Imatges de pàgina

His litter of smooth semilucent mist,
Diversely tinged with rose and amethyst,
Puzzled those eyes that for the centre sought;
And scarcely for one moment could be caught
His sluggish form reposing motionless.
Those two on winged steeds, with all the stress
Of vision search'd for him, as one would look
Athwart the sallows of a river nook
To catch a glance at silver-throated eels, —
Or from old Skiddaw's top, when fog conceals
His rugged foreh in a mantle pale,
With an eye-guess towards some pleasant vale,
Descry a favourite hamlet faint and far.

These raven horses, though they foster'd are Of earth's splenetic fire, dully drop Their full-vein'd ears, nostrils blood wide, and stop ; "pon the spiritless mist have they outspread Their ample feathers, are in slumber dead, And on those pinions, level in mid-air, Endymion sleepeth and the lady fair. Slowly they sail, slowly as icy isle Upon a calm sea drifting; and meanwhile The mournful wanderer dreams. Behold ! he walks On heaven's pavement, brotherly he talks To divine powers. from his hand full fain Juno's proud birds are pecking pearly grain : He tries the nerve of Phoebus' golden bow, And asketh where the golden apples grow: Upon his arm he braces Pal And strives in vain to unsettle and wield A Jovian thunderbolt: arch Ilebe brings A full-brimm'd goblet, dances lightly, sings And tantalizes long; at last he drinks, And lost in pleasure at her feet he sinks, Touching with dazzled lips her star-light hand, He blows a bugle, – an etherial band Are visible above: the Seasons four, Green-kyrtled Spring, flush Summer, golden store In Autumn's sickle, Winter frosty hoar, Join dance with shadowy Hours; while still the blast In swells unmitigated, still doth last To sway their floating morris. . Whose is this? Whose bugle "... he inquires : they smile—. O Dis: Whv is this nortal here Dost thou not know Its mistress' lips Not thou – T is Dan's: lo! She rises crescented ' . He looks, "t is she, His very goddess: good-bye earth, and sea, And air, and pains, and care, and suffering; Good-bye to all but love! Then doth he spring Towards her, and awakes—and, strange, o'erhead, of those same fragrant exhalations bred, Beheld awake his very dream: the gods Stood smiling, merry Hebe laughs and nods; And Phoebe bends towards him crescented. () state perplexing : On the pinion bed, Too well awoke, he feels the panting side of his delicious lady. He who died For soaring too audacious in the sun, Where that same treacherous wax began to run, Felt not more tongue-tied than Endymion. His heart leapt up as to its rightful throne, To that fair-shadow’d passion pulsed its way— Ah, what perplexity Ah, well-a-day ! So fond, so beauteous was his bed-fellow, o He could not help but kiss her then he grew


Awhile forgetful of all beauty save
Young Phoebe's, golden-hair'd; and so 'gan crave
Forgiveness: yet he turn'd once more to look
At the sweet sleeper, all his soul was shook, -
She press'd his hand in slumber ; so once more
tle could not help but kiss her and adore.
At this the shadow wept, melting away.
The Latmian started up : . Bright goddess, stay!
Search my most hidden breast ! By truth's own tongue,
I have no dardale heart: why is it wrung
To desperation : Is there nought for me,
Upon the bourne of bliss, but misery -

These words awoke the stranger of dark tresses: Her dawning love-look rapt Endymion blesses With "haviour soft. Sleep yawn'd from underneath. • Thou swan of Ganges, let us no more breathe This murky phantasm' thou contented seem'st Pillow'd in lovely idleness, nor dream'st What horrors may discomfort thee and me. Ah, shouldst thou die from my heart-treachery'— Yet did she merely weep—her gentle soul Hath no revenge in it; as it is whole In tenderness, would l were whole in love Can I prize thee, fair maid, all price above, Fiven when I feel as true as innocence 1 I do, I do.—What is this soul then Whence Caine it? It does not seem my own, and I Have no self-passion or identity. Some fearful end must be; where, where is it? by Nemesis I see my spirit flit Alone about the dark—Forgive me, sweet! shall we away?. He roused the steeds; they beat Their wings chivalrous into the clear air, Leaving old Sleep within his vapoury lair.

