
be sought in the _Irish Melodies_, to which a considerable share of merit,
and of apposite merit, is not to be denied: yet even here what deserts
around the oases, and the oases themselves how soon exhaustible and
forgettable! There are but few thoroughly beautiful and touching lines in
the whole of Moore's poetry. Here is one--

  "Come rest in this bosom, mine own stricken deer."

A great deal has been said upon the overpowering "lusciousness" of his
poetry, and the magical "melody" of his verse: most of this is futile.
There is in the former as much of _fadeur_ as of lusciousness; and a
certain tripping or trotting exactitude, not less fully reducible to the
test of scansion than of a well-attuned ear, is but a rudimentary form of
melody--while of harmony or rhythmic volume of sound Moore is as
decisively destitute as any correct versifier can well be. No clearer
proof of the incapacity of the mass of critics and readers to appreciate
the calibre of poetical work in point of musical and general execution
could be given than the fact that Moore has always with them passed, and
still passes, for an eminently melodious poet. What then remains? Chiefly
this. In one class of writing, liveliness of witty banter, along with
neatness; and, in the other and ostensibly more permanent class, elegance,
also along with neatness. Reduce these qualities to one denomination, and
we come to something that may be called "Propriety": a sufficiently
disastrous "raw material" for the purposes of a poet, and by no means
loftily to be praised or admired even when regarded as the outer
investiture of a nobler poetic something within. But let desert of every
kind have its place, and welcome. In the cosmical diapason and august
orchestra of poetry, Tom Moore's little Pan's-pipe can at odd moments be
heard, and interjects an appreciable and rightly-combined twiddle or two.
To be gratified with these at the instant is no more than the instrument
justifies, and the executant claims: to think much about them when the
organ is pealing or the violin plaining (with a Shelley performing on the
first, or a Mrs. Browning on the second), or to be on the watch for their
recurrences, would be equally superfluous and weak-minded.






CONTENTS

Advertisement.
After the Battle.
Alarming Intelligence.
Alciphron: a Fragment.
Letter I. From Alciphron at Alexandria to Cleon at Athens.
      II. From the Same to the Same.
     III. From the Same to the Same.
      IV. From Orcus, High Priest of Memphis, to Decius, the Praetorian
          Prefect.
All in the Family Way.
All that's Bright must Fade.
Almighty God.
Alone in Crowds to wander on.
Amatory Colloquy between Bank and Government.
Anacreon, Odes of.
        I. I saw the Smiling Bard of Pleasure.
       II. Give me the Harp of Epic Song.
      III. Listen to the Muse's Lyre.
       IV. Vulcan! hear Your Glorious Task.
        V. Sculptor, wouldst Thou glad my Soul.
       VI. As Late I sought the Spangled Bowers.
      VII. The Women tell Me Every Day.
     VIII. I care not for the Idle State.
       IX. I pray thee, by the Gods Above.
        X. How am I to punish Thee.
       XI. "Tell Me, Gentle Youth, I pray Thee".
      XII. They tell How Atys, Wild with Love.
     XIII. I will, I will, the Conflict's past.
      XIV. Count Me, on the Summer Trees.
       XV. Tell Me, Why, My Sweetest Dove.
      XVI. Thou, Whose Soft and Rosy Hues.
     XVII. And Now with All Thy Pencil's Truth.
    XVIII. Now the Star of Day is High.
      XIX. Here recline You, Gentle Maid.
       XX. One Day the Muses twined the Hands.
      XXI. Observe When Mother Earth is Dry.
     XXII. The Phrygian Rock, That braves the Storm.
    XXIII. I Often wish this Languid Lyre.
     XXIV. To All That breathe the Air of Heaven.
      XXV. Once in Each Revolving Year.
     XXVI. Thy Harp may sing of Troy's Alarms.
    XXVII. We read the Flying Courser's Name.
   XXVIII. As, by His Lemnian Forge's Flame.
     XXIX. Yes--Loving is a Painful Thrill.
      XXX. 'Twas in a Mocking Dream of Night.
     XXXI. Armed with Hyacinthine Rod.
    XXXII. Strew Me a Fragrant Bed of Leaves.
   XXXIII. 'Twas Noon of Night, When round the Pole.
    XXXIV. Oh Thou, of All Creation Blest.
     XXXV. Cupid Once upon a Bed.
    XXXVI. If Hoarded Gold possest the Power.
   XXXVII. 'Twas Night, and Many a Circling Bowl.
  XXXVIII. Let Us drain the Nectared Bowl.
    XXXIX. How I love the Festive Boy.
       XL. I know That Heaven hath sent Me Here.
      XLI. When Spring adorns the Dewy Scene.
     XLII. Yes, be the Glorious Revel Mine.
    XLIII. While Our Rosy Fillets shed.
     XLIV. Buds of Roses, Virgin Flowers.
      XLV. Within This Goblet Rich and Deep.
     XLVI. Behold, the Young, the Rosy Spring.
    XLVII. 'Tis True, My Fading Years decline.
   XLVIII. When My Thirsty Soul I steep.
     XLIX. When Bacchus, Jove's Immortal Boy.
        L. When Wine I quaff, before My Eyes.
       LI. Fly Not Thus My Brow of Snow.
      LII. Away, Away, Ye Men of Rules.
     LIII. When I beheld the Festive Train.
      LIV. Methinks, the Pictured Bull We see.
       LV. While We invoke the Wreathed Spring.
      LVI. He, Who instructs the Youthful Crew.
     LVII. Whose was the Artist Hand That Spread.
    LVIII. When Gold, as Fleet as Zephyr's Pinion.
      LIX. Ripened by the Solar Beam.
       LX. Awake to Life, My Sleeping Shell.
      LXI. Youth's Endearing Charms are fled.
     LXII. Fill Me, Boy, as Deep a Draught.
    LXIII. To Love, the Soft and Blooming Child.
     LXIV. Haste Thee, Nymph, Whose Well-aimed Spear.
      LXV. Like Some Wanton Filly sporting.
     LXVI. To Thee, the Queen of Nymphs Divine.
    LXVII. Rich in Bliss, I proudly scorn.
   LXVIII. Now Neptune's Month Our Sky deforms.
     LXIX. They wove the Lotus Band to deck.
      LXX. A Broken Cake, with Honey Sweet
     LXXI. With Twenty Chords My Lyre is hung.
    LXXII. Fare Thee Well, Perfidious Maid.
   LXXIII. Awhile I bloomed, a Happy Flower.
    LXXIV. Monarch Love, Resistless Boy.
     LXXV. Spirit of Love, Whose Locks unrolled.
    LXXVI. Hither, Gentle Muse of Mine.
   LXXVII. Would That I were a Tuneful Lyre.
  LXXVIII. When Cupid sees How Thickly Now.
           Let Me resign This Wretched Breath.
           I know Thou lovest a Brimming Measure.
           From Dread Lucadia's Frowning Steep.
           Mix Me, Child, a Cup Divine.
Anacreontic.
Anacreontic.
Anacreontic.
Anacreontic.
Anacreontic.
And doth not a Meeting Like This.
Angel of Charity.
Animal Magnetism.
Anne Boleyn.
Announcement of a New Grand Acceleration Company.
Announcement of a New Thalaba.
Annual Pill, The.
Anticipated Meeting of the British Association in the Year 1836.
As a Beam o'er the Face of the Waters may glow.
As down in the Sunless Retreats.
Ask not if Still I Love.
Aspasia.
As Slow our Ship.
As Vanquished Erin.
At Night.
At the Mid Hour of Night.
Avenging and Bright.
Awake, arise, Thy Light is come.
Awful Event.

Ballad, A.
Ballad for the Cambridge Election.
Ballad Stanzas.
Beauty and Song.
Before the Battle.
Behold the Sun.
Believe Me, if All Those Endearing Young Charms.
Black and Blue Eyes.
Blue Love-Song, A.
Boat Glee.
Boy of the Alps, The.
Boy Statesman, The.
Bright be Thy Dreams.
Bright Moon.
Bring the Bright Garlands Hither.
Brunswick Club, The.
But Who shall see.
By that Lake, Whose Gloomy Shore.

Calm be Thy Sleep.
Canadian Boat Song, A.
Canonization of Saint Butterworth, The.
Captain Rock in London.
Case of Libel, A.
Catalogue, The.
Cephalus and Procris.
Characterless, A.
Cherries, The.
Child's Song--From a Masque.
Church Extension.
Cloris and Fanny.
Cocker, on Church Reform.
Come, chase that Starting Tear Away.
Come Not, oh Lord.
Come o'er the Sea.
Come, play Me That Simple Air Again.
Come, rest in This Bosom.
Come, send Round the Wine.
Come, Ye Disconsolate.
Common Sense and Genius.
Consultation, The.
Copy of An Intercepted Despatch.
Corn and Catholics.
Corrected Report of Some Late Speeches, A.
Correspondence between a Lady and Gentleman.
Corruption, an Epistle.
Cotton and Corn.
Country Dance and Quadrille.
Crystal-Hunters, The.
Cupid and Psyche.
Cupid Armed.
Cupid's Lottery.
Curious Fact, A.

Dance of Bishops, The.
Dawn is breaking o'er Us, The.
Day-Dream, The.
Day of Love, The.
Dear Fanny.
Dear Harp of My Country.
Dear? Yes.
Desmond's Song.
Devil among the Scholars, The.
Dialogue between a Sovereign and a One Pound Note.
Dick * * * *.
Did not.
Dog-day Reflections.
Donkey and His Panniers, The.
Do not say That Life is waning.
Dost Thou Remember.
Dream, A.
Dreaming For Ever.
Dream of Antiquity, A.
Dream of Hindostan, A.
Dream of Home, The.
Dream of the Two Sisters, The.
Dream of Those Days, The.
Dream of Turtle, A.
Dreams.
Drink of This Cup.
Drink to Her.
Duke is the Lad, The.
Dying Warrior, The.

East Indian, The.
Echo.
Elegiac Stanzas.
Elegiac Stanzas.
Enigma.
Epigram.--"I never gave a Kiss" (says Prue).
Epigram.--"I want the Court Guide," said My Lady, "to look".
Epigram.--What News To-day?--"Oh! Worse and Worse".
Epigram.--Said His Highness to Ned, with That Grim Face of His.
Epilogue.
Epistle from Captain Rock to Lord Lyndhurst.
Epistle from Erasmus on Earth to Cicero in the Shades.
Epistle from Henry of Exeter to John of Tuam.
Epistle from Tom Crib to Big Ben.
Epistle of Condolence.
Epitaph on a Tuft-Hunter.
Erin, oh Erin.
Erin! The Tear and the Smile in Thine Eyes.
Euthanasia of Van, The.
Eveleen's Bower.
Evening Gun, The.
Evenings in Greece.
Exile, The.
Expostulation to Lord King, An.
Extract from a Prologue.
Extracts from the Diary of a Politician.

Fables for the Holy Alliance,
     I. The Dissolution of the Holy Alliance.
    II. The Looking-Glasses.
   III. The Torch of Liberty.
    IV. The Fly and the Bullock.
     V. Church and State.
    VI. The Little Grand Lama.
   VII. The Extinguishers.
  VIII. Louis Fourteenth's Wig.
Fairest! put on Awhile.
Fallen is Thy Throne.
Fall of Hebe, The.
Fancy.
Fancy Fair, The.
Fanny, Dearest.
Fare Thee Well, Thou Lovely One.
Farewell!--but Whenever You welcome the Hour.
Farewell, Theresa.
Fear not That, While Around Thee.
Fill the Bumper Fair.
Fire-Worshippers, The.
First Angel's Story.
Flow on, Thou Shining River.
Fly not Yet.
Fools' Paradise.
Forget not the Field.
For Thee Alone.
Fortune-Teller, The.
Fragment.
Fragment of a Character.
Fragment of a Mythological Hymn to Love.
Fragments of College Exercises.
From Life without Freedom.
From the Hon. Henry ----, to Lady Emma ----.
From This Hour the Pledge is given.
Fudge Family in Paris, The.
  Letter I. From Miss Biddy Fudge to Miss Dorothy ----, of Clonkilty, in
        Ireland.
    II. From Phil. Fudge, Esq., to the Lord Viscount Castlereagh.
   III. From Mr. Bob Fudge to Richard ----, Esq.
    IV. From Phelim Connor to ----.
     V. From Miss Biddy Fudge to Miss Dorothy ----.
    VI. From Phil. Fudge, Esq., to His Brother Tim Fudge, Esq., Barrister
        at Law.
   VII. From Phelim Connor to ----.
  VIII. From Mr. Bob Fudge to Richard ----, Esq.
    IX. From Phil. Fudge, Esq., to the Lord Viscount Castlereagh.
     X. From Miss Biddy Fudge to Miss Dorothy ----.
    XI. From Phelim Connor to ----.
   XII. From Miss Biddy Fudge to Miss Dorothy ----.
Fudges in England, The.
  Letter I. From Patrick Magan, Esq., to the Rev. Richard ---- Curate of
        ---- in Ireland.
    II. From Miss Biddy Fudge to Mrs. Elizabeth ---- Extracts from My
        Diary.
   III. From Miss Fanny Fudge to her Cousin, Kitty ----.
    IV. From Patrick Magan, Esq., to the Rev. Richard ----.
     V. From Larry O'Branigan In England, to His Wife Judy, at Mullinafad.
    VI. From Miss Biddy Fudge, to Mrs. Elizabeth ---- Extracts from My
        Diary.
   VII. From Miss Fanny Fudge, to her Cousin, Miss Kitty ----.
  VIII. From Bob Fudge, Esq., to the Rev. Mortimer O'Mulligan.
    IX. From Larry O'Branigan, to his Wife Judy.
     X. From the Rev. Mortimer O'Mulligan, to the Rev. ----.
    XI. From Patrick Magan, Esq., to the Rev. Richard ----.
Fum and Hum, the two Birds of Royalty.

Garland I send Thee, The.
Gayly sounds the Castanet.
Gazel.
Gazelle, The.
Genius and Criticism.
Genius of Harmony, The.
Ghost of Miltiades, The.
Ghost Story, A.
Go forth to the Mount.
Go, let Me weep.
Go, Now, and dream.
Go, Then--'tis Vain.
Go Where Glory waits Thee.
Grand Dinner of Type and Co.
Grecian Girl's Dream of the Blessed Islands, The.
Greek of Meleager, From the.
Guess, guess.

Halcyon hangs o'er Ocean, The.
Hark! the Vesper Hymn is stealing.
Hark! 'Tis the Breeze.
Harp That Once thro' Tara's Halls, The.
Has Sorrow Thy Young Days shaded.
Hat _versus_ Wig.
Hear Me but Once.
Here at Thy Tomb.
Here sleeps the Bard.
Here's the Bower.
Here, take My Heart.
Her Last Words at Parting.
Hero and Leander.
High-Born Ladye, The.
High Priest of Apollo to a Virgin of Delphi, From the.
Hip, Hip, Hurra.
Homeward March, The.
Hope comes Again.
Horace:
  Ode I. Lib. III.--I hate Thee, oh, Mob, as My Lady hates Delf.
  Ode XI. Lib. II.--Come, Yarmouth, My Boy, Never trouble your Brains.
  Ode XXII. Lib. I.--The Man Who keeps a Conscience Pure.
  Ode XXXVIII. Lib. I.--Boy, tell the Cook That I hate All Nicknackeries.
How Dear to Me the Hour.
How Happy, Once.
How lightly mounts the Muse's Wing.
How Oft has the Banshee cried.
How Oft, When watching Stars.
How shall I woo.
How to make a Good Politician.
How to make One's Self a Peer.
How to write by Proxy.
Hush, hush.
Hush, Sweet Lute.
Hymn of a Virgin of Delphi.
Hymn of Welcome after the Recess, A.

I'd mourn the Hopes.
"If" and "Perhaps".
If in Loving, Singing.
If Thou'lt be Mine.
If Thou wouldst have Me sing and play.
Ill Omens.
I love but Thee.
Imitation.
Imitation of Catullus.
Imitation of the Inferno of Dante.
Impromptu.
Impromptu.
Impromptu.
Incantation.
Incantation, An.
Inconstancy.
Indian Boat, The.
In Myrtle Wreaths.
Insurrection of the Papers, The.
Intended Tribute.
Intercepted Letters, etc.
  Letter I. From the Princess Charlotte of Wales to the Lady Barbara
        Ashley.
    II. From Colonel M'Mahon to Gould Francis Leckie, Esq.
   III. From George Prince Regent to the Earl of Yarmouth.
    IV. From the Right Hon. Patrick Duigenan to the Right Hon. Sir John
        Nicol.
     V. From the Countess Dowager of Cork to Lady ----.
    VI. From Abdallah, in London, to Mohassan, in Ispahan.
   VII. From Messrs. Lackington and Co. to Thomas Moore, Esq.
  VIII. From Colonel Thomas to ---- Skeffington, Esq.
        Appendix.
In the Morning of Life.
Intolerance, a Satire.
Invisible Girl, To the.
Invitation to Dinner.
Irish Antiquities.
Irish Peasant to His Mistress, The.
Irish Slave, The.
I saw from the Beach.
I saw the Moon rise Clear.
I saw Thy Form in Youthful Prime.
Is it not Sweet to think. Hereafter.
It is not the Tear at This Moment shed.
I've a Secret to tell Thee.
I Will, I will, the Conflict's past.
I wish I was by That Dim Lake.

Joke Versified, A.
Joys of Youth, how fleeting.

Keep Those Eyes Still Purely Mine.
King Crack and His Idols.
Kiss, The.

Lalla Rookh.
Lament for the Loss of Lord Bathurst's Tail.
Language of Flowers, The.
Late Scene at Swanage, A.
Latest Accounts from Olympus.
Late Tithe Case.
Leaf and the Fountain, The.
Legacy, The.
Legend of Puck the Fairy, The.
Lesbia hath a Beaming Eye.
Les Hommes Automates.
Let Erin remember the Days of Old.
Let Joy Alone be remembered Now.
Let's take This World as Some Wide Scene.
Letter from Larry O'Branigan to the Rev. Murtagh O'Mulligan.
Light of the Haram, The.
Light sounds the Harp.
Like Morning When Her Early Breeze.
Like One Who, doomed.
Limbo of Lost Reputations, The.
Lines on the Death of Joseph Atkinson, Esq., of Dublin.
Lines on the Death of Mr. Perceval.
Lines on the Death of Sheridan.
Lines on the Departure of Lords Castlereagh and Stewart for the Continent.
Lines on the Entry of the Austrians into Naples.
Lines written at the Cohos, or Falls of the Mohawk River.
Lines written in a Storm at Sea.
Lines written on leaving Philadelphia.
Literary Advertisement.
Little Man and Little Soul.
"Living Dog" and "the Dead Lion," The.
Long Years have past.
Lord Henley and St. Cecilia.
Lord, Who shall bear That Day.
Love Alone.
Love and Hope.
Love and Hymen.
Love and Marriage.
Love and Reason.
Love and the Novice.
Love and the Sun-Dial.
Love and Time.
Love is a Hunter-Boy.
Love's Light Summer-Cloud.
Loves of the Angels, The.
Love's Victory.
Love's Young Dream.
Love Thee.
Love Thee, Dearest? Love Thee.
Love, wandering Thro' the Golden Maze.
Lusitanian War-Song.
Lying.

Mad Tory and the Comet, The.
Magic Mirror, The.
Meeting of the Ships, The.
Meeting of the Waters, The.
Melologue.
Memorabilia of Last Week.
Merrily Every Bosom boundeth.
Millennium, The.
Mind Not Tho' Daylight.
Minstrel-Boy, The.
Missing.
Morality.
Moral Positions.
Mountain Sprite, The.
Mr. Roger Dodsworth.
Musical Box, The.
Musings of an Unreformed Peer.
Musings, suggested by the Late Promotion of Mrs. Nethercoat.
My Birth-Day.
My Gentle Harp.
My Harp has One Unchanging Theme.
My Heart and Lute.
My Mopsa is Little.

Natal Genius, The.
Nature's Labels.
Nay, tell Me Not, Dear.
Ne'er ask the Hour.
Ne'er Talk of Wisdom's Gloomy Schools.
Nets and Cages.
New Costume of the Ministers, The.
New Creation of Peers.
New-Fashioned Echoes.
New Grand Exhibition of Models
New Hospital for Sick Literati.
News for Country Cousins.
Night Dance, The.
Nights of Music.
Night Thought, A.
No--leave My Heart to Rest.
Nonsense.
Not from Thee.
Notions on Reform.
Numbering of the Clergy, The.

Occasional Address for the Opening of the New Theatre of St. Stephen.
Occasional Epilogue.
Odes to Nea.
Ode to a Hat.
Ode to Don Miguel.
Ode to Ferdinand.
Ode to the Goddess Ceres.
Ode to the Sublime Porte.
Ode to the Woods and Forests.
O'Donohue's Mistress.
Oft, in the Stilly Night.
Oh! Arranmore, Loved Arranmore.
Oh Banquet Not.
Oh! Blame Not the Bard.
Oh! Breathe Not His Name.
Oh, call it by Some Better Name.
Oh, come to Me When Daylight sets.
Oh, could We do with This World of Ours.
Oh, Days of Youth.
Oh, do not look so Bright and Blest.
Oh! doubt Me Not.
Oh Fair! oh Purest.
Oh for the Swords of Former Tim.
Oh, guard our Affection.
Ob! had We Some Bright Little Isle of Our Own.
Oh, No--Not--Even. When First We loved.
Oh, Soon return.
Oh, teach Me to love Thee.
Oh the Shamrock.
Oh, the Sight Entrancing.
Oh! think Not My Spirits are Always as Light.
Oh Thou Who dry'st the Mourner's Tear.
Oh, Ye Dead.
On a Squinting Poetess.
One Bumper at Parting.
One Dear Smile.
On Music.
On the Death of a Friend.
On the Death of a Lady.
Origin of the Harp, The.
O say, Thou Best and Brightest.
Our First Young Love.

Paddy's Metamorphosis.
Paradise and the Peri.
Parallel, The.
Parody of a Celebrated Letter.
Parting before the Battle, The.
Pastoral Ballad, A.
Peace and Glory.
Peace be around Thee.
Peace, Peace to Him That's gone.
Peace to the Slumberers.
Periwinkles and the Locusts, The.
Petition of the Orangemen of Ireland, The.
Philosopher Artistippus to a Lamp, The.
Pilgrim, The.
Poor Broken Flower.
Poor Wounded; Heart.
Pretty Rose-tree.
Prince's Day, The.
Proposals for a Gynsecocracy.

Quick! We have but a Second.

Reason, Folly, and Beauty.
Recent Dialogue, A.
Rector and His Curate, The.
Reflection at Sea, A.
Reflections.
Reinforcements for Lord Wellington.
Religion and Trade.
Remember Thee.
Remember the Time.
Remonstrance.
Resemblance, The.
Resolutions passed at a Late Meeting of Reverends and Right Reverends.
Reuben and Rose.
Reverend Pamphleteer, The.
Rhymes on the Road.
  Introductory Rhymes.
  Extract I. Geneva.
         II. Geneva.
        III. Geneva.
         IV. Milan.
          V. Padua.
         VI. Venice.
        VII. Venice.
       VIII. Venice.
         IX. Venice.
          X. Mantua.
         XI. Florence.
        XII. Florence.
       XIII. Rome.
        XIV. Rome.
         XV. Rome.
        XVI. Les Charmettes.
Rich and Rare were the Gems She wore.
Rings and Seals.
Ring, The.
Ring, The.
Rival Topics.
Rondeau.
Rose of the Desert.
Round the World goes.
Row Gently Here.
Russian Lover, The.

Sad Case, A.
Sail on, sail on.
Sale of Cupid.
Sale of Loves, The.
Sale of Tools, The.
Say, What shall be Our Sport To-day.
Say, What shall We dance.
Scene from a Play.
Scepticism.
Sceptic, The.
Second Angel's Story.
See the Dawn from Heaven.
Selections.
Shall the Harp Then be Silent.
She is Far from the Land.
She sung of Love.
Shield, The.
Shine Out, Stars.
Should Those Fond Hopes.
Shrine, The.
Silence is in Our Festal Halls.
Since First Thy Word.
Sing--sing--Music was given.
Sing, Sweet Harp.
Sinking Fund cried, The.
Sir Andrew's Dream.
Sketch of the First Act of a New Romantic Drama.
Slumber, oh slumber.
Snake, The.
Snow Spirit, The.
Some Account of the Late Dinner to Dan.
Song.--Ah! Where are They, Who heard, in Former Hours.
  Array Thee, Love, Array Thee, Love.
  As by the Shore, at Break of Day.
  As Love One Summer Eve was straying.
  As o'er Her Loom the Lesbian Maid.
  As Once a Grecian Maiden wove.
  Bring Hither, bring Thy Lute, while Day is dying.
  Calm as Beneath its Mother's eyes.
  Fly from the World, O Bessy! to Me.
  Have You not seen the Timid Tear.
  Here, While the Moonlight Dim.
  If I swear by That Eye, You'll allow.
  If to see Thee be to love Thee.
  I saw from Yonder Silent Cave.
  March! nor heed Those Anna That hold Thee.
  Mary, I believed Thee True.
  No Life is Like the Mountaineer's.
  Of All My Happiest Hours of Joy.
  Oh, Memory, How Coldly.
  Oh, Where art Thou dreaming.
  Raise the Buckler-poise the Lance.
  Smoothly flowing Thro' Verdant Vales.
  Some Mortals There may be, so Wise, or so Fine.
  Take back the Sigh, Thy Lips of Art.
  The Wreath You wove, the Wreath You wove.
  Think on that Look Whose Melting Ray.
  Thou art not Dead--Thou art not Dead.
  "'Tis the Vine! 'tis the  Vine!" said the Cup-loving Boy.
  Up and march! the Timbrel's Sound.
  Up with the Sparkling Brimmer.
  Weeping for Thee, My Love, Thro' the Long Day.
  Welcome Sweet Bird, Thro' the Sunny Air winging.
  When Evening Shades are falling.
  When the Balaika.
  When Time Who steals Our Years Away.
  Where is the Heart That would not give.
  "Who comes so Gracefully,".
  Who'll buy?--'tis Folly's Shop, who'll buy.
  Why does Azure deck the Sky.
  Yes! had I leisure to sigh and mourn.
Song and Trio.
Song and Trio.
Song of a Hyperborean.
Song of Fionnuala, The.
Song of Hercules to his Daughter.
Song of Innisfall.
Song of Old Puck.
Song of O'Ruark, The.
Song of the Battle Eve.
Song of the Box, The.
Song of the Departing Spirit of Tithe.
Song of the Evil Spirit of the Woods.
Song of the Nubian Girl.
Song of the Olden Time, The.
Song of the Poco-Curante Society.
Song of the two Cupbearers.
Songs of the Church.
Sound the Loud Timbrel.
Sovereign Woman.
So Warmly We met.
Spa, The Wellington.
Speculation, A.
Speech on the Umbrella Question.
Spring and Autumn.
Stanzas.
Stanzas from the Banks of the Shannon.
Stanzas written in Anticipation of Defeat.
Steersman's Song, The.
Still, like Dew in Silence falling.
Still Thou fliest.
Still When Daylight.
St. Jerome on Earth.
Stranger, The.
St. Senanus and the Lady.
Study from the Antique, A.
Sublime was the Warning.
Summer Fête, The.
Summer Webs, The.
Sunday Ethics.
Surprise, The.
Sweet Innisfallen.
Sylph's Ball, The.
Sympathy.

Take Back the Virgin Page.
Take Hence the Bowl.
Tear, The.
Tell Her, oh, tell Her.
Tell-Tale Lyre, The.
Temple to Friendship, A.
The Bird, let Loose.
Thee, Thee, Only Thee.
Then, Fare Thee Well.
Then First from Love.
There are Sounds of Mirth.
There comes a Time.
There is a Bleak Desert.
There's Something Strange.
They know not My Heart.
They may rail at This Life.
They met but Once.
They tell Me Thou'rt the Favored Guest.
Third Angel's Story.
This Life is All checkered with Pleasures and Woes.
This World is All a Fleeting Show..
Tho, Humble the Banquet.
Tho' Lightly sounds the Song I sing.
Those Evening Bells.
Tho' the Last Glimpse of Erin with Sorrow I see.
Tho' 'tis All but a Dream.
Thou art, O God.
Thou bidst Me sing.
Thoughts on Mischief.
Thoughts on Patrons, Puffs, and Other Matters.
Thoughts on Tar Barrels.
Thoughts on the Late Destructive Propositions of the Tories.
Thoughts on the Present Government of Ireland.
Thou lovest No More.
Three Doctors, The.
Tibullus to Sulpicia.
Time I've lost in wooing, The.
'Tis All for Thee.
'Tis Gone, and For Ever.
'Tis Sweet to think.
'Tis the Last Rose of Summer.
To......: And hast Thou marked the Pensive Shade.
To......: Come, take Thy Harp--'tis vain to muse.
To......: Never mind How the Pedagogue proses.
To......: Put off the Vestal Veil, nor, oh.
To......: Remember Him Thou leavest behind.
To......: Sweet Lady, look not Thus Again.
To......: That Wrinkle, when First I espied it.
To......: The World had just begun to steal.
To......: 'Tis Time, I feel, to leave Thee Now.
To......: To be the Theme of Every Hour.
To......:  When I loved You, I can't but allow.
To......: With All My Soul, Then, let us part.
To......'s Picture: Go Then, if She, Whose Shade Thou art.
To a Boy, with a Watch.
To a Lady, with Some Manuscript Poems.
To a Lady, on Her singing.
To Cara, after an Interval of Absence.
To Cara, oh the Dawning of a New Year's Day.
To Caroline, Viscountess Valletort.
To Cloe.
To-Day, Dearest, is Ours.
To George Morgan, Esq.
To His Serene Highness the Duke of Montpensier.
To James Corry, Esq.
To Joseph Atkinson, Esq.
To Julia, in Allusion to Some Illiberal Criticisms.
To Julia: Mock me No More with Love's Beguiling Dream.
To Julia: Though Fate, My Girl, may bid Us part.
To Julia, on Her Birthday.
To Julia: I saw the Peasant's Hand Unkind.
To Julia weeping.
To Ladies' Eyes.
To Lady Heathcote.
To Lady Holland.
To Lady Jersey.
To Lord Viscount Strangford.
To Miss Moore.
To Miss Susan Beckford.
To Miss ---- on Her asking the Author Why She had Sleepless Nights.
To Mrs. Bl----, written in Her Album.
To Mrs. ----, on Some Calumnies against Her Character.
To Mrs. ----: To see Thee Every Day That came.
To Mrs. ----, on Her Beautiful Translation of Voiture's Kiss.
To Mrs. Henry Tighe.
To My Mother.
To Phillis.
To Rosa, written during Illness.
To Rosa: And are You Then a Thing of Art.
To Rosa. Is the Song of Rosa Mute.
To Rosa: Like One Who trusts to Summer Skies.
To Rosa; Say Why should the Girl of My Soul be in Tears.
Tory Pledges.
To Sir Hudson Lowe.
To the Boston Frigate.
To the Fire-Fly.
To the Flying-Fish.
To the Honorable W. R. Spencer.
To the Lady Charlotte Rawdon.
To the Large and Beautiful Miss ----.
To the Lord Viscount Forbes.
To the Marchioness Dowager of Donegall.
To the Rev. Charles Overton.
To the Reverend ----.
To Thomas Hume, Esq., M.D.
To the Ship in Which Lord Castlereagh sailed for the Continent.
Tout pour la Tripe.
To weave a Garland for the Rose.
Translation from the Gull Language.
Translations from Catullus.
Trio.
Triumph of Bigotry.
Triumph of Farce, The.
Turf shall be My Fragrant Shrine, The
'Twas One of Those Dreams.
Two Loves, The.
Twin'st Thou with' Lofty Wreath Thy Brow.

Unbind Thee, Love.
Up, Sailor Boy, 'tis Day.

Valley of the Nile, The.
Variety.
Veiled Prophet of Khorassan, The.
Verses to the Poet Crabbe's Inkstand.
Vision, A.
Vision of Philosophy, A.
Voice, The.

Wake Thee, My Dear.
Wake Up, Sweet Melody.
Waltz Duet.
Wandering Bard, The.
War against Babylon.
Warning, A.
War Song.
Watchman, The.
Weep, Children of Israel.
Weep not for Those.
Weep on, weep on.
Wellington, Lord, and the Ministers.
Wellington Spa, The.
We may roam through This World.
Were not the Sinful Mary's Tears.
What shall I sing Thee.
What's My Thought like.
What the Bee is to the Floweret.
When Abroad in the World.
When Cold in the Earth.
When e'er I see Those Smiling Eyes.
When First I met Thee.
When First That Smile.
When He, Who adores Thee.
When Love was a Child.
When Love, Who ruled.
When Midst the Gay I meet.
When Night brings the Hour.
When on the Lip the Sigh delays.
When the First Summer Bee.
When the Sad Word.
When the Wine-Cup is smiling.
When Thou shalt wander.
When Through the Piazzetta.
When to Sad Music Silent You listen.
When Twilight Dews.
Where are the Visions.
Where is the Slave.
Where is Your Dwelling, Ye Sainted.
Where shall We bury our Shame.
While gazing on the Moon's Light.
While History's Muse.
Who is the Maid.
Who'll buy My Love Knots.
Why does She so Long delay.
Wind Thy Horn, My Hunter Boy.
Wine-Cup is circling, The.
With Moonlight beaming.
Woman.
Wonder, The.
World was husht.
Wo! wo.
Wreath and the Chain, The.
Wreaths for the Ministers.
Wreath the Bowl.
Write on, write on.
Written in a Commonplace Book.
Written in the Blank Leaf of a Lady's Commonplace Book.
Written on passing Deadman's Island.

Yes, yes, When the Bloom.
Young Indian Maid, The.
Young Jessica.
Young May Moon, The.
Young Muleteers of Grenada, The.
Young Rose, The.
You remember Ellen.
Youth and Age.








ODES OF ANACREON

(1800).

TRANSLATED INTO ENGLISH VERSE.

WITH NOTES.




TO

HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS

THE PRINCE OF WALES.


SIR,--In allowing me to dedicate this Work to Your Royal Highness, you
have conferred upon me an honor which I feel very sensibly: and I have
only to regret that the pages which you have thus distinguished are not
more deserving of such illustrious patronage.

Believe me, SIR,
With every sentiment of respect,
Your Royal Highness's
Very grateful and devoted Servant,

THOMAS MOORE.






REMARKS ON ANACREON


There is but little known, with certainty of the life of Anacreon.
Chamaeleon Heracleotes, who wrote upon the subject, has been lost in the
general wreck of ancient literature. The editors of the poet have
collected the few trifling anecdotes which are scattered through the
extant authors of antiquity, and, supplying the deficiency of materials by
fictions of their own imagination, have arranged what they call a life of
Anacreon. These specious fabrications are intended to indulge that
interest which we naturally feel in the biography of illustrious men; but
it is rather a dangerous kind of illusion, as it confounds the limits of
history and romance, and is too often supported by unfaithful citation.

Our poet was born in the city of Teos, in the delicious region of Ionia,
and the time of his birth appears to have been in the sixth century before
Christ. He flourished at that remarkable period when, under the polished
tyrants Hipparchus and Polycrates, Athens and Samos were become the rival
asylums of genius. There is nothing certain known about his family; and
those who pretend to discover in Plato that he was a descendant of the
monarch Codrus, show much more of zeal than of either accuracy or
judgment.

The disposition and talents of Anacreon recommended him to the monarch of
Samos, and he was formed to be the friend of such a prince as Polycrates.
Susceptible only to the pleasures, he felt not the corruptions, of the
court; and while Pythagoras fled from the tyrant, Anacreon was celebrating
his praises oh the lyre. We are told, too, by Maximus Tyrius, that, by the
influence of his amatory songs, he softened the mind of Polycrates into a
spirit of benevolence towards his subjects.

The amours of the poet, and the rivalship of the tyrant, I shall pass
over in silence; and there are few, I presume, who will regret the
omission of most of those anecdotes, which the industry of some editors
has not only promulged, but discussed. Whatever is repugnant to modesty
and virtue is considered, in ethical science, by a supposition very
favorable to humanity, as impossible; and this amiable persuasion should
be much more strongly entertained where the transgression wars with nature
as well as virtue. But why are we not allowed to indulge in the
presumption? Why are we officiously reminded that there have been really
such instances of depravity?

Hipparchus, who now maintained at Athens the power which his father
Pisistratus had usurped, was one of those princes who may be said to have
polished the fetters of their subjects. He was the first, according to
Plato, who edited the poems of Homer, and commanded them to be sung by the
rhapsodists at the celebration of the Panathenaea. From his court, which
was a sort of galaxy of genius, Anacreon could not long be absent.
Hipparchus sent a barge for him; the poet readily embraced the invitation,
and the Muses and the Loves were wafted with him to Athens.

The manner of Anacreon's death was singular. We are told that in the
eighty-fifth year of his age he was choked by a grape-stone; and however
we may smile at their enthusiastic partiality who see in this easy and
characteristic death a peculiar indulgence of Heaven, we cannot help
admiring that his fate should have been so emblematic of his disposition.
Caelius Calcagninus alludes to this catastrophe in the following epitaph
on our poet:--

  Those lips, then, hallowed sage, which poured along
  A music sweet as any cygnet's song,
    The grape hath closed for ever!
  Here let the ivy kiss the poet's tomb,
  Here let the rose he loved with laurels bloom,
    In bands that ne'er shall sever.
  But far be thou, oh! far, unholy vine,
  By whom the favorite minstrel of the Nine
    Lost his sweet vital breath;
  Thy God himself now blushes to confess,
  Once hallowed vine! he feels he loves thee less,
    Since poor Anacreon's death.

It has been supposed by some writers that Anacreon and Sappho were
contemporaries; and the very thought of an intercourse between persons so
congenial, both in warmth of passion and delicacy of genius, gives such
play to the imagination that the mind loves to indulge in it. But the
vision dissolves before historical truth; and Chamaeleon, and Hermesianax,
who are the source of the supposition, are considered as having merely
indulged in a poetical anachronism.

To infer the moral dispositions of a poet from the tone of sentiment
which pervades his works, is sometimes a very fallacious analogy; but the
soul of Anacreon speaks so unequivocally through his odes, that we may
safely consult them as the faithful mirrors of his heart. We find him
there the elegant voluptuary, diffusing the seductive charm of sentiment
over passions and propensities at which rigid morality must frown. His
heart, devoted to indolence, seems to have thought that there is wealth
enough in happiness, but seldom happiness in mere wealth. The
cheerfulness, indeed, with which he brightens his old age is interesting
and endearing; like his own rose, he is fragrant even in decay. But the
most peculiar feature of his mind is that love of simplicity, which be
attributes to himself so feelingly, and which breathes characteristically
throughout all that he has sung. In truth, if we omit those few vices in
our estimate which religion, at that time, not only connived at, but
consecrated, we shall be inclined to say that the disposition of our poet
was amiable; that his morality was relaxed, but not abandoned; and that
Virtue, with her zone loosened, may be an apt emblem of the character of
Anacreon.

Of his person and physiognomy, time has preserved such uncertain
memorials, that it were better, perhaps, to leave the pencil to fancy; and
few can read the Odes of Anacreon without imaging to themselves the form
of the animated old bard, crowned with roses, and singing cheerfully to
his lyre.

After the very enthusiastic eulogiums bestowed both by ancients and
moderns upon the poems of Anacreon, we need not be diffident in expressing
our raptures at their beauty, nor hesitate to pronounce them the most
polished remains of antiquity. They are indeed, all beauty, all
enchantment. He steals us so insensibly along with him, that we sympathize
even in his excesses. In his amatory odes there is a delicacy of
compliment not to be found in any other ancient poet. Love at that period
was rather an unrefined emotion; and the intercourse of the sexes was
animated more by passion than by sentiment. They knew not those little
tendernesses which form the spiritual part of affection; their expression
of feeling was therefore rude and unvaried, and the poetry of love
deprived it of its most captivating graces. Anacreon, however, attained
some ideas of this purer gallantry; and the same delicacy of mind which
led him to this refinement, prevented him also from yielding to the
freedom of language which has sullied the pages of all the other poets.
His descriptions are warm; but the warmth is in the ideas, not the words.
He is sportive without being wanton, and ardent without being licentious.
His poetic invention is always most brilliantly displayed in those
allegorical fictions which so many have endeavored to imitate, though all
have confessed them to be inimitable. Simplicity is the distinguishing
feature of these odes, and they interest by their innocence, as much as
they fascinate by their beauty. They may be said, indeed, to be the very
infants of the Muses, and to lisp in numbers.

I shall not be accused of enthusiastic partiality by those who have read
and felt the original; but to others, I am conscious, this should not be
the language of a translator, whose faint reflection of such beauties can
but ill justify his admiration of them.

In the age of Anacreon music and poetry were inseparable. These kindred
talents were for a long time associated, and the poet always sung his own
compositions to the lyre. It is probable that they were not set to any
regular air, but rather a kind of musical recitation, which was varied
according to the fancy and feelings of the moment. The poems of Anacreon
were sung at banquets as late as the time of Aulus Gellius, who tells us
that he heard one of the odes performed at a birthday entertainment.

The singular beauty of our poet's style and the apparent facility,
perhaps, of his metre have attracted, as I have already remarked, a crowd
of imitators. Some of these have succeeded with wonderful felicity, as may
be discerned in the few odes which are attributed to writers of a later
period. But none of his emulators have been half so dangerous to his fame
as those Greek ecclesiastics of the early ages, who, being conscious of
their own inferiority to their great prototypes, determined on removing
all possibility of comparison, and, under a semblance of moral zeal,
deprived the world of some of the most exquisite treasures of ancient
times. The works of Sappho and Alcaeus were among those flowers of Grecian
literature which thus fell beneath the rude hand of ecclesiastical
presumption. It is true they pretended that this sacrifice of genius was
hallowed by the interests of religion, but I have already assigned the
most probable motive; and if Gregorius Nazianzenus had not written
Anacreontics, we might now perhaps have the works of the Teian
unmutilated, and be empowered to say exultingly with Horace,

  _Nec si quid olim lusit Anacreon
  delevit aetas_.

The zeal by which these bishops professed to be actuated gave birth more
innocently, indeed, to an absurd species of parody, as repugnant to piety
as it is to taste, where the poet of voluptuousness was made a preacher of
the gospel, and his muse, like the Venus in armor at Lacedaemon, was
arrayed in all the severities of priestly instruction. Such was the
"Anacreon Recantatus," by Carolus de Aquino, a Jesuit, published 1701,
which consisted of a series of palinodes to the several songs of our poet.
Such, too, was the Christian Anacreon of Patrignanus, another Jesuit, who
preposterously transferred to a most sacred subject all that the Graecian
poet had dedicated to festivity and love.

His metre has frequently been adopted by the modern Latin poets; and
Scaliger, Taubman, Barthius, and others, have shown that it is by no means
uncongenial with that language. The Anacreontics of Scaliger, however,
scarcely deserve the name; as they glitter all over with conceits, and,
though often elegant, are always labored. The beautiful fictions of
Angerianus preserve more happily than any others the delicate turn of
those allegorical fables, which, passing so frequently through the mediums
of version and imitation, have generally lost their finest rays in the
transmission. Many of the Italian poets have indulged their fancies upon
the subjects; and in the manner of Anacreon, Bernardo Tasso first
introduced the metre, which was afterwards polished and enriched by
Chabriera and others.






ODES OF ANACREON






ODE I.[1]


I saw the smiling bard of pleasure,
The minstrel of the Teian measure;
'Twas in a vision of the night,
He beamed upon my wondering sight.
I heard his voice, and warmly prest
The dear enthusiast to my breast.
His tresses wore a silvery dye,
But beauty sparkled in his eye;
Sparkled in his eyes of fire,
Through the mist of soft desire.
His lip exhaled, when'er he sighed,
The fragrance of the racy tide;
And, as with weak and reeling feet
He came my cordial kiss to meet,
An infant, of the Cyprian band,
Guided him on with tender hand.
Quick from his glowing brows he drew
His braid, of many a wanton hue;
I took the wreath, whose inmost twine
Breathed of him and blushed with wine.
I hung it o'er my thoughtless brow,
And ah! I feel its magic now:
I feel that even his garland's touch
Can make the bosom love too much.


[1] This ode is the first of the series in the Vatican manuscript, which
attributes it to no other poet than Anacreon. They who assert that the
manuscript imputes it to Basilius, have been mislead. Whether it be the
production of Anacreon or not, it has all the features of ancient
simplicity, and is a beautiful imitation of the poet's happiest manner.






ODE II.


Give me the harp of epic song,
Which Homer's finger thrilled along;
But tear away the sanguine string,
For war is not the theme I sing.
Proclaim the laws of festal right,[1]
I'm monarch of the board to-night;
And all around shall brim as high,
And quaff the tide as deep as I.
And when the cluster's mellowing dews
Their warm enchanting balm infuse,
Our feet shall catch the elastic bound,
And reel us through the dance's round.
Great Bacchus! we shall sing to thee,
In wild but sweet ebriety;
Flashing around such sparks of thought,
As Bacchus could alone have taught.

Then, give the harp of epic song,
Which Homer's finger thrilled along;
But tear away the sanguine string,
For war is not the theme I sing.


[1] The ancients  prescribed certain laws of drinking at their festivals,
for an account of which see the commentators. Anacreon here acts the
symposiarch, or master of the festival.






ODE III.[1]


Listen to the Muse's lyre,
Master of the pencil's fire!
Sketched in painting's bold display,
Many a city first portray;
Many a city, revelling free,
Full of loose festivity.
Picture then a rosy train,
Bacchants straying o'er the plain;
Piping, as they roam along,
Roundelay or shepherd-song.
Paint me next, if painting may
Such a theme as this portray,
All the earthly heaven of love
These delighted mortals prove.


[1] La Fosse has thought proper to lengthen this poem by considerable
interpolations of his own, which he thinks are indispensably necessary to
the completion of the description.






ODE IV.[1]


Vulcan! hear your glorious task;
I did not from your labors ask
In gorgeous panoply to shine,
For war was ne'er a sport of mine.
No--let me have a silver bowl,
Where I may cradle all my soul;
But mind that, o'er its simple frame
No mimic constellations flame;
Nor grave upon the swelling side,
Orion, scowling o'er the tide.

I care not for the glittering wain,
Nor yet the weeping sister train.
But let the vine luxuriant roll
Its blushing tendrils round the bowl,
While many a rose-lipped bacchant maid
Is culling clusters in their shade.
Let sylvan gods, in antic shapes,
Wildly press the gushing grapes,
And flights of Loves, in wanton play,
Wing through the air their winding way;
While Venus, from her arbor green,
Looks laughing at the joyous scene,
And young Lyaeus by her side
Sits, worthy of so bright a bride.


[1] This ode, Aulus Gellius tells us, was performed at an entertainment
where he was present.






ODE V.


Sculptor, wouldst thou glad my soul,
Grave for me an ample bowl,
Worthy to shine in hall or bower,
When spring-time brings the reveller's hour.
Grave it with themes of chaste design,
Fit for a simple board like mine.
Display not there the barbarous rites
In which religious zeal delights;
Nor any tale of tragic fate
Which History shudders to relate.
No--cull thy fancies from above,
Themes of heaven and themes of love.
Let Bacchus, Jove's ambrosial boy,
Distil the grape in drops of joy,
And while he smiles at every tear,
Let warm-eyed Venus, dancing near,
With spirits of the genial bed,
The dewy herbage deftly tread.
Let Love be there, without his arms,
In timid nakedness of charms;
And all the Graces, linked with Love,
Stray, laughing, through the shadowy grove;
While rosy boys disporting round,
In circlets trip the velvet ground.
But ah! if there Apollo toys,[1]
I tremble for the rosy boys.


[1] An allusion to the fable that Apollo had killed his beloved boy
Hyacinth, while playing with him at quoits. "This" (says M. La Fosse) "is
assuredly the sense of the text, and it cannot admit of any other."






ODE VI.[1]


As late I sought the spangled bowers,
To cull a wreath of matin flowers,
Where many an early rose was weeping,
I found the urchin Cupid sleeping,
I caught the boy, a goblet's tide
Was richly mantling by my side,
I caught him by his downy wing,
And whelmed him in the racy spring.
Then drank I down the poisoned bowl,
And love now nestles in my soul.
Oh, yes, my soul is Cupid's nest,
I feel him fluttering in my breast.


[1] This beautiful fiction, which the commentators have attributed to
Julian, a royal poet, the Vatican MS. pronounces to be the genuine
offspring of Anacreon.






ODE VII.


The women tell me every day
That all my bloom has pas past away.
"Behold," the pretty wantons cry,
"Behold this mirror with a sigh;
The locks upon thy brow are few,
And like the rest, they're withering too!"
Whether decline has thinned my hair,
I'm sure I neither know nor care;
But this I know, and this I feel
As onward to the tomb I steal,
That still as death approaches nearer,
The joys of life are sweeter, dearer;
And had I but an hour to live,
That little hour to bliss I'd give.






ODE VIII.[1]


I care not for the idle state
Of Persia's king, the rich, the great.
I envy not the monarch's throne,
Nor wish the treasured gold my own
But oh! be mine the rosy wreath,
Its freshness o'er my brow to breathe;
Be mine the rich perfumes that flow,
To cool and scent my locks of snow.
To-day I'll haste to quaff my wine
As if to-morrow ne'er would shine;
But if to-morrow comes, why then--
I'll haste to quaff my wine again.
And thus while all our days are bright,
Nor time has dimmed their bloomy light,
Let us the festal hours beguile
With mantling pup and cordial smile;
And shed from each new bowl of wine,
The richest drop on Bacchus' shrine
For death may come, with brow unpleasant,
May come, when least we wish him present,
And beckon to the Sable shore,
And grimly bid us--drink no more!


[1] Baxter conjectures that this was written upon the occasion of our
poet's returning the money to Polycrates, according to the anecdote in
Stobaeus.






ODE IX.


I pray thee, by the gods above,
Give me the mighty bowl I love,
And let me sing, in wild delight,
"I will--I will be mad to-night!"
Alcmaeon once, as legends tell,
Was frenzied by the fiends of hell;
Orestes, too, with naked tread,
Frantic paced the mountain-head;
And why? a murdered mother's shade
Haunted them still where'er they strayed.
But ne'er could I a murderer be,
The grape alone shall bleed for me;
Yet can I shout, with wild delight,
"I will--I will be mad to-night."

Alcides' self, in days of yore,
Imbrued his hands in youthful gore,
And brandished, with a maniac joy,
The quiver of the expiring boy:
And Ajax, with tremendous shield,
Infuriate scoured the guiltless field.
But I, whose hands no weapon ask,
No armor but this joyous flask;
The trophy of whose frantic hours
Is but a scattered wreath of flowers,
Ev'n I can sing, with wild delight,
"I will--I will be mad to-night!"






ODE X.[1]


How am I to punish thee,
For the wrong thou'st done to me
Silly swallow, prating thing--
Shall I clip that wheeling wing?
Or, as Tereus did, of old,[2]
(So the fabled tale is told,)
Shall I tear that tongue away,
Tongue that uttered such a lay?
Ah, how thoughtless hast thou been!
Long before the dawn was seen,
When a dream came o'er my mind,
Picturing her I worship, kind,
Just when I was nearly blest,
Loud thy matins broke my rest!


[1] This ode is addressed to a swallow.

[2] Modern poetry has conferred the name of Philomel upon the nightingale;
but many respectable authorities among the ancients assigned this
metamorphose to Progne, and made Philomel the swallow, as Anacreon does
here.






ODE XI.[1]


"Tell me, gentle youth, I pray thee,
What in purchase shall I pay thee
For this little waxen toy,
Image of the Paphian boy?"
Thus I said, the other day,
To a youth who past my way:
"Sir," (he answered, and the while
Answered all in Doric style,)
"Take it, for a trifle take it;
'Twas not I who dared to make it;
No, believe me, 'twas not I;
Oh, it has cost me many a sigh,
And I can no longer keep
Little Gods, who murder sleep!"
"Here, then, here," (I said with joy,)
"Here is silver for the boy:
He shall be my bosom guest,
Idol of my pious breast!"

Now, young Love, I have thee mine,
Warm me with that torch of thine;
Make me feel as I have felt,
Or thy waxen frame shall melt:
I must burn with warm desire,
Or thou, my boy--in yonder fire.[2]


[1] It is difficult to preserve with any grace the narrative simplicity of
this ode, and the humor of the turn with which it concludes. I feel,
indeed, that the translation must appear vapid, if not ludicrous, to an
English reader.

[2] From this Longepierre conjectures, that, whatever Anacreon might say,
he felt sometimes the inconveniences of old age, and here solicits from
the power of Love a warmth which he could no longer expect from Nature.






ODE XII.


They tell how Atys, wild with love,
Roams the mount and haunted grove;[1]
Cvbele's name he howls around,
The gloomy blast returns the sound!
Oft too, by Claros' hallowed spring,[2]
The votaries of the laurelled king
Quaff the inspiring, magic stream,
And rave in wild, prophetic dream.
But frenzied dreams are not for me,
Great Bacchus is my deity!
Full of mirth, and full of him,
While floating odors round me swim,
While mantling bowls are full supplied,
And you sit blushing by my side,
I will be mad and raving too--
Mad, my girl, with love for you!


[1] There are many contradictory stories of the loves of Cybele and Atys.
It is certain that he was mutilated,  but whether by his own fury, or
Cybele's jealousy, is a point upon which authors are not agreed.

[2] This fountain was in a grove, consecrated to Apollo, and situated
between Colophon and Lebedos, in Ionia. The god had an oracle there.






ODE XIII.


I will, I will, the conflict's past,
And I'll consent to love at last.
Cupid has long, with smiling art,
Invited me to yield my heart;
And I have thought that peace of mind
Should not be for a smile resigned;
And so repelled the tender lure,
And hoped my heart would sleep secure.

But, slighted in his boasted charms,
The angry infant flew to arms;
He slung his quiver's golden frame,
He took his bow; his shafts of flame,
And proudly summoned me to yield,
Or meet him on the martial field.
And what did I unthinking do?
I took to arms, undaunted, too;
Assumed the corslet, shield, and spear,
And, like Pelides, smiled at fear.

Then (hear it, All ye powers above!)
I fought with Love! I fought with Love!
And now his arrows all were shed,
And I had just in terror fled--
When, heaving an indignant sigh,
To see me thus unwounded fly,
And, having now no other dart,
He shot himself into my heart![1]
My heart--alas the luckless day!
Received the God, and died away.
Farewell, farewell, my faithless shield!
Thy lord at length is forced to yield.
Vain, vain, is every outward care,
The foe's within, and triumphs there.


[1] Dryden has parodied this thought in the following extravagant lines:--
   ----I'm all o'er Love;
  Nay, I am Love, Love shot, and shot so fast,
  He shot himself into my breast at last.






ODE XIV.[1]


Count me, on the summer trees,
Every leaf that courts the breeze;
Count me, on the foamy deep,
Every wave that sinks to sleep;
Then, when you have numbered these
Billowy tides and leafy trees,
Count me all the flames I prove,
All the gentle nymphs I love.
First, of pure Athenian maids
Sporting in their olive shades,
You may reckon just a score,
Nay, I'll grant you fifteen more.
In the famed Corinthian grove,
Where such countless wantons rove,[2]
Chains of beauties may be found,
Chains, by which my heart is bound;
There, indeed, are nymphs divine,
Dangerous to a soul like mine.
Many bloom in Lesbos' isle;
Many in Ionia smile;
Rhodes a pretty swarm can boast;
Caria too contains a host.
Sum them all--of brown and fair
You may count two thousand there.
What, you stare? I pray you peace!
More I'll find before I cease.
Have I told you all my flames,
'Mong the amorous Syrian dames?
Have I numbered every one,
Glowing under Egypt's sun?
Or the nymphs, who blushing sweet
Deck the shrine of Love in Crete;
Where the God, with festal play,
Holds eternal holiday?
Still in clusters, still remain
Gades' warm, desiring train:[3]
Still there lies a myriad more
On the sable India's shore;
These, and many far removed,
All are loving--all are loved!


[1] The poet, in this catalogue of his mistresses, means nothing more,
than, by a lively hyperbole, to inform us, that his heart, unfettered by
any one object, was warm with devotion towards the sex in general. Cowley
is indebted to this ode for the hint of his ballad, called "The
Chronicle."

[2] Corinth was very famous for the beauty and number of its courtesans.
Venus was the deity principally worshipped by the people, and their
constant prayer was, that the gods should increase the number of her
worshippers.

[3] The music of the Gaditanian females had all the voluptuous character
of their dancing, as appears from Martial.






ODE XV.[1]


Tell me, why, my sweetest dove,
Thus your humid pinions move,
Shedding through the air in showers
Essence of the balmiest flowers?
Tell me whither, whence you rove,
Tell me all, my sweetest dove.

Curious stranger, I belong
To the bard of Teian song;
With his mandate now I fly
To the nymph of azure eye;--
She, whose eye has maddened many,
But the poet more than any,
Venus, for a hymn of love,
Warbled in her votive grove,[2]
('Twas, in sooth a gentle lay,)
Gave me to the bard away.
See me now his faithful minion,--
Thus with softly-gliding pinion,
To his lovely girl I bear
Songs of passion through the air.
Oft he blandly whispers me,
"Soon, my bird, I'll set you free."
But in vain he'll bid me fly,
I shall serve him till I die.
Never could my plumes sustain
Ruffling winds and chilling rain,
O'er the plains, or in the dell,
On the mountain's savage swell,
Seeking in the desert wood
Gloomy shelter, rustic food.
Now I lead a life of ease,
Far from rugged haunts like these.
From Anacreon's hand I eat
Food delicious, viands sweet;
Flutter o'er his goblet's brim,
Sip the foamy wine with him.
Then, when I have wantoned round
To his lyre's beguiling sound;
Or with gently moving-wings
Fanned the minstrel while he sings;
On his harp I sink in slumbers,
Dreaming still of dulcet numbers!

This is all--away--away--
You have made me waste the day.
How I've chattered! prating crow
Never yet did chatter so.


[1] The dove of Anacreon, bearing a letter from the poet to his mistress,
is met by a stranger, with whom this dialogue, is imagined.

[2] "This passage is invaluable, and I do not think that anything so
beautiful or so delicate has ever been said. What an idea does it give of
the poetry of the man, from whom Venus herself, the mother of the Graces
and the Pleasures, purchases a little hymn with one of her favorite
doves!"--LONGEPIERRE.






ODE XVI.[1]


Thou, whose soft and rosy hues
Mimic form and soul infuse,
Best of painters, come portray
The lovely maid that's far away.
Far away, my soul! thou art,
But I've thy beauties all by heart.
Paint her jetty ringlets playing,
Silky locks, like tendrils straying;[2]
And, if painting hath the skill
To make the spicy balm distil,
Let every little lock exhale
A sigh of perfume on the gale.
Where her tresses' curly flow
Darkles o'er the brow of snow,
Let her forehead beam to light,
Burnished as the ivory bright.
Let her eyebrows smoothly rise
In jetty arches o'er her eyes,
Each, a crescent gently gliding,
Just commingling, just dividing.

But, hast thou any sparkles warm,
The lightning of her eyes to form?
Let them effuse the azure rays,
That in Minerva's glances blaze,
Mixt with the liquid light that lies
In Cytherea's languid eyes.
O'er her nose and cheek be shed
Flushing white and softened red;
Mingling tints, as when there glows
In snowy milk the bashful rose.
Then her lip, so rich in blisses,
Sweet petitioner for kisses,
Rosy nest, where lurks Persuasion,
Mutely courting Love's invasion.
Next, beneath the velvet chin,
Whose dimple hides a Love within,
Mould her neck with grace descending,
In a heaven of beauty ending;
While countless charms, above, below,
Sport and flutter round its snow.
Now let a floating, lucid veil,
Shadow her form, but not conceal;[3]
A charm may peep, a hue may beam
And leave the rest to Fancy's dream.
Enough--'tis she! 'tis all I seek;
It glows, it lives, it soon will speak!


[1] This ode and the next may be called companion-pictures; they are
highly finished, and give us an excellent idea of the taste of the
ancients in beauty.

[2] The ancients have been very enthusiastic in their praises of the
beauty of hair. Apuleius, in the second book of his Milesiacs, says that
Venus herself, if she were bald, though surrounded by the Graces and the
Loves, could not be pleasing even to her husband Vulcan.

[3] This delicate art of description, which leaves imagination to complete
the picture, has been seldom adopted in the imitations of this beautiful
poem. Ronsard is exceptionally minute; and Politianus, in his charming
portrait of a girl, full of rich and exquisite diction, has lifted the
veil rather too much. The "_questa che tu m'intendi_" should be always
left to fancy.






ODE XVII.


And now with all thy pencil's truth,
Portray Bathyllus, lovely youth!
Let his hair, in masses bright,
Fall like floating rays of light;
And there the raven's die confuse
With the golden sunbeam's hues.
Let no wreath, with artful twine.
The flowing of his locks confine;
But leave them loose to every breeze,
To take what shape and course they please.
Beneath the forehead, fair as snow,
But flushed with manhood's early glow,
And guileless as the dews of dawn,
Let the majestic brows be drawn,
Of ebon hue, enriched by gold,
Such as dark, shining snakes unfold.
Mix in his eyes the power alike,
With love to win, with awe to strike;
Borrow from Mars his look of ire,
From Venus her soft glance of fire;
Blend them in such expression here,
That we by turns may hope and fear!

Now from the sunny apple seek
The velvet down that spreads his cheek;
And there, if art so far can go,
The ingenuous blush of boyhood show.
While, for his mouth--but no,--in vain
Would words its witching charm explain.
Make it the very seat, the throne,
That Eloquence would claim her own;
And let the lips, though silent, wear
A life-look, as if words were there.

Next thou his ivory neck must trace,
Moulded with soft but manly grace;
Fair as the neck of Paphia's boy,
Where Paphia's arms have hung in joy.
Give him the wingèd Hermes' hand,
With which he waves his snaky wand;
Let Bacchus the broad chest supply,
And Leda's son the sinewy thigh;
While, through his whole transparent frame,
Thou show'st the stirrings of that flame,
Which kindles, when the first love-sigh
Steals from the heart, unconscious why.

But sure thy pencil, though so bright,
Is envious of the eye's delight,
Or its enamoured touch would show
The shoulder, fair as sunless snow,
Which now in veiling shadow lies,
Removed from all but Fancy's eyes.
Now, for his feet--but hold--forbear--
I see the sun-god's portrait there:[1]
Why paint Bathyllus? when in truth,
There, in that god, thou'st sketched the youth.
Enough--let this bright form be mine,
And send the boy to Samos' shrine;
Phoebus shall then Bathyllus be,
Bathyllus then, the deity!


[1] The abrupt turn here is spirited, but requires some explanation. While
the artist is pursuing the portrait of Bathyllus, Anacreon, we must
suppose, turns around and sees a picture of Apollo, which was intended for
an altar at Samos. He then instantly tells the painter to cease his work;
that this picture will serve for Bathyllus; and that, when he goes to
Samos, he may make an Apollo of the portrait of the boy which he had
begun.






ODE XVIII.


Now the star of day is high,
Fly, my girls, in pity fly.
Bring me wine in brimming urns
Cool my lip, it burns, it burns!
Sunned by the meridian fire,
Panting, languid I expire,
Give me all those humid flowers,
Drop them o'er my brow in showers.
Scarce a breathing chaplet now
Lives upon my feverish brow;
Every dewy rose I wear
Sheds its tears, and withers there.[1]
But to you, my burning heart,
What can now relief impart?
Can brimming bowl, or floweret's dew,
Cool the flame that scorches you?


[1] In the poem of Mr. Sheridan's, "Uncouth is this moss-covered grotto of
stone," there is an idea very singularly coincident with this of
Angerianus:--

  And thou, stony grot, in thy arch may'st preserve
  Some lingering drops of the night-fallen dew:
  Let them fall on her bosom of snow, and they'll serve
  As tears of my sorrow entrusted to you.






ODE XIX.[1]


Here recline you, gentle maid,
Sweet is this embowering shade;
Sweet the young, the modest trees,
Ruffled by the kissing breeze;
Sweet the little founts that weep,
Lulling soft the mind to sleep;
Hark! they whisper as they roll,
Calm persuasion to the soul;
Tell me, tell me, is not this
All a stilly scene of bliss?
"Who, my girl, would pass it by?
Surely neither you nor I."


[1] The description of this bower is so natural and animated, that we
almost feel a degree of coolness and freshness while we peruse it.






ODE XX.[1]


One day the Muses twined the hands
Of infant Love with flowery bands;
And to celestial Beauty gave
The captive infant for her slave.
His mother comes, with many a toy,
To ransom her beloved boy;[2]
His mother sues, but all in vain,--
He ne'er will leave his chains again.
Even should they take his chains away,
The little captive still would stay.
"If this," he cries, "a bondage be,
Oh, who could wish for liberty?"


[1] The poet appears, in this graceful allegory, to describe the softening
influence which poetry holds over the mind, in making it peculiarly
susceptible to the impressions of beauty.

[2] In the first idyl of Moschus, Venus there proclaims the reward for her
fugitive child:--

  On him, who the haunts of my Cupid can show,
  A kiss of the tenderest stamp I'll bestow;
  But he, who can bring back the urchin in chains,
  Shall receive even something more sweet for his pains.






ODE XXI.[1]


Observe when mother earth is dry,
She drinks the droppings of the sky;
And then the dewy cordial gives
To every thirsty plant that lives.
The vapors, which at evening weep,
Are beverage to the swelling deep;
And when the rosy sun appears,
He drinks the ocean's misty tears.
The moon too quaffs her paly stream
Of lustre, from the solar beam.
Then, hence with all your sober thinking!
Since Nature's holy law is drinking;
I'll make the laws of nature mine,
And pledge the universe in wine.


[1] Those critics who have endeavored to throw the chains of precision
over the spirit of this beautiful trifle, require too much from
Anacreontic philosophy. Among others, Gail very sapiently thinks that the
poet uses the epithet [Greek: melainae], because black earth absorbs
moisture more quickly than any other; and accordingly he indulges us with
an experimental disquisition on the subject.--See Gail's Notes.






ODE XXII.


The Phrygian rock, that braves the storm,
Was once a weeping matron's form;[1]
And Progne, hapless, frantic maid,
Is now a swallow in the shade.
Oh! that a mirror's form were mine,
That I might catch that smile divine;
And like my own fond fancy be,
Reflecting thee, and only thee;
Or could I be the robe which holds
That graceful form within its folds;
Or, turned into a fountain, lave
Thy beauties in my circling wave.
Would I were perfume for thy hair,
To breathe my soul in fragrance there;
Or, better still, the zone, that lies
Close to thy breast, and feels its sighs![2]
Or even those envious pearls that show
So faintly round that neck of snow--
Yes, I would be a happy gem,
Like them to hang, to fade like them.
What more would thy Anacreon be?
Oh, any thing that touches thee;
Nay, sandals for those airy feet--
Even to be trod by them were sweet!


[1] The compliment of this ode is exquisitely delicate, and so singular
for the period in which Anacreon lived, when the scale of love had not yet
been graduated Into all its little progressive refinements, that if we
were inclined to question the authenticity of the poem, we should find a
much more plausible argument in the features of modern gallantry which it
bears, than in any of those fastidious conjectures upon which some
commentators have presumed so far.

[2] The women of Greece not only wore this zone, but condemned themselves
to fasting, and made use of certain drugs and powders for the same
purpose. To these expedients they were compelled, in consequence of their
inelegant fashion of compressing the waist into a very narrow compass,
which necessarily caused an excessive tumidity in the bosom. See
"Dioscorides," lib. v.






ODE XXIII.


I often wish this languid lyre,
This warbler of my soul's desire,
Could raise the breath of song sublime,
To men of fame, in former time.
But when the soaring theme I try,
Along the chords my numbers die,
And whisper, with dissolving tone,
"Our sighs are given to love alone!"
Indignant at the feeble lay,
I tore the panting chords away,
Attuned them to a nobler swell,
And struck again the breathing shell;
In all the glow of epic fire,
To Hercules I wake the lyre,
But still its fainting sighs repeat,
"The tale of love alone is sweet!"
Then fare thee well, seductive dream,
That madest me follow Glory's theme;
For thou my lyre, and thou my heart,
Shall never more in spirit part;
And all that one has felt so well
The other shall as sweetly tell!






ODE XXIV.


To all that breathe the air of heaven,
Some boon of strength has Nature given.
In forming the majestic bull,
She fenced with wreathed horns his skull;
A hoof of strength she lent the steed,
And winged the timorous hare with speed.
She gave the lion fangs of terror,
And, o'er the ocean's crystal mirror,
Taught the unnumbered scaly throng
To trace their liquid path along;
While for the umbrage of the grove,
She plumed the warbling world of love.

To man she gave, in that proud hour,
The boon of intellectual power.
Then, what, oh woman, what, for thee,
Was left in Nature's treasury?
She gave thee beauty--mightier far
Than all the pomp and power of war.
Nor steel, nor fire itself hath power
Like woman, in her conquering hour.
Be thou but fair, mankind adore thee,
Smile, and a world is weak before thee![1]


[1] Longepierre's remark here is ingenious; "The Romans," says he, "were
so convinced of the power of beauty, that they used a word implying
strength in the place of the epithet beautiful".






ODE XXV.


Once in each revolving year,
Gentle bird! we find thee here.
When Nature wears her summer-vest,
Thou comest to weave thy simple nest;
But when the chilling winter lowers.
Again thou seekest the genial bowers
Of Memphis, or the shores of Nile,
Where sunny hours for ever smile.
And thus thy pinion rests and roves,--
Alas! unlike the swarm of Loves,
That brood within this hapless breast,
And never, never change their nest!
Still every year, and all the year,
They fix their fated dwelling here;
And some their infant plumage try,
And on a tender winglet fly;
While in the shell, impregned with fires,
Still lurk a thousand more desires;
Some from their tiny prisons peeping,
And some in formless embryo sleeping.
Thus peopled, like the vernal groves,
My breast resounds, with warbling Loves;
One urchin imps the other's feather,
Then twin-desires they wing together,
And fast as they thus take their flight,
Still other urchins spring to light.
But is there then no kindly art,
To chase these Cupids from my heart;
Ah, no! I fear, in sadness fear,
They will for ever nestle here!






ODE XXVI.


Thy harp may sing of Troy's alarms,
Or tell the tale of Theban arms;
With other wars my song shall burn,
For other wounds my harp shall mourn.
'Twas not the crested warrior's dart,
That drank the current of my heart;
Nor naval arms, nor mailed steed,
Have made this vanquished bosom bleed;
No--'twas from eyes of liquid blue,
A host of quivered Cupids flew;[1]
And now my heart all bleeding lies
Beneath that army of the eyes!


[1] The poets abound with conceits on the archery of the eyes, but few
have turned the thought so naturally as Anacreon. Ronsard gives to the
eyes of his mistress _un petit camp d'amours_.






ODE XXVII.


We read the flying courser's name
Upon his side, in marks of flame;
And, by their turbaned brows alone,
The warriors of the East are known.
But in the lover's glowing eyes,
The inlet to his bosom lies;
Through them we see the small faint mark,
Where Love has dropt his burning spark!






ODE XXVIII.


As, by his Lemnian forge's flame,
The husband of the Paphian dame
Moulded the glowing steel, to form
Arrows for Cupid, thrilling warm;
And Venus, as he plied his art,
Shed honey round each new-made dart,
While Love, at hand, to finish all,
Tipped every arrow's point with gall;
It chanced the Lord of Battles came
To visit that deep cave of flame.
'Twas from the ranks of war he rushed,
His spear with many a life-drop blushed;
He saw the fiery darts, and smiled
Contemptuous at the archer-child.
"What!" said the urchin, "dost thou smile?
Here, hold this little dart awhile,
And thou wilt find, though swift of flight,
My bolts are not so feathery light."

  Mars took the shaft--and, oh, thy look,
Sweet Venus, when the shaft he took!--
Sighing, he felt the urchin's art,
And cried, in agony of heart,
"It is not light--I sink with pain!
Take--take thy arrow back again."
"No," said the child, "it must not be;
That little dart was made for thee!"






ODE XXIX.


Yes--loving is a painful thrill,
And not to love more painful still
But oh, it is the worst of pain,
To love and not be loved again!
Affection now has fled from earth,
Nor fire of genius, noble birth,
Nor heavenly virtue, can beguile,
From beauty's cheek one favoring smile.
Gold is the woman's only theme,
Gold is the woman's only dream.
Oh! never be that wretch forgiven--
Forgive him not, indignant heaven!
Whose grovelling eyes could first adore,
Whose heart could pant for sordid ore.
Since that devoted thirst began,
Man has forgot to feel for man;
The pulse of social life is dead,
And all its fonder feelings fled!
War too has sullied Nature's charms,
For gold provokes the world to arms;
And oh! the worst of all its arts,
It renders asunder loving hearts.






ODE XXX.[1]


'Twas in a mocking dream of night--
I fancied I had wings as light
As a young birds, and flew as fleet;
While Love, around whose beauteous feet,
I knew not why, hung chains of lead,
Pursued me, as I trembling fled;
And, strange to say, as swift as thought,
Spite of my pinions, I was caught!
What does the wanton Fancy mean
By such a strange, illusive scene?
I fear she whispers to my breast,
That you, sweet maid, have stolen its rest;
That though my fancy, for a while,
Hath hung on many a woman's smile,
I soon dissolved each passing vow,
And ne'er was caught by love till now!


[1] Barnes imagines from this allegory, that our poet married very late in
life. But I see nothing in the ode which alludes to matrimony, except it
be the lead upon the feet of Cupid; and I agree in the opinion of Madame
Dacier, in her life of the poet, that he was always too fond of pleasure
to marry.






ODE XXXI.[1]


Armed with hyacinthine rod,
(Arms enough for such a god,)
Cupid bade me wing my pace,
And try with him the rapid race.
O'er many a torrent, wild and deep,
By tangled brake and pendent steep.
With weary foot I panting flew,
Till my brow dropt with chilly dew.
And now my soul, exhausted, dying,
To my lip was faintly flying;
And now I thought the spark had fled,
When Cupid hovered o'er my head,
And fanning light his breezy pinion,
Rescued my soul from death's dominion;[2]
Then said, in accents half-reproving.
"Why hast thou been a foe to loving?"


[1] The design of this little fiction is to intimate, that much greater
pain attends insensibility than can ever result from the tenderest
impressions of love.

[2] "The facility with which Cupid recovers him, signifies that the sweets
of love make us easily forget any solicitudes which he may occasion."--LA
FOSSE.






ODE XXXII.[1]


Strew me a fragrant bed of leaves,
Where lotus with the myrtle weaves;
And while in luxury's dream I sink,
Let me the balm of Bacchus drink!
In this sweet hour of revelry
Young Love shall my attendant be--
Drest for the task, with tunic round
His snowy neck and shoulders bound,
Himself shall hover by my side,
And minister the racy tide!

  Oh, swift as wheels that kindling roll,
Our life is hurrying to the goal;
A scanty dust, to feed the wind,
Is all the trace 'twill leave behind.
Then wherefore waste the rose's bloom
Upon the cold, insensate tomb?
Can flowery breeze, or odor's breath,
Affect the still, cold sense of death?
Oh no; I ask no balm to steep
With fragrant tears my bed of sleep:
But now, while every pulse is glowing,
Now let me breathe the balsam flowing;
Now let the rose, with blush of fire,
Upon my brow in sweets expire;
And bring the nymph whose eye hath power
To brighten even death's cold hour.
Yes, Cupid! ere my shade retire,
To join the blest elysian choir;
With wine, and love, and social cheer,
I'll make my own elysium here!


[1] We here have the poet, in his true attributes, reclining upon myrtles,
with Cupid for his cup-bearer. Some interpreters have ruined the picture
by making [Greek: Eros] the name of his slave. None but Love should fill
the goblet of Anacreon. Sappho, in one of her fragments, has assigned this
office to Venus.

  Hither, Venus, queen of kisses.
  This shall be the night of blisses;
  This the night, to friendship dear.
  Thou shalt be our Hebe here.
  Fill the golden brimmer high,
  Let it sparkle like thine eye;
  Bid the rosy current gush.
  Let it mantle like thy blush.
  Goddess, hast thou e'er above
  Seen a feast so rich in love?
  Not a soul that is not mine!
  Not a soul that is not thine!






ODE XXXIII.


'Twas noon of night, when round the pole
The sullen Bear is seen to roll;
And mortals, wearied with the day,
Are slumbering all their cares away;
An infant, at that dreary hour,
Came weeping to my silent bower,
And waked me with a piteous prayer,
To shield him from the midnight air.
"And who art thou," I waking cry,
"That bid'st my blissful visions fly?"
"Ah, gentle sire!" the infant said,
"In pity take me to thy shed;
Nor fear deceit; a lonely child
I wander o'er the gloomy wild.
Chill drops the rain, and not a ray
Illumes the drear and misty way!"

  I heard the baby's tale of woe:
I heard the bitter night-winds blow;
And sighing for his piteous fate,
I trimmed my lamp and oped the gate.
'Twas Love! the little wandering sprite,
His pinion sparkled through the night,
I knew him by his bow and dart;
I knew him by my fluttering heart.
Fondly I take him in, and raise
The dying embers' cheering blaze;
Press from his dank and clinging hair
The crystals of the freezing air,
And in my hand and bosom hold
His little fingers thrilling cold.

  And now the embers' genial ray,
Had warmed his anxious fears away;
"I pray thee," said the wanton child,
(My bosom trembled as he smiled,)
"I pray thee let me try my bow,
For through the rain I've wandered so,
That much I fear the midnight shower
Has injured its elastic power."
The fatal bow the urchin drew;
Swift from the string the arrow flew;
As swiftly flew as glancing flame,
And to my inmost spirit came!
"Fare thee well," I heard him say
As laughing wild he winged away,
"Fare thee well, for now I know
The rain has not relaxt my bow;
It still can send a thrilling dart,
As thou shalt own with all thy heart!"






ODE XXXIV.[1]


Oh thou, of all creation blest,
Sweet insect, that delight'st to rest
Upon the wild wood's leafy tops,
To drink the dew that morning drops,
And chirp thy song with such a glee,
That happiest kings may envy thee.
Whatever decks the velvet field,
Whate'er the circling seasons yield,
Whatever buds, whatever blows,
For thee it buds, for thee it grows.
Nor yet art thou the peasant's fear,
To him thy friendly notes are dear;
For thou art mild as matin dew;
And still, when summer's flowery hue
Begins to paint the bloomy plain,
We hear thy sweet prophetic strain;
Thy sweet prophetic strain we hear,
And bless the notes and thee revere!
The Muses love thy shrilly tone;
Apollo calls thee all his own;
'Twas he who gave that voice to thee,
'Tis he who tunes thy minstrelsy.

  Unworn by age's dim decline,
The fadeless blooms of youth are thine.
Melodious insect, child of earth,
In wisdom mirthful, wise in mirth;
Exempt from every weak decay,
That withers vulgar frames away;
With not a drop of blood to stain,
The current of thy purer vein;
So blest an age is past by thee,
Thou seem'st--a little deity!


[1] In a Latin ode addressed to the grasshopper, Rapin has preserved some
of the thoughts of our author:--

  Oh thou, that on the grassy bed
  Which Nature's vernal hand has spread,
  Reclinest soft, and tunest thy song,
  The dewy herbs and leaves among!
  Whether thou lyest on springing flowers
  Drunk with the balmy morning-showers
  Or, etc.






ODE XXXV.[1]


Cupid once upon a bed
Of roses laid his weary head;
Luckless urchin not to see
Within the leaves a slumbering bee;
The bee awaked--with anger wild
The bee awaked, and stung the child.
Loud and piteous are his cries;
To Venus quick he runs, he flies;
"Oh mother!--I am wounded through--
I die with pain--in sooth I do!
Stung by some little angry thing,
Some serpent on a tiny wing--
A bee it was--for once, I know,
I heard a rustic call it so."
Thus he spoke, and she the while,
Heard him with a soothing smile;
Then said, "My infant, if so much
Thou feel the little wild-bee's touch,
How must the heart, ah, Cupid be,
The hapless heart that's stung by thee!"


[1] Theocritus has imitated this beautiful ode in his nineteenth idyl; but
is very inferior, I think, to his original, in delicacy of point and
naïveté of expression. Spenser, in one of his smaller compositions, has
sported more diffusely on the same subject. The poem to which I allude
begins thus:--

  Upon a day, as Love lay sweetly slumbering
    All in his mother's lap;
  A gentle bee, with his loud trumpet murmuring,
    About him flew by hap, etc.






ODE XXXVI.[1]


If hoarded gold possest the power
To lengthen life's too fleeting hour,
And purchase from the hand of death
A little span, a moment's breath,
How I would love the precious ore!
And every hour should swell my store;
That when death came, with shadowy pinion,
To waft me to his bleak dominion,
I might, by bribes, my doom delay,
And bid him call some distant day.
But, since not all earth's golden store
Can buy for us one bright hour more,
Why should we vainly mourn our fate,
Or sigh at life's uncertain date?
Nor wealth nor grandeur can illume
The silent midnight of the tomb.
No--give to others hoarded treasures--
Mine be the brilliant round of pleasures--
The goblet rich, the board of friends,
Whose social souls the goblet blends;[2]
And mine, while yet I've life to live,
Those joys that love alone can give.


[1] Fontenelle has translated this ode, in his dialogue between Anacreon
and Aristotle in the shades, where, on weighing the merits of both these
personages, he bestows the prize of wisdom upon the poet.

[2] The goblet rich, the board of friends.
    Whose social soul the goblet blends.

This communion Of friendship, which sweetened the bowl of Anacreon, has
not been forgotten by the author of the following scholium, where the
blessings of life are enumerated with proverbial simplicity:

  Of mortal blessing here the first is health,
    And next those charms by which the eye we move;
  The third is wealth, unwounding guiltless wealth,
    And then, sweet intercourse with those we love!






ODE XXXVII.


'Twas night, and many a circling bowl
Had deeply warmed my thirsty soul;
As lulled in slumber I was laid,
Bright visions o'er my fancy played.
With maidens, blooming as the dawn,
I seemed to skim the opening lawn;
Light, on tiptoe bathed in dew,
We flew, and sported as we flew!

  Some ruddy striplings, who lookt on--
With cheeks that like the wine-god's shone,
Saw me chasing, free and wild,
These blooming maids, and slyly smiled;
Smiled indeed with wanton glee,
Though none could doubt they envied me.
And still I flew--and now had caught
The panting nymphs, and fondly thought
To gather from each rosy lip
A kiss that Jove himself might sip--
When sudden all my dream of joys,
Blushing nymphs and laughing boys,
All were gone!--"Alas!" I said,
Sighing for the illusion fled,
"Again, sweet sleep, that scene restore,
Oh! let me dream it o'er and o'er!"[1]


[1] Dr. Johnson, in his preface to Shakespeare, animadverting upon the
commentators of that poet, who pretended, in every little coincidence of
thought, to detect an imitation of some ancient poet, alludes in the
following words to the line of Anacreon before us: "I have been told that
when Caliban, after a pleasing dream says, 'I cried to sleep again,' the
author imitates Anacreon, who had, like any other man, the same wish on
the same occasion."






ODE XXXVIII.


Let us drain the nectared bowl,
Let us raise the song of soul
To him, the god who loves so well
The nectared bowl, the choral swell;
The god who taught the sons of earth
To thread the tangled dance of mirth;
Him, who was nurst with infant Love,
And cradled in the Paphian grove;
Him, that the Snowy Queen of Charms
So oft has fondled in her arms.
Oh 'tis from him the transport flows,
Which sweet intoxication knows;
With him, the brow forgets its gloom,
And brilliant graces learn to bloom.

  Behold!--my boys a goblet bear,
Whose sparkling foam lights up the air.
Where are now the tear, the sigh?
To the winds they fly, they fly!
Grasp the bowl; in nectar sinking,
Man of sorrow, drown thy thinking!
Say, can the tears we lend to thought
In life's account avail us aught?
Can we discern with all our lore,
The path we've yet to journey o'er?
Alas, alas, in ways so dark,
'Tis only wine can strike a spark!

Then let me quaff the foamy tide,
And through the dance meandering glide;
Let me imbibe the spicy breath
Of odors chafed to fragrant death;
Or from the lips of love inhale
A more ambrosial, richer gale!
To hearts that court the phantom Care,
Let him retire and shroud him there;
While we exhaust the nectared bowl,
And swell the choral song of soul
To him, the god who loves so well
The nectared bowl, the choral swell!






ODE XXXIX.


How I love the festive boy,
Tripping through the dance of joy!
How I love the mellow sage,
Smiling through the veil of age!
And whene'er this man of years
In the dance of joy appears,
Snows may o'er his head be flung,
But his heart--his heart is young.






ODE XL.


I know that Heaven hath sent me here,
To run this mortal life's career;
The scenes which I have journeyed o'er,
Return no more--alas! no more!
And all the path I've yet to go,
I neither know nor ask to know.
Away, then, wizard Care, nor think
Thy fetters round this soul to link;
Never can heart that feels with me
Descend to be a slave to thee!
And oh! before the vital thrill,
Which trembles at my heart is still,
I'll gather Joy's luxuriant flowers,
And gild with bliss my fading hours;
Bacchus shall bid my winter bloom,
And Venus dance me to the tomb!






ODE XLI.

When Spring adorns the dewy scene,
How sweet to walk the velvet green,
And hear the west wind's gentle sighs,
As o'er the scented mead it flies!
How sweet to mark the pouting vine,
Ready to burst in tears of wine;
And with some maid, who breathes but love,
To walk, at noontide, through the grove,
Or sit in some cool, green recess--
Oh, is this not true happiness?






ODE XLII.[1]


Yes, be the glorious revel mine,
Where humor sparkles from the wine.
Around me, let the youthful choir
Respond to my enlivening lyre;
And while the red cup foams along,
Mingle in soul as well as song.
Then, while I sit, with flowerets crowned,
To regulate the goblets round.
Let but the nymph, our banquet's pride,
Be seated smiling by my side,
And earth has not a gift or power
That I would envy, in that hour.
Envy!--oh never let its blight
Touch the gay hearts met here tonight.
Far hence be slander's sidelong wounds,
Nor harsh dispute, nor discord's sounds
Disturb a scene, where all should be
Attuned to peace and harmony.

  Come, let us hear the harp's gay note
Upon the breeze inspiring float,
While round us, kindling into love,
Young maidens through the light dance move.
Thus blest with mirth, and love, and peace,
Sure such a life should never cease!


[1] The character of Anacreon is here very strikingly depicted. His love
of social, harmonized pleasures, is expressed with a warmth, amiable and
endearing.






ODE XLIII.


While our rosy fillets shed
Freshness o'er each fervid head,
With many a cup and many a smile
The festal moments we beguile.
And while the harp, impassioned flings
Tuneful rapture from its strings,[1]
Some airy nymph, with graceful bound,
Keeps measure to the music's sound;
Waving, in her snowy hand,
The leafy Bacchanalian wand,
Which, as the tripping wanton flies,
Trembles all over to her sighs.
A youth the while, with loosened hair,
Floating on the listless air,
Sings, to the wild harp's tender tone,
A tale of woe, alas, his own;
And oh, the sadness in his sigh.
As o'er his lips the accents die!
Never sure on earth has been
Half so bright, so blest a scene.
It seems as Love himself had come
To make this spot his chosen home;--[2]
And Venus, too, with all her wiles,
And Bacchus, shedding rosy smiles,
All, all are here, to hail with me
The Genius of Festivity!


[1] Respecting the barbiton a host of authorities may be collected, which,
after all, leave us ignorant of the nature of the instrument. There is
scarcely any point upon which we are so totally uninformed as the music of
the ancients. The authors extant upon the subject are, I imagine, little
understood; and certainly if one of their moods was a progression by
quarter-tones, which we are told was the nature of the enharmonic scale,
simplicity was by no means the characteristic of their melody; for this is
a nicety of progression of which modern music is not susceptible. The
invention of the barbiton is, by Athenaeus, attributed to Anacreon.

[2] The introduction of these deities to the festival is merely
allegorical. Madame Dacier thinks that the poet describes a masquerade,
where these deities were personated by the company in masks. The
translation will conform with either idea.






ODE XLIV.[1]


Buds of roses, virgin flowers,
Culled from Cupid's balmy bowers,
In the bowl of Bacchus steep,
Till with crimson drops they weep.
Twine the rose, the garland twine,
Every leaf distilling wine;
Drink and smile, and learn to think
That we were born to smile and drink.
Rose, thou art the sweetest flower
That ever drank the amber shower;
Rose, thou art the fondest child
Of dimpled Spring, the wood-nymph wild.
Even the Gods, who walk the sky,
Are amorous of thy scented sigh.
Cupid, too, in Paphian shades,
His hair with rosy fillets braids,
When with the blushing sister Graces,
The wanton winding dance he traces.
Then bring me, showers of roses bring,
And shed them o'er me while I sing.
Or while, great Bacchus, round thy shrine,
Wreathing my brow with rose and vine,
I lead some bright nymph through the dance,
Commingling soul with every glance!


[1] This spirited poem is a eulogy on the rose; and again, in the fifty-
fifth ode, we shall find our author rich in the praises of that flower. In
a fragment of Sappho, in the romance of Achilles Tatius, to which Barnes
refers us, the rose is fancifully styled "the eye of flowers;" and the
same poetess, in another fragment, calls the favors of the Muse "the roses
of the Pleria."






ODE XLV.


Within this goblet, rich and deep,
I cradle all my woes to sleep.
Why should we breathe the sigh of fear,
Or pour the unavailing tear?
For death will never heed the sigh,
Nor soften at the tearful eye;
And eyes that sparkle, eyes that weep,
Must all alike be sealed in sleep.
Then let us never vainly stray,
In search of thorns, from pleasure's way;
But wisely quaff the rosy wave,
Which Bacchus loves, which Bacchus gave;
And in the goblet, rich and deep,
Cradle our crying woes to sleep.






ODE XLVI.[1]


Behold, the young, the rosy Spring,
Gives to the breeze her scented wing:
While virgin Graces, warm with May;
Fling roses o'er her dewy way.
The murmuring billows of the deep
Have languished into silent sleep;
And mark! the flitting sea-birds lave
Their plumes in the reflecting wave;
While cranes from hoary winter fly
To flutter in a kinder sky.
Now the genial star of day
Dissolves the murky clouds away;
And cultured field, and winding stream,
Are freshly glittering in his beam.

  Now the earth prolific swells
With leafy buds and flowery bells;
Gemming shoots the olive twine,
Clusters ripe festoon the vine;
All along the branches creeping,
Through the velvet foliage peeping,
Little infant fruits we see,
Nursing into luxury.


[1] The fastidious affectation of some commentators has denounced this ode
as spurious. Degen pronounces the four last lines to be the patch-work of
some miserable versificator, and Brunck condemns the whole ode. It appears
to me, on the contrary, to be elegantly graphical: full of delicate
expressions and luxuriant imagery.






ODE XLVII.


'Tis true, my fading years decline,
Yet can I quaff the brimming wine,
As deep as any stripling fair,
Whose cheeks the flush of morning wear;
And if, amidst the wanton crew,
I'm called to wind the dance's clue,
Then shalt thou see this vigorous hand,
Not faltering on the Bacchant's wand,
But brandishing a rosy flask,
The only thyrsus e'er I'll ask![1]

  Let those, who pant for Glory's charms,
Embrace her in the field of arms;
While my inglorious, placid soul
Breathes not a wish beyond this bowl.
Then fill it high, my ruddy slave,
And bathe me in its brimming wave.
For though my fading years decay,
Though manhood's prime hath past away,
Like old Silenus, sire divine,
With blushes borrowed from my wine.
I'll wanton mid the dancing train,
And live my follies o'er again!


[1] Phornutus assigns as a reason for the consecration of the thyrsus to
Bacchus, that inebriety often renders the support of a stick very
necessary.






ODE XLVIII.


When my thirsty soul I steep,
Every sorrow's lulled to sleep.
Talk of monarchs! I am then
Richest, happiest, first of men;
Careless o'er my cup I sing,
Fancy makes me more than king;
Gives me wealthy Croesus' store,
Can I, can I wish for more?
On my velvet couch reclining,
Ivy leaves my brow entwining,[1]
While my soul expands with glee,
What are kings and crowns to me?
If before my feet they lay,
I would spurn them all away;
Arm ye, arm ye, men of might,
Hasten to the sanguine fight;
But let _me_, my budding vine!
Spill no other blood than thine.
Yonder brimming goblet see,
That alone shall vanquish me--
Who think it better, wiser far
To fall in banquet than in war,


[1] "The ivy was consecrated to Bacchus [says Montfaucon], because he
formerly lay hid under that tree, or as others will have it, because its
leaves resemble those of the vine." Other reasons for its consecration,
and the use of it in garlands at banquets, may be found in Longepierre,
Barnes, etc.






ODE XLIX.


When Bacchus, Jove's immortal boy,
The rosy harbinger of joy,
Who, with the sunshine of the bowl,
Thaws the winter of our soul--
When to my inmost core he glides,
And bathes it with his ruby tides,
A flow of joy, a lively heat,
Fires my brain, and wings my feet,
Calling up round me visions known
To lovers of the bowl alone.

  Sing, sing of love, let music's sound
In melting cadence float around,
While, my young Venus, thou and I
Responsive to its murmurs sigh.
Then, waking from our blissful trance,
Again we'll sport, again we'll dance.






ODE L.[1]


When wine I quaff, before my eyes
Dreams of poetic glory rise;[2]
And freshened by the goblet's dews,
My soul invokes the heavenly Muse,
When wine I drink, all sorrow's o'er;
I think of doubts and fears no more;
But scatter to the railing wind
Each gloomy phantom of the mind.
When I drink wine, the ethereal boy,
Bacchus himself, partakes my joy;
And while we dance through vernal bowers,
Whose every breath comes fresh from flowers,
In wine he makes my senses swim,
Till the gale breathes of naught but him!

  Again I drink,--and, lo, there seems
A calmer light to fill my dreams;
The lately ruffled wreath I spread
With steadier hand around my head;
Then take the lyre, and sing "how blest
The life of him who lives at rest!"
But then comes witching wine again,
With glorious woman in its train;
And, while rich perfumes round me rise,
That seem the breath of woman's sighs,
Bright shapes, of every hue and form.
Upon my kindling fancy swarm,
Till the whole world of beauty seems
To crowd into my dazzled dreams!
When thus I drink, my heart refines,
And rises as the cup declines;
Rises in the genial flow,
That none but social spirits know,
When, with young revellers, round the bowl,
The old themselves grow young in soul!
Oh, when I drink, true joy is mine,
There's bliss in every drop of wine.
All other blessings I have known,
I scarcely dared to call my own;
But this the Fates can ne'er destroy,
Till death o'ershadows all my joy.


[1] Faber thinks this ode spurious; but, I believe, he is singular in his
opinion. It has all the spirit of our author. Like the wreath which he
presented in the dream, "it smells of Anacreon."

[2] Anacreon is not the only one [says Longepierre] whom wine has inspired
with poetry. We find an epigram in the first book of the "Anthologia,"
which begins thus:--

  If with water you fill up your glasses,
    You'll never write anything wise;
  For wine's the true horse of Parnassus.
    Which carries a bard to the skies!






ODE LI.


Fly not thus my brow of snow,
Lovely wanton! fly not so.
Though the wane of age is mine,
Though youth's brilliant flush be thine,
Still I'm doomed to sigh for thee,
Blest, if thou couldst sigh for me!
See, in yonder flowery braid,
Culled for thee, my blushing maid,[1]
How the rose, of orient glow,
Mingles with the lily's snow;
Mark, how sweet their tints agree,
Just, my girl, like thee and me!


[1] In the same manner that Anacreon pleads for the whiteness of his
locks, from the beauty of the color in garlands, a shepherd, in
Theocritus, endeavors to recommend his black hair.






ODE LII.[1]


Away, away, ye men of rules,
What have I do with schools?
They'd make me learn, they'd make me think,
But would they make me love and drink?
Teach me this, and let me swim
My soul upon the goblet's brim;
Teach me this, and let me twine
Some fond, responsive heart to mine,
For, age begins to blanch my brow,
I've time for naught but pleasure now.

  Fly, and cool, my goblet's glow
At yonder fountain's gelid flow;
I'll quaff, my boy, and calmly sink
This soul to slumber as I drink.
Soon, too soon, my jocund slave,
You'll deck your master's grassy grave;
And there's an end--for ah, you know
They drink but little wine below!


[1] "This is doubtless the work of a more modern poet than Anacreon; for
at the period when he lived rhetoricians were not known."--DEGEN.

Though this ode is found in the Vatican manuscript, I am much inclined to
agree in this argument against its authenticity: for though the dawnings
of the art of rhetoric might already have appeared, the first who gave it
any celebrity was. Corax of Syracuse, and he flourished in the century
after Anacreon.






ODE LIII.


When I behold the festive train
Of dancing youth, I'm young again!
Memory wakes her magic trance,
And wings me lightly through the dance.
Come, Cybeba, smiling maid!
Cull the flower and twine the braid;
Bid the blush of summer's rose
Burn upon my forehead's snows;
And let me, while the wild and young
Trip the mazy dance along,
Fling my heap of years away,
And be as wild, as young as they.
Hither haste, some cordial, soul!
Help to my lips the brimming bowl;
And you shall see this hoary sage
Forget at once his locks and age.
He still can chant the festive hymn,
He still can kiss the goblet's brim;[1]
As deeply quaff, as largely fill,
And play the fool right nobly still.


[1] Wine is prescribed by Galen, as an excellent medicine for old men:
"_Quod frigidos et humbribus expletos calefaciut_," etc.; but Nature was
Anacreon's physician.

There is a proverb in Eriphus, as quoted by Athenaeus, which says, "that
wine makes an old man dance, whether he will or not."






ODE. LIV.[1]


Methinks, the pictured bull we see
Is amorous Jove--it must be he!
How fondly blest he seems to bear
That fairest of Phoenician fair!
How proud he breasts the foamy tide,
And spurns the billowy surge aside!
Could any beast of vulgar vein,
Undaunted thus defy the main?
No: he descends from climes above,
He looks the God, he breathes of Jove!


[1] "This ode is written upon., a picture which represented the rape, of
Europa."--MADAME DACIER.

It may probably have been a description of one of those coins, which the
Sidonians struck off in honor of Europa, representing a woman carried
across the sea by a bull. In the little treatise upon the goddess of
Syria, attributed very' falsely to Lucian, there is mention of this coin,
and of a temple dedicated by the Sidonians to Astarte, whom some, it
appears, confounded with Europa.






ODE LV.[1]


While we invoke the wreathed spring,
Resplendent rose! to thee we'll sing;
Resplendent rose, the flower of flowers,
Whose breath perfumes the Olympian bowers;
Whose virgin blush, of chastened dye,
Enchants so much our mortal eye.
When pleasure's spring-tide season glows.
The Graces love to wreathe the rose;
And Venus, in its fresh-blown leaves,
An emblem of herself perceives.
Oft hath the poet's magic tongue
The rose's fair luxuriance sung;
And long the Muses, heavenly maids,
Have reared it in their tuneful shades.
When, at the early glance of morn,
It sleeps upon the glittering thorn,
'Tis sweet to dare the tangled fence
To cull the timid floweret thence,
And wipe with tender hand away
The tear that on its blushes lay!
'Tis sweet to hold the infant stems,
Yet dropping with Aurora's gems,
And fresh inhale the spicy sighs
That from the weeping buds arise.

  When revel reigns, when mirth is high,
And Bacchus beams in every eye,
Our rosy fillets scent exhale,
And fill with balm the fainting gale.
There's naught in nature bright or gay,
Where roses do not shed their ray.
When morning paints the orient skies,
Her fingers burn with roseate dyes;[2]
Young nymphs betray; the Rose's hue,
O'er whitest arms it kindles thro'.
In Cytherea's form it glows,
And mingles with the living snows.

  The rose distils a healing balm,
The beating pulse of pain to calm;
Preserves the cold inurnèd clay,[3]
And mocks the vestige of decay:
And when, at length, in pale decline,
Its florid beauties fade and pine,
Sweet as in youth, its balmy breath
Diffuses odor even in death!
Oh! whence could such a plant have sprung?
Listen,--for thus the tale is sung.
When, humid, from the silvery stream,
Effusing beauty's warmest beam,
Venus appeared, in flushing hues,
Mellowed by ocean's briny dews;
When, in the starry courts above,
The pregnant brain of mighty Jove
Disclosed the nymph of azure glance,
The nymph who shakes the martial lance;--
Then, then, in strange eventful hour,
The earth produced an infant flower,
Which sprung, in blushing glories drest.
And wantoned o'er its parent breast.
The gods beheld this brilliant birth,
And hailed the Rose, the boon of earth!
With nectar drops, a ruby tide,
The sweetly orient buds they dyed,[4]
And bade them bloom, the flowers divine
Of him who gave the glorious vine;
And bade them on the spangled thorn
Expand their bosoms to the morn.


[1] This ode is a brilliant panegyric on the rose. "All antiquity [says
Barnes] has produced nothing more beautiful."

From the idea of peculiar excellence, which the ancients attached to this
flower, arose a pretty proverbial expression, used by Aristophanes,
according to Suidas "You have spoken roses."

[2] In the original here, he enumerates the many epithets of beauty,
borrowed from roses, which were used by the poets. We see that poets were
dignified in Greece with the title of sages: even the careless Anacreon,
who lived but for love and voluptuousness, was called by Plato the wise
Anacreon--_fuit haec sapienta quondam_.

[3] He here alludes to the use of the rose in embalming; and, perhaps (as
Barnes thinks), to the rosy unguent with which Venus anointed the corpse
of Hector.

[4] The author of the "Pervigilium Veneris" (a poem attributed to
Catullus, the style of which appears to me to have all the labored
luxuriance of a much later period) ascribes the tincture of the rose to
the blood from the wound of Adonis.






ODE LVI.


He, who instructs the youthful crew
To bathe them in the brimmer's dew,
And taste, uncloyed by rich excesses,
All the bliss that wine possesses;
He, who inspires the youth to bound
Elastic through the dance's round,--
Bacchus, the god again is here,
And leads along the blushing year;
The blushing year with vintage teems,
Ready to shed those cordial streams,
Which, sparkling in the cup of mirth,
Illuminate the sons of earth![1]

Then, when the ripe and vermil wine,--
Blest infant of the pregnant vine,
Which now in mellow clusters swells,--
Oh! when it bursts its roseate cells,
Brightly the joyous stream shall flow,
To balsam every mortal woe!
None shall be then cast down or weak,
For health and joy shall light each cheek;
No heart will then desponding sigh,
For wine shall bid despondence fly.
Thus--till another autumn's glow
Shall bid another vintage flow.


[1] Madame Dacier thinks that the poet here had the nepenthe of Homer in
his mind. Odyssey, lib. iv. This nepenthe was a something of exquisite
charm, infused by Helen into the wine of her guests, which had the power
of dispelling every anxiety. A French writer, De Mere, conjectures that
this spell, which made the bowl so beguiling, was the charm of Helen's
conversation. See Bayle, art. Helène.






ODE LVII[1]


Whose was the artist hand that spread
Upon this disk the ocean's bed?
And, in a flight of fancy, high
As aught on earthly wing can fly,
Depicted thus, in semblance warm,
The Queen of Love's voluptuous form
Floating along the silvery sea
In beauty's naked majesty!
Oh! he hath given the enamoured sight
A witching banquet of delight,
Where, gleaming through the waters clear,
Glimpses of undreamt charms appear,
And all that mystery loves to screen,
Fancy, like Faith, adores unseen.[2]

Light as a leaf, that on the breeze
Of summer skims the glassy seas,
She floats along the ocean's breast,
Which undulates in sleepy rest;
While stealing on, she gently pillows
Her bosom on the heaving billows.
Her bosom, like the dew-washed rose,
Her neck, like April's sparkling snows,
Illume the liquid path she traces,
And burn within the stream's embraces.
Thus on she moves, in languid pride,
Encircled by the azure tide,
As some fair lily o'er a bed
Of violets bends its graceful head.

Beneath their queen's inspiring glance,
The dolphins o'er the green sea dance,
Bearing in triumph young Desire,
And infant Love with smiles of fire!
While, glittering through the silver waves,
The tenants of the briny caves
Around the pomp their gambols play,
And gleam along the watery way.


[1] This ode is a very animated description of a picture of Venus on a
discus, which represented the goddess in her first emergence from the
waves. About two centuries after our poet wrote, the pencil of the artist
Apelles embellished this subject, in his famous painting of the Venus
Anadyomene, the model of which, as Pliny informs us, was the beautiful
Campaspe, given to him by Alexander; though, according to Natalis Comes,
lib. vii. cap. 16., it was Phryne who sat to Apelles for the face and
breast of this Venus.

[2] The picture here has all the delicate character of the semi-reducta
Venus, and affords a happy specimen of what the poetry of passion
_ought_ to be--glowing but through a veil, and stealing upon the heart
from concealment. Few of the ancients have attained this modesty of
description, which, like the golden cloud that hung over Jupiter and Juno,
is impervious to every beam but that of fancy.






ODE LVIII.


When Gold, as fleet as zephyr's' pinion,
Escapes like any faithless minion,[1]
And flies me (as he flies me ever),[2]
Do I pursue him? never, never!
No, let the false deserter go,
For who would court his direst foe?
But when I feel my lightened mind
No more by grovelling gold confined,
Then loose I all such clinging cares,
And cast them to the vagrant airs.
Then feel I, too, the Muse's spell,
And wake to life the dulcet shell,
Which, roused once more, to beauty sings,
While love dissolves along the strings!

But, scarcely has my heart been taught
How little Gold deserves a thought,
When, lo! the slave returns once more,
And with him wafts delicious store
Of racy wine, whose genial art
In slumber seals the anxious heart.
Again he tries my soul to sever
From love and song, perhaps forever!

Away, deceiver! why pursuing
Ceaseless thus my heart's undoing?
Sweet is the song of amorous fire.
Sweet the sighs that thrill the lyre;
Oh! sweeter far than all the gold
Thy wings can waft, thy mines can hold.
Well do I know thy arts, thy wiles--
They withered Love's young wreathèd smiles;
And o'er his lyre such darkness shed,
I thought its soul of song was fled!
They dashed the wine-cup, that, by him,
Was filled with kisses to the brim.[3]
Go--fly to haunts of sordid men,
But come not near the bard again.
Thy glitter in the Muse's shade,
Scares from her bower the tuneful maid;
And not for worlds would I forego
That moment of poetic glow,
When my full soul, in Fancy's stream,
Pours o'er the lyre, its swelling theme.
Away, away! to worldlings hence,
Who feel not this diviner sense;
Give gold to those who love that pest,--
But leave the poet poor and blest.


[1] There is a kind of pun in these words, as Madame Dacier has already
remarked; for Chrysos, which signifies gold, was also a frequent name for
a slave. In one of Lucian's dialogues, there is, I think, a similar play
upon the word, where the followers of Chrysippus are called golden fishes.
The puns of the ancients are, in general, even more vapid than our own;
some of the best are those recorded of Diogenes.

[2] This grace of iteration has already been taken notice of. Though
sometimes merely a playful beauty, it is peculiarly expressive of
impassioned sentiment, and we may easily believe that it was one of the
many sources of that energetic sensibility which breathed through the
style of Sappho.

[3] Horace has _Desiderique temperare poculum_, not figuratively, however,
like Anacreon, but importng the love-philtres of the witches. By "cups of
kisses" our poet may allude to a favorite gallantry among the ancients, of
drinking when the lips of their mistresses had touched the brim;--

  "Or leave a kiss within the cup And I'll not ask for wine."

As In Ben Jonson's translation from Philostratus; and Lucian has a conceit
upon the same idea, "that you may at once both drink and kiss."






ODE LIX.


Ripened by the solar beam,
Now the ruddy clusters teem,
In osier baskets borne along
By all the festal vintage throng
Of rosy youths and virgins fair,
Ripe as the melting fruits they bear.
Now, now they press the pregnant grapes,
And now the captive stream escapes,
In fervid tide of nectar gushing.
And for its bondage proudly blushing
While, round the vat's impurpled brim,
The choral song, the vintage hymn
Of rosy youths and virgins fair,
Steals on the charmed and echoing air.
Mark, how they drink, with all their eyes,
The orient tide that sparkling flies,
The infant Bacchus, born in mirth,
While Love stands by, to hail the birth.

When he, whose verging years decline
As deep into the vale as mine,
When he inhales the vintage-cup,
His feet, new-winged, from earth spring up,
And as he dances, the fresh air
Plays whispering through his silvery hair.
Meanwhile young groups whom love invites,
To joys even rivalling wine's delights,
Seek, arm in arm, the shadowy grove,
And there, in words and looks of love,
Such as fond lovers look and say,
Pass the sweet moonlight hours away.






ODE LX.[1]


Awake to life, my sleeping shell,
To Phoebus let thy numbers swell;
And though no glorious prize be thine,
No Pythian wreath around thee twine,
Yet every hour is glory's hour
To him who gathers wisdom's flower.
Then wake thee from thy voiceless slumbers,
And to the soft and Phrygian numbers,
Which, tremblingly, my lips repeat,
Send echoes, from thy chord as sweet.
'Tis thus the swan, with fading notes,
Down the Cayster's current floats,
While amorous breezes linger round,
And sigh responsive sound for sound.

Muse of the Lyre! illume my dream,
Thy Phoebus is my fancy's theme;
And hallowed is the harp I bear,
And hallowed is the wreath I wear,
Hallowed by him, the god of lays,
Who modulates the choral maze.
I sing the love which Daphne twined
Around the godhead's yielding mind;
I sing the blushing Daphne's flight
From this ethereal son of Light;
And how the tender, timid maid
Flew trembling to the kindly shade.
Resigned a form, alas, too fair,
Arid grew a verdant laurel there;
Whose leaves, with sympathetic thrill,
In terror seemed to tremble still!
The god pursued, with winged desire;
And when his hopes were all on fire,
And when to clasp the nymph he thought,
A lifeless tree was all he caught;
And 'stead of sighs that pleasure heaves,
Heard but the west-wind in the leaves!

But, pause, my soul, no more, no more--
Enthusiast, whither do I soar?
This sweetly-maddening dream of soul
Hath hurried me beyond the goal.
Why should I sing the mighty darts
Which fly to wound celestial hearts,
When ah, the song, with sweeter tone,
Can tell the darts that wound my own?
Still be Anacreon, still inspire
The descant of the Teian lyre:
Still let the nectared numbers float
Distilling love in every note!
And when some youth, whose glowing soul
Has felt the Paphian star's control,
When he the liquid lays shall hear,
His heart will flutter to his ear,
And drinking there of song divine,
Banquet on intellectual wine![2]


[1] This hymn to Apollo is supposed not to have been written by Anacreon;
and it is undoubtedly rather a sublimer flight than the Teian wing is
accustomed to soar. But in a poet of whose works so small a proportion has
reached us, diversity of style is by no means a safe criterion. If we knew
Horace but as a satirist, should we easily believe there could dwell such
animation in his lyre? Suidas says that our poet wrote hymns, and this
perhaps is one of them. We can perceive in what an altered and imperfect
state his works are at present, when we find a scholiast upon Horace
citing an ode from the third book of Anacreon.

[2] Here ends the last of the odes in the Vatican MS., whose authority
helps to confirm the genuine antiquity of them all, though a few have
stolen among the number, which we may hesitate in attributing to Anacreon.






ODE LXI.[1]


Youth's endearing charms are fled;
Hoary locks deform my head;
Bloomy graces, dalliance gay,
All the flowers of life decay.[2]
Withering age begins to trace
Sad memorials o'er my face;
Time has shed its sweetest bloom
All the future must be gloom.
This it is that sets me sighing;
Dreary is the thought of dying![3]
Lone and dismal is the road,
Down to Pluto's dark abode;
And, when once the journey's o'er,
Ah! we can return no more!


[1] The intrusion of this melancholy ode, among the careless levities of
our poet, reminds us of the skeletons which the Egyptians used to hang up
in the banquet-rooms, to inculcate a thought of mortality even amidst the
dissipations of mirth. If it were not for the beauty of its numbers, the
Teian Muse should disown this ode.

[2] Horace often, with feeling and elegance, deplores the fugacity of
human enjoyments.

[3] Regnier, a libertine French poet, has written some sonnets on the
approach of death, full of gloomy and trembling repentance. Chaulieu,
however, supports more consistently the spirit of the Epicurean
philosopher. See his poem, addressed to the Marquis de Lafare.






ODE LXII.[1]


Fill me, boy, as deep a draught,
As e'er was filled, as e'er was quaffed;
But let the water amply flow,
To cool the grape's intemperate glow;[2]
Let not the fiery god be single,
But with the nymphs in union mingle.
For though the bowl's the grave of sadness,
Ne'er let it be the birth of madness.
No, banish from our board tonight
The revelries of rude delight;
To Scythians leave these wild excesses,
Ours be the joy that soothes and blesses!
And while the temperate bowl we wreathe,
In concert let our voices breathe,
Beguiling every hour along
With harmony of soul and song.


[1] This ode consists of two fragments, which are to be found in
Athenaeus, book x., and which Barnes, from the similarity of their
tendency, has combined into one. I think this a very justifiable liberty,
and have adopted it in some other fragments of our poet.

[2] It was Amphictyon who first taught the Greeks to mix water with their
wine; in commemoration of which circumstance they erected altars to
Bacchus and the nymphs.






ODE LXIII.[1]


To Love, the soft and blooming child,
I touch the harp in descant wild;
To Love, the babe of Cyprian bowers,
The boy, who breathes and blushes flowers;
To Love, for heaven and earth adore him,
And gods and mortals bow before him!


[1] "This fragment is preserved in Clemens Alexandrinus, Storm, lib. vi.
and In Arsenius, Collect. Graec."--BARNES.

It appears to have been the opening of a hymn in praise of Love.






ODE LXIV.[1]


Haste thee, nymph, whose well-aimed spear
Wounds the fleeting mountain-deer!
Dian, Jove's immortal child,
Huntress of the savage wild!
Goddess with the sun-bright hair!
Listen to a people's prayer.
Turn, to Lethe's river turn,
There thy vanquished people mourn![2]
Come to Lethe's wavy shore,
Tell them they shall mourn no more.
Thine their hearts, their altars thine;
Must they, Dian--must they pine?


[1] This hymn to Diana is extant in Hephaestion. There is an anecdote of
our poet, which has led some to doubt whether he ever wrote any odes of
this kind. It is related by the Scholiast upon Pindar (Isthmionic. od. ii.
v. 1. as cited by Barnes) that Anaecreon being asked why he addressed all
his hymns to women, and none to the deities? answered, "Because women are
my deities."

I have assumed, it will be seen, in reporting this anecdote, the same
liberty which I have thought it right to take in translating some of the
odes; and it were to be wished that these little infidelities were always
allowable in interpreting the writings of the ancients.

[2] Lethe, a river of Iona, according to Strabo, falling into the Meander.
In its neighborhood was the city called Magnesia, in favor of whose
inhabitants our poet is supposed to have addressed this supplication to
Diana. It was written (as Madame Dacier conjectures) on the occasion of
some battle, in which the Magnesians had been defeated.






ODE LXV.[1]


Like some wanton filly sporting,
Maid Of Thrace, thou flyest my courting.
Wanton filly! tell me why
Thou trip'st away, with scornful eye,
And seem'st to think my doating heart
Is novice in the bridling art?
Believe me, girl, it is not so;
Thou'lt find this skilful hand can throw
The reins around that tender form,
However wild, however warm.
Yes--trust me I can tame thy force,
And turn and wind thee in the course.
Though, wasting now thy careless hours,
Thou sport amid the herbs and flowers,
Soon shalt thou feel the rein's control,
And tremble at the wished-for goal!


[1] This ode, which is addressed to some Thracian girl, exists in
Heraclides, and has been imitated very frequently by Horace, as all the
annotators have remarked. Madame Dacier rejects the allegory, which runs
so obviously through the poem, and supposes it to have been addressed to a
young mare belonging to Polycrates.

Pierius, in the fourth book of his "Hieroglyphics," cites this ode, and
informs us that the horse was the hieroglyphical emblem of pride.






ODE LXVI.[1]


To thee, the Queen of nymphs divine,
Fairest of all that fairest shine;
To thee, who rulest with darts of fire
This world of mortals, young Desire!
And oh! thou nuptial Power, to thee
Who bearest of life the guardian key,
Breathing my soul in fervent praise,
And weaving wild my votive lays,
For thee, O Queen! I wake the lyre,
For thee, thou blushing young Desire,
And oh! for thee, thou nuptial Power,
Come, and illume this genial hour.

  Look on thy bride, too happy boy,
And while thy lambent glance of joy
Plays over all her blushing charms,
Delay not, snatch her to thine arms,
Before the lovely, trembling prey,
Like a young birdling, wing away!
Turn, Stratocles, too happy youth,
Dear to the Queen of amorous truth,
And dear to her, whose yielding zone
Will soon resign her all thine own.
Turn to Myrilla, turn thine eye,
Breathe to Myrilla, breathe thy sigh.
To those bewitching beauties turn;
For thee they blush, for thee they burn.

  Not more the rose, the queen of flowers,
Outblushes all the bloom of bowers
Than she unrivalled grace discloses,
The sweetest rose, where all are roses.
Oh! may the sun, benignant, shed
His blandest influence o'er thy bed;
And foster there an infant tree,
To bloom like her, and tower like thee!


[1] This ode is introduced in the Romance of Theodorus Prodromus, and is
that kind of epithalamium which was sung like a scolium at the nuptial
banquet.






ODE LXVII.


Rich in bliss, I proudly scorn
The wealth of Amalthea's horn;
Nor should I ask to call the throne
Of the Tartessian prince my own;[1]
To totter through his train of years,
The victim of declining fears.
One little hour of joy to me
Is worth a dull eternity!


[1] He here alludes to Arganthonius, who lived, according to Lucian, an
hundred and fifty years; and reigned, according to Herodotus, eighty.






ODE LXVIII.


Now Neptune's month our sky deforms,
The angry night-cloud teems with storms;
And savage winds, infuriate driven,
Fly howling in the face of heaven!
Now, now, my friends, the gathering gloom
With roseate rays of wine illume:
And while our wreaths of parsley spread
Their fadeless foliage round our head,
Let's hymn the almighty power of wine,
And shed libations on his shrine!






ODE LXIX.


They wove the lotus band to deck
And fan with pensile wreath each neck;
And every guest, to shade his head,
Three little fragrant chaplets spread;[1]
And one was of the Egyptian leaf,
The rest were roses, fair and brief:
While from a golden vase profound,
To all on flowery beds around,
A Hebe, of celestial shape,
Poured the rich droppings of the grape!


[1] Longepierre, to give an idea of the luxurious estimation in which
garlands were held by the ancients, relates an anecdote of a courtezan,
who, in order to gratify three lovers, without leaving cause for Jealousy
with any of them, gave a kiss to one, let the other drink after her, and
put a garland on the brow of the third; so that each was satisfied with
his favor, and flattered himself with the preference.






ODE LXX.


A broken cake, with honey sweet,
Is all my spare and simple treat:
And while a generous bowl I crown
To float my little banquet down,
I take the soft, the amorous lyre,
And sing of love's delicious fire:
In mirthful measures warm and free,
I sing, dear maid, and sing for thee!






ODE LXXI.


With twenty chords my lyre is hung,
  And while I wake them all for thee,
Thou, O maiden, wild and young,
  Disportest in airy levity.

The nursling fawn, that in some shade
  Its antlered mother leaves behind,
Is not more wantonly afraid,
  More timid of the rustling wind!






ODE LXXII.


Fare thee well, perfidious maid,
My soul, too long on earth delayed,
Delayed, perfidious girl, by thee,
Is on the wing for liberty.
I fly to seek a kindlier sphere,
Since thou hast ceased to love me here!






ODE LXXIII.


Awhile I bloomed, a happy flower,
Till love approached one fatal hour,
And made my tender branches feel
The wounds of his avenging steel.
Then lost I fell, like some poor willow
That falls across the wintry billow!






ODE LXXIV.


Monarch Love, resistless boy,
With whom the rosy Queen of Joy,
And nymphs, whose eyes have Heaven's hue,
Disporting tread the mountain-dew;
Propitious, oh! receive my sighs,
Which, glowing with entreaty, rise
That thou wilt whisper to the breast
Of her I love thy soft behest:
And counsel her to learn from thee.
That lesson thou hast taught to me.
Ah! if my heart no flattery tell,
Thou'lt own I've learned that lesson well!






ODE LXXV.


Spirit of Love, whose locks unrolled,
Stream on the breeze like floating gold;
Come, within a fragrant cloud
Blushing with light, thy votary shroud;
And, on those wings that sparkling play,
Waft, oh, waft me hence away!
Love! my soul is full of thee,
Alive to all thy luxury.
But she, the nymph for whom I glow
The lovely Lesbian mocks my woe;
Smiles at the chill and hoary hues
That time upon my forehead strews.
Alas! I fear she keeps her charms,
In store for younger, happier arms!






