« PreviousContinue »
Oh, happy garden! whose seclusion deep
Hath been so friendly to industrious hours ;
And to soft slumbers, that did gently steep
Our spirits, carrying with them dreams of flowers,
And wild notes warbled among leafy bowers ;
Two burning months let summer overleap,
And, coming back with her who will be ours,
Into thy bosom we again shall creep.
Look at the fate of summer flowers,
Which blow at daybreak, droop ere evensong
And, grieved for their brief date, confess that ours,
Measured by what we are and ought to be,
Measured by all that trembling we foresee,
Is not so long!
If human life do pass away,
Perishing yet more swiftly than the flower
Whose frail existence is but of a day;
What space hath virgin's beauty to disclose
Her sweets, and triumph o'er the breathing rose !
Not even an hour !
The deepest grove whose foliage hid
The happiest lovers Arcady might boast,
Could not the entrance of this thought forbid:
Oh, be thou wise as they, soul-gifted maid !
Nor rate too high what must so quickly fade,
So soon be lost.
Then shall love teach some virtuous youth
“To draw out of the object of his eyes,"
The whilst on thee they gaze in simple truth,
Hues more exalted, “a refined form,”
That dreads not age, nor suffers from the worm,
And never dies.
“ERE WITH COLD BEADS OF MIDNIGHT
ERE with cold beads of midnight dew
Had mingled tears of thine,
I grieved, fond youth! that thou shouldst sue
To haughty Geraldine.
Immoveable by generous sighs,
She glories in a train
Who drag, beneath our native skies,
An oriental chain.
Pine not like them with arms across,
Forgetting in thy care
How the fast-rooted trees can toss
Their branches in mid air.
The humblest rivulet will take
Its own wild liberties;
And, every day, the imprisoned lake
Is flowing in the breeze.
Then crouch no more on suppliant knee,
But scorn with scorn outbrave;
A Briton, e'en in love, should be
A subject, not a slave!
I MET Louisa in the shade ;
And having seen that lovely maid,
Why should I fear to say
That she is ruddy, fleet, and strong:
And down the rocks can leap along,
Like rivulets in May?
And she hath smiles to earth unknownı;
Smiles, that with motion of their own
Do spread, and sink, and rise;
That come and go with endless play,
And ever, as they pass away,
Are hidden in her eyes.
She loves her fire, her cottage-home ;
Yet o'er the moorland will she roam
In weather rough and bleak;
And, when against the wind she strains,
Oh, might I kiss the mountain rains,
That sparkle on her cheek!
Take all that's mine 'beneath the moon,'
If I with her but half a noon
May sit beneath the walls
Of some old cave, or mossy nook,
up she winds along the brook
To hunt the waterfalls.
"STRANGE FITS OF PASSION I HAVE
STRANGE fits of passion I have known :
And I will dare to tell,
But in the lover's ear alone,
What once to me befell.
When she I loved was strong and gay,
And like a rose in June,
I to her cottage bent my way,
Beneath the evening moon.
Upon the moon I fixed my eye,
All over the wide lea ;
My horse trudged on—and we drew nigh
Those paths so dear to me.
And now we reached the orchard plot;
And as we climbed the hill,
Towards the roof of Lucy's cot
The moon descended still.
In one of those sweet dreams I slept,
Kind nature's gentlest boon!
And all the while my eyes I kept
On the descending moon.
My horse moved on; hoof after hoof
He raised, and never stopped :
When down behind the cottage roof,
At once, the bright moon dropped.
What fond and wayward thoughts will slide
Into a lover's head !
“Oh, mercy!” to myself I cried,
"If Lucy should be dead!”
“SHE DWELT AMONG THE UNTRODDEN
SHE dwelt among the untrodden ways
Beside the springs of Dove,
A maid whom there were none to praise,
And very few to love.
A violet by a mossy stone
Half-hidden from the eye!
Fair as a star, when only one
Is shining in the sky.
She lived unknown, and few could know
When Lucy ceased to be;
But she is in her grave, and, oh,
The difference to me!
“I TRAVELLED AMONG UNKNOWN MEN.”
I TRAVELLED among unknown men,
In lands beyond the sea;
Nor, England ! did I know till then
What love I bore to thee.
'Tis past, that melancholy dream!
Nor will I quit thy shore
A second time; for still I seem
To love thee more and more.
Among thy mountains did I feel
The joy of my desire;
And she I cherished turned her wheel
Beside an English fire.
Thy mornings showed, thy nights concealed
The bowers where Lucy played;
And thine is too the last green field
That Lucy's eyes surveyed.
“'TIS SAID THAT SOME HAVE DIED FOR
'Tis said that some have died for love:
And here and there a churchyard grave is found
In the cold north's unhallowed ground, -
Because the wretched man himself had slain,
His love was such a grievous pain.
And there is one whom I five years have known;
He dwells alone
Upon Helvellyn's side:
He loved--the pretty Barbara died,
And thus he makes his moan:
Three years had Barbara in her grave been laid
When thus his moan he made-