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[Frontispiece] Thompson, R. A. pinxt. Reynolds sculpt.
Published by Longman & Co. March 1808.
THE SECOND EDITION.
LONGMAN, HURST, REES, AND ORME,
RICHARD TAYLOR and Co. Printers,
THE Poems which compose this little volume were written, with two or three exceptions, several years ago: and to arrange and fit them for publication has been the amusement of many hours of retirement. AMELIA OPIE.
returned from the far Holy Land,
And a blood-tinctured falchion he bore;
But such precious blood as now darkened his sword
Had never distained it before.
Fast fluttered his heart as his own castle towers
He saw on the mountain's green height;
"My wife, and my son!" he exclaimed, while his tears
Obscured for some moments his sight.
For terror now whispered, the wife he had left
Full fifteen long twelvemonths before,
The child he had claspt in his farewel embrace,
Might both, then , alas! be no more.
Then, sighing, he thought of his Editha's tears
As his steed bore him far from her sight,
And her accents of love, while she fervently cried,
"Great God! guard his life in the fight!"
And then he remembered, in language half formed
How his child strove to bid him adieu;
While scarcely he now can believe, as a man,
That infant may soon meet his view.
But should he not live!....To escape from that fear,
He eagerly spurred his bold steed:
Nor stopped he again, till his own castle moat
Forbade on the way to proceed.
'T was day-break: yet still past the windows he saw
Busy forms lightly trip to and fro:
Blest sight! that she lives," he exclaimed with smile,
"Those symptoms of housewifery show:
"For, stranger to sloth, and on business intent,
The dawn calls her forth from her bed;
And see, through the castle, all busy appear,
By her to their duty still led."
That instant the knight by the warder was seen,
For far flamed the cross on his breast;
And while loud blew the horn, now a smile, now a tear,
Sir Walter's mixt feelings expressed.
'Tis I, my loved vassals!" the warrior exclaimed,....
The voice reached his Editha's ears;
Who, breathless and speechless, soon rushed to his arms,
Her transport betraying by tears.
"And dost thou still love me?" he uttered, when first
A silence so rapturous he broke;
She tried to reply, but in vain....while her sobs
A volume of tenderness spoke.
Behold how I'm changed! how I'm scarred!" he exclaimed,
"Each charm that I boasted is o'er:"....
"Thou hast bled for THY GOD ," she replied, "and each scar
Endears thee, my warrior, the more."
"But where is my child?" he cried, pale with alarm,
"Thou namest not my Alfred....my boy!"........
"And comes he not with you?" she said;...."then some woe
Embitters our beverage of joy."
"What meanest thou, my love?"......."When to manhood he grew,
And heard of his father's great name,
'O let me', he cried, 'to the Holy Land go,
To share my sire's dangers, and fame.
"'Perchance my young arm, by the cause nerved with strength,
May lower the Pagan's proud crest:
And the brave Christian knights, in reward of my zeal,
May bind the red cross on my breast,'....
"'And think'st thou,' I said, 'with the son I can part,
Till the father be safe in my arms?
No....hope not I'll add to the fears of the wife
The mother's as poignant alarms.'
"I ceased....and his head on my bosom reclined,
While his golden hair shaded his cheek;
When, parting his ringlets, I saw the big tears
His heart's disappointment bespeak.
The sight overcame me: 'Most loved,' I exclaimed,
'Go, share in thy father's renown!
Thy mother will gladly, to dry up thy tears,
Endure an increase of her own .'
"He kissed me...he thanked me....I armed him myself,
And girt his pure sword on his side;
So lovely he looked, that the mother's fond fears
Were lost in the mother's fond pride."
"He went then?...How long has my warrior been gone?"
"A twelvemonth, my Walter, and more."
Indeed!....then he scarcely could reach the far land
Until the last battle was o'er."
"I told him, my Walter, what armour was yours,
And what the device on your shield,
In hopes of your meeting."...."Alas!" he returned:
"My armour I changed on the field!
"A friend whom I loved from the dawning of youth,
For conquest and courage renowned,
Fell, fighting beside me, and thus he exclaimed,
While life issued fast from the wound:
"'And must I then die ere the flag of the Cross
Waves proudly o'er Saracen towers?
But grant me, loved Walter, this dying request,
For victory must surely be ours:
"'My armour well tried, and my falchion, my shield,
In memory of me deign to wear!
'T would sooth me to know, when the victory comes on,
That something of mine will be there!'
"I granted his wish, and his arms I assumed,
While yet he the action could see,
And marked with delight that his last closing look
Was fixt with fond pleasure on me.
"Yet now, this remembrance so dear to my heart
Is clouded by anxious regret;
Since, but for this change on the field of the fight,
The father and son would have met!"
"But if he has fought, and has fallen, my love!"....
"Suppress," cried the knight with a frown,
"A fear so ill-founded;....if Alfred had died,
He'd have fallen a child of renown ."
Yet vainly he strove by the father's proud hopes
To conquer the father's fond fears;
He feared for the life of his boy, though with smiles
He answered his Editha's tears.
And more and more forced grew the smile on his lip,
His brow more o'erclouded with thought;
At length he exclaimed, "From the field of renown
One mournful memorial I've brought.
"I grieve that I won it!....A Saracen chief
Fell bleeding before me in fight,
When lo! as I claimed him my prisoner and prize,
A warrior disputed my right.
"'I'm new to the battle,' he cried, 'and this prize
Will wreathe my young brow with renown,
Nor will I the conquest resign but with life:....
That chief by this arm was o'erthrown.'
"His daring enraged me,...for mine seemed the stroke
Which laid the proud Saracen low;....
Besides, from his bosom depended no cross,
His right to such daring to show."
"But surely, my Walter, the daring bespoke
A soul nobly eager for fame:
So many your laurels, that one you could spare,....
0 tell me you granted his claim !"
"No, Editha, no!....martial pride steeled my heart,
The youth I to combat defied;
He fought like a hero! but vainly he fought,...
Beneath my strong falchion he died."
"O ill-fated youth! how I bleed for his fate!
Perhaps that his mother, like me
Had armed him, and blest him, and prays for his life,
As I pray, my Alfred, for thee!....
"But never again shall he gladden her eyes,
And haste her fond blessing to crave!
O Walter! I tremble lest you in return
Be doomed to the sorrow you gave!
"Say, did not the cross, when your victim he fell,
Lie heavy and cold on your breast;....
That symbol of him full of meekness and love,
Whose deeds mercy only expressed?"
Yes....pity, shame, penitence seized on my soul;
So sweet too his voice was in tone!
Methought as he lay, and in agony groaned,
His accents resembled thine own.
"His casque I unlaced, and I chafed his cold brow,
And fain every wound would have healed;
So young, and so lovely he seemed, that I wept
As by him I tenderly kneeled.
"He saw my distress, and his last dying grasp
Forgiveness and kindness expressed;
And then, with a look I shall never forget,
He breathed his last sigh on my breast."
"But what's this memorial?" with cheek deadly pale
His Editha falteringly cried:...
"This scarf from his bosom!"....he uttered no more,
For Editha sunk by his side.
Ah then in her danger, her pale look of death,
He forgot all the laurels he'd won.
O father accurst!" she exclaimed, "in that youth
You slaughtered your Alfred....your son!"
, that massy, mouldering pile,
Whose ivied ruins load the ground,
Reechoed once to pious strains
By holy sisters breathed around.
There many a noble virgin came
To bid the world she loved....adieu;
There, victim of parental pride,
To years of hopeless grief withdrew.
Yes, proud St. Claire! thy costly walls
Have witnessed oft the mourner's pain;
And hearts in joyless durance bound,
Which sighed for kindred hearts in vain.
But never more within thy cells
Shall beauty breathe the fruitless sigh,
Nor hid beneath the envious veil
Shall sorrow dim the sparkling eye.
For now, a sight by reason blest,
Thy gloomy dome in ruins falls,
While bats and screechowls harbour there,
Sole tenants of thy crumbling walls.
