Obrázky stránek

Beckon thee to Gherardi's bridal bed ?
Is not that ring”—a pledge, he would have said,
Of broken vows; but she, with patient look,
The golden circle from her finger took,
And said—“Accept this token of my

faith, The pledge of vows to be absolved by death; And I am dead, or shall be soon — my

knell Will mix its music with that merry

bell :
Does not it sound as if they sweetly said,
“We toll a corpse out of the marriage bed?'
The flowers upon my bridal chamber strewn,
Will serve unfaded for my bier — so soon
That even the dying violet will not die
Before Ginevra.” The strong fantasy
Had made her accents weaker and more weak,
And quenched the crimson life


her cheek, And glazed her eyes, and spread an atmosphere Round her, which chilled the burning noon with fear; Making her but an image of the thought, Which, like a prophet or a shadow, brought News of the terrors of the coming time. Like an accuser branded with the crime He would have cast on a beloved friend, Whose dying eyes reproach not to the end The pale betrayer— he then with vain repentance Would share, he cannot now avert, the sentenceAntonio stood and would have spoken, when The compound voice of women and of men Was heard approaching; he retired, while she Was led amid the admiring company Back to the palace,— and her maidens soon Changed her attire for the afternoon, And left her at her own request to keep An hour of quiet and rest:- like one asleep With open eyes and folded hands she lay, Pale in the light of the declining day.

Meanwhile the day sinks fast, the sun is set,
And in the lighted hall the guests are met;

The beautiful looked lovelier in the light
Of love and admiration, and delight
Reflected from a thousand hearts and eyes,
Kindling a momentary paradise.

This crowd is safer than the silent wood,
Where love's own doubts disturb the solitude ;
On frozen hearts the fiery rain of wine
Falls, and the dew of music more divine
Tempers the deep emotions of the time,
To spirits cradled in a sunny

clime: How

many meet, who never yet have met, To part too soon, but never to forget. How many saw the beauty, power, and wit, Of looks and words which ne'er enchanted yet; But life's familiar veil was now withdrawn, As the world leaps before an earthquake's dawn, And unprophetic of the coming hours, The matin winds from the expanded flowers Scatter their hoarded incense, and awaken The earth, until the dewy sleep is shaken From every living heart which it possesses, Through seas and winds, cities and wildernesses, As if the future and the past were all Treasured i’the instant;—so Gherardi's hall Laughed in the mirth of its lord's festival, Till some one asked .“ Where is the Bride?” And then A bride's-maid went,-- and ere she came again A silence fell upon the guests — a pause Of expectation, as when beauty awes All hearts with its approach, though unbeheld, Then wonder, and then fear that wonder quelled ;For whispers passed from mouth to ear, which drew The colour from the hearer's cheeks, and flew Louder and swifter round the company; And then Gherardi entered with an eye Of ostentatious trouble, and a crowd Surrounded him, and some were weeping loud.

They found Ginevra dead! if it be death
To lie without motion, or pulse, or breath.
The marriage feast and its solemnity
Was turned to funeral pomp; the company
With heavy hearts and looks, broke up; and they
Who loved the dead, went weeping on their way!


There are, who will thine infant grace

Thy proudest dowry deem;
There are, will look upon thy face

And moralizing dream,
As of another atom piled,

Or wave launched on the sea;
Away!—thou 'rt a peculiar child

To many and to me.

It is not for thine eye so clear,

Nor even thy beauteous brow,
Sweet infant, that I hold thee dear;

For many, fair as thou,
Have I beheld in stately bower,

Perchance in lowly cot,-
Not theirs a soul-retaining power ;

I saw them, and forgot.

Bright nursling of a Poet's love,

To thee by birth belong
The Delphic shrine, the laurel grove,

The heritage of song; —

So rich art thou in natural grace,

So fair that home of thine,
Thou seemest of the fabled race,

Half earthly,— half divine !

Thou art not reared in low-born care,

'Mid things of sordid mould;
All glorious shapes, and visions rare,

Thine opening life unfold ;-
The garlands for thy cradle culled,

To fairy-land belong,
And the strains by which thy sleep is lulled,

To the demi-gods of song!

Then hallowed thus,— thus raised from earth,

Thou art no common child !
Let others vaunt of lordly birth,

By pompous phrase beguiled;
And others, of the sword and vest

Derived from warrior sire,-
Thine, boy, shall be a nobler crest,-

Thy father's Wreath and Lyre !
Literary Souvenir.

M. J. J.


The dark weed looks over our desolate home,
Like a death-pall where honour is closed in the tomb;
And it seems as it whispered in sighs to the air,
All the tale of the woes that have planted it there !

The chill drop that falls from its cold clammy wreath,
How deep hath it worn in the stone underneath!
So the one ceaseless thought which these ruins impart
With the chill of despair hath sunk deep in the heart!


Fount of the woods! thou art hid no more
From heaven's clear eye, as in time of yore !
For the roof hath sunk from thy mossy w

And the sun's free glance on thy slumber falls ;
And the dim tree-shadows across thee pass,
As the boughs are swayed o'er thy silvery glass;
And the reddening leaves to thy breast are blown,
When the autumn wind hath a stormy tone;
And thy bubbles rise to the flashing rain
Bright fount! thou art nature's own again!

Fount of the vale! thou art sought no more
By the pilgrim's foot, as in time of yore,
When he came from afar, his beads to tell,
And to chant his hymn at Our Lady's Well.
There is heard no Ave through thy bowers,
Thou art gleaming lone 'midst thy water-flowers !
But the herd may drink from thy gushing wave,
And there

the reaper

his forehead lave, And the woodman seeks thee not in vain Bright fount ! thou art nature's own again !

Fount of the Virgin's ruined shrine !
A voice that speaks of the past is thine!
It mingles the tone of a thoughtful sigh,
With the notes that ring through the laughing sky;
'Midst the mirthful song of the summer bird,
And the sound of the breeze, it will yet be heard !
-Why is it that thus we may gaze on thee,
To the brilliant sunshine sparkling free?
—'Tis that all on earth is of Time's domain-
He hath made thee nature's own again!

* A beautiful spring in the woods near St. Asaph, formerly covered in with a chapel, now in ruins. It was dedicated to the Virgin ; and, according to Pennant, much the resort of pilgrims.

« PředchozíPokračovat »