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And then, in crimsoning beauty, playfully
She frowned, and wore that self-betraying air
That women loved and flattered love to wear.
Oft would he, as on that same spot they lay
Beneath the last light of a summer's day,
Tell (and would watch the while her stedfast eye,)
How on the lone Pacific he had been,
When the Sea Lion' on his watery way
Went rolling thro' the billows
And shook that ocean's dead tranquillity :
And he would tell her of past times, and where
He rambled in his boyhood far away,
And spoke of other worlds and wonders fair
And mighty and magnificent, for he
Had seen the bright sun worshipp'd like a god
Upon that land where first Columbus trod;
And travelled by the deep Saint Lawrence' tide,
And by Niagara's cataracts of foam,
And seen the wild deer roam
Amongst interminable forests, where
The serpent and the savage have their lair
Together. Nature there in wildest guise
Stands undebased and nearer to the skies;
And ʼmidst her giant trees and waters wide
The bones of things forgotten, buried deep,
Give glimpses of an elder world, espied
By us but in thạt fine and dreamy sleep,
When Fancy, ever the mother of deep truth,
Breathes her dim oracles on the soul of youth.' pp. 13–15. She retires heart-broken from the banquet; and dreams that her beloved stands before her, and says
Awake and search yon dell, for I
• Though risen above my old mortality,
· Have left my mangled and unburied limbs
• A prey for wolves hard by the waters there,
' And one lock of my black and curled hair,
• That one I vowed to thee my beauty! swims
* Like a mere weed upon the mountain river ;
' And those dark eyes you used to love so well
(They loved you dearly, my own Isabel),
• Are shut, and now have lost their light for ever.' p. 15. -and then he proceeds to bid her take his heart from his bosom, and bury it beneath the basil tree which they had planted together, which should flourish for ever in memory of their loves, In the morning, half in agony, and half disbelieving, she journeys to the fatal ravine-and there finds the pangled body of the youth whom her brother had murdered.
6. There stiff and cold the dark-eyed Guido lay,
His pale face upwards to the careless day,
That smiled as it was wont; and he was found
His young limbs mangled on the rocky ground,
And, 'midst the weltering weeds and shallows cold,
His black hair floated as the phantom told,
And like the very dream his glassy eye
Spoke of gone mortality.' p. 19. She obeys the directions of the spirit; and the basil tree-nourished by that precious deposite-towers and blossoms in rare and unnatural beauty. Her brother, however, finds the heart, and casts it in the sea. Immediately the tree withers-and Isabel, missing her worshipped relic, flies from her cruel brother's house, and lives crazy and lonely in the woods and caves.
At last she wandered home. She came by night.
The pale moon shot a sad and troubled light
Amidst the mighty clouds that moved along.
The moaning winds of Autumn sang their song,
And shook the red leaves from the forest trees';
And subterranean voices spoke. The seas
Did rise and fall, and then that fearful swell
Came silently which seamen know so well;
And all was like an Omen. Isabel
Passed to the room where, in old times, she lay,
And there thəy found her at the break of day;
Her look was smiling, but she never spoke
Or motioned, even to say her heart was broke:
Yet in the quiet of her shining eye
Lay death, and something we are wont to deem
(When we discourse of some such mournful theme),
Beyond the look of mere mortality.
She died-yet scarcely can we call it death
When Heaven so softly draws the parting breath ;
She was translated to a finer sphere,
For what could match or make her happy here !
She died, and with her gentle death there came
Sorrow and ruin ; and Leoni fell
A victim to that unconsuming flame,
That burns and revels on the heart of man;
Remorse. This'is the tale of Isabel,
And of her love the young
Italian.' The Worship of Dian,' and the Death of Acis,' are very elegant and graceful imitations of the higher style of Theocritus; and remind us of Akinside's Hymn to the Naiads--though there is more grace and tenderness, and less majesty.
• Gyges' is the story of old Candaules, attempted in the
style of Beppo and Don Juan--and not quite successfully at-
tempted. Mr C. has no great turn for 'pleasantry; and no
knack at all—and we are glad of it-at scorn and misanthropy.
The two following stanzas, which have nothing to do with the
story, are touching.
! I saw a pauper once, when I was young,
Borne to his shallow grave : the bearers trod
Smiling to where the death-bell heavily rung,
And soon his bones were laid beneath the sod :
On the rough boards the earth was gaily flung :
Methought the prayer which gave him to his God
Was coldly said :—then all, passing away,
Left the scarce-coffin'd wretch to quick decay.
It was an autumn evening and the rain
Had ceased awhile, but the loud winds did shriek
And call'd the deluging tempest back again,
The flag-staff on the church-yard tow'r did creak,
And thro' the black clouds ran a lightning vein,
And then the flapping raven came to seek
Its home : its flight was heavy, and its wing
Seem'd weary with a long day's wandering.' p. 59.
• The Falcon' is an exquisite imitation, or versification ra-
ther, of a beautiful and very characteristic story of Boccacio.
Though thrown into a dramatic form, the greater part of it is
a very literal version of the words of the original—and the
whole is perfectly faithful to its spirit. Nor do we remember
to have seen any thing in English so well calculated to give a
just idea of the soft and flowing style, and of the natural grace
and pathos of that great master of modern literature. Ther
follow a number of little poems, songs, sonnets, and elegies
all elegant and fanciful. The following is entitled : Marcelia.'
6 - It was a dreary place. The shallow brook
That ran throughout the wood there took a turn,
And widened : all its music died away,
And in the place a silent eddy told
That there the stream grew deeper. . There dark trees
Funereal (cypres, yew, and shadowy pine,
And spicy cedar) clustered, and at night
Shook from their melancholy branches sounds
And sighs like death: 'twas strange, for thro' the day
They stood quite motionless, and looked methought
Like monumental things which the sad earth
From its green bosom had cast out in pity, .
To mark a young girl's grave.
Of venturous fisher be cast in with hope,
For not a fish abides there. The slim deer
Snorts as he ruffles with his shorten'd breath
The brook, and panting flies the unholy place,
And the white heifer lows and passes on;
The foaming hound laps not, and winter birds
Go higher up the stream. And yet I love
To loiter there : and when the rising moon
Flames down the avenue of pines, and looks
Red and dilated thro' the evening mists,
And chequered as the heavy branches sway
To and fro’ with the wind, I stay to listen,
And fancy to myself that a sad voice,
Praying, comes moaning thro’ the leaves, as 'twere
For some misdeed.' We may select the following, too, from a little fragment called - Portraits.'
• Behind her followed an Athenian dame,
(The pale and elegant Aspasia)
Like some fair marble carved by Phidias' hand,
And meant to imitate the nymph or muse.
Then came a dark-brow'd spirit, on whose head
Laurel and withering roses loosely hung;
She held a harp, amongst whose chords her hand
Wandered for music and it came : She sang
A song despairing, and the whispering winds
Seem'd envious of her melody, and streamed
Amidst the wires to rival her, in vain.
Short was the strain, but sweet : Methought it spoke
Of broken hearts, and still and moonlight seas,
Of love, and loneliness, and fancy gone,
And hopes decay'd for ever : and my ear
Caught well remember'd names, Leucadia's rock'
At times, and faithless Phaon:' Then the form
Pass'd not, but seem'd to melt in air away :
This was the Lesbian Sappho.
At last, came one whom none could e'er mistake
Amidst a million : Egypt's dark-ey'd Queen :
The love, the spell, the bane of Antony.
O, Cleopatra! who shall speak of thee?
Gaily, but like the Empress of a land
Șhe niov'd, and light as a wood nymph in her prime
And crown'd with costly gems, whose single price
Might buy a kingdom, yet how dim they shone
Beneath the magic of her eye, whose beam
Flash'd love and languishment: Of varying humours
She seem'd, yet subtle in her wildest mood,
As guile were to her passions ministrant.
At last she sank as dead. A noxious worm
Fed on those blue and wandering veins that lac'd
Her rising bosom : aye, did sleep upon
The pillow of Antony, and left behind,
In dark requital for its banquet-death.' pp.
105-107. The last poem, called · Diego de Montilla,"is, like Gyges, an imitation of Don Juan-and is liable to the same remarks. It is the longest piece, we think, in the collection-extending to some eighty or ninety stanzas;
and though it makes no great figure in the way of sarcasm, or lofty and energetic sentiment, it comes nearer perhaps than its immediate prototype to the weaker and more innocent pleasantry of the Italian ottava rime -and may fairly match with either as to the better qualities of elegance, delicacy, and tenderness. There is, as usual, not much of a story. Don Diego falls in love with a scornful lady ---and pines on her rejection of him; on which her younger sister falls secretly in love with him--and when he sets out on his travels to forget his passion, droops and fades in his absence, and at last dies of a soft and melancholy decline. Diego returns to mourn over her; and, touched to the heart by her purc and devoted love, sequesters himself in his paternal castleand lives a few calm and pensive years in retirement, when he dies before middle age, for the sake of his faithful victim. There is no profligacy and no horror in all this-no mockery of virtue and honour--and no strong mixtures of buffoonery and grandeur. Most certainly there is not any thing like the powerused or misused—that we have felt in other poems in the same measure; but there is nevertheless a great deal of beauty, and a great deal of poetry and pathos. We pass over the lighter parts, and come to the gentle decay of Aurora.
Oft would she sit and look upon the sky,
When rich clouds in the golden sun-set lay
Basking, and loved to hear the soft winds sigh
That come like music at the close of day
Trembling amongst the orange blooms, and die
As 'twere from very sweetness. She was gay,
Meekly and calmly gay, and then her gaze
Was brighter than belongs to dying days.
young thin cheek a vivid flush,
A clear transparent colour sate awhile:
'Twas like, a bard would say, the morning's blush,
And 'round her mouth there played a gentle smile,
Which tho' at first it might your terrors hush,
It could not, tho' it strove, at last beguile;
And her hand shook, and then 'rose the blue vein
Branching about in all its windings plain.