Imagens das páginas

That heavy chill has frozen o'er the fountain of our

tears, And though the eye may sparkle still, 't is where the

ice appears. Though wit may flash from fluent lips, and mirth

distract the breast, Thi ough midnight hours that yield no more their

former hope of rest; 'Tis but as ivy-leaves around the ruin'd turret

wreath, All green and wildly fresh without, but worn and

grey beneath. Oh could I feel as I have felt, or be what I have

been, Or weep as I could once have wept, o'er many a

vanish'd scene ; As springs in deserts found seem sweet, all brackish

though they be, So midst the wither'd waste of life, those tears would flow to me.

March, 1815.

STANZAS FOR MUSIC. THERE be none of Beauty's daughters

With a magic like thee ; And like music on the waters

Is thy sweet voice to me : When, as if its sound were causing The charmed ocean's pausing, The waves lie still and gleaming, And the lull'd winds seem dreaming.


We do not curse thee, Waterloo !
Though Freedom's blood thy plain bedew;
There 't was shed, but is not sunk-
Rising from each gory trunk,
Like the water-spout from ocean,
With a strong and growing motion
It soars, and mingles in the air,
With that of lost Labedoyère —
With that of him whose honour'd grave
Contains the “bravest ot' the brave."
A crimson cloud it spreads and glows,
But shall return to whence it rose ;
When 't is full 't will burst asunder
Never yet was heard such thunder,
As then shall shake the world with wonder
Never yet was seen such lightning
As o'er heaven shall then be bright'ning!
Like the Wormwood Star foretold
By the sainted Seer of old,
Show'ring down a fiery food,
Turning rivers into blood. 3

The chief has fallen, but not by you,
Vanquishers of Waterloo !
When the soldier citizen
Sway'd not o'er his fellow-men
Save in deeds that led them on
Where Glory smiled on Freedom's son
Who, of all the despots banded,

With that youthful chief compete ?

Who could boast o'er France defeated, Till lone Tyranny commanded ? Till, goaded by ambition's sting, The Hero sunk into the King ? Then he fell :- so perish all, Who would men by man enthrall !

III. And thou, too, of the snow-white plume ! + Whose realm refused thee ev'n a tomb ; Better hadst thou still been leading France o'er hosts of hirelings bleeding, Than sold thyself to death and shame For a meanly royal name ; Such as he of Naples wears, Who thy blood-bought title bears. Little didst thou deem, when dashing

On thy war-horse through the ranks

Like a stream which burst its banks, While helmets cleft, and sabres clashing,

And the midnight moon is weaving

Her bright chain o'er the deep ; Whose breast is gently heaving,

As an infant's asleep : So the spirit bows before thee, To listen and adore thee; With a full but soft emotion, Like the swell of Summer's ocean.


ON NAPOLEON'S ESCAPE FROY ELBA. Once fairly set out on his party of pleasure, Taking towns at his liking, and crowns at his leisure, From Elba to Lyons and Paris he goes, Making balls for the ladies, and bows to his foes. 2

March, 27. 1815.

! (" Do you remember the lines I sent you early last year ? I don't wish (like Mr. Fitzgerald) to claim the character of • Vates,' in all its translations, — but were they not a little prophetic ? I mean those beginning,' There's not a joy the world can give,' &c., on which I pique myself as being the truest, though the most melancholy, I ever wrote." Byron Letters, March, 1816]

2 (" I can forgive the rogue for utterly Calsifying every line of mine (de - which I take to be the last and uttermost stretch of human magnanimity. Do you remember the story of a certain abbé, who wrote a treatise on the Swedish constitution, and proved it indissoluble and eternal ? Just as he had corrected the last sheet, news came that Gustavus the Third had destroyed this immortal government. “Sir,' quoth the abbė, the King of Sweden may overthrow the constitution, but not my book!!! I think of the abbé, but not with him. Making every allowance for talent and most consummate daring, there is, after all, a good deal in luck or destiny. He might have been stopped by our frigates, or wrecked in the Gulf of Lyons, which is particularly tempestuous -or- a

thousand things. But he is certainly fortune's favourite." Byron Letters, March, 1815.]

