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Thou sawest Detection, like a witch, look on
And smile, and mock at the solemnity,
Conjuring the stars. Hark! was not that a noise ?
Ful. No; all is still.
Lor. Have none approached us ?
Lor. Then 'twas my fancy. Every passing hour
Is crowded with a thousand whisperers;
The night has lost its silence, and the stars
Shoot fire upon my soul. Darkness itself
Has objects for mine eyes to gaze upon,
And sends me terror when I pray
In vain upon my knees. Nor ends it here;
My greatest dread of all-Detection—casts
Her shadow on my walk, and startles me
At every turn : sometime will reason drag
Her frightful chain of probable alarms
Across my mind; or if, fatigued, she droops,
survive the while; as you have seen
The ocean tossing when the wind is down,
And the huge storm is dying on the waters.
Once, too, I had a dream-
Jul. The shadows of our sleep should fly with sleep ; Nor hang their sickness on the memory.
Lor. Methought the dead man, rising from his tomb, Frowned over me. Elmira, at my side, Stretched her fond arms to shield me from his wrath, At which he frowned the more. Disgusted, from the spectre, and essayed To clasp my wife; but she was pale, and cold, And in her breast the heart was motionless, And on her limbs the clothing of the grave,
With here and there a worm, hung heavily.
Then did the spectre laugh, till from its mouth
Blood dropped upon us while it cried—“Behold!
Such is the bridal bed that waits thy love !"
I would have struck it (for my rage was up);
I tried the blow; but, all my senses shaken
By the convulsion, broke the tranced spell,
And darkness told me-sleep was my tormentor.
Bryan Waller Proctor (Barry Cornwall).
A doting Husband's Love.
Duke MIRANDOLA, Duchess ISIDORA.
Duke. My own sweet love! Oh! my dear peerless wife!
By the blue sky and all its crowding stars,
I love you better-oh! far better than
Woman was ever loved. There's not an hour
Of day or dreaming night but I am with thee:
There's not a wind but whispers of thy name,
And not a flower that sleeps beneath the moon
But in its hues or fragrance tells a tale
Of thee, my love, to thy Mirandola.
Speak, dearest Isidora, can you love
As I do? Can-but no, no; I shall grow
Foolish if thus I talk.
You must be gone ;
You must be gone, fair Isidora, else
The business of the dukedom soon will cease.
I speak the truth, by Dian.
Gheraldi waits without (or should) to see me.
In faith, you must go : one kiss; and so, away.
Isidora. Farewell, my lord.
Duke. We'll ride together, dearest,
Some few hours hence.
Isid. Just as you please ; farewell.
[Exit. Duke. Farewell ; with what a waving air she goes Along the corridor. How like a fawn; Yet statelier. Hark! no sound, however soft (Nor gentlest echo), telleth when she treads; But every motion of her shape doth seem Hallowed by silence.
Thus did Hebe grow Amidst the gods, a paragon; and thusAway! I'm grown the very
fool of love.
COLA DI RIEnzi (afterwards the last of the Tribunes) heads the People,
to overthrow the powerful Faction of the Ursini, and other despotic Nobles, who tyrannize over Rome. Angelo Colonna, instigated by love for CLAUDIA, Rienzi's Daughter, and hate towards the rival House of URSINI, attends a Meeting of the People assembled by RIENZI to declare and redress their Wrongs. Rome.—Before the Gates of the Capitol.
ALBERTI, PAOLO, CITIZENS. 1st Citizen. This is the chosen spot. A brave assemblage ! 2d Cit. Why, yes.
No marvel that Rienzi struck So bold a blow. I had heard shrewd reports
Of heats, and discontents, and gathering bands,
But never dreamed of Cola.
Pao. 'Tis the spot !
Where loiters he? The night wears on apace.
Alberti. It is not yet the hour.
ist Cit. Who speaks ?
Another Cit. Alberti,
The captain of the guard; he and his soldiers
Have joined our faction.
Alb. Comrades, we shall gain
An easy victory. The Ursini,
Drunk with false hope and brute debauch, feast high
Within their palace. Never wore emprise
A fairer face.
Pao. And yet the summer heaven,
Sky, moon, and stars, are overcast. The saints
Send that this darkness-
Rie. [Advancing to the front.] Darkness ! did ye never Watch the dark glooming of the thunder-cloud, Ere the storm burst? We'll light this darkness, Sir, With the brave flash of spear and sword.
All the Citizens shout. Rienzi !
Live, brave Rienzi ! honest Cola !
Citizens. Long live Rienzi !
Alb. Listen to him.
I come not here to talk. Ye know too well
of our thraldom. We are slaves ! The bright sun rises to his course, and lights
A race of slaves !—He sets, and his last beam
Falls on a slave-
Slaves to a horde
Of petty tyrants, feudal despots; lords
Rich in some dozen paltry villages-
Strong in some hundred spearmen,-only great
In that strange spell—a name. Each hour, dark fraud,
Or open rapine, or protected murder,
Cry out against them. But this very day,
An honest man, my neighbour—[Pointing to Paolo]—
there he stands,
Was struck, -struck like a dog, by one who wore
The badge of Ursini ; because, forsooth,
He tossed not high his ready cap in air,
At sight of that
great ruffian. Be we men,
And suffer such dishonour? Men, and wash not
The stain away in blood ? Such shames are common :
I have known deeper wrongs.
I that speak to ye,
I had a brother once-
How I loved
That gracious boy! Younger by fifteen years,
Brother at once and son ! “ He left my side ;
A summer bloom on his fair cheeks,-a smile
Parting his innocent lips.' In one short hour
pretty harmless boy was slain !
The corse, the mangled corse, and then I cried
For vengeance !-Rouse, ye Romans !
brave sons ?-Look in the next fierce brawl To see them die. Have
ye fair daughters ?—Look
To see them live, torn from your arms, distained,
Dishonoured ; and, if ye dare call for justice,
Be answered by the lash. Yet, this is Rome,