The grey concrete surrounded me as that of a dreary day
The metal collarge of buses, encircling me..
whilst exposing the shyness of colour
to the dullness of the scene
How hard the colour tried..yet the grey consumed it without effort
I sat, whilst the fumes danced unashamedly
around the concrete path before me
But I could only see the huge metal conterie in front of me..
vibrating in tune to the fumes that swirled from it..
As my ears were full of song..
'You give me butterflies..'
..my heart sang to You as my eyes,
almost filled with tears..
looked upon the lugubroius scene before me..
'You give me butterflies..'
My heart sang even louder..
as the fumes enveloped me..
What is this I see amidst the concrete collarge..
What is this precious gem..
struggling through the choking fumes..
through the grey of this cold, somber calamity?
You filled me up with joy hardly contained
when, through all..
A pure white butterfly decended..
and as I held out my hand..
rested in my palm..
Oh my heart..........
With A Song In My Heart
Though I know that we meet evry night
And we couldnt heve change since the last time,
To my joy and delight,
Its a new kind of love at first sight.
Though its you and its I all the time
Evry meetings marvelous pastime.
Youre increasingly sweet,
So whenever we happened to met
I greet you ...
With a song in my heart
I behold your adorable face.
Just a song at the start
But it soon is a hymn to your grace.
When the music swells
Im touching you hand
It tells that yourre standing near, and ..
At the sound of your voice
Heaven opens his portals to me.
Can I help but rejoice
That a song such as ours came to be?
But I always knew
I would live life through
With a song in my heart for you.
Oh, the moons not a moon for a night
And these stars will not twinkle and fade out,
And the words in my ears
Will resound for the rest of my years.
In the morning I find with delight
Not a note of our music is played out.
It will be just as sweet,
And an air that Ill live to repeat:
I greet you ...
With a song in my heart
I behold your adorable face.
Just a song at the start
But it soon is a hymn to your grace.
When the music swells
Im touching you hand
It tells that youre standing near, and ..
At the sound of your voice
Heaven opens his portals to me.
Can I help but rejoice
That a song such as ours came to be?
But I always knew
I would live life through
With a song in my heart for you.
A Song In My Heart
I am yours, and you are mine
take me with you wherever you are
i will always love you
Until eternity to cherish and adore
I promise you my heart, my soul
My everything, my all
From this day on
I will sing you a song in my heart
And then i am finally complete
Song from My Heart
Song in my heart,
Speak to me,
Sing me your sweet melody.
The days been hard,
Sing me tonight a joyous song.
So many times
When all hope was gone,
I listened to your cry, a painful mourn-
But now all is serene,
The night is still-
Hum to me softly, if you will.
Oh song from my heart,
Music within me,
Sing me a song filled with melody.
May This Song Reach Your Heart
A strong young woman sings,
Her voice so divine.
'May this song reach your heart.'
She showed the epitome
Of soul, body, and mind.
'May this song reach your heart.'
She sang to the heavens
With uplifting spirit.
'May this song reach your heart.'
Her song was made
So the world could hear it.
'May this song reach your heart.'
The song she sang
Was that of fine art.
'May this song,
Reach your heart.'
When the Day Is White
When the day is white
Full of clouds from above
Just new from old night
With its dream full of
And your heart is young
Filled with thoughts so free
In and easy going song
That without end shall be
A love song so fine
Full of its finesses air
Drifting through sunshine
From here to everywhere
I feel you are so close
In my heartbeat you'll stay
Until everything away goes
That you and I knew today
When day becomes eve
And the white sky to red
When our day thoughts leave
And night is here instead
When we go on sleeping
And travel so far beyond
Where angels' stars are keeping
Until it becomes dawned
*(A lyric made now to my song, When the Day Is White, at Garageband.com)
I'm chilled to the bone this rainy day.
It's been pouring and pouring my time away.
My words are circling again in my head
while the rain comes down and the worms are fed.
It's the change in temperature that's chilled me so.
It's my change in thinking that takes me low.
I'm a sun-lover whose words come alive
just like sunflower, they seem to thrive.
So I'll warm myself and layer my clothes
and use some tissues to warm my nose.
The warmth of the pen with its ink-like blood
will fill the page while the rain does flood.
And at the end of this rain-dreary day
I'll reflect back and find a way
to warm my bones and welcome my bed,
then cover up the words that were in my head.
There is a song in my heart......
There is a song in my heart
and I want to sing it for you in the misty night
No one will ever knows what I have written for you
because it has been written with my heart only for you
Let us be alone when I sing my song for you
and let the melody of my song echo in the sky
I want our world to sleep deep when I sing for you
then only my song will get into your heart softly
My nights are not enough to love you
nor my songs cannot be sung without you
I sing with my heart to tell you how much I love you
I sing with my soul to tell you how much I miss you
My song will wipe your tears away
and immerse my body into your arms for thirsting love
These feelings of loving song comes when I am only with you
and let my love song, sing in your living heart forever
Song In My Heart
Maurice white, garry glenn and brenda russell
Ive gotta song in my heart
And a feeling just for you
So good that, we cant tear apart
A love thats positively true
Cant stop these feelings I got
Cause Ive been trying to get thru
Ive gotta song in my heart
And a feeling just for you
Oh, its time that we show
Just what one means, to the other
Take my hand, and youll know
We got a whole world to discover
Oh, i, Ive gotta song in my heart
And a feeling just for you
Ive gotta song in my heart
And feeling, feeling
Once in a lifetime you feel
This ringing in the air
Something delightful and real
Is something we can share
Now that weve started a spark,
Theres light thats peeping thru
Ive gotta song in my heart
And a feeling just for you
Smile, love will show
A wonderful blessing for believers
And what youre giving me, Im giving right back
Right back to you, try giving up, planting a reason
Love, it gives a touch
And love is pleasing and receiving
Oh, i, Ive gotta song in my heart
And a feeling just for you
Song in the Night
Born from the shadow of a breath
We wander in abandonment
And are lost in the eternal,
Like victims ignorant wherefore they are consecrated.
Like beggars nothing is our own,
We fools at the locked gate.
As blind people we listen in the silence,
In which our whisper is lost.
We are the wanderers without destinations,
The clouds which the wind blows away,
The flowers shaking in death's coolness,
Which wait, until one mows them down.
So that the last torment becomes complete with me,
I do not defend you, you hostile dark powers.
You are the road to great stillness,
Upon which we stride in the coolest nights.
Your breath makes me burn louder,
Patience! The star dies down, the dreams glide
In those realms not named to us,
And which we may only walk along dreamlessly.
You dark night, you dark heart,
Who mirrors your holiest ground,
And your malice's last abysses?
The mask stares before our pain -
Before our pain, before our lust
The empty mask's stony laughter,
On it the earthen things broke,
And ourselves not deliberately.
And a strange enemy stands before us,
Who jeers, about which we struggle dying,
So that our songs sound cloudier
And what weeps in us remains dark.
You are the wine that makes drunk,
Now I bleed in sweet dances
And must wreath my suffering with flowers!
So your deepest mind wills, o night!
I am the harp in your womb,
Now your dark song struggles
For the last pains in my heart
And makes me eternal, unreal.
Deep rest - o deep rest!
No devout bell rings,
You sweet mother of pain -
Your death-widened peace.
Close all wounds
With your cool, good hands -
So that inward they bleed to death -
Sweet mother of pain - you!
O let my silence be your song!
What should the poor's whisper be to you,
Who is separated from life's gardens?
Let you be nameless in me -
Who is dreamlesslybuilt up in me ,
Like a bell without tone,
Like my pain's sweet bride
And the drunken poppy of my sleepings.
I heard flowers die in the ground
And the wells' drunken lament
And a song from the bell's mouth,
Night, and a whispered question;
And a heart - o death-wound,
Beyond its poor days.
The darkness extinguished me in silence,
I became a dead shadow in the day -
Then I stepped from the house of joy
Outside in the night.
Now a silence dwells in my heart,
That does not feel the dreary day -
And smiles up to you like thorns,
Night - forever and ever!
O night, you mute gate before my suffering,
See this dark stigmata bleeding to death
And completely inclined the staggering chalice of agony!
O night, I am ready!
O night, you garden of oblivion
Around my poverty's closed-to-the-world shine,
The wine leaves wilt, the wreath of thorns wilts.
O come, you grand time!
My demon once laughed,
When I was a light in gleaming gardens,
And play and dance were my companions
And the wine of love, which makes drunk.
My demon once wept,
When I was a light in painful gardens
And humility was my companion,
Whose radiance shines on poverty's house.
However, now my demon neither weeps nor laughs,
I am a shadow of lost gardens
And my death-dark companion is
The silence of the empty midnight.
My poor smile which struggled for you,
My sobbing song faded away in darkness.
Now my path comes to an end.
Let me tread in your cathedral
Like once, a fool, simple minded, devoutly,
And stand adoring mutely before you.
You are in deep midnight
A dead shore at the silent sea,
A dead shore: Never more!
You are in deep midnight.
You are in deep midnight
The heaven in which you glowed as a star,
A heaven from which no more God blossoms.
You are in deep midnight.
You are in deep midnight
An unbegotten in sweet womb,
And never existing, unreal!
You are in deep midnight.
The Two Sides Of The River
O Winter, O white winter, wert thou gone
No more within the wilds were I alone
Leaping with bent bow over stock and stone!
No more alone my love the lamp should burn,
Watching the weary spindle twist and turn,
Or o’er the web hold back her tears and yearn:
O winter, O white winter, wert thou gone!
Sweet thoughts fly swiftlier than the drifting snow,
And with the twisting threads sweet longings grow,
And o’er the web sweet pictures come and go,
For no white winter are we long alone.
O stream so changed, what hast thou done to me,
That I thy glittering ford no more can see
Wreathing with white her fair feet lovingly?
See, in the rain she stands, and, looking down
With frightened eyes upon thy whirlpools brown,
Drops to her feet again her girded gown.
O hurrying turbid stream, what hast thou done?
The clouds lift, telling of a happier day
When through the thin stream I shall take my way,
Girt round with gold, and garlanded with may,
What rushing stream can keep us long alone?
O burning Sun, O master of unrest,
Why must we, toiling, cast away the best,
Now, when the bird sleeps by her empty nest?
See, with my garland lying at her feet,
In lonely labour stands mine own, my sweet,
Above the quern half-filled with half-ground wheat.
O red taskmaster, that thy flames were done!
O love, to-night across the half-shorn plain
Shall I not go to meet the yellow wain,
A look of love at end of toil to gain?
What flaming sun can keep us long alone?
To-morrow, said I, is grape gathering o’er;
To-morrow, and our loves are twinned no more
To-morrow came, to bring us woe and war.
What have I done, that I should stand with these
Hearkening the dread shouts borne upon the breeze,
While she, far off, sits weeping ’neath her trees?
Alas, O kings, what is it ye have done?
Come, love, delay not; come, and slay my dread!
Already is the banquet table spread;
In the cool chamber flower-strewn is my bed:
Come, love, what king shall keep us long alone?
O city, city, open thou thy gate!
See, with life snatched from out the hand of fate!
How on thy glittering triumph I must wait!
Are not her hands stretched out to me? Her eyes,
Grow they not weary as each new hope dies,
And lone before her still the long road lies?
O golden city, fain would I be gone!
And thou art happy, amid shouts and songs,
And all that unto conquering men belongs.
Night hath no fear for me, and day no wrongs.
What brazen city gates can keep us, lone?
O long, long road, how bare thou art, and grey!
Hill after hill thou climbest, and the day
Is ended now, O moonlit endless way!
And she is standing where the rushes grow,
And still with white hand shades her anxious brow,
Though ’neath the world the sun is fallen now,
O dreary road, when will thy leagues be done?
O tremblest thou, grey road, or do my feet
Tremble with joy, thy flinty face to meet?
Because my love’s eyes soon mine eyes shall greet?
No heart thou hast to keep us long alone.
O wilt thou ne’er depart, thou heavy night?
When will thy slaying bring on the morning bright,
That leads my weary feet to my delight?
Why lingerest thou, filling with wandering fears
My lone love’s tired heart; her eyes with tears
For thoughts like sorrow for the vanished years?
Weaver of ill thoughts, when wilt thou be gone?
Love, to the east are thine eyes turned as mine,
In patient watching for the night’s decline?
And hast thou noted this grey widening line?
Can any darkness keep us long alone?
O day, O day, is it a little thing
That thou so long unto thy life must cling,
Because I gave thee such a welcoming?
I called thee king of all felicity,
I praised thee that thou broughtest joy so nigh;
Thine hours are turned to years, thou wilt not die;
O day so longed for, would that thou wert gone!
The light fails, love; the long day soon shall be
Nought but a pensive happy memory
Blessed for the tales it told to thee and me.
How hard it was, O love, to be alone.
That all men would be cowards if they dare,
Some men we know have courage to declare;
And this the life of many a hero shows,
That, like the tide, man's courage ebbs and flows:
With friends and gay companions round them, then
Men boldly speak and have the hearts of men;
Who, with opponents seated miss the aid
Of kind applauding looks, and grow afraid;
Like timid travelers in the night, they fear
Th' assault of foes, when not a friend is near.
In contest mighty, and of conquest proud,
Was Justice Bolt, impetuous, warm, and loud;
His fame, his prowess all the country knew,
And disputants, with one so fierce, were few:
He was a younger son, for law design'd,
With dauntless look and persevering mind;
While yet a clerk, for disputation famed,
No efforts tired him, and no conflicts tamed.
Scarcely he bade his master's desk adieu,
When both his brothers from the world withdrew.
An ample fortune he from them possessed,
And was with saving care and prudence bless'd.
Now would he go and to the country give
Example how an English 'squire should live;
How bounteous, yet how frugal man may be,
By well-order'd hospitality;
He would the rights of all so well maintain.
That none should idle be, and none complain.
All this and more he purposed--and what man
Could do, he did to realise his plan;
But time convinced him that we cannot keep
A breed of reasoners like a flock of sheep;
For they, so far from following as we lead,
Make that a cause why they will not proceed.
Man will not follow where a rule is shown,
But loves to take a method of his own:
Explain the way with all your care and skill,
This will he quit, if but to prove he will. -
Yet had our Justice honour--and the crowd,
Awed by his presence, their respect avow'd.
In later years he found his heart incline,
More than in youth, to gen'rous food and wine;
But no indulgence check'd the powerful love
He felt to teach, to argue, and reprove.
Meetings, or public calls, he never miss'd -
To dictate often, always to assist.
Oft he the clergy join'd, and not a cause
Pertain'd to them but he could quote the laws;
He upon tithes and residence display'd
A fund of knowledge for the hearer's aid;
And could on glebe and farming, wool and grains
A long discourse, without a pause, maintain.
To his experience and his native sense
He join'd a bold imperious eloquence;
The grave, stern look of men inform'd and wise,
A full command of feature, heart, and eyes,
An awe-compelling frown, and fear-inspiring size.
When at the table, not a guest was seen
With appetite so lingering, or so keen;
But when the outer man no more required,
The inner waked, and he was man inspired.
His subjects then were those, a subject true
Presents in fairest form to public view;
Of church and state, of law, with mighty strength
Of words he spoke, in speech of mighty length:
And now, into the vale of years declined,
He hides too little of the monarch-mind:
He kindles anger by untimely jokes,
And opposition by contempt provokes;
Mirth he suppresses by his awful frown,
And humble spirits, by disdain, keeps down;
Blamed by the mild, approved by the severe,
The prudent fly him, and the valiant fear.
For overbearing is his proud discourse,
And overwhelming of his voice the force;
And overpowering is he when he shows
What floats upon a mind that always overflows.
This ready man at every meeting rose,
Something to hint, determine, or propose;
And grew so fond of teaching, that he taught
Those who instruction needed not or sought:
Happy our hero, when he could excite
Some thoughtless talker to the wordy fight:
Let him a subject at his pleasure choose,
Physic or law, religion or the muse;
On all such themes he was prepared to shine, -
Physician, poet, lawyer, and divine.
Hemm'd in by some tough argument, borne down
By press of language and the awful frown,
In vain for mercy shall the culprit plead;
His crime is past, and sentence must proceed:
Ah! suffering man, have patience, bear thy woes -
For lo! the clock--at ten the Justice goes.
This powerful man, on business, or to please
A curious taste, or weary grown of ease,
On a long journey travelled many a mile
Westward, and halted midway in our isle;
Content to view a city large and fair,
Though none had notice--what a man was there!
Silent two days, he then began to long
Again to try a voice so loud and strong;
To give his favourite topics some new grace,
And gain some glory in such distant place;
To reap some present pleasure, and to sow
Seeds of fair fame, in after-time to grow:
Here will men say, 'We heard, at such an hour,
The best of speakers--wonderful his power.'
Inquiry made, he found that day would meet
A learned club, and in the very street:
Knowledge to gain and give, was the design;
To speak, to hearken, to debate, and dine:
This pleased our traveller, for he felt his force
In either way, to eat or to discourse.
Nothing more easy than to gain access
To men like these, with his polite address:
So he succeeded, and first look'd around,
To view his objects and to take his ground;
And therefore silent chose awhile to sit,
Then enter boldly by some lucky hit;
Some observation keen or stroke severe,
To cause some wonder or excite some fear.
Now, dinner past, no longer he supprest
His strong dislike to be a silent guest;
Subjects and words were now at his command -
When disappointment frown'd on all he plann'd;
For, hark!--he heard amazed, on every side,
His church insulted and her priests belied;
The laws reviled, the ruling power abused,
The land derided, and its foes excused: -
He heard and ponder'd--What, to men so vile,
Should be his language?--For his threat'ning style
They were too many;--if his speech were meek,
They would despise such poor attempts to speak:
At other times with every word at will,
He now sat lost, perplex'd, astonish'd, still.
Here were Socinians, Deists, and indeed
All who, as foes to England's Church, agreed;
But still with creeds unlike, and some without a
Here, too, fierce friends of liberty he saw,
Who own'd no prince and who obey no law;
There were reformers of each different sort,
Foes to the laws, the priesthood, and the court;
Some on their favourite plans alone intent,
Some purely angry and malevolent:
The rash were proud to blame their country's laws;
The vain, to seem supporters of a cause;
One call'd for change, that he would dread to see;
Another sigh'd for Gallic liberty!
And numbers joining with the forward crew,
For no one reason--but that numbers do.
'How,' said the Justice, 'can this trouble rise,
This shame and pain, from creatures I despise?'
And Conscience answer'd--'The prevailing cause
Is thy delight in listening to applause;
Here, thou art seated with a tribe, who spurn
Thy favourite themes, and into laughter turn
Thy fears and wishes: silent and obscure,
Thyself, shalt thou the long harangue endure;
And learn, by feeling, what it is to force
On thy unwilling friends the long discourse:
What though thy thoughts be just, and these, it
Are traitors' projects, idiots' empty schemes;
Yet minds, like bodies, cramm'd, reject their food,
Nor will be forced and tortured for their good!'
At length, a sharp, shrewd, sallow man arose,
And begg'd he briefly might his mind disclose;
'It was his duty, in these worst of times,
T'inform the govern'd of their rulers' crimes:'
This pleasant subject to attend, they each
Prepare to listen, and forbore to teach.
Then voluble and fierce the wordy man
Through a long chain of favourite horrors ran: -
First of the Church, from whose enslaving power
He was deliver'd, and he bless'd the hour;
'Bishops and deans, and prebendaries all,'
He said, 'were cattle fatt'ning in the stall;
Slothful and pursy, insolent and mean,
Were every bishop, prebendary, dean,
And wealthy rector: curates, poorly paid,
Were only dull;--he would not them upbraid.'
From priests he turn'd to canons, creeds, and
Rubrics and rules, and all our Church affairs;
Churches themselves, desk, pulpit, altar, all
The Justice reverenced--and pronounced their fall.
Then from religion Hammond turn'd his view
To give our Rulers the correction due;
Not one wise action had these triflers plann'd;
There was, it seem'd, no wisdom in the land,
Save in this patriot tribe, who meet at times
To show the statesman's errors and his crimes.
Now here was Justice Bolt compell'd to sit,
To hear the deist's scorn, the rebel's wit;
The fact mis-stated, the envenom'd lie,
And, staring spell-bound, made not one reply.
Then were our Laws abused--and with the laws,
All who prepare, defend, or judge a cause:
'We have no lawyer whom a man can trust,'
Proceeded Hammond--'if the laws were just;
But they are evil; 'tis the savage state
Is only good, and ours sophisticate!
See! the free creatures in their woods and plains,
Where without laws each happy monarch reigns,
King of himself--while we a number dread,
By slaves commanded and by dunces led:
Oh, let the name with either state agree -
Savage our own we'll name, and civil theirs shall
The silent Justice still astonish'd sat,
And wonder'd much whom he was gazing at;
Twice he essay'd to speak--but in a cough,
The faint, indignant, dying speech went off:
'But who is this?' thought he--'a demon vile,
With wicked meaning and a vulgar style:
Hammond they call him: they can give the name
Of man to devils.--Why am I so tame?
Why crush I not the viper?'--Fear replied,
Watch him awhile, and let his strength be tried:
He will be foil'd, if man; but if his aid
Be from beneath, 'tis well to be afraid.'
'We are call'd free!' said Hammond--'doleful
When rulers add their insult to their crimes;
For should our scorn expose each powerful vice,
It would be libel, and we pay the price.'
Thus with licentious words the man went on,
Proving that liberty of speech was gone;
That all were slaves--nor had we better chance
For better times, than as allies to France.
Loud groan'd the Stranger--Why, he must relate,
And own'd, 'In sorrow for his country's fate;'
'Nay, she were safe,' the ready man replied,
'Might patriots rule her, and could reasoners
When all to vote, to speak, to teach, are free,
Whate'er their creeds or their opinions be;
When books of statutes are consumed in flames,
And courts and copyholds are empty names:
Then will be times of joy--but ere they come,
Havock, and war, and blood must be our doom.'
The man here paused--then loudly for Reform
He call'd, and hail'd the prospect of the storm:
The wholesome blast, the fertilizing flood -
Peace gain'd by tumult, plenty bought with blood:
Sharp means, he own'd; but when the land's disease
Asks cure complete, no med'cines are like these.
Our Justice now, more led by fear than rage,
Saw it in vain with madness to engage;
With imps of darkness no man seeks to fight,
Knaves to instruct, or set deceivers right:
Then as the daring speech denounced these woes,
Sick at the soul, the grieving Guest arose;
Quick on the board his ready cash he threw,
And from the demons to his closet flew:
There when secured, he pray'd with earnest seal,
That all they wish'd these patriot-souls might
'Let them to France, their darling country, haste,
And all the comforts of a Frenchman taste;
Let them his safety, freedom, pleasure know,
Feel all their rulers on the land bestow;
And be at length dismiss'd by one unerring blow, -
Not hack'd and hew'd by one afraid to strike,
But shorn by that which shears all men alike;
Nor, as in Britain, let them curse delay
Of law, but borne without a form away -
Suspected, tried, condemn'd, and carted in a day;
Oh! let them taste what they so much approve,
These strong fierce freedoms of the land they love
Home came our hero, to forget no more
The fear he felt and ever must deplore:
For though he quickly join'd his friends again,
And could with decent force his themes maintain,
Still it occurr'd that, in a luckless time,
He fail'd to fight with heresy and crime;
It was observed his words were not so strong,
His tones so powerful, his harangues so long,
As in old times--for he would often drop
The lofty look, and of a sudden stop;
When conscience whisper'd, that he once was still,
And let the wicked triumph at their will;
And therefore now, when not a foe was near,
He had no right so valiant to appear.
Some years had pass'd, and he perceived his
Yield to the spirit of his earlier years -
When at a meeting, with his friends beside,
He saw an object that awaked his pride;
His shame, wrath, vengeance, indignation--all
Man's harsher feelings did that sight recall.
For, lo! beneath him fix'd, our Man of Law
That lawless man the Foe of Order saw;
Once fear'd, now scorn'd; once dreaded, now
A wordy man, and evil every word:
Again he gazed--'It is,' said he 'the same
Caught and secure: his master owes him shame;'
So thought our hero, who each instant found
His courage rising, from the numbers round.
As when a felon has escaped and fled,
So long, that law conceives the culprit dead;
And back recall'd her myrmidons, intent
On some new game, and with a stronger scent;
Till she beholds him in a place, where none
Could have conceived the culprit would have gone;
There he sits upright in his seat, secure,
As one whose conscience is correct and pure;
This rouses anger for the old offence,
And scorn for all such seeming and pretence:
So on this Hammond look'd our hero bold,
Rememb'ring well that vile offence of old;
And now he saw the rebel dar'd t'intrude
Among the pure, the loyal, and the good;
The crime provok'd his wrath, the folly stirr'd his
Nor wonder was it, if so strange a sight
Caused joy with vengeance, terror with delight;
Terror like this a tiger might create,
A joy like that to see his captive state,
At once to know his force and then decree his fate.
Hammond, much praised by numerous friends, was
To read his lectures, so admired at home;
Historic lectures, where he loved to mix
His free plain hints on modern politics:
Here, he had heard, that numbers had design,
Their business finish'd, to sit down and dine;
This gave him pleasure, for he judged it right
To show by day that he could speak at night.
Rash the design--for he perceived, too late,
Not one approving friend beside him sate;
The greater number, whom he traced around,
Were men in black, and he conceived they frown'd.
'I will not speak,' he thought; 'no pearls of mine
Shall be presented to this herd of swine;'
Not this avail'd him, when he cast his eye
On Justice Bolt; he could not fight, nor fly:
He saw a man to whom he gave the pain,
Which now he felt must be return'd again;
His conscience told him with what keen delight
He, at that time, enjoy'd a stranger's fright;
That stranger now befriended--he alone,
For all his insult, friendless, to atone;
Now he could feel it cruel that a heart
Should be distress'd, and none to take its part;
'Though one by one,' said Pride, 'I would defy
Much greater men, yet meeting every eye,
I do confess a fear--but he will pass me by.'
Vain hope! the Justice saw the foe's distress,
With exultation he could not suppress;
He felt the fish was hook'd--and so forbore,
In playful spite to draw it to the shore.
Hammond look'd round again; but none were near,
With friendly smile to still his growing fear;
But all above him seem'd a solemn row
Of priests and deacons, so they seem'd below;
He wonder'd who his right-hand man might be -
Vicar of Holt cum Uppingham was he;
And who the man of that dark frown possess'd -
Rector of Bradley and of Barton-west;
'A pluralist,' he growl'd--but check'd the word,
That warfare might not, by his zeal, be stirr'd.
But now began the man above to show
Fierce looks and threat'nings to the man below;
Who had some thoughts his peace by flight to seek -
But how then lecture, if he dar'd not speak! -
Now as the Justice for the war prepared,
He seem'd just then to question if he dared:
'He may resist, although his power be small,
And growing desperate may defy us all;
One dog attack, and he prepares for flight -
Resist another, and he strives to bite;
Nor can I say, if this rebellious cur
Will fly for safety, or will scorn to stir.'
Alarm'd by this, he lash'd his soul to rage,
Burn'd with strong shame, and hurried to engage.