And soon, blest change! as those dread plains,
Where Etna's burning torrents poured,
Become, when Time its power has shed,
With softly-smiling verdure stored:
So, when thy darkly-frowning towers
The verdant plain no longer load,
These scenes, where sorrow reigned, may prove
Fond, faithful lovers' blest abode.
And they shall pledge the nuptial vow,
Where once far different vows were heard;
And where thy pining virgins mourned,
Shall babes, sweet smiling babes, be reared.
Hail, glorious change, to Nature dear!
Methinks I see the bridal throng;
And hark, where lonely sisters prayed,
How sweetly swells the social song!
But nought, O! nought can her restore
To social life, to happy love,
Who once amidst thy cloistered train
With passion's hopeless sorrow strove.
Lamented maid! my faithful Muse
To pity's ear shall tell thy tale;
Shall tell, at midnight's awful hour
Why groaning ghosts affright the vale.
On Julia's softly dimpled cheek
Just bloom'd to view youth's opening rose,
When, proudly stern, her father bade
St. Claire's dark walls her bloom enclose.
But no reluctance to obey
With tears bedewed her beauteous cheek,
Since love with soft persuasive power
Not yet had taught her heart to speak.
"Yes,....be a nun's vocation mine,
So I my brother's bliss improve;
His be their wealth," sweet Julia cried,
So I may boast my parent's love!"
Proud Clermont blessed his generous child;
Her gentler mother dropped a tear,
As if her boding heart foretold
That love and Julia's woes were near.
For lo! where glows the nuptial feast,
And Clermont's heir leads in his bride,
While Julia, called that feast to grace,
Sits by a blooming baron's side.
Dear, fatal hour! the feast is o'er,
But still in faithful memory charms,
And Julia's conscious heart has learnt
To throb with passion's new alarms.
"Now then I feel the power of love,"
She on her sleepless pillow cried,
"Then must I still my sire obey,
And this warm heart in cloisters hide?
"But hold, fond girl! thy throbbing breast
May be with hopeless fondness fraught;
Yet sure Montrose's speaking eyes
Declared he felt the love he taught."
And well her hopes his glance had read,....
Montrose a mutual passion felt,
Nor long his tender pangs concealed,
But at her feet impassioned knelt.
Her downcast eye, her blush, her smile
To crown her lover's suit conspired,
Who, bold in hope, to Clermont told
The artless wish by fondness fired.
But told in vain--"Away!" he cried;
"O'er me your pleadings boast no power:
Think not my son his rights shall yield,
To swell my pining daughter's dower."
"No:--let his rights still sacred be,"
Montrose with throbbing heart replied,
"Give me but Julia's willing hand,
I ask, I wish for nought beside."
"And darest thou think that Clermont's child
Shall e'er pronounce the nuptial vow
Unless," he said, "I could a dower
Equal to Clermont's rank bestow!
"Away, young lord! entreat no more!
Nor thus with vain complainings mourn;
For, ere tomorrow's sun has set,
My child shall to her cell return."
He spoke, and frown'd.--Alas, Montrose!
In vain thy manly bosom mourned
For, ere tomorrow's sun had set,
Thy Julia to her cell returned.
But changed indeed! Youth's opening rose
Now on her cheek no longer glowed;
And now, with earthly cares opprest,
Before the holy shrine she bowed.
Now to religion's rites no more
Her heart with ready zeal impelled;
No more with genuine fervour warm,
Her voice the holy anthem swelled.
"Whence thy pale cheek? and whence, my child,
Proceeds this change?" the abbess said,
"Why heaves thy breast with deep-drawn sighs,
And wherefore droops thy youthful head?"
"Yes,....you shall know," the sufferer cried,
"And let my fate your pity move!
See Passion's victim! Morn and eve
This struggling soul is lost in love.
"And I yon sacred shrine profane;
The cross with languid zeal I press;
Montrose's image claims the vows
Which my false lips to Heaven address.
"Yes:--while I drop the sacred bead,
His form obtrudes upon my view,
And love's warm tears my rosary wet,
Love claims the sigh devotion's due.
"Inhuman Father! wilt thou risk
My peace on earth, and hopes of heaven?
Tremble, tyrannic parent, think
What love may do to madness driven!"
With pitying heart the abbess heard;
For she an answering pang had known,
And well her gentle soul could mourn
A fate, a grief, so like her own.
"But why despair, my child?" she said,
"Before thy father lowly kneel,
And teach that heart, though fenced by pride,
Compassion's generous throb to feel."
Julia the kind advice obeyed;
And when the haughty Clermont came,
Before his feet she lowly knelt,
And hailed him by a parent's name.
"Think'st thou to wrong thy brother's rights
I e'er can be by thee beguiled?"
"Father!" her trembling lips replied,
"Say, is not Julia too your child?
"For him you bid the nuptial feast,
And all life's dearest blessings glow,
While I, alike your child, you doom
To hopeless love, and lonely woe."
But vain remonstrance, tears, and prayers;
The Count's proud heart could all deride,
For Nature's voice can never melt
The callous bosom fenced by pride.
"Urge me no more," he fiercely said,
"But know, not long these prayers can last;
Reflect, fond girl! at morning's dawn
The year of thy probation's past!"
Pale, pale grew then her youthful cheek,
Heart-piercing seemed her mournful cry:
"Clermont! relent," her mother cried,
"Nor coldly doom thy child to die."
But vain was Julia's piercing shriek;
Nor justice he nor mercy knew:
"Receive," he said, "my last embrace,"....
Then from the mournful scene withdrew.
Loud called the evening bell to prayers,
But still on Julia vainly called,
Who, leaning on her mother's breast,
With desperate words that breast appalled.
"Suppress, suppress thy grief, my child,
Or fear to call dread vengeance down:
Wouldst thou not tremble, impious girl!
Before thy God's avenging frown?"
"Paint not that gracious God in frowns,
Did not for us a Saviour bleed?
In mercy clothe his awful power,
For I shall soon that mercy need."
Dark, cheerless, awful is the night
When tempests load the troubled air;
But darker, gloomier is the mind
Where reigns the ghastly fiend Despair.
Fond mother! in thy Julia's eyes
Canst thou not see his reign is near?
Inhuman father! hark! loud groans
Shall swell the blast;....Beware! beware!
"Mother, the hour commands thee hence,"
Sad Julia cried, "we now must part;
And never may thy bosom know
A grief like that which rends my heart!
"In all thy prayers tonight for me,
The awful throne of Heaven address,
While I with grateful bosom kneel,
And bid its power thy goodness bless."
Speechless the mourning mother heard;
Her tongue denied the word 'farewell!'
At length her quivering lips she pressed,
And Julia hurried to her cell.....
Now chill and loud the North wind blew,
Through the long aisles hoarse murmurs ran;
The shuddering sisters' cheeks were pale,
When they their midnight tasks began.
Mock'd by deep groans each anthem seemed,
The vaulted roofs still gloomier grew:
The blast of night was swelled by shrieks,
The bird of night ill-omened flew.
The trembling tapers grew more pale,
While, where their languid radiance fell,
A phantom dimly seemed to glide,
And loud was heard the passing bell.
"Did you not see a phantom flit?
Did you not hear the passing bell?"
Each sister cried; while, pale with dread,
With hurried steps she sought her cell.
At length arose the fatal morn
Decreed to seal sad Julia's doom,
And make the worm of hopeless love
Feed on her beauty's opening bloom.
"Julia, thy bridal vest prepare;
Thy heavenly spouse expects thee; rise!"
The abbess cried.--"Oh, stay awhile,"
Julia with broken tones replies.
"The tapers burn, the altar glows,
Robed are the priests in costly pride,
The organ sounds! Prepare!"--Again
"One moment stay!" the victim cried.
When through the long and echoing aisles
An unknown voice the abbess hears--
It seems with wild, impatience fraught--
And lo! Montrose himself appears!
"I come," he cries, "to claim my bride;
A father's frown no more impedes:
His son's no more!--and Julia now
To Clermont's wealth and power succeeds."
Distrest, yet pleased, the abbess heard,
While on to Julia's cell she led,
And, as she went, to pitying Heaven
Her arms in pious homage spread.