The good-night blush of eve was waning slow, And Vesper, risen star, began to throe In the dusk heavens silvery, when they Thus sprang direct towards the Galaxy. Nor did speed hinder converse soft and strange— Eternal oaths and vows they interchange, In such wise, in such temper, so aloof top in the winds, beneath a starry roof, So withess of their doom, that verily 'T is well nigh past man's search their hearts to see; whether they wept, or laugh d, or grieved, or toy’d— Most like with joy gone inad, with sorrow cloyd.

Full facing their swift flight, from ebon streak, The moon put forth a little diamond peak, No bigger than an unobserved star, Or tiny point of fairy scimetar; Bright signal that she only stoopod to tie Her silver sandals, ere delicuousiv She bow'd into the heavens her timid head. Slowly she rose, as though she would have fled, w hile to his lady meek the Carian turn'd, To mark if her dark eves had wet discern'd This beauty an its birth—despair' despair' He saw her body fading gaunt and spare in the cold moonshine. Straight he scored her wrist; It melted from his grasp: her hand he kiss'd, And, horror! kiss d his own—he was alone.


Her steed a little higher soard, and then Dropt hawkwise to the earth.

There lies a den, Beyond the seeming confines of the space Made for the soul to wander in and trace Its own existence, of remotest glooms. Dark regions are around it, where the tombs Of buried griefs the spirit sees, but scarce One hour doth linger weeping, for the pierce of new-born woe it feels more inly smart: And in these regions many a venom'd dart At random flies; they are the proper home of every ill: the man is yet to come who hath not journev'd in this native hell. But few have ever felt how calm and well Sleep may be had in that deep den of all. There anguish does not sting, nor pleasure pall; Woe-hurricanes beat ever at the gate, Yet all is still within and desolate. Beset with plainful gusts, within ye hear No sound so loud as when on curtain'd bier The death-watch tick is stifled. Enter none Who strive therefore : on the sudden it is won. Just when the sufferer begins to burn, Then it is free to him; and from an urn, Still fed by melting ice, he takes a draught— Young Semele such richness never quaft In her maternal longing. Happy gloom! Dark Paradise! where pale becomes the bloom Of health by due ; where silence dreariest is most articulate; where hopes infest; Where those eyes are the brightest far that keep Their lids shut longest in a dreamless sleep. O happy spirit-home ! O wondrous soul! Pregnant with such a den to save the whole In thine own depth. Hail, gentle Carian : For, never since thy griefs and woes began, Host thou felt so content: a grievous feud Hath let thee to this Cave of Quietude. Aye, his lull'd soul was there, although upborne With dangerous speed : and so he did not mourn Because he knew not whither he was going. So happy was he, not the aerial blowing Of trumpets at clear parley from the east Could rouse from that fine relish, that high feast. They stung the feather'd horse; with fierce alarm He thapp'd towards the sound. Alas! no charm Could lift Endymion's head, or he had view'd A skyey mask, a pinion d multitude,And silvery was its passing: voices sweet Warbling the while as if to lull and greet The wanderer in his path. Thus warbled they, While past the vision went in bright array.

« Who, who from Dian's feast would be away? For all the golden bowers of the day Are empty left Who, who away would be From Cynthia's wedding and festivity? Not Hesperus: lo! upon his silver wings He leans away for highest heaven and sings, Snapping his lucid fingers merrily — Ah, Zephyrus' art here, and Flora too! Ye tender bibbers of the rain and dew, Young playmates of the rose and daffodil, Be careful, ere ye enter in, to fill