As a male turkey straggling on the green,
When by fierce harriers, terriers, mongrels seen,
He feels the insult of the noisy train
And skulks aside, though moved by much disdain;
But when that turkey, at his own barn-door,
Sees one poor straying puppy and no more,
(A foolish puppy who had left the pack,
Thoughtless what foe was threat'ning at his back)
He moves about, as ship prepared to sail,
He hoists his proud rotundity of tail,
The half-seal'd eyes and changeful neck he shows,
Where, in its quick'ning colours, vengeance glows;
From red to blue the pendent wattles turn,
Blue mix'd with red, as matches when they burn;
And thus th' intruding snarler to oppose,
Urged by enkindling wrath, he gobbling goes.
So look'd our hero in his wrath, his cheeks
Flush'd with fresh fires and glow'd in tingling
His breath by passion's force awhile restrain'd,
Like a stopp'd current greater force regain'd;
So spoke, so look'd he, every eye and ear
Were fix'd to view him, or were turn'd to hear.
'My friends, you know me, you can witness all,
How, urged by passion, I restrain my gall;
And every motive to revenge withstand -
Save when I hear abused my native land.
'Is it not known, agreed, confirm'd, confess'd,
That, of all people, we are govern'd best?
We have the force of monarchies; are free,
As the most proud republicans can be;
And have those prudent counsels that arise
In grave and cautious aristocracies;
And live there those, in such all-glorious state.
Traitors protected in the land they hate?
Rebels, still warring with the laws that give
To them subsistence?--Yes, such wretches live.
'Ours is a Church reformed, and now no more
Is aught for man to mend or to restore;
'Tis pure in doctrines, 'tis correct in creeds,
Has nought redundant, and it nothing needs;
No evil is therein--no wrinkle, spot,
Stain, blame, or blemish: --I affirm there's not.
'All this you know--now mark what once befell,
With grief I bore it, and with shame I tell:
I was entrapp'd--yes, so it came to pass,
'Mid heathen rebels, a tumultuous class;
Each to his country bore a hellish mind,
Each like his neighbour was of cursed kind;
The land that nursed them, they blasphemed; the
Their sovereign's glory, and their country's cause:
And who their mouth, their master-fiend, and who
Rebellion's oracle?--You, catiff, you!'
He spoke, and standing stretch'd his mighty arm,
And fix'd the Man of Words, as by a charm.
'How raved that railer! Sure some hellish power
Restrain'd my tongue in that delirious hour,
Or I had hurl'd the shame and vengeance due
On him, the guide of that infuriate crew;
But to mine eyes, such dreadful looks appear'd,
Such mingled yell of lying words I heard,
That I conceived around were demons all,
And till I fled the house, I fear'd its fall.
'Oh! could our country from our coasts expel
Such foes! to nourish those who wish her well:
This her mild laws forbid, but we may still
From us eject them by our sovereign will;
This let us do.'--He said, and then began
A gentler feeling for the silent man;
E'en in our hero's mighty soul arose
A touch of pity for experienced woes;
But this was transient, and with angry eye
He sternly look'd, and paused for a reply.
'Twas then the Man of many Words would speak -
But, in his trial, had them all to seek:
To find a friend he look'd the circle round,
But joy or scorn in every feature found;
He sipp'd his wine, but in those times of dread
Wine only adds confusion to the head;
In doubt he reason'd with himself--'And how
Harangue at night, if I be silent now?'
From pride and praise received, he sought to draw
Courage to speak, but still remain'd the awe;
One moment rose he with a forced disdain,
And then, abash'd, sunk sadly down again;
While in our hero's glance he seem'd to read,
'Slave and insurgent! what hast thou to plead?'
By desperation urged, he now began:
'I seek no favour--I--the rights of man!
Claim; and I--nay!--but give me leave--and I
Insist--a man--that is--and in reply,
I speak,'--Alas! each new attempt was vain:
Confused he stood, he sate, he rose again;
At length he growl'd defiance, sought the door,
Cursed the whole synod, and was seen no more.
'Laud we,' said Justice Bolt, 'the Powers above:
Thus could our speech the sturdiest foe remove.'
Exulting now, he gain'd new strength of fame,
And lost all feelings of defeat and shame.
'He dared not strive, you witness'd--dared not
His voice, nor drive at his accursed drift:
So all shall tremble, wretches who oppose
Our Church or State--thus be it to our foes.'
He spoke, and, seated with his former air,
Look'd his full self, and fill'd his ample chair;
Took one full bumper to each favourite cause,
And dwelt all night on politics and laws,
With high applauding voice, that gain'd him high
- quotes about justice
- quotes about France
- quotes about language
- quotes about violence
- quotes about numbers
- quotes about worry
- quotes about countries
- quotes about friendship
I Heard Her Song
I’ve often been distracted
By the lights and sounds
Of many a pretty young thing
Sometimes I’ll offer my heart
Others just watch from a distance
The end result to this date
Remains a succession of losses
Opportunity and feelings wasted
I’ve seen those thoughts and feelings
Change over a thousand times
New love begin after the old has died
Or not died merely push aside
Left on the back burner of my life
Now another change has come
A new passion for a familiar face
We have always had a comfortable distance
Talked on occasion for a minute
Now I’m looking upon her differently
I’ve heard her song, who she is
A brilliant and beautiful soul
With a kind naivety I admire
She may well damn me
But I heard her song and my heart sang
A genuine Heart enkindle a sacred tears
our eyes, value the essence of forgiveness, the glittering
tears flown like crystal jade lives in our hearts, is a birth
mark of the soul
leave not my heart where my soul begins the journey that
brings my spirit to a wonderful day of my life
a forgiveness shared with the sacredness of my tears comes
from the inner chamber of my heart, will always be in your
soul, that mold you to understand, the meaning of passion
though everything is changing to believe, but a reason to
accept that something is of everything to know that, all is just
a learning process, that every one has to experience this
a miles away to reach my destination, but a steps to reach your
heart, the value of tears in my heart, live to begin the worth of
your life in my blameless soul, please take it for its only one,
only for you
my heart has made, the rainbow to remember, the rain that
flows in the turmoil of river, stream out to the ocean of mercy,
you have been there knowing my path to reach my ideal of
what is meant to live with you
what matter most is the tears that i offer, letting you to feel, that
every drops of sacred tears in my heart is a stairway to achieve
my forgiveness and the steps, i make is only.....only for..... you,
Becuz Of The Purple Rain...
gangsta whisphers... becuz of the rain.....
DEAR NBK MESSAGE(notebook message)
YOU SAW ME CRYING IN THE PURPLE RAIN
A GREEK GANGSTA FULL OF PAIN
FROM THAT MOMENT ON A FRIENDSHIP DID START
YOU KISSED AWAY MY PURPLE TEAR AND SHELTERED MY HEART
I BLESS THE DAY GOD SENT U FROM ABOVE
BUT GREW FEARFUL FOR I HAD FALLEN IN LOVE
I TOLD U THIS FEELING AND WAT DID U SAY
YOU SAID YOU WERE SORRY BUT U LIKED OR FRIENDSHIP AND THATS HOW IT WOULD FOREVER STAY
I CRIED ONCE AGAIN FOR A FRIENDSHIP I THOUGHT I HAD LOST
BUT U REACHED OUT UR HAND
AND YOU DANCED WITH ME IN THE SAND
YOU WHISPHERED IN MY EAR
AND SAID BABEE DONT HAVE THE FEAR
I LOVE U AND FOREVER ILL BE NEAR
I SAW THE CLOUDS ROLLING IN AND OH IT LOOKS LIKE PURPLE RAIN
AS IT IS I ALWAYS FIGHT FOR THE WELCOME CHANGE
WHEN IT RAINS IT POURS ON THIS GANGSTA HEART OF MINE
SO I TAKE THE STORMS I FEEL EACH TIME
BUT I KNOW I LIVE UNDER THE PURPLE RAIN
YET THE WATER AND MY HEART DONT CHANGE
I CAN WALK AWAY FROM WATEVER LURKS OVER HEAD
AND AWAY FROM MY STORM AND U WITH ALL WORDS LEFT UNSAID
ITS MY STORM AND ILL ALWAYS FEEL ALONE
I HOPE ONE DAY TO FIND MY WAY BACK HOME
ILL STAND IN THE PURPLE RAIN
AND ILL FOREVER SCREAM OUT UR NAME
THIS IS THE REAL ME
I LIVED ALL MY LIFE TO LOVE ANOTHERS HEART
EVEN KNOWING WE WOULD FOREVER BE APART
IF FOR A MOMENT U CAN LOVE ME FOR A DAY
YOU MAKE ALL THESE PURPLE CLOUDS GO AWAY
THE GREEK GANGSTA PRINCESS KIKI
The Young Princess -- A Ballad Of Old Laws Of Love
When the South sang like a nightingale
Above a bower in May,
The training of Love's vine of flame
Was writ in laws, for lord and dame
To say their yea and nay.
When the South sang like a nightingale
Across the flowering night,
And lord and dame held gentle sport,
There came a young princess to Court,
A frost of beauty white.
The South sang like a nightingale
To thaw her glittering dream:
No vine of Love her bosom gave,
She drank no wine of Love, but grave
She held them to Love's theme.
The South grew all a nightingale
Beneath a moon unmoved:
Like the banner of war she led them on;
She left them to lie, like the light that has gone
From wine-cups overproved.
When the South was a fervid nightingale,
And she a chilling moon,
'Twas pity to see on the garden swards,
Against Love's laws, those rival lords
As willow-wands lie strewn.
The South had throat of a nightingale
For her, the young princess:
She gave no vine of Love to rear,
Love's wine drank not, yet bent her ear
To themes of Love no less.
The lords of the Court they sighed heart-sick,
Heart-free Lord Dusiote laughed:
I prize her no more than a fling o' the dice,
But, or shame to my manhood, a lady of ice,
We master her by craft!
Heart-sick the lords of joyance yawned,
Lord Dusiote laughed heart-free:
I count her as much as a crack o' my thumb,
But, or shame of my manhood, to me she shall come
Like the bird to roost in the tree!
At dead of night when the palace-guard
Had passed the measured rounds,
The young princess awoke to feel
A shudder of blood at the crackle of steel
Within the garden-bounds.
It ceased, and she thought of whom was need,
The friar or the leech;
When lo, stood her tirewoman breathless by:
Lord Dusiote, madam, to death is nigh,
Of you he would have speech.
He prays you of your gentleness,
To light him to his dark end.
The princess rose, and forth she went,
For charity was her intent,
Devoutly to befriend.
Lord Dusiote hung on his good squire's arm,
The priest beside him knelt:
A weeping handkerchief was pressed
To stay the red flood at his breast,
And bid cold ladies melt.
O lady, though you are ice to men,
All pure to heaven as light
Within the dew within the flower,
Of you 'tis whispered that love has power
When secret is the night.
I have silenced the slanderers, peace to their souls!
Save one was too cunning for me.
I die, whose love is late avowed,
He lives, who boasts the lily has bowed
To the oath of a bended knee.
Lord Dusiote drew breath with pain,
And she with pain drew breath:
On him she looked, on his like above;
She flew in the folds of a marvel of love
Revealed to pass to death.
You are dying, O great-hearted lord,
You are dying for me, she cried;
O take my hand, O take my kiss,
And take of your right for love like this,
The vow that plights me bride.
She bade the priest recite his words
While hand in hand were they,
Lord Dusiote's soul to waft to bliss;
He had her hand, her vow, her kiss,
And his body was borne away.
Lord Dusiote sprang from priest and squire;
He gazed at her lighted room:
The laughter in his heart grew slack;
He knew not the force that pushed him back
From her and the morn in bloom.
Like a drowned man's length on the strong flood-tide,
Like the shade of a bird in the sun,
He fled from his lady whom he might claim
As ghost, and who made the daybeams flame
To scare what he had done.
There was grief at Court for one so gay,
Though he was a lord less keen
For training the vine than at vintage-press;
But in her soul the young princess
Believed that love had been.
Lord Dusiote fled the Court and land,
He crossed the woeful seas,
Till his traitorous doing seemed clearer to burn,
And the lady beloved drew his heart for return,
Like the banner of war in the breeze.
He neared the palace, he spied the Court,
And music he heard, and they told
Of foreign lords arrived to bring
The nuptial gifts of a bridegroom king
To the princess grave and cold.
The masque and the dance were cloud on wave,
And down the masque and the dance
Lord Dusiote stepped from dame to dame,
And to the young princess he came,
With a bow and a burning glance.
Do you take a new husband to-morrow, lady?
She shrank as at prick of steel.
Must the first yield place to the second, he sighed.
Her eyes were like the grave that is wide
For the corpse from head to heel.
My lady, my love, that little hand
Has mine ringed fast in plight:
I bear for your lips a lawful thirst,
And as justly the second should follow the first,
I come to your door this night.
If a ghost should come a ghost will go:
No more the lady said,
Save that ever when he in wrath began
To swear by the faith of a living man,
She answered him, You are dead.
The soft night-wind went laden to death
With smell of the orange in flower;
The light leaves prattled to neighbour ears;
The bird of the passion sang over his tears;
The night named hour by hour.
Sang loud, sang low the rapturous bird
Till the yellow hour was nigh,
Behind the folds of a darker cloud:
He chuckled, he sobbed, alow, aloud;
The voice between earth and sky.
O will you, will you, women are weak;
The proudest are yielding mates
For a forward foot and a tongue of fire:
So thought Lord Dusiote's trusty squire,
At watch by the palace-gates.
The song of the bird was wine in his blood,
And woman the odorous bloom:
His master's great adventure stirred
Within him to mingle the bloom and bird,
And morn ere its coming illume.
Beside him strangely a piece of the dark
Had moved, and the undertones
Of a priest in prayer, like a cavernous wave,
He heard, as were there a soul to save
For urgency now in the groans.
No priest was hired for the play this night:
And the squire tossed head like a deer
At sniff of the tainted wind; he gazed
Where cresset-lamps in a door were raised,
Belike on a passing bier.
All cloaked and masked, with naked blades,
That flashed of a judgement done,
The lords of the Court, from the palace-door,
Came issuing silently, bearers four,
And flat on their shoulders one.
