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XVI. A dark, proud man he was, whose half

blown youth Hadshed its blossomseven in opening, Leaving a few that with more winning

ruth Trembling around grave manhood's

stem might cling, More sad than cheery, making, in good

sooth, Like the fringed gentian, a late

autumn spring : A twilight nature, braided light and

gloom, A youth half-smiling by an open tomb.

Of wearing all day long a lying face Fell lightly from him, and, a moment

free, Erect with wakened faith his spirit stood Aud scorned the weakness of his demon. mood.

XX. Like a sweet wind-harp to him was her

thought, Which would not let the common air

come near, Till from its dim enchantment it had

caught A musical tenderness that brimmed

his ear With sweetnessmore etherealıhanaught Save silver-dropping snatches that

whilere Rained down from some sad angel's

faithful harp To cool her fallen lover's anguish sharp

XVII. Fair as an angel, who yet inly wore A wrinkled heart foreboding his near

fall; Who saw him alway wished to know

him more, As if he were some fate's defiant thrall And nursed a dreaded secret at its core ;

Little he loved, but power most of all, And that he seemed to scorn, as one

who knew By what foul paths men choose to crawl

thereto.

XXI.
Deep in the forest was a little dell

High overarched with the leafy sweep Of a broad oak, through whose gnarled

roots there fell A slender rill that sung itself asleep, Where its continuous toil had scooped

a well To please the fairy folk ; breathlessly

deep The stillness was, save when the dream

ing brook From its small urn a drizzly murmur

shook.

XVIII. Hehad been noble, but some great deceit

Hadturned his betterinstinct toa vice : He strove to think the world was all a

cheat, That power and fame were cheap at

any price, That the sure way of being shortly great Was even to play life's game with

loaded dice, Since he had tried the honest play and

found Thatvice and virtue differed butin sound.

XXII. The wooded hills sloped upward all

around With gradual rise, and made an even

rim, So that it seemed a mighty casque un•

bound From some huge Titan's brow to

lighten him, Ages ago, and left upon the ground, Where the slow soil had mossed it to

the brim, Till after countless centuries it grew Into this dell, the haunt of noontide

dew.

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XVI. A dark, proud man he was, whose hall

blown youth Hadshed its blossomseven in opening, Leaving a few that with more winning

ruth Trembling around grave manhood's

stem might cling, More sad than cheery, making, in good

sooth, Like the fringed gentian, a late

autumn spring: A twilight nature, braided light and

gloom, A youth half-smiling by an open tomb.

Of wearing all day long a lying face Fell lightly from him, and, a moment

free, Erect with wakened faith his spirit stood And scorned the weakness of his demonmood.

XX. Like a sweet wind-harp to him was her

thought, Which would not let the common air Till from its dim enchantment it had

caught A musical tenderness that brimmed

his ear With sweetness more etherealihan aught Save silver-dropping snatches that

whilere Rained down from some sad angel's

faithful harp To cool her fallen lover's anguish sharp.

come near,

XVII. Fair as an angel, who yet inly wore A wrinkled heart foreboding his near

fall; Who saw him alway wished to know

him more, Asif he were some fate's defiant thrall And nursed a dreaded secret at its core ;

Little he loved, but power most of all, And that he seemed to scorn, as one

who knew By what foul paths men choose to crawl

thereto.

XXI.
Deep in the forest was a little dell

High overarched with the leafy sweep Of a broad oak, through whose gnarled

roots there fell A slender rill that sung itself asleep, Where its continuous toil had scooped

a well To please the fairy folk ; breathlessly

deep The stillness was, save when the dream

ing brook From its small urn a drizzly murmur

shook.

XVIII. Hehad been noble, but some great deceit

Hadturned his better instinct toa vice : He strove to think the world was all a

cheat, That power and fame were cheap at

any price, That the sure way of being shortly great Was even to play life's game with

loaded dice, Since he had tried the honest play and

found That vice and virtue differed but in sound.

XXII. The wooded hills sloped upward all

around With gradual rise, and made an even

rin So that it seemed a mighty casque un

bound From some huge Titan's brow to

lighten him, Ages ago, and left upon the ground, Where the slow soil had mossed it to

the brim, Till after countless centuries it grew Into this dell, the haunt of noontide

dew.

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XXIII. Dim vistas, sprinkled o'er with sun

flecked green, Wound through the thickset trunks

on every side, And, toward the west, in fancy might be

seen A gothic window in its blazing pride, When the low sun, two arching elms

between, Lit up the leaves beyond, which,

autumn-dyed With lavish hues, would into splendor

start, Shaming the labored panes of richest art.

XXIV. Here, leaning once against the old oak's

trunk, Mordred, for such was the young

Templar's name, Saw Margaret come ; unseen, the falcon

shrunk From the meek dove; sharp ihrills of

tipgling flame Made him forget that he was vowed a

monk, And all the outworks of his pride

o'ercame : Flooded he seemed with bright delicious

pain, As if a star had burst within his brain.

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XXV. Such power hath beauty and frank in

nocence: A flower bloomed forth, that sunshine

glad to bless, Even from his love's long leafless stem ;

the sense Of exile from Hope's happy realm

grew less, And thoughts of childish

peace,

he knew not whence, Thronged round his heart with many

an old caress, Melting the frost there into pearly dew That mirrored back his nature's morning-blue.

XXVI.
She turned and saw him, but she felt no

dread,
Her purity, like adamantine mail,

XXVIII. How they went home together through

the wood, And how all life seemed focussed into

one Thought-dazzling spot that set ablaze

the blood, What need to tell? Fit language

there is none For the heart's deepest things. Who

ever wooed As in his boyish hope he would have

done ? For, when the soul is fullest, the hushed

tongue Voicelessly trembles likealuteunstrung.

XXIX. But all things carry the heart's mes

sages And know it not, nor doth the heart

well know, But nature hath her will ; even as the

bees, Blithe go-betweens, fly singing to and

fro

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XXXII. How should she dream of ill? the heart

filled quite With sunshine, like the shepherd's

clock at noon, Closesitsleaves around its warm delight;

Whate'er in life is harsh or out of tune Is all shut out, no boding shade of light Can pierce the opiate ether of its

swoon : Love is but blindasthoughtful justice is, But naught can be so wanton-blind as

bliss.

I.

As one who, from the sunshine and the

green, Enters the solid darkness of a cave, Nor knows what precipice or pit unseen May yawn before him with its sudden

grave,

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