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Of little eyes ; as though thou wert to shed
Handfuls of daisies." Overpowered by this “ celestial colloquy sublime,' ” he sinks at last into slumber — and on wakening finds the scene disenchanted; and the dull shades of evening deepening over his solitude:
up I started — Ah! my sighs, my tears !
wild self did teaze
Faint Fare-thee-wells - and sigh-shrilled Adieus!" Soon after this he is led away by butterflies to the haunts of Naiads; and by them sent down into enchanted caverns, where he sees Venus and Adonis, and great flights of Cupids; and wanders over diamond terraces among beautiful fountains and temples and statues, and all sorts of fine and strange things. All this is very fantastical: But there are splendid pieces of description, and a sort of wild richness in the whole. We cull a few little morsels. This is the picture of the sleeping Adonis:
** In midst of all, there lay a sleeping youth
Of fondest beauty. Sideway his face repos'd
· Hard by,
A willow-bough, distilling odorous dew,
Rain'd violets upon his sleeping eyes." - p. 72, 73.
“Forth from a rugged arch, in the dusk below,
In another gloomy arch!"- p. 83. The following picture of the fairy waterworks, which he unconsciously sets playing in these enchanted caverns, is, it must be confessed, “high fantastical ;" but we venture to extract it, for the sake of the singular brilliancy and force of the execution:
“So on he hies
Of Flowers, Peacocks, Swans, and Naiads fair!
Cathedrals nam'd!” There are strange melodies too around him; and their effect on the fancy is thus poetically described :
“Oh! when the airy stress
In ev'ry place where infant Orpheus slept !" In the midst of all these enchantments he has, we do not very well know how, another ravishing interview with his unknown goddess; and when she again melts away from him, he finds himself in a vast grotto, where he overhears the courtship of Alpheus and Arethusa ; and as they elope together, discovers that the grotto has disappeared, and that he is at the bottom of the sea, under the transparent arches of its naked waters! The following is abundantly extravagant; but comes of no ignoble lineage — nor shames its high descent:
“ Far had he roam'd,
There he finds ancient Glaucus enchanted by Circe hears his wild story — and goes with him to the de
. liverance and restoration of thousands of drowned lovers, whose bodies were piled and stowed away in a large submarine palace. When this feat is happily performed, he finds himself again on dry ground, with woods and waters around him; and cannot help falling desperately in love with a beautiful damsel whom he finds there, pining for some such consolation; and who tells a long story of having come from India in the train of Bacchus, and having strayed away from him into that forest!So they vow eternal fidelity; and are wafted up to heaven on flying horses; on which they sleep and dream among the stars; - and then the lady melts
- away, and he is again alone upon the earth ; but soon rejoins his Indian love, and agrees to give up his goddess, and live only for her: But she refuses, and says she is resolved to devote herself to the service of Diana: But, when she goes to accomplish that dedication, she turns out to be the goddess herself in a new shape! and finally exalts her lover with her to a blessed immortality!
We have left ourselves room to say but little of the second volume; which is of a more miscellaneous character. Lamia is a Greek antique story, in the measure and taste of Endymion. Isabella is a paraphrase of the same tale of Boccacio which Mr. Cornwall has also imitated, under the title of “ A Sicilian Story.” It would be worth while to compare the two imitations; but we have no longer time for such a task. Mr. Keats has followed his original more closely, and has given a deep pathos to several of his stanzas. The widowed bride's discovery of the murdered body is very strikingly given. "Soon she turnd up a soiled glove, whereon
Her silk had play'd in purple phantasies !
And put it in her bosom, where it dries.
Then 'gan she work again ; nor stay'd her care,
Until her heart felt pity to the core,
And so she kneeled, with her locks all hoar,
Three hours they labour'd at this travail sore ;
And then — the prize was all for Isabel !
And all around each eye's sepulchral cell
With tears, as chilly as a dripping well,
Sighing all day -- and still she kiss'd, and wept !
Of precious flowers pluck'd in Araby,
Through the cold serpent-pipe refreshfully, -
A garden pot, wherein she laid it by,
And she forgot the blue above the trees;
And she forgot the chilly autumn breeze!
And the new morn she saw not!
And moisten'd it with tears, unto the core !” — p. 72–75. The following lines from an ode to a Nightingale are equally distinguished for harmony and high poetic feeling:
O for a beaker full of the warm South !
And purple-stained mouth!
And with thee fade away into the forest dim!
What Thou among the leaves hast never known
Here, -- where men sit and hear each other groan;
But in peace