Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

No path leads thither, 'tis not nigh

To any pasture-plot;
But cluster'd near the chattering brook,

Lone hollies mark'd the spot.*

Those hollies of themselves a shape

As of an arbour took,
A close, round arbour; and it stands

Not three strides from a brook. †

Within this arbour, which was still

With scarlet berries hung, Were these three friends, one Sunday morn,

Just as the first bell rung.

'Tis sweet to hear a brook, 'tis sweet

To hear the Sabbath-bell, 'Tis sweet to hear them both at once

Deep in a woody dell.

His limbs along the moss, his head

Upon a mossy heap,
With shut-up senses, Edward lay :
That brook e'en on a working day

Might chatter one to sleep.

And he had pass'd a restless night,

And was not well in health ;

* Some hollies mark the spot.—1809. of From the brook.-10.

The women sat down by his side,

And talk'd as 'twere by stealth.

“The Sun peeps through theclose thick leaves,

See, dearest Ellen ! see ! "Tis in the leaves, a little sun,

No bigger than your ee;

“ A tiny sun, and it has got

A perfect glory too ;
Ten thousand threads and hairs of light,
Make up a glory gay and bright

Round that small orb so blue."

And then they argued of those rays,

What colour they might be ; Says this, “They're mostly green;" says that,

They're amber-like to me.”

So they sat chatting, while bad thoughts

Were troubling Edward's rest; But soon they heard his hard quick pants,

And the thumping in his breast.

“ A mother too !” these self-same words

Did Edward mutter plain;
His face was drawn back on itself,

With horror and huge pain.

Both groan'd at once, for both knew well

What thoughts were in his mind;

When he waked up, and stared like one

That hath been just struck blind.

He sat upright; and ere the dream

Had had time to depart,
“O God, forgive me !" (he exclaim'd)

“I have torn out her heart."

Then Ellen shriek’d, and forthwith burst

Into ungentle laughter;
And Mary shiver'd, where she sat,

And never she smiled after.

Carmen reliquum in futurum tempus relegatum.
To-morrow! and To-morrow! and To-morrow !-

THE NIGHT-SCENE.

A DRAMATIC FRAGMENT.

SANDOVAL. You loved the daughter of Don

Manrique ? Earl Henry.

Loved ? Sandoval. Did you not say you woo'd her ? Earl Henry.

Once I loved Her whom I dared not woo ! Sandoval.

And woo'd, perchance, One whom you loved not ! Earl Henry.

Oh! I were most base, Not loving Oropeza. True, I woo'd her, Hoping to heal a deeper wound; but she

I swore, and with an inward thought that seem'd
The purpose and the substance of my being,
I swore to her, that were she red with guilt,
I would exchange my unblench'd state with hers. -
Friend ! by that winding passage, to that bower
I now will go all objects there will teach me
Unwavering love, and singleness of heart.
Go, Sandoval ! I am prepared to meet her-
Say nothing of me-I myself will seek her-
Nay, leave me, friend ! I cannot bear the torment
And keen inquiry of that scanning eye.-

[Earl Henry retires into the wood.] Sandoval [alone]. O Henry ! always strivest

thou to be great
By thine own act—yet art thou never great
But by the inspiration of great passion.
The whirl-blast comes, the desert-sands rise up
And shape themselves : from earth to heaven they

stand,
As though they were the pillars of a temple,
Built by Omnipotence in its own honour !
But the blast pauses, and their shaping spirit
Is fled: the mighty columns were but sand,
And lazy snakes trail o'er the level ruins !

TO A LADY.

WITH FALCONER'S " SHIPWRECK."

AF H! not by Cam or Isis, famous streams,

In arched groves, the youthful poet's choice ;

[blocks in formation]

I heard her heart beat-if 'twere not my own.

Sandoval. A rude and scaring note, my friend !
Earl Henry.

Oh ! no !
I have small memory of aught but pleasure.
The inquietudes of fear, like lesser streams
Still flowing, still were lost in those of love :
So love grew mightier from the fear, and Nature,
Fleeing from pain, shelter'd herself in joy.
The stars above our heads were dim and steady,
Like
eyes

suffused with rapture.—Life was in us :
We were all life, each atom of our frames
A living soul—I vow'd to die for her :
With the faint voice of one who, having spoken,
Relapses into blessedness, I vow'd it:
That solemn vow, a whisper scarcely heard,
A murmur breathed against a lady's ear.
Oh! there is joy above the name of pleasure,
Deep self-possession, an intense repose.
Sandoval [with a sarcastic smile). No other than

as eastern sages paint,
The God, who floats upon a lotos-leaf,
Dreams for a thousand ages; then awaking,
Creates a world, and smiling at the bubble,
Relapses into bliss.
Earl Henry.

Ah! was that bliss
Fear'd as an alien, and too vast for man?
For suddenly, impatient of its silence,
Did Oropeza, starting, grasp my forehead.
I caught her arms; the veins were swelling on them.
Through the dark bower she sent a hollow voice ;-
“Oh! what if all betray me? what if thou?”

« ForrigeFortsæt »