[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

But when I told the cruel scorn

Her bosom heaved--she stepped aside, That crazed that bold and lovely Knight, As conscious of my look she steppedAnd that he crossed the mountain-woods, Then suddenly, with timorous eye Nor rested day nor night ;

She fled to me and wept. That sometimes from the savage den, She half enclosed me with her arms, And sometimes from the darksome shade She pressed me with a meek embrace ; And sometimes starting up at once

And bending back her head, looked up, In green and sunny glade,

And gazed upon my face.

[blocks in formation]









Three times she sends her little page And in the eye of noon my love
Up the castled mountain's breast,

Shall lead me from my mother's door, 50 If he might find the Knight that wears Sweet boys and girls all clothed in white The Griffin for his crest.

Strewing flowers before : The sun was sloping down the sky, * But first the nodding minstrels go And she had linger'd there all day, With music meet for lordly bowers, Counting moments, dreaming fears-- The children next in snow-white vests, Oh wherefore can he stay?

Strewing buds and flowers ! She hears a rustling o'er the brook, "And then my love and I shall pace, She sees far off a swinging bough! My jet black hair in pearly braids, “ 'Tis He! 'Tis my betrothed Knight! Between our comely bachelors Lord Falkland, it is Thou !!

And blushing bridal maids.'

60 She springs, she clasps him round the neck,

1798. She sobs a thousand hopes and fears, Her kisses glowing on his cheeks

She quenches with her tears.

[Sent in a letter from Ratzeburg to the Wordsworths at Goslar in the winter of 1798-9. The

seven lines beginning ‘O! what a life is the My friends with rude ungentle words eye 'were printed in the edition of 1834, with the They scoff and bid me fly to thee ! heading Written during a temporary blindness O give me shelter in thy breast !

in the year 1799.' 'When I was ill and wakeO shield and shelter me !

ful (writes Coleridge) I composed some English

hexameters:-) My Henry, I have given thee much,

WILLIAM, my teacher, my friend! dear I gave what I can ne'er recall,


William and dear Dorothea !
I gave my heart, I gave my peace,

Smooth out the folds of my letter, and
O Heaven ! I gave thee all.'

place it on desk or on table; The Knight made answer to the Maid,

Place it on table or desk ; and your right While to his heart he held her hand,

hands loosely half-closing, Nine castles hath my noble sire,

Gently sustain them in air, and extendNone statelier in the land.

ing the digit didactic,

Rest it a moment on each of the forks of • The fairest one shall be my love's,

the five-forkéd left hand, The fairest castle of the nine !

Twice on the breadth of the thumb, and Wait only till the stars peep out,

once on the tip of each finger; The fairest shall be thine :

Read with a nod of the head in a hu

mouring recitativo; · Wait only till the hand of eve

And, as I live, you will see my hexaHath wholly closed yon western bars,

meters hopping before you. And through the dark we two will steal This is a galloping measure ; a hop, and Beneath the twinkling stars !'—

a trot, and a gallop ! The dark? the dark? No! not the All my hexameters fly, like stags pursued dark ?

by the stag-hounds, The twinkling stars? How, Henry ? Breathless and panting, and ready to How ?

drop, yet flying still onwards, 2 O God ! 'twas in the eye of noon

1 False metre. He pledged his sacred vow !

2 'Still flying onwards' were perhaps better.





I would full fain pull in my hard-mouthed | Lives with a separate life, and “Is it runaway hunter;

the Spirit ?' 1 he murmurs : But our English Spondeans are clumsy Sure it has thoughts of its own, and to yet impotent curb-reins ;

see is only its language.2 And so to make him go slowly, no way left have I but to lame him.

There was a great deal more, which

I have forgotten. ... The last line William, my head and my heart ! dear which I wrote, I remember, and write it Poet that feelest and thinkest!

for the truth of the sentiment, scarcely Dorothy, eager of soul, my most affec- less true in company than in pain and tionate sister !

solitude :Many a mile, O! many a wearisome William my head and my heart ! dear mile are ye distant,

William and dear Dorothea ! Long, long comfortless roads, with no

You have all in each other ; but I am one eye that doth know us.

lonely, and want you ! O! it is all too far to send you mockeries

idle : Yea, and I feel it not right ! But O! my

AD VILMUM AXIOLOGUM friends, my beloved ! Feverish and wakeful I lie, -I am weary

[TO WILLIAM WORDSWORTH] of feeling and thinking.

This be the meed, that thy song creates Every thought is worn down, I am weary

a thousand-fold echo! yet cannot be vacant.

Sweet as the warble of woods, that Five long hours have I tossed, rheumatic

awakes at the gale of the morning! heats, dry and flushing,

List! the Hearts of the Pure, like caves Gnawing behind in my head, and wan

in the ancient mountains dering and throbbing about me, Deep, deep in the Bosom, and from the Busy and tiresome, my friends, as the

Bosom resound it, heat of the boding night-spider.1 Each with a different tone, complete or

in musical fragmentsI forget the beginning of the line : All have welcomed thy Voice, and re

ceive and retain and prolong it! my eyes are a burthen, Now unwillingly closed, now open and

This is the word of the Lord ! it is aching with darkness.

spoken and Beings Eternal O! what a life is the eye ! what a fine 2 Live and are borne as an Infant, the and inscrutable essence !

Eternal begets the Immortal, Him that is utterly blind, nor glimpses Love is the Spirit of Life, and Music the the fire that warms him ;

Life of the Spirit ! ? 1805.