ODE LXXVI.


Hither, gentle Muse of mine,
  Come and teach thy votary old
Many a golden hymn divine,
  For the nymph with vest of gold.

Pretty nymph, of tender age,
  Fair thy silky looks unfold;
Listen to a hoary sage,
  Sweetest maid with vest of gold!






ODE LXXVII.


Would that I were a tuneful lyre,
  Of burnished ivory fair,
Which, in the Dionysian choir,
  Some blooming boy should bear!

Would that I were a golden vase.
  That some bright nymph might hold
My spotless frame, with blushing grace,
  Herself as pure as gold!






ODE LXXVIII.


When Cupid sees how thickly now,
The snows of Time fall o'er my brow,
Upon his wing of golden light.
He passes with an eaglet's flight,
And flitting onward seems to say,
"Fare thee well, thou'st had thy day!"

Cupid, whose lamp has lent the ray,
That lights our life's meandering way,
That God, within this bosom stealing,
Hath wakened a strange, mingled feeling.
Which pleases, though so sadly teasing,
And teases, though so sweetly pleasing!

       *       *       *       *       *

Let me resign this wretched breath
  Since now remains to me
No other balm than kindly death,
  To soothe my misery!

       *       *       *       *       *

I know thou lovest a brimming measure,
  And art a kindly, cordial host;
But let me fill and drink at pleasure--
  Thus I enjoy the goblet most.

I fear that love disturbs my rest,
  Yet feel not love's impassioned care;
I think there's madness in my breast
  Yet cannot find that madness there!

       *       *       *       *       *

From dread Leucadia's frowning steep,
I'll plunge into the whitening deep:
And there lie cold, to death resigned,
Since Love intoxicates my mind!

       *       *       *       *       *

Mix me, child, a cup divine,
Crystal water, ruby wine;
Weave the frontlet, richly flushing
O'er my wintry temples blushing.
Mix the brimmer--Love and I
Shall no more the contest try.
Here--upon this holy bowl,
I surrender all my soul!








SONGS FROM THE GREEK ANTHOLOGY.






HERE AT THY TOMB.

BY MELEAGER.


Here, at thy tomb, these tears I shed,
  Tears, which though vainly now they roll,
Are all love hath to give the dead,
  And wept o'er thee with all love's soul;--

Wept in remembrance of that light.
  Which naught on earth, without thee, gives,
Hope of my heart! now quenched in night,
  But dearer, dead, than aught that lives.

Where is she? where the blooming bough
  That once my life's sole lustre made?
Torn off by death, 'tis withering now,
  And all its flowers in dust are laid.

Oh earth! that to thy matron breast
  Hast taken all those angel charms,
Gently, I pray thee, let her rest,--
  Gently, as in a mother's arms.






SALE OF CUPID.

BY MELEAGER.


Who'll buy a little boy? Look, yonder is he,
Fast asleep, sly rogue on his mother's knee;
So bold a young imp 'tisn't safe to keep,
So I'll part with him now, while he's sound asleep.
See his arch little nose, how sharp 'tis curled,
His wings, too, even in sleep unfurled;
And those fingers, which still ever ready are found
For mirth or for mischief, to tickle, or wound.

He'll try with his tears your heart to beguile,
But never you mind--he's laughing all the while;
For little he cares, so he has his own whim,
And weeping or laughing are all one to him.
His eye is as keen as the lightning's flash,
His tongue like the red bolt quick and rash;
And so savage is he, that his own dear mother
Is scarce more safe in his hands than another.

In short, to sum up this darling's praise,
He's a downright pest in all sorts of ways;
And if any one wants such an imp to employ,
He shall have a dead bargain of this little boy.
But see, the boy wakes--his bright tears flow--
His eyes seem to ask could I sell him? oh no,
Sweet child no, no--though so naughty you be,
You shall live evermore with my Lesbia and me.






TO WEAVE A GARLAND FOR THE ROSE.

BY PAUL, THE SILENTIARY.


To weave a garland for the rose.
  And think thus crown'd 'twould lovelier be,
Were far less vain than to suppose
  That silks and gems add grace to thee.
Where is the pearl whose orient lustre
  Would not, beside thee, look less bright?
What gold could match the glossy cluster
  Of those young ringlets full of light?

Bring from the land, where fresh it gleams,
  The bright blue gem of India's mine,
And see how soon, though bright its beams,
  'Twill pale before one glance of thine:
Those lips, too, when their sounds have blest us
  With some divine, mellifluous air,
Who would not say that Beauty's cestus
  Had let loose all its witcheries there?

Here, to this conquering host of charms
  I now give up my spell-bound heart.
Nor blush to yield even Reason's arms,
  When thou her bright-eyed conqueror art.
Thus to the wind all fears are given;
  Henceforth those eyes alone I see.
Where Hope, as in her own blue heaven,
  Sits beckoning me to bliss and thee!






WHY DOES SHE SO LONG DELAY?

BY PAUL, THE SILENTIARY.


Why does she so long delay?
  Night is waning fast away;
Thrice have I my lamp renewed,
  Watching here in solitude,
Where can she so long delay?
  Where, so long delay?

Vainly now have two lamps shone;
  See the third is nearly gone:
Oh that Love would, like the ray
  Of that weary lamp, decay!
But no, alas, it burns still on,
  Still, still, burns on.

Gods, how oft the traitress dear
  Swore, by Venus, she'd be here!
But to one so false as she
  What is man or deity?
Neither doth this proud one fear,--
  No, neither doth she fear.






TWIN'ST THOU WITH LOFTY WREATH THY BROW?

BY PAUL, THE SILENTIARY.


Twin'st thou with lofty wreath thy brow?
  Such glory then thy beauty sheds,
I almost think, while awed I bow
  'Tis Rhea's self before me treads.
Be what thou wilt,--this heart
Adores whate'er thou art!

Dost thou thy loosened ringlets leave,
  Like sunny waves to wander free?
Then, such a chain of charms they weave,
  As draws my inmost soul from me.
Do what thou wilt,--I must
Be charm'd by all thou dost!

Even when, enwrapt in silvery veils,
  Those sunny locks elude the sight,--
Oh, not even then their glory fails
  To haunt me with its unseen light.
Change as thy beauty may,
It charms in every way.

For, thee the Graces still attend,
  Presiding o'er each new attire,
And lending every dart they send
  Some new, peculiar touch of fire,
Be what thou wilt,--this heart
  Adores what'er thou art!






WHEN THE SAD WORD.

BY PAUL, THE SILENTIARY.


When the sad word, "Adieu," from my lip is nigh falling,
  And with it, Hope passes away,
Ere the tongue hath half breathed it, my fond heart recalling
  That fatal farewell, bids me stay,
For oh! 'tis a penance so weary
  One hour from thy presence to be,
That death to this soul were less dreary,
  Less dark than long absence from thee.

Thy beauty, like Day, o'er the dull world breaking.
  Brings life to the heart it shines o'er,
And, in mine, a new feeling of happiness waking,
  Made light what was darkness before.
But mute is the Day's sunny glory,
While thine hath a voice, on whose breath,
  More sweet than the Syren's sweet story,
My hopes hang, through life and through death!






MY MOPSA IS LITTLE.

BY PHILODEMUS.


My Mopsa is little, my Mopsa is brown,
But her cheek is as smooth as the peach's soft down,
  And, for blushing, no rose can come near her;
In short, she has woven such nets round my heart,
That I ne'er from my dear little Mopsa can part,--
  Unless I can find one that's dearer.

Her voice hath a music that dwells on the ear,
And her eye from its orb gives a daylight so clear,
  That I'm dazzled whenever I meet her;
Her ringlets, so curly, are Cupid's own net,
And her lips, oh their sweetness I ne'er shall forget--
  Till I light upon lips that are sweeter.

But 'tis not her beauty that charms me alone,
'Tis her mind, 'tis that language whose eloquent tone
  From the depths of the grave could revive one:
In short, here I swear, that if death were her doom,
I would instantly join my dead love in the tomb--
 Unless I could meet with a live






STILL, LIKE DEW IN SILENCE FALLING.

BY MELEAGER.


Still, like dew in silence falling,
  Drops for thee the nightly tear
Still that voice the past recalling,
  Dwells, like echo, on my ear,
    Still, still!

Day and night the spell hangs o'er me,
  Here forever fixt thou art:
As thy form first shone before me,
  So 'tis graven on this heart,
    Deep, deep!

Love, oh Love, whose bitter sweetness,
  Dooms me to this lasting pain.
Thou who earnest with so much fleetness,
Why so slow to go again?
  Why? why?






UP, SAILOR BOY, 'TIS DAY.


Up, sailor boy, 'tis day!
  The west wind blowing,
  The spring tide flowing,
Summon thee hence away.
Didst thou not hear yon soaring swallow sing?
Chirp, chirp,--in every note he seemed to say
'Tis Spring, 'tis Spring.
Up boy, away,--
Who'd stay on land to-day?
  The very flowers
  Would from their bowers
Delight to wing away!

Leave languid youths to pine
  On silken pillows;
  But be the billows
Of the great deep thine.
Hark, to the sail the breeze sings, "Let us fly;"
While soft the sail, replying to the breeze,
Says, with a yielding sigh,
"Yes, where you; please."
Up, boy, the wind, the ray,
  The blue sky o'er thee,
  The deep before thee,
All cry aloud, "Away!"






IN MYRTLE WREATHS.

BY ALCAEUS.


In myrtle wreaths my votive sword I'll cover,
  Like them of old whose one immortal blow
Struck off the galling fetters that hung over
  Their own bright land, and laid her tyrant low.
Yes, loved Harmodius, thou'rt undying;
  Still midst the brave and free,
In isles, o'er ocean lying,
  Thy home shall ever be.

In myrtle leaves my sword shall hide its lightning,
  Like his, the youth, whose ever-glorious blade
Leapt forth like flame, the midnight banquet brightening;'
  And in the dust a despot victim laid.
Blest youths; how bright in Freedom's story
  Your wedded names shall be;
A tyrant's death your glory,
  Your meed, a nation free!








JUVENILE POEMS.

1801.




TO JOSEPH ATKINSON, ESQ.

MY DEAR SIR,


I feel a very sincere pleasure in dedicating to you the Second Edition of
our friend LITTLE'S Poems. I am not unconscious that there are many in the
collection which perhaps it would be prudent to have altered or omitted;
and, to say the truth, I more than once revised them for that purpose;
but, I know not why, I distrusted either my heart or my judgment; and the
consequence is you have them in their original form:

   _non possunt nostros multae, Faustine, liturae
        emendare jocos; una litura potest_.

I am convinced, however, that, though not quite a _casuiste relâché_, you
have charity enough to forgive such inoffensive follies: you know that the
pious Beza was not the less revered for those sportive Juvenilia which he
published under a fictitious name; nor did the levity of Bembo's poems
prevent him from making a very good cardinal.

Believe me, my dear friend.

With the truest esteem,

Yours,

T. M.

_April 19, 1802_






JUVENILE POEMS






FRAGMENTS OF COLLEGE EXERCISES.


    _Nobilitas sola est atque unica virtus_.--JUV.


Mark those proud boasters of a splendid line,
Like gilded ruins, mouldering while they shine,
How heavy sits that weight, of alien show,
Like martial helm upon an infant's brow;
Those borrowed splendors whose contrasting light
Throws back the native shades in deeper night.

Ask the proud train who glory's train pursue,
Where are the arts by which that glory grew?
The genuine virtues with that eagle-gaze
Sought young Renown in all her orient blaze!
Where is the heart by chymic truth refined,
The exploring soul whose eye had read mankind?
Where are the links that twined, with heavenly art,
His country's interest round the patriot's heart?

       *       *       *       *       *

    _Justum bellum quibus necessarium, et pia arma quibus nulla nisi in
    armis relinquitur spes_.--LIVY.

       *       *       *       *       *

Is there no call, no consecrating cause
Approved by Heav'n, ordained by nature's laws,
Where justice flies the herald of our way,
And truth's pure beams upon the banners play?

Yes, there's a call sweet as an angel's breath
To slumbering babes or innocence in death;
And urgent as the tongue of Heaven within,
When the mind's balance trembles upon sin.

Oh! 'tis our country's voice, whose claim should meet
An echo in the soul's most deep retreat;
Along the heart's responding chords should run,
Nor let a tone there vibrate--but the one!






VARIETY.


Ask what prevailing, pleasing power
  Allures the sportive, wandering bee
To roam untired, from flower to flower,
  He'll tell you, 'tis variety.

Look Nature round; her features trace,
  Her seasons, all her changes see;
And own, upon Creation's face,
  The greatest charm's variety.

For me, ye gracious powers above!
  Still let me roam, unfixt and free;
In all things,--but the nymph I love
  I'll change, and taste variety.

But, Patty, not a world of charms
  Could e'er estrange my heart from thee;--
No, let me ever seek those arms.
  There still I'll find variety.






TO A BOY, WITH A WATCH,

WRITTEN FOR A FRIEND


Is it not sweet, beloved youth,
  To rove through Erudition's bowers,
And cull the golden fruits of truth,
  And gather Fancy's brilliant flowers?

And is it not more sweet than this,
  To feel thy parents' hearts approving,
And pay them back in sums of bliss
  The dear, the endless debt of loving?

It must be so to thee, my youth;
  With this idea toil is lighter;
This sweetens all the fruits of truth,
  And makes the flowers of fancy brighter.

The little gift we send thee, boy,
  May sometimes teach thy soul to ponder,
If indolence or siren joy
  Should ever tempt that soul to wander.

'Twill tell thee that the wingèd day
  Can, ne'er be chain'd by man's endeavor;
That life and time shall fade away,
  While heaven and virtue bloom forever!






SONG.


If I swear by that eye, you'll allow,
  Its look is so shifting and new,
That the oath I might take on it now
  The very next glance would undo.

Those babies that nestle so sly
  Such thousands of arrows have got,
That an oath, on the glance of an eye
  Such as yours, may be off in a shot.

Should I swear by the dew on your lip,
  Though each moment the treasure renews,
If my constancy wishes to trip,
  I may kiss off the oath when I choose.

Or a sigh may disperse from that flower;
  Both the dew and the oath that are there;
And I'd make a new vow every hour,
  To lose them so sweetly in air.

But clear up the heaven of your brow,
  Nor fancy my faith is a feather;
On my heart I will pledge you my vow,
  And they both must be broken together!






TO .......


Remember him thou leavest behind,
  Whose heart is warmly bound to thee,
Close as the tenderest links can bind
  A heart as warm as heart can be.

Oh! I had long in freedom roved,
  Though many seemed my soul to snare;
'Twas passion when I thought I loved,
  'Twas fancy when I thought them fair.

Even she, my muse's early theme,
  Beguiled me only while she warmed;
Twas young desire that fed the dream,
  And reason broke what passion formed.

But thou-ah! better had it been
  If I had still in freedom roved,
If I had ne'er thy beauties seen,
  For then I never should have loved.

Then all the pain which lovers feel
  Had never to this heart been known;
But then, the joys that lovers steal,
  Should _they_ have ever been my own?

Oh! trust me, when I swear thee this,
  Dearest! the pain of loving thee,
The very pain is sweeter bliss
  Than passion's wildest ecstasy.

That little cage I would not part,
  In which my soul is prisoned now,
For the most light and winged heart
  That wantons on the passing vow.

Still, my beloved! still keep in mind,
  However far removed from me,
That there is one thou leavest behind,
  Whose heart respires for only thee!

And though ungenial ties have bound
  Thy fate unto another's care,
That arm, which clasps thy bosom round,
  Cannot confine the heart that's there.

No, no! that heart is only mine
  By ties all other ties above,
For I have wed it at a shrine
  Where we have had no priest but Love.






SONG.


When Time who steals our years away
  Shall steal our pleasures too,
The memory of the past will stay
  And half our joys renew,
Then, Julia, when thy beauty's flower
  Shall feel the wintry air,
Remembrance will recall the hour
  When thou alone wert fair.
Then talk no more of future gloom;
  Our joys shall always last;
For Hope shall brighten days to come,
  And Memory gild the past.

Come, Chloe, fill the genial bowl,
  I drink to Love and thee:
Thou never canst decay in soul,
  Thou'lt still be young for me.
And as thy; lips the tear-drop chase,
  Which on my cheek they find,
So hope shall steal away the trace
  That sorrow leaves behind.
Then fill the bowl--away with gloom!
  Our joys shall always last;
For Hope shall brighten days to come,
  And Memory gild the past.

But mark, at thought of future years
  When love shall lose its soul,
My Chloe drops her timid tears,
  They mingle with my bowl.
How like this bowl of wine, my fair,
  Our loving life shall fleet;
Though tears may sometimes mingle there,
  The draught will still be sweet.
Then fill the cup--away with gloom!
  Our joys shall always last;
For Hope will brighten days to come,
  And Memory gild the past.






SONG.


Have you not seen the timid tear,
  Steal trembling from mine eye?
Have you not marked the flush of fear,
  Or caught the murmured sigh?
And can you think my love is chill,
  Nor fixt on you alone?
And can you rend, by doubting still,
  A heart so much your own?

To you my soul's affections move,
  Devoutly, warmly true;
My life has been a task of love,
  One long, long thought of you.
If all your tender faith be o'er,
  If still my truth you'll try;
Alas, _I_ know but _one_ proof more--
  I'll bless your name, and die!






REUBEN AND ROSE.

A TALE OF ROMANCE.


The darkness that hung upon Willumberg's walls
  Had long been remembered with awe and dismay;
For years not a sunbeam had played in its halls,
  And it seemed as shut out from the regions of day.

Though the valleys were brightened by many a beam,
  Yet none could the woods of that castle illume;
And the lightning which flashed on the neighboring stream
  Flew back, as if fearing to enter the gloom!

"Oh! when shall this horrible darkness disperse!"
  Said Willumberg's lord to the Seer of the Cave;--
"It can never dispel," said the wizard of verse,
  "Till the bright star of chivalry sinks in the wave!"

And who was the bright star of chivalry then?
  Who _could_ be but Reuben, the flower of the age?
For Reuben was first in the combat of men,
  Though Youth had scarce written his name on her page.

For Willumberg's daughter his young heart had beat,
  For Rose, who was bright as the spirit of dawn,
When with wand dropping diamonds, and silvery feet,
  It walks o'er the flowers of the mountain and lawn.

Must Rose, then, from Reuben so fatally sever?
  Sad, sad were the words of the Seer of the Cave,
That darkness should cover that castle forever,
  Or Reuben be sunk in the merciless wave!

To the wizard she flew, saying, "Tell me, oh, tell?
  Shall my Reuben no more be restored to my eyes?"
"Yes, yes--when a spirit shall toll the great bell
  Of the mouldering abbey, your Reuben shall rise!"

Twice, thrice he repeated "Your Reuben shall rise!"
  And Rose felt a moment's release from her pain;
And wiped, while she listened, the tears from her eyes.
  And hoped she might yet see her hero again.

That hero could smite at the terrors of death,
  When he felt that he died for the sire of his Rose;
To the Oder he flew, and there, plunging beneath,
  In the depth of the billows soon found his repose.--

How strangely the order of destiny falls!
  Not long in the waters the warrior lay,
When a sunbeam was seen to glance over the walls,
  And the castle of Willumberg basked in the ray!

All, all but the soul of the maid was in light,
  There sorrow and terror lay gloomy and blank:
Two days did she wander, and all the long night,
  In quest of her love, on the wide river's bank.

Oft, oft did she pause for the toll of the bell,
  And heard but the breathings of night in the air;
Long, long did she gaze on the watery swell,
  And saw but the foam of the white billow there.

And often as midnight its veil would undraw,
  As she looked at the light of the moon in the stream,
She thought 'twas his helmet of silver she saw,
  As the curl of the surge glittered high in the beam.

And now the third night was begemming the sky;
  Poor Rose, on the cold dewy margent reclined,
There wept till the tear almost froze in her eye,
  When--hark!--'twas the bell that came deep in the wind!

She startled, and saw, through the glimmering shade,
  A form o'er the waters in majesty glide;
She knew 'twas her love, though his cheek was decayed,
And his helmet of silver was washed by the tide.

Was this what the Seer of the Cave had foretold?--
  Dim, dim through the phantom the moon shot a gleam;
'Twas Reuben, but, ah! he was deathly and cold,
  And fleeted away like the spell of a dream!

Twice, thrice did he rise, and as often she thought
  From the bank to embrace him, but vain her endeavor!
Then, plunging beneath, at a billow she caught,
  And sunk to repose on its bosom forever!






DID NOT.


'Twas a new feeling--something more
Than we had dared to own before.
  Which then we hid not;
We saw it in each other's eye,
And wished, in every half-breathed sigh,
  To speak, but did not.

She felt my lips' impassioned touch--
'Twas the first time I dared so much,
  And yet she chid not;
But whispered o'er my burning brow,
"Oh! do you doubt I love you now?"
  Sweet soul! I did not.

Warmly I felt her bosom thrill,
I prest it closer, closer still,
  Though gently bid not;
Till--oh! the world hath seldom heard
Of lovers, who so nearly erred,
  And yet, who did not.






TO .......


That wrinkle, when first I espied it,
  At once put my heart out of pain;
Till the eye, that was glowing beside it,
  Disturbed my ideas again.

Thou art just in the twilight at present,
  When woman's declension begins;
When, fading from all that is pleasant,
  She bids a good night to her sins.

Yet thou still art so lovely to me,
  I would sooner, my exquisite mother!
Repose in the sunset of thee,
  Than bask in the noon of another.






TO MRS. .......

ON SOME CALUMNIES AGAINST HER CHARACTER.


Is not thy mind a gentle mind?
Is not that heart a heart refined?
Hast thou not every gentle grace,
We love in woman's mind and face?
And, oh! art _thou_ a shrine for Sin
To hold her hateful worship in?

No, no, be happy--dry that tear--
Though some thy heart hath harbored near,
May now repay its love with blame;
Though man, who ought to shield thy fame,
Ungenerous man, be first to shun thee;
Though all the world look cold upon thee,
Yet shall thy pureness keep thee still
Unharmed by that surrounding chill;
Like the famed drop, in crystal found,[1]
Floating, while all was frozen round,--
Unchilled unchanging shalt thou be,
Safe in thy own sweet purity.


[1] This alludes to a curious gem, upon which Claudian has left
us some very elaborate epigrams. It was a drop of pure water enclosed
within a piece of crystal. Addison mentions a curiosity of this kind at
Milan; and adds; "It is such a rarity as this that I saw at Vendöme in
France, which they there pretend is a tear that our Saviour shed over
Lazarus, and was gathered up by an angel, who put it into a little crystal
vial, and made a present of it to Mary Magdalen".






ANACREONTIC.


    --_in lachrymas verterat omne merum_.
    TIB. lib. i. eleg. 5.


Press the grape, and let it pour
Around the board its purple shower:
And, while the drops my goblet steep,
I'll think in woe the clusters weep.

Weep on, weep on, my pouting vine!
Heaven grant no tears, but tears of wine.
Weep on; and, as thy sorrows flow,
I'll taste the luxury of woe.






TO .......


When I loved you, I can't but allow
  I had many an exquisite minute;
But the scorn that I feel for you now
  Hath even more luxury in it.

Thus, whether we're on or we're off,
  Some witchery seems to await you;
To love you was pleasant enough,
  And, oh! 'tis delicious hate you!






TO JULIA.

IN ALLUSION TO SOME ILLIBERAL CRITICISMS.


Why, let the stingless critic chide
With all that fume of vacant pride
Which mantles o'er the pendant fool,
Like vapor on a stagnant pool.
Oh! if the song, to feeling true,
Can please the elect, the sacred few,
Whose souls, by Taste and Nature taught,
Thrill with the genuine pulse of thought--
If some fond feeling maid like thee,
The warm-eyed child of Sympathy,
Shall say, while o'er my simple theme
She languishes in Passion's dream,
"He was, indeed, a tender soul--
 No critic law, no chill control,
 Should ever freeze, by timid art,
 The flowings of so fond a heart!"
Yes, soul of Nature! soul of Love!
That, hovering like a snow-winged dove,
Breathed o'er my cradle warblings wild,
And hailed me Passion's warmest child,--
Grant me the tear from Beauty's eye,
From Feeling's breast the votive sigh;
Oh! let my song, my memory find,
A shrine within the tender mind!
And I will smile when critics chide,
And I will scorn the fume of pride
Which mantles o'er the pendant fool,
Like vapor round some stagnant pool!






TO JULIA.


Mock me no more with Love's beguiling dream,
  A dream, I find, illusory as sweet:
One smile of friendship, nay, of cold esteem,
  Far dearer were than passion's bland deceit!

I've heard you oft eternal truth declare;
  Your heart was only mine, I once believed.
Ah! shall I say that all your vows were air?
  And _must_ I say, my hopes were all deceived?

Vow, then, no longer that our souls are twined
  That all our joys are felt with mutual zeal;
Julia!--'tis pity, pity makes you kind;
  You know I love, and you would _seem_ to feel.

But shall I still go seek within those arms
  A joy in which affection takes no part?
No, no, farewell! you give me but your charms,
  When I had fondly thought you gave your heart.






THE SHRINE.

TO .......


My fates had destined me to rove
A long, long pilgrimage of love;
And many an altar on my way
Has lured my pious steps to stay;
For if the saint was young and fair,
I turned, and sung my vespers there.
This, from a youthful pilgrim's fire,
Is what your pretty saints require:
To pass, nor tell a single bead,
With them would be profane indeed!
But, trust me, all this young devotion
Was but to keep my zeal in motion;
And, every humbler altar past,
I now have reached THE SHRINE at last!






TO A LADY,

WITH SOME MANUSCRIPT POEMS,

ON LEAVING THE COUNTRY.


When, casting many a look behind,
  I leave the friends I cherish here--
Perchance some other friends to find,
  But surely finding none so dear--

Haply the little simple page,
  Which votive thus I've traced for thee,
May now and then a look engage,
  And steal one moment's thought for me.

But, oh! in pity let not those
  Whose hearts are not of gentle mould,
Let not the eye that seldom flows
  With feeling's tear, my song behold.

For, trust me, they who never melt
  With pity, never melt with love;
And such will frown at all I've felt,
  And all my loving lays reprove.

But if, perhaps, some gentler mind,
  Which rather loves to praise than blame,
Should in my page an interest find.
  And linger kindly on my name;

Tell him--or, oh! if, gentler still,
  By female lips my name be blest:
For where do all affections thrill
  So sweetly as in woman's breast?--

Tell her, that he whose loving themes
  Her eye indulgent wanders o'er,
Could sometimes wake from idle dreams,
  And bolder flights of fancy soar;

That Glory oft would claim the lay,
  And Friendship oft his numbers move;
But whisper then, that, "sooth to say,
  His sweetest song was given to Love!"






TO JULIA.


Though Fate, my girl, may bid us part,
  Our souls it cannot, shall not sever;
The heart will seek its kindred heart,
  And cling to it as close as ever.

But must we, must we part indeed?
  Is all our dream of rapture over?
And does not Julia's bosom bleed
  To leave so dear, so fond a lover?

Does _she_, too, mourn?--Perhaps she may;
  Perhaps she mourns our bliss so fleeting;
But why is Julia's eye so gay,
  If Julia's heart like mine is beating?

I oft have loved that sunny glow
  Of gladness in her blue eye beaming--
But can the bosom bleed with woe
  While joy is in the glances beaming?

No, no!--Yet, love, I will not chide;
  Although your heart _were_ fond of roving,
Nor that, nor all the world beside
  Could keep your faithful boy from loving.

You'll soon be distant from his eye,
  And, with you, all that's worth possessing.
Oh! then it will be sweet to die,
  When life has lost its only blessing!






TO .......


Sweet lady, look not thus again:
  Those bright, deluding smiles recall
A maid remember'd now with pain,
  Who was my love, my life, my all!

Oh! while this heart bewildered took
  Sweet poison from her thrilling eye,
Thus would she smile and lisp and look,
  And I would hear and gaze and sigh!

Yes, I did love her--wildly love--
  She was her sex's best deceiver!
And oft she swore she'd never rove--
  And I was destined to believe her!

Then, lady, do not wear the smile
  Of one whose smile could thus betray;
Alas! I think the lovely wile
  Again could steal my heart away.

For, when those spells that charmed my mind
  On lips so pure as thine I see,
I fear the heart which she resigned
  Will err again and fly to thee!






NATURE'S LABELS.

A FRAGMENT.


In vain we fondly strive to trace
The soul's reflection in the face;
In vain we dwell on lines and crosses,
Crooked mouth or short proboscis;
Boobies have looked as wise and bright
As Plato or the Stagirite:
And many a sage and learned skull
Has peeped through windows dark and dull.
Since then, though art do all it can,
We ne'er can reach the inward man,
Nor (howsoe'er "learned Thebans" doubt)
The inward woman, from without,
Methinks 'twere well if nature could
(And Nature could, if Nature would)
Some pithy, short descriptions write
On tablets large, in black and white,
Which she might hang about our throttles,
Like labels upon physic-bottles;
And where all men might read--but stay--
As dialectic sages say,
The argument most apt and ample
For common use is the example.
For instance, then, if Nature's care
Had not portrayed, in lines so fair,
The inward soul of Lucy Lindon.
_This_ is the label she'd have pinned on.

LABEL FIRST.

Within this form there lies enshrined
The purest, brightest gem of mind.
Though Feeling's hand may sometimes throw
Upon its charms the shade of woe,
The lustre of the gem, when veiled,
Shall be but mellowed, not concealed.

       *       *       *       *       *

Now, sirs, imagine, if you're able,
That Nature wrote a second label,
They're her own words--at least suppose so--
And boldly pin it on Pomposo.

LABEL SECOND.

When I composed the fustian brain
Of this redoubted Captain Vain.
I had at hand but few ingredients,
And so was forced to use expedients.
I put therein some small discerning,
A grain of sense, a grain of learning;
And when I saw the void behind,
I filled it up with--froth and wind!

       *       *       *       *       *






TO JULIA

ON HER BIRTHDAY.


When Time was entwining the garland of years,
  Which to crown my beloved was given,
Though some of the leaves might be sullied with tears,
  Yet the flowers were all gathered in heaven.

And long may this garland be sweet to the eye,
  May its verdure forever be new;
Young Love shall enrich it with many a sigh,
  And Sympathy nurse it with dew.






A REFLECTION AT SEA.


See how, beneath the moonbeam's smile,
  Yon little billow heaves its breast,
And foams and sparkles for awhile,--
  Then murmuring subsides to rest.

Thus man, the sport of bliss and care,
  Rises on time's eventful sea:
And, having swelled a moment there,
  Thus melts into eternity!






CLORIS AND FANNY.


Cloris! if I were Persia's king,
  I'd make my graceful queen of thee;
While FANNY, wild and artless thing,
  Should but thy humble handmaid be.

There is but _one_ objection in it--
  That, verily, I'm much afraid
I should, in some unlucky minute,
  Forsake the mistress for the maid.






THE SHIELD.


Say, did you not hear a voice of death!
  And did you not mark the paly form
Which rode on the silvery mist of the heath,
  And sung a ghostly dirge in the storm?

Was it the wailing bird of the gloom,
  That shrieks on the house of woe all night?
Or a shivering fiend that flew to a tomb,
  To howl and to feed till the glance of light?

'Twas _not_ the death-bird's cry from the wood,
  Nor shivering fiend that hung on the blast;
'Twas the shade of Helderic--man of blood--
  It screams for the guilt of days that are past.

See, how the red, red lightning strays,
  And scares the gliding ghosts of the heath!
Now on the leafless yew it plays,
  Where hangs the shield of this son of death.

That shield is blushing with murderous stains;
  Long has it hung from the cold yew's spray;
It is blown by storms and washed by rains,
  But neither can take the blood away!

Oft by that yew, on the blasted field,
  Demons dance to the red moon's light;
While the damp boughs creak, and the swinging shield
  Sings to the raving spirit of night!






TO JULIA WEEPING.


Oh! if your tears are given to care,
   If real woe disturbs your peace,
Come to my bosom, weeping fair!
  And I will bid your weeping cease.

But if with Fancy's visioned fears,
  With dreams of woe your bosom thrill;
You look so lovely in your tears,
  That I must bid you drop them still.






DREAMS.

TO ... ....


In slumber, I prithee how is it
  That souls are oft taking the air,
And paying each other a visit,
  While bodies are heaven knows where?

Last night, 'tis in vain to deny it,
  Your soul took a fancy to roam,
For I heard her, on tiptoe so quiet,
  Come ask, whether _mine_ was at home.

And mine let her in with delight,
  And they talked and they laughed the time through;
For, when souls come together at night,
  There is no saying what they mayn't do!

And _your_ little Soul, heaven bless her!
  Had much to complain and to say,
Of how sadly you wrong and oppress her
  By keeping her prisoned all day.

"If I happen," said she, "but to steal
  "For a peep now and then to her eye,
"Or, to quiet the fever I feel,
  "Just venture abroad on a sigh;

"In an instant she frightens me in
  "With some phantom of prudence or terror,
"For fear I should stray into sin,
  "Or, what is still worse, into error!

"So, instead of displaying my graces,
  "By daylight, in language and mien,
"I am shut up in corners and places,
  "Where truly I blush to be seen!"

Upon hearing this piteous confession,
  _My_ Soul, looking tenderly at her,
Declared, as for grace and discretion,
  He did not know much of the matter;

"But, to-morrow, sweet Spirit!" he said,
  "Be at home, after midnight, and then
"I will come when your lady's in bed,
  "And we'll talk o'er the subject again."

So she whispered a word in his ear,
  I suppose to her door to direct him,
And, just after midnight, my dear,
  Your polite little Soul may expect him.






TO ROSA.

WRITTEN DURING ILLNESS.


The wisest soul, by anguish torn,
  Will soon unlearn the lore it knew;
And when the shrining casket's worn,
  The gem within will tarnish too.

But love's an essence of the soul,
  Which sinks hot with this chain of clay;
Which throbs beyond the chill control
  Of withering pain or pale decay.

And surely, when the touch of Death
  Dissolves the spirit's earthly ties,
Love still attends the immortal breath,
  And makes it purer for the skies!

Oh Rosa, when, to seek its sphere,
  My soul shall leave this orb of men,
That love which formed its treasure here,
  Shall be its _best_ of treasures then!

And as, in fabled dreams of old,
  Some air-born genius, child of time,
Presided o'er each star that rolled,
  And tracked it through its path sublime;

So thou, fair planet, not unled,
  Shalt through thy mortal orbit stray;
Thy lover's shade, to thee still wed,
  Shall linger round thy earthly way.

Let other spirits range the sky,
  And play around each starry gem;
I'll bask beneath that lucid eye,
  Nor envy worlds of suns to them.

And when that heart shall cease to beat,
  And when that breath at length is free,
Then, Rosa, soul to soul we'll meet,
  And mingle to eternity!






SONG.


The wreath you wove, the wreath you wove,
  Is fair--but oh, how fair,
If Pity's hand had stolen from Love
One leaf, to mingle there!

If every rose with gold were tied,
  Did gems for dewdrops fall,
One faded leaf where Love had sighed
  Were sweetly worth them all.

The wreath you wove,--the wreath you wove
  Our emblem well may be;
Its bloom is yours, but hopeless Love
  Must keep its tears for me.






THE SALE OF LOVES.


I dreamt that, in the Paphian groves,
  My nets by moonlight laying,
I caught a flight of wanton Loves,
  Among the rose-beds playing.
Some just had left their silvery shell,
  While some were full in feather;
So pretty a lot of Loves to sell,
  Were never yet strung together.
    Come buy my Loves,
    Come buy my Loves,
Ye dames and rose-lipped misses!--
  They're new and bright,
  The cost is light,
For the coin of this isle is kisses.

First Cloris came, with looks sedate.
  The coin on her lips was ready;
"I buy," quoth she, "my Love by weight,
  "Full grown, if you please, and steady."
"Let mine be light," said Fanny, "pray--
  "Such lasting toys undo one;
"A light little Love that will last to-day,--
  "To-morrow I'll sport a new one."
     Come buy my Loves,
     Come buy my Loves,
Ye dames and rose-lipped misses!--
  There's some will keep,
  Some light and cheap
At from ten to twenty kisses.

The learned Prue took a pert young thing,
  To divert her virgin Muse with,
And pluck sometimes a quill from his wing.
  To indite her billet-doux with,
Poor Cloe would give for a well-fledged pair
  Her only eye, if you'd ask it;
And Tabitha begged, old toothless fair.
  For the youngest Love in the basket.
    Come buy my Loves, etc.

But _one_ was left, when Susan came,
  One worth them all together;
At sight of her dear looks of shame,
  He smiled and pruned his feather.
She wished the boy--'twas more than whim--
  Her looks, her sighs betrayed it;
But kisses were not enough for him,
  I asked a heart and she paid it!
    Good-by, my Loves,
    Good-by, my Loves,
'Twould make you smile to've seen us
  First, trade for this
  Sweet child of bliss,
And then nurse the boy between us.






TO .... ....


The world has just begun to steal
  Each hope that led me lightly on;
I felt not, as I used to feel,
  And life grew dark and love was gone.

No eye to mingle sorrow's tear,
  No lip to mingle pleasure's breath,
No circling arms to draw me near--
  'Twas gloomy, and I wished for death.

But when I saw that gentle eye,
  Oh! something seemed to tell me then,
That I was yet too young to die,
  And hope and bliss might bloom again.

With every gentle smile that crost
  Your kindling cheek, you lighted home
Some feeling which my heart had lost
  And peace which far had learned to roam.

'Twas then indeed so sweet to live,
   Hope looked so new and Love so kind.
That, though I mourn, I yet forgive
   The ruin they have left behind.

I could have loved you--oh, so well!--
  The dream, that wishing boyhood knows,
Is but a bright, beguiling spell,
  That only lives while passion glows.

But, when this early flush declines,
  When the heart's sunny morning fleets,
You know not then how close it twines
  Round the first kindred soul it meets.

Yes, yes, I could have loved, as one
  Who, while his youth's enchantments fall,
Finds something dear to rest upon,
  Which pays him for the loss of all.






TO ....  ....


Never mind how the pedagogue proses,
  You want not antiquity's stamp;
A lip, that such fragrance discloses,
  Oh! never should smell of the lamp.

Old Cloe, whose withering kiss
  Hath long set the Loves at defiance,
Now, done with the science of bliss,
  May take to the blisses of science.

But for _you_ to be buried in books--
  Ah, Fanny, they're pitiful sages,
Who could not in _one_ of your looks
  Read more than in millions of pages.

Astronomy finds in those eyes
  Better light than she studies above;
And Music would borrow your sighs
  As the melody fittest for Love.

Your Arithmetic only can trip
  If to count your own charms you endeavor;
And Eloquence glows on your lip
  When you swear that you'll love me for ever.

Thus you see, what a brilliant alliance
  Of arts is assembled in you;--
A course of more exquisite science
  Man never need wish to pursue.

And, oh!--if a Fellow like me
  May confer a diploma of hearts,
With my lip thus I seal your degree,
  My divine little Mistress of Arts!






ON THE DEATH OF A LADY,


Sweet spirit! if thy airy sleep
  Nor sees my tears not hears my sighs,
Then will I weep, in anguish weep,
  Till the last heart's drop fills mine eyes.

But if thy sainted soul can feel,
  And mingles in our misery;
Then, then my breaking heart I'll seal--
  Thou shalt not hear one sigh from me.

The beam of morn was on the stream,
  But sullen clouds the day deform;
Like thee was that young, orient beam,
  Like death, alas, that sullen storm!

Thou wert not formed for living here,
  So linked thy soul was with the sky;
Yet, ah, we held thee all so dear,
  We thought thou wert not formed to die.






INCONSTANCY.


And do I then wonder that Julia deceives me,
  When surely there's nothing in nature more common?
She vows to be true, and while vowing she leaves me--
  And could I expect any more from a woman?

Oh, woman! your heart is a pitiful treasure;
  And Mahomet's doctrine was not too severe,
When he held that you were but materials of pleasure,
  And reason and thinking were out of your sphere.

By your heart, when the fond sighing lover can win it,
  He thinks that an age of anxiety's paid;
But, oh, while he's blest, let him die at the minute--
  If he live but a _day_, he'll be surely betrayed.






THE NATAL GENIUS.

A DREAM

TO .... ....

THE MORNING OF HER BIRTHDAY.


In witching slumbers of the night,
I dreamt I was the airy sprite
  That on thy natal moment smiled;
And thought I wafted on my wing
Those flowers which in Elysium spring,
  To crown my lovely mortal child.

With olive-branch I bound thy head,
Heart's ease along thy path I shed,
  Which was to bloom through all thy years;
Nor yet did I forget to bind
Love's roses, with his myrtle twined,
  And dewed by sympathetic tears.

Such was the wild but precious boon
Which Fancy, at her magic noon,
  Bade me to Nona's image pay;
And were it thus my fate to be
Thy little guardian deity,
  How blest around thy steps I'd play!

Thy life should glide in peace along,
Calm as some lonely shepherd's song
  That's heard at distance in the grove;
No cloud should ever dim thy sky,
No thorns along thy pathway lie,
  But all be beauty, peace and love.

Indulgent Time should never bring
To thee one blight upon his wing,
  So gently o'er thy brow he'd fly;
And death itself should but be felt
Like that of daybeams, when they melt,
  Bright to the last, in evening's sky!






ELEGIAC STANZAS.

SUPPOSED TO BE WRITTEN BY JULIA,

ON THE DEATH OF HER BROTHER.


Though sorrow long has worn my heart;
  Though every day I've, counted o'er
Hath brought a new and, quickening smart
  To wounds that rankled fresh before;

Though in my earliest life bereft
  Of tender links by nature tied;
Though hope deceived, and pleasure left;
  Though friends betrayed and foes belied;

I still had hopes--for hope will stay
  After the sunset of delight;
So like the star which ushers day,
  We scarce can think it heralds night!--

I hoped that, after all its strife,
  My weary heart at length should rest.
And, feinting from the waves of life,
  Find harbor in a brother's breast.

That brother's breast was warm with truth,
  Was bright with honor's purest ray;
He was the dearest, gentlest youth--
  Ah, why then was he torn away?

He should have stayed, have lingered here
  To soothe his Julia's every woe;
He should have chased each bitter tear,
  And not have caused those tears to flow.

We saw within his soul expand
  The fruits of genius, nurst by taste;
While Science, with a fostering hand,
  Upon his brow her chaplet placed.

We saw, by bright degrees, his mind
  Grow rich in all that makes men dear;
Enlightened, social, and refined,
  In friendship firm, in love sincere.

Such was the youth we loved so well,
  And such the hopes that fate denied;--
We loved, but ah! could scarcely tell
  How deep, how dearly, till he died!

Close as the fondest links could strain,
  Twined with my very heart he grew;
And by that fate which breaks the chain,
  The heart is almost broken too.






TO THE LARGE AND BEAUTIFUL MISS......,

IN ALLUSION TO SOME PARTNERSHIP IN A LOTTERY SHARE

IMPROMPTU.


    --_Ego Pars_--VIRG.


In wedlock a species of lottery lies,
  Where in blanks and in prizes we deal;
But how comes it that you, such a capital prize,
  Should so long have remained in the wheel?

If ever, by Fortune's indulgent decree,
  To me such a ticket should roll,
A sixteenth, Heaven knows! were sufficient for me;
  For what could _I_ do with the whole?






A DREAM.


I thought this heart enkindled lay
  On Cupid's burning shrine:
I thought he stole thy heart away,
  And placed it near to mine.

I saw thy heart begin to melt,
  Like ice before the sun;
Till both a glow congenial felt,
  And mingled into one!






TO  .......


With all my soul, then, let us part,
  Since both are anxious to be free;
And I will sand you home your heart,
  If you will send mine back to me.

We've had some happy hours together,
  But joy must often change its wing;
And spring would be but gloomy weather,
  If we had nothing else but spring.

'Tis not that I expect to find
  A more devoted, fond and true one,
With rosier cheek or sweeter mind--
  Enough for me that she's a new one.

Thus let us leave the bower of love,
  Where we have loitered long in bliss;
And you may down _that_ pathway rove,
  While I shall take my way through _this_.






ANACREONTIC.


"She never looked so kind before--
  "Yet why the wanton's smile recall?
"I've seen this witchery o'er and o'er,
  "'Tis hollow, vain, and heartless all!"

Thus I said and, sighing drained
  The cup which she so late had tasted;
Upon whose rim still fresh remained
  The breath, so oft in falsehood wasted.

I took the harp and would have sung
  As if 'twere not of her I sang;
But still the notes on Lamia hung--
  On whom but Lamia _could_ they hang?

Those eyes of hers, that floating shine,
  Like diamonds in some eastern river;
That kiss, for which, if worlds were mine,
  A world for every kiss I'd give her.

That frame so delicate, yet warmed
  With flushes of love's genial hue;
A mould transparent, as if formed
  To let the spirit's light shine through.

Of these I sung, and notes and words
  Were sweet, as if the very air
From Lamia's lip hung o'er the chords,
  And Lamia's voice still warbled there!

But when, alas, I turned the theme,
  And when of vows and oaths I spoke,
Of truth and hope's seducing dream--
  The chord beneath my finger broke.

False harp! false woman! such, oh, such
  Are lutes too frail and hearts too willing;
Any hand, whate'er its touch,
  Can set their chords or pulses thrilling.

And when that thrill is most awake,
  And when you think Heaven's joys await you,
The nymph will change, the chord will break--
  Oh Love, oh Music, how I hate you!






TO JULIA.


I saw the peasant's hand unkind
  From yonder oak the ivy sever;
They seemed in very being twined;
  Yet now the oak is fresh as ever!

Not so the widowed ivy shines:
  Torn from its dear and only stay,
In drooping widowhood it pines,
  And scatters all its bloom away.

Thus, Julia, did our hearts entwine,
  Till Fate disturbed their tender ties:
Thus gay indifference blooms in thine,
  While mine, deserted, droops and dies!






HYMN OF A VIRGIN OF DELPHI,

AT THE TOMB OF HER MOTHER.


Oh, lost, forever lost--no more
  Shall Vesper light our dewy way
Along the rocks of Crissa's shore,
  To hymn the fading fires of day;
No more to Tempe's distant vale
  In holy musings shall we roam,
Through summer's glow and winter's gale,
  To bear the mystic chaplets home.[1]

'Twas then my soul's expanding zeal,
  By nature warmed and led by thee,
In every breeze was taught to feel
  The breathings of a Deity.
Guide of my heart! still hovering round.
  Thy looks, thy words are still my own--
I see thee raising from the ground
  Some laurel, by the winds o'er thrown.
And hear thee say, "This humble bough
  Was planted for a doom divine;
And, though it droop in languor now,
  Shall flourish on the Delphic shrine!"
"Thus, in the vale of earthly sense,
 "Though sunk awhile the spirit lies,
"A viewless hand shall cull it thence
 "To bloom immortal in the skies!"

All that the young should feel and know
 By thee was taught so sweetly well,
Thy words fell soft as vernal snow,
 And all was brightness where they fell!
Fond soother of my infant tear,
 Fond sharer of my infant joy,
Is not thy shade still lingering here?
 Am I not still thy soul's employ?
Oh yes--and, as in former days,
 When, meeting on the sacred mount,
Our nymphs awaked their choral lays,
 And danced around Cassotis' fount;
As then, 'twas all thy wish and care,
 That mine should be the simplest mien,
My lyre and voice the sweetest there,
 My foot the lightest o'er the green:
So still, each look and step to mould,
 Thy guardian care is round me spread,
Arranging every snowy fold
 And guiding every mazy tread.
And, when I lead the hymning choir,
 Thy spirit still, unseen and free,
Hovers between my lip and lyre,
 And weds them into harmony.
Flow, Plistus, flow, thy murmuring wave
 Shall never drop its silvery tear
Upon so pure, so blest a grave,
 To memory so entirely dear!


[1] The laurel, for the common uses of the temple, for adorning
the altars and sweeping the pavement, was supplied by a tree near the
fountain of Castalia; but upon all important occasions, they sent to Tempe
for their laurel. We find, in Pausanias; that this valley supplied the
branches, of which the temple was originally constructed; and Plutarch
says, in his Dialogue on Music, "The youth who brings the Tempic laurel to
Delphi is always attended by a player on the flute."






SYMPATHY.

TO JULIA.


    --_sine me sit nulla Venus_.
    SULPICIA.


Our hearts, my love, were formed to be
The genuine twins of Sympathy,
  They live with one sensation;
In joy or grief, but most in love,
Like chords in unison they move,
  And thrill with like vibration.

How oft I've beard thee fondly say,
Thy vital pulse shall cease to play
  When mine no more is moving;
Since, now, to feel a joy _alone_
Were worse to thee than feeling none,
  So twined are we in loving!






THE TEAR.


On beds of snow the moonbeam slept,
  And chilly was the midnight gloom,
When by the damp grave Ellen wept--
  Fond maid! it was her Lindor's tomb!

A warm tear gushed, the wintry air,
  Congealed it as it flowed away:
All night it lay an ice-drop there,
  At morn it glittered in the ray.

An angel, wandering from her sphere,
  Who saw this bright, this frozen gem,
To dew-eyed Pity brought the tear
  And hung it on her diadem!






THE SNAKE.


My love and I, the other day,
Within a myrtle arbor lay,
When near us, from a rosy bed,
A little Snake put forth its head.

"See," said the maid with thoughtful eyes--
"Yonder the fatal emblem lies!
"Who could expect such hidden harm
"Beneath the rose's smiling charm?"

Never did grave remark occur
Less _à-propos_ than this from her.

I rose to kill the snake, but she,
Half-smiling, prayed it might not be.

"No," said the maiden--and, alas,
  Her eyes spoke volumes, while she said it--
"Long as the snake is in the grass,
  "One _may_, perhaps, have cause to dread it:
"But, when its wicked eyes appear,
  "And when we know for what they wink so,
"One must be _very_ simple, dear,
  "To let it wound one--don't you think so?"






TO ROSA.


Is the song of Rosa mute?
Once such lays inspired her lute!
Never doth a sweeter song
Steal the breezy lyre along,
When the wind, in odors dying,
Woos it with enamor'd sighing.

  Is my Rosa's lute unstrung?
Once a tale of peace it sung
To her lover's throbbing breast--
Then was he divinely blest!
Ah! but Rosa loves no more,
Therefore Rosa's song is o'er;
And her lute neglected lies;
And her boy forgotten sighs.
Silent lute--forgotten lover--
Rosa's love and song are over!






ELEGIAC STANZAS.


    _Sic juvat perire_.


When wearied wretches sink to sleep,
 How heavenly soft their slumbers lie!
How sweet is death to those who weep,
To those who weep and long to die!

Saw you the soft and grassy bed,
  Where flowrets deck the green earth's breast?
'Tis there I wish to lay my head,
  'Tis there I wish to sleep at rest.

Oh, let not tears embalm my tomb,--
 None but the dews at twilight given!
Oh, let not sighs disturb the gloom,--
 None but the whispering winds of heaven!






LOVE AND MARRIAGE.


    _Eque brevi verbo ferre perenne malum_.
    SECUNDUS, eleg. vii.


Still the question I must parry,
  Still a wayward truant prove:
Where I love, I must not marry;
  Where I marry, can not love.

Were she fairest of creation,
  With the least presuming mind;
Learned without affectation;
  Not deceitful, yet refined;

Wise enough, but never rigid;
  Gay, but not too lightly free;
Chaste as snow, and yet not frigid:
  Fond, yet satisfied with me:

Were she all this ten times over,
  All that heaven to earth allows.
I should be too much her lover
  Ever to become her spouse.

Love will never bear enslaving;
  Summer garments suit him best;
Bliss itself is not worth having,
  If we're by compulsion blest.






ANACREONTIC.


I filled to thee, to thee I drank,
  I nothing did but drink and fill;
The bowl by turns was bright and blank,
  'Twas drinking, filling, drinking still.

At length I bade an artist paint
  Thy image in this ample cup,
That I might see the dimpled saint,
  To whom I quaffed my nectar up.

Behold, how bright that purple lip
  Now blushes through the wave at me;
Every roseate drop I sip
  Is just like kissing wine from thee.

And still I drink the more for this;
  For, ever when the draught I drain,
Thy lip invites another kiss,
  And--in the nectar flows again.

So, here's to thee, my gentle dear,
  And may that eyelid never shine
Beneath a darker, bitterer tear
  Than bathes it in this bowl of mine!






THE SURPRISE.


Chloris, I swear, by all I ever swore,
That from this hour I shall not love thee more.--
"What! love no more? Oh! why this altered vow?"
Because I _can not_ love thee _more_
  --than _now_!






TO MISS .......

ON HER ASKING THE AUTHOR WHY SHE HAD SLEEPLESS NIGHTS.


I'll ask the sylph who round thee flies,
  And in thy breath his pinion dips,
Who suns him in thy radiant eyes,
  And faints upon thy sighing lips:

I'll ask him where's the veil of sleep
  That used to shade thy looks of light;
And why those eyes their vigil keep
  When other suns are sunk in night?

And I will say--her angel breast
  Has never throbbed with guilty sting;
Her bosom is the sweetest nest
  Where Slumber could repose his wing!

And I will say--her cheeks that flush,
  Like vernal roses in the sun,
Have ne'er by shame been taught to blush,
  Except for what her eyes have done!

Then tell me, why, thou child of air!
  Does slumber from her eyelids rove?
What is her heart's impassioned care?
  Perhaps, oh sylph! perhaps, 'tis _love_.






THE WONDER.


Come, tell me where the maid is found.
  Whose heart can love without deceit,
And I will range the world around,
  To sigh one moment at her feet.

Oh! tell me where's her sainted home,
  What air receives her blessed sigh,
A pilgrimage of years I'll roam
  To catch one sparkle of her eye!

And if her cheek be smooth and bright,
  While truth within her bosom lies,
I'll gaze upon her morn and night,
  Till my heart leave me through my eyes.

Show me on earth a thing so rare,
  I'll own all miracles are true;
To make one maid sincere and fair,
  Oh, 'tis the utmost Heaven can do!






LYING.


    _Che con le lor bugie pajon divini._
    MAURO D'ARCANO.


I do confess, in many a sigh,
My lips have breathed you many a lie;
And who, with such delights in view,
Would lose them for a lie or two?

  Nay,--look not thus, with brow reproving;
Lies are, my dear, the soul of loving.
If half we tell the girls were true,
If half we swear to think and do,
Were aught but lying's bright illusion,
This world would be in strange confusion.
If ladies' eyes were, every one,
As lovers swear, a radiant sun,
Astronomy must leave the skies,
To learn her lore in ladies' eyes.
Oh, no--believe me, lovely girl,
When nature turns your teeth to pearl,
Your neck to snow, your eyes to fire,
Your amber locks to golden wire,
Then, only then can Heaven decree,
That you should live for only me,
Or I for you, as night and morn,
We've swearing kist, and kissing sworn.
  And now, my gentle hints to clear,
For once I'll tell you truth, my dear.
Whenever you may chance to meet
Some loving youth, whose love is sweet,
Long as you're false and he believes you,
Long as you trust and he deceives you,
So long the blissful bond endures,
And while he lies, his heart is yours:
But, oh! you've wholly lost the youth
The instant that he tells you truth.






ANACREONTIC.


Friend of my soul, this goblet sip,
  'Twill chase that pensive tear;
'Tis not so sweet as woman's lip,
  But, oh! 'tis more sincere.

  Like her delusive beam,
    'Twill steal away thy mind:
  But, truer than love's dream,
    It leaves no sting behind.

Come, twine the wreath, thy brows to shade;
  These flowers were culled at noon;--
Like woman's love the rose will fade,
  But, ah! not half so soon.
    For though the flower's decayed,
      Its fragrance is not o'er;
    But once when love's betrayed,
      Its sweet life blooms no more.






THE PHILOSOPHER ARISTIPPUS[1]

TO A LAMP WHICH HAD BEEN GIVEN HIM BY LAIS.


    _Dulcis conscia lectuli lucerna_.
    MARTIAL, _lib. xiv. epig. 89_.


"Oh! love the Lamp" (my Mistress said),
  "The faithful Lamp that, many a night,
"Beside thy Lais' lonely bed?
  "Has kept its little watch of light.

"Full often has it seen her weep,
  "And fix her eye upon its flame.
"Till, weary, she has sunk to sleep,
  "Repeating her beloved's name.

"Then love the Lamp--'twill often lead
  "Thy step through learning's sacred way;
"And when those studious eyes shall read,
 "At midnight, by its lonely ray,
  "Of things sublime, of nature's birth,
  "Of all that's bright in heaven or earth,
 Oh, think that she, by whom 'twas given,
"Adores thee more than earth or heaven!"

Yes--dearest Lamp, by every charm
  On which thy midnight beam has hung;
The head reclined, the graceful arm
  Across the brow of ivory flung;

The heaving bosom, partly hid,
  The severed lips unconscious sighs,
The fringe that from the half-shut lid
  Adown the cheek of roses lies;

By these, by all that bloom untold,
  And long as all shall charm my heart,
I'll love my little Lamp of gold--
  My Lamp and I shall never part.

And often, as she smiling said,
  In fancy's hour thy gentle rays
Shall guide my visionary tread
  Through poesy's enchanting maze.
Thy flame shall light the page refined,
  Where still we catch the Chian's breath,
  Where still the bard though cold in death,
Has left his soul unquenched behind.
Or, o'er thy humbler legend shine,
  Oh man of Ascra's dreary glades,
To whom the nightly warbling Nine
  A wand of inspiration gave,
Plucked from the greenest tree, that shades
The crystal of Castalia's wave.

Then, turning to a purer lore,
We'll cull the sage's deep-hid store,
From Science steal her golden clue,
And every mystic path pursue,
Where Nature, far from vulgar eyes,
Through labyrinths of wonder flies.
'Tis thus my heart shall learn to know
How fleeting is this world below,
Where all that meets the morning light,
Is changed before the fall of night!

I'll tell thee, as I trim thy fire,
  "Swift, swift the tide of being runs,
"And Time, who bids thy flame expire,
  "Will also quench yon heaven of suns."

Oh, then if earth's united power
Can never chain one feathery hour;
If every print we leave to-day
To-morrow's wave will sweep away;
Who pauses to inquire of heaven
Why were the fleeting treasures given,
The sunny days, the shady nights,
And all their brief but dear delights,
Which heaven has made for man to use,
And man should think it crime to lose?
Who that has culled a fresh-blown rose
Will ask it why it breathes and glows,
Unmindful of the blushing ray,
In which it shines its soul away;
Unmindful of the scented sigh,
With which it dies and loves to die.

Pleasure, thou only good on earth[2]
One precious moment given to thee--
Oh! by my Lais' lip, 'tis worth
  The sage's immortality.

Then far be all the wisdom hence,
  That would our joys one hour delay!
Alas, the feast of soul and sense
  Love calls us to in youth's bright day,
  If not soon tasted, fleets away.
Ne'er wert thou formed, my Lamp, to shed
  Thy splendor on a lifeless page;--
Whate'er my blushing Lais said
  Of thoughtful lore and studies sage,
'Twas mockery all--her glance of joy
Told me thy dearest, best employ.
And, soon, as night shall close the eye
  Of heaven's young wanderer in the west;
When seers are gazing on the sky,
  To find their future orbs of rest;
Then shall I take my trembling way,
  Unseen but to those worlds above,
And, led by thy mysterious ray,
  Steal to the night-bower of my love.


[1] It does not appear to have been very difficult to become a
philosopher amongst the ancients. A moderate store of learning, with a
considerable portion of confidence, and just wit enough to produce an
occasional apophthegm, seem to have been all the qualifications necessary
for the purpose.

[2] Aristippus considered motion as the principle of happiness,
in which idea he differed from the Epicureans, who looked to a state of
repose as the only true voluptuousness, and avoided even the too lively
agitations of pleasure, as a violent and ungraceful derangement of the
senses.






TO MRS,---.

ON HER BEAUTIFUL TRANSLATION OF VOITURE'S KISS.


    _Mon ame sur mon lèvre étoit lors toute entière.
    Pour savourer le miel qui sur la votre étoit;
    Mais en me retirant, elle resta derrière,
      Tant de ce doux plaisir l'amorce l'a restoit_.
                      VOITURE.


How heavenly was the poet's doom,
  To breathe his spirit through a kiss:
And lose within so sweet a tomb
  The trembling messenger of bliss!

And, sure his soul returned to feel
  That it _again_ could ravished be;
For in the kiss that thou didst steal,
  His life and soul have fled to thee.






RONDEAU.


"Good night! good night!"--And is it so?
And must I from my Rosa go?
Oh Rosa, say "Good night!" once more,
And I'll repeat it o'er and o'er,
Till the first glance of dawning light
Shall find us saying, still, "Good night."

And still "Good night," my Rosa, say--
But whisper still, "A minute stay;"
And I will stay, and every minute
Shall have an age of transport in it;
Till Time himself shall stay his flight,
To listen to our sweet "Good night."

"Good night!" you'll murmur with a sigh,
And tell me it is time to fly:
And I will vow, will swear to go,
While still that sweet voice murmurs "No!"
Till slumber seal our weary sight--
And then, my love, my soul, "Good night!"






SONG.


Why does azure deck the sky?
  'Tis to be like thy looks of blue.
Why is red the rose's dye?
  Because it is thy blushes' hue.
All that's fair, by Love's decree,
  Has been made resembling thee!

Why is falling snow so white,
  But to be like thy bosom fair!
Why are solar beams so bright?
  That they may seem thy golden hair!
All that's bright, by Love's decree,
Has been made resembling thee!

Why are nature's beauties felt?
 Oh! 'tis thine in her we see!
Why has music power to melt?
 Oh! because it speaks like thee.
All that's sweet, by Love's decree,
Has been made resembling thee!






TO ROSA.


Like one who trusts to summer skies,
  And puts his little bark to sea,
Is he who, lured by smiling eyes,
  Consigns his simple heart to thee.

For fickle is the summer wind,
  And sadly may the bark be tost;
For thou art sure to change thy mind,
  And then the wretched heart is lost!






WRITTEN IN A COMMONPLACE BOOK, CALLED "THE BOOK OF FOLLIES;"
IN WHICH EVERY ONE THAT OPENED IT WAS TO CONTRIBUTE SOMETHING.

TO THE BOOK OF FOLLIES.


This tribute's from a wretched elf,
Who hails thee, emblem of himself.
The book of life, which I have traced,
Has been, like thee, a motley waste
Of follies scribbled o'er and o'er,
One folly bringing hundreds more.
Some have indeed been writ so neat,
In characters so fair, so sweet,
That those who judge not too severely,
Have said they loved such follies dearly!
Yet still, O book! the allusion stands;
For these were penned by _female_ hands:
The rest--alas! I own the truth--
Have all been scribbled so uncouth
That Prudence, with a withering look,
Disdainful, flings away the book.
Like thine, its pages here and there
Have oft been stained with blots of care;
And sometimes hours of peace, I own,
Upon some fairer leaves have shone,
White as the snowings of that heaven
By which those hours of peace were given;
But now no longer--such, oh, such
The blast of Disappointment's touch!--
No longer now those hours appear;
Each leaf is sullied by a tear:
Blank, blank is every page with care,
Not even a folly brightens there.
Will they yet brighten?--never, never!
Then _shut the book_, O God, for ever!






TO ROSA.


Say, why should the girl of my soul be in tears
  At a meeting of rapture like this,
When the glooms of the past and the sorrow of years
  Have been paid by one moment of bliss?

Are they shed for that moment of blissful delight,
  Which dwells on her memory yet?
Do they flow, like the dews of the love-breathing night,
  From the warmth of the sun that has set?

Oh! sweet is the tear on that languishing smile,
  That smile, which is loveliest then;
And if such are the drops that delight can beguile,
  Thou shalt weep them again and again.






LIGHT SOUNDS THE HARP.


Light sounds the harp when the combat is over,
  When heroes are resting, and joy is in bloom;
When laurels hang loose from the brow of the lover,
  And Cupid makes wings of the warrior's plume.
     But, when the foe returns,
     Again the hero burns;
High flames the sword in his hand once more:
     The clang of mingling arms
     Is then the sound that charms,
And brazen notes of war, that stirring trumpets pour;--
Then, again comes the Harp, when the combat is over--
  When heroes are resting, and Joy is in bloom--
When laurels hang loose from the brow of the lover,
  And Cupid makes wings of the warrior's plume.
Light went the harp when the War-God, reclining,
  Lay lulled on the white arm of Beauty to rest,
When round his rich armor the myrtle hung twining,
  And flights of young doves made his helmet their nest.
     But, when the battle came,
     The hero's eye breathed flame:
Soon from his neck the white arm was flung;
     While, to his waking ear,
     No other sounds were dear
But brazen notes of war, by thousand trumpets sung.
But then came the light harp, when danger was ended,
  And Beauty once more lulled the War-God to rest;
When tresses of gold with his laurels lay blended,
  And flights of young doves made his helmet their nest.






FROM THE GREEK OF MELEAGER.


Fill high the cup with liquid flame,
And speak my Heliodora's name.
Repeat its magic o'er and o'er,
And let the sound my lips adore,
Live in the breeze, till every tone,
And word, and breath, speaks her alone.

Give me the wreath that withers there,
  It was but last delicious night,
It circled her luxuriant hair,
  And caught her eyes' reflected light.
Oh! haste, and twine it round my brow,
'Tis all of her that's left me now.
And see--each rosebud drops a tear,
To find the nymph no longer here--
No longer, where such heavenly charms
As hers _should_ be--within these arms.






SONG.


Fly from the world, O Bessy! to me,
  Thou wilt never find any sincerer;
I'll give up the world, O Bessy! for thee,
  I can never meet any that's dearer.
Then tell me no more, with a tear and a sigh,
  That our loves will be censured by many;
All, all have their follies, and who will deny
  That ours is the sweetest of any?

When your lip has met mine, in communion so sweet,
  Have we felt as if virtue forbid it?--
Have we felt as if heaven denied them to meet?--
  No, rather 'twas heaven that did it.
So innocent, love, is the joy we then sip,
  So little of wrong is there in it,
That I wish all my errors were lodged on your lip,
  And I'd kiss them away in a minute.

Then come to your lover, oh! fly to his shed,
  From a world which I know thou despisest;
And slumber will hover as light o'er our bed!
  As e'er on the couch of the wisest.
And when o'er our pillow the tempest is driven,
  And thou, pretty innocent, fearest,
I'll tell thee, it is not the chiding of heaven,
  'Tis only our lullaby, dearest.

And, oh! while, we lie on our deathbed, my love,
  Looking back on the scene of our errors,
A sigh from my Bessy shall plead then above,
  And Death be disarmed of his terrors,
And each to the other embracing will say,
  "Farewell! let us hope we're forgiven."
Thy last fading glance will illumine the way,
  And a kiss be our passport to heaven!






THE RESEMBLANCE.


    _---- vo cercand' io,
    Donna quant' e possibile in altrui
    La desiata vostra forma vera_.
           PETRARC, _Sonett_. 14.


Yes, if 'twere any common love,
  That led my pliant heart astray,
I grant, there's not a power above
  Could wipe the faithless crime away.

But 'twas my doom to err with one
  In every look so like to thee
That, underneath yon blessed sun
  So fair there are but thou and she

Both born of beauty, at a birth,
  She held with thine a kindred sway,
And wore the only shape on earth
  That could have lured my soul to stray.

Then blame me not, if false I be,
  'Twas love that waked the fond excess;
My heart had been more true to thee,
  Had mine eye prized thy beauty less.






FANNY, DEAREST.


Yes! had I leisure to sigh and mourn,
  Fanny, dearest, for thee I'd sigh;
And every smile on my cheek should turn
  To tears when thou art nigh.
But, between love, and wine, and sleep,
  So busy a life I live,
That even the time it would take to weep
  Is more than my heart can give.
Then bid me not to despair and pine,
  Fanny, dearest of all the dears!
The Love that's ordered to bathe in wine,
  Would be sure to take cold in tears.

Reflected bright in this heart of mine,
  Fanny, dearest, thy image lies;
But, ah, the mirror would cease to shine,
  If dimmed too often with sighs.
They lose the half of beauty's light,
  Who view it through sorrow's tear;
And 'tis but to see thee truly bright
  That I keep my eye-beam clear.
Then wait no longer till tears shall flow,
  Fanny, dearest--the hope is vain;
If sunshine cannot dissolve thy snow,
  I shall never attempt it with rain.






THE RING.

TO .... ....


No--Lady! Lady! keep the ring:
  Oh! think, how many a future year,
Of placid smile and downy wing,
  May sleep within its holy sphere.

Do not disturb their tranquil dream,
  Though love hath ne'er the mystery warmed;
Yet heaven will shed a soothing beam,
  To bless the bond itself hath formed.

But then, that eye, that burning eye,--
  Oh! it doth ask, with witching power,
If heaven can ever bless the tie
  Where love inwreaths no genial flower?

Away, away, bewildering look,
  Or all the boast of virtue's o'er;
Go--hie thee to the sage's book,
  And learn from him to feel no more.

I cannot warn thee: every touch,
  That brings my pulses close to thine,
Tells me I want thy aid as much--
  Even more, alas, than thou dost mine.

Yet, stay,--one hope, one effort yet--
  A moment turn those eyes a way,
And let me, if I can, forget
  The light that leads my soul astray.

Thou sayest, that we were born to meet,
  That our hearts bear one common seal;--
Think, Lady, think, how man's deceit
  Can seem to sigh and feign to feel.

When, o'er thy face some gleam of thought,
  Like daybeams through the morning air,
Hath gradual stole, and I have caught
  The feeling ere it kindled there;

The sympathy I then betrayed,
  Perhaps was but the child of art,
The guile of one, who long hath played
  With all these wily nets of heart.

Oh! thine is not my earliest vow;
  Though few the years I yet have told,
Canst thou believe I've lived till now,
  With loveless heart or senses cold?

No--other nymphs to joy and pain
  This wild and wandering heart hath moved;
With some it sported, wild and vain,
  While some it dearly, truly, loved.

The cheek to thine I fondly lay,
  To theirs hath been as fondly laid;
The words to thee I warmly say,
  To them have been as warmly said.

Then, scorn at once a worthless heart,
  Worthless alike, or fixt or free;
Think of the pure, bright soul thou art,
  And--love not me, oh love not me.

Enough--now, turn thine eyes again;
  What, still that look and still that sigh!
Dost thou not feel my counsel then?
  Oh! no, beloved,--nor do I.






TO THE INVISIBLE GIRL.


They try to persuade me, my dear little sprite,
That you're not a true daughter of ether and light,
Nor have any concern with those fanciful forms
That dance upon rainbows and ride upon storms;
That, in short, you're a woman; your lip and your eye
As mortal as ever drew gods from the sky.
But I _will_ not believe them--no, Science, to you
I have long bid a last and a careless adieu:
Still flying from Nature to study her laws,
And dulling delight by exploring its cause,
You forget how superior, for mortals below,
Is the fiction they dream to the truth that they know.
Oh! who, that has e'er enjoyed rapture complete,
Would ask _how_ we feel it, or _why_ it is sweet;
How rays are confused, or how particles fly
Through the medium refined of a glance or a sigh;
Is there one, who but once would not rather have known it,
Than written, with Harvey, whole volumes upon it?

  As for you, my sweet-voiced and invisible love,
You must surely be one of those spirits, that rove
By the bank where, at twilight, the poet reclines,
When the star of the west on his solitude shines,
And the magical fingers of fancy have hung
Every breeze with a sigh, every leaf with a tongue.
Oh! hint to him then, 'tis retirement alone
Can hallow his harp or ennoble its tone;
Like you, with a veil of seclusion between,
His song to the world let him utter unseen,
And like you, a legitimate child of the spheres,
Escape from the eye to enrapture the ears.

  Sweet spirit of mystery! how I should love,
In the wearisome ways I am fated to rove,
To have you thus ever invisibly nigh,
Inhaling for ever your song and your sigh!
Mid the crowds of the world and the murmurs of care,
I might sometimes converse with my nymph of the air,
And turn with distaste from the clamorous crew,
To steal in the pauses one whisper from you.
Then, come and be near me, for ever be mine,
We shall hold in the air a communion divine,
As sweet as, of old, was imagined to dwell
In the grotto of Numa, or Socrates' cell.
And oft, at those lingering moments of night,
When the heart's busy thoughts have put slumber to flight,
You shall come to my pillow and tell me of love,
Such as angel to angel might whisper above.
Sweet spirit!--and then, could you borrow the tone
Of that voice, to my ear like some fairy-song known,
The voice of the one upon earth, who has twined
With her being for ever my heart and my mind,
Though lonely and far from the light of her smile,
An exile, and weary and hopeless the while,
Could you shed for a moment her voice on my ear.
I will think, for that moment, that Cara is near;
That she comes with consoling enchantment to speak,
And kisses my eyelid and breathes on my cheek,
And tells me the night shall go rapidly by,
For the dawn of our hope, of our heaven is nigh.

Fair spirit! if such be your magical power,
It will lighten the lapse of full many an hour;
And, let fortune's realities frown as they will,
Hope, fancy, and Cara may smile for me still.






THE RING[1]

A TALE


    _Annulus ille viri._
    OVID. _"Amor." lib. ii. eleg. 15_.


The happy day at length arrived
  When Rupert was to wed
The fairest maid in Saxony,
  And take her to his bed.

As soon as morn was in the sky,
  The feast and sports began;
The men admired the happy maid,
  The maids the happy man.

In many a sweet device of mirth
  The day was past along;
And some the featly dance amused,
  And some the dulcet song.

The younger maids with Isabel
  Disported through the bowers,
And decked her robe, and crowned her head
  With motley bridal flowers.

The matrons all in rich attire,
  Within the castle walls,
Sat listening to the choral strains
  That echoed, through the halls.

Young Rupert and his friends repaired
  Unto a spacious court,
To strike the bounding tennis-ball
  In feat and manly sport.

The bridegroom on his finger wore
  The wedding-ring so bright,
Which was to grace the lily hand
  Of Isabel that night.

And fearing he might break the gem,
  Or lose it in the play,
Hie looked around the court, to see
  Where he the ring might lay.

Now, in the court a statue stood,
  Which there full long had been;
It might a Heathen goddess be,
  Or else, a Heathen queen.

Upon its marble finger then
  He tried the ring to fit;
And, thinking it was safest there,
  Thereon he fastened it.

And now the tennis sports went on,
  Till they were wearied all,
And messengers announced to them
  Their dinner in the hall,

Young Rupert for his wedding-ring
  Unto the statue went;
But, oh, how shocked was he to find
  The marble finger bent!

The hand was closed upon the ring
  With firm and mighty clasp;
In vain he tried and tried and tried,
  He could not loose the grasp!

Then sore surprised was Rupert's mind--
  As well his mind might be;
"I'll come," quoth he, "at night again,
  "When none are here to see."

He went unto the feast, and much
  He thought upon his ring;
And marvelled sorely what could mean
  So very strange a thing!

The feast was o'er, and to the court
  He hied without delay,
Resolved to break the marble hand
  And force the ring away.

But, mark a stranger wonder still--
  The ring was there no more
And yet the marble hand ungrasped,
  And open as before!

He searched the base, and all the court,
  But nothing could he find;
Then to the castle hied he back
  With sore bewildered mind.

Within he found them all in mirth,
  The night in dancing flew:
The youth another ring procured,
  And none the adventure knew.

And now the priest has joined their hands,
  The hours of love advance:
Rupert almost forgets to think
  Upon the morn's mischance.

Within the bed fair Isabel
  In blushing sweetness lay,
Like flowers, half-opened by the
    dawn,
  And waiting for the day.

And Rupert, by her lovely side,
  In youthful beauty glows,
Like Phoebus, when he bends to cast
  His beams upon a rose.

And here my song would leave them both,
  Nor let the rest be told,
If 'twere not for the horrid tale
  It yet has to unfold.

Soon Rupert, 'twixt his bride and him
  A death cold carcass found;
He saw it not, but thought he felt
  Its arms embrace him round.

He started up, and then returned,
  But found the phantom still;
In vain he shrunk, it clipt him
    round,
  With damp and deadly chill!

And when he bent, the earthy lips
  A kiss of horror gave;
'Twas like the smell from charnel vaults,
  Or from the mouldering grave!

Ill-fated Rupert!--wild and loud
  Then cried he to his wife,
"Oh! save me from this horrid fiend,
  "My Isabel! my life!"

But Isabel had nothing seen,
  She looked around in vain;
And much she mourned the mad conceit
  That racked her Rupert's brain.

At length from this invisible
  These words to Rupert came:
(Oh God! while he did hear the words
  What terrors shook his frame!)

"Husband, husband, I've the ring
  "Thou gavest to-day to me;
"And thou'rt to me for ever wed,
  "As I am wed to thee!"

And all the night the demon lay
  Cold-chilling by his side,
And strained him with such deadly grasp,
  He thought he should have died.

But when the dawn of day was near,
  The horrid phantom fled,
And left the affrighted youth to weep
  By Isabel in bed.

And all that day a gloomy cloud
  Was seen on Rupert's brows;
Fair Isabel was likewise sad,
  But strove to cheer her spouse.

And, as the day advanced, he thought
  Of coming night with fear:
Alas, that he should dread to view
  The bed that should be dear!

At length the second night arrived,
  Again their couch they prest;
Poor Rupert hoped that all was o'er,
  And looked for love and rest.

But oh! when midnight came, again
  The fiend was at his side,
And, as it strained him in its grasp,
  With howl exulting cried:--

"Husband, husband, I've the ring,
  "The ring thou gavest to me;
"And thou'rt to me for ever wed,
  "As I am wed to thee!",

In agony of wild despair,
  He started from the bed;
And thus to his bewildered wife
  The trembling Rupert said;

"Oh Isabel! dost thou not see
  "A shape of horrors here,
"That strains me to its deadly kiss,
  "And keeps me from my dear?"

"No, no, my love! my Rupert, I
  "No shape of horrors see;
"And much I mourn the fantasy
  "That keeps my dear from me."

This night, just like the night before,
  In terrors past away.
Nor did the demon vanish thence
  Before the dawn of day.

Said Rupert then, "My Isabel,
  "Dear partner of my woe.
"To Father Austin's holy cave
  "This instant will I go."

Now Austin was a reverend man,
  Who acted wonders maint--
Whom all the country round believed
  A devil or a saint!

To Father Austin's holy cave
  Then Rupert straightway went;
And told him all, and asked him how
  These horrors to prevent.

The father heard the youth, and then
  Retired awhile to pray:
And, having prayed for half an hour
  Thus to the youth did say:

"There is a place where four roads meet,
  "Which I will tell to thee;
"Be there this eve, at fall of night,
  "And list what thou shalt see.

"Thou'lt see a group of figures pass
  "In strange disordered crowd,
"Travelling by torchlight through the roads,
  "With noises strange and loud.

"And one that's high above the rest,
  "Terrific towering o'er,
"Will make thee know him at a glance,
  "So I need say no more.

"To him from me these tablets give,
  "They'll quick be understood;
"Thou need'st not fear, but give them straight,
  "I've scrawled them with my blood!"

The night-fall came, and Rupert all
  In pale amazement went
To where the cross-roads met, as he
  Was by the Father sent.

And lo! a group of figures came
  In strange disordered crowd.
Travelling by torchlight through the roads,
  With noises strange and loud.

And, as the gloomy train advanced,
  Rupert beheld from far
A female form of wanton mien
  High seated on a car.

And Rupert, as he gazed upon
  The loosely-vested dame,
Thought of the marble statue's look,
  For hers was just the same.

Behind her walked a hideous form,
  With eyeballs flashing death;
Whene'er he breathed, a sulphured smoke
  Came burning in his breath.

He seemed the first of all the crowd,
  Terrific towering o'er;
"Yes, yes," said Rupert, "this is he,
  "And I need ask no more."

Then slow he went, and to this fiend
  The tablets trembling gave,
Who looked and read them with a yell
  That would disturb the grave.

And when he saw the blood-scrawled name,
  His eyes with fury shine;
"I thought," cries he, "his time was out,
  "But he must soon be mine!"

Then darting at the youth a look
  Which rent his soul with fear,
He went unto the female fiend,
  And whispered in her ear.

The female fiend no sooner heard
  Than, with reluctant look,
The very ring that Rupert lost,
  She from her finger took.

And, giving it unto the youth,
  With eyes that breathed of hell,
She said, in that tremendous voice,
  Which he remembered well:

"In Austin's name take back the ring,
  "The ring thou gavest to me;
"And thou'rt to me no longer wed,
  "Nor longer I to thee."

He took the ring, the rabble past.
  He home returned again;
His wife was then the happiest fair,
  The happiest he of men.


[1] I should be sorry to think that my friend had any serious intentions
of frightening the nursery by this story; I rather hope--though the manner
of it leads me to doubt--that his design was to ridicule that distempered
taste which prefers those monsters of the fancy to the _"speciosa
miracula"_ of true poetic imagination.






TO .... ....

ON SEEING HER WITH A WHITE VEIL AND A RICH GIRDLE.


Put off the vestal Veil, nor, oh!
  Let weeping angels View it;
Your cheeks belie its virgin snow.
  And blush repenting through it.

Put off the fatal zone you wear;
  The shining pearls around it
Are tears, that fell from Virtue there,
  The hour when Love unbound it.






WRITTEN IN THE BLANK LEAF OF A LADY'S COMMONPLACE BOOK.


Here is one leaf reserved for me,
From all thy sweet memorials free;
And here my simple song might tell
The feelings thou must guess so well.
But could I thus, within thy mind,
One little vacant corner find,
Where no impression yet is seen,
Where no memorial yet hath been,
Oh! it should be my sweetest care
To _write my name_ for ever _there_!






TO MRS. BL----.

WRITTEN IN HER ALBUM.


They say that Love had once a book
  (The urchin likes to copy you),
Where, all who came, the pencil took,
  And wrote, like us, a line or two.

'Twas Innocence, the maid divine,
  Who kept this volume bright and fair.
And saw that no unhallowed line
  Or thought profane should enter there;

And daily did the pages fill
  With fond device and loving lore,
And every leaf she turned was still
  More bright than that she turned before.

Beneath the touch of Hope, how soft,
  How light the magic pencil ran!
Till Fear would come, alas, as oft,
  And trembling close what Hope began.

A tear or two had dropt from Grief,
  And Jealousy would, now and then,
Ruffle in haste some snow-white leaf,
  Which Love had still to smooth again.

But, ah! there came a blooming boy,
  Who often turned the pages o'er,
And wrote therein such words of joy,
  That all who read them sighed for more.

And Pleasure was this spirit's name,
  And though so soft his voice and look,
Yet Innocence, whene'er he came,
  Would tremble for her spotless book.

For, oft a Bacchant cup he bore,
  With earth's sweet nectar sparkling bright;
And much she feared lest, mantling o'er,
Some drops should on the pages light.

And so it chanced, one luckless night,
  The urchin let that goblet fall
O'er the fair book, so pure, so white,
  And sullied lines and marge and all!

In vain now, touched with shame, he tried
  To wash those fatal stains away;
Deep, deep had sunk the sullying tide,
  The leaves grew darker everyday.

And Fancy's sketches lost their hue,
  And Hope's sweet lines were all effaced,
And Love himself now scarcely knew
  What Love himself so lately traced.

At length the urchin Pleasure fled,
  (For how, alas! could Pleasure stay?)
And Love, while many a tear he shed,
  Reluctant flung the book away.

The index now alone remains.
  Of all the pages spoiled by Pleasure,
And though it bears some earthly stains,
  Yet Memory counts the leaf a treasure.

And oft, they say, she scans it o'er,
  And oft, by this memorial aided,
Brings back the pages now no more,
  And thinks of lines that long have faded.

I know not if this tale be true,
  But thus the simple facts are stated;
And I refer their truth to you,
  Since Love and you are near related.






TO CARA,

AFTER AN INTERVAL OF ABSENCE.


Concealed within the shady wood
  A mother left her sleeping child,
And flew, to cull her rustic food,
  The fruitage of the forest wild.

But storms upon her pathway rise,
  The mother roams, astray and weeping;
Far from the weak appealing cries
  Of him she left so sweetly sleeping.

She hopes, she fears; a light is seen,
  And gentler blows the night wind's breath;
Yet no--'tis gone--the storms are keen,
  The infant may be chilled to death!

Perhaps, even now, in darkness shrouded,
  His little eyes lie cold and still;--
And yet, perhaps, they are not clouded,
  Life and love may light them still.

Thus, Cara, at our last farewell,
  When, fearful even thy hand to touch,
I mutely asked those eyes to tell
  If parting pained thee half so much:

I thought,--and, oh! forgive the thought,
  For none was e'er by love inspired
Whom fancy had not also taught
  To hope the bliss his soul desired.

Yes, I _did_ think, in Cara's mind,
  Though yet to that sweet mind unknown,
I left one infant wish behind,
  One feeling, which I called my own.

Oh blest! though but in fancy blest,
  How did I ask of Pity's care,
To shield and strengthen, in thy breast,
  The nursling I had cradled there.

And, many an hour, beguiled by pleasure,
  And many an hour of sorrow numbering,
I ne'er forgot the new-born treasure,
  I left within thy bosom slumbering.

Perhaps, indifference has not chilled it,
  Haply, it yet a throb may give--
Yet, no--perhaps, a doubt has killed it;
  Say, dearest--_does_ the feeling live?






TO CARA,

ON THE DAWNING OF A NEW YEAR'S DAY.


When midnight came to close the year,
  We sighed to think it thus should take
The hours it gave us--hours as dear
  As sympathy and love could make
Their blessed moments,--every sun
Saw us, my love, more closely one.

But, Cara, when the dawn was nigh
  Which came a new year's light to shed,
That smile we caught from eye to eye
  Told us, those moments were not fled:
Oh, no,--we felt, some future sun
Should see us still more closely one.

Thus may we ever, side by side,
From happy years to happier glide;
And still thus may the passing sigh
  We give to hours, that vanish o'er us,
Be followed by the smiling eye,
  That Hope shall shed on scenes before us!






TO ......., 1801.


To be the theme of every hour
The heart devotes to Fancy's power,
When her prompt magic fills the mind
With friends and joys we've left behind,
And joys return and friends are near,
And all are welcomed with a tear:--
In the mind's purest seat to dwell,
To be remembered oft and well
By one whose heart, though vain and wild,
By passion led, by youth beguiled,
Can proudly still aspire to be
All that may yet win smiles from thee:--
If thus to live in every part
Of a lone, weary wanderer's heart;
If thus to be its sole employ
Can give thee one faint gleam of joy,
Believe it. Mary,--oh! believe
A tongue that never can deceive,
Though, erring, it too oft betray
Even more than Love should dare to say,--
In Pleasure's dream or Sorrow's hour,
In crowded hall or lonely bower,
The business of my life shall be,
For ever to remember thee.
And though that heart be dead to mine,
Since Love is life and wakes not thine,
I'll take thy image, as the form
Of one whom Love had failed to warm,
Which, though it yield no answering thrill,
Is not less dear, is worshipt still--
I'll take it, wheresoe'er I stray,
The bright, cold burden of my way.
To keep this semblance fresh in bloom,
My heart shall be its lasting tomb,
And Memory, with embalming care,
Shall keep it fresh and fadeless there.






THE GENIUS OF HARMONY.

AN IRREGULAR ODE.


    _Ad harmoniam canere mundum_.
    CICERO _"de Nat. Deor." lib. iii_.


  There lies a shell beneath the waves,
  In many a hollow winding wreathed,
      Such as of old
Echoed the breath that warbling sea-maids breathed;
      This magic shell,
  From the white bosom of a syren fell,
As once she wandered by the tide that laves
      Sicilia's sands of gold.
        It bears
  Upon its shining side the mystic notes
    Of those entrancing airs,[1]
  The genii of the deep were wont to swell,
When heaven's eternal orbs their midnight music rolled!
  Oh! seek it, wheresoe'er it floats;
      And, if the power
Of thrilling numbers to thy soul be dear,

  Go, bring the bright shell to my bower,
  And I will fold thee in such downy dreams
  As lap the Spirit of the Seventh Sphere,
When Luna's distant tone falls faintly on his ear![2]
      And thou shalt own,
  That, through the circle of creation's zone,
  Where matter slumbers or where spirit beams;
  From the pellucid tides,[3] that whirl
  The planets through their maze of song,
  To the small rill, that weeps along
    Murmuring o'er beds of pearl;
        From the rich sigh
Of the sun's arrow through an evening sky,[4]
To the faint breath the tuneful osier yields
        On Afric's burning fields;[5]
  Thou'lt wondering own this universe divine
        Is mine!
  That I respire in all and all in me,
One mighty mingled soul of boundless harmony.

    Welcome, welcome, mystic shell!
    Many a star has ceased to burn,[6]
    Many a tear has Saturn's urn
  O'er the cold bosom of the ocean wept,
    Since thy aerial spell
    Hath in the waters slept.
        Now blest I'll fly
  With the bright treasure to my choral sky,
    Where she, who waked its early swell,
    The Syren of the heavenly choir.
Walks o'er the great string of my Orphic Lyre;
  Or guides around the burning pole
  The winged chariot of some blissful soul:
        While thou--
Oh son of earth, what dreams shall rise for thee!
    Beneath Hispania's sun,
    Thou'll see a streamlet run,
  Which I've imbued with breathing melody;[7]
And there, when night-winds down the current die,
Thou'lt hear how like a harp its waters sigh:
A liquid chord is every wave that flows,
An airy plectrum every breeze that blows.

  There, by that wondrous stream,
  Go, lay thy languid brow,
And I will send thee such a godlike dream,
As never blest the slumbers even of him,[8]
Who, many a night, with his primordial lyre,
    Sate on the chill Pangaean mount,[9]
  And, looking to the orient dim,
Watched the first flowing of that sacred fount,
From which his soul had drunk its fire.
Oh think what visions, in that lonely hour,
  Stole o'er his musing breast;
      What pious ecstasy
Wafted his prayer to that eternal Power,
Whose seal upon this new-born world imprest
The various forms of bright divinity!
  Or, dost thou know what dreams I wove,
  Mid the deep horror of that silent bower,[10]
Where the rapt Samian slept his holy slumber?
      When, free
    From every earthly chain,
From wreaths of pleasure and from bonds of pain,
  His spirit flew through fields above,
Drank at the source of nature's fontal number,
And saw, in mystic choir, around him move
The stars of song, Heaven's burning minstrelsy!
  Such dreams, so heavenly bright,
      I swear
By the great diadem that twines my hair,
And by the seven gems that sparkle there,
      Mingling their beams
  In a soft iris of harmonious light,
Oh, mortal! such shall be thy radiant dreams.

       *       *       *       *       *

I found her not--the chamber seemed
  Like some divinely haunted place
Where fairy forms had lately beamed,
  And left behind their odorous trace!

It felt as if her lips had shed
A sigh around her, ere she fled,
Which hung, as on a melting lute,
When all the silver chords are mute,
There lingers still a trembling breath
After the note's luxurious death,
A shade of song, a spirit air
Of melodies which had been there.

I saw the veil, which, all the day,
  Had floated o'er her cheek of rose;
I saw the couch, where late she lay
  In languor of divine repose;
And I could trace the hallowed print
  Her limbs had left, as pure and warm,
As if 'twere done in rapture's mint,
  And Love himself had stamped the form.

Oh my sweet mistress, where wert thou?
  In pity fly not thus from me;
Thou art my life, my essence now,
  And my soul dies of wanting thee.


[1] In the "Histoire Naturelle des Antilles," there is an account of some
curious shells, found at Curaçoa, on the back of which were lines, filled
with musical characters so distinct and perfect, that the writer assures
us a very charming trio was sung from one of them. The author adds, a poet
might imagine that these shells were used by the syrens at their concerts.

[2] According to Cicero, and his commentator, Macrobius, the lunar tone is
the gravest and faintest on the planetary heptachord.

[3] Leucippus, the atomist, imagined a kind of vortices in the heavens,
which he borrowed from Anaxagoras, and possibly suggested to Descartes.

[4] Heraclides, upon the allegories of Homer, conjectures that the idea of
the harmony of the spheres originated with this poet, who, in representing
the solar beams as arrows, supposes them to emit a peculiar sound in the
air.

[5] In the account of Africa which D'Ablancourt has translated, there is
mention of a tree in that country, whose branches, when shaken by the hand
produce very sweet sounds.

[6] Alluding to the extinction, or at least the disappearance, of some of
those fixed stars, which we are taught to consider as suns, attended each
by its system. Descartes thought that our earth might formerly have been a
sun, which became obscured by a thick incrustation over its surface. This
probably suggested the idea of a central fire.

[7] This musical river is mentioned in the romance of Achilles Tatius.

[8] Orpheus.

[9] Eratosthenes, in mentioning the extreme veneration of Orpheus for
Apollo, says that he was accustomed to go to the Pangaean mountain at
daybreak, and there wait the rising of the sun, that he might be the first
to hail its beams.

[10] Alluding to the cave near Samos, where Pythagoras devoted the greater
part of his days and nights to meditation and the mysteries of his
philosophy.






TO MRS. HENRY TIGHE,

ON READING HER "PSYCHE."


Tell me the witching tale again,
  For never has my heart or ear
Hung on so sweet, so pure a strain,
  So pure to feel, so sweet to hear.

Say, Love, in all thy prime of fame,
  When the high heaven itself was thine;
When piety confest the flame,
  And even thy errors were divine;

Did ever Muse's hand, so fair,
  A glory round thy temple spread?
Did ever lip's ambrosial air
  Such fragrance o'er thy altars shed?

One maid there was, who round her lyre
  The mystic myrtle wildly wreathed;--
But all _her_ sighs were sighs of fire,
  The myrtle withered as she breathed.

Oh! you that love's celestial dream,
  In all its purity, would know,
Let not the senses' ardent beam
  Too strongly through the vision glow.

Love safest lies, concealed in night,
  The night where heaven has bid him lie;
Oh! shed not there unhallowed light,
  Or, Psyche knows, the boy will fly.

Sweet Psyche, many a charmed hour,
  Through many a wild and magic waste,
To the fair fount and blissful bower
  Have I, in dreams, thy light foot traced!

Where'er thy joys are numbered now,
  Beneath whatever shades of rest,
The Genius of the starry brow
  Hath bound thee to thy Cupid's breast;

Whether above the horizon dim,
  Along whose verge our spirits stray,--
Half sunk beneath the shadowy rim,
  Half brightened by the upper ray,[1]--

Thou dwellest in a world, all light,
  Or, lingering here, doth love to be,
To other souls, the guardian bright
  That Love was, through this gloom, to thee;

Still be the song to Psyche dear,
  The song, whose gentle voice was given
To be, on earth, to mortal ear,
  An echo of her own, in heaven.


[1] By this image the Platonists expressed the middle state of the soul
between sensible and intellectual existence.






FROM THE HIGH PRIEST OF APOLLO TO A VIRGIN OF DELPHI.[1]


    _Cum digno digna_.....
                       SULPICIA.


"Who is the maid, with golden hair,
"With eye of fire, and foot of air,
"Whose harp around my altar swells,
"The sweetest of a thousand shells?"
'Twas thus the deity, who treads
The arch of heaven, and proudly sheds
Day from his eyelids--thus he spoke,
As through my cell his glories broke.

  Aphelia is the Delphic fair[2]
With eyes of fire and golden hair,
Aphelia's are the airy feet.
And hers the harp divinely sweet;
For foot so light has never trod
The laurelled caverns of the god.
Nor harp so soft hath ever given
A sigh to earth or hymn to heaven.

  "Then tell the virgin to unfold,
"In looser pomp, her locks of gold,
"And bid those eyes more fondly shine
"To welcome down a Spouse Divine;
"Since He, who lights the path of years--
"Even from the fount of morning's tears
"To where his setting splendors burn
"Upon the western sea-maid's urn--
"Doth not, in all his course, behold
"Such eyes of fire, such hair of gold.
"Tell her, he comes, in blissful pride,
"His lip yet sparkling with the tide
"That mantles in Olympian bowls,--
"The nectar of eternal souls!
"For her, for her he quits the skies,
"And to her kiss from nectar flies.
"Oh, he would quit his star-throned height,
"And leave the world to pine for light,
"Might he but pass the hours of shade,
"Beside his peerless Delphic maid,
"She, more than earthly woman blest,
"He, more than god on woman's breast!"

  There is a cave beneath the steep,[3]
Where living rills of crystal weep
O'er herbage of the loveliest hue
That ever spring begemmed with dew:
There oft the greensward's glossy tint
Is brightened by the recent print
Of many a faun and naiad's feet,--
Scarce touching earth, their step so fleet,--
That there, by moonlight's ray, had trod,
In light dance, o'er the verdant sod.
"There, there," the god, impassioned, said,
"Soon as the twilight tinge is fled,
"And the dim orb of lunar souls
"Along its shadowy pathway rolls--
"There shall we meet,--and not even He,
"The God who reigns immortally,
"Where Babel's turrets paint their pride
"Upon the Euphrates' shining tide,[4]--
"Not even when to his midnight loves
"In mystic majesty he moves,
"Lighted by many an odorous fire,
"And hymned by all Chaldaea's choir,--
"E'er yet, o'er mortal brow, let shine
"Such effluence of Love Divine,
"As shall to-night, blest maid, o'er thine."

  Happy the maid, whom heaven allows
To break for heaven her virgin vows!
Happy the maid!--her robe of shame
Is whitened by a heavenly flame,
Whose glory, with a lingering trace,
Shines through and deifies her race!


[1] This poem, as well as a few others in the following volume, formed
part of a work which I had early projected, and even announced to the
public, but which, luckily, perhaps, for myself, had been interrupted by
my visit to America in the year 1803.

[2] In the 9th Pythic of Pindar, where Apollo, in the same manner,
requires of Chiron some information respecting the fair Cyrene, the
Centaur, in obeying, very gravely apologizes for telling the God what his
omniscience must know so perfectly already.

[3] The Corycian Cave, which Pausanias mentions. The inhabitants of
Parnassus held it sacred to the Corycian nymphs, who were children of the
river Plistus.

[4] The temple of Jupiter Belus, at Babylon; in one of whose towers there
was a large chapel set apart for these celestial assignations. "No man is
allowed to sleep here," says Herodotus; "but the apartment is appropriated
to a female, whom, if we believe the Chaldaean priests, the deity selects
from the women of the country, as his favorite."






FRAGMENT.


Pity me, love! I'll pity thee,
If thou indeed hast felt like me.
All, all my bosom's peace is o'er!
At night, which _was_ my hour of calm,
When from the page of classic lore,
From the pure fount of ancient lay
My soul has drawn the placid balm,
Which charmed its every grief away,
Ah! there I find that balm no more.
Those spells, which make us oft forget
The fleeting troubles of the day,
In deeper sorrows only whet
The stings they cannot tear away.
When to my pillow racked I fly,
With weary sense and wakeful eye.
While my brain maddens, where, oh, where
Is that serene consoling prayer,
Which once has harbingered my rest,
When the still soothing voice of Heaven
Hath seemed to whisper in my breast,
"Sleep on, thy errors are forgiven!"
No, though I still in semblance pray,
My thoughts are wandering far away,
And even the name of Deity
Is murmured out in sighs for thee.






A NIGHT THOUGHT.


How oft a cloud, with envious veil,
  Obscures yon bashful light,
Which seems so modestly to steal
  Along the waste of night!

'Tis thus the world's obtrusive wrongs
  Obscure with malice keen
Some timid heart, which only longs
  To live and die unseen.






THE KISS.


Grow to my lip, thou sacred kiss,
On which my soul's beloved swore
That there should come a time of bliss,
When she would mock my hopes no more.
And fancy shall thy glow renew,
In sighs at morn, and dreams at night,
And none shall steal thy holy dew
Till thou'rt absolved by rapture's rite.
Sweet hours that are to make me blest,
Fly, swift as breezes, to the goal,
And let my love, my more than soul,
Come blushing to this ardent breast.
Then, while in every glance I drink
The rich overflowing of her mind,
Oh! let her all enamored sink
In sweet abandonment resigned,
Blushing for all our struggles past,
And murmuring, "I am thine at last!"






SONG.


Think on that look whose melting ray
  For one sweet moment mixt with mine,
And for that moment seemed to say,
  "I dare not, or I would be thine!"

Think on thy every smile and glance,
  On all thou hast to charm and move;
And then forgive my bosom's trance,
  Nor tell me it is sin to love.

Oh, _not_ to love thee were the sin;
  For sure, if Fate's decrees be done,
Thou, thou art destined still to win,
  As I am destined to be won!






THE CATALOGUE.


"Come, tell me," says Rosa, as kissing and kist,
  One day she reclined on my breast;
"Come, tell me the number, repeat me the list
  "Of the nymphs you have loved and carest."--
Oh Rosa! 'twas only my fancy that roved,
  My heart at the moment was free;
But I'll tell thee, my girl, how many I've loved,
  And the number shall finish with thee.

My tutor was Kitty; in infancy wild
  She taught me the way to be blest;
She taught me to love her, I loved like a child,
  But Kitty could fancy the rest.
This lesson of dear and enrapturing lore
  I have never forgot, I allow:
I have had it _by rote_ very often before,
  But never _by heart_ until now.

Pretty Martha was next, and my soul was all flame,
  But my head was so full of romance
That I fancied her into some chivalry dame,
  And I was her knight of the lance.
But Martha was not of this fanciful school,
  And she laughed at her poor little knight;
While I thought her a goddess, she thought me a fool,
  And I'll swear _she_ was most in the right.

My soul was now calm, till, by Cloris's looks,
  Again I was tempted to rove;
But Cloris, I found, was so learned in books
  That she gave me more logic than love.
So I left this young Sappho, and hastened to fly
  To those sweeter logicians in bliss,
Who argue the point with a soul-telling eye,
  And convince us at once with a kiss.

Oh! Susan was then all the world unto me,
  But Susan was piously given;
And the worst of it was, we could never agree
  On the road that was shortest to Heaven.
"Oh, Susan!" I've said, in the moments of mirth,
  "What's devotion to thee or to me?
"I devoutly believe there's a heaven on earth,
  "And believe that that heaven's in _thee_!"






IMITATION OF CATULLUS.

TO HIMSELF.


    _Miser Catulle, desinas ineptire_, etc.


Cease the sighing fool to play;
Cease to trifle life away;
Nor vainly think those joys thine own,
Which all, alas, have falsely flown.
What hours, Catullus, once were thine.
How fairly seemed thy day to shine,
When lightly thou didst fly to meet
The girl whose smile was then so sweet--
The girl thou lovedst with fonder pain
Than e'er thy heart can feel again.

  Ye met--your souls seemed all in one,
Like tapers that commingling shone;
Thy heart was warm enough for both,
And hers, in truth, was nothing loath.

  Such were the hours that once were thine;
But, ah! those hours no longer shine.
For now the nymph delights no more
In what she loved so much before;
And all Catullus now can do,
Is to be proud and frigid too;

Nor follow where the wanton flies,
Nor sue the bliss that she denies.
False maid! he bids farewell to thee,
To love, and all love's misery;
The heyday of his heart is o'er,
Nor will he court one favor more.

  Fly, perjured girl!--but whither fly?
Who now will praise thy cheek and eye?
Who now will drink the syren tone,
Which tells him thou art all his own?
Oh, none:--and he who loved before
Can never, never love thee more.

       *       *       *       *       *

    _"Neither do I condemn thee; go, and sin no more_!"
    --ST. JOHN, chap. viii.

Oh woman, if through sinful wile
  Thy soul hath strayed from honor's track,
'Tis mercy only can beguile,
  By gentle ways, the wanderer back.

The stain that on thy virtue lies,
  Washed by those tears, not long will stay;
As clouds that sully morning skies
  May all be wept in showers away.

Go, go, be innocent,--and live;
  The tongues of men may wound thee sore;
But Heaven in pity can forgive,
  And bids thee "go, and sin no more!"






NONSENSE.


Good reader! if you e'er have seen,
  When Phoebus hastens to his pillow,
The mermaids, with their tresses green,
  Dancing upon the western billow:
If you have seen, at twilight dim,
When the lone spirit's vesper hymn
  Floats wild along the winding shore,
If you have seen, through mist of eve,
The fairy train their ringlets weave,
Glancing along the spangled green:--
  If you have seen all this, and more,
God bless me, what a deal you've seen!






EPIGRAM.

FROM THE FRENCH.


"I never gave a kiss (says Prue),
  "To naughty man, for I abhor it."
She will not _give_ a kiss, 'tis true;
  She'll _take_ one though, and thank you for it.






ON A SQUINTING POETESS.


To no _one_ Muse does she her glance confine,
But has an eye, at once, to _all the Nine_!






TO .... ....


    _Maria pur quando vuol, non è bisogna mutar ni faccia ni voce per
    esser un Angelo_.[1]


Die when you will, you need not wear
At Heaven's Court a form more fair
  Than Beauty here on earth has given;
Keep but the lovely looks we see--
The voice we hear--and you will be
  An angel ready-made for Heaven!


[1] The words addressed by Lord Herbert of Cherbury to the beautiful Nun
at Murano.--_See his Life_.






TO ROSA.


    _A far conserva, e cumulo d'amanti.
    "Past. Fid_."


And are you then a thing of art,
  Seducing all, and loving none;
And have I strove to gain a heart
  Which every coxcomb thinks his own?

Tell me at once if this be true,
  And I will calm my jealous breast;
Will learn to join the dangling crew,
  And share your simpers with the rest.

But if your heart be _not_ so free,--
  Oh! if another share that heart,
Tell not the hateful tale to me,
  But mingle mercy with your art.

I'd rather think you "false as hell,"
  Than find you to be all divine,--
Than know that heart could love so well,
  Yet know that heart would not be mine!






TO PHILLIS.


Phillis, you little rosy rake,
  That heart of yours I long to rifle;
Come, give it me, and do not make
  So much ado about a _trifle_!






TO A LADY.

ON HER SINGING.


Thy song has taught my heart to feel
  Those soothing thoughts of heavenly love,
Which o'er the sainted spirits steal
  When listening to the spheres above!

When, tired of life and misery,
  I wish to sigh my latest breath,
Oh, Emma! I will fly to thee,
  And thou shalt sing me into death.

And if along thy lip and cheek
  That smile of heavenly softness play,
Which,--ah! forgive a mind that's weak,--
  So oft has stolen my mind away.

Thou'lt seem an angel of the sky,
  That comes to charm me into bliss:
I'll gaze and die--Who would not die,
  If death were half so sweet as this?






SONG.

ON THE BIRTHDAY OF MRS. ----.

WRITTEN IN IRELAND. 1799.


Of all my happiest hours of joy,
  And even I have had my measure,
When hearts were full, and every eye
  Hath kindled with the light of pleasure,
An hour like this I ne'er was given,
  So full of friendship's purest blisses;
Young Love himself looks down from heaven,
  To smile on such a day as this is.
    Then come, my friends, this hour improve,
      Let's feel as if we ne'er could sever;
And may the birth of her we love
Be thus with joy remembered ever!

Oh! banish every thought to-night,
  Which could disturb our soul's communion;
Abandoned thus to dear delight,
  We'll even for once forget the Union!
On that let statesmen try their powers,
  And tremble o'er the rights they'd die for;
The union of the soul be ours,
  And every union else we sigh for.
    Then come, my friends, etc.

In every eye around I mark
  The feelings of the heart o'er-flowing;
From every soul I catch the spark
  Of sympathy, in friendship glowing.
Oh! could such moments ever fly;
  Oh! that we ne'er were doomed to lose 'em;
And all as bright as Charlotte's eye,
  And all as pure as Charlotte's bosom.
    Then come, my friends, etc.

For me, whate'er my span of years,
  Whatever sun may light my roving;
Whether I waste my life in tears,
  Or live, as now, for mirth and loving;
This day shall come with aspect kind,
  Wherever fate may cast your rover;
He'll think of those he left behind,
  And drink a health to bliss that's over!
    Then come, my friends, etc.






SONG.[1]


Mary, I believed thee true,
  And I was blest in thus believing
But now I mourn that e'er I knew
  A girl so fair and so deceiving.
    Fare thee well.

Few have ever loved like me,--
  Yes, I have loved thee too sincerely!
And few have e'er deceived like thee.--
  Alas! deceived me too severely.

Fare thee well!--yet think awhile
  On one whose bosom bleeds to doubt thee:
Who now would rather trust that smile,
  And die with thee than live without thee.

Fare thee well! I'll think of thee.
  Thou leavest me many a bitter token;
For see, distracting woman, see,
  My peace is gone, my heart is broken!--
    Fare thee well!


[1] These words were written to the pathetic Scotch air "Galla Water."






MORALITY.

A FAMILIAR EPISTLE.

ADDRESSED TO J. ATKINSON, ESQ. M. R. I. A.


Though long at school and college dozing.
O'er books of verse and books of prosing,
And copying from their moral pages
Fine recipes for making sages;
Though long with' those divines at school,
Who think to make us good by rule;
Who, in methodic forms advancing,
Teaching morality like dancing,
Tell us, for Heaven or money's sake.
What _steps_ we are through life to take:
Though thus, my friend, so long employed,
With so much midnight oil destroyed,
I must confess my searches past,
I've only learned _to doubt_ at last
I find the doctors and the sages
Have differed in all climes and ages,
And two in fifty scarce agree
On what is pure morality.
'Tis like the rainbow's shifting zone,
And every vision makes its own.

  The doctors of the Porch advise,
As modes of being great and wise,
That we should cease to own or know
The luxuries that from feeling flow;
"Reason alone must claim direction,
"And Apathy's the soul's perfection.
"Like a dull lake the heart must lie;
"Nor passion's gale nor pleasure's sigh,
"Though Heaven the breeze, the breath, supplied,
"Must curl the wave or swell the tide!"

  Such was the rigid Zeno's plan
To form his philosophic man;
Such were the modes _he_ taught mankind
To weed the garden of the mind;
They tore from thence some weeds, 'tis true,
But all the flowers were ravaged too!

  Now listen to the wily strains,
Which, on Cyrene's sandy plains,
When Pleasure, nymph with loosened zone,
Usurped the philosophic throne,--
Hear what the courtly sage's[1] tongue
To his surrounding pupils sung:--
"Pleasure's the only noble end
"To which all human powers should tend,
"And Virtue gives her heavenly lore,
"But to make Pleasure please us more.
"Wisdom and she were both designed
"To make the senses more refined,
"That man might revel, free from cloying,
"Then most a sage when most enjoying!"

  Is this morality?--Oh, no!
Even I a wiser path could show.
The flower within this vase confined,
The pure, the unfading flower of mind,
Must not throw all its sweets away
Upon a mortal mould of clay;
No, no,--its richest breath should rise
In virtue's incense to the skies.

  But thus it is, all sects we see
Have watchwords of morality:
Some cry out Venus, others Jove;
Here 'tis Religion, there 'tis Love.
But while they thus so widely wander,
While mystics dream and doctors ponder:
And some, in dialectics firm,
Seek virtue in a middle term;
While thus they strive, in Heaven's defiance,
To chain morality with science;
The plain good man, whose action teach
More virtue than a sect can preach
Pursues his course, unsagely blest
His tutor whispering in his breast;
Nor could he act a purer part,
Though he had Tully all by heart.
And when he drops the tear on woe,
He little knows or cares to know
That Epictetus blamed that tear,
By Heaven approved, to virtue dear!

  Oh! when I've seen the morning beam
Floating within the dimpled stream;
While Nature, wakening from the night,
Has just put on her robes of light,
Have I, with cold optician's gaze,
Explored the _doctrine_ of those rays?
No, pedants, I have left to you
Nicely to separate hue from hue.
Go, give that moment up to art,
When Heaven and nature claim the heart;
And, dull to all their best attraction,
Go--measure _angles of refraction_.
While I, in feeling's sweet romance,
Look on each daybeam as a glance
From the great eye of Him above,
Wakening his world with looks of love!


[1] Aristippus.






THE TELL-TALE LYRE.


I've heard, there was in ancient days
  A Lyre of most melodious spell;
'Twas heaven to hear its fairy lays,
  If half be true that legends tell.

'Twas played on by the gentlest sighs,
  And to their breath it breathed again
In such entrancing melodies
  As ear had never drunk till then!

Not harmony's serenest touch
  So stilly could the notes prolong;
They were not heavenly song so much
  As they were dreams of heavenly song!

If sad the heart, whose murmuring air
  Along the chords in languor stole,
The numbers it awakened there
  Were eloquence from pity's soul.

Or if the sigh, serene and light,
  Was but the breath of fancied woes,
The string, that felt its airy flight,
  Soon whispered it to kind repose.

And when young lovers talked alone,
  If, mid their bliss, that Lyre was near,
It made their accents all its own,
  And sent forth notes that heaven might hear.

There was a nymph, who long had loved,
  But dared not tell the world how well:
The shades, where she at evening roved,
  Alone could know, alone could tell.

'Twas there, at twilight time, she stole,
  When the first star announced the night,--
With him who claimed her inmost soul,
  To wander by that soothing light.

It chanced that, in the fairy bower
  Where blest they wooed each other's smile,
This Lyre, of strange and magic power,
  Hung whispering o'er their head the while.

And as, with eyes commingling fire,
  They listened to each other's vow,
The youth full oft would make the Lyre
  A pillow for the maiden's brow!

And, while the melting words she breathed
  Were by its echoes wafted round,
Her locks had with the chords so wreathed,
  One knew not which gave forth the sound.

Alas, their hearts but little thought,
 While thus they talked the hours away,
That every sound the Lyre was taught
 Would linger long, and long betray.

So mingled with its tuneful soul
 Were all the tender murmurs grown,
That other sighs unanswered stole,
 Nor words it breathed but theirs alone.

Unhappy nymph! thy name was sung
 To every breeze that wandered by;
The secrets of thy gentle tongue
 Were breathed in song to earth and sky.

The fatal Lyre, by Envy's hand
 Hung high amid the whispering groves,
To every gale by which 'twas fanned,
 Proclaimed the mystery of your loves.

Nor long thus rudely was thy name
 To earth's derisive echoes given;
Some pitying spirit downward came.
 And took the Lyre and thee to heaven.

There, freed from earth's unholy wrongs,
 Both happy in Love's home shall be;
Thou, uttering naught but seraph songs,
 And that sweet Lyre still echoing thee!






PEACE AND GLORY.

WRITTEN ON THE APPROACH OF WAR.


Where is now the smile, that lightened
 Every hero's couch of rest?
Where is now the hope, that brightened
 Honor's eye and Pity's breast?
Have we lost the wreath we braided
 For our weary warrior men?
Is the faithless olive faded?
 Must the bay be plucked again?

Passing hour of sunny weather,
 Lovely, in your light awhile,
Peace and Glory, wed together,
 Wandered through our blessed isle.
And the eyes of Peace would glisten,
 Dewy as a morning sun,
When the timid maid would listen
 To the deeds her chief had done.

Is their hour of dalliance over?
 Must the maiden's trembling feet
Waft her from her warlike lover
 To the desert's still retreat?
Fare you well! with sighs we banish
 Nymph so fair and guests so bright;
Yet the smile, with which you vanish,
 Leaves behind a soothing light;--

Soothing light, that long shall sparkle
 O'er your warrior's sanguined way,
Through the field where horrors darkle,
 Shedding hope's consoling ray.
Long the smile his heart will cherish,
 To its absent idol true;
While around him myriads perish,
 Glory still will sigh for you!






SONG.


Take back the sigh, thy lips of art
 In passion's moment breathed to me;
Yet, no--it must not, will not part,
 'Tis now the life-breath of my heart,
And has become too pure for thee.

Take back the kiss, that faithless sigh
  With all the warmth of truth imprest;
Yet, no--the fatal kiss may lie,
Upon _thy_ lip its sweets would die,
  Or bloom to make a rival blest.

Take back the vows that, night and day,
  My heart received, I thought, from thine;
Yet, no--allow them still to stay,
They might some other heart betray,
  As sweetly as they've ruined mine.






LOVE AND REASON.


    _Quand l'homme commence à raissonner,
    il cesse de sentir_.--J. J. ROUSSEAU.


'Twas in the summer time so sweet,
  When hearts and flowers are both in season,
That--who, of all the world, should meet,
  One early dawn, but Love and Reason!

Love told his dream of yesternight,
  While Reason talked about the weather;
The morn, in sooth, was fair and bright,
  And on they took their way together.

The boy in many a gambol flew,
  While Reason, like a Juno, stalked,
And from her portly figure threw
  A lengthened shadow, as she walked.

No wonder Love, as on they past,
  Should find that sunny morning chill,
For still the shadow Reason cast
 Fell o'er the boy, and cooled him still.

In vain he tried his wings to warm.
  Or find a pathway not so dim
For still the maid's gigantic form
  Would stalk between the sun and him.

"This must not be," said little Love--
  "The sun was made for more than you."
So, turning through a myrtle grove,
  He bid the portly nymph adieu.

Now gayly roves the laughing boy
  O'er many a mead, by many a stream;
In every breeze inhaling joy,
  And drinking bliss in every beam.

From all the gardens, all the bowers,
  He culled the many sweets they shaded,
And ate the fruits and smelled the flowers,
  Till taste was gone and odor faded.

But now the sun, in pomp of noon,
  Looked blazing o'er the sultry plains;
Alas! the boy grew languid soon,
  And fever thrilled through all his veins.

The dew forsook his baby brow,
  No more with healthy bloom he smiled--
Oh! where was tranquil Reason now,
  To cast her shadow o'er the child?

Beneath a green and aged palm,
  His foot at length for shelter turning,
He saw the nymph reclining calm,
  With brow as cool as his was burning.

"Oh! take me to that bosom cold,"
  In murmurs at her feet he said;
And Reason oped her garment's fold,
  And flung it round his fevered head.

He felt her bosom's icy touch,
  And soon it lulled his pulse to rest;
For, ah! the chill was quite too much,
  And Love expired on Reason's breast!

       *       *       *       *       *

Nay, do not weep, my Fanny dear;
  While in these arms you lie.
This world hath not a wish, a fear,
That ought to cost that eye a tear.
  That heart, one single sigh.

The world!--ah, Fanny, Love must shun
  The paths where many rove;
One bosom to recline upon,
One heart to be his only--one,
  Are quite enough for Love.

What can we wish, that is not here
  Between your arms and mine?
Is there, on earth, a space so dear
As that within the happy sphere
  Two loving arms entwine?

For me, there's not a lock of jet
  Adown your temples curled,
Within whose glossy, tangling net,
My soul doth not, at once, forget
  All, all this worthless world.

'Tis in those eyes, so full of love,
  My only worlds I see;
Let but _their_ orbs in sunshine move,
And earth below and skies above
  May frown or smile for me.






ASPASIA.


'Twas in the fair Aspasia's bower,
That Love and Learning, many an hour,
In dalliance met; and Learning smiled
With pleasure on the playful child,
Who often stole, to find a nest
Within the folds of Learning's vest.

  There, as the listening statesman hung
In transport on Aspasia's tongue,
The destinies of Athens took
Their color from Aspasia's look.
Oh happy time, when laws of state
When all that ruled the country's fate,
Its glory, quiet, or alarms,
Was planned between two snow-white arms!

  Blest times! they could not always last--
And yet, even now, they _are_ not past,
Though we have lost the giant mould.
In which their men were cast of old,
Woman, dear woman, still the same,
While beauty breathes through soul or frame,
While man possesses heart or eyes,
Woman's bright empire never dies!

  No, Fanny, love, they ne'er shall say,
That beauty's charm hath past away;
Give but the universe a soul
Attuned to woman's soft control,
And Fanny hath the charm, the skill,
To wield a universe at will.






THE GRECIAN GIRL'S DREAM OF THE BLESSED ISLANDS.[1]

TO HER LOVER.


Was it the moon, or was it morning's ray,
That call'd thee, dearest, from these arms away?
Scarce hadst thou left me, when a dream of night
Came o'er my spirit so distinct and bright,
That, while I yet can vividly recall
Its witching wonders, thou shall hear them all.
Methought I saw, upon the lunar beam,
Two winged boys, such as thy muse might dream,
Descending from above, at that still hour,
And gliding, with smooth step, into my bower.
Fair as the beauteous spirits that, all day.
In Amatha's warm founts imprisoned stay,
But rise at midnight, from the enchanted rill,
To cool their plumes upon some moonlight hill.

  At once I knew their mission:--'twas to bear
My spirit upward, through the paths of air,
To that elysian realm, from whence stray beams
So oft, in sleep, had visited my dreams.
Swift at their touch dissolved the ties, that clung
All earthly round me, and aloft I sprung;
While, heavenward guides, the little genii flew
Thro' paths of light, refreshed by heaven's own dew,
And fanned by airs still fragrant with the breath
Of cloudless climes and worlds that know not death.

