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And through his sleep, and o'er each Wrought in his brain and bosom separate

waking hour,


Thoughts after thoughts, unresting mul- Some said that he was mad, others titudes, believed

Were driven within him, by some secret power,

Which bade them blaze, and live, and roll afar,

Like lights and sounds, from haunted tower to tower

O'er castled mountains borne, when
tempest's war

Is levied by the night-contending winds,
And the pale dalesmen watch with eager

ear ;

Though such were in his spirit, as the
Which wake and feed on everliving

A mirror found, he knew not-none
could know;
But on whoe'er might question him he


The light of his frank eyes, as if to show, He knew not of the grief within that burned,

But asked forbearance with a mournful look;

Or spoke in words from which none ever learned

By mortal fear or supernatural awe;
And others, - 'Tis the shadow of a



What was this grief, which ne'er in other Which the veiled eye of memory never



The cause of his disquietude; or shook With spasms of silent passion; or turned pale:

So that his friends soon rarely undertook

To stir his secret pain without avail;:For all who knew and loved him then


That there was drawn an adamantine veil

That memories of an antenatal life Made this, where now he dwelt, a penal hell;

And others said that such mysterious grief

From God's displeasure, like a darkness, fell

On souls like his which owned no higher law

Than love; love calm, steadfast, invin


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Men held with one another; nor did he Between his heart and mind,—both un- Like one who labours with a human woe relieved Decline this talk: as if its theme might be

Another, not himself, he to and fro Questioned and canvassed it with subtlest wit,

And none but those who loved him best could know

That which he knew not, how it galled and bit

His weary mind, this converse vain and cold;

For like an eyeless nightmare grief did sit

Upon his being; a snake which fold by


Pressed out the life of life, a clinging fiend




Which clenched him if he stirred with And when he heard the crash of nations


deadlier hold;

And so his grief remained—let it remain A bloodier power than ruled thy ruins -untold.1


PRINCE ATHANASE had one beloved friend,

An old, old man, with hair of silver white,

And lips where heavenly smiles would hang and blend

A fertile island in the barren sea,
One mariner who has survived his mates
Many a drear month in a great ship-
so he

and eyes whose

With his wise words; arrowy light

Shone like the reflex of a thousand minds.

He was the last whom superstition's


With soul-sustaining songs, and sweet debates

Of ancient lore, there fed his lonely being:

"The mind becomes that which it con-

And thus Zonoras, by forever seeing
Their bright creations, grew like wisest

1 The Author was pursuing a fuller development of the ideal character of Athanase, when it struck him that in an attempt at extreme refinement and analysis, his conceptions might be betrayed into the assuming a morbid character. The reader will judge whether he is a loser or gainer by the difference. [Shelley's Note.]

O sacred Hellas! many weary years
He wandered, till the path of Laian's

Was grass-grown-and the unremembered tears

Were dry in Laian for their honoured chief,

Who fell in Byzant, pierced by Moslem spears :

And as the lady looked with faithful grief

From her high lattice o'er the rugged path,

Where she once saw that horseman toil, with brief

Had spared in Greece-the blight that And blighting hope, who with the news cramps and blinds,

of death

And in his olive bower at ŒEnoe
Had sate from earliest youth. Like one
who finds

Struck body and soul as with a mortal


She saw beneath the chestnuts, far beneath,

An old man toiling up, a weary wight;
And soon within her hospitable hall
She saw his white hairs glittering in the


Of the wood fire, and round his shoulders Sounded o'er earth and sea its blast of



And his wan visage and his withered The Balearic fisher, driven from shore, mien

Yet calm and gentle and majestical.

And Athanase, her child, who must have

Then three years old, sate opposite and
In patient silence.


SUCH was Zonoras; and as daylight finds One amaranth glittering on the path of frost,

When autumn nights have nipt all weaker kinds,

The spirit of Prince Athanase, a child,
With soul-sustaining songs of ancient lore
And philosophic wisdom, clear and mild.

And sweet and subtle talk they evermore,
The pupil and the master shared; until,
Sharing that undiminishable store,

For, lo! the wintry clouds are all gone by,

And bright Arcturus through yon pines is glowing,


Thus through his age, dark, cold, and
Shone truth upon Zonoras; and he filled
From fountains pure, nigh overgrown

And far o'er southern waves, immovably
Belted Orion hangs—warm light is flow-
From the young moon into the sunset's

and lost,

The youth, as shadows on a grassy hill Outrun the winds that chase them, soon outran

Strange truths and new to that experi-
enced man;

Still they were friends, as few have ever
Who mark the extremes of life's dis-
cordant span.