MS. Him that never beheld the swelling breast

of his mother ; Him that ne'er smiled at the bosom as HYMN TO THE EARTH babe that smiles in its slumber : 3

[IMITATED FROM STOLBERG'S HYMNE Even to 4 him it exists, it stirs and moves 5 in its prison ;


HEXAMETERS 1 False metre. 2 [Strange. 1834. Ed.]

EARTH! thou mother of numberless chil3 [Him that smiled in his gladness as a babe

dren, the nurse and the mother, that smiles in its slumber. 1834. Ed.] 4 [For. 1834: Ed.]

1 [A spirit. 1834. Ed.] 5 [Moves and stirs. 1834. Ed.]

2 [A language. 1834. Ed.]

[ocr errors]

green island,



Hail ! O Goddess, thrice hail ! Elest be Fair was thy blush, the fairest and first thou ! and, blessing, I hymn thee !

of the blushes of morning! Forth, ye sweet sounds ! from my harp, Deep was the shudder, O Earth! the

and my voice shall float on your throe of thy self-retention :

Inly thou strovest to flee, and didst seek Soar thou aloft, O my soul ! and bear up thyself at thy centre ! my song on thy pinions.

Mightier far was the joy of thy sudden

resilience; and forthwith Travelling the vale with mine eyes— Myriad myriads of lives teem'd forth from green meadows and lake with

the mighty embracement.

Thousand-fold tribes of dwellers, impellid Dark in its basin of rock, and the bare

by thousand-fold instincts, stream flowing in brightness, Fill'd, as a dream, the wide waters; the Thrilld with thy beauty and love in the rivers sang on their channels ;

wooded slope of the mountain, Laugh'd on their shores the hoarse seas ; Here, great mother, I lie, thy child, with

the yearning ocean swell'd uphis head on thy bosom !

ward ; Playful the spirits of noon, that rushing Young life low'd through the meadows, soft through thy tresses,

the woods, and the echoing mounGreen-hair'd goddess ! refresh me; and

tains, hark! as they hurry or linger, Wander'd bleating in valleys, and warbled Fill the pause of my harp, or sustain it on blossoming branches.

with musical murmurs. Into my being thou murmurest joy, and

? 1799. tenderest sadness

MAHOMET Shedd'st thou, like dew, on my heart, till

the joy and the heavenly sadness UTTER the song, O my soul ! the flight Pour themselves forth from my heart in

and return of Mohammed, tears, and the hymn of thanks- Prophet and priest, who scatter'd abroad giving

both evil and blessing,

Huge wasteful empires founded and Earth! thou mother of numberless chil

hallow'd slow persecution, dren, the nurse and the mother, Soul-withering, but crush'd the blasSister thou of the stars, and beloved by

phemous rites of the Pagan the Sun, the rejoicer !

And idolatrous Christians. —For veiling Guardian and friend of the moon, O

the Gospel of Jesus, Earth, whom the comets forget They, the best corrupting, had made it not,

worse than the vilest. Yea, in the measureless distance wheel Wherefore Heaven decreed th' enthuround and again they behold thee!

siast warrior of Mecca, Fadeless and young and what if the Choosing good from iniquity rather than latest birth of creation ?)

evil from goodness. Bride and consort of Heaven, that looks Loud the tumult in Mecca surrounding down upon thee enamour'd!

the fane of the idol ;Say, mysterious Earth! O say, great Naked and prostrate the priesthood were mother and goddess,

laid--the people with mad shouts Was it not well with thee then, when first Thundering now, and now with saddest thy lap was ungirdled,

ululation Thy lap to the genial Heaven, the day Flew, as over the channel of rock-stone that he woo'd thee and won thee!

the ruinous river

[blocks in formation]
[ocr errors]

stride ;

HEAR, my beloved, an old Milesian

story ! High, and embosom'd in congregated

Glimmer'd a temple upon a breezy head-

In the dim distance amid the skiey billows Trochte trīps from lòng tò short ;
Rose a fair island ; the god of flocks had

From long to long in solemn sort
blest it.

Slow Spõndēe stālks ; strong foot! yea From the far shores of the bleat-resound

ill able ing island

Ever tỏ cõme ip with Dactyl triOft by the moonlight a little boat came


sām bics mārch from short to long; floating, Came to the sea-cave beneath the breezy

With ă leap ănd à bound thề swift headland,

Anăpăsts throng; Where amid myrtles a pathway stole in

One syllable long, with one short at each

side, mazes Up to the groves of the high embosom'd Åmphībrăchýs hāstes with ă stātely

temple. There in a thicket of dedicated roses,

First ănd lāst bēing long, middlě short, Oft did a priestess, as lovely as a vision,

Amphìmācer Pouring her soul to the son of Cytherea,

Strīkes hỉs thūndēring hoofs like ă proud Pray him to hover around the slight if Derwent be innocent, steady, and

hīgh-brěd Rācer. canoe-boat, And with invisible pilotage to guide it

wise, Over the dusk wave, until the nightly

And delight in the things of earth, water,

and skies; sailor Shivering with ecstasy sank upon her

Tender warmth at his heart, with these bosom.

metres to show it, With sound sense in his brains, may

make Derwent a poet, —

Nay crown him with fame, and must THE HOMERIC HEXAMETER

win him the love

Of his father on earth and his Father DESCRIBED ANI) EXEMPLIFIED


My dear, dear child ! STRONGLY it bears us along in swelling Could you stand upon Skiddaw, you and limitless billows,

would not from its whole ridge Nothing before and nothing behind but See a man who so loves you as your the sky and the ocean.

? 1799.



? 1799.

« VorigeDoorgaan »