They marched the body to squire and priest,
They lowered it sad to earth:
The priest they gave the burial dole,
Bade wrestle hourly for his soul,
Who was a lord of worth.
One said, farewell to a gallant knight!
And one, but a restless ghost!
'Tis a year and a day since in this place
He died, sped high by a lady of grace
To join the blissful host.
Not vainly on us she charged her cause,
The lady whom we revere
For faith in the mask of a love untrue
To the Love we honour, the Love her due,
The Love we have vowed to rear.
A trap for the sweet tooth, lures for the light,
For the fortress defiant a mine:
Right well! But not in the South, princess,
Shall the lady snared of her nobleness
Ever shamed or a captive pine.
When the South had voice of a nightingale
Above a Maying bower,
On the heights of Love walked radiant peers;
The bird of the passion sang over his tears
To the breeze and the orange-flower.
Heart From Eyes
The beloved lives to be loved.
What becomes of the beloved
when love is no longer in being?
How does a heart and body turn two different ways?
The heart turns to the beloved.
The eyes turn away.
This tearing goes on.
Heart from eyes. Distance lengthens.
I know time will cure it.
But right now...
Heart from eyes, heart from eyes, heart from eyes.
Only Peace Thrives
Only peace thrives
on the dreaming eye lids
of a toddling child
so nascent so fresh
as the drooling dews
on a quivering grass blade
as the first morning
of cool winter
Only peace thrives
no war no war-cry
only peace and peace thrives
a cow boy sings the song of joy
in a remote yet not far grass land
the innocence sleeps
nestling on the bed of roses
the frisky fragrance of love
the garland of motley hopes
touches his chin tenderly
he could see his God
the divine possibilities
with the dancing tune of nature
so close to his imbued heart
that is filled with
only joy and happiness.
no war no war cry
and only peace thrives.
Aproaching The New...the Unknown
it is not easy to save
or spare the years
itiis a tough business
ı have spared and saved so many years
once ı was a baby in a cradle
crying and seeking a refuge
in my mother bosom
then she was in flesh and blood
now she is gone and left me alone
fed up with me
resting in her grave
may be a skeleton ı fear and salute
ı have never known father too
thoughmy mother...my father
my sisters and my big brother
ı n a photocopy
of an ancient..old and faded photograph
my wife put in my sleeping room
my father was a veteran soldier
of our liberatı on war
now ı am grown up
becomı ng an old man
a ping pong ball
walking in stalk
sometimes with a walking stick
lost one of my hip
no bosom to cry
with nowhere to shelter
just me and myself
approaching where ı never know
cause ı have enough of years
when ı remember them each
comes from my heart and eyes
fearing the new of everything
it is 20 of december
no snow this year
even the season is faking
may be the end we are approaching
for the word
for the universe
or rather for me
never the less
life living worth
some say it is fall
some say it is spring
some say it is the end
but ı have enough of spared years
let the rest be yours
How fresh the Dartle's little waves that day!
A steely silver, underlined with blue,
And flashing where the round clouds, blown away,
Let drop the yellow sunshine to gleam through
And tip the edges of the waves with shifts
And spots of whitest fire, hard like gems
Cut from the midnight moon they were, and sharp
As wind through leafless stems.
The Lady Eunice walked between the drifts
Of blooming cherry-trees, and watched the rifts
Of clouds drawn through the river's azure warp.
Her little feet tapped softly down the path.
Her soul was listless; even the morning breeze
Fluttering the trees and strewing a light swath
Of fallen petals on the grass, could please
Her not at all. She brushed a hair aside
With a swift move, and a half-angry frown.
She stopped to pull a daffodil or two,
And held them to her gown
To test the colours; put them at her side,
Then at her breast, then loosened them and tried
Some new arrangement, but it would not do.
A lady in a Manor-house, alone,
Whose husband is in Flanders with the Duke
Of Marlborough and Prince Eugene, she's grown
Too apathetic even to rebuke
Her idleness. What is she on this Earth?
No woman surely, since she neither can
Be wed nor single, must not let her mind
Build thoughts upon a man
Except for hers. Indeed that were no dearth
Were her Lord here, for well she knew his worth,
And when she thought of him her eyes were kind.
Too lately wed to have forgot the wooing.
Too unaccustomed as a bride to feel
Other than strange delight at her wife's doing.
Even at the thought a gentle blush would steal
Over her face, and then her lips would frame
Some little word of loving, and her eyes
Would brim and spill their tears, when all they saw
Was the bright sun, slantwise
Through burgeoning trees, and all the morning's flame
Burning and quivering round her. With quick shame
She shut her heart and bent before the law.
He was a soldier, she was proud of that.
This was his house and she would keep it well.
His honour was in fighting, hers in what
He'd left her here in charge of. Then a spell
Of conscience sent her through the orchard spying
Upon the gardeners. Were their tools about?
Were any branches broken? Had the weeds
Been duly taken out
Under the 'spaliered pears, and were these lying
Nailed snug against the sunny bricks and drying
Their leaves and satisfying all their needs?
She picked a stone up with a little pout,
Stones looked so ill in well-kept flower-borders.
Where should she put it? All the paths about
Were strewn with fair, red gravel by her orders.
No stone could mar their sifted smoothness. So
She hurried to the river. At the edge
She stood a moment charmed by the swift blue
Beyond the river sedge.
She watched it curdling, crinkling, and the snow
Purfled upon its wave-tops. Then, 'Hullo,
My Beauty, gently, or you'll wriggle through.'
The Lady Eunice caught a willow spray
To save herself from tumbling in the shallows
Which rippled to her feet. Then straight away
She peered down stream among the budding sallows.
A youth in leather breeches and a shirt
Of finest broidered lawn lay out upon
An overhanging bole and deftly swayed
A well-hooked fish which shone
In the pale lemon sunshine like a spurt
Of silver, bowed and damascened, and girt
With crimson spots and moons which waned and played.
The fish hung circled for a moment, ringed
And bright; then flung itself out, a thin blade
Of spotted lightning, and its tail was winged
With chipped and sparkled sunshine. And the shade
Broke up and splintered into shafts of light
Wheeling about the fish, who churned the air
And made the fish-line hum, and bent the rod
Almost to snapping. Care
The young man took against the twigs, with slight,
Deft movements he kept fish and line in tight
Obedience to his will with every prod.
He lay there, and the fish hung just beyond.
He seemed uncertain what more he should do.
He drew back, pulled the rod to correspond,
Tossed it and caught it; every time he threw,
He caught it nearer to the point. At last
The fish was near enough to touch. He paused.
Eunice knew well the craft - 'What's got the thing!'
She cried. 'What can have caused -
Where is his net? The moment will be past.
The fish will wriggle free.' She stopped aghast.
He turned and bowed. One arm was in a sling.
The broad, black ribbon she had thought his basket
Must hang from, held instead a useless arm.
'I do not wonder, Madam, that you ask it.'
He smiled, for she had spoke aloud. 'The charm
Of trout fishing is in my eyes enhanced
When you must play your fish on land as well.'
'How will you take him?' Eunice asked. 'In truth
I really cannot tell.
'Twas stupid of me, but it simply chanced
I never thought of that until he glanced
Into the branches. 'Tis a bit uncouth.'
He watched the fish against the blowing sky,
Writhing and glittering, pulling at the line.
'The hook is fast, I might just let him die,'
He mused. 'But that would jar against your fine
Sense of true sportsmanship, I know it would,'
Cried Eunice. 'Let me do it.' Swift and light
She ran towards him. 'It is so long now
Since I have felt a bite,
I lost all heart for everything.' She stood,
Supple and strong, beside him, and her blood
Tingled her lissom body to a glow.
She quickly seized the fish and with a stone
Ended its flurry, then removed the hook,
Untied the fly with well-poised fingers. Done,
She asked him where he kept his fishing-book.
He pointed to a coat flung on the ground.
She searched the pockets, found a shagreen case,
Replaced the fly, noticed a golden stamp
Filling the middle space.
Two letters half rubbed out were there, and round
About them gay rococo flowers wound
And tossed a spray of roses to the clamp.
The Lady Eunice puzzled over these.
'G. D.' the young man gravely said. 'My name
Is Gervase Deane. Your servant, if you please.'
'Oh, Sir, indeed I know you, for your fame
For exploits in the field has reached my ears.
I did not know you wounded and returned.'
'But just come back, Madam. A silly prick
To gain me such unearned
Holiday making. And you, it appears,
Must be Sir Everard's lady. And my fears
At being caught a-trespassing were quick.'
He looked so rueful that she laughed out loud.
'You are forgiven, Mr. Deane. Even more,
I offer you the fishing, and am proud
That you should find it pleasant from this shore.
Nobody fishes now, my husband used
To angle daily, and I too with him.
He loved the spotted trout, and pike, and dace.
He even had a whim
That flies my fingers tied swiftly confused
The greater fish. And he must be excused,
Love weaves odd fancies in a lonely place.'
She sighed because it seemed so long ago,
Those days with Everard; unthinking took
The path back to the orchard. Strolling so
She walked, and he beside her. In a nook
Where a stone seat withdrew beneath low boughs,
Full-blossomed, hummed with bees, they sat them down.
She questioned him about the war, the share
Her husband had, and grown
Eager by his clear answers, straight allows
Her hidden hopes and fears to speak, and rouse
Her numbed love, which had slumbered unaware.
Under the orchard trees daffodils danced
And jostled, turning sideways to the wind.
A dropping cherry petal softly glanced
Over her hair, and slid away behind.
At the far end through twisted cherry-trees
The old house glowed, geranium-hued, with bricks
Bloomed in the sun like roses, low and long,
Gabled, and with quaint tricks
Of chimneys carved and fretted. Out of these
Grey smoke was shaken, which the faint Spring breeze
Tossed into nothing. Then a thrush's song
Needled its way through sound of bees and river.
The notes fell, round and starred, between young leaves,
Trilled to a spiral lilt, stopped on a quiver.
The Lady Eunice listens and believes.
Gervase has many tales of her dear Lord,
His bravery, his knowledge, his charmed life.
She quite forgets who's speaking in the gladness
Of being this man's wife.
Gervase is wounded, grave indeed, the word
Is kindly said, but to a softer chord
She strings her voice to ask with wistful sadness,
'And is Sir Everard still unscathed? I fain
Would know the truth.' 'Quite well, dear Lady, quite.'
She smiled in her content. 'So many slain,
You must forgive me for a little fright.'
And he forgave her, not alone for that,
But because she was fingering his heart,
Pressing and squeezing it, and thinking so
Only to ease her smart
Of painful, apprehensive longing. At
Their feet the river swirled and chucked. They sat
An hour there. The thrush flew to and fro.
The Lady Eunice supped alone that day,
As always since Sir Everard had gone,
In the oak-panelled parlour, whose array
Of faded portraits in carved mouldings shone.
Warriors and ladies, armoured, ruffed, peruked.
Van Dykes with long, slim fingers; Holbeins, stout
And heavy-featured; and one Rubens dame,
A peony just burst out,
With flaunting, crimson flesh. Eunice rebuked
Her thoughts of gentler blood, when these had duked
It with the best, and scorned to change their name.
A sturdy family, and old besides,
Much older than her own, the Earls of Crowe.
Since Saxon days, these men had sought their brides
Among the highest born, but always so,
Taking them to themselves, their wealth, their lands,
But never their titles. Stern perhaps, but strong,
The Framptons fed their blood from richest streams,
Scorning the common throng.
Gazing upon these men, she understands
The toughness of the web wrought from such strands
And pride of Everard colours all her dreams.
Eunice forgets to eat, watching their faces
Flickering in the wind-blown candle's shine.
Blue-coated lackeys tiptoe to their places,
And set out plates of fruit and jugs of wine.
The table glitters black like Winter ice.
The Dartle's rushing, and the gentle clash
Of blossomed branches, drifts into her ears.
And through the casement sash
She sees each cherry stem a pointed slice
Of splintered moonlight, topped with all the spice
And shimmer of the blossoms it uprears.
'In such a night -' she laid the book aside,
She could outnight the poet by thinking back.
In such a night she came here as a bride.
The date was graven in the almanack
Of her clasped memory. In this very room
Had Everard uncloaked her. On this seat
Had drawn her to him, bade her note the trees,
How white they were and sweet
And later, coming to her, her dear groom,
Her Lord, had lain beside her in the gloom
Of moon and shade, and whispered her to ease.
Her little taper made the room seem vast,
Caverned and empty. And her beating heart
Rapped through the silence all about her cast
Like some loud, dreadful death-watch taking part
In this sad vigil. Slowly she undrest,
Put out the light and crept into her bed.
The linen sheets were fragrant, but so cold.
And brimming tears she shed,
Sobbing and quivering in her barren nest,
Her weeping lips into the pillow prest,
Her eyes sealed fast within its smothering fold.
The morning brought her a more stoic mind,
And sunshine struck across the polished floor.
She wondered whether this day she should find
Gervase a-fishing, and so listen more,
Much more again, to all he had to tell.
And he was there, but waiting to begin
Until she came. They fished awhile, then went
To the old seat within
The cherry's shade. He pleased her very well
By his discourse. But ever he must dwell
Upon Sir Everard. Each incident
Must be related and each term explained.
How troops were set in battle, how a siege
Was ordered and conducted. She complained
Because he bungled at the fall of Liege.
The curious names of parts of forts she knew,
And aired with conscious pride her ravelins,
And counterscarps, and lunes. The day drew on,
And his dead fish's fins
In the hot sunshine turned a mauve-green hue.
At last Gervase, guessing the hour, withdrew.
But she sat long in still oblivion.
Then he would bring her books, and read to her
The poems of Dr. Donne, and the blue river
Would murmur through the reading, and a stir
Of birds and bees make the white petals shiver,
And one or two would flutter prone and lie
Spotting the smooth-clipped grass. The days went by
Threaded with talk and verses. Green leaves pushed
Through blossoms stubbornly.
Gervase, unconscious of dishonesty,
Fell into strong and watchful loving, free
He thought, since always would his lips be hushed.
But lips do not stay silent at command,
And Gervase strove in vain to order his.
Luckily Eunice did not understand
That he but read himself aloud, for this
Their friendship would have snapped. She treated him
And spoilt him like a brother. It was now
'Gervase' and 'Eunice' with them, and he dined
Whenever she'd allow,
In the oak parlour, underneath the dim
Old pictured Framptons, opposite her slim
Figure, so bright against the chair behind.
Eunice was happier than she had been
For many days, and yet the hours were long.
All Gervase told to her but made her lean
More heavily upon the past. Among
Her hopes she lived, even when she was giving
Her morning orders, even when she twined
Nosegays to deck her parlours. With the thought
Of Everard, her mind
Solaced its solitude, and in her striving
To do as he would wish was all her living.
She welcomed Gervase for the news he brought.
Black-hearts and white-hearts, bubbled with the sun,
Hid in their leaves and knocked against each other.
Eunice was standing, panting with her run
Up to the tool-house just to get another
Basket. All those which she had brought were filled,
And still Gervase pelted her from above.
The buckles of his shoes flashed higher and higher
Until his shoulders strove
Quite through the top. 'Eunice, your spirit's filled
This tree. White-hearts!' He shook, and cherries spilled
And spat out from the leaves like falling fire.
The wide, sun-winged June morning spread itself
Over the quiet garden. And they packed
Full twenty baskets with the fruit. 'My shelf
Of cordials will be stored with what it lacked.
In future, none of us will drink strong ale,
But cherry-brandy.' 'Vastly good, I vow,'
And Gervase gave the tree another shake.
The cherries seemed to flow
Out of the sky in cloudfuls, like blown hail.
Swift Lady Eunice ran, her farthingale,
Unnoticed, tangling in a fallen rake.
She gave a little cry and fell quite prone
In the long grass, and lay there very still.
Gervase leapt from the tree at her soft moan,
And kneeling over her, with clumsy skill
Unloosed her bodice, fanned her with his hat,
And his unguarded lips pronounced his heart.
'Eunice, my Dearest Girl, where are you hurt?'
His trembling fingers dart
Over her limbs seeking some wound. She strove
To answer, opened wide her eyes, above
Her knelt Sir Everard, with face alert.
Her eyelids fell again at that sweet sight,
'My Love!' she murmured, 'Dearest! Oh, my Dear!'
He took her in his arms and bore her right
And tenderly to the old seat, and 'Here
I have you mine at last,' she said, and swooned
Under his kisses. When she came once more
To sight of him, she smiled in comfort knowing
Herself laid as before
Close covered on his breast. And all her glowing
Youth answered him, and ever nearer growing
She twined him in her arms and soft festooned
Herself about him like a flowering vine,
Drawing his lips to cling upon her own.
A ray of sunlight pierced the leaves to shine
Where her half-opened bodice let be shown
Her white throat fluttering to his soft caress,
Half-gasping with her gladness. And her pledge
She whispers, melting with delight. A twig
Snaps in the hornbeam hedge.
A cackling laugh tears through the quietness.
Eunice starts up in terrible distress.
'My God! What's that?' Her staring eyes are big.
Revulsed emotion set her body shaking
As though she had an ague. Gervase swore,
Jumped to his feet in such a dreadful taking
His face was ghastly with the look it wore.
Crouching and slipping through the trees, a man
In worn, blue livery, a humpbacked thing,
Made off. But turned every few steps to gaze
At Eunice, and to fling
Vile looks and gestures back. 'The ruffian!
By Christ's Death! I will split him to a span
Of hog's thongs.' She grasped at his sleeve, 'Gervase!
What are you doing here? Put down that sword,
That's only poor old Tony, crazed and lame.
We never notice him. With my dear Lord
I ought not to have minded that he came.
But, Gervase, it surprises me that you
Should so lack grace to stay here.' With one hand
She held her gaping bodice to conceal
Her breast. 'I must demand
Your instant absence. Everard, but new
Returned, will hardly care for guests. Adieu.'
'Eunice, you're mad.' His brain began to reel.
He tried again to take her, tried to twist
Her arms about him. Truly, she had said
Nothing should ever part them. In a mist
She pushed him from her, clasped her aching head
In both her hands, and rocked and sobbed aloud.
'Oh! Where is Everard? What does this mean?
So lately come to leave me thus alone!'
But Gervase had not seen
Sir Everard. Then, gently, to her bowed
And sickening spirit, he told of her proud
Surrender to him. He could hear her moan.
Then shame swept over her and held her numb,
Hiding her anguished face against the seat.
At last she rose, a woman stricken - dumb -
And trailed away with slowly-dragging feet.
Gervase looked after her, but feared to pass
The barrier set between them. All his rare
Joy broke to fragments - worse than that, unreal.
And standing lonely there,
His swollen heart burst out, and on the grass
He flung himself and wept. He knew, alas!
The loss so great his life could never heal.
For days thereafter Eunice lived retired,
Waited upon by one old serving-maid.
She would not leave her chamber, and desired
Only to hide herself. She was afraid
Of what her eyes might trick her into seeing,
Of what her longing urge her then to do.
What was this dreadful illness solitude
Had tortured her into?
Her hours went by in a long constant fleeing
The thought of that one morning. And her being
Bruised itself on a happening so rude.
It grew ripe Summer, when one morning came
Her tirewoman with a letter, printed
Upon the seal were the Deane crest and name.
With utmost gentleness, the letter hinted
His understanding and his deep regret.
But would she not permit him once again
To pay her his profound respects? No word
Of what had passed should pain
Her resolution. Only let them get
Back the old comradeship. Her eyes were wet
With starting tears, now truly she deplored
His misery. Yes, she was wrong to keep
Away from him. He hardly was to blame.
'Twas she - she shuddered and began to weep.
'Twas her fault! Hers! Her everlasting shame
Was that she suffered him, whom not at all
She loved. Poor Boy! Yes, they must still be friends.
She owed him that to keep the balance straight.
It was such poor amends
Which she could make for rousing hopes to gall
Him with their unfulfilment. Tragical
It was, and she must leave him desolate.
Hard silence he had forced upon his lips
For long and long, and would have done so still
Had not she - here she pressed her finger tips
Against her heavy eyes. Then with forced will
She wrote that he might come, sealed with the arms
Of Crowe and Frampton twined. Her heart felt lighter
When this was done. It seemed her constant care
Might some day cease to fright her.
Illness could be no crime, and dreadful harms
Did come from too much sunshine. Her alarms
Would lessen when she saw him standing there,
Simple and kind, a brother just returned
From journeying, and he would treat her so.
She knew his honest heart, and if there burned
A spark in it he would not let it show.
But when he really came, and stood beside
Her underneath the fruitless cherry boughs,
He seemed a tired man, gaunt, leaden-eyed.
He made her no more vows,
Nor did he mention one thing he had tried
To put into his letter. War supplied
Him topics. And his mind seemed occupied.
Daily they met. And gravely walked and talked.
He read her no more verses, and he stayed
Only until their conversation, balked
Of every natural channel, fled dismayed.
Again the next day she would meet him, trying
To give her tone some healthy sprightliness,
But his uneager dignity soon chilled
Her well-prepared address.
Thus Summer waned, and in the mornings, crying
Of wild geese startled Eunice, and their flying
Whirred overhead for days and never stilled.
One afternoon of grey clouds and white wind,
Eunice awaited Gervase by the river.
The Dartle splashed among the reeds and whined
Over the willow-roots, and a long sliver
Of caked and slobbered foam crept up the bank.
All through the garden, drifts of skirling leaves
Blew up, and settled down, and blew again.
The cherry-trees were weaves
Of empty, knotted branches, and a dank
Mist hid the house, mouldy it smelt and rank
With sodden wood, and still unfalling rain.
Eunice paced up and down. No joy she took
At meeting Gervase, but the custom grown
Still held her. He was late. She sudden shook,
And caught at her stopped heart. Her eyes had shown
Sir Everard emerging from the mist.
His uniform was travel-stained and torn,
His jackboots muddy, and his eager stride
Jangled his spurs. A thorn
Entangled, trailed behind him. To the tryst
He hastened. Eunice shuddered, ran - a twist
Round a sharp turning and she fled to hide.
But he had seen her as she swiftly ran,
A flash of white against the river's grey.
'Eunice,' he called. 'My Darling. Eunice. Can
You hear me? It is Everard. All day
I have been riding like the very devil
To reach you sooner. Are you startled, Dear?'
He broke into a run and followed her,
And caught her, faint with fear,
Cowering and trembling as though she some evil
Spirit were seeing. 'What means this uncivil
Greeting, Dear Heart?' He saw her senses blur.
Swaying and catching at the seat, she tried
To speak, but only gurgled in her throat.
At last, straining to hold herself, she cried
To him for pity, and her strange words smote
A coldness through him, for she begged Gervase
To leave her, 'twas too much a second time.
Gervase must go, always Gervase, her mind
Repeated like a rhyme
This name he did not know. In sad amaze
He watched her, and that hunted, fearful gaze,
So unremembering and so unkind.
Softly he spoke to her, patiently dealt
With what he feared her madness. By and by
He pierced her understanding. Then he knelt
Upon the seat, and took her hands: 'Now try
To think a minute I am come, my Dear,
Unharmed and back on furlough. Are you glad
To have your lover home again? To me,
Pickthorn has never had
A greater pleasantness. Could you not bear
To come and sit awhile beside me here?
A stone between us surely should not be.'
She smiled a little wan and ravelled smile,
Then came to him and on his shoulder laid
Her head, and they two rested there awhile,
Each taking comfort. Not a word was said.
But when he put his hand upon her breast
And felt her beating heart, and with his lips
Sought solace for her and himself. She started
As one sharp lashed with whips,
And pushed him from her, moaning, his dumb quest
Denied and shuddered from. And he, distrest,
Loosened his wife, and long they sat there, parted.
Eunice was very quiet all that day,
A little dazed, and yet she seemed content.
At candle-time, he asked if she would play
Upon her harpsichord, at once she went
And tinkled airs from Lully's `Carnival'
And `Bacchus', newly brought away from France.
Then jaunted through a lively rigadoon
To please him with a dance
By Purcell, for he said that surely all
Good Englishmen had pride in national
Accomplishment. But tiring of it soon
He whispered her that if she had forgiven
His startling her that afternoon, the clock
Marked early bed-time. Surely it was Heaven
He entered when she opened to his knock.
The hours rustled in the trailing wind
Over the chimney. Close they lay and knew
Only that they were wedded. At his touch
Anxiety she threw
Away like a shed garment, and inclined
Herself to cherish him, her happy mind
Quivering, unthinking, loving overmuch.
Eunice lay long awake in the cool night
After her husband slept. She gazed with joy
Into the shadows, painting them with bright
Pictures of all her future life's employ.
Twin gems they were, set to a single jewel,
Each shining with the other. Soft she turned
And felt his breath upon her hair, and prayed
Her happiness was earned.
Past Earls of Crowe should give their blood for fuel
To light this Frampton's hearth-fire. By no cruel
Affrightings would she ever be dismayed.
When Everard, next day, asked her in joke
What name it was that she had called him by,
She told him of Gervase, and as she spoke
She hardly realized it was a lie.
Her vision she related, but she hid
The fondness into which she had been led.
Sir Everard just laughed and pinched her ear,
And quite out of her head
The matter drifted. Then Sir Everard chid
Himself for laziness, and off he rid
To see his men and count his farming-gear.
At supper he seemed overspread with gloom,
But gave no reason why, he only asked
More questions of Gervase, and round the room
He walked with restless strides. At last he tasked
Her with a greater feeling for this man
Than she had given. Eunice quick denied
The slightest interest other than a friend
Might claim. But he replied
He thought she underrated. Then a ban
He put on talk and music. He'd a plan
To work at, draining swamps at Pickthorn End.
Next morning Eunice found her Lord still changed,
Hard and unkind, with bursts of anger. Pride
Kept him from speaking out. His probings ranged
All round his torment. Lady Eunice tried
To sooth him. So a week went by, and then
His anguish flooded over; with clenched hands
Striving to stem his words, he told her plain
Tony had seen them, 'brands
Burning in Hell,' the man had said. Again
Eunice described her vision, and how when
Awoke at last she had known dreadful pain.
He could not credit it, and misery fed
Upon his spirit, day by day it grew.
To Gervase he forbade the house, and led
The Lady Eunice such a life she flew
At his approaching footsteps. Winter came
Snowing and blustering through the Manor trees.
All the roof-edges spiked with icicles
In fluted companies.
The Lady Eunice with her tambour-frame
Kept herself sighing company. The flame
Of the birch fire glittered on the walls.
A letter was brought to her as she sat,
Unsealed, unsigned. It told her that his wound,
The writer's, had so well recovered that
To join his regiment he felt him bound.
But would she not wish him one short 'Godspeed',
He asked no more. Her greeting would suffice.
He had resolved he never should return.
Would she this sacrifice
Make for a dying man? How could she read
The rest! But forcing her eyes to the deed,
She read. Then dropped it in the fire to burn.
Gervase had set the river for their meeting
As farthest from the farms where Everard
Spent all his days. How should he know such cheating
Was quite expected, at least no dullard
Was Everard Frampton. Hours by hours he hid
Among the willows watching. Dusk had come,
And from the Manor he had long been gone.
Eunice her burdensome
Task set about. Hooded and cloaked, she slid
Over the slippery paths, and soon amid
The sallows saw a boat tied to a stone.
Gervase arose, and kissed her hand, then pointed
Into the boat. She shook her head, but he
Begged her to realize why, and with disjointed
Words told her of what peril there might be
From listeners along the river bank.
