Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

Ah, tell me, my soul! must I perish

By pangs which a smile would dispel? Would the hope, which thou once bad'st me

For torture repay me too well? (cherish, Now sad is the garden of roses,

Beloved but false Haidée !
There Flora all wither'd reposes,
And mourns o'er thine absence with me.

1811.

ON PARTING.

Then manfully despising

The Turkish tyrant's yoke,
Let your country see you rising,

And all her chains are broke.
Brave shades of chiefs and sages,

Behold the coming strife !
Hellénes of past ages,

Oh, start again to life!
At the sound of my trumpet, breaking

Your sleep, oh, join with me!
And the seven-hill'd city seeking,
Fight, conquer, till we're free.

Sons of Greeks, &c. Sparta, Sparta, why in slumbers

Lethargic dost thou lie? Awake, and join thy numbers

With Athens, old ally! Leonidas recalling,

That chief of ancient song, Who saved ye once from falling,

The terrible! the strong!
Who made that bold diversion

In old Thermopylæ,
And warring with the Persian

To keep his country free;
With his three hundred waging

The battle, long he stood,
And like a lion raging,
Expired in seas of blood.

Sons of Greeks, &c.

The kiss, dear maid! thy lip has left

Shall never part from mine,
Till happier hours restore the gift

Untainted back to thine.
Thy parting glance, which fondly beams,

An equal love may see:
The tear that from thine eyelid streams

Can weep no change in me.
I ask no pledge to make me blest

In gazing when alone;
Nor one memorial for a breast,

Whose thoughts are all thine own.
Nor need I write-to tell the tale

My pen were doubly weak: Oh! what can idle words avail,

Unless the heart could speak ?
By day or night, in weal or woe,

That heart, no longer free,
Must bear the love it cannot show,
And silent ache for thee.

March, 1811.

66

TRANSLATION OF THE ROMAIC SONG,

Μπενω μες τσπεριβόλι

'Ωραιότατη Χάηδή,” &c. I ENTIR thy garden of roses,

Beloved and fair Haidée,
Each morning where Flora reposes,

For surely I see her in thee.
Oh, lovely! thus low I implore thee,

Receive this fond truth from my tongue,
Which atters its song to adore thee,

Yet trembles for what it has sung ;
As the branch, at the bidding of Nature,

Adds fragrance and fruit to the tree,
Through her eyes, through her every feature,

Shines the soul of the young Haidée.
But the loveliest garden grows hateful

When Love has abandon'd the bowers;
Bring me hemlock-since mine is ungrateful,

That herb is more fragrant than flowers.
The poison, when pour'd from the chalice,

Will deeply embitter the bowl ;
But when drunk to escape from thy malice,

The draught shall be sweet to my soul.
Too cruel ! in vain I implore thee

My heart from these horrors to save:
Will nought to my bosom restore thee?

Then open the gates of the grave.
As the chief who to combat advances

Secure of his conquest before,
Thus thou, with those eyes for thy lances,

Hast pierced through my heart to its core.

EPITAPH FOR JOSEPH BLACKETT,

LATE POET AND SHOEMAKER.
STRANGER! behold, interr'd together,
The souls of learning and of leather.
Poor Joe is gone, but left his all:
You 'll find his relics in a stall.
His works were neat, and often found
Well stitch'd, and with morocco bound.
Tread lightly-where the bard is laid
He cannot mend the shoe he made;
Yet is he happy in his hole,
With verse immortal as his sole.
But still to business he held fast,
And stuck to Phæbus to the last.
Then who shall say so good a fellow
Was only “ leather and prunella ?"
For character-he did not lack it;
And if he did, 't were shame to “Black it."

Malta, May 16, 1811.

FAREWELL TO MALTA. ADIEU, ye joys of La Valette! Adieu, sirocco, sun, and sweat! Adieu, thou palace rarely enter'd! Adieu, ye mansions where--I've ventured! Adieu, ye cursed streets of stairs! (How surely he who mounts you swears!)

E

How wondrous bright thy blooming morn arose ! But thou wert smitten with th' unhallow'd thirst Of crime un-named, and thy sad noon must close In scorn, and solitude unsought, the worst of woes.

1811. [First published, 1832.)

Adieu, ye merchants often failing!
Adieu, thou mob for ever railing!
Adieu, ye packets-without letters!
Adieu, ye fools-who ape your betters!
Adieu, thou damned'st quarantine,
That gave me fever, and the spleen!
Adieu, that stage which makes us yawn, Sirs,
Adieu, his Excellency's dancers !
Adieu to Peter-whom no fault 's in,
But could not teach a colonel waltzing;
Adieu, ye females fraught with graces!
Adieu, red coats, and redder faces!
Adieu, the supercilious air
of all that strut “en militaire !"
I go-but God knows when, or why,
To smoky towns and cloudy sky,
To things (the honest truth to say)
As bad-but in a different way.

