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38 CHILDE PAROLD'S PILGRIMAGE.
LXXXIV. Still he beheld, nor mingled with the throng; But viewed them not with misanthropic hate : Fain would he now have joined the dance, the song; But who may sınile that sinks beneath his fate? Nought that he saw his sadness could abate : Yet once he struggled 'gainst the demon's sway, And as in Beauty's bower he pensive sate,
Poured forth this unpremeditated lay, To charms as fair as those that soothed his happier day.
Nay, smile not at my sullen brow,
· Alas! I cannot smile again;
Yet heaven avert that ever thou
Should'st weep, and haply weep in vain.
And dost thou ask, what secret woe
I bear, corroding joy and youth?
And wilt thou vainly seek to know
A pang, ev’n thou must fail to soothe ?
It is not love, it is not hate,
Nor low ambition's honours lost,
That bids me loathe my present state ,
And fly from all I prized the most :
... .. 4.
It is that weariness which springs
· From all I meet, or hear, or see :
To me no pleasure beauty brings ;
Thine eyes have scarce a charm for me.
It is that settled, ceaseless gloom • The fabled Hebrew wanderer bore; That will not look beyond the tomb,
But cannot hope for rest before.
What exile from himself can flee ?
To zones, though more and more remote, Still, still pursues, where-e'er I be,
The blight of life-the demon, Thought.
Yet others rapt in pleasure seem,
And taste of all that I forsake :
Oh!. may they still of transport dream,
And ne'er, at least like me, awake !
Through many a clime 'tis mine to go,
With many a retrospection curst, And all my solace is to know
Whate'er betides, l've known the worst.
9. What is that worst? Nay do not ask
In pity from the search forbear : Smile on-nor venture to unmask
Man's heart, and view the Hell that's there.
Adieu, fair Cadiz! yea, a long adieu !
Who may forget how well thy walls have stood ?
When all were changing thou alone wert true,
First to be free and last to be subdued :
And if amidst a scene, a shock so rude,
Some native blood was seen thy streets to die;
A traitor only fell beneath the feud :
Here all were noble, 'save Nobility;
None hugged a conqueror's chain, save fallen Chivalry!
Such be the sons of Spain, and strange ber fate!
They fight for freedom who were never free;
A kingless people for a perveless state,
Her vassals combat when their chieftains flee,
True to the veriest slaves of treachery :
Fond of a land which gave them nought but life ,
Pride points the path that leads to liberty;
Back to the struggle, baffled in the strife,
War, war is still the cry, « War even to the knife! »
Ye, who would more of Spain and Spaniards know,
Go, read whate'er is writ of bloodiest strife :
Whate'er keen vengeance urged on foreign foe
Can act, is acting there against man's life :
From flashing scimitar to secret knife,
War mouldeth there each weapon-to his need
So may he guard the sister and the wife,
So may he make each curst oppressor bleed,
So may such foes deserve the most remorseless deed!
Flows there a tear of pity for the dead? Look o’er the ravage of the reeking plain; Look on the bands with female slaughter red; Then to the dogs resign the unburied slain, Then to the vulture let each corse remain;. Albeit unworthy of the prey-bird's maw, Let their bleached bones, and blood's unbleaching stain, Long mark the battle-field with hideous awe : Thus only may our sons conceive the scenes we saw !
Nor yet, alas! the dreadful work is done,
Fresh legions pour adown the Pyrenees;
It deepens still, the work is scarce begun,
Nor mortal eye the distant end foresees.
Fall'n nations gaze on Spain; if freed, she frees
More than her fell Pizarros once enchained.
Strange retribution! now Columbia's ease
Repairs the wrongs that Quito's sons sustained,
While o'er the parent clime prowls Murder unrestraired.
Have womall bier Deathe ho shall sium his spone sail!
Not all the blood at Talavera shed, .
Not all the marvels of Barossa's fight,
Not Albuera lavish of the dead,
Have won for Spain her well asserted right.
When shall ber olive-branch be free from blight?
When shall she breathe her from the blushing toil ?
How many a doubtful day shall sink in night, ,
Ere the Frank robber turn him from his spoil,
And Freedom's stranger-tree grow native of the soil !
And thou, my friend !-since unavailing woe
Bursts from my heart, and mingles with the strain
Had the sword laid thee with the mighty low,
Pride might forbid ev'n Friendship to complain :
.But thus unlaureled to descend in vain,
By all forgotten, save the lonely breast,
And mix unbleeding with the boasted slain,
While glory crowns so many a meaner crest!
What hadst thou done to sink so peacefully to rest!
Oh! known the earliest, and esteemed the most!
Dear to a heart where nought was left so dear!
Though to my hopeless days for ever lost,
In dreams deny me not to see thee here!
And morn in secret shall renew the tear
Of consciousness awaking to her woes,
And Fancy hover o'er thy bloodless bier,
Till my frail frame return to whence it rose,
And mourned and mourner lie united in repose.
Here is one fytte of Harold's pilgrimage :
Ye who of him may further seek to know,
Shall find some tidings in a future page,
If he that rhymeth now may scribble moe.
Is this too much? stern critic! say not so :
Patience! and ye shall hear what he beheld
In other lands, where he was doomed to go ::
Lands that contain the monuments of Eld,
Ere Greece and Grecian arts by barbarous hands were quelled.