Изображения страниц
[ocr errors]

Perhaps we should be dull were we not chidden; Paradise fruits are sweetest when forbidden. Folly can season Wisdom, Hatred Love.

Farewell, if it can be to say farewell

To those who—

I will not, as most dedicators do,


faultless you are

Assure myself and all the world and you,
- would to God they were
Who taunt me with your love! I then should wear
These heavy chains of life with a light spirit,

And would to God I were, or even as near it
As you, dear heart.
dear heart. Alas! what are we? Clouds
Driven by the wind in warring multitudes,
Which rain into the bosom of the earth,

And rise again, and in our death and birth,
And through our restless life, take as from heaven
Hues which are not our own, but which are given,
And then withdrawn, and with inconstant glance
Flash from the spirit to the countenance.
There is a Power, a Love, a Joy, a God,

Which makes in mortal hearts its brief abode,
A Pythian exhalation, which inspires

Love, only love

a wind which o'er the wires

Of the soul's giant harp

There is a mood which language faints beneath; You feel it striding, as Almighty Death

His bloodless steed.

And what is that most brief and bright delight Which rushes through the touch and through the


And stands before the spirit's inmost throne,
A naked Seraph? None hath ever known.
Its birth is darkness, and its growth desire;
Untamable and fleet and fierce as fire,
Not to be touched but to be felt alone,

It fills the world with glory — and is gone.

[ocr errors]

It floats with rainbow pinions o'er the stream
Of life, which flows, like a

Into the light of morning, to the

[ocr errors][merged small]



What is that joy which serene infancy
Perceives not, as the hours content them by,
Each in a chain of blossoms, yet enjoys
The shapes of this new world, in giant toys
Wrought by the busy

ever new?

Remembrance borrows Fancy's glass, to show

These forms more


Than now they are, than then, perhaps, they were. When everything familiar seemed to be

Wonderful, and the immortality

Of this great world, which all things must inherit,
Was felt as one with the awakening spirit,
Unconscious of itself, and of the strange
Distinctions which in its proceeding change
It feels and knows, and mourns as if each were
A desolation.

Were it not a sweet refuge, Emily,

For all those exiles from the dull insane

Who vex this pleasant world with pride and pain, For all that band of sister-spirits known

To one another by a voiceless tone?


And ever as he went he swept a lyre

Of unaccustomed shape, and

Now like the


of impetuous fire,

Which shakes the forest with its murmurings,
Now like the rush of the aërial wings

Of the enamoured wind among the treen,
Whispering unimaginable things,

And dying on the streams of dew serene, Which feed the unmown meads with ever-during


And the green Paradise which western waves
Embosom in their ever wailing sweep,
Talking of freedom to their tongueless caves,
Or to the spirits which within them keep
A record of the wrongs which, though they sleep,
Die not, but dream of retribution, heard
His hymns, and echoing them from steep to steep,

And then came one of sweet and earnest looks, Whose soft smiles to his dark and night-like eyes Were as the clear and ever living brooks Are to the obscure fountains whence they rise, Showing how pure they are: a Paradise Of happy truth upon his forehead low Lay, making wisdom lovely, in the guise Of earth-awakening morn upon the brow Of star-deserted heaven, while ocean gleams below. Lines written for Adonais. Published by Garnett, 1862.

His song, though very sweet, was low and faint,

A simple strain

A mighty Phantasm, half concealed

In darkness of his own exceeding light, Which clothed his awful presence unrevealed, Charioted on the


Of thunder-smoke, whose skirts were chrysolite.

And like a sudden meteor, which outstrips
The splendor-winged chariot of the sun,

The armies of the golden stars, each one
Pavilioned in its tent of light - all strewn
Over the chasms of blue night-



FAIREST of the Destinies,

Disarray thy dazzling eyes :

Keener far thy lightnings are

Than the wingèd [bolts] thou bearest,

And the smile thou wearest

Wraps thee as a star

Is wrapped in light.


Could Arethuse to her forsaken urn
From Alpheus and the bitter Doris run,
Or could the morning shafts of purest light
Lines Written for Hellas. Published by Garnett, 1862.

Again into the quivers of the Sun

Be gathered could one thought from its wild


Return into the temple of the brain

Without a change, without a stain, —
Could aught that is, ever again

Be what it once has ceased to be,
Greece might again be free!


A star has fallen upon the earth
'Mid the benighted nations,

A quenchless atom of immortal light,
A living spark of Night,

A cresset shaken from the constellations.
Swifter than the thunder fell

To the heart of Earth, the well
Where its pulses flow and beat,
And unextinct in that cold source
Burns, and on


Guides the sphere which is its prison,

Like an angelic spirit pent

In a form of mortal birth,

Till, as a spirit half arisen

Shatters its charnel, it has rent,
In the rapture of its mirth,

The thin and painted garment of the Earth,
Ruining its chaos- a fierce breath

Consuming all its forms of living death.

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »