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Even as a broken mirror, which the glass
In every fragment multiplies ; and makes
A thousand images of one that was,
The same, and still the more, the more it breaks ;
And thus the heart will do which not forsakes,
Living in shattered guise, and still, and cold,
And b) odless, with its sleepless, sorrow aches,
Yet withers on till all without is old,
Shewing no visible sign, for such things are untold.
There is a very life in our despair,
Vitality of poison, - a quick root
Which feeds these deadly branches; for it were
As nothing did we die ; but Life will suit,
Itself to Sorrow's most detested fruit,
Like to the apples on the 4 Dead Sea's shore,
All ashes to the taste : Did man compute
Existence by enjoyment, and count o’er Such hours' gainst years of life,-say, would he name three-score ? .
XXXV. The Psalmist numbered out the years of man : They are enough; and if thy tale be true, Thou, who didst grudge him even that fleeting span, More than enough, thou fatal Waterloo! Millions of tongues record thee, and anew Their children's lips shall echo them, and say, « Here, where the sword united nations drew,
« Our countrymen were warring on that day! » And this is much, and all which will not pass away.
There sunk the greatest, nor the worst of men.
Whose spirit antithetically mixt
One moment of the mightiest, and again
On litile objects with like firmness fixt,
Extreme in all things! hadst thou been betwixt,
Thy throne had still been thine, or never been ;
For daring made thy rise as fall : thou seek'st'
Even now to re-assume the imperial mien, . And shake again the world, the thunderer of the scene !
Conqueror and captive of the earth art thou !
She trembles at thee still, and thy wild name
Was ne'er more bruited in men's minds than now
That thou art nothing, save the jest of Fame,
Who wooed thee once, thy vassal, and became
The flatterer of thy fierceness, till thou wert
A god unto thyself; nor less the same
To the astounded kingdoms all inert,
Who deem'd thee for a time whate'er thou didst assert.
XXXVIII. Oh, more or less than man-in high or low, Battling with nations, flying from the field; Now making monarchs' necks thy footstool, now More than thy meanest soldier taught to yield; An empire thou could'st crush, command, rebuild, But govern not thy pettiest passion, nor, However deeply in men's spirits skill’d,
Look through thine own, nor curb the lust of war, Nor learn that tempted Fate will leave the loftiest star.
XXXIX. Yet well thy soul hath brook'd the turning tide With that untaught innate philosophy, Which, be it wisdom, coldness, or deep pride, Is gall and wormwood to an enemy. When the whole host of hatred stood hard by, To watch and mock thee shrinkiug, thou hast smiled. With a sedate and all-enduring eye;
When Fortune fled her spoild and favourite child, He stood unbowed beneath the ills upon him piled.
Sager than in thy fortunes ; for in them
Ambition steeld thee on too far to show
That just habitual scorn which could contemn
Men and their thoughts; 'twas wise to feel, not se
To wear it ever on thy lip and brow,
And spurn the instruments thou wert to use
Till they were turn'd unto thine operthrow :
'Tis but a worthless world to win or lose;
So hath it proved to thee, and all such lot who choose.
If, like a tower upon a headlong rock, ..
Thou hadst been made to stand or fall alone,
Such scorn of man had help'd to brave the shock;
But men's thoughts were the steps which paved thy throne
Their admiration thy best weapon shone ;
The part of Philip's son was thine, not then
(Unless aside thy purple had been throwo )
Like stern Diogenes to inock at men;
For sceptred cynics earth were far too wide a den.
But quiet to quick bosoms is a hell,
And there hath been thy bane; there is a fire
And motion of the soul which will not dwell
In its own narrow being, but aspire
Beyond the fitting medium of desire;
And, but once kindled, quenchless evermore,
Preys upon high adventure, nor can' tire
Of aught but rest; a fever at the core,
Fatal to him who bears, to all who ever bore.
This makes the madmen who have made men mad
By their contagion ; Conquerors and Kings,
Founders of sects and systems, to whom add
Sophists, Bards, Statesmen, all unquiet things,
Which stir too strongly the soul's secret springs,
And are themselves the fools to those they fool;
Envied, yet how unenviable ! what stings
Are theirs ? One breast laid open were a school
Which would unteach mankind the last to shine or rule :
Their breath is agitation, and įheir life .
A storm whereon they ride, to sink at last,
And yet so nurs’d and bigotted to strife,
That should their days, surviving perils past,
Melt to calm twilight, they feel overcast
With sorrow and supineness, and so die;
Even as a flame unfed, which runs to waste
With its own flickering, or a sword laid by
Which eats into itself, and rusts ingloriously.
He who ascends to mountain-tops, shall find,
The loftiest peaks most wrapt in clouds and snow;
He who surpasses or subdues mankind,
Must look down on the hate of those below.
Though high above the sun of glory glow,
And far beneath the earth and Ocean spread,
Round him are icy rocks, and loudly blow
Contending tempests on his naked head,
And thus reward the toils which to those summits led.
XLVI. Away with these! true Wisdom's world will be Within its own creation, or in thine, Maternal Nature! for who teems like thee, Thus on the banks of thy majestic Rhine? There Harold gazes on a work divine, A blending of all beauties ; streams and dells, Fruit, foliage, crag, wood, cornfield, mountain, vine,
And chiefless castles breathing stern farewells From gray but leafy walls, where Ruio greenly dwells.
XLVII. And there they stand, as stands a lofty mind, Worn, but unstooping to the baser crowd, All tenantless, save to the crannying wind, Or holding dark communion with the cloud. There was a day when they were young and proud, Banners on high, and battles pass'd below ; But they who fought are in a bloody shroud,
And those which waved are sbredless dust ere now, And the bleak battlements shall bear no future blow.