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Of Christian night rolled back upon the West
Wake, thou word
Of God, and from the throne of Destiny
Be thou a curse on them whose creed
Divides and multiplies the most high God!
SONG OF PROSERPINE,
WHILST GATHERING FLOWERS ON THE PLAIN OF ENNA.
SACRED Goddess, Mother Earth,
Thou from whose immortal bosom
If with mists of evening dew
Thou dost nourish these young flowers
Fairest children of the Hours,
Breathe thine influence most divine
THOU wert not, Cassius, and thou couldst not be, "Last of the Romans, "--though thy memory claim
From Brutus his own glory, and on thee
Rests the full splendour of his sacred fame;
'Twill wrong thee not: thou wouldst, if thou couldst feel,
In his own blood. A deed it was to wring
Tears from all men-though full of gentle pride,
Dark is the realm of grief: but human things
SILENCE! Oh well are Death and Sleep and Thou Three brethren named, the guardians gloomy-winged Of one abyss, where life and truth and joy
Are swallowed up. Yet spare me, Spirit, pity me! Until the sounds I hear become my soul,
And it has left these faint and weary limbs,
To track along the lapses of the air
This wandering melody until it rests
My head is wild with weeping for a grief
I walk into the air (but no relief
To seek,- —or haply, if I sought, to find;
It came unsought);-to wonder that a chief
'THE fierce beasts of the woods and wildernesses
FLOURISHING vine, whose kindling clusters glow
The rotting bones of dead antiquity.
I MET a traveller from an antique land
Who said: "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things, The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed. And on the pedestal these words appear:
'My name is Ozymandias, king of kings: Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!' Nothing beside remains. Round the decay Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare, The lone and level sands stretch far away."
NOR happiness, nor majesty, nor fame,
Nor peace, nor strength, nor skill in arms or arts,
TO A REVIEWER.
ALAS! good friend, what profit can you see
For to your passion I am far more coy
LIFT not the painted veil which those who live
With colours idly spread: behind, lurk Fear
The shadows, which the world calls substance, there.
I knew one who lifted it-he sought,
For his lost heart was tender, things to love
FEELINGS OF A REPUBLICAN ON THE FALL OF BONAPARTE.
I HATED thee, fallen Tyrant! I did groan
To think that a most unambitious slave,
Like thou, should dance and revel on the grave
A frail and bloody pomp, which Time has swept
For this, I prayed, would on thy sleep have crept,
And stifled thee their minister. I know
Than Force or Fraud: old Custom, Legal Crime,
YE hasten to the dead: what seek ye there,
Thou vainly curious mind which wouldst guess
With such swift feet life's green and pleasant path,
A refuge in the cavern of grey death?
O heart and mind and thoughts! what thing do you
SONNET TO BYRON.
[I AM afraid these verses will not please you, but] If I esteemed you less, Envy would kill
Pleasure, and leave to Wonder and Despair The ministration of the thoughts that fill
The mind which, like a worm whose life may share A portion of the unapproachable,
Marks your creations rise as fast and fair As perfect worlds at the Creator's will.
But such is my regard that nor your power
To soar above the heights where others [climb], Nor fame, that shadow of the unborn hour Cast from the envious future on the time, Move one regret for his unhonoured name
Who dares these words :-the worm beneath the sod May lift itself in homage of the God.