  Thou knowest, that, far beyond our nether sky,
And shown but dimly to man's erring eye,
A mighty ocean of blue ether rolls,[2]
Gemmed with bright islands, where the chosen souls,
Who've past in lore and love their earthly hours,
Repose for ever in unfading bowers.
That very moon, whose solitary light
So often guides thee to my bower at night,
Is no chill planet, but an isle of love,
Floating in splendor through those seas above,
And peopled with bright forms, aerial grown,
Nor knowing aught of earth but love alone.
Thither, I thought, we winged our airy way:--
Mild o'er its valleys streamed a silvery day,
While, all around, on lily beds of rest,
Reclined the spirits of the immortal Blest.
Oh! there I met those few congenial maids,
Whom love hath warmed, in philosophic shades;
There still Leontium,[3] on her sage's breast,
Found lore and love, was tutored and carest;
And there the clasp of Pythia's[4]gentle arms
Repaid the zeal which deified her charms.
The Attic Master,[5] in Aspasia's eyes,
Forgot the yoke of less endearing ties;
While fair Theano,[6] innocently fair,
Wreathed playfully her Samian's flowing hair,
Whose soul now fixt, its transmigrations past,
Found in those arms a resting-place, at last;
And smiling owned, whate'er his dreamy thought
In mystic numbers long had vainly sought,
The One that's formed of Two whom love hath bound,
Is the best number gods or men e'er found.

  But think, my Theon, with what joy I thrilled,
When near a fount, which through the valley rilled,
My fancy's eye beheld a form recline,
Of lunar race, but so resembling thine
That, oh! 'twas but fidelity in me,
To fly, to clasp, and worship it for thee.
No aid of words the unbodied soul requires,
To waft a wish or embassy desires;
But by a power, to spirits only given,
A deep, mute impulse, only felt in heaven,
Swifter than meteor shaft through summer skies,
From soul to soul the glanced idea flies.

  Oh, my beloved, how divinely sweet
Is the pure joy, when kindred spirits meet!
Like him, the river-god,[7]whose waters flow,
With love their only light, through caves below,
Wafting in triumph all the flowery braids,
And festal rings, with which Olympic maids
Have decked his current, as an offering meet
To lay at Arethusa's shining feet.

Think, when he meets at last his fountain-bride,
What perfect love must thrill the blended tide!
Each lost in each, till, mingling into one,
Their lot the same for shadow or for sun,
A type of true love, to the deep they run.
'Twas thus--
  But, Theon, 'tis an endless theme,
And thou growest weary of my half-told dream.

Oh would, my love, we were together now.
And I would woo sweet patience to thy brow,
And make thee smile at all the magic tales
Of starlight bowers and planetary vales,
Which my fond soul, inspired by thee and love,
In slumber's loom hath fancifully wove.
But no; no more--soon as tomorrow's ray
O'er soft Ilissus shall have died away,
I'll come, and, while love's planet in the west
Shines o'er our meeting, tell thee all the rest.


[1] It was imagined by some of the ancients that there is an
ethereal ocean above us, and that the sun and moon are two floating,
luminous islands, in which the spirits of the blest reside.

[2] This belief of an ocean in the heavens, or "waters above the
firmament," was one of the many physical errors In which the early fathers
bewildered themselves.

[3] The pupil and mistress of Epicurus, who called her his "dear
little Leontium" as appears by a fragment of one of his letters in
Laertius. This Leontium was a woman of talent; "she had the impudence
(says Cicero) to write against Theophrastus;" and Cicero, at the same
time, gives her a name which is neither polite nor translatable.

[4] Pythia was a woman whom Aristotle loved, and to whom after
her death he paid divine honors, solemnizing her memory by the same
sacrifices which the Athenians offered to the Goddess Ceres.

[5] Socrates, who used to console himself in the society of
Aspasia for those "less endearing ties" which he found at home with
Xantippe.

[6] There are some sensible letters extant under the name of
this fair Pythagorean. They are addressed to her female friends upon the
education of children, the treatment of servants, etc.

[7] The river Alpheus, which flowed by Pisa or Olympia, and into
which it was customary to throw offerings of different kinds, during the
celebration of the Olympic games. In the pretty romance of Clitophon and
Leucippe, the river is supposed to carry these offerings as bridal gifts
to the fountain Arethusa.






TO CLOE.

IMITATED FROM MARTIAL.


I could resign that eye of blue.
  How e'er its splendor used to thrill me;
And even that cheek of roseate hue,--
  To lose it, Cloe, scarce would kill me.

That snowy neck I ne'er should miss,
  However much I've raved about it;
And sweetly as that lip can kiss,
  I _think_ I could exist without it.

In short, so well I've learned to fast,
  That, sooth my love, I know not whether
I might not bring myself at last,
  To--do without you altogether.






THE WREATH AND THE CHAIN.


I bring thee, love, a golden chain,
  I bring thee too a flowery wreath;
The gold shall never wear a stain,
  The flowerets long shall sweetly breathe.
Come, tell me which the tie shall be,
To bind thy gentle heart to me.

The Chain is formed of golden threads,
  Bright as Minerva's yellow hair,
When the last beam of evening sheds
  Its calm and sober lustre there.
The Wreath's of brightest myrtle wove,
  With sunlit drops of bliss among it,
And many a rose-leaf, culled by Love,
  To heal his lip when bees have stung it.
Come, tell me which the tie shall be,
To bind thy gentle heart to me.

Yes, yes, I read that ready eye,
  Which answers when the tongue is loath,
Thou likest the form of either tie,
  And spreadest thy playful hands for both.
Ah!--if there were not something wrong,
  The world would see them blended oft;
The Chain would make the Wreath so strong!
  The Wreath would make the Chain so soft!
Then might the gold, the flowerets be
Sweet fetters for my love and me.

But, Fanny, so unblest they twine,
  That (heaven alone can tell the reason)
When mingled thus they cease to shine,
  Or shine but for a transient season.
Whether the Chain may press too much,
  Or that the Wreath is slightly braided,
Let but the gold the flowerets touch,
  And all their bloom, their glow is faded!
Oh! better to be always free.
Than thus to bind my love to me.

       *       *       *       *       *

The timid girl now hung her head,
  And, as she turned an upward glance,
I saw a doubt its twilight spread
  Across her brow's divine expanse
Just then, the garland's brightest rose
  Gave one of its love-breathing sighs--
Oh! who can ask how Fanny chose,
  That ever looked in Fanny's eyes!
"The Wreath, my life, the Wreath shall be
"The tie to bind my soul to thee."






TO .... ....


And hast thou marked the pensive shade,
  That many a time obscures my brow,
Midst all the joys, beloved maid.
  Which thou canst give, and only thou?

Oh! 'tis not that I then forget
  The bright looks that before me shine;
For never throbbed a bosom yet
  Could feel their witchery, like mine.

When bashful on my bosom hid,
  And blushing to have felt so blest,
Thou dost but lift thy languid lid
  Again to close it on my breast;--

Yes,--these are minutes all thine own,
  Thine own to give, and mine to feel;
Yet even in them, my heart has known
  The sigh to rise, the tear to steal.

For I have thought of former hours,
  When he who first thy soul possest,
Like me awaked its witching powers,
  Like me was loved, like me was blest.

Upon _his_ name thy murmuring tongue
  Perhaps hath all as sweetly dwelt;
Upon his words thine ear hath hung,
  With transport all as purely felt.

For him--yet why the past recall,
  To damp and wither present bliss?
Thou'rt now my own, heart, spirit, all,
  And heaven could grant no more than this!

Forgive me, dearest, oh! forgive;
  I would be first, be sole to thee,
Thou shouldst have but begun to live,
  The hour that gave thy heart to me.

Thy book of life till then effaced,
  Love should have kept that leaf alone
On which he first so brightly traced
  That thou wert, soul and all, my own.






TO .......'S PICTURE.


Go then, if she, whose shade thou art,
  No more will let thee soothe my pain;
Yet, tell her, it has cost this heart
  Some pangs, to give thee back again.

Tell her, the smile was not so dear,
  With which she made the semblance mine,
As bitter is the burning tear,
  With which I now the gift resign.

Yet go--and could she still restore,
  As some exchange for taking thee.
The tranquil look which first I wore,
  When her eyes found me calm and free;

Could she give back the careless flow,
  The spirit that my heart then knew--
Yet, no, 'tis vain--go, picture, go--
  Smile at me once, and then--adieu!






FRAGMENT OF A MYTHOLOGICAL HYMN TO LOVE.[1]


    Blest infant of eternity!
  Before the day-star learned to move,
In pomp of fire, along his grand career,
  Glancing the beamy shafts of light

From his rich quiver to the farthest sphere,
    Thou wert alone, oh Love!
  Nestling beneath the wings of ancient Night,
  Whose horrors seemed to smile in shadowing thee.
No form of beauty soothed thine eye,
  As through the dim expanse it wandered wide;
No kindred spirit caught thy sigh,
  As o'er the watery waste it lingering died.

Unfelt the pulse, unknown the power,
  That latent in his heart was sleeping,--
Oh Sympathy! that lonely hour
  Saw Love himself thy absence weeping.

But look, what glory through the darkness beams!
Celestial airs along the water glide:--
What Spirit art thou, moving o'er the tide
  So beautiful? oh, not of earth,
  But, in that glowing hour, the birth
Of the young Godhead's own creative dreams.
      'Tis she!
Psyche, the firstborn spirit of the air.
    To thee, oh Love, she turns,

    On thee her eyebeam burns:
  Blest hour, before all worlds ordained to be!
      They meet--
  The blooming god--the spirit fair
    Meet in communion sweet.
  Now, Sympathy, the hour is thine;
  All Nature feels the thrill divine,
  The veil of Chaos is withdrawn,
And their first kiss is great Creation's dawn!


[1] Love and Psyche are here considered as the active and passive
principles of creation, and the universe is supposed to have received its
first harmonizing impulse from the nuptial sympathy between these two
powers. A marriage is generally the first step in cosmogony. Timaeus held
Form to be the father, and Matter the mother of the World.






TO HIS SERENE HIGHNESS THE DUKE OF MONTPENSIER
ON HIS PORTRAIT OF THE LADY ADELAIDE FORBES.

_Donington Park, 1802_


To catch the thought, by painting's spell,
  Howe'er remote, howe'er refined,
And o'er the kindling canvas tell
  The silent story of the mind;

O'er nature's form to glance the eye,
  And fix, by mimic light and shade,
Her morning tinges ere they fly,
  Her evening blushes, ere they fade;

Yes, these are Painting's proudest powers,
  The gift, by which her art divine
Above all others proudly towers,--
  And these, oh Prince! are richly thine.

And yet, when Friendship sees thee trace,
  In almost living truth exprest,
This bright memorial of a face
  On which her eye delights to rest;

While o'er the lovely look serene,
  The smile of peace, the bloom of youth,
The cheek, that blushes to be seen.
  The eye that tells the bosom's truth;

While o'er each line, so brightly true,
  Our eyes with lingering pleasure rove,
Blessing the touch whose various hue
  Thus brings to mind the form we love;

We feel the magic of thy art,
  And own it with a zest, a zeal,
A pleasure, nearer to the heart
  Than critic taste can _ever_ feel.






THE FALL OF HEBE.

A DITHYRAMBIC ODE.


      'Twas on a day
When the immortals at their banquet lay;
      The bowl
  Sparkled with starry dew,
The weeping of those myriad urns of light,
  Within whose orbs, the Almighty Power,
  At nature's dawning hour,
Stored the rich fluid of ethereal soul.
      Around,
Soft odorous clouds, that upward wing their flight
      From eastern isles
(Where they have bathed them in the orient ray,
And with rich fragrance all their bosoms filled).
In circles flew, and, melting as they flew,
A liquid daybreak o'er the board distilled.

      All, all was luxury!
  All _must_ be luxury, where Lyaeus smiles.
    His locks divine
      Were crowned
    With a bright meteor-braid,
Which, like an ever-springing wreath of vine,
  Shot into brilliant leafy shapes,
And o'er his brow in lambent tendrils played:
    While mid the foliage hung,
      Like lucid grapes,
A thousand clustering buds of light,
Culled from the garden of the galaxy.

Upon his bosom Cytherea's head
Lay lovely, as when first the Syrens sung
      Her beauty's dawn,
And all the curtains of the deep, undrawn,
Revealed her sleeping in its azure bed.
      The captive deity
    Hung lingering on her eyes and lip,
      With looks of ecstasy.
      Now, on his arm,
    In blushes she reposed,
  And, while he gazed on each bright charm,
To shade his burning eyes her hand in dalliance stole.

And now she raised her rosy mouth to sip
    The nectared wave
    Lyaeus gave,
And from her eyelids, half-way closed,
  Sent forth a melting gleam,
  Which fell like sun-dew in the bowl:
While her bright hair, in mazy flow
  Of gold descending
Adown her cheek's luxurious glow,
  Hung o'er the goblet's side,
And was reflected in its crystal tide,
  Like a bright crocus flower,
 Whose sunny leaves, at evening hour
  With roses of Cyrene blending,[1]
Hang o'er the mirror of some silvery stream.

      The Olympian cup
      Shone in the hands
  Of dimpled Hebe, as she winged her feet
        Up
      The empyreal mount,
To drain the soul-drops at their stellar fount;[2]
        And still
      As the resplendent rill
  Gushed forth into the cup with mantling heat,
    Her watchful care
  Was still to cool its liquid fire
With snow-white sprinklings of that feathery air
The children of the Pole respire,
  In those enchanted lands.[3]
Where life is all a spring, and
  north winds never blow.

      But oh!
    Bright Hebe, what a tear,
    And what a blush were thine,
  When, as the breath of every Grace
Wafted thy feet along the studded sphere,
  With a bright cup for Jove himself to drink,
  Some star, that shone beneath thy tread,
    Raising its amorous head
  To kiss those matchless feet,
    Checked thy career too fleet,
    And all heaven's host of eyes
  Entranced, but fearful all,
Saw thee, sweet Hebe, prostrate fall
  Upon the bright floor of the azure skies;
    Where, mid its stars, thy beauty lay,
    As blossom, shaken from the spray
      Of a spring thorn,
Lies mid the liquid sparkles of the morn.
Or, as in temples of the Paphian shade,
The worshippers of Beauty's queen behold
An image of their rosy idol, laid
  Upon a diamond shrine.

    The wanton wind,
  Which had pursued the flying fair,
  And sported mid the tresses unconfined
    Of her bright hair,
Now, as she fell,--oh wanton breeze!
Ruffled the robe, whose graceful flow
Hung o'er those limbs of unsunned snow,
  Purely as the Eleusinian veil
    Hangs o'er the Mysteries!

  The brow of Juno flushed--
  Love blest the breeze!
  The Muses blushed;
And every cheek was hid behind a lyre,
While every eye looked laughing through the strings.
But the bright cup? the nectared draught
Which Jove himself was to have quaffed?
  Alas, alas, upturned it lay
  By the fallen Hebe's side;
While, in slow lingering drops, the ethereal tide,
As conscious of its own rich essence, ebbed away.

Who was the Spirit that remembered Man,
      In that blest hour,
    And, with a wing of love,
  Brushed off the goblet's scattered tears,
As, trembling near the edge of heaven they ran,
And sent them floating to our orb below?
  Essence of immortality!
    The shower
  Fell glowing through the spheres;
While all around new tints of bliss,
    New odors and new light,
    Enriched its radiant flow.
      Now, with a liquid kiss,
  It stole along the thrilling wire
    Of Heaven's luminous Lyre,
  Stealing the soul of music in its flight:
  And now, amid the breezes bland,
That whisper from the planets as they roll,
  The bright libation, softly fanned
  By all their sighs, meandering stole.
    They who, from Atlas' height,
      Beheld this rosy flame
  Descending through the waste of night,
Thought 'twas some planet, whose empyreal frame
  Had kindled, as it rapidly revolved
Around its fervid axle, and dissolved
    Into a flood so bright!

      The youthful Day,
    Within his twilight bower,
    Lay sweetly sleeping
On the flushed bosom of a lotos-flower;[4]
  When round him, in profusion weeping,
    Dropt the celestial shower,
        Steeping
    The rosy clouds, that curled
      About his infant head,
Like myrrh upon the locks of Cupid shed.
    But, when the waking boy
Waved his exhaling tresses through the sky,
        O morn of joy!
        The tide divine,
  All glorious with the vermil dye
  It drank beneath his orient eye,
  Distilled, in dews, upon the world,
And every drop was wine, was heavenly WINE!
  Blest be the sod, and blest the flower
  On which descended first that shower,
All fresh from Jove's nectareous springs;--
  Oh far less sweet the flower, the sod,
  O'er which the Spirit of the Rainbow flings
  The magic mantle of her solar God![5]


[1] We learn from Theopbrastus, that the roses of Cyrene were particularly
fragrant.

[2] Heraclitus (Physicus) held the soul to be a spark of the stellar
essence.

[3] The country of the Hyperboreans. These people were supposed to be
placed so far north that the north wind could not affect them; they lived
longer than any other mortals; passed their whole time in music and
dancing, etc.

[4] The Egyptians represented the dawn of day by a young boy seated upon a
lotos. Observing that the lotos showed its head above water at sunrise,
and sank again at his setting, they conceived the idea of consecrating
this flower to Osiris, or the sun.

[5] The ancients esteemed those flowers and trees the sweetest upon which
the rainbow had appeared to rest; and the wood they chiefly burned in
sacrifices, was that which the smile of Iris had consecrated.






RINGS AND SEALS.


"Go!" said the angry, weeping maid,
"The charm is broken!--once betrayed,
"Never can this wronged heart rely
"On word or look, on oath or sigh.
"Take back the gifts, so fondly given,
"With promised faith and vows to heaven;
"That little ring which, night and morn,
"With wedded truth my hand hath worn;
"That seal which oft, in moments blest,
"Thou hast upon my lip imprest,
"And sworn its sacred spring should be
"A fountain sealed[1] for only thee:
"Take, take them back, the gift and vow,
"All sullied, lost and hateful now!"

  I took the ring--the seal I took,
While, oh, her every tear and look
Were such as angels look and shed,
When man is by the world misled.
Gently I whispered, "Fanny, dear!
"Not half thy lover's gifts are here:
"Say, where are all the kisses given,
"From morn to noon, from noon to even,--
"Those signets of true love, worth more
"Than Solomon's own seal of yore,--
"Where are those gifts, so sweet, so many?
"Come, dearest,--give back all, if any."
  While thus I whispered, trembling too,
Lest all the nymph had sworn was true,
I saw a smile relenting rise
Mid the moist azure of her eyes,
Like daylight o'er a sea of blue,
While yet in mid-air hangs the dew
She let her cheek repose on mine,
She let my arms around her twine;
One kiss was half allowed, and then--
The ring and seal were hers again.


[1] "There are gardens, supposed to be those of King Solomon, in the
neighborhood of Bethlehem. The friars show a fountain, which, they say, is
the sealed fountain, to which the holy spouse in the Canticles is
compared; and they pretend a tradition, that Solomon shut up these springs
and put his signet upon the door, to keep them for his own
drinking."--_Maundrell's Travels_.






TO MISS SUSAN BECKFORD.[1]

ON HER SINGING.


I more than once have heard at night
  A song like those thy lip hath given,
And it was sung by shapes of light,
  Who looked and breathed, like thee, of heaven.

But this was all a dream of sleep.
  And I have said when morning shone:--
"Why should the night-witch, Fancy, keep
  "These wonders for herself alone?"

I knew not then that fate had lent
  Such tones to one of mortal birth;
I knew not then that Heaven had sent
  A voice, a form like thine on earth.

And yet, in all that flowery maze
  Through which my path of life has led,
When I have heard the sweetest lays
  From lips of rosiest lustre shed;

When I have felt the warbled word
  From Beauty's lip, in sweetness vying
With music's own melodious bird;
  When on the rose's bosom lying

Though form and song at once combined
  Their loveliest bloom and softest thrill,
My heart hath sighed, my ear hath pined
  For something lovelier, softer still:--

Oh, I have found it all, at last,
  In thee, thou sweetest living lyre,
Through which the soul of song e'er past,
  Or feeling breathed its sacred fire.

All that I e'er, in wildest flight
  Of fancy's dreams could hear or see
Of music's sigh or beauty's light
  Is realized, at once, in thee!


[1] Afterward Duchess of Hamilton.






IMPROMPTU,

ON LEAVING SOME FRIENDS.


    _o dulces comitum valete coetus_!
    CATULLUS.


No, never shall my soul forget
  The friends I found so cordial-hearted;
Dear shall be the day we met,
  And dear shall be the night we parted.

If fond regrets, however sweet,
  Must with the lapse of time decay,
Yet stall, when thus in mirth you meet,
  Fill high to him that's far away!

Long be the light of memory found
  Alive within your social glass;
Let that be still the magic round.
  O'er which Oblivion, dare not pass.






A WARNING.

TO .......


Oh, fair as heaven and chaste as light!
Did nature mould thee all so bright.
That thou shouldst e'er be brought to weep
O'er languid virtue's fatal sleep,
O'er shame extinguished, honor fled,
Peace lost, heart withered, feeling dead?

No, no! a star was born with thee,
Which sheds eternal purity.
Thou hast, within those sainted eyes,
So fair a transcript of the skies,
In lines of light such heavenly lore
That men should read them and adore.
Yet have I known a gentle maid
Whose mind and form were both arrayed
In nature's purest light, like thine;--
Who wore that clear, celestial sign
Which seems to mark the brow that's fair
For destiny's peculiar care;
Whose bosom, too, like Dian's own,
Was guarded by a sacred zone,
Where the bright gem of virtue shone;
Whose eyes had in their light a charm
Against all wrong and guile and harm.
Yet, hapless maid, in one sad hour
These spells have lost their guardian power;
The gem has been beguiled away;
Her eyes have lost their chastening ray;
The modest pride, the guiltless shame,
The smiles that from reflection came,
All, all have fled and left her mind
A faded monument behind;
The ruins of a once pure shrine,
No longer fit for guest divine,
Oh! 'twas a sight I wept to see--
Heaven keep the lost one's fate from thee!






TO .......


'Tis time, I feel, to leave thee now,
  While yet my soul is something free;
While yet those dangerous eyes allow
  One minute's thought to stray from thee.

Oh! thou becom'st each moment dearer;
  Every chance that brings me nigh thee
Brings my ruin nearer, nearer,--
  I am lost, unless I fly thee.

Nay, if thou dost not scorn and hate me,
  Doom me not thus so soon to fall
Duties, fame, and hopes await me,--
  But that eye would blast them all!

For, thou hast heart as false and cold
  As ever yet allured and swayed,
And couldst, without a sigh, behold
  The ruin which thyself had made.

Yet,--_could_ I think that, truly fond,
  That eye but once would smile on me,
Even as thou art, how far beyond
  Fame, duty, wealth, that smile would be!

Oh! but to win it, night and day,
  Inglorious at thy feet reclined,
I'd sigh my dreams of fame away,
  The world for thee forgot, resigned.

But no, 'tis o'er, and--thus we part,
  Never to meet again--no, never,
False woman, what a mind and heart
 Thy treachery has undone forever.






WOMAN.


Away, away--you're all the same,
  A smiling, fluttering, jilting throng;
And, wise too late, I burn with shame,
  To think I've been your slave so long.

Slow to be won, and quick to rove,
  From folly kind, from cunning loath,
Too cold for bliss, too weak for love,
  Yet feigning all that's best in both;

Still panting o'er a crowd to reign,--
  More joy it gives to woman's breast
To make ten frigid coxcombs vain,
  Than one true, manly lover blest.

Away, away--your smile's a curse--
  Oh! blot me from the race of men,
Kind, pitying Heaven, by death or worse,
  If e'er I love such things again.






TO .......


Come, take thy harp--'tis vain to muse
  Upon the gathering ills we see;
Oh! take thy harp and let me lose
  All thoughts of ill in hearing thee.

Sing to me, love!--Though death were near,
  Thy song could make my soul forget--
Nay, nay, in pity, dry that tear,
  All may be well, be happy yet.

Let me but see that snowy arm
  Once more upon the dear harp lie,
And I will cease to dream of harm,
  Will smile at fate, while thou art nigh.

Give me that strain of mournful touch
  We used to love long, long ago,
Before our hearts had known as much
  As now, alas! they bleed to know.

Sweet notes! they tell of former peace,
  Of all that looked so smiling then,
Now vanished, lost--oh, pray thee cease,
  I cannot bear those sounds again.

Art _thou_, too, wretched? Yes, thou art;
  I see thy tears flow fast with mine--
Come, come to this devoted heart,
  'Tis breaking, but it still is thine!






A VISION OF PHILOSOPHY.


'Twas on the Red Sea coast, at morn, we met
The venerable man;[1] a healthy bloom
Mingled its softness with the vigorous thought
That towered upon his brow; and when he spoke
'Twas language sweetened into song--such holy sounds
As oft, they say, the wise and virtuous hear,
Prelusive to the harmony of heaven,
When death is nigh; and still, as he unclosed[2]
His sacred lips, an odor, all as bland
As ocean-breezes gather from the flowers
That blossom in Elysium, breathed around,
With silent awe we listened, while he told
Of the dark veil which many an age had hung
O'er Nature's form, till, long explored by man,
The mystic shroud grew thin and luminous,
And glimpses of that heavenly form shone through:--
Of magic wonders, that were known and taught
By him (or Cham or Zoroaster named)
Who mused amid the mighty cataclysm,
O'er his rude tablets of primeval lore;
And gathering round him, in the sacred ark,
The mighty secrets of that former globe,
Let not the living star of science sink
Beneath the waters, which ingulfed a world!--
Of visions, by Calliope revealed
To him,[3]who traced upon his typic lyre
The diapason of man's mingled frame,
And the grand Doric heptachord of heaven.
With all of pure, of wondrous and arcane,
Which the grave sons of Mochus, many a night,
Told to the young and bright-haired visitant
Of Carmel's sacred mount.--Then, in a flow
Of calmer converse, he beguiled us on
Through many a Maze of Garden and of Porch,
Through many a system, where the scattered light
Of heavenly truth lay, like a broken beam
From the pure sun, which, though refracted all
Into a thousand hues, is sunshine still,[4]
And bright through every change!--he spoke of Him,
The lone, eternal One, who dwells above,
And of the soul's untraceable descent
From that high fount of spirit, through the grades
Of intellectual being, till it mix
With atoms vague, corruptible, and dark;
Nor yet even then, though sunk in earthly dross,
Corrupted all, nor its ethereal touch
Quite lost, but tasting of the fountain still.
As some bright river, which has rolled along
Through meads of flowery light and mines of gold,
When poured at length into the dusky deep,
Disdains to take at once its briny taint,
Or balmy freshness, of the scenes it left.
But keeps unchanged awhile the lustrous tinge,
And here the old man ceased--a winged train
Of nymphs and genii bore him from our eyes.
The fair illusion fled! and, as I waked,
'Twas clear that my rapt soul had roamed, the while,
To that bright realm of dreams, that spirit-world,
Which mortals know by its long track of light
O'er midnight's sky, and call the Galaxy.[5]


[1] In Plutarch's Essay on the Decline of the Oracles, Cleombrotus, one of
the interlocutors, describes an extraordinary man whom he had met with,
after long research, upon the banks of the Red Sea. Once in every year
this supernatural personage appeared to mortals and conversed with them;
the rest of his time he passed among the Genii and the Nymphs.

[2] The celebrated Janus Dousa, a little before his death, imagined that
he heard a strain of music in the air.

[3] Orpheus.--Paulinus, in his "_Hebdomades_, cap. 2, _lib_. iii, has
endeavored to show, after the Platonists, that man is a diapason, or
octave, made up of a diatesseron, which is his soul, and a dispente, which
is his body. Those frequent allusions to music, by which the ancient
philosophers illustrated their sublime theories, must have tended very
much to elevate the character of the art, and to enrich it with
associations of the grandest and most interesting nature.

[4] Lactantius asserts that all the truths of Christianity may be found
dispersed through the ancient philosophical sects, and that any one who
would collect these scattered fragments of orthodoxy might form a code in
no respect differing from that of the Christian.

[5] According to Pythagoras, the people of Dreams are souls collected
together in the Galaxy.






TO MRS. .......


To see thee every day that came,
And find thee still each day the same;
In pleasure's smile or sorrow's tear
To me still ever kind and dear;--
To meet thee early, leave thee late,
Has been so long my bliss, my fate,
That life, without this cheering ray,
Which came, like sunshine, every day,
And all my pain, my sorrow chased,
Is now a lone, a loveless waste.

Where are the chords she used to touch?
The airs, the songs she loved so much?
Those songs are hushed, those chords are still,
And so, perhaps, will every thrill
Of feeling soon be lulled to rest,
Which late I waked in Anna's breast.
Yet, no--the simple notes I played
From memory's tablet soon may fade;
The songs, which Anna loved to hear,
May vanish from her heart and ear;
But friendship's voice shall ever find
An echo in that gentle mind,
Nor memory lose nor time impair
The sympathies that tremble there.






TO LADY HEATHCOTE,

ON AN OLD RING FOUND AT TUNBRIDGE-WELLS.


    _"Tunnebridge est à la même distance de Londres, que Fontainebleau
    l'est de Paris. Ce qu'il y a de beau et de galant dans l'un et dans
    l'autre sexe s'y rassemble au terns des eaux. La compagnie,"_ etc.
    --See _Memoires de Grammont_, Second Part, chap. iii.


_Tunbridge Wells_.


When Grammont graced these happy springs,
  And Tunbridge saw, upon her Pantiles,
The merriest wight of all the kings
  That ever ruled these gay, gallant isles;

Like us, by day, they rode, they walked,
  At eve they did as we may do,
And Grammont just like Spencer talked,
  And lovely Stewart smiled like you.

The only different trait is this,
  That woman then, if man beset her,
Was rather given to saying "yes,"
  Because,--as yet, she knew no better.

Each night they held a coterie,
  Where, every fear to slumber charmed,
Lovers were all they ought to be,
  And husbands not the least alarmed.

Then called they up their school-day pranks,
  Nor thought it much their sense beneath
To play at riddles, quips, and cranks,
  And lords showed wit, and ladies teeth.

As--"Why are husbands like the mint?"
  Because, forsooth, a husband's duty
Is but to set the name and print
  That give a currency to beauty.

"Why is a rose in nettles hid
  Like a young widow, fresh and fair?"
Because 'tis sighing to be rid
  Of weeds, that "have no business there!"

And thus they missed and thus they hit,
  And now they struck and now they parried;
And some lay in of full grown wit.
  While others of a pun miscarried,

'Twas one of those facetious nights
  That Grammont gave this forfeit ring
For breaking grave conundrumrites,
  Or punning ill, or--some such thing;--

From whence it can be fairly traced,
  Through many a branch and many a bough,
From twig to twig, until it graced
  The snowy hand that wears it now.

All this I'll prove, and then, to you
  Oh Tunbridge! and your springs ironical,
I swear by Heathcote's eye of blue
  To dedicate the important chronicle.

Long may your ancient inmates give
  Their mantles to your modern lodgers,
And Charles's loves in Heathcote live,
  And Charles's bards revive in Rogers.

Let no pedantic fools be there;
  For ever be those fops abolished,
With heads as wooden as thy ware,
  And, heaven knows! not half so polished.

But still receive the young, the gay.
  The few who know the rare delight
Of reading Grammont every day,
  And acting Grammont every night.






THE DEVIL AMONG THE SCHOLARS,

A FRAGMENT.

       *       *       *       *       *

But, whither have these gentle ones,
These rosy nymphs and black-eyed nuns,
With all of Cupid's wild romancing,
Led by truant brains a-dancing?
Instead of studying tomes scholastic,
Ecclesiastic, or monastic,
Off I fly, careering far
In chase of Pollys, prettier far
Than any of their namesakes are,--
The Polymaths and Polyhistors,
Polyglots and all their sisters.

So have I known a hopeful youth
Sit down in quest of lore and truth,
With tomes sufficient to confound him,
Like Tohu Bohu, heapt around him,--
Mamurra[1] stuck to Theophrastus,
And Galen tumbling o'er Bombastus.[2]
When lo! while all that's learned and wise
Absorbs the boy, he lifts his eyes,
And through the window of his study
Beholds some damsel fair and ruddy,
With eyes, as brightly turned upon him as
The angel's[3] were on Hieronymus.
Quick fly the folios, widely scattered,
Old Homer's laureled brow is battered,
And Sappho, headlong sent, flies just in
The reverend eye of St. Augustin.
Raptured he quits each dozing sage,
Oh woman, for thy lovelier page:
Sweet book!--unlike the books of art,--
Whose errors are thy fairest part;
In whom the dear errata column
Is the best page in all the volume![4]
But to begin my subject rhyme--
'Twas just about this devilish time,
When scarce there happened any frolics
That were not done by Diabolics,
A cold and loveless son of Lucifer,
Who woman scorned, nor saw the use of her,
A branch of Dagon's family,
(Which Dagon, whether He or She,
Is a dispute that vastly better is
Referred to Scaliger[5] _et coeteris_,)
Finding that, in this cage of fools,
The wisest sots adorn the schools,
Took it at once his head Satanic in,
To grow a great scholastic manikin,--
A doctor, quite as learned and fine as
Scotus John or Tom Aquinas,
Lully, Hales Irrefragabilis,
Or any doctor of the rabble is.
In languages, the Polyglots,
Compared to him, were Babelsots:
He chattered more than ever Jew did;--
Sanhedrim and Priest included,
Priest and holy Sanhedrim
Were one-and-seventy fools to him.
But chief the learned demon felt a
Zeal so strong for gamma, delta,
That, all for Greek and learning's glory,[6]
He nightly tippled "Graeco more,"
And never paid a bill or balance
Except upon the Grecian Kalends:--
From whence your scholars, when they want tick,
Say, to be Attic's to be _on_ tick.
In logics, he was quite Ho Panu;
Knew as much as ever man knew.
He fought the combat syllogistic
With so much skill and art eristic,
That though you were the learned Stagyrite,
At once upon the hip he had you right.
In music, though he had no ears
Except for that amongst the spheres,
(Which most of all, as he averred it,
He dearly loved, 'cause no one heard it,)
Yet aptly he, at sight, could read
Each tuneful diagram in Bede,
And find, by Euclid's corollaria,
The ratios of a jig or aria.
But, as for all your warbling Delias,
Orpheuses and Saint Cecilias,
He owned he thought them much surpast
By that redoubted Hyaloclast[7]
Who still contrived by dint of throttle,
Where'er he went to crack a bottle.

  Likewise to show his mighty knowledge, he,
On things unknown in physiology,
Wrote many a chapter to divert us,
(Like that great little man Albertus,)
Wherein he showed the reason why,
When children first are heard to cry,
If boy the baby chance to be.
He cries O A!--if girl, O E!--
Which are, quoth he, exceeding fair hints
Respecting their first sinful parents;
"Oh Eve!" exclaimeth little madam,
While little master cries "Oh Adam!"

  But, 'twas in Optics and Dioptrics,
Our daemon played his first and top tricks.
He held that sunshine passes quicker
Through wine than any other liquor;
And though he saw no great objection
To steady light and clear reflection,
He thought the aberrating rays,
Which play about a bumper's blaze,
Were by the Doctors looked, in common, on,
As a more rare and rich phenomenon.
He wisely said that the sensorium
Is for the eyes a great emporium,
To which these noted picture-stealers
Send all they can and meet with dealers.
In many an optical proceeding
The brain, he said, showed great good breeding;
For instance, when we ogle women
(A trick which Barbara tutored him in),
Although the dears are apt to get in a
Strange position on the retina,
Yet instantly the modest brain
Doth set them on their legs again!

  Our doctor thus, with "stuft sufficiency"
Of all omnigenous omnisciency,
Began (as who would not begin
That had, like him, so much within?)
To let it out in books of all sorts,
Folios, quartos, large and small sorts;
Poems, so very deep and sensible
That they were quite incomprehensible
Prose, which had been at learning's Fair,
And bought up all the trumpery there,
The tattered rags of every vest,
In which the Greeks and Romans drest,
And o'er her figure swollen and antic
Scattered them all with airs so frantic,
That those, who saw what fits she had,
Declared unhappy Prose was mad!
Epics he wrote and scores of rebuses,
All as neat as old Turnebus's;
Eggs and altars, cyclopaedias,
Grammars, prayer-books--oh! 'twere tedious,
Did I but tell thee half, to follow me:
Not the scribbling bard of Ptolemy,
No--nor the hoary Trismegistus,
(Whose writings all, thank heaven! have missed us,)
E'er filled with lumber such a wareroom
As this great "_porcus literarum_!"


[1] Mamurra, a dogmatic philosopher, who never doubted about
anything, except who was his father.

[2] Bombastus was one of the names of that great scholar and
quack Paracelsus. He used to fight the devil every night with a
broadsword, to the no small terror of his pupil Oporinus, who has recorded
the circumstance.

[3]  The angel, who scolded St. Jerome for reading Cicero, as
Gratian tells the story in his "_concordantia discordantium Canonum_," and
says, that for this reason bishops were not allowed to read the Classics.

[4] The idea of the Rabbins, respecting the origin of woman, is
not a little singular. They think that man was originally formed with a
tail, like a monkey, but that the Deity cut off this appendage, and made
woman of it.

[5] Scaliger.--Dagon was thought by others to be a certain
sea-monster, who came every day out of the Red Sea to teach the Syrians
husbandry.

[6] It is much to be regretted that Martin Luther, with all his
talents for reforming, should yet be vulgar enough to laugh at Camerarius
for writing to him in Greek, "Master Joachim (says he) has sent me some
dates and some raisins, and has also written me two letters in Greek. As
soon as I am recovered, I shall answer them in Turkish, that he too may
have the pleasure of reading what he does not understand."

[7] Or Glass-breaker--Morhofius has given an account of this
extraordinary man, in a work, published 1682.

       *       *       *       *       *








POEMS RELATING TO AMERICA




TO FRANCIS, EARL OF MOIRA.

GENERAL IN HIS MAJESTY'S FORCES, MASTER-GENERAL OF THE ORDNANCE,
CONSTABLE OF THE TOWER, ETC.

MY LORD,


It is impossible to think of addressing a Dedication to your Lordship
without calling to mind the well-known reply of the Spartan to a
rhetorician, who proposed to pronounce an eulogium on Hercules. "Oh
Hercules!" said the honest Spartan, "who ever thought of blaming
Hercules?" In a similar manner the concurrence of public opinion has left
to the panegyrist of your Lordship a very superfluous task. I shall,
therefore, be silent on the subject, and merely entreat your indulgence to
the very humble tribute of gratitude which I have here the honor to
present.

I am, my Lord,
With every feeling of attachment and respect,
Your Lordship's very devoted Servant,

THOMAS MOORE.

_37 Bury Street, St. James's,
April 10, 1806_.




PREFACE.[1]


The principal poems in the following collection were written during an
absence of fourteen months from Europe. Though curiosity was certainly not
the motive of my voyage to America, yet it happened that the gratification
of curiosity was the only advantage which I derived from it. Finding
myself in the country of a new people, whose infancy had promised so much,
and whose progress to maturity has been an object of such interesting
speculation, I determined to employ the short period of time, which my
plan of return to Europe afforded me, in travelling through a few of the
States, and acquiring some knowledge of the inhabitants.

The impression which my mind received from the character and manners of
these republicans, suggested the Epistles which are written from the city
of Washington and Lake Erie.[2] How far I was right in thus assuming the
tone of a satirist against a people whom I viewed but as a stranger and a
visitor, is a doubt which my feelings did not allow me time to
investigate. All I presume to answer for is the fidelity of the picture
which I have given; and though prudence might have dictated gentler
language, truth, I think, would have justified severer.

I went to America with prepossessions by no means unfavorable, and indeed
rather indulged in many of those illusive ideas, with respect to the
purity of the government and the primitive happiness of the people, which
I had early imbibed In my native country, where, unfortunately, discontent
at home enhances every distant temptation, and the western world has long
been looked to as a retreat from real or imaginary oppression; as, in
short, the elysian Atlantis, where persecuted patriots might find their
visions realized, and be welcomed by kindred spirits to liberty and
repose. In all these flattering expectations I found myself completely
disappointed, and felt inclined to say to America, as Horace says to his
mistress, "_intentata nites_." Brissot, in the preface to his travels,
observes, that "freedom in that country is carried to so high a degree as
to border upon a state of nature;" and there certainly is a close
approximation to savage life not only in the liberty which they enjoy, but
in the violence of party spirit and of private animosity which results
from it. This illiberal zeal imbitters all social intercourse; and, though
I scarcely could hesitate in selecting the party, whose views appeared to
me the more pure and rational, yet I was sorry to observe that, in
asserting their opinions, they both assume an equal share of intolerance;
the Democrats consistently with their principles, exhibiting a vulgarity
of rancor, which the Federalists too often are so forgetful of their cause
as to imitate.

The rude familiarity of the lower orders, and indeed the unpolished state
of society in general, would neither surprise nor disgust if they seemed
to flow from that simplicity of character, that honest ignorance of the
gloss of refinement which may be looked for in a new and inexperienced
people. But, when we find them arrived at maturity in most of the vices,
and all the pride of civilization, while they are still so far removed
from its higher and better characteristics, it is impossible not to feel
that this youthful decay, this crude anticipation of the natural period of
corruption, must repress every sanguine hope of the future energy and
greatness of America.

I am conscious that, in venturing these few remarks, I have said just
enough to offend, and by no means sufficient to convince; for the limits
of a preface prevent me from entering into a justification of my opinions,
and I am committed on the subject as effectually as if I had written
volumes in their defence. My reader, however, is apprised of the very
cursory observation upon which these opinions are founded, and can easily
decide for himself upon the degree of attention or confidence which they
merit.

With respect to the poems in general, which occupy the following pages, I
know not in what manner to apologize to the public for intruding upon
their notice such a mass of unconnected trifles, such a world of epicurean
atoms as I have here brought in conflict together. To say that I have been
tempted by the liberal offers of my bookseller, is an excuse which can
hope for but little indulgence from the critic; yet I own that, without
this seasonable inducement, these poems very possibly would never have
been submitted to the world. The glare of publication is too strong for
such imperfect productions: they should be shown but to the eye of
friendship, in that dim light of privacy which is as favorable to poetical
as to female beauty, and serves as a veil for faults, while it enhances
every charm which it displays. Besides, this is not a period for the idle
occupations of poetry, and times like the present require talents more
active and more useful. Few have now the leisure to read such trifles, and
I most sincerely regret that I have had the leisure to write them.


[1] This Preface, as well as the Dedication which precedes it, were
prefixed originally to the miscellaneous volume entitled "Odes and
Epistles," of which, hitherto, the poems relating to my American tour have
formed a part.

[2] Epistles VI., VII., and VIII.






POEMS RELATING TO AMERICA.






TO LORD VISCOUNT STRANGFORD.

ABOARD THE PHAETON FRIGATE, OFF THE AZORES, BY MOONLIGHT.


Sweet Moon! if, like Crotona's sage,[1]
  By any spell my hand could dare
To make thy disk its ample page,
  And write my thoughts, my wishes there;
How many a friend, whose careless eye
Now wanders o'er that starry sky,
Should smile, upon thy orb to meet
The recollection, kind and sweet,
The reveries of fond regret,
The promise, never to forget,
And all my heart and soul would send
To many a dear-loved, distant friend.

How little, when we parted last,
I thought those pleasant times were past,
For ever past, when brilliant joy
Was all my vacant heart's employ:
When, fresh from mirth to mirth again,
  We thought the rapid hours too few;
Our only use for knowledge then
  To gather bliss from all we knew.
Delicious days of whim and soul!
  When, mingling lore and laugh together,
We leaned the book on Pleasure's bowl,
  And turned the leaf with Folly's feather.
Little I thought that all were fled,
That, ere that summer's bloom was shed,
My eye should see the sail unfurled
That wafts me to the western world.

And yet, 'twas time;--in youth's sweet days,
To cool that season's glowing rays,
The heart awhile, with wanton wing,
May dip and dive in Pleasure's spring;
But, if it wait for winter's breeze,
The spring will chill, the heart will freeze.
And then, that Hope, that fairy Hope,--
  Oh! she awaked such happy dreams,
And gave my soul such tempting scope
  For all its dearest, fondest schemes,
_That not Verona's child of song_,
  When flying from the Phrygian shore,
With lighter heart could bound along,
  Or pant to be a wanderer more!

  Even now delusive hope will steal
Amid the dark regrets I feel,
Soothing, as yonder placid beam
  Pursues the murmurers of the deep,
And lights them with consoling gleam,
  And smiles them into tranquil sleep.
Oh! such a blessed night as this,
  I often think, if friends were near,
How we should feel, and gaze with bliss
  Upon the moon-bright scenery here!
The sea is like a silvery lake,
  And, o'er its calm the vessel glides
Gently, as if it feared to wake
  The slumber of the silent tides.
The only envious cloud that lowers
  Hath hung its shade on Pico's height,[2]
Where dimly, mid the dusk, he towers,
  And scowling at this heaven of light,
Exults to see the infant storm
  Cling darkly round his giant form!

Now, could I range those verdant isles,
  Invisible, at this soft hour,
And see the looks, the beaming smiles,
  That brighten many an orange bower;
And could I lift each pious veil,
  And see the blushing cheek it shades,--
Oh! I should have full many a tale,
  To tell of young Azorian maids.[3]
Yes, Strangford, at this hour, perhaps,
  Some lover (not too idly blest,
Like those, who in their ladies' laps
  May cradle every wish to rest,)
Warbles, to touch his dear one's soul,
  Those madrigals, of breath divine,
Which Camoens' harp from Rapture stole
  And gave, all glowing warm, to thine.[4]
Oh! could the lover learn from thee,
  And breathe them with thy graceful tone,
Such sweet, beguiling minstrelsy
  Would make the coldest nymph his own.

  But, hark!--the boatswain's pipings tell
'Tis time to bid my dream farewell:
Eight bells:--the middle watch is set;
Good night, my Strangford!--ne'er forget
That far beyond the western sea
Is one whose heart remembers thee.


[1] Pythagoras; who was supposed to have a power of writing upon the Moon
by the means of a magic mirror.--See _Boyle_, art. _Pythag_.

[2] A very high mountain on one of the Azores, from which the island
derives its name.  It is said by some to be as high as the Peak of
Teneriffe.

[3] I believe it is Gutherie who says, that the inhabitants of the Azores
are much addicted to gallantry.  This is an assertion in which even
Gutherie may be credited.

[4] These islands belong to the Portuguese.






STANZAS.


A beam of tranquillity smiled in the west,
 The storms of the morning pursued us no more;
And the wave, while it welcomed the moment of rest.
 Still heaved, as remembering ills that were o'er.

Serenely my heart took the hue of the hour,
  Its passions were sleeping, were mute as the dead;
And the spirit becalmed but remembered their power,
  As the billow the force of the gale that was fled.

I thought of those days, when to pleasure alone
  My heart ever granted a wish or a sigh;
When the saddest emotion my bosom had known,
  Was pity for those who were wiser than I.

I reflected, how soon in the cup of Desire
  The pearl of the soul may be melted away;
How quickly, alas, the pure sparkle of fire
  We inherit from heaven, may be quenched in the clay;

And I prayed of that Spirit who lighted the flame,
  That Pleasure no more might its purity dim;
So that, sullied but little, or brightly the same,
  I might give back the boon I had borrowed from Him.

How blest was the thought! it appeared as if Heaven
  Had already an opening to Paradise shown;
As if, passion all chastened and error forgiven,
  My heart then began to be purely its own.

I looked to the west, and the beautiful sky
  Which morning had clouded, was clouded no more:
"Oh! thus," I exclaimed, "may a heavenly eye
  "Shed light on the soul that was darkened before."






TO THE FLYING-FISH.[1]


When I have seen thy snow-white wing
From the blue wave at evening spring,
And show those scales of silvery white,
So gayly to the eye of light,
As if thy frame were formed to rise,
And live amid the glorious skies;
Oh! it has made me proudly feel,
How like thy wing's impatient zeal
Is the pure soul, that rests not, pent
Within this world's gross element,
But takes the wing that God has given,
And rises into light and heaven!

But, when I see that wing, so bright,
Grow languid with a moment's flight,
Attempt the paths of air in vain,
And sink into the waves again;
Alas! the flattering pride is o'er;
Like thee, awhile, the soul may soar,
But erring man must blush to think,
Like thee, again, the soul may sink.

Oh Virtue! when thy clime I seek,
Let not my spirit's flight be weak;
Let me not, like this feeble thing,
With brine still dropping from its wing,
Just sparkle in the solar glow
And plunge again to depths below;
But, when I leave the grosser throng
With whom my soul hath dwelt so long,
Let me, in that aspiring day,
Cast every lingering stain away,
And, panting for thy purer air,
Fly up at once and fix me there.


[1] It is the opinion of St. Austin upon Genesis, and I believe of nearly
all the Fathers, that birds, like fish, were originally produced from the
waters; in defence of which idea they have collected every fanciful
circumstance which can tend to prove a kindred similitude between them.
With this thought in our minds, when we first see the Flying-Fish, we
could almost fancy, that we are present at the moment of creation, and
witness the birth of the first bird from the waves.






TO MISS MOORE.

FROM NORFOLK, IN VIRGINIA, NOVEMBER, 1803.


In days, my Kate, when life was new,
When, lulled with innocence and you,
I heard, in home's beloved shade,
The din the world at distance made;
When, every night my weary head
Sunk on its own unthorned bed,
And, mild as evening's matron hour,
Looks on the faintly shutting flower,
A mother saw our eyelids close,
And blest them into pure repose;
Then, haply if a week, a day,
I lingered from that home away,
How long the little absence seemed!
How bright the look of welcome beamed,
As mute you heard, with eager smile,
My tales of all that past the while!

Yet now, my Kate, a gloomy sea
Bolls wide between that home and me;
The moon may thrice be born and die,
Ere even that seal can reach mine eye.
Which used so oft, so quick to come,
Still breathing all the breath of home,--
As if, still fresh, the cordial air
From lips beloved were lingering there.
But now, alas,--far different fate!
It comes o'er ocean, slow and late,
When the dear hand that filled its fold
With words of sweetness may lie cold.

But hence that gloomy thought! at last,
Beloved Kate, the waves are past;
I tread on earth securely now,
And the green cedar's living bough
Breathes more refreshment to my eyes
Than could a Claude's divinest dyes.
At length I touch the happy sphere
To liberty and virtue dear,
Where man looks up, and, proud to claim
His rank within the social frame,
Sees a grand system round him roll,
Himself its centre, sun, and soul!
Far from the shocks of Europe--far
From every wild, elliptic star
That, shooting with a devious fire,
Kindled by heaven's avenging ire,
So oft hath into chaos hurled
The systems of the ancient world.

The warrior here, in arms no more
Thinks of the toil, the conflict o'er,
And glorying in the freedom won
For hearth and shrine, for sire and son,
Smiles on the dusky webs that hide
His sleeping sword's remembered pride.
While Peace, with sunny cheeks of toil,
Walks o'er the free, unlorded soil,
Effacing with her splendid share
The drops that war had sprinkled there.
Thrice happy land! where he who flies
From the dark ills of other skies,
From scorn, or want's unnerving woes.
May shelter him in proud repose;
Hope sings along the yellow sand
His welcome to a patriot land:
The mighty wood, with pomp, receives
The stranger in its world of leaves,
Which soon their barren glory yield
To the warm shed and cultured field;
And he, who came, of all bereft,
To whom malignant fate had left
Nor hope nor friends nor country dear,
Finds home and friends and country here.

Such is the picture, warmly such,
That Fancy long, with florid touch.
Had painted to my sanguine eye
Of man's new world of liberty.
Oh! ask me not, if Truth have yet
Her seal on Fancy's promise set;
If even a glimpse my eyes behold
Of that imagined age of gold;--
Alas, not yet one gleaming trace![1]
Never did youth, who loved a face
As sketched by some fond pencil's skill,
And made by fancy lovelier still,
Shrink back with more of sad surprise,
When the live model met his eyes,
Than I have felt, in sorrow felt,
To find a dream on which I've dwelt
From boyhood's hour, thus fade and flee
At touch of stern reality!

But, courage, yet, my wavering heart!
Blame not the temple's meanest part,[2]
Till thou hast traced the fabric o'er;--
As yet, we have beheld no more
Than just the porch to Freedom's fame;
And, though a sable spot may stain
The vestibule, 'tis wrong, 'tis sin
To doubt the godhead reigns within!
So here I pause--and now, my Kate,
To you, and those dear friends, whose fate
Touches more near this home-sick soul
Than all the Powers from pole to pole,
One word at parting,--in the tone
Most sweet to you, and most my own,
The simple strain I send you here,
Wild though it be, would charm your ear,
Did you but know the trance of thought
In which my mind its numbers caught.
'Twas one of those half-waking dreams,
That haunt me oft, when music seems
To bear my soul in sound along,
And turn its feelings all to song.
I thought of home, the according lays
Came full of dreams of other days;
Freshly in each succeeding note
I found some young remembrance float,
Till following, as a clue, that strain
I wandered back to home, again.

Oh! love the song, and let it oft
Live on your lip, in accents soft.
Say that it tells you, simply well,
All I have bid its wild notes tell,--
Of Memory's dream, of thoughts that yet
Glow with the light of joy that's set,
And all the fond heart keeps in store
Of friends and scenes beheld no more.
And now, adieu!--this artless air,
With a few rhymes, in transcript fair,
Are all the gifts I yet can boast
To send you from Columbia's coast;
But when the sun, with warmer smile.
Shall light me to my destined isle.[3]
You shall have many a cowslip-bell,
Where Ariel slept, and many a shell,
In which that gentle spirit drew
From honey flowers the morning dew.


[1] Such romantic works as "The American Farmer's Letters," and the
account of Kentucky by Imlay, would seduce us into a belief, that
innocence, peace, and freedom had deserted the rest of the world for
Martha's Vineyard and the banks of the Ohio.

[2] Norfolk, it must be owned, presents an unfavorable specimen of
America. The characteristics of Virginia in general are not such as can
delight either the politician or the moralist, and at Norfolk they are
exhibited in their least attractive form. At the time when we arrived the
yellow fever had not yet disappeared, and every odor that assailed us in
the streets very strongly accounted for its visitation.

[3] Bermuda.






A BALLAD.

THE LAKE OF THE DISMAL SWAMP.

WRITTEN AT NORFOLK, IN VIRGINIA.


    "They tell of a young man, who lost his mind upon the death of a girl
    he loved, and who, suddenly disappearing from his friends, was never
    afterwards heard of. As he had frequently said, in his ravings, that
    the girl was not dead, but gone to the Dismal Swamp, it is supposed he
    had wandered into that dreary wilderness, and had died of hunger, or
    been lost in some of its dreadful morasses."--Anon.


    _"La Poesie a ses monstres comme la nature."_
    D'ALEMBERT.


"They made her a grave, too cold and damp
  "For a soul so warm and true;
"And she's gone to the Lake of the Dismal Swamp,[1]
  "Where, all night long, by a firefly lamp,
"She paddles her white canoe.

"And her fire-fly lamp I soon shall see,
  "And her paddle I soon shall hear;
"Long and loving our life shall be,
"And I'll hide the maid in a cypress tree,
  "When the footstep of death is near."

Away to the Dismal Swamp he speeds--
  His path was rugged and sore,
Through tangled juniper, beds of reeds,
Through many a fen, where the serpent feeds,
  And man never trod before.

And, when on the earth he sunk to sleep
  If slumber his eyelids knew,
He lay, where the deadly vine doth weep
Its venomous tear and nightly steep
  The flesh with blistering dew!

And near him the she-wolf stirred the brake,
  And the copper-snake breathed in his ear,
Till he starting cried, from his dream awake,
"Oh! when shall I see the dusky Lake,
  "And the white canoe of my dear?"

He saw the Lake, and a meteor bright
  Quick over its surface played--
"Welcome," he said, "my dear one's light!"
And the dim shore echoed, for many a night,
  The name of the death-cold maid.

Till he hollowed a boat of the birchen bark,
  Which carried him off from shore;
Far, far he followed the meteor spark,
The wind was high and the clouds were dark,
  And the boat returned no more.

But oft, from the Indian hunter's camp
  This lover and maid so true
Are seen at the hour of midnight damp
To cross the Lake by a fire-fly lamp,
  And paddle their white canoe!


[1] The Great Dismal Swamp is ten or twelve miles distant from
Norfolk, and the Lake in the middle of it (about seven miles long) is
called Drummond's Pond.






TO THE MARCHIONESS DOWAGER OF DONEGALL.

FROM BERMUDA, JANUARY, 1804.


Lady! where'er you roam, whatever land
Woos the bright touches of that artist hand;
Whether you sketch the valley's golden meads,
Where mazy Linth his lingering current leads;[1]
Enamored catch the mellow hues that sleep,
At eve, on Meillerie's immortal steep;
Or musing o'er the Lake, at day's decline,
Mark the last shadow on that holy shrine,[2]
Where, many a night, the shade of Tell complains
Of Gallia's triumph and Helvetia's chains;
Oh! lay the pencil for a moment by,
Turn from the canvas that creative eye,
And let its splendor, like the morning ray
Upon a shepherd's harp, illume my lay.

Yet, Lady, no--for song so rude as mine,
Chase not the wonders of your art divine;
Still, radiant eye, upon the canvas dwell;
Still, magic finger, weave your potent spell;
And, while I sing the animated smiles
Of fairy nature in these sun-born isles,
Oh, might the song awake some bright design,
Inspire a touch, or prompt one happy line,
Proud were my soul, to see its humble thought
On painting's mirror so divinely caught;
While wondering Genius, as he leaned to trace
The faint conception kindling into grace,
Might love my numbers for the spark they threw,
And bless the lay that lent a charm to you.

Say, have you ne'er, in nightly vision, strayed
To those pure isles of ever-blooming shade,
Which bards of old, with kindly fancy, placed
For happy spirits in the Atlantic waste?
There listening, while, from earth, each breeze that came
Brought echoes of their own undying fame,
In eloquence of eye, and dreams of song,
They charmed their lapse of nightless hours along:--
Nor yet in song, that mortal ear might suit,
For every spirit was itself a lute,
Where Virtue wakened, with elysian breeze,
Pure tones of thought and mental harmonies.

Believe me, Lady, when the zephyrs bland
Floated our bark to this enchanted land,--
These leafy isles upon the ocean thrown,
Like studs of emerald o'er a silver zone,--
Not all the charm, that ethnic fancy gave
To blessed arbors o'er the western wave,
Could wake a dream, more soothing or sublime,
Of bowers ethereal, and the Spirit's clime.

  Bright rose the morning, every wave was still,
When the first perfume of a cedar hill
Sweetly awaked us, and, with smiling charms,
The fairy harbor woo'd us to its arms.[3]
Gently we stole, before the whispering wind,
Through plaintain shades, that round, like awnings, twined
And kist on either side the wanton sails,
Breathing our welcome to these vernal vales;
While, far reflected o'er the wave serene,
Each wooded island shed so soft a green
That the enamored keel, with whispering play,
Through liquid herbage seemed to steal its way.

  Never did weary bark more gladly glide,
Or rest its anchor in a lovelier tide!
Along the margin, many a shining dome,
White as the palace of a Lapland gnome,
Brightened the wave;--in every myrtle grove
Secluded bashful, like a shrine of love,
Some elfin mansion sparkled through the shade;
And, while the foliage interposing played,
Lending the scene an ever-changing grace,
Fancy would love, in glimpses vague, to trace
The flowery capital, the shaft, the porch,[4]
And dream of temples, till her kindling torch
Lighted me back to all the glorious days
Of Attic genius; and I seemed to gaze
On marble, from the rich Pentelio mount,
Gracing the umbrage of some Naiad's fount.

  Then thought I, too, of thee, most sweet of all
The spirit race that come at poet's call,
Delicate Ariel! who, in brighter hours,
Lived on the perfume of these honied bowers,
In velvet buds, at evening, loved to lie,
And win with music every rose's sigh.
Though weak the magic of my humble strain
To charm your spirit from its orb again,
Yet, oh, for her, beneath whose smile I sing,
For her (whose pencil, if your rainbow wing
Were dimmed or ruffled by a wintry sky.
Could smooth its feather and relume its dye.)
Descend a moment from your starry sphere,
And, if the lime-tree grove that once was dear,
The sunny wave, the bower, the breezy hill,
The sparkling grotto can delight you still,
Oh cull their choicest tints, their softest light,
Weave all these spells into one dream of night,
And, while the lovely artist slumbering lies,
Shed the warm picture o'er her mental eyes;
Take for the task her own creative spells,
And brightly show what song but faintly tells.


[1] Lady Donegall, I had reason to suppose, was at this time still in
Switzerland, where the well-known powers of her pencil must have been
frequently awakened.

[2] The chapel of William Tell on the Lake of Lucerne.

[3] Nothing can be more romantic than the little harbor of St. George's.
The number of beautiful islets, the singular clearness of the water, and
the animated play of the graceful little boats, gliding for ever between
the islands, and seeming to sail from one cedar-grove into another, formed
altogether as lovely a miniature of nature's beauties as can be imagined.

[4] This is an illusion which, to the few who are fanciful enough to
indulge in it, renders the scenery of Bermuda particularly interesting. In
the short but beautiful twilight of their spring evenings, the white
cottages, scattered over the islands, and but partially seen through the
trees that surround them, assume often the appearance of little Grecian
temples; and a vivid fancy may embellish the poor fisherman's hut with
columns such as the pencil of a Claude might imitate. I had one favorite
object of this kind in my walks, which the hospitality of its owner robbed
me of, by asking me to visit him. He was a plain good man, and received me
well and warmly, but I could never turn his house into a Grecian temple
again.






TO GEORGE MORGAN, ESQ. OF NORFOLK, VIRGINIA.

FROM BERMUDA, JANUARY, 1804.


Oh, what a sea of storm we've past!--
  High mountain waves and foamy showers,
And battling winds whose savage blast
  But ill agrees with one whose hours
  Have past in old Anacreon's bowers,
Yet think not poesy's bright charm
Forsook me in this rude alarm;[1]--
When close they reefed the timid sail,
  When, every plank complaining loud,
We labored in the midnight gale;
And even our haughty mainmast bowed,
Even then, in that unlovely hour,
The Muse still brought her soothing power,
And, midst the war of waves and wind,
In song's Elysium lapt my mind.
Nay, when no numbers of my own
Responded to her wakening tone,
She opened, with her golden key,
  The casket where my memory lays
Those gems of classic poesy,
  Which time has saved from ancient days.
Take one of these, to Lais sung,--
I wrote it while my hammock swung,
As one might write a dissertation
Upon "Suspended Animation!"

Sweet is your kiss, my Lais dear,
But, with that kiss I feel a tear
Gush from your eyelids, such as start
When those who've dearly loved must part.
Sadly you lean your head to mine,
And mute those arms around me twine,
Your hair adown my bosom spread,
All glittering with the tears you shed.
In vain I've kist those lids of snow,
For still, like ceaseless founts they flow,
Bathing our cheeks, whene'er they meet.
Why is it thus? Do, tell me, sweet!
Ah, Lais! are my bodings right?
Am I to lose you? Is to-night
Our last--go, false to heaven and me!
Your very tears are treachery.

Such, while in air I floating hung,
  Such was the strain, Morgante mio!
The muse and I together sung,
  With Boreas to make out the trio.
But, bless the little fairy isle!
  How sweetly after all our ills.
We saw the sunny morning smile
  Serenely o'er its fragrant hills;
And felt the pure, delicious flow
Of airs that round this Eden blow
Freshly as even the gales that come
O'er our own healthy hills at home.

Could you but view the scenery fair,
  That now beneath my window lies,
You'd think, that nature lavished there
  Her purest wave, her softest skies,
To make a heaven for love to sigh in,
For bards to live and saints to die in.
Close to my wooded bank below,
  In grassy calm the waters sleep,
And to the sunbeam proudly show
  The coral rocks they love to steep.[2]
The fainting breeze of morning fails;
  The drowsy boat moves slowly past,
And I can almost touch its sails
  As loose they flap around the mast.
The noontide sun a splendor pours
That lights up all these leafy shores;
While his own heaven, its clouds
and beams,
  So pictured in the waters lie,
That each small bark, in passing, seems
  To float along a burning sky.

Oh for the pinnace lent to thee,[3]
  Blest dreamer, who in vision bright,
Didst sail o'er heaven's solar sea
  And touch at all its isles of light.
Sweet Venus, what a clime he found
Within thy orb's ambrosial round--
There spring the breezes, rich and warm,
  That sigh around thy vesper car;
And angels dwell, so pure of form
  That each appears a living star.
These are the sprites, celestial queen!
  Thou sendest nightly to the bed
Of her I love, with touch unseen
  Thy planet's brightening tints to shed;
To lend that eye a light still clearer,
  To give that cheek one rose-blush more.
And bid that blushing lip be dearer,
  Which had been all too dear before.

But, whither means the muse to roam?
'Tis time to call the wanderer home.
Who could have thought the nymph would perch her
Up in the clouds with Father Kircher?
So, health and love to all your mansion!
  Long may the bowl that pleasures bloom in,
The flow of heart, the soul's expansion,
  Mirth and song, your board illumine.
At all your feasts, remember too,
  When cups are sparkling to the brim,
That here is one who drinks to you,
  And, oh! as warmly drink to him.


[1] We were seven days on our passage from Norfolk to Bermuda, during
three of which we were forced to lay-to in a gale of wind. The Driver
sloop of war, in which I went, was built at Bermuda of cedar, and is
accounted an excellent sea-boat. She was then commanded by my very
regretted friend Captain Compton, who in July last was killed aboard the
Lily in an action with a French privateer. Poor Compton! he fell a victim
to the strange impolicy of allowing such a miserable thing as the Lily to
remain in the service: so small, crank, and unmanageable, that a
well-manned merchantman was at any time a match for her.

[2] The water is so clear around the island, that the rocks are seen
beneath to a very great depth; and, as we entered the harbor, they
appeared to us so near the surface that it seemed impossible we should not
strike on them. There is no necessity, of course, for having the lead; and
the negro pilot, looking down at the rocks from the bow of the ship, takes
her through this difficult navigation, with a skill and confidence which
seem to astonish some of the oldest sailors.

[3] In Kircher's "Ecstatic Journey to Heaven." Cosmel, the genius of the
world, gives Theodidacticus a boat of asbestos, with which he embarks into
the regions of the sun.






LINES WRITTEN IN A STORM AT SEA.


That sky of clouds is not the sky
To light a lover to the pillow
    Of her he loves--
The swell of yonder foaming billow
Resembles not the happy sigh
    That rapture moves.

Yet do I feel more tranquil far
Amid the gloomy wilds of ocean,
    In this dark hour,
Than when, in passion's young emotion,
I've stolen, beneath the evening star,
    To Julia's bower.

Oh! there's a holy calm profound
In awe like this, that ne'er was given
    To pleasure's thrill;
'Tis as a solemn voice from heaven,
And the soul, listening to the sound,
    Lies mute and still.

'Tis true, it talks of danger nigh,
Of slumbering with the dead tomorrow
    In the cold deep,
Where pleasure's throb or tears of sorrow
No more shall wake the heart or eye,
    But all must sleep.

Well!--there are some, thou stormy bed,
To whom thy sleep would be a treasure;
    Oh! most to him,
Whose lip hath drained life's cup of pleasure,
Nor left one honey drop to shed
    Round sorrow's brim.

Yes--_he_ can smile serene at death:
Kind heaven, do thou but chase the weeping
    Of friends who love him;
Tell them that he lies calmly sleeping
Where sorrow's sting or envy's breath
    No more shall move him.






ODES TO NEA;

WRITTEN AT BERMUDA.


   [Greek: NEA turannei]
    EURPID. "_Medea_," v. 967.


Nay, tempt me not to love again,
  There was a time when love was sweet;
Dear Nea! had I known thee then,
  Our souls had not been slow to meet.
But, oh, this weary heart hath run,
  So many a time, the rounds of pain,
Not even for thee, thou lovely one,
  Would I endure such pangs again.

  If there be climes, where never yet
The print of beauty's foot was set,
Where man may pass his loveless nights,
Unfevered by her false delights,
Thither my wounded soul would fly,
Where rosy cheek or radiant eye
Should bring no more their bliss, or pain,
Nor fetter me to earth again.
Dear absent girl! whose eyes of light,
  Though little prized when all my own,
Now float before me, soft and bright
  As when they first enamoring shone,--
What hours and days have I seen glide,
While fit, enchanted, by thy side,
Unmindful of the fleeting day,
I've let life's dream dissolve away.
O bloom of youth profusely shed!
O moments I simply, vainly sped,
Yet sweetly too--or Love perfumed
The flame which thus my life consumed;
And brilliant was the chain of flowers,
In which he led my victim-hours.

  Say, Nea, say, couldst thou, like her,
When warm to feel and quick to err,
Of loving fond, of roving fonder,
This thoughtless soul might wish to wander,--
Couldst thou, like her, the wish reclaim,
  Endearing still, reproaching never,
Till even this heart should burn with shame,
  And be thy own more fixt than ever,
No, no--on earth there's only one
  Could bind such faithless folly fast;
And sure on earth but one alone
  Could make such virtue false at last!

Nea, the heart which she forsook,
  For thee were but a worthless shrine--
Go, lovely girl, that angel look
  Must thrill a soul more pure than mine.
Oh! thou shalt be all else to me,
That heart can feel or tongue can feign;
I'll praise, admire, and worship thee,
  But must not, dare not, love again.

       *       *       *       *       *

    --_tale iter omne cave. _
    PROPERT. _lib. iv. eleg. 8_.

I pray you, let us roam no more
Along that wild and lonely shore,
  Where late we thoughtless strayed;
'Twas not for us, whom heaven intends
To be no more than simple friends,
  Such lonely walks were made.

That little Bay, where turning in
From ocean's rude and angry din,
  As lovers steal to bliss,
The billows kiss the shore, and then
Flow back into the deep again,
  As though they did not kiss.

Remember, o'er its circling flood
In what a dangerous dream we stood--
  The silent sea before us,
Around us, all the gloom of grove,
That ever lent its shade to love,
  No eye but heaven's o'er us!

I saw you blush, you felt me tremble,
In vain would formal art dissemble
  All we then looked and thought;
'Twas more than tongue could dare reveal,
'Twas every thing that young hearts feel,
  By Love and Nature taught.

I stopped to cull, with faltering hand,
A shell that, on the golden sand,
  Before us faintly gleamed;
I trembling raised it, and when you
Had kist the shell, I kist it too--
  How sweet, how wrong it seemed!

Oh, trust me, 'twas a place, an hour,
The worst that e'er the tempter's power
  Could tangle me or you in;
Sweet Nea, let us roam no more
Along that wild and lonely shore.
  Such walks may be our ruin.

       *       *       *       *       *

You read it in these spell-bound eyes,
  And there alone should love be read;
You hear me say it all in sighs,
  And thus alone should love be said.

Then dread no more; I will not speak;
  Although my heart to anguish thrill,
I'll spare the burning of your cheek,
  And look it all in silence still.

Heard you the wish I dared to name,
  To murmur on that luckless night,
When passion broke the bonds of shame,
  And love grew madness in your sight?

Divinely through the graceful dance,
  You seemed to float in silent song,
Bending to earth that sunny glance,
  As if to light your steps along.

Oh! how could others dare to touch
  That hallowed form with hand so free,
When but to look was bliss too much,
  Too rare for all but Love and me!

With smiling eyes, that little thought,
How fatal were the beams they threw,
My trembling hands you lightly caught,
  And round me, like a spirit, flew.

Heedless of all, but you alone,--
  And _you_, at least, should not condemn.
If, when such eyes before me shone,
  My soul forgot all eyes but them,--

I dared to whisper passion's vow,--
  For love had even of thought bereft me,--
Nay, half-way bent to kiss that brow,
  But, with a bound, you blushing left me.

Forget, forget that night's offence,
  Forgive it, if, alas! you can;
'Twas love, 'twas passion--soul and sense--
  'Twas all that's best and worst in man.

That moment, did the assembled eyes
Of heaven and earth my madness view,
I should have seen, thro' earth and skies,
  But you alone--but only you.

Did not a frown from you reprove.
  Myriads of eyes to me were none;
Enough for me to win your love,
  And die upon the spot, when won.






A DREAM OF ANTIQUITY.


I just had turned the classic page.
  And traced that happy period over,
When blest alike were youth and age,
And love inspired the wisest sage,
  And wisdom graced the tenderest lover.

Before I laid me down to sleep
  Awhile I from the lattice gazed
Upon that still and moonlight deep,
  With isles like floating gardens raised,
For Ariel there his sports to keep;
While, gliding 'twixt their leafy shores
The lone night-fisher plied his oars.

I felt,--so strongly fancy's power
Came o'er me in that witching hour,--
As if the whole bright scenery there
  Were lighted by a Grecian sky,
And I then breathed the blissful air
  That late had thrilled to Sappho's sigh.

Thus, waking, dreamt I,--and when Sleep
  Came o'er my sense, the dream went on;
Nor, through her curtain dim and deep,
  Hath ever lovelier vision shone.
I thought that, all enrapt, I strayed
Through that serene, luxurious shade,
Where Epicurus taught the Loves
  To polish virtue's native brightness,--
As pearls, we're told, that fondling doves
  Have played with, wear a smoother whiteness.[1]
'Twas one of those delicious nights
  So common in the climes of Greece,
When day withdraws but half its lights,
  And all is moonshine, balm, and peace.
And thou wert there, my own beloved,
And by thy side I fondly roved
Through many a temple's reverend gloom,
And many a bower's seductive bloom,
Where Beauty learned what Wisdom taught.
And sages sighed and lovers thought;
Where schoolmen conned no maxims stern,
  But all was formed to soothe or move,
To make the dullest love to learn,
  To make the coldest learn to love.

And now the fairy pathway seemed
  To lead us through enchanted ground,
Where all that bard has ever dreamed
  Of love or luxury bloomed around.
Oh! 'twas a bright, bewildering scene--
Along the alley's deepening green
Soft lamps, that hung like burning flowers,
And scented and illumed the bowers,
Seemed, as to him, who darkling roves,
Amid the lone Hercynian groves,
Appear those countless birds of light,
That sparkle in the leaves at night,
And from their wings diffuse a ray
Along the traveller's weary way.

'Twas light of that mysterious kind.
  Through which the soul perchance may roam,
When it has left this world behind,
  And gone to seek its heavenly home.
And, Nea, thou wert by my side,
Through all this heavenward path my guide.

But, lo, as wandering thus we ranged
That upward path, the vision changed;
And now, methought, we stole along
  Through halls of more voluptuous glory
Than ever lived in Teian song,
  Or wantoned in Milesian story.[2]

And nymphs were there, whose very eyes
Seemed softened o'er with breath of sighs;
Whose every ringlet, as it wreathed,
A mute appeal to passion breathed.

Some flew, with amber cups, around,
  Pouring the flowery wines of Crete;
And, as they passed with youthful bound,
  The onyx shone beneath their feet.[3]
While others, waving arms of snow
  Entwined by snakes of burnished gold,[4]
And showing charms, as loth to show,
  Through many a thin, Tarentian fold,
Glided among the festal throng
Bearing rich urns of flowers along
Where roses lay, in languor breathing,
And the young beegrape, round them wreathing,
Hung on their blushes warm and meek,
Like curls upon a rosy cheek.

Oh, Nea! why did morning break
  The spell that thus divinely bound me?
Why did I wake? how _could_ I wake
  With thee my own and heaven around me!

       *       *       *       *       *

Well--peace to thy heart, though another's it be,
And health to that cheek, though it bloom not for me!
To-morrow I sail for those cinnamon groves,
Where nightly the ghost of the Carribee roves,
And, far from the light of those eyes, I may yet
Their allurements forgive and their splendor forget.

Farewell to Bermuda,[5] and long may the bloom
Of the lemon and myrtle its valleys perfume;
May spring to eternity hallow the shade,
Where Ariel has warbled and Waller has strayed.

And thou--when, at dawn, thou shalt happen to roam
Through the lime-covered alley that leads to thy home,
Where oft, when the dance and the revel were done,
And the stars were beginning to fade in the sun,
I have led thee along, and have told by the way
What my heart all the night had been burning to say--
Oh! think of the past--give a sigh to those times,
And a blessing for me to that alley of limes.

       *       *       *       *       *

If I were yonder wave, my dear,
  And thou the isle it clasps around,
I would not let a foot come near
  My land of bliss, my fairy ground.

If I were yonder couch of gold,
  And thou the pearl within it placed,
I would not let an eye behold
  The sacred gem my arms embraced.

If I were yonder orange-tree,
  And thou the blossom blooming there,
I would not yield a breath of thee
  To scent the most imploring air.

Oh! bend not o'er the water's brink,
  Give not the wave that odorous sigh,
Nor let its burning mirror drink
  The soft reflection of thine eye.

That glossy hair, that glowing cheek,
  So pictured in the waters seem,
That I could gladly plunge to seek
  Thy image in the glassy stream.

Blest fate! at once my chilly grave
  And nuptial bed that stream might be;
I'll wed thee in its mimic wave.
  And die upon the shade of thee.

Behold the leafy mangrove, bending
  O'er the waters blue and bright,
Like Nea's silky lashes, lending
  Shadow to her eyes of light.

Oh, my beloved! where'er I turn,
  Some trace of thee enchants mine eyes:
In every star thy glances burn;
  Thy blush on every floweret lies.

Nor find I in creation aught
  Of bright or beautiful or rare,
Sweet to the sense of pure to thought,
  But thou art found reflected there.


[1] This method of polishing pearls, by leaving them awhile to be played
with by doves, is mentioned by the fanciful Cardanus.

[2] The Milesiacs, or Milesian fables, had their origin in Miletus, a
luxurious town of Ionia. Aristides was the most celebrated author of these
licentious fictions.

[3] It appears that in very splendid mansions the floor or pavement was
frequently of onyx.

[4] Bracelets of this shape were a favorite ornament among the women of
antiquity.

[5] The inhabitants pronounce the name as if it were written Bermooda. I
wonder it did not occur to some of those all-reading gentlemen that,
possibly, the discoverer of this "island of hogs and devils" might have
been no less a personage than the great John Bermudez, who, about the same
period (the beginning of the sixteenth century), was sent Patriarch of the
Latin church to Ethiopia, and has left us most wonderful stories of the
Amazons and the Griffins which he encountered.--_Travels of the Jesuits_,
vol. i.






THE SNOW SPIRIT.


No, ne'er did the wave in its element steep
  An island of lovelier charms;
It blooms in the giant embrace of the deep,
  Like Hebe in Hercules' arms.
The blush of your bowers is light to the eye,
  And their melody balm to the ear;
But the fiery planet of day is too nigh,
  And the Snow Spirit never comes here.

The down from his wing is as white as the pearl
  That shines through thy lips when they part,
And it falls on the green earth as melting, my girl,
  As a murmur of thine on the heart.
Oh! fly to the clime, where he pillows the death,
  As he cradles the birth of the year;
Bright are your bowers and balmy their breath,
  But the Snow Spirit cannot come here.

How sweet to behold him when borne on the gale,
  And brightening the bosom of morn,
He flings, like the priest of Diana, a veil
  O'er the brow of each virginal thorn.
Yet think not the veil he so chillingly casts
  Is the veil of a vestal severe;
No, no, thou wilt see, what a moment it lasts,
  Should the Snow Spirit ever come here.

But fly to his region--lay open thy zone,
  And he'll weep all his brilliancy dim,
To think that a bosom, as white as his own,
  Should not melt in the daybeam like him.
Oh! lovely the print of those delicate feet
  O'er his luminous path will appear--
Fly, my beloved! this island is sweet,
  But the Snow Spirit cannot come here.

       *        *        *        *        *

  I stole along the flowery bank,
While many a bending seagrape[1] drank
The sprinkle of the feathery oar
That winged me round this fairy shore.

  'Twas noon; and every orange bud
Hung languid o'er the crystal flood,
Faint as the lids of maiden's eyes
When love-thoughts in her bosom rise.
Oh, for a naiad's sparry bower,
To shade me in that glowing hour!

  A little dove, of milky hue,
Before me from a plantain flew,
And, light along the water's brim,
I steered my gentle bark by him;
For fancy told me, Love had sent
This gentle bird with kind intent
To lead my steps, where I should meet--
I knew not what, but something sweet.

  And--bless the little pilot dove!
He had indeed been sent by Love,
To guide me to a scene so dear
As fate allows but seldom here;
One of those rare and brilliant hours.
That, like the aloe's lingering flowers,
May blossom to the eye of man
But once in all his weary span.

  Just where the margin's opening shade
A vista from the waters made,
My bird reposed his silver plume
Upon a rich banana's bloom.
Oh vision bright! oh spirit fair!
What spell, what magic raised her there?
'Twas Nea! slumbering calm and mild,
And bloomy as the dimpled child,
Whose spirit in elysium keeps
Its playful sabbath, while he sleeps.

  The broad banana's green embrace
Hung shadowy round each tranquil grace;
One little beam alone could win
The leaves to let it wander in.
And, stealing over all her charms,
From lip to cheek, from neck to arms,
New lustre to each beauty lent,--
Itself all trembling as it went!

  Dark lay her eyelid's jetty fringe
Upon that cheek whose roseate tinge
Mixt with its shade, like evening's light
Just touching on the verge of night.
Her eyes, though thus in slumber hid,
Seemed glowing through the ivory lid,
And, as I thought, a lustre threw
Upon her lip's reflecting dew,--
Such as a night-lamp, left to shine
Alone on some secluded shrine,
May shed upon the votive wreath,
Which pious hands have hung beneath.

  Was ever vision half so sweet!
Think, think how quick my heart-pulse beat,
As o'er the rustling bank I stole;--
Oh! ye, that know the lover's soul,
It is for you alone to guess,
That moment's trembling happiness.


[1] The seaside or mangrove grape, a native of the West Indies.






A STUDY FROM THE ANTIQUE.


Behold, my love, the curious gem
  Within this simple ring of gold;
'Tis hallow'd by the touch of them
  Who lived in classic hours of old.

Some fair Athenian girl, perhaps,
  Upon her hand this gem displayed,
Nor thought that time's succeeding lapse
  Should see it grace a lovelier maid.

Look, dearest, what a sweet design!
  The more we gaze, it charms the more;
Come--closer bring that cheek to mine,
  And trace with me its beauties o'er.

Thou seest, it is a simple youth
  By some enamored nymph embraced--
Look, as she leans, and say in sooth
  Is not that hand most fondly placed?

Upon his curled head behind
  It seems in careless play to lie,
Yet presses gently, half inclined
  To bring the truant's lip more nigh.

Oh happy maid! Too happy boy!
  The one so fond and little loath,
The other yielding slow to joy--
  Oh rare, indeed, but blissful both.

Imagine, love, that I am he,
  And just as warm as he is chilling;
Imagine, too, that thou art she,
  But quite as coy as she is willing:

So may we try the graceful way
  In which their gentle arms are twined,
And thus, like her, my hand I lay
  Upon thy wreathed locks behind:

And thus I feel thee breathing sweet,
  As slow to mine thy head I move;
And thus our lips together meet,
  And thus,--and thus,--I kiss thee, love.

       *       *       *       *       *

There's not a look, a word of thine,
  My soul hath e'er forgot;
Thou ne'er hast bid a ringlet shine,
Nor given thy locks one graceful twine
  Which I remember not.

There never yet a murmur fell
  From that beguiling tongue,
Which did not, with a lingering spell,
Upon thy charmed senses dwell,
  Like songs from Eden sung.

Ah! that I could, at once, forget
  All, all that haunts me so--
And yet, thou witching girl,--and yet,
To die were sweeter than to let
  The loved remembrance go.

No; if this slighted heart must see
  Its faithful pulse decay,
Oh let it die, remembering thee,
And, like the burnt aroma, be
  Consumed in sweets away.






TO JOSEPH ATKINSON, ESQ.

FROM BERMUDA.[1]


"The daylight is gone--but, before we depart,
"One cup shall go round to the friend of my heart,
"The kindest, the dearest--oh! judge by the tear
"I now shed while I name him, how kind and how dear."

  'Twas thus in the shade of the Calabash-Tree,
With a few, who could feel and remember like me,
The charm that, to sweeten my goblet, I threw
Was a sigh to the past and a blessing on you.

  Oh! say, is it thus, in the mirth-bringing hour,
When friends are assembled, when wit, in full flower,
Shoots forth from the lip, under Bacchus's dew,
In blossoms of thought ever springing and new--
Do you sometimes remember, and hallow the brim
Of your cup with a sigh, as you crown it to him
Who is lonely and sad in these valleys so fair,
And would pine in elysium, if friends were not there!

  Last night, when we came from the Calabash-Tree,
When my limbs were at rest and my spirit was free,
The glow of the grape and the dreams of the day
Set the magical springs of my fancy in play,
And oh,--such a vision as haunted me then
I would slumber for ages to witness again.
The many I like, and the few I adore,
The friends who were dear and beloved before.
But never till now so beloved and dear,
At the call of my Fancy, surrounded me here;
And soon,--oh, at once, did the light of their smiles
To a paradise brighten this region of isles;
More lucid the wave, as they looked on it, flowed,
And brighter the rose, as they gathered it, glowed.
Not the valleys Heraean (though watered by rills
Of the pearliest flow, from those pastoral hills.[2]
Where the Song of the Shepherd, primeval and wild,
Was taught to the nymphs by their mystical child,)
Could boast such a lustre o'er land and o'er wave
As the magic of love to this paradise gave.

  Oh magic of love! unembellished by you,
Hath the garden a blush or the landscape a hue?
Or shines there a vista in nature or art,
Like that which Love opes thro' the eye to the heart?

  Alas, that a vision so happy should fade!
That, when morning around me in brilliancy played,
The rose and the stream I had thought of at night
Should still be before me, unfadingly bright;
While the friends, who had seemed to hang over the stream,
And to gather the roses, had fled with my dream.

  But look, where, all ready, in sailing array,
The bark that's to carry these pages away,[3]
Impatiently flutters her wing to the wind,
And will soon leave these islets of Ariel behind.
What billows, what gales is she fated to prove,
Ere she sleep in the lee of the land that I love!
Yet pleasant the swell of the billows would be,
And the roar of those gales would be music to me.
Not the tranquillest air that the winds ever blew,
Not the sunniest tears of the summer-eve dew,
Were as sweet as the storm, or as bright as the foam
Of the surge, that would hurry your wanderer home.


[1] Pinkerton has said that "a good history and description of the
Bermudas might afford a pleasing addition to the geographical library;"
but there certainly are not materials for such a work. The island, since
the time of its discovery, has experienced so very few vicissitudes, the
people have been so indolent, and their trade so limited, that there is
but little which the historian could amplify into importance; and, with
respect to the natural productions of the country, the few which the
inhabitants can be induced to cultivate are so common in the West Indies,
that they have been described by every naturalist who has written any
account of those islands.

[2] Mountains of Sicily, upon which Daphnis, the first Inventor of bucolic
poetry, was nursed by the nymphs.

[3] A ship, ready to sail for England.






THE STEERMAN'S SONG,

WRITTEN ABOARD THE BOSTON FRIGATE

28TH APRIL.[1]


When freshly blows the northern gale,
  And under courses snug we fly;
Or when light breezes swell the sail,
  And royals proudly sweep the sky;
'Longside the wheel, unwearied still
  I stand, and, as my watchful eye
Doth mark the needle's faithful thrill,
  I think of her I love, and cry,
    Port, my boy! port.

When calms delay, or breezes blow
  Right from the point we wish to steer;
When by the wind close-hauled we go.
  And strive in vain the port to near;
I think 'tis thus the fates defer
  My bliss with one that's far away,
And while remembrance springs to her,
  I watch the sails and sighing say,
    Thus, my boy! thus.

But see the wind draws kindly aft,
  All hands are up the yards to square,
And now the floating stu'n-sails waft
  Our stately ship thro' waves and air.
Oh! then I think that yet for me
  Some breeze of fortune thus may spring,
Some breeze to waft me, love, to thee--
  And in that hope I smiling sing,
    Steady, boy! so.


[1] I left Bermuda in the Boston about the middle of April, in
company with the Cambrian and Leander, aboard the latter of which was the
Admiral Sir Andrew Mitchell, who divides his year between Halifax and
Bermuda, and is the very soul of society and good-fellowship to both. We
separated in a few days, and the Boston after a short cruise proceeded to
New York.






TO THE FIRE-FLY.[1]


At morning, when the earth and sky
  Are glowing with the light of spring,
We see thee not, thou humble fly!
  Nor think upon thy gleaming wing.

But when the skies have lost their hue,
  And sunny lights no longer play,
Oh then we see and bless thee too
  For sparkling o'er the dreary way.

Thus let me hope, when lost to me
  The lights that now my life illume,
Some milder joys may come, like thee,
  To cheer, if not to warm, the gloom!


[1] The lively and varying illumination, with which these fire-flies light
up the woods at night, gives quite an idea of enchantment.






TO THE LORD VISCOUNT FORBES.

FROM THE CITY OP WASHINGTON.


If former times had never left a trace
Of human frailty in their onward race,
Nor o'er their pathway written, as they ran,
One dark memorial of the crimes of man;
If every age, in new unconscious prime,
Rose, like a phenix, from the fires of time,
To wing its way unguided and alone,
The future smiling and the past unknown;
Then ardent man would to himself be new,
Earth at his foot and heaven within his view:
Well might the novice hope, the sanguine scheme
Of full perfection prompt his daring dream,
Ere cold experience, with her veteran lore,
Could tell him, fools had dreamt as much before.
But, tracing as we do, through age and clime,
The plans of virtue midst the deeds of crime,
The thinking follies and the reasoning rage
Of man, at once the idiot and the sage;
When still we see, through every varying frame
Of arts and polity, his course the same,
And know that ancient fools but died, to make
A space on earth for modern fools to take;
'Tis strange, how quickly we the past forget;
That Wisdom's self should not be tutored yet,
Nor tire of watching for the monstrous birth
Of pure perfection midst the sons of earth!

  Oh! nothing but that soul which God has given,
Could lead us thus to look on earth for heaven;
O'er dross without to shed the light within,
And dream of virtue while we see but sin.

  Even here, beside the proud Potowmac's stream,
Might sages still pursue the flattering theme
Of days to come, when man shall conquer fate,
Rise o'er the level of his mortal state,
Belie the monuments of frailty past,
And plant perfection in this world at last!
"Here," might they say, "shall power's divided reign
"Evince that patriots have not bled in vain.
"Here godlike liberty's herculean youth,
"Cradled in peace, and nurtured up by truth
"To full maturity of nerve and mind,
"Shall crush the giants that bestride mankind.
"Here shall religion's pure and balmy draught
"In form no more from cups of state be quaft,
"But flow for all, through nation, rank, and sect,
"Free as that heaven its tranquil waves reflect.
"Around the columns of the public shrine
"Shall growing arts their gradual wreath intwine,
"Nor breathe corruption from the flowering braid,
"Nor mine that fabric which they bloom to shade,
"No longer here shall Justice bound her view,
"Or wrong the many, while she rights the few;
"But take her range through all the social frame,
"Pure and pervading as that vital flame
"Which warms at once our best and meanest part,
"And thrills a hair while it expands a heart!"

  Oh golden dream! what soul that loves to scan
The bright disk rather than the dark of man,
That owns the good, while smarting with the ill,
And loves the world with all its frailty still,--
What ardent bosom does not spring to meet
The generous hope, with all that heavenly heat,
Which makes the soul unwilling to resign
The thoughts of growing, even on earth, divine!
Yes, dearest friend, I see thee glow to think
The chain of ages yet may boast a link
Of purer texture than the world has known,
And fit to bind us to a Godhead's throne.

  But, is it thus? doth even the glorious dream
Borrow from truth that dim, uncertain gleam,
Which tempts us still to give such fancies scope,
As shock not reason, while they nourish hope?
No, no, believe me, 'tis not so--even now,
While yet upon Columbia's rising brow
The showy smile of young presumption plays,
Her bloom is poisoned and her heart decays.
Even now, in dawn of life, her sickly breath
Burns with the taint of empires near their death;
And, like the nymphs of her own withering clime,
She's old in youth, she's blasted in her prime,[1]

  Already has the child of Gallia's school
The foul Philosophy that sins by rule,
With all her train of reasoning, damning arts,
Begot by brilliant heads on worthless hearts,
Like things that quicken after Nilus' flood,
The venomed birth of sunshine and of mud,--
Already has she poured her poison here
O'er every charm that makes existence dear;
Already blighted, with her blackening trace,
The opening bloom of every social grace,
And all those courtesies, that love to shoot
Round virtue's stem, the flowerets of her fruit.

  And, were these errors but the wanton tide
Of young luxuriance or unchastened pride;
The fervid follies and the faults of such
As wrongly feel, because they feel too much;
Then might experience make the fever less,
Nay, graft a virtue on each warm excess.
But no; 'tis heartless, speculative ill,
All youth's transgression with all age's chill;
The apathy of wrong, the bosom's ice,
A slow and cold stagnation into vice.

  Long has the love of gold, that meanest rage,
And latest folly of man's sinking age,
Which, rarely venturing in the van of life,
While nobler passions wage their heated strife,
Comes skulking last, with selfishness and fear,
And dies, collecting lumber in the rear,--
Long has it palsied every grasping hand
And greedy spirit through this bartering land;
Turned life to traffic, set the demon gold
So loose abroad that virtue's self is sold,
And conscience, truth, and honesty are made
To rise and fall, like other wares of trade.

  Already in this free, this virtuous state,
Which, Frenchmen tell us, was ordained by fate,
To show the world, what high perfection springs
From rabble senators, and merchant kings,--
Even here already patriots learn to steal
Their private perquisites from public weal,
And, guardians of the country's sacred fire,
Like Afric's priests, let out the flame for hire.
Those vaunted demagogues, who nobly rose
From England's debtors to be England's foes,
Who could their monarch in their purse forget,
And break allegiance, but to cancel debt,
Have proved at length, the mineral's tempting hue,
Which makes a patriot, can un-make him too.[2]
Oh! Freedom, Freedom, how I hate thy cant!
Not Eastern bombast, not the savage rant
Of purpled madmen, were they numbered all
From Roman Nero down to Russian Paul,
Could grate upon my ear so mean, so base,
As the rank jargon of that factious race,
Who, poor of heart and prodigal of words,
Formed to be slaves, yet struggling to be lords,
Strut forth, as patriots, from their negro-marts,
And shout for rights, with rapine in their hearts.
  Who can, with patience, for a moment see
The medley mass of pride and misery,
Of whips and charters, manacles and rights,
Of slaving blacks and democratic whites,
And all the piebald polity that reigns
In free confusion o'er Columbia's plains?
To think that man, thou just and gentle God!
Should stand before thee with a tyrant's rod
O'er creatures like himself, with souls from thee,
Yet dare to boast of perfect liberty;
Away, away--I'd rather hold my neck
By doubtful tenure from a sultan's beck,
In climes, where liberty has scarce been named,
Nor any right but that of ruling claimed,
Than thus to live, where bastard Freedom waves
Her fustian flag in mockery over slaves;
Where--motley laws admitting no degree
Betwixt the vilely slaved and madly free--
Alike the bondage and the license suit
The brute made ruler and the man made brute.

  But, while I thus, my friend, in flowerless song,
So feebly paint, what yet I feel so strong,
The ills, the vices of the land, where first
Those rebel fiends, that rack the world, were nurst,
Where treason's arm by royalty was nerved,
And Frenchmen learned to crush the throne they served--
Thou, calmly lulled in dreams of classic thought,
By bards illumined and by sages taught,
Pant'st to be all, upon this mortal scene,
That bard hath fancied or that sage hath been.
Why should I wake thee? why severely chase
The lovely forms of virtue and of grace,
That dwell before thee, like the pictures spread
By Spartan matrons round the genial bed,
Moulding thy fancy, and with gradual art
Brightening the young conceptions of thy heart.

  Forgive me, Forbes--and should the song destroy
One generous hope, one throb of social joy,
One high pulsation of the zeal for man,
Which few can feel, and bless that few who can,--
Oh! turn to him, beneath those kindred eyes
Thy talents open and thy virtues rise,
Forget where nature has been dark or dim,
And proudly study all her lights in him.
Yes, yes, in him the erring world forget,
And feel that man _may_ reach perfection yet.


[1] "What will be the old age of this government, if it is thus
early decrepit!" Such was the remark of Fauchet, the French minister at
Philadelphia, in that famous despatch to his government, which was
intercepted by one of our cruisers in the year 1794. This curious memorial
may be found in Porcupine's Works, vol. i. p. 279. It remains a striking
monument of republican intrigue on one side and republican profligacy on
the other; and I would recommend the perusal of it to every honest
politician, who may labor under a moment's delusion with respect to the
purity of American patriotism.

[2] See Porcupine's account of the Pennsylvania Insurrection in
1794. In short, see Porcupine's works throughout, for ample corroboration
of every sentiment which I have ventured to express. In saying this, I
refer less to the comments of that writer than to the occurrences which he
has related and the documents which he has preserved. Opinion may be
suspected of bias, but facts speak for themselves.






TO THOMAS HUME, ESQ., M. D.

FROM THE CITY OF WASHINGTON.


'Tis evening now; beneath the western star
Soft sighs the lover through his sweet cigar,
And fills the ears of some consenting she
With puffs and vows, with smoke and constancy.

The patriot, fresh from Freedom's councils come,
Now pleased retires to lash his slaves at home;
Or woo, perhaps, some black Aspasia's charms,
And dream of freedom in his bondsmaid's arms.

  In fancy now, beneath the twilight gloom,
Come, let me lead thee o'er this "second Rome!"[1]
Where tribunes rule, where dusky Davi bow,
And what was Goose-Creek once is Tiber now:[2]--
This embryo capital, where Fancy sees
Squares in morasses, obelisks in trees;
Which second-sighted seers, even now, adorn
With shrines unbuilt and heroes yet unborn,
Though naught but woods[3] and Jefferson they see,
Where streets should run and sages _ought_ to be.

  And look, how calmly in yon radiant wave,
The dying sun prepares his golden grave.
Oh mighty river! oh ye banks of shade!
Ye matchless scenes, in nature's morning made,
While still, in all the exuberance of prime,
She poured her wonders, lavishly sublime,
Nor yet had learned to stoop, with humbler care,
From grand to soft, from wonderful to fair;--
Say, were your towering hills, your boundless floods,
Your rich savannas and majestic woods,
Where bards should meditate and heroes rove,
And woman charm, and man deserve her love,--
Oh say, was world so bright, but born to grace
Its own half-organized, half-minded race[4]
Of weak barbarians, swarming o'er its breast,
Like vermin gendered on the lion's crest?
Were none but brutes to call that soil their home,
Where none but demigods should dare to roam?
Or worse, thou wondrous world! oh! doubly worse,
Did heaven design thy lordly land to nurse
The motley dregs of every distant clime,
Each blast of anarchy and taint of crime
Which Europe shakes from her perturbed sphere,
In full malignity to rankle here?

  But hold,--observe yon little mount of pines,
Where the breeze murmurs and the firefly shines.
There let thy fancy raise, in bold relief,
The sculptured image of that veteran chief[5]
Who lost the rebel's in the hero's name,
And climb'd o'er prostrate royalty to fame;
Beneath whose sword Columbia's patriot train
Cast off their monarch that their mob might reign.

  How shall we rank thee upon glory's page?
Thou more than soldier and just less than sage!
Of peace too fond to act the conqueror's part,
Too long in camps to learn a statesman's art,
Nature designed thee for a hero's mould,
But, ere she cast thee, let the stuff grow cold.

  While loftier souls command, nay, make their fate,
Thy fate made thee and forced thee to be great.
Yet Fortune, who so oft, so blindly sheds
Her brightest halo round the weakest heads,
Found _thee_ undazzled, tranquil as before,
Proud to be useful, scorning to be more;
Less moved by glory's than by duty's claim,
Renown the meed, but self-applause the aim;
All that thou _wert_ reflects less fame on thee,
Far less, than all thou didst _forbear to be_.
Nor yet the patriot of one land alone,--
For, thine's a name all nations claim their own;
And every shore, where breathed the good and brave,
Echoed the plaudits thy own country gave.

  Now look, my friend, where faint the moonlight falls
On yonder dome, and, in those princely halls,--
If thou canst hate, as sure that soul must hate,
Which loves the virtuous, and reveres the great,
If thou canst loathe and execrate with me
The poisoning drug of French philosophy,
That nauseous slaver of these frantic times,
With which false liberty dilutes her crimes,
If thou has got, within thy free-born breast,
One pulse that beats more proudly than the rest,
With honest scorn for that inglorious soul,
Which creeps and whines beneath a mob's control,
Which courts the rabble's smile, the rabble's nod,
And makes, like Egypt, every beast its god,
There, in those walls--but, burning tongue forbear!
Rank must be reverenced, even the rank that's there:
So here I pause--and now, dear Hume, we part:
But oft again, in frank exchange of heart,
Thus let us meet, and mingle converse dear
By Thames at home, or by Potowmac here.
O'er lake and marsh, through fevers and through fogs,
'Midst bears and yankees, democrats and frogs,
Thy foot shall follow me, thy heart and eyes
With me shall wonder, and with me despise.
While I, as oft, in fancy's dream shall rove,
With thee conversing, through that land I love,
Where, like the air that fans her fields of green,
Her freedom spreads, unfevered and serene;
And sovereign man can condescend to see
The throne and laws more sovereign still than he.


[1] "On the original location of the ground now allotted for the seat of
the Federal City [says Mr. Weld] the identical spot on which the capitol
now stands was called Rome. This anecdote is related by many as a certain
prognostic of the future magnificence of this city, which is to be, as it
were, a second Rome."--_Weld's Travels_, letter iv.

[2] A little stream runs through the city, which, with intolerable
affectation, they have styled the Tiber. It was originally called Goose-
Creek.

[3] "To be under the necessity of going through a deep wood for one or two
miles, perhaps, in order to see a next-door neighbor, and in the same
city, is a curious and I believe, a novel circumstance."--_Weld_, letter
iv.

The Federal City (if it, must be called a city), has hot been much
increased since Mr. Weld visited it.

[4] The picture which Buffon and De Pauw have drawn of the American
Indian, though very humiliating, is, as far as I can judge, much more
correct than the flattering representations which Mr. Jefferson has given
us. See the Notes on Virginia, where this gentleman endeavors to disprove
in general the opinion maintained so strongly by some philosophers that
nature (as Mr. Jefferson expresses it) _belittles_ her productions in
the western world.

[5] On a small hill near the capital there is to be an equestrian statue
of General Washington.






LINES WRITTEN ON LEAVING PHILADELPHIA.


Alone by the Schuylkill a wanderer roved,
  And bright were its flowery banks to his eye;
But far, very far were the friends that he loved,
  And he gazed on its flowery banks with a sigh.

Oh Nature, though blessed and bright are thy rays,
  O'er the brow of creation enchantingly thrown,
Yet faint are they all to the lustre that plays
  In a smile from the heart that is fondly our own.

Nor long did the soul of the stranger remain
 Unblest by the smile he had languished to meet;
Though scarce did he hope it would soothe him again,
  Till the threshold of home had been pressed by his feet.

But the lays of his boyhood had stolen to their ear,
And they loved what they knew of so humble a name;
And they told him, with flattery welcome and dear,
That they found in his heart something better than fame.

Nor did woman--oh woman! Whose form and whose soul
  Are the spell and the life of each path we pursue;
Whether sunned in the tropics or chilled at the pole,
  If woman be there, there is happiness too:--

Nor did she her enamoring magic deny,--
  That magic his heart had relinquished so long,--
Like eyes he had loved was _her_ eloquent eye,
  Like them did it soften and weep at his song.

Oh, blest be the tear, and in memory oft
  May its sparkle be shed o'er the wanderer's dream;
Thrice blest be that eye, and may passion as soft,
  As free from a pang, ever mellow its beam!

The stranger is gone--but he will not forget,
  When at home he shall talk of the toils he has known,
To tell, with a sigh, what endearments he met,
  As he strayed by the wave of the Schuylkill alone.






LINES WRITTEN AT THE COHOS, OR FALLS OF THE MOHAWK KIVER.[1]


    _Gia era in loco ove s'udia l'rimbombo
    Dell' acqua_. DANTE.


From rise of morn till set of sun
I've seen the mighty Mohawk run;
And as I markt the woods of pine
Along his mirror darkly shine,
Like tall and gloomy forms that pass
Before the wizard's midnight glass:
And as I viewed the hurrying pace
With which he ran his turbid race,
Rushing, alike untried and wild,
Through shades that frowned and flowers that smiled,
Flying by every green recess
That wooed him to its calm caress,
Yet, sometimes turning with the wind,
As if to leave one look behind,--
Oft have I thought, and thinking sighed,
How like to thee, thou restless tide,
May be the lot, the life of him
Who roams along thy water's brim;
Through what alternate wastes of woe
And flowers of joy my path may go;
How many a sheltered, calm retreat
May woo the while my weary feet,
While still pursuing, still unblest,
I wander on, nor dare to rest;
But, urgent as the doom that calls
Thy water to its destined falls,
I feel the world's bewildering force
Hurry my heart's devoted course
From lapse to lapse, till life be done,
And the spent current cease to run.

  One only prayer I dare to make,
As onward thus my course I take;--
Oh, be my falls as bright as thine!
May heaven's relenting rainbow shine
Upon the mist that circles me,
As soft as now it hangs o'er thee!


[1] There is a dreary and savage character in the country immediately
about these Falls, which is much more in harmony with the wildness of such
a scene than the cultivated lands in the neighborhood of Niagara.






SONG OF THE EVIL SPIRIT OF THE WOODS.[1]


    _qua via difficilis, quaque est via nulla_
    OVID _Metam. lib_ iii. v. 227.


Now the vapor, hot and damp,
Shed by day's expiring lamp,
Through the misty ether spreads
Every ill the white man dreads;
Fiery fever's thirsty thrill,
Fitful ague's shivering chill!

Hark! I hear the traveller's song,
As he winds the woods along;--
Christian, 'tis the song of fear;
Wolves are round thee, night is near,
And the wild thou dar'st to roam--
Think, 'twas once the Indian's home![2]

Hither, sprites, who love to harm,
Wheresoe'er you work your charm,
By the creeks, or by the brakes,
Where the pale witch feeds her snakes,
And the cayman[3] loves to creep,
Torpid, to his wintry sleep:
Where the bird of carrion flits,
And the shuddering murderer sits,[4]
Lone beneath a roof of blood;
While upon his poisoned food,
From the corpse of him he slew
Drops the chill and gory dew.

Hither bend ye, turn ye hither,
Eyes that blast and wings that wither
Cross the wandering Christian's way,
Lead him, ere the glimpse of day,
Many a mile of maddening error
Through the maze of night and terror,
Till the morn behold him lying
On the damp earth, pale and dying.
Mock him, when his eager sight
Seeks the cordial cottage-light;
Gleam then, like the lightning-bug,
Tempt him to the den that's dug
For the foul and famished brood
Of the she wolf, gaunt for blood;
Or, unto the dangerous pass
O'er the deep and dark morass,
Where the trembling Indian brings
Belts of porcelain, pipes, and rings,
Tributes, to be hung in air,
To the Fiend presiding there![5]

  Then, when night's long labor past,
Wildered, faint, he falls at last,
Sinking where the causeway's edge
Moulders in the slimy sedge,
There let every noxious thing
Trail its filth and fix its sting;
Let the bull-toad taint him over,
Round him let mosquitoes hover,
In his ears and eyeballs tingling,
With his blood their poison mingling,
Till, beneath the solar fires,
Rankling all, the wretch expires!


[1] The idea of this poem occurred to me in passing through the very
dreary wilderness between Batavia, a new settlement in the midst of the
woods, and the little village of Buffalo upon Lake Erie. This is the most
fatiguing part of the route, in travelling through the Genesee country to
Niagara.

[2] "The Five Confederated Nations (of Indians) were settled along the
banks of the Susquehannah and the adjacent country, until the year 1779,
when General Sullivan, with an army of 4000 men drove them from their
country to Niagara, where, being obliged to live on salted provisions, to
which they were unaccustomed, great numbers of them died. Two hundred of
them, it is said, were buried in one grave, where they had encamped."--
_Morse's American Geography_.

[3] The alligator, who is supposed to lie in a torpid state all the
winter, in the bank of some creek or pond, having previously swallowed a
large number of pine-knots, which are his only sustenance during the time.

[4] This was the mode of punishment for murder (as Charlevoix tells us)
among the Hurons. "They laid the dead body upon poles at the top of a
cabin, and the murderer was obliged to remain several days together, and
to receive all that dropped from the carcass, not only on himself but on
his food."

[5] "We find also collars of porcelain, tobacco, ears of maize, skins,
etc., by the side of difficult and dangerous ways, on rocks, or by the
side of the falls; and these are so many offerings made to the spirits
which preside in these places."--See _Charlevoix's Letter on the
Traditions and the Religion of the Savages of Canada_.

Father Hennepin too mentions this ceremony; he also says, "We took notice
of one barbarian, who made a kind of sacrifice upon an oak at the Cascade
of St. Anthony of Padua upon the river Mississippi."--See _Hennepin's
Voyage into North America_.






TO THE HONORABLE W. R. SPENCER.

FROM BUFFALO, UPON LAKE ERIE.


    _nec venit ad duros musa vocata Getas_.
    OVID. _ex Ponto, lib. 1. ep. 5_.


Thou oft hast told me of the happy hours
Enjoyed by thee in fair Italia's bowers,
Where, lingering yet, the ghost of ancient wit
Midst modern monks profanely dares to flit.
And pagan spirits, by the Pope unlaid,
Haunt every stream and sing through every shade.
There still the bard who (if his numbers be
His tongue's light echo) must have talked like thee,--
The courtly bard, from whom thy mind has caught
Those playful, sunshine holidays of thought,
In which the spirit baskingly reclines,
Bright without effort, resting while it shines,--
There still he roves, and laughing loves to see
How modern priests with ancient rakes agree:
How, 'neath the cowl, the festal garland shines,
And Love still finds a niche in Christian shrines.

  There still, too, roam those other souls of song,
With whom thy spirit hath communed so long,
That, quick as light, their rarest gems of thought,
By Memory's magic to thy lip are brought.
But here, alas! by Erie's stormy lake,
As, far from such bright haunts my course I take,
No proud remembrance o'er the fancy plays,
No classic dream, no star of other days
Hath left that visionary light behind,
That lingering radiance of immortal mind,
Which gilds and hallows even the rudest scene,
The humblest shed, where Genius once has been!

  All that creation's varying mass assumes
Of grand or lovely, here aspires and blooms;
Bold rise the mountains, rich the gardens glow,
Bright lakes expand, and conquering[1] rivers flow;
But mind, immortal mind, without whose ray,
This world's a wilderness and man but clay,
Mind, mind alone, in barren, still repose,
Nor blooms, nor rises, nor expands, nor flows.
Take Christians, Mohawks, democrats, and all
From the rude wigwam to the congress-hall,
From man the savage, whether slaved or free,
To man the civilized, less tame than he,--
'Tis one dull chaos, one unfertile strife
Betwixt half-polished and half-barbarous life;
Where every ill the ancient world could brew
Is mixt with every grossness of the new;
Where all corrupts, though little can entice,
And naught is known of luxury but its vice!

  Is this the region then, is this the clime
For soaring fancies? for those dreams sublime,
Which all their miracles of light reveal
To heads that meditate and hearts that feel?
Alas! not so--the Muse of Nature lights
Her glories round; she scales the mountain heights,
And roams the forests; every wondrous spot
Burns with her step, yet man regards it not.
She whispers round, her words are in the air,
But lost, unheard, they linger freezing there,[2]
Without one breath of soul, divinely strong,
One ray of mind to thaw them into song.

  Yet, yet forgive me, oh ye sacred few,
Whom late by Delaware's green banks I knew;
Whom, known and loved through many a social eve,
'Twas bliss to live with, and 'twas pain to leave.[3]
Not with more joy the lonely exile scanned
The writing traced upon the desert's sand,
Where his lone heart but little hoped to find
One trace of life, one stamp of human kind,
Than did I hail the pure, the enlightened zeal,
The strength to reason and the warmth to feel,
The manly polish and the illumined taste,
Which,--mid the melancholy, heartless waste
My foot has traversed,--oh you sacred few!
I found by Delaware's green banks with you.

  Long may you loathe the Gallic dross that runs
Through your fair country and corrupts its sons;
Long love the arts, the glories which adorn
Those fields of freedom, where your sires were born.
Oh! if America can yet be great,
If neither chained by choice, nor doomed by fate
To the mob-mania which imbrutes her now,
She yet can raise the crowned, yet civic brow
Of single majesty,--can add the grace
Of Rank's rich capital to Freedom's base,
Nor fear the mighty shaft will feebler prove
For the fair ornament that flowers above;--
If yet released from all that pedant throng,
So vain of error and so pledged to wrong,
Who hourly teach her, like themselves, to hide
Weakness in vaunt and barrenness in pride,
She yet can rise, can wreathe the Attic charms
Of soft refinement round the pomp of arms,
And see her poets flash the fires of song,
To light her warriors' thunderbolts along;--
It is to you, to souls that favoring heaven
Has made like yours, the glorious task is given:--
Oh! but for _such_, Columbia's days were done;
Rank without ripeness, quickened without sun,
Crude at the surface, rotten at the core,
Her fruits would fall, before her spring were o'er.

  Believe me, Spencer, while I winged the hours
Where Schuylkill winds his way through banks of flowers,
Though few the days, the happy evenings few;
So warm with heart, so rich with mind they flew,
That my charmed soul forgot its wish to roam,
And rested there, as in a dream of home.
And looks I met, like looks I'd loved before,
And voices too, which, as they trembled o'er
The chord of memory, found full many a tone
Of kindness there in concord with their own.
Yes,--we had nights of that communion free,
That flow of heart, which I have known with thee
So oft, so warmly; nights of mirth and mind,

Of whims that taught, and follies that refined.
When shall we both renew them? when, restored
To the gay feast and intellectual board,
Shall I once more enjoy with thee and thine
Those whims that teach, those follies that refine?
Even now, as, wandering upon Erie's shore,
I hear Niagara's distant cataract roar,
I sigh for home,--alas! these weary feet
Have many a mile to journey, ere we meet.


[1] This epithet was suggested by Charlevoix's striking description of the
confluence of the Missouri with the Mississippi.

[2] Alluding to the fanciful notion of "words congealed in northern air."

[3] In the society of Mr. Dennie and his friends, at Philadelphia, I
passed the few agreeable moments which my tour through the States afforded
me. Mr. Dennie has succeeded in diffusing through this cultivated little
circle that love for good literature and sound politics which he feels so
zealously himself, and which is so very rarely the characteristic of his
countrymen. They will not, I trust, accuse me of illiberality for the
picture which I have given of the ignorance and corruption that surround
them. If I did not hate, as I ought, the rabble to which they are opposed,
I could not value, as I do, the spirit with which they defy it; and in
learning from them what Americans _can be_, I but see with the more
indignation what Americans _are_.






BALLAD STANZAS.

I knew by the smoke, that so gracefully curled
  Above the green elms, that a cottage was near.
And I said, "If there's peace to be found in the world,
  "A heart that was humble might hope for it here!"
It was noon, and on flowers that languished around
  In silence reposed the voluptuous bee;
Every leaf was at rest, and I heard not a sound
  But the woodpecker tapping the hollow beech-tree.

And, "Here in this lone little wood," I exclaimed,
  "With a maid who was lovely to soul and to eye,
"Who would blush when I praised her, and weep if I blamed,
  How blest could I live, and how calm could I die!

"By the shade of yon sumach, whose red berry dips
  "In the gush of the fountain, how sweet to recline,
"And to know that I sighed upon innocent lips,
  "Which had never been sighed on by any but mine!"






A CANADIAN BOAT SONG.

WRITTEN ON THE RIVER ST. LAWRENCE.[1]


    _et remigem cantus hortatur_.
    QUINTILIAN.


Faintly as tolls the evening chime
Our voices keep tune and our oars keep time.
Soon as the woods on shore look dim,
We'll sing at St. Ann's our parting hymn.[2]
Row, brothers, row, the stream runs fast,
The Rapids are near and the daylight's past.

  Why should we yet our sail unfurl?
There is not a breath the blue wave to curl,
But, when the wind blows off the shore,
Oh! sweetly we'll rest our weary oar.
Blow, breezes, blow, the stream runs fast,
The Rapids are near and the daylight's past.

  Utawas' tide! this trembling moon
Shall see us float over thy surges soon.
Saint of this green isle! hear our prayers,
Oh, grant us cool heavens and favoring airs.
Blow, breezes, blow, the stream runs fast,
The Rapids are near and the daylight's past.


[1] I wrote these words to an air which our boatmen sung to us frequently.
The wind was so unfavorable that they were obliged to row all the way, and
we were five days in descending the river from Kingston to Montreal,
exposed to an intense sun during the day, and at night forced to take
shelter from the dews in any miserable hut upon the banks that would
receive us. But the magnificent scenery of the St. Lawrence repays all
such difficulties.

[2] "At the Rapid of St. Ann they are obliged to take out part, if not the
whole, of their lading. It is from this spot Canadians consider they take
their departure, as it possesses the last church on the island, which is
dedicated to the tutelar saint of voyagers."--_Mackenzie, General History
of the Fur Trade_.






TO THE LADY CHARLOTTE RAWDON.

FROM THE BANKS OF THE ST. LAWRENCE.


Not many months have now been dreamed away
Since yonder sun, beneath whose evening ray
Our boat glides swiftly past these wooded shores,
Saw me where Trent his mazy current pours,
And Donington's old oaks, to every breeze,
Whisper the tale of by-gone centuries;--
Those oaks, to me as sacred as the groves,
Beneath whose shade the pious Persian roves,
And hears the spirit-voice of sire, or chief,
Or loved mistress, sigh in every leaf.
There, oft, dear Lady, while thy lip hath sung
My own unpolished lays, how proud I've hung
On every tuneful accent! proud to feel.
That notes like mine should have the fate to steal,
As o'er thy hallowing lip they sighed along.
Such breath of passion and such soul of song.
Yes,--I have wondered, like some peasant boy
Who sings, on Sabbath-eve, his strains of joy,
And when he hears the wild, untutored note
Back to his ear on softening echoes float,
Believes it still some answering spirit's tone,
And thinks it all too sweet to be his own!

  I dreamt not then that, ere the rolling year
Had filled its circle, I should wander here
In musing awe; should tread this wondrous world,
See all its store of inland waters hurled
In one vast volume down Niagara's steep,
Or calm behold them, in transparent sleep,
Where the blue hills of old Toronto shed
Their evening shadows o'er Ontario's bed;
Should trace the grand Cadaraqui, and glide
Down the white rapids of his lordly tide
Through massy woods, mid islets flowering fair,
And blooming glades, where the first sinful pair
For consolation might have weeping trod,
When banished from the garden of their God,
Oh, Lady! these are miracles, which man,
Caged in the bounds of Europe's pigmy span,
Can scarcely dream of,--which his eye must see
To know how wonderful this world can be!

  But lo,--the last tints of the west decline,
And night falls dewy o'er these banks of pine.
Among the reeds, in which our idle boat
Is rocked to rest, the wind's complaining note
Dies like a half-breathed whispering of flutes;
Along the wave the gleaming porpoise shoots,
And I can trace him, like a watery star,[1]
Down the steep current, till he fades afar
Amid the foaming breakers' silvery light.
Where yon rough rapids sparkle through the night.
Here, as along this shadowy bank I stray,
And the smooth glass-snake,[2] glid-o'er my way,
Shows the dim moonlight through his scaly form,
Fancy, with all the scene's enchantment warm,
Hears in the murmur of the nightly breeze
Some Indian Spirit warble words like these:--

  From the land beyond the sea,
  Whither happy spirits flee;
  Where, transformed to sacred doves,[3]
  Many a blessed Indian roves
  Through the air on wing, as white
  As those wondrous stones of light,[4]
  Which the eye of morning counts
  On the Apalachian mounts,--
  Hither oft my flight I take
  Over Huron's lucid lake,
  Where the wave, as clear as dew,
  Sleeps beneath the light canoe,
  Which, reflected, floating there,
  Looks as if it hung in air.

  Then, when I have strayed a while
Through the Manataulin isle,[5]
Breathing all its holy bloom,
Swift I mount me on the plume
Of my Wakon-Bird,[6] and fly
Where, beneath a burning sky,
O'er the bed of Erie's lake
Slumbers many a water-snake,
Wrapt within the web of leaves,
Which the water-lily weaves.[7]
Next I chase the floweret-king
Through his rosy realm of spring;
See him now, while diamond hues
Soft his neck and wings suffuse,
In the leafy chalice sink,
Thirsting for his balmy drink;
Now behold him all on fire,
Lovely in his looks of ire,
Breaking every infant stem,
Scattering every velvet gem,
Where his little tyrant lip
Had not found enough to sip.

  Then my playful hand I steep
Where the gold-thread loves to creep,
Cull from thence a tangled wreath,
Words of magic round it breathe,
And the sunny chaplet spread
O'er the sleeping fly-bird's head,
Till, with dreams of honey blest,
Haunted, in his downy nest,
By the garden's fairest spells,
Dewy buds and fragrant bells,
Fancy all his soul embowers
In the fly-bird's heaven of flowers.

