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It is the muse that consecrates
TRE SOLDIER'S DREAM. Our bugles sang truce, for the night-cloud had lower'd,
And the sentinel stars set their watch in the sky; And thousands had sunk on the ground overpower'd,
The weary to sleep, and the wounded to die. When reposing that night on my pallet of straw,
By the wolf-scaring fagot that guarded the slain, At the dead of the night a sweet vision I saw,
And thrice ere the morning I dream'd it again.
Methought from the battle-field's dreadful array,
Far, far I had roam'd on a desolate track: 'Twas Autumn; and sunshine arose on the way
To the home of my fathers, that welcomed me back. I flew to the pleasant fields traversed so oft (young;
In life's morning march, when my bosom was I heard my own mountain-goats bleating aloft, And knew the sweet strain that the corn-reapers
sung. Then pledged we the winecup, and fondly I swore From my home and my weeping friends never to
part : My little ones kiss'd me a thousand times o'er,
And my wife sobb’d aloud in her fulness of heart; Stay, stay with us : rest, thou art weary and worn:
And fain was their war-broken soldier to stay ; But sorrow return'd with the dawning of morn,
And the voice in my dreaming ear melted away.
TO THE RAINBOW.
TRIUMPHAL arch, that fill'st the sky
When storms prepare to part,
To teach me what thou art:
A midway station given
Betwixt the earth and heaven.
Thy form to please me so,
Hid in thy radiant bow ?
Enchantment's veil withdraws,
To cold, material laws!
And yet, fair bow, no fabling dreams,
But words of the Most High, Have told why first thy robe of beams
Was woven in the sky. When o'er the green, undeluged earth,
Heaven's covenant thou didst shine, How came the world's gray fathers forth
To watch thy sacred sign?
O'er mountains yet untrod,
To bless the bow of God. Methinks, thy jubilee to keep,
The first-made anthem rang,
And the first poet sang.
Unraptured greet thy beam :
Be still the poet's theme!
The lark thy welcome sings,
The snowy mushrooin springs. How glorious is thy girdle cast
O'er mountain, tower, and town, Or mirror'd in the ocean vast,
A thousand fathoms down! As fresh in yon horizon dark,
As young thy beauties seem, As when the eagle from the ark
First sported in thy beam.
Heaven still rebuilds thy span,
That first spoke peace to man.
VALEDICTORY STANZAS TO J. P. KEMBLE.
PRIDE of the British stage,
A long and last adieu !
Revived to Fancy's view.
When the sun smiles his last,
Our memory of the past;
That wine or music need not swell,
To Kemble-fare thee well!
Which only acting lends,
Where all their beauty blends :
Full many a tone of thought sublime, And Painting, mute and motionless,
Steals but a glance of Time. But by the mighty actor brought,
Illusion's perfect triumphs come; Verse ceases to be airy thought,
And Sculpture to be dumb. Time may again revive,
But ne'er eclipse the charm, When Cato spoke in him alive,
Or Hotspur kindled warm. What soul was not resign'd entire
To the deep sorrows of the Moor? What English heart was not on fire
With him at Agincour? And yet a majesty possess'd
His transport's most impetuous tone, And to each passion of his breast
The Graces gave their zone. VOL. II.-GG
High were the task--too high,
Ye conscious bosoms here!
Of Kemble and of Lear;
Those bursts of Reason's half-extinguish'd glare ;
Had Shakspeare's self amid you been,
And triumph'd to have seen!
And there was many an hour
Of blended kindred fame,
And sister magic came.
The tragic paragons had grown:
The columns of her throne;
From heart to heart in their applause,
In lovelier woman's cause.
Fair as some classic dome,
Robust and richly graced,
Of genius and of taste :
That, when supernal light is given,
And tell its height in heaven.
His mind survey'd the tragic page,