Your baskets high With fennel green, and balm, and golden Pines, Savory, latter-mint, and columbines, Cool parsley, basil sweet, and sunny thyme; Yea, every flower and leaf of every clime, All gather'd in the dewy morning : hie Away! fly, fly!— Crystalline brother of the belt of heaven, Aquarius' to whom king Jove has given Two liquid pulse streams 'stead of featherd winos, Two fan-like fountains,—thine illuminings For Dian play: Dissolve the frozen purity of air; Let thy white shoulders silvery and bare Show cold through watery pinions: make more brot: The Star-Queen's crescent on her marriage night: Haste, haste away! Castor has tamed the planet Lion, see! And of the Bear has Pollux mastery: A third is in the race' who is the third. Speeding away swift as the eagle bird * The ramping Centaur! The Lion's mane's on end the Bear how fierce" The Centaur's arrow ready seems to pierce Some enemy: far forth his bow is bent Into the blue of heaven. He 'll be shent, Pale unrelentor, When he shall hear the wedding lutes a playing.— Andromeda! sweet woman' why delaying So timidly among the stars: come hither: Join this bright throng, and nimbly follow whither They all are going. Danae's Son, before Jove newly bow'd, Haswept for thee, calling to Jove aloud. Thee, gentle lady, did he disenthral: Ye shall for ever live and love, for all Thy tears are flowing.— By Daphne's fright, behold Apollo!—e

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To nothing, loved a nothing, nothing seen
Or felt but a great dream : Oh, I have been
Presumptuous against love, against the sky,
Against all elements, against the tie
Of mortals eagh to each, against the blooms
Of thowers, rush of rivers, and the tombs
Of heroes gone Against his proper glory
Has my own soul conspired : so my story
Will I to children utter, and repent.
There never lived a mortal man, who bent
llis appetite beyond his natural sphere,
But starved and died. My sweetest Indian, here,
Here will I kneel, for thou redeemed hast
My life from too thin breathing ; gone and past
Are cloudy phantasms. Caverns lone, farewell'
And air of visions, and the monstrous swell
Of visionary seas" No, never more
Shall airy voices cheat me to the shore
Of tangled wonder, breathless and aghast.
Adieu, my daintiest Dream although so vast
My love is still for thee. The hour may come
When we shall meet in pure elysium.
On earth I may not love thee; and therefore

- Doves will I offer up, and sweetest store

All through the teeming year: so thou wiltshine
On me, and on this damsel fair of mine,
And bless our simple lives. My Indian bliss!
Mly river lily bud! one human kiss!
One sigh of real breith—one gentle squeeze,
Warm as a dove's nest among summer trees,
And warm with dew at ooze from living blood!
Whither didst melt? Ah, what of that!—all good
We'll talk about—no more of dreaming.—Now,
Where shall our dwelling be? Under the brow
of some steep mossy hill, where ivy dun
Would hide us up, although spring leaves were none;
And where dark yew-trees, as we rustle through,
Will drop their scarlet-berry cups of dew?
O thou wouldst joy to live in such a place!
Dusk for our loves, yet light enough to grace
Those gentle limbs on mossy bed reclined:
For by one step the blue sky shouldst thou find,
And by another, in deep dell below,
See, through the trees, a little river go
All in its mid-day told and glimmering.
Honey from out the gnarled hive I'll bring,
And apples, wan with sweetness, gather thee,_
Cresses that grow where no man inay them see,
And sorrel untorn by the dew-claw'd stag :
Pipes will I fashion of the syrinx flag,
That thou mayst always know whither I roam,
When it shall please thee in our quiet home
To listen and think of love. Still let me speak;
Still let me dive into the joy I seek, -
For yet the past doth prison me. The rill,
Thou haply mayst delight in, will I fill
With fairy fishes from the mountain tarn,
And thou shalt feed them from the squirrel's barn.
Its bottom will I strew with amber shells,
And pebbles blue from deep enchanted wells.
Its sides 'll plant with dew-sweet et;lantine,
And Iloneysuckles full of clear bee-wine.
1 will entice this crystal rill to trace
Love's silver name upon the meadow's face.
1 'll kneel to Vesta, for a flane of fire;
And to god Phoebus, for a golden lyre;

