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As on the height of some huge eminence
long labour, the wayfaring man
Pauses awhile, and gazing o'er the plain
With many a sore step travelled, turns him then
Serious to contemplate the onward road,
And calls to mind the comforts of his home,
And sighs that he has left them, and resolves
To stray no more: I on my way of life
Muse thus, Penates, and with firmest faith
Devote myself to you.”
NIGHT IN A DESART.
“ How beautiful is night! A dewy freshness fills the silent air, No mist obscures, nor cloud, nor speck, nor stain,
Breaks the serene of heaven;
In full-orb'd glory yonder moon divine
Rolls through the dark-blue depths.
Beneath her steady ray
The desert circle spreads,
Like the round ocean, girdled with the sky.
How beautiful is night!"
ARGUMENT AGAINST SUICIDE.
“ There is a morning to the tomb's long night,
A dawn of glory, a reward in heaven,
He shall not gain who never merited.
If thou didst know the worth of one good deed
In life's last hour, thou wouldst not bid me lose
The power to benefit: if I but save
A drowning fly, I shall not live in vain !"
Amid a grove embower'd
Stood the prodigious pile;
Trees of such ancient majesty
Tower'd not op Yemen's happy hills,
Nor crown'd the stately brow of Lebanon.
Fabric so vast, so lavishly enrich'd,
For idol or for tyrant, never yet
Rais'd the slave race of man,
In Rome, nor in the elder Babylon,
Nor old Persepolis,
Nor where the family of Greece
Hymn'd Eleutherian Jove.
Here studding azure tablatures,
And ray'd with feeble light,
Star-like the ruby and the diamond shone :
Here on the golden towers
The yellow moonbeam lay,
Here with white splendour floods the silver wall.
Less wonderous pile, and less magnificent,
Sennamar built at Hirah, though his art
Seal'd with one stone the ample edifice,
And made its colors, like the serpent's skin,
Play with a changeful beauty: him, its lord,
Jealous lest after effort might surpass
The now unequall'd palace, from its height
Dash'd on the pavement down."
A DAMSEL AND BOY GATHERING DATES.
“ Under a shapely palm,
Herself as shapely, there a Damsel stood;
She held her ready robe,
And look'd towards a Boy,
Who from the tree above,
With one hand clinging to its trunk,
Cast with the other down the cluster'd dates."
“ Every gem,
So sages say, has virtue; but the science
Of difficult attainment! some grow pale,
Conscious of poison, or with sudden shade
Of darkness, warn the wearer; some preserve
From spells, or blunt the hostile weapon's edge;
Some open rocks and mountains, and lay bare
Their buried treasures; others make the sight
Strong to perceive the presence of all Beings,
Thro' whose pure substance the unaided eye
Passes, like empty air,.. and in yon stone
I deem some such mysterious quality.”
DESCRIPTION OF A YOUTH.
“ Black were his eyes, and bright,
The sunny hue of health
Glowed on his tawny cheek,
His lip was darkened by maturing life ;
Strong were his shapely limbs; his stature tall;
Peerless among Arabian youths was he.”
" Yet through the purple glow of eve
Shines dimly the white Moon.
The slackened bow, the quiver, the long lance,
Rest on the pillar of the l'ent.
Knitting light palm-leaves for her brother's brow,
The dark-eyed damsel sits;
The old man tranquilly
Up his curl'd pipe inhales
The tranquillizing herb.
So listen they the reed of Thalaba,
While his skilled fingers modulate
The low, sweet, soothing, melancholy tones.
Or if he strung the pearls of poësy,
Singing with agitated face,
And eloquent arms, and sobs that reach the heart,
A tale of love and woe;
Then if the brightning Moon, that lit his face,
In darkness favoured her's,
Oh! even with such a look, as fables say,
The mother ostrich fixes on her egg,
Till that intense affection
Kindle its light of life,
Even in such deep and breathless tenderness
Oneiza's soul is centred on the youth,
So motionless, with such an ardent gaze,..
