« ElőzőTovább »
Live long, ere from thy topmost head Ah shameless ! for he did but sing
| A song that pleased us from its Long, erc the hateful crow shall tread worth ; The corners of thine eyes :
No public life was his on earth, Live long, nor feel in head or chest No blazon'd statesman he, nor king: Our changeful equinoxes,
He gave the people of his best: Till mellow Death, like some late His worst he kept, his best he gavc.. guest,
My Shakespeare's curse on clown Shall call thee from the boxes.
and knave But when he calls, and thou shalt cease | Who will not let his ashes rest! To pace the gritted floor,
Who make it seem more sweet to be And, laying down an unctuous lease The little life of bank and brier, Of life, shalt earn no more :
The bird that pipes his lone desire No carved cross-bones, the types of And dies unheard within his tree, Death,
Than he that warbles long and loud Shall show thee past to Heaven :
And drops at Glory's temple-gates, But carved cross-pipes, and, under
For whom the carrion vulture waits neath,
To tear his heart before the crowd ! A pint-pot, neatly graven.
TO E. L., ON HIS TRAVELS IN TO
GREECE AFTER READING A LIFE AND LETTERS.
ILLYRIAN Woodlands, echoing falls « Cursed be he that moves my bones.”
Of water, sheets of summer glass, Shakespeare's Epitaph. 1 The long divine Peneïan pass, You might have won the Poet's name, The vast Åkrokeraunian walls,
If such be worth the winning now, Tomohrit, Athos, all things fair,
And gain'd a laurel for your brow With such a pencil, such a pen, Of sounder leaf than I can claim;
You shadow forth to distant men, But you have made the wiser choice, | I read and felt that I was there :
A life that moves to gracious ends And trust me while I turn'd the page,
Thro' troops of unrecording friends, | And track'd you still on classic A deedful life, a silent voice;
ground, And you have miss'd the irreverent I grew in gladness till I found doom
My spirits in the golden age. Of those that wear the Poet's crown: For me the torrent ever pour'd
Hereafter, neither knave nor clown And glisten'd-here and there alone Shall hold their orgies at your tomb. The broad-limb'd Gods at random For now the poet cannot die
thrown Nor leave his music as of old, By fountain-urns; and Naiads oard
But round him ere he scarce be cold a glimmering shoulder under gloom Begins the scandal and the cry:
Of cavern pillars; on the swell “Proclaim the faults he would not The silver lily heaved and fell ;
And many a slope was rich in bloom show : Break lock and seal: Betray the From him that on the mountain lea trust :
By dancing rivulets fed his flocks, Keep nothing sacred : 'tis but just To him who sat upon the rocks, The many-headed beast should know.” | And fluted to the morning sea.
“If I'm a beggar born,” she said, It was the time when lilies blow,
“I will speak out, for I dare not lie. And clouds are highest up in air,
Pull off, pull off, the broach of gold. Lord Ronald brought a lily-white doe
And Aling the diamond necklace by" To give his cousin, Lady Clare. “Nay now, my child,” said Alice the I trow they did not part in scorn :
If there be any faith in man.” " He does not love me for my birth, 'Nay now, what faith?" said Alice
Nor for my lands so broad and fair: the nurse, He loves me for my own true worth, 1 “The man will cleave unto his
And that is well,” said Lady Clare. right." In there came old Alice the nurse,
“And he shall have it,” the lady Said, “Who was this that went from
“Tho' I should die to-night.” thee?" " It was my cousin,” said Lady Clare, | "Yet give one kiss to your mother “ To-morrow he weds with me.'
dcar! "O God be thank'd !” said Alice the Alas, my child, I sinn'd for thee."; nurse,
11“ O mother, mother, mother,” she said, “That all comes round so just and “ So strange it seems to me.
fair: Lord Ronald is heir of all your lands. | “Yet here's a kiss for my mother dear. And you are not the Lady Clare.”
| My mother dear, if this be so,
And lay your hand upon ny head. “Are ye out of your mind, my nurse, And bless me, mother, ere I go."
my nurse?”' Said Lady Clare, “that ye speak so she clad herself in a russet gown, wild ? "
She was no longer Lady Clare : “As God's above,” said Alice the She went by dale, and she went by nurse,
down, "I speak the truth: you are my With a single rose in her hair child.
