Слике страница
PDF
ePub

The Muse's swans with happiest wing,
Dipping their bills, before they sing-
The minstrels of the table greet
The list'ning ear with descant sweet:-

'Tis not for thee the fault to blame, For from those eyes the madness came. Forgive but thou the crime of loving,

In this heart more pride 'twill raiso To be thus wrong, with thee approving,

Than right, with all a world to praise !

SONG AND TRIO.

THE LEVEE AND COUCHEE.

Call the Loves around,

Let the whisp'ring sound
Of their wings be heard alone,

Till soft to rest

My Lady blest
At this bright hour hath gone.

Let Fancy's beams

Play o'er her dreams,
Till, touch'd with light all through,

Her spirit be

Like a summer sea,
Shining and slumb'ring too.
And, while thus hush'd sho lies,

Let the whisper'd chorus rise“Good evening, good evening, to our Lady's bright

eyes.”

But say, while light these songs resound,
What means that buz of whisp'ring round,
From lip to lip-as if the Power
Of Mystery, in this gay hour,
Had thrown some secret (as we fling
Nuts among children) to that ring
Of rosy, restless lips, to be
Thus scrambled for so wantonly ?
And, mark ye, still as each reveals
The mystic news, her hearer steals
A look tow'rds yon enchanted chair,

Where, like the Lady of the Mask,
A nymph, as exquisitely fair

As Love himself for bride could ask, Sits blushing deep, as if aware Of the wing'd secret circling there. Who is this nymph ? and what, oh Muse,

What, in the name of all odd things That woman's restless brain pursues,

What mean these mystic whisperings?

But the day-beam breaks,

See, our Lady wakes!
Call the Loves around onco more,

Like stars that wait

At Morning's gate,
Iler first steps to adore.

Let the veil of night

From her dawning sight
Al gently pass away,

Liko mists that flee

From a summer sea,
Leaving it full of day.
And, while her last dream flies,

Let the whisper'd chorus rise"Good morning, good morning, to our Lady's bright

eyes.”

Thus runs the tale :-yon blushing maid,
Who sits in beauty's light array'd,
While o'er her leans a tall young Derviso,
(Who from her eyes, as all observe, is
Learning by heart the Marriage Service)
Is the bright heroine of our song,
The Love-wed Psyche, whom so long
We've miss'd among this mortal train,
We thought her wing'd to heaven again

Both are,

But no-earth still demands her smile ;
Her friends, the Gods, must wait awhile.
And if, for maid of heavenly birth,

A young Duke's proffer'd heart and hand Be things worth waiting for on earth,

this hour, at her command. To-night, in yonder half-lit shade,

For love concerns expressly meant, The fond proposal first was made,

And love and silence blush'd consent. Parents and friends (all here, as Jews, Enchanters, housemaids, Turks, Hindoos,) Have heard, approved, and bless'd the tie; And now, hadst thou a poet's eye, Thou might'st behold, in th' air, abovo That brilliant brow, triunphant Love,

SONG.

Ir to see thee bo to love thee,

If to love thee be to prize
Naught of earth or heav'n above thee,

Nor to live but for those eyes :
If such love to mortal given,
Be

wrong to earth, be wrong to heav'n,

Holding, as if to drop it down
Gently upon her curls, a crown
Of Ducal shape_but, oh, such gems!
Pilfer'd from Peri diadems,
And set in gold like that which shines
To deck the Fairy of the Mines:
In short, a crown all glorious—such as
Love orders when he makes a Duchess.

But

see, ’tis morn in heaven; the Sun Up the bright orient hath begun To canter his immortal team;

And, though not yet arrived in sight, His leader's nostrils send a steam

Of radiance forth, so rosy bright

As makes their onward path all light. What's to be done? if Sol will be So deuced early, so must wo;

And when the day thus shines outright

, Ev'n dearest friends must bid good night

. So farewell, scene of mirth and masking,

Now almost a by-gone tale;
Beauties, late in lamp-light basking,

Now, by daylight, dim and pale ;
Harpers, yawning o'er your harps,
Scarcely knowing flats from sharps;
Mothers who, while bored you keep
Time by nodding, nod to sleep;
Heads of air, that stood last night
Crépé, crispy, and upright,
But have now, alas! one sees, a
Leaning like the tower of Pisa ;
Fare ye well—thus sinks away

All that's mighty, all that's bright;
Tyre and Sidon had their day,

And ev'n a Ball-has but its night!

a

EVENINGS IN GREECE.