3. See Rev.chap. viii. v. 7, &c. "The first angel sour.ded, and there followed hail and fire mingled with blood," &c. 8. “And the second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea ; and the third part of the sea became blood," &c. v. 10. "And the third angel sounded, and there fell a great star from heaven, burning as it were a lamp ; and it fell upon the third part of the rivers, and upon the fountains of waters." 0. 11. * And the name of the star is calleri I Formwood : and the third part of the waters became wormwood ; and many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter."

[“ Poor dcar Murat, what an end! His white plume used to be a rallying point in battle, like Henry the Fourth's. lle refused a confessor and a bandage ; so would neither suffer his soul nor body to be bandaged." - Byron Letters.]

5 Murat's remains are said to have been torn from the grave and burnt


FROM THE FRENCU. Must thou go, my glorious Chief, 2

Sever'd from thy faithful few ? Who can tell thy warrior's grief,

Maddening o'er that long adieu ? Woman's love, and friendship's zeal,

Dear as both have been to me — What are they to all I feel,

With a soldier's faith for thee ?

Shone and shiver'd fast around thee –
of the fate at last which found thee :
Was that haughty plume laid low
By a slave's dishoncst blow?
Once - as the Moon sways o'er the tide,
It rollid in air, the warrior's guide ;
Through the smoke-created night
Of the black and sulphurous figlit,
The soldier raised his seeking eye
To catch that crest's ascendency
And as it onward rolling rose,
So moved his heart upon our focs.
There, where death's brief pang was quickest,
And the battle's wreck lay thickest,
Strew'd beneath the advancing banner

of the eagle's burning crest —
( There with thunder-clouds to fan her,
Who could then her wing arrest -
Victory beaming from her breast ?

?) While the broken line enlarging

Fell, or fled along the plain ; There be sure was Murat charging ! There he ne'er shall charge again !

O'er glories gone the invaders march,
Weeps Triumph o'er each levellid arch -
But let Freedom rejoice,
With her heart in her voice;
But, her hand on her sword,
Doubly shall she be adored ;
France hath twice too well been taught
The “ moral lesson " dearly bought
Her safety sits not on a throne,
With Capet or Napoleon !
But in equal rights and laws,
Hearts and hands in one great cause —
Freedom, such as God hath given
Unto all beneath his heaven,
With their breath, and from their birth,
Though Guilt would sweep it from the earth;
With a fierce and lavish hand
Scattering nations' wealth like sand;
Pouring nations' blood like water,
In imperial seas of slaughter !

But the heart and the mind,
And the voice of mankind,
Shall arise in communion
And who shall resist that proud union ?
The time is past when swords subdued
Man may die—the soul's renew'd :
Even in this low world of care
Freedom ne'er shall want an heir;
Millions breathe but to inberit
Her for ever bounding spirit —
When once more her hosts assemble,
Tyrants shall believe and tremble
Smile they at this idle threat ?
Crimson tears will follow yet. 1

Idol of the soldier's soul !

First in fight, but mightiest now : Jany could a world control;

Thee alone no doom can bow. By thy side for years I dared

Death ; and envied those who fell, When their dying shout was heard,

Blessing him they served so well. 3 Would that I were cold with those,

Since this hour I live to see ; When the doubts of coward foes

Scarce dare trust a man with thee, Dreading each should set thee free!

Oh ! although in dungeons pent, All their chains were light to me,

Gazing on thy soul unbent. Would the sycophants of him

Now so deaf to duty's prayer, Were his borrow'd glories dim,

In his native darkness share ? Were that world this hour his own,

All thou calmly dost resign, Could he purchase with that throne

Hearts like those which still are thine ?

My chief, my king, my friend, adieu !

Never did I droop before ; Never to my sovereign sue,

As bis fues I now implore : All I ask is to divide

Every peril he must brave; Sharing by the hero's side

His fall, his exile, and his grave.



