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She stopp'd-threw back her dark far-floating hair,
That nearly veil'd her face and bosom fair,
As if she late had bent her leaning head
Above some object of her doubt or dread.
They meet-upon her brow-unknown-forgot-
Her hurrying hand had left--'twas but a spot--
Its hue was all he saw, and scarce withstood-
Oh! slight but certain pledge of crime-'tis blood!

X.

He had seen battle-he had brooded lone

O'er promised pangs to sentenced guilt foreshown;
He had been tempted-chasten'd-and the chain
Yet on his arms might ever there remain :
But ne'er from strife-captivity-remorse-
From all his feelings in their inmost force-
So thrill'd-so shudder'd every creeping vein,
As now they froze before that purple stain.
That spot of blood, that light but guilty streak,
Had banish'd all the beauty from her cheek!
Blood he had view'd-could view unmoved-but ther
It flow'd in combat, or was shed by men!

XI.

"""Tis done-he nearly waked-but it is done.
Corsair! he perish'd-thou art dearly won.
All words would now be vain-away-away!
Our bark is tossing-'tis already day.
The few gain'd over, now are wholly mine,
And these thy yet surviving band shall join:
Anon my voice shall vindicate my hand,
When once our sail forsakes this hated strand."

XII.

She clapp'd her hands-and through the gallery pour,
Equipp❜d for flight, her vassals-Greek and Moor:
Silent but quick they stoop, his chains unbind;
Once more his limbs are free as mountain wind!
But on his heavy heart such sadness sate,
As if they there transferr'd that iron weight.
No words are utter'd― at her sign, a door
Reveals the secret passage to the shore;
The city lies behind-they speed, they reach
The glad waves dancing on the yellow beach;
And Conrad following, at her beck, obey'd,
Nor cared he now if rescued or betray'd;
Resistance was as useless as if Seyd
Yet lived to view the doom his ire decreed.

XIII.

Embark'd, the sail unfurl'd, the light breeze blew -
How much had Conrad's memory to review !
Sunk he in Contemplation till the cape
Where last he anchor'd rear'd its giant shape.

Ah!-since that fatal night, though brief the time,
Had swept an age of terror, grief, and crime.
As its far shadow frown'd above the mast,
He veil'd his face, and sorrow'd as he pass'd;
He thought of all-Gonsalvo and his band,
His fleeting triumph and his tailing hand;
He thought on her afar, his lonely bride:
He turn'd and saw-Gulnare, the homicide!

XIV.

She watch'd his features till she could not bear
Their freezing aspect and averted air,
And that strange fierceness, foreign to her eye,
Fell quench'd in tears, too late to shed or dry.
She knelt beside him, and his hand she press'd,

Thou mayst forgive though Alla's self detest;
But for that deed of darkness what wert thou?
Reproach me but not yet-O! spare me now!
I am not what I seem-this fearful night
My brain bewilder'd-do not madden quite !
If I had never loved-though less my guilt,
Thou hadst not lived to-hate me-it thou wilt."

XV.

She wrongs his thoughts, they more himself upbraid
Than her, though undesign'd, the wretch he made;
But speechless all, deep, dark, and unexpress'd,
They bleed within that silent cell-his breast.
Still onward, fair the breeze, nor rough the surge,
The blue waves sport around the stern they urge;
Far on the horizon's verge appears a speck,
A spot-a mast-a sail-an armed deck!
Their little bark her men of watch descry,
And ampler canvas woos the wind from high;
She bears her down majestically near,
Speed on her prow, and terror in her tier;
A flash is seen-the ball beyond their bow
Booms harmless, hissing to the deep below.
Up rose keen Conrad from his silent trance,
A long, long absent gladness in his glance;
""Tis mine-my blood-red flag! again-again-
I am not all deserted on the main !"

They own the signal, answer to the hail,
Hoist out the boat at once, and slacken sail.
""Tis Conrad! Conrad !" shouting from the deck,
Command nor duty could their transport check!
With light alacrity and gaze of pride,

They view him mount once more his vessel's side;
A smile relaxing in each rugged face,

Their arms can scarce forbear a rough embraco.
He, half forgetting danger and defeat,
Returns their greeting as a chief may greet,

Wrings with a cordial grasp Anselmo's hand,
And feels he yet can conquer and command!

XVI.

These greetings o'er, the feelings that o'erflow,
Yet grieve to win him back without a blow;
They sail'd prepared for vengeance-had they known
A woman's hand secured that deed her own,
She were their queen-less scrupulous are they
Than haughty Conrad how they win their way.
With many an asking smile, and wondering staro,
They whisper round, and gaze upon Gulnare;
And her, at once above-beneath her sex,
Whom blood appall'd not, their regards perplex.
To Conrad turns her faint imploring eye,
She drops her veil, and stands in silence by ;
Her arms are meekly folded on that breast,
Which-Conrad safe-to fate resign'd the rest.
Though worse than frenzy could that bosom fill,
Extreme in love or hate, in good or ill,
The worst of crimes had left her woman still!

XVII.

This Conrad mark'd, and felt-ah! could he less?-
Hate of that deed-but grief for her distress;
What she has done no tears can wash away,
And Heaven must punish on its angry day:
But it was done : he knew, whate'er her guilt,
For him that poniard smote, that blood was spilt;
And he was free!-and she for him had given
Her all on earth, and more than all in Heaven!
And now he turn'd him to that dark-eyed slave,
Whose brow was bow'd beneath the glance he gave,
Who now seem'd changed and humbled:-faint and racek,
But varying oft the colour of her cheek

To deeper shades of paleness-all its red,

That fearful spot which stain'd it from the dead!
He took that hand-it trembled-now too late-
So soft in love-so wildly nerved in hate;
He clasp'd that hand-it trembled-and his own
Had lost its firmness, and his voice its tone.
"Gulnare!"-but she replied not-" dear Gulnare!"
She raised her eye-her only answer there-
At once she sought and sunk in his embrace :
If he had driven her from that resting-place,
His had been more or less than mortal heart,
But-good or ill-it bade her not depart.
Perchance, but for the bodings of his breast,
His latest virtue then had join'd the rest.
Yet even Medora might forgive the kiss
That ask'd from form so fair no more than this,
The first, the last that Frailty stole from Faith-
To lips where love had lavish'd all his breath,

To lips-whose broken sighs such fragrance fling
As he had fann'd them freshly with his wing!

XVIII.

They gain by twilight's hour their lonely isle.
To them the very rocks appear to smile;
The haven hums with many a cheering sound,
The beacons blaze their wonted stations round,
The boats are darting o'er the curly bay,
And sportive dolphins bend them through the spray;
Even the hoarse sea-bird's shrill, discordant shriek,
Greets like the welcome of his tuneless beak!
Beneath each lamp that through its lattice gleams,
Their fancy paints the friends that trim the beams.
Oh! what can sanctify the joys of home,
Like Hope's gay glance from Ocean's troubled foam?

XIX.

The lights are high on beacon and from bower,
And 'midst them Conrad seeks Medora's tower:
He looks in vain-'tis strange-and all remark,
Amid so many, hers alone is dark.

'Tis strange-of yore its welcome never fail'd,
Nor now, perchance, extinguish'd, only veil'd.
With the first boat descends he to the shore,
And looks impatient on the lingering oar.
O! for a wing beyond the falcon's flight,
To bear him like an arrow to that height!
With the first pause the resting rowers gave,
He waits not looks not-leaps into the wave,
Strives through the surge, bestrides the beach, and high
Ascends the path familiar to his eye.

He reach'd his turret door-he paused-no sound
Broke from within; and all was night around.
He knock'd, and loudly-footstep nor reply
Announced that any heard or deem'd him nigh;
He knock'd-but faintly-for his trembling hand
Refused to aid his heavy heart's demand.
The portal opens-'tis a well-known face-
But not the form he panted to embrace.
Its lips are silent-twice his own essay'd,
And fail'd to frame the question they delay'd;
He snatch'd the lamp-its light will answer all-
It quits his grasp, expiring in the fall.
He would not wait for that reviving ray,-
As soon could he have linger'd there for day;
But, glimmering through the dusky corridore
Another chequers o'er the shadow'd floor;
His steps the chamber gain-his eyes behol
All that nis heart believed not-yet foretold,

XX.

He turn'd not-spoke not-sunk not-fix'd his look,
And set the anxious frame that lately shook:
He gazed-how long we gaze despite of pain,
And know, but dare not own, we gaze in vain!
In life itself she was so still and fair,

That death with gentler aspect wither'd tnere ;
And the cold flowers her colder hand contain'd,*
In that last grasp as tenderly were strain'd
As if she scarcely felt, but feign'd a sleep,
And made it almost mockery yet to weep:
The long dark lashes fringed her lids of snow,
And veil'd-thought shrinks from all that lurk'd below-
Oh! o'er the eye death most exerts his might,
And hurls the spirit from her throne of light!
Sinks those blue orbs in that long last eclipse.
But spares, as yet, the charm around her lips-
Yet, yet they seem as they forbore to smile
And wish'd repose-but only for a while;
But the white shroud, and each extended tress,
Long-fair-but spread in utter lifelessness,
Which, late the sport of every summer wind,
Escaped the baffled wreath that strove to bind ;
These-and the pale pure cheek, became the bier,
But she is nothing-wherefore is he here?

XXI.

He ask'd no question-all were answer'd now
By the first glance on that still-marble brow.
It was enough-she died-what reck'd it how?
The love of youth, the hope of better years,
The source of softest wishes, tenderest fears,
The only living thing he could not hate,
Was reft at once-and he deserved his fate,
But did not feel it less ;-the good explore,
For peace, those realms where guilt can never soar;
The proud-the wayward-who have fix'd below
Their joy, and find this earth enough for woe,
Lose in that one their all-perchance a mite-
But who in patience parts with all delight?
Full many a stoic eye and aspect stern
Mask hearts where grief hath little left to learn!
And many a withering thought lies hid, not lost,
In smiles that least befit who wear them most.

XXII.

By those, that deepest feel, is ill express'd
The indistinctness of the suffering breast;
Where thousand thoughts begin to end in one,
Which seeks from all the refuge found in none;

• In the Levant it is the custom to strew flowers on the bodies of the dead, and in the aands of young persons to place a nosegay.-B.

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