A push would take them out of earshot. Ten
Minutes was all he asked, then she should land,
He go away again,
Forever this time. Yet how could he thank
Her for so much compassion. Here she sank
Upon a thwart, and bid him quick unstrand
His boat. He cast the rope, and shoved the keel
Free of the gravel; jumped, and dropped beside
Her; took the oars, and they began to steal
Under the overhanging trees. A wide
Gash of red lantern-light cleft like a blade
Into the gloom, and struck on Eunice sitting
Rigid and stark upon the after thwart.
It blazed upon their flitting
In merciless light. A moment so it stayed,
Then was extinguished, and Sir Everard made
One leap, and landed just a fraction short.
His weight upon the gunwale tipped the boat
To straining balance. Everard lurched and seized
His wife and held her smothered to his coat.
'Everard, loose me, we shall drown -' and squeezed
Against him, she beat with her hands. He gasped
'Never, by God!' The slidden boat gave way
And the black foamy water split - and met.
Bubbled up through the spray
A wailing rose and in the branches rasped,
And creaked, and stilled. Over the treetops, clasped
In the blue evening, a clear moon was set.
They lie entangled in the twisting roots,
Embraced forever. Their cold marriage bed
Close-canopied and curtained by the shoots
Of willows and pale birches. At the head,
White lilies, like still swans, placidly float
And sway above the pebbles. Here are waves
Sun-smitten for a threaded counterpane
Gold-woven on their graves.
In perfect quietness they sleep, remote
In the green, rippled twilight. Death has smote
Them to perpetual oneness who were twain.
Endymion: Book I
A Poetic Romance.
"THE STRETCHED METRE OF AN AN ANTIQUE SONG."
INSCRIBED TO THE MEMORY OF THOMAS CHATTERTON.
A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:
Its loveliness increases; it will never
Pass into nothingness; but still will keep
A bower quiet for us, and a sleep
Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.
Therefore, on every morrow, are we wreathing
A flowery band to bind us to the earth,
Spite of despondence, of the inhuman dearth
Of noble natures, of the gloomy days,
Of all the unhealthy and o'er-darkened ways
Made for our searching: yes, in spite of all,
Some shape of beauty moves away the pall
From our dark spirits. Such the sun, the moon,
Trees old and young, sprouting a shady boon
For simple sheep; and such are daffodils
With the green world they live in; and clear rills
That for themselves a cooling covert make
'Gainst the hot season; the mid forest brake,
Rich with a sprinkling of fair musk-rose blooms:
And such too is the grandeur of the dooms
We have imagined for the mighty dead;
All lovely tales that we have heard or read:
An endless fountain of immortal drink,
Pouring unto us from the heaven's brink.
Nor do we merely feel these essences
For one short hour; no, even as the trees
That whisper round a temple become soon
Dear as the temple's self, so does the moon,
The passion poesy, glories infinite,
Haunt us till they become a cheering light
Unto our souls, and bound to us so fast,
That, whether there be shine, or gloom o'ercast,
They alway must be with us, or we die.
Therefore, 'tis with full happiness that I
Will trace the story of Endymion.
The very music of the name has gone
Into my being, and each pleasant scene
Is growing fresh before me as the green
Of our own vallies: so I will begin
Now while I cannot hear the city's din;
Now while the early budders are just new,
And run in mazes of the youngest hue
About old forests; while the willow trails
Its delicate amber; and the dairy pails
Bring home increase of milk. And, as the year
Grows lush in juicy stalks, I'll smoothly steer
My little boat, for many quiet hours,
With streams that deepen freshly into bowers.
Many and many a verse I hope to write,
Before the daisies, vermeil rimm'd and white,
Hide in deep herbage; and ere yet the bees
Hum about globes of clover and sweet peas,
I must be near the middle of my story.
O may no wintry season, bare and hoary,
See it half finished: but let Autumn bold,
With universal tinge of sober gold,
Be all about me when I make an end.
And now at once, adventuresome, I send
My herald thought into a wilderness:
There let its trumpet blow, and quickly dress
My uncertain path with green, that I may speed
Easily onward, thorough flowers and weed.
Upon the sides of Latmos was outspread
A mighty forest; for the moist earth fed
So plenteously all weed-hidden roots
Into o'er-hanging boughs, and precious fruits.
And it had gloomy shades, sequestered deep,
Where no man went; and if from shepherd's keep
A lamb strayed far a-down those inmost glens,
Never again saw he the happy pens
Whither his brethren, bleating with content,
Over the hills at every nightfall went.
Among the shepherds, 'twas believed ever,
That not one fleecy lamb which thus did sever
From the white flock, but pass'd unworried
By angry wolf, or pard with prying head,
Until it came to some unfooted plains
Where fed the herds of Pan: ay great his gains
Who thus one lamb did lose. Paths there were many,
Winding through palmy fern, and rushes fenny,
And ivy banks; all leading pleasantly
To a wide lawn, whence one could only see
Stems thronging all around between the swell
Of turf and slanting branches: who could tell
The freshness of the space of heaven above,
Edg'd round with dark tree tops? through which a dove
Would often beat its wings, and often too
A little cloud would move across the blue.
Full in the middle of this pleasantness
There stood a marble altar, with a tress
Of flowers budded newly; and the dew
Had taken fairy phantasies to strew
Daisies upon the sacred sward last eve,
And so the dawned light in pomp receive.
For 'twas the morn: Apollo's upward fire
Made every eastern cloud a silvery pyre
Of brightness so unsullied, that therein
A melancholy spirit well might win
Oblivion, and melt out his essence fine
Into the winds: rain-scented eglantine
Gave temperate sweets to that well-wooing sun;
The lark was lost in him; cold springs had run
To warm their chilliest bubbles in the grass;
Man's voice was on the mountains; and the mass
Of nature's lives and wonders puls'd tenfold,
To feel this sun-rise and its glories old.
Now while the silent workings of the dawn
Were busiest, into that self-same lawn
All suddenly, with joyful cries, there sped
A troop of little children garlanded;
Who gathering round the altar, seemed to pry
Earnestly round as wishing to espy
Some folk of holiday: nor had they waited
For many moments, ere their ears were sated
With a faint breath of music, which ev'n then
Fill'd out its voice, and died away again.
Within a little space again it gave
Its airy swellings, with a gentle wave,
To light-hung leaves, in smoothest echoes breaking
Through copse-clad vallies,--ere their death, oer-taking
The surgy murmurs of the lonely sea.
And now, as deep into the wood as we
Might mark a lynx's eye, there glimmered light
Fair faces and a rush of garments white,
Plainer and plainer shewing, till at last
Into the widest alley they all past,
Making directly for the woodland altar.
O kindly muse! let not my weak tongue faulter
In telling of this goodly company,
Of their old piety, and of their glee:
But let a portion of ethereal dew
Fall on my head, and presently unmew
My soul; that I may dare, in wayfaring,
To stammer where old Chaucer used to sing.
Leading the way, young damsels danced along,
Bearing the burden of a shepherd song;
Each having a white wicker over brimm'd
With April's tender younglings: next, well trimm'd,
A crowd of shepherds with as sunburnt looks
As may be read of in Arcadian books;
Such as sat listening round Apollo's pipe,
When the great deity, for earth too ripe,
Let his divinity o'er-flowing die
In music, through the vales of Thessaly:
Some idly trailed their sheep-hooks on the ground,
And some kept up a shrilly mellow sound
With ebon-tipped flutes: close after these,
Now coming from beneath the forest trees,
A venerable priest full soberly,
Begirt with ministring looks: alway his eye
Stedfast upon the matted turf he kept,
And after him his sacred vestments swept.
From his right hand there swung a vase, milk-white,
Of mingled wine, out-sparkling generous light;
And in his left he held a basket full
Of all sweet herbs that searching eye could cull:
Wild thyme, and valley-lilies whiter still
Than Leda's love, and cresses from the rill.
His aged head, crowned with beechen wreath,
Seem'd like a poll of ivy in the teeth
Of winter hoar. Then came another crowd
Of shepherds, lifting in due time aloud
Their share of the ditty. After them appear'd,
Up-followed by a multitude that rear'd
Their voices to the clouds, a fair wrought car,
Easily rolling so as scarce to mar
The freedom of three steeds of dapple brown:
Who stood therein did seem of great renown
Among the throng. His youth was fully blown,
Shewing like Ganymede to manhood grown;
And, for those simple times, his garments were
A chieftain king's: beneath his breast, half bare,
Was hung a silver bugle, and between
His nervy knees there lay a boar-spear keen.
A smile was on his countenance; he seem'd,
To common lookers on, like one who dream'd
Of idleness in groves Elysian:
But there were some who feelingly could scan
A lurking trouble in his nether lip,
And see that oftentimes the reins would slip
Through his forgotten hands: then would they sigh,
And think of yellow leaves, of owlets cry,
Of logs piled solemnly.--Ah, well-a-day,
Why should our young Endymion pine away!
Soon the assembly, in a circle rang'd,
Stood silent round the shrine: each look was chang'd
To sudden veneration: women meek
Beckon'd their sons to silence; while each cheek
Of virgin bloom paled gently for slight fear.
Endymion too, without a forest peer,
Stood, wan, and pale, and with an awed face,
Among his brothers of the mountain chase.
In midst of all, the venerable priest
Eyed them with joy from greatest to the least,
And, after lifting up his aged hands,
Thus spake he: "Men of Latmos! shepherd bands!
Whose care it is to guard a thousand flocks:
Whether descended from beneath the rocks
That overtop your mountains; whether come
From vallies where the pipe is never dumb;
Or from your swelling downs, where sweet air stirs
Blue hare-bells lightly, and where prickly furze
Buds lavish gold; or ye, whose precious charge
Nibble their fill at ocean's very marge,
Whose mellow reeds are touch'd with sounds forlorn
By the dim echoes of old Triton's horn:
Mothers and wives! who day by day prepare
The scrip, with needments, for the mountain air;
And all ye gentle girls who foster up
Udderless lambs, and in a little cup
Will put choice honey for a favoured youth:
Yea, every one attend! for in good truth
Our vows are wanting to our great god Pan.
Are not our lowing heifers sleeker than
Night-swollen mushrooms? Are not our wide plains
Speckled with countless fleeces? Have not rains
Green'd over April's lap? No howling sad
Sickens our fearful ewes; and we have had
Great bounty from Endymion our lord.
The earth is glad: the merry lark has pour'd
His early song against yon breezy sky,
That spreads so clear o'er our solemnity."
Thus ending, on the shrine he heap'd a spire
Of teeming sweets, enkindling sacred fire;
Anon he stain'd the thick and spongy sod
With wine, in honour of the shepherd-god.
Now while the earth was drinking it, and while
Bay leaves were crackling in the fragrant pile,
And gummy frankincense was sparkling bright
'Neath smothering parsley, and a hazy light
Spread greyly eastward, thus a chorus sang:
"O THOU, whose mighty palace roof doth hang
From jagged trunks, and overshadoweth
Eternal whispers, glooms, the birth, life, death
Of unseen flowers in heavy peacefulness;
Who lov'st to see the hamadryads dress
Their ruffled locks where meeting hazels darken;
And through whole solemn hours dost sit, and hearken
The dreary melody of bedded reeds--
In desolate places, where dank moisture breeds
The pipy hemlock to strange overgrowth;
Bethinking thee, how melancholy loth
Thou wast to lose fair Syrinx--do thou now,
By thy love's milky brow!
By all the trembling mazes that she ran,
Hear us, great Pan!
"O thou, for whose soul-soothing quiet, turtles
Passion their voices cooingly 'mong myrtles,
What time thou wanderest at eventide
Through sunny meadows, that outskirt the side
Of thine enmossed realms: O thou, to whom
Broad leaved fig trees even now foredoom
Their ripen'd fruitage; yellow girted bees
Their golden honeycombs; our village leas
Their fairest-blossom'd beans and poppied corn;
The chuckling linnet its five young unborn,
To sing for thee; low creeping strawberries
Their summer coolness; pent up butterflies
Their freckled wings; yea, the fresh budding year
All its completions--be quickly near,
By every wind that nods the mountain pine,
O forester divine!
"Thou, to whom every fawn and satyr flies
For willing service; whether to surprise
The squatted hare while in half sleeping fit;
Or upward ragged precipices flit
To save poor lambkins from the eagle's maw;
Or by mysterious enticement draw
Bewildered shepherds to their path again;
Or to tread breathless round the frothy main,
And gather up all fancifullest shells
For thee to tumble into Naiads' cells,
And, being hidden, laugh at their out-peeping;
Or to delight thee with fantastic leaping,
The while they pelt each other on the crown
With silvery oak apples, and fir cones brown--
By all the echoes that about thee ring,
Hear us, O satyr king!
"O Hearkener to the loud clapping shears,
While ever and anon to his shorn peers
A ram goes bleating: Winder of the horn,
When snouted wild-boars routing tender corn
Anger our huntsman: Breather round our farms,
To keep off mildews, and all weather harms:
Strange ministrant of undescribed sounds,
That come a swooning over hollow grounds,
And wither drearily on barren moors:
Dread opener of the mysterious doors
Leading to universal knowledge--see,
Great son of Dryope,
The many that are come to pay their vows
With leaves about their brows!
Be still the unimaginable lodge
For solitary thinkings; such as dodge
Conception to the very bourne of heaven,
Then leave the naked brain: be still the leaven,
That spreading in this dull and clodded earth
Gives it a touch ethereal--a new birth:
Be still a symbol of immensity;
A firmament reflected in a sea;
An element filling the space between;
An unknown--but no more: we humbly screen
With uplift hands our foreheads, lowly bending,
And giving out a shout most heaven rending,
Conjure thee to receive our humble Paean,
Upon thy Mount Lycean!
Even while they brought the burden to a close,
A shout from the whole multitude arose,
That lingered in the air like dying rolls
Of abrupt thunder, when Ionian shoals
Of dolphins bob their noses through the brine.