Star of the brave ! — whose beam hath shed
Such glory o'er the quick and dead
Thou radiant and adored deceit !
Which millions rush'd in arms to grect,
Wild meteor of immortal birth !
Why rise in Heaven to set on Earth ?
Souls of slain heroes form'd thy rays;
Eternity flash'd through thy blaze ;

" ("Talking of politics, as Caleb Quotem says, pray look at the conclusion of my • Ode on Waterloo,' written in the year 1815, and, coinparing it with the Duke de Berri's catastrophe in 1820, tell me if I have not as good a right to the character of' Vutes,' in both senses of the word, as Fitzgerald and Coleridge ?

• Crimson tcars will follow yet ;' and have they not ?"- Dyron Letters, 1820.)

“ All wept, but particularly Savary, and a Polish oficer

who had been exalted from the ranks by Buonaparte. He clung to his master's knees; wrote a letter to Lord Keith, entreating permission to accompany him, even in the most menial capacity, which could not be admitted."

3“ At Waterloo, one man was seen, whose left arm was shattered by a cannon ball, to wrench it off with the other, and throwing it up in the air, exclaimed to his comrades, • Vive l'Empereur, jusqu'a la mort !' There were inany other instances of the like: this, however, you may depend on as true." - Private Letter from Brussels.

The music of thy martial sphere

Oh! for the veteran bearts that were wasted Was fame on high and lionour here ;

In strife with the storm, when their battles were won And thy light broke on human eyes,

Then the Eagle, whose gaze in that moment was blasted, Like a volcano of the skies.

Had still soar'd with eyes fix'd on victory's sun ! Like lava rollid thy stream of blood,

Farewell to thee, France !- but when Liberty rallies And swept down empires with its flood;

Once more in thy regions, remember me thenEarth rock'd beneath thee to her base,

The violet still grows in the depth of thy valleys ; As thou didst lighten through all space; Though wither'd, thy tear will unfold it again And the shorn Sun grew dim in air,

Yet, yet, I may baffle the hosts that surround us, And set while thou wert dwelling there. And yet may thy heart leap awake to my voice — Before thee rose, and with thee grew,

There are links which must break in the chain that

has bound us, A rainbow of the loveliest hue Of three bright colours 1, each divine,

Then turn thee and call on the Chief of thy choice ! And fit for that celestial sign ; For Freedom's hand had blended them, Like tints in an immortal gem.

ENDORSEMENT TO THE DEED OF SEPAROne tint was of the sunbeam's dyes ;

ATION, IN THE APRIL OF 1816. One, the blue depth of Seraph's eyes ;

A year ago you swore, fond she ! One, the pure Spirit's veil of white

“ To love, to honour," and so forth : Had robed in radiance of its light:

Such was the vow you pledged to me,
The three so mingled did beseem

And here's exactly what 't is worth.
The texture of a heavenly dream.
Star of the brave ! thy ray is pale,
And darkness must again prevail !

But, oh thou Rainbow of the free !

I had a dream, which was not all a dream. 3 Our tears and blood must flow for thee.

The bright sun was extinguish'd, and the stars When thy bright promisc fades away,

Did wander darkling in the eternal space, Our life is but a load of clay.

Rayless, and pathless, and the icy earth And Freedom hallows with her tread

Swung blind and blackening in the moonless air; The silent cities of the dead;

Morn came and went — and came, and brought no day, For beautiful in death are they

And men forgot their passions in the dread Who proudly fall in her array ;

Of this their desolation ; and all hearts And soon, oh Goddess ! may we be

Were chill'd into a selfish prayer for light:
For evermore with them or thce !

And they did live by watchfires — and the thrones,
The palaces of crowned kings — the huts,
The habitations of all things which dwell,

Were burnt for beacons ; cities were consumed,

And men were gather'd round their blazing homes FROM THE FRENCH.

To look once more into each other's face; Farewell to the Land, where the gloom of my Glory Happy were those who dwelt within the eye Arose and o'ershadow'd the earth with her name

Of the volcanos, and their mountain-torch : She abandons me now, but the page of her story,

A fearful hope was all the world contain'd; The brightest or blackest, is fill'd with my fame.

Forests were set on fire -- but hour by hour I have warr'd with a world which vanquish'd me only They fell and faded — and the crackling trunks When the meteor of conquest allured me too far;

Extinguish'd with a crash — and all was black. I have coped with the nations which dread me thus

The brows of men by the despairing light lonely,

Wore an unearthly aspect, as by fits The last single Captive to millions in war.

The flashes fell upon them; some lay down

And hid their eyes and wept; and some did rest Farewell to thee, France! when thy diadem crown'd meTheir chins upon their clenched hands, and smiled; I made thee the gem and the wonder of earth, - And others hurried to and fro, and fed But thy weakness decrees I should leave as I found thee, Their funeral piles with fuel, and look'd up Decay'd in thy glory, and sunk in thy worth.

With mad disquietude on the dull sky, | The tricolour.

fail in exciting our terror from the extravagance of the plan. ? [In the original MS.—“ A Dream."]

To speak plainly, the framing of such phantasms is a dangerous

employment for the exalted and teeming imagination of such 3 (In this poem Lord Byron has abandoned the art, so pe- a poet as Lord Byron, whose Pegasus ever required rather a culiarly his own, of showing the reader where his purpose bridle than a spur. The waste of boundless space into which tends, and has contented himself with presenting a mass of they lead the poet, the neglect of precision which such themes powerful ideas unarranged, and the meaning of which it is may render habitual, make them, in respect to poetry, what not easy to attain. A succession of terrible images is placed mysticism is to religion. The meaning of the poet, as he asbefore us, flitting and mixing, and disengaging themselves, as cends upon cloudy wing, becomes the shadow only of a in the dream of a feverish man - chimeras dire, to whose ex. thought, and having eluded the comprehension of others, istence the mind refuses credit, which contound and weary necessarily ends by escaping from that of the author himself. the ordinary reader, and bathe the comprehension, even of The strength of poetical conception, and the beauty of dicthose more accustomed to the lights of a poetic muse. The tion, bestowed upon such prolusions, is as much thrown subject is the progress of utter darkness, until it becomes, in away as the colours of a painter, could he take a cloud of Shakspeare's phrnse, the "burier of the dead;" and the assem- mist, or a wreath of smoke, for his canvass. - SIR WALTER blage of terrific ideas which the poet has placed before us only Scott.]

And the clouds perish'd i Darkness had no need
Of aid from them - She was the Universe. 1

Diodati, July 4816.

The pall of a past world; and then again
With curses cast them down upon the dust,
And gnash'd their teeth and howld: the wild birds

And, terrified, did flutter on the ground,
And flap their useless wings; the wildest brutes
Came tame and tremulous; and vipers crawl'd
And twined themselves among the multitude,
Hissing, but stingless - they were slain for food :
And War, which for a moment was no more,
Did glut himself again; -a meal was bought
With blood, and each sate sullenly apart
Gorging himself in gloom: no love was left ;
All earth was but one thought — and that was death,
Immediate and inglorious; and the pang
Of famine fed upon all entrails - men
Died, and their bones were tombless as their flesh;
The meagre by the meagre were devour'd,
Even dogs assail'd their masters, all save one,
And he was faithful to a corse, and kept
The birds and beasts and famish'd men at bay,
'Till hunger clung them, or the dropping dead
Lured their lank jaws ; himself sought out no food,
But with a piteous and perpetual moan,
And a quick desolate cry, licking the hand
Which answer'd not with a caress — he died.
The crowd was famish'd by degrees ; but two
Of an enormous city did survive,
And they were enemies: they met beside
The dying embers of an altar-place
Where had been heap'd a mass of holy things
For an unholy usage; they raked up,
and shivering scraped with their cold skeleton hands
The feeble ashes, and their feeble breath
Blew for a little life, and made a flame
Which was a mockery; then they lifted up
Their eyes as it grew lighter, and beheld
Each other's aspects — saw, and shriek'd, and died
Even of their mutual hideousness they died,
Unknowing who he was upon whose brow
Famine had written Fiend. The world was void,
The populous and the powerful was a lump,
Seasonless, herbless, treeless, nanless, lifeless -
A lunip of death - a chaos of hard clay.
The rivers, lakes, and ocean all stood still,
And nothing stirr'd within their silent depths;
Ships sailorless lay rotting on the sea,
And their masts fell down piecemeal; as they dropp'd
They slept on the abyss without a surge -
The waves were dead; the tides were in their grave,
'The Moon, their mistress, had expired befors;
The winds were wither'd in the stagnant air,