  Oft, when hoar and silvery flakes
Melt along the ruffled lakes,
When the gray moose sheds his horns,
When the track, at evening, warns
Weary hunters of the way
To the wigwam's cheering ray,
Then, aloft through freezing air,
With the snow-bird soft and fair
As the fleece that heaven flings
O'er his little pearly wings,
Light above the rocks I play,
Where Niagara's starry spray,
Frozen on the cliff, appears
Like a giant's starting tears.
There, amid the island-sedge,
Just upon the cataract's edge,
Where the foot of living man
Never trod since time began,
Lone I sit, at close of day,
While, beneath the golden ray,
Icy columns gleam below,
Feathered round with falling snow,
And an arch of glory springs,
Sparkling as the chain of rings
Round the neck of virgins hung,--
Virgins, who have wandered young
O'er the waters of the west
To the land where spirits rest!

Thus have I charmed, with visionary lay,
The lonely moments of the night away;
And now, fresh daylight o'er the water beams!
Once more, embarked upon the glittering streams,
Our boat flies light along the leafy shore,
Shooting the falls, without a dip of oar
Or breath of zephyr, like the mystic bark
The poet saw, in dreams divinely dark,
Borne, without sails, along the dusky flood,
While on its deck a pilot angel stood,
And, with his wings of living light unfurled,
Coasted the dim shores of another world!

Yet, oh! believe me, mid this mingled maze
Of Nature's beauties, where the fancy strays
From charm to charm, where every floweret's hue
Hath something strange, and every leaf is new,--
I never feel a joy so pure and still
So inly felt, as when some brook or hill,
Or veteran oak, like those remembered well,
Some mountain echo or some wild-flower's smell,
(For, who can say by what small fairy ties
The memory clings to pleasure as it flies?)
Reminds my heart of many a silvan dream
I once indulged by Trent's inspiring stream;
Of all my sunny morns and moonlight nights
On Donington's green lawns and breezy heights.

Whether I trace the tranquil moments o'er
When I have seen thee cull the fruits of lore,
With him, the polished warrior, by thy side,
A sister's idol and a nation's pride!
When thou hast read of heroes, trophied high
In ancient fame, and I have seen thine eye
Turn to the living hero, while it read,
For pure and brightening comments on the dead;--
Or whether memory to my mind recalls
The festal grandeur of those lordly halls,
When guests have met around the sparkling board,
And welcome warmed the cup that luxury poured;
When the bright future Star of England's throne,
With magic smile, hath o'er the banquet shone,
Winning respect, nor claiming what he won,
But tempering greatness, like an evening sun
Whose light the eye can tranquilly admire,
Radiant, but mild, all softness, yet all fire;--
Whatever hue my recollections take,
Even the regret, the very pain they wake
Is mixt with happiness;--but, ah! no more--
Lady! adieu--my heart has lingered o'er
Those vanished times, till all that round me lies,
Stream, banks, and bowers have faded on my eyes!


[1] Anburey, in his Travels, has noticed this shooting illumination which
porpoises diffuse at night through the river St. Lawrence,--Vol. i. p. 29.

[2] The glass-snake is brittle and transparent.

[3] "The departed spirit goes into the Country of Souls, where, according
to some, it is transformed into a dove."--_Charlevoix upon the
Traditions and the Religion of the Savages of Canada_.

[4] "The mountains appeared to be sprinkled with white stones, which
glistened in the sun, and were called by the Indians manetoe aseniah, or
spirit-stones."--_Mackenzie's Journal_.

[5] Manataulin signifies a Place of Spirits, and this island in Lake Huron
is held sacred by the Indians.

[6] "The Wakon-Bird, which probably is of the same species with the bird
of Paradise, receives its name from the ideas the Indians have of its
superior excellence; the Wakon-Bird being, in their language, the Bird of
the Great Spirit."--_Morse_.

[7] The islands of Lake Erie are surrounded to a considerable distance by
the large pond-lily, whose leaves spread thickly over the surface of the
lake, and form a kind of bed for the water-snakes in summer.






IMPROMPTU.

AFTER A VISIT TO MRS. ----, OF MONTREAL.


'Twas but for a moment--and yet in that time
  She crowded the impressions of many an hour:
Her eye had a glow, like the sun of her clime,
  Which waked every feeling at once into flower.

Oh! could we have borrowed from Time but a day,
  To renew such impressions again and again,
The things we should look and imagine and say
  Would be worth all the life we had wasted till then.

What we had not the leisure or language to speak,
  We should find some more spiritual mode of revealing,
And, between us, should feel just as much in a week
  As others would take a millennium in feeling.






WRITTEN

ON PASSING DEADMAN'S ISLAND,
IN THE GULF OF ST. LAWRENCE,[1]
LATE IN THE EVENING, SEPTEMBER, 1804.

See you, beneath yon cloud so dark,
Fast gliding along a gloomy bark?
Her sails are full,--though the wind is still,
And there blows not a breath her sails to fill!

Say, what doth that vessel of darkness bear?
The silent calm of the grave is there,
Save now and again a death-knell rung,
And the flap of the sails with night-fog hung.

There lieth a wreck on the dismal shore
Of cold and pitiless Labrador;
Where, under the moon, upon mounts of frost,
Full many a mariner's bones are tost.

Yon shadowy bark hath been to that wreck,
And the dim blue fire, that lights her deck,
Doth play on as pale and livid a crew,
As ever yet drank the churchyard dew.

To Deadman's Isle, in the eye of the blast,
To Deadman's Isle, she speeds her fast;
By skeleton shapes her sails are furled,
And the hand that steers is not of this world!

Oh! hurry thee on-oh! hurry thee on,
Thou terrible bark, ere the night be gone,
Nor let morning look on so foul a sight
As would blanch for ever her rosy light!

[1]  This is one of the Magdalen Islands, and, singularly enough, is the
property of Sir Isaac Coffin. The above lines were suggested by a
superstition very common among sailors, who called this ghost-ship, I
think, "The Flying Dutchman."






TO THE BOSTON FRIGATE, ON LEAVING HALIFAX FOR ENGLAND,[1]

OCTOBER, 1804.


With triumph, this morning, oh Boston! I hail
The stir of thy deck and the spread of thy sail,
For they tell me I soon shall be wafted, in thee,
To the flourishing isle of the brave and the free,
And that chill Nova-Scotia's unpromising strand
Is the last I shall tread of American land.
Well--peace to the land! may her sons know, at length,
That in high-minded honor lies liberty's strength,
That though man be as free as the fetterless wind,
As the wantonest air that the north can unbind,
Yet, if health do not temper and sweeten the blast,
If no harvest of mind ever sprung where it past,
Then unblest is such freedom, and baleful its might,--
Free only to ruin, and strong but to blight!

Farewell to the few I have left with regret:
May they sometimes recall, what I cannot forget;
The delight of those evenings,--too brief a delight!
When in converse and song we have stolen on the night;
When they've asked me the manners, the mind, or the mien,
Of some bard I had known or some chief I had seen,
Whose glory, though distant, they long had adored,
Whose name had oft hallowed the wine-cup they poured;
And still as, with sympathy humble but true,
I have told of each bright son of fame all I knew,
They have listened, and sighed that the powerful stream
Of America's empire should pass like a dream,
Without leaving one relic of genius, to say,
How sublime was the tide which had vanished away!
Farewell to the few--though we never may meet
On this planet again, it is soothing and sweet
To think that, whenever my song or my name
Shall recur to their ear, they'll recall me the same
I have been to them now, young, unthoughtful, and blest,
Ere hope had deceived me or sorrow deprest.

But, Douglas! while thus I recall to my mind
The elect of the land we shall soon leave behind,
I can read in the weather-wise glance of thine eye
As it follows the rack flitting over the sky,
That the faint coming breeze would be fair for our flight,
And shall steal us away, ere the falling of night.
Dear Douglas! thou knowest, with thee by my side,
With thy friendship to soothe me, thy courage to guide,
There is not a bleak isle in those summerless seas,
Where the day comes in darkness, or shines but to freeze,
Not a tract of the line, not a barbarous shore,
That I could not with patience, with pleasure explore!
Oh think then how gladly I follow thee now,
When Hope smooths the billowy path of our prow,
And each prosperous sigh of the west-springing wind
Takes me nearer the home where my heart is inshrined;
Where the smile of a father shall meet me again,
And the tears of a mother turn bliss into pain;
Where the kind voice of sisters shall steal to my heart,
And ask it, in sighs, how we ever could part?--

But see!--the bent top sails are ready to swell--
To the boat--I am with thee--Columbia, farewell!


[1] Commanded by Captain J. E. Douglas, with whom I returned to England,
and to whom I am indebted for many, many kindnesses.








IRISH MELODIES




DEDICATION

TO THE MARCHIONESS DOWAGER OF DONEGAL.


It is now many years since, in, a Letter prefixed to the Third Number of
the Irish Melodies, I had the pleasure of inscribing the Poems of that
work to your Ladyship, as to one whose character reflected honor on the
country to which they relate, and whose friendship had long been the pride
and happiness of their Author. With the same feelings of affection and
respect, confirmed if not increased by the experience of every succeeding
year, I now place those Poems in their present new form under your
protection, and am,

With perfect Sincerity,
Your Ladyship's ever attached friend,

THOMAS MOORE.




PREFACE.


Though an edition of the Poetry of the Irish Melodies, separate from the
Music, has long been called for, yet, having, for many reasons, a strong
objection to this sort of divorce, I should with difficulty have consented
to a disunion of the words from the airs, had it depended solely upon me
to keep them quietly and indissolubly together. But, besides the various
shapes in which these, as well as my other lyrical writings, have been
published throughout America, they are included, of course, in all the
editions of my works printed on the Continent, and have also appeared, in
a volume full of typographical errors, in Dublin. I have therefore readily
acceded to the wish expressed by the Proprietor of the Irish Melodies, for
a revised and complete edition of the poetry of the Work, though well
aware that my verses must lose even more than the "_animae dimidium_" in
being detached from the beautiful airs to which it was their good fortune
to be associated.






IRISH MELODIES






GO WHERE GLORY WAITS THEE.


Go where glory waits thee,
But while fame elates thee,
  Oh! still remember me.
When the praise thou meetest
To thine ear is sweetest,
  Oh! then remember me.
Other arms may press thee,
Dearer friends caress thee,
All the joys that bless thee,
  Sweeter far may be;
But when friends are nearest,
And when joys are dearest,
  Oh! then remember me!

When, at eve, thou rovest
By the star thou lovest,
  Oh! then remember me.
Think, when home returning,
Bright we've seen it burning,
  Oh! thus remember me.
Oft as summer closes,
When thine eye reposes
On its lingering roses,
  Once so loved by thee,
Think of her who wove them,
Her who made thee love them,
  Oh! then, remember me.

When, around thee dying,
Autumn leaves are lying,
  Oh! then remember me.
And, at night, when gazing
On the gay hearth blazing,
  Oh! still remember me.
Then should music, stealing
All the soul of feeling,
To thy heart appealing,
  Draw one tear from thee;
Then let memory bring thee
Strains I used to sing thee,--
  Oh! then remember me.






WAR SONG.

REMEMBER THE GLORIES OF BRIEN THE BRAVE.[1]


Remember the glories of Brien the brave,
  Tho' the days of the hero are o'er;
Tho' lost to Mononia and cold in the grave,[2]
  He returns to Kinkora no more.[3]
That star of the field, which so often hath poured
  Its beam on the battle, is set;
But enough of its glory remains on each sword,
  To light us to victory yet.

Mononia! when Nature embellished the tint
  Of thy fields, and thy mountains so fair,
Did she ever intend that a tyrant should print
  The footstep of slavery there?
No! Freedom, whose smile we shall never resign,
  Go, tell our invaders, the Danes,
That 'tis sweeter to bleed for an age at thy shrine,
  Than to sleep but a moment in chains.

Forget not our wounded companions, who stood[4]
  In the day of distress by our side;
While the moss of the valley grew red with their blood,
  They stirred not, but conquered and died.
That sun which now blesses our arms with his light,
  Saw them fall upon Ossory's plain;--
Oh! let him not blush, when he leaves us to-night,
  To find that they fell there in vain.


[1] Brien Boromhe, the great monarch of Ireland, who was killed at the
battle of Clontarf, in the beginning of the 11th century, after having
defeated the Danes in twenty-five engagements.

[2] Munster.

[3] The palace of Brien.

[4] This alludes to an interesting circumstance related of the Dalgais,
the favorite troops of Brien, when they were interrupted in their return
from the battle of Clontarf, by Fitzpatrick, prince of Ossory. The wounded
men entreated that they might be allowed to fight with the rest,--"_Let
stakes_[they said] _be stuck in the ground, and suffer each of us to be
tied to and supported by one of these stakes, to be placed in his rank by
the side of a sound man_." "Between seven and eight hundred men (adds
O'Halloran) pale, emaciated, and supported in this manner, appeared mixed
with the foremost of the troops;--never was such another sight
exhibited."--_"History of Ireland_," book xii. chap i.






ERIN! THE TEAR AND THE SMILE IN THINE EYES.


Erin, the tear and the smile in thine eyes,
Blend like the rainbow that hangs in thy skies!
  Shining through sorrow's stream,
  Saddening through pleasure's beam,
  Thy suns with doubtful gleam,
    Weep while they rise.

Erin, thy silent tear never shall cease,
Erin, thy languid smile ne'er shall increase,
  Till, like the rainbow's light,
  Thy various tints unite,
  And form in heaven's sight
    One arch of peace!






OH! BREATHE NOT HIS NAME.


Oh! breathe not his name, let it sleep in the shade,
Where cold and unhonored his relics are laid:
Sad, silent, and dark, be the tears that we shed,
As the night-dew that falls on the grass o'er his head.
But the night-dew that falls, tho' in silence it weeps,
Shall brighten with verdure the grave where he sleeps;
And the tear that we shed, tho' in secret it rolls,
Shall long keep his memory green in our souls.






WHEN HE, WHO ADORES THEE.


When he, who adores thee, has left but the name
  Of his fault and his sorrows behind,
Oh! say wilt thou weep, when they darken the fame
  Of a life that for thee was resigned?
Yes, weep, and however my foes may condemn,
  Thy tears shall efface their decree;
For Heaven can witness, tho' guilty to them,
  I have been but too faithful to thee.

With thee were the dreams of my earliest love;
  Every thought of my reason was thine;
In my last humble prayer to the Spirit above,
  Thy name shall be mingled with mine.
Oh! blest are the lovers and friend who shall live
  The days of thy glory to see;
But the next dearest blessing that Heaven can give
  Is the pride of thus dying for thee.






THE HARP THAT ONCE THRO' TARA'S HALLS.


The harp that once thro' Tara's halls
  The soul of music shed,
Now hangs as mute on Tara's walls.
  As if that soul were fled.--
So sleeps the pride of former days,
  So glory's thrill is o'er,
And hearts, that once beat high for praise,
  Now feel that pulse no more.

No more to chiefs and ladies bright
  The harp of Tara swells;
The chord alone, that breaks at night,
  Its tale of ruin tells.
Thus Freedom now so seldom wakes,
  The only throbs she gives,
Is when some heart indignant breaks.
  To show that still she lives.






FLY NOT YET.


Fly not yet, 'tis just the hour,
When pleasure, like the midnight flower
That scorns the eye of vulgar light,
Begins to bloom for sons of night,
  And maids who love the moon.
'Twas but to bless these hours of shade
That beauty and the moon were made;
'Tis then their soft attractions glowing
Set the tides and goblets flowing.
  Oh! stay,--Oh! stay,--
Joy so seldom weaves a chain
Like this to-night, and oh, 'tis pain
  To break its links so soon.

Fly not yet, the fount that played
In times of old through Ammon's shade,
Though icy cold by day it ran,
Yet still, like souls of mirth, began
  To burn when night was near.
And thus, should woman's heart and looks,
At noon be cold as winter brooks,
Nor kindle till the night, returning,
Brings their genial hour for burning.
  Oh! stay,--Oh! stay,--
When did morning ever break,
And find such beaming eyes awake
  As those that sparkle here?






OH! THINK NOT MY SPIRITS ARE ALWAYS AS LIGHT.


Oh! think not my spirits are always as light,
  And as free from a pang as they seem to you now;
Nor expect that the heart-beaming smile of to-night
  Will return with to morrow to brighten my brow.
No!--life is a waste of wearisome hours,
  Which seldom the rose of enjoyment adorns;
And the heart that is soonest awake to the flowers,
  Is always the first to be touched by the thorns.
But send round the bowl, and be happy awhile--
  May we never meet worse, in our pilgrimage here,
Than the tear that enjoyment may gild with a smile,
  And the smile that compassion can turn to a tear.

The thread of our life would be dark, Heaven knows!
  If it were not with friendship and love intertwined:
And I care not how soon I may sink to repose,
  When these blessings shall cease to be dear to my mind.
But they who have loved the fondest, the purest.
  Too often have wept o'er the dream they believed;
And the heart that has slumbered in friendship, securest,
  Is happy indeed if 'twas never deceived.
But send round the bowl; while a relic of truth
  Is in man or in woman, this prayer shall be mine,--
That the sunshine of love may illumine our youth,
  And the moonlight of friendship console our decline.






THO' THE LAST GLIMPSE OF ERIN WITH SORROW I SEE.


Tho' the last glimpse of Erin with sorrow I see,
Yet wherever thou art shall seem Erin to me;
In exile thy bosom shall still be my home,
And thine eyes make my climate wherever we room.

To the gloom of some desert or cold rocky shore,
Where the eye of the stranger can haunt us no more,
I will fly with my Coulin, and think the rough wind
Less rude than the foes we leave frowning behind.

And I'll gaze on thy gold hair as graceful it wreathes;
And hang o'er thy soft harp, as wildly it breathes;
Nor dread that the cold-hearted Saxon will tear
One chord from that harp, or one lock from that hair.[1]


[1] "In the twenty-eighth year of the reign of Henry VIII, an Act was made
respecting the habits, and dress in general, of the Irish, whereby all
persons were restrained from being shorn or shaven above the ears, or from
wearing Glibbes, or _Coulins_ (long locks), on their heads, or hair on
their upper lip, called _Crommeal_. On this occasion a song was written by
one of our bards, in which an Irish virgin is made to give the preference
to her dear _Coulin_ (or the youth with the flowing locks) to all
strangers (by which the English were meant), or those who wore their
habits. Of this song, the air alone has reached us, and is universally
admired."--"_Walker's "Historical Memoirs of Irish Bards_," p. 184. Mr.
Walker informs us also, that, about the same period, there were some harsh
measures taken against the Irish Minstrels.






RICH AND RARE WERE THE GEMS SHE WORE.[1]


Rich and rare were the gems she wore,
And a bright gold ring on her wand she bore;
But oh! her beauty was far beyond
Her sparkling gems, or snow-white wand.

"Lady! dost thou not fear, to stray,
"So lone and lovely through this bleak way?
"Are Erin's sons so good or so cold,
"As not to be tempted by woman or gold?"

"Sir Knight! I feel not the least alarm,
"No son of Erin will offer me harm:--
"For though they love woman and golden store,
"Sir Knight! they love honor and virtue more!"

On she went and her maiden smile
In safety lighted her round the green isle;
And blest for ever is she who relied
Upon Erin's honor, and Erin's pride.


[1] This ballad is founded upon the following anecdote:--"The people were
inspired with such a spirit of honor, virtue, and religion, by the great
example of Brien, and by his excellent administration, that, as a proof of
it, we are informed that a young lady of great beauty, adorned with jewels
and a costly dress, undertook a journey alone, from one end of the kingdom
to the other, with a wand only in her hand, at the top of which was a ring
of exceeding great value; and such an impression had the laws and
government of this Monarch made on the minds of all the people, that no
attempt was made upon her honor, nor was she robbed of her clothes or
jewels."--_Warner's "History of Ireland_," vol i, book x.






AS A BEAM O'ER THE FACE OF THE WATERS MAY GLOW.


As a beam o'er the face of the waters may glow
While the tide runs in darkness and coldness below,
So the cheek may be tinged with a warm sunny smile,
Though the cold heart to ruin runs darkly the while.

One fatal remembrance, one sorrow that throws
Its bleak shade alike o'er our joys and our woes.
To which life nothing darker or brighter can bring
For which joy has no balm and affliction no sting--

Oh! this thought in the midst of enjoyment will stay,
Like a dead, leafless branch in the summer's bright ray;
The beams of the warm sun play round it in vain,
It may smile in his light, but it blooms not again.






THE MEETING OF THE WATERS.[1]


There is not in the wide world a valley so sweet
As that vale in whose bosom the bright waters meet;[2]
Oh! the last rays of feeling and life must depart,
Ere the bloom of that valley shall fade from my heart.

Yet it _was_ not that nature had shed o'er the scene
Her purest of crystal and brightest of green;
'Twas _not_ her soft magic of streamlet or hill,
Oh! no,--it was something more exquisite still.

'Twas that friends, the beloved of my bosom, were near,
Who made every dear scene of enchantment more dear,
And who felt how the best charms of nature improve,
When we see them reflected from looks that we love.

Sweet vale of Avoca! how calm could I rest
In thy bosom of shade, with the friends I love best.
Where the storms that we feel in this cold world should cease,
And our hearts, like thy waters, be mingled in peace.


[1] "The Meeting of the Waters" forms a part of that beautiful scenery
which lies between Rathdrum and Arklow, in the county of Wicklow, and
these lines were suggested by a visit to this romantic spot, in the summer
of the year 1807.

[2] The rivers Avon and Avoca.






HOW DEAR TO ME THE HOUR.


How dear to me the hour when daylight dies,
  And sunbeams melt along the silent sea,
For then sweet dreams of other days arise,
  And memory breathes her vesper sigh to thee.

And, as I watch the line of light, that plays
  Along the smooth wave toward the burning west,
I long to tread that golden path of rays,
  And think 'twould lead to some bright isle of rest.






TAKE BACK THE VIRGIN PAGE.

WRITTEN ON RETURNING A BLANK BOOK.


Take back the virgin page,
  White and unwritten still;
Some hand, more calm and sage,
  The leaf must fill.
Thoughts come, as pure as light
  Pure as even _you_ require:
But, oh! each word I write
  Love turns to fire.

Yet let me keep the book:
  Oft shall my heart renew,
When on its leaves I look,
  Dear thoughts of you.
Like you, 'tis fair and bright;
  Like you, too bright and fair
To let wild passion write
  One wrong wish there.

Haply, when from those eyes
  Far, far away I roam.
Should calmer thoughts arise
  Towards you and home;
Fancy may trace some line,
  Worthy those eyes to meet,
Thoughts that not burn, but shine,
  Pure, calm, and sweet.

And as, o'er ocean, far,
  Seamen their records keep,
Led by some hidden star
  Thro' the cold deep;
So may the words I write
  Tell thro' what storms I stray--
  _You_ still the unseen light,
    Guiding my way.






THE LEGACY.


When in death I shall calmly recline,
  O bear my heart to my mistress dear;
Tell her it lived upon smiles and wine
  Of the brightest hue, while it lingered here.
Bid her not shed one tear of sorrow
  To sully a heart so brilliant and light;
But balmy drops of the red grape borrow,
  To bathe the relic from morn till night.

When the light of my song is o'er,
  Then take my harp to your ancient hall;
Hang it up at that friendly door,
  Where weary travellers love to call.[1]
Then if some bard, who roams forsaken,
  Revive its soft note in passing along,
Oh! let one thought of its master waken
  Your warmest smile for the child of song.
Keep this cup, which is now o'er-flowing,
  To grace your revel, when I'm at rest;
Never, oh! never its balm bestowing
  On lips that beauty has seldom blest.
But when some warm devoted lover
  To her he adores shall bathe its brim,
Then, then my spirit around shall hover,
  And hallow each drop that foams for him.


[1] "In every house was one or two harps, free to all travellers, who were
the more caressed, the more they excelled in music."--_O'Halloran_.






HOW OFT HAS THE BANSHEE CRIED.


    How oft has the Banshee cried,
    How oft has death untied
    Bright links that Glory wove,
    Sweet bonds entwined by Love!
Peace to each manly soul that sleepeth;
Rest to each faithful eye that weepeth;
    Long may the fair and brave
    Sigh o'er the hero's grave.

    We're fallen upon gloomy days![1]
    Star after star decays,
    Every bright name, that shed
    Light o'er the land, is fled.
Dark falls the tear of him who mourneth
Lost joy, or hope that ne'er returneth;
    But brightly flows the tear,
    Wept o'er a hero's bier.

    Quenched are our beacon lights--
    Thou, of the Hundred Fights![2]
    Thou, on whose burning tongue
    Truth, peace, and freedom hung!
Both mute,--but long as valor shineth,
Or Mercy's soul at war repineth,
    So long shall Erin's pride
    Tell how they lived and died.


[1] I have endeavored here, without losing that Irish character, which it
is my object to preserve throughout this work, to allude to the sad and
ominous fatality, by which England has been deprived of so many great and
good men, at a moment when she most requires all the aids of talent and
integrity.

[2] This designation, which has been before applied to Lord Nelson, is the
title given to a celebrated Irish Hero, in a Poem by O'Guive, the bard of
O'Niel, which is quoted in the "Philosophical Survey of the South of
Ireland," page 433. "Con, of the hundred Fights, sleep in thy grass-grown
tomb, and upbraid not our defeats with thy victories."






WE MAY ROAM THROUGH THIS WORLD.


We may roam thro' this world, like a child at a feast,
 Who but sips of a sweet, and then flies to the rest;
And, when pleasure begins to grow dull in the east,
 We may order our wings and be off to the west;
But if hearts that feel, and eyes that smile,
 Are the dearest gifts that heaven supplies,
We never need leave our own green isle,
 For sensitive hearts, and for sun-bright eyes.
Then remember, wherever your goblet is crowned,
 Thro' this world, whether eastward or westward you roam,
When a cup to the smile of dear woman goes round,
 Oh! remember the smile which adorns her at home.

In England, the garden of Beauty is kept
 By a dragon of prudery placed within call;
But so oft this unamiable dragon has slept,
 That the garden's but carelessly watched after all.
Oh! they want the wild sweet-briery fence,
 Which round the flowers of Erin dwells;
Which warns the touch, while winning the sense,
 Nor charms us least when it most repels.
Then remember, wherever your goblet is crowned,
 Thro' this world, whether eastward or westward you roam,
When a cup to the smile of dear woman goes round,
 Oh! remember the smile that adorns her at home.

In France, when the heart of a woman sets sail,
 On the ocean of wedlock its fortune to try,
Love seldom goes far in a vessel so frail,
 But just pilots her off, and then bids her good-by.
While the daughters of Erin keep the boy,
 Ever smiling beside his faithful oar,
Thro' billows of woe, and beams of joy,
 The same as he looked when he left the shore.
Then remember, wherever your goblet is crowned,
 Thro' this world, whether eastward or westward you roam,
When a cup to the smile of dear woman goes round,
 Oh! remember the smile that adorns her at home.






EVELEEN'S BOWER.


    Oh! weep for the hour,
    When to Eveleen's bower
The Lord of the Valley with false vows came;
    The moon hid her light
    From the heavens that night.
And wept behind her clouds o'er the maiden's shame.

    The clouds past soon
    From the chaste cold moon,
And heaven smiled again with her vestal flame:
    But none will see the day,
    When the clouds shall pass away,
Which that dark hour left upon Eveleen's fame.

    The white snow lay
    On the narrow path-way,
When the Lord of the Valley crost over the moor;
    And many a deep print
    On the white snow's tint
Showed the track of his footstep to Eveleen's door.

    The next sun's ray
    Soon melted away
Every trace on the path where the false Lord came;
    But there's a light above,
    Which alone can remove
That stain upon the snow of fair Eveleen's fame.






LET ERIN REMEMBER THE DAYS OF OLD.


Let Erin remember the days of old.
  Ere her faithless sons betrayed her;
When Malachi wore the collar of gold,[1]
Which he won from her proud invader.
When her kings, with standard of green unfurled,
  Led the Red-Branch Knights to danger;[2]
Ere the emerald gem of the western world
  Was set in the crown of a stranger.

On Lough Neagh's bank as the fisherman strays,
  When the clear cold eve's declining,
He sees the round towers of other days
  In the wave beneath him shining:
Thus shall memory often, in dreams sublime,
  Catch a glimpse of the days that are over;
Thus, sighing, look thro' the waves of time
For the long-faded glories they cover.[3]


[1] "This brought on an encounter between Malachi (the Monarch of Ireland
in the tenth century) and the Danes, in which Malachi defeated two of
their champions, whom he encountered successively, hand to hand, taking a
collar of gold from the neck of one, and carrying off the sword of the
other, as trophies of his victory."--_Warner's "History of Ireland,"_
vol. i. book ix.

[2] "Military orders of knights were very early established in Ireland;
long before the birth of Christ we find an hereditary order of Chivalry in
Ulster, called _Curaidhe na Craiobhe ruadh_, or the Knights of the
Red Branch, from their chief seat in Emania, adjoining to the palace of
the Ulster kings, called _Teagh na Craiobhe ruadh_, or the Academy of
the Red Branch; and contiguous to which was a large hospital, founded for
the sick knights and soldiers, called _Bronbhearg_, or the House of
the Sorrowful Soldier."--_O'Halloran's Introduction_, etc., part 1,
chap. 5.

[3] It was an old tradition, in the time of Giraldus, that Lough Neagh had
been originally a fountain, by whose sudden overflowing the country was
inundated, and a whole region, like the Atlantis of Plato, overwhelmed. He
says that the fishermen, in clear weather, used to point out to strangers
the tall ecclesiastical towers under the water.






THE SONG OF FIONNUALA.[1]


Silent, oh Moyle, be the roar of thy water,
  Break not, ye breezes, your chain of repose,
While, murmuring mournfully, Lir's lonely daughter
  Tells to the night-star her tale of woes.
When shall the swan, her death-note singing,
Sleep, with wings in darkness furled?
When will heaven, its sweet bell ringing,
Call my spirit from this stormy world?

Sadly, oh Moyle, to thy winter wave weeping,
Fate bids me languish long ages away;
Yet still in her darkness doth Erin lie sleeping,
Still doth the pure light its dawning delay.
When will that day-star, mildly springing,
Warm our isle with peace and love?
When will heaven, its sweet bell ringing,
Call my spirit to the fields above?


[1] To make this story intelligible in a song would require a much greater
number of verses than any one is authorized to inflict upon an audience at
once; the reader must therefore be content to learn, in a note, that
Fionnuala, the daughter of Lir, was, by some supernatural power,
transformed into a swan, and condemned to wander, for many hundred years,
over certain lakes and rivers in Ireland, till the coming of Christianity,
when the first sound of the mass-bell was to be the signal of her
release,--I found this fanciful fiction among some manuscript translations
from the Irish, which were begun under the direction of that enlightened
friend of Ireland, the late Countess of Moira.






COME, SEND ROUND THE WINE.


Come, send round the wine, and leave points of belief
To simpleton sages, and reasoning fools;
This moment's a flower too fair and brief,
To be withered and stained by the dust of the schools.
Your glass may be purple, and mine may be blue,
But, while they are filled from the same bright bowl,
The fool, who would quarrel for difference of hue,
Deserves not the comfort they shed o'er the soul.
Shall I ask the brave soldier, who fights by my side
In the cause of mankind, if our creeds agree?
Shall I give up the friend I have valued and tried,
If he kneel not before the same altar with me?
From the heretic girl of my soul should I fly,
To seek somewhere else a more orthodox kiss?
No, perish the hearts, and the laws that try
Truth, valor, or love, by a standard like this!






SUBLIME WAS THE WARNING.


Sublime was the warning that Liberty spoke,
And grand was the moment when Spaniards awoke
Into life and revenge from the conqueror's chain.
Oh, Liberty! let not this Spirit have rest,
Till it move, like a breeze, o'er the waves of the west--
Give the light of your look to each sorrowing spot,
Nor, oh, be the Shamrock of Erin forgot
While you add to your garland the Olive of Spain!

If the fame of our fathers, bequeathed with their rights,
Give to country its charm, and to home its delights,
If deceit be a wound, and suspicion a stain,
Then, ye men of Iberia; our cause is the same!
And oh!  may his tomb want a tear and a name,
Who would ask for a nobler, a holier death,
Than to turn his last sigh into victory's breath,
For the Shamrock of Erin and Olive of Spain!

Ye Blakes and O'Donnels, whose fathers resigned
The green hills of their youth, among strangers to find
That repose which, at home, they had sighed for in vain,
Join, join in our hope that the flame, which you light,
May be felt yet in Erin, as calm, and as bright,
And forgive even Albion while blushing she draws,
Like a truant, her sword, in the long-slighted cause
  Of the Shamrock of Erin and Olive of Spain!

God prosper the cause!--oh, it cannot but thrive,
While the pulse of one patriot heart is alive.
  Its devotion to feel, and its rights to maintain;
Then, how sainted by sorrow, its martyrs will die!
The finger of Glory shall point where they lie;
While, far from the footstep of coward or slave.
The young spirit of Freedom shall shelter their grave
  Beneath Shamrocks of Erin and Olives of Spain!






BELIEVE ME IF ALL THOSE ENDEARING YOUNG CHARMS.


Believe me, if all those endearing young charms,
  Which I gaze on so fondly today,
Were to change by to-morrow, and fleet in my arms,
  Like fairy-gifts fading away,
Thou wouldst still be adored, as this moment thou art.
  Let thy loveliness fade as it will.
And around the dear ruin each wish of my heart
  Would entwine itself verdantly still.

It is not while beauty and youth are thine own,
  And thy cheeks unprofaned by a tear,
That the fervor and faith of a soul can be known,
  To which time will but make thee more dear;
No, the heart that has truly loved never forgets,
  But as truly loves on to the close,
As the sun-flower turns on her god, when he sets,
  The same look which she turned when he rose.






ERIN, OH ERIN.


Like the bright lamp, that shone in Kildare's holy fane,[1]
  And burn'd thro' long ages of darkness and storm,
Is the heart that sorrows have frowned on in vain,
  Whose spirit outlives them, unfading and warm.
Erin, oh Erin, thus bright thro' the tears
Of a long night of bondage, thy spirit appears.

The nations have fallen, and thou still art young,
  Thy sun is but rising, when others are set;
And tho' slavery's cloud o'er thy morning hath hung,
  The full noon of freedom shall beam round thee yet.
Erin, oh Erin, tho' long in the shade,
Thy star will shine out when the proudest shall fade.

Unchilled by the rain, and unwaked by the wind,
  The lily lies sleeping thro' winter's cold hour,
Till Spring's light touch her fetters unbind,
  And daylight and liberty bless the young flower.
Thus Erin, oh Erin, _thy_ winter is past,
And the hope that lived thro' it shall blossom at last.


[1] The inextinguishable fire of St. Bridget, at Kildare, which Giraldus
mentions.






DRINK TO HER.


Drink to her, who long,
  Hath waked the poet's sigh.
The girl, who gave to song
  What gold could never buy.
Oh! woman's heart was made
  For minstrel hands alone;
By other fingers played,
  It yields not half the tone.
Then here's to her, who long
  Hath waked the poet's sigh,
The girl who gave to song
  What gold could never buy.

At Beauty's door of glass,
  When Wealth and Wit once stood,
They asked her '_which_ might pass?"
  She answered, "he, who could."
With golden key Wealth thought
  To pass--but 'twould not do:
While Wit a diamond brought,
  Which cut his bright way through.
So here's to her, who long
  Hath waked the poet's sigh,
The girl, who gave to song
  What gold could never buy.

The love that seeks a home
  Where wealth or grandeur shines,
Is like the gloomy gnome,
  That dwells in dark gold mines.
But oh! the poet's love
  Can boast a brighter sphere;
Its native home's above,
  Tho' woman keeps it here.
Then drink to her, who long
  Hath waked the poet's sigh,
The girl, who gave to song
  What gold could never buy.






OH! BLAME NOT THE BARD.[1]


Oh! blame not the bard, if he fly to the bowers,
  Where Pleasure lies, carelessly smiling at Fame;
He was born for much more, and in happier hours
  His soul might have burned with a holier flame.
The string, that now languishes loose o'er the lyre,
  Might have bent a proud bow to the warrior's dart;[2]
And the lip, which now breathes but the song of desire,
  Might have poured the full tide of a patriot's heart.

But alas for his country!--her pride is gone by,
  And that spirit is broken, which never would bend;
O'er the ruin her children in secret must sigh,
  For 'tis treason to love her, and death to defend.
Unprized are her sons, till they've learned to betray;
  Undistinguished they live, if they shame not their sires;
And the torch, that would light them thro' dignity's way,
  Must be caught from the pile, where their country expires.

Then blame not the bard, if in pleasure's soft dream,
  He should try to forget, what he never can heal:
Oh! give but a hope--let a vista but gleam
  Thro' the gloom of his country, and mark how he'll feel!
That instant, his heart at her shrine would lay down
  Every passion it nurst, every bliss it adored;
While the myrtle, now idly entwined with his crown,
  Like the wreath of Harmodius, should cover his sword.

But tho' glory be gone, and tho' hope fade away,
  Thy name, loved Erin, shall live in his songs;
Not even in the hour, when his heart is most gay,
  Will he lose the remembrance of thee and thy wrongs.
The stranger shall hear thy lament on his plains;
  The sigh of thy harp shall be sent o'er the deep,
Till thy masters themselves, as they rivet thy chains,
  Shall pause at the song of their captive, and weep!


[1] We may suppose this apology to have been uttered by one of those
wandering bards, whom Spenser so severely, and perhaps, truly, describes
in his State of Ireland, and whose poems, he tells us, "were sprinkled
with some pretty flowers of their natural device, which have good grace
and comeliness unto them, the which it is great pity to see abused to the
gracing of wickedness and vice, which, with good usage, would serve to
adorn and beautify virtue."

[2] It is conjectured by Wormius, that the name of Ireland is derived from
Yr, the Runic for a _bow_ in the use of which weapon the Irish were once
very expert. This derivation is certainly more creditable to us than the
following: "So that Ireland, called the land of _Ire_, from the constant
broils therein for 400 years, was now become the land of concord."
_Lloyd's "State Worthies_," art. _The Lord Grandison_.






WHILE GAZING ON THE MOON'S LIGHT.


While gazing on the moon's light,
  A moment from her smile I turned,
To look at orbs, that, more bright,
  In lone and distant glory burned.
        But _too_ far
        Each proud star,
  For me to feel its warming flame;
        Much more dear
        That mild sphere.
  Which near our planet smiling came;
Thus, Mary, be but thou my own;
  While brighter eyes unheeded play,
I'll love those moonlight looks alone,
  That bless my home and guide my way.

The day had sunk in dim showers,
  But midnight now, with lustre meet.
Illumined all the pale flowers,
  Like hope upon a mourner's cheek.
        I said (while
        The moon's smile
  Played o'er a stream, in dimpling bliss,)
        "The moon looks
        "On many brooks,
  "The brook can see no moon but this;"[1]
And thus, I thought, our fortunes run,
  For many a lover looks to thee,
While oh! I feel there is but _one_,
  _One_ Mary in the world for me.


[1] This image was suggested by the following thought, which occurs
somewhere In Sir William Jones's works: "The moon looks upon many night-
flowers, the night flower sees but one moon."






ILL OMENS.


When daylight was yet sleeping under the billow,
  And stars in the heavens still lingering shone.
Young Kitty, all blushing, rose up from her pillow,
  The last time she e'er was to press it alone.
For the youth! whom she treasured her heart and her soul in,
  Had promised to link the last tie before noon;
And when once the young heart of a maiden is stolen
  The maiden herself will steal after it soon.

As she looked in the glass, which a woman ne'er misses.
  Nor ever wants time for a sly glance or two,
A butterfly,[1] fresh from the night-flower's kisses.
  Flew over the mirror, and shaded her view.
Enraged with the insect for hiding her graces,
  She brushed him--he fell, alas; never to rise:
"Ah! such," said the girl, "is the pride of our faces,
  "For which the soul's innocence too often dies."

While she stole thro' the garden, where heart's-ease was growing,
  She culled some, and kist off its night-fallen dew;
And a rose, further on, looked so tempting and glowing,
  That, spite of her haste, she must gather it too:
But while o'er the roses too carelessly leaning,
  Her zone flew in two, and the
    heart's-ease was lost:
 "Ah! this means," said the girl
   (and she sighed at its meaning),
  "That love is scarce worth the
   repose it will cost!"


[1] An emblem of the soul.






BEFORE THE BATTLE.


By the hope within us springing,
  Herald of to-morrow's strife;
By that sun, whose light is bringing
  Chains or freedom, death or life--
  Oh! remember life can be
No charm for him, who lives not free!
  Like the day-star in the wave,
  Sinks a hero in his grave,
Midst the dew-fall of a nation's tears.

  Happy is he o'er whose decline
  The smiles of home may soothing shine
And light him down the steep of years:--
  But oh, how blest they sink to rest,
  Who close their eyes on victory's breast!

O'er his watch-fire's fading embers
  Now the foeman's cheek turns white,
When his heart that field remembers,
  Where we tamed his tyrant might.
Never let him bind again
A chain; like that we broke from then.
  Hark! the horn of combat calls--
  Ere the golden evening falls,
May we pledge that horn in triumph round![1]
  Many a heart that now beats high,
  In slumber cold at night shall lie,
Nor waken even at victory's sound--
  But oh, how blest that hero's sleep,
  O'er whom a wondering world shall weep!


[1] "The Irish Corna was not entirely devoted to martial purposes. In the
heroic ages, our ancestors quaffed Meadh out of them, as the Danish
hunters do their beverage at this day."--_Walker_.






AFTER THE BATTLE.


Night closed around the conqueror's way,
  And lightnings showed the distant hill,
Where those who lost that dreadful day,
  Stood few and faint, but fearless still.
The soldier's hope, the patriot's zeal,
  For ever dimmed, for ever crost--
Oh! who shall say what heroes feel,
  When all but life and honor's lost?

The last sad hour of freedom's dream,
  And valor's task, moved slowly by,
While mute they watcht, till morning's beam
  Should rise and give them light to die.
There's yet a world, where souls are free,
  Where tyrants taint not nature's bliss;--
If death that world's bright opening be,
  Oh! who would live a slave in this?






'TIS SWEET TO THINK.


'Tis sweet to think, that, where'er we rove,
  We are sure to find something blissful and dear.
And that, when we're far from the lips we love,
  We've but to make love to the lips, we are near.
The heart, like a tendril, accustomed to cling,
  Let it grow where it will, can not flourish alone,
But will lean to the nearest and loveliest thing
  It can twine with itself and make closely its own.

Then oh! what pleasure, where'er we rove,
  To be sure to find something still that is dear,
And to know, when far from the lips we love,
  We've but to make love to the lips we are near.

'Twere a shame, when flowers around us rise.
  To make light of the rest, if the rose isn't there;
And the world's so rich in resplendent eyes,
  'Twere a pity to limit one's love to a pair.
Love's wing and the peacock's are nearly alike,
  They are both of them bright, but they're changeable too,
And, wherever a new beam of beauty can strike,
  It will tincture Love's plume with a different hue.
Then oh! what pleasure, where'er we rove,
  To be sure to find something still that is dear,
And to know, when far from the lips we love,
  We've but to make love to the lips we are near.






THE IRISH PEASANT TO HIS MISTRESS.[1]


Thro' grief and thro' danger thy smile hath cheered my way,
Till hope seemed to bud from each thorn that round me lay;
The darker our fortune, the brighter our pure love burned,
Till shame into glory, till fear into zeal was turned;
Yes, slave as I was, in thy arms my spirit felt free,
And blest even the sorrows that made me more dear to thee.

Thy rival was honored, while thou wert wronged and scorned,
Thy crown was of briers, while gold her brows adorned;
She wooed me to temples, while thou lay'st hid in caves,
Her friends were all masters, while thine, alas! were slaves;
Yet cold in the earth, at thy feet, I would rather be,
Than wed what I loved not, or turn one thought from thee.

They slander thee sorely, who say thy vows are frail--
Hadst thou been a false one, thy cheek had looked less pale.
They say, too, so long thou hast worn those lingering chains,
That deep in thy heart they have printed their servile stains--
Oh! foul is the slander,--no chain could that soul subdue--
Where shineth _thy_ spirit, there liberty shineth too![2]


[1] Meaning, allegorically, the ancient Church of Ireland.

[2] "Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty"--_St. Paul's
Corinthians_ ii., l7.






ON MUSIC.


When thro' life unblest we rove,
  Losing all that made life dear,
Should some notes we used to love,
  In days of boyhood, meet our ear,
Oh! how welcome breathes the strain!
  Wakening thoughts that long have slept;
Kindling former smiles again
  In faded eyes that long have wept.

Like the gale, that sighs along
  Beds of oriental flowers,
Is the grateful breath of song,
  That once was heard in happier hours;
Filled with balm, the gale sighs on,
  Tho' the flowers have sunk in death;
So, when pleasure's dream is gone,
  Its memory lives in Music's breath.

Music, oh how faint, how weak,
  Language fades before thy spell!
Why should Feeling ever speak,
  When thou canst breathe her soul so well?
Friendship's balmy words may feign,
  Love's are even more false than they;
Oh! 'tis only music's strain
  Can sweetly soothe, and not betray.






IT IS NOT THE TEAR AT THIS MOMENT SHED.[1]


It is not the tear at this moment shed,
  When the cold turf has just been laid o'er him,
That can tell how beloved was the friend that's fled,
  Or how deep in our hearts we deplore him.
'Tis the tear, thro' many a long day wept,
  'Tis life's whole path o'ershaded;
'Tis the one remembrance, fondly kept,
  When all lighter griefs have faded.

Thus his memory, like some holy light,
  Kept alive in our hearts, will improve them,
For worth shall look fairer, and truth more bright,
  When we think how we lived but to love them.
And, as fresher flowers the sod perfume
  Where buried saints are lying,
So our hearts shall borrow a sweetening bloom
  From the image he left there in dying!


[1] These lines were occasioned by the loss of a very near and
dear relative, who had died lately at Madeira.






THE ORIGIN OF THE HARP.


'Tis believed that this Harp, which I wake now for thee,
Was a Siren of old, who sung under the sea;
And who often, at eve, thro' the bright waters roved,
To meet, on the green shore, a youth whom she loved.

But she loved him in vain, for he left her to weep,
And in tears, all the night, her gold tresses to steep;
Till heaven looked with pity on true-love so warm,
And changed to this soft Harp the sea-maiden's form.

Still her bosom rose fair--still her cheeks smiled the same--
While her sea-beauties gracefully formed the light frame;
And her hair, as, let loose, o'er her white arm it fell,
Was changed to bright chords uttering melody's spell.

Hence it came, that this soft Harp so long hath been known
To mingle love's language with sorrow's sad tone;
Till _thou_ didst divide them, and teach the fond lay
To speak love when I'm near thee, and grief when away.






LOVE'S YOUNG DREAM.


Oh! the days are gone, when Beauty bright
    My heart's chain wove;
When my dream of life, from morn till night,
    Was love, still love.
    New hope may bloom,
    And days may come,

  Of milder, calmer beam,
But there's nothing half so sweet in life
  As love's young dream;
No, there's nothing half so sweet in life
  As love's young dream.

Tho' the bard to purer fame may soar,
      When wild youth's past;
Tho' he win the wise, who frowned before,
      To smile at last;
      He'll never meet
      A joy so sweet,
  In all his noon of fame,
As when first he sung to woman's ear
  His soul-felt flame,
And, at every close, she blushed to hear
  The one lov'd name.

No,--that hallowed form is ne'er forgot
      Which first love traced;
Still it lingering haunts the greenest spot
      On memory's waste.
      'Twas odor fled
      As soon as shed;
  'Twas morning's winged dream;
'Twas a light, that ne'er can shine again
  On life's dull stream:
Oh! 'twas light that ne'er can shine again
  On life's dull stream.






THE PRINCE'S DAY.[1]


Tho' dark are our sorrows, to-day we'll forget them,
  And smile thro' our tears, like a sunbeam in showers:
There never were hearts, if our rulers would let them,
  More formed to be grateful and blest than ours.
      But just when the chain
    Has ceased to pain,
  And hope has enwreathed it round with flowers,
      There comes a new link
      Our spirits to sink--
Oh! the joy that we taste, like the light of the poles,
  Is a flash amid darkness, too brilliant to stay;
But, tho' 'twere the last little spark in our souls,
  We must light it up now, on our Prince's Day.

Contempt on the minion, who calls you disloyal!
  Tho' fierce to your foe, to your friends you are true;
And the tribute most high to a head that is royal,
  Is love from a heart that loves liberty too.
      While cowards, who blight
      Your fame, your right,
Would shrink from the blaze of the battle array,
      The Standard of Green
      In front would be seen,--
Oh, my life on your faith! were you summoned this minute,
  You'd cast every bitter remembrance away,
And show what the arm of old Erin has in it,
  When roused by the foe, on her Prince's Day.

He loves the Green Isle, and his love is recorded
  In hearts, which have suffered too much to forget;
And hope shall be crowned, and attachment rewarded,
  And Erin's gay jubilee shine out yet.
      The gem may be broke
      By many a stroke,
  But nothing can cloud its native ray:
      Each fragment will cast
      A light, to the last,--
And thus, Erin, my country tho' broken thou art,
  There's a lustre within thee that ne'er will decay;
A spirit, which beams thro' each suffering part,
  And now smiles at all pain on the Prince's Day.


[1] This song was written for a _fête_ in honor of the Prince of
Wales's Birthday, given by my friend, Major Bryan, at his seat in the
county of Kilkenny.






WEEP ON, WEEP ON.


Weep on, weep on, your hour is past;
  Your dreams of pride are o'er;
The fatal chain is round you cast,
  And you are men no more.
In vain the hero's heart hath bled;
  The sage's tongue hath warned in vain;--
Oh, Freedom! once thy flame hath fled,
  It never lights again.

Weep on--perhaps in after days,
  They'll learn to love your name;
When many a deed may wake in praise
  That long hath slept in blame.
And when they tread the ruined isle,
  Where rest, at length, the lord and slave,
They'll wondering ask, how hands so vile
  Could conquer hearts so brave?

"'Twas fate," they'll say, "a wayward fate
  "Your web of discord wove;
"And while your tyrants joined in hate,
  "You never joined in love.
"But hearts fell off, that ought to twine,
  "And man profaned what God had given;
"Till some were heard to curse the shrine,
  "Where others knelt to heaven!"






LESBIA HATH A BEAMING EYE.


Lesbia hath a beaming eye,
  But no one knows for whom it beameth;
Right and left its arrows fly,
  But what they aim at no one dreameth.
Sweeter 'tis to gaze upon
  My Nora's lid that seldom rises;
Few its looks, but every one,
  Like unexpected light, surprises!
    Oh, My Nora Creina, dear,
  My gentle, bashful Nora Creina,
      Beauty lies
      In many eyes,
  But love in yours, My Nora Creina.

Lesbia wears a robe of gold,
  But all so close the nymph hath laced it,
Not a charm of beauty's mould
  Presumes to stay where nature placed it.
Oh! my Nora's gown for me,
  That floats as wild as mountain breezes,
Leaving every beauty free
  To sink or swell as Heaven pleases.
    Yes, my Nora Creina, dear.
  My simple, graceful Nora Creina,
      Nature's dress
      Is loveliness--
  The dress _you_ wear, my Nora Creina.

Lesbia hath a wit refined,
  But, when its points are gleaming round us,
Who can tell if they're designed
  To dazzle merely, or to wound us?
Pillowed on my Nora's heart,
  In safer slumber Love reposes--
Bed of peace! whose roughest part
  Is but the crumpling of the roses.
    Oh! my Nora Creina dear,
  My mild, my artless Nora Creina,
      Wit, though bright,
      Hath no such light,
  As warms your eyes, my Nora Creina.






I SAW THY FORM IN YOUTHFUL PRIME.


I saw thy form in youthful prime,
  Nor thought that pale decay
Would steal before the steps of Time,
  And waste its bloom away, Mary!

Yet still thy features wore that light,
  Which fleets not with the breath;
And life ne'er looked more truly bright
  Than in thy smile of death, Mary!

As streams that run o'er golden mines,
  Yet humbly, calmly glide,
Nor seem to know the wealth that shines
  Within their gentle tide, Mary!
So veiled beneath the simplest guise,
  Thy radiant genius shone,
And that, which charmed all other eyes,
  Seemed worthless in thy own, Mary!

If souls could always dwell above,
  Thou ne'er hadst left that sphere;
Or could we keep the souls we love,
  We ne'er had lost thee here, Mary!
Though many a gifted mind we meet,
  Though fairest forms we see,
To live with them is far less sweet,
  Than to remember thee, Mary!






BY THAT LAKE, WHOSE GLOOMY SHORE.[1]


By that Lake, whose gloomy shore
Sky-lark never warbles o'er,[2]
Where the cliff hangs high and steep,
Young St. Kevin stole to sleep.
"Here, at least," he calmly said,
"Woman ne'er shall find my bed."
Ah! the good Saint little knew
What that wily sex can do."

'Twas from Kathleen's eyes he flew,--
Eyes of most unholy blue!
She had loved him well and long
Wished him hers, nor thought it wrong.
Wheresoe'er the Saint would fly,
Still he heard her light foot nigh;
East or west, where'er he turned,
Still her eyes before him burned.

On the bold cliff's bosom cast,
Tranquil now, he sleeps at last;
Dreams of heaven, nor thinks that e'er
Woman's smile can haunt him there.
But nor earth nor heaven is free,
From her power, if fond she be:
Even now, while calm he sleeps,
Kathleen o'er him leans and weeps.

Fearless she had tracked his feet
To this rocky, wild retreat;
And when morning met his view,
Her mild glances met it, too.
Ah, your Saints have cruel hearts!
Sternly from his bed he starts,
And with rude, repulsive shock,
Hurls her from the beetling rock.

Glendalough, thy gloomy wave
Soon was gentle Kathleen's grave!
Soon the Saint (yet ah! too late,)
Felt her love, and mourned her fate.
When he said, "Heaven rest her soul!"
Round the Lake light music stole;
And her ghost was seen to glide,
Smiling o'er the fatal tide.


[1] This ballad is founded upon one of the many stories related of St.
Kevin, whose bed in the rock is to be seen at Glendalough, a most gloomy
and romantic spot in the county of Wicklow.

[2] There are many other curious traditions concerning this Lake, which
may be found in Giraldus, Colgan, etc.






SHE IS FAR FROM THE LAND.


She is far from the land where her young hero sleeps,
  And lovers are round her, sighing:
But coldly she turns from their gaze, and weeps,
  For her heart in his grave is lying.

She sings the wild song of her dear native plains,
  Every note which he loved awaking;--
Ah! little they think who delight in her strains,
  How the heart of the Minstrel is breaking.

He had lived for his love, for his country he died,
  They were all that to life had entwined him;
Nor soon shall the tears of his country be dried,
  Nor long will his love stay behind him.

Oh! make her a grave where the sunbeams rest,
  When they promise a glorious morrow;
They'll shine o'er her sleep, like a smile from the West,
  From her own loved island of sorrow.






NAY, TELL ME NOT, DEAR.


Nay, tell me not, dear, that the goblet drowns
  One charm of feeling, one fond regret;
Believe me, a few of thy angry frowns
  Are all I've sunk in its bright wave yet.
    Ne'er hath a beam
    Been lost in the stream
  That ever was shed from thy form or soul;
    The spell of those eyes,
    The balm of thy sighs,
  Still float on the surface, and hallow my bowl,
Then fancy not, dearest, that wine can steal
  One blissful dream of the heart from me;
Like founts that awaken the pilgrim's zeal,
  The bowl but brightens my love for thee.

They tell us that love in his fairy bower,
  Had two blush-roses of birth divine;
He sprinkled the one with a rainbow shower,
  But bathed the other with mantling wine.
    Soon did the buds,
    That drank of the floods
  Distilled by the rainbow, decline and fade;
    While those which the tide
    Of ruby had dyed
  All blushed into beauty, like thee, sweet maid!
Then fancy not, dearest, that wine can steal
  One blissful dream of the heart from me;
Like founts, that awaken the pilgrim's zeal,
  The bowl but brightens my love for thee.






AVENGING AND BRIGHT.


Avenging and bright fall the swift sword of Erin[1]
  On him who the brave sons of Usna betrayed!
For every fond eye he hath wakened a tear in,
  A drop from his heart-wounds shall weep o'er her blade.

By the red cloud that hung over Conor's dark dwelling,[2]
   When Ulad's[3] three champions lay sleeping in gore--
By the billows of war, which so often, high swelling,
  Have wafted these heroes to victory's shore--

We swear to revenge them!--no joy shall be tasted,
  The harp shall be silent, the maiden unwed,
Our halls shall be mute and our fields shall lie wasted,
  Till vengeance is wreaked on the murderer's head.

Yes, monarch! tho' sweet are our home recollections,
  Tho' sweet are the tears that from tenderness fall;
Tho' sweet are our friendships, our hopes, our affections,
  Revenge on a tyrant is sweetest of all!


[1] The words of this song were suggested by the very ancient Irish story
called "Deirdri, or the Lamentable Fate of the Sons of Usnach." The
treachery of Conor, King of Ulster, in putting to death the three sons of
Usna, was the cause of a desolating war against Ulster, which terminated
in the destruction of Eman.

[2] "Oh Nasi! view that cloud that I here see in the sky! I see over
Eman-green a chilling cloud of blood-tinged red."--_Deirdri's Song_.

[3] Ulster.






WHAT THE BEE IS TO THE FLOWERET.


HE.

What the bee is to the floweret,
  When he looks for honey-dew,
Thro' the leaves that close embower it,
  That, my love, I'll be to you.

SHE.

What the bank, with verdure glowing,
  Is to waves that wander near,
Whispering kisses, while they're going,
  That I'll be to you, my dear.

SHE.

But they say, the bee's a rover,
  Who will fly, when sweets are gone;
And, when once the kiss is over,
  Faithless brooks will wander on.

HE.

Nay, if flowers _will_ lose their looks,
  If sunny banks _will_ wear away,
Tis but right that bees and brooks
 Should sip and kiss them while they may.






LOVE AND THE NOVICE.


"Here we dwell, in holiest bowers,
  "Where angels of light o'er our orisons bend;
"Where sighs of devotion and breathings of flowers
  "To heaven in mingled odor ascend.
    "Do not disturb our calm, oh Love!
    "So like is thy form to the cherubs above,
"It well might deceive such hearts as ours."

Love stood near the Novice and listened,
  And Love is no novice in taking a hint;
His laughing blue eyes soon with piety glistened;
  His rosy wing turned to heaven's own tint.
    "Who would have thought," the urchin cries,
    "That Love could so well, so gravely disguise
"His wandering wings and wounding eyes?"

Love now warms thee, waking and sleeping,
  Young Novice, to him all thy orisons rise.
_He_ tinges the heavenly fount with his weeping,
  _He_ brightens the censer's flame with his sighs.
    Love is the Saint enshrined in thy breast,
    And angels themselves would admit such a guest,
If he came to them clothed in Piety's vest.






THIS LIFE IS ALL CHECKERED WITH PLEASURES AND WOES


This life is all checkered with pleasures and woes,
  That chase one another like waves of the deep,--
Each brightly or darkly, as onward it flows,
  Reflecting our eyes, as they sparkle or weep.
So closely our whims on our miseries tread,
  That the laugh is awaked ere the tear can be dried;
And, as fast as the rain-drop of Pity is shed.
   The goose-plumage of Folly can turn it aside.
But pledge me the cup--if existence would cloy,
   With hearts ever happy, and heads ever wise,
Be ours the light Sorrow, half-sister to Joy,
   And the light, brilliant Folly that flashes and dies.
When Hylas was sent with his urn to the fount,
   Thro' fields full of light, and with heart full of play,
Light rambled the boy, over meadow and mount,
   And neglected his task for the flowers on the way.
Thus many, like me, who in youth should have tasted
   The fountain that runs by Philosophy's shrine,
Their time with the flowers on the margin have wasted,
   And left their light urns all as empty as mine.
But pledge me the goblet;--while Idleness weaves
   These flowerets together, should Wisdom but see
One bright drop or two that has fallen on the leaves
   From her fountain divine, 'tis sufficient for me.






OH THE SHAMROCK.


   Thro' Erin's Isle,
   To sport awhile,
As Love and Valor wandered,
   With Wit, the sprite,
   Whose quiver bright
A thousand arrows squandered.
   Where'er they pass,
   A triple grass[1]
Shoots up, with dew-drops streaming.
   As softly green
   As emeralds seen
Thro' purest crystal gleaming.
Oh the Shamrock, the green, immortal Shamrock!
   Chosen leaf.
   Of Bard and Chief,
Old Erin's native Shamrock!

   Says Valor, "See,
   "They spring for me,
"Those leafy gems of morning!"--
  Says Love, "No, no,
  "For _me_ they grow,
"My fragrant path adorning."
   But Wit perceives
   The triple leaves,
And cries, "Oh! do not sever
   "A type, that blends
   "Three godlike friends,
"Love, Valor, Wit, for ever!"
Oh the Shamrock, the green, immortal Shamrock!
   Chosen leaf
   Of Bard and Chief,
Old Erin's native Shamrock!

   So firmly fond
   May last the bond,
They wove that morn together,
   And ne'er may fall
   One drop of gall
On Wit's celestial feather.
   May Love, as twine
   His flowers divine.
Of thorny falsehood weed 'em;
   May Valor ne'er
   His standard rear
Against the cause of Freedom!
Oh the Shamrock, the green, immortal Shamrock!
   Chosen leaf
   Of Bard and Chief,
Old Erin's native Shamrock!


[1] It is said that St. Patrick, when preaching the Trinity to the Pagan
Irish, used to illustrate his subject by reference to that species of
trefoil called in Ireland by the name of the Shamrock; and hence, perhaps,
the Island of Saints adopted this plant as her national emblem. Hope,
among the ancients, was sometimes represented as a beautiful child,
standing upon tiptoes, and a trefoil or three-colored grass in her hand.






AT THE MID HOUR OF NIGHT


At the mid hour of night, when stars are weeping, I fly
To the lone vale we loved, when life shone warm in thine eye;
And I think oft, if spirits can steal from the regions of air,
To revisit past scenes of delight, thou wilt come to me there,
And tell me our love is remembered, even in the sky.

Then I sing the wild song 'twas once such pleasure to hear
When our voices commingling breathed, like one, on the ear;
And, as Echo far off thro' the vale my sad orison rolls,
I think, oh my love! 'tis thy voice from the Kingdom of Souls,[1]
Faintly answering still the notes that once were so dear.


[1] "There are countries." says Montaigne, "where they believe the souls
of the happy live in all manner of liberty, in delightful fields; and
there it is those souls, repeating the words we utter, which we call
Echo."






ONE BUMPER AT PARTING.


One bumper at parting!--tho' many
  Have circled the board since we met,
The fullest, the saddest of any
  Remains to be crowned by us yet.
The sweetness that pleasure hath in it,
  Is always so slow to come forth,
That seldom, alas, till the minute
  It dies, do we know half its worth.
But come,--may our life's happy measure
  Be all of such moments made up;
They're born on the bosom of Pleasure,
  They die midst the tears of the cup.

'Tis onward we journey, how pleasant
  To pause and inhabit awhile
Those few sunny spots, like the present,
  That mid the dull wilderness smile!
But Time, like a pitiless master,
  Cries "Onward!" and spurs the gay hours--
Ah, never doth Time travel faster,
  Than when his way lies among flowers.
But come--may our life's happy measure
  Be all of such moments made up;
They're born on the bosom of Pleasure,
  They die midst the tears of the cup.

We saw how the sun looked in sinking,
  The waters beneath him how bright;
And now, let our farewell of drinking
  Resemble that farewell of light.
You saw how he finished, by darting
  His beam o'er a deep billow's brim--
So, fill up, let's shine at our parting,
  In full liquid glory, like him.
And oh! may our life's happy measure
  Of moments like this be made up,
'Twas born on the bosom of Pleasure,
  It dies mid the tears of the cup.






'TIS THE LAST ROSE OF SUMMER.


'Tis the last rose of summer
  Left blooming alone;
All her lovely companions
  Are faded and gone;
No flower of her kindred,
  No rose-bud is nigh,
To reflect back her blushes,
  Or give sigh for sigh.

I'll not leave thee, thou lone one!
  To pine on the stem;
Since the lovely are sleeping.
  Go, sleep thou with them.
Thus kindly I scatter
  Thy leaves o'er the bed,
Where thy mates of the garden
  Lie scentless and dead.

So soon may _I_ follow,
  When friendships decay,
And from Love's shining circle
  The gems drop away.
When true hearts lie withered,
  And fond ones are flown,
Oh! who would inhabit
  This bleak world alone?






THE YOUNG MAY MOON.


The young May moon is beaming, love,
The glow-worm's lamp is gleaming, love,
   How sweet to rove
   Through Morna's grove,
When the drowsy world is dreaming, love!
Then awake!--the heavens look bright, my dear,
'Tis never too late for delight, my dear,
   And the best of all ways
   To lengthen our days,
Is to steal a few hours from the night, my dear!

Now all the world is sleeping, love,
But the Sage, his star-watch keeping, love,
   And I, whose star,
   More glorious far,
Is the eye from that casement peeping, love.
Then awake!--till rise of sun, my dear,
The Sage's glass we'll shun, my dear,
   Or, in watching the flight
   Of bodies of light,
He might happen to take thee for one, my dear.






THE MINSTREL-BOY.


The Minstrel-Boy to the war is gone,
  In the ranks of death you'll find him;
His father's sword he has girded on.
  And his wild harp slung behind him.
"Land of song!" said the warrior-bard,
  "Tho' all the world betrays thee,
"_One_ sword, at least, thy rights shall guard,
  "_One_ faithful harp shall praise thee!"

The Minstrel fell!--but the foeman's chain
  Could not bring his proud soul under;
The harp he loved ne'er spoke again,
  For he tore its chords asunder;
And said, "No chains shall sully thee,
  "Thou soul of love and bravery!
"Thy songs were made for the pure and free,
  "They shall never sound in slavery."






THE SONG OF O'RUARK,

PRINCE OF BREFFNI.[1]


The valley lay smiling before me,
   Where lately I left her behind;
Yet I trembled, and something hung o'er me,
  That saddened the joy of my mind.
I looked for the lamp which, she told me,
  Should shine, when her Pilgrim returned;
But, tho' darkness began to infold me,
  No lamp from the battlements burned!

I flew to her chamber--'twas lonely,
  As if the loved tenant lay dead;--
Ah, would it were death, and death only!
  But no, the young false one had fled.
And there hung the lute that could soften
  My very worst pains into bliss;
While the hand, that had waked it so often,
  Now throbbed to a proud rival's kiss.

There _was_ a time, falsest of women,
  When Breffni's good sword would have sought
That man, thro' a million of foe-men,
  Who dared but to wrong thee _in thought_!
While now--oh degenerate daughter
  Of Erin, how fallen is thy fame!
And thro' ages of bondage and slaughter,
  Our country shall bleed for thy shame.

Already, the curse is upon her,
  And strangers her valleys profane;
They come to divide, to dishonor,
  And tyrants they long will remain.
But onward!--the green banner rearing,
  Go, flesh every sword to the hilt;
On _our_ side is Virtue and Erin,
  On _theirs_ is the Saxon and Guilt.


[1] These stanzas are founded upon an event of most melancholy importance
to Ireland; if, as we are told by our Irish historians, it gave England
the first opportunity of profiting by our divisions and subduing us. The
following are the circumstances, as related by O'Halloran:--"The king of
Leinster had long conceived a violent affection for Dearbhorgil, daughter
to the king of Meath, and though she had been for some time married to
O'Ruark, prince of Breffni, yet it could not restrain his passion. They
carried on a private correspondence, and she informed him that O'Ruark,
intended soon to go on a pilgrimage (an act of piety frequent in those
days), and conjured him to embrace that opportunity of conveying her from
a husband she detested to a lover she adored. MacMurchad too punctually
obeyed the summons, and had the lady conveyed to his capital of Ferns."--
The monarch Roderick espoused the cause of O'Ruark, while MacMurchad fled
to England, and obtained the assistance of Henry II.

"Such," adds Giraldus Cambrensis (as I find him in an old translation)
"is the variable and fickle nature of woman, by whom all mischief in the
world (for the most part) do happen and come, as may appear by Marcus
Antonius, and by the destruction of Troy."






OH! HAD WE SOME BRIGHT LITTLE ISLE OF OUR OWN.


Oh! had we some bright little isle of our own,
In a blue summer ocean, far off and alone,
Where a leaf never dies in the still blooming bowers,
And the bee banquets on thro' a whole year of flowers;
  Where the sun loves to pause
    With so fond a delay,
  That the night only draws
    A thin veil o'er the day;
Where simply to feel that we breathe, that we live,
Is worth the best joy that life elsewhere can give.

There, with souls ever ardent and pure as the clime,
We should love, as they loved in the first golden time;
The glow of the sunshine, the balm of the air,
Would steal to our hearts, and make all summer there.
  With affection as free
    From decline as the bowers,
  And, with hope, like the bee,
    Living always on flowers,
Our life should resemble a long day of light,
And our death come on, holy and calm as the night.






FAREWELL!--BUT WHENEVER YOU WELCOME THE HOUR.


Farewell!--but whenever you welcome the hour.
That awakens the night-song of mirth in your bower,
Then think of the friend who once welcomed it too,
And forgot his own griefs to be happy with you.
His griefs may return, not a hope may remain
Of the few that have brightened his pathway of pain.
But he ne'er will forget the short vision, that threw
Its enchantment around him, while lingering with you.
And still on that evening, when pleasure fills up
To the highest top sparkle each heart and each cup,
Where'er my path lies, be it gloomy or bright,
My soul, happy friends, shall be with you that night;


Shall join in your revels, your sports, and your wiles,
And return to me, beaming all o'er with your smiles--
Too blest, if it tells me that, mid the gay cheer
Some kind voice had murmured, "I wish he were here!"

Let Fate do her worst, there are relics of joy,
Bright dreams of the past, which she cannot destroy;
Which come in the night-time of sorrow and care,
And bring back the features that joy used to wear.
Long, long be my heart with such memories filled!
Like the vase, in which roses have once been distilled--
You may break, you may shatter the vase, if you will,
But the scent of the roses will hang round it still.






OH! DOUBT ME NOT.


    Oh! doubt me not--the season
      Is o'er, when Folly made me rove,
    And now the vestal, Reason,
      Shall watch the fire awaked by love.
Altho' this heart was early blown,
  And fairest hands disturbed the tree,
They only shook some blossoms down,
  Its fruit has all been kept for thee.
    Then doubt me not--the season
      Is o'er, when Folly made me rove,
    And now the vestal, Reason,
      Shall watch the fire awaked by Love.

    And tho' my lute no longer
      May sing of Passion's ardent spell,
    Yet, trust me, all the stronger
      I feel the bliss I do not tell.
The bee thro' many a garden roves,
  And hums his lay of courtship o'er,
But when he finds the flower he loves,
  He settles there, and hums no more.
    Then doubt me not--the season
      Is o'er, when Folly kept me free,
    And now the vestal, Reason,
      Shall guard the flame awaked by thee.






YOU REMEMBER ELLEN.


You remember Ellen, our hamlet's pride,
  How meekly she blest her humble lot,
When the stranger, William, had made her his bride,
  And love was the light of their lowly cot.
Together they toiled through winds and rains,
  Till William, at length, in sadness said,
"We must seek our fortune on other plains;"--
  Then, sighing, she left her lowly shed.

They roamed a long and a weary way,
  Nor much was the maiden's heart at ease,
When now, at close of one stormy day,
  They see a proud castle among the trees.
"To-night," said the youth, "we'll shelter there;
  "The wind blows cold, the hour is late:"
So he blew the horn with a chieftain's air,
  And the Porter bowed, as they past the gate.

"Now, welcome, Lady," exclaimed the youth,--
  "This castle is thine, and these dark woods all!"
She believed him crazed, but his words were truth,
  For Ellen is Lady of Rosna Hall!
And dearly the Lord of Rosna loves
  What William the stranger wooed and wed;
And the light of bliss, in these lordly groves,
  Shines pure as it did in the lowly shed.






I'D MOURN THE HOPES.


I'd mourn the hopes that leave me,
  If thy smiles had left me too;
I'd weep when friends deceive me,
  If thou wert, like them, untrue.
But while I've thee before me,
  With heart so warm and eyes so bright,
No clouds can linger o'er me,
  That smile turns them all to light.

'Tis not in fate to harm me,
  While fate leaves thy love to me;
'Tis not in joy to charm me,
  Unless joy be shared with thee.
One minute's dream about thee
  Were worth a long, an endless year
Of waking bliss without thee,
  My own love, my only dear!

And tho' the hope be gone, love,
  That long sparkled o'er our way,
Oh! we shall journey on, love,
  More safely, without its ray.
Far better lights shall win me
  Along the path I've yet to roam:--
The mind that burns within me,
  And pure smiles from thee at home.

Thus, when the lamp that lighted
  The traveller at first goes out,
He feels awhile benighted.
  And looks round in fear and doubt.
But soon, the prospect clearing,
  By cloudless starlight on he treads,
And thinks no lamp so cheering
  As that light which Heaven sheds.






COME O'ER THE SEA.


    Come o'er the sea,
    Maiden, with me,
  Mine thro' sunshine, storm, and snows;
    Seasons may roll,
    But the true soul
  Burns the same, where'er it goes.
Let fate frown on, so we love and part not;
'Tis life where _thou_ art, 'tis death where thou art not.
    Then come o'er the sea,
    Maiden, with me,
  Come wherever the wild wind blows;
    Seasons may roll,
    But the true soul
  Burns the same, where'er it goes.

    Was not the sea
    Made for the Free,
  Land for courts and chains alone?
    Here we are slaves,
    But, on the waves,
  Love and Liberty's all our own.
No eye to watch, and no tongue to wound us,
All earth forgot, and all heaven around us--
    Then come o'er the sea,
    Maiden, with me,
  Mine thro' sunshine, storm, and snows;
    Seasons may roll,
    But the true soul
  Burns the same, where'er it goes.






HAS SORROW THY YOUNG DAYS SHADED.


Has sorrow thy young days shaded,
  As clouds o'er the morning fleet?
Too fast have those young days faded,
  That, even in sorrow, were sweet?
Does Time with his cold wing wither
  Each feeling that once was dear?--
Then, child of misfortune, come hither,
  I'll weep with thee, tear for tear.

Has love to that soul, so tender,
  Been like our Lagenian mine,[1]
Where sparkles of golden splendor
  All over the surface shine--
But, if in pursuit we go deeper,
  Allured by the gleam that shone,
Ah! false as the dream of the sleeper,
  Like Love, the bright ore is gone.

Has Hope, like the bird in the story,[2]
  That flitted from tree to tree
With the talisman's glittering glory--
  Has Hope been that bird to thee?
On branch after branch alighting,
  The gem did she still display,
And, when nearest and most inviting.
  Then waft the fair gem away?

If thus the young hours have fleeted,
  When sorrow itself looked bright;
If thus the fair hope hath cheated,
  That led thee along so light;
If thus the cold world now wither
  Each feeling that once was dear:--
Come, child of misfortune, come hither,
  I'll weep with thee, tear for tear.


[1] Our Wicklow Gold Mines, to which this verse alludes, deserve, I fear,
but too well the character here given of them.

[2] "The bird, having got its prize, settled not far off, with the
talisman in his mouth. The prince drew near it, hoping it would drop it:
but as he approached, the bird took wing, and settled again,"
etc.--"_Arabian Nights_."






NO, NOT MORE WELCOME.


No, not more welcome the fairy numbers
  Of music fall on the sleeper's ear,
When half-awaking from fearful slumbers,
  He thinks the full choir of heaven is near,--
Than came that voice, when, all forsaken.
  This heart long had sleeping lain,
Nor thought its cold pulse would ever waken
  To such benign, blessed sounds again.

Sweet voice of comfort! 'twas like the stealing
  Of summer wind thro' some wreathed shell--
Each secret winding, each inmost feeling
  Of my soul echoed to its spell.
'Twas whispered balm--'twas sunshine spoken!--
  I'd live years of grief and pain
To have my long sleep of sorrow broken
  By such benign, blessed sounds again.






WHEN FIRST I MET THEE.


When first I met thee, warm and young,
  There shone such truth about thee.
And on thy lip such promise hung,
  I did not dare to doubt thee.
I saw the change, yet still relied,
  Still clung with hope the fonder,
And thought, tho' false to all beside,
  From me thou couldst not wander.
    But go, deceiver! go,
      The heart, whose hopes could make it
    Trust one so false, so low,
      Deserves that thou shouldst break it.

When every tongue thy follies named,
  I fled the unwelcome story;
Or found, in even the faults they blamed,
  Some gleams of future glory.
_I_ still was true, when nearer friends
  Conspired to wrong, to slight thee;
The heart that now thy falsehood rends,
  Would then have bled to right thee,
    But go, deceiver! go,--
      Some day, perhaps, thou'lt waken
    From pleasure's dream, to know
      The grief of hearts forsaken.

Even now, tho' youth its bloom has shed,
  No lights of age adorn thee:
The few, who loved thee once, have fled,
  And they who flatter scorn thee.
Thy midnight cup is pledged to slaves,
  No genial ties enwreath it;
The smiling there, like light on graves,
  Has rank cold hearts beneath it.
    Go--go--tho' worlds were thine,
      I would not now surrender
    One taintless tear of mine
      For all thy guilty splendor!

And days may come, thou false one! yet,
  When even those ties shall sever;
When thou wilt call, with vain regret,
  On her thou'st lost for ever;
On her who, in thy fortune's fall,
  With smiles had still received thee,
And gladly died to prove thee all
  Her fancy first believed thee.
    Go--go--'tis vain to curse,
      'Tis weakness to upbraid thee;
    Hate cannot wish thee worse
      Than guilt and shame have made thee.






WHILE HISTORY'S MUSE.


While History's Muse the memorial was keeping
  Of all that the dark hand of Destiny weaves,
Beside her the Genius of Erin stood weeping,
  For hers was the story that blotted the leaves.
But oh! how the tear in her eyelids grew bright,
When, after whole pages of sorrow and shame,
    She saw History write,
    With a pencil of light
That illumed the whole volume, her Wellington's name.

"Hail, Star of my Isle!" said the Spirit, all sparkling
  With beams, such as break from her own dewy skies--
"Thro' ages of sorrow, deserted and darkling,
  "I've watched for some glory like thine to arise.
"For, tho' heroes I've numbered, unblest was their lot,
"And unhallowed they sleep in the crossways of Fame;--
    "But oh! there is not
    "One dishonoring blot
"On the wreath that encircles my Wellington's name.

"Yet still the last crown of thy toils is remaining,
  "The grandest, the purest, even _thou_ hast yet known;
"Tho' proud was thy task, other nations unchaining,
  "Far prouder to heal the deep wounds of thy own.
"At the foot of that throne, for whose weal thou hast stood,
"Go, plead for the land that first cradled thy fame,
    "And, bright o'er the flood
    "Of her tears and her blood,
"Let the rainbow of Hope be her Wellington's name!"






THE TIME I'VE LOST IN WOOING.


The time I've lost in wooing,
In watching and pursuing
  The light, that lies
  In woman's eyes,
Has been my heart's undoing.
Tho' Wisdom oft has sought me,
I scorned the lore she brought me,
  My only books
  Were woman's looks,
And folly's all they've taught me.

Her smile when Beauty granted,
I hung with gaze enchanted,
  Like him the Sprite,[1]
  Whom maids by night
Oft meet in glen that's haunted.
Like him, too, Beauty won me,
But while her eyes were on me,
  If once their ray
  Was turned away,
O! winds could not outrun me.

And are those follies going?
And is my proud heart growing
  Too cold or wise
  For brilliant eyes
Again to set it glowing?
No, vain, alas! the endeavor
From bonds so sweet to sever;
  Poor Wisdom's chance
  Against a glance
Is now as weak as ever.


[1] This alludes to a kind of Irish fairy, which is to be met with, they
say, in the fields at dusk. As long as you keep your eyes upon him, he is
fixed, and in your power;--but the moment you look away (and he is
ingenious in furnishing some inducement) he vanishes. I had thought that
this was the sprite which we call the Leprechaun; but a high authority
upon such subjects, Lady Morgan, (in a note upon her national and
interesting novel, O'Donnel), has given a very different account of that
goblin.






WHERE IS THE SLAVE.


Oh, where's the slave so lowly,
Condemned to chains unholy,
  Who, could he burst
  His bonds at first,
Would pine beneath them slowly?
What soul, whose wrongs degrade it,
Would wait till time decayed it,
  When thus its wing
  At once may spring
To the throne of Him who made it?

Farewell, Erin.--farewell, all,
Who live to weep our fall!

Less dear the laurel growing,
Alive, untouched and blowing,
  Than that, whose braid
  Is plucked to shade
The brows with victory glowing
We tread the land that bore us,
Her green flag glitters o'er us,
  The friends we've tried
  Are by our side,
And the foe we hate before us.

Farewell, Erin,--farewell, all,
Who live to weep our fall!






COME, REST IN THIS BOSOM.


Come, rest in this bosom, my own stricken deer,
Tho' the herd have fled from thee, thy home is still here;
Here still is the smile, that no cloud can o'ercast,
And a heart and a hand all thy own to the last.

Oh! what was love made for, if 'tis not the same
Thro' joy and thro' torment, thro' glory and shame?
I know not, I ask not, if guilt's in that heart,
I but know that I love thee, whatever thou art.

Thou hast called me thy Angel in moments of bliss,
And thy Angel I'll be, mid the horrors of this,--
Thro' the furnace, unshrinking, thy steps to pursue,
And shield thee, and save thee,--or perish there too!






'TIS GONE, AND FOR EVER.


'Tis gone, and for ever, the light we saw breaking,
  Like Heaven's first dawn o'er the sleep of the dead--
When Man, from the slumber of ages awaking,
  Looked upward, and blest the pure ray, ere it fled.
'Tis gone, and the gleams it has left of its burning
But deepen the long night of bondage and mourning,
That dark o'er the kingdoms of earth is returning,
  And darkest of all, hapless Erin, o'er thee.

For high was thy hope, when those glories were darting
  Around thee, thro' all the gross clouds of the world;
When Truth, from her fetters indignantly starting,
  At once, like a Sun-burst, her banner unfurled.[1]
Oh! never shall earth see a moment so splendid!
Then, then--had one Hymn of Deliverance blended
The tongues of all nations--how sweet had ascended
  The first note of Liberty, Erin, from thee!

But, shame on those tyrants, who envied the blessing!
  And shame on the light race, unworthy its good,
Who, at Death's reeking altar, like furies, caressing
  The young hope of Freedom, baptized it in blood.
Then vanished for ever that fair, sunny vision,
Which, spite of the slavish, the cold heart's derision,
Shall long be remembered, pure, bright, and elysian,
  As first it arose, my lost Erin, on thee.


[1] "The Sun-burst" was the fanciful name given by the ancient Irish to
the Royal Banner.






I SAW FROM THE BEACH.


I saw from the beach, when the morning was shining,
  A bark o'er the waters move gloriously on;
I came when the sun o'er that beach was declining,
  The bark was still there, but the waters were gone.

And such is the fate of our life's early promise,
  So passing the spring-tide of joy we have known;
Each wave, that we danced on at morning, ebbs from us,
  And leaves us, at eve, on the bleak shore alone.

Ne'er tell me of glories, serenely adorning
  The close of our day, the calm eve of our night;--
Give me back, give me back the wild freshness of Morning,
  Her clouds and her tears are worth Evening's best light.

Oh, who would not welcome that moment's returning,
  When passion first waked a new life thro' his frame,
And his soul, like the wood, that grows precious in burning,
  Gave out all its sweets to love's exquisite flame.






FILL THE BUMPER FAIR.


Fill the bumper fair!
  Every drop we sprinkle
O'er the brow of Care
  Smooths away a wrinkle.
Wit's electric flame
  Ne'er so swiftly passes,
As when thro' the frame
  It shoots from brimming glasses.
Fill the bumper fair!
  Every drop we sprinkle
O'er the brow of Care
  Smooths away a wrinkle.

Sages can, they say,
  Grasp the lightning's pinions,
And bring down its ray
  From the starred dominions:--
So we, Sages, sit,
  And, mid bumpers brightening,
From the Heaven of Wit
  Draw down all its lightning.

Wouldst thou know what first
  Made our souls inherit
This ennobling thirst
  For wine's celestial spirit?
It chanced upon that day,
  When, as bards inform us,
Prometheus stole away
  The living fires that warm us:

The careless Youth, when up
  To Glory's fount aspiring,
Took nor urn nor cup
  To hide the pilfered fire in.--
But oh his joy, when, round
  The halls of Heaven spying,
Among the stars he found
  A bowl of Bacchus lying!

Some drops were in the bowl,
  Remains of last night's pleasure,
With which the Sparks of Soul
  Mixt their burning treasure.
Hence the goblet's shower
  Hath such spells to win us;
Hence its mighty power
  O'er that flame within us.
Fill the bumper fair!
  Every drop we sprinkle
O'er the brow of Care
  Smooths away a wrinkle.






DEAR HARP OF MY COUNTRY.


Dear Harp of my Country! in darkness I found thee,
  The cold chain of silence had hung o'er thee long,[1]
When proudly, my own Island Harp, I unbound thee,
  And gave all thy chords to light, freedom, and song!
The warm lay of love and the light note of gladness
  Have wakened thy fondest, thy liveliest thrill;
But, so oft hast thou echoed the deep sigh of sadness,
  That even in thy mirth it will steal from thee still.
Dear Harp of my country! farewell to thy numbers,
  This sweet wreath of song is the last we shall twine!
Go, sleep with the sunshine of Fame on thy slumbers,
  Till touched by some hand less unworthy than mine;
If the pulse of the patriot, soldier, or lover,
  Have throbbed at our lay, 'tis thy glory alone;
I was _but_ as the wind, passing heedlessly over,
  And all the wild sweetness I waked was thy own.


[1] The chain of Silence was a sort of practical figure of rhetoric among
the ancient Irish. Walker tells us of "a celebrated contention for
precedence between Finn and Gaul, near Finn's palace at Almhaim, where the
attending Bards anxious, if possible, to produce a cessation of
hostilities, shook the chain of Silence, and flung themselves among the
ranks."






MY GENTLE HARP.


My gentle harp, once more I waken
  The sweetness of thy slumbering strain;
In tears our last farewell was taken,
  And now in tears we meet again.
No light of joy hath o'er thee broken,
  But, like those Harps whose heavenly skill
Of slavery, dark as thine, hath spoken,
  Thou hang'st upon the willows still.

And yet, since last thy chord resounded,
  An hour of peace and triumph came,
And many an ardent bosom bounded
  With hopes--that now art turned to shame.
Yet even then, while Peace was singing
  Her halcyon song o'er land and sea,
Tho' joy and hope to others bringing,
  She only brought new tears to thee.

Then, who can ask for notes of pleasure,
  My drooping Harp, from chords like thine?
Alas, the lark's gay morning measure
  As ill would suit the swan's decline!
Or how shall I, who love, who bless thee,
  Invoke thy breath for Freedom's strains,
When even the wreaths in which I dress thee,
  Are sadly mixt--half flowers, half chains?

But come--if yet thy frame can borrow
  One breath of joy, oh, breathe for me,
And show the world, in chains and sorrow,
  How sweet thy music still can be;
How gaily, even mid gloom surrounding,
  Thou yet canst wake at pleasure's thrill--
Like Memnon's broken image sounding,
  Mid desolation tuneful still!






IN THE MORNING OF LIFE.


In the morning of life, when its cares are unknown,
  And its pleasures in all their new lustre begin,
When we live in a bright-beaming world of our own,
  And the light that surrounds us is all from within;
Oh 'tis not, believe me, in that happy time
  We can love, as in hours of less transport we may;--
Of our smiles, of our hopes, 'tis the gay sunny prime,
  But affection is truest when these fade away.

When we see the first glory of youth pass us by,
  Like a leaf on the stream that will never return;
When our cup, which had sparkled with pleasure so high,
  First tastes of the _other_, the dark-flowing urn;
Then, then is the time when affection holds sway
  With a depth and a tenderness joy never knew;
Love, nursed among pleasures, is faithless as they,
  But the love born of Sorrow, like Sorrow, is true.

In climes full of sunshine, tho' splendid the flowers,
  Their sighs have no freshness, their odor no worth;
'Tis the cloud and the mist of our own Isle of showers,
  That call the rich spirit of fragrancy forth.
So it is not mid splendor, prosperity, mirth,
  That the depth of Love's generous spirit appears;
To the sunshine of smiles it may first owe its birth,
  But the soul of its sweetness is drawn out by tears.






AS SLOW OUR SHIP.


As slow our ship her foamy track
  Against the wind was cleaving,
Her trembling pennant still looked back
  To that dear isle 'twas leaving.
So loathe we part from all we love.
  From all the links that bind us;
So turn our hearts as on we rove,
  To those we've left behind us.

When, round the bowl, of vanished years
  We talk, with joyous seeming,--
With smiles that might as well be tears,
  So faint, so sad their beaming;
While memory brings us back again
  Each early tie that twined us,
Oh, sweet's the cup that circles then
  To those we've left behind us.

And when, in other climes, we meet
  Some isle, or vale enchanting,
Where all looks flowery, wild, and sweet,
  And naught but love is wanting;
We think how great had been our bliss,
  If heaven had but assigned us
To live and die in scenes like this,
  With some we've left behind us!

As travellers oft look back at eve,
  When eastward darkly going,
To gaze upon that light they leave
  Still faint behind them glowing,--
So, when the close of pleasure's day
  To gloom hath near consigned us,
We turn to catch one fading ray
  Of joy that's left behind us.






WHEN COLD IN THE EARTH.


When cold in the earth lies the friend thou hast loved,
  Be his faults and his follies forgot by thee then;
Or, if from their slumber the veil be removed,
  Weep o'er them in silence, and close it again.
And oh! if 'tis pain to remember how far
  From the pathways of light he was tempted to roam,
Be it bliss to remember that thou wert the star
  That arose on his darkness and guided him home.

From thee and thy innocent beauty first came
  The revealings, that taught him true love to adore,
To feel the bright presence, and turn him with shame
  From the idols he blindly had knelt to before.
O'er the waves of a life, long benighted and wild,
  Thou camest, like a soft golden calm o'er the sea;
And if happiness purely and glowingly smiled
  On his evening horizon, the light was from thee.

And tho', sometimes, the shades of past folly might rise,
  And tho' falsehood again would allure him to stray,
He but turned to the glory that dwelt in those eyes,
  And the folly, the falsehood, soon vanished away.
As the Priests of the Sun, when their altar grew dim,
  At the day-beam alone could its lustre repair,
So, if virtue a moment grew languid in him,
  He but flew to that smile and rekindled it there.






REMEMBER THEE.


Remember thee? yes, while there's life in this heart,
It shall never forget thee, all lorn as thou art;
More dear in thy sorrow, thy gloom, and thy showers,
Than the rest of the world in their sunniest hours.

Wert thou all that I wish thee, great, glorious, and free,
First flower of the earth, and first gem of the sea,
I might hail thee with prouder, with happier brow,
But oh! could I love thee more deeply than now?

No, thy chains as they rankle, thy blood as it runs,
But make thee more painfully dear to thy sons--
Whose hearts, like the young of the desert-bird's nest,
Drink love in each life-drop that flows from thy breast.






WREATH THE BOWL.


  Wreath the bowl
  With flowers of soul,
The brightest wit can find us;
  We'll take a flight
  Towards heaven to-night,
And leave dull earth behind us.
  Should Love amid
  The wreaths be hid,
That joy, the enchanter, brings us,
  No danger fear,
  While wine is near,
We'll drown him if he stings us,
  Then, wreath the bowl
  With flowers of soul,
The brightest wit can find us;
  We'll take a flight
  Towards heaven to-night,
And leave dull earth behind us.

  'Twas nectar fed
  Of old, 'tis said,
Their Junos, Joves, Apollos;
  And man may brew
  His nectar too,
The rich receipt's as follows:
  Take wine like this,
  Let looks of bliss
Around it well be blended,
  Then bring wit's beam
  To warm the stream,
And there's your nectar, splendid!
  So wreath the bowl
  With flowers of soul,
The brightest wit can find us;
  We'll take a flight
  Towards heaven to-night,
And leave dull earth behind us.

  Say, why did Time
  His glass sublime
Fill up with sands unsightly,
  When wine, he knew,
  Runs brisker through,
And sparkles far more brightly?
  Oh, lend it us,
  And, smiling thus,
The glass in two we'll sever,
  Make pleasure glide
  In double tide,
And fill both ends for ever!
  Then wreath the bowl
  With flowers of soul
The brightest wit can find us;
  We'll take a flight
  Towards heaven to-night,
And leave dull earth behind us.






WHENE'ER I SEE THOSE SMILING EYES.


Whene'er I see those smiling eyes,
  So full of hope, and joy, and light,
As if no cloud could ever rise,
  To dim a heaven so purely bright--
I sigh to think how soon that brow
  In grief may lose its every ray,
And that light heart, so joyous now,
  Almost forget it once was gay.

For time will come with all its blights,
  The ruined hope, the friend unkind,
And love, that leaves, where'er it lights,
  A chilled or burning heart behind:--
While youth, that now like snow appears,
  Ere sullied by the darkening rain,
When once 'tis touched by sorrow's tears
  Can ever shine so bright again.






IF THOU'LT BE MINE.


If thou'lt be mine, the treasures of air,
  Of earth, and sea, shall lie at thy feet;
Whatever in Fancy's eye looks fair,
  Or in Hope's sweet music sounds _most_ sweet,
Shall be ours--if thou wilt be mine, love!

Bright flowers shall bloom wherever we rove,
  A voice divine shall talk in each stream;
The stars shall look like worlds of love,
  And this earth be all one beautiful dream
    In our eyes--if thou wilt be mine, love!

And thoughts, whose source is hidden and high,
  Like streams, that come from heavenward hills,
Shall keep our hearts, like meads, that lie
  To be bathed by those eternal rills,
  Ever green, if thou wilt be mine, love!

All this and more the Spirit of Love
  Can breathe o'er them, who feel his spells;
That heaven, which forms his home above,
  He can make on earth, wherever he dwells,
    As thou'lt own.--if thou wilt be mine, love!






TO LADIES' EYES.


To Ladies' eyes around, boy,
  We can't refuse, we can't refuse,
Tho' bright eyes so abound, boy,
  'Tis hard to choose, 'tis hard to choose.
For thick as stars that lighten
  Yon airy bowers, yon airy bowers,
The countless eyes that brighten
  This earth of ours, this earth of ours.
But fill the cup--where'er, boy,
  Our choice may fall, our choice may fall,
We're sure to find Love there, boy,
  So drink them all! so drink them all!

Some looks there are so holy,
  They seem but given, they seem but given,
As shining beacons, solely,
  To light to heaven, to light to heaven.
While some--oh! ne'er believe them--
  With tempting ray, with tempting ray,
Would lead us (God forgive them!)
  The other way, the other way.
But fill the cup--where'er, boy,
  Our choice may fall, our choice may fall,
We're sure to find Love there, boy,
  So drink them all! so drink them all!

In some, as in a mirror,
  Love seems portrayed, Love seems portrayed,
But shun the flattering error,
  'Tis but his shade, 'tis but his shade.
Himself has fixt his dwelling
  In eyes we know, in eyes we know,
And lips--but this is telling--
  So here they go! so here they go!
Fill up, fill up--where'er, boy,
  Our choice may fall, our choice may fall,
We're sure to find Love there, boy,
  So drink them all! so drink them all!






FORGET NOT THE FIELD.


Forget not the field where they perished,
  The truest, the last of the brave,
All gone--and the bright hope we cherished
  Gone with them, and quenched in their grave!

Oh! could we from death but recover
  Those hearts as they bounded before,
In the face of high heaven to fight over
  That combat for freedom once more;--

Could the chain for an instant be riven
  Which Tyranny flung round us then,
No, 'tis not in Man, nor in Heaven,
  To let Tyranny bind it again!

But 'tis past--and, tho' blazoned in story
  The name of our Victor may be,
Accurst is the march of that glory
  Which treads o'er the hearts of the free.

Far dearer the grave or the prison,
  Illumed by one patriot name,
Than the trophies of all, who have risen
  On Liberty's ruins to fame.






THEY MAY RAIL AT THIS LIFE.


They may rail at this life--from the hour I began it,
  I found it a life full of kindness and bliss;
And, until they can show me some happier planet,
  More social and bright, I'll content me with this.
As long as the world has such lips and such eyes,
  As before me this moment enraptured I see,
They may say what they will of their orbs in the skies,
  But this earth is the planet for you, love, and me.

In Mercury's star, where each moment can bring them
  New sunshine and wit from the fountain on high,
Tho' the nymphs may have livelier poets to sing them,
  They've none, even there, more enamored than I.
And as long as this harp can be wakened to love,
  And that eye its divine inspiration shall be,
They may talk as they will of their Edens above,
  But this earth is the planet for you, love, and me.

In that star of the west, by whose shadowy splendor,
  At twilight so often we've roamed thro' the dew,
There are maidens, perhaps, who have bosoms as tender,
  And look, in their twilights, as lovely as you.
But tho' they were even more bright than the queen
  Of that isle they inhabit in heaven's blue sea,
As I never those fair young celestials have seen,
  Why--this earth is the planet for you, love, and me.

As for those chilly orbs on the verge of creation,
  Where sunshine and smiles must be equally rare,
Did they want a supply of cold hearts for that station,
  Heaven knows we have plenty on earth we could spare,
Oh! think what a world we should have of it here,
  If the haters of peace, of affection and glee,
Were to fly up to Saturn's comfortless sphere,
  And leave earth to such spirits as you, love, and me.






OH FOR THE SWORDS OF FORMER TIME!


Oh for the swords of former time!
  Oh for the men who bore them,
When armed for Right, they stood sublime,
  And tyrants crouched before them:
When free yet, ere courts began
 With honors to enslave him,
The best honors worn by Man
 Were those which Virtue gave him.
Oh for the swords, etc.

Oh for the kings who flourished then!
  Oh for the pomp that crowned them,
When hearts and hands of freeborn men
  Were all the ramparts round them.
When, safe built on bosoms true,
  The throne was but the centre,
Round which Love a circle drew,
  That Treason durst not enter.
Oh for the kings who flourished then!
  Oh for the pomp that crowned them,
When hearts and hands of freeborn men
  Were all the ramparts round them!






ST. SENANUS AND THE LADY.


ST. SENANUS.[1]

"Oh! haste and leave this sacred isle,
Unholy bark, ere morning smile;
For on thy deck, though dark it be,
  A female form I see;
And I have sworn this sainted sod
Shall ne'er by woman's feet be trod."

THE LADY.

"Oh! Father, send not hence my bark,
Thro' wintry winds and billows dark:
I come with humble heart to share
  Thy morn and evening prayer;
Nor mine the feet, oh! holy Saint,
The brightness of thy sod to taint."

The Lady's prayer Senanus spurned;
The winds blew fresh, the bark returned;
But legends hint, that had the maid
  Till morning's light delayed,
And given the saint one rosy smile,
She ne'er had left his lonely isle.


[1] In a metrical life of St. Senanus, which is taken from an old Kilkenny
MS., and may be found among the "_Acta Sanctorum Hiberniae_," we are told
of his flight to the island of Scattery, and his resolution not to admit
any woman of the party; he refused to receive even a sister saint, St.
Cannera, whom an angel had taken to the island for the express purpose of
introducing her to him.






NE'ER ASK THE HOUR.

Ne'er ask the hour--what is it to us
  How Time deals out his treasures?
The golden moments lent us thus,
  Are not _his_ coin, but Pleasure's.
If counting them o'er could add to their blisses,
  I'd number each glorious second:
But moments of joy are, like Lesbia's kisses,
  Too quick and sweet to be reckoned.
Then fill the cup--what is it to us
  How time his circle measures?
The fairy hours we call up thus,
  Obey no wand but Pleasure's.

Young Joy ne'er thought of counting hours,
  Till Care, one summer's morning,
Set up, among his smiling flowers,
  A dial, by way of warning.
But Joy loved better to gaze on the sun,
  As long as its light was glowing,
Than to watch with old Care how the shadows stole on,
  And how fast that light was going.
So fill the cup--what is it to us
  How Time his circle measures?
The fairy hours we call up thus,
  Obey no wand but Pleasure's.






SAIL ON, SAIL ON.


Sail on, sail on, thou fearless bark--
  Wherever blows the welcome wind,
It cannot lead to scenes more dark,
  More sad than those we leave behind.
Each wave that passes seems to say,
  "Tho' death beneath our smile may be,
  Less cold we are, less false than they,
  Whose smiling wrecked thy hopes and thee."
Sail on, sail on,--thro' endless space--
  Thro' calm--thro' tempest--stop no more:
The stormiest sea's a resting place
  To him who leaves such hearts on shore.
Or--if some desert land we meet,
  Where never yet false-hearted men
Profaned a world, that else were sweet,--
  Then rest thee, bark, but not till then.






THE PARALLEL.


Yes, sad one of Sion,[1] if closely resembling,
  In shame and in sorrow, thy withered-up heart--
If drinking deep, deep, of the same "cup of trembling"
  Could make us thy children, our parent thou art,

Like thee doth our nation lie conquered and broken,
  And fallen from her head is the once royal crown;
In her streets, in her halls, Desolation hath spoken,
  And "while it is day yet, her sun hath gone down."[2]

Like thine doth her exile, mid dreams of returning,
  Die far from the home it were life to behold;
Like thine do her sons, in the day of their mourning,
  Remember the bright things that blest them of old.

Ah, well may we call her, like thee "the Forsaken,"[3]
  Her boldest are vanquished, her proudest are slaves;
And the harps of her minstrels, when gayest they waken,
  Have tones mid their mirth like the wind over graves!

Yet hadst thou thy vengeance--yet came there the morrow,
  That shines out, at last, on the longest dark night,
When the sceptre, that smote thee with slavery and sorrow,
  Was shivered at once, like a reed, in thy sight.

When that cup, which for others the proud Golden City[4]
  Had brimmed full of bitterness, drenched her own lips;
And the world she had trampled on heard, without pity,
  The howl in her halls, and the cry from her ships.

When the curse Heaven keeps for the haughty came over
  Her merchants rapacious, her rulers unjust,
And, a ruin, at last, for the earthworm to cover,[5]
  The Lady of Kingdoms[6] lay low in the dust.


[1] These verses were written after the perusal of a treatise by Mr.
Hamilton, professing to prove that the Irish were originally Jews.

[2] 1 "Her sun is gone down while it was yet day."--_Jer_. xv. 9.

[3] "Thou shalt no more be termed Forsaken."--_Isaiah_, lxii. 4.

[4] "How hath the oppressor ceased! the golden city ceased!"--
_Isaiah_, xiv. 4.

[5] "Thy pomp is brought down to the grave . . . and the worms cover
thee."--_Isaiah_, xiv. 11.

[6] "Thou shalt no more be called the Lady of Kingdoms."--_Isaiah_,
xlvil. 5.






DRINK OF THIS CUP.


Drink of this cup;--you'll find there's a spell in
  Its every drop 'gainst the ills of mortality;
Talk of the cordial that sparkled for Helen!
  Her cup was a fiction, but this is reality.
Would you forget the dark world we are in,
  Just taste of the bubble that gleams on the top of it;
But would you rise above earth, till akin
  To Immortals themselves, you must drain every drop of it;
Send round the cup--for oh there's a spell in
  Its every drop 'gainst the ills of mortality;
Talk of the cordial that sparkled for Helen!
  Her cup was a fiction, but this is reality.

Never was philter formed with such power
  To charm and bewilder as this we are quaffing;
Its magic began when, in Autumn's rich hour,
  A harvest of gold in the fields it stood laughing.
There having, by Nature's enchantment, been filled
  With the balm and the bloom of her kindliest weather,
This wonderful juice from its core was distilled
  To enliven such hearts as are here brought together.
Then drink of the cup--you'll find there's a spell in
  Its every drop 'gainst the ills of mortality;
Talk of the cordial that sparkled for Helen!
  Her cup was a fiction, but this is reality.

And tho' perhaps--but breathe it to no one--
  Like liquor the witch brews at midnight so awful,
This philter in secret was first taught to flow on,
  Yet 'tisn't less potent for being unlawful.
And, even tho' it taste of the smoke of that flame,
  Which in silence extracted its virtue forbidden--
Fill up--there's a fire in some hearts I could name,
  Which may work too its charm, tho' as lawless and hidden.
So drink of the cup--for oh there's a spell in
  Its every drop 'gainst the ills of mortality;
Talk of the cordial that sparkled for Helen!
  Her cup was a fiction, but this is reality.






THE FORTUNE-TELLER.


Down in the valley come meet me to-night,
  And I'll tell you your fortune truly
As ever 'twas told, by the new-moon's light,
  To a young maiden, shining as newly.

But, for the world, let no one be nigh,
  Lest haply the stars should deceive me;
Such secrets between you and me and the sky
  Should never go farther, believe me.

If at that hour the heavens be not dim,
  My science shall call up before you
A male apparition,--the image of him
  Whose destiny 'tis to adore you.

And if to that phantom you'll be kind,
  So fondly around you he'll hover,
You'll hardly, my dear, any difference find
  'Twixt him and a true living lover.

Down at your feet, in the pale moonlight,
  He'll kneel, with a warmth of devotion--
An ardor, of which such an innocent sprite
  You'd scarcely believe had a notion.

What other thoughts and events may arise,
  As in destiny's book I've not seen them,
Must only be left to the stars and your eyes
  To settle, ere morning, between them.






OH, YE DEAD!


Oh, ye Dead! oh, ye Dead![1] whom we know by the light you give
From your cold gleaming eyes, tho' you move like men who live,
  Why leave you thus your graves,
  In far off fields and waves,
Where the worm and the sea-bird only know your bed,
  To haunt this spot where all
  Those eyes that wept your fall,
And the hearts that wailed you, like your own, lie dead?

It is true, it is true, we are shadows cold and wan;
And the fair and the brave whom we loved on earth are gone;
  But still thus even in death,
  So sweet the living breath
Of the fields and the flowers in our youth we wander'd o'er,
  That ere, condemned, we go
  To freeze mid Hecla's snow,
We would taste it awhile, and think we live once more!


[1] Paul Zealand mentions that there is a mountain in some part of
Ireland, where the ghosts of persons who have died in foreign lands walk
about and converse with those they meet, like living people. If asked why
they do not return to their homes, they say they are obliged to go to
Mount Hecla, and disappear immediately.






O'DONOHUE'S MISTRESS.


Of all the fair months, that round the sun
In light-linked dance their circles run,
  Sweet May, shine thou for me;
For still, when thy earliest beams arise,
That youth, who beneath the blue lake lies,
  Sweet May, returns to me.

Of all the bright haunts, where daylight leaves
Its lingering smile on golden eyes,
  Fair Lake, thou'rt dearest to me;
For when the last April sun grows dim,
Thy Naïads prepare his steed[1] for him
  Who dwells, bright Lake, in thee.

Of all the proud steeds, that ever bore
Young plumed Chiefs on sea or shore,
  White Steed, most joy to thee;
Who still, with the first young glance of spring,
From under that glorious lake dost bring
  My love, my chief, to me.

While, white as the sail some bark unfurls,
When newly launched, thy long mane[2] curls,
  Fair Steed, as white and free;
And spirits, from all the lake's deep bowers,
Glide o'er the blue wave scattering flowers,
  Around my love and thee.

Of all the sweet deaths that maidens die,
Whose lovers beneath the cold wave lie,
  Most sweet that death will be,
Which, under the next May evening's light,
When thou and thy steed are lost to sight,
Dear love, I'll die for thee.


[1] The particulars of the tradition respecting Donohue and his White
Horse, may be found in Mr. Weld's Account of Killarney, or more fully
detailed in Derrick's Letters. For many years after his death, the spirit
of this hero is supposed to have been seen on the morning of Mayday,
gliding over the lake on his favorite white horse to the sound of sweet
unearthly music, and preceded by groups of youths and maidens, who flung
wreaths of delicate spring flowers in his path.

[2] The boatmen at Killarney call those waves which come on a windy day,
crested with foam, "O'Donohue's White Horses."






ECHO.


How sweet the answer Echo makes
  To music at night,
When, roused by lute or horn, she wakes,
And far away, o'er lawns and lakes,
  Goes answering light.

Yet Love hath echoes truer far,
  And far more sweet,
Than e'er beneath the moonlight star,
Of horn or lute, or soft guitar,
  The songs repeat.

'Tis when the sigh, in youth sincere,
  And only then,--
The sigh that's breath'd for one to hear,
Is by that one, that only dear,
  Breathed back again!






OH BANQUET NOT.


Oh banquet not in those shining bowers,
  Where Youth resorts, but come to me:
For mine's a garden of faded flowers,
  More fit for sorrow, for age, and thee.
And there we shall have our feast of tears,
  And many a cup in silence pour;
Our guests, the shades of former years,
  Our toasts to lips that bloom no more.

There, while the myrtle's withering boughs
  Their lifeless leaves around us shed,
We'll brim the bowl to broken vows,
  To friends long lost, the changed, the dead.
Or, while some blighted laurel waves
  Its branches o'er the dreary spot,
We'll drink to those neglected graves,
  Where valor sleeps, unnamed, forgot.






THEE, THEE, ONLY THEE.


The dawning of morn, the daylight's sinking,
The night's long hours still find me thinking
    Of thee, thee, only thee.
When friends are met, and goblets crowned,
  And smiles are near, that once enchanted,
Unreached by all that sunshine round,
  My soul, like some dark spot, is haunted
    By thee, thee, only thee.

Whatever in fame's high path could waken
My spirit once, is now forsaken
    For thee, thee, only thee.
Like shores, by which some headlong bark
  To the ocean hurries, resting never,
Life's scenes go by me, bright or dark,
  I know not, heed not, hastening ever
    To thee, thee, only thee.

I have not a joy but of thy bringing,
And pain itself seems sweet when springing
    From thee, thee, only thee.
Like spells, that naught on earth can break,
  Till lips, that know the charm, have spoken,
This heart, howe'er the world may wake
  Its grief, its scorn, can but be broken
    By thee, thee, only thee.






SHALL THE HARP THEN BE SILENT.


Shall the Harp then be silent, when he who first gave
  To our country a name, is withdrawn from all eyes?
Shall a Minstrel of Erin stand mute by the grave,
  Where the first--where the last of her Patriots lies?

No--faint tho' the death-song may fall from his lips,
  Tho' his Harp, like his soul, may with shadows be crost,
Yet, yet shall it sound, mid a nation's eclipse,
  And proclaim to the world what a star hath been lost;--[1]

What a union of all the affections and powers
  By which life is exalted, embellished, refined,
Was embraced in that spirit--whose centre was ours,
  While its mighty circumference circled mankind.

Oh, who that loves Erin, or who that can see,
  Thro' the waste of her annals, that epoch sublime--
Like a pyramid raised in the desert--where he
  And his glory stand out to the eyes of all time;

That _one_ lucid interval, snatched from the gloom
  And the madness of ages, when filled with his soul,
A Nation o'erleaped the dark bounds of her doom,
  And for _one_ sacred instant, touched Liberty's goal?

Who, that ever hath heard him--hath drank at the source
  Of that wonderful eloquence, all Erin's own,
In whose high-thoughted daring, the fire, and the force,
  And the yet untamed spring of her spirit are shown?

An eloquence rich, wheresoever its wave
  Wandered free and triumphant, with thoughts that shone thro',
As clear as the brook's "stone of lustre," and gave,
  With the flash of the gem, its solidity too.

Who, that ever approached him, when free from the crowd,
  In a home full of love, he delighted to tread
'Mong the trees which a nation had given, and which bowed,
  As if each brought a new civic crown for his head--

Is there one, who hath thus, thro' his orbit of life
  But at distance observed him--thro' glory, thro' blame,
In the calm of retreat, in the grandeur of strife,
  Whether shining or clouded, still high and the same,--

Oh no, not a heart, that e'er knew him, but mourns
  Deep, deep o'er the grave, where such glory is shrined--
O'er a monument Fame will preserve, 'mong the urns
  Of the wisest, the bravest, the best of mankind!


[1] These lines were written on the death of our great patriot, Grattan,
in the year 1820. It is only the two first verses that are either intended
or fitted to be sung.






OH, THE SIGHT ENTRANCING.


Oh, the sight entrancing,
When morning's beam is glancing,
    O'er files arrayed
    With helm and blade,
And plumes, in the gay wind dancing!
When hearts are all high beating,
And the trumpet's voice repeating
    That song, whose breath
    May lead to death,
But never to retreating.
Oh the sight entrancing,
When morning's beam is glancing
  O'er files arrayed
  With helm and blade,
And plumes, in the gay wind dancing.

Yet, 'tis not helm or feather--
For ask yon despot, whether
  His plumed bands
  Could bring such hands
And hearts as ours together.
Leave pomps to those who need 'em--
Give man but heart and freedom,
  And proud he braves
  The gaudiest slaves
That crawl where monarchs lead 'em.
The sword may pierce the beaver,
Stone walls in time may sever,
  'Tis mind alone,
  Worth steel and stone,
That keeps men free for ever.
Oh that sight entrancing,
When the morning's beam is glancing,
  O'er files arrayed
  With helm and blade,
And in Freedom's cause advancing!






SWEET INNISFALLEN.


Sweet Innisfallen, fare thee well,
  May calm and sunshine long be thine!
How fair thou art let others tell,--
  To _feel_ how fair shall long be mine.

Sweet Innisfallen, long shall dwell
  In memory's dream that sunny smile,
Which o'er thee on that evening fell,
  When first I saw thy fairy isle.

'Twas light, indeed, too blest for one,
  Who had to turn to paths of care--
Through crowded haunts again to run,
  And leave thee bright and silent there;

No more unto thy shores to come,
  But, on the world's rude ocean tost,
Dream of thee sometimes, as a home
  Of sunshine he had seen and lost.

Far better in thy weeping hours
  To part from thee, as I do now,
When mist is o'er thy blooming bowers,
  Like sorrow's veil on beauty's brow.

For, though unrivalled still thy grace,
  Thou dost not look, as then, _too_ blest,
But thus in shadow, seem'st a place
  Where erring man might hope to rest--

Might hope to rest, and find in thee
  A gloom like Eden's on the day
He left its shade, when every tree,
  Like thine, hung weeping o'er his way.

Weeping or smiling, lovely isle!
  And all the lovelier for thy tears--
For tho' but rare thy sunny smile,
  'Tis heaven's own glance when it appears.

Like feeling hearts, whose joys are few,
  But, when _indeed_ they come divine--
The brightest light the sun e'er threw
  Is lifeless to one gleam of thine!






'TWAS ONE OF THOSE DREAMS.[1]


'Twas one of those dreams, that by music are brought,
Like a bright summer haze, o'er the poet's warm thought--
When, lost in the future, his soul wanders on,
And all of this life, but its sweetness, is gone.

The wild notes he heard o'er the water were those
He had taught to sing Erin's dark bondage and woes,
And the breath of the bugle now wafted them o'er
From Dinis' green isle, to Glenà's wooded shore.

He listened--while, high o'er the eagle's rude nest,
The lingering sounds on their way loved to rest;
And the echoes sung back from their full mountain choir,
As if loath to let song so enchanting expire.

It seemed as if every sweet note, that died here,
Was again brought to life in some airier sphere,
Some heaven in those hills, where the soul of the strain
They had ceased upon earth was awaking again!

Oh forgive, if, while listening to music, whose breath
Seemed to circle his name with a charm against death,
He should feel a proud Spirit within him proclaim,
"Even so shalt thou live in the echoes of Fame:

"Even so, tho' thy memory should now die away,
'Twill be caught up again in some happier day,
And the hearts and the voices of Erin prolong,
Through the answering Future, thy name and thy song."


[1] Written during a visit to Lord Kenmare, at Killarney.






FAIREST! PUT ON AWHILE.


Fairest! put on awhile
  These pinions of light I bring thee,
And o'er thy own green isle
  In fancy let me wing thee.
Never did Ariel's plume,
  At golden sunset hover
O'er scenes so full of bloom,
  As I shall waft thee over.

Fields, where the Spring delays
  And fearlessly meets the ardor
Of the warm Summer's gaze,
  With only her tears to guard her.
Rocks, thro' myrtle boughs
  In grace majestic frowning;
Like some bold warrior's brows
  That Love hath just been crowning.

Islets, so freshly fair,
  That never hath bird come nigh them,
But from his course thro' air
  He hath been won down by them;--[1]
Types, sweet maid, of thee,
  Whose look, whose blush inviting,
Never did Love yet see
  From Heaven, without alighting.

Lakes, where the pearl lies hid,[2]
  And caves, where the gem is sleeping,
Bright as the tears thy lid
  Lets fall in lonely weeping.
Glens,[3] where Ocean comes,
  To 'scape the wild wind's rancor,
And harbors, worthiest homes
  Where Freedom's fleet can anchor.

Then, if, while scenes so grand,
  So beautiful, shine before thee,
Pride for thy own dear land
  Should haply be stealing o'er thee,
Oh, let grief come first,
  O'er pride itself victorious--
Thinking how man hath curst
  What Heaven had made so glorious!


[1] In describing the Skeligs (islands of the Barony of Forth), Dr.
Keating says, "There is a certain attractive virtue in the soil which
draws down all the birds that attempt to fly over it, and obliges them to
light upon the rock."

[2] "Nennius, a British writer of the ninth century, mentions the
abundance of pearls in Ireland. Their princes, he says, hung them behind
their ears: and this we find confirmed by a present made A.C. 1094, by
Gilbert, Bishop of Limerick, to Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury, of a
considerable quantity of Irish pearls."--_O'Halloran_.

[3] Glengariff.






QUICK! WE HAVE BUT A SECOND.


Quick! we have but a second,
  Fill round the cup, while you may;
For Time, the churl, hath beckoned,
  And we must away, away!
Grasp the pleasure that's flying,
  For oh, not Orpheus' strain
Could keep sweet hours from dying,
  Or charm them to life again.
    Then, quick! we have but a second,
      Fill round the cup while you may;
    For Time, the churl, hath beckoned,
      And we must away, away!

See the glass, how it flushes.
  Like some young Hebe's lip,
And half meets thine, and blushes
  That thou shouldst delay to sip.
Shame, oh shame unto thee,
  If ever thou see'st that day,
When a cup or lip shall woo thee,
  And turn untouched away!
    Then, quick! we have but a second,
      Fill round, fill round, while you may;
    For Time, the churl, hath beckoned,
      And we must away, away!






AND DOTH NOT A MEETING LIKE THIS.


And doth not a meeting like this make amends,
  For all the long years I've been wandering away--
To see thus around me my youth's early friends,
  As smiling and kind as in that happy day?
Tho' haply o'er some of your brows, as o'er mine,
  The snow-fall of time may be stealing--what then?
Like Alps in the sunset, thus lighted by wine,
  We'll wear the gay tinge of youth's roses again.

What softened remembrances come o'er the heart,
  In gazing on those we've been lost to so long!
The sorrows, the joys, of which once they were part,
  Still round them, like visions of yesterday, throng,
As letters some hand hath invisibly traced,
  When held to the flame will steal out on the sight,
So many a feeling, that long seemed effaced,
  The warmth of a moment like this brings to light.

And thus, as in memory's bark we shall glide,
  To visit the scenes of our boyhood anew,
Tho' oft we may see, looking down on the tide,
  The wreck of full many a hope shining thro';
Yet still, as in fancy we point to the flowers,
  That once made a garden of all the gay shore,
Deceived for a moment, we'll think them still ours,
 And breathe the fresh air of life's morning once more.

So brief our existence, a glimpse, at the most,
  Is all we can have of the few we hold dear;
And oft even joy is unheeded and lost,
  For want of some heart, that could echo it, near.
Ah, well may we hope, when this short life is gone,
  To meet in some world of more permanent bliss,
For a smile, or a grasp of the hand, hastening on,
  Is all we enjoy of each other in this.

But, come, the more rare such delights to the heart,
  The more we should welcome and bless them the more;
They're ours, when we meet,--they are lost when we part,
  Like birds that bring summer, and fly when 'tis o'er.
Thus circling the cup, hand in hand, ere we drink,
  Let Sympathy pledge us, thro' pleasure, thro' pain,
That, fast as a feeling but touches one link,
  Her magic shall send it direct thro' the chain.






THE MOUNTAIN SPRITE.


In yonder valley there dwelt, alone,
A youth, whose moments had calmly flown,
Till spells came o'er him, and, day and night,
He was haunted and watched by a Mountain Sprite.

As once, by moonlight, he wander'd o'er
The golden sands of that island shore,
A foot-print sparkled before his sight--
'Twas the fairy foot of the Mountain Sprite!

Beside a fountain, one sunny day,
As bending over the stream he lay,
There peeped down o'er him two eyes of light,
And he saw in that mirror the Mountain Sprite.

He turned, but, lo, like a startled bird,
That spirit fled!--and the youth but heard
Sweet music, such as marks the flight
Of some bird of song, from the Mountain Sprite.