ON MOORE'S LAST OPERATIC FARCE,

OR FARCICAL OPERA.
GOOD plays are scarce,

So Moore writes farce:
The poet's fame ws brittle-

We knew before

That Little's Moore,
But now 't is Moore that 's littie.

September 14, 1811.
[First published, 1830.)

EPISTLE TO A FRIEND,

Farewell to these, but not adieu,
Triumphant sons of truest blue!
While either Adriatic shore,
And fallen chiefs, and fleets no more,
And nightly smiles, and daily dinners,
Proclaim you war and woman's winners.
Pardon my Muse, who apt to prate is,
And take my rhyme-because 't is “gratis."

IN ANSWER TO SOME LINES EXHORTING THE AUTHOR TO BE CHEERFUL, AND TO

“BANISH CARE."

And now I've got to Mrs. Fraser,
Perhaps you think I mean to praise her-
And were I vain enough to think
My praise was worth this drop of ink,
A line-or two-were no hard matter,
As here, indeed, I need not tiatter:
But she must be content to shine
In better praises than in mine,
With lively air, and open heart,
And fashion's ease, without its art;
Her hours can gaily glide along,
Nor ask the aid of idle song.

“ OH! banish care"-such ever be
The motto of thy revelry!
Perchance of mine, when wassail nights
Renew those riotous delights,
Wherewith the children of Despair
Lull the lone heart, and “banish care."
But not in morn's reflecting hour,
When present, past, and future lower,
When all I loved is changed or gone,
Mock with such taunts the woes of one,
Whose every thought-but let them pass-
Thou know'st I am not what I was.
But, above all, if thou wouldst hold
Place in a heart that ne'er was cold,
By all the powers that men revere,
By all unto thy bosom dear,
Thy joys below, thy hopes above,
Speak-speak of anything but love.

And now, O Malta! since thou 'st got us,
Thou little military hothouse!
I'll not offend with words uncivil,
And wish thee rudely at the Devil,
But only stare from out my casement,
And ask, for what is such a place meant?
Then, in my solitary nook,
Return to scribbling, or a book,
Or take my physic while I 'm able
(Two spoonfuls hourly by the label),
Prefer my nightcap to my beaver,
And bless the gods I've got a fever.

May 26, 1811. [First published, 1832.)

'T were long to tell, and vain to hear, The tale of one who scorns a tear; And there is little in that tale Which better bosoms would bewail. But mine has suffer'd more than well 'T would suit philosophy to tell. I've seen my bride another's bride,Have seen her seated by his side, Have seen the infant, which she bore, Wear the sweet smile the mother wore, When she and I in youth have smiled, As fond and faultless as her child; Have seen her eyes, in cold disdain, Ask if I felt no secret pain; And I have acted well my part, And made my cheek belie my heart, Return'd the freezing glance she gave, Yet felt the while that woman's slave;Have kiss'd, as if without design, The babe which ought to have been mine, And show'd, alas! in each caress Time had not made me love the less.

TO DIVES.

A FRAGMENT.

UNHAPPY DIVES! in an evil hour
'Gainst Nature's voice seduced to deeds accurst!
Once Fortune's minion, now thou feel'st her power;
Wrath's vial on thy lofty head' hath burst.
In Wit, in Genius, as in Wealth the first,

But let this pass—I'll whine no more,

The pledge we wore-I wear it still, Nor seek again an eastern shore;

But where is thine?-Ah! where art thou? The world befits a busy brain,

Oft have I borne the weight of ill, I'll hie me to its haunts again.

But never bent beneath till now! But if, in some succeeding year,

Well hast thou left in life's best bloom When Britain's "May is in the sere,"

The cup of woe for me to drain. Thou hear'st of one whose decpening crimes

If rest alone be in the tomb, Suit with the sablest of the times,

I would not wish thee here again. of one, whom love nor pity sways, Nor hope of fame, nor good men's praise;

But if in worlds more blest than this One, who in stern ambition's pride,

Thy virtues seek a fitter sphere, Perchance not blood shall turn aside;

Impart some portion of thy bliss, One rank'd in some recording page

To wean me from mine anguish here. With the worst anarchs of the age,

Teach me--too early taught by thee! Him wilt thou know-and knowing pause,

To bear, forgiving and forgiven: Nor with the effect forget the cause.

On earth thy love was such to me; Newstead Abbey, Oct. 11, 1811, It fain would form my hope in heaven! (First published, 1830.)

October 11, 1811

TO THYRZA.

AWAY, AWAY, YE NOTES OF WOE!
AWAY, away, ye notes of woe!

Be silent, thou once soothing strain,
Or I must tlee from hence-for, oh!

