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virtue were a crown of glory to the world—whose love had been the source of happiness, peace, and good,—to be buried with him!
The concluding stanzas of the Adonais pointed out where the remains ought to be deposited; in addition to which our beloved child lay buried in the cemetery at Rome. Thither Shelley's ashes were conveyed ; and they rest beneath one of the antique weed-grown towers that recur at intervals in the circuit of the massy ancient wall of Rome. He selected the hallowed place himself; there is
"And grey walls moulder round, on whicb dull Time
A field is spread, on which a newer hand
Could sorrow for the lost, and shuddering anguish at the vacancy left behind, be soothed by poetic imaginations, there was something in Shelley's fate to mitigate pangs which yet, alas! could not be so mitigated ; for hard reality brings too miserably home to the mourner all that is lost of happiness, all of lonely unsolaced struggle that remains. Still, though dreams and hues of poetry cannot blunt grief, it invests his fate with a sublime fitness, which those less nearly allied may regard with complacency. A year before, he had poured into verse all such ideas about death as give it a glory of its own. He had, as it now seems, almost anticipated his own destiny; and, when the mind figures his skiff wrapped from sight by the thunder-storm, as it was last seen upon the purple sea, and then, as the cloud of the tempest passed away, no sign remained of where it had been*—who but will regard as a prophecy the last stanza of the Adonais?
"The breath whose might I have invoked in song
Whilst, burning through the inmost veil of heaven.
Puttuy, May ist, 1839.
* Captain Roberts watched the vessel with his glass from the top of the light-house of Leghorn, on its homeward track. They were off Via Reggio, at some distance from shore, when a storm was driven over the sea. It enveloped them and several larger vessels in darkness. When the cloud passed onward, Roberts looked again, ana saw every other vessel sailing on the ocean except their little schooner, which had vanished. From that time he could scarcely doubt the fatal truth ; yet we fancied that they might have been driven towards Elba, or Corsica, and so be saved. The observation made as to the spot where the boat disappeared caused it to be found, through the exertions of Trelawny for that effect. It had gone down in ten fathom water; it had not capsized, and, except such things as had floated from her, everything was found on board exactly as it had been placed when they sailed. The boat itself was uninjured. Roberts possessed himself of her, and decked her; but she proved not sea-worthy, and her shattered planks now lie rotting on the shore of one of the Ionian islands, on which she was wrecked.
Thy dewy looks sink in my breast;
Thy gentle words stir poison there:
I could have borne my wayward lot;
Yes, I was firm. Thus wert not thou.
To meet thy looks—I could not know
Which preys upon itself alone;
Of fettered grief that dares not groan,
Whilst thou alone, then not regarded,
To spend years thus, and be rewarded
When none were near—Oh! I did wake
From torture for that moment's sake!
Upon my heart thy accents sweet
On flowers half dead; thy lips did meet
Their soft persuasion on my brain,
Charming away its dream of pain.
We are not happy, sweet! our state
More need of words that ills abate;—
Our sacred friendship, lest there be
No solace left for thee and me.
Gentle and good and mild thou art;
Nor can I live if thou appear
Away from me, or stoop to wear
Yet look on me—take not thine eyes away,
Which feed upon the love within mine own,Which is indeed but the reflected ray
Of thine own beauty from my spirit thrown.
Yet speak to me: thy voice is as the tone Of my heart's echo, and I think I hear
That thou yet lovest me. Yet thou alone, Like one before a mirror, without care Of aught but thine own features imaged there ;And yet I wear out life in watching thee,
A toil so sweet at times. And thou indeed Art kind when I am sick, and pityest me.
IV. Dear home, thou scene of earliest hopes and joys, The least of which wronged Memory ever makes Bitterer than all thine unremembered tears. 1816.
A Shovel of his ashes took
And so they followed hard—
Nor Custom, queen of many slaves, makes blind,
Chastened by deathful victory now, and find
In my faint eyes, and that my heart beat fast
Once more descend The shadows of my soul upon mankind;
For, to those hearts with which they never blend, Thoughts are but shadows which the flashing mind, -
From the swift clouds which track its flight of fire, Casts on the gloomy world it leaves behindv—" 1817.
Oh that a chariot of cloud were mine—
Oh that a chariot of cloud were mine!
I would sail on the waves of the billowy wind
A Golden-winged Angel stood
Before the Eternal Judgment-seat:
Stained his dainty hands and feet.
Like the rushing of wings was heard around;
There was a youth who, as with toil and travel,
Had grown quite weak and grey before his time; Nor any could the restless griefs unravel