« PředchozíPokračovat »
THE DESTRUCTION OF SENNACHERIB.*
THE Assyrian came down like the wolf on the fold,
Like the leaves of the forest when Summer is green,
For the Angel of Death spread his wings on the blast,
And there lay the steed with his nostril all wide,
But through it there rolled not the breath of his pride;
And the foam of his gasping lay white on the turf,
And there lay the rider distorted and pale,
With the dew on his brow and the rust on his mail :
And the widows of Ashur are loud in their wail,
* See 2 Chron. xxxii.
THE SLAVE'S DREAM.
BESIDE the ungathered rice he lay,
His breast was bare, his matted hair
Again, in the mist and shadow of sleep,
Wide through the landscape of his dreams
Once more a king he strode,
He saw once more his dark-eyed queen
They clasped his neck, they kissed his cheeks,
A tear burst from the sleeper's lids,
And fell into the sand.
And then at furious speed he rode
Along the Niger's bank;
His bridle-reins were golden chains,
And, with a martial clank,
At each leap he could feel his scabbard of steel Smiting his stallion's flank.
Before him, like a blood-red flag,
The bright flamingoes flew ;
From morn till night he followed their flight,
O'er plains where the tamarind grew,
Till he saw the roofs of Caffre huts,
And the ocean rose to view.
At night he heard the lion roar,
And the hyena scream,
And the river-horse as he crushed the reeds
And it passed like a glorious roll of drums,
The forests, with their myriad tongues,
And the Blast of the Desert cried aloud,
That he started in his sleep, and smiled
He did not feel the driver's whip,
A worn-out fetter, that the soul
Had broken and thrown away!
THE BURIAL OF WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR, AT CAEN IN NORMANDY-1087.*
BY MRS. HEMANS.
LOWLY upon his bier
The royal Conqueror lay;
Baron and chief stood near,
Silent in war-array.
"The Conqueror was buried in the church of St. Stephen, which he had built, but his funeral was singularly interrupted. At the moment that the coffin was being lowered into the grave, a man of low degree, raising himself from the crowd, exclaimed, 'Clerks, Bishops, this land is mine; it was the site of my father's house; the man for whom you pray took it from me by force to build his church. I have not sold my ground, I have not pawned it, I have not given it; it is my right, and I claim it.
Down the long minster's aisle
Crowds mutely gazing streamed,
Through mists of incense gleamed.
And, by the torches' blaze,
They lowered him, with the sound
"Forbear! forbear!" it cried;
"By the violated hearth
Which made way for yon proud shrine:
Hath borne for me and mine;
"By the house e'en here o'erthrown,
"Will my sire's unransomed field,
To the buried spoiler yield
Soft slumbers in the grave!
In the name of Heaven, I forbid that the body of the spoiler be placed there, and that it be covered by my glebe.' The man who spoke was named Asselin, and all the bystanders confirmed the truth of his assertions. The Bishops made him approach, and agreed to pay him sixty sous for the place of sepulture alone, and to compensate him justly for the rest of the ground."-THIERRY'S Hist. of the Conquest of England by the Normans.
"The tree before him fell
Which we cherished many a year;
"The land that I have tilled
Hath yet its brooding breast
Hath been wet by weeping eyes—
Where no wrong against him cries."
Of those proud and steel-girt men,
A little earth for him
Whose banner flew so far!
One deep voice thus arose
From a heart which wrongs had riven:
Oh! who shall number those
That were but heard in Heaven?
MARY, THE MAID OF THE INN.
WHO is yonder poor Maniac, whose wildly-fixed eyes
She weeps not, yet often and deeply she sighs;