“Our farewell word is woman's pray'r, “And the hope before us-Liberty!

“ Farewell, farewell. “To Greece we give our shining blades, “ And our hearts to you, young Zean Med

In thus connecting together a series of Songs by a thread of poetical narrative, my chief object has been to combine Recitation with Music, so as to enable a greater number of persons to join in the performance, by enlisting, as readers, those who may not feel willing or competent to take a part as singers.

The Island of Zea, where the scene is laid, was called by the ancients Ceos, and as the birthplaco of Simonides, Bacchylides, and other eminent persons. An account of its present state may be found in the Travels of Dr. Clarke, who says, that “it appeared to him to be the best cultivated of any of tho Grecian Isles.”—Vol. vi. p. 174.

T. M.

“ The moon is in the heavens above,

“ And the wind is on the foaming sea“ Thus shines the star of woman's love On the glorious strife of Liberty!

“ Farewell, farewell. “To Greece we give our shining blades " And our hearts to you, young Zean Maids

EVENINGS IN GREECE.

Thus sung they from the bark, that now
Turn'd to the sea its gallant prow,
Bearing within it hearts as brave,
As e'er sought Freedom o'er the are;
And leaving on that islet's shore,

Where still the farewell beacons burn, Friends, that shall many a day look o’er

The long, dim sea for their return.

FIRST EVENING.

Tue sky is bright—the breeze is fair,

“And the mainsail flowing, full and free

Virgin of Heaven ! speed their tray.

Oh, speed their way, the chosen flon's,

While round, to grace its cradle green,
Groups of Velani oaks are seen,
Tow'ring on every verdant height
Tall, shadowy, in the evening light,
Like Genii, set to watch the birth
Of some enchanted child of earth
Fair oaks, that over Zea's vales,

Stand with their leafy pride unfurlid; While Commerce, from her thousand sails,

Scatters their fruit throughout the world !

Of Zea's youth, the hope and stay

Of parents in their wintry hour,
The love of maidens, and the pride
Of the young, happy, blushing bride,
Whose nuptial wreath has not yet died
All, all are in that precious bark,

Which now, alas, no more is seen-
Though every eye still turns to mark

The moonlight spot where it had been Vainly yon look, ye maidens, sires,

And mothers, your beloved are gone ! Now may you quench those signal fires,

Whose light they long look'd back upon
From their dark deck-watching the flame

As fast it faded from their view,
With thoughts, that, but for manly shame,

Had made them droop and weep like you.
Home to your chambers! home, and pray
For the bright coming of that day,
When, bless'd by heaven, the Cross shall sweep
The Crescent from the Ægean deep,
And your brave warriors, hastning back,
Will bring such glories in their track,
As shall, for many an age to come,
Shed light around their name and home.

'Twas here—as soon as prayer and sleep (Those truest friends to all who weep) Had lightend every heart, and mado Ev'n sorrow wear a softer shade'Twas here, in this secluded spot,

Amid whose breathings calm and sweet Grief might be sooth’d, if not forgot,

The Zean nymphs resolved to meet Each evening now, by the same light That saw their farewell tears that night; And try, if sound of lute and song,

If wand'ring 'mid the moonlight flowers In various talk, could charm along

With lighter step, the ling'ring hours, Till tidings of that Bark should come, Or Victory waft their warriors home!

[ocr errors]

When first they met—the wonted smile
Of greeting having gleam'd awhile-
"Twould touch ev'n Moslem heart to see
The sadness that came suddenly
O’er their young brows, when they look'd round
Upon that bright, enchanted ground;
And thought, how many a time, with those

Who now were gone to the rude wars,
They there had met, at evening's close,

And danced till morn outshone the stars!

There is a Fount on Zea's islo,
Round which, in soft luxuriance, smile
All the sweet flowers, of every kind,

On which the sun of Greece looks down,

Pleased as a lover on the crown His mistress for her brow hath twined, When he beholds each flow'ret there, Himself had wish'd her most to wear; Here bloom'd the laurel-rose,' whose wreath

Hangs radiant round the Cypriot shrines, And here those bramble-flowers that breathe

Their odor into Zante's wines :-
The splendid woodbine, that, at eve,

To grace their floral diadems,
The lovely maids of Patmos weave:-

And that fair plant, whose tangled stems
Shine like a Nereid's hair, when spread,
Dishevell’d, o'er her azure bed ;-
All these bright children of the clime,
(Each at its own most genial time,
The summer, or the year's sweet prime,)
Like beautiful earth-stars, adorn
The Valley, where that Fount is born :

