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He once had a heart which was moved by the wires
Of manifold pleasures and many desires :
And what if he cherished his purse! 'Twas no more
Then treading a path trod by thousands before.
"Twas a path trod by thousands; but Daniel is one
Who went something further than others have gone,
And now with old Daniel you see how it fares;
You see to what end he has brought his gray hairs.
The pair sally forth hand in hand: ere the sun
Has peered o'er the beeches, their work is begun:
And yet, into whatever sin they may fall,
This child but half knows it, and that not at all.
They hunt through the streets with deliberate tread,
And each, in his turn, is both leader and led;
And, wherever they carry their plots and their wiles,
Every face in the village is dimpled with smiles.
Neither checked by the rich nor the needy they roam;
The gray-headed sire has a daughter at home,
Who will gladly repair all the damage that's done;
And three, were it asked, would be rendered for one.
Old man, whom so oft I with pity have eyed,
I love thee, and love the sweet boy at thy side:
Long yet mayst thou live! for a teacher we see
That lifts up the veil of our nature in thee.
ANIMAL TRANQUILLITY AND DECAY.
The little hedgerow birds,
That peck along the road, regard him not.
He travels on, and in his face, his step,
His gait, is one expression; every limb,
His look and bending figure, all bespoak
A man who does not move with pain, but moves
With thought. He is insensibly subdued
To settled quiet: he is one by whom
All effort seems forgotten; one to whom
Long patience hath such mild composure given,
That patience now doth seem a thing of which
He hath no need. He is by nature led
To peace so perfect, that the young behold
With envy, what the old man hardly feels.
TRANSLATED FROM CHIABRERA.
1. PERHAPS some needful service of the state Drew Titus from the depth of studious bowers, And doomed him to contend in faithless courts, Where gold determines between right and wrong. Yet did at length his loyalty of heart, And his pure native genius, lead him back To wait upon the bright and gracious Muses, Whom he had early loved. And not in vain Such course he held. Bologna's learned schools Were gladdened by the sage's voice, and hung With fondness on those sweet Nestorian strains. There pleasure crowned his days, and all his thoughts A roseate fragrance breathed. Oh, human life, That never art secure from dolorous change! Behold a high injunction suddenly To Arno's side conducts him, and he charmed A Tuscan audience; but full soon was called To the perpetual silence of the grave.
Mourn, Italy, the loss of him who stood
A champion steadfast and invincible,
To quell the rage of literary war!
O Thou who movest onward with a mind
Intent upon thy way, pause, though in haste !
'Twill be no fruitless moment. I was born
Within Savona's walls, of gentle blood.
On Tiber's banks my youth was dedicate
To sacred studies; and the Roman shepherd
Gave to my charge Urbino's numerous flock.
Much did I watch, much laboured, nor had power
To escape from many and strange indignities;
Was smitten by the great ones of the world,
But did not fall; for virtue braves all shocks,
Upon herself resting immoveably.
Me did a kindlier fortune then invite
To serve the glorious Henry, King of France,
And in his hands I saw a high reward
Stretched out for my acceptance-but death came
Now, reader, learn from this my fate-how false,
How treacherous to her promise is the world,
And trust in God--to whose eternal doom
Must bend the sceptred potentates of earth.
III. There never breathed a man who when his life Was closing might not of that life relate Toils long and hard. The warrior will report Of wounds, and bright swords flashing in the field, And blast of trumpets. He who hath been doomed To bow his forehead in the courts of kings,
Will tell of fraud and never-ceasing hate,
Envy and heart-inquietude, derived
From intricate cabals of treacherous friends.
I, who on shipboard lived from earliest youth,
Could represent the countenance horrible
Of the vexed waters, and the indignant rage
Of Auster and Boötes. Forty years
Over the well-steered galleys did I rule:
From huge Pelorus to the Atlantic pillars
Rises no mountain to mine eyes unknown ;
And the broad gulfs I traversed oft and oft :
Of every cloud which in the heavens might stir
I knew the force; and hence the rough sea's pride
Availed not to my vessel's overthrow.
What noble pomp and frequent have not I
On regal decks beheld ! yet in the end
I learn that one poor moment can suffice
To equalize the lofty and the low.
We sail the sea of life-a calm one finds,
And one a tempest-and, the voyage o'er,
Death is the quiet haven of us all.
If more of my condition ye would know,
Savona was my birthplace, and I sprang
Of noble parents : sixty years and three
Lived I-then yielded to a slow disease.
DESTINED to war from very infancy
Was I, Roberto Dati, and I took
In Malta the white symbol of the cross.
Nor in life's vigorous season did I shun
Hazard or toil; among the sands was seen
Of Libya, and not seldom, on the banks
Of wide Hungarian Danube, 'twas my lot
To hear the sanguinary trumpet sounded.
So lived I, and repined not at such fate;
This only grieves me, for it seems a wrong,
That stripped of arms I to my end am brought
On the soft down of my paternal home.
Yet haply Arno shall be spared all cause
To blush for me. Thou, loiter not nor halt
In thy appointed way, and bear in mind
How fleeting and how frail is human life.
v. Not without heavy grief of heart did he, On whom the duty fell (for at that time The father sojourned in a distant land), Deposit in the hollow of this tomb A brother's child, most tenderly beloved ! Francesco was the name the youth had borne, Pozzobonnelli his illustrious house ; And, when beneath this stone the corse was laid, The eyes of all Savona streamed with tears. Alas! the twentieth April of his life Had scarcely flowered : and at this early time, By genuine virtue he inspired a hope That greatly cheered his country: to his kin
nd the fiattering thoughts His friends had in their fondness entertained, He suffered not to languish or decay, Now is there not good reason to break forth Into a passionate lament? O Soul ! Short while a pilgrim in our nether world, Do thou enjoy the calm empyreal air ; And round this earthly tomb let roses rise, An everlasting spring! in memory Of that delightful fragrance which was once, From thy mild manners, quietly exhaled.