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That brow in furrow'd lines had fix'd at last,
And spake of passions, but of passion past :
The pride, but not the fire, of early days,
Coldness of mien, and carelessness of praise;
A high demeanour, and a glance that took
Their thoughts from others by a single look ;
And that sarcastic levity of tongue,
The stinging of a heart the world hath stung,
That darts in seeming playfulness around, 75
And makes those feel that will not own the wound;
All these seemd his, and something more beneath,
Than glance could well reveal, or accent breathe.
Ambition, glory, love, the common aim,
That some can conquer, and that all would claim, 80
Within his breast appear'd no more to strive,
Yet seem'd as lately they had been alive;
And some deep feeling it were vain to trace
At moments lighten'd o'er his livid face.

VI.

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Not much he loved long question of the past,
Nor told of wondrous wilds, and deserts vast,
In those far lands where he had wander'd lone,
And-as himself would have it seem-unknown:
Yet these in vain his eye could scarcely scan,
Nor glean experience from his fellow man;
But what he had beheld he shunn'd' to show,
As hardly worth a stranger's care to know;

90

If still more prying such inquiry grew,
His brow fell darker, and his words more few.

VII.

Not unrejoiced to see him once again,

95 Warm was his welcome to the haunts of men; Born of high lineage, link'd in high command, He mingled with the Magnates of his land; Join'd the carousals of the great and gay, And saw them smile or sigh their hours away; 100 But still he only saw,

and did not share The common pleasure or the general care; He did not follow what they all pursued With hope still baffled still to be renew'd; Nor shadowy honour, nor substantial gain,

105 Nor beauty's preference, and the rival's pain: Around him some mysterious circle thrown Repell'd approach, and show'd him still alone; Upon his eye sate something of reproof, That kept at least frivolity aloof;

110 And things more timid that beheld him near, In silence gazed, or whisper'd mutual fear; And they the wiser, friendlier few confest They deem'd him better than his air exprest.

VIII.

115

'Twas strange-in youth all action and all life, Burning for pleasure, not averse from strife;

Woman---the field--the ocean-all that gave
Promise of gladness, peril of a grave,
In turn he tried ---he ransack'd all below,
And found his recompense in joy or wo,

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No tame, trite medium ; for his feelings sought
In that intenseness an escape from thought:
The tempest of his heart in scorn had gazed
On that the feebler elements hath raised;
The rapture of his heart had look'd on high, 125
And ask'd if greater dwelt beyond the sky:
Chain'd to excess, the slave of each extreme,
How woke he from the wildness of that dream ?
Alas! he told not-but he did awake
To curse the wither'd heart that would not break. 130

IX.

Books, for his volume heretofore was Man,
With eye more curious he appear'd to scan,
And oft, in sudden mood, for many a day
From all communion he would start away:
And then, his rarely call'd attendants said, 135
Through night's long hours would sound his hurried

tread
O’er the dark gallery, where his fathers frown'd
In rude but antique portraiture around:
They heard, but whisper'd—"that must not be known--

The sound of words less earthly than his own. 140 “ Yes, they who chose might smile, but some had seen They scarce knew what, but more than should have

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“Why gazed he so upon the ghastly head "Which hands profane had gather'd from the dead, "That still beside his open'd volume lay, 145

As if to startle all save him away? “Why slept he not when others were at rest ?

Why heard no music, and received no guest ? “All was not well they deem'd—but where the wrong? “Some knew perchance-but 'twere a tale too long; “And such besides were too discreetly wise, 151 “ To more than hint their knowledge in surmise ; “But if they would—they could”—around the board, Thus Lara's vassals prattled of their lord.

X.

It was the night--and Lara's glassy stream 155
The stars are studding, each with imaged beam :
So calm, the waters scarcely seem to stray,
And yet they glide like happiness away;
Reflecting far and fairy-like from high
The immortal lights that live along the sky: 160
Its banks are fringed with many a goodly tree,
And flowers the fairest that may feast the bee:
Such in her chaplet infant Dian wove,
And Innocence would offer to her love.
These deck the shore; the waves their channel make
In windings bright and mazy like the snake. 106
All was so still, so soft in earth and air,
You scarce would start to meet a spirit there;

170

Secure that nought of evil could delight
To walk in such a scene, on such a night!
It was a moment only for the good :
So Lara deem'd, nor longer there he stood,
But turn'd in silence to his castle-gate ;
Such scene his soul no more could contemplate:
Such scene reminded him of other days,
Of skies more cloudless, moons of purer blaze, -
Of nights more soft and frequent, hearts that now-
No-no—the storm may beat upon his brow,
Unfelt-unsparing--but a night like this,
A night of beauty, mock'd such breast as his. 180

XI. He turn'd within his solitary hall, And his high shadow shot along the wall; There were the painted forms of other times, 'Twas all they left of virtues or of crimes, Save vague tradition; and the gloomy vaults 185 That hid their dust, their foibles, and their faults; And half a column of the pompous page, That speeds the specious tale from age to age; Where history's pen its praise or blame supplies, And lies like truth, and still most truly lies. 190 He wandering mused, and as the moonbeam shone Through the dim lattice o'er the floor of stone, And the high fretted roof, and saints, that there O'er Gothic windows knelt in pictured prayer,

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