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From fractured arch and mouldering wall—
Man's headstrong violence and Time's fleetness,
See, where his difficult way that Old Man wins
(As if her labour and her ease were twins)
AFTER LEAVING ITALY.
Fair Land! Thee all men greet with joy; how
few, Whose souls take pride in freedom, virtue, fame, Part from thee without pity dyed in shame: I could not—while from Venice we withdrew, Led on till an Alpine strait confined our view 5 Within its depths, and to the shore we came Of Lago Morto, dreary sight and name,
Which o'er sad thoughts a sadder colouring
threw. Italia! on the surface of thy spirit, (Too aptly emblemed by that torpid lake) 10 Shall a few partial breezes only creep ?— Be its depths quickened; what thou dost
inherit Of the world's hopes, dare to fulfil; awake, Mother of Heroes, from thy death-like sleep!
As indignation mastered grief, my tongue
If with old love of you, dear Hills! I share
Nor art thou wronged, sweet May! when I
compare Thy present birth-morn with thy last, so fair, 5 So rich to me in favours. For my lot Then was within the famed Egerian Grot To sit and muse, fanned by its dewy air Mingling with thy soft breath! That morning
too, Warblers I heard their joy unbosoming 10
Amid the sunny, shadowy, Colosseum;
hue, For victories there won by flower-crowned
THE PILLAR OF TRAJAN.
Where towers are crushed, and unforbidden
A votive Column, spared by fire and flood :—
Group winding after group with dream-like
ease; Triumphs in sunbright gratitude displayed, Or softly stealing into modest shade. —So, pleased with purple clusters to entwine Some lofty elm-tree, mounts the daring vine; 20 The woodbine so, with spiral grace, and
breathes Wide-spreading odours from her flowery
Borne by the Muse from rills in shepherds'
ears Murmuring but one smooth story for all years, I gladly commune with the mind and heart 25 Of him who thus survives by classic art, His actions witness, venerate his mien, And study Trajan as by Pliny seen; Behold how fought the Chief whose conquering
Stretched far as earth might own a single lord;
Memorial Pillar! 'mid the wrecks of Time 35 Preserve thy charge with confidence sublime— The exultations, pomps, and cares of Bome, Whence half the breathing world received its
doom; Things that recoil from language; that, if
shown By apter pencil, from the light had flown. 40 A Pontiff, Trajan here the Gods implores, There greets an Embassy from Indian shores; Bo! he harangues his cohorts—there the storm Of battle meets him in authentic form! 44
Unharnessed, naked, troops of Moorish horse Sweep to the charge; more high, the Dacian
Spirit in him pre-eminent, who guides,
wait; Rise as he may, his grandeur scorns the test 55 Of outward symbol, nor will deign to rest On aught by which another is deprest. —Alas! that One thus disciplined could toil To enslave whole nations on their native soil; So emulous of Macedonian fame, 60
That, when his age was measured with his aim,
sighs. 0 weakness of the Great! O folly of the Wise!
Where now the haughty Empire that was spread 65
With such fond hope? her very speech is dead;