Save when from her full eyes
Quickly she wipes away the swelling tears
That dim his image there.”
A CLOUD OF LOCUSTS. “ Onward they came, a dark continuous cloud
Of congregated myriads numberless, The rushing of whose wings was as the sound
Of a broad river, headlong in its course Plunged from a mountain summit; or the roar
Of a wild ocean in the autumn storm,
Shattering its billows on a shore of rocks. Onward they came, the winds impelled them on,
Their work was done, their path of ruin past,
Their graves were ready in the wilderness.”
“ Day dawns, the twilight gleam dilates,
The sun comes forth, and, like a god,
Rides through rejoicing heaven.”
REPOSE. “ Awhile he lay, and watch'd the lovely moon, O'er whose broad orb the bough's
A mazy fretting framed,
Or with a pale transparent green
Lighting the restless leaves,
The thin Acacia leaves, that play'd above.
The murmuring wind, the moving leaves,
Lulld him at length to sleep,
With mingled lullabies of sight and sound."
AN ENCHANTED GARDEN.
“ Where'er his eye could reach,
Fair structures, rainbow-hued, arose; And rich pavilions through the opening woods Gleamed from their waving curtain's sunny gold;
And winding through the verdant vale,
Flowed streams of liquid light;
And fluted cypresses rear'd up
Their living obelisks; . And broad-leav'd plane-trees in long colonades
O'erarched delightful walks,
Where round their trunks the thousand-tendrild vine
Wound up and hung the boughs with greener wreaths,
And clusters not their own.
Wearied with restless beauty, did his eyes
Return for rest? beside him teams the earth
With tulips, like the ruddy evening streaked;
And here the lilly hangs her head of snow;
And here amid her sable cup
Shines the red eye-spot, like one brightest star,
The solitary twinkler of the night;
And here the rose expands
Her paradise of leaves."
“ Loud sung the Lark, the awaken'd maid
Beheld him twinkling in the morning light,
And wished for wings and liberty like his."
THE ADVANTAGES OF AFFLICTION.
“ Behold this vine,
I found it a wild tree, whose wanton strength
Had swollen into irregular twigs
And bold excrescences,
And spent itself in leaves and little rings ;
So in the flourish of its outwardness
Wasting the sap and strength
That should have given forth fruit;
But when I pruned the tree,
Then it grew temperate in its vain expanse
Of useless leaves, and knotted, as thou seest,
Into these full, clear clusters, to repay
The hand that wisely wounded it.
Repine not, O my son !
In wisdom and in mercy heaven inflicts,
Like a wise leech, its painful remedies."
BEAUTY AND SORROW.
“ Her face was sorrowful, but sure
More beautiful for sorrow.”
PENETENTIAL ASHES. “ He smote his forehead as he spake, And from his head the ashes fell, like snow Shaken from some dry beach leaves, when a bird
Lights on the bending spray.”
" But Roderick sate the while Covering his face with both his hands close prost, His head bowed down, his spirit to such point Of sufferance knit, as one who patiently Awaits the uplifted sword.”
« Silently The people knelt; and when they rose, such awe
Held them in silence, that the eagle's cry,
Who far above them, at her highest fight,
A speck scarce visible, wheeled round and round,
Was heard distinctly; and the mountain stream,
Which from the distant glen sent forth its sound
Wafted upon the wind, was audible
In that deep hush of feeling, like the voice
Of waters in this stillness of the night.”
“ I charm thy life
From the weapons of strife,
From stone and from wood,
From fire and from flood,
And the beasts of blood :
From sickness I charm thee,
And time shall not harm thee;
But earth, which is mine,
Its fruits shall deny thee;
And water shall hear me,
And know thee and fly thee;
And the winds shall not touch thee
When they pass by thee,
And the dews shall not wet thee,
When they fall nigh thee:
And thou shalt seek death
To release thee, in vain ;
Thou shalt live in thy pain,
While Kehama shall reign,