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Breathing out music that might steal Even bliss was humbled by the thought, Heaven from itself, and rapt in prayer

• What claim have I to be so blessed ?' That seraphs might be proud to share ! Still less could maid so meek have nursed Oh, he did feel it-far too well

Desire of kuowledge—that vain thirst With warmth that much too dearly With which the sex hath all been cursed, cost;

From luckless Eve to her who near Nor knew he, when at last he fell, The Tabernacle stole, to hear To which attraction, to which spell, The secrets of the Angels-no

Love, Music, or Devotion, most To love as her own seraph loved,

His soul in that sweet hour was lost. With Faith, the same through bliss and Sweet was the hour, though dearly won, Faith that, were even its light re

And pure, as aught of earth could be, moved,
For then first did the glorious sun Could, like the dial, fixed remain,
Before Religion's altar see

And wait till it shone out again-
Two hearts in wedlock's golden tie With Patience that, though often bowed
Self-pledged, in love to live and die- By the rude storm, can rise anew,
Then first did woman's virgin brow And Hope that, even from Evil's cloud,
That hymeneal chaplet wear,

Sees sunny Good half breaking Which, when it dies, no second vow through !

Can bid a new one bloom out there- This deep, relying Love, worth more Blest union ! by that angel wove, In heaven than all a cherub's lore

And worthy from such hands to come; This Faith, more sure than aught beSafe, sole asylum, in which Love,

side, When fallen or exiled from above, Was the sole joy, ambition, pride, In this dark world can find a home. Of her fond heart-the unreasoning

scope And, though the Spirit had trans- Of all its views, above, below: gressed,

So true she felt it that to hope, Had, from his station 'mong the blessed, To trust, is happier than to know. Won down by woman's smile, allowed

Terrestrial passion to breathe o'er And thus in humbleness they trod, The mirror of his heart, and cloud Abashed, but pure before their God;

God's image, there so bright before, Nor e'er did earth behold a sight Yet never did that God look down So meekly beautiful as they,

On error with a brow so mild ; When, with the altar's holy light Never did justice launch a frown

Full on their brows, they knelt to That, ere it fell, so nearly smiled.

pray, For gentle was their love, with awe Hand within hand, and side by side,

And trembling like a treasure kept, Two links of love, awhile untied That was not theirs by holy law, From the great chain above, but fast Whose beauty with remorse they saw, Holding together to the lastAnd o'er whose preciousness they Two fallen Splendors from that tree wept.

Which buds with such eternally, Humility, that low, sweet root, Shaken to earth, yet keeping all From which all heavenly virtues shoot, Their light and freshness in the fall. Was in the hearts of both- but most

In Nama's heart, by whom alone Their only punishment (as wrong, Those charms, for which a heaven was However sweet, must bear its brand), lost,

Their only doom was this—that, long Seemed all unvalued and unknown; As the green earth and ocean stand, And when her Seraph's eyes she caught, They both shall wander here—the same

And hid hers glowing on his breast, Throughout all time, in heartand frame

see

Still looking to that goal sublinie, Rise up ren arded for their trust
Whose light, remote but sure, they In Him, from whom all goodness

springs, Pilgrims of Love, whose way is Time, And, shaking off earth's soiling dust Whose home is in Eternity !

From their emancipated wings, Subject, the while, to all the strife Wander for ever through those skies True love encounters in this life- Of radiance, where Love never dies ! The wishes, hopes, he breathes in vain; The chill

, that turns his warmest sighs In what lone region of the earth To earthly vapour, ere they rise ;

These pilgrims now may roam or The doubt he feeds on, and the pain

dwell, That in his very sweetness lies. God and the Angels, who look forth Still worse, the illusions that betray

To watch their steps, alone can tell, His footsteps to their shining brink; But should we, in our wanderings, That tempt him, on his desert way

Meet a young pair, whose beauty

wants Through the bleak world, to bend and drink,

But the adornment of bright wings

To look like heaven's inhabitants Where nothing meets his lips, alas, But he again must sighing pass

Who shine where'er they tread, and yet On to that far-off home of peace,

Are humble in their earthly lot, In which alone his thirst will cease.

