Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

And the souls of whom thou lovest

Walk upon the winds with lightness
Till they fail, as I am failing,
Dizzy, lost, yet unbewailing!

P. B. SHELLEY.

272

WRITTEN IN EARLY SPRING I heard a thousand blended notes

While in a grove I sat reclined, In that sweet mood when pleasant thoughts

Bring sad thoughts to the mind.

5

To her fair works did Nature link

The human soul that through me ran ; And much it grieved my heart to think

What man has made of man.

10

Through primrose tufts, in that green bower,

The periwinkle trail'd its wreaths ; And ’tis my faith that every flower

Enjoys the air it breathes.

The birds around me hopp'd and play’d,

Their thoughts I cannot measureBut the least motion which they made

It seem'd a thrill of pleasure.

15

The budding twigs spread out their fan

To catch the breezy air ;
And I must think, do all I can,

That there was pleasure there.

20

If this belief from heaven be sent,

If such be Nature's holy plan, Have I not reason to lament What man has made of man ?

W. WORDSWORTH.

273

5

RUTH : OR THE INFLUENCES OF NATURE

When Ruth was left half desolate
Her father took another mate;

And Ruth, not seven years old,
A slighted child, at her own will
Went wandering over dale and hill,

In thoughtless freedom, bold.
And she had made a pipe of straw,
And music from that pipe could draw

Like sounds of winds and floods ;
Had built a bower upon the green,
As if she from her birth had been

An infant of the woods.

10

Beneath her father's roof, alone
She seem'd to live ; her thoughts her own ;
Herself her own delight :

15
Pleased with herself, nor sad nor gay.
And, passing thus the live-long day,

She grew to woman's height.
There came a youth from Georgia's shore-
A military casque he wore

20
With splendid feathers drest ;
He brought them from the Cherokees ;
The feathers nodded in the breeze

And made a gallant crest.

26

From Indian blood you deem him sprung :
But no! he spake the English tongue

And bore a soldier's name;
And, when America was free
From battle and from jeopardy,

He 'cross the ocean came.

30

With hues of genius on his cheek,
In finest tones the youth could speak :

35

40

45

--While he was yet a boy
The moon, the glory of the sun,
And streams that murmur as they run,

Had been his dearest joy.
He was a lovely youth ! I guess
The panther in the wilderness

Was not so fair as he ;
And when he chose to sport and play,
No dolphin ever was so gay

Upon the tropic sea.
Among the Indians he had fought ;
And with him many tales he brought

Of pleasure and of fear ;
Such tales as, told to any maid
By such a youth, in the green shade,

Were perilous to hear.
He told of girls, a happy rout!
Who quit their fold with dance and shout,

Their pleasant Indian town,
To gather strawberries all day long ;
Returning with a choral song

When daylight is gone down.
He spake of plants that hourly change
Their blossoms, through a boundless range

Of intermingling hues ;
With budding, fading, faded flowers,
They stand the wonder of the bowers

From morn to evening dews.
He told of the magnolia, spread
High as a cloud, high over head !

The cypress and her spire ;
-Of flowers that with one scarlet gleam
Cover a hundred leagues, and seem

To set the hills on fire.
The youth of green savannahs spake,
And many an endless, endless lake

51

55

60

65 75

With all its fairy crowds Of islands, that together lie

70 As quietly as spots of sky

Among the evening clouds.
* How pleasant,' then he said, “it were
A fisher or a hunter there,

In sunshine or in shade
To wander with an easy mind,
And build a household fire, and find

A home in every glade !
What days and what bright years! Ah me!
Our life were life indeed, with thee

80
So pass'd in quiet bliss ;
And all the while,' said he, to know
That we were in a world of woe,

On such an earth as this !'
And then he sometimes interwove

85 Fond thoughts about a father's love, · For there,' said he,

are spun Around the heart such tender ties, That our own children to our eyes

Are dearer than the sun.
Sweet Ruth! and could you go with me
My helpmate in the woods to be,

Our shed at night to rear ;
Or run, my own adopted bride,
A sylvan huntress at my side,

And drive the flying deer !
· Beloved Ruth ! !-No more he said.
The wakeful Ruth at midnight shed

A solitary tear :
She thought again and did agree

100 With him to sail across the sea,

And drive the flying deer.
And now, as fitting is and right,
We in the church our faith will plight,

6

90

95 105

A husband and a wife,'
Even so they did ; and I may say
That to sweet Ruth that happy day

Was more than human life.
Through dream and vision did she sink,
Delighted all the while to think

That, on those lonesome floods
And green savannahs, she should share
His board with lawful joy, and bear

His name in the wild woods.

110

115

But, as you have before been told,
This Stripling, sportive, gay, and bold,

And with his dancing crest
So beautiful, through savage lands
Had roam'd about, with vagrant bands

Of Indians in the West

120

125

130

The wind, the tempest roaring high,
The tumult of a tropic sky

Might well be dangerous food
For him, a youth to whom was given
So much of earth--so much of heaven,

And such impetuous blood.
Whatever in those climes he found
Irregular in sight or sound

Did to his mind impart
A kindred impulse, seem'd allied
To his own powers, and justified

The workings of his heart.
Nor less, to feed voluptuous thought,
The beauteous forms of Nature wrought,-

Fair trees and gorgeous flowers ;
The breezes their own languor lent ;
The stars had feelings, which they sent

Into those favour'd bowers.
Yet, in his worst pursuits, I ween
That sometimes there did intervene

135

140

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »