Imatges de pàgina

I love tranquil solitude,
And such society

As is quiet, wise and good;
Between thee and me

What difference? but thou dost possess
The things I seek, not love them less.

I love Love-though he has wings,
And like light can flee,
But above all other things,

Spirit, I love thee

Thou art love and life! O come,
Make once more my heart thy home.



THUS to be lost and thus to sink and die,

Perchance were death indeed !—Constantia, turn!

In thy dark eyes a power like light doth lie,

Even though the sounds which were thy voice, which burn
Between thy lips, are laid to sleep;

Within thy breath, and on thy hair, like odour it is yet,

And from thy touch like fire doth leap.

Even while I write, my burning cheeks are wet,

Alas, that the torn heart can bleed, but not forget!

A breathless awe, like the swift change

Unseen, but felt in youthful slumbers,

Wild, sweet, but uncommunicably strange,

Thou breathest now in fast ascending numbers.

The cope of heaven seems rent and cloven

By the enchantment of thy strain,

And on my shoulders wings are woven,
To follow its sublime career,

Beyond the mighty moons that wane

Upon the verge of nature's utmost sphere,

Till the world's shadowy walls are past and disappear.

Her voice is hovering o'er my soul-it lingers
O'ershadowing it with soft and lulling wings,
The blood and life within those snowy fingers
Teach witchcraft to the instrumental strings.
My brain is wild, my breath comes quick-
The blood is listening in my frame,
And thronging shadows, fast and thick,
Fall on my overflowing eyes;

My heart is quivering like a flame;

As morning dew, that in the sunbeam dies,

I am dissolved in these consuming ecstasies.

I have no life, Constantia, now, but thee,

Whilst, like the world-surrounding air, thy song
Flows on, and fills all things with melody.

Now is thy voice a tempest swift and strong,

On which, like one in trance upborne,

Secure o'er rocks and waves I sweep,

Rejoicing like a cloud of morn.

Now 'tis the breath of summer night,

Which when the starry waters sleep.

Round western isles, with incense-blossoms bright,
Lingering, suspends my soul in its voluptuous flight.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]



DEAREST, best and brightest,
Come away,

To the woods and to the fields !
Dearer than this fairest day,
Which like thee to those in sorrow,
Comes to bid a sweet good-morrow
To the rough year just awake
In its cradle in the brake.

The eldest of the hours of spring,
Into the winter wandering,
Looks upon the leafless wood;
And the banks all bare and rude
Found it seems this halcyon morn,
In February's bosom born,

Bending from heaven, in azure mirth,
Kissed the cold forehead of the earth,
And smiled upon the silent sea,
And bade the frozen streams be free;
And waked to music all the fountains,
And breathed upon the rigid moun-

And made the wintry world appear
Like one on whom thou smilest, dear.

Radiant Sister of the Day,
Awake! arise! and come away!
To the wild woods and the plains,
To the pools where winter rains
Image all the roof of leaves,
Where the Pine its garland weaves,
Sapless, grey, and ivy dun

Round stones that never kiss the sun,
To the sandhills of the sea,
Where the carliest violets be.

Now the last day of many days,
All beautiful and bright as thou,
The loveliest and the last, is dead,
Rise Memory, and write its praise,
And do thy wonted work and trace
The epitaph of glory fled:

For the Earth hath changed its face,
A frown is on the Heaven's brow.

We wandered to the Pine Forest

That skirts the Ocean's foam,
The lightest wind was in its nest,
The tempest in its home.

The whispering waves were half asleep,
The clouds were gone to play,
And on the woods, and on the deep,
The smile of Heaven lay.

It seemed as if the day were one
Sent from beyond the skies,
Which shed to earth above the sun
A light of Paradise.

We paused amid the Pines that stood
The giants of the waste,
Tortured by storms to shapes as rude,
With stems like serpents interlaced.

How calm it was-the silence there
By such a chain was bound,
That even the busy woodpecker
Made stiller by her sound

The inviolable quietness;

The breath of peace we drew,
With its soft motion made not less
The calm that round us grew.

It seemed that from the remotest seat
Of the white mountain's waste,
To the bright flower beneath our feet,
A magic circle traced;

A spirit interfused around,
A thinking silent life,
To momentary peace it bound
Our mortal Nature's strife.

For still it seemed the centre of

The magic circle there,
Was one whose being filled with love
The breathless atmosphere.

Were not the crocuses that grew
Under that ilex tree,

As beautiful in scent and hue
As ever fed the bee?

We stood beside the pools that lie
Under the forest bough,
And each seemed like unto a sky
Gulfed in a world below;

A purple firmament of light,
Which in the dark earth lay,
More boundless than the depth of

And clearer than the day

In which the massy forests grew,

As in the upper air, More perfect both in shape and hue Than any waving there.

Like one beloved, the scene had lent
To the dark water's breast
Its every leaf and lineament

With that clear truth expressed.

There lay far glades and neighbouring lawn,

And through the dark green crowd The white sun twinkling like the dawn Under a speckled cloud.

Sweet views, which in our world above

Can never well be seen,
Were imaged by the water's love
Of that fair forest green.

And all was interfused beneath
With an Elysium air,
An atmosphere without a breath,
A silence sleeping there.

Until a wandering wind crept by,
Like an unwelcome thought,
Which from my mind's too faithful eye
Blots thy bright image out.

For thou art good and dear and kind,
The forest ever green,

But less of peace in S's mind,
Than calm in waters seen.
2nd February, 1822.


SWIFTLY walk over the western wave,
Spirit of Night!

Out of the misty eastern cave,
Where, all the long and lone daylight,
Thou wovest dreams of joy and fear,
Which make thee terrible and dear,-
Swift be thy flight!

Wrap thy form in a mantle grey,

Blind with thine hair the eyes of day,
Kiss her until she be wearied out,

Then wander o'er city, and sea, and land,
Touching all with thine opiate wand-

Come, long sought!

When I arose and saw the dawn,

I sighed for thee;

When light rode high, and the dew was gone,

And noon lay heavy on flower and tree,

And the weary Day turned to his rest,
Lingering like an unloved guest,
I sighed for thee.

Thy brother Death came, and cried,
Wouldst thou me?

Thy sweet child Sleep, the filmy-eyed,
Murmured like a noontide bee,

Shall I nestle near thy side?
Wouldst thou me?-And I replied,
No, not thee!

Death will come when thou art dead,
Soon, too soon-

Sleep will come when thou art fled;
Of neither would I ask the boon
I ask of thee, beloved Night-
Swift be thine approaching flight,
Come soon, soon!




THE sun is set; the swallows are asleep;
The bats are flitting fast in the grey air;
The slow soft toads out of damp corners creep,
And evening's breath, wandering here and there
Over the quivering surface of the stream,
Wakes not one ripple from its silent dream.

There is no dew on the dry grass to-night,

Nor damp within the shadow of the trees; The wind is intermitting, dry, and light;

And in the inconstant motion of the breeze The dust and straws are driven up and down, And whirled about the pavement of the town.

Within the surface of the fleeting river

The wrinkled image of the city lay, Immovably unquiet, and for ever

It trembles, but it never fades away; Go to the [

You, being changed, will find it then as now.

The chasm in which the sun has sunk is shut
By darkest barriers of enormous cloud,
Like mountain over mountain huddled-but
Growing and moving upwards in a crowd,
And over it a space of watery blue,

Which the keen evening star is shining through.


OUR boat is asleep in Serchio's stream,
Its sails are folded like thoughts in a dream,
The helm sways idly, hither and thither;

Dominic, the boatman, has brought the mast,

And the oars and the sails; but 'tis sleeping fast, Like a beast, unconscious of its tether.

The stars burnt out in the pale blue air,

And the thin white moon lay withering there,

To tower, and cavern, and rift and tree,

The owl and the bat fled drowsily.

Day had kindled the dewy woods,

And the rocks above and the stream below,

And the vapours in their multitudes,

And the Apennine's shroud of summer snow,

And clothed with light of aery gold

The mists in their eastern caves uprolled.

Day had awakened all things that be,

The lark and the thrush and the swallow free,

And the milkmaid's song and the mower's scythe, And the matin-bell and the mountain bee:

« AnteriorContinua »