"Julia, come forth! come forth, my child!
Unlock thy cell, Montrose's bride!
Now thou art his, a father's frown
No longer will your fates divide.
"Behold him here to snatch thee hence,
And give thee to thy father's sight."
"How! silent still?" Montrose exclaimed;
"Why thus thy lover's soul affright?"
The door with trembling speed he forced....
Ah me! what object meets their eyes!
Stretcht on her bed in death's last pangs,
And bathed in blood, his Julia lies.
Presumptuous girl! when Heaven afflicts
Should we its dread decrees arraign?
Lo! Heaven thy woe with mercy saw,
But thou hast made its mercy vain.
"Behold the work of rash despair!"
In fluttering, feeble words she said:
"Had I been patient still, Montrose,
This day had blessings on me shed.
"Didst thou not say my father's heart
Had deigned at length thy vows to hear?
Too late remorse! but oh, to him
My pardon, and my blessing bear.
"But must I die? and canst not thou
Thy Julia from death's terrors save?
We should have been so blest, Montrose!
And must I leave thee for the grave?
"Help me! they tear me from thy arms,
Save me, O save thy destin'd bride!
It will not be;....forgive me, Heaven!"
She feebly said, then groaned and died.
Oh! who can paint the lover's woe,
Or childless father's deep remorse,
While, bending o'er the blood-stained bed,
He clasped his daughter's pallid corse!
But from this scene of dreadful woe,
Learn why the village swain turns pale,
When he at midnight wanders near
The mouldering Convent in the vale.
There, faintly heard through whispering trees,
A mournful voice on Julia calls;
There, dimly seen, a blood-stained vest
Streams ghastly o'er the ivied walls.
[Written to a Provincial Tune, and published by Mr. Biggs. ]
came to Grasmere's pleasant vale
A stranger maid in tatters clad,
Whose eyes were wild, whose cheek was pale,
While oft she cried, "Poor Kate is mad!"
Four words were all she'd ever say,
Nor would she shelter in a cot;
And e'en in winter's coldest day
She still would cry, "My brain is hot."
A look she had of better days;
And once, while o'er the hills she ranged,
We saw her on her tatters gaze,
And heard her say, "How Kate is changed!"
Whene'er she heard the death-bell sound,
Her face grew dreadful to behold;
She started, trembled, beat the ground,
And shuddering cried, "Poor Kate is cold!"
And when to church we brought the dead,
She came in ragged mourning drest;
The coffin-plate she trembling read,
Then laughing cried, "Poor Kate is blest!"
But when a wedding peal was rung,
With dark revengeful leer she smiled,
And, curses muttering on her tongue,
She loudly screamed, "Poor Kate is wild!"
To be in Grasmere church interred,
A corpse one day from far was brought;
Poor Kate the death-bell sounding heard,
And reached the aisle as quick as thought:
When on the coffin looking down,
She started, screamed, and back retired,
Then clasped it....breathing such a groan!
And with that dreadful groan expired.
to thy pencil! well its glowing art
Has traced those features painted on my heart;
Now, though in distant scenes she soon will rove,
Still here I behold the friend I love--
Still see that smile, "endearing, artless, kind,"
The eye's mild beam that speaks the candid mind,
Which, sportive oft, yet fearful to offend,
By humour charms, but never wounds a friend.
But in my breast contending feelings rise,
While this loved semblance fascinates my eyes;
Now, pleased I mark the painter's skilful line,
And now, rejoice the skill I mark is thine:
And while I prize the gift by thee bestow'd,
My heart proclaims, I'm of the giver proud.
Thus pride and friendship war with equal strife,
And now the friend exults, and now the wife.
wearing away like the snow in the sun,
I am wearing away from the pain in my heart;
But ne'er shall he know, who my peace has undone,
How bitter, how lasting, how deep is my smart.
I know he would pity--so kind is his soul,
To him my affliction would agony be;
But never, while I can my feelings control,
The youth whom I love shall know sorrow through me.
Though longing to weep, in his presence I'll smile,
Call the flush of my cheek the pure crimson of health;
His fears for my peace by my song I'll beguile,
Nor venture to gaze on his eyes but by stealth.
For conscious I am, by my glance is exprest
The passion that faithful as hopeless will be,
And he, whom, alas! I can ne'er render blest,
Shall never, no never, know sorrow through me.
Go, distant shores and brighter conquests seek,
But my affection will your scorn survive!
For not from radiant eyes or crimson cheek
My fondness I, or you your power derive;--
Nor sprung the passion from your fancied love;
To me, your smiles no dear delusion caused;
I saw you tower my humble hopes above,
And, ere I loved, I shuddered, trembled, paused.
But I was formed to prize superior worth,
And felt 't was virtue you, with love, to see;
I hoped a choice so glorious might call forth
Merit like yours, Lorenzo, e'en in me.--
Then go, assured that mine's no transient flame,
For on your worth it feeds, and lives upon your fame.
, Derwent's beauteous pride!
Whose charms rough rocks in threatening grandeur guard,
Whose entrance seems to mortals barred,
But to the Genius of the storm thrown wide.
He on thy rock's dread height,
Reclined beneath his canopy of clouds,
His form in darkness shrouds,
And frowns as fixt to keep thy beauties from the sight.
But rocks and storms are vain:
Midst mountains rough and rude
Man's daring feet intrude,
Till, lo! upon the ravished eye
Burst thy clear stream, thy smiling sky,
Thy wooded valley, and thy matchless plain.
Bright vale! the Muse's choicest theme,
My morning thought, my midnight dream;
Still memory paints thee, smiling scene,
Still views the robe of purest green,
Refreshed by beauty-shedding rains,
Which wraps thy flower-enamelled plains;
Still marks thy mountains' fronts sublime,
Force graces from the hand of time;
Still I thy rugged rocks recall,
Which seem as nodding to their fall,
Whose wonders fixed my aching sight,
Till terror yielded to delight,
And my surprises, pleasures, fears,
Were told by slow delicious tears.
But suddenly the smiling day
That cheered the valley, flies away;
The wooded rocks, the rapid stream,
No longer boast the noon-tide beam.
But storms athwart the mountains sail,
And darkly brood o'er Borrowdale.
The frightened swain his cottage seeks,
Ere the thick cloud in terror speaks:--
And see, pale lightning flashes round!
While as the thunder's awful sound
On Echo's pinion widely flies,
Yon cataract's roar unheeded dies;....
And thee, Sublimity! I hail,
Throned on the gloom of Borrowdale.
But soon the thunder dies away,
The flash withdraws its fearful ray;
Again upon the silver stream
Waves in bright wreaths the noon-tide beam.
O scene sequestered, varied, wild,
Scene formed to soothe Affliction's child,
How blest were I to watch each charm
That decks thy vale in storm or calm!
To see Aurora's hand unbind
The mists by night's chill power confined;
Upon the mountain's dusky brow
Then mark their colours as they flow,
Gliding the colder West to seek,
As from the East day's splendours break.
Now the green plain enchants the sight,
Adorned with spots of yellow light;
While, by its magic influence, shade
With contrast seems each charm to aid,
And clothes the woods in deeper dyes,
To suit the azure-vested skies.
While, lo! the lofty rocks above,
Where proudly towers the bird of Jove;
See from the view yon radiant cloud
His broad and sable pinions shroud,
Till, as he onward wings his flight,
He vanishes in floods of light;
Where feathered clouds on æther sail,
And glittering hang o'er Borrowdale.....
Or, at still midnight's solemn hour,
When the dull bat revolves no more,
In search of nature's awful grace,
I'd go, with slow and cautious pace,
Where the loud torrent's foaming tide
Lashes the rock's uneven side,....
That rock which, o'er the stream below
Bending its moss-clad crumbling brow,
Makes pale with fear the wanderer's cheek,
Nor midnight's silence fails to break
By fragments from its aged head,
Which, rushing to the river's bed,
Cause, as they dash the waters round,
A dread variety of sound;
While I the gloomy grandeur hail,
And awe-struck rove through Borrowdale.