I dare not trust those sounds again.
To me they speak of brighter days

But lull the chords, for now, alas!
I must not think, I may not gaze,

On what I am-on what I was.

WITHOUT a stone to mark the spot,

And say, what Truth might well have said, By all, save one, perchance forgot,

Ah! wherefore art thou lowly laid? By many a shore and many a sea

Divided, yet beloved in vain; The past, the future fled to thee,

To bid us meet-no-ne'er again! Could this have been a word, a look,

That softly said, “We part in peace," Nad taught my bosom how to brook,

With fainter sighs, thy soul's release. And didst thou not, since Death for thee

Prepared a light and pangless dart, Once long for him thou ne'er shalt see,

Who held, and holds thee in his heart?
Oh! who like him had watch'd thee here?

Or sadly mark'd thy glazing eye,
In that dread hour ere death appear,

When silent sorrow fears to sigh,
Till all was past? But when no more

'Twas thine to reck of human woe, Affection's heart-drops, gushing o'er,

Had flow'd as fast-as now they flow. Shall they not flow, when many a day

In these, to me, deserted towers, Ere call'd but for a time away,

Affection's mingling tears were ours? Ours too the glance none saw beside;

The smile none else might understand, The whisper'd thought of hearts allied,

The pressure of the thrilling hand; The kiss, so guiltless and refined,

That Love each warmer wish forbore; Those eyes proclaim'd so pure a mind,

Even Passion blush'd to plead for more.
The tone, that taught me to rejoice,

When prone, unlike thee, to repine;
The song, celestial from thy voice,
But sweet to me from none but thine;

The voice that made those sounds more sweet

Is hush'd, and all their charms are fled;
And now their softest notes repeat

A dirge, an anthem o'er the dead!
Yes, Thyrza! yes, they breathe of thee,

Beloved dust! since dust thou art;
And all that once was harmony

Is worse than discord to my heart!
"Tis silent all!--but on my ear

The well remember'd echoes thrill;
I hear a voice I would not hear,

A voice that now might well be stil:
Yet oft my doubting soul 't will shake,

Even slumber owns its gentle tone,
Till consciousness will vainly wake

To listen, though the dream be flown.
Sweet Thyrza! waking as in sleep,

Thou art but now a lovely dream;
A star that trembled o'er the deep,

Then turn'd from earth its tender beam.
But he who through life's dreary way

Must pass, when heaven is veil'd in wrath,
Wil long lament the vanish'd ray
That scatter'd gladness o'er his path.

December 6, 1811.

ONE STRUGGLE MORE, AND I AM FREE.
ONE struggle more, and I am free

From pangs that rend my heart in twain;
One last long sigh to love and thee,

Then back to busy life again.

No band of friends or heirs be there,

To weep, or wish, the coming blow : No maiden, with dishevelled hair,

To feel, or feign, decorous woe.

But silent let me sink to earth,

With no officious mourners near: I would not mar one hour of mirth,

Nor startle friendship with a tear. Yet Love, if Love in such an hour

Could nobly check its useless sighs, Might then exert its latest power

In her who lives, and him who dies.

'T were sweet, my Psyche! to the last

Thy features still serene to see : Forgetful of its struggles past,

E'en Pain itself should smile on thee.

But vain the wish-for Beauty still

Will shrink, as shrinks the ebbing breath; And women's tears, produced at will,

Deceive in life, unman in death.

It suits me well to mingle now

With things that never pleased before: Though every joy is fled below,

What future grief can touch me more ? Then bring me wine, the banquet bring;

Man was not form'd to live alone: I'll be that light, unmeaning thing

That smiles with all, and weeps with none. It was not thus in days more dear,

It never would have been, but thou Hast fled, and left me lonely here;

Thou 'rt nothing-all are nothing now. In vain my lyre would lightly breathe!

The smile that sorrow fain would wear
But mocks the woe that lurks beneath,

Like roses o'er a sepulchre.
Though gay companions o'er the bowl

Dispel awhile the sense of ill:
Though pleasure fires the maddening soul,

The heart,--the heart is lonely still!
On many a lone and lovely night

It sooth'd to gaze upon the sky; For then I deem'd the heavenly light

Shone sweetly on thy pensive eye: And oft I thought at Cynthia's noon,

When sailing o'er the Ægean wave, Now Thyrza gazes on that moon"

Alas, it gleam'd upon her grave! When stretch'd on fever's sleepless bed,

And sickness shrunk my throbbing veins, 'Tis comfort still," I faintly said,

“That Thyrza cannot know my pains :" Like freedom to the time-worn slave,

A boon 't is idle then to give, Relenting Nature vainly gaye

My life, when Thyrza ceased to live! My Thyrza's pledge in better days,

When love and life alike were new! How different now thou meet'st my gaze!

