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And o'er the silvery sheet a rainbow spreads :-
A brilliant halo round the awful brow
Now we will seek the glen
That blossoms in rich beauty, like the fields
Of classic Tempe, in their loveliness.
It is a place meet for the home of those
Who leave the busy world—and in the pure,-
The blest communion of each other's hearts,
Live in their hallow'd intercourse with Him
Who giveth them the boon of sweet content.
Of old, such haunts as this, the wood-nymphs sought,
And when the burning noon look'd hotly down,
Met with the Naiades of the neighboring streams;
These blew their wreathed shells, the others join'd
With delicate trumpets made of hollow flowers,
And fragrance mingled with the blending notes.
Here oft I sit when eve with silent pace
Steals on—when only here and there a star
Emits a doubtful ray, as though it were
Some gentle spirit coming forth to see
This earth by summer twilight-then I love
To listen to the music issuing out
In untaught freedom from each gushing fount,
And to the melody among the leaves
Of the green woods. For Fancy then can deem
These sounds the low responsive utterings
From Nature's temple to her worshippers.
Here, thou mayst woo the spirit of Poesy,
Here thou shalt find her, in her gentler moods.
METHOUGHT I stood
Upon a field where slaughter once had rode
With reeking scimitar, and plumes that hung,
Flapping upon his helmet, drench'd with blood ;-
And there were graves, that had been digg'd
By soldiers' hands—the turf turn'd up in haste,
With blades still hot from battle--and the grass
Was thick-a heart had gush'd on every root,
And it was fed with clotted gore, until
It lifted up its tall, rank spires of green,
Hath lost its splendor, ceased to play ;
And thou art but a shadow now,
With helmet shatter'd-spear in rust-
Thy honor but a dream—and thou
Despised—degraded in the dust!
Where sleeps the spirit, that of old
Dash'd down to earth the Persian plume,
When the loud chant of triumph told
How fatal was the despot's doom?
The bold three hundred-where are they,
Who died on battle's gory breast?
Tyrants have trampled on the clay,
Where death has hush'd them into rest.
Yet, Ida, yet upon thy hill
A glory shines of ages fled;
And fame her light is pouring still,
Not on the living, but the dead!
But 't is the dim sepulchral light,
Which sheds a faint and feeble ray,
As moon-beams on the brow of night,
When tempests sweep upon
Greece! yet awake thee from thy trance,
Behold thy banner waves afar;
Behold the glittering weapons glance
Along the gleaming front of war!
A gallant chief, of high emprize,
Is urging foremnost in the field,
Who calls upon thee to arise
In might-in majesty reveal’d.
In vain in vain the hero calls-
In vain he sounds the trumpet loud!
His banner totters—see! it falls
In ruin, freedom's battle shroud:
Thy children have no soul to dare
Such deeds as glorified their sires ;
There valor 's but a meteor's glare,
Which gleams a moment, and expires.
Lost land! where genius made his reign, And reard his golden arch on high; Where science raised her sacred fane, Its summits peering to the sky;
Upon thy clime the midnight deep
Of ignorance hath brooded long,
And in the tomb, forgotten, sleep
The sons of science and of song.
Thy sun hath set-the evening storm
Hath pass'd in giant fury by,
To blast the beauty of thy form,
And spread its pall upon the sky!
Gone is thy glory's diadem,
And freedom never more shall cease
To pour her mournful requiem
O’er blighted, lost, degraded Greece!
I saw her in life's morning bloom,
In youth and beauty brightly gay, And little thought the savage tomb
So soon would steal her charms away: I saw her when her eye was bright
As the blue vestment of the sky, And little thought the fearful night
Of the death angel was so nigh!
And it was mine to see her fade,
To see her wither day by day; And it was mine to see her laid
Beneath the cold, repulsive clay; And then the sad funereal bell
Bore the death music to my ear’T was hope's and love's expiring knell,
Yet I was left to linger here.
It little boots my spirit now,
To think that she was fair and kind ; White were the lilies on her brow,
And stainless was her gentle mind. Her's was the holy, heavenly love,
Which beacons life's beclouded way, Such as the seraphs feel above,
Where heaven's eternal sunbeams play.
Around that place of carnage, marking out
The spot where desolation's hand had fall'n.
So where the ruins of some city lie -
The mantling ivy spreads its leafy arms
O’er every mouldering shaft-embracing close
Each fluted column, as it were to hide
The lone prostration of the beautiful.
In that unholy place, methought I stood
In midnight solitude—and one approach'd,
Whose step resounded 'mid the tombs, as if
The sheeted dead were troubled and their sleep
Disturb’d and broken by the stranger's walk.
He had a princely presence, and his glance
Might make the boldest cheek grow pale with awe;
His brow was that of majesty—and yet
An unquelld spirit seem'd at work within
A mighty spirit for that bosom heaved,
And there were flashes passing o'er that brow
Like lightning o'er a marble firmament.
He trod upon a grave—there was a sound-
A bursting sound beneath the hollow earth,
And he who lay there, woke—and rose ;-and yet
No terror smote that proud one's heart-nor stay'd
The beating of his pulses, but he gazed
In calmness at the form, who beckon'd him
Forth from that Golgotha. The spectre led,
And they toild on, in paths that mortal foot
Till then had never press’d. The cataract,
That like the wrath of God bore down-was cross'd;
And when the tempest in its fury came,
They battled onward—and the strife was like
The combat of a band of giants, when
They fight for domination, and put forth,
Their utmost strength, until their sinews snap,
And the blood rushes like a lava stream.
That youthful warrior follow'd still the track
Of him clothed in unearthly robes, until
They reach'd a mountain's base; then in a voice
That caused my flesh to quake, and the cold sweat
To stand upon my brow, he bade him mount
The precipice, and scale the jutting cliff.
There was a rustling of the panoply
Which he had on-an outstretch'd arm 1-and then
Blue lightning shot across a dome that stood
Upon that rocky parapet-I saw
A fiery inscription on the base
Of that aspiring temple
Before the winning breeze could steal
Morn's sprinkled pearl-drops from this rose, I cull'd it, that it might reveal
The tale my lips dare not disclose. Its leaves of virgin tenderness,
Where I have press'd a kiss for thee,-
Its blush of maiden bashfulness,
Both tell of love and secrecy.
For they have bound my flowing curls,
And told me, that ere eve's mild hour,
They'll deck me with their gems and pearls,
To shine the queen of Irad's bower. But I will toil and tempest brave,
And roam the desert at thy side, And kiss thy feet, and live thy slave,
Rather than be proud Irad's bride.
Thou bright one !-let thy lover calm
The breast that heaves such throbbing sighs, And still thy quivering lips, whose balm
Is like the breath of Paradise.
For, by thy token-flower, that brought
The seal thy crimson lips impress'd, —
By these thin leaves, with sweetness fraught,
Like shrines where spikenard blossoms rest ;-
By thy pure eyes, whose diamond glow
Steals through their lashes timidly;