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Over the sightless tyrants of our fate ;
And through the cavern without wings they flew, But neither prayer nor verse could dissipate And cried, “ Away! he is not of our crew.” The night which closed on her ; nor uncreate I wept, and, though it be a dream, I weep. That world within this Chaos, mine and me, Of which she was the veiled Divinity,
What storms then shook the ocean of my sleep, The world I say of thoughts that worshipped Blotting that Moon, whose pale and waning lips her :
Then shrank as in the sickness of eclipse ;And therefore I went forth, with hope and fear. And how my soul was as a lampless sea, And every gentle passion sick to death,
And who was then its Tempest ; and when She, Feeding my course with expectation's breath, The Planet of that hour, was quenched, what frost Into the wintry forest of our life;
Crept o'er those waters, till from coast to coast And struggling through its error with vain strife, The moving billows of my being fell And stumbling in my weakness and my haste,
Into a death of ice, immoveable ;And half bewildered by new forms, I past
And then—what earthquakes made it gape and split, Seeking among those untaught foresters
The white Moon smiling all the while on it, If I could find one form resembling hers,
These words conceal :- If not, each word would be In which she might have masked herself from The key of staunchless tears. Weep not for me ! There,—One, whose voice was venomed melody At length, into the obscure forest came Sate by a well, under blue night-shade bowers ; The vision I had sought through grief and shame. The breath of her false mouth was like faint Athwart that wintry wilderness of thorns flowers,
Flashed from her motion splendour like the Morn's, Her touch was as electric poison,-flame
And from her presence life was radiated Out of her looks into my vitals came,
Through the grey earth and branches bare and And from her living cheeks and bosom flew A killing air, which pierced like honey.dew So that her way was paved, and roofed above Into the core of my green heart, and lay
With flowers as soft as thoughts of budding love ; Upon its leaves ; until, as hair grown grey
And music from her respiration spread O'er a young brow, they hid its unblown prime Like light,-all other sounds were penetrated With ruins of unseasonable time.
By the small, still, sweet spirit of that sound,
So that the savage winds hung mute around ; In many mortal forms I rashly sought
And odours warm and fresh fell from her hair The shadow of that idol of my thought.
Dissolving the dull cold in the froze air :
I stood, and felt the dawn of my long night
Thin Spheres of light who rule this passive Earth, The cold chaste Moon, the Queen of Heaven's bright This world of love, this me ; and into birth isles,
Awaken all its fruits and flowers, and dart
And lull its storms, each in the craggy grave
towers She led me to a cave in that wild place,
Of Heaven look forth and fold the wandering globe And sat beside me, with her downward face In liquid sleep and splendour, as a robe ; Illumining my slumbers, like the Moon
And all their many-mingled influence blend, Waxing and waning o'er Endymion.
If equal, yet unlike, to one sweet end ;And I was laid asleep, spirit and limb,
So ye, bright regents, with alternate sway, And all my being became bright or dim
Govern my sphere of being, night and day! As the Moon's image in a summer sea,
Thou, not disdaining even a borrowed might; According as she smiled or frowned on me; Thou, not eclipsing a remoter light; And there I lay, within a chaste cold bed : And, through the shadow of the seasons three, Alas, I then was nor alive por dead :
From Spring to Autumn's sere maturity, For at her silver voice came Death and Life, Light it into the Winter of the tomb, Unmindful each of their accustomed strife, Where it may ripen to a brighter bloom. Masked like twin babes, a sister and a brother, Thou too, 0 Comet, beautiful and fierce, The wandering hopes of one abandoned mother, Who drew the heart of this frail Universe
Towards thine own; till, wreckt in that convulsion, Undulate with the undulating tide:
There are thick woods where sylvan forms abide ;
As clear as elemental diamond, Be there love's folding-star at thy return;
Or serene morning air; and far beyond, The living Sun will feed thee from its urn
The mossy tracks made by the goats and deer Of golden fire ; the Moon will veil her horn (Which the rough shepherd treads but once a In thy last smiles ; adoring Even and Morn
year,) Will worship thee with incense of calm breath Pierce into glades, caverns, and bowers, and halls And lights and shadows; as the star of Death Built round with ivy, which the waterfalls And Birth is worshipped by those sisters wild Illumining, with sound that never fails, Called Hope and Fear-upon the heart are piled Accompany the noonday nightingales; Their offerings, of this sacrifice divine
And all the place is peopled with sweet airs; A World shall be the altar.
