« السابقةمتابعة »
Saint Anne of Auray, who sees us, that in a similar case I would shoot my son as I shot your brother. Now you are master. Yes, I pity you. You have lied to your captain. You, Christian, are without faith; you, Breton, are without honor. I was confided to your loyalty and accepted by your treason; you offer my death to those to whom you had promised my life. Do you know who it is you are destroying here? It is yourself. You take my life from the king, and you give your eternity to the devil. Go on; commit your crime, - it is well. You sell cheaply your share in Paradise. Thanks to you, the devil will conquer; thanks to you, the churches will fall; thanks to you, the heathen will continue to melt the bells and make cannon of them. They will shoot men with that which used to warn souls ! At this moment in which I speak to you, perhaps the bell that rang for your baptism is killing your mother. Go on; aid the devil, -- do not hesitate. Yes, I condemned your brother; but know this: I am an instrument of God. Ah, you pretend to judge the means God uses! Will you take it on yourself to judge Heaven's thunderbolt ? Wretched man, you will be judged by it. Take care what you do. Do you even know whether I am in a state of grace? No. Go on, all the same. Do what you like. You are free to cast me into hell, and to cast yourself there with me. Our two damnations are in your hand. It is you who will be responsible before God. We are alone ; face to face in the abyss. Go on— finish — make an end. I am old and you are young; I am without arms and you are armed; kill me!”
While the old man stood erect, uttering these words in a voice louder than the noise of the sea, the undulations of the waves showed him now in the shadow, now in the light. The sailor had grown lividly white; great drops of sweat fell from his forehead; he trembled like a leaf; he kissed his rosary again and again. When the old man finished speaking, he threw down his pistol and fell on his knees.
“ Mercy, my lord! Pardon me!” he cried ; “you speak like God. I have done wrong. My brother did wrong. I will try to repair his crime. Dispose of me. Command ; I will obey."
“ I give you pardon,” said the old man.
“Tu domines notre âge ; ange ou démon, qu'importo ! " ANGEL or demon! thou whether of light
The minister, or darkness - still dost sway This age of ours; thine eagle's soaring flight
Bears us, all breathless, after it away.
The eye that from thy presence fain would stray, Shuns thee in vain ; thy mighty shadow thrown
Rests on all pictures of the living day,
Thus, when the admiring stranger's steps explore
The subject-lands that 'neath Vesuvius be, Whether he wind along the enchanting shore
To Portici from fair Parthenope,
Or, lingering long in dreamy revery,
Wooed by whose breath the soft and am'rous sea
Him, whether Pæstum's solemn fane detain,
Shrouding his soul with meditation's power; Or at Pozzuoli, to the sprightly strain
Of tarantella danced 'neath Tuscan tower,
Listening, he while away the evening hour; Or wake the echoes, mournful, lone, and deep,
Of that sad city in its dreaming bower By the volcano seized, where mansions keep The likeness which they wore at that last fatal sleep;
Or be his bark at Posilippo laid,
While as the swarthy boatman at his side Chants Tasso's lays to Virgil's pleased shade,
Ever he sees throughout that circuit wide,
From shaded nook or sunny lawn espied, From rocky headland viewed, or flow'ry shore,
From sea and spreading mead alike descried, The Giant Mount, tow'ring all objects o'er, And black’ning with its breath th' horizon evermore!
THE RETREAT FROM Moscow. It snowed. A defeat was our conquest red ! For once the eagle was hanging its head. Sad days! the Emperor turned slowly his back On smoking Moscow, blent orange and black. The winter burst, avalanche-like, to reign Over the endless blanched sheet of the plain. Nor chief nor banner in order could keep, The wolves of warfare were 'wildered like sheep. The wings from centre could hardly be known Through snow o'er horses and carts o'erthrown, Where froze the wounded. In the bivouacs forlorn Strange sights and gruesome met the breaking morn: Mute were the bugles, while the men bestrode Steeds turned to marble, unheeding the goad. The shells and bullets came down with the snow As though the heavens hated these poor troops below. Surprised at trembling, thongh it was with cold, Who ne'er had trembled out of fear, the veterans bold Marched stern; to grizzled moustache hoar-frost clung 'Neath banners that in leaden masses hung.
It snowed, went snowing still. And chill the breeze
'Neath folds of blankness, monuments were raised
fled French glory then,
Outside still fell the smothering snow. Was it a voice indeed ? or but a dream ? It was the vulture's, but how like the sea-bird's scream.
POOR FOLK. 'Tis night - within the close stout cabin door,
The room is wrapped in shade save where there fall Some twilight rays that creep along the floor,
And show the fisher's nets upon the wall.
In the dim corner, from the oaken chest,
A few white dishes glimmer; through the shade Stands a tall bed with dusky curtains dressed,
And a rough mattress at its side is laid.
Five children on the long low mattress lie
A nest of little souls, it heaves with dreams : In the high chimney the last embers die,
And redden the dark room with crimson gleams.
The mother kneels and thinks, and pale with fear,
She prays alone, hearing the billows shout: While to wild winds, to rocks, to midnight drear,
The ominous old ocean sobs without.
MY THOUGHTS OF YE.
The limpid ocean mirrors all the stars,