« PreviousContinue »
consolate mother that one consolation was still left that her son would be damned for ever. «Why to be sure there is some satisfaction in that,” whimpered the good lady, and dried her tears, consoling herself in the meanwhile with the pleasant probability of her son's damnation.
By this time the story had got wind, and a report was circulated through the town, that Brenno had made a compact with the devil; that the virtue of his mother had exposed the fraud; and that Apollyon, accompanied by a cloud of sulphur and brimstone, was seen to fly away, with a torch in one hand and his tail in the other.
Worn down with anxiety, and fearful of the superstition of his countrymen, the unfortunate lover returned in a state of agony to his hermitage. Here he passed his hours of solitude, in fruitless lamentations for the fairy he had lost, and regret for his shameless duplicity. His only pleasure seemed to consist in wandering by the banks of the Swan's Pool, and in recalling the remembrance of the past. He thought of the beautiful Zoe, fond and gentle as he first knew her, and dwelt with agony on her soft smiles, her infantine simplicity. He was roaming one evening by the side of his favourite streamlet, when a light step passed beside liim. He turned round to discover the intruder, and beheld - the fair form of Zoe, the object of his thoughts by day, his dreams by night. “You are surprised," she exclaimed, “at my return, but listen to my reasons. I have wandered to other times; I have seen my dearest friends drop day by day into the grave, and life grow desolate and forlorn. On returning to the home of my infancy, I found my mother dead, my father sinking into the tomb. Friends-relations, that I left smiling in health and happiness were all--all gone, and I stood among my native hills, as a stranger in a foreign land. In the hour of my solitude, my thoughts reverted to you, with whom I had spent many of the happiest hours of my existence. I thought of your fondness, your regard to feminine delicacy, and I
resolved to return to you for ever. Do you accept my offer, love?”
- Sweetest, sweetest girl," passionately replied Brenno, “I am thine, for ever thine. My love, my virgin bride, we will henceforth live solely for each other, devoting each thought and each moment to delight."-" Thus, then, I seal our union,” resumed Zoe, tearing in a thousand pieces the magic web of immortality. “I shall not need eternal beauty while your affection lasts. To you I shall be ever beautiful ; and when age obscures the fair front of youth, the mind of the lover will continue the delusion. Here, then, where we first met, we will for ever live; and the wood that once echoed the song of love shall still reply to our bridal felicity. We will wander, hand in hand, through a world which affection shall strew with roses; and when Brenno sinks into the tomb, Zoe will not long remain behind. Why should I court immortality, when he is gone for whom alone I desired it? Is there a pleasure in sitting by the grave of a beloved object, and feeling that all we once held dear is flownnever to return ? No! my love thy bride shall never survive the fate that shall bow thee to the earth, but wither like a floweret on its stem when thou hast ceased to be. In the quiet grave we will repose together, and, locked in each other's arms, await the period of a more glorious resurrection.”
She ceased, and the heart of Brenno was happy. They lived long and tranquilly together; and the beautiful Zoe imparted the privilege of immortality to her children, whose descendants still flourish in the darkbrowed mountains of Swabia. Years and years have rolled on; and by the banks of the Bath of Beauty a little tomb may still be seen, bearing on its mouldering tablets the simple names of Zoé and Brenno. At the period of the equinox, a sweet strain of music is heard to float along the magic pool, and the spirits of the lovers rise from their cold tenements, to visit the spots that were once so dear. They are friendly to man, and are accustomed to warn him of impending sorrows;
and if fate throws a cloud athwart the sunshine of his path, it is the province of the fairies to dissipate the gloom, and restore the original splendor.
AN ANCIENT BALLAD.
Hapless Julia took her way;
O'er the spot where Damon laye.
O'er the green grass turf to throw;
Thus she sang to soothe her woe:
Fast o'er thee my teares shall flowe;
Onlye refuge left for woe.
Shall thy hallowed turf pervade;
Hapless youth, shall soothe thy shade.
See me, to thy memorye true,
Many a votive flower to strewe:
Prove my love and constancye!
And, dear youth, I'll followe thee.
Sweetest flower that nature blowes ;
Now o'er him the green grass grows.
Lily, o'er the green turfe twine;
Honour meete that turfe should have,
Beautye's bed and Virtue's shrine.
“ Primrose pale, and violet blue,
Jasmin sweete, and eglantine,
Proude to deck my true love's shrine.
He did die, and so must you;
Halfe so virtuous, halfe so true?
No such virtues can you boast;
Yet my faithful love is crost.
(Loitering moments, faster flowe!).
Smile at deathe, and laughe at woe.”
Beate her breast, and wept, and sighed;
On the green turfe grave she dy’d. .
Sung her knell, while breezes sighed;
How so poore a mayden dy'd!
ORIGINAL AND SELECTED,
- ATTENDING three country cousins to the Opera, who after staring at the figures painted upon the ceiling, &c. &c. constantly and audibly ask you, who such and such a person is with a star; at the same time, to pre
vent all possibility of your mistaking the object, directing their finger towards him.
A very thin house at Drury-lane. · Attending private theatricals, where the gentlemen performers always press near the prompter's side, always hurry over passages in order to catch every word before it slips from the memory, one performer not giving the cue word, or giving it, not remembered by the other who plays with him, standing like posts when they have nothing to say, and using their legs and arms as if they had been just bestowed upon them.
A fine overture playing, and a noisy audience. To hear nineteen prologues out of twenty. Going to the theatre on a very crowded night, waiting an hour in the pit passage, half jammed to death, receiving a dreadful kick on the ankle; in making a desperate effort to stoop down to rub it, finding your hand in the coat pocket of the man who stands opposite to you, and gradually withdrawing it with indescribable horror, so as just to escape being taken up for a pickpocket.
Going to the theatre to see some distinguished play and performer, having places kept; owing to some of the party not being ready in time, entering your box just as the first act is over, and observing the last bustle of a number of persons who have just descended into your front seats, and are all smirking and smiling to think themselves so very fortunate.
Attending a school play.
Being annoyed by the renders of bills of the play, in going to the theatre, having a party of fine ladies to attend to.
- Paying at the theatre in a hurry, and being obliged to change a bad shilling.
Coming to London, from a great distance, for the sole purpose of gratifying your loyal curiosity, once before you die, with a sight of the royal family at the play; then, on entering the house, finding that the place kept for you is directly over their heads; so that, when you have painfully stretched yourself farther and