The light clear element which the isle wears
Is heavy with the scent of lemon-flowers,
Lady mine, Which floats like mist laden with unseen showers, Scorn not these flowers of thought, the fading birth And falls upon the eye-lids like faint sleep ; Which from its heart of hearts that plant puts And from the moss violets and jonquils peep, forth,
And dart their arrowy odour through the brain Whose fruit, made perfect by thy sunny eyes, Till you might faint with that delicious pain. Will be as of the trees of Paradise.
And every motion, odour, beam, and tone,
With that deep music is in unison :
Like echoes of an antenatal dream.-
It is an isle 'twixt Heaven, Air, Earth, and Sea, To the intense, the deep, the imperishable, Cradled, and hung in clear tranquillity; Not mine, but me, henceforth be thou united Bright as that wandering Eden Lucifer, Even as a bride, delighting and delighted.
Washed by the soft blue Oceans of young air. The hour is come :- the destined Star has risen It is a favoured place. Famine or Blight, Which shall descend upon a vacant prison. Pestilence, War, and Earthquake, never light The walls are high, the gates are strong, thick set | Upon its mountain-peaks; blind vultures, they The sentinels—but true love never yet
Sail onward far upon their fatal way: Was thus constrained : it overleaps all fence : The winged storms, chaunting their thunder-psalm Like lightning, with invisible violence
To other lands, leave azure chasms of calm Piercing its continents ; like Heaven's free breath, Over this isle, or weep themselves in dew, Which he who grasps can hold not ; liker Death, From which its fields and woods ever renew Who rides upon a thought, and makes his way Their green and golden immortality. Through temple, tower, and palace, and the array And from the sea there rise, and from the sky Of arms : more strength has Love than he or they'; There fall clear exhalations, soft and bright, For he can burst his charnel, and make free Veil after veil, each hiding some delight. The limbs in chains, the heart in agony,
Which Sun or Moon or zephyr draw aside, The soul in dust and chaos.
Till the isle’s beauty, like a naked bride
Glowing at once with love and loveliness,
Blushes and trembles at its own excess :
Yet, like a buried lamp, a Soul no less A wind is hovering o'er the mountain's brow; Burns in the heart of this delicious isle, There is a path on the sea's azure floor,
An atom of the Eternal, whose own smile No keel has ever ploughed that path before ; Unfolds itself, and may be felt not seen The halcyons brood around the foamless isles ; O'er the grey rocks, blue waves, and forests green, The treacherous Ocean has forsworn its wiles; Filling their bare and void interstices.The merry mariners are bold and free :
But the chief marvel of the wilderness Say, my heart's sister, wilt thou sail with me? Is a lone dwelling, built by whom or how Our bark is as an albatross, whose nest
None of the rustic island-people know; Is a far Eden of the purple East ;
"Tis not a tower of strength, though with its height And we between her wings will sit, while Night, It overtops the woods; but, for delight, And Day, and Storm, and Calm, pursue their flight, Some wise and tender Ocean-King, ere crime Our ministers, along the boundless Sea,
Had been invented, in the world's young prime, Treading each other's heels, unheededly.
Reared it, a wonder of that simple time, It is an isle under Ionian skies,
An envy of the isles, a pleasure-house Beautiful as a wreck of Paradise,
Made sacred to his sister and his spouse. And, for the harbours are not safe and good, It scarce seems now a wreck of human art, This land would have remained a solitude
But, as it were, Titanic ; in the heart But for some pastoral people native there, Of Earth having assumed its form, then grown Who from the Elysian, clear, and golden air Out of the mountains, from the living stone, Draw the last spirit of the age of gold,
Lifting itself in caverns light and high : Simple and spirited ; innocent and bold.
For all the antique and learned imagery The blue Ægean girds this chosen home,
Has been erased, and in the place of it With ever-changing sound and light and foam, The ivy and the wild vine interknit Kissing the sifted sands, and caverns hoar; The volumes of their many-twining stems And all the winds wandering along the shore
Parasite flowers illume with dewy gems
The lampless halls, and when they fade, the sky Where some old cavern hoar seems yet to keep
A veil for our seclusion, close as Night's,
Where secure sleep may kill thine innocent lights ; And, day and night, aloof, from the high towers Sleep, the fresh dew of languid love, the rain And terraces, the Earth and Ocean seem
Whose drops quench kisses till they burn again. To sleep in one another's arms, and dream
And we will talk, until thought's melody Of waves, flowers, clouds, woods, rocks, and all Become too sweet for utterance, and it die that we
In words, to live again in looks, which dart Read in their smiles, and call reality.