As is the wayside violet,

That shines unseen, and were it not All this they bear, but, not the less, For its sweet breath would beforgotHave moments rich in happiness-- Whose hearts in every thought are one, Blest meetings, after many a day

Whose voices utter the same wills, Of widowhood past far away,

Answering as Echo doth, some tone When the loved face again is seen Of fairy music ’mong the hills, Close, close, with not a tear between - So like itself, we seek in vain Confidings frank, without control, Which is the echo, which the strainPoured mutually from soul to soul ; Whose piety is love-whose love, As free from any fear or doubt

Though close as 'twere their souls' As is that light from chill or stain, embrace, The sun into the stars sheds out, Is not of earth, but from above

To be by them shed back again !- Like two fair mirrors, face to face, That happy minglement of hearts, Whose light, from one to the other Where, changed as chymic compounds thrown, are,

Is heaven's reflection, not their ownEach with its own existence parts, Should we e'er meet with aught so pure,

To find a new one, happier far ! So perfect here, we may be sure Such are their joys-and. crowning all, There is but one such pair below;

That blessed hope of the bright hour, And, as we bless them'on their way When, happy and no more to fall, Through the world's wilderness, may Their spirits shall, with freshened say, power,

• There Zaraph and his Nama go.'

FABLES FOR THE HOLY ALLIANCE.

1823.

Tu Regibus alas
Eripe.- VIRGIL, Georg. lib. iv.

Clip the wings
Of these high-flying, arbitrary Řings.--DRYDEN's Translation.

TO LORD BYRON. DEAR LORD BYRON,—Though this Volume should possess no other merit in your eyes than that of reminding you of the short time we passed together at Venice, when some of the trifles which it contains were written, you will, I am sure, receive the dedication of it with pleasure, and believe that I am, my dear Lord, ever faithfully yours,

T. B.

PREFACE.

THOUGH it was the wish of the Members of the Poco-curante Society (who have lately done me the honour of electing me their Secretary) that I should prefix my name to the following Miscellany, it is but fair to them and to myself to state that, except in the painful pre-eminence of being employed to transcribe their lucubrations, my claim to such a distinction in the title-page is not greater than that of any other gentleman who has contributed his share to the contents of the volume.

I had originally intended to take tsis opportunity of giving some account of the origin and objects of our Institution, the names and characters of the different members, etc. etc.; but as I am at present preparing for the press the First Volume of the Transactions of the Poco-curante Society,' I shall reserve for that occasion all further details upon the subject; and content myself here with referring, for a general insight into our tenets, to a Song which will be found at the end

of this work, and which is sung to us on the first day of every month, by one of our oldest members, to the tune of (as far as I can recollect, being no musician) either ‘Nancy Dawson' or “He stole away the Bacon.'

It may be as well also to state, for the information of those critics who attack with the hope of being answered, and of being thereby brought into notice, that it is the rule of this Society to return no other answer to such assailants than is contained in three words, “Non curat Hippoclides' (meaning, in English, * Hippoclides does not care a fig'), which were spoken two thousand years ago by the firstfounder of Poco-curantism, and have ever since been adopted as the leading dictum of the sect.

THOMAS BROWN.

FABLE I

So, on he capered, fearless quite,

Thinking himself extremely clever, And waltzed away with all his might,

As if the frost would last for ever.

THE DISSOLUTION OF THE HOLY

ALLIANCE.

1

A Dream.

Just fancy how a bard like me, I've had a dream that bodes no good

Who reverence monarchs, must have

trembled, Unto the Holy Brotherhood.

To see that goodly company
I
may

be
wrong,
but I confess-

At such a ticklish sport assembled.
As far as it is right or lawful
For one, no conjurer, to guess-

Nor were the fears, that thus astounded It seems to me extremely awful.

My loyal soul, at all unfounded;

For, lo! ere long, those walls so massy Methought, upon the Neva's flood

Were seized with an ill-omened dripA beautiful Ice Palace stood; A dome of frost-work, on the plan

ping,

And o'er the floors, now growing glassy, Of that once built by Empress Anne,

Their Holinesses took to slipping. Which shone by moonlight-as the tale is

The Czar, half through a Polonaise, Like an aurora borealis.

Could scarce get on for downright In this said Palace-furnished all

stumbling;

And Prussia, though to slippery ways And lighted as the best on land areI dreamed there was a splendid ball,

So used, was cursedly near tumbling. Given by the Emperor Alexander, To entertain with all due zeal,

Yet still 'twas who could stamp the Those holy gentlemen who've shown a

floor most, Regard so kind for Europe's weal,

Russia and Austria 'mong the foremost. Āt Troppau, Laybach, and Verona.

And now, to an Italian air,

This precious brace would hand in The thought was happy, and designed To hint how thus the human mind

Now-while old ....3 from his chair, May-like the stream imprisoned Intreated them his toes to sparethere

Called loudly out for a fandango. Be checked and chilled till it can bear The heaviest Kings, that ode or sonnet Aod a fandango, 'faith, they had, E'er yet be-praised, to dance upon it. At which they all set to like mad

Never were Kings (though small the exAnd all were pleased, and cold, and stately,

Of wit among their Excellencies) Shivering in grand illumination- So ont of all their princely senses. Admired the superstructure greatly, Nor gave one thought to the founda. But, ah! that dance—that Spanish tion.

danceMuch too the Czar himself exulted, Scarce was the luckless strain begun,

To all plebeian fears a stranger, When, glaring red-as 'twere a glance As Madame Krudener' when consulted, Shot from an angry southern sunHad pledged her word there was no A light through all the chambers flamed, danger.

Astonishing old Father Frost,

hand go ;

pense is

I 'It is well known that the Empress Anne built a palace of ice on the Neva in 1740, which was fifty-two feet in length, and when illuminated had a surprising effect.'-Pinkerton.

s Louis. * A fanatic who pretended to prophecy, much favoured by the Czar.

6

Who, bursting into tears, exclaimed, When in some urchin's mouth, alas!

A thaw, by Jove !-we're lost, we're It melts into a shapeless mass !

lost ! Run, F-!l a second Waterloo

In short, I scarce could count a minute Is come to drown you—sauve qui peut l' Ere the bright dome, and all within it,

Kings, Fiddlers, Emperors-all were Why, why will monarchs caper so

gone ! In palaces without foundations ? And nothing now was seen or heard Instantly all was in a flow :

But the bright river, rushing on, Crowns, fiddles, sceptres, decora- Happy as an enfranchised bird, tions;

And prouder of that natural ray, Those royal arms, that looked so nice, Shining along its chainless wayCut out in the resplendent ice; More proudly happy thus to glide Those eagles, handsomely provided In simple grandeur to the sea, With double heads for double deal. Than when in sparkling fetters tied, ings

And decked with all that kingly pride How fast theglobes and sceptres glided Could bring to light its slavery !

Out of their claws on all the ceilings !
Proud Prussia's double bird of prey, Such is my dream-and, I confess,
Tame as a spatch-cock, slunk away; I tremble at its awfulness.
While-just like France herself, when
she

That Spanish dance, that southern
Proclaims how great her naval skill

beamis

But I say nothing—there's my dreamPoor ... drowning fleurs-de-lys

And Madame Krudener, the sheImagined themselves water-lilies.

prophet, And not alone rooms, ceilings, shelves, May make just what she pleases of it.

But-still more fatal executionThe Great Legitimates themselves Seemed in a state of dissolution.

FABLE II. The indignant Czar-when just about

To issue a sublime Ukase "Whereas, alllight must be keptout'Dissolved to nothing in its blaze.

Proem. Next Prussia took his turn to melt, And, while his lips illustrious felt WHERE Kings have been by mobThe influence of this southern air,

elections Some word like 'Constitution,' long Raised to the throne, 'tis strange to see Concealed in frosty silence there, What different and what odd perfections Came slowly thawing from his Men have required in royalty. tongue.

Someliking monarchs large and plumpy, While-lapsing by degree,

Have chosen their Sovereigns by the And sighing out a faint adieu

weight; To truffles, salmis, toasted cheese, Some wished them tall ; some thought And smoking fondus, quickly grew

your dumpy, Himself into a fondu too;

Dutch-built the true Legitimate.3 Or, like that goodly King they make The Easterns, in a Prince, 'tis said, Of sugar, for a twelfth-night cake, Prefer what's called a jolter-bead ; 4

THE LOOKING-GLASSES.

2 Louis's. 3 The Goths had a law to chooss always a short thick man for their king.-Munster, Cosmog. lib. ii. p. 164.

i France.

1 'In a Prince, à jolter-head is invaluable.'— Oriental Field Sports.

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