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O’ertopping the young trees,

On comes the Elephant, to slake
His thirst at noon in yon pellucid springs.
Lo! from his trunk upturn'd, aloft he flings

The grateful shower; and now

Plucking the broad-leaved bough
Of yonder plane, with wavy motion slow,

Fanning the languid air,

He moves it to and fro. But when that form of beauty meets his sight,

The trunk its undulating motion stops. From his forgetful hold the plane-branch drops, Reverent he kneels, and lifts his rational eyes

To her, as if in prayer ; And when she pours her angel voice in song,

Entranced he listens to the thrilling notes, Till his strong temples, bathed with sudden dews,

Their fragrance of delight and love diffuse.

(x11.)
Lo! as the voice melodious floats around,

The Antelope draws near,
The Tigress leaves her toothless cubs to hear;
The Snake comes gliding from the secret brake,

Himself in fascination forced along

By that enchanting song;
The antic Monkeys, whose wild gambols late,
When not a breeze waved the tall jungle grass,
Shook the whole wood, are hush’d, and silently

Hang on the cluster'd tree.
All things in wonder and delight are still;

Only at times the nightingale is heard,
Not that in emulous skill that sweetest bird,
Her rival strain would try

A mighty songster, with the Maid to vie ;
She only bore her part in powerful sympathy.

(x111.) Well might they thus adore that heavenly Maid !

For never Nymph of Mountain,

Or Grove, or Lake, or Fountain,
With a diviner presence fill’d the shade.

No idle ornaments deface

Her natural grace,
Musk-spot, nor sandal-streak, nor scarlet stain,
Ear-drop nor chain, nor arm nor ankle-ring,

Nor trinketry on front, or neck, or breast,
Marring the perfect form: she seem'd a thing
Of Heaven's prime uncorrupted work, a child

Of early nature undefiled,
A daughter of the years of innocence.
And therefore all things loved her. When she stood

Beside the glassy pool, the fish, that flies

Quick as an arrow from all other eyes
Hover'd to gaze on her. The mother bird,

When Kailyal's step she heard,
Sought not to tempt her from her secret nest,
But hastening to the dear retreat, would fly
To meet and welcome her benignant eye.

THE LAST OF THE GOTHS.

1814.

ROBERT SOUTHEY.

I. Count Julian by the aid of the Moors avenges the outrage

of his daughter Florinda and overthrows the Christian
power in Spain.--I 1. Roderick goes into exile, becomes a
monk, and, unrecognised in his priestly garments, (III.)
confesses Florinda, (IV.) visits his mother, (V.) administers
extreme unction to Count Julian who has been assassinated,
and then reveals himself, and (VI.) having regained his
war-horse Orelio leads the Spanish forces to the reconquest
of the Moors, and finally disappears from the field of
victory. Dots thus . . . indicate lines omitted.

1.
THE FLIGHT OF RODERICK.

(FROM BOOK 1.)

BRAVELY in thạt eight-days fight The King had striven, for victory first, while hope Remain d, then desperately in search of death. The arrows passed him by to right and left, The spear-point pierced him not, the scymitar Glanced from his helmet. Is the shield of Heaven, Wretch that I am, extended over me ? Cried Roderick ; and he dropt orelio's reins, And threw his hands aloft in frantic prayer, Death is the only mercy that I crave, Death soon and short, death and forgetfulness ! Aloud he cried; but in his inmost heart There answer'd him a secret voice, that spake Of righteousness and judgment after death, And God's redeeming love, which fain would save The guilty soul alive. 'Twas agony, And yet 'twas hope; a momentary light, That flash'd through utter darkness on the Cross

To point salvation, then left all within
Dark as before. Fear, never felt till then,
Sudden and irresistible as stroke
Of lightning, smote him. From his horse he dropt,
Whether with human impulse, or by Heaven
Struck down, he knew not; loosen'd from his wrist
The sword-chain, and let fall the sword, whose hilt
Clung to his palm a moment ere it fell,
Glued there with Moorish gore. His royal robe,
His horned helmet and enamelled mail,
He cast aside, and taking from the dead
A peasant's garment, in those weeds involved,
Stole like a thief in darkness, from the field.

Evening closed round to favour him. All night
He sled, the sound of battle in his ear
Ringing, and sights of death before his eyes,
With forms more horrible of eager fiends
That seemed to hover round, and gulphs of fire
Opening beneath his feet. At times the groan
Of some poor fugitive, who, bearing with him
His mortal hurt, had fallen beside the way,
Roused him from these dread visions, and he call'd
In answering groans on his Redeemer's name,
That word the only prayer that pass'd his lips
Or rose within his heart. Then would he see
The Cross whereon a bleeding Saviour hung,
Who call'd on him to come and cleanse his soul
In those all-healing streams, which from his wounds;
As from perpetual springs, for ever flow'd.
No hart e'er panted for the water-brooks
As Roderick thirsted there to drink and live :
But Hell was interposed ; and worse than Hell-
Yea to his eyes more dreadful than the fiends

b

Who flock'd like hungry ravens round his head, -
Florinda stood between, and warn’d him off
With her abhorrent hands,—that agony
Still in her face, which, when the deed was done,
Inflicted on her ravisher the curse
That it invoked from Heaven.-Oh what a night
Of waking horrors ! Nor when morning came
Did the realities of light and day
Bring aught of comfort : wheresoe'er he went
The tidings of defeat had gone before ;
And leaving their defenceless homes to seek
What shelter walls and battlements might yield,
Old men with feeble feet, and tottering babes,
And widows with their infants in their arms,
Hurried along. Nor royal festival,
Nor sacred pageant, with like multitudes
E'er fillid the public way. All whom the sword
Had spared were here; bed-rid infirmity
Alone was left behind : the cripple plied
His crutches,--with her child of yesterday
The mother fled, and she whose hour was come
Fell by the road.

Less dreadful than this view
Of outward suffering which the day disclosed,
Had night and darkness seem'd to Roderick's heart,
With all their dread creations. From the throng
He turn'd aside, unable to endure
This burthen of the general woe: nor walls,
Nor towers, nor mountain fastnesses he sought;
A firmer hold his spirit yearned to find,
A rock of surer strength. Unknowing where,
Straight through the wild he hasten'd on all day,
And with unslacken'd speed was travelling still
When evening gathered round.

1

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