So in the caverns of the forest green,
Or by the rocks of echoing ocean hoar,
Zonoras and Prince Athanase were seen
By summer woodmen ; and when winter's


Hanging upon the peaked wave afar, Then saw their lamp from Laian's turret gleam,

Piercing the stormy darkness like a star,

Which pours beyond the sea one steadfast beam,

Whilst all the constellations of the sky Seemed reeling through the storm. They did but seem


"O, summer eve! with power divine, bestowing

"Of fevered brains, oppressed with grief and madness,

His teacher, and did teach with native Were lulled by thee, delightful nightinskill gale!

And these soft waves, murmuring a gentle sadness,

"On thine own bird the sweet enthusiasm Which overflows in notes of liquid glad


Filling the sky like light! How many a spasm

"And the far sighings of yon piny dale Made vocal by some wind, we feel not here,

I bear alone what nothing may avail

"To lighten a strange load!"- No human ear

Heard this lament; but o'er the visage


Of Athanase, a ruffling atmosphere

Of dark emotion, a swift shadow ran, Like wind upon some forest-bosom'd lake,

Glassy and dark.—And that divine old


Beheld his mystic friend's whole being shake,

Even where its inmost depths were gloomiest

And with a calm and measured voice he spake,

And with a soft and equal pressure, prest
That cold lean hand:-
:-"Dost thou
remember yet
When the curved moon then lingering
in the west

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To see it rise thus joyous from its dreams,

The fresh and radiant Earth. The hoary grove

Waxed green-and flowers burst forth like starry beams;—

The grass in the warm sun did start and


And sea-buds burst beneath the waves

"Paused in yon waves her mighty horns to wet,

How in those beams we walked, half resting on the sea?

How many a spirit then puts on the pinions

'Tis just one year-sure thou dost not And his own steps-and over wide Of fancy, and outstrips the lagging blast, forget


Stands up before its mother bright and
Of whose soft voice the air expectant


How many a one, though none be near to love,

Loves then the shade of his own soul,

half seen In any mirror — -or the spring's young minions,

The winged leaves amid the copses


Sweeps in his dream-drawn chariot, far
and fast,
More fleet than storms-the wide world
shrinks below,

When winter and despondency are past.

'Twas at this season that Prince Athanase Past the white Alps-those eagle-baffling


Slept in their shrouds of snow;—beside the ways


'TWAS at the season when the Earth The waterfalls were voiceless-for their upsprings fountains

Were changed to mines of sunless crystal

From slumber, as a sphered angel's child,
Shadowing its eyes with green and golden



Or by the curdling winds-like brazen wings

Which clanged along the mountain's marble browWarped into adamantine fretwork, hung So stood before the sun, which shone And filled with frozen light the chasm and smiled




THOU art the wine whose drunkenness is all

We can desire, O Love! and happy souls, Ere from thy vine the leaves of autumn fall,

Catch thee, and feed from their o'er-
flowing bowls
Thousands who thirst for thy ambrosial

Thou art the radiance which where
ocean rolls


Beauty like some bright robe;-thou

ever soarest

Among the towers of men, and as soft air
In spring, which moves the unawakened
Clothing with leaves its branches bare
and bleak,
and aye


Thou floatest among men; plorest

That which from thee they should implore:-the weak


THE story of " Rosalind and Helen" is, undoubtedly, not an attempt in the highest

Investest it; and when the heavens are style of poetry. It is in no degree calculated to excite profound meditation;


is fair

The shadow of thy moving wings imbue
Its deserts and its mountains, till they

Thou fillest them; and when the earth and if, by interesting the affections and amusing the imagination, it awaken a certain ideal melancholy favourable to the reception of more important impressions, it will produce in the reader all that the writer experienced in the composition. I resigned myself, as I wrote, to the impulse of the feelings which moulded the conception of the story; and this impulse determined the pauses of a measure, which only pretends to be regular inasmuch as it corresponds with, and expresses, the irregularity of the imaginations which inspired it.

Alone kneel to thee, offering up




HER hair was brown, her sphered eyes were brown,

And in their dark and liquid moisture

The light from them, as when tears of delight

Double the western planet's serene flame.


Like the dim orb of the eclipsèd moon; Yet when the spirit flashed beneath, there came



The strong have broken-yet where condemn the insertion of the introductory shall any seek

A garment whom thou clothest not?

lines, which image forth the sudden relief of a state of deep despondency by the radiant visions disclosed by the sudden burst of an Italian sunrise in autumn on the highest peak of those delightful mountains, I can only offer as my excuse, that they were not erased at the request of a dear friend, with whom added years of intercourse only add to my apprehension of its value, and who would have had more right than any one to complain,

I do not know which of the few scattered poems I left in England will be selected by my bookseller to add to this collection. One,1 which I sent from Italy, was written after a day's excursion among those lovely mountains which surround what was once the retreat, and where is now the sepulchre, of Petrarch. If any one is inclined to

1 "Lines written among the Euganean Hills." Ed.

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