With thrilling tone into the voiceless heart,
Harmonising silence without a sound. This isle and house are mine, and I have vowed Our breath shall intermix, our bosoms bound, Thee to be lady of the solitude.
And our veins beat together; and our lips, And I have fitted up some chambers there With other eloquence than words, eclipse Looking towards the golden Eastern air,
The soul that burns between them; and the wells And level with the living winds, which flow Which boil under our being's inmost cells, Like waves above the living waves below.
The fountains of our deepest life, shall be I have sent books and music there, and all Confused in passion's golden purity, Those instruments with which high spirits call As mountain-springs under the morning Sun. The future from its cradle, and the past
We shall become the same, we shall be one Out of its grave, and make the present last Spirit within two frames, oh! wherefore two ? In thoughts and joys which sleep, but cannot die, One passion in twin-hearts, which grows and grew Folded within their own eternity.
Till like two meteors of expanding flame, Our simple life wants little, and true taste
Those spheres instinct with it become the same, Hires not the pale drudge Luxury to waste Touch, mingle, are transfigured; ever still The scene it would adorn, and therefore still, Burning, yet ever inconsumable: Nature, with all her children, haunts the hill. In one another's substance finding food, The ring-dove, in the embowering ivy, yet
Like flames too pure and light and unimbued Keeps up her love-lament, and the owls fit To nourish their bright lives with baser prey, Round the evening tower, and the young stars Which point to Heaven and cannot pass away: glance
One hope within two wills, one will beneath Between the quick bats in their twilight dance ;
Two overshadowing minds, one life, one death, The spotted deer bask in the fresh moonlight One Heaven, one Hell, one immortality, Before our gate, and the slow silent night
And one annihilation. Woe is me!
I pant, I sink, I tremble, I expire!
Weak verses, go, kneel at your Sovereign's feet, Under the roof of blue Ionian weather,
And say:—“ We are the masters of thy slave; And wander in the meadows, or ascend
“ What wouldest thou with us and ours and thine ?" The mossy mountains, where the blue heavens Then call your sisters from Oblivion's cave, bend
All singing loud : “ Love's very pain is sweet, With lightest winds, to touch their paramour;
But its reward is in the world divine, Or linger, where the pebble-paven shore,
Which, if not here, it builds beyond the grave." Under the quick faint kisses of the sea
So shall ye live when I am there. Then haste Trembles and sparkles as with ecstacy,–
Over the hearts of men, until ye meet Possessing and possest by all that is
Marina, Vanna, Primus, and the rest, Within that calm circumference of bliss,
And bid them love each other, and be blest: And by each other, till to love and live
And leave the troop which errs, and which reproves, Be one:-or, at the noontide hour, arrive
And come and be my guest,-for I am Love's.
AN ELEGY ON THE DEATH OF JOHN KEATS,
AUTHOR OF ENDYMION, HYPERION, ETC.
'Αστήρ πρίν μεν έλαμπες ένα ζώοισιν εώος.
shaft lights on a heart made callous by many blows, or
one, like Keats's, composed of more penetrable stuff. Φάρμακονήλθε, Βίων, ποτί σον στόμα, φάρμακον είδες:
One of their associates is, to my knowledge, a most Πώς τευ τοϊς χείλεσσι ποτέδραμε, κούκ έγλυκάνθη;
base and unprincipled calumniator. As to "Endymion," Τίς δε βρoτός τοσσούτον ανάμερος, ή κεράσαι τοι,
was it a poem, whatever might be its defects, to be *Η δούναι λαλέοντι το φάρμακον και έκφυγεν ηδάν.
treated contemptuously by those who had celebrated
with various degrees of complacency and panegyric, MOSCHUS, Epitaph. Bion.