One night, still haunted by that bright look,
The boy, bewildered, his pencil took,
And, guided only by memory's light,
Drew the once-seen form of the Mountain Sprite.

"Oh thou, who lovest the shadow," cried
A voice, low whispering by his side,
"Now turn and see,"--here the youth's delight
Sealed the rosy lips of the Mountain Sprite.

"Of all the Spirits of land and sea,"
Then rapt he murmured, "there's none like thee,
"And oft, oh oft, may thy foot thus light
"In this lonely bower, sweet Mountain Sprite!"






AS VANQUISHED ERIN.


As vanquished Erin wept beside
  The Boyne's ill-fated river,
She saw where Discord, in the tide,
  Had dropt his loaded quiver.
"Lie hid," she cried, "ye venomed darts,
  "Where mortal eye may shun you;
"Lie hid--the stain of manly hearts,
  "That bled for me, is on you."

But vain her wish, her weeping vain,--
  As Time too well hath taught her--
Each year the Fiend returns again,
  And dives into that water;
And brings, triumphant, from beneath
  His shafts of desolation,
And sends them, winged with worse than death,
  Through all her maddening nation.

Alas for her who sits and mourns,
  Even now, beside that river--
Unwearied still the Fiend returns,
  And stored is still his quiver.
"When will this end, ye Powers of Good?"
  She weeping asks for ever;
But only hears, from out that flood,
  The Demon answer, "Never!"






DESMOND'S SONG.[1]


By the Feal's wave benighted,
  No star in the skies,
To thy door by Love lighted,
  I first saw those eyes.
Some voice whispered o'er me,
  As the threshold I crost,
There was ruin before me,
  If I loved, I was lost.

Love came, and brought sorrow
  Too soon in his train;
Yet so sweet, that to-morrow
  'Twere welcome again.
Though misery's full measure
  My portion should be,
I would drain it with pleasure,
  If poured out by thee.

You, who call it dishonor
  To bow to this flame,
If you've eyes, look but on her,
  And blush while you blame.
Hath the pearl less whiteness
  Because of its birth?
Hath the violet less brightness
  For growing near earth?

No--Man for his glory
  To ancestry flies;
But Woman's bright story
  Is told in her eyes.

While the Monarch but traces
  Thro' mortals his line,
Beauty, born of the Graces,
  Banks next to Divine!


[1] "Thomas, the heir of the Desmond family, had accidentally been so
engaged in the chase, that he was benighted near Tralee, and obliged to
take shelter at the Abbey of Feal, in the house of one of his dependents,
called Mac Cormac. Catherine, a beautiful daughter of his host, instantly
inspired the Earl with a violent passion, which he could not subdue. He
married her, and by this inferior alliance alienated his followers, whose
brutal pride regarded this indulgence of his love as an unpardonable
degradation of his family."--_Leland_, vol. ii.






THEY KNOW NOT MY HEART.


They know not my heart, who believe there can be
One stain of this earth in its feelings for thee;
Who think, while I see thee in beauty's young hour,
As pure as the morning's first dew on the flower,
I could harm what I love,--as the sun's wanton ray
But smiles on the dew-drop to waste it away.

No--beaming with light as those young features are,
There's a light round thy heart which is lovelier far:
It is not that cheek--'tis the soul dawning clear
Thro' its innocent blush makes thy beauty so dear:
As the sky we look up to, tho' glorious and fair,
Is looked up to the more, because Heaven lies there!






I WISH I WAS BY THAT DIM LAKE.


I wish I was by that dim Lake,[1]
Where sinful souls their farewell take
Of this vain world, and half-way lie
In death's cold shadow, ere they die.
There, there, far from thee,
Deceitful world, my home should be;
Where, come what might of gloom and pain,
False hope should ne'er deceive again.

The lifeless sky, the mournful sound
Of unseen waters falling round;
The dry leaves, quivering o'er my head,
Like man, unquiet even when dead!
These, ay, these shall wean
My soul from life's deluding scene,
And turn each thought, o'ercharged with gloom,
Like willows, downward towards the tomb.

As they, who to their couch at night
Would win repose, first quench the light,
So must the hopes, that keep this breast
Awake, be quenched, ere it can rest.
Cold, cold, this heart must grow,
Unmoved by either joy or woe,
Like freezing founts, where all that's thrown
Within their current turns to stone.


[1] These verses are meant to allude to that ancient haunt of
superstition, called Patrick's Purgatory. "In the midst of these gloomy
regions of Donegall (says Dr. Campbell) lay a lake, which was to become
the mystic theatre of this fabled and intermediate state. In the lake were
several islands; but one of them was dignified with that called the Mouth
of Purgatory, which, during the dark ages, attracted the notice of all
Christendom, and was the resort of penitents and pilgrims from almost
every country in Europe."






SHE SUNG OF LOVE.


She sung of Love, while o'er her lyre
  The rosy rays of evening fell,
As if to feed with their soft fire
  The soul within that trembling shell.
The same rich light hung o'er her cheek,
  And played around those lips that sung
And spoke, as flowers would sing and speak,
  If Love could lend their leaves a tongue.

But soon the West no longer burned,
  Each rosy ray from heaven withdrew;
And, when to gaze again I turned,
  The minstrel's form seemed fading too.
As if _her_ light and heaven's were one,
  The glory all had left that frame;
And from her glimmering lips the tone,
  As from a parting spirit, came.

Who ever loved, but had the thought
  That he and all he loved must part?
Filled with this fear, I flew and caught
  The fading image to my heart--
And cried, "Oh Love! is this thy doom?
  "Oh light of youth's resplendent day!
"Must ye then lose your golden bloom,
  "And thus, like sunshine, die away?"






SING--SING--MUSIC WAS GIVEN.


Sing--sing--Music was given,
  To brighten the gay, and kindle the loving;
Souls here, like planets in Heaven,
  By harmony's laws alone are kept moving.
Beauty may boast of her eyes and her cheeks,
  But Love from the lips his true archery wings;
And she, who but feathers the dart when she speaks,
  At once sends it home to the heart when she sings.
  Then sing--sing--Music was given,
    To brighten the gay, and kindle the loving;
  Souls here, like planets in Heaven,
    By harmony's laws alone are kept moving.

When Love, rocked by his mother,
  Lay sleeping as calm as slumber could make him,
"Hush, hush," said Venus, "no other
  "Sweet voice but his own is worthy to wake him."
Dreaming of music he slumbered the while
  Till faint from his lip a soft melody broke,
And Venus, enchanted, looked on with a smile,
  While Love to his own sweet singing awoke.
  Then sing--sing--Music was given,
    To brighten the gay, and kindle the loving;
  Souls here, like planets in Heaven,
    By harmony's laws alone are kept moving.






THO' HUMBLE THE BANQUET.


Tho' humble the banquet to which I invite thee,
  Thou'lt find there the best a poor bard can command:
Eyes, beaming with welcome, shall throng round, to light thee,
  And Love serve the feast with his own willing hand.

And tho' Fortune may seem to have turned from the dwelling
  Of him thou regardest her favoring ray,
Thou wilt find there a gift, all her treasures excelling,
  Which, proudly he feels, hath ennobled his way.

'Tis that freedom of mind, which no vulgar dominion
  Can turn from the path a pure conscience approves;
Which, with hope in the heart, and no chain on the pinion,
  Holds upwards its course to the light which it loves.

'Tis this makes the pride of his humble retreat,
  And, with this, tho' of all other treasures bereaved,
The breeze of his garden to him is more sweet
  Than the costliest incense that Pomp e'er received.

Then, come,--if a board so untempting hath power
  To win thee from grandeur, its best shall be thine;
And there's one, long the light of the bard's happy bower,
  Who, smiling, will blend her bright welcome with mine.






SING, SWEET HARP.


Sing, sweet Harp, oh sing to me
  Some song of ancient days,
Whose sounds, in this sad memory,
  Long buried dreams shall raise;--
Some lay that tells of vanished fame,
  Whose light once round us shone;
Of noble pride, now turned to shame,
  And hopes for ever gone.--
Sing, sad Harp, thus sing to me;
  Alike our doom is cast,
Both lost to all but memory,
  We live but in the past.

How mournfully the midnight air
  Among thy chords doth sigh,
As if it sought some echo there
  Of voices long gone by;--
Of Chieftains, now forgot, who seemed
  The foremost then in fame;
Of Bards who, once immortal deemed,
  Now sleep without a name.--
In vain, sad Harp, the midnight air
  Among thy chords doth sigh;
In vain it seeks an echo there
  Of voices long gone by.

Couldst thou but call those spirits round.
  Who once, in bower and hall,
Sat listening to thy magic sound,
  Now mute and mouldering all;--
But, no; they would but wake to weep
  Their children's slavery;
Then leave them in their dreamless sleep,
  The dead, at least, are free!--
Hush, hush, sad Harp, that dreary tone,
  That knell of Freedom's day;
Or, listening to its death-like moan,
  Let me, too, die away.






SONG OF THE BATTLE EVE.

TIME--THE NINTH CENTURY.


To-morrow, comrade, we
On the battle-plain must be,
  There to conquer, or both lie low!
The morning star is up,--
But there's wine still in the cup,
  And we'll take another quaff, ere we go, boy, go;
  We'll take another quaff, ere we go.

'Tis true, in manliest eyes
A passing tear will rise,
  When we think of the friends we leave lone;
But what can wailing do?
See, our goblet's weeping too!
  With its tears we'll chase away our own, boy, our own;
  With its tears we'll chase away our own.

But daylight's stealing on;--
The last that o'er us shone
  Saw our children around us play;
The next--ah! where shall we
And those rosy urchins be?
  But--no matter--grasp thy sword and away, boy, away;
  No matter--grasp thy sword and away!

Let those, who brook the chain
Of Saxon or of Dane,
  Ignobly by their firesides stay;
One sigh to home be given,
One heartfelt prayer to heaven,
  Then, for Erin and her cause, boy, hurra! hurra! hurra!
  Then, for Erin and her cause, hurra!






THE WANDERING BARD.


What life like that of the bard can be--
The wandering bard, who roams as free
As the mountain lark that o'er him sings,
And, like that lark, a music brings
Within him, where'er he comes or goes,--
A fount that for ever flows!
The world's to him like some playground,
Where fairies dance their moonlight round;--
If dimmed the turf where late they trod,
The elves but seek some greener sod;
So, when less bright his scene of glee,
To another away flies he!

Oh, what would have been young Beauty's doom,
Without a bard to fix her bloom?
They tell us, in the moon's bright round,
Things lost in this dark world are found;
So charms, on earth long past and gone,
In the poet's lay live on.--
Would ye have smiles that ne'er grow dim?
You've only to give them all to him.
Who, with but a touch of Fancy's wand,
Can lend them life, this life beyond,
And fix them high, in Poesy's sky,--
Young stars that never die!

Then, welcome the bard where'er he comes,--
For, tho' he hath countless airy homes,
To which his wing excursive roves,
Yet still, from time to time, he loves
To light upon earth and find such cheer
As brightens our banquet here.
No matter how far, how fleet he flies,
You've only to light up kind young eyes,
Such signal-fires as here are given,--
And down he'll drop from Fancy's heaven,
The minute such call to love or mirth
Proclaims he's wanting on earth!






ALONE IN CROWDS TO WANDER ON.


Alone in crowds to wander on,
And feel that all the charm is gone
Which voices dear and eyes beloved
Shed round us once, where'er we roved--
This, this the doom must be
Of all who've loved, and lived to see
The few bright things they thought would stay
For ever near them, die away.

Tho' fairer forms around us throng,
Their smiles to others all belong,
And want that charm which dwells alone
Round those the fond heart calls its own.
Where, where the sunny brow?
The long-known voice--where are they now?
Thus ask I still, nor ask in vain,
The silence answers all too plain.

Oh, what is Fancy's magic worth,
If all her art can not call forth
One bliss like those we felt of old
From lips now mute, and eyes now cold?
No, no,--her spell is vain,--
As soon could she bring back again
Those eyes themselves from out the grave,
As wake again one bliss they gave.






I'VE A SECRET TO TELL THEE.


I've a secret to tell thee, but hush! not here,--
  Oh! not where the world its vigil keeps:
I'll seek, to whisper it in thine ear,
  Some shore where the Spirit of Silence sleeps;
Where summer's wave unmurmuring dies,
  Nor fay can hear the fountain's gush;
Where, if but a note her night-bird sighs,
  The rose saith, chidingly, "Hush, sweet, hush!"

There, amid the deep silence of that hour,
  When stars can be heard in ocean dip,
Thyself shall, under some rosy bower,
  Sit mute, with thy finger on thy lip:
Like him, the boy,[1] who born among
  The flowers that on the Nile-stream blush,
Sits ever thus,--his only song
  To earth and heaven, "Hush, all, hush!"


[1] The God of Silence, thus pictured by the Egyptians.






SONG OF INNISFAIL.


They came from a land beyond the sea,
  And now o'er the western main
Set sail, in their good ships, gallantly,
  From the sunny land of Spain.
"Oh, where's the Isle we've seen in dreams,
  Our destined home or grave?"[1]
Thus sung they as, by the morning's beams,
  They swept the Atlantic wave.

And, lo, where afar o'er ocean shines
  A sparkle of radiant green,
As tho' in that deep lay emerald mines,
  Whose light thro' the wave was seen.
"'Tis Innisfail[2]--'tis Innisfail!"
  Rings o'er the echoing sea;
While, bending to heaven, the warriors hail
  That home of the brave and free.

Then turned they unto the Eastern wave,
  Where now their Day-God's eye
A look of such sunny-omen gave
  As lighted up sea and sky.
Nor frown was seen thro' sky or sea,
  Nor tear o'er leaf or sod,
When first on their Isle of Destiny
  Our great forefathers trod.


[1] Milesius remembered the remarkable prediction of the principal Druid,
who foretold that the posterity of Gadelus should obtain the possession of
a Western Island (which was Ireland), and there inhabit.--_Keating_.

[2] The Island of Destiny, one of the ancient names of Ireland.






THE NIGHT DANCE.


Strike the gay harp! see the moon is on high,
  And, as true to her beam as the tides of the ocean,
Young hearts, when they feel the soft light of her eye,
  Obey the mute call and heave into motion.
Then, sound notes--the gayest, the lightest,
  That ever took wing, when heaven looked brightest!
      Again! Again!

Oh! could such heart-stirring music be heard
  In that City of Statues described by romancers,
So wakening its spell, even stone would be stirred,
  And statues themselves all start into dancers!

Why then delay, with such sounds in our ears,
  And the flower of Beauty's own garden before us,--
While stars overhead leave the song of their spheres,
  And listening to ours, hang wondering o'er us?
Again, that strain!--to hear it thus sounding
  Might set even Death's cold pulses bounding--
      Again! Again!

Oh, what delight when the youthful and gay,
  Each with eye like a sunbeam and foot like a feather,
Thus dance, like the Hours to the music of May,
  And mingle sweet song and sunshine together!






THERE ARE SOUNDS OF MIRTH.


There are sounds of mirth in the night-air ringing,
  And lamps from every casement shown;
While voices blithe within are singing,
  That seem to say "Come," in every tone.
Ah! once how light, in Life's young season,
  My heart had leapt at that sweet lay;
Nor paused to ask of graybeard Reason
  Should I the syren call obey.

And, see--the lamps still livelier glitter,
  The syren lips more fondly sound;
No, seek, ye nymphs, some victim fitter
  To sink in your rosy bondage bound.
Shall a bard, whom not the world in arms
  Could bend to tyranny's rude control,
Thus quail at sight of woman's charms
  And yield to a smile his freeborn soul?

Thus sung the sage, while, slyly stealing,
  The nymphs their fetters around him cast,
And,--their laughing eyes, the while, concealing,--
  Led Freedom's Bard their slave at last.
For the Poet's heart, still prone to loving,
Was like that rack of the Druid race,[1]
Which the gentlest touch at once set moving,
  But all earth's power couldn't cast from its base.


[1] The Rocking Stones of the Druids, some of which no force is able to
dislodge from their stations.






OH, ARRANMORE, LOVED ARRANMORE.


Oh! Arranmore, loved Arranmore,
  How oft I dream of thee,
And of those days when, by thy shore,
  I wandered young and free.
Full many a path I've tried, since then,
  Thro' pleasure's flowery maze,
But ne'er could find the bliss again
  I felt in those sweet days.

How blithe upon thy breezy cliffs,
  At sunny morn I've stood,
With heart as bounding as the skiffs
  That danced along thy flood;
Or, when the western wave grew bright
  With daylight's parting wing,
Have sought that Eden in its light,
  Which dreaming poets sing;[1]--

That Eden where the immortal brave
  Dwell in a land serene,--
Whose bowers beyond the shining wave,
  At sunset, oft are seen.
Ah dream too full of saddening truth!
  Those mansions o'er the main
Are like the hopes I built in youth,--
  As sunny and as vain!


[1] "The inhabitants of Arranmore are still persuaded that, in a clear
day, they can see from this coast Hy Brysail or the Enchanted Island, the
paradise of the Pagan Irish, and concerning which they relate a number of
romantic stories",--_Beaufort's "Ancient Topography of Ireland_."






LAY HIS SWORD BY HIS SIDE.


Lay his sword by his side,[1]--it hath served him too well
  Not to rest near his pillow below;
To the last moment true, from his hand ere it fell,
  Its point was still turned to a flying foe.
Fellow-laborers in life, let them slumber in death,
  Side by side, as becomes the reposing brave,--
That sword which he loved still unbroke in its sheath,
  And himself unsubdued in his grave.

Yet pause--for, in fancy, a still voice I hear,
  As if breathed from his brave heart's remains;--
Faint echo of that which, in Slavery's ear,
  Once sounded the war-word, "Burst your chains!"
And it cries from the grave where the hero lies deep,
  "Tho' the day of your Chieftain for ever hath set,
"Oh leave not his sword thus inglorious to sleep,--
  "It hath victory's life in it yet!"

"Should some alien, unworthy such weapon to wield,
  "Dare to touch thee, my own gallant sword,
"Then rest in thy sheath, like a talisman sealed,
 Or return to the grave of thy chainless lord.
But, if grasped by a hand that hath learned the proud use
 Of a falchion, like thee, on the battle-plain,--
Then, at Liberty's summons, like lightning let loose,
 Leap forth from thy dark sheath again!"


[1] It was the custom of the ancient Irish, in the manner of the
Scythians, to bury the favorite swords of their heroes along with them.






OH, COULD WE DO WITH THIS WORLD OF OURS.


Oh, could we do with this world of ours
As thou dost with thy garden bowers,
Reject the weeds and keep the flowers,
  What a heaven on earth we'd make it!
So bright a dwelling should be our own,
So warranted free from sigh or frown,
That angels soon would be coming down,
  By the week or month to take it.

Like those gay flies that wing thro' air,
And in themselves a lustre bear,
A stock of light, still ready there,
  Whenever they wish to use it;
So, in this world I'd make for thee,
Our hearts should all like fire-flies be,
And the flash of wit or poesy
  Break forth whenever we choose it.

While every joy that glads our sphere
Hath still some shadow hovering near,
In this new world of ours, my dear,
  Such shadows will all be omitted:--
Unless they're like that graceful one,
Which, when thou'rt dancing in the sun.
Still near thee, leaves a charm upon
  Each spot where it hath flitted.






THE WINE-CUP IS CIRCLING.


The wine-cup is circling in Almhin's hall,[1]
  And its Chief, mid his heroes reclining,
Looks up with a sigh, to the trophied wall,
  Where his sword hangs idly shining.
    When, hark! that shout
    From the vale without,--
    "Arm ye quick, the Dane, the Dane is nigh!"
    Every Chief starts up
    From his foaming cup,
  And "To battle, to battle!" is the Finian's cry.

The minstrels have seized their harps of gold,
  And they sing such thrilling numbers,
'Tis like the voice of the Brave, of old,
  Breaking forth from the place of slumbers!
    Spear to buckler rang,
    As the minstrels sang,
  And the Sun-burst[2] o'er them floated wide;
    While remembering the yoke
    Which their father's broke,
  "On for liberty, for liberty!" the Finians cried.

Like clouds of the night the Northmen came,
  O'er the valley of Almhin lowering;
While onward moved, in the light of its fame,
  That banner of Erin, towering.
    With the mingling shock
    Rung cliff and rock,
  While, rank on rank, the invaders die:
    And the shout, that last,
    O'er the dying past,
  Was "victory! victory!"--the Finian's cry.


[1] The Palace of Fin Mac-Cumhal (the Fingal of Macpherson) in Leinster.
It was built on the top of the hill, which has retained from thence the
name of the Hill of Allen, in the county of Kildare. The Finians, or
Fenii, were the celebrated National Militia of Ireland, which this chief
commanded. The introduction of the Danes in the above song is an
anachronism common to most of the Finian and Ossianic legends.

[2] The name given to the banner of the Irish.






THE DREAM OF THOSE DAYS.


The dream of those days when first I sung thee is o'er,
Thy triumph hath stained the charm thy sorrows then wore;
And even of the light which Hope once shed o'er thy chains,
Alas, not a gleam to grace thy freedom remains.

Say, is it that slavery sunk so deep in thy heart,
That still the dark brand is there, though chainless thou art;
And Freedom's sweet fruit, for which thy spirit long burned,
Now, reaching at last thy lip, to ashes hath turned?

Up Liberty's steep by Truth and Eloquence led,
With eyes on her temple fixt, how proud was thy tread!
Ah, better thou ne'er hadst lived that summit to gain
Or died in the porch than thus dishonor the fane.






FROM THIS HOUR THE PLEDGE IS GIVEN.


From this hour the pledge is given,
  From this hour my soul is thine:
Come what will, from earth or heaven,
  Weal or woe, thy fate be mine.
When the proud and great stood by thee,
  None dared thy rights to spurn;
And if now they're false and fly thee,
  Shall I, too, basely turn?
No;--whate'er the fires that try thee,
  In the same this heart shall burn.

Tho' the sea, where thou embarkest,
  Offers now no friendly shore,
Light may come where all looks darkest,
  Hope hath life when life seems o'er.
And, of those past ages dreaming,
  When glory decked thy brow,
Oft I fondly think, tho' seeming
  So fallen and clouded now,
Thou'lt again break forth, all beaming,--
  None so bright, so blest as thou!






SILENCE IS IN OUR FESTAL HALLS.[1]


Silence is in our festal halls,--
  Sweet Son of Song! thy course is o'er;
In vain on thee sad Erin calls,
  Her minstrel's voice responds no more;--
All silent as the Eolian shell
  Sleeps at the close of some bright day,
When the sweet breeze that waked its swell
  At sunny morn hath died away.

Yet at our feasts thy spirit long
  Awakened by music's spell shall rise;
For, name so linked with deathless song
  Partakes its charm and never dies:
And even within the holy fane
  When music wafts the soul to heaven,
One thought to him whose earliest strain
  Was echoed there shall long be given.

But, where is now the cheerful day.
  The social night when by thy side
He who now weaves this parting lay
  His skilless voice with thine allied;
And sung those songs whose every tone,
  When bard and minstrel long have past,
Shall still in sweetness all their own
  Embalmed by fame, undying last.

Yes, Erin, thine alone the fame,--
  Or, if thy bard have shared the crown,
From thee the borrowed glory came,
  And at thy feet is now laid down.
Enough, if Freedom still inspire
  His latest song and still there be.
As evening closes round his lyre,
  One ray upon its chords from thee.


[1] It is hardly necessary, perhaps, to inform the reader, that these
lines are meant as a tribute of sincere friendship to the memory of an old
and valued colleague in this work, Sir John Stevenson.








NATIONAL AIRS




ADVERTISEMENT.


It is Cicero, I believe, who says "_naturâ, ad modes ducimur;_" and the
abundance of wild, indigenous airs, which almost every country, except
England, possesses, sufficiently proves the truth of his assertion. The
lovers of this simple, but interesting kind of music, are here presented
with the first number of a collection, which, I trust, their contributions
will enable us to continue. A pretty air without words resembles one of
those _half_ creatures of Plato, which are described as wandering in
search of the remainder of themselves through the world. To supply this
other half, by uniting with congenial words the many fugitive melodies
which have hitherto had none,--or only such as are unintelligible to the
generality of their hearers,--it is the object and ambition of the present
work. Neither is it our intention to confine ourselves to what are
strictly called National Melodies, but, wherever we meet with any
wandering and beautiful air, to which poetry has not yet assigned a worthy
home, we shall venture to claim it as an _estray_ swan, and enrich our
humble Hippocrene with its song.


T.M.






NATIONAL AIRS






A TEMPLE TO FRIENDSHIP.

(SPANISH AIR.)


"A Temple to Friendship;" said Laura, enchanted,
  "I'll build in this garden,--the thought is divine!"
Her temple was built and she now only wanted
  An image of Friendship to place on the shrine.
She flew to a sculptor, who set down before her
  A Friendship, the fairest his art could invent;
But so cold and so dull, that the youthful adorer
  Saw plainly this was not the idol she meant.

"Oh! never," she cried, "could I think of enshrining
  "An image whose looks are so joyless and dim;--
"But yon little god, upon roses reclining,
  "We'll make, if you please, Sir, a Friendship of him."
So the bargain was struck; with the little god laden
  She joyfully flew to her shrine in the grove:
"Farewell," said the sculptor, "you're not the first maiden
  "Who came but for Friendship and took away Love."






FLOW ON, THOU SHINING RIVER.

(PORTUGUESE AIR.)


Flow on, thou shining river;
  But ere thou reach the sea
Seek Ella's bower and give her
  The wreaths I fling o'er thee
And tell her thus, if she'll be mine
  The current of our lives shall be,
With joys along their course to shine,
  Like those sweet flowers on thee.

But if in wandering thither
  Thou find'st she mocks my prayer,
Then leave those wreaths to wither
  Upon the cold bank there;
And tell her thus, when youth is o'er,
  Her lone and loveless Charms shall be
Thrown by upon life's weedy shore.
  Like those sweet flowers from thee.






ALL THAT'S BRIGHT MUST FADE.

(INDIAN AIR.)


All that's bright must fade,--
  The brightest still the fleetest;
All that's sweet was made
  But to be lost when sweetest.
Stars that shine and fall;--
  The flower that drops in springing;--
These, alas! are types of all
  To which our hearts are clinging.
All that's bright must fade,--
  The brightest still the fleetest;
All that's sweet was made
  But to be lost when sweetest?

Who would seek our prize
  Delights that end in aching?
Who would trust to ties
  That every hour are breaking?
Better far to be
  In utter darkness lying,
Than to be blest with light and see
  That light for ever flying.
All that's bright must fade,--
  The brightest still the fleetest;
All that's sweet was made
  But to be lost when sweetest!






SO WARMLY WE MET.

(HUNGARIAN AIR.)


So warmly we met and so fondly we parted,
  That which was the sweeter even I could not tell,--
That first look of welcome her sunny eyes darted,
  Or that tear of passion, which blest our farewell.
To meet was a heaven and to part thus another,--
  Our joy and our sorrow seemed rivals in bliss;
Oh! Cupid's two eyes are not liker each other
  In smiles and in tears than that moment to this.

The first was like day-break, new, sudden, delicious,--
  The dawn of a pleasure scarce kindled up yet;
The last like the farewell of daylight, more precious,
  More glowing and deep, as 'tis nearer its set.
Our meeting, tho' happy, was tinged by a sorrow
  To think that such happiness could not remain;
While our parting, tho' sad, gave a hope that to-morrow
  Would bring back the blest hour of meeting again.






THOSE EVENING BELLS.

(AIR.--THE BELLS OF ST. PETERSBURGH.)


Those evening bells! those evening bells!
How many a tale their music tells,
Of youth and home and that sweet time
When last I heard their soothing chime.

Those joyous hours are past away:
And many a heart, that then was gay.
Within the tomb now darkly dwells,
And hears no more those evening bells.

And so 'twill be when I am gone:
That tuneful peal will still ring on,
While other bards shall walk these dells,
And sing your praise, sweet evening bells!






SHOULD THOSE FOND HOPES.

(PORTUGUESE AIR.)


Should those fond hopes e'er forsake thee,
  Which now so sweetly thy heart employ:
Should the cold world come to wake thee
  From all thy visions of youth and joy;
Should the gay friends, for whom thou wouldst banish
  Him who once thought thy young heart his own,
All, like spring birds, falsely vanish,
  And leave thy winter unheeded and lone;--

Oh! 'tis then that he thou hast slighted
  Would come to cheer thee, when all seem'd o'er;
Then the truant, lost and blighted,
  Would to his bosom be taken once more.
Like that dear bird we both can remember,
  Who left us while summer shone round,
But, when chilled by bleak December,
  On our threshold a welcome still found.






REASON, FOLLY, AND BEAUTY.

(ITALIAN AIR.)


Reason and Folly and Beauty, they say,
Went on a party of pleasure one day:
  Folly played
  Around the maid,
The bells of his cap rung merrily out;
  While Reason took
  To his sermon-book--
Oh! which was the pleasanter no one need doubt,
Which was the pleasanter no one need doubt.

Beauty, who likes to be thought very sage.
Turned for a moment to Reason's dull page,
  Till Folly said,
  "Look here, sweet maid!"--
The sight of his cap brought her back to herself;
  While Reason read
  His leaves of lead,
With no one to mind him, poor sensible elf!
No,--no one to mind him, poor sensible elf!

Then Reason grew jealous of Folly's gay cap;
Had he that on, he her heart might entrap--
  "There it is,"
  Quoth Folly, "old quiz!"
(Folly was always good-natured, 'tis said,)
  "Under the sun
  There's no such fun,
As Reason with my cap and bells on his head!"
"Reason with my cap and bells on his head!"

But Reason the head-dress so awkwardly wore,
That Beauty now liked him still less than before;
  While Folly took
  Old Reason's book,
And twisted the leaves in a cap of such _ton_,
  That Beauty vowed
  (Tho' not aloud),
She liked him still better in that than his own,
Yes,--liked him still better in that than his own.






FARE THEE WELL, THOU LOVELY ONE!

(SICILIAN AIR.)


Fare thee well, thou lovely one!
  Lovely still, but dear no more;
Once his soul of truth is gone,
  Love's sweet life is o'er.
Thy words, what e'er their flattering spell,
  Could scarce have thus deceived;
But eyes that acted truth so well
  Were sure to be believed.
Then, fare thee well, thou lovely one!
  Lovely still, but dear no more;
Once his soul of truth is gone,
  Love's sweet life is o'er.

Yet those eyes look constant still,
  True as stars they keep their light;
Still those cheeks their pledge fulfil
  Of blushing always bright.
'Tis only on thy changeful heart
  The blame of falsehood lies;
Love lives in every other part,
  But there, alas! he dies.
Then, fare thee well, thou lovely one!
  Lovely still, but dear no more;
Once his soul of truth is gone,
  Love's sweet life is o'er.






DOST THOU REMEMBER.

(PORTUGUESE AIR.)


Dost thou remember that place so lonely,
A place for lovers and lovers only,
 Where first I told thee all my secret sighs?
When, as the moonbeam that trembled o'er thee
Illumed thy blushes, I knelt before thee,
  And read my hope's sweet triumph in those eyes?
Then, then, while closely heart was drawn to heart,
Love bound us--never, never more to part!

And when I called thee by names the dearest[1]
That love could fancy, the fondest, nearest,--
  "My life, my only life!" among the rest;
In those sweet accents that still enthral me,
Thou saidst, "Ah!" wherefore thy life thus call me?
  "Thy soul, thy soul's the name I love best;
"For life soon passes,--but how blest to be
"That Soul which never, never parts from thee!"


[1] The thought in this verse is borrowed from the original Portuguese
words.






OH, COME TO ME WHEN DAYLIGHT SETS.

(VENETIAN AIR.)


Oh, come to me when daylight sets;
  Sweet! then come to me,
When smoothly go our gondolets
  O'er the moonlight sea.
When Mirth's awake, and Love begins,
  Beneath that glancing ray,
With sound of lutes and mandolins,
  To steal young hearts away.
Then, come to me when daylight sets;
  Sweet! then come to me,
When smoothly go our gondolets
  O'er the moonlight sea.

Oh, then's the hour for those who love,
  Sweet, like thee and me;
When all's so calm below, above,
  In Heaven and o'er the sea.
When maiden's sing sweet barcarolles,
  And Echo sings again
So sweet, that all with ears and souls
  Should love and listen then.
So, come to me when daylight sets;
  Sweet! then come to me,
When smoothly go our gondolets
  O'er the moonlight sea.






OFT, IN THE STILLY NIGHT.

(SCOTCH AIR.)


Oft in the stilly night,
  Ere Slumber's chain has bound me,
Fond Memory brings the light
  Of other days around me;
    The smiles, the tears,
    Of boyhood's years,
  The words of love then spoken;
    The eyes that shone,
    Now dimmed and gone,
  The cheerful hearts now broken!
Thus, in the stilly night,
  Ere Slumber's chain has bound me,
Sad Memory brings the light
  Of other days around me.

When I remember all
  The friends, so linked together,
I've seen around me fall,
  Like leaves in wintry weather;
    I feel like one,
    Who treads alone,
  Some banquet-hall deserted,
    Whose lights are fled,
    Whose garlands dead,
  And all but he departed!
Thus, in the stilly night,
  Ere Slumber's chain has bound me,
Sad Memory brings the light
  Of other days around me.






HARK! THE VESPER HYMN IS STEALING.

(RUSSIAN AIR.)


Hark! the vesper hymn is stealing
  O'er the waters soft and clear;
Nearer yet and nearer pealing,
  And now bursts upon the ear:
    Jubilate, Amen.
Farther now, now farther stealing
  Soft it fades upon the ear:
    Jubilate, Amen.

Now, like moonlight waves retreating
  To the shore it dies along;
Now, like angry surges meeting,
  Breaks the mingled tide of song
    Jubilate, Amen.
Hush! again, like waves, retreating
  To the shore, it dies along:
     Jubilate, Amen.






LOVE AND HOPE.

(SWISS AIR.)


At morn, beside yon summer sea,
  Young Hope and Love reclined;
But scarce had noon-tide come, when he
Into his bark leapt smilingly,
  And left poor Hope behind.

"I go," said Love, "to sail awhile
  "Across this sunny main;"
And then so sweet, his parting smile,
That Hope, who never dreamt of guile,
  Believed he'd come again.

She lingered there till evening's beam
  Along the waters lay;
And o'er the sands, in thoughtful dream,
Oft traced his name, which still the stream
  As often washed away.

At length a sail appears in sight,
  And toward the maiden moves!
'Tis Wealth that comes, and gay and bright,
His golden bark reflects the light,
  But ah! it is not Love's.

Another sail--'twas Friendship showed
  Her night-lamp o'er the sea;
And calm the light that lamp bestowed;
But Love had lights that warmer glowed,
  And where, alas! was he?

Now fast around the sea and shore
  Night threw her darkling chain;
The sunny sails were seen no more,
Hope's morning dreams of bliss were o'er--
  Love never came again!






THERE COMES A TIME.

(GERMAN AIR.)


There comes a time, a dreary time,
  To him whose heart hath flown
O'er all the fields of youth's sweet prime,
  And made each flow its own.
'Tis when his soul must first renounce
  Those dreams so bright, so fond;
Oh! then's the time to die at once.
  For life has naught beyond.

When sets the sun on Afric's shore,
  That instant all is night;
And so should life at once be o'er.
  When Love withdraws his light;--
Nor, like our northern day, gleam on
  Thro' twilight's dim delay,
The cold remains of lustre gone,
  Of fire long past away.






MY HARP HAS ONE UNCHANGING THEME.

(SWEDISH AIR.)


My harp has one unchanging theme,
  One strain that still comes o'er
Its languid chord, as 'twere a dream
  Of joy that's now no more.
In vain I try, with livelier air,
  To wake the breathing string;
That voice of other times is there,
  And saddens all I sing.

Breathe on, breathe on, thou languid strain,
  Henceforth be all my own;
Tho' thou art oft so full of pain
  Few hearts can bear thy tone.
Yet oft thou'rt sweet, as if the sigh,
  The breath that Pleasure's wings
Gave out, when last they wantoned by.
  Were still upon thy strings.






OH, NO--NOT EVEN WHEN FIRST WE LOVED.

(CASHMERIAN AIR.)


Oh, no--not even when first we loved,
  Wert thou as dear as now thou art;
Thy beauty then my senses moved,
  But now thy virtues bind my heart.
What was but Passion's sigh before,
  Has since been turned to Reason's vow;
And, though I then might love thee _more_,
  Trust me, I love thee _better_ now.

Altho' my heart in earlier youth
  Might kindle with more wild desire,
Believe me, it has gained in truth
  Much more than it has lost in fire.
The flame now warms my inmost core,
  That then but sparkled o'er my brow,
And, though I seemed to love thee more,
  Yet, oh, I love thee better now.






PEACE BE AROUND THEE.

(SCOTCH AIR.)


Peace be around thee, wherever thou rov'st;
  May life be for thee one summer's day,
And all that thou wishest and all that thou lov'st
  Come smiling around thy sunny way!
If sorrow e'er this calm should break,
  May even thy tears pass off so lightly,
Like spring-showers, they'll only make
  The smiles, that follow shine more brightly.

May Time who sheds his blight o'er all
  And daily dooms some joy to death
O'er thee let years so gently fall,
  They shall not crush one flower beneath.
As half in shade and half in sun
  This world along its path advances.
May that side the sun's upon
  Be all that e'er shall meet thy glances!






COMMON SENSE AND GENIUS.

(FRENCH AIR.)


While I touch the string,
  Wreathe my brows with laurel,
For the tale I sing
  Has, for once, a moral.
Common Sense, one night,
  Tho' not used to gambols,
Went out by moonlight,
  With Genius, on his rambles.
    While I touch the string, etc.

Common Sense went on,
  Many wise things saying;
While the light that shone
  Soon set Genius straying.
_One_ his eye ne'er raised
  From the path before him;
T'_other_ idly gazed
  On each night-cloud o'er him.
    While I touch the string, etc.

So they came, at last,
  To a shady river;
Common Sense soon past,
  Safe, as he doth ever;
While the boy, whose look
  Was in Heaven that minute.
Never saw the brook,
  But tumbled headlong in it!
    While I touch the string, etc.

How the Wise One smiled,
  When safe o'er the torrent,
At that youth, so wild,
  Dripping from the current!
Sense went home to bed;
  Genius, left to shiver
On the bank, 'tis said,
  Died of that cold river!
    While I touch the string, etc.






THEN, FARE THEE WELL.

(OLD ENGLISH AIR.)


Then, fare thee well, my own dear love,
  This world has now for us
No greater grief, no pain above
  The pain of parting thus,
      Dear love!
  The pain of parting thus.

Had we but known, since first we met,
  Some few short hours of bliss,
We might, in numbering them, forget
  The deep, deep pain of this,
      Dear love!
  The deep, deep pain of this.

But no, alas, we've never seen
  One glimpse of pleasure's ray,
But still there came some cloud between,
  And chased it all away,
      Dear love!
  And chased it all away.

Yet, even could those sad moments last,
  Far dearer to my heart
Were hours of grief, together past,
  Than years of mirth apart,
      Dear love!
  Than years of mirth apart.

Farewell! our hope was born in fears,
  And nurst mid vain regrets:
Like winter suns, it rose in tears,
  Like them in tears it sets,
      Dear love!
  Like them in tears it sets.






GAYLY SOUNDS THE CASTANET.

(MALTESE AIR.)


Gayly sounds the castanet,
  Beating time to bounding feet,
When, after daylight's golden set,
  Maids and youths by moonlight meet.
Oh, then, how sweet to move
 Thro' all that maze of mirth,
Led by light from eyes we love
  Beyond all eyes on earth.

Then, the joyous banquet spread
  On the cool and fragrant ground,
With heaven's bright sparklers overhead,
  And still brighter sparkling round.
Oh, then, how sweet to say
  Into some loved one's ear,
Thoughts reserved thro' many a day
  To be thus whispered here.

When the dance and feast are done,
  Arm in arm as home we stray,
How sweet to see the dawning sun
  O'er her cheek's warm blushes play!
Then, too, the farewell kiss--
  The words, whose parting tone
Lingers still in dreams of bliss,
  That haunt young hearts alone.






LOVE IS A HUNTER-BOY.

(LANGUEDOCIAN AIR.)


Love is a hunter-boy,
  Who, makes young hearts his prey,
And in his nets of joy
  Ensnares them night and day.
In vain concealed they lie--
  Love tracks them every where;
In vain aloft they fly--
  Love shoots them flying there.

But 'tis his joy most sweet,
  At early dawn to trace
The print of Beauty's feet,
  And give the trembler chase.
And if, thro' virgin snow,
  He tracks her footsteps fair,
How sweet for Love to know
  None went before him there.






COME, CHASE THAT STARTING TEAR AWAY.

(FRENCH AIR.)


Come, chase that starting tear away,
  Ere mine to meet it springs;
To-night, at least, to-night be gay,
  Whate'er to-morrow brings.
Like sunset gleams, that linger late
  When all is darkening fast,
Are hours like these we snatch from Fate--
  The brightest, and the last.
    Then, chase that starting tear, etc.

To gild the deepening gloom, if Heaven
  But one bright hour allow,
Oh, think that one bright hour is given,
  In all its splendor, now.
Let's live it out--then sink in night,
  Like waves that from the shore
One minute swell, are touched with light,
  Then lost for evermore!
    Come, chase that starting tear, etc.






JOYS OF YOUTH, HOW FLEETING!

(PORTUGUESE AIR.)


Whisperings, heard by wakeful maids,
  To whom the night-stars guide us;
Stolen walks thro' moonlight shades,
  With those we love beside us,
      Hearts beating,
      At meeting;
      Tears starting,
      At parting;
Oh, sweet youth, how soon it fades!
  Sweet joys of youth, how fleeting!

Wanderings far away from home,
  With life all new before us;
Greetings warm, when home we come,
  From hearts whose prayers watched o'er us.
      Tears starting,
      At parting;
      Hearts beating,
      At meeting;
Oh, sweet youth, how lost on some!
  To some, how bright and fleeting!






HEAR ME BUT ONCE.

(FRENCH AIR.)


Hear me but once, while o'er the grave,
  In which our Love lies cold and dead,
I count each flattering hope he gave
  Of joys now lost and charms now fled.

Who could have thought the smile he wore
  When first we met would fade away?
Or that a chill would e'er come o'er
  Those eyes so bright thro' many a day?
      Hear me but once, etc.






WHEN LOVE WAS A CHILD

(SWEDISH AIR.)


When Love was a child, and went idling round,
  'Mong flowers the whole summer's day,
One morn in the valley a bower he found,
  So sweet, it allured him to stay.

O'erhead, from the trees, hung a garland fair,
  A fountain ran darkly beneath;--
'Twas Pleasure had hung up the flowerets there;
  Love knew it, and jumped at the wreath.

But Love didn't know--and, at _his_ weak years,
  What urchin was likely to know?--
That Sorrow had made of her own salt tears
  The fountain that murmured below.

He caught at the wreath--but with too much haste,
  As boys when impatient will do--
It fell in those waters of briny taste,
  And the flowers were all wet through.

This garland he now wears night and day;
  And, tho' it all sunny appears
With Pleasure's own light, each leaf, they say,
  Still tastes of the Fountain of Tears.






SAY, WHAT SHALL BE OUR SPORT TO-DAY?

(SICILIAN AIR.)


Say, what shall be our sport today?
  There's nothing on earth, in sea, or air,
Too bright, too high, too wild, too gay
  For spirits like mine to dare!
'Tis like the returning bloom
  Of those days, alas, gone by,
When I loved, each hour--I scarce knew whom--
  And was blest--I scarce knew why.

Ay--those were days when life had wings,
  And flew, oh, flew so wild a height
That, like the lark which sunward springs,
  'Twas giddy with too much light.
And, tho' of some plumes bereft,
  With that sun, too, nearly set,
I've enough of light and wing still left
  For a few gay soarings yet.






BRIGHT BE THY DREAMS.

(WELSH AIR.)


Bright be thy dreams--may all thy weeping
Turn into smiles while thou art sleeping.
  May those by death or seas removed,
The friends, who in thy springtime knew thee,
  All thou hast ever prized or loved,
In dreams come smiling to thee!

There may the child, whose love lay deepest,
Dearest of all, come while thou sleepest;
  Still as she was--no charm forgot--
No lustre lost that life had given;
  Or, if changed, but changed to what
Thou'lt find her yet in Heaven!






GO, THEN--'TIS VAIN.

(SICILIAN AIR.)


Go, then--'tis vain to hover
  Thus round a hope that's dead;
At length my dream is over;
  'Twas sweet--'twas false--'tis fled!
Farewell! since naught it moves thee,
  Such truth as mine to see--
Some one, who far less loves thee,
  Perhaps more blest will be.

Farewell, sweet eyes, whose brightness
  New life around me shed;
Farewell, false heart, whose lightness
  Now leaves me death instead.
Go, now, those charms surrender
  To some new lover's sigh--
One who, tho' far less tender,
  May be more blest than I.






THE CRYSTAL-HUNTERS.

(SWISS AIR.)


    O'er mountains bright
    With snow and light,
  We Crystal-Hunters speed along;
    While rocks and caves,
    And icy wares,
  Each instant echo to our song;
And, when we meet with store of gems,
We grudge not kings their diadems.
    O'er mountains bright
    With snow and light,
We Crystal-Hunters speed along;
    While grots and caves,
    And icy waves,
Each instant echo to our song.

Not half so oft the lover dreams
  Of sparkles from his lady's eyes,
As we of those refreshing gleams
  That tell where deep the crystal lies;
Tho', next to crystal, we too grant,
That ladies' eyes may most enchant.
    O'er mountains bright, etc.

Sometimes, when on the Alpine rose
  The golden sunset leaves its ray,
So like a gem the floweret glows,
  We hither bend our headlong way;
And, tho' we find no treasure there,
We bless the rose that shines so fair.
  O'er mountains bright
  With snow and light,
We Crystal-Hunters speed along;
  While rocks and caves,
  And icy waves,
Each instant echo to our song,






ROW GENTLY HERE.

(VENETIAN AIR.)


    Row gently here,
    My gondolier,
  So softly wake the tide,
    That not an ear.
    On earth, may hear,
  But hers to whom we glide.
Had Heaven but tongues to speak, as well
   As starry eyes to see,
Oh, think what tales 'twould have to tell
   Of wandering youths like me!

    Now rest thee here.
    My gondolier;
  Hush, hush, for up I go,
    To climb yon light
    Balcony's height,
  While thou keep'st watch below.
Ah! did we take for Heaven above
   But half such pains as we
Take, day and night, for woman's love,
   What' Angels we should be.






OH, DAYS OF YOUTH.

(FRENCH AIR.)


Oh, days of youth and joy, long clouded,
  Why thus for ever haunt my view?
When in the grave your light lay shrouded,
  Why did not Memory die there too?
Vainly doth hope her strain now sing me,
  Telling of joys that yet remain--
No, never more can this life bring me
  One joy that equals youth's sweet pain.

Dim lies the way to death before me,
  Cold winds of Time blow round my brow;
Sunshine of youth! that once fell o'er me,
  Where is your warmth, your glory now?
_'Tis_ not that then no pain could sting me;
  'Tis not that now no joys remain;
Oh, 'tis that life no more can bring me
  One joy so sweet as that worst pain.






WHEN FIRST THAT SMILE.

(VENETIAN AIR.)


When first that smile, like sunshine, blest my sight,
  Oh what a vision then came o'er me!
Long years of love, of calm and pure delight,
  Seemed in that smile to pass before me.
Ne'er did the peasant dream of summer skies,
  Of golden fruit and harvests springing,
With fonder hope than I of those sweet eyes,
  And of the joy their light was bringing.

Where now are all those fondly-promised hours?
  Ah! woman's faith is like her brightness--
Fading as fast as rainbows or day-flowers,
  Or aught that's known for grace and lightness.
Short as the Persian's prayer, at close of day,
  Should be each vow of Love's repeating;
Quick let him worship Beauty's precious ray--
  Even while he kneels, that ray is fleeting!






PEACE TO THE SLUMBERERS!

(CATALONIAN AIR.)


Peace to the slumberers!
  They lie on the battle-plain.
With no shroud to cover them;
  The dew and the summer rain
Are all that weep over them.
      Peace to the slumberers!

Vain was their bravery!--
  The fallen oak lies where it lay,
Across the wintry river;
  But brave hearts, once swept away,
Are gone, alas! forever.
      Vain was their bravery!

Woe to the conqueror!
  Our limbs shall lie as cold as theirs
Of whom his sword bereft us.
  Ere we forget the deep arrears
Of vengeance they have left us!
      Woe to the conqueror!






WHEN THOU SHALT WANDER.

(SICILIAN AIR.)


When thou shalt wander by that sweet light
  We used to gaze on so many an eve,
When love was new and hope was bright,
  Ere I could doubt or thou deceive--
Oh, then, remembering how swift went by
Those hours of transport, even _thou_ may'st sigh.

Yes, proud one! even thy heart may own
  That love like ours was far too sweet
To be, like summer garments thrown
  Aside, when past the summer's heat;
And wish in vain to know again
Such days, such nights, as blest thee then.






WHO'LL BUY MY LOVE-KNOTS?

(PORTUGUESE AIR.)


Hymen, late, his love-knots selling,
Called at many a maiden's dwelling:
None could doubt, who saw or knew them,
Hymen's call was welcome to them.
  "Who'll buy my love-knots?
  "Who'll buy my love-knots?"
Soon as that sweet cry resounded
How his baskets were surrounded!

Maids, who now first dreamt of trying
These gay knots of Hymen's tying;
Dames, who long had sat to watch him
Passing by, but ne'er could catch him;--
  "Who'll buy my love-knots?
  "Who'll buy my love-knots?"--
All at that sweet cry assembled;
Some laughed, some blushed, and some trembled.

"Here are knots," said Hymen, taking
Some loose flowers, "of Love's own making;
"Here are gold ones--you may trust 'em"--
(These, of course, found ready custom).
  "Come, buy my love-knots!
  "Come, buy my love-knots!
"Some are labelled 'Knots to tie men--
"Love the maker--Bought of Hymen.'"

Scarce their bargains were completed,
When the nymphs all cried, "We're cheated!
"See these flowers--they're drooping sadly;
"This gold-knot, too, ties but badly--
  "Who'd buy such love-knots?
  "Who'd buy such love-knots?
"Even this tie, with Love's name round it--
"All a sham--He never bound it."

Love, who saw the whole proceeding,
Would have laughed, but for good breeding;
While Old Hymen, who was used to
Cries like that these dames gave loose to--
  "Take back our love-knots!
  "Take back our love-knots!"
Coolly said, "There's no returning
"Wares on Hymen's hands--Good morning!"






SEE, THE DAWN FROM HEAVEN.

(TO AN AIR SUNG AT ROME, ON CHRISTMAS EVE.)


See, the dawn from Heaven is breaking
  O'er our sight,
And Earth from sin awaking,
  Hails the light!
See those groups of angels, winging
  From the realms above,
On their brows, from Eden, bringing
  Wreaths of Hope and Love.

Hark, their hymns of glory pealing
  Thro' the air,
To mortal ears revealing
  Who lies there!
In that dwelling, dark and lowly,
  Sleeps the Heavenly Son,
He, whose home's above,--the Holy,
  Ever Holy One!






NETS AND CAGES.[1]

(SWEDISH AIR.)


Come, listen to my story, while
  Your needle task you ply:
At what I sing some maids will smile,
  While some, perhaps, may sigh.
Though Love's the theme, and Wisdom blames
  Such florid songs as ours,

Yet Truth sometimes, like eastern dames,
  Can speak her thoughts by flowers.
  Then listen, maids, come listen, while
    Your needle's task you ply;
  At what I sing there's some may smile,
    While some, perhaps, will sigh.

Young Cloe, bent on catching Loves,
  Such nets had learned to frame,
That none, in all our vales and groves,
  E'er caught so much small game:
But gentle Sue, less given to roam,
  While Cloe's nets were taking
Such lots of Loves, sat still at home,
  One little Love-cage making.
    Come, listen, maids, etc.

Much Cloe laughed at Susan's task;
  But mark how things went on:
These light-caught Loves, ere you could ask
  Their name and age, were gone!
So weak poor Cloe's nets were wove,
  That, tho' she charm'd into them
New game each hour, the youngest Love
  Was able to break thro' them.
    Come, listen, maids, etc.

Meanwhile, young Sue, whose cage was wrought
  Of bars too strong to sever,
One Love with golden pinions caught.
  And caged him there for ever;
Instructing, thereby, all coquettes,
  Whate'er their looks or ages,
That, tho 'tis pleasant weaving Nets,
  'Tis wiser to make Cages.

Thus, maidens, thus do I beguile
  The task your fingers ply.--
May all who hear like Susan smile,
  And not, like Cloe, sigh!


[1] Suggested by the following remark of Swift's;--"The reason why so few
marriages are happy, is, because young ladies spend their time in making
nets, not in making cages."






WHEN THROUGH THE PIAZZETTA.

(VENETIAN AIR.)


When thro' the Piazzetta
  Night breathes her cool air,
Then, dearest Ninetta,
  I'll come to thee there.
Beneath thy mask shrouded,
  I'll know thee afar,
As Love knows tho' clouded
  His own Evening Star.

In garb, then, resembling
  Some gay gondolier,
I'll whisper thee, trembling,
  "Our bark, love, is near:
"Now, now, while there hover
  "Those clouds o'er the moon,
"'Twill waft thee safe over
  "Yon silent Lagoon."






GO, NOW, AND DREAM.

(SICILIAN AIR.)


Go, now, and dream o'er that joy in thy slumber--
Moments so sweet again ne'er shalt thou number.
Of Pain's bitter draught the flavor ne'er flies,
While Pleasure's scarce touches the lip ere it dies.
  Go, then, and dream, etc.

That moon, which hung o'er your parting, so splendid,
Often will shine again, bright as she then did--
But, never more will the beam she saw burn
In those happy eyes, at your meeting, return.
  Go, then, and dream, etc.






TAKE HENCE THE BOWL.

(NEAPOLITAN AIR.)


Take hence the bowl;--tho' beaming
  Brightly as bowl e'er shone,
Oh, it but sets me dreaming
  Of happy days now gone.
There, in its clear reflection,
  As in a wizard's glass,
Lost hopes and dead affection,
  Like shades, before me pass.

Each cup I drain brings hither
  Some scene of bliss gone by;--
Bright lips too bright to wither,
  Warm hearts too warm to die.
Till, as the dream comes o'er me
  Of those long vanished years,
Alas, the wine before me
  Seems turning all to tears!






FAREWELL, THERESA!

(VENETIAN AIR.)


Farewell, Theresa! yon cloud that over
  Heaven's pale night-star gathering we see,
Will scarce from that pure orb have past ere thy lover
Swift o'er the wide wave shall wander from thee.

Long, like that dim cloud, I've hung around thee,
  Darkening thy prospects, saddening thy brow;
With gay heart, Theresa, and bright cheek I found thee;
  Oh, think how changed, love, how changed art thou now!

But here I free thee: like one awaking
  From fearful slumber, thou break'st the spell;
'Tis over--the moon, too, her bondage is breaking--
Past are the dark clouds; Theresa, farewell!






HOW OFT, WHEN WATCHING STARS.

(SAVOYARD AIR.)


Oft, when the watching stars grow pale,
  And round me sleeps the moonlight scene,
To hear a flute through yonder vale
  I from my casement lean.
"Come, come, my love!" each note then seems to say,
"Oh, come, my love! the night wears fast away!"
  Never to mortal ear
    Could words, tho' warm they be,
  Speak Passion's language half so clear
    As do those notes to me!

Then quick my own light lute I seek,
  And strike the chords with loudest swell;
And, tho' they naught to others speak,
  _He_ knows their language well.
"I come, my love!" each note then seems to say,
"I come, my love!--thine, thine till break of day."
  Oh, weak the power of words,
    The hues of painting dim
  Compared to what those simple chords
    Then say and paint to him!






WHEN THE FIRST SUMMER BEE.

(GERMAN AIR.)


  When the first summer bee
    O'er the young rose shall hover,
  Then, like that gay rover,
    I'll come to thee.
He to flowers, I to lips, full of sweets to the brim--
What a meeting, what a meeting for me and for him!
  When the first summer bee, etc.

  Then, to every bright tree
    In the garden he'll wander;
    While I, oh, much fonder,
      Will stay with thee.
In search of new sweetness thro' thousands he'll run,
While I find the sweetness of thousands in one.
  Then, to every bright tree, etc.






THO' 'TIS ALL BUT A DREAM.

(FRENCH AIR.)


Tho' 'tis all but a dream at the best,
  And still, when happiest, soonest o'er,
Yet, even in a dream, to be blest
  Is so sweet, that I ask for no more.
    The bosom that opes
    With earliest hopes,
  The soonest finds those hopes untrue:
    As flowers that first
    In spring-time burst
  The earliest wither too!
    Ay--'tis all but a dream, etc.

Tho' by friendship we oft are deceived,
  And find love's sunshine soon o'ercast,
Yet friendship will still be believed.
  And love trusted on to the last.
    The web 'mong the leaves
    The spider weaves
Is like the charm Hope hangs o'er men;
    Tho' often she sees
    'Tis broke by the breeze,
She spins the bright tissue again.
    Ay--'tis all but a dream, etc.






WHEN THE WINE-CUP IS SMILING.

(ITALIAN AIR.)


When the wine-cup is smiling before us,
  And we pledge round to hearts that are true, boy, true,
Then the sky of this life opens o'er us,
  And Heaven gives a glimpse of its blue.
Talk of Adam in Eden reclining,
  We are better, far better off thus, boy, thus;
For _him_ but _two_ bright eyes were shining--
  See, what numbers are sparkling for us!

When on _one_ side the grape-juice is dancing,
  While on t'other a blue eye beams, boy, beams,
'Tis enough, 'twixt the wine and the glancing,
  To disturb even a saint from his dreams.
Yet, tho' life like a river is flowing,
  I care not how fast it goes on, boy, on,
So the grape on its bank is still growing,
  And Love lights the waves as they run.






WHERE SHALL WE BURY OUR SHAME?

(NEAPOLITAN AIR.)


Where shall we bury our shame?
  Where, in what desolate place,
Hide the last wreck of a name
  Broken and stained by disgrace?
Death may dissever the chain,
  Oppression will cease when we're gone;
But the dishonor, the stain,
  Die as we may, will live on.

Was it for this we sent out
  Liberty's cry from our shore?
Was it for this that her shout
  Thrilled to the world's very core?
Thus to live cowards and slaves!--
  Oh, ye free hearts that lie dead,
Do you not, even in your graves,
  Shudder, as o'er you we tread?






NE'ER TALK OF WISDOM'S GLOOMY SCHOOLS.

(MAHRATTA AIR.)


Ne'er talk of Wisdom's gloomy schools;
  Give me the sage who's able
To draw his moral thoughts and rules
  From the study of the table;--
Who learns how lightly, fleetly pass
  This world and all that's in it.
From the bumper that but crowns his glass,
  And is gone again next minute!

The diamond sleeps within the mine,
  The pearl beneath the water;
While Truth, more precious, dwells in wine.
  The grape's own rosy daughter.
And none can prize her charms like him,
  Oh, none like him obtain her,
Who thus can, like Leander, swim
  Thro' sparkling floods to gain her!






HERE SLEEPS THE BARD.

(HIGHLAND AIR.)


Here sleeps the Bard who knew so well
All the sweet windings of Apollo's shell;
Whether its music rolled like torrents near.
Or died, like distant streamlets, on the ear.
Sleep, sleep, mute bard; alike unheeded now
The storm and zephyr sweep thy lifeless brow;--
That storm, whose rush is like thy martial lay;
That breeze which, like thy love-song, dies away!






DO NOT SAY THAT LIFE IS WANING.


Do not say that life is waning,
  Or that hope's sweet day is set;
While I've thee and love remaining,
  Life is in the horizon yet.

Do not think those charms are flying,
  Tho' thy roses fade and fall;
Beauty hath a grace undying,
  Which in thee survives them all.

Not for charms, the newest, brightest,
  That on other cheeks may shine,
Would I change the least, the slightest.
  That is lingering now o'er thine.






THE GAZELLE.


Dost thou not hear the silver bell,
  Thro' yonder lime-trees ringing?
'Tis my lady's light gazelle;
  To me her love thoughts bringing,--
All the while that silver bell
  Around his dark neck ringing.

See, in his mouth he bears a wreath,
  My love hath kist in tying;
Oh, what tender thoughts beneath
  Those silent flowers are lying,--
Hid within the mystic wreath,
  My love hath kist in trying!

Welcome, dear gazelle, to thee,
  And joy to her, the fairest.
Who thus hath breathed her soul to me.
  In every leaf thou bearest;
Welcome, dear gazelle, to thee,
  And joy to her the fairest!

Hail ye living, speaking flowers,
  That breathe of her who bound ye;
Oh, 'twas not in fields, or bowers;
  'Twas on her lips, she found ye;--
Yes, ye blushing, speaking flowers,
  'Twas on her lips she found ye.






NO--LEAVE MY HEART TO REST.


No--leave my heart to rest, if rest it may,
When youth, and love, and hope, have past away.
Couldst thou, when summer hours are fled,
To some poor leaf that's fallen and dead,
Bring back the hue it wore, the scent it shed?
No--leave this heart to rest, if rest it may,
When youth, and love, and hope, have past away.

Oh, had I met thee then, when life was bright,
Thy smile might still have fed its tranquil light;
But now thou comest like sunny skies,
Too late to cheer the seaman's eyes,
When wrecked and lost his bark before him lies!
No--leave this heart to rest, if rest it may,
Since youth, and love, and hope have past away.






WHERE ARE THE VISIONS.


"Where are the visions that round me once hovered,
  "Forms that shed grace from their shadows alone;
"Looks fresh as light from a star just discovered,
  "And voices that Music might take for her own?"
Time, while I spoke, with his wings resting o'er me,
  Heard me say, "Where are those visions, oh where?"
And pointing his wand to the sunset before me,
  Said, with a voice like the hollow wind, "There."

Fondly I looked, when the wizard had spoken,
  And there, mid the dim-shining ruins of day,
Saw, by their light, like a talisman broken,
  The last golden fragments of hope melt away.






WIND THY HORN, MY HUNTER BOY.


Wind thy horn, my hunter boy,
  And leave thy lute's inglorious sighs;
Hunting is the hero's joy,
  Till war his nobler game supplies.
Hark! the hound-bells ringing sweet,
While hunters shout and the, woods repeat,
                 Hilli-ho! Hilli-ho!

Wind again thy cheerful horn,
  Till echo, faint with answering, dies:
Burn, bright torches, burn till morn,
  And lead us where the wild boar lies.
Hark! the cry, "He's found, he's found,"
While hill and valley our shouts resound.
                 Hilli-ho! Hilli-ho!






OH, GUARD OUR AFFECTION.


Oh, guard our affection, nor e'er let it feel
The blight that this world o'er the warmest will steal:
While the faith of all round us is fading or past,
Let ours, ever green, keep its bloom to the last.

Far safer for Love 'tis to wake and to weep,
As he used in his prime, than go smiling to sleep;
For death on his slumber, cold death follows fast,
White the love that is wakeful lives on to the last.

And tho', as Time gathers his clouds o'er our head,
A shade somewhat darker o'er life they may spread,
Transparent, at least, be the shadow they cast,
So that Love's softened light may shine thro' to the last.






SLUMBER, OH SLUMBER.


"Slumber, oh slumber; if sleeping thou mak'st
"My heart beat so wildly, I'm lost if thou wak'st."
  Thus sung I to a maiden,
    Who slept one summer's day,
  And, like a flower overladen
    With too much sunshine, lay.
      Slumber, oh slumber, etc.

"Breathe not, oh breathe not, ye winds, o'er her cheeks;
"If mute thus she charm me, I'm lost when she speaks."
  Thus sing I, while, awaking,
    She murmurs words that seem
  As if her lips were taking
    Farewell of some sweet dream.
      Breathe not, oh breathe not, etc.






BRING THE BRIGHT GARLANDS HITHER.


Bring the bright garlands hither,
  Ere yet a leaf is dying;
If so soon they must wither.
  Ours be their last sweet sighing.
Hark, that low dismal chime!
'Tis the dreary voice of Time.
Oh, bring beauty, bring roses,
  Bring all that yet is ours;
Let life's day, as it closes,
  Shine to the last thro' flowers.

Haste, ere the bowl's declining,
  Drink of it now or never;
Now, while Beauty is shining,
  Love, or she's lost for ever.
Hark! again that dull chime,
'Tis the dreary voice of Time.
Oh, if life be a torrent,
  Down to oblivion going,
Like this cup be its current,
  Bright to the last drop flowing!






IF IN LOVING, SINGING.


If in loving, singing, night and day
We could trifle merrily life away,
Like atoms dancing in the beam,
Like day-flies skimming o'er the stream,
Or summer blossoms, born to sigh
Their sweetness out, and die--
How brilliant, thoughtless, side by side,
Thou and I could make our minutes glide!
No atoms ever glanced so bright,
No day-flies ever danced so light,
Nor summer blossoms mixt their sigh,
So close, as thou and I!






THOU LOVEST NO MORE.


Too plain, alas, my doom is spoken
  Nor canst thou veil the sad truth o'er;
Thy heart is changed, thy vow is broken,
  Thou lovest no more--thou lovest no more.

Tho' kindly still those eyes behold me,
  The smile is gone, which once they wore;
Tho' fondly still those arms enfold me,
  'Tis not the same--thou lovest no more.

Too long my dream of bliss believing,
  I've thought thee all thou wert before;
But now--alas! there's no deceiving,
  'Tis all too plain, thou lovest no more.

Oh, thou as soon the dead couldst waken,
  As lost affection's life restore,
Give peace to her that is forsaken,
  Or bring back him who loves no more.






WHEN ABROAD IN THE WORLD.


When abroad in the world thou appearest.
  And the young and the lovely are there,
To my heart while of all thou'rt the dearest.
  To my eyes thou'rt of all the most fair.
    They pass, one by one,
      Like waves of the sea,
    That say to the Sun,
      "See, how fair we can be."
  But where's the light like thine,
  In sun or shade to shine?
No--no, 'mong them all, there is nothing like thee,
      Nothing like thee.

Oft, of old, without farewell or warning,
  Beauty's self used to steal from the skies;
Fling a mist round her head, some fine morning,
  And post down to earth in disguise;
    But, no matter what shroud
      Around her might be,
    Men peeped through the cloud,
      And whispered, "'Tis She."
  So thou, where thousands are,
  Shinest forth the only star,--
Yes, yes, 'mong them all, there is nothing like thee,
      Nothing like thee.






KEEP THOSE EYES STILL PURELY MINE.


Keep those eyes still purely mine,
  Tho' far off I be:
When on others most they shine,
  Then think they're turned on me.

Should those lips as now respond
  To sweet minstrelsy,
When their accents seem most fond,
  Then think they're breathed for me.

Make what hearts thou wilt thy own,
  If when all on thee
Fix their charmed thoughts alone,
  Thou think'st the while on me.






HOPE COMES AGAIN.


Hope comes again, to this heart long a stranger,
  Once more she sings me her flattering strain;
But hush, gentle syren--for, ah, there's less danger
  In still suffering on, than in hoping again.

Long, long, in sorrow, too deep for repining,
  Gloomy, but tranquil, this bosom hath lain:
And joy coming now, like a sudden light shining
  O'er eyelids long darkened, would bring me but pain.

Fly then, ye visions, that Hope would shed o'er me;
  Lost to the future, my sole chance of rest
Now lies not in dreaming of bliss that's before me.
  But, ah--in forgetting how once I was blest.






O SAY, THOU BEST AND BRIGHTEST.


O say, thou best and brightest,
  My first love and my last.
When he, whom now thou slightest,
  From life's dark scene hath past,
Will kinder thoughts then move thee?
  Will pity wake one thrill
For him who lived to love thee,
  And dying loved thee still?

If when, that hour recalling
  From which he dates his woes,
Thou feel'st a tear-drop falling,
  Ah, blush not while it flows;
But, all the past forgiving,
  Bend gently o'er his shrine,
And say, "This heart, when living,
  "With all its faults, was mine."






WHEN NIGHT BRINGS THE HOUR.


When night brings the hour
  Of starlight and joy,
There comes to my bower
  A fairy-winged boy;
With eyes so bright,
  So full of wild arts,
Like nets of light,
  To tangle young hearts;
With lips, in whose keeping
  Love's secret may dwell,
Like Zephyr asleep in
  Some rosy sea-shell.
Guess who he is,
  Name but his name,
And his best kiss
  For reward you may claim.

Where'er o'er the ground
  He prints his light feet.
The flowers there are found
  Most shining and sweet:
His looks, as soft
  As lightning in May,
Tho' dangerous oft,
  Ne'er wound but in play:
And oh, when his wings
  Have brushed o'er my lyre,
You'd fancy its strings
  Were turning to fire.
Guess who he is,
  Name but his name,
And his best kiss
  For reward you may claim.






LIKE ONE WHO, DOOMED.


Like one who, doomed o'er distant seas
  His weary path to measure,
When home at length, with favoring breeze,
  He brings the far-sought treasure;

His ship, in sight of shore, goes down,
  That shore to which he hasted;
And all the wealth he thought his own
  Is o'er the waters wasted!

Like him, this heart, thro' many a track
  Of toil and sorrow straying,
One hope alone brought fondly back,
  Its toil and grief repaying.

Like him, alas, I see that ray
  Of hope before me perish,
And one dark minute sweep away
  What years were given to cherish.






FEAR NOT THAT, WHILE AROUND THEE.


Fear not that, while around thee
  Life's varied blessings pour,
One sigh of hers shall wound thee,
  Whose smile thou seek'st no more.
No, dead and cold for ever
  Let our past love remain;
Once gone, its spirit never
  Shall haunt thy rest again.

May the new ties that bind thee
  Far sweeter, happier prove,
Nor e'er of me remind thee,
  But by their truth and love.
Think how, asleep or waking,
  Thy image haunts me yet;
But, how this heart is breaking
  For thy own peace forget.






WHEN LOVE IS KIND.


When Love is kind,
  Cheerful and free,
Love's sure to find
  Welcome from me.

But when Love brings
  Heartache or pang,
Tears, and such things--
  Love may go hang!

If Love can sigh
  For one alone,
Well pleased am I
  To be that one,

But should I see
  Love given to rove
To two or three,
  Then--good by Love!

Love must, in short,
  Keep fond and true,
Thro' good report,
  And evil too.

Else, here I swear,
  Young Love may go.
For aught I care--
  To Jericho.






THE GARLAND I SEND THEE.


The Garland I send thee was culled from those bowers
Where thou and I wandered in long vanished hours;
Not a leaf or a blossom its bloom here displays,
But bears some remembrance of those happy days.

The roses were gathered by that garden gate,
Where our meetings, tho' early, seemed always too late;
Where lingering full oft thro' a summer-night's moon,
Our partings, tho' late, appeared always too soon.

The rest were all culled from the banks of that glade,
Where, watching the sunset, so often we've strayed,
And mourned, as the time went, that Love had no power
To bind in his chain even one happy hour.






HOW SHALL I WOO?


If I speak to thee in friendship's name,
  Thou think'st I speak too coldly;
If I mention Love's devoted flame,
  Thou say'st I speak too boldly.
Between these two unequal fires,
  Why doom me thus to hover?
I'm a friend, if such thy heart requires,
  If more thou seek'st, a lover.
Which shall it be? How shall I woo?
  Fair one, choose between the two.

Tho' the wings of Love will brightly play,
  When first he comes to woo thee,
There's a chance that he may fly away,
  As fast as he flies _to_ thee.
While Friendship, tho' on foot she come,
  No flights of fancy trying,
Will, therefore, oft be found at home,
  When Love abroad is flying.
Which shall it be? How shall I woo?
  Dear one, choose between the two.

If neither feeling suits thy heart
  Let's see, to please thee, whether
We may not learn some precious art
  To mix their charms together;
One feeling, still more sweet, to form
  From two so sweet already--
A friendship that like love is warm,
  A love like friendship steady.
Thus let it be, thus let me woo,
  Dearest, thus we'll join the two.






SPRING AND AUTUMN.


Every season hath its pleasures;
  Spring may boast her flowery prime,
Yet the vineyard's ruby treasures
  Brighten Autumn's soberer time.
So Life's year begins and closes;
  Days tho' shortening still can shine;
What tho' youth gave love and roses,
  Age still leaves us friends and wine.

Phillis, when she might have caught me,
  All the Spring looked coy and shy,
Yet herself in Autumn sought me,
  When the flowers were all gone by.
Ah, too late;--she found her lover
  Calm and free beneath his vine,
Drinking to the Spring-time over,
  In his best autumnal wine.

Thus may we, as years are flying,
  To their flight our pleasures suit,
Nor regret the blossoms dying,
  While we still may taste the fruit,
Oh, while days like this are ours,
  Where's the lip that dares repine?
Spring may take our loves and flowers,
  So Autumn leaves us friends and wine.






LOVE ALONE.


If thou wouldst have thy charms enchant our eyes,
First win our hearts, for there thy empire lies:
Beauty in vain would mount a heartless throne,
Her Right Divine is given by Love alone.

What would the rose with all her pride be worth,
Were there no sun to call her brightness forth?
Maidens, unloved, like flowers in darkness thrown,
Wait but that light which comes from Love alone.

Fair as thy charms in yonder glass appear,
Trust not their bloom, they'll fade from year to year:
Wouldst thou they still should shine as first they shone,
Go, fix thy mirror in Love's eyes alone.








SACRED SONGS




TO

EDWARD TUITE DALTON, ESQ.

THE FIRST NUMBER

OF

SACRED SONGS

IS INSCRIBED,

BY HIS SINCERE AND AFFECTIONATE FRIEND,

THOMAS MOORE.

_Mayfield Cottage, Ashbourne_,
      _May, 1816_






SACRED SONGS






THOU ART, O GOD.

(Air.--Unknown.)[1]


    "The day is thine, the night is also thine: thou hast prepared the
    light and the sun.

    "Thou hast set all the borders of the earth: thou hast made summer and
    winter."
    --_Psalm_ lxxiv. 16, 17.


Thou art, O God, the life and light
  Of all this wondrous world we see;
Its glow by day, its smile by night,
  Are but reflections caught from Thee.
Where'er we turn, thy glories shine,
  And all things fair and bright are Thine!

When Day, with farewell beam, delays
  Among the opening clouds of Even,
And we can almost think we gaze
  Thro' golden vistas into Heaven--
Those hues, that make the Sun's decline
So soft, so radiant, LORD! are Thine.

When Night, with wings of starry gloom,
  O'ershadows all the earth and skies,
Like some dark, beauteous bird, whose plume
  Is sparkling with unnumbered eyes--
That sacred gloom, those fires divine,
So grand, so countless, LORD! are Thine.

When youthful Spring around us breathes,
  Thy Spirit warms her fragrant sigh;
And every flower the Summer wreaths
  Is born beneath that kindling eye.
Where'er we turn, thy glories shine,
And all things fair and bright are Thine.


[1] I have heard that this air is by the late Mrs. Sheridan. It is sung to
the beautiful old words, "I do confess thou'rt smooth and fair."






THE BIRD, LET LOOSE.

(AIR.--BEETHOVEN.)


The bird, let loose in eastern skies,[1]
  When hastening fondly home,
Ne'er stoops to earth her wing, nor flies
  Where idle warblers roam.
But high she shoots thro' air and light,
  Above all low delay,
Where nothing earthly bounds her flight,
  Nor shadow dims her way.

So grant me, GOD, from every care
  And stain of passion free,
Aloft, thro' Virtue's purer air,
  To hold my course to Thee!
No sin to cloud, no lure to stay
  My Soul, as home she springs;--

Thy Sunshine on her joyful way,
  Thy Freedom in her wings!


[1] The carrier-pigeon, it is well known, flies at an elevated pitch, in
order to surmount every obstacle between her and the place to which she is
destined.






FALLEN IS THY THRONE.

(AIR.--MARTINI.)


Fallen is thy Throne, oh Israel!
  Silence is o'er thy plains;
Thy dwellings all lie desolate,
  Thy children weep in chains.
Where are the dews that fed thee
  On Etham's barren shore?
That fire from Heaven which led thee,
  Now lights thy path no more.

LORD! thou didst love Jerusalem--
  Once she was all thy own;
Her love thy fairest heritage,[1]
  Her power thy glory's throne.[2]
Till evil came, and blighted
  Thy long-loved olive-tree;[3]--
And Salem's shrines were lighted
  For other gods than Thee.

Then sunk the star of Solyma--
  Then past her glory's day,
Like heath that, in the wilderness,[4]
  The wild wind whirls away.
Silent and waste her bowers,
  Where once the mighty trod,
And sunk those guilty towers,
  While Baal reign'd as God.

"Go"--said the LORD--"Ye Conquerors!
  "Steep in her blood your swords,
"And raze to earth her battlements,[5]
  "For they are not the LORD'S.
"Till Zion's mournful daughter
  "O'er kindred bones shall tread,
"And Hinnom's vale of slaughter[6]
  "Shall hide but half her dead!"


[1] "I have left mine heritage; I have given the clearly beloved of my
soul into the hands of her enemies."--_Jeremiah_, xii. 7.

[2] "Do not disgrace the throne of thy glory."--_Jer_. xiv. 21.

[3] "The LORD called by name a green olive-tree; fair, and of goodly
fruit," etc.--_Jer_. xi. 16.

[4] "For he shall be like the heath in the desert."--_Jer_. xvii, 6.

[5] "Take away her battlements; for they are not the LORD'S."--_Jer_. v.
10.

[6] "Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that it shall no
more be called Tophet, nor the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, but the Valley
or Slaughter; for they shall bury in Tophet till there be no place."--
_Jer_. vii. 32.






WHO IS THE MAID?

ST. JEROME'S LOVE.

(AIR.--BEETHOVEN.)


Who is the Maid my spirit seeks,
  Thro' cold reproof and slander's blight?
Has _she_ Love's roses on her cheeks?
  Is _hers_ an eye of this world's light?
No--wan and sunk with midnight prayer
  Are the pale looks of her I love;
Or if at times a light be there,
  Its beam is kindled from above.

I chose not her, my heart's elect,
  From those who seek their Maker's shrine
In gems and garlands proudly decked,
  As if themselves were things divine.
No--Heaven but faintly warms the breast
  That beats beneath a broidered veil;
And she who comes in glittering vest
  To mourn her frailty, still is frail.

Not so the faded form I prize
  And love, because its bloom is gone;
The glory in those sainted eyes
  Is all the grace _her_ brow puts on.
And ne'er was Beauty's dawn so bright,
  So touching as that form's decay,
Which, like the altar's trembling light,
  In holy lustre wastes away.






THIS WORLD IS ALL A FLEETING SHOW.

(AIR.--STEVENSON.)


This world is all a fleeting show,
  For man's illusion given;
The smiles of joy, the tears of woe,
Deceitful shine, deceitful flow--
  There's nothing true but Heaven!

And false the light on glory's plume,
  As fading hues of even;
And love and hope, and beauty's bloom,
Are blossoms gathered for the tomb--
  There's nothing bright but Heaven!

Poor wanderers of a stormy day,
  From wave to wave we're driven,
And fancy's flash and reason's ray
Serve but to light the troubled way--
  There's nothing calm but Heaven!






OH THOU WHO DRY'ST THE MOURNER'S TEAR.

(AIR.--HAYDN.)


    "He healeth the broken in heart and bindeth up their wounds,"
    --_Psalm_. cxlvii. 3.


Oh Thou who dry'st the mourner's tear,
  How dark this world would be,
If, when deceived and wounded here,
  We could not fly to Thee.
The friends who in our sunshine live,
  When winter comes, are flown;
And he who has but tears to give,
  Must weep those tears alone.
But Thou wilt heal that broken heart,
  Which, like the plants that throw
Their fragrance from the wounded part,
  Breathes sweetness out of woe.

When joy no longer soothes or cheers,
  And even the hope that threw
A moment's sparkle o'er our tears
  Is dimmed and vanished too,
Oh, who would bear life's stormy doom,
  Did not thy Wing of Love
Come, brightly wafting thro' the gloom
  Our Peace-branch from above?
Then sorrow, touched by Thee, grows bright
  With more than rapture's ray;
As darkness shows us worlds of light
  We never saw by day!






WEEP NOT FOR THOSE.

(AIR.--AVISON.)


Weep not for those whom the veil of the tomb,
  In life's happy morning, hath hid from our eyes,
Ere sin threw a blight o'er the spirit's young bloom,
  Or earth had profaned what was born for the skies.
Death chilled the fair fountain, ere sorrow had stained it;
  'Twas frozen in all the pure light of its course,
And but sleeps till the sunshine of Heaven has unchained it,
  To water that Eden where first was its source.
Weep not for those whom the veil of the tomb,
  In life's happy morning, hath hid from our eyes,
Ere sin threw a blight o'er the spirit's young bloom,
  Or earth had profaned what was born for the skies.

Mourn not for her, the young Bride of the Vale,[1]
  Our gayest and loveliest, lost to us now,
Ere life's early lustre had time to grow pale,
  And the garland of Love was yet fresh on her brow.
Oh, then was her moment, dear spirit, for flying
  From this gloomy world, while its gloom was unknown--
And the wild hymns she warbled so sweetly, in dying,
  Were echoed in Heaven by lips like her own.
Weep not for her--in her springtime she flew
  To that land where the wings of the soul are unfurled;
And now, like a star beyond evening's cold dew,
  Looks radiantly down on the tears of this world.


[1] This second verse, which I wrote long after the first, alludes to the
fate of a very lovely and amiable girl, the daughter of the late Colonel
Bainbrigge, who was married in Ashbourne church, October 81, 1815, and
died of a fever in a few weeks after. The sound of her marriage-bells
seemed scarcely out of our ears when we heard of her death. During her
last delirium she sung several hymns, in a voice even clearer and sweeter
than usual, and among them were some from the present collection,
(particularly, "There's nothing bright but Heaven,") which this very
interesting girl had often heard me sing during the summer.






THE TURF SHALL BE MY FRAGRANT SHRINE.

(AIR.--STEVENSON.)


The turf shall be my fragrant shrine;
My temple, LORD! that Arch of thine;
My censer's breath the mountain airs,
And silent thoughts my only prayers.

My choir shall be the moonlight waves,
When murmuring homeward to their caves,
Or when the stillness of the sea,
Even more than music dreams of Thee!

I'll seek, by day, some glade unknown,
All light and silence, like thy Throne;
And the pale stars shall be, at night,
The only eyes that watch my rite.

Thy Heaven, on which 'tis bliss to look,
Shall be my pure and shining book,
Where I shall read, in words of flame,
The glories of thy wondrous name.

I'll read thy anger in the rack
That clouds awhile the day-beam's track;
Thy mercy in the azure hue
Of sunny brightness, breaking thro'.

There's nothing bright, above, below,
From flowers that bloom to stars that glow,
But in its light my soul can see
Some feature of thy Deity:

There's nothing dark, below, above,
But in its gloom I trace thy Love,
And meekly wait that moment, when
Thy touch shall turn all bright again!






SOUND THE LOUD TIMBREL.

MIRIAM'S SONG.

(AlR.--AVISON.)[1]


    "And Miriam, the Prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in
    her band; and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with
    dances."
    --_Exod_. xv. 20.


Sound the loud Timbrel o'er Egypt's dark sea!
JEHOVAH has triumphed--his people are free.
Sing--for the pride of the Tyrant is broken,
  His chariots, his horsemen, all splendid and brave--
How vain was their boast, for the LORD hath but spoken,
  And chariots and horsemen are sunk in the wave.
Sound the loud Timbrel o'er Egypt's dark sea;
JEHOVAH has triumphed--his people are free.

Praise to the Conqueror, praise to the LORD!
His word was our arrow, his breath was our sword--
Who shall return to tell Egypt the story
  Of those she sent forth in the hour of her pride?
For the LORD hath looked out from his pillar of glory,[2]
  And all her brave thousands are dashed in the tide.
Sound the loud Timbrel o'er Egypt's dark sea,
JEHOVAH has triumphed--his people are free!


[1] I have so much altered the character of this air, which is from the
beginning of one of Avison's old-fashioned concertos, that, without this
acknowledgment, it could hardly, I think, be recognized.

[2] "And it came to pass, that, in the morning watch the LORD looked unto
the host of the Egyptians, through the pillar of fire and of the cloud,
and troubled the host of the Egyptians."--_Exod_. xiv. 24.






GO, LET ME WEEP.

(AIR.--STEVENSON.)


Go, let me weep--there's bliss in tears,
When he who sheds them inly feels
Some lingering stain of early years
  Effaced by every drop that steals.
The fruitless showers of worldly woe
Fall dark to earth and never rise;
While tears that from repentance flow,
  In bright exhalement reach the skies.
    Go, let me weep.

Leave me to sigh o'er hours that flew
More idly than the summer's wind,
And, while they past, a fragrance threw,
But left no trace of sweets behind.--
The warmest sigh that pleasure heaves
Is cold, is faint to those that swell
The heart where pure repentance grieves
  O'er hours of pleasure, loved too well.
    Leave me to sigh.






COME NOT, OH LORD.

(AIR.--HAYDN.)


Come not, oh LORD, in the dread robe of splendor
  Thou worest on the Mount, in the day of thine ire;
Come veiled in those shadows, deep, awful, but tender,
  Which Mercy flings over thy features of fire!

LORD, thou rememberest the night, when thy Nation[1]
  Stood fronting her Foe by the red-rolling stream;
O'er Egypt thy pillar shed dark desolation,
  While Israel basked all the night in its beam.

So, when the dread clouds of anger enfold Thee,
  From us, in thy mercy, the dark side remove;
While shrouded in terrors the guilty behold Thee,
  Oh, turn upon us the mild light of thy Love!


[1] "And it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel;
and it was a cloud and darkness to them, but it gave light by night to
these"--_Exod_. xiv. 20.






WERE NOT THE SINFUL MARY'S TEARS.

(AIR.--STEVENSON.)


Were not the sinful Mary's tears
  An offering worthy Heaven,
When, o'er the faults of former years,
  She wept--and was forgiven?

When, bringing every balmy sweet
  Her day of luxury stored,
She o'er her Saviour's hallowed feet
  The precious odors poured;--
And wiped them with that golden hair,
  Where once the diamond shone;
Tho' now those gems of grief were there
  Which shine for GOD alone!

Were not those sweets, so humbly shed--
  That hair--those weeping eyes--
And the sunk heart, that inly bled--
  Heaven's noblest sacrifice?

Thou that hast slept in error's sleep,
  Oh, would'st thou wake in Heaven,
Like Mary kneel, like Mary weep,
  "Love much" and be forgiven![1]


[1] "Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much."--St.
Luke, vii.47.






AS DOWN IN THE SUNLESS RETREATS.

(AIR.--HAYDN.)


As down in the sunless retreats of the Ocean,
  Sweet flowers are springing no mortal can see,
So, deep in my soul the still prayer of devotion,
  Unheard by the world, rises silent to Thee,
    My God! silent to Thee--
    Pure, warm, silent, to Thee,

As still to the star of its worship, tho' clouded,
  The needle points faithfully o'er the dim sea,
So, dark as I roam, in this wintry world shrouded,
  The hope of my spirit turns trembling to Thee,
    My GOD! trembling to Thee--
    True, fond, trembling, to Thee.






BUT WHO SHALL SEE.

(AIR.--STEVENSON.)


But who shall see the glorious day
  When, throned on Zion's brow,
The LORD shall rend that veil away
  Which hides the nations now?[1]
When earth no more beneath the fear
  Of this rebuke shall lie;[2]
When pain shall cease, and every tear
  Be wiped from every eye.[3]

Then, Judah, thou no more shall mourn
  Beneath the heathen's chain;
Thy days of splendor shall return,
  And all be new again.[4]

The Fount of Life shall then be quaft
  In peace, by all who come;[5]
And every wind that blows shall waft
  Some long-lost exile home.


[1] "And he will destroy, in this mountain, the face of the covering cast
over all people, and the vail that is spread over all nations."--Isaiah,
xxv. 7.

[2] "The rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the
earth."--Isaiah, xxv. 8.

[3] "And GOD shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; neither shall
there be any more pain."--Rev. xxi:4.

[4] "And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things
new."--Rev. xxi. 5.

[5] "And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely."--Rev.
xxii. 17.






ALMIGHTY GOD!

CHORUS OF PRIESTS.

(AIR.--MOZART.)


Almighty GOD! when round thy shrine
The Palm-tree's heavenly branch we twine,[1]
(Emblem of Life's eternal ray,
And Love that "fadeth not away,")
We bless the flowers, expanded all,[2]
We bless the leaves that never fall,

And trembling say,--"In Eden thus
"The Tree of Life may flower for us!"
When round thy Cherubs--smiling calm,
Without their flames--we wreathe the Palm.
Oh God! we feel the emblem true--
Thy Mercy is eternal too,
Those Cherubs, with their smiling eyes,
That crown of Palm which never dies,
Are but the types of Thee above--
Eternal Life, and Peace, and Love!


[1] "The Scriptures having declared that the Temple of Jerusalem was a
type of the Messiah, it is natural to conclude that the Palms, which made
so conspicuous a figure in that structure, represented that Life and
Immortality which were brought to light by the Gospel."--"Observations on
the Palm, as a sacred Emblem," by W. Tighe.

[2] "And he carved all the walls of the house round about with carved
figures of cherubim, and palm-trees, and _open flowers_."--1 Kings,
VI. 29.






OH FAIR! OH PUREST!

SAINT AUGUSTINE TO HIS SISTER.

(AIR.--MOORE)


Oh fair! oh purest! be thou the dove
That flies alone to some sunny grove,
And lives unseen, and bathes her wing,
All vestal white, in the limpid spring.
There, if the hovering hawk be near,
That limpid spring in its mirror clear
Reflects him ere he reach his prey
And warns the timorous bird away,
     Be thou this dove;
Fairest, purest, be thou this dove,

The sacred pages of God's own book
Shall be the spring, the eternal brook,
In whose holy mirror, night and day,
Thou'lt study Heaven's reflected ray;--
And should the foes of virtue dare,
With gloomy wing, to seek thee there,
Thou wilt see how dark their shadows lie
Between Heaven and thee, and trembling fly!
    Be thou that dove;
Fairest, purest, be thou that dove.






ANGEL OF CHARITY.

(AIR.--HANDEL)


Angel of Charity, who, from above,
  Comest to dwell a pilgrim here,
Thy voice is music, thy smile is love,
  And Pity's soul is in thy tear.
When on the shrine of God were laid
  First-fruits of all most good and fair,
That ever bloomed in Eden's shade,
  Thine was the holiest offering there.

Hope and her sister, Faith, were given
  But as our guides to yonder sky;
Soon as they reach the verge of heaven,
  There, lost in perfect bliss, they die.
But, long as Love, Almighty Love,
  Shall on his throne of thrones abide,
Thou, Charity, shalt dwell above,
  Smiling for ever by His side!






BEHOLD THE SUN.

(AIR.--LORD MORNINGTON.)


Behold the Sun, how bright
 From yonder East he springs,
As if the soul of life and light
 Were breathing from his wings.

So bright the Gospel broke
 Upon the souls of men;
So fresh the dreaming world awoke
 In Truth's full radiance then.

Before yon Sun arose,
 Stars clustered thro' the sky--
But oh how dim, how pale were those,
 To His one burning eye!

So Truth lent many a ray,
  To bless the Pagan's night--
But, Lord, how weak, how cold were they
  To Thy One glorious Light!






LORD, WHO SHALL BEAR THAT DAY.

(AIR.--DR. BOYCE.)


Lord, who shall bear that day, so dread, so splendid,
  When we shall see thy Angel hovering o'er
This sinful world with hand to heaven extended,
  And hear him swear by Thee that time's no more?[1]
When Earth shall feel thy fast consuming ray--
Who, Mighty God, oh who shall bear that day?

When thro' the world thy awful call hath sounded--
  "Wake, all ye Dead, to judgment wake, ye Dead!"
And from the clouds, by seraph eyes surrounded,
  The Saviour shall put forth his radiant head;[2]
While Earth and Heaven before Him pass away[3]--
Who, Mighty God, oh who shall bear that day?


When, with a glance, the Eternal Judge shall sever
  Earth's evil spirits from the pure and bright,
And say to _those_, "Depart from me for ever!"
  To _these_, "Come, dwell with me in endless light!"[4]
When each and all in silence take their way--
Who, Mighty God, oh who shall bear that day?


[1] And the angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth,
lifted up his hand to heaven, and swear by Him that liveth for ever and
ever...that there should be time no longer."--_Rev_. x. 5, 6.

[2] "They shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven--and all
the angels with him."--_Matt_. xxiv. 90, and xxv. 80.

[3] "From whose face the earth and the heaven fled away."--_Rev_. xx. ii.

[4] "And before Him shall be gathered all nations, and He shall separate
them one from another.

"Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of
my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you, etc.

"Then shall He say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye
cursed, etc.

"And these shall go away into everlasting punishment; but the righteous
into life eternal."

--_Matt_ xxv. 32, _et seq_.






OH, TEACH ME TO LOVE THEE.

(AIR.--HAYDN.)


Oh, teach me to love Thee, to feel what thou art,
Till, filled with the one sacred image, my heart
  Shall all other passions disown;
Like some pure temple that shines apart,
  Reserved for Thy worship alone.

In joy and in sorrow, thro' praise and thro' blame,
Thus still let me, living and dying the same,
  In _Thy_ service bloom and decay--
Like some lone altar whose votive flame
  In holiness wasteth away.

Tho' born in this desert, and doomed by my birth
To pain and affliction, to darkness and dearth,
  On Thee let my spirit rely--
Like some rude dial, that, fixt on earth,
  Still looks for its light from the sky.






WEEP, CHILDREN OF ISRAEL.

(AIR.--STEVENSON.)


Weep, weep for him, the Man of God--[1]
  In yonder vale he sunk to rest;
But none of earth can point the sod[2]
  That flowers above his sacred breast.
    Weep, children of Israel, weep!

His doctrine fell like Heaven's rain.[3]
  His words refreshed like Heaven's dew--
Oh, ne'er shall Israel see again
  A Chief, to GOD and her so true.
    Weep, children of Israel, weep!

Remember ye his parting gaze,
  His farewell song by Jordan's tide,
When, full of glory and of days,
  He saw the promised land--and died.[4]
    Weep, children of Israel, weep!

Yet died he not as men who sink,
  Before our eyes, to soulless clay;
But, changed to spirit, like a wink
  Of summer lightning, past away.[5]
    Weep, children of Israel, weep!


[1] "And the children of Israel wept for Moses in the plains of Moab."--
_Deut_. xxxiv, 8.

[2] "And, he buried him in a valley in the land of Moab...but no man
knoweth of his sepulchre unto this day."--_Ibid_. ver. 6.

[3] "My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the
dew."--_Moses' Song_.

[4] "I have caused thee to see it with thine eyes, but thou shalt not go
over thither."--_Deut_. xxxiv. 4.

[5] "As he was going to embrace Eleazer and Joshua, and was still
discoursing with them, a cloud stood over him on the sudden, and he
disappeared in a certain valley, although he wrote in the Holy Books that
he died, which was done out of fear, lest they should venture to say that,
because of his extraordinary virtue, he went to GOD."--_Josephus_,
book iv. chap. viii.






LIKE MORNING, WHEN HER EARLY BREEZE.

(AIR. BEETHOVEN.)


Like morning, when her early breeze
Breaks up the surface of the seas,
That, in those furrows, dark with night,
Her hand may sow the seeds of light--

Thy Grace can send its breathings o'er
The Spirit, dark and lost before,
And, freshening all its depths, prepare
For Truth divine to enter there.

Till David touched his sacred lyre.
In silence lay the unbreathing wire;
But when he swept its chords along,
Even Angels stooped to hear that song.

So sleeps the soul, till Thou, oh LORD,
Shalt deign to touch its lifeless chord--
Till, waked by Thee, its breath shall rise
In music, worthy of the skies!






COME, YE DISCONSOLATE.

(AIR.--GERMAN.)


Come, ye disconsolate, where'er you languish,
  Come, at God's altar fervently kneel;
Here bring your wounded hearts, here tell your anguish--
  Earth has no sorrow that Heaven cannot heal.

Joy of the desolate, Light of the straying,
  Hope, when all others die, fadeless and pure,
Here speaks the Comforter, in GOD'S name saying--
  "Earth has no sorrow that Heaven cannot cure."

Go, ask the infidel, what boon he brings us
  What charm for aching hearts _he_ can reveal,
Sweet as that heavenly promise Hope sings us--
  "Earth has no sorrow that GOD cannot heal."






AWAKE, ARISE, THY LIGHT IS COME.

(AIR.--STEVENSON.)


Awake, arise, thy light is come;[1]
  The nations, that before outshone thee,
Now at thy feet lie dark and dumb--
  The glory of the Lord is on thee!

Arise--the Gentiles to thy ray,
  From every nook of earth shall cluster;
And kings and princes haste to pay
  Their homage to thy rising lustre.[2]

Lift up thine eyes around, and see
  O'er foreign fields, o'er farthest waters,
Thy exiled sons return to thee,
  To thee return thy home-sick daughters.[3]

And camels rich, from Midians' tents,
  Shall lay their treasures down before thee;
And Saba bring her gold and scents,
  To fill thy air and sparkle o'er thee.[4]

See, who are these that, like a cloud,[5]
  Are gathering from all earth's dominions,
Like doves, long absent, when allowed
  Homeward to shoot their trembling pinions.

Surely the isles shall wait for me,[6]
  The ships of Tarshish round will hover,
To bring thy sons across the sea,
  And waft their gold and silver over.

And Lebanon thy pomp shall grace[7]--
  The fir, the pine, the palm victorious
Shall beautify our Holy Place,
  And make the ground I tread on glorious.

No more shall dischord haunt thy ways,[8]
  Nor ruin waste thy cheerless nation;
But thou shalt call thy portal Praise,
  And thou shalt name thy walls Salvation.

The sun no more shall make thee bright,[9]
  Nor moon shall lend her lustre to thee;
But God, Himself, shall be thy Light,
  And flash eternal glory thro' thee.

Thy sun shall never more go down;
  A ray from heaven itself descended
Shall light thy everlasting crown--
  Thy days of mourning all are ended.[10]

My own, elect, and righteous Land!
  The Branch, for ever green and vernal,
Which I have planted with this hand--
  Live thou shalt in Life Eternal.[11]


[1] "Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is
risen upon thee."--_Isaiah_, xl.

[2] "And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness
of thy rising."--_Isaiah_, xl.

[3] "Lift up thine eyes round about, and see; all they gather themselves
together, they come to thee: thy sons shall come from afar, and thy
daughters shall be nursed at thy side."--_Isaiah_, lx.

[4] "The multitude of camels shall cover thee; the dromedaries of Midian
and Ephah; all they from Sheba shall come; they shall bring gold and
incense."--_Ib_.

[5] "Who are these that fly as a cloud and as the doves to their
windows?"--_Ib_.

[6] "Surely the isles shall wait for me, and the ships of Tarshish first,
to bring thy sons from far, their silver and their gold with
them."--_Ib_.

[7] "The glory of Lebanon shall come unto thee; the fir-tree, the
pine-tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of my sanctuary;
and I will make the place of my feet glorious."--_Ib_.

[8] "Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction
within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls, Salvation, and thy
gates, Praise.--_Isaiah_, lx.

[9] "Thy sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness
shall the moon give light unto thee: but the Lord shall be unto thee an
everlasting light, and thy God thy glory."--_Ib_.

[10] "Thy sun shall no more go down...for the Lord shall be thine
everlasting light, and the days of thy mourning shall be
ended."--_Ib_.

[11] "Thy people also shall be all righteous; they shall inherit the land
for ever, the branch of my planting, the work of my hands."--_Ib_.






THERE IS A BLEAK DESERT.

(AIR.--CRESCENTINI.)


There is a bleak Desert, where daylight grows weary
Of wasting its smile on a region so dreary--
  What may that Desert be?
'Tis Life, cheerless Life, where the few joys that come
Are lost, like that daylight, for 'tis not their home.

There is a lone Pilgrim, before whose faint eyes
The water he pants for but sparkles and flies--
  Who may that Pilgrim be?
'Tis Man, hapless Man, thro' this life tempted on
By fair shining hopes, that in shining are gone.

There is a bright Fountain, thro' that Desert stealing
To pure lips alone its refreshment revealing--
  What may that Fountain be?
'Tis Truth, holy Truth, that, like springs under ground,
By the gifted of Heaven alone can be found.

There is a fair Spirit whose wand hath the spell
To point where those waters in secrecy dwell--
  Who may that Spirit be?
'Tis Faith, humble Faith, who hath learned that where'er
Her wand bends to worship the Truth must be there!






SINCE FIRST THY WORD.

(AIR.--NICHOLAS FREEMAN.)


Since first Thy Word awaked my heart,
Like new life dawning o'er me,
Where'er I turn mine eyes, Thou art,
  All light and love before me.
Naught else I feel, or hear or see--
  All bonds of earth I sever--
Thee, O God, and only Thee
  I live for, now and ever.

Like him whose fetters dropt away
  When light shone o'er his prison,[1]
My spirit, touched by Mercy's ray,
  Hath from her chains arisen.
And shall a soul Thou bidst be free,
  Return to bondage?--never!
Thee, O God, and only Thee
  I live for, now and ever.


[1] "And, behold, the angel of the Lord came upon him, and a light shined
in the prison...and his chains fell off from his hands."--_Acts_,
xii. 7.






HARK! 'TIS THE BREEZE.

(AIR.--ROUSSEAU.)


Hark! 'tis the breeze of twilight calling;
  Earth's weary children to repose;
While, round the couch of Nature falling,
  Gently the night's soft curtains close.
Soon o'er a world, in sleep reclining,
  Numberless stars, thro' yonder dark,
Shall look, like eyes of Cherubs shining
  From out the veils that hid the Ark.

Guard us, oh Thou, who never sleepest,
  Thou who in silence throned above,
Throughout all time, unwearied, keepest
  Thy watch of Glory, Power, and Love.
Grant that, beneath thine eye, securely,
  Our souls awhile from life withdrawn
May in their darkness stilly, purely,
  Like "sealed fountains," rest till dawn.






WHERE IS YOUR DWELLING, YE SAINTED?

(AIR.--HASSE.)


Where is your dwelling, ye Sainted?
  Thro' what Elysium more bright
Than fancy or hope ever painted,
  Walk ye in glory and light?
Who the same kingdom inherits?
  Breathes there a soul that may dare
Look to that world of Spirits,
  Or hope to dwell with you there?

Sages! who even in exploring
  Nature thro' all her bright ways,
Went like the Seraphs adoring,
  And veiled your eyes in the blaze--
Martyrs! who left for our reaping
  Truths you had sown in your blood--
Sinners! whom, long years of weeping
  Chastened from evil to good--

Maidens! who like the young Crescent,
  Turning away your pale brows
From earth and the light of the Present,
  Looked to your Heavenly Spouse--
Say, thro' what region enchanted
  Walk ye in Heaven's sweet air?
Say, to what spirits 'tis granted,
  Bright, souls, to dwell with you there?






HOW LIGHTLY MOUNTS THE MUSE'S WING.

(AIR--ANONYMOUS.)


How lightly mounts the Muse's wing,
  Whose theme is in the skies--
Like morning larks that sweeter sing
  The nearer Heaven they rise,

Tho' love his magic lyre may tune,
  Yet ah, the flowers he round it wreathes,
Were plucked beneath pale Passion's moon,
  Whose madness in their ode breathes.

How purer far the sacred lute,
  Round which Devotion ties
Sweet flowers that turn to heavenly fruit,
  And palm that never dies.

Tho' War's high-sounding harp may be.,
  Most welcome to the hero's ears,
Alas, his chords of victory
  Are wet, all o'er, with human tears.

How far more sweet their numbers run,
  Who hymn like Saints above,
No victor but the Eternal One,
  No trophies but of Love!






GO FORTH TO THE MOUNT,

(AIR.--STEVENSON.)


Go forth to the Mount; bring the olive-branch home,[1]
And rejoice; for the day of our  freedom is come!
From that time,[2] when the moon upon Ajalon's vale,
  Looking motionless down,[3] saw the kings of the earth,
In the presence of God's mighty champion grow pale--
  Oh, never had Judah an hour of such mirth!
Go forth to the Mount--bring the olive-branch home,
And rejoice, for the day of our freedom is come!

Bring myrtle and palm--bring the boughs of each tree
That's worthy to wave o'er the tents of the Free.[4]
From that day when the footsteps of Israel shone
  With a light not their own, thro' the Jordan's deep tide,
Whose waters shrunk back as the ark glided on[5]--
  Oh, never had Judah an hour of such pride!
Go forth to the Mount--bring the olive-branch home,
And rejoice, for the day of our Freedom is come!


[1] And that they should publish and proclaim in all their cities, and in
Jerusalem, saying, "Go forth unto the mount, and fetch olive-branches,'!
etc.--_Neh_. viii. 15.

[2] "For since the days of Joshua the son of Nun unto that day had not the
children of Israel done so; and there was very great gladness."--
_Ib_. 17.

[3] "Sun, stand thou still upon Gibeon and thou Moon, in the valley of
Ajalon."--_Josh_. x. 12.

[4] "Fetch olive-branches, and pine-branches, and myrtle-branches, and
palm-branches, and branches of thick trees, to make booths."

--_Neh_. viii. 15.

[5] "And the priests that bare the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood
firm on dry ground in the midst of Jordan, and all the Israelites passed
over on dry ground."--_Josh_. iii. 17.






IS IT NOT SWEET TO THINK, HEREAFTER.

(AIR.--HAYDN.)


Is it not sweet to think, hereafter,
  When the Spirit leaves this sphere.
Love, with deathless wing, shall waft her
  To those she long hath mourned for here?

Hearts from which 'twas death to sever.
  Eyes this world can ne'er restore,
There, as warm, as bright as ever,
  Shall meet us and be lost no more.

When wearily we wander, asking
  Of earth and heaven, where are they,
Beneath whose smile we once lay basking,
  Blest and thinking bliss would stay?

Hope still lifts her radiant finger
  Pointing to the eternal Home,
Upon whose portal yet they linger,
  Looking back for us to come.

Alas, alas--doth Hope deceive us?
  Shall friendship--love--shall all those ties
That bind a moment, and then leave us,
  Be found again where nothing dies?

Oh, if no other boon were given,
  To keep our hearts from wrong and stain,
Who would not try to win a Heaven
  Where all we love shall live again?






WAR AGAINST BABYLON.

(AIR.--NOVELLO.)


"War against Babylon!" shout we around,
  Be our banners through earth unfurled;
Rise up, ye nations, ye kings, at the sound--
  "War against Babylon!" shout thro' the world!
Oh thou, that dwellest on many waters,[1]
  Thy day of pride is ended now;
And the dark curse of Israel's daughters
  Breaks like a thundercloud over thy brow!
    War, war, war against Babylon!

Make bright the arrows, and gather the shields,[2]
  Set the standard of God on high;
Swarm we, like locusts, o'er all her fields.
  "Zion" our watchword, and "vengeance" our cry!
Woe! woe!--the time of thy visitation[3]
  Is come, proud land, thy doom is cast--
And the black surge of desolation
  Sweeps o'er thy guilty head, at last!
      War, war, war against Babylon!


[1] "Oh thou that dwellest upon many waters...thine end is
come."--_Jer_. li. 13.

[2] "Make bright the arrows; gather the shields...set up the standard upon
the walls of Babylon"--_Jer_. li. 11, 12.

[3] "Woe unto them! for their day is come, the time of their
visitation!"--_Jer_. l. 27.








A MELOLOGUE UPON NATIONAL MUSIC.




ADVERTISEMENT.


These verses were written for a Benefit at the Dublin Theatre, and were
spoken by Miss Smith, with a degree of success, which they owed solely to
her admirable manner of reciting them. I wrote them in haste; and it very
rarely happens that poetry which has cost but little labor to the writer
is productive of any great pleasure to the reader. Under this impression,
I certainly should not have published them if they had not found their way
into some of the newspapers with such an addition of errors to their own
original stock, that I thought it but fair to limit their responsibility
to those faults alone which really belong to them.

With respect to the title which I have invented for this Poem, I feel even
more than the scruples of the Emperor Tiberius, when he humbly asked
pardon of the Roman Senate for using "the outlandish term, _monopoly_."
But the truth is, having  written the Poem with the sole view of serving a
Benefit, I thought that an unintelligible word of this kind would not be
without its attraction for the multitude, with whom, "If 'tis not sense,
at least 'tis Greek." To some of my readers, however, it may not be
superfluous to say, that by "Melologue," I mean that mixture of recitation
of music, which is frequently adopted in the performance of Collins's Ode
on the Passions, and of which the most striking example I can remember is
the prophetic speech of Joad in the Athalie of Racine.

T.M.






MELOLOGUE






A SHORT STRAIN OF MUSIC FROM THE ORCHESTRA.


_There_ breathes a language known and felt
  Far as the pure air spreads its living zone;
Wherever rage can rouse, or pity melt,
  That language of the soul is felt and known.
    From those meridian plains,
  Where oft, of old, on some high tower
The soft Peruvian poured his midnight strains,
And called his distant love with such sweet power,
  That, when she heard the lonely lay,
Not worlds could keep her from his arms away,[1]
  To the bleak climes of polar night,
  Where blithe, beneath a sunless sky,
The Lapland lover bids his reindeer fly,
And sings along the lengthening waste of snow,
  Gayly as if the blessed light
  Of vernal Phoebus burned upon his brow;
    Oh Music! thy celestial claim
    Is still resistless, still the same;
    And, faithful as the mighty sea
  To the pale star that o'er its realm presides,
    The spell-bound tides
Of human passion rise and fall for thee!


[1] "A certain Spaniard, one night late, met an Indian woman in the
streets of Cozco, and would have taken her to his home, but she cried out,
'For God's sake, Sir, let me go; for that pipe, which you hear in yonder
tower, calls me with great passion, and I cannot refuse the summons; for
love constrains me to go, that I may be his wife, and he my
husband.'"--"_Garcilasso de la Véga_," in Sir Paul Ryeaut's translation.






GREEK AIR


    List! 'tis a Grecian maid that sings,
    While, from Ilissus' silvery springs,
  She draws the cool lymph in her graceful urn;
And by her side, in Music's charm dissolving,
Some patriot youth, the glorious past revolving,
  Dreams of bright days that never can return;
    When Athens nurst her olive bough
      With hands by tyrant power unchained;
    And braided for the muse's brow
      A wreath by tyrant touch unstained.
    When heroes trod each classic field
      Where coward feet now faintly falter;
    When every arm was Freedom's shield,
      And every heart was Freedom's altar!






FLOURISH OF TRUMPETS.


    Hark, 'tis the sound that charms
    The war-steed's wakening ears!--
  Oh! many a mother folds her arms
Round her boy-soldier when that call she hears;
  And, tho' her fond heart sink with fears,
  Is proud to feel his young pulse bound
  With valor's fever at the sound.
  See, from his native hills afar
  The rude Helvetian flies to war;
  Careless for what, for whom he fights,
  For slave or despot, wrongs or rights:
    A conqueror oft--a hero never--
  Yet lavish of his life-blood still,
  As if 'twere like his mountain rill,
    And gushed forever!

    Yes, Music, here, even here,
  Amid this thoughtless, vague career,
Thy soul-felt charm asserts its wondrous power.--
  There's a wild air which oft, among the rocks
Of his own loved land, at evening hour,
  Is heard, when shepherds homeward pipe their flocks,
Whose every note hath power to thrill his mind
  With tenderest thoughts; to bring around his knees
The rosy children whom he left behind,
    And fill each little angel eye
    With speaking tears, that ask him why
  He wandered from his hut for scenes like these.
Vain, vain is then the trumpet's brazen roar;
  Sweet notes of home, of love, are all he hears;
And the stern eyes that looked for blood before
  Now melting, mournful, lose themselves in tears.






SWISS AIR.--"RANZ DES VACHES."


    But wake, the trumpet's blast again,
    And rouse the ranks of warrior-men!
  Oh War, when Truth thy arm employs,
And Freedom's spirit guides the laboring storm,
'Tis then thy vengeance takes a hallowed form,
And like Heaven's lightning sacredly destroys.
Nor, Music, thro' thy breathing sphere,
Lives there a sound more grateful to the ear
    Of Him who made all harmony,
    Than the blest sound of fetters breaking,
    And the first hymn that man awaking
  From Slavery's slumber breathes to Liberty.






SPANISH CHORUS.


  Hark! from Spain, indignant Spain,
  Burst the bold, enthusiast strain,
  Like morning's music on the air;
  And seems in every note to swear
  By Saragossa's ruined streets,
    By brave Gerona's deathful story,
  That, while _one_ Spaniard's life-blood beats,
    That blood shall stain the conqueror's glory.






SPANISH AIR.--"YA DESPERTO."

  But ah! if vain the patriot's zeal,
If neither valor's force nor wisdom's light
Can break or melt that blood-cemented seal
Which shuts so close the books of Europe's right--
  What song shall then in sadness tell
    Of broken pride, of prospects shaded,
  Of buried hopes, remembered well
    Of ardor quenched, and honor faded?
  What muse shall mourn the breathless brave,
    In sweetest dirge at Memory's shrine?
  What harp shall sigh o'er Freedom's grave?
    Oh Erin, Thine!








SET OF GLEES,

MUSIC BY MOORE.






THE MEETING OF THE SHIPS.


When o'er the silent seas alone,
For days and nights we've cheerless gone,
Oh they who've felt it know how sweet,
Some sunny morn a sail to meet.

Sparkling at once is every eye,
"Ship ahoy!" our joyful cry;
While answering back the sounds we hear,
"Ship ahoy!" what cheer? what...cheer?


Then sails are backed, we nearer come,
Kind words are said of friends and home;
And soon, too soon, we part with pain,
To sail o'er silent seas again.






HIP, HIP, HURRA!


Come, fill round a bumper, fill up to the brim,
He who shrinks from a bumper I pledge not to him;
Here's the girl that each loves, be her eye of what hue,
Or lustre, it may, so her heart is but true.
    Charge! (drinks) hip, hip, hurra, hurra!

Come charge high, again, boy, nor let the full wine
Leave a space in the brimmer, where daylight may shine;
Here's "the friends of our youth--tho' of some we're bereft,
May the links that are lost but endear what are left!"
    Charge! (drinks) hip, hip, hurra, hurra!

Once more fill a bumper--ne'er talk of the hour;
On hearts thus united old Time has no power.
May our lives, tho', alas! like the wine of to-night,
They must soon have an end, to the last flow as bright.
    Charge! (drinks) hip, hip, hurra, hurra!

Quick, quick, now, I'll give you, since Time's glass will run
Even faster than ours doth, three bumpers in one;
Here's the poet who sings--here's the warrior who fights--
Here's the, statesman who speaks, in the cause of men's rights!
    Charge! (drinks) hip, hip, hurra, hurra!

Come, once more, a bumper!--then drink as you please,
Tho', _who_ could fill half-way to toast such as these?
Here's our next joyous meeting--and oh when we meet,
May our wine be as bright and our union as sweet!
    Charge! (drinks) hip, hip, hurra, hurra!






HUSH, HUSH!


"Hush, hush!"--how well
That sweet word sounds,
When Love, the little sentinel,
  Walks his night-rounds;
Then, if a foot but dare
  One rose-leaf crush,
Myriads of voices in the air
  Whisper, "Hush, hush!"

"Hark, hark, 'tis he!"
  The night elves cry,
And hush their fairy harmony,
  While he steals by;
But if his silvery feet
  One dew-drop brush,
Voices are heard in chorus sweet,
  Whispering, "Hush, hush!"






THE PARTING BEFORE THE BATTLE.


HE.

On to the field, our doom is sealed,
  To conquer or be slaves:
This sun shall see our nation free,
  Or set upon our graves.

SHE.

Farewell, oh farewell, my love,
  May heaven thy guardian be,
And send bright angels from above
  To bring thee back to me.

HE.

On to the field, the battle-field,
  Where freedom's standard waves,
This sun shall see our tyrant yield,
  Or shine upon our graves.






THE WATCHMAN.

A TRIO.


WATCHMAN.

Past twelve o'clock--past twelve.

Good night, good night, my dearest--
  How fast the moments fly!
'Tis time to part, thou hearest
That hateful watchman's cry.

WATCHMAN.

Past one o'clock--past one.

Yet stay a moment longer--
  Alas! why is it so,
The wish to stay grows stronger,
  The more 'tis time to go?

WATCHMAN.

Past two o'clock--past two.

Now wrap thy cloak about thee--
  The hours must sure go wrong,
For when they're past without thee,
  They're, oh, ten times as long.

WATCHMAN.

Past three o'clock--past three.

Again that dreadful warning!
  Had ever time such flight?
And see the sky, 'tis morning--
  So now, _indeed_, good night.

WATCHMAN.

Past three o'clock--past three.

Goodnight, good night.






SAY, WHAT SHALL WE DANCE?


  Say, what shall we dance?
Shall we bound along the moonlight plain,
To music of Italy, Greece, or Spain?
  Say, what shall we dance?
Shall we, like those who rove
Thro' bright Grenada's grove,
To the light Bolero's measures move?
Or choose the Guaracia's languishing lay,
And thus to its sound die away?

  Strike the gay chords,
Let us hear each strain from every shore
That music haunts, or young feet wander o'er.
Hark! 'tis the light march, to whose measured time,
The Polish lady, by her lover led,
Delights thro' gay saloons with step untried to tread,
Or sweeter still, thro' moonlight walks
Whose shadows serve to hide
The blush that's raised by who talks
Of love the while by her side,
Then comes the smooth waltz, to whose floating sound
Like dreams we go gliding around,
Say, which shall we dance? which shall we dance?






THE EVENING GUN.


Remember'st thou that setting sun,
  The last I saw with thee,
When loud we heard the evening gun
Peal o'er the twilight sea?
Boom!--the sounds appeared to sweep
  Far o'er the verge of day,

Till, into realms beyond the deep,
  They seemed to die away.
Oft, when the toils of day are done,
  In pensive dreams of thee,
I sit to hear that evening gun,
  Peal o'er the stormy sea.
Boom!--and while, o'er billows curled.
  The distant sounds decay,
I weep and wish, from this rough world
  Like them to die away.








LEGENDARY BALLADS.




TO

THE MISS FEILDINGS,

THIS VOLUME

IS INSCRIBED

BY

THEIR FAITHFUL FRIEND AND SERVANT,

THOMAS MOORE.






LEGENDARY BALLADS






THE VOICE.


It came o'er her sleep, like a voice of those days,
When love, only love was the light of her ways;
And, soft as in moments of bliss long ago,
It whispered her name from the garden below.

"Alas," sighed the maiden, "how fancy can cheat!
"The world once had lips that could whisper thus sweet;
"But cold now they slumber in yon fatal deep.
"Where, oh that beside them this heart too could sleep!"

She sunk on her pillow--but no, 'twas in vain
To chase the illusion, that Voice came again!
She flew to the casement--but, husht as the grave,
In moonlight lay slumbering woodland and wave.

"Oh sleep, come and shield me," in anguish she said,
"From that call of the buried, that cry of the Dead!"
And sleep came around her--but, starting, she woke,
For still from the garden that spirit Voice spoke!

"I come," she exclaimed, "be thy home where it may,
"On earth or in Heaven, that call I obey;"
Then forth thro' the moonlight, with heart beating fast
And loud as a death-watch, the pale maiden past.

Still round her the scene all in loneliness shone;
And still, in the distance, that Voice led her on;
But whither she wandered, by wave or by shore,
None ever could tell, for she came back no more.

No, ne'er came she back,--but the watchman who stood,
That night, in the tower which o'ershadows the flood,
Saw dimly, 'tis said, o'er the moonlighted spray,
A youth on a steed bear the maiden away.






CUPID AND PSYCHE.


They told her that he, to whose vows she had listened
  Thro' night's fleeting hours, was a spirit unblest;--
Unholy the eyes, that beside her had glistened,
  And evil the lips she in darkness had prest.

"When next in thy chamber the  bridegroom reclineth,
  "Bring near him thy lamp, when in slumber he lies;
"And there, as the light, o'er his dark features shineth,
  "Thou'lt see what a demon hath won all thy sighs!"

Too fond to believe them, yet doubting, yet fearing,
  When calm lay the sleeper she stole with her light;
And saw--such a vision!--no image, appearing
  To bards in their day-dreams, was ever so bright.

A youth, but just passing from childhood's sweet morning,
  While round him still lingered its innocent ray;
Tho' gleams, from beneath his shut eyelids gave warning
  Of summer-noon lightnings that under them lay.

His brow had a grace more than mortal around it,
  While, glossy as gold from a fairy-land mine,
His sunny hair hung, and the flowers that crowned it
  Seemed fresh from the breeze of some garden divine.

Entranced stood the bride, on that miracle gazing,
  What late was but love is idolatry now;
But, ah--in her tremor the fatal lamp raising--
  A sparkle flew from it and dropt on his brow.

All's lost--with a start from his rosy sleep waking;
  The Spirit flashed o'er her his glances of fire;
Then, slow from the clasp of her snowy arms breaking,
  Thus said, in a voice more of sorrow than ire:

"Farewell--what a dream thy suspicion hath broken!
  "Thus ever. Affection's fond vision is crost;
"Dissolved are her spells when a doubt is but spoken,
  "And love, once distrusted, for ever is lost!"






HERO AND LEANDER.


"The night wind is moaning with mournful sigh,
"There gleameth no moon in the misty sky
  "No star over Helle's sea;
"Yet, yet, there is shining one holy light,
"One love-kindled star thro' the deep of night,
  "To lead me, sweet Hero, to thee!"

Thus saying, he plunged in the foamy stream,
Still fixing his gaze on that distant beam
  No eye but a lover's could see;
And still, as the surge swept over his head,
"To night," he said tenderly, "living or dead,
  "Sweet Hero, I'll rest with thee!"

But fiercer around him, the wild waves speed;
Oh, Love! in that hour of thy votary's need,
  Where, where could thy Spirit be?
He struggles--he sinks--while the hurricane's breath
Bears rudely away his last farewell in death--
  "Sweet Hero, I die for thee!"






THE LEAF AND THE FOUNTAIN.


"Tell me, kind Seer, I pray thee,
"So may the stars obey thee
  "So may each airy
  "Moon-elf and fairy
"Nightly their homage pay thee!
"Say, by what spell, above, below,
"In stars that wink or flowers that blow,
  "I may discover,
  "Ere night is over,
"Whether my love loves me, or no,
"Whether my love loves me."

"Maiden, the dark tree nigh thee
"Hath charms no gold could buy thee;
  "Its stem enchanted.
  "By moon-elves planted,
"Will all thou seek'st supply thee.
"Climb to yon boughs that highest grow,
"Bring thence their fairest leaf below;
  "And thou'lt discover,
  "Ere night is over,
"Whether thy love loves thee or no,
"Whether thy love loves thee."

"See, up the dark tree going,
"With blossoms round me blowing,
  "From thence, oh Father,
  "This leaf I gather,
"Fairest that there is growing.
"Say, by what sign I now shall know
"If in this leaf lie bliss or woe
  "And thus discover
  "Ere night is over,
"Whether my love loves me or no,
"Whether my love loves me."

"Fly to yon fount that's welling
"Where moonbeam ne'er had dwelling,
  "Dip in its water
  "That leaf, oh Daughter,
"And mark the tale 'tis telling;[1]
"Watch thou if pale or bright it glow,
"List thou, the while, that fountain's flow,
  "And thou'lt discover
  "Whether thy lover,
"Loved as he is, loves thee or no,
"Loved as he is, loves thee."

Forth flew the nymph, delighted,
To seek that fount benighted;
  But, scarce a minute
  The leaf lay in it,
When, lo, its bloom was blighted!
And as she asked, with voice of woe--
Listening, the while, that fountain's flow--
  "Shall I recover
  "My truant lover?"
The fountain seemed to answer, "No;"
The fountain answered, "No."


[1] The ancients had a mode of divination somewhat similar to this; and we
find the Emperor Adrian, when he went to consult the Fountain of Castalia,
plucking a bay leaf, and dipping it into the sacred water.






CEPHALUS AND PROCRIS.


A hunter once in that grove reclined,
  To shun the noon's bright eye,
And oft he wooed the wandering wind,
  To cool his brow with its sigh,
While mute lay even the wild bee's hum,
  Nor breath could stir the aspen's hair,
His song was still "Sweet air, oh come?"
  While Echo answered, "Come, sweet Air!"

But, hark, what sounds from the thicket rise!
  What meaneth that rustling spray?
"'Tis the white-horned doe," the Hunter cries,
  "I have sought since break of day."
Quick o'er the sunny glade he springs,
  The arrow flies from his sounding bow,
"Hilliho-hilliho!" he gayly sings,
  While Echo sighs forth "Hilliho!"

Alas, 'twas not the white-horned doe
  He saw in the rustling grove,
But the bridal veil, as pure as snow,
  Of his own young wedded love.
And, ah, too sure that arrow sped,
  For pale at his feet he sees her lie;--
"I die, I die," was all she said,
  While Echo murmured. "I die, I die!"






YOUTH AND AGE.


"Tell me, what's Love?" said Youth, one day,
To drooping Age, who crest his way.--
"It is a sunny hour of play,
"For which repentance dear doth pay;
  "Repentance! Repentance!
"And this is Love, as wise men say."
"Tell me, what's Love?" said Youth once more,
Fearful, yet fond, of Age's lore.--
"Soft as a passing summer's wind,
"Wouldst know the blight it leaves behind?
  "Repentance! Repentance!
"And this is Love--when love is o'er."

"Tell me, what's Love? "said Youth again,
Trusting the bliss, but not the pain.
"Sweet as a May tree's scented air--
"Mark ye what bitter fruit 'twill bear,
  "Repentance! Repentance!
"This, this is Love--sweet Youth, beware."

Just then, young Love himself came by,
And cast on Youth a smiling eye;
Who could resist that glance's ray?
In vain did Age his warning say,
  "Repentance! Repentance!"
Youth laughing went with Love away.






THE DYING WARRIOR.


A wounded Chieftain, lying
  By the Danube's leafy side,
Thus faintly said, in dying,
  "Oh! bear, thou foaming tide.
  "This gift to my lady-bride."

'Twas then, in life's last quiver,
  He flung the scarf he wore
Into the foaming river,
  Which, ah too quickly, bore
  That pledge of one no more!

With fond impatience burning,
  The Chieftain's lady stood,
To watch her love returning
  In triumph down the flood,
  From that day's field of blood.

But, field, alas, ill-fated!
  The lady saw, instead
Of the bark whose speed she waited,
  Her hero's scarf, all red
With the drops his heart had shed.

One shriek--and all was over--
  Her life-pulse ceased to beat;
The gloomy waves now cover
  That bridal-flower so sweet.
  And the scarf is her winding sheet!






THE MAGIC MIRROR.


"Come, if thy magic Glass have power
  "To call up forms we sigh to see;
"Show me my, love, in that, rosy bower,
  "Where last she pledged her truth to me."

The Wizard showed him his Lady bright,
  Where lone and pale in her bower she lay;
"True-hearted maid," said the happy Knight,
  "She's thinking of one, who is far away."

But, lo! a page, with looks of joy,
  Brings tidings to the Lady's ear;
"'Tis," said the Knight, "the same bright boy,
  "Who used to guide me to my dear."
The Lady now, from her favorite tree,
  Hath, smiling, plucked a rosy flower:
"Such," he exclaimed, "was the gift that she
  "Each morning sent me from that bower!"

She gives her page the blooming rose,
  With looks that say, "Like lightning, fly!"
"Thus," thought the Knight, "she soothes her woes,
  "By fancying, still, her true-love nigh."
But the page returns, and--oh, what a sight,
  For trusting lover's eyes to see!--
Leads to that bower another Knight,
  As young and, alas, as loved as he!

"Such," quoth the Youth, "is Woman's love!"
  Then, darting forth, with furious bound,
Dashed at the Mirror his iron glove,
  And strewed it all in fragments round.

MORAL.

Such ills would never have come to pass,
  Had he ne'er sought that fatal view;
The Wizard would still have kept his Glass,
  And the Knight still thought his Lady true.






THE PILGRIM.


Still thus, when twilight gleamed,
Far off his Castle seemed,
  Traced on the sky;
And still, as fancy bore him.
To those dim towers before him,
He gazed, with wishful eye;
  And thought his home was nigh.

"Hall of my Sires!" he said,
"How long, with weary tread,
  "Must I toil on?
"Each eve, as thus I wander,
"Thy towers seem rising yonder,
"But, scarce hath daylight shone,
  "When, like a dream, thou'rt gone!"

So went the Pilgrim still,
Down dale and over hill,
  Day after day;
That glimpse of home, so cheering,
At twilight still appearing,
But still, with morning's ray,
  Melting, like mist, away!

Where rests the Pilgrim now?
Here, by this cypress bough,
  Closed his career;
That dream, of fancy's weaving,
No more his steps deceiving,
Alike past hope and fear,
  The Pilgrim's home is here.






THE HIGH-BORN LADYE.


In vain all the Knights to the Underwald wooed her,
  Tho' brightest of maidens, the proudest was she;
Brave chieftains they sought, and young minstrels they sued her,
  But worthy were none of the high-born Ladye.

"Whosoever I wed," said this maid, so excelling,
  "That Knight must the conqueror of conquerors be;
"He must place me in halls fit for monarchs to dwell in:--
  "None else shall be Lord of the high-born Ladye!

Thus spoke the proud damsel, with scorn looking round her
  On Knights and on Nobles of highest degree;
Who humbly and hopelessly left as they found her,
  And worshipt at distance the high-born Ladye.

At length came a Knight, from a far land to woo her,
  With plumes on his helm like the foam of the sea;
His visor was down--but, with voice that thrilled thro her,
  He whispered his vows to the high-born Ladye.

"Proud maiden! I come with high spousals to grace thee,
  "In me the great conqueror of conquerors see;
"Enthroned in a hall fit for monarchs I'll place thee,
  "And mine, thou'rt for ever, thou high-born Ladye!"

The maiden she smiled, and in jewels arrayed her,
  Of thrones and tiaras already dreamt she;
And proud was the step, as her bridegroom conveyed her
  In pomp to his home, of that highborn Ladye.

"But whither," she, starting, exclaims, "have you, led me?
  "Here's naught but a tomb and a dark cypress tree;
"Is _this_ the bright palace in which thou wouldst wed me?"
  With scorn in her glance said the high-born Ladye.

"Tis the home," he replied, "of earth's loftiest creatures"--
  Then lifted his helm for the fair one to see;
But she sunk on the ground--'twas a skeleton's features
  And Death was the Lord of the high-born Ladye!






THE INDIAN BOAT.


    'Twas midnight dark,
    The seaman's bark,
Swift o'er the waters bore him,
    When, thro' the night,
    He spied a light
Shoot o'er the wave before him.
"A sail! a sail!" he cries;
  "She comes from the Indian shore
"And to-night shall be our prize,
  "With her freight of golden ore;
    "Sail on! sail on!"
    When morning shone
He saw the gold still clearer;
    But, though so fast
    The waves he past
That boat seemed never the nearer.

    Bright daylight came,
    And still the same
Rich bark before him floated;
    While on the prize
    His wishful eyes
Like any young lover's doted:
"More sail! more sail!" he cries,
  While the waves overtop the mast;
And his bounding galley flies,
  Like an arrow before the blast.
    Thus on, and on,
    Till day was gone,
And the moon thro' heaven did hie her,
    He swept the main,
    But all in vain,
That boat seemed never the nigher.

    And many a day
    To night gave way,
And many a morn succeeded:
    While still his flight,
    Thro day and night,
That restless mariner speeded.
Who knows--who knows what seas
  He is now careering o'er?
Behind, the eternal breeze,
  And that mocking bark, before!
    For, oh, till sky
    And earth shall die,
And their death leave none to rue it,
    That boat must flee
    O'er the boundless sea,
And that ship in vain pursue it.






THE STRANGER.


Come list, while I tell of the heart-wounded Stranger
  Who sleeps her last slumber in this haunted ground;
Where often, at midnight, the lonely wood-ranger
  Hears soft fairy music re-echo around.

None e'er knew the name of that heart-stricken lady,
  Her language, tho' sweet, none could e'er understand;
But her features so sunned, and her eyelash so shady,
  Bespoke her a child of some far Eastern land.

'Twas one summer night, when the village lay sleeping,
  A soft strain of melody came o'er our ears;
So sweet, but so mournful, half song and half weeping,
  Like music that Sorrow had steeped in her tears.

We thought 'twas an anthem some angel had sung us;--
  But, soon as the day-beams had gushed from on high,
With wonder we saw this bright stranger among us,
  All lovely and lone, as if strayed from the sky.

Nor long did her life for this sphere seem intended,
  For pale was her cheek, with that spirit-like hue,
Which comes when the day of this world is nigh ended,
  And light from another already shines through.

Then her eyes, when she sung--oh, but once to have seen them--
  Left thoughts in the soul that can never depart;
While her looks and her voice made a language between them,
  That spoke more than holiest words to the heart.

But she past like a day-dream, no skill could restore her--
  Whate'er was her sorrow, its ruin came fast;
She died with the same spell of mystery o'er her.
  That song of past days on her lips to the last.

Not even in the grave is her sad heart reposing--
  Still hovers the spirit of grief round her tomb;
For oft, when the shadows of midnight are closing,
  The same strain of music is heard thro' the gloom.








BALLADS, SONGS, ETC.






TO-DAY, DEAREST! IS OURS.


To-day, dearest! is ours;
  Why should Love carelessly lose it?
This life shines or lowers
  Just as we, weak mortals, use it.
'Tis time enough, when its flowers decay,
  To think of the thorns of Sorrow
And Joy, if left on the stem to-day,
  May wither before to-morrow.

Then why, dearest! so long
  Let the sweet moments fly over?
Tho' now, blooming and young
  Thou hast me devoutly thy lover;
Yet Time from both, in his silent lapse,
  Some treasure may steal or borrow;
Thy charms may be less in bloom, perhaps,
  Or I less in love to-morrow.






WHEN ON THE LIP THE SIGH DELAYS.


When on the lip the sigh delays,
  As if 'twould linger there for ever;
When eyes would give the world to gaze,
  Yet still look down and venture never;
When, tho' with fairest nymphs we rove,
  There's one we dream of more than any--
If all this is not real love,
  'Tis something wondrous like it, Fanny!

To think and ponder, when apart,
  On all we've got to say at meeting;
And yet when near, with heart to heart,
  Sit mute and listen to their beating:
To see but one bright object move,
  The only moon, where stars are many--
If all this is not downright love,
  I prithee say what _is_, my Fanny!

When Hope foretells the brightest, best,
  Tho' Reason on the darkest reckons;
When Passion drives us to the west,
  Tho' Prudence to the eastward beckons;
When all turns round, below, above,
  And our own heads the most of any--
If this is not stark, staring love,
  Then you and I are sages, Fanny.






HERE, TAKE MY HEART.


Here, take my heart--'twill be safe in thy keeping,
  While I go wandering o'er land and o'er sea;
Smiling or sorrowing, waking or sleeping,
  What need I care, so my heart is with thee?

If in the race we are destined to run, love,
  They who have light hearts the happiest be,
Then happier still must be they who have none, love.
  And that will be _my_ case when mine is with thee.

It matters not where I may now be a rover,
  I care not how many bright eyes I may see;
Should Venus herself come and ask me to love her,
  I'd tell her I couldn't--my heart is with thee.

And there let it lie, growing fonder and, fonder--
  For, even should Fortune turn truant to me,
Why, let her go--I've a treasure beyond her,
  As long as my heart's out at interest With thee!






OH, CALL IT BY SOME BETTER NAME.


Oh, call it by some better name,
  For Friendship sounds too cold,
While Love is now a worldly flame,
  Whose shrine must be of gold:
And Passion, like the sun at noon,
  That burns o'er all he sees,
Awhile as warm will set as soon--
  Then call it none of these.

Imagine something purer far,
  More free from stain of clay
Than Friendship, Love, or Passion are,
  Yet human, still as they:
And if thy lip, for love like this,
  No mortal word can frame,
Go, ask of angels what it is,
  And call it by that name!






POOR WOUNDED HEART


  Poor wounded heart, farewell!
    Thy hour of rest is come;
    Thou soon wilt reach thy home,
  Poor wounded heart, farewell!
The pain thou'lt feel in breaking
  Less bitter far will be,
Than that long, deadly aching,
  This life has been to thee.

  There--broken heart, farewell!
    The pang is o'er--
    The parting pang is o'er;
    Thou now wilt bleed no more.
  Poor broken heart, farewell!
No rest for thee but dying--
  Like waves whose strife is past,
On death's cold shore thus lying,
  Thou sleepst in peace at last--
    Poor broken heart, farewell!






THE EAST INDIAN.


Come, May, with all thy flowers,
  Thy sweetly-scented thorn,
Thy cooling evening showers,
  The fragrant breath at morn:
When, May-flies haunt the willow,
  When May-buds tempt the bee,
Then o'er the shining billow
  My love will come to me.

From Eastern Isles she's winging
  Thro' watery wilds her way,
And on her cheek is bringing
  The bright sun's orient ray:
Oh, come and court her hither,
  Ye breezes mild and warm--
One winter's gale would wither
  So soft, so pure a form.

The fields where she was straying
  Are blest with endless light,
With zephyrs always playing
  Thro' gardens always bright.
Then now, sweet May! be sweeter
  Than e'er, thou'st been before;
Let sighs from roses meet her
  When she comes near our shore.






POOR BROKEN FLOWER.


Poor broken flower! what art can now recover thee?
  Torn from the stem that fed thy rosy breath--
    In vain the sunbeams seek
    To warm that faded cheek;
The dews of heaven, that once like balm fell over thee;
  Now are but tears, to weep thy early death.

So droops the maid whose lover hath forsaken her,--
  Thrown from his arms, as lone and lost as thou;
    In vain the smiles of all
    Like sunbeams round her fall:
The only smile that could from death awaken her,
  That smile, alas! is gone to others now.






THE PRETTY ROSE-TREE.


      Being weary of love,
      I flew to the grove,
And chose me a tree of the fairest;
      Saying, "Pretty Rose-tree,
      "Thou my mistress shall be,
  "And I'll worship each bud thou bearest.
    "For the hearts of this world are hollow,
    "And fickle the smiles we follow;
        "And 'tis sweet, when all
        "Their witcheries pall
"To have a pure love to fly to:
        "So, my pretty Rose-tree,
        "Thou my mistress shalt be,
"And the only one now I shall sigh to."

        When the beautiful hue
        Of thy cheek thro' the dew
Of morning is bashfully peeping,
        "Sweet tears," I shall say
        (As I brush them away),
  "At least there's no art in this weeping"
  Altho thou shouldst die to-morrow;
  'Twill not be from pain or sorrow;
        And the thorns of thy stem
        Are not like them
With which men wound each other;
        So, my pretty Rose-tree,
        Thou my mistress shalt be
And I'll never again sigh to another.






SHINE OUT, STARS!


Shine out, Stars! let Heaven assemble
  Round us every festal ray,
Lights that move not, lights that tremble,
  All to grace this Eve of May.
Let the flower-beds all lie waking,
  And the odors shut up there,
From their downy prisons breaking,
  Fly abroad thro sea and air.

And Would Love, too, bring his sweetness,
  With our other joys to weave,
Oh what glory, what completeness,
  Then would crown this bright May Eve!
Shine out, Stars! let night assemble
  Round us every festal ray,
Lights that move not, lights that tremble,
  To adorn this Eve of May.






THE YOUNG MULETEERS OF GRENADA.

Oh, the joys of our evening posada,
  Where, resting, at close of day,
We, young Muleteers of Grenada,
  Sit and sing the sunshine away;
So merry, that even the slumbers
  That round us hung seem gone;
Till the lute's soft drowsy numbers
  Again beguile them on.
    Oh the joys, etc.

Then as each to his loved sultana
  In sleep still breathes the sigh,
The name of some black-eyed Tirana,
  Escapes our lips as we lie.
Till, with morning's rosy twinkle,
  Again we're up and gone--
While the mule-bell's drowsy tinkle
  Beguiles the rough way on.
Oh the joys of our merry posada,
  Where, resting at close of day,
We, young Muleteers of Grenada,
  Thus sing the gay moments away.






TELL HER, OH, TELL HER.


Tell her, oh, tell her, the lute she left lying
Beneath the green arbor is still lying there;
And breezes like lovers around it are sighing,
But not a soft whisper replies to their prayer.

Tell her, oh, tell her, the tree that, in going,
Beside the green arbor she playfully set,
As lovely as, ever is blushing and blowing,
And not a, bright leaflet has fallen from it yet.

So while away from that arbor forsaken,
The maiden is wandering, still let her be
As true as the lute that no sighing can waken
And blooming for ever, unchanged as the tree!






NIGHTS OF MUSIC.


Nights of music, nights of loving,
  Lost too soon, remembered long.
When we went by moonlight roving,
  Hearts all love and lips all song.
When this faithful lute recorded
  All my spirit felt to thee;
And that smile the song rewarded--
  Worth Whole years of fame to me!

Nights of song, and nights of splendor,
Filled with joys too sweet to last--
Joys that, like the star-light, tender,
While they shore no shadow cast.
Tho' all other happy hours
   From my fading memory fly,
Of, that starlight, of those bowers,
   Not a beam, a leaf may die!






OUR FIRST YOUNG LOVE.


Our first young love resembles
  That short but brilliant ray,
Which smiles and weeps and trembles
Thro' April's earliest day.
And not all life before us,
  Howe'er its lights may play,
Can shed a lustre o'er us
  Like that first April ray.

Our summer sun may squander
A blaze serener, grander;
      Our autumn beam
      May, like a dream
  Of heaven, die calm away;
But no--let life before us
  Bring all the light it may,
'Twill ne'er shed lustre o'er us
  Like that first youthful ray.






BLACK AND BLUE EYES.


     The brilliant black eye
     May in triumph let fly
All its darts without Caring who feels 'em;
     But the soft eye of blue,
     Tho' it scatter wounds too,
Is much better pleased when it heals 'em--
     Dear Fanny!
Is much better pleased when it heals 'em.

     The black eye may say,
     "Come and worship my ray--
"By adoring, perhaps you may move me!"
     But the blue eye, half hid,
     Says from under its lid,
"I love and am yours, if you love me!"
     Yes, Fanny!
     The blue eye, half hid,
     Says, from under its lid,
"I love and am yours, if you love me!"

     Come tell me, then, why
     In that lovely blue eye
Not a charm of its tint I discover;
     Oh why should you wear
     The only blue pair
That ever said "No" to a lover?
    Dear Fanny!
    Oh, why should you wear
    The only blue pair
That ever said "No" to a lover?






DEAR FANNY.


"She has beauty, but still you must keep your heart cool;
  "She has wit, but you mustn't be caught, so;"
Thus Reason advises, but Reason's a fool,
  And 'tis not the first time I have thought so,
    Dear Fanny.
  'Tis not the first time I have thought so.

"She is lovely; then love her, nor let the bliss fly;
  "'Tis the charm of youth's vanishing season;"
Thus Love has advised me and who will deny
  That Love reasons much better than Reason,
    Dear Fanny?
  Love reasons much better than Reason.






FROM LIFE WITHOUT FREEDOM.


From life without freedom, say, who would not fly?
For one day of freedom, oh! who would not die?
Hark!--hark! 'tis the trumpet! the call of the brave,
The death-song of tyrants, the dirge of the slave.
Our country lies bleeding--haste, haste to her aid;
One arm that defends is worth hosts that invade.

In death's kindly bosom our last hope remains--
The dead fear no tyrants, the grave has no chains.
On, on to the combat! the heroes that bleed
For virtue and mankind are heroes indeed.
And oh, even if Freedom from _this_ world be driven,
Despair not--at least we shall find her in heaven.






HERE'S THE BOWER.


Here's the bower she loved so much,
  And the tree she planted;
Here's the harp she used to touch--
  Oh, how that touch enchanted!
Roses now unheeded sigh;
  Where's the hand to wreathe them?
Songs around neglected lie;
  Where's the lip to breathe them?
        Here's the bower, etc.

Spring may bloom, but she we loved
  Ne'er shall feel its sweetness;
Time, that once so fleetly moved,
  Now hath lost its fleetness.
Years were days, when here she strayed,
  Days were moments near her;
Heaven ne'er formed a brighter maid,
  Nor Pity wept a dearer!
        Here's the bower, etc.






I SAW THE MOON RISE CLEAR.

A FINLAND LOVE SONG.


I saw the moon rise clear
  O'er hills and vales of snow
Nor told my fleet reindeer
  The track I wished to go.
Yet quick he bounded forth;
  For well my reindeer knew
I've but one path on earth--
  The path which leads to you.

The gloom that winter cast,
  How soon the heart forgets,
When summer brings, at last,
  Her sun that never sets!
So dawned my love for you;
  So, fixt thro' joy and pain,
Than summer sun more true,
  'Twill never set again.






LOVE AND THE SUN-DIAL.


Young Love found a Dial once in a dark shade
Where man ne'er had wandered nor sunbeam played;
"Why thus in darkness lie?" whispered young Love,
"Thou, whose gay hours in sunshine should move."
"I ne'er," said the Dial, "have seen the warm sun,
"So noonday and midnight to me, Love, are one."

Then Love took the Dial away from the shade,
And placed her where Heaven's beam warmly played.
There she reclined, beneath Love's gazing eye,
While, marked all with sunshine, her hours flew by.
"Oh, how," said the Dial, "can any fair maid
"That's born to be shone upon rest in the shade?"

But night now comes on and the sunbeam's o'er,
And Love stops to gaze on the Dial no more.
Alone and neglected, while bleak rain and winds
Are storming around her, with sorrow she finds
That Love had but numbered a few sunny hours,--
Then left the remainder to darkness and showers!






LOVE AND TIME.


'Tis said--but whether true or not
  Let bards declare who've seen 'em--
That Love and Time have only got
  One pair of wings between 'em.
In Courtship's first delicious hour,
  The boy full oft can spare 'em;
So, loitering in his lady's bower,
  He lets the gray-beard wear 'em.
    Then is Time's hour of play;
    Oh, how be flies, flies away!

But short the moments, short as bright,
  When he the wings can borrow;
If Time to-day has had his flight,
  Love takes his turn to-morrow.
Ah! Time and Love, your change is then
  The saddest and most trying,
When one begins to limp again,
  And t'other takes to flying.
    Then is Love's hour to stray;
    Oh, how he flies, flies away!

But there's a nymph, whose chains I feel,
  And bless the silken fetter,
Who knows, the dear one, how to deal
  With Love and Time much better.
So well she checks their wanderings,
  So peacefully she pairs 'em,
That Love with her ne'er thinks of wings,
  And Time for ever wears 'em.
    This is Time's holiday;
    Oh, how he flies, flies away!






LOVE'S LIGHT SUMMER-CLOUD.


Pain and sorrow shall vanish before us--
  Youth may wither, but feeling will last;
All the shadow that e'er shall fall o'er us
  Love's light summer-cloud only shall cast.
    Oh, if to love thee more
    Each hour I number o'er--
    If this a passion be
    Worthy of thee,
Then be happy, for thus I adore thee.
  Charms may wither, but feeling shall last:
All the shadow that e'er shall fall o'er thee,
  Love's light summer-cloud sweetly shall cast.
Rest, dear bosom, no sorrows shall pain thee,
  Sighs of pleasure alone shalt thou steal;
Beam, bright eyelid, no weeping shall stain thee,
  Tears of rapture alone shalt thou feel.
      Oh, if there be a charm,
      In love, to banish harm--
      If pleasure's truest spell
        Be to love well,
Then be happy, for thus I adore thee,
  Charms may wither, but feeling shall last;
All the shadow that e'er shall fall o'er thee.
  Love's light summer-cloud sweetly shall cast.






LOVE, WANDERING THRO' THE GOLDEN MAZE.


Love, wandering through the golden maze
  Of my beloved's hair,
Traced every lock with fond delays,
  And, doting, lingered there.
And soon he found 'twere vain to fly;
  His heart was close confined,
For, every ringlet was a tie--
  A chain by beauty twined.






MERRILY EVERY BOSOM BOUNDETH.

(THE TYROLESE SONG OF LIBERTY.)


Merrily every bosom boundeth,
      Merrily, oh!
Where the song of Freedom soundeth,
      Merrily oh!
  There the warrior's arms
    Shed more splendor;
  There the maiden's charm's
    Shine more tender;
Every joy the land surroundeth,
  Merrily, oh! merrily, oh!

Wearily every bosom pineth,
      Wearily, oh!
Where the bond of slavery twineth
      Wearily, oh
  There the warrior's dart
    Hath no fleetness;
  There the maiden's heart
    Hath no sweetness--
Every flower of life declineth,
  Wearily, oh! wearily, oh!

Cheerily then from hill and valley,
      Cheerily, oh!
Like your native fountain sally,
      Cheerily, oh!
  If a glorious death,
    Won by bravery,
  Sweeter be than breath
    Sighed in slavery,
Round the flag of Freedom rally,
  Cheerily, oh! cheerily, oh!






REMEMBER THE TIME.

(THE CASTILIAN MAID.)


Remember the time, in La Mancha's shades,
  When our moments so blissfully flew;
When you called me the flower of Castilian maids,
  And I blushed to be called so by you;
When I taught you to warble the gay seguadille.
  And to dance to the light castanet;
Oh, never, dear youth, let you roam where you will,
  The delight of those moments forget.

They tell me, you lovers from Erin's green isle,
  Every hour a new passion can feel;
And that soon, in the light of some lovelier smile.
  You'll forget the poor maid of Castile.
But they know not how brave in battle you are,
  Or they never could think you would rove;
For 'tis always the spirit most gallant in war
  That is fondest and truest in Love.






OH, SOON RETURN.


Our white sail caught the evening ray,
  The wave beneath us seemed to burn,
When all the weeping maid could say,
  Was, "Oh, soon return!"
Thro' many a clime our ship was driven
O'er many a billow rudely thrown;
Now chilled beneath a northern heaven,
  Now sunned in summer's zone:
And still, where'er we bent our way,
  When evening bid the west wave burn,
I fancied still I heard her say,
  "Oh, soon return!"

If ever yet my bosom found
  Its thoughts one moment turned from thee,
'Twas when the combat raged around,
  And brave men looked to me.
But tho' the war-field's wild alarm
  For gentle love was all unmeet,
He lent to glory's brow the charm,
  Which made even danger sweet.
And still, when victory's calm came o'er
  The hearts where rage had ceased to burn,
Those parting words I heard once more,
  "Oh, soon return!--Oh, soon return!"






LOVE THEE?


Love thee?--so well, so tenderly
  Thou'rt loved, adored by me,
Fame, fortune, wealth, and liberty,
  Were worthless without thee.
Tho' brimmed with blessings, pure and rare,
  Life's cup before me lay,
Unless thy love were mingled there,
  I'd spurn the draft away.
Love thee?--so well, so tenderly,
  Thou'rt loved, adored by me,
Fame, fortune, wealth, and liberty,
  Are worthless without thee.

Without thy smile, the monarch's lot
  To me were dark and lone,
While, _with_ it, even the humblest cot
  Were brighter than his throne.
Those worlds for which the conqueror sighs
  For me would have no charms;
My only world thy gentle eyes--
  My throne thy circling arms!
Oh, yes, so well, so tenderly
  Thou'rt loved, adored by me,
Whole realms of light and liberty
  Were worthless without thee.






ONE DEAR SMILE.


Couldst thou look as dear as when
  First I sighed for thee;
Couldst thou make me feel again
Every wish I breathed thee then,
  Oh, how blissful life would be!
Hopes that now beguiling leave me,
  Joys that lie in slumber cold--
All would wake, couldst thou but give me
  One dear smile like those of old.

No--there's nothing left us now,
  But to mourn the past;
Vain was every ardent vow--
Never yet did Heaven allow
  Love so warm, so wild, to last.
Not even hope could now deceive me--
  Life itself looks dark and cold;
Oh, thou never more canst give me
  One dear smile like those of old






YES, YES, WHEN THE BLOOM.


Yes, yes, when, the bloom of Love's boyhood is o'er,
  He'll turn into friendship that feels no decay;
And, tho' Time may take from him the wings he once wore,
The charms that remain will be bright as before,
  And he'll lose but his young trick of flying away.
Then let it console thee, if Love should not stay,
  That Friendship our last happy moments will crown:
Like the shadows of morning, Love lessens away,
While Friendship, like those at the closing of day,
  Will linger and lengthen as life's sun goes down.






THE DAY OF LOVE.


  The beam of morning trembling
    Stole o'er the mountain brook,
  With timid ray resembling
    Affection's early look.
Thus love begins--sweet morn of love!

  The noon-tide ray ascended,
    And o'er the valley's stream
  Diffused a glow as splendid
    As passion's riper dream.
Thus love expands--warm noon of love!

  But evening came, o'ershading
    The glories of the sky,
  Like faith and fondness fading
    From passion's altered eye.
Thus love declines--cold eve of love!






LUSITANIAN WAR-SONG.


The song of war shall echo thro' our mountains,
  Till not one hateful link remains
  Of slavery's lingering chains;
  Till not one tyrant tread our plains,
Nor traitor lip pollute our fountains.
  No! never till that glorious day
  Shall Lusitania's sons be gay,
  Or hear, oh Peace, thy welcome lay
Resounding thro' her sunny mountains.

The song of war shall echo thro' our mountains,
  Till Victory's self shall, smiling, say,
  "Your cloud of foes hath past away,
  "And Freedom comes with new-born ray
"To gild your vines and light your fountains."
  Oh, never till that glorious day
  Shall Lusitania's sons be gay,
  Or hear, sweet Peace, thy welcome lay
Resounding thro' her sunny mountains.






THE YOUNG ROSE.


The young rose I give thee, so dewy and bright,
Was the floweret most dear to the sweet bird of night,
Who oft, by the moon, o'er her blushes hath hung,
And thrilled every leaf with the wild lay he sung.

Oh, take thou this young rose, and let her life be
Prolonged by the breath she will borrow from thee;
For, while o'er her bosom thy soft notes shall thrill,
She'll think the sweet night-bird is courting her still.






WHEN MIDST THE GAY I MEET.


When midst the gay I meet
  That gentle smile of thine,
Tho' still on me it turns most sweet,
  I scarce can call it mine:
But when to me alone
  Your secret tears you show,
Oh, then I feel those tears my own,
  And claim them while they flow.
Then still with bright looks bless
  The gay, the cold, the free;
Give smiles to those who love you less,
  But keep your tears for me.

The snow on Jura's steep
  Can smile in many a beam,
Yet still in chains of coldness sleep.
  How bright soe'er it seem.
But, when some deep-felt ray
  Whose touch is fire appears,
Oh, then the smile is warmed away,
  And, melting, turns to tears.
Then still with bright looks bless
  The gay, the cold, the free;
Give smiles to those who love you less,
  But keep your tears for me.






WHEN TWILIGHT DEWS.


When twilight dews are falling soft
  Upon the rosy sea, love,
I watch the star, whose beam so oft
  Has lighted me to thee, love.
And thou too, on that orb so dear,
  Dost often gaze at even,
And think, tho' lost for ever here,
  Thou'lt yet be mine in heaven.

There's not a garden walk I tread,
  There's not a flower I see, love,
But brings to mind some hope that's fled,
  Some joy that's gone with thee, Love.
And still I wish that hour was near,
  When, friends and foes forgiven,
The pains, the ills we've wept thro' here
  May turn to smiles in heaven.






YOUNG JESSICA.


Young Jessica sat all the day,
  With heart o'er idle love-thoughts pining;
Her needle bright beside her lay,
  So active once!--now idly shining.
Ah, Jessy, 'tis in idle hearts
  That love and mischief are most nimble;
The safest shield against the darts
  Of Cupid is Minerva's thimble.

The child who with a magnet plays
  Well knowing all its arts, so wily,
The tempter near a needle lays.
  And laughing says, "We'll steal it slily."
The needle, having naught to do,
  Is pleased to let the magnet wheedle;
Till closer, closer come the two,
  And--off, at length, elopes the needle.

Now, had this needle turned its eye
  To some gay reticule's construction,
It ne'er had strayed from duty's tie,
  Nor felt the magnet's sly seduction.
Thus, girls, would you keep quiet hearts,
  Your snowy fingers must be nimble;
The safest shield against the darts
  Of Cupid is Minerva's thimble.






HOW HAPPY, ONCE.


_How_ happy, once, tho' winged with sighs,
  My moments flew along,
While looking on those smiling eyes,
  And listening to thy magic song!
But vanished now, like summer dreams,
  Those moments smile no more;
For me that eye no longer beams,
  That song for me is o'er.
Mine the cold brow,
  That speaks thy altered vow,
While others feel thy sunshine now.

Oh, could I change my love like thee,
  One hope might yet be mine--
Some other eyes as bright to see,
  And hear a voice as sweet as thine:
But never, never can this heart
  Be waked to life again;
With thee it lost its vital part,
  And withered then!
Cold its pulse lies,
And mute are even its sighs,
All other grief it now defies.






I LOVE BUT THEE.


If, after all, you still will doubt and fear me,
  And think this heart to other loves will stray,
If I must swear, then, lovely doubter, hear me;
  By every dream I have when thou'rt away,
By every throb I feel when thou art near me,
  I love but thee--I love but thee!

By those dark eyes, where light is ever playing,
  Where Love in depth of shadow holds his throne,
And by those lips, which give whate'er thou'rt saying,
  Or grave or gay, a music of its own,
A music far beyond all minstrel's playing,
  I love but thee--I love but thee!

By that fair brow, where Innocence reposes,
  As pure as moonlight sleeping upon snow,
And by that cheek, whose fleeting blush discloses
  A hue too bright to bless this world below,
And only fit to dwell on Eden's roses,
  I love but thee--I love but thee!






LET JOY ALONE BE REMEMBERED NOW.


Let thy joys alone be remembered now,
  Let thy sorrows go sleep awhile;
Or if thought's dark cloud come o'er thy brow,
  Let Love light it up with his smile,
For thus to meet, and thus to find,
  That Time, whose touch can chill
Each flower of form, each grace of mind,
  Hath left thee blooming still,
Oh, joy alone should be thought of now,
  Let our sorrows go sleep awhile;
Or, should thought's dark cloud come o'er thy brow,
  Let Love light it up with his smile.

When the flowers of life's sweet garden fade,
  If but _one_ bright leaf remain,
Of the many that once its glory made,
  It is not for us to complain.
But thus to meet and thus to wake
  In all Love's early bliss;
Oh, Time all other gifts may take,
  So he but leaves us this!
Then let joy alone be remembered now,
  Let our sorrows go sleep awhile;
Or if thought's dark cloud come o'er the brow,
  Let Love light it up with his smile!






LOVE THEE, DEAREST? LOVE THEE?


Love thee, dearest? love thee?
  Yes, by yonder star I swear,
Which thro' tears above thee
  Shines so sadly fair;
Tho' often dim,
With tears, like him,
Like him my truth will shine,
  And--love thee, dearest? love thee?
Yes, till death I'm thine.

Leave thee, dearest? leave thee?
  No, that star is not more true;
When my vows deceive thee,
  _He_ will wander too.
A cloud of night
May veil his light,
And death shall darken mine--
  But--leave thee, dearest? leave thee?
No, till death I'm thine.






MY HEART AND LUTE.


I give thee all--I can no more--
  Tho' poor the offering be;
My heart and lute are all the store
  That I can bring to thee.
A lute whose gentle song reveals
  The soul of love full well;
And, better far, a heart that feels
  Much more than lute could tell.

Tho' love and song may fail, alas!
  To keep life's clouds away,
At least 'twill make them lighter pass,
  Or gild them if they stay.
And even if Care at moments flings
  A discord o'er life's happy strain,
Let Love but gently touch the strings,
  'Twill all be sweet again!






PEACE, PEACE TO HIM THAT'S GONE!


  When I am dead.
  Then lay my head
In some lone, distant dell,
  Where voices ne'er
  Shall stir the air,
Or break its silent spell.

  If any sound
  Be heard around,
Let the sweet bird alone,
  That weeps in song,
  Sing all night long,
"Peace, peace, to him that's gone!"

  Yet, oh, were mine
  One sigh of thine,
One pitying word from thee,
  Like gleams of heaven,
  To sinners given,
Would be that word to me.

  Howe'er unblest,
  My shade would rest
While listening to that tone;--
  Enough 'twould be
  To hear from thee,
"Peace, peace, to him that gone."






ROSE OF THE DESERT


Rose of the Desert! thou, whose blushing ray,
Lonely and lovely, fleets unseen away;
No hand to cull thee, none to woo thy sigh,--
In vestal silence left to live and die.--
Rose of the Desert! thus should woman be,
Shining uncourted, lone and safe, like thee.

Rose of the Garden, how, unlike thy doom!
Destined for others, not thyself, to bloom;
Culled ere thy beauty lives thro' half its day;
A moment cherished, and then cast away;
Rose of the Garden! such is woman's lot,--
Worshipt while blooming--when she fades, forgot.






'TIS ALL FOR THEE.


If life for me hath joy or light,
    'Tis all from thee,
My thoughts by day, my dreams by night,
    Are but of thee, of only thee.
Whate'er of hope or peace I know,
My zest in joy, my balm in woe,
To those dear eyes of thine I owe,
    'Tis all from thee.

My heart, even ere I saw those eyes,
    Seemed doomed to thee;
Kept pure till then from other ties,
    'Twas all for thee, for only thee.
Like plants that sleep till sunny May
Calls forth their life my spirit lay,
Till, touched by Love's awakening ray,
    It lived for thee, it lived for thee.

When Fame would call me to her heights,
    She speaks by thee;
And dim would shine her proudest lights,
    Unshared by thee, unshared by thee.
Whene'er I seek the Muse's shrine,
Where Bards have hung their wreaths divine,
And wish those wreaths of glory mine,
  'Tis all for thee, for only thee.






THE SONG OF THE OLDEN TIME.


There's a song of the olden time,
  Falling sad o'er the ear,
Like the dream of some village chime,
  Which in youth we loved to hear.
And even amidst the grand and gay,
  When Music tries her gentlest art
I never hear so sweet a lay,
  Or one that hangs so round my heart,
As that song of the olden time,
  Falling sad o'er the ear,
Like the dream of some village chime,
  Which in youth we loved to hear,

And when all of this life is gone,--
  Even the hope, lingering now,
Like the last of the leaves left on
  Autumn's sere and faded bough,--
'Twill seem as still those friends were near,
  Who loved me in youth's early day,
If in that parting hour I hear
  The same sweet notes and die away,--
To that song of the olden time,
  Breathed, like Hope's farewell strain,
To say, in some brighter clime,
  Life and youth will shine again!






WAKE THEE, MY DEAR.


Wake thee, my dear--thy dreaming
  Till darker hours will keep;
While such a moon is beaming,
  'Tis wrong towards Heaven to sleep.

Moments there are we number,
  Moments of pain and care,
Which to oblivious slumber
  Gladly the wretch would spare.

But now,--who'd think of dreaming
  When Love his watch should keep?
While such a moon is beaming,
  'Tis wrong towards Heaven to sleep.

If e'er the fates should sever
  My life and hopes from thee, love,
The sleep that lasts for ever
  Would then be sweet to me, love;
But now,--away with dreaming!
  Till darker hours 'twill keep;
While such a moon is beaming,
  'Tis wrong towards Heaven to sleep.






THE BOY OF THE ALPS.


Lightly, Alpine rover,
Tread the mountains over;
Rude is the path thou'st yet to go;
  Snow cliffs hanging o'er thee,
  Fields of ice before thee,
While the hid torrent moans below.
Hark, the deep thunder,
Thro' the vales yonder!
'Tis the huge avalanche downward cast;
  From rock to rock
  Rebounds the shock.
But courage, boy! the danger's past.
  Onward, youthful rover,
  Tread the glacier over,
Safe shalt thou reach thy home at last.
On, ere light forsake thee,
Soon will dusk o'ertake thee:
O'er yon ice-bridge lies thy way!
  Now, for the risk prepare thee;
  Safe it yet may bear thee,
Tho' 'twill melt in morning's ray.

Hark, that dread howling!
'Tis the wolf prowling,--
Scent of thy track the foe hath got;
  And cliff and shore
  Resound his roar.
But courage, boy,--the danger's past!

  Watching eyes have found thee,
  Loving arms are round thee,
Safe hast thou reached thy father's cot.






FOR THEE ALONE.


For thee alone I brave the boundless deep,
Those eyes my light through every distant sea;
My waking thoughts, the dream that gilds my sleep,
  The noon-tide revery, all are given to thee,
      To thee alone, to thee alone.

Tho' future scenes present to Fancy's eye
  Fair forms of light that crowd the distant air,
When nearer viewed, the fairy phantoms fly,
  The crowds dissolve, and thou alone art there,
      Thou, thou alone.

To win thy smile, I speed from shore to shore,
  While Hope's sweet voice is heard in every blast,
Still whispering on that when some years are o'er,
  One bright reward shall crown my toil at last,
      Thy smile alone, thy smile alone,

Oh place beside the transport of that hour
  All earth can boast of fair, of rich, and bright,
Wealth's radiant mines, the lofty thrones of power,--
  Then ask where first thy lover's choice would light?
      On thee alone, on thee alone.






HER LAST WORDS, AT PARTING.


Her last words, at parting, how _can_ I forget?
  Deep treasured thro' life, in my heart they shall stay;
Like music, whose charm in the soul lingers yet,
  When its sounds from the ear have long melted away.
Let Fortune assail me, her threatenings are vain;
  Those still-breathing words shall my talisman be,--
"Remember, in absence, in sorrow, and pain,
  "There's one heart, unchanging, that beats but for thee."

From the desert's sweet well tho' the pilgrim must hie,
  Never more of that fresh-springing fountain to taste,
He hath still of its bright drops a treasured supply,
  Whose sweetness lends life to his lips thro' the waste.
So, dark as my fate is still doomed to remain,
  These words shall my well in the wilderness be,--
 "Remember, in absence, in sorrow, and pain,
  "There's one heart, unchanging, that beats but for thee."






LET'S TAKE THIS WORLD AS SOME WIDE SCENE.


Let's take this world as some wide scene.
  Thro' which in frail but buoyant boat,
With skies now dark and now serene,
  Together thou and I must float;
Beholding oft on either shore
  Bright spots where we should love to stay;
But Time plies swift his flying oar,
  And away we speed, away, away.

Should chilling winds and rains come on,
  We'll raise our awning 'gainst the shower;
Sit closer till the storm is gone,
  And, smiling, wait a sunnier hour.
And if that sunnier hour should shine,
  We'll know its brightness cannot stay,
But happy while 'tis thine and mine,

  Complain not when it fades away.
So shall we reach at last that Fall
  Down which life's currents all must go,--
The dark, the brilliant, destined all
  To sink into the void below.
Nor even that hour shall want its charms,
  If, side by side, still fond we keep,
And calmly, in each other's arms
  Together linked, go down the steep.






LOVE'S VICTORY.


Sing to Love--for, oh, 'twas he
  Who won the glorious day;
Strew the wreaths of victory
  Along the conqueror's way.
Yoke the Muses to his car,
  Let them sing each trophy won;
While his mother's joyous star
  Shall light the triumph on.

Hail to Love, to mighty Love,
  Let spirits sing around;
While the hill, the dale, and grove,
  With "mighty Love" resound;
Or, should a sigh of sorrow steal
  Amid the sounds thus echoed o'er,
'Twill but teach the god to feel
  His victories the more.

See his wings, like amethyst
  Of sunny Ind their hue;
Bright as when, by Psyche kist,
  They trembled thro' and thro'.
Flowers spring beneath his feet;
  Angel forms beside him run;
While unnumbered lips repeat
  "Love's victory is won!"
   Hail to Love, to mighty Love,
   etc,






SONG OF HERCULES TO HIS DAUGHTER.[1]


"I've been, oh, sweet daughter,
  "To fountain and sea,
"To seek in their water
  "Some bright gem for thee.
"Where diamonds were sleeping,
  "Their sparkle I sought,
"Where crystal was weeping,
  "Its tears I have caught.

"The sea-nymph I've courted
  "In rich coral halls;
"With Naiads have sported
  "By bright waterfalls.
"But sportive or tender,
  "Still sought I around
"That gem, with whose splendor
  "Thou yet shalt be crowned.

"And see, while I'm speaking,
  "Yon soft light afar;--
"The pearl I've been seeking
  "There floats like a star!
"In the deep Indian Ocean
  "I see the gem shine,
"And quick as light's motion
  "Its wealth shall be thine."

Then eastward, like lightning,
  The hero-god flew,
His sunny looks brightening
  The air he went thro'.
And sweet was the duty,
  And hallowed the hour,
Which saw thus young Beauty
  Embellished by Power.


[1] Founded on the fable reported by Arrian (in Indicis) of Hercules
having searched the Indian Ocean, to find the pearl with which he adorned
his daughter Pandaea.






THE DREAM OF HOME.


Who has not felt how sadly sweet
  The dream of home, the dream of home,
Steals o'er the heart, too soon to fleet,
  When far o'er sea or land we roam?
Sunlight more soft may o'er us fall,
  To greener shores our bark may come;
But far more bright, more dear than all,
  That dream of home, that dream of home.

Ask the sailor youth when far
  His light bark bounds o'er ocean's foam,
What charms him most, when evening's star
  Smiles o'er the wave? to dream of home.
Fond thoughts of absent friends and loves
  At that sweet hour around him come;
His heart's best joy where'er he roves,
  That dream of home, that dream of home.






THEY TELL ME THOU'RT THE FAVORED GUEST.


They tell me thou'rt the favored guest
  Of every fair and brilliant throng;
No wit like thine to wake the jest,
  No voice like thine to breathe the song;
And none could guess, so gay thou art,
That thou and I are far apart.

Alas! alas! how different flows
  With thee and me the time away!
Not that I wish thee sad--heaven knows--
  Still if thou canst, be light and gay;
I only know, that without thee
The sun himself is dark to me.

Do I thus haste to hall and bower,
  Among the proud and gay to shine?
Or deck my hair with gem and flower,
  To flatter other eyes than thine?
Ah, no, with me love's smiles are past
Thou hadst the first, thou hadst the last.






THE YOUNG INDIAN MAID.


    There came a nymph dancing
     Gracefully, gracefully,
    Her eye a light glancing
     Like the blue sea;
    And while all this gladness
     Around her steps hung,
    Such sweet notes of sadness
     Her gentle lips sung,
That ne'er while I live from my memory shall fade
The song or the look of that young Indian maid.

    Her zone of bells ringing
     Cheerily, cheerily,
    Chimed to her singing
     Light echoes of glee;
    But in vain did she borrow
     Of mirth the gay tone,
    Her voice spoke of sorrow,
     And sorrow alone.
Nor e'er while I live from my memory shall fade
The song or the look of that young Indian maid.






THE HOMEWARD MARCH.


Be still my heart: I hear them come:
  Those sounds announce my lover near:
The march that brings our warriors home
  Proclaims he'll soon be here.

    Hark, the distant tread,
    O'er the mountain's head,
While hills and dales repeat the sound;
    And the forest deer
    Stand still to hear,
As those echoing steps ring round.

Be still my heart. I hear them come,
  Those sounds that speak my soldier near;
Those joyous steps seem winged fox home.--
  Rest, rest, he'll soon be here.

But hark, more faint the footsteps grow,
  And now they wind to distant glades;
Not here their home,--alas, they go
  To gladden happier maids!

  Like sounds in a dream,
  The footsteps seem,
As down the hills they die away;
  And the march, whose song
  So pealed along,
Now fades like a funeral lay.

'Tis past, 'tis o'er,--hush, heart, thy pain!
  And tho' not here, alas, they come,
Rejoice for those, to whom that strain
  Brings sons and lovers home.






WAKE UP, SWEET MELODY.


  Wake up, sweet melody!
    Now is the hour
  When young and loving hearts
    Feel most thy power,
One note of music, by moonlight's soft ray--
Oh, 'tis worth thousands heard coldly by day.
  Then wake up, sweet melody!
    Now is the hour
  When young and loving hearts
    Feel most thy power.

  Ask the fond nightingale,
    When his sweet flower
  Loves most to hear his song,
    In her green bower?
Oh, he will tell thee, thro' summer-nights long,
Fondest she lends her whole soul to his song.
  Then wake up, sweet melody!
    Now is the hour
  When young and loving hearts
    Feel most thy power.






CALM BE THY SLEEP.


Calm be thy sleep as infant's slumbers!
  Pure as angel thoughts thy dreams!
May every joy this bright world numbers
  Shed o'er thee their mingled beams!
Or if, where Pleasure's wing hath glided,
  There ever must some pang remain,
Still be thy lot with me divided,--
  Thine all the bliss and mine the pain!

Day and night my thoughts shall hover
  Round thy steps where'er they stray;
As, even when clouds his idol cover,
  Fondly the Persian tracks its ray.
If this be wrong, if Heaven offended
  By worship to its creature be,
Then let my vows to both be blended,
  Half breathed to Heaven and half to thee.






THE EXILE.


Night waneth fast, the morning star
  Saddens with light the glimmering sea,
Whose waves shall soon to realms afar
  Waft me from hope, from love, and thee.
Coldly the beam from yonder sky
  Looks o'er the waves that onward stray;
But colder still the stranger's eye
  To him whose home is far away

Oh, not at hour so chill and bleak,
  Let thoughts of me come o'er thy breast;
But of the lost one think and speak,
  When summer suns sink calm to rest.
So, as I wander, Fancy's dream
  Shall bring me o'er the sunset seas,
Thy look in every melting beam,
  Thy whisper in each dying breeze.






THE FANCY FAIR.


Come, maids and youths, for here we sell
  All wondrous things of earth and air;
Whatever wild romancers tell,
  Or poets sing, or lovers swear,
  You'll find at this our Fancy Fair.

Here eyes are made like stars to shine,
  And kept for years in such repair,
That even when turned of thirty-nine,
  They'll hardly look the worse for wear,
  If bought at this our Fancy Fair.

We've lots of tears for bards to shower,
  And hearts that such ill usage bear,
That, tho' they're broken every hour,
  They'll still in rhyme fresh breaking bear,
  If purchased at our Fancy Fair.

As fashions change in every thing,
  We've goods to suit each season's air,
Eternal friendships for the spring,
  And endless loves for summer wear,--
  All sold at this our Fancy Fair.

We've reputations white as snow,
  That long will last if used with care,
Nay, safe thro' all life's journey go,
  If packed and marked as "brittle ware,"--
  Just purchased at the Fancy Fair.






IF THOU WOULDST HAVE ME SING AND PLAY.


If thou wouldst have me sing and play,
  As once I played and sung,
First take this time-worn lute away,
  And bring one freshly strung.
Call back the time when pleasure's sigh
First breathed among the strings;
And Time himself, in flitting by.
  Made music with his wings.

But how is this? tho' new the lute,
  And shining fresh the chords,
Beneath this hand they slumber mute,
  Or speak but dreamy words.
In vain I seek the soul that dwelt
  Within that once sweet shell,
Which told so warmly what it felt,
  And felt what naught could tell.

Oh, ask not then for passion's lay,
  From lyre so coldly strung;
With this I ne'er can sing or play,
  As once I played and sung.
No, bring that long-loved lute again,--
  Tho' chilled by years it be,
If _thou_ wilt call the slumbering strain,
  'Twill wake again for thee.

Tho' time have frozen the tuneful stream
  Of thoughts that gushed along,
One look from thee, like summer's beam,
  Will thaw them into song.
Then give, oh give, that wakening ray,
  And once more blithe and young,
Thy bard again will sing and play,
  As once he played and sung.






STILL WHEN DAYLIGHT.


Still when daylight o'er the wave
Bright and soft its farewell gave,
I used to hear, while light was falling,
O'er the wave a sweet voice calling,
  Mournfully at distance calling.

Ah! once how blest that maid would come,
To meet her sea-boy hastening home;
And thro' the night those sounds repeating,
Hail his bark with joyous greeting,
  Joyously his light bark greeting.

But, one sad night, when winds were high,
Nor earth, nor heaven could hear her cry.
She saw his boat come tossing over
Midnight's wave,--but not her lover!
  No, never more her lover.

And still that sad dream loath to leave,
She comes with wandering mind at eve,
And oft we hear, when night is falling,
Faint her voice thro' twilight calling,
  Mournfully at twilight calling.






THE SUMMER WEBS.


The summer webs that float and shine,
  The summer dews that fall,
Tho' light they be, this heart of mine
  Is lighter still than all.
It tells me every cloud is past
  Which lately seemed to lour;
That Hope hath wed young Joy at last,
  And now's their nuptial hour!

With light thus round, within, above,
  With naught to wake one sigh,
Except the wish that all we love
  Were at this moment nigh,--
It seems as if life's brilliant sun
  Had stopt in full career,
To make this hour its brightest one,
And rest in radiance here.






MIND NOT THO' DAYLIGHT.


Mind not tho' daylight around us is breaking,--
Who'd think now of sleeping when morn's but just waking?
Sound the merry viol, and daylight or not,
Be all for one hour in the gay dance forgot.

See young Aurora up heaven's hill advancing,
Tho' fresh from her pillow, even she too is dancing:
While thus all creation, earth, heaven, and sea.
Are dancing around us, oh, why should not we?

Who'll say that moments we use thus are wasted?
Such sweet drops of time only flow to be tasted;
While hearts are high beating and harps full in tune,
The fault is all morning's for coming so soon.






THEY MET BUT ONCE.


They met but once, in youth's sweet hour,
  And never since that day
Hath absence, time, or grief had power
  To chase that dream away.
They've seen the suns of other skies,
  On other shores have sought delight;
But never more to bless their eyes
  Can come a dream so bright!
They met but once,--a day was all
  Of Love's young hopes they knew;
And still their hearts that day recall
  As fresh as then it flew.

Sweet dream of youth! oh, ne'er again
  Let either meet the brow
They left so smooth and smiling then,
  Or see what it is now.
For, Youth, the spell was only thine,
  From thee alone the enchantment flows,
That makes the world around thee shine
  With light thyself bestows.
They met but once,--oh, ne'er again
  Let either meet the brow
They left so smooth and smiling then,
  Or see what it is now.






WITH MOONLIGHT BEAMING.


With moonlight beaming
  Thus o'er the deep,
Who'd linger dreaming
  In idle sleep?
Leave joyless souls to live by day,--
Our life begins with yonder ray;
And while thus brightly
  The moments flee,
Our barks skim lightly
  The shining sea.

To halls of splendor
  Let great ones hie;
Thro' light more tender
  Our pathways lie.
While round, from banks of brook or lake,
Our company blithe echoes make;
And as we lend 'em
  Sweet word or strain,
Still back they send 'em
  More sweet again.






CHILD'S SONG.

FROM A MASQUE.


I have a garden of my own,
  Shining with flowers of every hue;
I loved it dearly while alone,
  But I shall love it more with you:
And there the golden bees shall come,
  In summer-time at break of morn,
And wake us with their busy hum
  Around the Siha's fragrant thorn.

I have a fawn from Aden's land,
  On leafy buds and berries nurst;
And you shall feed him from your hand,
 Though he may start with fear at first.
And I will lead you where he lies
  For shelter in the noontide heat;
And you may touch his sleeping eyes,
  And feel his little silvery feet.






THE HALCYON HANGS O'ER OCEAN.


The halcyon hangs o'er ocean,
  The sea-lark skims the brine;
This bright world's all in motion,
  No heart seems sad but mine.

To walk thro' sun-bright places,
  With heart all cold the while;
To look in smiling faces,
  When we no more can smile;

To feel, while earth and heaven
  Around thee shine with bliss,
To thee no light is given,--
  Oh, what a doom is this!






THE WORLD WAS HUSHT.


The world was husht, the moon above
  Sailed thro' ether slowly,
When near the casement of my love,
  Thus I whispered lowly,--
"Awake, awake, how canst thou sleep?
  "The field I seek to-morrow
"Is one where man hath fame to reap,
  "And woman gleans but sorrow."

"Let battle's field be what it may.
  Thus spoke a voice replying,
"Think not thy love, while thou'rt away,
  "Will sit here idly sighing.
"No--woman's soul, if not for fame,
  "For love can brave all danger!
Then forth from out the casement came
  A plumed and armed stranger.

A stranger? No; 'twas she, the maid,
  Herself before me beaming,
With casque arrayed and falchion blade
  Beneath her girdle gleaming!
Close side by side, in freedom's fight,
  That blessed morning found us;
In Victory's light we stood ere night,
  And Love the morrow crowned us!






THE TWO LOVES.


There are two Loves, the poet sings,
  Both born of Beauty at a birth:
The one, akin to heaven, hath wings,
  The other, earthly, walks on earth.
With _this_ thro' bowers below we play,
  With _that_ thro' clouds above we soar;
With both, perchance, may lose our way:--
    Then, tell me which,
  Tell me which shall we adore?

The one, when tempted down from air,
  At Pleasure's fount to lave his lip,
Nor lingers long, nor oft will dare
  His wing within the wave to dip.
While plunging deep and long beneath,
  The other bathes him o'er and o'er
In that sweet current, even to death:--
    Then, tell me which,
  Tell me which shall we adore?

The boy of heaven, even while he lies
  In Beauty's lap, recalls his home;
And when most happy, inly sighs
  For something happier still to come.
While he of earth, too fully blest
  With this bright world to dream of more,
Sees all his heaven on Beauty's breast:--
    Then, tell me which,
  Tell me which shall we adore?

The maid who heard the poet sing
  These twin-desires of earth and sky,
And saw while one inspired his string,
  The other glistened in his eye,--
To name the earthlier boy ashamed,
  To chose the other fondly loath,
At length all blushing she exclaimed,--
    "Ask not which,
  "Oh, ask not which--we'll worship both.

"The extremes of each thus taught to shun,
  "With hearts and souls between them given,
"When weary of this earth with one,
  "We'll with the other wing to heaven."
Thus pledged the maid her vow of bliss;
And while _one_ Love wrote down the oath,
The other sealed it with a kiss;
    And Heaven looked on,
  Heaven looked on and hallowed both.






THE LEGEND OF PUCK THE FAIRY.


Wouldst know what tricks, by the pale moonlight,
  Are played by me, the merry little Sprite,
Who wing thro' air from the camp to the court,
From king to clown, and of all make sport;
    Singing, I am the Sprite
    Of the merry midnight,
Who laugh at weak mortals and love the moonlight.

To a miser's bed, where he snoring slept
And dreamt of his cash, I slyly crept;
Chink, chink o'er his pillow like money I rang,
And he waked to catch--but away I sprang,
    Singing, I am the Sprite, etc.

I saw thro' the leaves, in a damsel's bower,
She was waiting her love at that starlight hour:
"Hist--hist!" quoth I, with an amorous sigh,
And she flew to the door, but away flew I,
    Singing, I am the Sprite, etc.

While a bard sat inditing an ode to his love,
Like a pair of blue meteors I stared from above,
And he swooned--for he thought 'twas the ghost, poor man!
Of his lady's eyes, while away I ran,
    Singing, I am the Sprite, etc.






BEAUTY AND SONG.


Down in yon summer vale,
  Where the rill flows.
Thus said a Nightingale
  To his loved Rose:--
"Tho' rich the pleasures
"Of song's sweet measures,
"Vain were its melody,
"Rose, without thee."

Then from the green recess
  Of her night-bower,
Beaming with bashfulness,
  Spoke the bright flower:--
"Tho' morn should lend her
"Its sunniest splendor,
"What would the Rose be,
"Unsung by thee?"

Thus still let Song attend
  Woman's bright way;
Thus still let woman lend
  Light to the lay.
Like stars thro' heaven's sea
Floating in harmony
Beauty should glide along
Circled by Song.






WHEN THOU ART NIGH.


When thou art nigh, it seems
  A new creation round;
The sun hath fairer beams,
  The lute a softer sound.
Tho' thee alone I see,
  And hear alone thy sigh,
'Tis light, 'tis song to me,
  Tis all--when thou art nigh.

When thou art nigh, no thought
  Of grief comes o'er my heart;
I only think--could aught
  But joy be where thou art?
Life seems a waste of breath,
  When far from thee I sigh;
And death--ay, even death
  Were sweet, if thou wert nigh.






SONG OF A HYPERBOREAN.


I come from a land in the sun bright deep,
  Where golden gardens grow;
Where the winds of the north, be calmed in sleep,
  Their conch-shells never blow.[1]
    Haste to that holy Isle with me,
      Haste--haste!

So near the track of the stars are we,
  That oft on night's pale beams
The distant sounds of their harmony
  Come to our ear, like dreams.
    Then haste to that holy Isle with me, etc.

The Moon too brings her world so nigh,
  That when the night-seer looks
To that shadowless orb, in a vernal sky,
  He can number its hills and brooks.
        Then, haste, etc.

To the Sun-god all our hearts and lyres[2]
  By day, by night, belong;
And the breath we draw from his living fires,
  We give him back in song.
            Then, haste, etc.

From us descends the maid who brings
  To Delos gifts divine;
And our wild bees lend their rainbow wings
  To glitter on Delphi's shrine.
    Then haste to that holy Isle with me,
      Haste--haste!


[1] On the Tower of the Winds, at Athens, there is a conch shell placed in
the hands of Boreas.--See _Stuart's Antiquities_. "The north wind," says
Herodotus, in speaking of the Hyperboreans, "never blows with them."

[2] Hecataeus tells us, that this Hyperborean island was dedicated to
Apollo; and most of the inhabitants were either priests or songsters.






THOU BIDST ME SING.


Thou bidst me sing the lay I sung to thee
  In other days ere joy had left this brow;
But think, tho' still unchanged the notes may be,
  How different feels the heart that breathes them now!
The rose thou wearst to-night is still the same
  We saw this morning on its stem so gay;
But, ah! that dew of dawn, that breath which came
  Like life o'er all its leaves, hath past away.

Since first that music touched thy heart and mine,
  How many a joy and pain o'er both have past,--
The joy, a light too precious long to shine,--
  The pain, a cloud whose shadows always last.
And tho' that lay would like the voice of home
  Breathe o'er our ear, 'twould waken now a sigh--
Ah! not, as then, for fancied woes to come,
  But, sadder far, for real bliss gone by.






CUPID ARMED.


  Place the helm on thy brow,
    In thy hand take the spear;--
  Thou art armed, Cupid, now,
    And thy battle-hour is near.
March on! march on! thy shaft and bow
  Were weak against such charms;
March on! march on! so proud a foe
  Scorns all but martial arms.

  See the darts in her eyes,
    Tipt with scorn, how they shine!
  Every shaft, as it flies,
    Mocking proudly at thine.
March on! march on! thy feathered darts
  Soft bosoms soon might move;
But ruder arms to ruder hearts
  Must teach what 'tis to love.
  Place the helm on thy brow;
    In thy hand take the spear,--
  Thou art armed, Cupid, now,
    And thy battle-hour is near.






ROUND THE WORLD GOES.


Round the world goes, by day and night,
  While with it also round go we;
And in the flight of one day's light
  An image of all life's course we see.
Round, round, while thus we go round,
  The best thing a man can do,
Is to make it, at least, a _merry_-go-round,
  By--sending the wine round too.

Our first gay stage of life is when
  Youth in its dawn salutes the eye--
Season of bliss! Oh, who wouldn't then
  Wish to cry, "Stop!" to earth and sky?
But, round, round, both boy and girl
  Are whisked thro' that sky of blue;
And much would their hearts enjoy the whirl,
If--their heads didn't whirl round too.

Next, we enjoy our glorious noon,
  Thinking all life a life of light;
But shadows come on, 'tis evening soon,
  And ere we can say, "How short!"--'tis night.
Round, round, still all goes round,
  Even while I'm thus singing to you;
And the best way to make it a _merry_-go-round,
  Is to--chorus my song round too.






OH, DO NOT LOOK SO BRIGHT AND BLEST.


Oh, do not look so bright and blest,
  For still there comes a fear,
When brow like thine looks happiest,
  That grief is then most near.
There lurks a dread in all delight,
  A shadow near each ray,
That warns us then to fear their flight,
  When most we wish their stay.
Then look not thou so bright and blest,
  For ah! there comes a fear,
When brow like thine looks happiest,
  That grief is then most near.

Why is it thus that fairest things
  The soonest fleet and die?--
That when most light is on their wings,
  They're then but spread to fly!
And, sadder still, the pain will stay--
  The bliss no more appears;
As rainbows take their light away,
  And leave us but the tears!
Then look not thou so bright and blest,
  For ah! there comes a fear,
When brow like thine looks happiest,
  That grief is then most near.






THE MUSICAL BOX.


"Look here," said Rose, with laughing eyes,
  "Within this box, by magic hid,
"A tuneful Sprite imprisoned lies,
  "Who sings to me whene'er he's bid.
"Tho' roving once his voice and wing,
  "He'll now lie still the whole day long;
"Till thus I touch the magic spring--
  "Then hark, how sweet and blithe his song!"
      _(A symphony.)_

"Ah, Rose," I cried, "the poet's lay
  "Must ne'er even Beauty's slave become;
"Thro' earth and air his song may stray,
  "If all the while his heart's at home.
"And tho' in freedom's air he dwell,
  "Nor bond nor chain his spirit knows,
"Touch but the spring thou knowst so well,
  "And--hark, how sweet the love-song flows!"
      _(A symphony.)_

Thus pleaded I for freedom's right;
  But when young Beauty takes the field,
And wise men seek defence in flight,
  The doom of poets is to yield.
No more my heart the enchantress braves,
  I'm now in Beauty's prison hid;
The Sprite and I are fellow slaves,
  And I, too, sing whene'er I'm bid.






WHEN TO SAD MUSIC SILENT YOU LISTEN.


When to sad Music silent you listen,
  And tears on those eyelids tremble like dew,
Oh, then there dwells in those eyes as they glisten
  A sweet holy charm that mirth never knew.
But when some lively strain resounding
  Lights up the sunshine of joy on that brow,
Then the young reindeer o'er the hills bounding
  Was ne'er in its mirth so graceful as thou.

When on the skies at midnight thou gazest.
  A lustre so pure thy features then wear,
That, when to some star that bright eye thou raisest,
  We feel 'tis thy home thou'rt looking for there.
But when the word for the gay dance is given,
  So buoyant thy spirit, so heartfelt thy mirth,
Oh then we exclaim, "Ne'er leave earth for heaven,
  "But linger still here, to make heaven of earth."






THE LANGUAGE OF FLOWERS.


Fly swift, my light gazelle,
  To her who now lies waking,
To hear thy silver bell
  The midnight silence breaking.
And, when thou com'st, with gladsome feet,
  Beneath her lattice springing,
Ah, well she'll know how sweet
  The words of love thou'rt bringing.

Yet, no--not words, for they
  But half can tell love's feeling;
Sweet flowers alone can say
  What passion fears revealing.
A once bright rose's withered leaf,
  A towering lily broken,--
Oh these may paint a grief
  No words could e'er have spoken.

Not such, my gay gazelle,
  The wreath thou speedest over
Yon moonlight dale, to tell
  My lady how I love her.
And, what to her will sweeter be
  Than gems the richest, rarest,--
From Truth's immortal tree[1]
  One fadeless leaf thou bearest.


[1] The tree called in the East, Amrita, or the Immortal.






THE DAWN IS BREAKING O'ER US.


The dawn is breaking o'er us,
  See, heaven hath caught its hue!
We've day's long light before us,
What sport shall we pursue?
The hunt o'er hill and lea?
The sail o'er summer sea?
Oh let not hour so sweet
Unwinged by pleasure fleet.
The dawn is breaking o'er us,
  See, heaven hath caught its hue!
We've days long light before us,
  What sport shall we pursue?

But see, while we're deciding,
  What morning sport to play,
The dial's hand is gliding,
  And morn hath past away!
Ah, who'd have thought that noon
  Would o'er us steal so soon,--
That morn's sweet hour of prime
  Would last so short a time?
But come, we've day before us,
  Still heaven looks bright and blue;
Quick, quick, ere eve comes o'er us,
  What sport shall we pursue?

Alas! why thus delaying?
  We're now at evening's hour;
Its farewell beam is playing
  O'er hill and wave and bower.
That light we thought would last,
Behold, even now 'tis past;
And all our morning dreams
Have vanisht with its beams
But come! 'twere vain to borrow
  Sad lessons from this lay,
For man will be to-morrow--
  Just what he's been to-day.








UNPUBLISHED SONGS.

ETC.






ASK NOT IF STILL I LOVE.


Ask not if still I love,
  Too plain these eyes have told thee;
Too well their tears must prove
  How near and dear I hold thee.
If, where the brightest shine,
To see no form but thine,
To feel that earth can show
  No bliss above thee,--
If this be love, then know
  That thus, that thus, I love thee.

'Tis not in pleasure's idle hour
That thou canst know affection's power.
No, try its strength in grief or pain;
  Attempt as now its bonds to sever,
Thou'lt find true love's a chain
  That binds forever!






DEAR? YES.


Dear? yes, tho' mine no more,
  Even this but makes thee dearer;
And love, since hope is o'er,
  But draws thee nearer.

Change as thou wilt to me,
The same thy charm must be;
New loves may come to weave
  Their witchery o'er thee,
Yet still, tho' false, believe
  That I adore thee, yes, still adore thee.
Think'st thou that aught but death could end
A tie not falsehood's self can rend?
No, when alone, far off I die,
  No more to see, no more cares thee,
Even then, my life's last sigh
  Shall be to bless thee, yes, still to bless thee.






UNBIND THEE, LOVE.


Unbind thee, love, unbind thee, love,
  From those dark ties unbind thee;
Tho' fairest hand the chain hath wove,
  Too long its links have twined thee.
Away from earth!--thy wings were made
  In yon mid-sky to hover,
With earth beneath their dove-like shade,
  And heaven all radiant over.

Awake thee, boy, awake thee, boy,
  Too long thy soul is sleeping;
And thou mayst from this minute's joy
  Wake to eternal weeping.
Oh, think, this world is not for thee;
  Tho' hard its links to sever;
Tho' sweet and bright and dear they be,
  Break or thou'rt lost for ever.






THERE'S SOMETHING STRANGE.

A BUFFALO SONG.


There's something strange, I know not what,
        Come o'er me,
Some phantom I've for ever got
        Before me.
I look on high and in the sky
        'Tis shining;
On earth, its light with all things bright
        Seems twining.
In vain I try this goblin's spells
        To sever;
Go where I will, it round me dwells
        For ever.

And then what tricks by day and night
        It plays me;
In every shape the wicked sprite
        Waylays me.
Sometimes like two bright eyes of blue
        'Tis glancing;
Sometimes like feet, in slippers neat,
        Comes dancing.
By whispers round of every sort
        I'm taunted.
Never was mortal man, in short,
        So haunted.






NOT FROM THEE.


Not from thee the wound should come,
  No, not from thee.
Care not what or whence my doom,
  So not from thee!
Cold triumph! first to make
  This heart thy own;
And then the mirror break
  Where fixt thou shin'st alone.
Not from thee the wound should come,
  Oh, not from thee.
I care not what, or whence, my doom,
  So not from thee.

Yet no--my lips that wish recall;
  From thee, from thee--
If ruin o'er this head must fall,
  'Twill welcome be.
Here to the blade I bare
  This faithful heart;
Wound deep--thou'lt find that there,
  In every pulse thou art.
Yes from thee I'll bear it all:
  If ruin be
The doom that o'er this heart must fall,
  'Twere sweet from thee.






GUESS, GUESS.


I love a maid, a mystic maid,
  Whose form no eyes but mine can see;
She comes in light, she comes in shade,
  And beautiful in both is she.
Her shape in dreams I oft behold,
  And oft she whispers in my ear
Such words as when to others told,
  Awake the sigh, or wring the tear;
Then guess, guess, who she,
The lady of my love, may be.

I find the lustre of her brow,
  Come o'er me in my darkest ways;
And feel as if her voice, even now,
  Were echoing far off my lays.
There is no scene of joy or woe
  But she doth gild with influence bright;
And shed o'er all so rich a glow
  As makes even tears seem full of light:
Then guess, guess, who she,
The lady of my love, may be.






WHEN LOVE, WHO RULED.


When Love, who ruled as Admiral o'er
Has rosy mother's isles of light,
Was cruising off the Paphian shore,
  A sail at sunset hove in sight.
"A chase, a chase! my Cupids all,"
Said Love, the little Admiral.

Aloft the winged sailors sprung,
  And, swarming up the mast like bees,
The snow-white sails expanding flung,
  Like broad magnolias to the breeze.
"Yo ho, yo ho, my Cupids all!"
Said Love, the little Admiral.

The chase was o'er--the bark was caught,
  The winged crew her freight explored;
And found 'twas just as Love had thought,
  For all was contraband aboard.
"A prize, a prize, my Cupids all!"
Said Love, the little Admiral.

Safe stowed in many a package there,
  And labelled slyly o'er, as "Glass,"
Were lots of all the illegal ware,
  Love's Custom-House forbids to pass.
"O'erhaul, o'erhaul, my Cupids all,"
Said Love, the little Admiral.

False curls they found, of every hue,
  With rosy blushes ready made;
And teeth of ivory, good as new,
  For veterans in the smiling trade.
"Ho ho, ho ho, my Cupids all,"
Said Love, the little Admiral.

Mock sighs, too,--kept in bags for use,
  Like breezes bought of Lapland seers,--
Lay ready here to be let loose,
  When wanted, in young spinsters' ears.
"Ha ha, ha ha, my Cupids all,"
Said Love, the little Admiral.

False papers next on board were found,
  Sham invoices of flames and darts,
Professedly for Paphos bound,
  But meant for Hymen's golden marts.
"For shame, for shame, my Cupids all!"
Said Love, the little Admiral.

Nay, still to every fraud awake,
  Those pirates all Love's signals knew,
And hoisted oft his flag, to make
  Rich wards and heiresses _bring-to_.[1]
"A foe, a foe, my Cupids all!"
Said Love, the little Admiral.

"This must not be," the boy exclaims,
  "In vain I rule the Paphian seas,
"If Love's and Beauty's sovereign names
  "Are lent to cover frauds like these.
"Prepare, prepare, my Cupids all!"
Said Love, the little Admiral.

Each Cupid stood with lighted match--
  A broadside struck the smuggling foe,
And swept the whole unhallowed batch
  Of Falsehood to the depths below.
"Huzza, huzza! my Cupids all!"
Said Love the little Admiral.


[1] "_To Bring-to_, to check the course of a ship."--_Falconer_.






STILL THOU FLIEST.


Still thou fliest, and still I woo thee,
  Lovely phantom,--all in vain;
Restless ever, my thoughts pursue thee,
  Fleeting ever, thou mock'st their pain.
Such doom, of old, that youth betided,
  Who wooed, he thought, some angel's charms,
But found a cloud that from him glided,--
  As thou dost from these outstretched arms.

Scarce I've said, "How fair thou shinest,"
  Ere thy light hath vanished by;
And 'tis when thou look'st divinest
  Thou art still most sure to fly.
Even as the lightning, that, dividing
  The clouds of night, saith, "Look on me,"
Then flits again, its splendor hiding.--
  Even such the glimpse I catch of thee.






THEN FIRST FROM LOVE.


Then first from Love, in Nature's bowers,
  Did Painting learn her fairy skill,
And cull the hues of loveliest flowers,
  To picture woman lovelier still.
For vain was every radiant hue,
  Till Passion lent a soul to art,
And taught the painter, ere he drew,
  To fix the model in his heart.

Thus smooth his toil awhile went on,
  Till, lo, one touch his art defies;
The brow, the lip, the blushes shone,
  But who could dare to paint those eyes?
'Twas all in vain the painter strove;
  So turning to that boy divine,
"Here take," he said, "the pencil, Love,
  "No hand should paint such eyes but thine."






HUSH, SWEET LUTE.


Hush, sweet Lute, thy songs remind me
  Of past joys, now turned to pain;
Of ties that long have ceased to bind me,
  But whose burning marks remain.
In each tone, some echo falleth
  On my ear of joys gone by;
Every note some dream recalleth
  Of bright hopes but born to die.

Yet, sweet Lute, though pain it bring me,
  Once more let thy numbers thrill;
Tho' death were in the strain they sing me,
  I must woo its anguish still.
Since no time can e'er recover
  Love's sweet light when once 'tis set,--
Better to weep such pleasures over,
  Than smile o'er any left us yet.






BRIGHT MOON.


Bright moon, that high in heaven art shining,
  All smiles, as if within thy bower to-night
Thy own Endymion lay reclining,
  And thou wouldst wake him with a kiss of light!--
By all the bliss thy beam discovers,
  By all those visions far too bright for day,
Which dreaming bards and waking lovers
  Behold, this night, beneath thy lingering ray,--

I pray thee, queen of that bright heaven,
  Quench not to-night thy love-lamp in the sea,
Till Anthe, in this bower, hath given
  Beneath thy beam, her long-vowed kiss to me.
Guide hither, guide her steps benighted,
  Ere thou, sweet moon, thy bashful crescent hide;
Let Love but in this bower be lighted,
  Then shroud in darkness all the world beside.






LONG YEARS HAVE PAST.


Long years have past, old friend, since we
  First met in life's young day;
And friends long loved by thee and me,
  Since then have dropt away;--
But enough remain to cheer us on,
  And sweeten, when thus we're met,
The glass we fill to the many gone,
  And the few who're left us yet.
Our locks, old friend, now thinly grow,
  And some hang white and chill;
While some, like flowers mid Autumn's snow,
  Retain youth's color still.
And so, in our hearts, tho' one by one,
  Youth's sunny hopes have set,
Thank heaven, not all their light is gone,--
  We've some to cheer us yet.

Then here's to thee, old friend, and long
  May thou and I thus meet,
To brighten still with wine and song
  This short life, ere it fleet.
And still as death comes stealing on,
  Let's never, old friend, forget,
Even while we sigh o'er blessings gone,
  How many are left us yet.






DREAMING FOR EVER.


Dreaming for ever, vainly dreaming,
  Life to the last, pursues its flight;
Day hath its visions fairly beaming,
  But false as those of night.
The one illusion, the other real,
  But both the same brief dreams at last;
And when we grasp the bliss ideal,
  Soon as it shines, 'tis past.

Here, then, by this dim lake reposing,
  Calmly I'll watch, while light and gloom
Flit o'er its face till night is closing--
  Emblem of life's short doom!
But tho', by turns, thus dark and shining,
  'Tis still unlike man's changeful day,
Whose light returns not, once declining,
  Whose cloud, once come, will stay.






THO' LIGHTLY SOUNDS THE SONG I SING.

A SONG OF THE ALPS.


Tho' lightly sounds the song I sing to thee,
Tho' like the lark's its soaring music be,
Thou'lt find even here some mournful note that tells
How near such April joy to weeping dwells.
'Tis 'mong the gayest scenes that oftenest steal
Those saddening thoughts we fear, yet love to feel;
And music never half so sweet appears,
As when her mirth forgets itself in tears.

Then say not thou this Alpine song is gay--
It comes from hearts that, like their mountain-lay,
Mix joy with pain, and oft when pleasure's breath
Most warms the surface feel most sad beneath.
The very beam in which the snow-wreath wears
Its gayest smile is that which wins its tears,--
And passion's power can never lend the glow
Which wakens bliss, without some touch of woe.






THE RUSSIAN LOVER.


Fleetly o'er the moonlight snows
  Speed we to my lady's bower;
Swift our sledge as lightning goes,
  Nor shall stop till morning's hour.
Bright, my steed, the northern star
  Lights us from yon jewelled skies;
But to greet us, brighter far,
  Morn shall bring my lady's eyes.
Lovers, lulled in sunny bowers,
  Sleeping out their dream of time,
Know not half the bliss that's ours,
  In this snowy, icy clime.
Like yon star that livelier gleams
  From the frosty heavens around,
Love himself the keener beams
  When with snows of coyness crowned.
Fleet then on, my merry steed,
  Bound, my sledge, o'er hill and dale;--
What can match a lover's speed?
  See, 'tis daylight, breaking pale!
Brightly hath the northern star
  Lit us from yon radiant Skies;
But, behold, how brighter far
  Yonder shine my lady's eyes!








A SELECTION FROM THE SONGS IN

M. P.; OR, THE BLUE-STOCKING:

A COMIC OPERA IN THREE ACTS.

1811.






BOAT GLEE.


The song that lightens the languid way,
    When brows are glowing,
    And faint with rowing,
Is like the spell of Hope's airy lay,
To whose sound thro' life we stray;
The beams that flash on the oar awhile,
  As we row along thro' the waves so clear,
Illume its spray, like the fleeting smile
  That shines o'er sorrow's tear.

Nothing is lost on him who sees
  With an eye that feeling gave;--
For him there's a story in every breeze,
  And a picture in every wave.
Then sing to lighten the languid way;
    When brows are glowing,
    And faint with rowing,
'Tis like the spell of Hope's airy lay,
To whose sound thro' life we stray.

       *       *       *       *       *

'Tis sweet to behold when the billows are sleeping,
  Some gay-colored bark moving gracefully by;
No damp on her deck but the eventide's weeping,
  No breath in her sails but the summer wind's sigh.
Yet who would not turn with a fonder emotion,
  To gaze on the life-boat, tho' rugged and worn.
Which often hath wafted o'er hills of the ocean
  The lost light of hope to the seaman forlorn!

Oh! grant that of those who in life's sunny slumber
  Around us like summer-barks idly have played,
When storms are abroad we may find in the number
  One friend, like the life-boat, to fly to our aid.

       *       *       *       *       *

When Lelia touched the lute,
  Not _then_ alone 'twas felt,
But when the sounds were mute,
  In memory still they dwelt.
Sweet lute! in nightly slumbers
Still we heard thy morning numbers.

Ah, how could she who stole
  Such breath from simple wire,
Be led, in pride of soul,
  To string with gold her lyre?
Sweet lute! thy chords she breaketh;
Golden now the strings she waketh!

But where are all the tales
  Her lute so sweetly told?
In lofty themes she fails,
  And soft ones suit not gold.
Rich lute! we see thee glisten,
But, alas! no more we listen!

       *       *       *       *       *

Young Love lived once in a humble shed,
   Where roses breathing
   And woodbines wreathing
Around the lattice their tendrils spread,
As wild and sweet as the life he led.
   His garden flourisht,
   For young Hope nourisht.
The infant buds with beams and showers;
But lips, tho' blooming, must still be fed,
  And not even Love can live on flowers.

Alas! that Poverty's evil eye
   Should e'er come hither,
   Such sweets to wither!
The flowers laid down their heads to die,
And Hope fell sick as the witch drew nigh.
   She came one morning.
   Ere Love had warning,
  And raised the latch, where the young god lay;
"Oh ho!" said Love--"is it you? good-by;"
  So he oped the window and flew away!

       *       *       *       *       *

Spirit of Joy, thy altar lies
  In youthful hearts that hope like mine;
And 'tis the light of laughing eyes
  That leads us to thy fairy shrine.

There if we find the sigh, the tear,
  They are not those to sorrow known;
But breathe so soft, and drop so clear,
  That bliss may claim them for her own.
Then give me, give me, while I weep,
  The sanguine hope that brightens woe,
And teaches even our tears to keep
  The tinge of pleasure as they flow.

The child who sees the dew of night
  Upon the spangled hedge at morn,
Attempts to catch the drops of light,
  But wounds his finger with the thorn.
Thus oft the brightest joys we seek,
  Are lost when touched, and turned to pain;
The flush they kindle leaves the cheek,
  The tears they waken long remain.
But give me, give me, etc.

       *       *       *       *       *

To sigh, yet feel no pain.
  To weep, yet scarce know why;
To sport an hour with Beauty's chain,
  Then throw it idly by;
To kneel at many a shrine,
  Yet lay the heart on none;
To think all other charms divine,
  But those we just have won;
This is love, careless love,
Such as kindleth hearts that rove.

To keep one sacred flame,
  Thro' life unchilled, unmoved,
To love in wintry age the same
  As first in youth we loved;
To feel that we adore
  To such refined excess.
That tho' the heart would break with _more_,
  We could not live with _less_;
This is love, faithful love,
Such as saints might feel above.

       *       *       *       *       *

Dear aunt, in the olden time of love,
  When women like slaves were spurned,
A maid gave her heart, as she would her glove,
 To be teased by a fop, and returned!
But women grow wiser as men improve.
And, tho' beaux, like monkeys, amuse us,
Oh! think not we'd give such a delicate gem
As the heart to be played with or sullied by them;
  No, dearest aunt, excuse us.

We may know by the head on Cupid's seal
  What impression the heart will take;
If shallow the head, oh! soon we feel
  What a poor impression 'twill make!
Tho' plagued, Heaven knows! by the foolish zeal
Of the fondling fop who pursues me,
Oh, think not I'd follow their desperate rule,
Who get rid of the folly by wedding the fool;
  No, dearest aunt! excuse me.

       *       *       *       *       *

When Charles was deceived by the maid he loved,
  We saw no cloud his brow o'er-casting,
But proudly he smiled as if gay and unmoved,
  Tho' the wound in his heart was deep and lasting.
And oft at night when the tempest rolled
  He sung as he paced the dark deck over--
"Blow, wind, blow! thou art not so cold
As the heart of a maid that deceives her lover."

Yet he lived with the happy and seemed to be gay,
  Tho' the wound but sunk more deep for concealing;
And Fortune threw many a thorn in his way,
  Which, true to one anguish, he trod without feeling!
And still by the frowning of Fate unsubdued
  He sung as if sorrow had placed him above her--
"Frown, Fate, frown! thou art not so rude
  As the heart of a maid that deceives her lover."

At length his career found a close in death,
  The close he long wished to his cheerless roving,
For Victory shone on his latest breath,
  And he died in a cause of his heart's approving.
But still he remembered his sorrow,--and still
  He sung till the vision of life was over--
"Come, death, come! thou art not so chill
  As the heart of a maid that deceives her lover."

       *       *       *       *       *

When life looks lone and dreary,
  What light can dispel the gloom?
When Time's swift wing grows weary,
  What charm can refresh his plume?
'Tis woman whose sweetness beameth
  O'er all that we feel or see;
And if man of heaven e'er dreameth,
  'Tis when he thinks purely of thee,
          O woman!

Let conquerors fight for glory,
  Too dearly the meed they gain;
Let patriots live in story--
  Too often they die in vain;
Give kingdoms to those who choose 'em,
  This world can offer to me
No throne like Beauty's bosom,
  No freedom like serving thee,
          O woman!






CUPID'S LOTTERY.


A lottery, a Lottery,
In Cupid's court there used to be;
    Two roguish eyes
    The highest prize
In Cupid's scheming Lottery;
    And kisses, too,
    As good as new,
Which weren't very hard to win,
    For he who won
    The eyes of fun
Was sure to have the kisses in
       A Lottery, a Lottery, etc.

This Lottery, this Lottery,
In Cupid's court went merrily,
    And Cupid played
    A Jewish trade
In this his scheming Lottery;
    For hearts, we're told,
    In _shares_ he sold
To many a fond believing drone,
    And cut the hearts
    In sixteen parts
So well, each thought the whole his own.
   _Chor_.--A Lottery, a Lottery, etc.

       *       *       *       *       *

Tho' sacred the tie that our country entwineth,
  And dear to the heart her remembrance remains,
Yet dark are the ties where no liberty shineth,
  And sad the remembrance that slavery stains.
O thou who wert born in the cot of the peasant,
  But diest in languor in luxury's dome,
Our vision when absent--our glory, when present--
  Where thou art, O Liberty! there is my home.

Farewell to the land where in childhood I've wandered!
  In vain is she mighty, in vain, is she brave!
Unblest is the blood that for tyrants is squandered,
  And fame has no wreaths for the brow of the slave.
But hail to thee, Albion! who meet'st the commotion.
  Of Europe as calm as thy cliffs meet the foam!
With no bonds but the law, and no slave but the ocean,
  Hail, Temple of Liberty! thou art my home.

       *       *       *       *       *

Oh think, when a hero is sighing,
  What danger in such an adorer!
What woman can dream' of denying
  The hand that lays laurels before her?
No heart is so guarded around,
  But the smile of the victor will take it;
No bosom can slumber so sound,
  But the trumpet of glory will wake it.

Love sometimes is given to sleeping,
  And woe to the heart that allows him;
For oh, neither smiling nor weeping
  Has power at those moments to rouse him.
But tho' he was sleeping so fast,
  That the life almost seemed to forsake him,
Believe me, one soul-thrilling blast
  From the trumpet of glory would wake him.

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. Orator Puff had two tones in his voice,
  The one squeaking thus, and the other down so!
In each sentence he uttered he gave you your choice,
  For one was B alt, and the rest G below.
Oh! oh, Orator Puff!
One voice for one orator's surely enough.

But he still talked away spite of coughs and of frowns,
So distracting all ears with his ups and his downs,
That a wag once on hearing the orator say,
"My voice is for war," asked him, "Which of them, pray?"
    Oh! oh! etc.

Reeling homewards one evening, top-heavy with gin,
And rehearsing his speech on the weight of the crown,
He tript near a sawpit, and tumbled right in,
"Sinking Fund," the last words as his noddle came down.
    Oh! oh, etc.

"Help! help!" he exclaimed, in his he and she tones,
"Help me out! help me out--I have broken my bones!"
"Help you out?" said a Paddy who passed, "what a bother!
Why, there's two of you there, can't you help one another?"
    Oh I oh! etc.








MISCELLANEOUS POEMS.






OCCASIONAL EPILOGUE.

SPOKEN BY MR. COBBY, IN THE CHARACTER OF VAPID, AFTER THE PLAY OF THE
DRAMATIST, AT THE KILKENNY THEATRE.


(_Entering as if to announce the Play_.)

Ladies and Gentlemen, on Monday night,
For the ninth time--oh accents of delight
To the poor author's ear, when _three times three_
With a full bumper crowns, his Comedy!
When, long by money, and the muse, forsaken,
He finds at length his jokes and boxes taken,
And sees his play-bill circulate--alas,
The only bill on which his name will pass!
Thus, Vapid, thus shall Thespian scrolls of fame
Thro' box and gallery waft your well-known name,
While critic eyes the happy cast shall con,
And learned ladies spell your _Dram. Person_.

'Tis said our worthy Manager[1]intends
To help my night, and _he_, ye know, has friends.
Friends, did I say? for fixing friends, or _parts_,
Engaging actors, or engaging hearts,
There's nothing like him! wits, at his request.
Are turned to fools, and dull dogs learn to jest;
Soldiers, for him, good "trembling cowards" make,
And beaus, turned clowns, look ugly for his sake;
For him even lawyers talk without a fee,
For him (oh friendship) _I_ act tragedy!
In short, like Orpheus, his persuasive tricks
Make _boars_ amusing, and put life in _sticks_.

With _such_ a manager we can't but please,
Tho' London sent us all her loud  O. P.'s,[2]
Let them come on, like snakes, all hiss and rattle,
Armed with a thousand fans, we'd  give them battle;
You, on our side, R. P.[3]upon our  banners,
Soon should we teach the saucy O. P.'s manners:
And show that, here--howe'er John Bull may doubt--
In all _our_ plays, the Riot-Act's cut out;
And, while we skim the cream of many a jest,
Your well-timed thunder never sours its zest.

Oh gently thus, when three short weeks are past,
At Shakespeare's altar,[4] shall we breathe our last;
And, ere this long-loved dome to ruin nods,
Die all, die nobly, die like demigods!


[1] The late Mr. Richard Power.

[2] The brief appellation by which these persons were distinguished who,
at the opening of the new theatre of Convent Garden, clamored for the
continuance of the old prices of admission.

[3] The initials of our manager's name.

[4] This alludes to a scenic representation then preparing for the last
night of the performances.






EXTRACT.

FROM A PROLOGUE WRITTEN AND SPOKEN BY THE AUTHOR, AT THE OPENING OF THE
KILKENNY THEATRE, OCTOBER, 1809.

       *        *       *       *       *

Yet, even here, tho' Fiction rules the hour,
There shine some genuine smiles, beyond her power;
And there are tears, too--tears that Memory sheds
Even o'er the feast that mimic fancy spreads,
When her heart misses one lamented guest,[1]
Whose eye so long threw light o'er all the rest!
There, there, indeed, the Muse forgets her task,
And drooping weeps behind Thalia's mask.

Forgive this gloom--forgive this joyless strain,
Too sad to welcome pleasure's smiling train.
But, meeting thus, our hearts will part the lighter,
As mist at dawn but makes the setting brighter;
Gay Epilogue will shine where Prologue fails--
As glow-worms keep their splendor for their tails.

I know not why--but time, methinks, hath past
More fleet than usual since we parted last.
It seems but like a dream of yesternight.
Whose charm still hangs, with fond, delaying light;
And, ere the memory lose one glowing hue
Of former joy, we come to kindle new.
Thus ever may the flying moments haste
With trackless foot along life's vulgar waste,
But deeply print and lingeringly move,
When thus they reach the sunny spots we love.
Oh yes, whatever be our gay career,
Let this be still the solstice of the year,
Where Pleasure's sun shall at its height remain,
And slowly sink to level life again.


[1] The late Mr. John Lyster, one of the oldest members and best actors of
the Kilkenny Theatrical Society.






THE SYLPH'S BALL.


A sylph, as bright as ever sported
  Her figure thro' the fields of air,
By an old swarthy Gnome was courted.
  And, strange to say, he won the fair.

The annals of the oldest witch
  A pair so sorted could not show,
But how refuse?--the Gnome was rich,
  The Rothschild of the world below;

And Sylphs, like other pretty creatures,
  Are told, betimes, they must consider
Love as an auctioneer of features,
  Who knocks them down to the best bidder.

Home she was taken to his Mine--
  A Palace paved with diamonds all--
And, proud as Lady Gnome to shine,
  Sent out her tickets for a ball.

The _lower_ world of course was there,
  And all the best; but of the _upper_
The sprinkling was but shy and rare,--
A few old Sylphids who loved supper.

As none yet knew the wondrous Lamp
Of DAVY, that renowned Aladdin,
And the Gnome's Halls exhaled a damp
Which accidents from fire were had in;

The chambers were supplied with light
By many strange but safe devices;
Large fire-flies, such as shine at night
Among the Orient's flowers and spices;--

Musical flint-mills--swiftly played
 By elfin hands--that, flashing round,
Like certain fire-eyed minstrel maids,
Gave out at once both light and sound.

Bologna stones that drink the sun;
 And water from that Indian sea,
Whose waves at night like wildfire run--
Corked up in crystal carefully.

Glow-worms that round the tiny dishes
Like little light-houses, were set up;
And pretty phosphorescent fishes
 That by their own gay light were eat up.

'Mong the few guests from Ether came
That wicked Sylph whom Love we call--
My Lady knew him but by name,
 My Lord, her husband, not at all.

Some prudent Gnomes, 'tis said, apprised
That he was coming, and, no doubt
Alarmed about his torch, advised
 He should by all means be kept out.

But others disapproved this plan,
 And by his flame tho' somewhat frighted,
Thought Love too much a gentleman
In such a dangerous place to light it.

However, _there_ he was--and dancing
 With the fair Sylph, light as a feather;
They looked like two fresh sunbeams glancing
At daybreak down to earth together.

And all had gone off safe and well,
 But for that plaguy torch whose light,
Though not _yet_ kindled--who could tell
How soon, how devilishly, it _might_?

And so it chanced--which, in those dark
 And fireless halls was quite amazing;
Did we not know how small a spark
 Can set the torch of Love a-blazing.

Whether it came (when close entangled
 In the gay waltz) from her bright eyes,
Or from the _lucciole_, that spangled
 Her locks of jet--is all surmise;

But certain 'tis the ethereal girl
 _Did_ drop a spark at some odd turning,
Which by the waltz's windy whirl
 Was fanned up into actual burning.

Oh for that Lamp's metallic gauze,
 That curtain of protecting wire,
Which DAVY delicately draws
 Around illicit, dangerous fire!--

The wall he sets 'twixt Flame and Air,
  (Like that which barred young Thisbe's bliss,)
Thro' whose small holes this dangerous pair
  May see each other but not kiss.

At first the torch looked rather bluely,--
  A sign, they say, that no good boded--
Then quick the gas became unruly.
  And, crack! the ball-room all exploded.

Sylphs, gnomes, and fiddlers mixt together,
  With all their aunts, sons, cousins, nieces,
Like butterflies in stormy weather,
  Were blown--legs, wings, and tails--to pieces!

While, mid these victims of the torch,
  The Sylph, alas, too, bore her part--
Found lying with a livid scorch
  As if from lightning o'er her heart!

       *       *       *       *       *

"Well done"--a laughing Goblin said--
  Escaping from this gaseous strife--
"'Tis not the _first_ time Love has made
  "A _blow-up_ in connubial life!"






REMONSTRANCE.


_After a Conversation with Lord John Russell, in which he had intimated
some Idea of giving up all political Pursuits. _


What! _thou_, with thy genius, thy youth, and thy name--
  Thou, born of a Russell--whose instinct to run
The accustomed career of thy sires, is the same
  As the eaglet's, to soar with his eyes on the sun!

Whose nobility comes to thee, stampt with a seal,
  Far, far more ennobling than monarch e'er set;
With the blood of thy race, offered up for the weal
  Of a nation that swears by that martyrdom yet!

Shalt _thou_ be faint-hearted and turn from the strife,
  From the mighty arena, where all that is grand
And devoted and pure and adorning in life,
  'Tis for high-thoughted spirits like thine to command?

Oh no, never dream it--while good men despair
  Between tyrants and traitors, and timid men bow,
Never think for an instant thy country can spare
  Such a light from her darkening horizon as thou.

With a spirit, as meek as the gentlest of those
  Who in life's sunny valley lie sheltered and warm;
Yet bold and heroic as ever yet rose
  To the top cliffs of Fortune and breasted her storm;

With an ardor for liberty fresh as in youth
  It first kindles the bard and gives life to his lyre;
Yet mellowed, even now, by that mildness of truth
  Which tempers but chills not the patriot fire;

With an eloquence--not like those rills from a height,
  Which sparkle and foam and in vapor are o'er;
But a current that works out its way into light
  Thro' the filtering recesses of thought and of lore.

Thus gifted, thou never canst sleep in the shade;
  If the stirrings of Genius, the music of fame,
And the charms of thy cause have not power to persuade,
  Yet think how to Freedom thou'rt pledged by thy Name.

Like the boughs of that laurel by Delphi's decree
  Set apart for the Fane and its service divine,
So the branches that spring from the old Russell tree
  Are by Liberty _claimed_ for the use of her Shrine.






MY BIRTH-DAY.


"My birth-day"--what a different sound
  That word had in my youthful ears!
And how, each time the day comes round,
  Less and less white its mark appears!

"When first our scanty years are told,
It seems like pastime to grow old;
And as Youth counts the shining links
  That Time around him binds so fast,
Pleased with the task, he little thinks
  How hard that chain will press at last.
Vain was the man, and false as vain,
  Who said--"were he ordained to run
"His long career of life again,
  "He would do all that he _had_ done."--
Ah, 'tis not thus the voice that dwells
  In sober birth-days speaks to me;
Far otherwise--of time it tells,
  Lavished unwisely, carelessly:
Of counsel mockt; of talents made
  Haply for high and pure designs,
But oft, like Israel's incense, laid
  Upon unholy, earthly shrines;
Of nursing many a wrong desire,
  Of wandering after Love too far,
And taking every meteor fire
  That crost my pathway, for his star.--
All this it tells, and, could I trace
  The imperfect picture o'er again.
With power to add, retouch, efface
  The lights and shades, the joy and pain,
How little of the past would stay!
How quickly all should melt away--
All--but that Freedom of the Mind
  Which hath been more than wealth to me;
Those friendships, in my boyhood twined,
  And kept till now unchangingly,
And that dear home, that saving ark,
  Where Love's true light at last I've found,
Cheering within, when all grows dark
  And comfortless and stormy round!






FANCY.


The more I've viewed this world, the more I've found,
That filled as 'tis with scenes and creatures rare,
Fancy commands within her own bright round
  A world of scenes and creatures far more fair.
Nor is it that her power can call up there
  A single charm, that's not from Nature won,--
No more than rainbows in their pride can wear
  A single tint unborrowed from the sun;
But 'tis the mental medium; it shines thro',
That lends to Beauty all its charm and hue;
As the same light that o'er the level lake
  One dull monotony of lustre flings,
Will, entering in the rounded raindrop, make
Colors as gay as those on angels' wings!






SONG.

FANNY, DEAREST.


Yes! had I leisure to sigh and mourn,
  Fanny dearest, for thee I'd sigh;
And every smile on my cheek should turn
  To tears when thou art nigh.
But between love and wine and sleep,
  So busy a life I live,
That even the time it would take to weep
  Is more than my heart can give.
Then wish me not to despair and pine,
  Fanny, dearest of all the dears!
The Love that's ordered to bathe in wine,
  Would be sure to take cold in tears.

Reflected bright in this heart of mine,
  Fanny dearest, thy image lies;
But ah! the mirror would cease to shine,
  If dimmed too often with sighs.
They lose the half of beauty's light,
  Who view it thro' sorrow's tear;
And 'tis but to see thee truly bright
  That I keep my eye-beams clear.
Then wait no longer till tears shall flow--

  Fanny, dearest! the hope is vain;
If sunshine cannot dissolve thy snow,
  I shall never attempt it with rain.








TRANSLATIONS FROM CATULLUS.






CARM. 70.

    _dicebas quondam, etc_.

TO LESBIA.


Thou told'st me, in our days of love,
  That I had all that heart of thine;
That, even to share the couch of Jove,
  Thou wouldst not, Lesbia, part from mine.

How purely wert thou worshipt then!
  Not with the vague and vulgar fires
Which Beauty wakes in soulless men,--
  But loved, as children by their sires.

That flattering dream, alas, is o'er;--
  I know thee now--and tho' these eyes
Doat on thee wildly as before,
  Yet, even in doating, I despise.

Yes, sorceress--mad as it may seem--
  With all thy craft, such spells adorn thee,
That passion even outlives esteem.
  And I at once adore--and scorn thee.






CARM. II.


    _pauca nunciate meae puellae_.


Comrades and friends! with whom, where'er
  The fates have willed thro' life I've roved,
Now speed ye home, and with you bear
  These bitter words to her I've loved.

Tell her from fool to fool to run,
  Where'er her vain caprice may call;
Of all her dupes not loving one,
  But ruining and maddening all.

Bid her forget--what now is past--
  Our once dear love, whose rain lies
Like a fair flower, the meadow's last.
  Which feels the ploughshare's edge and dies!






CARM. 29.


    _peninsularum Sirmio, insularumque ocelle_.


Sweet Sirmio! thou, the very eye
  Of all peninsulas and isles,
That in our lakes of silver lie,
  Or sleep enwreathed by Neptune's smiles--

How gladly back to thee I fly!
  Still doubting, asking--_can_ it be
That I have left Bithynia's sky,
  And gaze in safety upon thee?

Oh! what is happier than to find
  Our hearts at ease, our perils past;
When, anxious long, the lightened mind
  Lays down its load of care at last:

When tired with toil o'er land and deep,
  Again we tread the welcome floor
Of our own home, and sink to sleep
  On the long-wished-for bed once more.

This, this it is that pays alone
  The ills of all life's former track.--
Shine out, my beautiful, my own
  Sweet Sirmio, greet thy master back.

And thou, fair Lake, whose water quaffs
  The light of heaven like Lydia's sea,
Rejoice, rejoice--let all that laughs
  Abroad, at home, laugh out for me!






TIBULLUS TO SULPICIA.


    _nulla tuum nobis subducet femina lectum, etc.,
    Lib. iv. Carm. 13_.


"Never shall woman's smile have power
  "To win me from those gentle charms!"--
Thus swore I, in that happy hour,
  When Love first gave thee to my arms.

And still alone thou charm'st my sight--
  Still, tho' our city proudly shine
With forms and faces, fair and bright,
  I see none fair or bright but thine.

Would thou wert fair for only me,
  And couldst no heart but mine allure!--
To all men else unpleasing be,
  So shall I feel my prize secure.

Oh, love like mine ne'er wants the zest
  Of others' envy, others' praise;
But, in its silence safely blest,
  Broods o'er a bliss it ne'er betrays.

Charm of my life! by whose sweet power
  All cares are husht, all ills subdued--
My light in even the darkest hour,
  My crowd in deepest solitude!

No, not tho' heaven itself sent down
  Some maid of more than heavenly charms,
With bliss undreamt thy bard to crown,
  Would he for her forsake those arms!






IMITATION.

FROM THE FRENCH.


With women and apples both Paris and Adam
  Made mischief enough in their day:--
God be praised that the fate of mankind, my dear Madam,
  Depends not on _us_, the same way.
For, weak as I am with temptation to grapple,
  The world would have doubly to rue thee:

Like Adam, I'd gladly take _from_ thee the apple,
  Like Paris, at once give it _to_ thee.






INVITATION TO DINNER.

ADDRESSED TO LORD LANSDOWNE.

September, 1818.


Some think we bards have nothing real;
  That poets live among the stars so,
Their very dinners are ideal,--
  (And, heaven knows, too oft they _are_ so,)--
For instance, that we have, instead
  Of vulgar chops and stews and hashes,
First course--a Phoenix, at the head.
  Done in its own celestial ashes;
At foot, a cygnet which kept singing
All the time its neck was wringing.
Side dishes, thus--Minerva's owl,
Or any such like learned fowl:
Doves, such as heaven's poulterer gets,
When Cupid shoots his mother's pets.
Larks stewed in Morning's roseate breath,
  Or roasted by a sunbeam's splendor;
And nightingales, berhymed to death--
  Like young pigs whipt to make them tender.

Such fare may suit those bards, who are able
To banquet at Duke Humphrey's table;
But as for me, who've long been taught
  To eat and drink like other people;
And can put up with mutton, bought
  Where Bromham[1] rears its ancient steeple--
If Lansdowne will consent to share
My humble feast, tho' rude the fare,
Yet, seasoned by that salt he brings
From Attica's salinest springs,
'Twill turn to dainties;--while the cup,
Beneath his influence brightening up,
Like that of Baucis, touched by Jove,
Will sparkle fit for gods above!


[1] A picturesque village in sight of my cottage, and from which it is
separated out by a small verdant valley.






VERSES TO THE POET CRABBE'S INKSTAND.[1]

(WRITTEN MAY, 1832.)


All, as he left it!--even the pen,
  So lately at that mind's command,
Carelessly lying, as if then
  Just fallen from his gifted hand.

Have we then lost him? scarce an hour,
  A little hour, seems to have past,
Since Life and Inspiration's power
  Around that relic breathed their last.

Ah, powerless now--like talisman
  Found in some vanished wizard's halls,
Whose mighty charm with him began,
  Whose charm with him extinguisht falls.

Yet, tho', alas! the gifts that shone
  Around that pen's exploring track,
Be now, with its great master, gone,
  Nor living hand can call them back;

Who does not feel, while thus his eyes
  Rest on the enchanter's broken wand,
Each earth-born spell it worked arise
  Before him in succession grand?

Grand, from the Truth that reigns o'er all;
  The unshrinking truth that lets her light
Thro' Life's low, dark, interior fall,
  Opening the whole, severely bright:

Yet softening, as she frowns along,
  O'er scenes which angels weep to see--
Where Truth herself half veils the Wrong,
  In pity of the Misery.

True bard!--and simple, as the race
  Of true-born poets ever are,
When, stooping from their starry place,
  They're children near, tho' gods afar.

How freshly doth my mind recall,
  'Mong the few days I've known with thee,
One that, most buoyantly of all,
  Floats in the wake of memory;[2]

When he, the poet, doubly graced,
  In life, as in his perfect strain,
With that pure, mellowing power of Taste,
  Without which Fancy shines in vain;

Who in his page will leave behind,
  Pregnant with genius tho' it be,
But half the treasures of a mind,
  Where Sense o'er all holds mastery:--

Friend of long years! of friendship tried
  Thro' many a bright and dark event;
In doubts, my judge--in taste, my guide--
  In all, my stay and ornament!

He, too, was of our feast that day,
  And all were guests of one whose hand
Hath shed a new and deathless ray
  Around the lyre of this great land;

In whose sea-odes--as in those shells
  Where Ocean's voice of majesty
Seems still to sound--immortal dwells
  Old Albion's Spirit of the Sea.

Such was our host; and tho', since then,
  Slight clouds have risen 'twixt him and me,
Who would not grasp such hand again,
  Stretched forth again in amity?

Who can, in this short life, afford
  To let such mists a moment stay,
When thus one frank, atoning word,
  Like sunshine, melts them all away?

Bright was our board that day--tho' _one_
  Unworthy brother there had place;
As 'mong the horses of the Sun,
  One was, they say, of earthly race.

Yet, _next_ to Genius is the power
  Of feeling where true Genius lies;
And there was light around that hour
  Such as, in memory, never dies;

Light which comes o'er me as I gaze,
  Thou Relic of the Dead, on thee,
Like all such dreams of vanisht days,
  Brightly, indeed--but mournfully!


[1] Soon after Mr. Crabbe's death, the sons of that gentleman did me the
honor of presenting to me the inkstand, pencil, etc., which their
distinguished father had long been in the habit of using.

[2] The lines that follow allude to a day passed in company with Mr.
Crabbe, many years since, when a party, consisting only of Mr. Rogers, Mr.
Crabbe, and the author of these verses, had the pleasure of dining with
Mr. Thomas Campbell, at his house at Sydenham.






TO CAROLINE, VISCOUNTESS VALLETORT.

WRITTEN AT LACOCK ABBEY, JANUARY, 1832.


When I would sing thy beauty's light,
Such various forms, and all so bright,
I've seen thee, from thy childhood, wear,
I know not which to call most fair,
Nor 'mong the countless charms that spring
For ever round thee, _which_ to sing.

  When I would paint thee as thou _art_,
Then all thou _wert_ comes o'er my heart--
The graceful child in Beauty's dawn
Within the nursery's shade withdrawn,
Or peeping out--like a young moon
Upon a world 'twill brighten soon.
Then next in girlhood's blushing hour,
As from thy own loved Abbey-tower
I've seen thee look, all radiant, down,
With smiles that to the hoary frown
Of centuries round thee lent a ray,
Chasing even Age's gloom away;--
Or in the world's resplendent throng,
As I have markt thee glide along,
Among the crowds of fair and great
A spirit, pure and separate,
To which even Admiration's eye
Was fearful to approach too nigh;--
A creature circled by a spell
Within which nothing wrong could dwell;
And fresh and clear as from the source.
Holding through life her limpid course,
Like Arethusa thro' the sea,
Stealing in fountain purity.

  Now, too, another change of light!
As noble bride, still meekly bright
Thou bring'st thy Lord a dower above
All earthly price, pure woman's love;
And showd'st what lustre Rank receives,
When with his proud Corinthian leaves
Her rose this high-bred Beauty weaves.

  Wonder not if, where all's so fair,
To choose were more than bard can dare;
Wonder not if, while every scene
I've watched thee thro' so bright hath been,
The enamored muse should, in her quest
Of beauty, know not where to rest,
But, dazzled, at thy feet thus fall,
Hailing thee beautiful in all!






A SPECULATION.


Of all speculations the market holds forth,
  The best that I know for a lover of pelf,
Is to buy Marcus up, at the price he is worth,
  And then sell him at that which he sets on himself.






TO MY MOTHER.

WRITTEN IN A POCKET BOOK, 1822.


They tell us of an Indian tree,
  Which, howsoe'er the sun and sky
May tempt its boughs to wander free,
  And shoot and blossom wide and high,
Far better loves to bend its arms
  Downward again to that dear earth,
From which the life that, fills and warms
  Its grateful being, first had birth.
'Tis thus, tho' wooed by flattering friends,
  And fed with fame (_if_ fame it be)
This heart, my own dear mother, bends,
  With love's true instinct, back to thee!






LOVE AND HYMEN.


Love had a fever--ne'er could close
  His little eyes till day was breaking;
And wild and strange enough, Heaven knows,
  The things he raved about while waking.

To let him pine so were a sin;--
  One to whom all the world's a debtor--
So Doctor Hymen was called in,
  And Love that night slept rather better.

Next day the case gave further hope yet,
  Tho' still some ugly fever latent;--
"Dose, as before"--a gentle opiate.
  For which old Hymen has a patent.

After a month of daily call,
  So fast the dose went on restoring,
That Love, who first ne'er slept at all,
  Now took, the rogue! to downright snoring.






LINES ON THE ENTRY OF THE AUSTRIANS INTO NAPLES, 1821.


    _carbone notati_.


Ay--down to the dust with them, slaves as they are,
  From this hour let the blood in their dastardly veins,
That shrunk at the first touch of Liberty's war,
  Be wasted for tyrants, or stagnate in chains.

On, on like a cloud, thro' their beautiful vales,
  Ye locusts of tyranny, blasting them o'er--
Fill, fill up their wide sunny waters, ye sails
  From each slave-mart of Europe and shadow their shore!

Let their fate be a mock-word--let men of all lands
  Laugh out with a scorn that shall ring to the poles,
When each sword that the cowards let fall from their hands
  Shall be forged into fetters to enter their souls.

And deep, and more deep, as the iron is driven,
  Base slaves! let the whet of their agony be,
To think--as the Doomed often think of that heaven
  They had once within reach--that they _might_ have been free.

Oh shame! when there was not a bosom whose heat
  Ever rose 'bove the _zero_ of Castlereagh's heart.
That did not, like echo, your war-hymn repeat,
  And send all its prayers with your Liberty's start;

When the world stood in hope--when a spirit that breathed
  The fresh air of the olden time whispered about;
And the swords of all Italy, halfway unsheathed,
  But waited one conquering cry to flash out!

When around you the shades of your Mighty in fame,
  FILICAJAS and PETRARCHS, seemed bursting to view,
And their words and their warnings, like tongues of bright flame
  Over Freedom's apostles, fell kindling on you!

Oh shame! that in such a proud moment of life
  Worth the history of ages, when, had you but hurled
One bolt at your tyrant invader, that strife
  Between freemen and tyrants had spread thro' the world--

That then--oh! disgrace upon manhood--even then,
  You should falter, should cling to your pitiful breath;
Cower down into beasts, when you might have stood men,
  And prefer the slave's life of prostration to death.

It is strange, it is dreadful:--shout, Tyranny, shout
  Thro' your dungeons and palaces, "Freedom is o'er;"--
If there lingers one spark of her light, tread it out,
  And return to your empire of darkness once more.

For if _such_ are the braggarts that claim to be free,
  Come, Despot of Russia, thy feet let me kiss;
Far nobler to live the brute bondman of thee,
  Than to sully even chains by a struggle like this!






SCEPTICISM.


Ere Psyche drank the cup that shed
  Immortal Life into her soul,
Some evil spirit poured, 'tis said,
  One drop of Doubt into the bowl--

Which, mingling darkly with the stream,
  To Psyche's lips--she knew not why--
Made even that blessed nectar seem
  As tho' its sweetness soon would die.

Oft, in the very arms of Love,
  A chill came o'er her heart--a fear
That Death might, even yet, remove
  Her spirit from that happy sphere.

"Those sunny ringlets," she exclaimed.
  Twining them round her snowy fingers;
"That forehead, where a light unnamed,
  "Unknown on earth, for ever lingers;

"Those lips, thro' which I feel the breath
  "Of Heaven itself, whene'er they sever--
"Say, are they mine, beyond all death,
  "My own, hereafter, and for ever?

"Smile not--I know that starry brow,
  "Those ringlets, and bright lips of thine,
"Will always shine, as they do now--
  "But shall _I_ live to see them shine?"

In vain did Love say, "Turn thine eyes
  "On all that sparkles round thee here--
"Thou'rt now in heaven where nothing dies,
  "And in these arms--what _canst_ thou fear?"

In vain--the fatal drop, that stole
  Into that cup's immortal treasure,
Had lodged its bitter near her soul.
  And gave a tinge to every pleasure.

And, tho' there ne'er was transport given
  Like Psyche's with that radiant boy,
Here is the only face in heaven,
  That wears a cloud amid its joy.






A JOKE VERSIFIED.


"Come, come," said Tom's father, "at your time of life,
  "There's no longer excuse for thus playing the rake--
"It is time you should think, boy, of taking a wife"--
  "Why, so it is, father--whose wife shall I take?"






ON THE DEATH OF A FRIEND.


Pure as the mantle, which, o'er him who stood
  By Jordan's stream, descended from the sky,
Is that remembrance which the wise and good
  Leave in the hearts that love them, when they die.

So pure, so precious shall the memory be,
Bequeathed, in dying, to our souls by thee--
So shall the love we bore thee, cherisht warm
  Within our souls thro' grief and pain and strife,
Be, like Elisha's cruse, a holy charm,
  Wherewith to "heal the waters" of this life!






TO JAMES CORRY, ESQ.

ON HIS MAKING ME A PRESENT OF A WINE STRAINER.

BRIGHTON, JUNE, 1825.


This life, dear Corry, who can doubt?--
  Resembles much friend Ewart's[1] wine,
When _first_ the rosy drops come out,
  How beautiful, how clear they shine!
And thus awhile they keep their tint,
  So free from even a shade with some,
That they would smile, did you but hint,
  That darker drops would _ever_ come.

But soon the ruby tide runs short,
  Each minute makes the sad truth plainer,
Till life, like old and crusty port,
  When near its close, requires a strainer.

_This_ friendship can alone confer,
  Alone can teach the drops to pass,
If not as bright as _once_ they were,
  At least unclouded, thro' the glass.

Nor, Corry, could a boon be mine.
  Of which this heart were fonder, vainer,
Than thus, if life grow like old wine,
  To have _thy_ friendship for its strainer.


[1] A wine-merchant.






FRAGMENT OF A CHARACTER.


