Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB
[graphic][merged small]

THE POWER OF BACCHUS.

27

There came a knight in presence there, he named my master's name,
As he stood betting golden coin upon the royal game;
And on Sir Robert Clifford's word, they took his sword away,
And William Stanley, to the Tower, was prisoner sent that day.

God only knows the hearts of men; but 'twas a wondrous thing,
My noble master should conspire against the crownéd king;
For well I know on Bosworth Field it was his red right hand
That placed upon Earl Richmond's brow King Richard's royal band.

But ancient service is forgot; and he, the Wise Man said,
Think thou no evil of the King upon thy lonely bed ;
And therefore little will I name of what I then heard told,
That my good lord's worst treasons were his broad lands and his gold.

I saw him on the scaffold stand, the axe was gleaming bright;
But I will say he faced its shine as did become a knight ;
He pray'd a prayer—he knelt him down—there smote a sullen sound, -
I saw my master's sever'd head upon the dark-red ground.

No nobles bore the noble’s pall, there was no funeral bell ;
But I stood weeping by the grave of him I loved so well.
I know not of the right or wrong; but this much let me say,
Would God my master had been kept from kings and courts away !”

THE POWER OF BACCHU S.

TRANSLATED FROM THE GREEK OF EURIPIDES.

BY THE LATE LORD VISCOUNT MELBOURNE.

DIONYSUS.
HERE on this Theban earth at length I stand;
The son of Jove, I tread my native land;
1,—whom midst Lightning's glare, and Thunder's roar,
Thy Daughter, Cadmus, to the godhead bore,
1,-Dionysus ! Thus, in mortal guise,
Around these famous scenes I cast my eyes :

These scenes, which witness'd erst my mother's woes,
Where Dirce rises, and Ismenus flows.
Lo! near her mansion, from whose ruins bare
The clouds of smoke still rolling through the air,
Tell, that beneath, yet lives Jove's forkéd fire,
(Eternal type of Juno's deathless ire.)
Lo! there the sad memorial of her doom
By Jove's own bolt : Lo! there my mother's tomb !
Blesséd be Cadmus, whose fond care would save
From all unhallow'd tread his daughter's grave :-
My power has o'er it spread a sacred screen,
The vine's full clusters and luxuriant green.

I left behind me Lydia's golden sands,-
And Persia's sun-struck plains,—and Phrygia's lands;
Thence Bactria's cities,-Media's land, distrest
With wintry storms,—and Araby the blest ;
And all of Asia's fair and fertile plain,
That lies along the margin of the main,
Where mix'd dwell Grecian and Barbarian powers,
In cities throng'd with men, and crown'd with tow'rs;
I view'd and pass’d :—and thence, oh Thebes, decree,
Of Grecian cities, first to enter thee.
To thee, my mystic power shall first appear,
First will I plant my wondrous worship here:
That I, too, with the rest of Heaven may find
My godhead known and reverenced by mankind !
Thou, first of Greece, shalt hear my votaries raise,
Oh Thebes, their sacred howlings in thy ways;
Thou, first, the goat-skin on thy limbs shall bear,
And toss the ivied Thyrsus high in air !
For they, whom least of all it so became, -
My mother's sisters,—have abjured my name ;
Yes! they have dared deny my birth from Jove,
Have said she bore the fruit of mortal love,
And charged (so Cadmus taught,) to hide her shame
Her own dishonour on the Thunderer's name.
This impious tale (they feign,) drew down his ire,
And her destruction by his blasting fire.
Them, from their homes, the Power they have reviled
Has driven madd’ning forth into the wild :

[graphic][ocr errors][subsumed][ocr errors][ocr errors]
« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »