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mates. His days were chiefly spent on the water; the management of his boat, its alterations and improvements, were his principal occupation. At night, when the unclouded moon shone on the calm sea, he often went alone in his little shallop to the rocky caves that bordered it, and sitting beneath their shelter wrote "The Triumph of Life," the last of his productions. The beauty but strangeness of this lonely place, the refined pleasure which he felt in the companionship of a few selected friends, our entire sequestration from the rest of the world, all contributed to render this period of his life one of continued enjoyment. I am convinced that the two months wc passed there were the happiest which he had ever known: his health even rapidly improved, and he was never better than when I last saw him, full of spirits and joy, embark for Leghorn, that he might there welcome Leigh Hunt to Italy. I was to have accompanied him, but illness confined me to my room, and thus put the seal on my misfortune. His vessel bore out of sight with a favourable wind, and I remained awaiting his return by the breakers of that sea which was about to engulf him.
He spent a week at Pisa, employed in kind offices toward his friends, and enjoying with keen delight the renewal of their intercourse. He then embarked with Williams, the chosen and beloved sharer of his pleasures and of his fate, to return to us. We waited for tbem in vain; the sea by its restless moaning seemed to desire to inform us of what we would not learn:
but a veil may well be drawn over such misery.
The real anguish of those moments transcended all the fictions that the most glowing imagination ever portrayed: our seclusion, the savage nature of the inhabitants of the surrounding villages, and our immediate vicinity to the troubled sea, combined to imbue with strange horror our days of uncertainty. The truth was at last known,—a truth that made our loved and lovely Italy appear a tomb, its sky a pall. Every heart echoed the deep lament, and my only consolation was in the praise and earnest love that sach voice bestowed and each countenance demon
strated for him wc had lost,—not, I fondly hope, for ever: his unearthly and elevated nature is a pledge of the continuation of his being, although in an altered form. Rome received his ashes; they are deposited beneath its weed-grown wall, and "the world's sole monument" is enriched by his remains.
I must add a few words concerning the contents of this volume. "Julian and Maddalo," "The Witch of Atlas/' and most of the Translations, were written some years ago; and, with the exception of "The Cyclops," and the Scenes from the "Magic© Prodigioso," may be considered as having received the author's ultimate corrections. ** The Triumph of Life" was his last work, and was left in so unfinished a state, that I arranged it in its present form with gTcat difficulty. All his poems which were scattered in periodical works are collected in this volume, and I have added a reprint of "Alastor, or the Spirit of Solitude : "—the difficulty with which a copy can be obtained is the cause of its republication. Many of the Miscellaneous Poems, written on the spur of the occasion, and never retouched, I found among his manuscript books, and have carefully copied. I have subjoined, whenever I have been able, the date of their composition.
I do not know whether the critic* will reprehend the insertion of some of the most imperfect among them; but I frankly own that I have been more actuated by the fear lest any monument of his genius should escape me, than the wish of presenting no thin* but what was complete to the fastidious reader. I feci secure that the Lovers of Suflley's Poetry (who know how more than any poet of the present day every line and word he wrote is instinct with peculiar beauty) will pardon and thank me: I consecrate tan volume to them.
The size of this collection has prevented the insert ion of any prose pieces. They will hereafter appear in a separate publication.
Mary W. Shkllfy.
London, June let, 1824.
When he had wrought the lovely instrument, Me tried the chords, and made division meet
Preluding with the plectrum, and there went
Of mighty sounds, and from his lips he sent
Joyous and wild and wanton—such you may
Hear among revellers on a holiday.
So saying, Hermes roused the oxen rut;
O'er shadowy mountain and resounding dell. And flower-paven plains, great Hermes past;
Till the black night divine, which favouring fill Around his steps, grew grey, and morning fast
Wakened the world to work, and from her cell, Sea-strewn, the Pallantean Moon sublime Into her watch-tower just began to climb.
He sung how Jove and May of the bright sandal
And his own birth, still scoffing at the scandal,
His mother's cave and servant maids he planned all
Perennial pot, trippet, and brazen pan—
But singing he conceived another plan.
Seized with a sudden fancy for fresh meat,
He in his sacred crib deposited
Rushed with great leaps up to the mountain's
Lo! the great Sun under the ocean's bed has Driven steeds and chariot—the child meanwhile strode
O'er the Pierian mountains clothed in shadows, Where the immortal oxen of the God
Are pastured in the flowering unmown meadows, And safely stalled in a remote abode—
The archer Argicidc, elate and proud,
Drove fifty from the herd, lowing aloud.
He drove them wandering o'er the sandy way,
Backward and forward drove tie them astray,
His sandals then he threw to the ocean spray,
Of tamarisk, and tamarisk-like sprigs.
And bound them in a lump with withy twigs.
And on his feet he tied these sandals light,
His track ; anil then, a self-sufficing wight,
He from Pieria's mountain bent his flight;
But an old man perceived the infant pass
Down green Onchestus, heaped like beds with grass.
The old man stood dressing his sunny vine: "Halloo! old fellow with the crooked shoulder!
You grub those stumps 1 Before they will bear wine Methinks even you must grow a little older:
Attend, I pray, to this advice of mine,
As you would 'scape what might appal a bolder—
Seeing, see not—and hearing, hear not—and—
If you have understanding—understand."
Now to Alpheus he had driven all
The broad-foreheaded oxen of the Sun;
They came unwearied to the lofty 6tall
Through the fresh fields—and when with rushgriss
Had pastured been, the Great (iod made them move
Towards the stall in a collected drove.
A mighty pile of wood the God then heaped,
Of fire, from two smooth laurel branches stript
Suddenly forth the burning vapour leapt,
Mercury first found out for human weal
Tinder-box, matches, fire-irons, flint, and steei.
And fine dry logs and roots innumerous
And kindled them—and instantaneous
The strength of the fierce flame was breathed around:
And whilst the might of glorious Vulcan thin Wrapt the great pile withglare and roaringsouini,
Hermes dragged forth two heifers, lowing loud.
Close to the fire—such might was in the God.
xx. And on the earth upon their backs he threw
The panting beasts, and rolled them o'er and o'tr, And bored their lives out Without more ad'J
He cut up fat and flesh, and down before The fire on spits of wood he placed the two.
Toasting their flesh and ribs, and all the gore Pursed in the bowels ; and while this wan donHc stretched their hides over a craggy stone.
We mortals let an ox grow old, and then
But joyous-minded Hermes from the glen
Of a flat smooth space, and portioned then ; •»" He had by lot assigned to each a ration [wbe»
Of the twelve Gods, his mind became aware
Of all the joys which in religion are.
xxn. For the sweet savour of the roasted meat
Tempted him, though immortal. Nstbeleaf He cheeked his haughty will and did not cat.
Though what it cost him words can scarce eifn«s And every wish to put such morsels sweet
Down his most sacred throat, he did repreM . But soon within the lofty portalled stall He placed the fat and flesh and bones and alL