Here lies Factotum Ned at last;
  Long as he breathed the vital air,
Nothing throughout all Europe past
  In which Ned hadn't some small share.

Whoe'er was _in_, whoe'er was _out_,
  Whatever statesmen did or said,
If not exactly brought about,
  'Twas all, at least, contrived by Ned.

With Nap, if Russia went to war,
  'Twas owing, under Providence,
To certain hints Ned gave the Tsar--
  (Vide his pamphlet--price, sixpence.)

If France was beat at Waterloo--
  As all but Frenchmen think she was--
To Ned, as Wellington well knew,
  Was owing half that day's applause.

Then for his news--no envoy's bag
  E'er past so many secrets thro' it;
Scarcely a telegraph could wag
  Its wooden finger, but Ned knew it.

Such tales he had of foreign plots,
  With foreign names, one's ear to buzz in!
From Russia, _shefs_ and _ofs_ in lots,
  From Poland, _owskis_ by the dozen.

When George, alarmed for England's creed,
  Turned out the last Whig ministry,
And men asked--who advised the deed?
  Ned modestly confest 'twas he.

For tho', by some unlucky miss,
  He had not downright _seen_ the King,
He sent such hints thro' Viscount _This_,
  To Marquis _That_, as clenched the thing.

The same it was in science, arts,
  The Drama, Books, MS. and printed--
Kean learned from Ned his cleverest parts,
  And Scott's last work by him was hinted.

Childe Harold in the proofs he read,
  And, here and there infused some soul in't--
Nay, Davy's Lamp, till seen by Ned,
  Had--odd enough--an awkward hole in't.

'Twas thus, all-doing and all-knowing,
  Wit, statesman, boxer, chymist, singer,
Whatever was the best pie going,
  In _that_ Ned--trust him--had his finger.

       *        *        *        *        *






WHAT SHALL I SING THEE?

TO ----.


What shall I sing thee? Shall I tell
Of that bright hour, remembered well
As tho' it shone but yesterday,

When loitering idly in the ray
Of a spring sun I heard o'er-head,
My name as by some spirit said,
And, looking up, saw two bright eyes
  Above me from a casement shine,
Dazzling my mind with such surprise
  As they, who sail beyond the Line,
Feel when new stars above them rise;--
And it was thine, the voice that spoke,
  Like Ariel's, in the mid-air then;
And thine the eye whose lustre broke--
  Never to be forgot again!

What shall I sing thee? Shall I weave
A song of that sweet summer-eve,
(Summer, of which the sunniest part
Was that we, each, had in the heart,)
When thou and I, and one like thee,
  In life and beauty, to the sound
Of our own breathless minstrelsy.
  Danced till the sunlight faded round,
Ourselves the whole ideal Ball,
Lights, music, company, and all?

Oh, 'tis not in the languid strain
  Of lute like mine, whose day is past,
To call up even a dream again
  Of the fresh light those moments cast.






COUNTRY DANCE AND QUADRILLE.


One night the nymph called country dance--
  (Whom folks, of late, have used so ill,
Preferring a coquette from France,
  That mincing thing, _Mamselle_ quadrille)--

Having been chased from London down
  To that most humble haunt of all
She used to grace--a Country Town--
  Went smiling to the New-Year's Ball.

"Here, here, at least," she cried, tho' driven
  "From London's gay and shining tracks--
"Tho', like a Peri cast from heaven,
  "I've lost, for ever lost, Almack's--

"Tho' not a London Miss alive
  "Would now for her acquaintance own me;
"And spinsters, even, of forty-five,
  "Upon their honors ne'er have known me;

"Here, here, at least, I triumph still,
  "And--spite of some few dandy Lancers.
"Who vainly try to preach Quadrille--
  "See naught but _true-blue_ Country Dancers,

"Here still I reign, and, fresh in charms,
  "My throne, like Magna Charta, raise
"'Mong sturdy, free-born legs and arms,
  "That scorn the threatened _chaine anglaise_."

'Twas thus she said, as mid the din
  Of footmen, and the town sedan,
She lighted at the King's Head Inn,
  And up the stairs triumphant ran.

The Squires and their Squiresses all,
  With young Squirinas, just _come out_,
And my Lord's daughters from the Hall,
  (Quadrillers in their hearts no doubt,)--

All these, as light she tript upstairs,
  Were in the cloak-room seen assembling--
When, hark! some new outlandish airs,
  From the First Fiddle, set her trembling.

She stops--she listens--_can_ it be?
  Alas, in vain her ears would 'scape it--
It _is "Di tanti palpiti"_
  As plain as English bow can scrape it.

"Courage!" however--in she goes,
  With her best, sweeping country grace;
When, ah too true, her worst of foes,
  Quadrille, there meets her, face to face.

Oh for the lyre, or violin,
  Or kit of that gay Muse, Terpsichore,
To sing the rage these nymphs were in,
  Their looks and language, airs and trickery.

There stood Quadrille, with cat-like face
  (The beau-ideal of French beauty),
A band-box thing, all art and lace
  Down from her nose-tip to her shoe-tie.

Her flounces, fresh from _Victorine_--
  From _Hippolyte_, her rouge and hair--
Her poetry, from _Lamartine_--
  Her morals, from--the Lord knows where.

And, when she danced--so slidingly,
  So near the ground she plied her art,
You'd swear her mother-earth and she
  Had made a compact ne'er to part.

Her face too, all the while, sedate,
  No signs of life or motion showing.
Like a bright _pendule's_ dial-plate--
  So still, you'd hardly think 'twas _going_.

Full fronting her stood Country Dance--
  A fresh, frank nymph, whom you would know
For English, at a single glance--
  English all o'er, from top to toe.

A little _gauche_, 'tis fair to own,
  And rather given to skips and bounces;
Endangering thereby many a gown,
  And playing, oft, the devil with flounces.

Unlike _Mamselle_--who would prefer
  (As morally a lesser ill)
A thousand flaws of character,
  To one vile rumple of a frill.

No rouge did She of Albion wear;
  Let her but run that two-heat race
She calls a _Set_, not Dian e'er
  Came rosier from the woodland chase.

Such was the nymph, whose soul had in't
  Such anger now--whose eyes of blue
(Eyes of that bright, victorious tint,
  Which English maids call "Waterloo")--

Like summer lightnings, in the dusk
  Of a warm evening, flashing broke.
While--to the tune of "Money Musk,"[1]
  Which struck up now--she proudly spoke--

"Heard you that strain--that joyous strain?
  "'Twas such as England loved to hear,
"Ere thou and all thy frippery train,
  "Corrupted both her foot and ear--

"Ere Waltz, that rake from foreign lands,
  "Presumed, in sight of all beholders,
"To lay his rude, licentious hands
  "On virtuous English backs and shoulders--

"Ere times and morals both grew bad,
  "And, yet unfleeced by funding block-heads,
"Happy John Bull not only _had_,
  "But danced to, 'Money in both pockets.'

"Alas, the change!--Oh, Londonderry,
  "Where is the land could 'scape disasters,
"With _such_ a Foreign Secretary,
  "Aided by Foreign Dancing Masters?

"Woe to ye, men of ships and shops!
  "Rulers of day-books and of waves!
"Quadrilled, on one side, into fops,
  "And drilled, on t'other, into slaves!

"Ye, too, ye lovely victims, seen,
  "Like pigeons, trussed for exhibition,
"With elbows, _à la crapaudine_,
  "And feet, in--God knows what position;

"Hemmed in by watchful chaperons,
  "Inspectors of your airs and graces,
"Who intercept all whispered tones,
  "And read your telegraphic faces;

"Unable with the youth adored,
  "In that grim _cordon_ of Mammas,
"To interchange one tender word,
  "Tho' whispered but in _queue-de-chats_.

"Ah did you know how blest we ranged,
  "Ere vile Quadrille usurpt the fiddle--
"What looks in _setting_ were exchanged,
  "What tender words in _down the middle_;

"How many a couple, like the wind,
  "Which nothing in its course controls,
Left time and chaperons far behind,
  "And gave a loose to legs and souls;

How matrimony throve--ere stopt
  "By this cold, silent, foot-coquetting--
"How charmingly one's partner propt
"The important question in _poussetteing_.

"While now, alas--no sly advances--
  "No marriage hints--all goes on badly--
"'Twixt Parson Malthus and French Dances,
  "We, girls, are at a discount sadly.

"Sir William Scott (now Baron Stowell)
  "Declares not half so much is made
"By Licences--and he must know well--
  "Since vile Quadrilling spoiled the trade."

She ceased--tears fell from every Miss--
  She now had touched the true pathetic:--
One such authentic fact as this,
  Is worth whole volumes theoretic.

Instant the cry was "Country Dance!"
  And the maid saw with brightening face,
The Steward of the night advance,
  And lead her to her birthright place.

The fiddles, which awhile had ceased,
  Now tuned again their summons sweet,
And, for one happy night, at least,
  Old England's triumph was complete.


[1] An old English country dance.






GAZEL.


Haste, Maami, the spring is nigh;
  Already, in the unopened flowers
That sleep around us, Fancy's eye
  Can see the blush of future bowers;
And joy it brings to thee and me,
My own beloved Maami!

The streamlet frozen on its way,
  To feed the marble Founts of Kings,
Now, loosened by the vernal ray,
  Upon its path exulting springs--
As doth this bounding heart to thee,
My ever blissful Maami!

Such bright hours were not made to stay;
  Enough if they awhile remain,
Like Irem's bowers, that fade away.
  From time to time, and come again.
And life shall all one Irem be
For us, my gentle Maami.

O haste, for this impatient heart,
  Is like the rose in Yemen's vale,
That rends its inmost leaves apart
  With passion for the nightingale;
So languishes this soul for thee,
My bright and blushing Maami!






LINES ON THE DEATH OF JOSEPH ATKINSON, ESQ., OF DUBLIN.


If ever life was prosperously cast,
  If ever life was like the lengthened flow
Of some sweet music, sweetness to the last,
  'Twas his who, mourned by many, sleeps below.

The sunny temper, bright where all is strife.
  The simple heart above all worldly wiles;
Light wit that plays along the calm of life,
  And stirs its languid surface into smiles;

Pure charity that comes not in a shower,
  Sudden and loud, oppressing what it feeds,
But, like the dew, with gradual silent power,
  Felt in the bloom it leaves along the meads;

The happy grateful spirit, that improves
  And brightens every gift by fortune given;
That, wander where it will with those it loves,
  Makes every place a home, and home a heaven:

All these were his.--Oh, thou who read'st this stone,
  When for thyself, thy children, to the sky
Thou humbly prayest, ask this boon alone,
  That ye like him may live, like him may die!






GENIUS AND CRITICISM.


    _scripsit quidem fata, sed sequitur_.
    SENECA.


Of old, the Sultan Genius reigned,
  As Nature meant, supreme alone;
With mind unchekt, and hands unchained,
  His views, his conquests were his own.

But power like his, that digs its grave
  With its own sceptre, could not last;
So Genius' self became the slave
  Of laws that Genius' self had past.

As Jove, who forged the chain of Fate,
  Was, ever after, doomed to wear it:
His nods, his struggles all too late--
  "_Qui semel jussit, semper paret_."

To check young Genius' proud career,
  The slaves who now his throne invaded,
Made Criticism his prime Vizir,
  And from that hour his glories faded.

Tied down in Legislation's school,
  Afraid of even his own ambition,
His very victories were by rule,
  And he was great but by permission.

His most heroic deeds--the same,
  That dazzled, when spontaneous actions--
Now, done by law, seemed cold and tame,
  And shorn of all their first attractions.

If he but stirred to take the air,
  Instant, the Vizir's Council sat--
"Good Lord, your Highness can't go there--
"Bless me, your Highness can't do that."

If, loving pomp, he chose to buy
  Rich jewels for his diadem,
"The taste was bad, the price was high--
  "A flower were simpler than a gem."

To please them if he took to flowers--
  "What trifling, what unmeaning things!
"Fit for a woman's toilet hours,
  "But not at all the style for Kings."

If, fond of his domestic sphere,
  He played no more the rambling comet--
"A dull, good sort of man, 'twas clear,
  "But, as for great or brave, far from it."

Did he then look o'er distant oceans,
  For realms more worthy to enthrone him?--
"Saint Aristotle, what wild notions!
  "Serve a '_ne exeat regno_' on him."

At length, their last and worst to do,
They round him placed a guard of watchmen,
Reviewers, knaves in brown, or blue
Turned up with yellow--chiefly Scotchmen;

To dog his footsteps all about
  Like those in Longwood's prison grounds,
Who at Napoleon's heels rode out,
  For fear the Conqueror should break bounds.

Oh for some Champion of his power,
  Some _Ultra_ spirit, to set free,
As erst in Shakespeare's sovereign hour,
  The thunders of his Royalty!--

To vindicate his ancient line,
  The first, the true, the only one,
Of Right eternal and divine,
  That rules beneath the blessed sun.






TO LADY JERSEY.

ON BEING ASKED TO WRITE SOMETHING IN HER ALBUM.

Written at Middleton.


Oh albums, albums, how I dread
  Your everlasting scrap and scrawl!
How often wish that from the dead
Old Omar would pop forth his head,
  And make a bonfire of you all!

So might I 'scape the spinster band,
  The blushless blues, who, day and night,
Like duns in doorways, take their stand,
To waylay bards, with book in hand,
  Crying for ever, "Write, sir, write!"

So might I shun the shame and pain,
  That o'er me at this instant come,
When Beauty, seeking Wit in vain,
Knocks at the portal of my brain,
  And gets, for answer, "Not at home!"

_November, 1828_.






TO THE SAME.

ON LOOKING THROUGH HER ALBUM.


No wonder bards, both high and low,
  From Byron down to ***** and me,
Should seek the fame which all bestow
  On him whose task is praising thee.

Let but the theme be Jersey's eyes,
  At once all errors are forgiven;
As even old Sternhold still we prize,
  Because, tho' dull, he sings of heaven.






AT NIGHT.[1]


At night, when all is still around.
How sweet to hear the distant sound
  Of footstep, coming soft and light!
What pleasure in the anxious beat,
With which the bosom flies to meet
  That foot that comes so soft at night!

And then, at night, how sweet to say
"'Tis late, my love!" and chide delay,
  Tho' still the western clouds are bright;
Oh! happy, too, the silent press,
The eloquence of mute caress.
  With those we love exchanged at night!


[1] These lines allude to a curious lamp, which has for its device a
Cupid, with the words "at night" written over him.






TO LADY HOLLAND.

ON NAPOLEON'S LEGACY OP A SNUFF-BOX.


Gift of the Hero, on his dying day,
  To her, whose pity watched, for ever nigh;
Oh! could he see the proud, the happy ray,
  This relic lights up on her generous eye,
Sighing, he'd feel how easy 'tis to pay
  A friendship all his kingdoms could not buy.

_Paris, July_, 1821






EPILOGUE.

WRITTEN FOR LADY DACRE'S TRAGEDY OF INA.


Last night, as lonely o'er my fire I sat,
Thinking of cues, starts, exits, and--all that,
And wondering much what little knavish sprite
Had put it first in women's heads to write:--
Sudden I saw--as in some witching dream--
A bright-blue glory round my book-case beam,
From whose quick-opening folds of azure light
Out flew a tiny form, as small and bright
As Puck the Fairy, when he pops his head,
Some sunny morning from a violet bed.
"Bless me!" I starting cried "what imp are you?"--
"A small he-devil, Ma'am--my name BAS BLEU--
"A bookish sprite, much given to routs and reading;
"'Tis I who teach your spinsters of good breeding,
"The reigning taste in chemistry and caps,
"The last new bounds of tuckers and of maps,
"And when the waltz has twirled her giddy brain
"With metaphysics twirl it back again!"
I viewed him, as he spoke--his hose were blue,
His wings--the covers of the last Review--
Cerulean, bordered with a jaundice hue,
And tinselled gayly o'er, for evening wear,
Till the next quarter brings a new-fledged pair.
"Inspired by me--(pursued this waggish Fairy)--
"That best of wives and Sapphos, Lady Mary,
"Votary alike of Crispin and the Muse,
"Makes her own splay-foot epigrams and shoes.
"For me the eyes of young Camilla shine,
"And mingle Love's blue brilliances with mine;
"For me she sits apart, from coxcombs shrinking,
"Looks wise--the pretty soul!--and _thinks_ she's thinking.
"By my advice Miss Indigo attends
"Lectures on Memory, and assures her friends,
"''Pon honor!--(_mimics_)--nothing can surpass the plan
"'Of that professor--(_trying to recollect_)--psha! that memory-man--
"'That--what's his name?--him I attended lately--
"''Pon honor, he improved _my_ memory greatly.'"
Here curtsying low, I asked the blue-legged sprite,
What share he had in this our play to-night.
'Nay, there--(he cried)--there I am guiltless quite--
"What! choose a heroine from that Gothic time
"When no one waltzed and none but monks could rhyme;
"When lovely woman, all unschooled and wild,
"Blushed without art, and without culture smiled--
"Simple as flowers, while yet unclassed they shone,
"Ere Science called their brilliant world her own,
"Ranged the wild, rosy things in learned orders,
"And filled with Greek the garden's blushing borders!--
"No, no--your gentle Inas will not do--
"To-morrow evening, when the lights burn blue,
"I'll come--(_pointing downwards_)--you understand--till then adieu!"

  And _has_ the sprite been here! No--jests apart--
Howe'er man rules in science and in art,
The sphere of woman's glories is the heart.
And, if our Muse have sketched with pencil true
The wife--the mother--firm, yet gentle too--
Whose soul, wrapt up in ties itself hath spun,
Trembles, if touched in the remotest one;
Who loves--yet dares even Love himself disown,
When Honor's broken shaft supports his throne:
If such our Ina, she may scorn the evils,
Dire as they are, of Critics and--Blue Devils.






THE DAY-DREAM.[1]


They both were husht, the voice, the chords,--
  I heard but once that witching lay;
And few the notes, and few the words.
  My spell-bound memory brought away;

Traces, remembered here and there,
  Like echoes of some broken strain;--
Links of a sweetness lost in air,
  That nothing now could join again.

Even these, too, ere the morning, fled;
  And, tho' the charm still lingered on,
That o'er each sense her song had shed,
  The song itself was faded, gone;--

Gone, like the thoughts that once were ours,
  On summer days, ere youth had set;
Thoughts bright, we know, as summer flowers,
  Tho' _what_ they were we now forget.

In vain with hints from other strains
  I wooed this truant air to come--
As birds are taught on eastern plains
  To lure their wilder kindred home.

In vain:--the song that Sappho gave,
  In dying, to the mournful sea,
Not muter slept beneath the wave
  Than this within my memory.

At length, one morning, as I lay
  In that half-waking mood when dreams
Unwillingly at last gave way
  To the full truth of daylight's beams,

A face--the very face, methought,
  From which had breathed, as from a shrine
Of song and soul, the notes I sought--
  Came with its music close to mine;

And sung the long-lost measure o'er,--
  Each note and word, with every tone
And look, that lent it life before,--
  All perfect, all again my own!

Like parted souls, when, mid the Blest
  They meet again, each widowed sound
Thro' memory's realm had winged in quest
  Of its sweet mate, till all were found.

Nor even in waking did the clew,
  Thus strangely caught, escape again;
For never lark its matins knew
  So well as now I knew this strain.

And oft when memory's wondrous spell
  Is talked of in our tranquil bower,
I sing this lady's song, and tell
  The vision of that morning hour.


[1] In these stanzas I have done little more than relate a fact in verse;
and the lady, whose singing gave rise to this curious instance of the
power of memory in sleep, is Mrs. Robert Arkwright.






SONG.


Where is the heart that would not give
  Years of drowsy days and nights,
One little hour, like this, to live--
  Full, to the brim, of life's delights?
    Look, look around,
    This fairy ground,
  With love-lights glittering o'er;
    While cups that shine
    With freight divine
  Go coasting round its shore.

Hope is the dupe of future hours,
  Memory lives in those gone by;
Neither can see the moment's flowers
  Springing up fresh beneath the eye,
    Wouldst thou, or thou,
    Forego what's _now_,
  For all that Hope may say?
    No--Joy's reply,
    From every eye,
  Is, "Live we while we may,"






SONG OF THE POCO-CURANTE SOCIETY.


    _haud curat Hippoclides_.
    ERASM. _Adag_.


To those we love we've drank tonight;
  But now attend and stare not,
While I the ampler list recite
  Of those for whom WE CARE NOT.

For royal men, howe'er they frown,
  If on their fronts they bear not
That noblest gem that decks a crown,
  The People's Love--WE CARE NOT.

For slavish men who bend beneath
  A despot yoke, yet dare not
Pronounce the will whose very breath
  Would rend its links--WE CARE NOT.

For priestly men who covet sway
  And wealth, tho' they declare not;
Who point, like finger-posts, the way
  They never go--WE CARE NOT.

For martial men who on their sword,
  Howe'er it conquers, wear not
The pledges of a soldier's word,
  Redeemed and pure--WE CARE NOT.

For legal men who plead for wrong.
  And, tho' to lies they swear not,
Are hardly better than the throng
  Of those who do--WE CARE NOT.

For courtly men who feed upon
  The land, like grubs, and spare not
The smallest leaf where they can sun
  Their crawling limbs--WE CARE NOT.

For wealthy men who keep their mines
  In darkness hid, and share not
The paltry ore with him who pines
  In honest want--WE CARE NOT.

For prudent men who hold the power
  Of Love aloof, and bare not
Their hearts in any guardless hour
  To Beauty's shaft--WE CARE NOT.

For all, in short, on land or sea,
  In camp or court, who _are_ not,
Who never _were_, or e'er _will_ be
  Good men and true--WE CARE NOT.






ANNE BOLEYN.

TRANSLATION FROM THE METRICAL

"_Histoire d'Anne Boleyn."_


    _"S'elle estoit belle et de taille élégante,
    Estoit des yeulx encor plus attirante,
    Lesquelz sçavoit bien conduyre à propos
    En les lenant quelquefoys en repos;
    Aucune foys envoyant en message
    Porter du cueur le secret tesmoignage_."


Much as her form seduced the sight,
  Her eyes could even more surely woo;
And when and how to shoot their light
  Into men's hearts full well she knew.
For sometimes in repose she hid
Their rays beneath a downcast lid;
And then again, with wakening air,
  Would send their sunny glances out,
Like heralds of delight, to bear
  Her heart's sweet messages about.






THE DREAM OF THE TWO SISTERS.

FROM DANTE.


    _Nell ora, credo, che dell'oriente
      Prima raggio nel monte Citerea,
      Che di fuoco d'amor par sempre dente,
    Giovane e bella in sogno mi parea
      Donna vedere andar per una landa
      Cogliendo flori; e cantando dicea ;--
    Sappia qualunque'l mio nome dimanda,
      Ch'io mi son Lia, e vo movendo 'ntorno
      Le belle mani a farmi una ghirlanda--
    Per piacermi allo specchio qui m'adorno;
      Ma mia suora Rachel mai non si smaga
      Dal suo ammiraglio, e siede tutto il giorno_.

    _Ell' è de'suoi begli occhi veder vaga,
      Com' io dell'adornarmi con le mani;
      Lei lo vodere e me l'ovrare appaga_.

    DANTE, _Purg. Canto xxvii_.


'Twas eve's soft hour, and bright, above.
  The star of beauty beamed,
While lulled by light so full of love,
  In slumber thus I dreamed--
Methought, at that sweet hour,
  A nymph came o'er the lea,
Who, gathering many a flower,
  Thus said and sung to me:--
"Should any ask what Leila loves,
  "Say thou, To wreathe her hair
"With flowerets culled from glens and groves,
  "Is Leila's only care.

"While thus in quest of flowers rare,
  "O'er hill and dale I roam,
"My sister, Rachel, far more fair,
  "Sits lone and mute at home.
"Before her glass untiring,
  "With thoughts that never stray,
"Her own bright eyes admiring,
  "She sits the live-long day;
"While I!--oh, seldom even a look
  "Of self salutes my eye;
"My only glass, the limpid brook,
  "That shines and passes by."






SOVEREIGN WOMAN.

A BALLAD.


The dance was o'er, yet still in dreams
  That fairy scene went on;
Like clouds still flusht with daylight gleams
  Tho' day itself is gone.
And gracefully to music's sound,
The same bright nymphs were gliding round;
While thou, the Queen of all, wert there--
The Fairest still, where all were fair.
The dream then changed--in halls of state,
  I saw thee high enthroned;
While, ranged around, the wise, the great,
  In thee their mistress owned;
And still the same, thy gentle sway
O'er willing subjects won its way--
Till all confest the Right Divine
To rule o'er man was only thine!

But, lo, the scene now changed again--
  And borne on plumed steed,
I saw thee o'er the battle-plain
  Our land's defenders lead:
And stronger in thy beauty's charms,
Than man, with countless hosts in arms,
Thy voice, like music, cheered the Free,
Thy very smile was victory!

Nor reign such queens on thrones alone--
  In cot and court the same,
Wherever woman's smile is known,
  Victoria's still her name.
For tho' she almost blush to reign,
Tho' Love's own flowerets wreath the chain,
Disguise our bondage as we will,
'Tis woman, woman, rules us still.






COME, PLAY ME THAT SIMPLE AIR AGAIN.

A BALLAD.


Come, play me that simple air again,
  I used so to love, in life's young day,
And bring, if thou canst, the dreams that then
  Were wakened by that sweet lay
    The tender gloom its strain
      Shed o'er the heart and brow
    Grief's shadow without its pain--
      Say where, where is it now?
But play me the well-known air once more,
  For thoughts of youth still haunt its strain
Like dreams of some far, fairy shore
  We never shall see again.

Sweet air, how every note brings back
  Some sunny hope, some daydream bright,
That, shining o'er life's early track,
  Filled even its tears with light.
    The new-found life that came
    With love's first echoed vow;--
  The fear, the bliss, the shame--
    Ah--where, where are they now?
But, still the same loved notes prolong,
  For sweet 'twere thus, to that old lay,
In dreams of youth and love and song,
  To breathe life's hour away.








POEMS FROM THE EPICUREAN

(1827.)






THE VALLEY OF THE NILE.


Far as the sight can reach, beneath as clear
And blue a heaven as ever blest this sphere,
Gardens and pillared streets and porphyry domes
And high-built temples, fit to be the homes
Of mighty gods, and pyramids whose hour
Outlasts all time, above the waters tower!

Then, too, the scenes of pomp and joy that make
One theatre of this vast peopled lake,
Where all that Love, Religion, Commerce gives
Of life and motion, ever moves and lives,
Here, up in the steps of temples, from the wave
Ascending, in procession slow and grave,
Priests in white garments go, with sacred wands
And silver cymbals gleaming in their hands:
While there, rich barks--fresh from those sunny tracts
Far off, beyond the sounding cataracts--
Glide with their precious lading to the sea,
Plumes of bright birds, rhinoceros' ivory,
Gems from the isle of Meroë, and those grains
Of gold, washed down by Abyssinian rains.

Here, where the waters wind into a bay
Shadowy and cool, some pilgrims on their way
To Saïs or Bubastus, among beds
Of lotos flowers that close above their heads,
Push their light barks, and hid as in a bower
Sing, talk, or sleep away the sultry hour,
While haply, not far off, beneath a bank
Of blossoming acacias, many a prank
Is played in the cool current by a train
Of laughing nymphs, lovely as she whose chain
Around two conquerors of the world was cast;
But, for a third too feeble, broke at last.






SONG OF THE TWO CUPBEARERS.


FIRST CUPBEARER.

Drink of this cup--Osiris sips
  The same in his halls below;
And the same he gives, to cool the lips
  Of the dead, who downward go.

Drink of this cup--the water within
  Is fresh from Lethe's stream;
'Twill make the past, with all its sin,
  And all its pain and sorrows, seem
  Like a long forgotten dream;
The pleasure, whose charms
  Are steeped in woe;
The knowledge, that harms
  The soul to know;

The hope, that bright
  As the lake of the waste,
Allures the sight
  And mocks the taste;

The love, that binds
  Its innocent wreath,
Where the serpent winds
  In venom beneath!--

All that of evil or false, by thee
  Hath ever been known or seen,
Shalt melt away in this cup, and be
  Forgot as it never had been!

SECOND CUPBEARER.

Drink of this cup--when Isis led
  Her boy of old to the beaming sky,
She mingled a draught divine and said.--
 "Drink of this cup, thou'lt never die!"

Thus do I say and sing to thee.
  Heir of that boundless heaven on high,
Though frail and fallen and lost thou be,
  "Drink of this cup, thou'lt never die!"

       *       *       *       *       *

And Memory, too, with her dreams shall come,
  Dreams of a former, happier day,
When heaven was still the spirit's home,
  And her wings had not yet fallen away.

Glimpses of glory ne'er forgot,
  That tell, like gleams on a sunset sea,
What once hath been, what now is not.
  But oh! what again shall brightly be!"






SONG OF THE NUBIAN GIRL.


    O Abyssinian tree,
    We pray, we pray to thee;
By the glow of thy golden fruit
  And the violet hue of the flower,
    And the greeting mute
    Of thy boughs' salute
  To the stranger who seeks thy bow.

    O Abyssinian tree!
    How the traveller blesses thee
When the light no moon allows,
  And the sunset hour is near,
    And thou bend'st thy boughs
    To kiss his brows.
  Saying, "Come, rest thee here."
    O Abyssinian tree!
    Thus bow thy head to me!








THE SUMMER FÊTE.




TO THE HONORABLE MRS. NORTON.


For the groundwork of the following Poem I am indebted to a memorable
Fête, given some years since, at Boyle Farm, the seat of the late Lord
Henry Fitzgerald. In commemoration of that evening--of which the lady to
whom these pages are inscribed was, I well recollect, one of the most
distinguished ornaments--I was induced at the time to write some verses,
which were afterwards, however, thrown aside unfinished, on my discovering
that the same task had been undertaken by a noble poet,[1] whose playful
and happy _jeu d'esprit_ on the subject has since been published. It was
but lately, that, on finding the fragments of my own sketch among my
papers, I thought of founding on them such a description of an imaginary
Fête as might furnish me with situations for the introduction of music.

Such is the origin and object of the following Poem, and to MRS. NORTON it
is, with every feeling of admiration and regard, inscribed by her father's
warmly attached friend,

                                                  THOMAS MOORE.

_Sloperton Cottage_,

_November 1881_


[1] Lord Francis Egerton.






THE SUMMER FÊTE


"Where are ye now, ye summer days,
"That once inspired the poet's lays?
"Blest time! ere England's nymphs and swains,
  "For lack of sunbeams, took to coals--
"Summers of light, undimmed by rains,
"Whose only mocking trace remains
  "In watering-pots and parasols."

Thus spoke a young Patrician maid,
  As, on the morning of that Fête
  Which bards unborn shall celebrate,
She backward drew her curtain's shade,
And, closing one half-dazzled eye,
Peeped with the other at the sky--
The important sky, whose light or gloom
Was to decide, this day, the doom
Of some few hundred beauties, wits,
Blues, Dandies, Swains, and Exquisites.

Faint were her hopes; for June had now
  Set in with all his usual rigor!
Young Zephyr yet scarce knowing how
To nurse a bud, or fan a bough,
  But Eurus in perpetual vigor;
And, such the biting summer air,
That she, the nymph now nestling there--
Snug as her own bright gems recline
At night within their cotton shrine--
Had more than once been caught of late
Kneeling before her blazing grate,
Like a young worshipper of fire,
  With hands uplifted to the flame,
Whose glow as if to woo them nigher.
  Thro' the white fingers flushing came.

But oh! the light, the unhoped-for light,
  That now illumed this morning's heaven!
Up sprung Iänthe at the sight,
  Tho'--hark!--the clocks but strike eleven,
And rarely did the nymph surprise
Mankind so early with her eyes.
Who now will say that England's sun
  (Like England's self, these spendthrift days)
His stock of wealth hath near outrun,
  And must retrench his golden rays--
Pay for the pride of sunbeams past,
And to mere moonshine come at last?

"Calumnious thought!" Iänthe cries,
  While coming mirth lit up each glance,
And, prescient of the ball, her eyes
  Already had begun to dance:
For brighter sun than that which now
  Sparkled o'er London's spires and towers,
Had never bent from heaven his brow
  To kiss Firenze's City of Flowers.

What must it be--if thus so fair.
Mid the smoked groves of Grosvenor Square--
What must it be where Thames is seen
Gliding between his banks of green,
While rival villas, on each side,
Peep from their bowers to woo his tide,
And, like a Turk between two rows
Of Harem beauties, on he goes--
A lover, loved for even the grace
With which he slides from their embrace.

In one of those enchanted domes,
  One, the most flowery, cool, and bright
Of all by which that river roams,
  The Fête is to be held to-night--
That Fête already linked to fame,
  Whose cards, in many a fair one's sight
(When looked for long, at last they came,)
  Seemed circled with a fairy light;--
That Fête to which the cull, the flower
Of England's beauty, rank and power,
From the young spinster, just come _out_,
  To the old Premier, too long _in_--
From legs of far descended gout,
  To the last new-mustachioed chin--
All were convoked by Fashion's spells
To the small circle where she dwells,
Collecting nightly, to allure us,
  Live atoms, which, together hurled,
She, like another Epicurus,
  Sets dancing thus, and calls "the World."

Behold how busy in those bowers
(Like May-flies in and out of flowers.)
The countless menials, swarming run,
To furnish forth ere set of sun
The banquet-table richly laid
Beneath yon awning's lengthened shade,
Where fruits shall tempt and wines entice,
  And Luxury's self, at Gunter's call,
Breathe from her summer-throne of ice
  A spirit of coolness over all.

And now the important hour drew nigh,
When, 'neath the flush of evening's sky,
The west-end "world" for mirth let loose,
And moved, as he of Syracuse[1]
Ne'er dreamt of moving worlds, by force
  Of four horse power, had all combined
Thro' Grosvenor Gate to speed their course,
  Leaving that portion of mankind,
  Whom they call "Nobody," behind;
No star for London's feasts to-day,
No moon of beauty, new this May,
To lend the night her crescent ray;--
Nothing, in short, for ear or eye,
But veteran belles and wits gone by,
The relics of a past beau-monde,
A world like Cuvier's, long dethroned!
Even Parliament this evening nods
Beneath the harangues of minor Gods,
  On half its usual opiate's share;
The great dispensers of repose,
The first-rate furnishers of prose
  Being all called to--prose elsewhere.

Soon as thro' Grosvenor's lordly square--
  That last impregnable redoubt,
Where, guarded with Patrician care,
  Primeval Error still holds out--
Where never gleam of gas must dare
  'Gainst ancient Darkness to revolt,
Nor smooth Macadam hope to spare
  The dowagers one single jolt;--
Where, far too stately and sublime
To profit by the lights of time,
Let Intellect march how it will,
They stick to oil and watchman still:--
Soon as thro' that illustrious square
  The first epistolary bell.
Sounding by fits upon the air,
  Of parting pennies rung the knell;
Warned by that tell-tale of the hours,
  And by the day-light's westering beam,
The young Iänthe, who, with flowers
  Half crowned, had sat in idle dream
Before her glass, scarce knowing where
Her fingers roved thro' that bright hair,
  While, all capriciously, she now
  Dislodged some curl from her white brow,
And now again replaced it there:--
As tho' her task was meant to be
One endless change of ministry--
A routing-up of Loves and Graces,
But to plant others in their places.

Meanwhile--what strain is that which floats
Thro' the small boudoir near--like notes
Of some young bird, its task repeating
For the next linnet music-meeting?
A voice it was, whose gentle sounds
Still kept a modest octave's bounds,
Nor yet had ventured to exalt
Its rash ambition to _B alt_,
That point towards which when ladies rise,
The wise man takes his hat and--flies.
Tones of a harp, too, gently played,
  Came with this youthful voice communing;
Tones true, for once, without the aid
  Of that inflictive process, tuning--
A process which must oft have given
  Poor Milton's ears a deadly wound;
So pleased, among the joys of Heaven,
  He specifies "harps _ever_ tuned."
She who now sung this gentle strain
  Was our young nymph's still younger sister--
Scarce ready yet for Fashion's train
  In their light legions to enlist her,
But counted on, as sure to bring
Her force into the field next spring.

The song she thus, like Jubal's shell,
Gave forth "so sweetly and so well,"
Was one in Morning Post much famed,
From a _divine_ collection, named,
  "Songs of the Toilet"--every Lay
Taking for subject of its Muse,
  Some branch of feminine array,
Some item, with full scope, to choose,
From diamonds down to dancing shoes;
From the last hat that Herbault's hands
  Bequeathed to an admiring world,
Down to the latest flounce that stands
Like Jacob's Ladder--or expands
  Far forth, tempestuously unfurled.

Speaking of one of these new Lays,
The Morning Post thus sweetly says:--
"Not all that breathes from Bishop's lyre,
  "That Barnett dreams, or Cooke conceives,
"Can match for sweetness, strength, or fire,
  "This fine Cantata upon Sleeves.
"The very notes themselves reveal
  "The cut of each new sleeve so well;
"A _flat_ betrays the _Imbécilles_,[2]
  "Light fugues the flying lappets tell;
"While rich cathedral chords awake
'Our homage for the _Manches d'Évêque_."

'Twas the first opening song the Lay
  Of all least deep in toilet-lore,
That the young nymph, to while away
  The tiring-hour, thus warbled o'er:--


SONG.


Array thee, love, array thee, love,
  In all thy best array thee;
The sun's below--the moon's above--
  And Night and Bliss obey thee.
Put on thee all that's bright and rare,
  The zone, the wreath, the gem,
Not so much gracing charms so fair,
  As borrowing grace from them.
Array thee, love, array thee, love,
  In all that's bright array thee;
The sun's below--the moon's above--
  And Night and Bliss obey thee.

Put on the plumes thy lover gave.
  The plumes, that, proudly dancing,
Proclaim to all, where'er they wave,
  Victorious eyes advancing.
Bring forth the robe whose hue of heaven
  From thee derives such light,
That Iris would give all her seven
  To boast but _one_ so bright.
Array thee, love, array thee, love, etc.

Now hie thee, love, now hie thee, love,
  Thro' Pleasure's circles hie thee.
And hearts, where'er thy footsteps move,
  Will beat when they come nigh thee.
Thy every word shall be a spell,
  Thy every look a ray,
And tracks of wondering eyes shall tell
  The glory of thy way!
Now hie thee, love, now hie thee, love,
  Thro' Pleasure's circles hie thee,
And hearts, where'er thy footsteps move,
  Shall beat when they come nigh thee.

       *       *       *       *       *

Now in his Palace of the West,
  Sinking to slumber, the bright Day,
Like a tired monarch fanned to rest,
  Mid the cool airs of Evening lay;
While round his couch's golden rim
  The gaudy clouds, like courtiers, crept--
Struggling each other's light to dim,
  And catch his last smile e'er he slept.
How gay, as o'er the gliding Thames
  The golden eve its lustre poured,
Shone out the high-born knights and dames
  Now grouped around that festal board;
A living mass of plumes and flowers.
As tho' they'd robbed both birds and bowers--
A peopled rainbow, swarming thro'
With habitants of every hue;
While, as the sparkling juice of France
High in the crystal brimmers flowed,
  Each sunset ray that mixt by chance
With the wine's sparkles, showed
  How sunbeams may be taught to dance.
If not in written form exprest,
'Twas known at least to every guest,
That, tho' not bidden to parade
Their scenic powers in masquerade,
(A pastime little found to thrive
  In the bleak fog of England's skies,
Where wit's the thing we best contrive,
  As masqueraders, to _disguise_,)
It yet was hoped-and well that hope
  Was answered by the young and gay--
  That in the toilet's task to-day
Fancy should take her wildest scope;--
That the rapt milliner should be
Let loose thro fields of poesy,
The tailor, in inventive trance,
  Up to the heights of Epic clamber,
And all the regions of Romance
  Be ransackt by the _femme de chambre_.

Accordingly, with gay Sultanas,
Rebeccas, Sapphos, Roxalanas--
Circassian slaves whom Love would pay
  Half his maternal realms to ransom;--
Young nuns, whose chief religion lay
  In looking most profanely handsome;--
Muses in muslin-pastoral maids
With hats from the _Arcade-ian_ shades,
And fortune-tellers, rich, 'twas plain,
As fortune-_hunters_ formed their train.

With these and more such female groups,
Were mixt no less fantastic troops
Of male exhibitors--all willing
To look even more than usual killing;--
Beau tyrants, smock-faced braggadocios,
And brigands, charmingly ferocious:--
M.P.'s turned Turks, good Moslems then,
  Who, last night, voted for the Greeks;
And Friars, stanch No-Popery men,
  In close confab with Whig Caciques.

But where is she--the nymph whom late
  We left before her glass delaying
Like Eve, when by the lake she sate,
  In the clear wave her charms surveying,
And saw in that first glassy mirror
The first fair face that lured to error.
"Where is she," ask'st thou?--watch all looks
  As centring to one point they bear,
Like sun-flowers by the sides of brooks,
  Turned to the sun--and she is there.
Even in disguise, oh never doubt
By her own light you'd track her out:
As when the moon, close shawled in fog,
Steals as she thinks, thro' heaven _incog_.,
Tho' hid herself, some sidelong ray
At every step, detects her way.

But not in dark disguise to-night
Hath our young heroine veiled her light;--
For see, she walks the earth, Love's own.
  His wedded bride, by _holiest_ vow
Pledged in Olympus, and made known
  To mortals by the type which now
  Hangs glittering on her snowy brow,
That butterfly, mysterious trinket,
Which means the Soul (tho' few would think it),
And sparkling thus on brow so white,
Tells us we've Psyche here tonight!
But hark! some song hath caught her ears--
  And, lo, how pleased, as tho' she'd ne'er
Heard the Grand Opera of the Spheres,
  Her goddess-ship approves the air;
And to a mere terrestrial strain,
Inspired by naught but pink champagne,
  Her butterfly as gayly nods
As tho' she sate with all her train
  At some great Concert of the Gods,
With Phoebus, leader--Jove, director,
And half the audience drunk with nectar.

From the male group the carol came--
  A few gay youths whom round the board
The last-tried flask's superior fame
  Had lured to taste the tide it poured;
And one who from his youth and lyre
Seemed grandson to the Teian-sire,
Thus gayly sung, while, to his song,
Replied in chorus the gay throng:--


SONG.


Some mortals there may be, so wise, or so fine,
  As in evenings like this no enjoyment to see;
But, as I'm not particular--wit, love, and wine,
  Are for one night's amusement sufficient for me.
Nay--humble and strange as my tastes may appear--
  If driven to the worst, I could manage, thank Heaven,
To put up with eyes such as beam round me here,
  And such wine as we're sipping, six days out of seven.
So pledge me a bumper--your sages profound
  May be blest, if they will, on their own patent plan:
But as we are _not_ sages, why--send the cup round--
  We must only be happy the best way we can.

A reward by some king was once offered, we're told,
  To whoe'er could invent a new bliss for mankind;
But talk of _new_ pleasures!--give me but the old,
  And I'll leave your inventors all new ones they find.
Or should I, in quest of fresh realms of bliss,
  Set sail in the pinnace of Fancy some day,
Let the rich rosy sea I embark on be this,
  And such eyes as we've here be the stars of my way!
In the mean time, a bumper--your Angels, on high,
  May have pleasures unknown to life's limited span;
But, as we are _not_ Angels, why--let the flask fly--
  We must be happy _all_ ways that we can.

       *       *       *       *       *

Now nearly fled was sunset's light,
  Leaving but so much of its beam
As gave to objects, late so blight,
  The coloring of a shadowy dream;
And there was still where Day had set
  A flush that spoke him loath to die--
A last link of his glory yet,
  Binding together earth and sky.
Say, why is it that twilight best
Becomes even brows the loveliest?
That dimness with its softening Touch
  Can bring out grace unfelt before,
And charms we ne'er can see too much,
  When seen but half enchant the more?
Alas, it is that every joy
In fulness finds its worst alloy,
And half a bliss, but hoped or guessed,
Is sweeter than the whole possest;--
That Beauty, when least shone upon,
  A creature most ideal grows;
And there's no light from moon or sun
  Like that Imagination throws;--
It is, alas, that Fancy shrinks
  Even from a bright reality,
And turning inly, feels and thinks
  For heavenlier things than e'er will be.

Such was the effect of twilight's hour
  On the fair groups that, round and round,
From glade to grot, from bank to bower,
  Now wandered thro' this fairy ground;
And thus did Fancy--and champagne--
  Work on the sight their dazzling spells,
Till nymphs that looked at noonday plain,
  Now brightened in the gloom to belles;
And the brief interval of time,
  'Twixt after dinner and before,
To dowagers brought back their prime,
  And shed a halo round two-score.

Meanwhile, new pastimes for the eye,
  The ear, the fancy, quick succeed;
And now along the waters fly
  Light gondoles, of Venetian breed,
With knights and dames who, calm reclined,
  Lisp out love-sonnets as they glide--
Astonishing old Thames to find
  Such doings on his moral tide.

So bright was still that tranquil river,
With the last shaft from Daylight's quiver,
That many a group in turn were seen
Embarking on its wave serene;
And 'mong the rest, in chorus gay,
  A band of mariners, from the isles
  Of sunny Greece, all song and smiles,
As smooth they floated, to the play
Of their oar's cadence, sung this lay:--


TRIO.


Our home is on the sea, boy,
  Our home is on the sea;
    When Nature gave
    The ocean-wave,
  She markt it for the Free.
Whatever storms befall, boy,
  Whatever storms befall,
    The island bark
    Is Freedom's ark,
  And floats her safe thro' all.

Behold yon sea of isles, boy,
  Behold yon sea of isles,
    Where every shore
    Is sparkling o'er
  With Beauty's richest smiles.
For us hath Freedom claimed, boy,
  For us hath Freedom claimed
    Those ocean-nests
    Where Valor rests
  His eagle wing untamed.

And shall the Moslem dare, boy,
  And shall the Moslem dare,
    While Grecian hand
    Can wield a brand,
  To plant his Crescent there?
No--by our fathers, no, boy,
  No, by the Cross, we show--
    From Maina's rills
    To Thracia's hills
  All Greece re-echoes "No!"

       *       *       *       *       *

Like pleasant thoughts that o'er the mind
  A minute come and go again,
Even so by snatches in the wind,
  Was caught and lost that choral strain,
Now full, now faint upon the ear,
As the bark floated far or near.
At length when, lost, the closing note
  Had down the waters died along,
Forth from another fairy boat,
  Freighted with music, came this song--


SONG.


Smoothly flowing thro' verdant vales,
  Gentle river, thy current runs,
Sheltered safe from winter gales,
  Shaded cool from summer suns.
Thus our Youth's sweet moments glide.
  Fenced with flowery shelter round;
No rude tempest wakes the tide,
  All its path is fairy ground.

But, fair river, the day will come,
  When, wooed by whispering groves in vain,
Thou'lt leave those banks, thy shaded home,
  To mingle with the stormy main.
And thou, sweet Youth, too soon wilt pass
  Into the world's unsheltered sea,
Where, once thy wave hath mixt, alas,
  All hope of peace is lost for thee.

Next turn we to the gay saloon,
Resplendent as a summer noon,
  Where, 'neath a pendent wreath of lights,
A Zodiac of flowers and tapers--
(Such as in Russian ball-rooms sheds
Its glory o'er young dancers' heads)--
  Quadrille performs her mazy rites,
And reigns supreme o'er slides and capers;--

Working to death each opera strain,
  As, with a foot that ne'er reposes,
She jigs thro' sacred and profane,
  From "Maid and Magpie" up to "Moses;"--[3]
Wearing out tunes as fast as shoes,
  Till fagged Rossini scarce respires;
Till Meyerbeer for mercy sues,
  And Weber at her feet expires.

And now the set hath ceased--the bows
Of fiddlers taste a brief repose,
While light along the painted floor,
  Arm within arm, the couples stray,
Talking their stock of nothings o'er,
  Till--nothing's left at last to say.
When lo!--most opportunely sent--
  Two Exquisites, a he and she,
Just brought from Dandyland, and meant
  For Fashion's grand Menagerie,
Entered the room--and scarce were there
When all flocked round them, glad to stare
At _any_ monsters, _any_ where.
Some thought them perfect, to their tastes;
While others hinted that the waists
(That in particular of the _he_ thing)
Left far too ample room for breathing:
Whereas, to meet these critics' wishes,
  The isthmus there should be so small,
That Exquisites, at last, like fishes,
  Must manage not to breathe at all.
The female (these same critics said),
  Tho' orthodox from toe to chin,
Yet lacked that spacious width of head
  To hat of toadstool much akin--
That build of bonnet, whose extent
Should, like a doctrine of dissent,
  Puzzle church-doors to let it in.

However--sad as 'twas, no doubt,
That nymph so smart should go about,
With head unconscious of the place
It _ought_ to fill in Infinite Space--
Yet all allowed that, of her kind,
A prettier show 'twas hard to find;
While of that doubtful genus, "dressy men,"
The male was thought a first-rate specimen.
Such _Savans_, too, as wisht to trace
The manners, habits, of this race--
To know what rank (if rank at all)
'Mong reasoning things to them should fall--
What sort of notions heaven imparts
To high-built heads and tight-laced hearts
And how far Soul, which, Plato says,
Abhors restraint, can act in stays--
Might now, if gifted with discerning,
Find opportunities of learning:
As these two creatures--from their pout
And frown, 'twas plain--had just fallen out;
And all their little thoughts, of course.
Were stirring in full fret and force;--
Like mites, through microscope espied,
A world of nothings magnified.

But mild the vent such beings seek,
The tempest of their souls to speak:
As Opera swains to fiddles sigh,
To fiddles fight, to fiddles die,
Even so this tender couple set
Their well-bred woes to a Duet.


WALTZ DUET.


HE.
Long as I waltzed with only thee,
  Each blissful Wednesday that went by,
Nor stylish Stultz, nor neat Nugee
  Adorned a youth so blest as I.
    Oh! ah! ah! oh!
    Those happy days are gone--heigho!

SHE.
Long as with thee I skimmed the ground,
  Nor yet was scorned for Lady Jane,
No blither nymph tetotumed round
  To Collinet's immortal strain.
    Oh! ah! etc.
    Those happy days are gone--heigho!

HE.
With Lady Jane now whirled about,
  I know no bounds of time or breath;
And, should the charmer's head hold out,
  My heart and heels are hers till death.
    Oh! ah! etc.
    Still round and round thro' life we'll go.

SHE.
To Lord Fitznoodle's eldest son,
  A youth renowned for waistcoats smart,
I now have given (excuse the pun)
  A vested interest in my heart.
    Oh! ah! etc.
    Still round and round with him I'll go.

HE.
What if by fond remembrance led
  Again to wear our mutual chain.
For me thou cut'st Fitznoodle
   dead,
 And I _levant_ from Lady Jane.
  Oh! ah! etc.
  Still round and round again we'll go.

SHE.
Tho' he the Noodle honors give,
And thine, dear youth, are not so high,
With thee in endless waltz I'd live,
 With thee, to Weber's Stop--
      Waltz, die!
     Oh! ah! etc.
     Thus round and round thro' life we'll go.

[_Exeunt waltzing_.

       *       *       *       *       *

While thus, like motes that dance away
Existence in a summer ray,
These gay things, born but to quadrille,
The circle of their doom fulfil--
(That dancing doom whose law decrees
 That they should live on the alert toe
A life of ups-and-downs, like keys
  Of Broadwood's in a long concerto:--)
While thus the fiddle's spell, _within_,
 Calls up its realm of restless sprites.
_Without_, as if some Mandarin
 Were holding there his Feast of Lights,
Lamps of all hues, from walks and bowers,
Broke on the eye, like kindling flowers,
Till, budding into light, each tree
Bore its full fruit of brilliancy.

Here shone a garden-lamps all o'er,
  As tho' the Spirits of the Air
Had taken it in their heads to pour
  A shower of summer meteors there;--
While here a lighted shrubbery led
  To a small lake that sleeping lay,
Cradled in foliage but, o'er-head,
  Open to heaven's sweet breath and ray;
While round its rim there burning stood
  Lamps, with young flowers beside them bedded,
That shrunk from such warm neighborhood,
And, looking bashful in the flood,
  Blushed to behold themselves so wedded.

Hither, to this embowered retreat,
Fit but for nights so still and sweet;
  Nights, such as Eden's calm recall
  In its first lonely hour, when all
    So silent is, below, on high,
    That is a star falls down the sky,
  You almost think you hear it fall--
  Hither, to this recess, a few,
    To shun the dancers' wildering noise,
  And give an hour, ere night-time flew,
    To music's more ethereal joys,
  Came with their voices-ready all
  As Echo waiting for a call--
 In hymn or ballad, dirge or glee,
 To weave their mingling ministrelsy,
And first a dark-eyed nymph, arrayed--
Like her whom Art hath deathless made,
Bright Mona Lisa[4]--with that braid
Of hair across the brow, and one
Small gem that in the centre shone--
With face, too, in its form resembling
Da Vinci's Beauties-the dark eyes,
Now lucid as thro' crystal trembling,
  Now soft as if suffused with sighs--
Her lute that hung beside her took,
And, bending o'er it with shy look,
More beautiful, in shadow thus,
Than when with life most luminous,
Past her light finger o'er the chords,
And sung to them these mournful words:--


SONG.


Bring hither, bring thy lute, while day is dying--
  Here will I lay me and list to thy song;
Should tones of other days mix with its sighing,
  Tones of a light heart, now banisht so long,
Chase them away-they bring but pain,
And let thy theme be woe again.

Sing on thou mournful lute--day is fast going,
  Soon will its light from thy chords die away;
One little gleam in the west is still glowing,
  When that hath vanisht, farewell to thy lay.
Mark, how it fades!-see, it is fled!
Now, sweet lute, be thou, too, dead.

The group that late in garb of Greeks
  Sung their light chorus o'er the tide--
Forms, such as up the wooded creeks
  Of Helle's shore at noon-day glide,
Or nightly on her glistening sea,
Woo the bright waves with melody--
Now linked their triple league again
Of voices sweet, and sung a strain,
Such as, had Sappho's tuneful ear
  But caught it, on the fatal steep,
She would have paused, entranced, to hear,
  And for that day deferred her leap.


SONG AND TRIO.


On one of those sweet nights that oft
  Their lustre o'er the AEgean fling,
Beneath my casement, low and soft,
  I heard a Lesbian lover sing;
And, listening both with ear and thought,
These sounds upon the night breeze caught--
  "Oh, happy as the gods is he,
  "Who gazes at this hour on thee!"

The song was one by Sappho sung,
  In the first love-dreams of her lyre,
When words of passion from her tongue
  Fell like a shower of living fire.
And still, at close of every strain,
I heard these burning words again--
  "Oh, happy as the gods is he,
  "Who listens at this hour to thee!"

Once more to Mona Lisa turned
  Each asking eye--nor turned in vain
Tho' the quick, transient blush that burned
  Bright o'er her cheek and died again,
Showed with what inly shame and fear
Was uttered what all loved to hear.
Yet not to sorrow's languid lay
  Did she her lute-song now devote;
But thus, with voice that like a ray
  Of southern sunshine seemed to float--
  So rich with climate was each note--
Called up in every heart a dream
Of Italy with this soft theme:--


SONG.


Oh, where art thou dreaming,
  On land, or on sea?
In my lattice is gleaming
  The watch-light for thee;

And this fond heart is glowing
  To welcome thee home,
And the night is fast going,
  But thou art not come:
           No, thou com'st not!

'Tis the time when night-flowers
  Should wake from their rest;
'Tis the hour of all hours,
  When the lute singeth best,
But the flowers are half sleeping
  Till _thy_ glance they see;
And the husht lute is keeping
  Its music for thee.
            Yet, thou com'st not!

       *       *       *       *       *

Scarce had the last word left her lip,
When a light, boyish form, with trip
Fantastic, up the green walk came,
Prankt in gay vest to which the flame
Of every lamp he past, or blue
Or green or crimson, lent its hue;
As tho' a live chameleon's skin
He had despoiled, to robe him in.
A zone he wore of clattering shells,
  And from his lofty cap, where shone
A peacock's plume, there dangled bells
  That rung as he came dancing on.
Close after him, a page--in dress
And shape, his miniature express--
An ample basket, filled with store
Of toys and trinkets, laughing bore;
Till, having reached this verdant seat,
He laid it at his master's feet,
Who, half in speech and half in song,
Chanted this invoice to the throng:--


SONG.


Who'll buy?--'tis Folly's shop, who'll buy?--
  We've toys to suit all ranks and ages;
Besides our usual fools' supply,
  We've lots of playthings, too, for sages.
For reasoners here's a juggler's cup
  That fullest seems when nothing's in it;
And nine-pins set, like systems, up,
  To be knocked down the following minute.
     Who'll buy?--'tis Folly's shop, who'll buy?

Gay caps we here of foolscap make.
  For bards to wear in dog-day weather;
Or bards the bells alone may take,
  And leave to wits the cap and feather,
Tetotums we've for patriots got,
  Who court the mob with antics humble;
Like theirs the patriot's dizzy lot,
  A glorious spin, and then--a tumble,
                Who'll buy, etc.

Here, wealthy misers to inter,
  We've shrouds of neat post-obit paper;
While, for their heirs, we've _quick_silver,
  That, fast as they can wish, will caper.
For aldermen we've dials true,
  That tell no hour but that of dinner;
For courtly parsons sermons new,
  That suit alike both saint and sinner.
                Who'll buy, etc.

No time we've now to name our terms,
  But, whatsoe'er the whims that seize you,
  This oldest of all mortal firms,
  Folly and Co., will try to please you.
Or, should you wish a darker hue
Of goods than _we_ can recommend you,
Why then (as we with lawyers do)
  To Knavery's shop next door we'll send you.
                Who'll buy, etc.

While thus the blissful moments rolled,
  Moments of rare and fleeting light,
That show themselves, like grains of gold
  In the mine's refuse, few and bright;
Behold where, opening far away,
  The long Conservatory's range,
Stript of the flowers it wore all day,
  But gaining lovelier in exchange,
Presents, on Dresden's costliest ware,
A supper such as Gods might share.

Ah much-loved Supper!--blithe repast
Of other times, now dwindling fast,
Since Dinner far into the night
Advanced the march of appetite;
Deployed his never-ending forces
Of various vintage and three courses,
And, like those Goths who played the dickens
With Rome and all her sacred chickens,
Put Supper and her fowls so white,
Legs, wings, and drumsticks, all to flight.
Now waked once more by wine--whose tide
Is the true Hippocrene, where glide
The Muse's swans with happiest wing,
Dipping their bills before they sing--
The minstrels of the table greet
The listening ear with descant sweet:--


SONG AND TRIO.

THE LEVÉE AND COUCHÉE.


    Call the Loves around,
    Let the whispering sound
  Of their wings be heard alone.
    Till soft to rest
    My Lady blest
  At this bright hour hath gone,
    Let Fancy's beams
    Play o'er her dreams,
  Till, touched with light all through.
    Her spirit be
    Like a summer sea,
  Shining and slumbering too.
  And, while thus husht she lies,
  Let the whispered chorus rise--
"Good evening, good evening, to our
    Lady's bright eyes."

    But the day-beam breaks,
    See, our Lady wakes!
  Call the Loves around once more,
    Like stars that wait
    At Morning's gate,
  Her first steps to adore.
    Let the veil of night
    From her dawning sight
  All gently pass away,
    Like mists that flee
    From a summer sea,
  Leaving it full of day.
  And, while her last dream flies,
  Let the whispered chorus rise--
"Good morning, good morning, to our
    Lady's bright eyes."


SONG.


If to see thee be to love thee,
  If to love thee be to prize
Naught of earth or heaven above thee,
  Nor to live but for those eyes:
If such love to mortal given,
Be wrong to earth, be wrong to heaven,
'Tis not for thee the fault to blame,
For from those eyes the madness came.
Forgive but thou the crime of loving
  In this heart more pride 'twill raise
To be thus wrong with thee approving,
  Than right with all a world to praise!

       *       *       *       *       *

But say, while light these songs resound,
What means that buzz of whispering round,
From lip to lip--as if the Power
Of Mystery, in this gay hour,
Had thrown some secret (as we fling
Nuts among children) to that ring
Of rosy, restless lips, to be
Thus scrambled for so wantonly?
And, mark ye, still as each reveals
The mystic news, her hearer steals
A look towards yon enchanted chair,
  Where, like the Lady of the Masque,
A nymph, as exquisitely fair
  As Love himself for bride could ask,
Sits blushing deep, as if aware
Of the winged secret circling there.
Who is this nymph? and what, oh Muse,
  What, in the name of all odd things
That woman's restless brain pursues,
What mean these mystic whisperings?

Thus runs the tale:--yon blushing maid,
Who sits in beauty's light arrayed,
While o'er her leans a tall young Dervise,
(Who from her eyes, as all observe, is
Learning by heart the Marriage Service,)
Is the bright heroine of our song,--
The Love-wed Psyche, whom so long
We've missed among this mortal train,
We thought her winged to heaven again.

But no--earth still demands her smile;
Her friends, the Gods, must wait awhile.
And if, for maid of heavenly birth,
  A young Duke's proffered heart and hand
Be things worth waiting for on earth,
  Both are, this hour, at her command.
To-night, in yonder half-lit shade,
For love concerns expressly meant,
The fond proposal first was made,
  And love and silence blusht consent
Parents and friends (all here, as Jews,
Enchanters, house-maids, Turks, Hindoos,)
Have heard, approved, and blest the tie;
And now, hadst thou a poet's eye,
Thou might'st behold, in the air, above
That brilliant brow, triumphant Love,
Holding, as if to drop it down
Gently upon her curls, a crown
Of Ducal shape--but, oh, such gems!
Pilfered from Peri diadems,
And set in gold like that which shines
To deck the Fairy of the Mines:
In short, a crown all glorious--such as
Love orders when he makes a Duchess.

But see, 'tis morn in heaven; the Sun
Up in the bright orient hath begun
To canter his immortal beam;
  And, tho' not yet arrived in sight,
His leaders' nostrils send a steam
  Of radiance forth, so rosy bright
  As makes their onward path all light.
What's to be done? if Sol will be
So deuced early, so must we:
And when the day thus shines outright,
Even dearest friends must bid good night.
So, farewell, scene of mirth and masking,
  Now almost a by-gone tale;
Beauties, late in lamp-light basking,
  Now, by daylight, dim and pale;
Harpers, yawning o'er your harps,
Scarcely knowing flats from sharps;
Mothers who, while bored you keep
Time by nodding, nod to sleep;
Heads of hair, that stood last night
_Crépé_, crispy, and upright,
But have now, alas, one sees, a
Leaning like the tower of Pisa;
Fare ye will--thus sinks away
 All that's mighty, all that's bright:
Tyre and Sidon had their day,
And even a Ball--has but its night!


[1] Archimedes.

[2] The name given to those large sleeves that hang loosely.

[3] In England the partition of this opera of Rossini was transferred to
the story of Peter the Hermit; by which means the indecorum of giving such
names as "Moyse," "Pharaon," etc., to the dancers selected from it (as was
done in Paris), has been avoided.

[4] The celebrated portrait by Leonardo da Vinci, which he is said to have
occupied four years in painting,--_Vasari_, vol. vii.








EVENINGS IN GREECE


In thus connecting together a series of Songs by a thread of poetical
narrative, my chief object has been to combine Recitation with Music, so
as to enable a greater number of persons to join in the performance, by
enlisting as readers those who may not feel willing or competent to take a
part as singers.

The Island of Zea where the scene is laid was called by the ancients
Ceos, and was the birthplace of Simonides, Bacchylides, and other eminent
persons. An account of its present state may be found in the Travels of
Dr. Clarke, who says, that "it appeared to him to be the best cultivated
of any of the Grecian Isles."--Vol. vi. p. 174.

T.M.






EVENINGS IN GREECE.




FIRST EVENING.


"The sky is bright--the breeze is fair,
  "And the mainsail flowing, full and free--
"Our farewell word is woman's prayer,
  "And the hope before us--Liberty!
    "Farewell, farewell.
  "To Greece we give our shining blades,
  "And our hearts to you, young Zean Maids!

"The moon is in the heavens above,
  "And the wind is on the foaming sea--
"Thus shines the star of woman's love
  "On the glorious strife of Liberty!
    "Farewell, farewell.
  "To Greece we give our shining blades,
  "And our hearts to you, young Zean Maids!"

  Thus sung they from the bark, that now
Turned to the sea its gallant prow,
Bearing within its hearts as brave,
As e'er sought Freedom o'er the wave;
And leaving on that islet's shore,
  Where still the farewell beacons burn,
Friends that shall many a day look o'er
  The long, dim sea for their return.

Virgin of Heaven! speed their way--
  Oh, speed their way,--the chosen flower,
Of Zea's youth, the hope and stay
  Of parents in their wintry hour,
The love of maidens and the pride
Of the young, happy, blushing bride,
Whose nuptial wreath has not yet died--
All, all are in that precious bark,
  Which now, alas! no more is seen--
Tho' every eye still turns to mark
  The moonlight spot where it had been.

Vainly you look, ye maidens, sires,
  And mothers, your beloved are gone!--
Now may you quench those signal fires,
  Whose light they long looked back upon
From their dark deck--watching the flame
  As fast it faded from their view,
With thoughts, that, but for manly shame,
  Had made them droop and weep like you.
Home to your chambers! home, and pray
For the bright coming of that day,
When, blest by heaven, the Cross shall sweep
The Crescent from the Aegean deep,
And your brave warriors, hastening back,
Will bring such glories in their track,
As shall, for many an age to come,
Shed light around their name and home.

  There is a Fount on Zea's isle,
Round which, in soft luxuriance, smile
All the sweet flowers, of every kind,
  On which the sun of Greece looks down,
  Pleased as a lover on the crown
His mistress for her brow hath twined,
When he beholds each floweret there,
Himself had wisht her most to wear;
Here bloomed the laurel-rose,[1] whose wreath
Hangs radiant round the Cypriot shines,
And here those bramble-flowers, that breathe
  Their odor into Zante's wines:--
The splendid woodbine that, as eve,
  To grace their floral diadems,
The lovely maids of Patmos weave:--[2]
And that fair plant whose tangled stems
Shine like a Nereid's hair,[3] when spread,
Dishevelled, o'er her azure bed:--
All these bright children of the clime,
(Each at its own most genial time,
The summer, or the year's sweet prime,)
  Like beautiful earth-stars, adorn
  The Valley where that Fount is born;
While round, to grace its cradle green
Groups of Velani oaks are seen
Towering on every verdant height--
Tall, shadowy, in the evening light,
Like Genii set to watch the birth
Of some enchanted child of earth--
Fair oaks that over Zea's vales,
  Stand with their leafy pride unfurled;
While Commerce from her thousand sails
  Scatters their fruit throughout the world![4]

  'Twas here--as soon as prayer and sleep
(Those truest friends to all who weep)
Had lightened every heart; and made
Even sorrow wear a softer shade--
'Twas here, in this secluded spot,
  Amid whose breathings calm and sweet
Grief might be soothed if not forgot,
  The Zean nymphs resolved to meet
Each evening now, by the same light
That saw their farewell tears that night:
And try if sound of lute and song,
  If wandering mid the moonlight flowers
In various talk, could charm along
  With lighter step, the lingering hours,
Till tidings of that Bark should come,
Or Victory waft their warriors home!

  When first they met--the wonted smile
Of greeting having gleamed awhile--
'Twould touch even Moslem heart to see
The sadness that came suddenly
O'er their young brows, when they looked round
Upon that bright, enchanted ground;
And thought how many a time with those
  Who now were gone to the rude wars
They there had met at evening's close,
  And danced till morn outshone the stars!

But seldom long doth hang the eclipse
  Of sorrow o'er such youthful breasts--
The breath from her own blushing lips,
  That on the maiden's mirror rests,
Not swifter, lighter from the glass,
Than sadness from her brow doth pass.

Soon did they now, as round the Well
  They sat, beneath the rising moon--
And some with voice of awe would tell
Of midnight fays and nymphs who dwell
  In holy founts--while some would time
Their idle lutes that now had lain
For days without a single strain;--
And others, from the rest apart,
With laugh that told the lightened heart,
Sat whispering in each other's ear
Secrets that all in turn would hear;--
Soon did they find this thoughtless play
So swiftly steal their griefs away,
  That many a nymph tho' pleased the while,
  Reproached her own forgetful smile,
And sighed to think she _could_ be gay.

Among these maidens there was one
  Who to Leucadia[5] late had been--
Had stood beneath the evening sun
  On its white towering cliffs and seen
The very spot where Sappho sung
Her swan-like music, ere she sprung
(Still holding, in that fearful leap,
By her loved lyre,) into the deep,
And dying quenched the fatal fire,
At once, of both her heart and lyre.

  Mutely they listened all--and well
Did the young travelled maiden tell
Of the dread height to which that steep
Beetles above the eddying deep--[6]
Of the lone sea-birds, wheeling round
The dizzy edge with mournful sound--
And of those scented lilies found
Still blooming on that fearful place--
As if called up by Love to grace
The immortal spot o'er which the last
Bright footsteps of his martyr past!

  While fresh to every listener's thought
These legends of Leucadia brought
All that of Sappho's hapless flame
Is kept alive, still watcht by Fame--
The maiden, tuning her soft lute,
While all the rest stood round her, mute,
Thus sketched the languishment of soul,
That o'er the tender Lesbian stole;
And in a voice whose thrilling tone
Fancy might deem the Lesbian's own,
One of those fervid fragments gave,
  Which still,--like sparkles of Greek Fire,
Undying, even beneath the wave,--
  Burn on thro' Time and ne'er expire.


SONG.


As o'er her loom the Lesbian Maid
  In love-sick languor hung her head,
Unknowing where her fingers strayed,
  She weeping turned away, and said,
"Oh, my sweet Mother--'tis in vain--
  "I cannot weave, as once I wove--
"So wildered is my heart and brain
  "With thinking of that youth I love!"

Again the web she tried to trace,
  But tears fell o'er each tangled thread;
While looking in her mother's face,
  Who watchful o'er her leaned, she said,
"Oh, my sweet Mother--'tis in vain--
  "I cannot weave, as once I wove--
"So wildered is my heart and brain
  "With thinking of that youth I love!"

       *       *       *       *       *

A silence followed this sweet air,
  As each in tender musing stood,
Thinking, with lips that moved in prayer,
  Of Sappho and that fearful flood:
While some who ne'er till now had known
  How much their hearts resembled hers,
Felt as they made her griefs their own,
  That _they_ too were Love's worshippers.

  At length a murmur, all but mute,
So faint it was, came from the lute
Of a young melancholy maid,
Whose fingers, all uncertain played
From chord to chord, as if in chase
  Of some lost melody, some strain
Of other times, whose faded trace
  She sought among those chords again.
Slowly the half-forgotten theme
  (Tho' born in feelings ne'er forgot)
Came to her memory--as a beam
  Falls broken o'er some shaded spot;--
And while her lute's sad symphony
Filled up each sighing pause between;
And Love himself might weep to see
  What ruin comes where he hath been--
As withered still the grass is found
Where fays have danced their merry round--
Thus simply to the listening throng
She breathed her melancholy song:--


SONG.


Weeping for thee, my love, thro' the long day,
Lonely and wearily life wears away.
Weeping for thee, my love, thro' the long night--
No rest in darkness, no joy in light!
Naught left but Memory whose dreary tread
Sounds thro' this ruined heart, where all lies dead--
Wakening the echoes of joy long fled!

       *       *       *       *       *

  Of many a stanza, this alone
Had 'scaped oblivion--like the one
Stray fragment of a wreck which thrown
With the lost vessel's name ashore
Tells who they were that live no more.
  When thus the heart is in a vein
Of tender thought, the simplest strain
Can touch it with peculiar power--
  As when the air is warm, the scent
Of the most wild and rustic flower
  Can fill the whole rich element--
And in such moods the homeliest tone
That's linked with feelings, once our own--
With friends or joy gone by--will be
Worth choirs of loftiest harmony!

But some there were among the group
  Of damsels there too light of heart
To let their spirits longer droop,
  Even under music's melting art;
And one upspringing with a bound
From a low bank of flowers, looked round
With eyes that tho' so full of light
  Had still a trembling tear within;
And, while her fingers in swift flight
  Flew o'er a fairy mandolin,
Thus sung the song her lover late
  Had sung to her--the eve before
  That joyous night, when as of yore
All Zea met to celebrate
  The feast of May on the sea-shore.


SONG.


When the Balaika[7]
  Is heard o'er the sea,
I'll dance the Romaika
  By moonlight with thee.
If waves then advancing
  Should steal on our play,
Thy white feet in dancing
  Shall chase them away.[8]
When the Balaika
  Is heard o'er the sea,
Thou'lt dance the Romaika
  My own love, with me.

Then at the closing
  Of each merry lay,
How sweet 'tis, reposing
  Beneath the night ray!
Or if declining
  The moon leave the skies,
We'll talk by the shining
  Of each other's eyes.

Oh then how featly
  The dance we'll renew,
Treading so fleetly
  Its light mazes thro':[9]
Till stars, looking o'er us
  From heaven's high bowers,
Would change their bright chorus
  For one dance of ours!
When the Balaika
  Is heard o'er the sea,
Thou'lt dance the Romaika,
  My own love, with me.

       *       *       *       *       *

How changingly for ever veers
The heart of youth 'twixt smiles and tears!
Even as in April the light vane
Now points to sunshine, now to rain.
Instant this lively lay dispelled
  The shadow from each blooming brow,
And Dancing, joyous Dancing, held
  Full empire o'er each fancy now.


But say--_what_ shall the measure be?
  "Shall we the old Romaika tread,"
(Some eager asked) "as anciently
  "'Twas by the maids of Delos led,
"When slow at first, then circling fast,
"As the gay spirits rose--at last,
"With hand in hand like links enlocked,
  "Thro' the light air they seemed to flit
"In labyrinthine maze, that mocked
  "The dazzled eye that followed it?"
Some called aloud "the Fountain Dance!"--
  While one young, dark-eyed Amazon,
Whose step was air-like and whose glance
  Flashed, like a sabre in the sun,
Sportively said, "Shame on these soft
  "And languid strains we hear so oft.
"Daughters of Freedom! have not we
  "Learned from our lovers and our sires
"The Dance of Greece, while Greece was free--
  "That Dance, where neither flutes nor lyres,
"But sword and shield clash on the ear
"A music tyrants quake to hear?
"Heroines of Zea, arm with me
"And dance the dance of Victory!"

Thus saying, she, with playful grace,
Loosed the wide hat, that o'er her face
(From Anatolia came the maid)
  Hung shadowing each sunny charm;
And with a fair young armorer's aid,
  Fixing it on her rounded arm,
A mimic shield with pride displayed;
Then, springing towards a grove that spread
  Its canopy of foliage near,
Plucked off a lance-like twig, and said,
  "To arms, to arms!" while o'er her head
  She waved the light branch, as a spear.

Promptly the laughing maidens all
Obeyed their Chief's heroic call;--
Round the shield-arm of each was tied
  Hat, turban, shawl, as chance might be;
  The grove, their verdant armory,
Falchion and lance[10] alike supplied;
  And as their glossy locks, let free,
  Fell down their shoulders carelessly,
You might have dreamed you saw a throng
  Of youthful Thyads, by the beam
Of a May moon, bounding along
  Peneus' silver-eddied stream!

And now they stept, with measured tread,
  Martially o'er the shining field;
Now to the mimic combat led
(A heroine at each squadron's head),
  Struck lance to lance and sword to shield:
While still, thro' every varying feat,
Their voices heard in contrast sweet
With some of deep but softened sound
From lips of aged sires around,
Who smiling watched their children's play--
Thus sung the ancient Pyrrhic lay:--


SONG.


"Raise the buckler--poise the lance--
"Now here--now there--retreat--advance!"

Such were the sounds to which the warrior boy
  Danced in those happy days when Greece was free;
When Sparta's youth, even in the hour of joy,
  Thus trained their steps to war and victory.
"Raise the buckler--poise the lance--
"Now here--now there--retreat--advance!"
Such was the Spartan warriors' dance.
  "Grasp the falchion--gird the shield--
"Attack--defend--do all but yield."

Thus did thy sons, oh Greece, one glorious night,
  Dance by a moon like this, till o'er the sea
That morning dawned by whose immortal light
  They nobly died for thee and liberty![11]
"Raise the buckler--poise the lance--
"Now here--now there--retreat--advance!"
Such was the Spartan heroes' dance.

       *       *       *       *       *

Scarce had they closed this martial lay
When, flinging their light spears away,
The combatants, in broken ranks.
  All breathless from the war-field fly;
And down upon the velvet banks
  And flowery slopes exhausted lie,
Like rosy huntresses of Thrace,
Resting at sunset from the chase.

"Fond girls!" an aged Zean said--
One who himself had fought and bled,
And now with feelings half delight,
Half sadness, watched their mimic fight--
"Fond maids! who thus with War can jest--
"Like Love in Mar's helmet drest,
"When, in his childish innocence,
  "Pleased with the shade that helmet flings,
"He thinks not of the blood that thence
  "Is dropping o'er his snowy wings.
"Ay--true it is, young patriot maids,
  "If Honor's arm still won the fray,
"If luck but shone on righteous blades,
  "War were a game for gods to play!
"But, no, alas!--hear one, who well
  "Hath tracked the fortunes of the brave--
"Hear _me_, in mournful ditty, tell
  "What glory waits the patriot's grave."


SONG.


As by the shore, at break of day,
A vanquished chief expiring lay.
Upon the sands, with broken sword,
  He traced his farewell to the Free;
And, there, the last unfinished word
  He dying wrote was "Liberty!"

At night a Sea-bird shrieked the knell
Of him who thus for Freedom fell;
The words he wrote, ere evening came,
  Were covered by the sounding sea;--
So pass away the cause and name
  Of him who dies for Liberty!

       *       *       *       *       *

That tribute of subdued applause
  A charmed but timid audience pays,
That murmur which a minstrel draws
  From hearts that feel but fear to praise,
Followed this song, and left a pause
Of silence after it, that hung
Like a fixt spell on every tongue.

  At length a low and tremulous sound
Was heard from midst a group that round
A bashful maiden stood to hide
Her blushes while the lute she tried--
Like roses gathering round to veil
The song of some young nightingale,
Whose trembling notes steal out between
The clustered leaves, herself unseen.
And while that voice in tones that more
  Thro' feeling than thro' weakness erred,
Came with a stronger sweetness o'er
  The attentive ear, this strain was heard:--


SONG.


I saw from yonder silent cave,[12]
  Two Fountains running side by side;
The one was Memory's limpid wave,
  The other cold Oblivion's tide.
"Oh Love!" said I, in thoughtless mood,
  As deep I drank of Lethe's stream,
"Be all my sorrows in this flood
  "Forgotten like a vanisht dream!"

But who could bear that gloomy blank
  Where joy was lost as well as pain?
Quickly of Memory's fount I drank.
  And brought the past all back again;
And said, "Oh Love! whate'er my lot,
  "Still let this soul to thee be true--
"Rather than have one bliss forgot,
  "Be all my pains remembered too!"

      *      *      *      *      *

The group that stood around to shade
The blushes of that bashful maid,
Had by degrees as came the lay
More strongly forth retired away,
Like a fair shell whose valves divide
To show the fairer pearl inside:
For such she was--a creature, bright
  And delicate as those day-flowers,
Which while they last make up in light
  And sweetness what they want in hours.

  So rich upon the ear had grown
Her voice's melody--its tone
Gathering new courage as it found
An echo in each bosom round--
That, ere the nymph with downcast eye
Still on the chords, her lute laid by,
"Another song," all lips exclaimed,
And each some matchless favorite named;
while blushing as her fingers ran
O'er the sweet chords she thus began:--


SONG.


Oh, Memory, how coldly
  Thou paintest joy gone by:
Like rainbows, thy pictures
  But mournfully shine and die.
Or if some tints thou keepest
  That former days recall,
As o'er each line thou weepest,
  Thy tears efface them all.

But, Memory, too truly
  Thou paintest grief that's past;
Joy's colors are fleeting,
  But those of Sorrow last.
And, while thou bringst before us
  Dark pictures of past ill,
Life's evening closing o'er us
  But makes them darker still.

       *       *       *       *       *

So went the moonlight hours along,
In this sweet glade; and so with song
And witching sounds--not such as they,
 The cymbalists of Ossa, played,
To chase the moon's eclipse away,[13]
  But soft and holy--did each maid
Lighten her heart's eclipse awhile,
And win back Sorrow to a smile.

Not far from this secluded place,
  On the sea-shore a ruin stood;--
A relic of the extinguisht race,
  Who once o'er that foamy flood,
  When fair Ioulis[14] by the light
  Of golden sunset on the sight
    Of mariners who sailed that sea,
  Rose like a city of chrysolite
    Called from the wave by witchery.
  This ruin--now by barbarous hands
    Debased into a motley shed,
  Where the once splendid column stands
    Inverted on its leafy head--
  Formed, as they tell in times of old
    The dwelling of that bard whose lay
  Could melt to tears the stern and cold,
    And sadden mid their mirth the gay--
  Simonides,[15] whose fame thro' years
    And ages past still bright appears--
  Like Hesperus, a star of tears!

  'Twas hither now--to catch a view
    Of the white waters as they played
  Silently in the light--a few
    Of the more restless damsels strayed;
  And some would linger mid the scent
    Of hanging foliage that perfumed
  The ruined walls; while others went
    Culling whatever floweret bloomed

In the lone leafy space between,
Where gilded chambers once had been;
Or, turning sadly to the sea,
  Sent o'er the wave a sigh unblest
To some brave champion of the Free--
Thinking, alas, how cold might be
  At that still hour his place of rest!

Meanwhile there came a sound of song
  From the dark ruins--a faint strain,
As if some echo that among
Those minstrel halls had slumbered long
  Were murmuring into life again.

But, no--the nymphs knew well the tone--
  A maiden of their train, who loved
Like the night-bird to sing alone.
  Had deep into those ruins roved,
And there, all other thoughts forgot,
  Was warbling o'er, in lone delight,
A lay that, on that very spot,
  Her lover sung one moonlight night:--


SONG.


Ah! where are they, who heard, in former hours,
The voice of Song in these neglected bowers?
  They are gone--all gone!

The youth who told his pain in such sweet tone
That all who heard him wisht his pain their own--
  He is gone--he is gone!

And she who while he sung sat listening by
And thought to strains like these 'twere sweet to die--
  She is gone--she too is gone!

'Tis thus in future hours some bard will say
Of her who hears and him who sings this lay--
  They are gone--they both are gone!

       *       *       *       *       *

The moon was now, from heaven's steep,
  Bending to dip her silvery urn
Into the bright and silent deep--
  And the young nymphs, on their return
From those romantic ruins, found
Their other playmates ranged around
The sacred Spring, prepared to tune
Their parting hymn,[16] ere sunk the moon,
To that fair Fountain by whose stream
Their hearts had formed so many a dream.

  Who has not read the tales that tell
Of old Eleusis' sacred Well,
Or heard what legend-songs recount
Of Syra and its holy Fount,[17]
Gushing at once from the hard rock
  Into the laps of living flowers--
Where village maidens loved to flock,
  On summer-nights and like the Hours
Linked in harmonious dance and song,
Charmed the unconscious night along;
While holy pilgrims on their way
  To Delos' isle stood looking on,
Enchanted with a scene so gay,
  Nor sought their boats till morning shone.

Such was the scene this lovely glade
And its fair inmates now displayed.
As round the Fount in linked ring
  They went in cadence slow and light
And thus to that enchanted Spring
  Warbled their Farewell for the night:--


SONG.


Here, while the moonlight dim
Falls on that mossy brim,
Sing we our Fountain Hymn,
  Maidens of Zea!
Nothing but Music's strain,
When Lovers part in pain,
Soothes till they meet again,
  Oh, Maids of Zea!

Bright Fount so clear and cold
Round which the nymphs of old
Stood with their locks of gold,
  Fountain of Zea!
Not even Castaly,
Famed tho' its streamlet be,
Murmurs or shines like thee,
  Oh, Fount of Zea!

Thou, while our hymn we sing,
Thy silver voice shalt bring,
Answering, answering,
  Sweet Fount of Zea!
For of all rills that run
Sparkling by moon or sun
Thou art the fairest one,
  Bright Fount of Zea!

Now, by those stars that glance
Over heaven's still expanse
Weave we our mirthful dance,
  Daughters of Zea!
Such as in former days
Danced they by Dian's rays
Where the Eurotas strays,
  Oh, Maids of Zea!

But when to merry feet
Hearts with no echo beat,
Say, can the dance be sweet?
  Maidens of Zea!
No, naught but Music's strain,
When lovers part in pain,
Soothes till they meet again,
  Oh, Maids of Zea!




SECOND EVENING.


SONG.


When evening shades are falling
  O'er Ocean's sunny sleep,
To pilgrims' hearts recalling
  Their home beyond the deep;
When rest o'er all descending
  The shores with gladness smile,
And lutes their echoes blending
  Are heard from isle to isle,
Then, Mary, Star of the Sea,
We pray, we pray, to thee!

The noon-day tempest over,
  Now Ocean toils no more,
And wings of halcyons hover
  Where all was strife before.
Oh thus may life in closing
  Its short tempestuous day
Beneath heaven's smile reposing
  Shine all its storms away:
Thus, Mary, Star of the Sea,
We pray, we pray, to thee!

On Helle's sea the light grew dim
As the last sounds of that sweet hymn
  Floated along its azure tide--
Floated in light as if the lay
Had mixt with sunset's fading ray
  And light and song together died.
So soft thro' evening's air had breathed
That choir of youthful voices wreathed
In many-linked harmony,
That boats then hurrying o'er the sea
Paused when they reached this fairy shore,
And lingered till the strain was o'er.

Of those young maids who've met to fleet
In song and dance this evening's hours,
Far happier now the bosoms beat
  Than when they last adorned these bowers;
For tidings of glad sound had come,
  At break of day from the far isles--
Tidings like breath of life to some--
That Zea's sons would soon wing home,
  Crowded with the light of Victory's smiles
To meet that brightest of all meeds
That wait on high, heroic deeds.
When gentle eyes that scarce for tears
  Could trace the warrior's parting track,
Shall like a misty morn that clears
When the long-absent sun appears
  Shine out all bliss to hail him back.

How fickle still the youthful breast!--
  More fond of change than a young moon,
No joy so new was e'er possest
  But Youth would leave for newer soon.
These Zean nymphs tho' bright the spot
  Where first they held their evening play
As ever fell to fairy's lot
  To wanton o'er by midnight's ray,
Had now exchanged that sheltered scene
  For a wide glade beside the sea--
A lawn whose soft expanse of green
  Turned to the west sun smilingly
As tho' in conscious beauty bright
It joyed to give him light for light.

And ne'er did evening more serene
Look down from heaven on lovelier scene.
Calm lay the flood around while fleet
  O'er the blue shining element
Light barks as if with fairy feet
  That stirred not the husht waters went;
Some, that ere rosy eve fell o'er
  The blushing wave, with mainsail free,
Had put forth from the Attic shore,
  Or the near Isle of Ebony;--
Some, Hydriot barks that deep in caves
  Beneath Colonna's pillared cliffs,
Had all day lurked and o'er the waves
  Now shot their long and dart-like skiffs.
Woe to the craft however fleet
These sea-hawks in their course shall meet,
Laden with juice of Lesbian vines,
Or rich from Naxos' emery mines;
For not more sure, when owlets flee
O'er the dark crags of Pendelee,
Doth the night-falcon mark his prey,
Or pounce on it more fleet than they.

And what a moon now lights the glade
  Where these young island nymphs are met!
Full-orbed yet pure as if no shade
  Had touched its virgin lustre yet;
And freshly bright as if just made
By Love's own hands of new-born light
Stolen from his mother's star tonight.

  On a bold rock that o'er the flood
Jutted from that soft glade there stood
A Chapel, fronting towards the sea,--
Built in some by-gone century,--
Where nightly as the seaman's mark
When waves rose high or clouds were dark,
A lamp bequeathed by some kind Saint
Shed o'er the wave its glimmer faint.
Waking in way-worn men a sigh
And prayer to heaven as they went by.
'Twas there, around that rock-built shrine
  A group of maidens and their sires
Had stood to watch the day's decline,
  And as the light fell o'er their lyres
Sung to the Queen-Star of the Sea
That soft and holy melody.

But lighter thoughts and lighter song
Now woo the coming hours along.
For mark, where smooth the herbage lies,
  Yon gay pavilion curtained deep
With silken folds thro' which bright eyes
  From time to time are seen to peep;
While twinkling lights that to and fro
Beneath those veils like meteors go,
  Tell of some spells at work and keep
Young fancies chained in mute suspense,
Watching what next may shine from thence,
Nor long the pause ere hands unseen
  That mystic curtain backward drew,
And all that late but shone between
  In half-caught gleams now burst to view.

A picture 'twas of the early days
Of glorious Greece ere yet those rays
Of rich, immortal Mind were hers
That made mankind her worshippers;
While yet unsung her landscapes shone
With glory lent by heaven alone;
Nor temples crowned her nameless hills,
Nor Muse immortalized her rills;
Nor aught but the mute poesy
Of sun and stars and shining sea
Illumed that land of bards to be.
While prescient of the gifted race
  That yet would realm so blest adorn,
Nature took pains to deck the place
  Where glorious Art was to be born.

Such was the scene that mimic stage
  Of Athens and her hills portrayed
Athens in her first, youthful age,
  Ere yet the simple violet braid,[18]
Which then adorned her had shone down
The glory of earth's loftiest crown.
While yet undreamed, her seeds of Art
  Lay sleeping in the marble mine--
Sleeping till Genius bade them start
  To all but life in shapes divine;
Till deified the quarry shone
And all Olympus stood in stone!

There in the foreground of that scene,
On a soft bank of living green
Sate a young nymph with her lap full
  Of the newly gathered flowers, o'er which
She graceful leaned intent to cull
  All that was there of hue most rich,
To form a wreath such as the eye
Of her young lover who stood by,
With pallet mingled fresh might choose
To fix by Painting's rainbow hues.

The wreath was formed; the maiden raised
  Her speaking eyes to his, while he--
Oh _not_ upon the flowers now gazed,
  But on that bright look's witchery.
While, quick as if but then the thought
Like light had reached his soul, he caught
His pencil up and warm and true
As life itself that love-look drew:
And, as his raptured task went on,
And forth each kindling feature shone,
Sweet voices thro' the moonlight air
  From lips as moonlight fresh and pure
Thus hailed the bright dream passing there,
  And sung the Birth of Portraiture.[19]


SONG.


As once a Grecian maiden wove
  Her garland mid the summer bowers,
There stood a youth with eyes of love
  To watch her while she wreathed the flowers.
The youth was skilled in Painting's art,
  But ne'er had studied woman's brow,
Nor knew what magic hues the heart
  Can shed o'er Nature's charms till now.


CHORUS.


Blest be Love to whom we owe
All that's fair and bright below.

His hand had pictured many a rose
  And sketched the rays that light the brook;
But what were these or what were those
  To woman's blush, to woman's look?
"Oh, if such magic power there be,
  "This, this," he cried, "is all my prayer,
"To paint that living light I see
  "And fix the soul that sparkles there."

His prayer as soon as breathed was heard;
  His pallet touched by Love grew warm,
And Painting saw her hues transferred
  From lifeless flowers to woman's form.
Still as from tint to tint he stole,
  The fair design shone out the more,
And there was now a life, a soul,
  Where only colors glowed before.

Then first carnations learned to speak
  And lilies into life were brought;
While mantling on the maiden's cheek
  Young roses kindled into thought.
Then hyacinths their darkest dyes
  Upon the locks of Beauty threw;
And violets transformed to eyes
  Inshrined a soul within their blue.


CHORUS.


Blest be Love to whom we owe,
All that's fair and bright below.
Song was cold and Painting dim
Till Song and Painting learned from him.

       *       *       *       *       *

Soon as the scene had closed, a cheer
  Of gentle voices old and young
Rose from the groups that stood to hear
  This tale of yore so aptly sung;
And while some nymphs in haste to tell
The workers of that fairy spell
How crowned with praise their task had been
Stole in behind the curtained scene,
The rest in happy converse strayed--
  Talking that ancient love-tale o'er--
Some to the groves that skirt the glade,
  Some to the chapel by the shore,
To look what lights were on the sea.
And think of the absent silently.

But soon that summons known so well
  Thro' bower and hall in Eastern lands,
Whose sound more sure than gong or bell
  Lovers and slaves alike commands,--
  The clapping of young female hands,
Calls back the groups from rock and field
To see some new-formed scene revealed;--
And fleet and eager down the slopes
Of the green glades like antelopes
When in their thirst they hear the sound
Of distant rills, the light nymphs bound.

Far different now the scene--a waste
  Of Libyan sands, by moonlight's ray;
An ancient well, whereon were traced
  The warning words, for such as stray
  Unarmed there, "Drink and away!"[20]
While near it from the night-ray screened,
  And like his bells in husht repose,
A camel slept--young as if weaned
  When last the star Canopus rose.[21]

Such was the back-ground's silent scene;--
  While nearer lay fast slumbering too
In a rude tent with brow serene
  A youth whose cheeks of wayworn hue
And pilgrim-bonnet told the tale
That he had been to Mecca's Vale:
Haply in pleasant dreams, even now
  Thinking the long wished hour is come
  When o'er the well-known porch at home
His hand shall hang the aloe bough--
Trophy of his accomplished vow.[22]

But brief his dream--for now the call
  Of the camp-chiefs from rear to van,
  "Bind on your burdens,"[23] wakes up all
  The widely slumbering caravan;
And thus meanwhile to greet the ear
  Of the young pilgrim as he wakes,
The song of one who lingering near
  Had watched his slumber, cheerly breaks.


SONG.


Up and march! the timbrel's sound
Wakes the slumbering camp around;
Fleet thy hour of rest hath gone,
Armed sleeper, up, and on!
Long and weary is our way
O'er the burning sands to-day;
But to pilgrim's homeward feet
Even the desert's path is sweet.

When we lie at dead of night,
Looking up to heaven's light,
Hearing but the watchman’s tone
Faintly chanting "God is one,"[24]
Oh what thoughts then o'er us come
Of our distant village home,
Where that chant when evening sets
Sounds from all the minarets.

Cheer thee!--soon shall signal lights,
Kindling o'er the Red Sea heights,
Kindling quick from man to man,
Hail our coming caravan:[25]
Think what bliss that hour will be!
Looks of home again to see,
And our names again to hear
Murmured out by voices dear.

       *        *        *        *        *

So past the desert dream away,
Fleeting as his who heard this lay,
Nor long the pause between, nor moved
   The spell-bound audience from that spot;
While still as usual Fancy roved
   On to the joy that yet was not;--
Fancy who hath no present home,
But builds her bower in scenes to come,
Walking for ever in a light
That flows from regions out of sight.

But see by gradual dawn descried
   A mountain realm-rugged as e'er
   Upraised to heaven its summits bare,
Or told to earth with frown of pride
   That Freedom's falcon nest was there,
Too high for hand of lord or king
To hood her brow, or chain her wing.

'Tis Maina's land--her ancient hills,
The abode of nymphs--her countless rills
And torrents in their downward dash
   Shining like silver thro' the shade
Of the sea-pine and flowering ash--
   All with a truth so fresh portrayed
As wants but touch of life to be
A world of warm reality.

And now light bounding forth a band
   Of mountaineers, all smiles, advance--
Nymphs with their lovers hand in hand
Linked in the Ariadne dance;
And while, apart from that gay throng,
A minstrel youth in varied song
Tells of the loves, the joys, the ills
Of these wild children of the hills,
The rest by turns or fierce or gay
As war or sport inspires the lay
Follow each change that wakes the strings
And act what thus the lyrist sings:--


SONG.


No life is like the mountaineer's,
His home is near the sky,
Where throned above this world he hears
  Its strife at distance die,
Or should the sound of hostile drum
Proclaim below, "We come--we come,"
Each crag that towers in air
Gives answer, "Come who dare!"
While like bees from dell and dingle,
Swift the swarming warriors mingle,
And their cry "Hurra!" will be,
"Hurra, to victory!"

Then when battle's hour is over
See the happy mountain lover
With the nymph who'll soon be bride
Seated blushing by his side,--
Every shadow of his lot
In her sunny smile forgot.
Oh, no life is like the mountaineer's.
  His home is near the sky,
Where throned above this world he hears
  Its strife at distance die.
Nor only thus thro' summer suns
His blithe existence cheerly runs--
  Even winter bleak and dim
  Brings joyous hours to him;
When his rifle behind him flinging
He watches the roe-buck springing,
And away, o'er the hills away
Re-echoes his glad "hurra."

Then how blest when night is closing,
By the kindled hearth reposing,
To his rebeck's drowsy song,
He beguiles the hour along;
Or provoked by merry glances
To a brisker movement dances,
Till, weary at last, in slumber's chain,
He dreams o'er chase and dance again,
  Dreams, dreams them o'er again.

        *        *        *        *        *

As slow that minstrel at the close
Sunk while he sung to feigned repose,
Aptly did they whose mimic art
  Followed the changes of his lay
Portray the lull, the nod, the start,
  Thro' which as faintly died away
His lute and voice, the minstrel past,
Till voice and lute lay husht at last.

But now far other song came o'er
  Their startled ears--song that at first
As solemnly the night-wind bore
  Across the wave its mournful burst,
Seemed to the fancy like a dirge
  Of some lone Spirit of the Sea,
Singing o'er Helle's ancient surge
  The requiem of her Brave and Free.

Sudden amid their pastime pause
  The wondering nymphs; and as the sound
Of that strange music nearer draws,
  With mute inquiring eye look round,
Asking each other what can be
The source of this sad minstrelsy?
Nor longer can they doubt, the song
  Comes from some island-bark which now
Courses the bright waves swift along
And soon perhaps beneath the brow
Of the Saint's Bock will shoot its prow.

Instantly all with hearts that sighed
  'Twixt fear's and fancy's influence,
  Flew to the rock and saw from thence
A red-sailed pinnace towards them glide,
Whose shadow as it swept the spray
Scattered the moonlight's smiles away.
Soon as the mariners saw that throng
  From the cliff gazing, young and old,
Sudden they slacked their sail and song,
  And while their pinnace idly rolled
  On the light surge, these tidings told:--

'Twas from an isle of mournful name,
From Missolonghi, last they came--
Sad Missolonghi sorrowing yet
O'er him, the noblest Star of Fame
  That e'er in life's young glory set!--
And now were on their mournful way,
  Wafting the news thro' Helle's isles;--
News that would cloud even Freedom's ray
  And sadden Victory mid her smiles.

Their tale thus told and heard with pain,
Out spread the galliot's wings again;
And as she sped her swift career
Again that Hymn rose on the ear--
"Thou art not dead--thou art not dead!"
  As oft 'twas sung in ages flown
Of him, the Athenian, who to shed
  A tyrant's blood poured out his own.


SONG.


Thou art not dead--thou art not dead!
  No, dearest Harmodius, no.
Thy soul to realms above us fled
Tho' like a star it dwells o'er head
Still lights this world below.
Thou art _not_ dead--thou art not dead!
  No, dearest Harmodius, no.

Thro' isles of light where heroes tread
  And flowers ethereal blow,
Thy god-like Spirit now is led,
Thy lip with life ambrosial fed
Forgets all taste of woe.
Thou art not dead--thou art not dead!
  No, dearest Harmodius, no.

The myrtle round that falchion spread
  Which struck the immortal blow,
Throughout all time with leaves unshed--
The patriot's hope, the tyrant's dread--
  Round Freedom's shrine shall grow.
Thou art not dead--thou art not dead!
  No, dearest Harmodius, no.

Where hearts like thine have broke or bled,
  Tho' quenched the vital glow,
Their memory lights a flame instead,
Which even from out the narrow bed
  Of death its beams shall throw.
Thou art not dead--thou art not dead!
  No, dearest Harmodius, no.

Thy name, by myriads sung and said,
  From age to age shall go,
Long as the oak and ivy wed,
As bees shall haunt Hymettus' head,
  Or Helle's waters flow.
Thou art not dead--thou art not dead!
  No, dearest Harmodius, no.

       *       *       *       *       *

'Mong those who lingered listening there,--
  Listening with ear and eye as long
As breath of night could towards them bear
  A murmur of that mournful song,--
A few there were in whom the lay
  Had called up feelings far too sad
To pass with the brief strain away,
  Or turn at once to theme more glad;
And who in mood untuned to meet
  The light laugh of the happie train,
Wandered to seek some moonlight seat
Where they might rest, in converse sweet,
  Till vanisht smiles should come again.

And seldom e'er hath noon of night
To sadness lent more soothing light.
On one side in the dark blue sky
Lonely and radiant was the eye
Of Jove himself, while on the other
  'Mong tiny stars that round her gleamed,
The young moon like the Roman mother
  Among her living "jewels" beamed.

Touched by the lovely scenes around,
  A pensive maid--one who, tho' young,
Had known what 'twas to see unwound
  The ties by which her heart had clung--
Wakened her soft tamboura's sound,
  And to its faint accords thus sung:--


SONG.


  Calm as beneath its mother's eyes
  In sleep the smiling infant lies,
  So watched by all the stars of night
  Yon landscape sleeps in light.
And while the night-breeze dies away,
  Like relics of some faded strain,
Loved voices, lost for many a day,
  Seem whispering round again.
Oh youth! oh love! ye dreams that shed
Such glory once--where are ye fled?

Pure ray of light that down the sky
  Art pointing like an angel's wand,
As if to guide to realms that lie
  In that bright sea beyond:
Who knows but in some brighter deep
  Than even that tranquil, moonlit main,
Some land may lie where those who weep
  Shall wake to smile again!
With cheeks that had regained their power
  And play of smiles,--and each bright eye
Like violets after morning's shower
  The brighter for the tears gone by,
Back to the scene such smiles should grace
These wandering nymphs their path retrace,
And reach the spot with rapture new
Just as the veils asunder flew
And a fresh vision burst to view.

There by her own bright Attic flood,
The blue-eyed Queen of Wisdom stood;--
Not as she haunts the sage's dreams,
  With brow unveiled, divine, severe;
But softened as on bards she beams
  When fresh from Poesy's high sphere
A music not her own she brings,
And thro' the veil which Fancy flings
O'er her stern features gently sings.

But who is he--that urchin nigh,
  With quiver on the rose-trees hung,
Who seems just dropt from yonder sky,
And stands to watch that maid with eye
  So full of thought for one so young?--
That child--but, silence! lend thine ear,
And thus in song the tale thou'lt hear:--


SONG.


As Love one summer eve was straying,
  Who should he see at that soft hour
But young Minerva gravely playing
Her flute within an olive bower.
I need not say, 'tis Love's opinion
  That grave or merry, good or ill,
The sex all bow to his dominion,
  As woman will be woman still.

Tho' seldom yet the boy hath given
  To learned dames his smiles or sighs,
So handsome Pallas looked that even
  Love quite forgot the maid was wise.
Besides, a youth of his discerning
  Knew well that by a shady rill
At sunset hour whate'er her learning
  A woman will be woman still.

Her flute he praised in terms extatic,--
  Wishing it dumb, nor cared how soon.--
For Wisdom's notes, howe'er chromatic,
  To Love seem always out of tune.
But long as he found face to flatter,
  The nymph found breath to shake and thrill;
As, weak or wise--it doesn't matter--
Woman at heart is woman still.

Love changed his plan, with warmth exclaiming,
  "How rosy was her lips' soft dye!"
And much that flute the flatterer blaming,
  For twisting lips so sweet awry.
The nymph looked down, beheld her features
  Reflected in the passing rill,
And started, shocked--for, ah, ye creatures!
  Even when divine you're women still.

Quick from the lips it made so odious.
  That graceless flute the Goddess took
And while yet filled with breath melodious,
  Flung it into the glassy brook;
Where as its vocal life was fleeting
  Adown the current, faint and shrill,
'Twas heard in plaintive tone repeating,
  "Woman, alas, vain woman still!"

       *       *       *       *       *

An interval of dark repose--
Such as the summer lightning knows,
Twixt flash and flash, as still more bright
  The quick revealment comes and goes,
Opening each time the veils of night,
To show within a world of light--
Such pause, so brief, now past between
This last gay vision and the scene
  Which now its depth of light disclosed.
A bower it seemed, an Indian bower,
  Within whose shade a nymph reposed,
Sleeping away noon's sunny hour--
Lovely as she, the Sprite, who weaves
Her mansion of sweet Durva leaves,
And there, as Indian legends say,
Dreams the long summer hours away.
And mark how charmed this sleeper seems
With some hid fancy--she, too, dreams!
Oh for a wizard's art to tell
  The wonders that now bless her sight!
'Tis done--a truer, holier spell
Than e'er from wizard's lip yet fell.
  Thus brings her vision all to light:--


SONG.


"Who comes so gracefully
  "Gliding along
"While the blue rivulet
  "Sleeps to her song;
"Song richly vying
"With the faint sighing
"Which swans in dying
  "Sweetly prolong?"

So sung the shepherd-boy
  By the stream's side,
Watching that fairy-boat
  Down the flood glide,
Like a bird winging,
Thro' the waves bringing
That Syren, singing
  To the husht tide.

"Stay," said the shepherd-boy,
"Fairy-boat, stay,
"Linger, sweet minstrelsy,
  "Linger a day."
But vain his pleading,
Past him, unheeding,
Song and boat, speeding,
  Glided away.

So to our youthful eyes
  Joy and hope shone;
So while we gazed on them
  Fast they flew on;--
Like flowers declining
Even in the twining,
One moment shining.
  And the next gone!

       *       *       *       *       *

Soon as the imagined dream went by,
Uprose the nymph, with anxious eye
Turned to the clouds as tho' some boon
She waited from that sun-bright dome,
And marvelled that it came not soon
As her young thoughts would have it come.

But joy is in her glance!--the wing
  Of a white bird is seen above;
And oh, if round his neck he bring
  The long-wished tidings from her love,
Not half so precious in her eyes
  Even that high-omened bird[26] would be.
Who dooms the brow o'er which he flies
  To wear a crown of royalty.

She had herself last evening sent
  A winged messenger whose flight
Thro' the clear, roseate element,
  She watched till lessening out of sight
Far to the golden West it went,
Wafting to him, her distant love,
  A missive in that language wrought
Which flowers can speak when aptly wove,
  Each hue a word, each leaf a thought.

And now--oh speed of pinion, known
To Love's light messengers alone I--
Ere yet another evening takes
Its farewell of the golden lakes,
She sees another envoy fly,
With the wished answer, thro' the sky.


SONG.


Welcome sweet bird, thro' the sunny air winging,
  Swift hast thou come o'er the far-shining sea,
Like Seba's dove on thy snowy neck bringing
  Love's written vows from my lover to me.
Oh, in thy absence what hours did I number!--
  Saying oft, "Idle bird, how could he rest?"
But thou art come at last, take now thy slumber,
  And lull thee in dreams of all thou lov'st best.

Yet dost thou droop--even now while I utter
  Love's happy welcome, thy pulse dies away;
Cheer thee, my bird--were it life's ebbing flutter.
  This fondling bosom should woo it to stay,
But no--thou'rt dying--thy last task is over--
  Farewell, sweet martyr to Love and to me!
The smiles thou hast wakened by news from my lover,
  Will now all be turned into weeping for thee.

       *       *       *       *       *

While thus this scene of song (their last
For the sweet summer season) past,
A few presiding nymphs whose care
  Watched over all invisibly,
As do those guardian sprites of air
  Whose watch we feel but cannot see,
Had from the circle--scarcely missed,
  Ere they were sparkling there again--
Glided like fairies to assist
  Their handmaids on the moonlight plain,
Where, hid by intercepting shade
  From the stray glance of curious eyes,
A feast of fruits and wines was laid--
  Soon to shine out, a glad surprise!

And now the moon, her ark of light
  Steering thro' Heaven, as tho' she bore
In safety thro' that deep of night
Spirits of earth, the good, the bright,
  To some remote immortal shore,
Had half-way sped her glorious way,
  When round reclined on hillocks green
In groups beneath that tranquil ray,
  The Zeans at their feast were seen.
Gay was the picture--every maid
Whom late the lighted scene displayed,
Still in her fancy garb arrayed;--
The Arabian pilgrim, smiling here
  Beside the nymph of India's sky;
While there the Mainiote mountaineer
Whispered in young Minerva's ear,
  And urchin Love stood laughing by.

Meantime the elders round the board,
  By mirth and wit themselves made young,
High cups of juice Zacynthian poured,
  And while the flask went round thus sung:--


SONG.


Up with the sparkling brimmer,
  Up to the crystal rim;
Let not a moonbeam glimmer
  'Twixt the flood and brim.
When hath the world set eyes on
  Aught to match this light,
Which o'er our cup's horizon
  Dawns in bumpers bright?

Truth in a deep well lieth--
  So the wise aver;
But Truth the fact denieth--
  Water suits not her.
No, her abode's in brimmers,
  Like this mighty cup--
Waiting till we, good swimmers,
  Dive to bring her up.

       *       *       *       *       *

Thus circled round the song of glee,
  And all was tuneful mirth the while,
  Save on the cheeks of some whose smile
As fixt they gaze upon the sea,
Turns into paleness suddenly!
What see they there? a bright blue light
  That like a meteor gliding o'er
The distant wave grows on the sight,
As tho' 'twere winged to Zea's shore.
To some, 'mong those who came to gaze,
  It seemed the night-light far away
Of some lone fisher by the blaze
  Of pine torch luring on his prey;
While others, as 'twixt awe and mirth
  They breathed the blest Panaya's[27] name,
Vowed that such light was not of earth
  But of that drear, ill-omen'd flame
Which mariners see on sail or mast
When Death is coming in the blast.
While marvelling thus they stood, a maid
  Who sate apart with downcast eye,
Not yet had like the rest surveyed
  That coming light which now was nigh,
Soon as it met her sight, with cry
  Of pain-like joy, "'Tis he! 'tis he!"
Loud she exclaimed, and hurrying by
  The assembled throng, rushed towards the sea.
At burst so wild, alarmed, amazed,
All stood like statues mute and gazed
Into each other's eyes to seek
What meant such mood in maid so meek?

Till now, the tale was known to few,
But now from lip to lip it flew:--
A youth, the flower of all the band,
  Who late had left this sunny shore,
When last he kist that maiden's hand,
  Lingering to kiss it o'er and o'er.
By his sad brow too plainly told
  The ill-omened thought which crost him then,
That once those hands should lose their hold,
  They ne'er would meet on earth again!
In vain his mistress sad as he,
But with a heart from Self as free
As generous woman's only is,
Veiled her own fears to banish his:--
With frank rebuke but still more vain,
  Did a rough warrior who stood by
Call to his mind this martial strain,
  His favorite once, ere Beauty's eye
  Had taught his soldier-heart to sigh:--


SONG.


March! nor heed those arms that hold thee,
  Tho' so fondly close they come;
Closer still will they enfold thee
  When thou bring'st fresh laurels home.
Dost thou dote on woman's brow?
  Dost thou live but in her breath?
March!--one hour of victory now
 Wins thee woman's smile till death.

Oh what bliss when war is over
  Beauty's long-missed smile to meet.
And when wreaths our temples cover
  Lay them shining at her feet.
Who would not that hour to reach
  Breathe out life's expiring sigh,--
Proud as waves that on the beach
  Lay their war-crests down and die.

There! I see thy soul is burning--
  She herself who clasps thee so
Paints, even now, thy glad returning,
  And while clasping bids thee go.
One deep sigh to passion given,
  One last glowing tear and then--
March!--nor rest thy sword till Heaven
  Brings thee to those arms again.

       *       *       *       *       *

Even then ere loath their hands could part
  A promise the youth gave which bore
Some balm unto the maiden's heart,
  That, soon as the fierce fight was o'er,
To home he'd speed, if safe and free--
  Nay, even if dying, still would come,
So the blest word of "Victory!"
  Might be the last he'd breathe at home.
"By day," he cried, "thou'lt know my bark;
"But should I come thro' midnight dark,
"A blue light on the prow shall tell
"That Greece hath won and all is well!"

Fondly the maiden every night,
Had stolen to seek that promised light;
Nor long her eyes had now been turned
From watching when the signal burned.
Signal of joy--for her, for all--
  Fleetly the boat now nears the land,
While voices from the shore-edge call
  For tidings of the long-wished band.

Oh the blest hour when those who've been
  Thro' peril's paths by land or sea
Locked in our arms again are seen
  Smiling in glad security;
When heart to heart we fondly strain,
  Questioning quickly o'er and o'er--
Then hold them off to gaze affain
  And ask, tho' answered oft before,
  If they _indeed_ are ours once more?

Such is the scene so full of joy
Which welcomes now this warrior-boy,
As fathers, sisters, friends all run
Bounding to meet him--all but one
Who, slowest on his neck to fall,
Is yet the happiest of them all.

And now behold him circled round
  With beaming faces at that board,
While cups with laurel foliage crowned,
  Are to the coming warriors poured--
Coming, as he, their herald, told,
With blades from victory scarce yet cold,
With hearts untouched by Moslem steel
And wounds that home's sweet breath will heal.

"Ere morn," said he,--and while he spoke
  Turned to the east, where clear and pale
The star of dawn already broke--
  "We'll greet on yonder wave their sail!"
Then wherefore part? all, all agree
  To wait them here beneath this bower;
And thus, while even amidst their glee,
Each eye is turned to watch the sea,
  With song they cheer the anxious hour.


SONG.


"'Tis the Vine! 'tis the Vine!" said the cup-loving boy
As he saw it spring bright from the earth,
And called the young Genii of Wit, Love, and Joy,
  To witness and hallow its birth.
The fruit was full grown, like a ruby it flamed
  Till the sunbeam that kist it looked pale;
"'Tis the Vine! 'tis the Vine!" every Spirit exclaimed
  "Hail, hail to the Wine-tree, all hail!"

First, fleet as a bird to the summons Wit flew,
  While a light on the vine-leaves there broke
In flashes so quick and so brilliant all knew
  T'was the light from his lips as he spoke.
"Bright tree! let thy nectar but cheer me," he cried,
  "And the fount of Wit never can fail:"
"'Tis the Vine! 'tis the Vine!" hills and valleys reply,
  "Hail, hail to the Wine-tree, all hail!"

Next Love as he leaned o'er the plant to admire
  Each tendril and cluster it wore,
From his rosy mouth sent such a breath of desire,
  As made the tree tremble all o'er.
Oh! never did flower of the earth, sea, or sky,
  Such a soul-giving odor inhale:
"'Tis the Vine! 'tis the Vine!" all re-echo the cry,
  "Hail, hail to the Wine-tree, all hail!"

Last, Joy, without whom even Love and Wit die,
  Came to crown the bright hour with his ray;
And scarce had that mirth-waking tree met his eye,
  When a laugh spoke what Joy could not say;--
A laugh of the heart which was echoed around
  Till like music it swelled on the gale:
"T is the Vine! 'tis the Vine!" laughing myriads resound,
"Hail, hail to the Wine-tree, all hail!"


[1] "_Nerium Oleander_. In Cyprus it retains its ancient name,
Rhododaphne, and the Cypriots adorn their churches with the flowers on
feast-days."--_Journal of Dr. Sibthorpe, Walpole's, Turkey_.

[2] _Lonicera caprifolium_, used by the girls of Patmos for garlands.

[3] _Cuscuta europoea_. "From the twisting and twining of the stems, it is
compared by the Greeks to the dishevelled hair of the Nereids."--
_Walpole's Turkey_.

[4] "The produce of the island in these acorns alone amounts annually to
fifteen thousand quintals."--_Clarke's Travels_.

[5] Now Santa Maura--the island, from whose cliffs Sappho leaped into the
sea.

[6] "The precipice, which is fearfully dizzy, is about one hundred and
fourteen feet from the water, which is of a profound depth, as appears
from the dark blue color and the eddy that plays round the pointed and
projecting rocks."--_Goodisson's Ionian Isles_.

[7] This word is defrauded here, I suspect, of a syllable; Dr. Clarke, if
I recollect right, makes it "Balalaika."

[8] "I saw above thirty parties engaged in dancing the Romaika upon the
sand; in some of these groups, the girl who led them chased the retreating
wave."--Douglas on the Modern Greeks.

[9] "In dancing the Romaika [says Mr. Douglas] they begin in slow and
solemn step till they have gained the time, but by degrees the air becomes
more sprightly; the conductress of the dance sometimes setting to her
partners, sometimes darting before the rest, and leading them through the
most rapid revolutions: sometimes crossing under the hands, which are held
up to let her pass, and giving as much liveliness and intricacy as she can
to the figures, into which she conducts her companions, while their
business is to follow her in all her movements, without breaking the
chain, or losing the measure,"

[10] The sword was the weapon chiefly used in this dance.

[11] It is said that Leonidas and his companions employed themselves, on
the eve of the battle, in music and the gymnastic exercises of their
country.

[12] "This morning we paid our visit to the Cave of Trophonius, and the
Fountains of Memory and Oblivion, just upon the water of Hercyna, which
flows through stupendous rocks."--_Williams's Travels in Greece_.

[13] This superstitious custom of the Thessalians exists also, as Pietro
dello Valle tells us, among the Persians.

[14] An ancient city of Zea, the walls of which were of marble. Its
remains (says Clarke) "extend from the shore, quite into a valley watered
by the streams of a fountain, whence Ioulis received its name."

[15] Zea was the birthplace of this poet, whose verses are by Catullus
called "tears."

[16] These "Songs of the Well," as they were called among the ancients,
still exist in Greece. _De Guys_ tells us that he has seen "the young
women in Prince's Island, assembled in the evening at a public well,
suddenly strike up a dance, while others sung in concert to them."

[17] "The inhabitants of Syra, both ancient and modern, may be considered
as the worshippers of water. The old fountain, at which the nymphs of the
island assembled in the earliest ages, exists in its original state; the
same rendezvous as it was formerly, whether of love and gallantry, or of
gossiping and tale-telling. It is near to the town, and the most limpid
water gushes continually from the solid rock. It is regarded by the
inhabitants with a degree of religious veneration; and they p reserve a
tradition, that the pilgrims of old time, in their way to Delos, resorted
hither for purification."_--Clarke_.

[18] "Violet-crowned Athens."--_Pindar_.

[19] The whole of this scene was suggested by Pliny's account of the
artist Pausias and his mistress Glycera, _Lib_. 35 c. 40.

[20] The traveller Shaw mentions a beautiful rill In Barbary, which is
received into a large basin called _Shrub wee krub_, "Drink and away"--
there being great danger of meeting with thieves and assassins in such
places.

[21] The Arabian shepherd has a peculiar ceremony in weaning the young
camel; when the proper time arrives, he turns the camel towards the rising
star, Canopus, and says, "Do you see Canopus? from this moment you taste
not another drop of milk."--_Richardson_.

[22] "Whoever returns from a pilgrimage to Mecca hangs this plant (the
mitre-shaped Aloe) over his street door, as a token of his having
performed this holy journey."--_Hasselquist_.

[23] This form of notice to the caravans to prepare for marching was
applied by Hafiz to the necessity of relinquishing the pleasures of this
world, and preparing for death:--"For me what room is there for pleasure
in the bower of Beauty, when every moment the bell makes proclamation,
'Bind on your burden'?"

[24] The watchmen, in the camp of the caravans, go their rounds, crying
one after another, "God is one," etc.

[25] "It was customary," says Irwin, "to light up fires on the mountains,
within view of Cosseir, to give notice of the approach of the caravans
that came from the Nile."

[26] the Hume.

[27] The name which the Greeks give to the Virgin Mary.








ALCIPHRON: A FRAGMENT.






LETTER I.

FROM ALCIPHRON AT ALEXANDRIA TO CLEON AT ATHENS.


Well may you wonder at my flight
  From those fair Gardens in whose bowers
Lingers whate'er of wise and bright,
Of Beauty's smile or Wisdom's light,
  Is left to grace this world of ours.
Well may my comrades as they roam
  On such sweet eyes as this inquire
Why I have left that happy home
  Where all is found that all desire,
  And Time hath wings that never tire:
Where bliss in all the countless shapes
  That Fancy's self to bliss hath given
Comes clustering round like roadside grapes
  That woo the traveller's lip at even;
Where Wisdom flings not joy away--
As Pallas in the stream they say
Once flung her flute--but smiling owns
That woman's lip can send forth tones
Worth all the music of those spheres
So many dream of but none hears;
Where Virtue's self puts on so well
  Her sister Pleasure's smile that, loath
From either nymph apart to dwell,
  We finish by embracing both.
Yes, such the place of bliss, I own
From all whose charms I just have flown;
And even while thus to thee I write,
  And by the Nile's dark flood recline,
Fondly, in thought I wing my flight
Back to those groves and gardens bright,
And often think by this sweet light
  How lovelily they all must shine;
Can see that graceful temple throw
  Down the green slope its lengthened shade,
While on the marble steps below
  There sits some fair Athenian maid,
Over some favorite volume bending;
  And by her side a youthful sage
Holds back the ringlets that descending
  Would else o'ershadow all the page.
But hence such thoughts!--nor let me grieve
O'er scenes of joy that I but leave,
As the bird quits awhile its nest
To come again with livelier zest.

