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Women or wine, you 'll have to undergo ;
But which to chuse, I really hardly know ; And if I had to give a casting voice,
For both sides I could many reasons show, And then decide, without great wrong to either, It were much better to have both than neither.
With swimming looks of speechless tenderness, Which mix'd all feelings, friend, child, lover, brother,
All that the best can mingle and express,
And love too much, and yet can not love less ;
Why did they not then die ?—they had lived too long, Should an hour come to bid them breathe apart ;
Years could but bring them cruel things or wrong. The world was not for them, nor the world's art
For beings passionate as Sappho's song ; Love was born with them, in them, so intense, It was their very spirit—not a sense.
Unseen as sings the nightingale ; they were
Called social, haunts of hate, vice and care : How lonely every freeborn creature broods !
The sweetest song-birds nestle in a pair ; The eagle soars alone ; the gull and crow Flock o'er their carrion, just as mortals do.
Haidee and Juan their siesta took ;
For ever and anon a something shook
And Haidee's sweet lips murmur'd like a brook,
Within an Alpine hollow, when the wind
The mystical usurper of the mindO’erpowering us to be whate'er may seem
Good to the soul which we no more can bind; Strange state of being ! (for 't is still to be) Senseless to feel, and with seal'd eyes to see.
Chain'd to a rock ; she knew not how, but stir
Grew, and each wave rose roughly, threatening her; And o'er her upper lip they seem'd to pour,
Until she sobb’d for breath, and soon they were Foaming o'er her lone head, so fierce and high Each broke to drown her, yet she could not die.
O’er the sharp shingles with her bleeding feet,
And something roll'd before her in a sheet, Which she must still pursue, howe'er afraid ;
'T was white and indistinct, nor stopp'd to meet Her glance nor grasp, for still she gazed and grasp'd, And ran, but it escaped her as she clasp’d.
Were hung with marble icicles ; the work
Where waves might wash, and seals might breed and lurk ; Her hair was dripping, and the very
Pale as the foam that froth'd on his dead brow,
Were once her cares, how idle seem'd they now!)
Of his quench'd heart ; and the sea dirges low
Faded, or alter'd into something new-
More like and like to Lambro's aspect grewWith all his keen worn look and Grecian grace ;
And starting, she awoke, and what to view ? Oh ! Powers of Heaven ! what dark eye meets she there ? 'T is—'t is her father's-fix'd upon the pair !
With joy and sorrow, hope and fear to see
The ocean-buried, risen from death, to be
Dear as her father had been to Haidee,
And caught her falling, and from off the wall
Vengeance on him who was the cause of all:
Smild scornfuily, and said, “Within my call
'T is Lambro—'t is my father! Kneel with me-He will forgive us-yes-it must be-yes.
Oh! dearest father, in this agony
Thy garment's hem with transport, can it be
XXXIX. High and inscrutable the old man stood,
Calm in his voice, and calm within his eyeNot always signs with him of calmest mood :
He look'd upon her, but gave no reply;
Oft came and went, as there resolved to die ;
XL. “Young man, your sword;" so Lambro once more said:
Juan replied, “Not while this arm is free.”
And, drawing from his belt a pistol, he
Then look'd close at the flint, as if to see
know A moment more will bring the sight to bear
Upon your person, twelve yards off, or so ; A gentlemanly distance, not too near,
If you have got a former friend for foe; But after having been fired at once or twice, The ear becomes more Irish and less nice.
XLIJ. Lambro presented, and one instant more
Had stopp'd this canto, and Don Juan's breath, When Haidee threw herself her boy before ;
Stern as her sire : "On me," she cried, “let death Descend—the fault is mine; this fatal shore
He found—but sought not. I have pledg'd my faithI love him I will die with him : I knew Your nature's firmness--know your daughter's too."
And tenderness, and infancy : but now
Pale, statue-like, and stern, she woo'd the blow ;
She drew up to her height, as if to show
How like they look’ ! the expression was the sameSerenely savage, with a little change
In the large dark eyes' mutual darted flame ; For she too was as one who could avenge,
If cause should be--a lioness, though tame : Her father's blood before her father's face Boild up, and proved her truly of his race.
Their stature differing but in sex and years ;
There was resemblance, such as true blood wears; And now to see them, thus divided, stand
In fix'd ferocity, when joyous tears,
His weapon, and replaced it; but stood still,
“ Not I,” he said, " have sought this stranger's ill; Not I have made this desolation : few
Would bear such outrage, and forbear to kill ;
XLVII. “ Let him disarm; or, by my father's head, His own shall roll before
like a ball !" He raised his whistle, as the word he said,
And blew; another answer'd to the call, And rushing in disorderly, though led,
And arm'd from boot to turban, one and all, Some twenty of his train came, rank on rank ; He
gave the word, “ Arrest or slay the Frank.”
His daughter ; while compress’d within bis clasp, "Twixt her and Juan interposed the crew ;
In vain she struggled in her father's clasp
Upon their prey, as darts an angry asp,
XLIX. The second had his cheek laid
but The third, a wary cool old sworder, took The blows upon his cutlass, and then put
His own well in, so well, ere you could look, His man was floor'd, and helpless at his foot,
With the blood running like a little brook From two smart sabre gashes, deep and red One on the arm, the other on the head.