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THE PLEASURES OF HOPE.

1798.

THOMAS CAMPBELL.

THE FALL OF POLAND.

FROM PART I. Oh! sacred Truth! thy triumph ceased a while, And Hope, thy sister, ceased with thee to smile, When leagued Oppression pour'd to Northern wars Her whisker'd pandoors and her fierce hussars, Waved her dread standard to the breeze of morn, Peal'd her loud drum, and twang'd her trumpet-horn, Tumultuous horror brooded o'er her van, Presaging wrath to Poland—and to man ! Warsaw's last champion from her heights survey'd, Wide o'er the fields, a waste of ruin laid, “O Heaven!” he cried, “my bleeding country save!Is there no hand on high to shield the brave ? Yet, though destruction sweep those lovely plains, Rise, fellow-men ! our country yet remains ! By that dread name, we wave the sword on high! And swear for her to live !- with her to die !” He said, and on the rampart-heights array'd His trusty warriors, few, but undismay'd ; Firm-paced and slow, a horrid front they form, Still as the breeze, but dreadful as the storm ; Low murmuring sounds along their banners fly, Revenge, or death,—the watchword and reply; Then peal'd the notes, omnipotent to charm, And the loud tocsin toll'd their last alarm !

In vain, alas ! in vain, ye gallant few!
From rank to rank your volley'd thunder flew :-
Oh, bloodiest picture in the book of Time,
Sarmatia fell, unwept, without a crime;
Found not a generous friend, a pitying foe,
Strength in her arms, nor mercy in her woe !
Dropp'd from her nerveless grasp the shatter'd spear,
Closed her bright eye, and curb’d her high career ;-
Hope, for a season, bade the world farewell,
And Freedom shriek'd-as Kosciusko fell !

The sun went down, nor ceased the carnage there,
Tumultuous murder shook the midnight air-
On Prague's proud arch the fires of ruin glow,
His blood-dyed waters murmuring far below;
The storm prevails, the rampart yields a way,
Bursts the wild cry of horror and dismay!
Hark, as the sinouldering piles with thunder fall,
A thousand shrieks for hopeless mercy call !
Earth shook-red meteors flash'd along the sky,
And conscious Nature shudder'd at the cry!

Oh! righteous Heaven; ere Freedom found a grave,
Why slept the sword omnipotent to save ?
Where was thine arm, O Vengeance ! where thy rod
That smote the foes of Zion and of God;
That crush'd proud Ammon, when his iron car
Was yoked in wrath, and thunder'd from afar ?
Where was the storm that slumber'd till the host
Of blood-stain's Pharaoh left their trembling coast;
Then bade the deep in wild commotion flow,
And heaved an ocean on their march below ?

Departed spirits of the mighty dead !
Ye that at Marathon and Leuctra bled !
Friends of the world! restore your swords to man,
Fight in his sacred cause, and lead the van!
Yet for Sarmatia's tears of blood atone,
And make her arm puissant as your own!
Oh! once again to Freedom's cause return
The patriot Tell-the BRUCE OF BANNOCKBURN!

Yes! thy proud lords, unpitied land ! shall see
That man hath yet a soul-and dare be free!
A little while, along thy saddening plains,
The starless night of Desolation reigns;
Truth shall restore the light by Nature given,
And, like Prometheus, bring the fire of Heaven !
Prone to the dust Oppression shall be hurl’d,
Her name, her nature, wither'd from the world!

GERTRUDE OF WYOMING.

1839.

THOMAS CAMPBELL.

THE DEATH OF GERTRUDE.

FROM PART III.

(xxv.) Pasr was the flight, and welcome seem'd the tower, That like a giant standard-bearer frown'd Defiance on the roving Indian power, Beneath, each bold and promontory mound With embrasure emboss'd and armour crown'd, And arrowy frize, and wedged ravelin, Wove like a diadem its tracery round The lofty summit of that mountain green; Here stood secure the group, and eyed a distant scene.

!

(XXVI.) A scene of death! where fires beneath the sun, And blended arms, and white pavilions glow; And for the business of destruction done, Its requiem the war-horn seem'd to blow : There, sad spectatress of her country's woe! The lovely Gertrude, safe from present harm, Had laid her cheek, and clasp'd her hands of snow On Waldegrave's shoulder, half within his arm Enclosed, that felt her heart, and hush'd its wild alarm!

(XXVII.) But short that contemplation-sad and short The pause to bid each much-loved scene adieu ! Beneath the very shadow of the fort, Where friendly swords were drawn,and banners flew: Ah! who could deem that foot of Indian crew Was near ?-yet there, with lust of murderous deeds, Gleam'd like a basilisk, from woods in view, The ambush'd foeman's eye-his volley speeds, And Albert-Albert falls ! the dear old father bleeds!

(xxvII.) And tranced in giddy horror, Gertrude swoonid; Yet, while she clasps him lifeless to her zone, Say, burst they, borrow'd from her father's wound, These drops ? Oh, God ! the life-blood is her own! And faltering, on her Waldegrave's bosom thrown; “Weep not, O Love!”—she cries, " to see me bleed; Thee, Gertrude's sad survivor, thee alone Heaven's peace commiserate; for scarce I heed These wounds ;-yet thee to leave is death, is death

indeed!

(xxix.) “Clasp me a little longer on the brink Of fate! while I can feel thy dear caress; And when this heart hath ceased to beat,-oh! think And let it mitigate thy woe's excess, That thou hast been to me all tenderness, And friend to more than human friendship just. Oh! by that retrospect of happiness, And by the hopes of an immortal trust, God shall assuage thy pangs-when I am laid in dust!

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