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She saw the water-lily bloom,
In the stormy east-wind straining,
Over tower'd Camelot ;
Down she came and found a boat
And round about the prow she wrote
The Lady of Shalott.
And down the river's dim expanse-
Did she look to Camelot.
And at the closing of the day
She loosed the chain, and down she lay;
She floated down to Camelot :
Heard a carol, mournful, holy,
Out upon the wharfs they came,
Who is this? and what is here?
He had been always with her in the house, Thought not of Dora.
Then the old man
Then there came a day When Allan call'd his son, and said, "My son, I married late; but I would wish to see My grandchild on my knees before I die : And I have set my heart upon a match. Now therefore look to Dora; she is well To look to; thrifty too beyond her age. She is my brother's daughter: he and I Had once hard words, and parted, and he died In foreign lands; but for his sake I bred His daughter Dora: take her for your wife; For I have wish'd this marriage, night and day, For many years." But William answer'd short, "I cannot marry Dora; by my life, I will not marry Dora." Was wroth, and doubled up his hands, and said, "You will not, boy! you dare to answer thus! But in my time a father's word was law, And so it shall be now for me. Look to't. Consider take a month to think, and give An answer to my wish; or by the Lord That made me, you shall pack, and nevermore Darken my doors again." And William heard, And answer'd something madly; bit his lips, And broke away. The more he look'd at her The less he liked her; and his ways were harsh; But Dora bore them meekly. Then before The month was out he left his father's house, And hired himself to work within the fields; And half in love, half spite, he woo'd and wed A labourer's daughter, Mary Morrison.
Then, when the bells were ringing, Allan call'd His niece and said, “ My girl, I love you well; But if you speak with him that was my son, Or change a word with her he calls his wife, My home is none of yours. My will is law." And Dora promised, being meek. She thought, "It cannot be; my uncle's mind will change!"
And days went on, and there was born a boy To William; then distresses came on him; And day by day he pass'd his father's gate, Heart-broken, and his father help'd him not. But Dora stored what little she could save, And sent it them by stealth, nor did they know Who sent it; till at last a fever seized On William, and in harvest time he died.
Then Dora went to Mary. Mary sat, And look'd with tears upon her boy, and thought Hard things of Dora. Dora came and said, "I have obey'd my uncle until now, And I have sinn'd, for it was all through me This evil came on William at the first. But, Mary, for the sake of him that's gone,
And for your sake, the woman that he chose, And for this orphan, I am come to you:
You know there has not been for these five years
But when the morrow came, she rose and took
And answer'd softly, "This is William's child!"
So saying, he took the boy, that cried aloud And struggled hard. The wreath of flowers fell At Dora's feet. She bow'd upon her hands, And the boy's cry came to her from the field, More and more distant. She bow'd down her head, Remembering the day when first she came, And all the things that had been. She bow'd down And wept in secret; and the reapers reap'd, And the sun fell, and all the land was dark.
Then Dora went to Mary's house, and stood Upon the threshold. Mary saw the boy Was not with Dora. She broke out in praise To God, that help'd her in her widowhood. And Dora said, "My uncle took the boy; But, Mary, let me live and work with you: He says that he will never see me more." Then answer'd Mary, "This shall never be, That thou shouldst take my trouble on thyself: And, now I think, he shall not have the boy, For he will teach him hardness, and to slight His mother; therefore thou and I will go, And I will have my boy, and bring him home; And I will beg of him to take thee back; But if he will not take thee back again, Then thou and I will live within one house, And work for William's child, until he grows Of age to help us."
So the women kiss'd
Each other, and set out, and reach'd the farm.
The boy set up betwixt his grandsire's knees,
"O Father!-if you let me call you so-
The troubles I have gone through!' Then he turn'd
His face and pass'd-unhappy that I am!
So Mary said, and Dora hid her face By Mary. There was silence in the room; And all at once the old man burst in sobs :"I have been to blame-to blame. I have kill'd my son.
I have kill'd him-but I loved him my dear son.
Then they clung about
So those four abode Within one house together; and as years Went forward, Mary took another mate; But Dora lived unmarried till her death.
Two children in two neighbour villages
MR. DARLEY is the author of Sylvia or the May Queen, a poem devoted to summer and the fairies; the Manuscripts of Erdeley; Thomas à Becket, a tragedy; Ethelstan, a chronicle; and other pieces, narrative, lyrical and dramatic. He belongs to a new class of writers, of whom we have elsewhere noticed ROBERT BROWNING, and R. H. HORNE. He has shown himself to be a true poet, of an original vein of thought, and an affluent imagination. In the preface to Ethelstan, he says, "I would fain build a cairn, or rude national monument, on some eminence of our Poetic Mountain, to a few amongst the many heroes of our race, sleeping even yet with no memorial there, or one hidden beneath the moss of ages. Ethelstan' is the second stone, Becket' was the first, borne thither by me for this homely pyramid; to rear it may be above my powers, but were it a mere mound of rubbish, it might re
main untrampled and unscorned, from the sacredness of its purpose." Aside from this object, his works would command respect; but their beauty is marred by an affected quaintness, by novel epithets, and occasional obscurities. His ruggedness of manner, interrupted by a frequent melody of expression, remind us of the old poets, whom he has carefully studied, and well described in one of the richest and most idiomatic specimens of recent prose, his Critical Essay prefixed to Moxon's edition of BEAUMONT and FLETCHER, in which he says, "You find tulips growing out of sandbanks, pluck Hesperian fruit from crab-trees, step from velvet turf upon sharp stubble." "No prose or poetry," says a judicious critic in Arcturus, "can be farther from the sonorous school of ADDISON, and nowhere can we find rythmical cadences of greater beauty, than in some occasional passages of Darley."