To Empress Dian, for a hunting-spear;
To Vesper, for a taper silver-clear,
That I may see thy beauty through the night;
To Flora, and a nightingale shall light
Tame on thy finger; to the River-toods,
And they shall bring thee taper fishing-rods
Of gold, and lines of Naiads' long bright tress.
Heaven shield thee for thine utter loveliness!
Thy mossy footstool shall the altar be
'Fore which I'll bend, bending, dear love, to thee:
Those lips shall be my Delphos, and shall speak
Laws to my footsteps, colour to my cheek,
Trembling or stedfastness to this same voice,
And of three sweetest pleasurings the choice:
And that affectionate light, those diamond things -
Those eyes, those passions, those supreme pearl springs,
Shall be my grief, or twinkle me to pleasure.
Say, is not bliss within our perfect seisure?
O that I could not doubt?-

The mountaineer

Thus strove by fancies vain and crude to clear
Ilis briar'd path to some tranquillity.
It gave bright gladness to his lady's eye,
And yet the tears she wept were tears of sorrow;
Answering thus, just as the tolden morrow
Beam'd upward from the valleys of the east:
“O that the flutter of this heart had ceased,
Or the sweet name of love had pass'd away!
Young feather'd tyrant! by a swift decay
Wilt thou devote this body to the earth:
And I do think that at my very birth
I lisp'd thy blooming titles inwardly;
For at the first, first dawn and thought of thee,
With uplift hands I blest the stars of heaven.
Art thou not cruel! Ever have I striven
To think thee kind, but all, it will not do?
When yet a child, I heard that kisses drew
Favour from thee, and so I kisses gave
To the void air, bidding them find out love:
But when I came to feel how far above
All fancy, pride, and fickle maidenhood,
All earthly pleasure, all imagined good,
Was the warm tremble of a devout kiss, -
Even then, that moment, at the thought of this,
Fainting I fell into a bed of flowers,
And Hanguish'd there three days. Ye milder powers,
Am I not cruelly wrong'd Believe, believe
Me, dear Endymion, were I to weave
With my own fancies garlands of sweet life,
Thou shouldst be one of all. Ah, bitter strife!
I may not be thy love: I am forbidden—
indeed I am —thwarted, affrighted, chidden,
Iy things I trembled at, and gorgon wrath.
Twice last thou ask'd whither I went: henceforth
Ask me no more! I may not utter it,
Nor may I be thy love. We might commit
Ourselves at once to vengeance; we might die;
We might embrace and die: voluptuous thought:
Enlarge not to my hunger, or I'm caught
In trammels of perverse deliciousness.
No, no, that shall not be: thee will I bless,
And bid a long adieu."

The Carian No word return'd : both lovelorm, silent, wan,


Into the valleys green together went.
Far wandering, they were perforce content
To sit beneath a fair lone beechen tree;
Nor at each other gazed, but heavily
Pored on its hazel cirque of shedded leaves.

Endymion unhappy! it nigh grieves Me to behold thee thus in last extreme: Enskied ere this, but truly that I deem Truth the best music in a first-born song. Thy lute-voiced brother will I sing ere long, And thou shalt aid—hast thou not aided me? Yes, moonlight Emperor' felicity Has been thy meed for many thousand years; Yet often have I, on the brink of tears,. Mourn’d as if yet thou wert a forester;Forgetting the old tale.

He did not stir His eyes from the dead leaves, or one small pulse of joy he might have felt. The spirit culls Unfaded amaranth, when wild it strays Through the old garden-tround of boyish days. A little onward ran the very stream By which he took his first soft poppy dream; And on the very bark gainst which he leant A crescent he had carved, and round it spent ilis skill in little stars. The teeming tree Had swoll'n and green'd the pious charactery, But not ta'en out. Why, there was not a slope Up which he had not fear'd the antelope; And not a tree, beneath whose rooty shade He had not with his tamed leopards play d: Nor could an arrow light, or javelin, Fly in the air where his had never been— And yet he knew it not.

