Slike strani

Upon its leaves and flowers; the star which panted
In evening for the day, whose car has rolled
Over the horizon's wave, with looks of light
Smiled on it from the threshold of the night.


The mitigated influences of air

And light revived the plant; and from it grew
Strong leaves and tendrils; and its flowers fair,
Full as a cup with the vine's burning dew,
O'erflowed with golden colours. An atmosphere
Of vital warmth enfolded it anew ;

And every impulse sent to every part
The unbeheld pulsations of its heart.


Well might the plant grow beautiful and strong,
Even if the air and sun had smiled not on it;
For one wept o'er it all the winter long

Tears pure as heaven's rain, which fell upon it
Hour after hour; for sounds of softest song,

Mixed with the stringèd melodies that won it
To leave the gentle lips on which it slept,
Had loosed the heart of him who sat and wept;


Had loosed his heart, and shook the leaves and flowers
On which he wept, the while the savage storm,
Waked by the darkest of December's hours,

Was raving round the chamber hushed and warm.
The birds were shivering in their leafless bowers,
The fish were frozen in the pools, the form
Of every summer plant was dead;

Whilst this

January 1822.



THERE was a little lawny islet,

By anemone and violet,

Like mosaic, paven :

And its roof was flowers and leaves

Which the summer's breath enweaves,

Where nor sun nor showers nor breeze
Pierce the pines and tallest trees,-

Each a gem engraven :

Girt by many an azure wave

With which the clouds and mountains pave

A lake's blue chasm.



The following fragments are part of a Drama undertaken for the amusement of the individuals who composed our intimate society, but left unfinished. I have preserved a sketch of the story as far as it had been shadowed in the poet's mind.

An Enchantress, living in one of the islands of the Indian Archipelago, saves the life of a Pirate, a man of savage but noble nature. She becomes enamoured of him; and he, inconstant to his mortal love, for a while returns her passion: but at length, recalling the memory of her whom he left, and who laments his loss, he escapes from the Enchanted Island, and returns to his lady. His mode of life makes him again go to sea, and the Enchantress seizes the opportunity to bring him, by a spiritbrewed tempest, back to her Island.

M. W. S.

Scene, before the Cavern of the Indian Enchantress.
The Enchantress comes forth.


HE came like a dream, in the dawn of life;
He fled like a shadow, before its noon.
He is gone, and my peace is turned to strife,
And I wander and wane like the weary moon.
O sweet Echo, wake,

And for my sake

Make answer the while my heart shall break!

But my heart has a music which Echo's lips,
Though tender and true, yet can answer not,
And the shadow that moves in the soul's eclipse
Can return not the kiss by his now forgot;
Sweet lips! he who hath

On my desolate path

Cast the darkness of absence, worse than death!

The Enchantress makes her spell: she is answered by a Spirit.

Spirit. Within the silent centre of the earth

My mansion is: where I have lived insphered

From the beginning, and around my sleep
Have woven all the wondrous imagery

Of this dim spot which mortals call the world,-
Infinite depths of unknown elements
Massed into one impenetrable mask,
Sheets of immeasurable fire, and veins

Of gold and stones and adamantine iron.

And as a veil in which I walk through heaven

I have wrought mountains, seas, and waves, and clouds,
And lastly light, whose interfusion dawns

In the dark space of interstellar air.

A good Spirit, who watches over the Pirate's fate, leads, in a mysterious manner, the lady of his love to the Enchanted Isle; and has also led thither a Youth, who loves the lady, but whose passion she returns only with a sisterly affection. The ensuing scene takes place between them on their arrival at the Isle, where they meet, but without distinct mutual recognition.


Indian. And, if my grief should still be dearer to me
Than all the pleasures in the world beside,

Why would you lighten it?


I offer only

That which I seek, some human sympathy,

In this mysterious island.


Oh! my friend,

My sister, my beloved! . . . What do I say!
My brain is dizzy, and I scarce know whether
I speak to thee or her.


Peace, perturbed heart!

I am to thee only as thou to mine,—

The passing wind which heals the brow at noon,

And may strike cold into the breast at night,

Yet cannot linger where it soothes the most,

Or long soothe could it linger.


You also loved?


But you said

Loved! Oh! I love!-Methinks

This word of "love" is fit for all the world;

And that for gentle hearts another name

Would speak of gentler thoughts than the world owns.

I have loved.

Indian. And thou lovest not? If so, Young as thou art, thou canst afford to weep.

Lady. Oh! would that I could claim exemption From all the bitterness of that sweet name! I loved, I love; and, when I love no more, Let joys and grief perish, and leave despair To ring the knell of youth. He stood beside me, The embodied vision of the brightest dream Which like a dawn heralds the day of life; The shadow of his presence made my world A paradise. All familiar things he touched, All common words he spoke, became to me Like forms and sounds of a diviner world. He was as is the sun in his fierce youth, As terrible and lovely as a tempest; He came, and went, and left me what I am. Alas! Why must I think how oft we two Have sat together near the river springs, Under the green pavilion which the willow Spreads on the floor of the unbroken fountain, Strewn, by the nurslings that linger there, Over that islet paved with flowers and moss,— While the musk-rose leaves, like flakes of crimson snow, Showered on us, and the dove mourned in the pine, Sad prophetess of sorrows not her own?

The crane returned to her unfrozen haunt,

And the false cuckoo bade the Spring good morn;
And on a wintry bough the widowed bird,
Hid in the deepest night of ivy-leaves,
Renewed the vigils of a sleepless sorrow.
I, left like her, and leaving one like her,
Alike abandoned and abandoning

(Oh! unlike her in this !) the gentlest youth,

Whose love had made my sorrows dear to him,

Even as my sorrow made his love to me!

Indian. One curse of Nature stamps in the same mould The features of the wretched; and they are

As like as violet to violet,

When memory, the ghost, their odours keeps 'Mid the cold relics of abandoned joy.— Proceed.

Lady. He was a simple innocent boy.
I loved him well, but not as he desired;
Yet even thus he was content to be:-
A short content, for I was . . .


[Aside] God of heaven!

From such an islet, such a river-spring . . .!

I dare not ask her if there stood upon it

A pleasure-dome surmounted by a crescent,

With steps to the blue water.-[Aloud] It may be
That Nature masks in life several copies

Of the same lot, so that the sufferers
May feel another's sorrow as their own,
And find in friendship what they lost in love.
That cannot be yet it is strange that we,
From the same scene, by the same path to this

Realm of abandonment . . . But speak! your breath


Your breath is like soft music, your words are

The echoes of a voice which on my heart

Sleeps like a melody of early days.

But, as you



He was so awful, yet

So beautiful in mystery and terror,
Calming me, as the loveliness of heaven
Soothes the unquiet sea. And yet not so,
For he seemed stormy, and would often seem
A quenchless sun masked in portentous clouds;
For such his thoughts and even his actions were ;-
But he was not of them, nor they of him,

But as they hid his splendour from the earth.
Some said he was a man of blood and peril,
And steeped in bitter infamy to the lips.
More need was there I should be innocent;

More need that I should be most true and kind;
And much more need that there should be found one

To share remorse and scorn and solitude,

And all the ills that wait on those who do

The tasks of ruin in the world of life.

He fled, and I have followed him.


Such a one

Is he who was the winter of my peace.—

But, fairest stranger, when didst thou depart

From the far hills where rise the springs of India? VOL. II.

2 A

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