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Born on the stage—through every shifting scene,
CAPTIVITY. Obscure or bright, tempestuous or serene, Still has your smile her trembling spirit fired! Caged in old woods, whose reverend echoes wake And can she act, with thoughts like these inspired ? When the hern screams along the distant lake, Thus from her mind all artifice she flings,
Her little heart oft flutters to be free,
And terraced walls their black reflection throw
SLEEP on, and dream of heaven a while.
As all its lessening turrets bluely fade;
And busy fancy fondly lends her aid.
Ah! now each dear, domestic scene he knew,
Recall'd and cherish'd in a foreign clime, She starts, she trembles, and she weeps! Charms with the magic of a moonlight view; Her fair hands folded on her breast.
Its colours mellow'd, not impair'd, by time. -And now,
how like a saint she sleeps! A seraph in the realms of rest!
True as the needle, homeward points his heart,
Through all the horrors of the stormy main; Sleep on secure! Above control,
This, the last wish that would with life depart, Thy thoughts belong to heaven and thee!
To see the smile of her he loves again.
When morn first faintly draws her silver line,
Still, still he views the parting look she gave.
Her gentle spirit, lightly hovering o'er,
Attends his little bark from pole to pole;
And when the beating billows round him roar,
Whispers sweet hope to soothe his troubled soul. I would not, if I could, be gay.
Carved is her name in many a spicy grove, 0, if you knew the pensive pleasure
In many a plantain forest, waving wide;
Where dusky youths in painted plumage rove,
And giant palms o’erarch the golden tide.
But lo, at last he comes with crowded sail
In each he hears the welcome of a friend.
—'Tis she, 'tis she herself! she waves her hand!
Soon through the whitening surge he springs to Dip their white vestments in its waters clear,
land, And hang them to the sun. There first I saw And clasps the maid he singled from the world.
her. Her dark and eloquent eyes, mild, full of fire, 'Twas heaven to look upon; and her sweet voice, As tunable as harp of many strings,
TO AN OLD OAK. At once spoke joy and sadness to my soul !
Immota manet; multosque nepotes,
Multir virûm volvens durando sæcula, vincit.- Virg. Dear is that valley to the murmuring bees ; And all, who know it, come and come again. The small birds build there; and, at summer Round thee, alas, no shadows move! noon,
From thee no sacred murmurs breathe ! Oft have I heard a child, gay among flowers,
Yet within thee, thyself a grove, As in the shining grass she sate conceal’d,
Once did the eagle scream above, Sing to herself
And the wolf howl beneath.
There once the steel-clad knight reclined, Sweet drop of pure and pearly light !
In thee the rays of virtue shine;
More calmly clear, more mildly bright,
Than any gem that gilds the mine.
Benign restorer of the soul !
Who ever fly'st to bring relief, And village sports, and garlands gay.
When first we feel the rude control
Of love or pity, joy or grief.
The sage's and the poet's theme,
In every clime, in every age; Father of many a forest deep,
Thou charm'st in fancy's idle dream,
In reason's philosophic page.
That very law* which moulds a tear,
And bids it trickle from its source,
That law preserves the earth a sphere,
And guides the planets in their course.
TO A VOICE THAT HAD BEEN LOST.
Vane, quid affectas faciem mihi ponere, pictor ? And the wan moon wheels round to glare
Aëris et linguæ sum filia; On the long corse that shivers there
Et, si vis similem pingere, pinge sonum. ---Ausonius.
ONCE more, enchantress of the soul,
-Yet whither, whither didst thou fly?
To what bright region of the sky?
Say, in what distant star to dwell ? WELL may you sit within, and, fond of grief,
(Of other worlds thou seem'st to tell) Look in each other's face, and melt in tears.
Or trembling, fluttering here below, Well may you shun all counsel, all relief.
Resolved and unresolved to go, O, she was great in mind, though young in years ! In secret didst thou still impart Changed is that lovely countenance, which shed
Thy raptures to the pure in heart? Light when she spoke, and kindled sweet surprise,
Perhaps to many a desert shore, As o'er her frame each warm emotion spread,
Thee, in his rage, the tempest bore ; Play'd round her lips, and sparkled in her eyes.
Thy broken murmurs swept along,
'Mid echoes yet untuned by song ; Those lips so pure, that moved but to persuade,
Arrested in the realms of frost, Still to the last enliven'd and endear'd.