Yes, scene sequestered, varied, wild,
So form'd to soothe Affliction's child,
Sweet Borrowdale! to thee I'll fly,
To hush my bosom's ceaseless sigh.
If yet in Nature's store there be
One kind heart-healing balm for me,
Now the long hours are told by sighs,
And sorrow steals health's crimson dyes,--
If aught can smiles and bloom restore,
Ah! surely thine's the precious power!
Then take me to thy world of charms,
And hush my tortured breast's alarms;
Thy scenes with unobtrusive art
Shall steal the mourner from her heart,....
The hands in sorrow claspt unclose,
Bid her sick soul on Heaven repose,
And, soothed by time and nature, hail
Health, peace, and hope in Borrowdale.
[From Mr. Bryan Edwards's History of the West Indies. ]
"SEVERAL vessels (says Dr. Robertson) were fitted out for the Lucayos, the commanders of which informed the natives, with whose language they were now well acquainted, that they came from a delicious country in which their departed ancestors resided, by whom they were sent to invite them to partake of the bliss which they enjoyed. That simple people listened with wonder and credulity, and, fond of visiting their relations and friends in that happy region, followed the Spaniards with eagerness. By this artifice above 40,000 were decoyed into Hispaniola, to share in the sufferings of that island, and its wretched race of men."
Affecting particulars of the poor Lucayans when
"Many of them in the anguish of despair refuse all sustenance, retire to desert caves and woods, and silently give up the ghost. Others, repairing to the sea-coast on the northern side of Hispaniola, cast many a longing look to that part of the ocean where they suppose their own islands situated, and as the sea breeze rises eagerly inhale it , believing it has lately visited their own happy valleys, and comes fraught with the breath of those they love, their wives and children. With this idea they continue for hours on the coast, till nature becomes utterly exhausted; when, stretching out their arms towards the ocean, as if to take a last embrace of their distant country and relations, they sink down, and expire without a groan."
, lonely shore! hail, desert cave!
To you, o'erjoyed, from men I fly,
And here I'll make my early grave....
For what can misery do but die?
Sad was the hour when, fraught with guile,
Spain's cruel sons our valleys sought;
Unknown to us the Christian's wile,
Unknown the dark deceiver's thought.
They said, that here, for ever blest,
Our loved forefathers lived and reigned;
And we, by pious fondness prest,
Believed the flattering tales they feigned.
But when we learnt the mournful truth....
No, I'll the horrid tale forbear:
For on our trusting, blighted youth,
My brethren, who will drop a tear!
Thou treasure of these burning eyes,
Where wave thy groves, dear native isle?
Methinks where yon blue mountains rise,
'Tis there thy precious valleys smile!
Yes....yes....these tears of joy that start,
The softly-soothing truth declare:
Thou whisperest right, my beating heart....
My loved regretted home is there!
But then its trees that wave so high,
The glittering birds that deck each grove,
I cannot, cannot hence descry,
Nor, dearer far, the forms I love.
Yet still the winds that cool my brow,
And o'er these murmuring waters come,
A joy that mocks belief bestow;
For sure they lately left my home.
Then deeply I'll the breeze inhale,
To life it yet imparts one joy,
Methinks your breath has filled the gale,
My faithful love, my prattling boy!
My prattling boy, my beauteous wife!
Say, do you still my name repeat,
And only bear the load of life
In hopes that we once more may meet!
My love! in dreams thou still art nigh,
But changed and pale thou seemest to be;
Yet still the more thou charmest my eye,
I think thee changed by love for me:....
While oft, to fond remembrance true,
I see thee seek the sparkling sand,
In hopes the little bark to view
That bears me to my native land.
But never more shall Zama's eye
Her loved returning husband see,
Nor more her locks of ebon dye
Shall Zama fondly braid for me.
Yet still, with hope chastised by fear,
Watch for my bark from yonder shore,
And still, my Zama, think me near,
When this torn bosom throbs no more.
Yet surely hope, each day deceived,
At length to daring deeds will fire;
The Spaniard's tale no more believed,
My fate will fearful doubts inspire.
And then, blest thought! across the main
Thou'lt haste, thy injured love to find,
All danger scorn, all fears disdain,
And gladly trust the waves and wind.
Ha! even now the distant sky
Seems by one spot of darkness crost;
Yes, yes, a vessel meets my eye!.....
Or else I gaze in phrensy lost!
It hither steers!........No....beating breast,
Too well I see what bade thee glow;
The sea-bird hastening to its nest,
To taste a joy I ne'er shall know.
Moment of hope, too bright to last,
Thou hast but deepened my despair;
But woe's severest pangs are past,
For life's last closing hours are near.
'T was morn when first this beach I sought,
Now evening's shadows fill the plain;
Yet here I've stood entranced in thought,
Unheeding thirst, fatigue, or pain.
'T is past....I faint...my throbbing brow
Cold clammy drops I feel bedew;
Dear native shore! where art thou now?....
Some Spaniard shuts thee from my view.
Monster, away! and let me taste
That joy in death, in life denied!
Still let me o'er the watery waste
Behold the hills which Zama hide!
Alas! I rave! no foe is near;
'T is death's thick mist obscures my sight;
Those precious hills, to memory dear,
No more shall these fond eyes delight!
But sent from thee, my native shore,
Again that precious breeze is nigh....
Zama, I feel thy breath once more,
And now content, transported, die!
it for this I dearly loved thee?....
But since at length I know thy heart,
And learn no real passion moved thee,
Go, Henry, go; this hour we part.
But do not think, past love forgetting,
That I thy foe can ever be;
My blighted hopes howe'er regretting,
I still shall pray for bliss to thee.
I still, no wrongs from thee resenting,
Shall wish Love's choicest treasures thine;
Though till life's closing sigh lamenting
The power to bless thee was not mine .
youthful Henry's restless bed
His weeping friends and parents pressed;
But she who raised his languid head
He loved far more than all the rest.
Fond mutual love their bosoms fired;
And nearly dawned their bridal day,
When every hope at once expired,
For Henry on his death-bed lay.
The fatal truth the sufferer read
In weeping Lucy's downcast eye:
"And must I, must I, then," he said,
"Ere thou art mine, my Lucy, die!
"No,...deign to grant my last, last prayer;
'T would soothe thy lover's parting breath,
Wouldst thou with me to church repair,
Ere yet I feel the stroke of death.
"For trust me, love, I shall my life
With something like to joy resign,
If I but once may call thee wife,
And, dying, claim and hail thee mine."
He ceased: and Lucy checked the thought
That he might at the altar die,....
The prayer with such true love was fraught,
How could she such a prayer deny?
They reached the church....her cheek was wan
With chilling fears of coming woe....
But triumph when the rites began
Lent Henry's cheek a flattering glow.
The nuptial knot was scarcely tied,
When Henry's eye strange lustre fired,
"She's mine! she's mine!" he faltering cried,
And in that throb of joy expired.
, thou art changed since first we met,
But think not I shall e'er regret,
Though never can my heart forget,
The charms that once were thine:
For, Marian, well the cause I know
That stole the lustre from thine eye;
That proved thy beauty's secret foe,
And bade thy bloom and spirits fly:
What laid thy health, my Marian, low,
Was anxious care of mine.
O'er my sick couch I saw thee bend
The duteous wife, the tender friend,
And each capricious wish attend
With soft, incessant care.
Then trust me, love, that pallid face
Can boast a sweeter charm for me,
A truer, tenderer, dearer grace
Than blooming health bestowed on thee;....
For there thy well-tried love I see,
And read my blessings there.
o'er the sands the youthful Cynthio strayed,
Moist from the wave he saw a pebble shine,
While, with its borrowed lustre charmed, he said
"Henceforth this sparkling treasure shall be mine."
But when his hand had dried the glistening prize,
Wond'ring he found the pebble beamed no more!
Then, having viewed it with disdainful eyes,
He, frowning, whirled it to its native shore.
Suppress thy fruitless rage! and on thy heart
Let this, sweet boy, a moral truth impress,
To blunt the power of Disappointment's dart,
And make the dangerous sway of Fancy less.
