« AnteriorContinuar »
Childe Harold was he hight :—but whence his name And lineage long, it suits me not to say; Suffice it, that perchance they were of fame, And had been glorious in another day: But one sad loscl soils a name for aye, However mighty in the olden time; Nor all that heralds rake from coffined clay, Nor florid prose, nor honied lies of rhyme. Can blazon evil deeds, or consecrate a crime.
Childe Harold basked him in the noon-tide sun* Disporting there like any other fly; Nor deemed before his little day was done One blast might chill him into misery. But long ere scarce a third of his passed by, Worse than adversity the Childe befell; He felt the-ftslness of satiety: Then loathed he in his native land to dwell, Which seemed to him more lone than Eremite's sad cell.
For he through Sin's long labyrinth had run,
And now Childe Harold was sore sick at heart, And from his fellow bacchanals would flee; 'Tis said, at times the sullen tear would start, But Pride congealed the drop within his ee: Apart he stalked in joyless reverie, And from his native land resolved to go, And visit scorching climes beyond the sea; With pleasure drugged he almost longed for woe, ^ And e'en for change of scene would seek the shades below.
The Childe departed from his father's hall:
Yet oft-times in his maddest mirthful mood Strange pangs would flash along Childe Harold's brow, As if the memory of some deadly feud Or disappointed passion lurked below: But this none knew, nor haply cared to know; For his was not that open, artless soul That feels relief by bidding sorrow flow, Nor sought he friend to counsel or condole, Whate'er this grief mote be which he could not control. IX.
And none did love him—though to hall and bower He gathered revellers from far and near, He knew them flatt'rers of the festal hour; The heaitless parasites of present cheer. Yea! none did love him—not his lemons dearPut pomp and power alone are woman's care, And where these are light Eros finds a feere; Maidens, like moths, are ever caught by glare, And Mammon wins his way where Seraphs might despair.
Childe Harold had a mother—not forgot, Though parting from that mother he did ihun; A sister whom he loved, bitl saw her not Before his weary pilgrimage begun: If friends he had, he bade adieu to none. Yet deem not thence his breast a breast of steel; Ye who have known what 'tis to doat upon A few dear objects, will in sadness feel Such partings break the heart they fondly hope to heal.
His house, his home, his heritage, his lands, The laughing d;imes in whom he did delight, Whose large blue eyes, fair locks, aud snowy hands Might shiike the saintship of an anchorite, And long had fed his youthful appetite; His goblets brimmed with every co>tly wine, Anil all tha* mote to luxuiy invite, Without a sigh he left, to cross thr briuc, And traverse Payuim shores, aud pass Earth's central lin«.
The sails were filled, am1 fair the light winds blew, As glad to waft him from his native home; And fast the white rocks faded from his view, And soon were lost in circumambient foam: And then, it may be, of his ivi.-h to roam Repented be, but in his bosom slept The silent thought, nor from his lips did come One word of wail, whilst others sate and wept, And to the reckless gales unmanly moaning kept.
But when the sun was sinking in the sea He seized his harp, which he at times could string, And strike, albeit with untaught meloily, When deemed he no strange ear was listening: And now his lingers o'er it he did (ling. And tuned his farewell in the dim twilight. While flew the vessel oo her snowy wing, And fleeting shores receded from his sight, Thus to the elements be poured bis !a,n « Good Night. »
.. Adieu, adieu! my naiive shore
Fades o'er the waters blue;
And shrieks the wild scamew.
We follow in his flight;
My native laud—Good Night!
« A few short hours and he will rise
To give the morrow birth;
But not my mother earth.
Its hearth is desolate;
My dog howls at the gate.
.< Come hither, hither, my little page!
Why dost thou weep and wail?
Or tremble at the gale?
Our ship is swift and strong:
More merrily along. »
« Let winds be shrill, let waves roll high, I fear not wave nor wind;
Yet marvel not, Sir Childe, that I
For I have from my father gone,
And have no friend, save these alone,
Yet did not much complain; But sorely will my mother sigh
Till I come back again. »—