But seldom long doth hang th' eclipse

Of sorrow o'er such youthful breastsThe breath from her own blushing lips,

That on the maiden's mirror rests, Not swifter, lighter from the glass, Than sadness from her brow doth pass. Soon did they now, as round the Well

They sat, beneath the rising moonAnd some, with voice of awe, would tell Of midnight fays, and nymphs who dwell

In holy founts--while some would tune

1 "Nerium Oleander. In Cyprus it retains its ancient 4 Cuscuta europæa. “ From the twisting and twining of name, Rhododaphce, and the Cypriots adorn their churches the stems, it is compared by the Greeks to the dishevelled with the flowers on feast-days."- Journal of Dr. Sibthorpe, hair of the Nereids.”—Walpole's Turkey. Walpole's Turkey.

5 "The produce of the island in these acorns alone * Lonicera Caprifolium, used by the girls of Patmos for amounts annually to fifteen thousand quintals."-Clarke's garlands.

1 Id.

Travels.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

Mutely they listen'd all-and well
Did the young travell’d maiden tell
Of the dread height to which that steep
Beetles above the eddying deep:—
Of the lone sea-birds, wheeling round
The dizzy edge with mournful sound
And of those scented lilies found
Still blooming on that fearful place-
As if call'd up by Love, to graco
Th' immortal spot, o'er which the last
Bright footsteps of his martyr pass'd!

A silence follow'd this sweet air,

As each in tender musing stood, Thinking, with lips that moved in prayer,

Of Sappho and that fearful flood : While some, who ne'er till now had known

How much their hearts resembled hers, Felt as they made her griefs their own,

That they, too, wero Love's worshippers.

While fresh to ev'ry listener's thought
These legends of Leucadia brought
All that of Sappho’s hapless flame
Is kept alive, still watch'd by Fame--
The maiden, tuning her soft lute,
While all the rest stood round her, mute,
Thus sketch'd the languishment of soul,
That o'er the tender Lesbian stole;
And, in a voice, whose thrilling tone
Fancy might deem the Lesbian's own,
One of those fervid fragments gave,

Which still,-like sparkles of Greek Fire, Undying, ev'n beneath the wave,

Burn ou through Time, and ne'er expire.

At length a murmur, all but mute,
So faint it was, came from the lute
Of a young melancholy maid,
Whose fingers, all uncertain play'd
From chord to chord, as if in chase

Of some lost melody, some strain
Of other times, whose faded trace

She sought among those chords again Slowly the half-forgotten theme

(Though born in feelings ne'er forgot) Came to her memory

-as a beam Falls broken o'er some shaded spot ;And while her lute's sad symphony

Filld up each sighing pause between ; And Love himself might weep to see

What ruin comes where he hath beenAs wither'd still the grass is found Where fays have danced their merry round

a

Now Santa Maura--the island, from whose cliffs Sap 3 See Mr. Goodisson's very interesting description of all pho leaped into the sea.

these circumstauces. 2 "The precipice, which is fearfully dizzy, is about one • I have attempted, in these four lines, to give some idea hucured and fourteen feet from the water, which is of a pro- of that beautiful fragment of Sappho, beginning rukcia foun) depth, as appenrs from the dark-blue color and the pãrep, which represents so truly (as Warton remarks) "the eddy that plays round the pointed and projecting rocks."- languor and listlessness of a person deeply in love." Goodisson's Ionian Isles.

[blocks in formation]

1 This word is defranded here, I suspect, of a syllable; of the dance sometimes setting to her partner, sometimes Dr. Clarke, if I recollect right, nakes it “ Balalaika." darting before the rest, and leading them through the most

9 "I saw above thirty parties engaged in dancing the Ro- rapid revolutions; sometimes crossing under the hands, majka upon the sand; in some of these groups, the girl who which are held up to let her pass, and giving as much liveled them chased the retreating wave."-Douglas on the liness and intricacy as she can to the figures, into which Modern Greeks.

she conducts her companions, while their business is to 3 "In dancing the Romaika (says Mr. Douglas) they begin follow her in all her movements, without breaking the in slow and solemn step till they have gained the time, but chain, or losing the measure.” by degrees the air becomes more sprightly; the conductress

« ПретходнаНастави »