Or in the wilds of ether lost. Those eyes at once her secret soul convey'd,
Far happier thou ! 'twas thine to soar And ever beam'd delight when you appear’d.
Careering on the winged wind.
Thy triumphs who shall dare explore ?
Did thee detain. Thy wing of fire (Glory and joy reserved for you to share.)
Bore thee amidst the cherub-choir ; Far, far more blest in blessing those she loves
And there a while to thee 'twas given Than they, alas ! unconscious of her care.
Once more that voicet beloved to join,
Which taught thee first a flight divine,
FROM A GREEK EPIGRAM.
WHILE on the cliff with calm delight she kneels, A secret source of pensive pleasure.
And the blue vales a thousand joys recall, The little brilliant, ere it fell,
See, to the last, last verge her infant steals! Its lustre caught from Chloe's eye;
O fly-yet stir not, speak not, lest it fall. Then, trembling, left its coral cell
Far better taught, she lays her bosom bare,
And the fond boy springs back to nestle there. The spring of sensibility!
* The law of gravitation. + In the winter of 1803. * On the death of a younger sister.
THE BOY OF EGREMOND.* FRAGMENT OF A STATUE OF HERCULES,
“ Say, what remains when hope is filed ?” COMMONLY CALLED THE TORSO.
She answerd, “ Endless weeping !” And dost thou still, thou mass of breathing stone, For in the herdsman's eye she read (Thy giant limbs to night and chaos hurld,)
Who in his shroud lay sleeping. Still sit as on the fragment of a world ;
At Embsay rung the matin-bell, Surviving all, majestic and alone ?
The stag was roused on Barden fell; What though the spirits of the north, that swept The mingled sounds were swelling, dying, Rome from the earth, when in her pomp she slept, And down the Wharfe a hern was flying ; Smote thee with fury, and thy headless trunk
When near the cabin in the wood, Deep in the dust 'mid tower and temple sunk;
In tartan clad and forest green, Soon to subdue mankind 'twas thine to rise,
With hound in leash and hawk in hood, Still, still unquell'd thy glorious energies !
The Boy of Egremond was seen, Aspiring minds, with thee conversing, caught*
Blithe was his song, a song of yore; Bright revelations of the good they sought;
But where the rock is rent in two, By thee that long-lost spellt in secret given,
And the river rushes through,
'Twas but a step! the gulf he pass'd
As through the mist he wing'd his way,
(A cloud that hovers night and day,)
The hound hung back, and back he drew Ah! little thought she, when, with mild delight,
The master and his merlin too. By many a torrent's shining track she flew,
That narrow place of noise and strife When mountain-glens and caverns full of night
Received their little all of life! O’er her young mind divine enchantment threw,
There now the matin-bell is rung;
The “ Miserere !” duly sung;
But what avail they? Ruthless lord,
Thou didst not shudder when the sword Yet round her couch indulgent fancy drew
Here on the young its fury spent, The kindred forms her closing eye required.
The helpless and the innocent. There didst thou stand—there, with the smile she
Sit now and answer groan for groan, knew,
The child before thee is thy own. She moved her lips to bless thee, and expired.
And she who wildly wanders there And now to thee she comes; still, still the same
The mother in her long despair, As in the hours gone unregarded by !
Shall oft remind thee, waking, sleeping, To thee, how changed ! comes as she ever came
Of those who by the Wharfe were weeping; Health on her cheek, and pleasure in her eye!
Of those who would not be consoled
When red with blood the river roll'd.
TO A FRIEND ON HIS MARRIAGE.
The maid thy earliest, fondest wishes knew. WRITTEN IN A SICK CHAMBER. Each soft enchantment of the soul is hers; THERE, in that bed so closely curtain'd round,
Thine be the joys to firm attachment due. Worn to a shade, and wan with slow decay, As on she moves with hesitating grace, A father sleeps! O hush'd be every sound ! She wins assurance from his soothing voice; Soft may we breathe the midnight hours away! And, with a look the pencil could not trace, He stirs—yet still he sleeps. May heavenly dreams Smiles through her blushes, and confirms the choice. Long o'er his smooth and settled pillow rise ;
* In the twelfth century William Fitz-Duncan laid Till through the shutter'd pane the morning streams
waste the valleys of Craven with fire and sword; and And on the hearth the glimmering rushlight dies. was afterward established there by his uncle, David,
King of Scotland. * In the gardens of the Vatican, where it was placed by He was the last of the race; his son, commonly called Julius II., it was long the favourite study of those great the Boy of Egremond, dying before him in the manner here men to whom we owe the revival of the arts, Michael related; when a priory was removed from Embsay to Angelo, Raphael, and the Carracci.
