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VII.

170

A change came o'er the spirit of my dream.
The lady of his love;-Oh! she was changed
As by the sickness of the soul; her mind
Had wander'd from its dwelling, and her eyes
They had not their own lustre, but the look
Which is not of the earth; she was become
The queen of a fantastic realm; her thoughts
Were combinations of disjointed things;
And forms impalpable and unperceived
Of others' sight familiar were to hers.
And this the world calls phrensy; but the wise
Have a far deeper madness, and the glance
Of melancholy is a fearful gift ;
What is it but the telescope of truth?
Which strips the distance of its phantasies,
And brings life near in utter nakedness,
Making the cold reality too real !

180

VIII.
A change came o'er the spirit of my dream.-
The Wanderer was alone as heretofore,
The beings which surrounded him were gone,
Or were at war with him; he was a mark
For blight and desolation, compass'd round
With Hatred and Contention ; Pain was mix'd

In all which was served up to him, until

190 Like to the Pontic monarch of old days, (11) He fed on poisons, and they had no power, But were a kind of nutriment; he lived Through that which had been death to many men, And made him friends of mountains : with the stars And the quick Spirit of the Universe He held his dialogues; and they did teach To him the magic of their mysteries; To him the book of Night was open'd wide, And voices from the deep abyss reveal'd 200 A marvel and a secret-Be it so.

IX.
My dream was past; it had no further change.
It was of a strange order, that the doom
Of these two creatures should be thus traced out
Almost like a reality—the one
To end in madness—both in misery.

PROMETHEUS.

I.
TITAN! to whose immortal eyes

The sufferings of mortality,

Seen in their sad reality, Were not as things that gods despise; What was thy pity's recompense ? A silent suffering, and intense; The rock, the vulture, and the chain, All that the proud can feel of pain, The agony they do not show, The suffocating sense of woe,

Which speaks but in its loneliness, And then is jealous lest the sky Should have a listener, nor will sigh

Until its voice is echoless.

Titan! to thee the strife was given

Between the suffering and the will,

Which torture where they cannot kill; And the inexorable Heaven, And the deaf tyranny of Fate, The ruling principle of Hate,

Which for its pleasure doth create
The things it may annihilate,
Refused thee even the boon to die:
The wretched gift eternity
Was thine—and thou hast borne it well.
All that the Thunderer wrung from thee
Was but the menace which flung back
On him the torments of thy rack;
The fate thou didst so well foresee,
But would not to appease him tell;
And in thy Silence was his Sentence,
And in his Soul a vain repentance,
And evil dread so ill dissembled
That in his hand the lightnings trembled.

III.

Thy Godlike crime was to be kind,

To render with thy precepts less

The sum of human wretchedness,
And strengthen Man with his own mind;
But baffled as thou wert from high,
Still in thy patient energy,
In the endurance, and repulse

Of thine impenetrable Spirit,
Which Earth and Heaven could not convulse,

A mighty lesson we inherit :

Thou art a symbol and a sign

To Mortals of their fate and force; Like thee, Man is in part divine,

A troubled stream from a pure source; And Man in portions can foresee His own funereal destiny; His wretchedness, and his resistance, And his sad unallied existence: To which his Spirit may oppose Itself—an equal to all woes,

And a firm will, and a deep sense, Which even in torture can descry

Its own concenter'd recompense, Triumphant where it dares defy, And making Death a Victory.

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