As o'er the pebble's form the waves had shed
In silver dews a soft attractive power,
So Fancy's hand delights in youth to spread
Delusive colours on the future hour.
Moist from her pencil tempting scenes arise;
On common life, romance's tints she lays;
Till cold Reality her hand applies,
And at the touch each flattered form decays.
Ingenuous boy, warned by experience, now
The pebble's charms shall tempt thine eyes no more;
Would that my verse, my Cynthio, could bestow
A shield to guard thee against Fancy's power!
maid! on whom my wishes rest,
My morning thought, my midnight dream,
O grant Lysander's fond request,
And let those eyes with mercy beam!
"Thy coy delays at length give o'er,
And let me claim thy nuptial vow!
Bid that cold bosom, cold no more,
With mutual passion's ardour glow.
"To yonder isle amidst the sea,
Which sportive laves those mountains' feet,
Beloved Euphrasia, haste with me,
And there the priest of Hymen meet.
"There, spicy groves thick foliage spread
The timid virgin's blush to hide;
There, gales which tender languors shed
Diffuse the richest perfumes wide.
"O! blest retreat for happy love!
And see the sun's descending beams
Now richly gild each distant grove,
And shed around soft roseate gleams.
"Then let this bark for thee designed,
For thee by anxious fondness drest,
Yon beauteous island strive to find,
And bear us o'er the ocean's breast."
Here paused the youth, and round her waist
His arm with timid boldness threw;
While from his grasp, with blushing haste,
The pleased yet frowning fair withdrew.
"And wilt thou scorn my suit?" he said,
While in despair his hands he wrung....
"Behold!" replied the yielding maid,
And to the bark she, sighing, sprung.
There, fondly seated by her side,
The youth her fluttered spirits cheered,
And o'er the eve-empurpled tide
To find the priest of Hymen steered.
But too, too slow for lovers' haste
The sluggish bark appeared to move;
Still lengthening seemed the watry waste,
To thy fond glances, eager love!
At length with fruitless wishes tired,
The fretful youth to Cupid prayed;
Who, pitying power! a thought inspired
The ardent suppliant's will to aid.
To hide her face from Love's keen gaze,
O'er which Consent's soft languor spread,
Within her veil's luxuriant maze
Euphrasia wrapt her beauteous head.
But now that veil the youth unbinds,
Then to the bark with ardour ties....
See! its folds catch the passing winds,
And lo, to land the vessel flies!
But not alone, youth loved of heaven!
Thy glowing bosom blessed that hour;
The thought, to crown thy wishes given,
Still charms with never-ending power:
And grateful ages yet unborn
Shall bless Euphrasia's floating veil;
Thence dawned on Art a brighter morn,
For thence she framed the swelling sail.
gay Summer! now the changing wind
That Autumn brings commands thee to retreat;
It fades the roses which thy temples bind,
And the green sandals which adorn thy feet.
Now flies with thee the walk at eventide,
That favouring hour to rapt enthusiasts dear;
When most they love to seek the mountain side,
And mark the pomp of twilight hastening near.
Then fairy forms around the poet throng,
On every cloud a glowing charm he sees....
Sweet Evening, these delights to thee belong:....
But now, alas! comes Autumn's chilling breeze,
And early Night, attendant on its sway,
Bears in her envious veil sweet Fancy's hour away.
, Laura, cease, suspect no more
This careless heart has learnt to love,
Because on yonder lonely shore
I still at pensive evening rove;
Because of Henry's worth I speak
With eager warmth and sparkling eye;
Because his favourite haunts I seek,
And still o'erjoyed to meet him fly:....
But, Laura, should my faltering tongue
Refuse to speak in Henry's praise,
My trembling voice deny the song
When Henry claims his favourite lays;
When Henry comes, should I neglect
With smiles the welcome youth to seek,
But meet him full of cold respect,
While conscious blushes paint my cheek;
Should I, when Ella shares his praise,
Heave deeply-drawn but smothered sighs,
And, when on me he deigns to gaze,
Fix on the earth my conscious eyes;....
Then, I'll no more thy charge deny,
No more thy tender fears reprove:
Then, Laura, heave compassion's sigh,
For mine will be the sigh of love.
heedless friend, why thus augment the flame
That glows resistless in my beating breast?
Why with thy praises grace his fatal name,
Who robs thy Emma's hapless heart of rest?
Why needest thou dwell on Henry's graceful ease;
Why praise the timid worth his glance reveals;
Why speak enraptured of his power to please,
Whose power to wound my aching bosom feels?
Say not, "That gentle voice was formed for love,"
Nor in his eyes such sweet expression see;
Say not, that tenderness those glances prove,
Which never fix with tenderness on me.
Too well my Henry's charms I've numbered o'er,
And thus to end the fond survey is mine:
His heart will own some brighter fair one's power;
Think not, lost Emma, he can e'er be thine.
Yet why despair? Though Beauty's boasted rose
On others' cheeks in livelier colours shine,
The tender heart that in my bosom glows
The palm of fondness will to none resign.
Though brighter radiance beams in others' eyes,
By shape, by colour formed the soul to steal;
If Love's expression Henry's heart can prize,
Then, Henry's heart the power of mine must feel.
Yet vain the hope: "Fond maid, thy love suppress,"
Calm Reason cries; "go, learn to check the sigh:
But, if resolved to love in rash excess,
Seek out some lonely shade, despair, and die!"
Then, Laura, bid to Henry's praise farewel!
Forget his merit, and my hopeless flame;
On the dear theme no more ill-judging dwell,
And from thy memory blot his fatal name.
But if I urge this plaintive prayer in vain,
Bid execrations on that name attend;
And him, my Laura, view with cold disdain,
Who sees unmoved the sorrows of thy friend.
Say, such the scorn, the pride of Henry's breast,
It cannot Love's endearing softness share,
Say, vice degrades....Hold! slight my wild request,
Nor by such calumny my fury dare.
No....from my frantic wishes still appeal,
Declare that Henry is from error free;
Or the keen hate for him I bade thee feel,
My wayward heart will learn to feel for thee .
thou hast learnt the secret of my soul,
Officious Friendship has its trust betrayed;
No more I need the bursting sigh control,
Nor summon pride my struggling soul to aid.
But think not banished hope returns again,
Think not I write thy thankless heart to move;
The faded form that tells my tender pain
May win thy pity, but it can't thy love.
Nor can I move thee by soft winning art,
By manners taught to charm, or practised glance;
Artless as thine, my too too feeling heart
Disdains the tutored eye, the fond advance.
The cold coquette, to win her destined prey,
May feign a passion which she ne'er can feel;
But I true Passion's soft commands obey,
And fain my tender feelings would conceal.
In others' eyes, when fixed on thine, I see
That fondness painted which alone I know;
Think not, my Henry, they can love like me,
More love I hide than they can e'er bestow.
While tender glances their emotions speak,
And oft they heave and oft suppress the sigh;
O turn to me, behold my pallid cheek
Shrinking from thine, behold my downcast eye!
While they by mirth, by wit, thine ear amuse,
And by their eloquence thy plaudits seek;
See me the fond contention still refuse,
Nor in thy presence, Henry, dare to speak.
When asked to breathe the soul-enchanting song,
See them o'erjoyed exert their utmost art;
While vainly I would join the choral throng,
Lost are those tones which once could touch the heart.
But, Henry, wert thou in Love's language wise,
Vainly would others more than Emma shine;
Beyond their sweetest strains thy heart would prize
One faint, one broken, tender tone of mine.
O proofs of passion, eloquent as vain!
By thee unheeded, or perhaps unknown,....
But learn, the pangs that prompt this pensive strain,
Ere long, disdainful youth, may be thine own.
Ah! no....in hopeless love thou canst not pine,
Thou ne'er canst woo the brightest maid in vain;
For thee Love's star midst cloudless skies will shine,
And light thy graceful steps to Hymen's fane:
While I, as hope, and strength, and life recede,
Far, far from thee shall waste the languid day;
Blest, if the scroll that speaks thy bliss I read,
But far more blest to feel life's powers decay.
not, while fairer nymphs invite
Thy feet, dear youth, to Pleasure's bowers,
My faded form shall meet thy sight,
And cloud my Henry's smiling hours.
