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Glad to return, though Hope could grant no more, And chains and torture hail'd him to the shore.
And hence the charm historic scenes impart : Hence Tiber awes, and Avon melts the heart. Aerial forms in Tempe's classic vale Glance through the gloom and whisper in the gale; In wild Vaucluse with love and Laura dwell, And watch and weep in Eloisa's cell. 'Twas ever thus. As now at Virgil's tomb We bless the shade, and bid the verdure bloom : So Tully paused, amid the wrecks of Time, On the rude stone to trace the truth sublime; When at his feet, in honour'd dust disclosed, The immortal sage of Syracuse reposed. And as he long in sweet delusion hung, Where once a Plato taught, a Pindar sung; Who now but meets him musing, when he roves His ruinid Tusculan's romantic groves ? In Rome's great forum, who but hears him roll His moral thunders o'er the subject soul?
And hence that calm delight the portrait gives :
What though the iron school of war erase
The intrepid Swiss, who guards a foreign shore, Condemn'd to climb his mountain cliffs no more.
If chance he hears the song so sweetly wild Which on those cliffs his infant hours beguiled, Melts at the long-lost scenes that round him rise, And sinks a martyr to repentant sighs.
Ask not if courts or camps dissolve the charm, Say why Vespasian loved his Sabine farm; Why great Navarre, when France and Freedom bled, Sought the lone limits of a forest shed. When Diocletian's self-corrected mind The imperial fasces of a world resign'd, Say why we trace the labours of his spade In calm Salona's philosophic shade. Say, when contentious Charles renounced a throne, To muse with monks unletter'd and unknown, What from his soul the parting tribute drew, What claim'd the sorrow of a last adieu ? The still retreats that sooth'd his tranquil breast Ere grandeur dazzled and its cares oppress’d.
The lark has sung his carol in the sky, The bees have humm'd their noontide lullaby. Still in the vale the village bells ring round, Still in Llewellyn Hall the jests resound; For now the caudle-cup is circling there, Now, glad at heart, the gossips breathe their prayer, And, crowding, stop the cradle to admire The babe, the sleeping image of his sire.
A few short years, and then these sounds shall The day again, and gladness fill the vale ; [hail So soon the child a youth, the youth a man, Eager to run the race his fathers ran. Then the huge ox shall yield the broad sirloin; The ale, now brew'd, in floods of amber shine; And, basking in the chimney's ample blaze, Mid many a tale told of his boyish days,
The nurse shall cry, of all her ills beguiled, “ 'Twas on these knees he sat so oft and smiled."
And soon again shall music swell the breeze; Soon, issuing forth, shall glitter through the trees Vestures of nuptial white; and hymns be sung, And violets scatter'd round; and old and young, In every cottage porch with garlands green, Stand still to gaze, and, gazing, bless the scene; While, her dark eyes declining, by his side Moves in her virgin veil the gentle bride.
And once, alas! nor in a distant hour,
And such is Human Life! so, gliding on,
The hour arrives, the moment wish'd and fear'd;
Her, by her smile, how soon the stranger knows; How soon by his the glad discovery shows! As to her lips she lifts the lovely boy, What answering looks of sympathy and joy! He walks, he speaks. In many a broken word His wants, his wishes, and his griefs are heard. And ever, ever to her lap he flies, When rosy sleep comes on with sweet surprise.
Lock'd in her arms, his arms across her flung
But soon a nobler task demands her care.
Released, he chases the bright butterfly; Oh, he would follow, follow through the sky! Climbs the gaunt mastiff slumbering in his chain, And chides and buffets, clinging by the mane; Then runs, and, kneeling by the fountain side, Sends his brave ship in triumph down the tide, A dangerous voyage ; or, if now he can, If now he wears the habit of a man, Flings off the coat so long his pride and pleasure, And, like a miser digging for his treasure, His tiny spade in his own garden plies, And in green letters sees his name arise ! Where'er he goes, for ever in her sight, She looks, and looks, and still with new delight.
Ah who, when fading of itself away, Would cloud the sunshine of his little day! Now is the May of Life. Careering round, Joy wings his feet, joy lifts him from the ground! Pointing to such, well might Cornelia say, When the rich casket shone in bright array, “These are my jewels !” Well of such as he, When Jesus spake, well might his language be, “ Suffer these little ones to come to me!"
Thoughtful by fits, he scans and he reveres The brow engraven with the thoughts of years;
Close by her side, his silent homage given,
Then is the age of admiration : then