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'Twas not thy voice, my buried friend !-Oh, no:
Twas not, 0 ******, the murmur of thy trees; But at the thought I feel my bosom glow, And woo the dream whose air-drawn shadows
please. And I can think I see the groves again,
The larches that yon peaceful roof embower, The airy down, the castle-speckled plain,
And the slant sunshine on the village tower. And I can think I hear its sabbath chime
Come smoothly soften'd down the woody vale; Or mark on yon lone eminence sublime,
Fast whirling in the wind the white mill’s sail. Phantom! that by my bed dost beckoning glide;
Spectre of Death! to the damp charnel hie; Thy dim pale hand, thy fostering visage hide ;
Thou comest to say, 'I with thy worms shall lie!' Thou comest to say that my once vacant mind
Amid those scenes shall never more rejoice ; Nor on the day of rest the hoary hind
Bend o'er his staff, attentive to my voice! Hast thou not visited that pleasant place
Where in this hard world I have happiest been; And shall I tremble at thy lifted mace, That hath pierced all on which life seem'd to
But Hope 'might whisper,— Many a smiling day
And many a cheerful eve might yet be mine, Ere age's autumn strew my locks with gray,
And weary to the dust my steps decline.'
I argue not, but uncomplaining bow
To Heaven's high hest; secure, whate'er my lot, Meek spirit of resign'd Content, that thou
Wilt smooth my pillow, and forsake me not. Thou to the turfy hut with pilgrim feet
Wanderest from halls of loud tumultuous joy; Or on the naked down, when the winds beat,
Dost sing to the forsaken shepherd boy. Thou art the sick man's nurse, the poor man's friend, And through each change of life thou hast
been mine; In every ill thou canst a comfort blend,
And bid the eye, though sad, in sadness shine. Thee I have met on Cherwell's willow'd side;
And when our destined road far onward lay, Thee I have found, whatever chance betide,
The kind companion of my devious way. With thee unwearied have I loved to roam
By the smooth-flowing Scheldtor rushing Rhine; And thou hast gladden'd my sequester'd home,
And hung my peaceful porch with eglantine. When cares and crosses my tired spirits tried,
When to the dust my father I resign'd; Amidst the quiet shade unseen I sigh’d,
And, bless'd with thee, forgot a world unkind.
Even now,while toiling through the sleepless night,
A tearful look to distant scenes I cast, And the glad objects that once charm’d my sight
Remember, like soft views of faerie pass'd;
I see thee come half-smiling to my bed,
With Fortitude more awfully severe, Whose arm sustaining holds my drooping head,
Who dries with her dark locks the tender tear.
O firmer spirit! on some craggy height
Who, when the tempest sails aloft, dost stand, And hearest the ceaseless billows of the night
Rolling upon the solitary strand; At this sad hour, when no harsh thoughts intrude
To mar the melancholy mind's repose, When I am left to night and solitude,
And languid life seems verging to its close; 0, let me thy pervading influence feel!
Be every weak and wayward thought repress’d! And hide thou, as with plates of coldest steel,
The faded aspect and the throbbing breast. Silent the motley pageant may retreat,
And vain mortality's brief scenes remove; Yet let my bosom, whilst with life it beat,
Breathe a last prayer for all on earth I love. Slow creeping pain weighs down my heavy eye,
A chiller faintness steals upon my breast; 0, gentle Muse, with some sweet lullaby *' Rock me in long forgetfulness to rest.
* See Dr. Harington's exquisite air to the words:
Come, gentle Muse, lall me to sleep
DISASTROUS man! sad child of Pain and Grief!
The wretch to every tender passion steeld,
another's pain to bear; The heart, with anguish torn, which for mankind Still beats responsive, patient, and resign'd! Shall not for him, dissolved in kindred woe, The conscious virgin give her tears to flow? Shall not the Muse for him, the gentle Muse, (She favours still the good) sweet numbers choose ? Such as assuaged the grief, old fables say, Of that prophetic God who rules the day, When, late repenting, in the guilty shade, He mourn’d the murder'd Larissæan maid. (Fictions like these would mighty bards rehearse, Who veil'd immortal truths with mystic verse.) Or as, in pity to the youth she bore, Calliopeia breathed on Hebrus’ shore,
When, for the nymph beloved, alas, too well,
To the sick mind, by sorrow wearied long,
EARL OF CARYSFORT.