Thou art the world's delighted guest,
And all that pride desires is thine;
Then I'll not wound thy generous breast,
By numbering o'er the woes of mine.
I will not say how well, how long
This faithful heart has sighed for thee;
But leave thee happier nymphs among,
Content if thou contented be.
But, Henry, should Misfortune's hand
Bid all thy youth's fond triumphs fly,
The crimson from thy lip command,
And force the lustre from thine eye,....
Then, thoughtless of my own distress,
I'll haste thy comforter to prove;
And Henry shall my friendship bless,
Although, alas! he scorns my love.
I hail this morn's appearing!
It will thee, my love, restore:
Safety danger past endearing,
Sure we meet to part no more!
Fame is thine, lo! crowds aver it,
And her smile is dear to thee;
But I charge thee, don't prefer it
E'er again to home and me.
Thou, thy country's call obeying,
Hast her battles nobly fought;
And, thy ready zeal repaying,
See, she gives the laurels sought.
But have I no claims, my rover?
Claims as fondly dear to thee?
Yes, O yes! and, wandering over,
Thou wilt rest with love and me.
Ha! methinks, thy glances reading,
From thine eyes my fate I know;
Duty still love's claim impeding,
Thou again must seek the foe.
Of my fears too dread revival!
Yet, with tearful joy I see,
Duty is the only rival
Potent over love and me.
! thy impatient bloom restrain!
Nor wake so soon thy genial power;
For deeds of death must hail thy reign,
And clouds of fate around thee lower:....
In vain thy balmy breath to me
Scents with its sweets the evening gale;
In vain the violet's charms I see,
Or fondly mark thy primrose pale:
To me thy softest zephyrs breathe
Of sorrow's soul-disparting tone;
To me thy most attractive wreath
Seems tinged with human blood alone.
Arrest thy steps, thou source of love,
Thou genial friend of joy and life!
Let not thy smile propitious prove
To works of carnage, scenes of strife:
Bid winter all his frowns recall,
And back his icy footsteps trace;
Again the soil in frost enthral,
And check the war-fiend's murderous chase.
Fond, fruitless prayer! Thy hand divine
The smiling season on must lead;
And still at war's ensanguined shrine
Must bid unnumbered victims bleed.
Seine, along thy winding tide
Fair smiles yon plain expanding wide,
And, deckt with art and nature's pride,
Seems formed for jocund revelry.
Scene, formed the eye of taste to please!
There splendid domes attention seize,
There, proudly towering, spreading trees
Arise in beauteous rivalry:....
But there's a place amidst that plain
Which bids its beauties beam in vain;
Which wakes the inmost soul to pain,
And prompts the throb of agony.
That place by day, lo! numbers fly,
And, shuddering, start to see it nigh;
Who there at midnight breathe the sigh
Of faithful, suffering, loyalty.
While, blending with those loyal sighs,
Oft times the patriot's murmurs rise,
Who thither, hid by darkness, flies,
To mourn the sons of liberty.
Lo! as amidst that plain I stray,
Methinks strange sadness shrouds the day,
And clothed in slaughter's red array
Appears the scene of gayety.
For once that spot was dark with blood,
There death's destroying engine stood,
There streamed, alas! the vital flood
Of all that graced humanity.
Ah! since this fair domain ye chose,
Dread ruffians, for your murderous blows,
Could not the smiling scene unclose
Your hearts to love and charity!
No....horrid contrast! on that scene
The murderer reared his poniard keen;
There proudly stalked with hideous mien
The blood-stained sons of anarchy.
Nor, Gallia, shall thy varied mirth,
Thy store of all that graces earth,
Ere give a kind oblivion birth
To thy recorded cruelty.
In all thy pomp of charms and power,
Earth can, alas! forget no more
The awful guilt that stains thy shore
With dies of sanguine tyranny,
Than they who see blue lightnings beam
Can ere forget, though fair they seem,
That danger lurks in every gleam,
And death's appalling agency.
fact is clear....Both man and woman
Prize not what's good, but what's uncommon ;
And most delighted still they are,
Not with the excellent, but rare,....
I could of this give proofs most stable,
But, par exemple , take a fable.
'T was night....but still a mimic day
Shone softly forth from milky way;
For now the bright unclouded moon
'Was riding in her highest noon....'
Who, as she slowly sailed along,
Beheld a most unusual throng
With eyes upraised devoutly gazing,
And heard, "Behold! see there! amazing!"
"What can this mean?" dame Cynthia said,
"Perhaps," and high she drew her head,
"Perhaps that I to earth tonight
Shine with unwonted beauty bright;
And therefore mortals in amaze
Come crowding forth on me to gaze;"
And then,....for heavenly beauties love,
Like earthly ones, applause to move,....
She stooped, within a lake below
To see how looked her sparkling brow:
And as her crescent she adjusted,
She thought, if mirrors might be trusted,
That night, so wondrous was her beauty,
To gaze on her was mortals' duty.
But O! sad fall to female pride!
She soon with wondering looks descried
'Twas not on her that eyes were turned;
For her no curious ardour burned;
At her no telescopes were aimed,
Nor wonder at her charms proclaimed;....
Some other idol now, she found,
Had fickle man in fetters bound;
And Cynthia was compelled to own,
Unseen her matchless beauty shone.
"But what," she cried, "thus rivals me?
I all the stars and planets see....
Orion has his belt in order;
Of Saturn's ring bright shines the border;
Mars sports his coat of reddest hue;
The Bear has put his horses to;....
But still, these sights so oft are seen,
There's nothing new in them I ween:
And after all I know the cry
Is, 'they are nought when I am by....'
'Tis strange; and I shall surely pout
Until I've found my rival out."
This said, she looked on every side
With eager looks of wounded pride,
And round with all the spite inspected
Of conscious beauty quite neglected;
When, lo! she saw with wondring breast,
Just twinkling in the northern west,
And dimly seen, since seen from far,
A rayless, misty, long-tailed star;
While homage from her charms was ravished,
To be on this poor Comet lavished!
W--k--e, beware! Though amateurs,
And nobles, artists, connoisseurs,
Thy works admire, thy skill commend,
And smiling o'er thy canvass bend,
Thy powers will be no more respected,
Thy crowded easel soon neglected,
If ever artist should appear
(The comet of dame fashion's sphere,)
Who works to wondering London shows
Not done with fingers , but with....toes .
not, Lothario, while I view
The bright expression of thy face,
And on thy cheek of crimson hue
Emotion's varying beauties trace,
That in my heart one feeling dwells,
But what the coldest must approve,
Nor think my conscious bosom swells
With aught resembling secret love.
No....still these eyes can fix on thine,
Nor fear their keenest glance to meet;
And when thou boldly searchest mine,
My quiet heart disdains to beat.
But, if by vain self-love misled,
Thou in my looks canst passion see;
And think, by weak illusions fed,
My towering hopes aspire to thee....
Let us my absent Henry seek;
And when he meets my conscious eyes,
In every glance my heart will speak,
And plainly tell for whom it sighs.
that cruel doubt, dear youth!
That starting tear, that sigh reprove;
Why dost thou wrong thine Emma's truth,
And think that aught can change my love?
Though of the world's vain selfish smile
Some adverse influence now bereave thee,
By fondness I'll thy cares beguile,
Though friends desert, I'll never leave thee.
Then bid each anxious fear farewel,
Each cold suspicion bid depart!
With thee, in deserts I could dwell,
Be thou content with Emma's heart.
Should care, should labour dim thine eye,
Should nearly treasured hopes deceive thee,
I'll love's persuasive duties try,
And, till thou'rt cheered, I'll never leave thee.
Should I, still urged by female pride,
In humble scenes reluctant move,
The ignoble feeling soon I'll chide,
And hail the home of thee, and love.
Should'st thou e'er frame a harsh reply,
I'll not with weak reproaches grieve thee,
But think new woes thy temper try,
And at thy bidding sigh, and leave thee.