The lily-white doe Lord Ronald had “The old Earl's daughter died at my brought breast;
Leapt up from where she lay, I speak the truth, as I live by bread! Dropt her head in the maiden's hand, I buried her like my own sweet child, And follow'd her all the way, And put my child in her stead.”
Down stept Lord Ronald from his "Falsely, falsely have ye done,
tower : O mother," she said, “if this be “O Lady Clare, you shame your true,
worth! To keep the best man under the sun Why come you drest like a village So many years from his due.”
maid, Nay now, my child," said Alice the
That are the flower of the earth ?” nurse,
“If I come drest like a village naid, “ But keep the secret for your life, I am but as my fortunes are : And all you have will be Lord Ronald's, I am a beggar born,” she said,
When you are man and wife." 1 “And not the Lady Clare."
“Play me no tricks,” said Lord 1 Lay betwixt his home and hers; Ronald,
Parks with oak and chestnut shady, “For I am yours in word and in Parks and order'd gardens great, deed.
Ancient homes of lord and lady, Play me no tricks,” said Lord Ronald, | Built for pleasure and for state. “'Your riddle is hard to read.” All he shows her makes him dearer:
Evermore she seems to gaze
On that cottage growing nearer,
Where they twain will spend their
days. And told him all her nurse's tale.
O but she will love him truly! He laugh'd a laugh of merry scorn: He shall have a cheerful home; He turn'd, and kiss'd her where she She will order all things duly, stood:
When beneath his roof they come. * If you are not the heiress born, Thus her heart rejoices greatly,
And I,” said he, “the next in blood Till a gateway she discerns "If you are not the heiress born,
With armorial bearings stately, And I,” said he, “the lawful heir,
And beneath the gate she turns;
Sees a mansion more majestic
Than all those she saw before :
Bows before him at the door.
And they speak in gentle murmur,
When they answer to his call, IN her ear he whispers gayly,
While he treads with footstep firmer, “If my heart by signs can tell,
Leading on from hall to hall. Maiden, I have watched thee daily,
And, while now she wonders blindly, And I think thou lov'st me well." Nor the meaning can divine, She replies, in accents fainter,
Proudly turns he round and kindly, “There is none I love like thee.".
"All of this is mine and thine." He is but a landscape-painter,
Here he lives in state and bounty, And a village maiden she.
Lord of Burleigh, fair and free, He to lips, that fondly falter,
Not a lord in all the county Presses his without reproof:
Is so great a lord as he. Leads her to the village altar,
All at once the color flushes And they leave her father's roof.
Her sweet face from brow to chin: "I can make no marriage present ;
As it were with shame she blushes, Little can I give my wife.
And her spirit changed within. Love will make our cottage pleasant,
Then her countennance all over And I love thee more than life.”
Pale again as death did prove; They by parks and lodges going
But he clasp'd her like a lover, See the lordly castles stand;
And he cheer'd her soul with love. Summer woods, about them blowing, So she strove against her weakness, Made a murmur in the land.
Tho' at times her spirits sank : From deep thought himself he rouses,
Shaped her heart with woman's meek Says to her that loves him well,
ness “Let us see these handsome houses
To all duties of her rank: Where the wealthy nobles dwell.”
And a gentle consort made he, So she goes by him attended,
And her gentle mind was such Hears him lovingly converse,
That she grew a noble lady, Sees whatever fair and splendid
And the people loved her much.
But a trouble weigh'd upon her, And drooping chestnut-buds began
And perplex'd her, night and morn To spread into the perfect san, With the burden of an honor
Above the teeming ground. Unto which she was not born.
Then, in the boyhood of the year, Faint she grew, and ever fainter,
Sir Launcelot and Queen Guinevere As she murmur'd, “O, that he
Rode thro' the coverts of the deer, Were once more that landscape
With blissful treble ringing clear. painter, Which did win my heart from me!”