Bolion, that it might be as near as possible to the place + Once in the possession of Praxiteles, if we may be where the accident happened. That place is still known lieve an ancient epigram on the Guidian Venus.-Ana- by the name of the Strid; and the mother's answer, as lecta Vet. Poetarum, III. 200.
given in the first stanza, is to this day often repeated in On the death of her sister.
Wharfedale. -See Whit:aker's Hist. of Craven.
Spare the fine tremors of her feeling frame !
YOUNGEST DAUGHTER OF LADY ****, Weakness that charms, reluctance that endears !
Ay, why with tell-tale tongue reveal* At each response the sacred rite requires,
What most her blushes would conceal ? From her full bosom bursts th’ unbidden sigh.
Why lift that modest veil to trace A strange, mysterious awe the scene inspires;
The seraph sweetness of her face ? And on her lips the trembling accents die.
Some fairer, better sport prefer ;
And feel for us, if not for her. O’er her fair face what wild emotions play!
For this presumption, soon or late, What lights and shades in sweet confusion blend ! Know thine shall be a kindred fate. Soon shall they fly, glad harbingers of day,
Another shall in vengeance riseAnd settled sunshine on her soul descend !
Sing Harriet's cheeks, and Harriet's eyes;
And, echoing back her wood-notes wild, Ah soon, thine own confest, ecstatic thought!
-Trace all the mother in the child !
AN EPITAPH+ ON A ROBIN-REDBREAST.
THE ALPS AT DAYBREAK.
TREAD lightly here ; for here, 'tis said,
IMITATION OF AN ITALIAN SONNET.
Love, under friendship’s vesture white,
But now as rage the god appears !
TO THE GNAT.
Mine be a cot beside the hill,
* There are passes in the Alps, where the guides tell Alluding to some verses which she had written on an you to move on with speed, and say nothing, lest the agi- elder sister. tation of the air should loosen the snows above.
+ Inscribed on an urn in the flower-garden at Hafod.
The swallow, oft, beneath my thatch
That birds may come and drink upon his grave, Making it holy !*
Around my ivied porch shall spring
WRITTEN AT MIDNIGHT, 1786. While through the broken pane the tempest sighs, And my step falters on the faithless floor, Shades of departed joys around me rise, With many a face that smiles on me no more; With many a voice that thrills of transport gave, Now silent as the grass that tufts their grave!
AN ITALIAN SONG. Dear is my little native vale, The ring-dove builds and murmurs there; Close by my cot she tells her tale To every passing villager. The squirrel leaps from tree to tree, And shells his nuts at liberty. In orange groves and myrtle bowers, That breathe a gale of fragrance round, I charm the fairy-footed hours With my loved lute's romantic sound; Or crowns of living laurel weave, For those that win the race at eve. The shepherd's horn at break of day, The ballet danced in twilight glade, The canzonet and roundelay Sung in the silent greenwood shade, These simple joys, that never fail, Shall bind me to my native vale.
WRITTEN IN THE HIGHLANDS OF SCOT
LAND, SEPTEMBER 2, 1812.
The fairy isles fled far away;
Tarbat,thy shore I climb'd at last,
Night fell; and dark and darker grew
AN INSCRIPTION. SHEPHERD, or huntsman, or worn mariner, Whate'er thou art, who wouldst allay thy thirst, Drink and be glad. This cistern of white stone, Arch’d, and o’erwrought with many a sacred verse, This iron cup chain'd for the general use, And these rude seats of earth within the grove, Were given by Fatima. Borne hence a bride, 'Twas here she turn'd from her beloved sire, To see his face no more.* 0, if thou canst, ('Tis not far off,) visit his tomb with flowers; And with a drop of this sweet water fill The two small cells scoop'd in the marble there,
* A Turkish superstition. + A famous outlaw. I Signifying, in the Erse language, an isthmus. $ Loch Long. ll A phenomenon described by many navigators.
See an anecdote related by Pausanias, iii. 20.