Meantime, on shady levels, mossy fine,
Young companies nimbly began dancing
To the swift treble pipe, and humming string.
Aye, those fair living forms swam heavenly
To tunes forgotten--out of memory:
Fair creatures! whose young children's children bred
Thermopylæ its heroes--not yet dead,
But in old marbles ever beautiful.
High genitors, unconscious did they cull
Time's sweet first-fruits--they danc'd to weariness,
And then in quiet circles did they press
The hillock turf, and caught the latter end
Of some strange history, potent to send
A young mind from its bodily tenement.
Or they might watch the quoit-pitchers, intent
On either side; pitying the sad death
Of Hyacinthus, when the cruel breath
Of Zephyr slew him,--Zephyr penitent,
Who now, ere Phoebus mounts the firmament,
Fondles the flower amid the sobbing rain.
The archers too, upon a wider plain,
Beside the feathery whizzing of the shaft,
And the dull twanging bowstring, and the raft
Branch down sweeping from a tall ash top,
Call'd up a thousand thoughts to envelope
Those who would watch. Perhaps, the trembling knee
And frantic gape of lonely Niobe,
Poor, lonely Niobe! when her lovely young
Were dead and gone, and her caressing tongue
Lay a lost thing upon her paly lip,
And very, very deadliness did nip
Her motherly cheeks. Arous'd from this sad mood
By one, who at a distance loud halloo'd,
Uplifting his strong bow into the air,
Many might after brighter visions stare:
After the Argonauts, in blind amaze
Tossing about on Neptune's restless ways,
Until, from the horizon's vaulted side,
There shot a golden splendour far and wide,
Spangling those million poutings of the brine
With quivering ore: 'twas even an awful shine
From the exaltation of Apollo's bow;
A heavenly beacon in their dreary woe.
Who thus were ripe for high contemplating,
Might turn their steps towards the sober ring
Where sat Endymion and the aged priest
'Mong shepherds gone in eld, whose looks increas'd
The silvery setting of their mortal star.
There they discours'd upon the fragile bar
That keeps us from our homes ethereal;
And what our duties there: to nightly call
Vesper, the beauty-crest of summer weather;
To summon all the downiest clouds together
For the sun's purple couch; to emulate
In ministring the potent rule of fate
With speed of fire-tailed exhalations;
To tint her pallid cheek with bloom, who cons
Sweet poesy by moonlight: besides these,
A world of other unguess'd offices.
Anon they wander'd, by divine converse,
Into Elysium; vieing to rehearse
Each one his own anticipated bliss.
One felt heart-certain that he could not miss
His quick gone love, among fair blossom'd boughs,
Where every zephyr-sigh pouts and endows
Her lips with music for the welcoming.
Another wish'd, mid that eternal spring,
To meet his rosy child, with feathery sails,
Sweeping, eye-earnestly, through almond vales:
Who, suddenly, should stoop through the smooth wind,
And with the balmiest leaves his temples bind;
And, ever after, through those regions be
His messenger, his little Mercury.
Some were athirst in soul to see again
Their fellow huntsmen o'er the wide champaign
In times long past; to sit with them, and talk
Of all the chances in their earthly walk;
Comparing, joyfully, their plenteous stores
Of happiness, to when upon the moors,
Benighted, close they huddled from the cold,
And shar'd their famish'd scrips. Thus all out-told
Their fond imaginations,--saving him
Whose eyelids curtain'd up their jewels dim,
Endymion: yet hourly had he striven
To hide the cankering venom, that had riven
His fainting recollections. Now indeed
His senses had swoon'd off: he did not heed
The sudden silence, or the whispers low,
Or the old eyes dissolving at his woe,
Or anxious calls, or close of trembling palms,
Or maiden's sigh, that grief itself embalms:
But in the self-same fixed trance he kept,
Like one who on the earth had never stept.
Aye, even as dead-still as a marble man,
Frozen in that old tale Arabian.
Who whispers him so pantingly and close?
Peona, his sweet sister: of all those,
His friends, the dearest. Hushing signs she made,
And breath'd a sister's sorrow to persuade
A yielding up, a cradling on her care.
Her eloquence did breathe away the curse:
She led him, like some midnight spirit nurse
Of happy changes in emphatic dreams,
Along a path between two little streams,--
Guarding his forehead, with her round elbow,
From low-grown branches, and his footsteps slow
From stumbling over stumps and hillocks small;
Until they came to where these streamlets fall,
With mingled bubblings and a gentle rush,
Into a river, clear, brimful, and flush
With crystal mocking of the trees and sky.
A little shallop, floating there hard by,
Pointed its beak over the fringed bank;
And soon it lightly dipt, and rose, and sank,
And dipt again, with the young couple's weight,--
Peona guiding, through the water straight,
Towards a bowery island opposite;
Which gaining presently, she steered light
Into a shady, fresh, and ripply cove,
Where nested was an arbour, overwove
By many a summer's silent fingering;
To whose cool bosom she was used to bring
Her playmates, with their needle broidery,
And minstrel memories of times gone by.
So she was gently glad to see him laid
Under her favourite bower's quiet shade,
On her own couch, new made of flower leaves,
Dried carefully on the cooler side of sheaves
When last the sun his autumn tresses shook,
And the tann'd harvesters rich armfuls took.
Soon was he quieted to slumbrous rest:
But, ere it crept upon him, he had prest
Peona's busy hand against his lips,
And still, a sleeping, held her finger-tips
In tender pressure. And as a willow keeps
A patient watch over the stream that creeps
Windingly by it, so the quiet maid
Held her in peace: so that a whispering blade
Of grass, a wailful gnat, a bee bustling
Down in the blue-bells, or a wren light rustling
Among seer leaves and twigs, might all be heard.
O magic sleep! O comfortable bird,
That broodest o'er the troubled sea of the mind
Till it is hush'd and smooth! O unconfin'd
Restraint! imprisoned liberty! great key
To golden palaces, strange minstrelsy,
Fountains grotesque, new trees, bespangled caves,
Echoing grottos, full of tumbling waves
And moonlight; aye, to all the mazy world
Of silvery enchantment!--who, upfurl'd
Beneath thy drowsy wing a triple hour,
But renovates and lives?--Thus, in the bower,
Endymion was calm'd to life again.
Opening his eyelids with a healthier brain,
He said: "I feel this thine endearing love
All through my bosom: thou art as a dove
Trembling its closed eyes and sleeked wings
About me; and the pearliest dew not brings
Such morning incense from the fields of May,
As do those brighter drops that twinkling stray
From those kind eyes,--the very home and haunt
Of sisterly affection. Can I want
Aught else, aught nearer heaven, than such tears?
Yet dry them up, in bidding hence all fears
That, any longer, I will pass my days
Alone and sad. No, I will once more raise
My voice upon the mountain-heights; once more
Make my horn parley from their foreheads hoar:
Again my trooping hounds their tongues shall loll
Around the breathed boar: again I'll poll
The fair-grown yew tree, for a chosen bow:
And, when the pleasant sun is getting low,
Again I'll linger in a sloping mead
To hear the speckled thrushes, and see feed
Our idle sheep. So be thou cheered sweet,
And, if thy lute is here, softly intreat
My soul to keep in its resolved course."
Hereat Peona, in their silver source,
Shut her pure sorrow drops with glad exclaim,
And took a lute, from which there pulsing came
A lively prelude, fashioning the way
In which her voice should wander. 'Twas a lay
More subtle cadenced, more forest wild
Than Dryope's lone lulling of her child;
And nothing since has floated in the air
So mournful strange. Surely some influence rare
Went, spiritual, through the damsel's hand;
For still, with Delphic emphasis, she spann'd
The quick invisible strings, even though she saw
Endymion's spirit melt away and thaw
Before the deep intoxication.
But soon she came, with sudden burst, upon
Her self-possession--swung the lute aside,
And earnestly said: "Brother, 'tis vain to hide
That thou dost know of things mysterious,
Immortal, starry; such alone could thus
Weigh down thy nature. Hast thou sinn'd in aught
Offensive to the heavenly powers? Caught
A Paphian dove upon a message sent?
Thy deathful bow against some deer-herd bent,
Sacred to Dian? Haply, thou hast seen
Her naked limbs among the alders green;
And that, alas! is death. No, I can trace
Something more high perplexing in thy face!"
Endymion look'd at her, and press'd her hand,
And said, "Art thou so pale, who wast so bland
And merry in our meadows? How is this?
Tell me thine ailment: tell me all amiss!--
Ah! thou hast been unhappy at the change
Wrought suddenly in me. What indeed more strange?
Or more complete to overwhelm surmise?
Ambition is no sluggard: 'tis no prize,
That toiling years would put within my grasp,
That I have sigh'd for: with so deadly gasp
No man e'er panted for a mortal love.
So all have set my heavier grief above
These things which happen. Rightly have they done:
I, who still saw the horizontal sun
Heave his broad shoulder o'er the edge of the world,
Out-facing Lucifer, and then had hurl'd
My spear aloft, as signal for the chace--
I, who, for very sport of heart, would race
With my own steed from Araby; pluck down
A vulture from his towery perching; frown
A lion into growling, loth retire--
To lose, at once, all my toil breeding fire,
And sink thus low! but I will ease my breast
Of secret grief, here in this bowery nest.
"This river does not see the naked sky,
Till it begins to progress silverly
Around the western border of the wood,
Whence, from a certain spot, its winding flood
Seems at the distance like a crescent moon:
And in that nook, the very pride of June,
Had I been used to pass my weary eves;
The rather for the sun unwilling leaves
So dear a picture of his sovereign power,
And I could witness his most kingly hour,
When he doth lighten up the golden reins,
And paces leisurely down amber plains
His snorting four. Now when his chariot last
Its beams against the zodiac-lion cast,
There blossom'd suddenly a magic bed
Of sacred ditamy, and poppies red:
At which I wondered greatly, knowing well
That but one night had wrought this flowery spell;
And, sitting down close by, began to muse
What it might mean. Perhaps, thought I, Morpheus,
In passing here, his owlet pinions shook;
Or, it may be, ere matron Night uptook
Her ebon urn, young Mercury, by stealth,
Had dipt his rod in it: such garland wealth
Came not by common growth. Thus on I thought,
Until my head was dizzy and distraught.
Moreover, through the dancing poppies stole
A breeze, most softly lulling to my soul;
And shaping visions all about my sight
Of colours, wings, and bursts of spangly light;
The which became more strange, and strange, and dim,
And then were gulph'd in a tumultuous swim:
And then I fell asleep. Ah, can I tell
The enchantment that afterwards befel?
Yet it was but a dream: yet such a dream
That never tongue, although it overteem
With mellow utterance, like a cavern spring,
Could figure out and to conception bring
All I beheld and felt. Methought I lay
Watching the zenith, where the milky way
Among the stars in virgin splendour pours;
And travelling my eye, until the doors
Of heaven appear'd to open for my flight,
I became loth and fearful to alight
From such high soaring by a downward glance:
So kept me stedfast in that airy trance,
Spreading imaginary pinions wide.
When, presently, the stars began to glide,
And faint away, before my eager view:
At which I sigh'd that I could not pursue,
And dropt my vision to the horizon's verge;
And lo! from opening clouds, I saw emerge
The loveliest moon, that ever silver'd o'er
A shell for Neptune's goblet: she did soar
So passionately bright, my dazzled soul
Commingling with her argent spheres did roll
Through clear and cloudy, even when she went
At last into a dark and vapoury tent--
Whereat, methought, the lidless-eyed train
Of planets all were in the blue again.
To commune with those orbs, once more I rais'd
My sight right upward: but it was quite dazed
By a bright something, sailing down apace,
Making me quickly veil my eyes and face:
Again I look'd, and, O ye deities,
Who from Olympus watch our destinies!
Whence that completed form of all completeness?
Whence came that high perfection of all sweetness?
Speak, stubborn earth, and tell me where, O Where
Hast thou a symbol of her golden hair?
Not oat-sheaves drooping in the western sun;
Not--thy soft hand, fair sister! let me shun
Such follying before thee--yet she had,
Indeed, locks bright enough to make me mad;
And they were simply gordian'd up and braided,
Leaving, in naked comeliness, unshaded,
Her pearl round ears, white neck, and orbed brow;
The which were blended in, I know not how,
With such a paradise of lips and eyes,
Blush-tinted cheeks, half smiles, and faintest sighs,
That, when I think thereon, my spirit clings
And plays about its fancy, till the stings
Of human neighbourhood envenom all.
Unto what awful power shall I call?
To what high fane?--Ah! see her hovering feet,
More bluely vein'd, more soft, more whitely sweet
Than those of sea-born Venus, when she rose
From out her cradle shell. The wind out-blows
Her scarf into a fluttering pavilion;
'Tis blue, and over-spangled with a million
Of little eyes, as though thou wert to shed,
Over the darkest, lushest blue-bell bed,
Handfuls of daisies."--"Endymion, how strange!
Dream within dream!"--"She took an airy range,
And then, towards me, like a very maid,
Came blushing, waning, willing, and afraid,
And press'd me by the hand: Ah! 'twas too much;
Methought I fainted at the charmed touch,
Yet held my recollection, even as one
Who dives three fathoms where the waters run
Gurgling in beds of coral: for anon,
I felt upmounted in that region
Where falling stars dart their artillery forth,
And eagles struggle with the buffeting north
That balances the heavy meteor-stone;--
Felt too, I was not fearful, nor alone,
But lapp'd and lull'd along the dangerous sky.
Soon, as it seem'd, we left our journeying high,
And straightway into frightful eddies swoop'd;
Such as ay muster where grey time has scoop'd
Huge dens and caverns in a mountain's side:
There hollow sounds arous'd me, and I sigh'd
To faint once more by looking on my bliss--
I was distracted; madly did I kiss
The wooing arms which held me, and did give
My eyes at once to death: but 'twas to live,
To take in draughts of life from the gold fount
Of kind and passionate looks; to count, and count
The moments, by some greedy help that seem'd
A second self, that each might be redeem'd
And plunder'd of its load of blessedness.
