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Whose quiet beauty o'er my soul through distant years will come, Yet what but as the dead, to thee, shall I be then, my home?
Not as the dead !--no, not the dead! we speak of them-we
keep Their names, like light that must not fade, within our bosoms
deep; We hallow even the lyre they touched, we love the lay they sung,
pass with softer steps the place they filled our band among ! But I depart, like sound, like dew, like aught that leaves on earth No trace of sorrow or delight, no memory of its birth! I go!--the echo of the rock a thousand songs may swell, When mine is a forgotten voice.-Woods, mountains, home, fare
And farewell, mother! I have borne in lonely silence long,
thee! Brightly it would have gushed, but thou—my mother ! thou hast
thrown Back on the forests and the wilds what should have been thine
LINES WRITTEN ON A STARRY NIGHT.
Ye distant, beautiful, and glowing stars,
of genius forming in the mine
Spirits of fire, that will shine out at last, And blaze, and kindle others. These delight In the lone musing hour to roam the earth ; To listen to the music of the trees; Or if perchance the nightingale be near, Pouring her sweet and solitary song, They love to hear her lay. With such as these 'T is sweet to hold communion. Though the world And fates of life forbid a closer tie, Yet we can gaze upon the selfsame stars As Byron in his Grecian skiff was wont To view at midnight, or which livelier Moore Translates into his soft and glowing song. Nay, more—those very stars in elder time, Sparkling with purer light in the clear sky Of Greece, perhaps were those that Homer saw, And deemed so beautiful, that even the gods Might dwell in them with pride. O holy Night! If thou canst wake so many luminous dreams, Call up such recollections; bring the past, The present, and the future, into one Immortal feeling ; from thine influence Let me draw inspiration; let me mount Thy mystic atmosphere ; and let the shapes Of heroes, gods, and poets, in the clouds Meet my impassioned gaze! My soul is dark, And wild, and wayward; and the silver moon Shooting her rays upon the misty deep, Or sleeping on the frowning battlement Of some time-stricken solitary tower That rises in the desert, seems more bright, And grand, and glorious, than the glaring sun Shining upon the open haunts of men.
BY PERCY BYSSHE SHELLEY.
How beautiful this night! the balmiest sigh
this moveless scene. Heaven's ebon vault,
The orb of day,
Ah! whence yon glare That fires the arch of heaven !- that dark red smoke Blotting the silver moon? The stars are quenched In darkness, and the pure and spangling snow Gleams faintly through the gloom that gathers round ! Hark to that roar, whose swift and deafening peals In countless echoes through the mountains ring, Startling pale Midnight on her starry throne ! Now swells the intermingling din; the jar, Frequent and frightful, of the bursting bomb; The falling beam, the shriek, the groan, the shout, The ceaseless clangour, and the rush of men Inebriate with rage!-Loud and more loud The discord grows; till pale Death shuts the scene, And o'er the conqueror and the conquered draws His cold and bloody shroud. Of all the men Whom day's departing beam saw blooming there, In proud and vigorous health — of all the hearts That beat with anxious life at sunset there How few survive, how few are beating now! All is deep silence, like the fearful calm That slumbers in the storm's protentous pause ; Save when the frantic wail of widowed love Comes shuddering on the blast, or the faint moan With which some soul bursts from the frame of clay Wrapt round its struggling powers.
The grey morn Dawns on the mournful scene; the sulphurous smoke Before the icy wind slow rolls away, And the bright beams of frosty morning dance Along the spangling snow. There tracks of blood, Even to the forest's depth, and scattered arms, And lifeless warriors, whose hard lineaments Death's self could change not, mark the dreadful path Of the outsallying victors : far behind Black ashes note where their proud city stood. Within yon forest is a gloomy glen – Each tree which guards its darkness from the day, Waves o'er a warrior's tomb.