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Once fed with many-voiced waves--a dream
Oh for Medea's wondrous alchymy, Which, wheresoe'er it fell, made the earth gleam With bright flowers, and the wintry boughs exhale From vernal blooms fresh fragrance! Oh that God, Profuse of poisons, would conceal the chalice Which but one living man has drain’d, who now, Vessel of deathless wrath, a slave that feels No proud exemption in the blighting curse He bears, over the world wanders for ever, Lone as incarnate death! Oh that the dream Of dark magician in his vision'd cave, Raking the cinders of a crucible For life and power, even when his feeble hand Shakes in its last decay, were the true law Of this so lovely world! But thou art fed Like some frail exhalation, which the dawn Robes in its golden beams : ah! thou hast fled; The brave, the gentle, and the beautiful, The child of grace and genius. Heartless things Are done and said i'the world, and many worms, And beasts, and men live on, and mighty Earth From sea and mountain, city and wilderness, In vesper low or joyous orison, Lifts still its solemn voice : but thou art fled : Thou canst no longer know or love the shapes Of this phantasmal scene, who have to thee Been purest ministers; who are, alas ! Now thou art not. Upon those pallid lips, So sweet even in their silence; on those eyes, That image sleep in death ; upon that form, Yet safe from the worm's outrage, let no tear Be shed, not even in thought. Nor, when those Are gone, and those divinest lineaments, [hues Worn by the senseless wind, shall live alone
In the frail pauses of this simple strain,
Away! the moor is dark beneath the moon,
Rapid clouds have drank the last pale beam of Away! the gathering winds will call the darkness
soon, And profoundest midnight shroud the serene lights
of Heaven. Pause not! The time is past! Every voice cries
Away! Tempt not with one last glance thy friend's un
gentle mood: Thy lover's eye, so glazed and cold, dares not entreat
thy stay : Duty and dereliction guide thee back to solitude. Away, away! to thy sad and silent home;
Pour bitter tears on its desolated hearth; Watch the dim shades as like ghosts they go and
come, And complicate strange webs of melancholy mirth.
The leaves of wasted autumn woods shall float
around thy head; The blooms of dewy spring shall gleam beneath
thy feet: But thy soul or this world must fade in the frost that
binds the dead, Ere midnight's frown and morning's smile, ere
thou and peace may meet.
The cloud-shadows of midnight possess their own
repose, For the weary winds are silent, or the moon is in
the deep: Some respite to its turbulence unresting ocean
knows; Whatever moves, or toils, or grieves, hath its ap
pointed sleep: Thou in the grave shalt rest : yet till the phantoms
flee Which that house, and heath, and garden made
dear to thee erewhile, Thy remembrance, and repentance, and deep mu
sings are not free From the music of two voices, and the light of one
We are as clouds that veil the midnight moon;
How restlessly they speed, and gleam, and quiver, Streaking the darkness radiantly! yet soon
Night closes round, and they are lost for ever;
Or, like forgotten lyres, whose dissonant strings
Give various response to each varying blast, To whose frail frame no second motion brings
One mood or modulation like the last.
We rest: a dream has power to poison sleep;
We rise: one wandering thought pollutes the day; We feel, conceive or reason, laugh or weep; . Embrace fond wo, or cast our cares away :
It is the same! For, be it joy or sorrow,
The path of its departure still is free:
Naught may endure but Mutability.
LINES TO AN INDIAN AIR.
I ARISE from dreams of thee
The wandering airs they faint
The sun is warm, the sky is clear,
The waves are dancing fast and bright, Blue isles and snowy mountains wear
The purple moon's transparent light
Like many a voice of one delight,
With green and purple seaweeds strown;
Like light dissolved in star-showers, thrown: I sit upon the sands alone,
The lightning of the noontide ocean Is flashing round me, and a tone
Arises from its measured motion, How sweet! did any heart now share in my emotion. Alas! I have nor hope nor health,
Nor peace within nor calm around,
The sage in meditation found,
Nor fame, nor power, nor love, nor leisure.
Smiling they live, and call life. pleasure : To me that cup has been dealt in another measure. Yet now despair itself is mild,
Even as the winds and waters are ; I could lie down like a tired child,
And weep away the life of care Which I have borne and yet must bear,
Till death, like sleep, might steal on me, And I might feel in the warm air
My cheek grow cold, and hear the sea Breathe o'er my dying brain its last monotony.