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Endymion, weep not so! Why shouldst thou pine
When all great Latinos so exalt will be?
Thank the great gods, and look not bitterly;
And speak not one pale word, and sigh no more.
Sure I will not believe thou hast such store
of grief, to last thee to my kiss again.
Thou surely canst not bear a mind in pain,
Come hand in hand with one so beautiful.
Be happy both of you! for I will pull
The flowers of autumn for your coronals.
Pan's holy priest for young Endymion calls;
And when he is restored, thou, fairest dame,
Shalt be our queen. Now, is it not a shame
To see ye thus, not very, very sad?
Perhaps ye are too happy to be glad:
O feel as if it were a common day;
Free-voiced as one who never was away.

No tongue shall ask, whence come ye; but ye shall
Be gods of your own rest imperial.
Not even I, for one whole month, will pry
Into the hours that have pass'd us by,
Since in my arbour I did sing to thee.
O Hermes! on this very night will be
A hymning up to Cynthia, queen of light;
For the soothsayers old saw yesternight
Good visions in the air, whence will befal,
As say these sages, health perpetual
To shepherds and their flocks; and furthermore,
In Dian's face they read the genile lore:
Therefore for her these vesper-carols are.
Our friends will all be there from bigh and far.
Many upon thy death have ditties made;
And many, even now, their foreheads shade
With cypress, on a day of sacrifice.
New singing for our maids shalt thou devise.
And pluck the sorrow from our huntsnen's brown.
Tell me, my lady-queen, how to espouse
This wayward brother to his rightful joys!
His eyes are on thee bent, as thou didst Porse
His fate most goddess-like. Help me, I pray,
To lure—Endymion, dear brother, say
What ails thee?" He could bear no more, and so
Bent his soul fiercely like a spiritual bow,
And twang'd it inwardly, and calmly said:
• I would have thee my only friend, sweet maid"
My only visitors not ignorant though,
That those deceptions which for pleasure go
'Mono inen, are pleasures real as real may be:
But there are higher ones I may not see, -
If impiously an earthly realm 1 take.
Since I saw thee, I have been wide awake
Night after night, and day by day, until
Of the empyrean I have drunk my fill.
Let it content thee, Sister, seeing me
More happy than betides mortality.
A hermit young, 1 'll live in mossy cave,
Where thou alone shalt come to me, and lave
Thy spirit in the wonders l shall tell.
Through me the shepherd realm shall prosper well.
For to thy tongue will I all health confisie.
And, for my sake, let this yount: unaid abide
With thee as a dear sister. Thou alone,
Peona, mayst return to me. I own
This may sound strangely; but when, dearest rid.
Thou seest it for my happiness, no peari
Will trespass down those checks. Companion ano
Wilt be content to dwell with her, to share
This sister's love with me!" Like one resign'd
And bent by circumstances, and thereby blind
In self-commitment, thus that meek unknown
• Aye, but a buzzing by my cars has down.
Of jubilee to Dian:—truth I heard!
Well then, I see there is no little bird,
Tender soever, but is Jove's own care.
Long have 1 sought for rest, and, unaware,
Behold I find it! so exalted too !
So after my own heart! I knew, I knew
There was a place untenanted unit:
In that same void white Chastity shall sit,
And monitor me nightly to lone slumber.
With sanest lips I vow me to the number
of Dian's sisterhood; and, kind lady,
With thy good help, this very night shall see

My future days to her fane consecrate.”