Then learn to love affliction's hour,
From hollow friends it sets thee free,
And proves, beyond deception's power,
The value of a friend like me.
Then, whilst thou, Henry, hailst the day
That bade false hopes no more deceive thee,
I'll bless that passion's generous sway,
Which made me vow....I'd never leave thee.
faded lip may oft to thee
As gay a smile, my Anna, wear,
As when in youth, from sorrow free,
I only shed the transient tear.
And oft chill Autumn's varying day,
Resembles April's genial hours;
And glitters with the noontide ray,
Though oftener dark with clouds and showers.
And, when I join the social throng,
This heart as warmly seems to glow
As when my pensive early song
Was only tuned to fancied woe.
And oft we see gay ivy's wreath
The tree with brilliant bloom o'erspread,
When, part its leaves, and gaze beneath,
We find the hidden tree is dead.
dear to me the twilight hour!
It breathes, it speaks of pleasures past;
When Laura sought this humble bower,
And o'er it courtly splendours cast.
Fond fancy's friend, dim twilight, hail!
Thou canst the absent nymph restore;
And as around thy shadows sail,
They bring the form I still adore.
Again her pensive smile I view,
Her modest eye's soft chastened fire;
And mark her cheek of tender hue
From thee a softer tint acquire.
No eye but mine in that dim hour
The softly blushing maid could see;
And then her voice of magic power
Charmed with its sweetness none but me.
But now, alas! to distant plains,
To crowded scenes, perhaps, she flies;
She speaks, to charm unnumbered swains;
She smiles, to bless unnumbered eyes.
Yet if, while crowds before thee bow,
Thy lips to favouring smiles incline,
Think not, sweet maid, their bosoms glow
With love as pure, as true as mine.
Reflect,....I knelt before thy feet,
Afraid to speak, or look, or move,
Nor e'en thy pity dared entreat
For hours of hopeless pining love.
They can with bold unfaltering tongue
Their loudly-boasted flame reveal;
But, Laura, spurn the heartless throng,
They talk of pangs I only feel .
From glowing cheeks, and sparkling eyes,
O turn, my Laura! turn to him
From whose sunk cheek the colour flies,
Whose eye with hopeless love is dim.
O turn to me, whose blighted youth
The wreck of former days appears!....
But well the change has proved my truth,
And thou wilt own that change endears.
Yet, no; ah, no! forget, forget
My ardent love, my faith, and me;
Remember not we ever met;
I would not cause one pang to thee.
And when I hear that thou art blest,
My own distress I'll learn to scorn;
I'll bid imperious anguish rest,
While smiles my pallid lips adorn.
Deep in my heart the load of grief,
Concealed from every glance, shall lie;
Till sorrow proves its own relief,
And I shall suffer, smile, and die.
one kind look....one friendly word!
Wilt thou in chilling silence sit;
Nor through the social hour afford
One cheering smile, or beam of wit?
Yet still, absorbed in studious care,
Neglect to waste one look on me;
For then my happy eyes may dare
To gaze and dwell unchecked on thee.
And still in silence sit, nor deign
One gentle precious word to say;
For silent I may then remain,
Nor let my voice my soul betray.
This faltering voice, these conscious eyes,
My throbbing heart too plainly speak:
There timid hopeless passion lies,
And bids it silence keep, and break .
me how dear this twilight hour,
Cheered by the faggot's varying blaze!
If this be mine, I ask no more
On morn's refulgent light to gaze:
For now, while on HIS
I see the fire's red radiance fall,
The darkest seat I softly seek,
And gaze on HIM , unseen by all.
His folded arms, his studious brow,
His thoughtful eye, unmarked, I see;
Nor could his voice or words bestow
So dear, so true a joy on me.
But he forgets that I am near....
Fame, future fame, in thought he seeks:
To him ambition's paths appear,
And bright the sun of science breaks.
His heart with ardent hope is filled;
His prospects full of beauty bloom:
But, oh! my heart despair has chilled,
My only prospect is....the tomb!
One only boon from Heaven I claim,
And may it grant the fond desire!
That I may live to hear his fame,
And in that throb of joy expire .
hast thou marked my chilling eye,
And mourned my cold reserve to see,
Resolved the fickle friend to fly,
Who seemed unjust to worth and thee:
While I, o'erjoyed, thy anger saw....
Blest proof I had not tried in vain
To give imperious passion law,
And hide my bosom's conscious pain.
But when night's sheltering darkness came,
And none the conscious wretch could view,
How fiercely burned the smothered flame!
How deep was every sigh I drew!
Yet still to thee I'll clothe my brow
In all that jealous pride requires;
My look the type of Ætna's snow....
My heart, of Ætna's secret fires.
little moment, short as blest,
Compassion Love's soft semblance wore;
My meagre form he fondly pressed,
And on his beating bosom bore.
His frame with strong emotion shook,
And kindness tuned each faltering word;
While I, surprised, with anxious look
The meaning of his glance explored.
But soon my too experienced heart
Read nought but generous pity there;
I felt presumptuous hope depart,
And all again was dark despair.
Yet still, in memory still, my heart
Lives o'er that fleeting bliss again;
I feel his glance, his touch, impart
Emotion through each bursting vein.
," I cry, "those eyes so sweet
On me with fondness deigned to shine;
For once I felt his bosom beat
Against the conscious throbs of mine!"
Nor shall the dear remembrance die
While aught of life to me is given;
But soothe my last convulsive sigh,
And be, till then, my joy....my heaven!
was a time, poor phrensied maid,
When I could o'er thy grief have mourned,
And still with tears the tale repaid
Of sense by sorrow's sway o'erturned.
But now thy state my envy moves:
For thou art woe's unconscious prize;
Thy heart no sense of suffering proves,
No fruitless tears bedew thine eyes.
Excess of sorrow, kind to thee,
At once destroyed thy reason's power;
But reason still remains to me,
And only bids me grieve the more.
are thy towers, Byzantium! towers that stood
Before the Turk's dread fury, when he came,
The crescent sparkling amidst Christian blood,
And to the reeking den of Moloch turned
Sophia's holy fane! Where, where are now,
Imperial city, the late proud remains
Of thy brave founder's greatness, when he clothed
In worldly grandeur pure Religion's form;
Then placed beside him, placed upon a throne,
The lowly Nazarene's meek simple child!....
He, wandering then upon a Christian land,
Stranger at home had been, nor known again
His artless rites, his followers, in the domes
Filled with the sparkling shrine, the rich-robed priests,
And pomp of earthly greatness........But not long
Lived there his name....Science and art, farewell!
The foe of light and love, Mohammed, comes,
And Constantine's proud race exists no more.
But, sons of Mahomet, the towers he built,
Though by your anger spared, have fallen now,
And crushed your bloody race! A mightier arm
Than his who raised, or spared, yon domes came forth;
From the hot sable rolling cloud it came,
And crumbled them to dust!....The wind, the air,
Seem in strict silence bound, but smiling still
Appears the face of day; assassin-like,
Smiling, though conscious of intended death.
But Nature trembles at her own repose;
The brute creation dread forebodings shake;
While man alone is bold.....But see where now
The labouring ocean, in fantastic shapes
And sudden swells, her heaving bosom rears;
Like the mad Pythia, when the Delphian god
Spoke by her fraudful lips....But here, alas!
A real God that world of waters moves
To do his dreadful bidding!....
Hark! he comes!
The thunder's roar, the rush of winds proclaim
The Mighty One is near....But oh! when past
His power, and those he spared raised up their heads,
Where was the eye could bear upon the waste
To gaze, and mark the ruin stretching wide!
Oh! ye were blest, ye victims, ye who fell
Deep in the yawning chasm!...."Where are now,"
The sad survivor cries, "my peaceful home,
The sacred mosque I loved, the child, the wife
I clasped but now; the city towering high,
Proud in its strength?....Disperse, thou gloomy cloud,
And let me gaze on them!" The cloud's dispersed;
But he beholds no city, he can trace
No vestige of his home: a putrid lake
Or barren ground replace them, and proclaim,
Devouring earthquake, thy resistless power.
