Imatges de pÓgina

"The forest, and as if from some dread war Triumphantly returning, the loud million Fiercely extolled the fortune of her star.

"A moving arch of victory, the vermilion And green and azure plumes of Iris had Built high over her wind-wingèd pavilion,

"And underneath ethereal glory clad The wilderness, and far before her flew The tempest of the splendour, which forbade

"Shadow to fall from leaf and stone; the crew Seemed in that light, like atomies to dance Within a sunbeam; - some upon the new

"Embroidery of flowers, that did enhance The grassy vesture of the desert, played, Forgetful of the chariot's swift advance;

"Others stood gazing, till within the shade Of the great mountain its light left them dim; Others outspeeded it; and others made

"Circles around it, like the clouds that swim Round the high moon in a bright sea of air And more did follow, with exulting hymn,

"The chariot and the captives fettered there :— But all like bubbles on an eddying flood Fell into the same track at last, and were

"Borne onward. — I among the multitude Was swept-me, sweetest flowers delayed not


Me, not the shadow nor the solitude;

"Me, not that falling stream's Lethean song; Me, not the phantom of that early form, Which moved upon its motion- but among

"The thickest billows of that living storm I plunged, and bared my bosom to the clime Of that cold light, whose airs too soon de


"Before the chariot had begun to climb The opposing steep of that mysterious dell, Behold a wonder worthy of the rhyme

"Of him who from the lowest depths of hell, Through every paradise and through all glory, Love led serene, and who returned to tell

"The words of hate and awe; the wondrous story

How all things are transfigured except Love; For deaf as is a sea, which wrath makes hoary,

"The world can hear not the sweet notes that


The sphere whose light is melody to lovers — A wonder worthy of his rhyme. The grove

"Grew dense with shadows to its inmost covers, The earth was gray with phantoms, and the air Was peopled with dim forms, as when there


[ocr errors]

"A baby's or an idiot's brow, and made Their nests in it. The old anatomies Sate hatching their bare broods under the shade

"Of dæmon wings, and laughed from their dead eyes

To reassume the delegated power,
Arrayed in which those worms did monarchize,

"Who made this earth their charnel. Others


Humble, like falcons, sate upon the fist
Of common men, and round their heads did


"Or like small gnats and flies, as thick as mist On evening marshes, thronged about the brow Of lawyers, statesmen, priest and theorist ; —

"And others, like discoloured flakes of snow On fairest bosoms and the sunniest hair, Fell, and were melted by the youthful glow

« AnteriorContinua »