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I hear the shepherd's mountain flute,
I hear the whispering tree-
the echoes of my soul are mute;
where is my own blue sea?
HATEFUL is the dark-blue sky,
vaulted o'er the dark-blue sea.
Death is the end of life; ah, why
should life all labour be?
Let us alone.
and in a little
Time driveth onward fast,
while our lips are dumb.
What is it that will last?
taken from us, and become
portions and parcels of the dreadful Past.
Let us alone. What pleasure can we have
to war with evil? is there any peace
in ever climbing up the climbing wave?
all things have rest, and ripen toward the grave
in silence; ripen, fall and cease:
give us long rest or death, dark death or dreadful ease.
How happy is the blameless Vestal's lot,
the world forgetting, by the world forgot?
eternal sunshine of the spotless mind!
each prayer accepted, and each wish resign'd;
labour and rest, that equal periods keep;
obedient slumbers that can wake and weep;
desires composed, affections ever even;
tears that delight, and sighs that waft to heaven.
Grace shines around her with serenest beams,
and whispering angels prompt her golden dreams:
for her th' unfading rose of Eden blooms,
and wings of Seraphs shed divine perfumes,
for her the spouse prepares the bridal ring,
for her white virgins hymenæals sing,
to sounds of heavenly harps she dies away,
and melts in visions of eternal day.
EE in her cell sad Eloisa spread,
propt on some tomb, a neighbour of the dead:
in each low wind methinks a spirit calls,
and more than echoes talk along the walls.
Here, as I watched the dying lamps around,
from yonder shrine I heard a hollow sound;
'Come, sister, come! (it said or seemed to say)
thy place is here, sad sister, come away!
once, like thyself, I trembled, wept and pray'd,
love's victim then, though now a sainted maid:
but all is calm in this eternal sleep;
here grief forgets to groan, and love to weep;
ev'n superstition loses every fear:
for God, not man, absolves our frailties here.'.
I come! I come! prepare your roseate bowers,
celestial palms and ever-blooming flowers:
thither, where sinners may have rest, I go,
where flames refined in breasts seraphic glow.
545 HIPPOLYTA TAURELLA TO HER HUSBAND DURING
HIS ABSENCE AT THE GAY COURT OF LEO X
THEY tell me thou'rt the favoured guest
of every fair and brilliant throng:
no wit like thine to wake the jest,
no voice like thine to breathe the song; and none could guess, so gay thou art, that thou and I are far apart.
Alas! alas! how different flows
with thee and me the time away!
not that I wish thee sad-heaven knows,
still if thou canst, be light and gay:
I only know, that without thee
the sun himself is dark to me.
Do I thus haste to hall and bower,
among the proud and gay to shine?
or deck my hair with gem and flower
to flatter other eyes than thine?
Ah no; with me love's smiles are past,
thou hadst the first, thou hadst the last.
RETURN OF SPRING TO THE LOVER
IS sweet in the green Spring,
to gaze upon the wakening fields around;
birds in the thicket sing,
winds whisper, waters prattle from the ground;
a thousand odours rise,
breathed up from blossoms of a thousand dyes.
Shadowy and close and cool
the pine and poplar keep their quiet nook;
for ever fresh and full
shines at their feet the thirst-inviting brook;
and the soft herbage seems
spread for a place of banquets and of dreams.
Thou, who alone art fair,
and whom alone I love, art far away;
unless thy smile be there,
it makes me sad to see the earth so gay;
I care not if the train
of leaves and flowers and zephyrs go again.
W to beat the woods and rouse the bounding prey,
HEN from the cave thou risest with the day
the cave with moss and branches I'll adorn,
and cheerful sit, to wait my lord's return;
and, when thou frequent bring'st the smitten deer
(for seldom, archers say, thy arrows err),
I'll fetch quick fuel from the neighbouring wood,
and strike the sparkling flint, and dress the food:
with humble duty and officious haste
I'll cull the furthest mead for thy repast:
the choicest herbs I to thy board will bring,
and draw thee water from the freshest spring;
and, when at night with weary toil opprest,
soft slumber thou enjoy'st and wholesome rest;
watchful I'll guard thee, and with midnight prayer
weary the gods to keep thee in their care;
and joyous ask, at morn's returning ray,
if thou hast health, and I may bless the day.
HENCE comes my love?-O heart, disclose!
'twas from her cheeks that shame the rose;
from lips that spoil the ruby's praise,
from eyes that mock the diamond's blaze:
whence comes my woe, as freely own;
ah me! 'twas from a heart like stone.
The blushing cheek speaks modest mind,
the lips befitting words most kind:
the eye does témpt to love's desire,
and seems to say, 'tis Cupid's fire:
yet all so fair but speak my moan,
sith nought doth say the heart of stone.
Why thus, my love, so kindly speak
sweet eye, sweet lip, sweet blushing cheek,
yet not a heart to save my pain?
O Venus! take thy gifts again:
make not so fair to cause our moan,
or make a heart that's like your own.
THE ADOPTED CHILD
HY wouldst thou leave me, O gentle child?
thy home on the mountain is bleak and wild,
a straw-roofed cabin with lowly wall
mine is a fair and a pillared hall,
where many an image of marble gleams,
and the sunshine of pictures for ever streams.'
'Oh! green is the turf where my brothers play
through the long bright hours of the summer-day;
they find the red cup-moss where they climb,
and they chase the bee o'er the scented thyme:
and the rocks where the heath-flower blooms they know-
Lady, kind Lady, oh! let me go!'
'Content thee, boy, in my bower to dwell,
here are sweet sounds which thou lovest well; flutes on the air in the stilly noon,
harps which the wandering breezes tune, and the silver wood-note of many a bird
whose voice was ne'er in thy mountains heard.'
HE sunbeams are my shafts, with which I kill deceit, that loves the night and fears the day; all men, who do or even imagine ill
fly me, and from the glory of my ray
good minds and open actions take new might,
until diminished by the reign of night.
I feed the clouds, the rainbows, and the flowers,
with their ethereal colours; the moon's globe
and the pure stars in their eternal bowers
are cinctured with my power as with a robe;
whatever lamps on earth or heaven may shine
are portions of one power, which is mine.
I am the eye with which the Universe
beholds itself and knows itself divine;
all harmony of instrument or verse,
all prophecy, all medicine are mine,
all light of art or nature;-to my song.
victory and praise in their own right belong.
SUNSET VIEWED FROM THE PIRAEUS
LOW sinks, more lovely ere his race be run,
along Morea's hills the setting sun;
not as in northern climes obscurely bright,
but one unclouded blaze of living light:
o'er the hushed deep the yellow beam he throws,
gilds the green wave that trembles as it glows.
On old Ægina's rock and Idra's isle
the god of gladness sheds his parting smile;
o'er his own regions lingering, loves to shine,
though there his altars are no more divine.
Descending fast the mountain shadows kiss
thy glorious gulf, unconquered Salamis !
their azure arches through the long expanse
more deeply purpled meet his mellowing glance,
and tenderest tints, along their summits driven,
mark his gay course and own the hues of heaven;
till, darkly shaded from the land and deep,
behind his Delphian cliff he sinks to sleep.