How tinged by time with sorrow's hue! The heart that gave itself with thee

Is silent-ah, were mine as still !
Though cold as e'en the dead can be,

It feels, it sickens with the chill.
Thou bitter pledge! thou mournful token!

Though painful, welcome to my breast!
Still, still preserve that love unbroken,

Or break the heart to which thou 'rt press'd. Time tempers love, but not removes,

More hallow'd when its hope is fled: Oh! what are thousand living loves

To that which cannot quit the dead?

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

EUTHANASIA.

I will not ask where thou liest low,

Nor gaze upon the spot ;
There flowers or weeds at will may grow,

So I behold them not:
It is enough for me to prove
That what I loved, and long must love,

Like common earth can rot;
To me there needs no stone to tell,
'Tis Nothing that I loved so well.

WHEN Time, or soon or late, shall bring

The dreamless sleep that lulls the dead, Oblivion! may thy languid wing

Wave gently o'er my dying bed!

Yet did I love thee to the last

As fervently as thou,
Who didst not change through all the past,

And canst not alter now.
The love where Death has set his seal,
Nor age can chill, nor rival steal,

Nor falsehood disavow:
And, what were worse, thou canst not see
Or wrong, or change, or fault in me.
The better days of life were ours;

The worst can be but mine:
The sun that cheers, the storm that lowers,

Shall never more be thine.
The silence of that dreamless sleep
I envy now too much to weep;

Nor need I to repine,
That all those charms have pass'd away;
I might have watch'd through long decay.
The flower in ripen'd bloom unmatch'd

Must fall the earliest prey;
Though by no hand untimely snatch'd,

The leaves must drop away:
And yet it were a greater grief
To watch it withering, leaf by leaf,

Than see it pluck'd to-day;
Since earthly eye but ill can bear
To trace the change to foul from fair.
I know not if I could have borne

To see thy beauties fade;
The night that follow'd such a morn

Had worn a deeper shade:
Thy day without a cloud hath pass'd,
And thou wert lovely to the last;

Extinguish'd, not decay'd;
As stars that shoot along the sky
Shine brightest as they fall from high.
As once I wept, if I could weep,

My tears might well be shed,
To think I was not near to keep
One vigil o'er thy bed;

gaze, how fondly! on thy face, To fold thee in a faint embrace,

Uphold thy drooping head;
And show that love, however vain,
Nor thou nor I can feel again.
Yet how much less it were to gain,

Though thou hast left me free,
The loveliest things that still remain,

Than thus remember thee!
The all of thine that cannot die
Through dark and dread Eternity

Returns again to me,
And more thy buried love endears
Than aught, except its living years.

February, 1812.

And now that sad and silent hour

Thus much of thee can still restore, And sorrow unobserved inay pour

The plaint she dare not speak before. Oh, pardon that in crowds awhile

I waste one thought I owe to thee,
And self-condemn’d, appear to smile,

Unfaithful to thy memory:
Nor deem that memory less dear,

That then I seem not repine;
I would not fools should overhear

One sigh that should be wholly thine.
If not the goblet pass unquaff'd,

It is not drain'd to banish care ;
The cup must hold a deadlier draught,

That brings a Lethe for despair.
And could Oblivion set my soul

From all her troubled visions free, I'd dash to earth the sweetest bowl

That drown'd a single thought of thee. For wert thou vanish'd from my mind,

Where could my vacant bosom turn? And who would then remain behind

To honour thine abandon'd Urn? No, no-it is my sorrow's pride

That last dear duty to fulfil : Though all the world forget beside,

"T is meet that I remember still. For well I know, that such had been

Thy gentle care for him, who now Unmourn'd shall quit this mortal scene,

Where none regarded him, but thou: And, oh! I feel in that was given

A blessing never meant for me ; Thou wert too like a dream of Heaven For earthly Love to merit thee.

March 14, 1812,

FROM THE FRENCH.

ÆGLE, beauty and poet, has two little crimes;
She makes her own face, and does not make her

rhymes.

ON A CORNELIAN HEART WHICH

WAS BROKEN.

ILL-FATED Heart! and can it be,

That thou should'st thus be rent in twain ?
Have years of care for thine and thee

Alike been all employ'd in vain ?
Yet precious seems each shatter'd part,

And every fragment dearer grown,
Since he who wears thee feels thou art
A fitter emblem of his own.

March 16, 1812.

IP SOMETIMES IN THE HAUNTS OF

MEN.
IP sometimes in the haunts of men

Thine image from my breast may fade,
The lonely hour presents again

The semblance of thy gentle shade :

LINES TO A LADY WEEPING. WEEP, daughter of a royal line,

A Sire's disgrace, a realm's decay ; Ah! happy if each tear of thine

Could wash a father's fault away!

« AnteriorContinuar »