صور الصفحة
PDF

I can repeople with the past and of
The present there is still for eye and thonght,
And meditation chasten'd down, enough;
And more, it may be, than I hoped or sought;
And of the happiest moments which were wrought
Within the web of my existence, some
From thee, fair Venice! have their colours caught:

There are some feelings Time can not bennmb, Nor Torture shake, or mine would now be cold

and dumb.

But from their nature will the tannen grow 15)
Loftiest on loftiest and least shelter'd rocks,
Rooted in barrenness, where nonght below
Of soil supports them 'gainst the Alpine shocks
Of eddying storms; yet springs the trunk, and

mocks The howling tempest, till its height and frame Are worthy of the mountains from whose blocks

Of bleak, gray granite into life it came, And grew a giant tree; - the mind may grow

the same.

XXI. Existence may be borne, and the deep root Of life and sufferance make its firm abode In bare and desolated bosoms: mute The camel labours with the heaviest load, And the wolf dies in silence, - not bestow'd In vain should such example be; if they, Things of ignoble or of savage mood,

Endure and shrink not, we of nobler clay May temper it to bear, – it is but for a day.

XXII. All suffering doth destroy, or is destroy'd, Even by the sufferer; and, in each event, Ends: -- Some, with hope replenish'd and re

buoy'd, Return to whence they came with like intent, And weave their web again; some, bow'd and bent, Wax gray and ghastly, withering ere their time, And perish with the reed on which they leant;

Some seek devotion, toil, war, good or crime, According as their souls were form'd to sink or

climb:

XXIII. But ever and anon of griefs subdued There comes a token like a scorpion's sting, Scarce seen, but with fresh bitterness imbued; And slight withal may be the things which bring Back on the heart the weight which it would

fling A side for ever: it may be a sound

tone of music - summer's eve - or spring A flower the wind - the ocean - which shall

wound, Striking the electric chain wherewith we are darkly

bound;

XXIV. And how and why we know not, nor can trace Home to its cloud this lightning of the mind, But feel the shock renew'd, nor can efface The blight and blackening which it leaves behind, Which out of things familiar, undesign'd, When least we deem of such, calls up to view The spectres whom no exorcism can bind, The cold - the changed - perchance the dead

anew, The mourn'd, the loved, the lost - too many! yet how few!

xxv. But my soul wanders; I demand it back To meditate amongst decay, and stand A ruin amidst ruins; there to track Fall’n states and buried greatness, o'er a land Which was the mightiest in its old command, And is the loveliest, and must ever be The niaster-mould of Nature's heavenly hand, Wherein were cast the heroic and the free, The beautiful, the brave -- the lords of earth and

sea,

XXVI. The commonwealth of kings, the men of Rome! And even since, and now, fair Italy! Thou art the garden of the world, the home Of all Art vi s, and Nature can decree; Even in thy desert, what is like to thee? Thy very weeds are beautiful, thy waste More rich than other climes' fertility;

Thy wreck a glory, and thy ruin graced With' an immaculate charm which can not be de.

faced.

XXVII.
The Moon is up, and yet it is not night-
Sunset divides the sky with her - a sea
Of glory streams along the Alpine height
Of blue Friuli's mountains; Heaven is free
From clouds, but of all colours seems to be
Melted to one vast Iris of the West,
Where the Day joins the past Eternity;

While, on the other hand, meek Dian's crest Floats through the azure air- an island of the blest!

XXVIII. A single star is at her side, and reigns With her o'er half the lovely heaven; but still 14) Yon sunny sea heaves brightly, and remains Roll'd o'er the peak of the far Rhaetian hill, As Day and Night contending were, until Nature reclaimd her order: - gently flows The deep-dyed Brenta, where their hues instil

The odorous purple of a new-born rose, Which streams upon her stream, and glass'd within it glows,

XXIX. Fill'd with the face of heaven, which, from afar, Comes down upon the waters; all its hues, From the rich sunset to the rising star, Their magical variety diffuse: And now they change; a paler shadow strews Its mantle o'er the mountains; parting day Dies like the dolphin, whom each pang imbues

With a new colour as it gasps away, The last still loveliest, till — 'tis gone - and all is gray.

xxx.
There is a tomb in Arqua; - rear'd in air,
Pillar'd in their sarcophagus, repose
The bones of Laura's lover: here repair
Many familiar with his well-sung woes,
The pilgrims of his genius. He arose
To raise a language, and his land reclaim
From the dull yoke of her barbaric foes :

Watering the tree which bears his lady's name 15) With his melodious tears, he gave himself to fame.

XXXI. They keep his dust in Arqua, where he died; 16) The mountain - village where his latter days Went down the vale of years; and 'tis their prideAn honest pride — and let it be their praise, To offer to the passing stranger's gaze His mansion and his sepulchre; both plain And venerably simple, such as raise

A feeling more accordant with his strain Than if a pyramid form’d his monumental fane.

XXXII. And the soft quiet hamlet where he dwelt Is one of that complexion which seems made For those who their mortality have felt. And sought a refuge from their hopes decay'd In the deep umbrage of a green hill's shade, Which shows a distant prospect far away Of busy cities, now in vain display'd,

For they can lure no further; and the ray Of a bright sun can make sufficient holiday,

XXXII. Developing the mountains, leaves, and flowers, And shining in the brawling brook, where by, Clear as its current, glide the sauntering hours With a calm languor, which, though to the eye Idlesse it seem, hath its morality. If from society we learn to live,

'Tis solitude should teach us how to die;

It hath no flatterers ; vanity can give No hollow aid; alone - man with his God must

strive:

XXXIV. Or, it may be, with demons, who impair 13). Thé strength of better thoughts, and seek their

prey In melancholy bosoms, such as were Of moody texture from their earliest day, And loved to dwell in darkness and dismay, Deeming themselves predestined to a doom Which is not of the pangs that pass away; Making the sun like blood, the earth a tomb, The tomb a hell, and hell itself a murkier gloom.

XXXV. Ferrara! in thy wide and grass - grown streets, Whose summetry was not for solitude, There seems as 'twere a curse upon the seats of former sovereigns, and the antique brood Of Este, which for many an age made good Its strength within thy walls, and was of yore Patron or tyrant, as the changing mood

Of petty power impellid, of those who wore The wreath which Dante's brow alone had worn

before,

XXXVI. And Tasso is their glory and their shame. Hark to his strain ! and then survey his coll! And see how dearly earn'd Torquato's fame And where Alfonso bade his poet dwell: The miserable despot could not quell The insulted mind he sought to quench, and blend With the surrounding maniacs, in the hell

Where he had plunged it. Glory without end Scatter'd the clouds away-and on that name attend

XXXVII. The tears and praises of all time: while thine Would rot in its oblivion - in the sink Of worthless dust, which from thy boasted line

« السابقةمتابعة »