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A BETH GELERT.
THE spearman heard the bugle sound,
And still he blew a louder blast,
"Come, Gelert! why art thou the last
"Oh, where does faithful Gelert roam ?
So true, so brave; a lamb at home,
"Twas only at Llewellyn's board
The faithful Gelert fed;
He watched, he served, he cheered his lord, And sentinelled his bed.
In sooth, he was a peerless hound,
But now no Gelert could be found,
And now, as over rocks and dells
That day Llewellyn little loved
The chase of heart or hare :
Unpleased, Llewellyn homeward hied,
But when he gained the castle-door,
The hound was smeared with gouts of gore,
Llewellyn gazed with wild surprise,
Onward in haste Llewellyn pass'd-
And still, where'er his eyes were cast,
O'erturned his infant's bed, he found
He called his child-no voice replied;
"Hell-hound! by thee my child's devoured!" The frantic father cried;
And to the hilt his vengeful sword
His suppliant, as to earth he fell
Aroused by Gelert's dying yell,
Concealed beneath a mangled heap,
Nor scratch had he, nor harm, nor dread—
Ah! what was then Llewellyn's pain!
Vain, vain was all Llewellyn's woe;
The frantic deed which laid thee low,
And now a gallant tomb they raise,
Here never could the spearman pass,
Here oft the tear-besprinkled grass
And here he hung his horn and spear;
In fancy's piercing sounds would hear
Poor Gelert's dying yell!
THE night wind with a desolate moan swept by, And the old shutters of the turret swung Screaming upon their hinges: and the moon, As the torn edges of the clouds flew past, Struggled aslant the stained and broken panes So dimly, that the watchful eye of death Scarcely was conscious when it went and came.
The fire beneath his crucible was low; Yet still it burned; and ever as his thoughts Grew insupportable, he raised himself Upon his wasted arm, and stirred the coals With difficult energy, and when the rod Fell from his nerveless fingers, and his eye Felt faint within its sockets, he shrunk back Upon his pallet, and with unclosed lips Muttered a curse on death! The silent room, From its dim corners, mockingly gave back His rattling breath; the humming in the fire Had the distinctness of a knell; and when Duly the antique horologe beat one, He drew a phial from beneath his head, And drank. And instantly his lips compressed, And, with a shudder in his skeleton frame, He rose with supernatural strength, and sat Upright, and communed with himself:
"I did not think to die
Till I had finished what I had to do;
I thought to pierce the eternal secret through
I felt-oh God! it seemeth, even now,
"And yet it is- I feel,
Of this dull sickness at my heart, afraid!
Binding its pulse with an icy band.
"And this is death! But why
Feel I this wild recoil?
The immortal spirit shuddereth to be free!
Like a chained eaglet at its parent's call?
To live but for a hope that mocks at last-
Night's better beauty, feeling, fancy, thought,
God of my spirit!—but a day-to win
Break for me but one seal that is unbroken!
With a swift dizziness, and my heart grows sick, And these hot temple-throbs come fast and thick, And I am freezing-burning
Dying! Oh God! If I might only live!
-Ha! it thrills me- -I revive!
"Ay-were not man to die,
He were too mighty for this narrow sphere! Had he but time to brood on knowledge hereCould he but train his eye
Might he but wait the mystic word and hour
Only his Maker would transcend his power!