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These infant pledges of a love so dear,
In tears she utter'd - as the frozen snow Touchd by the spring's mild ray, begins to flow, So just began to melt his stubborn soul, As mild-ray'd Pity o'er the tyrant stole; But destiny forbade : with eager zeal (Again pretended for the public weal), Her fierce accusers urg'd her speedy doom; Again, dark rage diffus'd its horrid gloom O'er stern Alonzo's brow : swift at the sign, Their swords,'unsheath'd, around her brandish'd shine. O foul disgrace, of knighthood lasting stain, By men of arms a helpless lady slain !
Thus Pyrrhus, burning with unmanly ire, Fulfilled the mandate of his furious sire; Disdainful of the frantic matron's prayer, On fair Polyxena, her last fond care, He rush'd, his blade yet warm with Priam's gore, And dash'd the daughter on the sacred Roor; While mildly she her raving mother eyed, Resigned her bosom to the sword, and died. Thus Inez, while her eyes to heaven appeal, Resigns her bosom to the murd'ring steel : That snowy neck, whose matchless form sustain'd The loveliest face, where all the graces reign'd, Whose charms so long the gallant prince enflam'd, That her pale corse was Lisbon's queen proclaim'd, That snowy neck was stain'd with spouting gore, Another sword her lovely bosom tore. The flowers that glisten'd with her tears bedew'd, Now shrunk and languish'd with her blood embru'd. As when a rose ere-while of bloom so gay, Thrown from the careless virgin's breast away, Lies faded on the plain, the living red, The snowy white, and all its fragrance fled; So from her cheeks the roses died away, And pale in death the beauteous Inez lay: With dreadful smiles, and crimson'd with her blood, Round the wan victim the stern murd'rers stood, Unmindful of the sure, though future hour, Sacred to vengeance and her lover's power.
O Sun, couldst thou so foul a crime behold,
The son's torn limbs supplied ! – Yet you, ye vales!
Mickle's Translation, Canto III.
THE SPIRIT OF THE CAPE.
VASCO DE GAMA relates the incidents of his voyage from Portugal to the King of Melinda. The southern cross had appeared in the heavens and the fleet was approaching the southern point of Africa. While at anchor in a bay the Portuguese aroused the hostility of the savages, and hastily set sail.
“Now, prosp'rous gales the bending canvas swellid;
Avert this omen, mighty God!' I cried ;
“I spoke, when rising through the darken'd air, Appallid, we saw a hideous phantom glare; High and enormous o'er the flood he tower'd, And 'thwart our way with sullen aspect lower'd: An earthy paleness o'er his cheeks was spread, Erect uprose his hairs of wither'd red; Writhing to speak, his sable lips disclose, Sharp and disjoin'd, his gnashing teeth's blue rows; His haggard beard flow'd quiv’ring on the wind, Revenge and horror in his mien combin'd; His clouded front, by with'ring lightnings scard, The inward anguish of his soul declar'd. His red eyes, glowing from their dusky caves, Shot livid fires : far echoing o'er the waves His voice resounded, as the cavernd shore With hollow groan repeats the tempest's roar. Cold gliding horrors thrill'd each hero's breast, Our bristling hair and tott'ring knees confess'd Wild dread, the while with visage ghastly wan, His black lips trembling, thus the fiend began :
"O) you, the boldest of the nations, fir'd By caring pride, by lust of fame inspir'd, Who, scornful of the bow'rs of sweet repose, Through these my waves advance your fearless prows, Regardless of the length'ning wat'ry way, And all the storms that own my sov'reign sway, Who, mid surrounding rocks and shelves explore Where never hero brav'd my rage before ; Ye sons of Lusus, who with eyes profane Have view'd the secrets of my awful reign, Have passed the bounds which jealous Nature drew To veil her secret shrine from mortal view; Hear from my lips what direful woes attend, And, bursting soon, shall o'er your race descend.