And now to tell thee--what I fear
Thou'lt gravely smile at--_why_ I'm here
Tho' thro' my life's short, sunny dream,
  I've floated without pain or care
Like a light leaf down pleasure's stream,
  Caught in each sparkling eddy there;
Tho' never Mirth awaked a strain
That my heart echoed not again;
Yet have I felt, when even most gay,
  Sad thoughts--I knew not whence or why--
  Suddenly o'er my spirit fly,
Like clouds that ere we've time to say
  "How bright the sky is!" shade the sky.
Sometimes so vague, so undefined
Were these strange darkenings of my mind--
"While naught but joy around me beamed
  So causelessly they've come and flown,
That not of life or earth they seemed,
  But shadows from some world unknown.
More oft, however, 'twas the thought
  How soon that scene with all its play
  Of life and gladness must decay--
Those lips I prest, the hands I caught--
Myself--the crowd that mirth had brought
Around me--swept like weeds away!

This thought it was that came to shed
  O'er rapture's hour its worst alloys;
And close as shade with sunshine wed
  Its sadness with my happiest joys.
Oh, but for this disheartening voice
  Stealing amid our mirth to say
That all in which we most rejoice
  Ere night may be the earthworm's prey--
_But_ for this bitter--only this--
Full as the world is brimmed with bliss,
And capable as feels my soul
Of draining to its dregs the whole,
I should turn earth to heaven and be,
If bliss made Gods, a Deity?

Thou know'st that night--the very last
That 'mong my Garden friends I past--
When the School held its feast of mirth
To celebrate our founder's birth.
And all that He in dreams but saw
  When he set Pleasure on the throne
Of this bright world and wrote her law
  In human hearts was felt and known--
_Not_ in unreal dreams but true,
Substantial joy as pulse e'er knew--
By hearts and bosoms, that each felt
_Itself_ the realm where Pleasure dwelt.

That night when all our mirth was o'er,
  The minstrels silent, and the feet
Of the young maidens heard no more--
  So stilly was the time, so sweet,
And such a calm came o'er that scene,
Where life and revel late had been--
Lone as the quiet of some bay
From which the sea hath ebbed away--
That still I lingered, lost in thought,
  Gazing upon the stars of night,
Sad and intent as if I sought
  Some mournful secret in their light;
And asked them mid that silence why
Man, glorious man, alone must die
While they, less wonderful than he,
Shine on thro' all eternity.

That night--thou haply may'st forget
  Its loveliness--but 'twas a night
To make earth's meanest slave regret
  Leaving a world so soft and bright.
On one side in the dark blue sky
Lonely and radiant was the eye
Of Jove himself, while on the other,
 'Mong stars that came out one by one,
The young moon--like the Roman mother
  Among her living jewels--shone.
"Oh that from yonder orbs," I thought,
  "Pure and eternal as they are,
"There could to earth some power be brought,
"Some charm with their own essence fraught
  "To make man deathless as a star,
"And open to his vast desires
  "A course, as boundless and sublime
"As that which waits those comet-fires,
  "That burn and roam throughout all time!"

While thoughts like these absorbed my mind,
  That weariness which earthly bliss
However sweet still leaves behind,
  As if to show how earthly 'tis,
Came lulling o'er me and I laid
  My limbs at that fair statue's base--
That miracle, which Art hath made
  Of all the choice of Nature's grace--
To which so oft I've knelt and sworn.
  That could a living maid like her
Unto this wondering world be born,
  I would myself turn worshipper.

Sleep came then o'er me--and I seemed
  To be transported far away
To a bleak desert plain where gleamed
  One single, melancholy ray.
Throughout that darkness dimly shed
  From a small taper in the hand
Of one who pale as are the dead
  Before me took his spectral stand,
And said while awfully a smile
  Came o'er the wanness of his cheek--
"Go and beside the sacred Nile
  "You'll find the Eternal Life you seek."

Soon as he spoke these words the hue
Of death o'er all his features grew
Like the pale morning when o'er night
She gains the victory full of light;
While the small torch he held became
A glory in his hand whose flame
Brightened the desert suddenly,
  Even to the far horizon's line--
Along whose level I could see
  Gardens and groves that seemed to shine
As if then o'er them freshly played
A vernal rainbow's rich cascade;
And music floated every where,
Circling, as 'twere itself the air,
And spirits on whose wings the hue
Of heaven still lingered round me flew,
Till from all sides such splendors broke,
That with the excess of light I woke!

Such was my dream;--and I confess
  Tho' none of all our creedless school
E'er conned, believed, or reverenced less
  The fables of the priest-led fool
Who tells us of a soul, a mind,
Separate and pure within us shrined,
Which is to live--ah, hope too bright!--
For ever in yon fields of light;
Who fondly thinks the guardian eyes
  Of Gods are on him--as if blest
And blooming in their own blue skies
The eternal Gods were not too wise
  To let weak man disturb their rest!--
Tho' thinking of such creeds as thou
  And all our Garden sages think,
Yet is there something, I allow,
  In dreams like this--a sort of link
With worlds unseen which from the hour
  I first could lisp my thoughts till now
Hath mastered me with spell-like power.

And who can tell, as we're combined
Of various atoms--some refined,
Like those that scintillate and play
In the fixt stars--some gross as they
That frown in clouds or sleep in clay--
Who can be sure but 'tis the best
  And brightest atoms of our frame,
  Those most akin to stellar flame,
That shine out thus, when we're at rest;--
Even as the stars themselves whose light
Comes out but in the silent night.
Or is it that there lurks indeed
Some truth in Man's prevailing creed
And that our Guardians from on high
  Come in that pause from toil and sin
To put the senses' curtain by
  And on the wakeful soul look in!

Vain thought!--but yet, howe'er it be,
Dreams more than once have proved to me
Oracles, truer far than Oak
Or Dove or Tripod ever spoke.
And 'twas the words--thou'lt hear and smile--
  The words that phantom seemed to speak--
"Go and beside the sacred Nile
  "You'll find the Eternal Life you seek"--
That haunting me by night, by day,
  At length as with the unseen hand
Of Fate itself urged me away
  From Athens to this Holy Land;
Where 'mong the secrets still untaught,
  The mysteries that as yet nor sun
Nor eye hath reached--oh, blessed thought!--
  May sleep this everlasting one.

Farewell--when to our Garden friends
Thou talk'st of the wild dream that sends
The gayest of their school thus far,
Wandering beneath Canopus' star,
Tell them that wander where he will
  Or howsoe'er they now condemn
His vague and vain pursuit he still
  Is worthy of the School and them;--
Still all their own--nor e'er forgets
  Even while his heart and soul pursue
The Eternal Light which never sets,
  The many meteor joys that _do_,
But seeks them, hails them with delight
Where'er they meet his longing sight.
And if his life _must_ wane away
Like other lives at least the day,
The hour it lasts shall like a fire
With incense fed in sweets expire.






LETTER II.

FROM THE SAME TO THE SAME.

_Memphis_.


'Tis true, alas--the mysteries and the lore
I came to study on this, wondrous shore.
Are all forgotten in the new delights.
The strange, wild joys that fill my days and nights.
Instead of dark, dull oracles that speak
From subterranean temples, those _I_ seek
Come from the breathing shrines where Beauty lives,
And Love, her priest, the soft responses gives.
Instead of honoring Isis in those rites
At Coptos held, I hail her when she lights
Her first young crescent on the holy stream--
When wandering youths and maidens watch her beam
And number o'er the nights she hath to run,
Ere she again embrace her bridegroom sun.
While o'er some mystic leaf that dimly lends
A clew into past times the student bends,
And by its glimmering guidance learns to tread
Back thro' the shadowy knowledge of the dead--
The only skill, alas, _I_ yet can claim
Lies in deciphering some new loved-one's name--
Some gentle missive hinting time and place,
In language soft as Memphian reed can trace.

And where--oh where's the heart that could withstand
The unnumbered witcheries of this sun-born land,
Where first young Pleasure's banner was unfurled
And Love hath temples ancient as the world!
Where mystery like the veil by Beauty worn
Hides but to win and shades but to adorn;
Where that luxurious melancholy born
Of passion and of genius sheds a gloom
Making joy holy;--where the bower and tomb
Stand side by side and Pleasure learns from Death
The instant value of each moment's breath.
Couldst thou but see how like a poet's dream
This lovely land now looks!--the glorious stream
That late between its banks was seen to glide
'Mong shrines and marble cities on each side
Glittering like jewels strung along a chain
Hath now sent forth its waters, and o'er plain
And valley like a giant from his bed
Rising with outstretched limbs hath grandly spread.
While far as sight can reach beneath as clear
And blue a heaven as ever blest our sphere,
Gardens and pillared streets and porphyry domes
And high-built temples fit to be the homes
Of mighty Gods, and pyramids whose hour
Outlasts all time above the waters tower!

Then, too, the scenes of pomp and joy that make
One theatre of this vast, peopled lake,
Where all that Love, Religion, Commerce gives
Of life and motion ever moves and lives.
Here, up the steps of temples from the wave
Ascending in procession slow and grave.
Priests in white garments go, with sacred wands
And silver cymbals gleaming in their hands;
While there, rich barks--fresh from those sunny tracts
Far off beyond the sounding cataracts--
Glide with their precious lading to the sea,
Plumes of bright birds, rhinoceros ivory,
Gems from the Isle of Meroe, and those grains
Of gold washed down by Abyssinian rains.
Here where the waters wind into a bay
Shadowy and cool some pilgrims on their way
To Saïs or Bubastus among beds
Of lotus flowers that close above their heads
Push their light barks, and there as in a bower,
Sing, talk, or sleep away the sultry hour;
Oft dipping in the Nile, when faint with heat,
That leaf from which its waters drink most sweet.--
While haply not far off beneath a bank
Of blossoming acacias many a prank
Is played in the cool current by a train
Of laughing nymphs, lovely as she,[1] whose chain
Around two conquerors of the world was cast,
But, for a third too feeble, broke at last.

For oh! believe not them who dare to brand
As poor in charms the women of this land.
Tho' darkened by that sun whose spirit flows
Thro' every vein and tinges as it goes,
'Tis but the embrowning of the fruit that tells
How rich within the soul of ripeness dwells--
The hue their own dark sanctuaries wear,
Announcing heaven in half-caught glimpses there.
And never yet did tell-tale looks set free
The secret of young hearts more tenderly.
Such eyes!--long, shadowy, with that languid fall
Of the fringed lids which may be seen in all
Who live beneath the sun's too ardent rays--
Lending such looks as on their marriage days
Young maids cast down before a bridegroom's gaze!
Then for their grace--mark but the nymph-like shapes
Of the young village girls, when carrying grapes
From green Anthylla or light urns of flowers--
Not our own Sculpture in her happiest hours
E'er imaged forth even at the touch of him[2]
Whose touch was life, more luxury of limb!
Then, canst thou wonder if mid scenes like these
I should forget all graver mysteries,
All lore but Love's, all secrets but that best
In heaven or earth, the art of being blest!
Yet are there times--tho' brief I own their stay,
Like summer-clouds that shine themselves away--
Moments of gloom, when even these pleasures pall
Upon my saddening heart and I recall
That garden dream--that promise of a power,
Oh, were there such!--to lengthen out life's hour,
On, on, as thro' a vista far away
Opening before us into endless day!
And chiefly o'er my spirit did this thought
Come on that evening--bright as ever brought
Light's golden farewell to the world--when first
The eternal pyramids of Memphis burst
Awfully on my sight-standing sublime
Twixt earth and heaven, the watch-towers of Time,
From whose lone summit when his reign hath past
From earth for ever he will look his last!

There hung a calm and solemn sunshine round
Those mighty monuments, a hushing sound
In the still air that circled them which stole
Like music of past times into my soul.
I thought what myriads of the wise and brave
And beautiful had sunk into the grave,
Since earth first saw these wonders--and I said
"Are things eternal only for the Dead?
"Hath Man no loftier hope than this which dooms
"His only lasting trophies to be tombs?
"But _'tis_ not so--earth, heaven, all nature shows
"He _may_ become immortal--_may_ unclose
"The wings within him wrapt, and proudly rise
"Redeemed from earth, a creature of the skies!

"And who can say, among the written spells
"From Hermes' hand that in these shrines and cells
"Have from the Flood lay hid there may not be
"Some secret clew to immortality,
"Some amulet whose spell can keep life's fire
"Awake within us never to expire!
"'Tis known that on the Emerald Table, hid
"For ages in yon loftiest pyramid,
"The Thrice-Great[3] did himself engrave of old
"The chymic mystery that gives endless gold.
"And why may not this mightier secret dwell
"Within the same dark chambers? who can tell
"But that those kings who by the written skill
"Of the Emerald Table called forth gold at will
"And quarries upon quarries heapt and hurled,
"To build them domes that might outstand the world--
"Who knows, but that the heavenlier art which shares
"The life of Gods with man was also theirs--
"That they themselves, triumphant o'er the power
"Of fate and death, are living at this hour;
"And these, the giant homes they still possess.
"Not tombs but everlasting palaces
"Within whose depths hid from the world above
"Even now they wander with the few they love,
"Thro' subterranean gardens, by a light
"Unknown on earth which hath nor dawn nor night!
"Else, why those deathless structures? why the grand
"And hidden halls that undermine this land?
"Why else hath none of earth e'er dared to go
"Thro' the dark windings of that realm below,
"Nor aught from heaven itself except the God
"Of Silence thro' those endless labyrinths trod?"
Thus did I dream--wild, wandering dreams, I own,
But such as haunt me ever, if alone,
Or in that pause 'twixt joy and joy I be,
Like a ship husht between two waves at sea.
Then do these spirit whisperings like the sound
Of the Dark Future come appalling round;
Nor can I break the trance that holds me then,
Till high o'er Pleasure's surge I mount again!

Even now for new adventure, new delight,
My heart is on the wing;--this very night,
The Temple on that island halfway o'er
From Memphis' gardens to the eastern shore
Sends up its annual rite[4] to her whose beams
Bring the sweet time of night-flowers and dreams;
The nymph who dips her urn in silent lakes
And turns to silvery dew each drop it takes;--
Oh! not our Dian of the North who chains
In vestal ice the current of young veins,
But she who haunts the gay Bubastian[5] grove
And owns she sees from her bright heaven above,
Nothing on earth to match that heaven but Love.
Think then what bliss will be abroad to-night!--
Besides those sparkling nymphs who meet the sight
Day after day, familiar as the sun,
Coy buds of beauty yet unbreathed upon
And all the hidden loveliness that lies,--
Shut up as are the beams of sleeping eyes
Within these twilight shrines--tonight shall be
Let loose like birds for this festivity!
And mark, 'tis nigh; already the sun bids
His evening farewell to the Pyramids.
As he hath done age after age till they
Alone on earth seem ancient as his ray;
While their great shadows stretching from the light
Look like the first colossal steps of Night
Stretching across the valley to invade
The distant hills of porphyry with their shade.
Around, as signals of the setting beam,
Gay, gilded flags on every housetop gleam:
While, hark!--from all the temples a rich swell
Of music to the Moon--farewell--farewell.


[1] Cleopatra.

[2] Apellas.

[3] The Hermes Trismegistus.

[4] The great Festival of the Moon.

[5] Bubastis, or Isis, was the Diana of the Egyptian mythology.






LETTER III.

FROM THE SAME TO THE SAME.

_Memphis_.


There is some star--or may it be
  That moon we saw so near last night--
Which comes athwart my destiny
  For ever with misleading light.
If for a moment pure and wise
  And calm I feel there quick doth fall
A spark from some disturbing eyes,
That thro' my heart, soul, being flies,
  And makes a wildfire of it all.
I've seen--oh, Cleon, that this earth
Should e'er have given such beauty birth!--
That man--but, hold--hear all that past
Since yester-night from first to last.

The rising of the Moon, calm, slow,
  And beautiful, as if she came
Fresh from the Elysian bowers below,
  Was with a loud and sweet acclaim
Welcomed from every breezy height,
Where crowds stood waiting for her light.
And well might they who viewed the scene
  Then lit up all around them, say
That never yet had Nature been
  Caught sleeping in a lovelier ray
Or rivalled her own noontide face
With purer show of moonlight grace.

Memphis--still grand, tho' not the same
  Unrivalled Memphis that could seize
From ancient Thebes the crown of Fame,
  And wear it bright thro' centuries--
Now, in the moonshine, that came down
Like a last smile upon that crown.
Memphis, still grand among her lakes,
  Her pyramids and shrines of fire,
Rose like a vision that half breaks
On one who dreaming still awakes
  To music from some midnight choir:
While to the west--where gradual sinks
  In the red sands from Libya rolled.
Some mighty column or fair sphynx,
  That stood in kingly courts of old--
It seemed as, mid the pomps that shone
Thus gayly round him Time looked on,
Waiting till all now bright and blest,
Should sink beneath him like the rest.

No sooner had the setting sun
Proclaimed the festal rite begun,
And mid their idol's fullest beams
  The Egyptian world was all afloat,
Than I who live upon these streams
Like a young Nile-bird turned my boat
To the fair island on whose shores
Thro' leafy palms and sycamores
Already shone the moving lights
Of pilgrims hastening to the rites.
While, far around like ruby sparks
Upon the water, lighted barks,
Of every form and kind--from those
  That down Syene's cataract shoots,
To the grand, gilded barge that rows
  To tambour's beat and breath of flutes,
And wears at night in words of flame
On the rich prow its master's name;--
All were alive and made this sea
  Of cities busy as a hill
Of summer ants caught suddenly
  In the overflowing of a rill.

Landed upon the isle, I soon
  Thro' marble alleys and small groves
  Of that mysterious palm she loves,
Reached the fair Temple of the Moon;
And there--as slowly thro' the last
Dim-lighted vestibule I past--
Between the porphyry pillars twined
  With palm and ivy, I could see
A band of youthful maidens wind
  In measured walk half dancingly,
Round a small shrine on which was placed
  That bird[1] whose plumes of black and white
Wear in their hue by Nature traced
  A type of the moon's shadowed light.

In drapery like woven snow
These nymphs were clad; and each below
The rounded bosom loosely wore
  A dark blue zone or bandelet,
With little silver stars all o'er
  As are the skies at midnight set.
While in their tresses, braided thro',
  Sparkled that flower of Egypt's lakes,
The silvery lotus in whose hue
  As much delight the young Moon takes
As doth the Day-God to behold
The lofty bean-flower's buds of gold.
And, as they gracefully went round
  The worshipt bird, some to the beat
Of castanets, some to the sound
  Of the shrill sistrum timed their feet;
While others at each step they took
A tinkling chain of silver shook.

They seemed all fair--but there was one
On whom the light had not yet shone,
Or shone but partly--so downcast
She held her brow, as slow she past.
And yet to me there seemed to dwell
  A charm about that unseen face--
A something in the shade that fell
  Over that brow's imagined grace
Which won me more than all the best
Outshining beauties of the rest.
And _her_ alone my eyes could see
Enchained by this sweet mystery;
And her alone I watched as round
She glided o'er that marble ground,
Stirring not more the unconscious air
Than if a Spirit were moving there.
Till suddenly, wide open flew
The Temple's folding gates and threw
A splendor from within, a flood
Of glory where these maidens stood.
While with that light--as if the same
Rich source gave birth to both--there came
A swell of harmony as grand
As e'er was born of voice and band,
Filling the gorgeous aisles around
With luxury of light and sound.

Then was it, by the flash that blazed
  Full o'er her features--oh 'twas then,
As startingly her eyes she raised,
  But quick let fall their lids again,
I saw--not Psyche's self when first
  Upon the threshold of the skies
She paused, while heaven's glory burst
  Newly upon her downcast eyes,
Could look more beautiful or blush
  With holier shame than did this maid,
Whom now I saw in all that gush
  Of splendor from the aisles, displayed.
Never--tho' well thou know'st how much
  I've felt the sway of Beauty's star--
Never did her bright influence touch
  My soul into its depths so far;
And had that vision lingered there
  One minute more I should have flown,
Forgetful _who_ I was and where.
  And at her feet in worship thrown
  Proffered my soul thro' life her own.

But scarcely had that burst of light
And music broke on ear and sight,
Than up the aisle the bird took wing
  As if on heavenly mission sent,
While after him with graceful spring
  Like some unearthly creatures, meant
  To live in that mixt element
  Of light and song the young maids went;
And she who in my heart had thrown
A spark to burn for life was flown.

In vain I tried to follow;--bands
  Of reverend chanters filled the aisle:
Where'er I sought to pass, their wands
  Motioned me back, while many a file
Of sacred nymphs--but ah, not they
Whom my eyes looked for thronged the way.
Perplext, impatient, mid this crowd
Of faces, lights--the o'erwhelming cloud
Of incense round me, and my blood
Full of its new-born fire--I stood,
Nor moved, nor breathed, but when I caught
  A glimpse of some blue, spangled zone,
Or wreath of lotus, which I thought
  Like those she wore at distance shone.

But no, 'twas vain--hour after hour,
  Till my heart's throbbing turned to pain,
And my strained eyesight lost its power,
  I sought her thus, but all in vain.
At length, hot--wildered--in despair,
I rushed into the cool night-air,
And hurrying (tho' with many a look
Back to the busy Temple) took
My way along the moonlight shore,
And sprung into my boat once more.
There is a Lake that to the north
Of Memphis stretches grandly forth,
Upon whose silent shore the Dead
  Have a proud city of their own,[2]
With shrines and pyramids o'erspread--
Where many an ancient kingly head
  Slumbers, immortalized in stone;
And where thro' marble grots beneath
  The lifeless, ranged like sacred things,
Nor wanting aught of life but breath,
  Lie in their painted coverings,
And on each new successive race
  That visit their dim haunts below
Look with the same unwithering face
  They wore three thousand years ago.

There. Silence, thoughtful God, who loves
The neighborhood of death in groves
Of asphodel lies hid and weaves
His hushing spell among the leaves--
Nor ever noise disturbs the air
  Save the low, humming, mournful sound
Of priests within their shrines at prayer
  For the fresh Dead entombed around.

'Twas toward this place of death--in mood
  Made up of thoughts, half bright, half dark--
I now across the shining flood
  Unconscious turned my light-winged bark.
The form of that young maid in all
  Its beauty was before me still;
And oft I thought, if thus to call
  Her image to my mind at will,
If but the memory of that one
Bright look of hers for ever gone,
Was to my heart worth all the rest
Of woman-kind, beheld, possest--
What would it be if wholly mine,
Within these arms as in a shrine,
Hallowed by Love, I saw her shine--
An idol, worshipt by the light
Of her own beauties, day and night--
If 'twas a blessing but to see
And lose again, what would _this_ be?

In thoughts like these--but often crost
By darker threads--my mind was lost,
Till near that City of the Dead,
Waked from my trance, I saw o'erhead--
As if by some enchanter bid
  Suddenly from the wave to rise--
Pyramid over pyramid
  Tower in succession to the skies;
While one, aspiring, as if soon,
  'Twould touch the heavens, rose over all;
And, on its summit, the white moon
  Rested as on a pedestal!

The silence of the lonely tombs
  And temples round where naught was heard
But the high palm-tree's tufted plumes,
  Shaken at times by breeze or bird,
Formed a deep contrast to the scene
Of revel where I late had been;
To those gay sounds that still came o'er,
Faintly from many a distant shore,
And the unnumbered lights that shone
Far o'er the flood from Memphis on
To the Moon's Isle and Babylon.

My oars were lifted and my boat
  Lay rocked upon the rippling stream;
While my vague thoughts alike afloat,
  Drifted thro' many an idle dream.
With all of which, wild and unfixt
As was their aim, that vision mixt,
That bright nymph of the Temple--now,
With the same innocence of brow
She wore within the lighted fane--
Now kindling thro' each pulse and vein
With passion of such deep-felt fire
As Gods might glory to inspire;--
And now--oh Darkness of the tomb,
  That must eclipse even light like hers!
Cold, dead, and blackening mid the gloom
  Of those eternal sepulchres.

Scarce had I turned my eyes away
  From that dark death-place, at the thought,
When by the sound of dashing spray
  From a light oar my ear was caught,
While past me, thro' the moonlight, sailed.
  A little gilded bark that bore
Two female figures closely veiled
  And mantled towards that funeral shore.
They landed--and the boat again
Put off across the watery plain.

Shall I confess--to _thee_ I may--
  That never yet hath come the chance
Of a new music, a new ray
  From woman's voice, from woman's glance,
Which--let it find me how it might,
  In joy or grief--I did not bless,
And wander after as a light
  Leading to undreamt, happiness.
And chiefly now when hopes so vain
Were stirring in my heart and brain,
When Fancy had allured my soul
  Into a chase as vague and far
As would be his who fixt his goal
  In the horizon or some star--
_Any_ bewilderment that brought
More near to earth my high-flown thought--
The faintest glimpse of joy, less pure,
Less high and heavenly, but more sure,
Came welcome--and was then to me
What the first flowery isle must be
To vagrant birds blown out to sea.

Quick to the shore I urged my bark,
  And by the bursts of moonlight shed
Between the lofty tombs could mark
  Those figures as with hasty tread
They glided on--till in the shade
  Of a small pyramid, which thro'
Some boughs of palm its peak displayed,
  They vanisht instant from my view.

I hurried to the spot--no trace
Of life was in that lonely place;
And had the creed I hold by taught
Of other worlds I might have thought
Some mocking spirits had from thence
Come in this guise to cheat my sense.

At length, exploring darkly round
The Pyramid's smooth sides, I found
An iron portal--opening high
  'Twixt peak and base--and, with a prayer
To the bliss-loving Moon whose eye
  Alone beheld me sprung in there.
Downward the narrow stairway led
Thro' many a duct obscure and dread,
  A labyrinth for mystery made,
With wanderings onward, backward, round,
And gathering still, where'er it wound.
  But deeper density of shade.

Scarce had I asked myself, "Can aught
  "That man delights in sojourn here?"--
When, suddenly, far off, I caught
  A glimpse of light, remote, but clear--
Whose welcome glimmer seemed to pour
  From some alcove or cell that ended
The long, steep, marble corridor,
  Thro' which I now, all hope, descended.
Never did Spartan to his bride
With warier foot at midnight glide.
It seemed as echo's self were dead
In this dark place, so mute my tread.
Reaching at length that light, I saw--
  Oh! listen to the scene now raised
Before my eyes--then guess the awe,
  The still, rapt awe with which I gazed.

'Twas a small chapel, lined around
With the fair, spangling marble found
In many a ruined shrine that stands
Half seen above the Libyan sands.
The walls were richly sculptured o'er,
And charactered with that dark lore
Of times before the Flood, whose key
Was lost in the "Universal Sea."--
While on the roof was pictured bright
  The Theban beetle as he shines,
  When the Nile's mighty flow declines
And forth the creature springs to light,
With life regenerate in his wings:--
Emblem of vain imaginings!
Of a new world, when this is gone,
In which the spirit still lives on!

Direct beneath this type, reclined
  On a black granite altar, lay
A female form, in crystal shrined,
  And looking fresh as if the ray
  Of soul had fled but yesterday,
While in relief of silvery hue
  Graved on the altar's front were seen
A branch of lotus, broken in two,
  As that fair creature's life had been,
And a small bird that from its spray
Was winging like her soul away.

But brief the glimpse I now could spare
  To the wild, mystic wonders round;
For there was yet one wonder there
  That held me as by witchery bound.
The lamp that thro' the chamber shed
Its vivid beam was at the head
Of her who on that altar slept;
  And near it stood when first I came--
Bending her brow, as if she kept
  Sad watch upon its silent flame--
A female form as yet so placed
  Between the lamp's strong glow and me,
That I but saw, in outline traced,
  The shadow of her symmetry.
Yet did my heart--I scarce knew why--
Even at that shadowed shape beat high.
Nor was it long ere full in sight
The figure turned; and by the light
That touched her features as she bent
Over the crystal monument,
I saw 'twas she--the same--the same--
  That lately stood before me, brightening
The holy spot where she but came
  And went again like summer lightning!

Upon the crystal o'er the breast
Of her who took that silent rest,
There was a cross of silver lying--
  Another type of that blest home,
Which hope and pride and fear of dying
  Build for us in a world to come:--
This silver cross the maiden raised
To her pure lips:--then, having gazed
Some minutes on that tranquil face,
Sleeping in all death's mournful grace,
Upward she turned her brow serene,
  As if intent on heaven those eyes
Saw them nor roof nor cloud between
  Their own pure orbits and the skies,
And, tho' her lips no motion made,
  And that fixt look was all her speech,
I saw that the rapt spirit prayed
  Deeper within than words could reach.

Strange power of Innocence, to turn
  To its own hue whate'er comes near,
And make even vagrant Passion burn
  With purer warmth within its sphere!
She who but one short hour before
Had come like sudden wild-fire o'er
My heart and brain--whom gladly even
  From that bright Temple in the face
Of those proud ministers of heaven,
  I would have borne in wild embrace,
And risked all punishment, divine
And human, but to make her mine;--
She, she was now before me, thrown
  By fate itself into my arms--
There standing, beautiful, alone,
  With naught to guard her but her charms.
Yet did I, then--did even a breath
  From my parched lips, too parched to move,
Disturb a scene where thus, beneath
  Earth's silent covering, Youth and Death
  Held converse thro' undying love?
No--smile and taunt me as thou wilt--
  Tho' but to gaze thus was delight,
Yet seemed it like a wrong, a guilt,
  To win by stealth so pure a sight:
And rather than a look profane
  Should then have met those thoughtful eyes,
Or voice or whisper broke the chain
That linked her spirit with the skies,
I would have gladly in that place
From which I watched her heavenward face,
Let my heart break, without one beat
That could disturb a prayer so sweet.
Gently, as if on every tread.
  My life, my more than life depended,
Back thro' the corridor that led
  To this blest scene I now ascended,
And with slow seeking and some pain
And many a winding tried in vain
Emerged to upper earth again.

The sun had freshly risen, and down
  The marble hills of Araby,
Scattered as from a conqueror's crown
  His beams into that living sea.
There seemed a glory in his light,
  Newly put on--as if for pride.
Of the high homage paid this night
  To his own Isis, his young bride.,
Now fading feminine away
In her proud Lord's superior ray.

My mind's first impulse was to fly
  At once from this entangling net--
New scenes to range, new loves to try,
Or in mirth, wine and luxury
Of every sense that might forget.
But vain the effort--spell-bound still,
I lingered, without power or will
  To turn my eyes from that dark door,
Which now enclosed her 'mong the dead;
 Oft fancying, thro' the boughs that o'er
The sunny pile their flickering shed.
'Twas her light form again I saw
  Starting to earth--still pure and bright,
But wakening, as I hoped, less awe,
  Thus seen by morning's natural light,
  Than in that strange, dim cell at night.

But no, alas--she ne'er returned:
  Nor yet--tho' still I watch--nor yet,
Tho' the red sun for hours hath burned,
  And now in his mid course hath met
The peak of that eternal pile
  He pauses still at noon to bless,
Standing beneath his downward smile,
  Like a great Spirit shadowless!--
Nor yet she comes--while here, alone,
  Sauntering thro' this death-peopled place,
Where no heart beats except my own,
Or 'neath a palm-tree's shelter thrown,
  By turns I watch and rest and trace
These lines that are to waft to thee
My last night's wondrous history.

Dost thou remember, in that Isle
  Of our own Sea where thou and I
Lingered so long, so happy a while,
  Till all the summer flowers went by--
How gay it was when sunset brought
  To the cool Well our favorite maids--
Some we had won, and some we sought--
  To dance within the fragrant shades,
And till the stars went down attune
Their Fountain Hymns[3] to the young moon?

That time, too--oh, 'tis like a dream--
  When from Scamander's holy tide
I sprung as Genius of the Stream,
  And bore away that blooming bride,
Who thither came, to yield her charms
  (As Phrygian maids are wont ere wed)
Into the cold Scamander's arms,
  But met and welcomed mine, instead--
Wondering as on my neck she fell,
How river-gods could love so well!
Who would have thought that he who roved
  Like the first bees of summer then,
Rifling each sweet nor ever loved
  But the free hearts that loved again,
Readily as the reed replies
To the least breath that round it sighs--
Is the same dreamer who last night
Stood awed and breathless at the sight
Of one Egyptian girl; and now
Wanders among these tombs with brow
Pale, watchful, sad, as tho' he just,
Himself, had risen from out their dust!

Yet so it is--and the same thirst
  For something high and pure, above
This withering world, which from the first
  Made me drink deep of woman's love--
As the one joy, to heaven most near
Of all our hearts can meet with here--
Still burns me up, still keeps awake
A fever naught but death can slake.

Farewell; whatever may befall--
Or bright, or dark--thou'lt know it all.


[1] The Ibis.

[2] Necropolis, or the City of the Dead, to the south of Memphis.

[3] These Songs of the Well, as they were called by the ancients, are
still common in the Greek isles.






LETTER IV.

FROM ORCUS, HIGH PRIEST OF MEMPHIS, TO
DECIUS, THE PRAETORIAN PREFECT.


Rejoice, my friend, rejoice;--the youthful Chief
Of that light Sect which mocks at all belief,
And gay and godless makes the present hour
Its only heaven, is now within our power.
Smooth, impious school!--not all the weapons aimed,
At priestly creeds, since first a creed was framed,
E'er struck so deep as that sly dart they wield,
The Bacchant's pointed spear in laughing flowers concealed.
And oh, 'twere victory to this heart, as sweet
As any _thou _canst boast--even when the feet
Of thy proud war-steed wade thro' Christian blood,
To wrap this scoffer in Faith's blinding hood,
And bring him tamed and prostrate to implore
The vilest gods even Egypt's saints adore.
What!--do these sages think, to _them_ alone
The key of this world's happiness is known?
That none but they who make such proud parade
Of Pleasure's smiling favors win the maid,
Or that Religion keeps no secret place,
No niche in her dark fanes for Love to grace?

Fools!--did they know how keen the zest that's given
To earthly joy when seasoned well with heaven;
How Piety's grave mask improves the hue
Of Pleasure's laughing features, half seen thro',
And how the Priest set aptly within reach
Of two rich worlds, traffics for bliss with each,
Would they not, Decius--thou, whom the ancient tie
'Twixt Sword and Altar makes our best ally--
Would they not change their creed, their craft, for ours?
Leave the gross daylight joys that in their bowers
Languish with too much sun, like o'er-blown flowers,
For the veiled loves, the blisses undisplayed
That slyly lurk within the Temple's shade?
And, 'stead of haunting the trim Garden's school--
Where cold Philosophy usurps a rule,
Like the pale moon's, o'er passion's heaving tide,
Till Pleasure's self is chilled by Wisdom's pride--
Be taught by _us_, quit shadows for the true,
Substantial joys we sager Priests pursue,
Who far too wise to theorize on bliss
Or pleasure's substance for its shade to miss.
Preach _other_ worlds but live for only _this_:-
Thanks to the well-paid Mystery round us flung,
Which, like its type the golden cloud that hung
O'er Jupiter's love-couch its shade benign,
Round human frailty wraps a veil divine.

Still less should they presume, weak wits, that they
Alone despise the craft of us who pray;--
Still less their creedless vanity deceive
With the fond thought that we who pray believe.
Believe!--Apis forbid--forbid it, all
Ye monster Gods before whose shrines we fall--
Deities framed in jest as if to try
How far gross Man can vulgarize the sky;
How far the same low fancy that combines
Into a drove of brutes yon zodiac's signs,
And turns that Heaven itself into a place
Of sainted sin and deified disgrace,
Can bring Olympus even to shame more deep,
Stock it with things that earth itself holds cheap.
Fish, flesh, and fowl, the kitchen's sacred brood,
Which Egypt keeps for worship, not for food--
All, worthy idols of a Faith that sees
In dogs, cats, owls, and apes, divinities!

Believe!--oh, Decius, thou, who feel'st no care
For things divine beyond the soldier's share,
Who takes on trust the faith for which he bleeds,
A good, fierce God to swear by, all he needs--
Little canst thou, whose creed around thee hangs
Loose as thy summer war-cloak guess the pangs
Of loathing and self-scorn with which a heart
Stubborn as mine is acts the zealot's part--
The deep and dire disgust with which I wade
Thro' the foul juggling of this holy trade--
This mud profound of mystery where the feet
At every step sink deeper in deceit.
Oh! many a time, when, mid the Temple's blaze,
O'er prostrate fools the sacred cist I raise,
Did I not keep still proudly in my mind
The power this priestcraft gives me o'er mankind--
A lever, of more might, in skilful hand,
To move this world, than Archimede e'er planned--
I should in vengeance of the shame I feel
At my own mockery crush the slaves that kneel
Besotted round; and--like that kindred breed
Of reverend, well-drest crocodiles they feed,
At famed Arsinoë[1]--make my keepers bless,
With their last throb, my sharp-fanged Holiness.

Say, _is_ it to be borne, that scoffers, vain
Of their own freedom from the altar's chain,
Should mock thus all that thou thy blood hast sold.
And I my truth, pride, freedom, to uphold?
It must not be:--think'st thou that Christian sect,
Whose followers quick as broken waves, erect
Their crests anew and swell into a tide,
That threats to sweep away our shrines of pride--
Think'st thou with all their wondrous spells even they
Would triumph thus, had not the constant play
Of Wit's resistless archery cleared their way?--
That mocking spirit, worst of all the foes,
Our solemn fraud, our mystic mummery knows,
Whose wounding flash thus ever 'mong the signs
Of a fast-falling creed, prelusive shines,
Threatening such change as do the awful freaks
Of summer lightning ere the tempest breaks.

But, to my point--a youth of this vain school,
But one, whom Doubt itself hath failed to cool
Down to that freezing point where Priests despair
Of any spark from the altar catching there--
Hath, some nights since--it was, me thinks, the night
That followed the full Moon's great annual rite--
Thro' the dark, winding ducts that downward stray
To these earth--hidden temples, tracked his way,
Just at that hour when, round the Shrine, and me,
The choir of blooming nymphs thou long'st to see,
Sing their last night-hymn in the Sanctuary.
The clangor of the marvellous Gate that stands
At the Well's lowest depth--which none but hands
Of new, untaught adventurers, from above,
Who know not the safe path, e'er dare to move--
Gave signal that a foot profane was nigh:--
'Twas the Greek youth, who, by that morning's sky,
Had been observed, curiously wandering round
The mighty fanes of our sepulchral ground.

Instant, the Initiate's Trials were prepared,--
The Fire, Air, Water; all that Orpheus dared,
That Plato, that the bright-haired Samian[2] past,
With trembling hope, to come to--_what_, at last?
Go, ask the dupes of Priestcraft; question him
Who mid terrific sounds and spectres dim
Walks at Eleusis; ask of those who brave
The dazzling miracles of Mithra's Cave
With its seven starry gates; ask all who keep
Those terrible night-mysteries where they weep
And howl sad dirges to the answering breeze.
O'er their dead Gods, their mortal Deities--
Amphibious, hybrid things that died as men,
Drowned, hanged, empaled, to rise as gods again;--
Ask _them_, what mighty secret lurks below
This seven-fold mystery--can they tell thee? No;
Gravely they keep that only secret, well
And fairly kept--that they have none to tell;
And duped themselves console their humbled pride
By duping thenceforth all mankind beside.

And such the advance in fraud since Orpheus' time--
That earliest master of our craft sublime--
So many minor Mysteries, imps of fraud,
From the great Orphic Egg have winged abroad,
That, still to uphold our Temple's ancient boast,
And seem most holy, we must cheat the most;
Work the best miracles, wrap nonsense round
In pomp and darkness till it seems profound;
Play on the hopes, the terrors of mankind,
With changeful skill; and make the human mind
Like our own Sanctuary, where no ray
But by the Priest's permission wins its way--
Where thro' the gloom as wave our wizard rods.
Monsters at will are conjured into Gods;
While Reason like a grave-faced mummy stands
With her arms swathed in hieroglyphic bands.
But chiefly in that skill with which we use
Man's wildest passions for Religion's views,
Yoking them to her car like fiery steeds,
Lies the main art in which our craft succeeds.
And oh be blest, ye men of yore, whose toil
Hath, for our use, scooped out from Egypt's soil
This hidden Paradise, this mine of fanes,
Gardens and palaces where Pleasure reigns
In a rich, sunless empire of her own,
With all earth's luxuries lighting up her throne:--
A realm for mystery made, which undermines
The Nile itself and, 'neath the Twelve Great Shrines
That keep Initiation's holy rite,
Spreads its long labyrinths of unearthly light.
A light that knows no change--its brooks that run
Too deep for day, its gardens without sun,
Where soul and sense, by turns, are charmed, surprised.
And all that bard or prophet e'er devised
For man's Elysium, priests have realized.

Here, at this moment--all his trials past.
And heart and nerve unshrinking to the last--
Our new Initiate roves--as yet left free
To wander thro' this realm of mystery;
Feeding on such illusions as prepare
The soul, like mist o'er waterfalls, to wear
All shapes and lines at Fancy's varying will,
Thro' every shifting aspect, vapor still;--
Vague glimpses of the Future, vistas shown.
By scenic skill, into that world unknown.
Which saints and sinners claim alike their own;
And all those other witching, wildering arts,
Illusions, terrors, that make human hearts,
Ay, even the wisest and the hardiest quail
To _any_ goblin throned behind a veil.
Yes--such the spells shall haunt his eye, his ear,
Mix wild his night-dreams, form his atmosphere;
Till, if our Sage be not tamed down, at length,
His wit, his wisdom, shorn of all their strength,
Like Phrygian priests, in honor of the shrine--
If he become not absolutely mine,
Body and soul and like the tame decoy
Which wary hunters of wild doves employ
Draw converts also, lure his brother wits
To the dark cage where his own spirit flits.
And give us if not saints good hypocrites--
If I effect not this then be it said
The ancient spirit of our craft hath fled,
Gone with that serpent-god the Cross hath chased
To hiss its soul out in the Theban waste.


[1] For the trinkets with which the sacred Crocodiles were ornamented see
the "Epicurean" chap x.

[2] Pythagoras.








LALLA ROOKH




TO

SAMUEL ROGERS, ESQ.

THIS EASTERN ROMANCE

IS INSCRIBED

BY

HIS VERY GRATEFUL AND AFFECTIONATE FRIEND,

THOMAS MOORE.






LALLA ROOKH


In the eleventh year of the reign of Aurungzebe, Abdalla, King of the
Lesser Bucharia, a lineal descendant from the Great Zingis, having
abdicated the throne in favor of his son, set out on a pilgrimage to the
Shrine of the Prophet; and, passing into India through the delightful
valley of Cashmere, rested for a short time at Delhi on his way. He was
entertained by Aurungzebe in a style of magnificent hospitality, worthy
alike of the visitor and the host, and was afterwards escorted with the
same splendor to Surat, where he embarked for Arabia.[1] During the stay
of the Royal Pilgrim at Delhi, a marriage was agreed upon between the
Prince, his son, and the youngest daughter of the Emperor, LALLA ROOKH;
[2]--a Princess described by the poets of her time as more beautiful than
Leila,[3] Shirine,[4] Dewildé,[5] or any of those heroines whose names
and loves embellish the songs of Persia and Hindostan. It was intended
that the nuptials should be celebrated at Cashmere; where the young King,
as soon as the cares of the empire would permit, was to meet, for the
first time, his lovely bride, and, after a few months' repose in that
enchanting valley, conduct her over the snowy hills into Bucharia.

The day of LALLA ROOKH'S departure from Delhi was as splendid as sunshine
and pageantry could make it. The bazaars and baths were all covered with
the richest tapestry; hundreds of gilded barges upon the Jumna floated
with their banners shining in the water; while through the streets groups
of beautiful children went strewing the most delicious flowers around, as
in that Persian festival called the Scattering of the Roses;[6] till
every part of the city was as fragrant as if a caravan of musk from Khoten
had passed through it. The Princess, having taken leave of her kind
father, who at parting hung a cornelian of Yemen round her neck, on which
was inscribed a verse from the Koran, and having sent a considerable
present to the Fakirs, who kept up the Perpetual Lamp in her sister's
tomb, meekly ascended the palankeen prepared for her; and while Aurungzebe
stood to take a last look from his balcony, the procession moved slowly on
the road to Lahore.

Seldom had the Eastern world seen a cavalcade so superb. From the gardens
in the suburbs to the Imperial palace, it was one unbroken line of
splendor. The gallant appearance of the Rajahs and Mogul lords,
distinguished by those insignia of the Emperor's favor,[7] the feathers
of the egret of Cashmere in their turbans, and the small silver-rimm'd
kettle-drums at the bows of their saddles;--the costly armor of their
cavaliers, who vied, on this occasion, with the guards of the great Keder
Khan,[8] in the brightness of their silver battle-axes and the massiness
of their maces of gold;--the glittering of the gilt pine-apple[9] on the
tops of the palankeens;--the embroidered trappings of the elephants,
bearing on their backs small turrets, in the shape of little antique
temples, within which the Ladies of LALLA ROOKH lay as it were enshrined;
--the rose-colored veils of the Princess's own sumptuous litter,[10] at
the front of which a fair young female slave sat fanning her through the
curtains, with feathers of the Argus pheasant's wing;[11]--and the lovely
troop of Tartarian and Cashmerian maids of honor, whom the young King had
sent to accompany his bride, and who rode on each side of the litter, upon
small Arabian horses;--all was brilliant, tasteful, and magnificent, and
pleased even the critical and fastidious FADLADEEN, Great Nazir or
Chamberlain of the Haram, who was borne in his palankeen immediately after
the Princess, and considered himself not the least important personage of
the pageant.

FADLADEEN was a judge of everything,--from the pencilling of a
Circassian's eyelids to the deepest questions of science and literature;
from the mixture of a conserve of rose-leaves to the composition of an
epic poem: and such influence had his opinion upon the various tastes of
the day, that all the cooks and poets of Delhi stood in awe of him. His
political conduct and opinions were founded upon that line of Sadi,--
"Should the Prince at noon-day say, It is night, declare that you behold
the moon and stars."--And his zeal for religion, of which Aurungzebe was a
munificent protector,[12] was about as disinterested as that of the
goldsmith who fell in love with the diamond eyes of the idol of
Jaghernaut.[13]

During the first days of their journey, LALLA ROOKH, who had passed all
her life within the shadow of the Royal Gardens of Delhi,[14] found
enough in the beauty of the scenery through which they passed to interest
her mind, and delight her imagination; and when at evening or in the heat
of the day they turned off from the high road to those retired and
romantic places which had been selected for her encampments,--sometimes,
on the banks of a small rivulet, as clear as the waters of the Lake of
Pearl;[15] sometimes under the sacred shade of a Banyan tree, from which
the view opened upon a glade covered with antelopes; and often in those
hidden, embowered spots, described by one from the Isles of the West,
[16]as "places of melancholy, delight, and safety, where all the company
around was wild peacocks and turtle-doves;"--she felt a charm in these
scenes, so lovely and so new to her, which, for a time, made her
indifferent to every other amusement. But LALLA ROOKH was young, and the
young love variety; nor could the conversation of her Ladies and the Great
Chamberlain, FADLADEEN,(the only persons, of course, admitted to her
pavilion.) sufficiently enliven those many vacant hours, which were
devoted neither to the pillow nor the palankeen. There was a little
Persian slave who sung sweetly to the Vina, and who, now and then, lulled
the Princess to sleep with the ancient ditties of her country, about the
loves of Wavnak and Ezra,[17] the fair-haired Zal and his mistress
Rodahver,[18] not forgetting the combat of Rustam with the terrible White
Demon.[19] At other times she was amused by those graceful dancing-girls
of Delhi, who had been permitted by the Bramins of the Great Pagoda to
attend her, much to the horror of the good Mussulman FADLADEEN, who could
see nothing graceful or agreeable in idolaters, and to whom the very
tinkling of their golden anklets[20] was an abomination.

But these and many other diversions were repeated till they lost all their
charm, and the nights and noon-days were beginning to move heavily, when,
at length, it was recollected that, among the attendants sent by the
bridegroom, was a young poet of Cashmere, much celebrated throughout the
Valley for his manner of reciting the Stories of the East, on whom his
Royal Master had conferred the privilege of being admitted to the pavilion
of the Princess, that he might help to beguile the tediousness of the
journey by some of his most agreeable recitals. At the mention of a poet,
FADLADEEN elevated his critical eyebrows, and, having refreshed his
faculties with a dose of that delicious opium which is distilled from the
black poppy of the Thebais, gave orders for the minstrel to be forthwith
introduced into the presence.

The Princess, who had once in her life seen a poet from behind the screens
of gauze in her father's hall, and had conceived from that specimen no
very favorable ideas of the Caste, expected but little in this new
exhibition to interest her;--she felt inclined, however, to alter her
opinion on the very first appearance of FERAMORZ. He was a youth about
LALLA ROOKH'S own age, and graceful as that idol of women,
Crishna,[21]--such as he appears to their young imaginations, heroic,
beautiful, breathing music from his very eyes, and exalting the religion
of his worshippers into love. His dress was simple, yet not without some
marks of costliness; and the Ladies of the Princess were not long in
discovering that the cloth, which encircled his high Tartarian cap, was of
the most delicate kind that the shawl-goats of Tibet supply.[22] Here and
there, too, over his vest, which was confined by a flowered girdle of
Kashan, hung strings of fine pearl, disposed with an air of studied
negligence;--nor did the exquisite embroidery of his sandals escape the
observation of these fair critics; who, however they might give way to
FADLADEEN upon the unimportant topics of religion and government, had the
spirit of martyrs in everything relating to such momentous matters as
jewels and embroidery.

For the purpose of relieving the pauses of recitation by music, the young
Cashmerian held in his hand a kitar;--such as, in old times, the Arab
maids of the West used to listen to by moonlight in the gardens of the
Alhambra--and, having premised, with much humility, that the story he was
about to relate was founded on the adventures of that Veiled Prophet of
Khorassan,[23] who, in the year of the Hegira 163, created such alarm
throughout the Eastern Empire, made an obeisance to the Princess, and thus
began:--


THE VEILED PROPHET OF KHORASSAN.[24]


In that delightful Province of the Sun,
The first of Persian lands he shines upon.
Where all the loveliest children of his beam,
Flowerets and fruits, blush over every stream,[25]
And, fairest of all streams, the MURGA roves
Among MEROU'S[26] bright palaces and groves;--
There on that throne, to which the blind belief
Of millions raised him, sat the Prophet-Chief,
The Great MOKANNA. O'er his features hung
The Veil, the Silver Veil, which he had flung
In mercy there, to hide from mortal sight
His dazzling brow, till man could bear its light.
For, far less luminous, his votaries said,
Were even the gleams, miraculously shed
O'er MOUSSA'S[27] cheek, when down the Mount he trod
All glowing from the presence of his God!

  On either side, with ready hearts and hands,
His chosen guard of bold Believers stands;
Young fire-eyed disputants, who deem their swords,
On points of faith, more eloquent than words;

And such their zeal, there's not a youth with brand
Uplifted there, but at the Chief's command,
Would make his own devoted heart its sheath,
And bless the lips that doomed so dear a death!
In hatred to the Caliph's hue of night,[28]
Their vesture, helms and all, is snowy white;
Their weapons various--some equipt for speed,
With javelins of the light Kathaian reed;[29]
Or bows of buffalo horn and shining quivers
Filled with the stems[30]
that bloom on IRAN'S rivers;[31]
While some, for war's more terrible attacks,
Wield the huge mace and ponderous battle-axe;
And as they wave aloft in morning's beam
The milk-white plumage of their helms, they seem
Like a chenar-tree grove[32] when winter throws
O'er all its tufted heads his feathery snows.

  Between the porphyry pillars that uphold
The rich moresque-work of the roof of gold,
Aloft the Haram's curtained galleries rise,
Where thro' the silken net-work, glancing eyes,
From time to time, like sudden gleams that glow
Thro' autumn clouds, shine o'er the pomp below.--
What impious tongue, ye blushing saints, would dare
To hint that aught but Heaven hath placed you there?
Or that the loves of this light world could bind,
In their gross chain, your Prophet's soaring mind?
No--wrongful thought!--commissioned from above
To people Eden's bowers with shapes of love,
(Creatures so bright, that the same lips and eyes
They wear on earth will serve in Paradise,)
There to recline among Heaven's native maids,
And crown the Elect with bliss that never fades--
Well hath the Prophet-Chief his bidding done;
And every beauteous race beneath the sun,
From those who kneel at BRAHMA'S burning fount,[33]
To the fresh nymphs bounding o'er YEMEN'S mounts;
From PERSIA'S eyes of full and fawnlike ray,
To the small, half-shut glances of KATHAY;[34]
And GEORGIA'S bloom, and AZAB'S darker smiles,
And the gold ringlets of the Western Isles;
All, all are there;--each Land its flower hath given,
To form that fair young Nursery for Heaven!

  But why this pageant now? this armed array?
What triumph crowds the rich Divan to-day
With turbaned heads of every hue and race,
Bowing before that veiled and awful face,
Like tulip-beds,[35] of different shape and dyes,
Bending beneath the invisible West-wind's sighs!
What new-made mystery now for Faith to sign
And blood to seal, as genuine and divine,
What dazzling mimicry of God's own power
Hath the bold Prophet planned to grace this hour?

  Not such the pageant now, tho' not less proud;
Yon warrior youth advancing from the crowd
With silver bow, with belt of broidered crape
And fur-bound bonnet of Bucharian shape.[36]
So fiercely beautiful in form and eye,
Like war's wild planet in a summer sky;
That youth to-day,--a proselyte, worth hordes
Of cooler spirits and less practised swords,--
Is come to join, all bravery and belief,
The creed and standard of the heaven-sent Chief.

  Tho' few his years, the West already knows
Young AZIM'S fame;--beyond the Olympian snows
Ere manhood darkened o'er his downy cheek,
O'erwhelmed in fight and captive to the Greek,[37]
He lingered there, till peace dissolved his chains;--
Oh! who could even in bondage tread the plains
Of glorious GREECE nor feel his spirit rise
Kindling within him? who with heart and eyes
Could walk where Liberty had been nor see
The shining foot-prints of her Deity,
Nor feel those god-like breathings in the air
Which mutely told her spirit had been there?
Not he, that youthful warrior,--no, too well
For his soul's quiet worked the awakening spell;
And now, returning to his own dear land,
Full of those dreams of good that, vainly grand,
Haunt the young heart,--proud views of human-kind,
Of men to Gods exalted and refined,--
False views like that horizon's fair deceit
Where earth and heaven but _seem_, alas, to meet!--
Soon as he heard an Arm Divine was raised
To right the nations, and beheld, emblazed
On the white flag MOKANNA'S host unfurled,
Those words of sunshine, "Freedom to the World,"
At once his faith, his sword, his soul obeyed
The inspiring summons; every chosen blade
That fought beneath that banner's sacred text
Seemed doubly edged for this world and the next;
And ne'er did Faith with her smooth bandage bind
Eyes more devoutly willing to be blind,
In virtue's cause;--never was soul inspired
With livelier trust in what it most desired,
Than his, the enthusiast there, who kneeling, pale
With pious awe before that Silver Veil,
Believes the form to which he bends his knee
Some pure, redeeming angel sent to free
This fettered world from every bond and stain,
And bring its primal glories back again!

Low as young AZIM knelt, that motley crowd
Of all earth's nations sunk the knee and bowed,
With shouts of "ALLA!" echoing long and loud;
Which high in air, above the Prophet's head,
Hundreds of banners to the sunbeam spread
Waved, like the wings of the white birds that fan
The flying throne of star-taught SOLIMAN.[38]
Then thus he spoke:-"Stranger, tho' new the frame
"Thy soul inhabits now. I've trackt its flame
"For many an age,[39] in every chance and change
"Of that existence, thro' whose varied range,--
"As thro' a torch-race where from hand to hand
"The flying youths transmit their shining brand,
"From frame to frame the unextinguisht soul
"Rapidly passes till it reach the goal!

"Nor think 'tis only the gross Spirits warmed
"With duskier fire and for earth's medium formed
"That run this course;--Beings the most divine
"Thus deign thro' dark mortality to shine.
"Such was the Essence that in ADAM dwelt,
"To which all Heaven except the Proud One knelt:[40]
"Such the refined Intelligence that glowed
"In MOUSSA'S[41] frame,--and thence descending flowed
"Thro' many a Prophet's breast;--in ISSA[42] shone
"And in MOHAMMED burned; till hastening on.
"(As a bright river that from fall to fall
"In many a maze descending bright thro' all,
"Finds some fair region where, each labyrinth past,
"In one full lake of light it rests at last)
"That Holy Spirit settling calm and free
"From lapse or shadow centres all in me!

Again throughout the assembly at these words
Thousands of voices rung: the warrior's swords
Were pointed up at heaven; a sudden wind
In the open banners played, and from behind
Those Persian hangings that but ill could screen
The Harem's loveliness, white hands were seen
Waving embroidered scarves whose motion gave
A perfume forth--like those the Houris wave
When beckoning to their bowers the immortal Brave.

"But these," pursued the Chief "are truths sublime,
"That claim a holier mood and calmer time
"Than earth allows us now;--this sword must first
"The darkling prison-house of mankind burst.
"Ere Peace can visit them or Truth let in
"Her wakening daylight on a world of sin.
"But then,--celestial warriors, then when all
"Earth's shrines and thrones before our banner fall,
"When the glad Slave shall at these feet lay down
"His broken chain, the tyrant Lord his crown,
"The Priest his book, the Conqueror his wreath,
"And from the lips of Truth one mighty breath
"Shall like a whirlwind scatter in its breeze
"That whole dark pile of human mockeries:--
"Then shall the reign of mind commence on earth,
"And starting fresh as from a second birth,
"Man in the sunshine of the world's new spring
"Shall walk transparent like some holy thing!
"Then too your Prophet from his angel brow
"Shall cast the Veil that hides its splendors now,
"And gladdened Earth shall thro' her wide expanse
"Bask in the glories of this countenance!

"For thee, young warrior, welcome!--thou hast yet
"Some tasks to learn, some frailties to forget,
"Ere the white war-plume o'er thy brow can wave;--
"But, once my own, mine all till in the grave!"

The pomp is at an end--the crowds are gone--
Each ear and heart still haunted by the tone
Of that deep voice, which thrilled like ALLA'S own!
The Young all dazzled by the plumes and lances,
The glittering throne and Haram's half-caught glances,
The Old deep pondering on the promised reign
Of peace and truth, and all the female train
Ready to risk their eyes could they but gaze
A moment on that brow's miraculous blaze!

But there was one among the chosen maids
Who blushed behind the gallery's silken shades,
One, to whose soul the pageant of to-day
Has been like death:--you saw her pale dismay,
Ye wondering sisterhood, and heard the burst
Of exclamation from her lips when first
She saw that youth, too well, too dearly known,
Silently kneeling at the Prophet's throne.

Ah ZELICA! there was a time when bliss
Shone o'er thy heart from every look of his,
When but to see him, hear him, breathe the air
In which he dwelt was thy soul's fondest prayer;
When round him hung such a perpetual spell,
Whate'er he did, none ever did so well.
Too happy days! when, if he touched a flower
Or gem of thine, 'twas sacred from that hour;
When thou didst study him till every tone
And gesture and dear look became thy own.--
Thy voice like his, the changes of his face
In thine reflected with still lovelier grace,
Like echo, sending back sweet music, fraught
With twice the aerial sweetness it had brought!
Yet now he comes,--brighter than even he
E'er beamed before,--but, ah! not bright for thee;
No--dread, unlookt for, like a visitant
From the other world he comes as if to haunt
Thy guilty soul with dreams of lost delight,
Long lost to all but memory's aching sight:--
Sad dreams! as when the Spirit of our Youth
Returns in sleep, sparkling with all the truth
And innocence once ours and leads us back,
In mournful mockery o'er the shining track
Of our young life and points out every ray
Of hope and peace we've lost upon the way!

  Once happy pair!--In proud BOKHARA'S groves,
Who had not heard of their first youthful loves?
Born by that ancient flood,[43]which from its spring
In the dark Mountains swiftly wandering,
Enriched by every pilgrim brook that shines
With relics from BUCHARIA'S ruby mines.
And, lending to the CASPIAN half its strength,
In the cold Lake of Eagles sinks at length;--
There, on the banks of that bright river born,
The flowers that hung above its wave at morn
Blest not the waters as they murmured by
With holier scent and lustre than the sigh
And virgin-glance of first affection cast
Upon their youth's smooth current as it past!
But war disturbed this vision,--far away
From her fond eyes summoned to join the array
Of PERSIA'S warriors on the hills of THRACE,
The youth exchanged his sylvan dwelling-place
For the rude tent and war-field's deathful clash;
His ZELICA'S sweet glances for the flash
Of Grecian wild-fire, and Love's gentle chains
For bleeding bondage on BYZANTIUM'S plains.

  Month after month in widowhood of soul
Drooping the maiden saw two summers roll
Their suns away--but, ah, how cold and dim
Even summer suns when not beheld with him!
From time to time ill-omened rumors came
Like spirit-tongues muttering the sick man's name
Just ere he dies:--at length those sounds of dread
Fell withering on her soul, "AZIM is dead!"
Oh Grief beyond all other griefs when fate
First leaves the young heart lone and desolate
In the wide world without that only tie
For which it loved to live or feared to die;--
Lorn as the hung-up lute, that near hath spoken
Since the sad day its master-chord was broken!

Fond maid, the sorrow of her soul was such,
Even reason sunk,--blighted beneath its touch;
And tho' ere long her sanguine spirit rose
Above the first dead pressure of its woes,
Tho' health and bloom returned, the delicate chain
Of thought once tangled never cleared again.
Warm, lively, soft as in youth's happiest day,
The mind was still all there, but turned astray,--
A wandering bark upon whose pathway shone
All stars of heaven except the guiding one!
Again she smiled, nay, much and brightly smiled,
But 'twas a lustre, strange, unreal, wild;
And when she sung to her lute's touching strain,
'Twas like the notes, half ecstasy, half pain,
The bulbul[44] utters ere her soul depart,
When, vanquisht by some minstrel's powerful art,
She dies upon the lute whose sweetness broke her heart!

Such was the mood in which that mission found,
Young ZELICA,--that mission which around
The Eastern world in every region blest
With woman's smile sought out its loveliest
To grace that galaxy of lips and eyes
Which the Veiled Prophet destined for the skies:--
And such quick welcome as a spark receives
Dropt on a bed of Autumn's withered leaves,
Did every tale of these enthusiasts find
In the wild maiden's sorrow-blighted mind.
All fire at once the maddening zeal she caught:--
Elect of Paradise! blest, rapturous thought!
Predestined bride, in heaven's eternal dome,
Of some brave youth--ha! durst they say "of _some_?"
No--of the one, one only object traced
In her heart's core too deep to be effaced;
The one whose memory, fresh as life, is twined
With every broken link of her lost mind;
Whose image lives tho' Reason's self be wreckt
Safe mid the ruins of her intellect!

  Alas, poor ZELICA! it needed all
The fantasy which held thy mind in thrall
To see in that gay Haram's glowing maids
A sainted colony for Eden's shades;
Or dream that he,--of whose unholy flame
Thou wert too soon the victim,--shining came
From Paradise to people its pure sphere
With souls like thine which he hath ruined here!
No--had not reason's light totally set,
And left thee dark thou hadst an amulet
In the loved image graven on thy heart
Which would have saved thee from the tempter's art,
And kept alive in all its bloom of breath
That purity whose fading is love's death!--
But lost, inflamed,--a restless zeal took place
Of the mild virgin's still and feminine grace;
First of the Prophets favorites, proudly first
In zeal and charms, too well the Impostor nurst
Her soul's delirium in whose active flame,
Thus lighting up a young, luxuriant frame,
He saw more potent sorceries to bind
To his dark yoke the spirits of mankind,
More subtle chains than hell itself e'er twined.
No art was spared, no witchery;--all the skill
His demons taught him was employed to fill
Her mind with gloom and ecstasy by turns--
That gloom, thro' which Frenzy but fiercer burns,
That ecstasy which from the depth of sadness
Glares like the maniac's moon whose light is madness!

  'Twas from a brilliant banquet where the sound
Of poesy and music breathed around,
Together picturing to her mind and ear
The glories of that heaven, her destined sphere,
Where all was pure, where every stain that lay
Upon the spirit's light should pass away,
And realizing more than youthful love
E'er wisht or dreamed, she should for ever rove
Thro' fields of fragrance by her AZIM'S side,
His own blest, purified, eternal bride!--
T was from a scene, a witching trance like this,
He hurried her away, yet breathing bliss,
To the dim charnel-house;--thro' all its steams
Of damp and death led only by those gleams
Which foul Corruption lights, as with design
To show the gay and proud _she_ too can shine--
And passing on thro' upright ranks of Dead
Which to the maiden, doubly crazed by dread,
Seemed, thro' the bluish death-light round them cast,
To move their lips in mutterings as she past--
There in that awful place, when each had quaft
And pledged in silence such a fearful draught,
Such--oh! the look and taste of that red bowl
Will haunt her till she dies--he bound her soul
By a dark oath, in hell's own language framed,
Never, while earth his mystic presence claimed,
While the blue arch of day hung o'er them both,
Never, by that all-imprecating oath,
In joy or sorrow from his side to sever.--
She swore and the wide charnel echoed "Never, never!"

  From that dread hour, entirely, wildly given
To him and--she believed, lost maid!--to heaven;
Her brain, her heart, her passions all inflamed,
How proud she stood, when in full Haram named
The Priestess of the Faith!--how flasht her eyes
With light, alas, that was not of the skies,
When round in trances only less than hers
She saw the Haram kneel, her prostrate worshippers.
Well might MOKANNA think that form alone
Had spells enough to make the world his own:--
Light, lovely limbs to which the spirit's play
Gave motion, airy as the dancing spray,
When from its stem the small bird wings away;
Lips in whose rosy labyrinth when she smiled
The soul was lost, and blushes, swift and wild
As are the momentary meteors sent
Across the uncalm but beauteous firmament.
And then her look--oh! where's the heart so wise
Could unbewildered meet those matchless eyes?
Quick, restless, strange, but exquisite withal,
Like those of angels just before their fall;
Now shadowed with the shames of earth--now crost
By glimpses of the Heaven her heart had lost;
In every glance there broke without control,
The flashes of a bright but troubled soul,
Where sensibility still wildly played
Like lightning round the ruins it had made!

  And such was now young ZELICA--so changed
From her who some years since delighted ranged
The almond groves that shade BOKHARA'S tide
All life and bliss with AZIM by her side!
So altered was she now, this festal day,
When, mid the proud Divan's dazzling array,
The vision of that Youth whom she had loved,
Had wept as dead, before her breathed and moved;--
When--bright, she thought, as if from Eden's track
But half-way trodden, he had wandered back
Again to earth, glistening with Eden's light--
Her beauteous AZIM shone before her sight.

  O Reason! who shall say what spells renew,
When least we look for it, thy broken clew!
Thro' what small vistas o'er the darkened brain
Thy intellectual day-beam bursts again;
And how like forts to which beleaguerers win
Unhoped-for entrance thro' some friend within,
One clear idea, wakened in the breast
By memory's magic, lets in all the rest.
Would it were thus, unhappy girl, with thee!
But tho' light came, it came but partially;
Enough to show the maze, in which thy sense
Wandered about,--but not to guide it thence;
Enough to glimmer o'er the yawning wave,
But not to point the harbor which might save.
Hours of delight and peace, long left behind,
With that dear form came rushing o'er her mind;
But, oh! to think how deep her soul had gone
In shame and falsehood since those moments shone;
And then her oath--_there_ madness lay again,
And shuddering, back she sunk into her chain
Of mental darkness, as if blest to flee
From light whose every glimpse was agony!
Yet _one_ relief this glance of former years
Brought mingled with its pain,--tears, floods of tears,
Long frozen at her heart, but now like rills
Let loose in spring-time from the snowy hills,
And gushing warm after a sleep of frost,
Thro' valleys where their flow had long been lost.

  Sad and subdued, for the first time her frame
Trembled with horror when the summons came
(A summons proud and rare, which all but she,
And she, till now, had heard with ecstasy,)
To meet MOKANNA at his place of prayer,
A garden oratory cool and fair
By the stream's side, where still at close of day
The Prophet of the Veil retired to pray,
Sometimes alone--but oftener far with one,
One chosen nymph to share his orison.

  Of late none found such favor in his sight
As the young Priestess; and tho', since that night
When the death-cavorns echoed every tone
Of the dire oath that made her all his own,
The Impostor sure of his infatuate prize
Had more than once thrown off his soul's disguise,
And uttered such unheavenly, monstrous things,
As even across the desperate wanderings
Of a weak intellect, whose lamp was out,
Threw startling shadows of dismay and doubt;--
Yet zeal, ambition, her tremendous vow,
The thought, still haunting her, of that bright brow,
Whose blaze, as yet from mortal eye concealed,
Would soon, proud triumph! be to her revealed,
To her alone;--and then the hope, most dear,
Most wild of all, that her transgression here
Was but a passage thro' earth's grosser fire,
From which the spirit would at last aspire,
Even purer than before,--as perfumes rise
Thro' flame and smoke, most welcome to the skies--
And that when AZIM's fond, divine embrace
Should circle her in heaven, no darkening trace
Would on that bosom he once loved remain.
But all be bright, be pure, be _his_ again!--
These were the wildering dreams, whose curst deceit
Had chained her soul beneath the tempter's feet,
And made her think even damning falsehood sweet.
But now that Shape, which had appalled her view,
That Semblance--oh how terrible, if true!
Which came across her frenzy's full career
With shock of consciousness, cold, deep, severe.
As when in northern seas at midnight dark
An isle of ice encounters some swift bark,
And startling all its wretches from their sleep
By one cold impulse hurls them to the deep;--
So came that shock not frenzy's self could bear,
And waking up each long-lulled image there,
But checkt her headlong soul to sink it in despair!

  Wan and dejected, thro' the evening dusk,
She now went slowly to that small kiosk,
Where, pondering alone his impious schemes,
MOKANNA waited her--too wrapt in dreams
Of the fair-ripening future's rich success,
To heed the sorrow, pale and spiritless,
That sat upon his victim's downcast brow,
Or mark how slow her step, how altered now
From the quick, ardent Priestess, whose light bound
Came like a spirit's o'er the unechoing ground,--
From that wild ZELICA whose every glance
Was thrilling fire, whose every thought a trance!

  Upon his couch the Veiled MOKANNA lay,
While lamps around--not such as lend their ray,
Glimmering and cold, to those who nightly pray
In holy KOOM,[45] or MECCA'S dim arcades,--
But brilliant, soft, such lights as lovely maids.
Look loveliest in, shed their luxurious glow
Upon his mystic Veil's white glittering flow.
Beside him, 'stead of beads and books of prayer,
Which the world fondly thought he mused on there,
Stood Vases, filled with KISIIMEE'S[46] golden wine,
And the red weepings of the SHIRAZ vine;
Of which his curtained lips full many a draught
Took zealously, as if each drop they quaft
Like ZEMZEM'S Spring of Holiness[47] had power
To freshen the soul's virtues into flower!
And still he drank and pondered--nor could see
The approaching maid, so deep his revery;
At length with fiendish laugh like that which broke
From EBLIS at the Fall of Man he spoke:--
"Yes, ye vile race, for hell's amusement given,
"Too mean for earth, yet claiming kin with heaven;
"God's images, forsooth!--such gods as he
"Whom INDIA serves, the monkey deity;[48]
"Ye creatures of a breath, proud things of clay,
"To whom if LUCIFER, as gran-dams say,
"Refused tho' at the forfeit of heaven's light
"To bend in worship, LUCIFER was right!
"Soon shall I plant this foot upon the neck
"Of your foul race and without fear or check,
"Luxuriating in hate, avenge my shame,
"My deep-felt, long-nurst loathing of man's name!--
"Soon at the head of myriads, blind and fierce
"As hooded falcons, thro' the universe
"I'll sweep my darkening, desolating way,
"Weak man my instrument, curst man my prey!

  "Ye wise, ye learned, who grope your dull way on
"By the dim twinkling gleams of ages gone,
"Like superstitious thieves who think the light
"From dead men's marrow guides them best at night[49]--
"Ye shall have honors--wealth--yes, Sages, yes--
"I know, grave fools, your wisdom's nothingness;
"Undazzled it can track yon starry sphere,
"But a gilt stick, a bauble blinds it here.
"How I shall laugh, when trumpeted along
"In lying speech and still more lying song,
"By these learned slaves, the meanest of the throng;
"Their wits brought up, their wisdom shrunk so small,
"A sceptre's puny point can wield it all!

  "Ye too, believers of incredible creeds,
"Whose faith enshrines the monsters which it breeds;
"Who, bolder even than NEMROD, think to rise
"By nonsense heapt on nonsense to the skies;
"Ye shall have miracles, ay, sound ones too,
"Seen, heard, attested, everything--but true.
"Your preaching zealots too inspired to seek
"One grace of meaning for the things they speak:
"Your martyrs ready to shed out their blood,
"For truths too heavenly to be understood;
"And your State Priests, sole venders of the lore,
"That works salvation;--as, on AVA'S shore,
"Where none _but_ priests are privileged to trade
"In that best marble of which Gods are made[50];
"They shall have mysteries--ay precious stuff
"For knaves to thrive by--mysteries enough;
"Dark, tangled doctrines, dark as fraud can weave,
"Which simple votaries shall on trust receive,
"While craftier feign belief till they believe.
"A Heaven too ye must have, ye lords of dust,--
"A splendid Paradise,--pure souls, ye must:
"That Prophet ill sustains his holy call,
"Who finds not heavens to suit the tastes of all;
"Houris for boys, omniscience for sages,
"And wings and glories for all ranks and ages.
"Vain things!--as lust or vanity inspires,
"The heaven of each is but what each desires,
"And, soul or sense, whate'er the object be,
"Man would be man to all eternity!
"So let him--EBLIS! grant this crowning curse,
"But keep him what he is, no Hell were worse."

  "Oh my lost soul!" exclaimed the shuddering maid,
Whose ears had drunk like poison all he said:
MOKANNA started--not abasht, afraid,--
He knew no more of fear than one who dwells
Beneath the tropics knows of icicles!
But in those dismal words that reached his ear,
"Oh my lost soul!" there was a sound so drear,
So like that voice among the sinful dead
In which the legend o'er Hell's Gate is read,
That, new as 'twas from her whom naught could dim
Or sink till now, it startled even him.

  "Ha, my fair Priestess!"--thus, with ready wile,
The impostor turned to greet her--"thou whose smile
"Hath inspiration in its rosy beam
"Beyond the Enthusiast's hope or Prophet's dream,
"Light of the Faith! who twin'st religion's zeal
"So close with love's, men know not which they feel,
"Nor which to sigh for, in their trance of heart,
"The heaven thou preachest or the heaven thou art!
"What should I be without thee? without thee
"How dull were power, how joyless victory!
"Tho' borne by angels, if that smile of thine
"Blest not my banner 'twere but half divine.
"But--why so mournful, child? those eyes that shone
"All life last night--what!--is their glory gone?
"Come, come--this morn's fatigue hath made them pale,
"They want rekindling--suns themselves would fail
"Did not their comets bring, as I to thee,
"From light's own fount supplies of brilliancy.
"Thou seest this cup--no juice of earth is here,
"But the pure waters of that upper sphere,
"Whose rills o'er ruby beds and topaz flow,
"Catching the gem's bright color as they go.
"Nightly my Genii come and fill these urns--
"Nay, drink--in every drop life's essence burns;
"'Twill make that soul all fire, those eyes all light--
"Come, come, I want thy loveliest smiles to-night:
"There is a youth--why start?--thou saw'st him then;
"Lookt he not nobly? such the godlike men,
"Thou'lt have to woo thee in the bowers above;--
"Tho' _he_, I fear, hath thoughts too stern for love,
"Too ruled by that cold enemy of bliss
"The world calls virtue--we must conquer this;
"Nay, shrink not, pretty sage! 'tis not for thee
"To scan the mazes of Heaven's mystery:
"The steel must pass thro' fire, ere it can yield
"Fit instruments for mighty hands to wield.
"This very night I mean to try the art
"Of powerful beauty on that warrior's heart.
"All that my Haram boasts of bloom and wit,
"Of skill and charms, most rare and exquisite,
"Shall tempt the boy;--young MIRZALA'S blue eyes
"Whose sleepy lid like snow on violets lies;
"AROUYA'S cheeks warm as a spring-day sun
"And lips that like the seal of SOLOMON
"Have magic in their pressure; ZEBA'S lute,
"And LILLA'S dancing feet that gleam and shoot
"Rapid and white as sea-birds o'er the deep--
"All shall combine their witching powers to steep
"My convert's spirit in that softening trance,
"From which to heaven is but the next advance;--
"That glowing, yielding fusion of the breast.
"On which Religion stamps her image best.
"But hear me, Priestess!--tho' each nymph of these
"Hath some peculiar, practised power to please,
"Some glance or step which at the mirror tried
"First charms herself, then all the world beside:
"There still wants _one_ to make the victory sure,
"One who in every look joins every lure,
"Thro' whom all beauty's beams concentred pass,
"Dazzling and warm as thro' love's burning glass;
"Whose gentle lips persuade without a word,
"Whose words, even when unmeaning, are adored.
"Like inarticulate breathings from a shrine,
"Which our faith takes for granted are divine!
"Such is the nymph we want, all warmth and light,
"To crown the rich temptations of to-night;
"Such the refined enchantress that must be
"This hero's vanquisher,--and thou art she!"

  With her hands claspt, her lips apart and pale,
The maid had stood gazing upon the Veil
From which these words like south winds thro' a fence
Of Kerzrah flowers, came filled with pestilence;[51]
So boldly uttered too! as if all dread
Of frowns from her, of virtuous frowns, were fled,
And the wretch felt assured that once plunged in,
Her woman's soul would know no pause in sin!

  At first, tho' mute she listened, like a dream
Seemed all he said: nor could her mind whose beam
As yet was weak penetrate half his scheme.
But when at length he uttered, "Thou art she!"
All flasht at once and shrieking piteously,
"Oh not for worlds! "she cried--"Great God! to whom
"I once knelt innocent, is this my doom?
"Are all my dreams, my hopes of heavenly bliss,
"My purity, my pride, then come to this,--
"To live, the wanton of a fiend! to be
"The pander of his guilt--oh infamy!
"And sunk myself as low as hell can steep
"In its hot flood, drag others down as deep!

"Others--ha! yes--that youth who came to-day--
"_Not_ him I loved--not him--oh! do but say,
"But swear to me this moment 'tis not he,
"And I will serve, dark fiend, will worship even thee!"

"Beware, young raving thing!--in time beware,
"Nor utter what I can not, must not bear,
"Even from _thy_ lips. Go--try thy lute, thy voice,
"The boy must feel their magic;--I rejoice
"To see those fires, no matter whence they rise,
"Once more illuming my fait Priestess' eyes;
"And should the youth whom soon those eyes shall warm,
"Indeed resemble thy dead lover's form,
"So much the happier wilt thou find thy doom,
"As one warm lover full of life and bloom
"Excels ten thousand cold ones in the tomb.
"Nay, nay, no frowning, sweet!--those eyes were made
"For love, not anger--I must be obeyed."

 "Obeyed!--'tis well--yes, I deserve it all--
"On me, on me Heaven's vengeance can not fall
"Too heavily--but AZIM, brave and true
"And beautiful--must _he_ be ruined too?
"Must _he_ too, glorious as he is, be driven
"A renegade like me from Love and Heaven?
"Like me?--weak wretch, I wrong him--not like me;
"No--he's all truth and strength and purity!
"Fill up your maddening hell-cup to the brim,
"Its witchery, fiends, will have no charm for him.
"Let loose your glowing wantons from their bowers,
"He loves, he loves, and can defy their powers!
"Wretch as I am, in his heart still I reign
"Pure as when first we met, without a stain!
"Tho' ruined--lost--my memory like a charm
"Left by the dead still keeps his soul from harm.
"Oh! never let him know how deep the brow
"He kist at parting is dishonored now;--
"Ne'er tell him how debased, how sunk is she.
"Whom once he loved--once!--_still_ loves dotingly.
"Thou laugh'st, tormentor,--what!--thou it brand my name?
"Do, do--in vain--he'll not believe my shame--
"He thinks me true, that naught beneath God's sky
"Could tempt or change me, and--so once thought I.
"But this is past--tho' worse than death my lot,
"Than hell--'tis nothing while _he_ knows it not.
"Far off to some benighted land I'll fly,
"Where sunbeam ne'er shall enter till I die;
"Where none will ask the lost one whence she came,
"But I may fade and fall without a name.
"And thou--curst man or fiend, whate'er thou art,
"Who found'st this burning plague-spot in my heart,
"And spread'st it--oh, so quick!--thro' soul and frame,
"With more than demon's art, till I became
"A loathsome thing, all pestilence, all flame!--
"If, when I'm gone"--"Hold, fearless maniac, hold,
"Nor tempt my rage--by Heaven, not half so bold
"The puny bird that dares with teasing hum
"Within the crocodile's stretched jaws to come![52]
"And so thou'lt fly, forsooth?--what!--give up all
"Thy chaste dominion in the Haram Hall,
"Where now to Love and now to ALLA given,
"Half mistress and half saint, thou hang'st as even
"As doth MEDINA'S tomb, 'twixt hell and heaven!
"Thou'lt fly?--as easily may reptiles run,
"The gaunt snake once hath fixt his eyes upon;
"As easily, when caught, the prey may be
"Pluckt from his loving folds, as thou from me.
"No, no, 'tis fixt--let good or ill betide,
"Thou'rt mine till death, till death MOKANNA'S bride!
"Hast thou forgot thy oath?"--
    At this dread word,
The Maid whose spirit his rude taunts had stirred
Thro' all its depths and roused an anger there,
That burst and lightened even thro' her despair--
Shrunk back as if a blight were in the breath
That spoke that word and staggered pale as death.

  "Yes, my sworn bride, let others seek in bowers
"Their bridal place--the charnel vault was ours!
"Instead of scents and balms, for thee and me
"Rose the rich steams of sweet mortality,
"Gay, flickering death-lights shone while we were wed.
"And for our guests a row of goodly Dead,
"(Immortal spirits in their time, no doubt,)
"From reeking shrouds upon the rite looked out!
"That oath thou heard'st more lips than thine repeat--
"That cup--thou shudderest, Lady,--was it sweet?
"That cup we pledged, the charnel's choicest wine,
"Hath bound thee--ay--body and soul all mine;
"Bound thee by chains that, whether blest or curst
"No matter now, not hell itself shall burst!
"Hence, woman, to the Haram, and look gay,
"Look wild, look--anything but sad; yet stay--
"One moment more--from what this night hath past,
"I see thou know'st me, know'st me _well_ at last.
"Ha! ha! and so, fond thing, thou thought'st all true,
"And that I love mankind?--I do, I do--
"As victims, love them; as the sea-dog dotes
"Upon the small, sweet fry that round him floats;
"Or, as the Nile-bird loves the slime that gives
"That rank and venomous food on which she lives!--

  "And, now thou seest my _soul's_ angelic hue,
"'Tis time these _features_ were uncurtained too;--
"This brow, whose light--oh rare celestial light!
"Hath been reserved to bless thy favored sight;
"These dazzling eyes before whose shrouded might
"Thou'st seen immortal Man kneel down and quake--
"Would that they _were_ heaven's lightnings for his sake!
"But turn and look--then wonder, if thou wilt,
"That I should hate, should take revenge, by guilt,
"Upon the hand whose mischief or whose mirth
"Sent me thus mained and monstrous upon earth;
"And on that race who, tho' more vile they be
"Than moving apes, are demigods to me!
"Here--judge if hell, with all its power to damn,
"Can add one curse to the foul thing I am!"--
He raised his veil--the Maid turned slowly round,
Looked at him--shrieked--and sunk upon the ground!


On their arrival next night at the place of encampment they were surprised
and delighted to find the groves all around illuminated; some artists of
Yamtcheou[53] having been sent on previously for the purpose. On each
side of the green alley, which led to the Royal Pavilion, artificial
sceneries of bamboo-work were erected, representing arches, minarets,
towers, from which hung thousands of silken lanterns painted by the most
delicate pencils of Canton.--Nothing could be more beautiful than the
leaves of the mango-trees and acacias shining in the light of the
bamboo-scenery which shed a lustre round as soft as that of the nights of
Peristan.

LALLA ROOKH, however, who was too much occupied by the sad story of ZELICA
and her lover to give a thought to anything else, except perhaps him who
related it, hurried on through this scene of splendor to her
pavilion,--greatly to the mortification of the poor artists of
Yamtcheou,--and was followed with equal rapidity by the Great Chamberlain,
cursing, as he went, that ancient Mandarin, whose parental anxiety in
lighting up the shores of the lake, where his beloved daughter had
wandered and been lost, was the origin of these fantastic Chinese
illuminations.[54]

Without a moment's delay, young FERAMORZ was introduced, and FADLADEEN,
who could never make up his mind as to the merits of a poet till he knew
the religious sect to which he belonged, was about to ask him whether he
was a Shia or a Sooni when LALLA KOOKH impatiently clapped her hands for
silence, and the youth being seated upon the musnud near her proceeded:--


Prepare thy soul, young AZIM!--thou hast braved
The bands of GREECE, still mighty tho' enslaved;
Hast faced her phalanx armed with all its fame,--
Her Macedonian pikes and globes of fame,
All this hast fronted with firm heart and brow,
But a more perilous trial waits thee now,--
Woman's bright eyes, a dazzling host of eyes
From every land where woman smiles or sighs;
Of every hue, as Love may chance to raise
His black or azure banner in their blaze;
And each sweet mode of warfare, from the flash
That lightens boldly thro' the shadowy lash,
To the sly, stealing splendors almost hid
Like swords half-sheathed beneath the downcast lid;--
Such, AZIM, is the lovely, luminous host
Now led against thee; and let conquerors boast
Their fields of fame, he who in virtue arms
A young, warm spirit against beauty's charms,
Who feels her brightness, yet defies her thrall,
Is the best, bravest conqueror of them all.

  Now, thro' the Haram chambers, moving lights
And busy shapes proclaim the toilet's rites;--
From room to room the ready handmaids hie,
Some skilled to wreath the turban tastefully,
Or hang the veil in negligence of shade
O'er the warm blushes of the youthful maid,
Who, if between the folds but one eye shone,
Like SEBA'S Queen could vanquish with that one:[55]--

While some bring leaves of Henna to imbue
The fingers' ends with a bright roseate hue,[56]
So bright that in the mirror's depth they seem
Like tips of coral branches in the stream:
And others mix the Kohol's jetty dye,
To give that long, dark languish to the eye,[57]
Which makes the maids whom kings are proud to call
From fair Circassia's vales, so beautiful.
All is in motion; rings and plumes and pearls
Are shining everywhere:--some younger girls
Are gone by moonlight to the garden-beds,
To gather fresh, cool chaplets for their heads;--
Gay creatures! sweet, tho' mournful, 'tis to see
How each prefers a garland from that tree
Which brings to mind her childhood's innocent day
And the dear fields and friendships far away.
The maid of INDIA, blest again to hold
In her full lap the Champac's leaves of gold,[58]
Thinks of the time when, by the GANGES' flood,
Her little playmates scattered many a bud
Upon her long black hair with glossy gleam
Just dripping from the consecrated stream;
While the young Arab haunted by the smell
Of her own mountain flowers as by a spell,--
The sweet Alcaya[59] and that courteous tree
Which bows to all who seek its canopy,[60]
Sees called up round her by these magic scents
The well, the camels, and her father's tents;
Sighs for the home she left with little pain,
And wishes even its sorrow back again!

  Meanwhile thro' vast illuminated halls,
Silent and bright, where nothing but the falls
Of fragrant waters gushing with cool sound
From many a jasper fount is heard around,
Young AZIM roams bewildered,--nor can guess
What means this maze of light and loneliness.
Here the way leads o'er tesselated floors
Or mats of CAIRO thro' long corridors,
Where ranged in cassolets and silver urns
Sweet wood of aloe or of sandal burns,
And spicy rods such as illume at night
The bowers of TIBET[61] send forth odorous light,
Like Peris' wands, when pointing out the road
For some pure Spirit to its blest abode:--
And here at once the glittering saloon
Bursts on his sight, boundless and bright as noon;
Where in the midst reflecting back the rays
In broken rainbows a fresh fountain plays
High as the enamelled cupola which towers
All rich with Arabesques of gold and flowers:
And the mosaic floor beneath shines thro'
The sprinkling of that fountain's silvery dew,
Like the wet, glistening shells of every dye
That on the margin of the Red Sea lie.

  Here too he traces the kind visitings
Of woman's love in those fair, living things
Of land and wave, whose fate--in bondage thrown
For their weak loveliness--is like her own!
On one side gleaming with a sudden grace
Thro' water brilliant as the crystal vase
In which it undulates, small fishes shine
Like golden ingots from a fairy mine;--
While, on the other, latticed lightly in
With odoriferous woods of COMORIN,
Each brilliant bird that wings the air is seen;--
Gay, sparkling loories such as gleam between
The crimson blossoms of the coral-tree[62]
In the warm isles of India's sunny sea:
Mecca's blue sacred pigeon,[63] and the thrush
Of Hindostan[64] whose holy warblings gush
At evening from the tall pagoda's top;--
Those golden birds that in the spice time drop
About the gardens, drunk with that sweet food[65]
Whose scent hath lured them o'er the summer flood;[66]
And those that under Araby's soft sun
Build their high nests of budding cinnamon;[67]
In short, all rare and beauteous things that fly
Thro' the pure element here calmly lie
Sleeping in light, like the green birds[68] that dwell
In Eden's radiant fields of asphodel!

  So on, thro' scenes past all imagining,
More like the luxuries of that impious King,[69]
Whom Death's dark Angel with his lightning torch
Struck down and blasted even in Pleasure's porch,
Than the pure dwelling of a Prophet sent
Armed with Heaven's sword for man's enfranchisement--
Young AZIM wandered, looking sternly round,
His simple garb and war-boots clanking sound
But ill according with the pomp and grace
And silent lull of that voluptuous place.

  "Is this, then," thought the youth, "is this the way
"To free man's spirit from the deadening sway
"Of worldly sloth,--to teach him while he lives
"To know no bliss but that which virtue gives,
"And when he dies to leave his lofty name
"A light, a landmark on the cliffs of fame?
"It was not so, Land of the generous thought
"And daring deed, thy god-like sages taught;
"It was not thus in bowers of wanton ease
"Thy Freedom nurst her sacred energies;
"Oh! not beneath the enfeebling, withering glow
"Of such dull luxury did those myrtles grow
"With which she wreathed her sword when she would dare
"Immortal deeds; but in the bracing air
"Of toil,--of temperance,--of that high, rare,
"Ethereal virtue, which alone can breathe
"Life, health, and lustre into Freedom's wreath.
"Who that surveys this span of earth we press.--
"This speck of life in time's great wilderness,
"This narrow isthmus 'twixt two boundless seas,
"The past, the future, two eternities!--
"Would sully the bright spot, or leave it bare,
"When he might build him a proud temple there,
"A name that long shall hallow all its space,
"And be each purer soul's high resting-place.
"But no--it cannot be, that one whom God
"Has sent to break the wizard Falsehood's rod,--
"A Prophet of the Truth, whose mission draws
"Its rights from Heaven, should thus profane its cause
"With the world's vulgar pomps;--no, no,--I see--
"He thinks me weak--this glare of luxury
"Is but to tempt, to try the eaglet gaze
"Of my young soul--shine on, 'twill stand the blaze!"

  So thought the youth;--but even while he defied
This witching scene he felt its witchery glide
Thro' every sense. The perfume breathing round,
Like a pervading spirit;--the still sound
Of falling waters, lulling as the song
Of Indian bees at sunset when they throng
Around the fragrant NILICA, and deep
In its blue blossoms hum themselves to sleep;[70]
And music, too--dear music! that can touch
Beyond all else the soul that loves it much--
Now heard far off, so far as but to seem
Like the faint, exquisite music of a dream;
All was too much for him, too full of bliss,
The heart could nothing feel, that felt not this;
Softened he sunk upon a couch and gave
His soul up to sweet thoughts like wave on wave
Succeeding in smooth seas when storms are laid;
He thought of ZELICA, his own dear maid,
And of the time when full of blissful sighs
They sat and lookt into each other's eyes,
Silent and happy--as if God had given
Naught else worth looking at on this side heaven.

  "Oh, my loved mistress, thou whose spirit still
"Is with me, round me, wander where I will--
"It is for thee, for thee alone I seek
"The paths of glory; to light up thy cheek
"With warm approval--in that gentle look
"To read my praise as in an angel's book,
"And think all toils rewarded when from thee
"I gain a smile worth immortality!
"How shall I bear the moment, when restored
"To that young heart where I alone am Lord.
"Tho' of such bliss unworthy,--since the best
"Alone deserve to be the happiest:--
"When from those lips unbreathed upon for years
"I shall again kiss off the soul-felt tears,
"And find those tears warm as when last they started,
"Those sacred kisses pure as when we parted.
"O my own life!--why should a single day,
"A moment keep me from those arms away?"

While thus he thinks, still nearer on the breeze
Come those delicious, dream-like harmonies,
Each note of which but adds new, downy links
To the soft chain in which his spirit sinks.
He turns him toward the sound, and far away
Thro' a long vista sparkling with the play
Of countless lamps,--like the rich track which Day
Leaves on the waters, when he sinks from us,
So long the path, its light so tremulous;--
He sees a group of female forms advance,
Some chained together in the mazy dance
By fetters forged in the green sunny bowers,
As they were captives to the King of Flowers;[71]
And some disporting round, unlinkt and free,
Who seemed to mock their sisters' slavery;
And round and round them still in wheeling flight
Went like gay moths about a lamp at night;
While others waked, as gracefully along
Their feet kept time, the very soul of song
From psaltery, pipe, and lutes of heavenly thrill,
Or their own youthful voices heavenlier still.
And now they come, now pass before his eye,
Forms such as Nature moulds when she would vie
With Fancy's pencil and give birth to things
Lovely beyond its fairest picturings.
Awhile they dance before him, then divide,
Breaking like rosy clouds at eventide
Around the rich pavilion of the sun,--
Till silently dispersing, one by one,
Thro' many a path that from the chamber leads
To gardens, terraces and moonlight meads,
Their distant laughter comes upon the wind,
And but one trembling nymph remains behind,--
Beckoning them back in vain--for they are gone
And she is left in all that light alone;
No veil to curtain o'er her beauteous brow,
In its young bashfulness more beauteous now;
But a light golden chain-work round her hair,[72]
Such as the maids of YEZD and SHIRAS wear,[73]
From which on either side gracefully hung
A golden amulet in the Arab tongue,
Engraven o'er with some immortal line
From Holy Writ or bard scarce less divine;
While her left hand, as shrinkingly she stood,
Held a small lute of gold and sandal-wood,
Which once or twice she touched with hurried strain,
Then took her trembling fingers off again.
But when at length a timid glance she stole
At AZIM, the sweet gravity of soul
She saw thro' all his features calmed her fear,
And like a half-tamed antelope more near,
Tho' shrinking still, she came;--then sat her down
Upon a musnud's[74] edge, and, bolder grown.
In the pathetic mode of ISFAHAN[75]
Touched a preluding strain and thus began:--

There's a bower of roses by BENDEMEER's[76] stream,
  And the nightingale sings round it all the day long;
In the time of my childhood 'twas like a sweet dream,
  To sit in the roses and hear the bird's song.

That bower and its music, I never forget,
  But oft when alone in the bloom of the year
I think--is the nightingale singing there yet?
  Are the roses still bright by the calm BENDEMEER?

No, the roses soon withered that hung o'er the wave,
  But some blossoms were gathered while freshly they shone.
And a dew was distilled from their flowers that gave
  All the fragrance of summer when summer was gone.

Thus memory draws from delight ere it dies
  An essence that breathes of it many a year;
Thus bright to my soul, as 'twas then to my eyes,
  Is that bower on the banks of the calm BENDEMEER!

  "Poor maiden!" thought the youth, "if thou wert sent
"With thy soft lute and beauty's blandishment
"To wake unholy wishes in this heart,
"Or tempt its truth, thou little know'st the art.
"For tho' thy lips should sweetly counsel wrong,
"Those vestal eyes would disavow its song.
"But thou hast breathed such purity, thy lay
"Returns so fondly to youth's virtuous day,
"And leads thy soul--if e'er it wandered thence--
"So gently back to its first innocence,
"That I would sooner stop the unchained dove,
"When swift returning to its home of love,
"And round its snowy wing new fetters twine.
"Than turn from virtue one pure wish of thine!"

  Scarce had this feeling past, when sparkling thro'
The gently open'd curtains of light blue
That veiled the breezy casement, countless eyes
Peeping like stars thro' the blue evening skies,
Looked laughing in as if to mock the pair
That sat so still and melancholy there:--
And now the curtains fly apart and in
From the cool air mid showers of jessamine
Which those without fling after them in play,
Two lightsome maidens spring,--lightsome as they
Who live in the air on odors,--and around
The bright saloon, scarce conscious of the ground,
Chase one another in a varying dance
Of mirth and languor, coyness and advance,
Too eloquently like love's warm pursuit:--
While she who sung so gently to the lute
Her dream of home steals timidly away,
Shrinking as violets do in summer's ray,--
But takes with her from AZIM'S heart that sigh
We sometimes give to forms that pass us by
In the world's crowd, too lovely to remain,
Creatures of light we never see again!

  Around the white necks of the nymphs who danced
Hung carcanets of orient gems that glanced
More brilliant than the sea-glass glittering o'er
The hills of crystal on the Caspian shore;[77]
While from their long, dark tresses, in a fall
Of curls descending, bells as musical
As those that on the golden-shafted trees
Of EDEN shake in the eternal breeze,[78]
Rung round their steps, at every bound more sweet.
As 'twere the ecstatic language of their feet.
At length the chase was o'er, and they stood wreathed
Within each other's arms; while soft there breathed
Thro' the cool casement, mingled with the sighs
Of moonlight flowers, music that seemed to rise
From some still lake, so liquidly it rose;
And as it swelled again at each faint close
The ear could track thro' all that maze of chords
And young sweet voices these impassioned words:--

A SPIRIT there is whose fragrant sigh
  Is burning now thro' earth and air;
Where cheeks are blushing the Spirit is nigh,
  Where lips are meeting the Spirit is there!

His breath is the soul of flowers like these,
  And his floating eyes--oh! they resemble[79]
Blue water-lilies,[80] when the breeze
  Is making the stream around them tremble.

Hail to thee, hail to thee, kindling power!
  Spirit of Love, Spirit of Bliss!
Thy holiest time is the moonlight hour,
  And there never was moonlight so sweet as this.

By the fair and brave
  Who blushing unite,
Like the sun and wave,
  When they meet at night;

By the tear that shows
  When passion is nigh,
As the rain-drop flows
  From the heat of the sky;

By the first love-beat
  Of the youthful heart,
By the bliss to meet,
  And the pain to part;

By all that thou hast
  To mortals given,
Which--oh, could it last,
  This earth were heaven!

We call thee thither, entrancing Power!
  Spirit of Love! Spirit of Bliss!
Thy holiest time is the moonlight hour,
  And there never was moonlight so sweet as this.

Impatient of a scene whose luxuries stole,
Spite of himself, too deep into his soul,
And where, midst all that the young heart loves most,
Flowers, music, smiles, to yield was to be lost,
The youth had started up and turned away
From the light nymphs and their luxurious lay
To muse upon the pictures that hung round,--[81]
Bright images, that spoke without a sound,
And views like vistas into fairy ground.
But here again new spells came o'er his sense:--
All that the pencil's mute omnipotence
Could call up into life, of soft and fair,
Of fond and passionate, was glowing there;
Nor yet too warm, but touched with that fine art
Which paints of pleasure but the purer part;
Which knows even Beauty when half-veiled is best,--
Like her own radiant planet of the west,
Whose orb when half retired looks loveliest.[82]
_There_ hung the history of the Genii-King,
Traced thro' each gay, voluptuous wandering
With her from SABA'S bowers, in whose bright eyes
He read that to be blest is to be wise;--
_Here_ fond ZULEIKA woos with open arms[83]
The Hebrew boy who flies from her young charms,
Yet flying turns to gaze and half undone
Wishes that Heaven and she could _both_ be won;
And here MOHAMMED born for love and guile
Forgets the Koran in his MARY'S smile;--
Then beckons some kind angel from above
With a new text to consecrate their love.[84]

With rapid step, yet pleased and lingering eye,
Did the youth pass these pictured stories by,
And hastened to a casement where the light
Of the calm moon came in and freshly bright
The fields without were seen sleeping as still
As if no life remained in breeze or rill.
Here paused he while the music now less near
Breathed with a holier language on his ear,
As tho' the distance and that heavenly ray
Thro' which the sounds came floating took away
All that had been too earthly in the lay.

Oh! could he listen to such sounds unmoved,
And by that light--nor dream of her he loved?
Dream on, unconscious boy! while yet thou may'st;
'Tis the last bliss thy soul shall ever taste.
Clasp yet awhile her image to thy heart,
Ere all the light that made it dear depart.
Think of her smiles as when thou saw'st them last,
Clear, beautiful, by naught of earth o'ercast;
Recall her tears to thee at parting given,
Pure as they weep, _if_ angels weep in Heaven.
Think in her own still bower she waits thee now
With the same glow of heart and bloom of brow,
Yet shrined in solitude--thine all, thine only,
Like the one star above thee, bright and lonely.
Oh! that a dream so sweet, so long enjoyed,
Should be so sadly, cruelly destroyed!

The song is husht, the laughing nymphs are flown,
And he is left musing of bliss alone;--
Alone?--no, not alone--that heavy sigh,
That sob of grief which broke from some one nigh--
Whose could it be?--alas! is misery found
Here, even here, on this enchanted ground?
He turns and sees a female form close veiled,
Leaning, as if both heart and strength had failed,
Against a pillar near;--not glittering o'er
With gems and wreaths such as the others wore,
But in that deep-blue, melancholy dress.[85]
BOKHARA'S maidens wear in mindfulness
Of friends or kindred, dead or far away;--
And such as ZELICA had on that day
He left her--when with heart too full to speak
He took away her last warm tears upon his cheek.

A strange emotion stirs within him,--more
Than mere compassion ever waked before;
Unconsciously he opes his arms while she
Springs forward as with life's last energy,
But, swooning in that one convulsive bound,
Sinks ere she reach his arms upon the ground;--
Her veil falls off--her faint hands clasp his knees--
'Tis she herself!--it is ZELICA he sees!
But, ah, so pale, so changed--none but a lover
Could in that wreck of beauty's shrine discover
The once adorned divinity--even he
Stood for some moments mute, and doubtingly
Put back the ringlets from her brow, and gazed
Upon those lids where once such lustre blazed,
Ere he could think she was _indeed_ his own,
Own darling maid whom he so long had known
In joy and sorrow, beautiful in both;
Who, even when grief was heaviest--when loath
He left her for the wars--in that worst hour
Sat in her sorrow like the sweet night-flower,[86]
When darkness brings its weeping glories out,
And spreads its sighs like frankincense about.

  "Look up, my ZELICA--one moment show
"Those gentle eyes to me that I may know
"Thy life, thy loveliness is not all gone,
"But _there_ at least shines as it ever shone.
"Come, look upon thy AZIM--one dear glance,
"Like those of old, were heaven! whatever chance
"Hath brought thee here, oh, 'twas a blessed one!
"There--my loved lips--they move--that kiss hath run
"Like the first shoot of life thro' every vein,
"And now I clasp her, mine, all mine again.
"Oh the delight--now, in this very hour,
"When had the whole rich world been in my power,
"I should have singled out thee only thee,
"From the whole world's collected treasury--
"To have thee here--to hang thus fondly o'er
"My own, best, purest ZELICA once more!"

  It was indeed the touch of those fond lips
Upon her eyes that chased their short eclipse.
And gradual as the snow at Heaven's breath
Melts off and shows the azure flowers beneath,
Her lids unclosed and the bright eyes were seen
Gazing on his--not, as they late had been,
Quick, restless, wild, but mournfully serene;
As if to lie even for that tranced minute
So near his heart had consolation in it;
And thus to wake in his beloved caress
Took from her soul one half its wretchedness.
But, when she heard him call her good and pure,
Oh! 'twas too much--too dreadful to endure!
Shuddering she broke away from his embrace.
And hiding with both hands her guilty face
Said in a tone whose anguish would have riven
A heart of very marble, "Pure!--oh Heaven!"--

  That tone--those looks so changed--the withering blight,
That sin and sorrow leave where'er they light:
The dead despondency of those sunk eyes,
Where once, had he thus met her by surprise,
He would have seen himself, too happy boy,
Reflected in a thousand lights of joy:
And then the place,--that bright, unholy place,
Where vice lay hid beneath each winning grace
And charm of luxury as the viper weaves
Its wily covering of sweet balsam leaves,[87]--
All struck upon his heart, sudden and cold
As death itself;--it needs not to be told--
No, no--he sees it all plain as the brand
Of burning shame can mark--whate'er the hand,
That could from Heaven and him such brightness sever,
'Tis done--to Heaven and him she's lost for ever!
It was a dreadful moment; not the tears,
The lingering, lasting misery of years
Could match that minute's anguish--all the worst
Of sorrow's elements in that dark burst
Broke o'er his soul and with one crash of fate
Laid the whole hopes of his life desolate.

  "Oh! curse me not," she cried, as wild he tost
His desperate hand towards Heav'n--"tho' I am lost,
"Think not that guilt, that falsehood made me fall,
"No, no--'twas grief, 'twas madness did it all!
"Nay, doubt me not--tho' all thy love hath ceased--
"I know it hath--yet, yet believe, at least,
"That every spark of reason's light must be
"Quenched in this brain ere I could stray from thee.
"They told me thou wert dead--why, AZIM, why
"Did we not, both of us, that instant die
"When we were parted? oh! couldst thou but know
"With what a deep devotedness of woe
"I wept thy absence--o'er and o'er again
"Thinking of thee, still thee, till thought grew pain,
"And memory like a drop that night and day
"Falls cold and ceaseless wore my heart away.
"Didst thou but know how pale I sat at home,
"My eyes still turned the way thou wert to come,
"And, all the long, long night of hope and fear,
"Thy voice and step still sounding in my ear--
"Oh God! thou wouldst not wonder that at last,
"When every hope was all at once o'ercast,
"When I heard frightful voices round me say
"_Azim is dead_!--this wretched brain gave way,
"And I became a wreck, at random driven,
"Without one glimpse of reason or of Heaven--
"All wild--and even this quenchless love within
"Turned to foul fires to light me into sin!--
"Thou pitiest me--I knew thou wouldst--that sky
"Hath naught beneath it half so lorn as I.
"The fiend, who lured me hither--hist! come near.
"Or thou too, _thou_ art lost, if he should hear--
"Told me such things--oh! with such devilish art.
"As would have ruined even a holier heart--
"Of thee, and of that ever-radiant sphere,
"Where blest at length, if I but served him here,
"I should for ever live in thy dear sight.
"And drink from those pure eyes eternal light.
"Think, think how lost, how maddened I must be,
"To hope that guilt could lead to God or thee!
"Thou weep'st for me--do weep--oh, that I durst
"Kiss off that tear! but, no--these lips are curst,
"They must not touch thee;--one divine caress,
"One blessed moment of forgetfulness
"I've had within those arms and _that_ shall lie
"Shrined in my soul's deep memory till I die;
"The last of joy's last relics here below,
"The one sweet drop, in all this waste of woe,
"My heart has treasured from affection's spring,
"To soothe and cool its deadly withering!
"But thou--yes, thou must go--for ever go;
"This place is not for thee--for thee! oh no,
"Did I but tell thee half, thy tortured brain
"Would burn like mine, and mine go wild again!
"Enough that Guilt reigns here--that hearts once good
"Now tainted, chilled and broken are his food.--
"Enough that we are parted--that there rolls
"A flood of headlong fate between our souls,
"Whose darkness severs me as wide from thee
"As hell from heaven to all eternity!"

  "ZELICA, ZELICA!" the youth exclaimed.
In all the tortures of a mind inflamed
Almost to madness--"by that sacred Heaven,
"Where yet, if prayers can move, thou'lt be forgiven,
"As thou art here--here, in this writhing heart,
"All sinful, wild, and ruined as thou art!
"By the remembrance of our once pure love,
"Which like a church-yard light still burns above
"The grave of our lost souls--which guilt in thee
"Cannot extinguish nor despair in me!
"I do conjure, implore thee to fly hence--
"If thou hast yet one spark of innocence,
"Fly with me from this place"--
    "With thee! oh bliss!
"'Tis worth whole years of torment to hear this.
"What! take the lost one with thee?--let her rove
"By thy dear side, as in those days of love,
"When we were both so happy, both so pure--
"Too heavenly dream! if there's on earth a cure
"For the sunk heart, 'tis this--day after day
"To be the blest companion of thy way;
"To hear thy angel eloquence--to see
"Those virtuous eyes for ever turned on me;
"And in their light re-chastened silently,
"Like the stained web that whitens in the sun,
"Grow pure by being purely shone upon!
"And thou wilt pray for me--I know thou wilt--
"At the dim vesper hour when thoughts of guilt
"Come heaviest o'er the heart thou'lt lift thine eyes
"Full of sweet tears unto the darkening skies
"And plead for me with Heaven till I can dare
"To fix my own weak, sinful glances there;
"Till the good angels when they see me cling
"For ever near thee, pale and sorrowing,
"Shall for thy sake pronounce my soul forgiven,
"And bid thee take thy weeping slave to Heaven!
"Oh yes, I'll fly with thee"--
    Scarce had she said
These breathless words when a voice deep and dread
As that of MONKER waking up the dead
From their first sleep--so startling 'twas to both--
Rang thro' the casement near, "Thy oath! thy oath!"
Oh Heaven, the ghastliness of that Maid's look!--
"'Tis he," faintly she cried, while terror shook
Her inmost core, nor durst she lift her eyes,
Tho' thro' the casement, now naught but the skies
And moonlight fields were seen, calm as before--
"'Tis he, and I am his--all, all is o'er--
"Go--fly this instant, or thou'rt ruin'd too--
"My oath, my oath, oh God! 'tis all too true,
"True as the worm in this cold heart it is--
"I am MOKANNA'S bride--his, AZIM, his--
"The Dead stood round us while I spoke that vow,
"Their blue lips echoed it--I hear them now!
"Their eyes glared on me, while I pledged that bowl,
"'Twas burning blood--I feel it in my soul!
"And the Veiled Bridegroom--hist! I've seen to-night
"What angels know not of--so foul a sight.
"So horrible--oh! never may'st thou see
"What _there_ lies hid from all but hell and me!
"But I must hence--off, off--I am not thine,
"Nor Heaven's, nor Love's, nor aught that is divine--
"Hold me not--ha! think'st thou the fiends that sever
"Hearts cannot sunder hands?--thus, then--for ever!"

With all that strength which madness lends the weak
She flung away his arm; and with a shriek
Whose sound tho' be should linger out more years
Than wretch e'er told can never leave his ears--
Flew up thro' that long avenue of light,
Fleetly as some dark, ominous bird of night,
Across the sun; and soon was out of sight!


LALLA ROOKH could think of nothing all day but the misery of those two
young lovers. Her gayety was gone, and she looked pensively even upon
FADLAPEEN. She felt, too, without knowing why, a sort of uneasy pleasure
in imagining that AZIM must have been just such a youth as FERAMORZ; just
as worthy to enjoy all the blessings, without any of the pangs, of that
illusive passion, which too often like the sunny apples of Istkahar[88]
is all sweetness on one side and all bitterness on the other.

As they passed along a sequestered river after sunset they saw a young
Hindoo girl upon the bank, whose employment seemed to them so strange that
they stopped their palankeens to observe her. She had lighted a small lamp
filled with oil of cocoa, and placing it in an earthen dish adorned with a
wreath of flowers, had committed it with a trembling hand to the stream;
and was now anxiously watching its progress down the current, heedless of
the gay cavalcade which had drawn up beside her. LALLA ROOKH was all
curiosity;--when one of her attendants, who had lived upon the banks of
the Ganges, (where this ceremony is so frequent that often in the dusk of
the evening the river is seen glittering all over with lights, like the
Oton-tala or Sea of Stars,)[89] informed the princess that it was the
usual way in which the friends of those who had gone on dangerous voyages
offered up vows for their safe return. If the lamp sunk immediately the
omen was disastrous; but if it went shining down the stream and continued
to burn till entirely out of sight, the return of the beloved object was
considered as certain.

LALLA ROOKH as they moved on more than once looked back to observe how the
young Hindoo's lamp proceeded; and while she saw with pleasure that it was
still unextinguished she could not help fearing that all the hopes of this
life were no better than that feeble light upon the river. The remainder
of the journey was passed in silence. She now for the first time felt that
shade of melancholy which comes over the youthful maiden's heart as sweet
and transient as her own breath upon a mirror; nor was it till she heard
the lute of FERAMOKZ, touched lightly at the door of her pavilion that she
waked from the revery in which she had been wandering. Instantly her eyes
were lighted up with pleasure; and after a few unheard remarks from
FADLADEEN upon the indecorum of a poet seating himself in presence of a
Princess everything was arranged as on the preceding evening and all
listened with eagerness while the story was thus continued:--


Whose are the gilded tents that crowd the way,
Where all was waste and silent yesterday?
This City of War which, in a few short hours,
Hath sprung up here, as if the magic powers[90]
Of Him who, in the twinkling of a star,
Built the high pillared halls of CHILMINAR,[91]
Had conjur'd up, far as the eye can see,
This world of tents and domes and sunbright armory:--
Princely pavilions screened by many a fold
Of crimson cloth and topt with balls of gold:--
Steeds with their housings of rich silver spun,
Their chains and poitrels glittering in the sun;
And camels tufted o'er with Yemen's shells[92]
Shaking in every breeze their light-toned bells!

But yester-eve, so motionless around,
So mute was this wide plain that not a sound
But the far torrent or the locust bird[93]
Hunting among thickets could be heard;--
Yet hark! what discords now of every kind,
Shouts, laughs, and screams are revelling in the wind;
The neigh of cavalry;--the tinkling throngs
Of laden camels and their drivers' songs;--
Ringing of arms, and flapping in the breeze
Of streamers from ten thousand canopies;--[94]
War-music bursting out from time to time
With gong and tymbalon's tremendous chime;--
Or in the pause when harsher sounds are mute,
The mellow breathings of some horn or flute,
That far off, broken by the eagle note
Of the Abyssinian trumpet, swell and float.[95]

Who leads this mighty army?--ask ye "who?"
And mark ye not those banners of dark hue,
The Night and Shadow, over yonder tent?--[96]
It is the CALIPH'S glorious armament.
Roused in his Palace by the dread alarms,
That hourly came, of the false Prophet's arms,
And of his host of infidels who hurled
Defiance fierce at Islam and the world,[97]
Tho' worn with Grecian warfare, and behind
The veils of his bright Palace calm reclined,
Yet brooked he not such blasphemy should stain,
Thus unrevenged, the evening of his reign;
But having sworn upon the Holy Grave[98]
To conquer or to perish, once more gave
His shadowy banners proudly to the breeze,
And with an army nurst in victories,
Here stands to crush the rebels that o'errun
His blest and beauteous Province of the Sun.

Ne'er did the march of MAHADI display
Such pomp before;--not even when on his way
To MECCA'S Temple, when both land and sea
Were spoiled to feed the Pilgrim's luxury;[99]
When round him mid the burning sands he saw
Fruits of the North in icy freshness thaw,
And cooled his thirsty lip beneath the glow
Of MECCA'S sun with urns of Persian snow:--
Nor e'er did armament more grand than that
Pour from the kingdoms of the Caliphat.
First, in the van, the People of the Rock[100]
On their light mountain steeds of royal stock:[101]
Then chieftains of DAMASCUS proud to see
The flashing of their swords' rich marquetry;--[102]
Men from the regions near the VOLGA'S mouth
Mixt with the rude, black archers of the South;
And Indian lancers in white-turbaned ranks
From the far SINDE or ATTOCK'S sacred banks,
With dusky legions from the Land of Myrrh,[103]
And many a mace-armed Moor and Midsea islander.

Nor less in number tho' more new and rude
In warfare's school was the vast multitude
That, fired by zeal or by oppression wronged,
Round the white standard of the impostor thronged.
Beside his thousands of Believers--blind,
Burning and headlong as the Samiel wind--
Many who felt and more who feared to feel
The bloody Islamite's converting steel,
Flockt to his banner;--Chiefs of the UZBEK race,
Waving their heron crests with martial grace;[104]
TURKOMANS, countless as their flocks, led forth
From the aromatic pastures of the North;
Wild warriors of the turquoise hills,--and those[105]
Who dwell beyond the everlasting snows
Of HINDOO KOSH, in stormy freedom bred,
Their fort the rock, their camp the torrent's bed.
But none of all who owned the Chief's command
Rushed to that battle-field with bolder hand
Or sterner hate than IRAN'S outlawed men,
Her Worshippers of Fire--all panting then[106]
For vengeance on the accursed Saracen;
Vengeance at last for their dear country spurned,
Her throne usurpt, and her bright shrines o'erturned.

From YEZD'S eternal Mansion of the Fire[107]
Where aged saints in dreams of Heaven expire:
From BADKU and those fountains of blue flame
That burn into the CASPIAN, fierce they came,[108]
Careless for what or whom the blow was sped,
So vengeance triumpht and their tyrants bled.

Such was the wild and miscellaneous host
That high in air their motley banners tost
Around the Prophet-Chief--all eyes still bent
Upon that glittering Veil, where'er it went,
That beacon thro' the battle's stormy flood,
That rainbow of the field whose showers were blood!

Twice hath the sun upon their conflict set
And risen again and found them grappling yet;
While streams of carnage in his noontide blaze,
Smoke up to Heaven--hot as that crimson haze
By which the prostrate Caravan is awed[109]
In the red Desert when the wind's abroad.
"Oh, Swords of God!" the panting CALIPH calls,--
"Thrones for the living--Heaven for him who falls!"--
"On, brave avengers, on," MOKANNA cries,
"And EBLIS blast the recreant slave that flies!"
Now comes the brunt, the crisis of the day--
They clash--they strive--the CALIPH'S troops give way!
MOKANNA'S self plucks the black Banner down,
And now the Orient World's Imperial crown
Is just within his grasp--when, hark, that shout!
Some hand hath checkt the flying Moslem's rout;
And now they turn, they rally--at their head
A warrior, (like those angel youths who led,
In glorious panoply of Heaven's own mail,
The Champions of the Faith thro BEDER'S vale,)[110]
Bold as if gifted with ten thousand lives,
Turns on the fierce pursuers' blades, and drives
At once the multitudinous torrent back--
While hope and courage kindle in his track;
And at each step his bloody falchion makes
Terrible vistas thro' which victory breaks!
In vain MOKANNA, midst the general flight,
Stands like the red moon on some stormy night
Among the fugitive clouds that hurrying by
Leave only her unshaken in the sky--
In vain he yells his desperate curses out,
Deals death promiscuously to all about,
To foes that charge and coward friends that fly,
And seems of _all_ the Great Archenemy.
The panic spreads--"A miracle!" throughout
The Moslem ranks, "a miracle!" they shout,
All gazing on that youth whose coming seems
A light, a glory, such as breaks in dreams;
And every sword, true as o'er billows dim
The needle tracks the lode-star, following him!

Right towards MOKANNA now he cleaves his path,
Impatient cleaves as tho' the bolt of wrath
He bears from Heaven withheld its awful burst
From weaker heads and souls but half way curst,
To break o'er Him, the mightiest and the worst!
But vain his speed--tho', in that hour of blood,
Had all God's seraphs round MOKANNA stood
With swords o'fire ready like fate to fall,
MOKANNA'S soul would have defied them all;
Yet now, the rush of fugitives, too strong
For human force, hurries even _him_ along;
In vain he struggles mid the wedged array
Of flying thousands--he is borne away;
And the sole joy his baffled spirit knows,
In this forced flight, is--murdering as he goes!
As a grim tiger whom the torrent's might
Surprises in some parched ravine at night,
Turns even in drowning on the wretched flocks
Swept with him in that snow-flood from the rocks,
And, to the last, devouring on his way,
Bloodies the stream lie hath not power to stay.

"Alla illa Alla!"--the glad shout renew--
"Alla Akbar"--the Caliph's in MEROU.[111]
Hang out your gilded tapestry in the streets,
And light your shrines and chant your ziraleets.[112]
The swords of God have triumpht--on his throne
Your Caliph sits and the veiled Chief hath flown.
Who does not envy that young warrior now
To whom the Lord of Islam bends his brow,
In all the graceful gratitude of power,
For his throne's safety in that perilous hour?
Who doth not wonder, when, amidst the acclaim
Of thousands heralding to heaven his name--
Mid all those holier harmonies of fame
Which sound along the path of virtuous souls,
Like music round a planet as it rolls,--
He turns away--coldly, as if some gloom
Hung o'