“ Paris,” and “ Woman,” and a Syrian Tale," and Mrs. Lefanu, and Mr. Barret, and Mr. Howard Payne,
and a long list of the illustrious obscure? Are these It is my intention to subjoin to the London edition the men, who in their venal good-nature, presumed to of this poem, a criticism upon the claims of its lamented draw a parallel between the Rev. Mr. Milman and object to be classed among the writers of the highest Lord Byron? What gnat did they strain at here, after genius who have adorned our age. My known repug- having swallowed all those camels ? Against what nance to the narrow principles of taste on which several woman taken in adultery dares the foremost of these of his earlier compositions were modelled, prove at literary prostitutes to cast bis opprobrious stone ? least that I am an impartial judge. I consider the Miserable man! you, one of the meanest, have fragment of “ Hyperion," as second to nothing that wantonly defaced one of the noblest specimens of the was ever produced by a writer of the same years. workmanship of God. Nor shall it be your excuse,
John Keats died at Rome, of a consumption, in his that, murderer as you are, you have spoken daggers, twenty-fourth year, on the 27th of December, 1820, but used none. and was buried in the romantic and lonely cemetery of The circumstances of the closing scene of poor the protestants in that city, under the pyramid which Keats's life were not made known to me until the is the tomb of Cestius, and the massy walls and towers, Elegy was ready for the press. I am given to undernow mouldering and desolate, which formed the circuit stand that the wound which his sensitive spirit had of ancient Rome. The cemetery is an open space among
received from the criticism of “ Endymion” was ex. the ruins, covered in winter with violets and daisies. asperated at the bitter sense of unrequited benefits; It might make one in love with death, to think that the poor fellow seems to have been hooted from the one should be buried in so sweet a place.
stage of life, no less by those on whom he had wasted The genius of the lamented person to whose memory the promise of his genius, than those on whom he had I have dedicated these unworthy verses, was not less lavished his fortune and his care. He was accompanied delicate and fragile than it was beautiful ; and where to Rome, and attended in his last illness by Mr. canker-worms abound, what wonder, if its young Severn, a young artist of the highest promise, who, I flower was blighted in the bud? The savage criticism have been informed, “ almost risked his own life, and on his “ Endymion,” which appeared in the Quarterly sacrificed every prospect, to unwearicd attendance upon Review, produced the most violent effect on his sus. his dying friend." Had I known these circumstances ceptible mind; the agitation thus originated ended in before the completion of my poem, I should have been the rupture of a blood vessel in the lungs ; a rapid tempted to add my feeble tribute of applause to the consumption ensued ; and the succeeding acknowledg more solii recompense which the virtuous man finds in ments from more candid critics, of the true greatness the recollection of his own motives. Mr. Severn can of his powers, were ineffectual to heal the wound thus dispense with a reward from "such stuff as dreams wantonly inflicted.
are made of." His conduct is a golden augury of the It may be well said, that these wretched men know success of his future career-may the unextinguished not what they do. They scatter their insults and their Spirit of his illustrious friend animate the creations of slanders without heed as to whether the poisoned | his pencil, and plead against Oblivion for his name !
Most musical of mourners, weep again!
Oh, weep for Adonais !—The quick Dreams, Lament anew, Urania !-He died,
The passion-winged Ministers of thought, Who was the Sire of an immortal strain,
Who were his flocks, whom near the living streams Blind, old, and lonely, when his country's pride Of his young spirit he fed, and whom he taught The priest, the slave, and the liberticide,
The love which was its music, wander not Trampled and mocked with many a loathed rite Wander no more, from kindling brain to brain, Of lust and blood; he went, unterrified,
But droop there, whence they sprung; and mourn Into the gulf of death; but his clear Sprite
their lot Yet reigns o'er earth; the third among the sons of Round the cold heart, where, after their sweet pain, light.
They ne'er will gather strength, nor find a home
again. Most musical of mourners, weep anew!
And one with trembling hand clasps his cold head, Not all to that bright station dared to climb: And fans him with her moonlight wings, and cries, And happier they their happiness who knew, “ Our love, our hope, our sorrow, is not dead; Whose tapers yet burn through that night of time See, on the silken fringe of his faint eyes, In which suns perished ; others more sublime, Like dew upon a sleeping flower, there lies Struck by the envious wrath of man or God, A tear some Dream has loosened from his brain." Have sunk, extinct in their refulgent prime; Lost Angel of a ruined Paradise !
And some yet live, treading the thorny road, She knew not 'twas her own; as with no stain Which leads, through toil and hate, to Fame's She faded, like a cloud which had outwept its serene abode.