As feels a dreamer what doth most create tlis own particular fright, so these three felt: Or like one who, in after ages, knelt To Lucifer or Baal, when he'd pine After a little sleep: or when in mine Far under-ground, a sleeper meets his friends Who know him not. Each diligently bends Tow'rds common thoughts and things for very fear; Striving their ghastly malady to cheer, By thinking it a thing of yes and no, That housewives talk of. But the spirit-blow Was struck, and all wer” dreamers. At the last Endymion said: • Are not our fates all cast? Why stand we here? Adieu, ye tender pair! Adieu ! - Whereat those maidens, with will stare, walk'd dimily away. Pain’d and hot His eyes went after them, until they got Near to a cypress grove, whose deadly maw, In one swift moment, would what then he saw Engulf for ever. . Stay!" he cried, - ah, stay" Turn, damsels' hist! one word I have to say: Sweet Indian, I would see thee once again. It is a thing I dote on: so I'd fain, Peona, ye should hand in hand repair, Into those holy groves that silent are Behind great Dian's temple. I'll be yon, At vesper's earliest twinkle—they are gone— But once, once, once again— - At this he press'd His hands against his face, and then did rest His head upon a mossy hillock green And so remain’d as he a corpse had been All the long day; save when he scantly lifted His eyes abroad, to see how shadows shifted With the slow move of time, sluggish and weary Until the poplar tops, in journey dreary, had reach'd the river's brim. Then up he rose, . And, slowly as that very river flows, walk'd tow'rds the temple-trove with this lament: ... why such a golden even The breeze is sent Careful and soft, that not a leaf may fall Before the serene father of thern all Bows down his summer head below the west. Now am I of breath, speech, and speed possest, But at the setting I must bid adieu To her for the last time. Night will strew On the damp grass myriads of lingering leaves, And with them shall I die; nor much it grieves To die, when summer dies on the cold sward. why, I have been a butterfly, a lord Of flowers, garlands, love-knots, silly posies, Groves, meadows, melodies, and arbour-roses; My kingdom's at its death, and just it is That I should die with it: so in all this we miscal grief, bale, sorrow, heart-break, woe, what is there to plain of by Titan's foe I am but rightly served. So saying, he Tripp'd lightly on, in sort of deathful glee;

Laughing at the clear stream and setting sun,
As though they jests had been: nor had he done
His laugh at nature's holy countenance,
Until that grove appear'd, as if perchance,
And then his tongue with sober seemlihed
Gave utterance as he enter d : « Ila '• I said,
• King of the butterflies; but by this gloom,
And by old Rhadamanthus' tongue of doom,
This dusk religion, pomp of solitude,
And the Promethean clay by thief endued,
By old Saturnus' forelock, by his head
Shook with eternal palsy, I did wed
Myself to things of light from infancy;
And thus to be cast out, thus lorn to die,
Is sure enough to make a mortal man
Grow impious. So he inwardly began
On things for which no wording can be found,
Deeper and deeper sinking, until drown'd
Beyond the reach of music : for the choir
Of Cynthia he heard not, though rough briar
Nor muffling thicket interposed to dull
The vesper hymn, far swollen, soft and full,
Through the dark pillars of those sylvan aisles.
He saw not the two maidens, nor their siniles,
Wan as primroses gather'd at midnight
By chilly-finger'd spring. Unhappy wight!
Endymion!, said Peona, “we are here!
What wouldst thou ere we all are laid on bier?”
Then he embraced her, and his lady's hand
Press'd, saying: - Sister, I would have command,
If it were heaven's will, on our sad fate."
At which that dark-eyed stranger stood elate
And said, in a new voice, but sweet as love,
To Endymion’s amaze; a By Cupid's dove,
And so thou shalt! and by the lily truth
of my own breast thou shalt, beloved youth!"
And as she spake, into her face there came
Light, as reflected from a silver flame:
Her long black hair swell'd ampler, in display
Full golden; in her eves a brighter day
Dawn'd blue and full of love. Ave, he beheld
Phoebe, his passion' joyous she upheld
Her lucid bow, continuing thus: • Drear, drear
Has our delaying been; but foolish fear
With held me first, and then decrees of fate;
And then 't was fit that from this mortal state
Thou shouldst, my love, by some unlook'd-for change
Be spiritualued. Peona, we shall range
These forests, and to thee they safe shall be
As was thy cradle; hither shall thou flee
To meet us many a time. Next Cynthia bright
Peona kiss'd, and bless'd with fair good night:
Her brother kiss'd her too, and knelt adown
Before his goddess, in a blissful swoon.
she gave her fair hands to him, and behold,
Before three swiftest kisses he had told,
They vanish d far away –Peona went
ilome through the gloomy wood in wonderment

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