She seem'd a part of joyous Spring: .So she droop'd and droop'd before
A grown of grass-green silk she wore,
Buckled with golden clasps before ; him, Fading slowly from his side :
A light-green tuft of plumes she bore
Closed in a golden ring. Three fair children first she bore him,
Then before her time she died. Now on some twisted ivy-net, Weeping, weeping late and early, Now by some tinkling rivulet,
Walking up and pacing down, In mosses mixt with violet Deeply mourn'd the Lord of Burleigh, Her cream-white mule his pastern set;
Burleigh-house by Stamford-town. And fleeter now she skimm'd the And he came to look upon her,
plains And he look'd at her and said, Than she whose elfin prancer springs “ Bring the dress and put it on her, By night to eery warblings,
That she wore when she was wed.”. When all the glimmering moorland Then her people, softly treading,
rings Bore to earth her body, drest
With jingling bridle-reins.
As she fled fast thro' sun and shade,
She look'd so lovely, as she sway'd SIR LAUNCELOT AND QUEEN
The rein with dainty finger-tips,
A man had given all other bliss,
To waste his whole heart in one kiss
Upon her perfect lips
Flow down, cold rivulet, to the sea,
Thy tribute wave deliver: Blue isles of heaven laugh'd between, No more by thee my steps shall be, And, far in forest-deeps unseen,
Forever and forever. The topmost elm-tree gather'd green From draughts of balmy air. Flow, softly flow, by lawn and lea,
A rivulet then a river:
Forever and forever.
And here thine aspen shiver:
A thousand suns will stream on thee,
A thousand moons will quiver ; But not by thee my steps shall be,
Forever and forever.
Suffused them, sitting, lying, languid
shapes, By heaps of gourds, and skins of wine,
and piles of grapes.
THE BEGGAR MAID
Then methought I heard a mellow HER arms across her breast she laid :
sound, She was more fair than words can
Gathering up from all the lower ground; say : Barefooted came the beggar maid
Narrowing in to where they sat assem
bled Before the king Cophetua
Low voluptuous music winding tremIn robe and crown the king stept down,
bled, To meet and greet her on her way:
Wov'n in circles: they that heard it “ It is no wonder," said the lords,
sigh’d, “She is more beautiful than day"
Panted hand in hand with faces pale,
Swung themselves, and in low tones As shines the moon in clouded skies,
replied ; She in her poor attire was seen:
Till the fountain spouted, showering One praised her ankles, one her eyes, One her dark hair and lovesome
Sleet of diamond-drift and pearly hail ; mien.
Then the music touch'd the gates and So sweet a face, such angel grace,
died; In all that land had never been :
Rose again from where it seem'd to fail, Cophetua sware a royal oath :
Storm'd in orbs of song, a growing “This beggar maid shall be my
gale ; Till thronging in and in, to where they
As 'twere a hundred-throated nightTHE VISION OF SIN.
ingale, The strong tempestuous treble throbb’d
and palpitated; I had a vision when the night was Ran into its giddiest whirl of sound, late :
Caught the sparkles, and in circles, A youth came riding toward a palace- Purple gauzes, golden hazes, liquid gate.
mazes, He rode a horse with wings, that would Flung the torrent rainbow round: have flown,
Then they started from their places, But that his heavy rider kept him down. Moved with violence, changed in hue, And from the palace came a child of Caught each other with wild grimaces, sin,
Hall-invisible to the view, And took him by the curls, and led him Wheeling with precipitate paces in,
To the melody, till they flew, Where sat a company with heated eyes, Hair, and eyes, and limbs, and faces, Expecting when a fountain should arise : Twisted hard in fierce embraces, A sleepy light upon their brows and Like to Furies, like to Graces, lips .
Dash'd together in blinding dew : As when the sun, a crescent of eclipse, Till, kill'd with some luxurious agony, Dreams over lake and lawn, and isles The nerve-dissolving melody and capes
Flutter'd headlong from the sky.