« • With every bounding keel that dares my rage, Eternal war my rocks and storms shall wage, The next proud Meet that through my drear domain, With daring search shall hoist the streaming vane, That gallant navy, by my whirlwinds toss'd,
And raging seas, shall perish on my coast :
sheeted masts shall strew my shore.
" • With trophies plum'd behold a hero come, Ye dreary wilds, prepare his yawning tomb. Though smiling fortune bless'd his youthful morn, Though glory's rays his laurell'd brows adorn, Full oft though he beheld with sparkling eye The Turkish moons in wild confusion fly, While he, proud victor, thunder'd in the rear, All, all his mighty fame shall vanish here. Quiloa's sons, and thine, Mombaz, shall see Their conqueror bend his laureli'd head to me; While, proudly mingling with the tempest's sound, Their shouts of joy from every cliff rebound.
“ The howling blast, ye slumb'ring storms prepare, A youthful lover and his beauteous fair Triumphant sail from India's ravag'd land; His evil angel leads him to my strand. Through the torn hulk the dashing waves shall roar, The shatter'd wrecks shall blacken all my shore. Themselves escaped, despoil'd by savage lands, Shall, naked, wander o'er the burning sands, Spar'd by the waves far deeper woes to bear, Woes, e'en by me, acknowledg'd with a tear. Their infant race, the promis'd heirs of joy, Shall now, no more, a hundred hands employ; By cruel want, beneath the parents' eye, In these wide wastes their infant race shall die; Through dreary wilds, where never pilgrim trod Where caverns yawn, and rocky fragments nod, The hapless lover and his bride shall stray, By night unshelter'd, and forlorn by day. In vain the lover o'er the trackless plain Shall dart his eyes, and cheer his spouse in vain. Her tender limbs, and breast of mountain snow, Where, ne'er before, intruding blast might blow, Parch'd by the sun, and shrivell’d by the cold Of dewy night, shall he, fond man, behold. Thus, wand'ring wide, a thousand ills o'er past, In fond embraces they shall sink at last; While pitying tears their dying eyes o'erflow, And the last sigh shall wail each other's woe.
"Some few, the sad companions of their fate,
“ He paus'd, in act still further to disclose A long, a dreary prophecy of woes: When springing onward, loud my voice resounds, And midst his rage the threat'ning shade confounds.
"What art thou, horrid form that rid'st the air? By Heaven's eternal light, stern fiend, declare.' His lips he writhes, his eyes far round he throws, And, from his breast, deep hollow groans arose, Sternly askance he stood: with wounded pride And anguish torn, 'In me, behold,' he cried, While dark-red sparkles from his eyeballs roll’d, * In me the Spirit of the Cape behold, That rock, by you the Cape of Tempests nam'd, By Neptune's rage, in horrid earthquakes fram'd, When Jove's red bolts o'er Titan's offspring flam'd. With wide-stretch'd piles I guard the pathless strand, And Afric's southern mound, unmov’d, I stand : Nor Roman prow, nor daring Tyrian oar Ere dash'd the white wave foaming to my shore; Nor Greece nor Carthage ever spread the sail On these my seas, to catch the trading gale. You, you alone have dar'd to plough my main, And with the human voice disturb my lonesome reign."
“He spoke, and deep a lengthen'd sigh he drew, A doleful sound, and vanish'd from the view : The frighten'd billows gave a rolling swell, And, distant far, prolong'd the dismal yell, Faint and more faint the howling echoes die, And the black cloud dispersing, leaves the sky. High to the angel-host, whose guardian care Had ever round us watch'd, my hands I rear, And Heaven's dread King implore : 'As o'er our head The fiend dissolv'd, an empty shadow fled; So may his curses, by the winds of heav'n, Far o'er the deep, their idle sport, be driv'n!""
With sacred horror thrillid, Melinda's lord Held up the eager hand, and caught the word. “Oh, wondrous faith of ancient days," he cries, “ Concealed in mystic lore and dark disguise ! Taught by their sires, our hoary fathers tell, On these rude shores a giant spectre fell, What time from heaven the rebel band were thrown :