! blest country, from such woes as these
Thy temperate clime preserves thee; lightly felt,
If ever, by thy comfort-breathing shores,
The earthquake desolating distant lands:
And....thou hast cause to lift thy voice most high,
In the great choir of nations hymning praise.
But ye, who wander from your native shores,
While haply such calamity draws near
As sunk Byzantium; ye, whose eager hearts
Anticipate a glad return to scenes
Ye shall behold no more, for ever swept
From off the earth, unconscious heirs of woe;
For you I mourn!....Methinks I see the cheek
Flushed with delight, chastized perhaps by fear,
When your own land approaches....See the eye
Misty with tears ope wide its eager lid
To catch the well-known objects! Horrid change!
Fear pales that glowing cheek, and dries that eye,
"It is our native shore,....but where are gone
The fanes, the spires, erewhile our city's pride?"
I hear you cry. "The pilot is deceived,
And hope deceived us too....'Tis not our land!"
But soon the mournful certainty ye guess,
And leap to shore; and there ye call in vain
On all ye loved....Throughout the silent streets
That yet remain, perhaps some meagre form
May trembling steal along, and tell the tale;
While on the ruins some lone maniac sits,
And, as he points to where the chasm yawned,
Boasts of the treasures earth preserves for him;
Or, while a sudden beam of reason darts,
Screams his discordant anguish, and commands
Earth to give back his children!....
Angel of woe, that from the eternal hand
Receivest thy dread commission, going forth
To flap thy sable pinions o'er the world,
And shed unnumbered evils, which appear
To piety's uplifted eye as good
Concealed in evil's garb;....angel of woe,
Upon thy awful power I've pondered oft,
In all its dark varieties, I've sought
The horrid path where Madness stalks along
In fancied majesty, or from his cell
Sends the loud shriek, or more afflicting laugh;
And, as I hurried from the o'erwhelming scene,
Have shuddering owned thy awful presence there ,....
I've seen thee by the death-bed sit, and bid
The silent corse to speak again, and urge
The eyes for ever closed to ope once more
And beam as they were wont:....and I have walked
In slow procession to the opening grave,
And seen thee triumph when the earth received
The form beloved, and the deep bursting groan
Bespoke affliction's forced composure o'er,
And agony victorious! I have gazed
Upon the guilty wretch, when, doomed to die,
Terror has vanquished him, and his pale cheek
Has proved the falsehood of his vaunting tongue,
While, to his startled fancy, in the rear
Of Death came judgement, and the world to come
Unfolded all its horrors! There, O there,
Thee I beheld, and fled from!....and I've heard
How on the sultry suffocating breath
Of livid pestilence, thou, floating wide,
Hast done thy master's bidding! Vain were then
The ties of nature! from the parent's grasp
The child has forced its once sustaining hand,
And, horror-struck, has from contagion fled!
While the fond parent, from his dying child
Vainly his aid imploring, terror-winged,
Has urged his selfish flight* ! And there thou wert....
But when the earthquake's varied horrors come,
All, all thy ministers are waiting round,
Fear, Madness, Pestilence, Pain, Famine, Death,
And all the AGONIES COMBINED are there!
many a fond and blooming maid
Attempts thy heart to gain;
And, by thy fatal smile betrayed,
Thinks not she strives in vain:
While in those eyes of tender blue
They answering passion see,
And in thy sweet expression view
The charm that conquered me:....
I still should scorn their winning art,
And be, my Henry, blest,
If thou wouldst give that precious heart
To her who loves thee best.
fatal form, where'er I go,
Still swims before my sight;
It dooms the day to restless woe,
Of sleep it robs the night:
While thou art wandering far away,
From all such sorrow free;
Forgetting her, who, night and day,
Can think of NOUGHT BUT THEE .
Yet, be it so! I would not cloud
Thy days in gloom like mine;
No....though my life to grief be vowed,
May constant bliss be thine!
I'll ne'er by looks, or language, speak
The pang that preys on me;
Nor shalt thou, if my heart should break,
Suspect it BREAKS FOR THEE .
[ Written to a Hindoo Air, and published by Mr. Biggs. ]
not, whence springs my ceaseless sadness,
But let me still the secret keep:
Ask not, why thus in restless madness
Pass the long hours once given to sleep:
And strive not thus my looks to read:....
For 't is by certain fate decreed,
The cause that bids me rove forlorn,
If known, would only move thy scorn,
And make with anger's lightnings shine
Those now soft-smiling eyes of thine.
But know, when I no more behold thee,
And to distant scenes remove;
Should e'er a mournful tale be told thee,
Of a youth who died for love,
Who, though unknown to rank and fame,
Dared to admire a high-born dame;
But, still averse to wound her pride,
Sad silence kept, and pined, and died:....
My likeness in that victim see,
And pitying him thou'lt pity me.
....though we've loved so long, so well,
Imperious duty bids us part;
But though thy breast with anguish swell,
A pang more lasting tears my heart.
My grief is dumb,....loquacious thine,
The mournful hoard I sacred keep;
Thou seekest crowds, alone I pine;
My eyes are dry, but thine can weep.
Then, whatsoe'er thy lips have vowed,
A truer sorrow sways my soul;
For shallow streams run bright and loud,
Deep waters darkly silent roll.
[Written to some of the Welsh Airs which are soon to be published
by Mr. Thomson of Edinburgh. ]
fondly I gaze on the fast falling-leaves,
That mark, as I wander, the summer's decline;
And then I exclaim, while my conscious heart heaves,
"Thus early to droop and to perish be mine!"
Yet once I remember, in moments long past,
Most dear to my sight was the spring's opening bloom;
But then my youth's spring sorrow had not o'ercast,
Nor taught me with fondness to look on the tomb.
Fair Spring! now no longer these grief-faded eyes
Thy rich glowing beauties with pleasure can see;
Thy pale sickly hues, chilly Autumn, I prize,
They suit blighted hopes, and are emblems of me.
dost thou bide, blessed soul of my love!
Is ether thy dwelling, O whisper me where!
Rapt in remembrance, while lonely I rove,
I gaze on bright clouds, and I fancy thee there.
Or to thy bower when musing I go,
I think, 't is thy voice that I hear in the breeze;
Softly it seems to speak peace to my woe,
And life once again for a moment can please.
If this be phrensy alone, 't is so dear,
That long may the pleasing delusion be nigh;
Still Ellen's voice in the breeze may I hear,
Still see in bright clouds the kind beams of her eye!
hung the dark clouds on Plinlimmon's tall peak,
And slowly, yet surely, the winter drew near;
When Ellen, sweet Ellen, a tear on her cheek,
Exclaimed as we parted, "In May I'll be here."
How swiftly I ran up the mountain's steep height,
To catch the last glimpse of an object so dear!
And, when I no longer could keep her in sight,
I thought on her promise,...."In May I'll be here."
Now gladly I mark from Plinlimmon's tall peak
The low-hanging vapours and clouds disappear,
And climb the rough mountain, thence Ellen to seek,
Repeating her promise...."In May I'll be here."
But vainly I gaze the wide prospect around,
'T is May, yet no Ellen returning is near:
Oh, when shall I see her! when feel my heart bound,
As sweetly she cries, "It is May, and I'm here!"
ask why these mountains delight me no more,
And why lovely Clwyd's attractions are o'er;
Ah! have you not heard, then, the cause of my pain?
The pride of fair Clwyd, the boast of the plain,
We never, no never, shall gaze on again!
What though from her coldness keen anguish I felt,
And vainly, to move her, in agony knelt;
Yet could I restore her, I'd never complain,
Not e'en though she doomed me to endless disdain....
I'd bear any torture to see her again.
I grieved when on others with kindness she gazed,
I mourned when another with pleasure she praised;
But could I recall her to life by my pain,
I'd urge her to favour some happier swain,
And wish no reward but to see her again.
Those beauties that charmed me, from death I would free,
Though sure that those beauties another's should be!
But truth, and affection, and grief are all vain;
The pride of fair Clwyd, the boast of our plain,
We never, ah never! can gaze on again!
Printed by RICHARD TAYLOR & CO ., Shoe-Lane .