Ah, desperate mortal! I ev'n dar'd to press
Her very cheek against my crowned lip,
And, at that moment, felt my body dip
Into a warmer air: a moment more,
Our feet were soft in flowers. There was store
Of newest joys upon that alp. Sometimes
A scent of violets, and blossoming limes,
Loiter'd around us; then of honey cells,
Made delicate from all white-flower bells;
And once, above the edges of our nest,
An arch face peep'd,--an Oread as I guess'd.
"Why did I dream that sleep o'er-power'd me
In midst of all this heaven? Why not see,
Far off, the shadows of his pinions dark,
And stare them from me? But no, like a spark
That needs must die, although its little beam
Reflects upon a diamond, my sweet dream
Fell into nothing--into stupid sleep.
And so it was, until a gentle creep,
A careful moving caught my waking ears,
And up I started: Ah! my sighs, my tears,
My clenched hands;--for lo! the poppies hung
Dew-dabbled on their stalks, the ouzel sung
A heavy ditty, and the sullen day
Had chidden herald Hesperus away,
With leaden looks: the solitary breeze
Bluster'd, and slept, and its wild self did teaze
With wayward melancholy; and r thought,
Mark me, Peona! that sometimes it brought
Faint fare-thee-wells, and sigh-shrilled adieus!--
Away I wander'd--all the pleasant hues
Of heaven and earth had faded: deepest shades
Were deepest dungeons; heaths and sunny glades
Were full of pestilent light; our taintless rills
Seem'd sooty, and o'er-spread with upturn'd gills
Of dying fish; the vermeil rose had blown
In frightful scarlet, and its thorns out-grown
Like spiked aloe. If an innocent bird
Before my heedless footsteps stirr'd, and stirr'd
In little journeys, I beheld in it
A disguis'd demon, missioned to knit
My soul with under darkness; to entice
My stumblings down some monstrous precipice:
Therefore I eager followed, and did curse
The disappointment. Time, that aged nurse,
Rock'd me to patience. Now, thank gentle heaven!
These things, with all their comfortings, are given
To my down-sunken hours, and with thee,
Sweet sister, help to stem the ebbing sea
Of weary life."
Thus ended he, and both
Sat silent: for the maid was very loth
To answer; feeling well that breathed words
Would all be lost, unheard, and vain as swords
Against the enchased crocodile, or leaps
Of grasshoppers against the sun. She weeps,
And wonders; struggles to devise some blame;
To put on such a look as would say, Shame
On this poor weakness! but, for all her strife,
She could as soon have crush'd away the life
From a sick dove. At length, to break the pause,
She said with trembling chance: "Is this the cause?
This all? Yet it is strange, and sad, alas!
That one who through this middle earth should pass
Most like a sojourning demi-god, and leave
His name upon the harp-string, should achieve
No higher bard than simple maidenhood,
Singing alone, and fearfully,--how the blood
Left his young cheek; and how he used to stray
He knew not where; and how he would say, nay,
If any said 'twas love: and yet 'twas love;
What could it be but love? How a ring-dove
Let fall a sprig of yew tree in his path;
And how he died: and then, that love doth scathe,
The gentle heart, as northern blasts do roses;
And then the ballad of his sad life closes
With sighs, and an alas!--Endymion!
Be rather in the trumpet's mouth,--anon
Among the winds at large--that all may hearken!
Although, before the crystal heavens darken,
I watch and dote upon the silver lakes
Pictur'd in western cloudiness, that takes
The semblance of gold rocks and bright gold sands,
Islands, and creeks, and amber-fretted strands
With horses prancing o'er them, palaces
And towers of amethyst,--would I so tease
My pleasant days, because I could not mount
Into those regions? The Morphean fount
Of that fine element that visions, dreams,
And fitful whims of sleep are made of, streams
Into its airy channels with so subtle,
So thin a breathing, not the spider's shuttle,
Circled a million times within the space
Of a swallow's nest-door, could delay a trace,
A tinting of its quality: how light
Must dreams themselves be; seeing they're more slight
Than the mere nothing that engenders them!
Then wherefore sully the entrusted gem
Of high and noble life with thoughts so sick?
Why pierce high-fronted honour to the quick
For nothing but a dream?" Hereat the youth
Look'd up: a conflicting of shame and ruth
Was in his plaited brow: yet his eyelids
Widened a little, as when Zephyr bids
A little breeze to creep between the fans
Of careless butterflies: amid his pains
He seem'd to taste a drop of manna-dew,
Full palatable; and a colour grew
Upon his cheek, while thus he lifeful spake.
"Peona! ever have I long'd to slake
My thirst for the world's praises: nothing base,
No merely slumberous phantasm, could unlace
The stubborn canvas for my voyage prepar'd--
Though now 'tis tatter'd; leaving my bark bar'd
And sullenly drifting: yet my higher hope
Is of too wide, too rainbow-large a scope,
To fret at myriads of earthly wrecks.
Wherein lies happiness? In that which becks
Our ready minds to fellowship divine,
A fellowship with essence; till we shine,
Full alchemiz'd, and free of space. Behold
The clear religion of heaven! Fold
A rose leaf round thy finger's taperness,
And soothe thy lips: hist, when the airy stress
Of music's kiss impregnates the free winds,
And with a sympathetic touch unbinds
Eolian magic from their lucid wombs:
Then old songs waken from enclouded tombs;
Old ditties sigh above their father's grave;
Ghosts of melodious prophecyings rave
Round every spot where trod Apollo's foot;
Bronze clarions awake, and faintly bruit,
Where long ago a giant battle was;
And, from the turf, a lullaby doth pass
In every place where infant Orpheus slept.
Feel we these things?--that moment have we stept
Into a sort of oneness, and our state
Is like a floating spirit's. But there are
Richer entanglements, enthralments far
More self-destroying, leading, by degrees,
To the chief intensity: the crown of these
Is made of love and friendship, and sits high
Upon the forehead of humanity.
All its more ponderous and bulky worth
Is friendship, whence there ever issues forth
A steady splendour; but at the tip-top,
There hangs by unseen film, an orbed drop
Of light, and that is love: its influence,
Thrown in our eyes, genders a novel sense,
At which we start and fret; till in the end,
Melting into its radiance, we blend,
Mingle, and so become a part of it,--
Nor with aught else can our souls interknit
So wingedly: when we combine therewith,
Life's self is nourish'd by its proper pith,
And we are nurtured like a pelican brood.
Aye, so delicious is the unsating food,
That men, who might have tower'd in the van
Of all the congregated world, to fan
And winnow from the coming step of time
All chaff of custom, wipe away all slime
Left by men-slugs and human serpentry,
Have been content to let occasion die,
Whilst they did sleep in love's elysium.
And, truly, I would rather be struck dumb,
Than speak against this ardent listlessness:
For I have ever thought that it might bless
The world with benefits unknowingly;
As does the nightingale, upperched high,
And cloister'd among cool and bunched leaves--
She sings but to her love, nor e'er conceives
How tiptoe Night holds back her dark-grey hood.
Just so may love, although 'tis understood
The mere commingling of passionate breath,
Produce more than our searching witnesseth:
What I know not: but who, of men, can tell
That flowers would bloom, or that green fruit would swell
To melting pulp, that fish would have bright mail,
The earth its dower of river, wood, and vale,
The meadows runnels, runnels pebble-stones,
The seed its harvest, or the lute its tones,
Tones ravishment, or ravishment its sweet,
If human souls did never kiss and greet?
"Now, if this earthly love has power to make
Men's being mortal, immortal; to shake
Ambition from their memories, and brim
Their measure of content; what merest whim,
Seems all this poor endeavour after fame,
To one, who keeps within his stedfast aim
A love immortal, an immortal too.
Look not so wilder'd; for these things are true,
And never can be born of atomies
That buzz about our slumbers, like brain-flies,
Leaving us fancy-sick. No, no, I'm sure,
My restless spirit never could endure
To brood so long upon one luxury,
Unless it did, though fearfully, espy
A hope beyond the shadow of a dream.
My sayings will the less obscured seem,
When I have told thee how my waking sight
Has made me scruple whether that same night
Was pass'd in dreaming. Hearken, sweet Peona!
Beyond the matron-temple of Latona,
Which we should see but for these darkening boughs,
Lies a deep hollow, from whose ragged brows
Bushes and trees do lean all round athwart,
And meet so nearly, that with wings outraught,
And spreaded tail, a vulture could not glide
Past them, but he must brush on every side.
Some moulder'd steps lead into this cool cell,
Far as the slabbed margin of a well,
Whose patient level peeps its crystal eye
Right upward, through the bushes, to the sky.
Oft have I brought thee flowers, on their stalks set
Like vestal primroses, but dark velvet
Edges them round, and they have golden pits:
'Twas there I got them, from the gaps and slits
In a mossy stone, that sometimes was my seat,
When all above was faint with mid-day heat.
And there in strife no burning thoughts to heed,
I'd bubble up the water through a reed;
So reaching back to boy-hood: make me ships
Of moulted feathers, touchwood, alder chips,
With leaves stuck in them; and the Neptune be
Of their petty ocean. Oftener, heavily,
When love-lorn hours had left me less a child,
I sat contemplating the figures wild
Of o'er-head clouds melting the mirror through.
Upon a day, while thus I watch'd, by flew
A cloudy Cupid, with his bow and quiver;
So plainly character'd, no breeze would shiver
The happy chance: so happy, I was fain
To follow it upon the open plain,
And, therefore, was just going; when, behold!
A wonder, fair as any I have told--
The same bright face I tasted in my sleep,
Smiling in the clear well. My heart did leap
Through the cool depth.--It moved as if to flee--
I started up, when lo! refreshfully,
There came upon my face, in plenteous showers,
Dew-drops, and dewy buds, and leaves, and flowers,
Wrapping all objects from my smothered sight,
Bathing my spirit in a new delight.
Aye, such a breathless honey-feel of bliss
Alone preserved me from the drear abyss
Of death, for the fair form had gone again.
Pleasure is oft a visitant; but pain
Clings cruelly to us, like the gnawing sloth
On the deer's tender haunches: late, and loth,
'Tis scar'd away by slow returning pleasure.
How sickening, how dark the dreadful leisure
Of weary days, made deeper exquisite,
By a fore-knowledge of unslumbrous night!
Like sorrow came upon me, heavier still,
Than when I wander'd from the poppy hill:
And a whole age of lingering moments crept
Sluggishly by, ere more contentment swept
Away at once the deadly yellow spleen.
Yes, thrice have I this fair enchantment seen;
Once more been tortured with renewed life.
When last the wintry gusts gave over strife
With the conquering sun of spring, and left the skies
Warm and serene, but yet with moistened eyes
In pity of the shatter'd infant buds,--
That time thou didst adorn, with amber studs,
My hunting cap, because I laugh'd and smil'd,
Chatted with thee, and many days exil'd
All torment from my breast;--'twas even then,
Straying about, yet, coop'd up in the den
Of helpless discontent,--hurling my lance
From place to place, and following at chance,
At last, by hap, through some young trees it struck,
And, plashing among bedded pebbles, stuck
In the middle of a brook,--whose silver ramble
Down twenty little falls, through reeds and bramble,
Tracing along, it brought me to a cave,
Whence it ran brightly forth, and white did lave
The nether sides of mossy stones and rock,--
'Mong which it gurgled blythe adieus, to mock
Its own sweet grief at parting. Overhead,
Hung a lush screen of drooping weeds, and spread
Thick, as to curtain up some wood-nymph's home.
"Ah! impious mortal, whither do I roam?"
Said I, low voic'd: "Ah whither! 'Tis the grot
Of Proserpine, when Hell, obscure and hot,
Doth her resign; and where her tender hands
She dabbles, on the cool and sluicy sands:
Or 'tis the cell of Echo, where she sits,
And babbles thorough silence, till her wits
Are gone in tender madness, and anon,
Faints into sleep, with many a dying tone
Of sadness. O that she would take my vows,
And breathe them sighingly among the boughs,
To sue her gentle ears for whose fair head,
Daily, I pluck sweet flowerets from their bed,
And weave them dyingly--send honey-whispers
Round every leaf, that all those gentle lispers
May sigh my love unto her pitying!
O charitable echo! hear, and sing
This ditty to her!--tell her"--so I stay'd
My foolish tongue, and listening, half afraid,
Stood stupefied with my own empty folly,
And blushing for the freaks of melancholy.
Salt tears were coming, when I heard my name
Most fondly lipp'd, and then these accents came:
‘Endymion! the cave is secreter
Than the isle of Delos. Echo hence shall stir
No sighs but sigh-warm kisses, or light noise
Of thy combing hand, the while it travelling cloys
And trembles through my labyrinthine hair."
At that oppress'd I hurried in.--Ah! where
Are those swift moments? Whither are they fled?
I'll smile no more, Peona; nor will wed
Sorrow the way to death, but patiently
Bear up against it: so farewel, sad sigh;
And come instead demurest meditation,
To occupy me wholly, and to fashion
My pilgrimage for the world's dusky brink.
No more will I count over, link by link,
My chain of grief: no longer strive to find
A half-forgetfulness in mountain wind
Blustering about my ears: aye, thou shalt see,
Dearest of sisters, what my life shall be;
What a calm round of hours shall make my days.
There is a paly flame of hope that plays
Where'er I look: but yet, I'll say 'tis naught--
And here I bid it die. Have not I caught,
Already, a more healthy countenance?
By this the sun is setting; we may chance
Meet some of our near-dwellers with my car."
This said, he rose, faint-smiling like a star
Through autumn mists, and took Peona's hand:
They stept into the boat, and launch'd from land.