A SCENE FROM ETHELSTAN.
The king in sackcloth at an oaken table in a small Cabinet. Enter his sister, Edgitha, abbess of Beverley, whom he embraces.
Ethelstan. My sister! my born friend! Why at this hour,
When none save night's rough minions venture
Edgitha. Is there no flush
Bespreads my cheek? that's health! new life, my
Which joy to see thee brings. But out, alas!
And changed their glittering robes with russet weeds,
Eth. Wise for themselves they were!
Edg. Nay, thou'rt, if not in bloomiest youth's Beside us; to these gardens paced by forms
Bland-whispering as their trees, and moving round
Abbot and abbess, side by side, return
Eth. I could, even now, sleep to the lullaby Sung by Death's gossip, that assiduous crone, Who hushes all our race!-if one hope fail, One single, life-endearing hope
Edg. Dear brother,
[brow, Take hope from my content!-though pale this "Tis calm as if she smiled on it, yon Prioress Of heaven's pure nunnery, whose placid cheer O'erlooks the world beneath her; this wren's voice, Though weak, preserveth lightsome tone and tenor, Ne'er sick with joy like the still-hiccupping swallow's,
Ne'er like the nightingale's with grief. Believe me Seclusion is the blessedest estate
Life owns; wouldst be amongst the bless'd on earth, Hie thither!
Eth. Ay-and what are my poor Saxons To do without their king?
Edg. Have they not thanes
Eth. Without their father? their defender? Now specially, when rumours of the Dane Borne hither by each chill Norwegian wind, Like evening thunder creep along the ocean With many a mutter'd threat of morrow dire? No! no! I must not now desert my Saxons, Who ne'er deserted me!
Edg. Is there none else
To king it?
Eth. None save the Etheling should; he cannot: Childe Edmund is o'er-green in wit; though pre
In that too for his years, and grown by exercise
Yet call me best of men?
Edg. It has been worn
Long, long enow! "Tis time it were put off.
Edg. Pour all into my breast!
Eth. No! Unbosom'd pain
Is half dismiss'd. I'll keep my punisher with me.
Edg. Have care of that!
Eth. Nay, I am jocund; let's to supper! There! A king shall be his own house-knight, and serve. See what a feast! we Saxons love good cheer!
[He takes from a cupboard pulse, bread, and water.] Edg. Ah! when he will but smile, how he can smile!
"Tis feigning all! this death sits on his bosom
A SONG FROM ETHELSTAN.
O'ER the wild gannet's bath
With beak'd heads peering,
O'er the Sun's mirror green
O'er the wind's ploughing-field
SONG OF THE SUMMER WINDS.
Up the dale and down the bourne,
O'er the meadow swift we fly; Now we sing, and now we mourn, Now we whistle, now we sigh. By the grassy-fringed river,
Through the murmuring reeds we sweep;
Mid the lily-leaves we quiver,
To their very hearts we creep.
Scarcely knowing how it was.
On our weary wings we hie. There of idlenesses dreaming, Scarce from waking we refrain, Moments long as ages deeming
Till we're at our play again.
THE GAMBOLS OF CHILDREN. Down the dimpled green-sward dancing Bursts a flaxen-headed bevy, Bud-lipt boys and girls advancing,
Love's irregular little levy. Rows of liquid eyes in laughter,
How they glimmer, how they quiver! Sparkling one another after,
Like bright ripples on a river. Tipsy band of rubious faces,
Flush'd with joy's ethereal spirit, Make your mocks and sly grimaces At love's self, and do not fear it.
A VILLAGE BLACKSMITH, HERE he, your law, vociferous wits, Strong son of the sounding anvil, sits; Black and sharp his eyebrow edge, His hand smites heavily as his sledgeAt will he kindles bright discourse, Or blows it out, with blustrous force; The fiery talk, with dominant clamour, Moulds as hot metal with his hammer. Yet this swart sinewy boisterer, His wife and babe sit smiling near, All fairness with all feebleness in her arms, Safe in their innocence and in their charms.
FOOL! I mean not
That poor-soul'd piece of heroism, self-slaughter: Oh no! the miserablest day we live
There's many a better thing to do than die!
SUFFICE to say, that smoother glade,
In harvest time, when Love is tipsy,
Have you not oft, in the still wind,
Fainter than that which seems to roar
Like Dian's moonbeam dulcimer;
But mix'd with whoops, and infant laughter, Shouts following one another after,
As on a hearty holyday
When youth is flush and full of May;
Of this sweet clime, to fight with cranes!