« AnteriorContinuar »
The flames around their captive close,
Till inly search'd by thousand throes,
And maddening in her ire,
One sad and sole relief she knows,
The sting she nourish'd for her foes,
Whose venom never yet was vain,
Gives but one pang and cures all pain,
And darts into her desperate brain :
So do the dark in soul expire,
Or live like Scorpion girt by fire;
So writhes the mind Remorse hath riven,
Unfit for earth, undoomed for heaven,
Darkness above, despair beneath,
Around it flame, within it death!
'KNOW YE THE LAND?'
(From The Bride of Abydos.) KNOW ye the land where the cypress and myrtle
Are emblems of deeds that are done in their clime? Where the rage of the vulture, the love of the turtle, Now melt into sorrow, now madden to crime ! Know ye the land of the cedar and vine,
Where the flowers ever blossom, the beams ever shine; Where the light wings of Zephyr, oppress'd with perfume,
Wax faint o'er the gardens of Gúl in her bloom;
Where the citron and olive are fairest of fruit,
And the voice of the nightingale never is muté;
Where the tints of the earth, and the hues of the sky,
In colour though varied, in beauty may vie,
And the purple of ocean is deepest in dye;
Where the virgins are soft as the roses they twine,
And all, save the spirit of man, is divine?
'Tis the clime of the East; 'tis the land of the SunCan he smile on such deeds as his children have done ? Oh! wild as the accents of lovers' farewell
Are the hearts which they bear, and the tales which they tell.
(The Bride of Abydos, II, i-iv)
THE winds are high on Helle's wave,
As on that night of stormy water
When Love, who sent, forgot to save
The young, the beautiful, the brave,
The lonely hope of Sestos' daughter.
Oh! when alone along the sky
Her turret-torch was blazing high,
Though rising gale, and breaking foam,
And shrieking sea-birds warn'd him home;
And clouds aloft and tides below,
With signs and sounds, forbade to go,
He could not see, he would not hear,
Or sound or sign foreboding fear;
His eye but saw that light of love,
The only star it hail'd above;
His ear but rang with Hero's song,
'Ye waves, divide not lovers long!'-
That tale is old, but love anew
May nerve young hearts to prove as true.
The winds are high, and Helle's tide
Rolls darkly heaving to the main ;
And Night's descending shadows hide
That field with blood bedew'd in vain,
The desert of old Priam's pride;
The tombs, sole relics of his reign,
All-save immortal dreams that could beguile
The blind old man of Scio's rocky isle !
Oh! yet for there my steps have been;
These feet have press'd the sacred shore, These limbs that buoyant wave hath borneMinstrel with thee to muse, to mourn,
To trace again those fields of yore,
Believing every hillock green
Contains no fabled hero's ashes,
And that around the undoubted scene
Thine own broad Hellespont' still dashes,
Be long my lot! and cold were he
Who there could gaze denying thee !
The night hath closed on Helle's stream,
Nor yet hath risen on Ida's hill
That moon, which shone on his high theme :
No warrior chides her peaceful beam,
But conscious shepherds bless it still,
Their flocks are grazing on the mound
Of him who felt the Dardan's arrow :
That mighty heap of gather'd ground
Which Ammon's son ran proudly round,
By nations raised, by monarchs crown'd,
Is now a lone and nameless barrow !
Within-thy dwelling-place how narrow!
Without can only strangers breathe
The name of him that was beneath :
Dust long outlasts the storied stone;
But Thou-thy very dust is gone!
FROM THE CORSAIR'
'O'ER the glad waters of the dark blue sea,
Our thoughts as boundless, and our souls as free,
Far as the breeze can bear, the billows foam,
Survey our empire, and behold our home!
These are our realms, no limits to their sway—
Our flag the sceptre all who meet obey.
Ours the wild life in tumult still to range
From toil to rest, and joy in every change.
Oh, who can tell? not thou, luxurious slave!
Whose soul would sicken o'er the heaving wave;
Not thou, vain lord of wantonness and ease!
Whom slumber soothes not-pleasure cannot please-
Oh, who can tell, save he whose heart hath tried,
And danced in triumph o'er the waters wide,
The exulting sense-the pulse's maddening play,
That thrills the wanderer of that trackless way
That for itself can woo the approaching fight,
And turn what some deem danger to delight;
That seeks what cravens shun with more than zeal,
And where the feebler faint can only feel-
Feel-to the rising bosom's inmost core,
Its hope awaken and its spirit soar?
No dread of death-if with us die our foes-
Save that it seems even duller than repose:
Come when it will-we snatch the life of life-
When lost-what recks it—by disease or strife ?
Let him who crawls enamour'd of decay,
Cling to his couch, and sicken years away:
Heave his thick breath, and shake his palsied head;
Ours-the fresh turf, and not the feverish bed.
While gasp by gasp he falters forth his soul,
Ours with one pang-one bound-escapes control.
His corse may boast its urn and narrow cave,
And they who loathed his life may gild his grave:
Ours are the tears, though few, sincerely shed,
When Ocean shrouds and sepulchres our dead.
For us, even banquets fond regret supply
In the red cup that crowns our memory;
And the brief epitaph in danger's day,
When those who win at length divide the prey,
And cry, Remembrance saddening o'er each brow,
How had the brave who fell exulted now!'
THE SIEGE OF CORINTH
In the year since Jesus died for men,
Eighteen hundred years and ten,
We were a gallant company,
Riding o'er land, and sailing o'er sea.
Oh! but we went merrily!
We forded the river, and clomb the high hill,
Never our steeds for a day stood still;
Whether we lay in the cave or the shed,
Our sleep fell soft on the hardest bed:
Whether we couched in our rough capote,
On the rougher plank of our gliding boat,
Or stretched on the beach, or our saddles spread,
As a pillow beneath the resting head,
Fresh we woke upon the morrow:
All our thoughts and words had scope,
We had health, and we had hope,
Toil and travel, but no sorrow.
We were of all tongues and creeds ;-
Some were those who counted beads,
Some of mosque, and some of church,
And some, or I mis-say, of neither;
Yet through the wide world might ye search,
Nor find a motlier crew nor blither.
But some are dead, and some are gone,
And some are scattered and alone,
And some are rebels on the hills
That look along Epirus' valleys,
Where Freedom still at moments rallies,
And pays in blood Oppression's ills;
And some are in a far countree,
And some all restlessly at home;
But never more, oh! never, we Shall meet to revel and to roam.