I stood beside the grave of him who blazo!

The comet of a season, and I saw
The humblest of all sepulchres, and gazed

With not the less of sorrow and of awe
On that neglected turf and quiet stone,
With name no clearer than the names unknown,
Which lay unread around it ; and I ask'd

The Gardener of that ground, why it might be
That for this plant strangers his memory task'd

Through the thick deaths of half a century ?
And thus he answer'd — “ Well, I do not know
Why frequent travellers turn to pilgrims so ;
He died before my day of Sextonship,

And I had not the digging of this grave."
And is this all ? I thought, and do we rip

The veil of Immortality ? and crave
I know not what of honour and of light
Through unborn ages, to endure this blight ?
So soon, and so successless ?

As I said,
The Architect of all on which we tread,
For Earth is but a tombstone, did essay
To extricate remembrance from the clay,
Whose minglings might confuse a Newton's thought,

Were it not that all life must end in one,
Of which we are but dreamers ; — as he caught
As 't were the twilight of a former Sun,
Thus spoke he,-“ I believe the man of whom
You wot, who lies in this selected tomb,
Was a most famous writer in his day,
And therefore travellers step from out their way
To pay him honour, — and myself whate'er

Your honour pleases,”-then most pleased I shook
From out my pocket's avaricious nook
Some certain coins of silver, which as 't were
Perforce I gave this man, though I could spare
So much but inconveniently:- - Ye smile,
I see ye, ye profane ones ! all the while,
Because my homely phrase the truth would tell.
You are the fools, not I- for I did dwell
With a deep thought, and with a soften'd eye,
On that Old Sexton's natural homily,
In which there was Obscurity and Fame,
The Glory and the Nothing of a Name. 3

Diodati, 1916.

I [ Darkness" is a grand and gloomy sketch of the supposed consequences of the final extinction of the Sun and the heavenly bodies : executed, undoubtedly, with great and fear. ful force, but with something of German exaggeration, and a fantastical solution of incidents. The very conception is terrible above all conception of known calamity, and is too oppressive to the imagination to be contemplated with pleasure, even in the faint retlection of poetry. - JEFFREY.)

? (On the sheet containing the original draught of these lines, Lord Byron has written :--"The following poem (as most that I have endearoured to write) is founded on a fact; and this detail is an attempt at a serious imitation of the style of a great poet - its beauties and its defects: I say the style; for the thoughts I claim as my own. In this, if there be any thing ridiculous, let it be attributed to me, at least as much as to Mr. Wordsworth; of whom there can exist few greater admirers than myself. I have blended what I would deem to be the beauties as well as defects of his style ; and it ought to be remembered, that, in such things, whether there be praise or dispraise, there is always what is called a compliment, however unintentional.")

3 [" The Grave of Churchill might have called from Lord Byron a deeper commemoration; for, though they generally differed in character and genius, there was a resemblance be tween their history and character. The satire of Churchill flowed with a more profuse, though not a more embittered, stream ; while, on the other hand, he cannot be compared to Lord Byron in point of tenderness or imagination. But both these poets held themselves above the opinion of the world, and both were followed by the fame and popularity which they seemed to despise. The writings of both exhibit an inborn, though sometimes ill-regulated, generosity of mind, and a spirit of proud independence, frequently pushed to extremes. Both carried their hatred of hypocrisy beyond the verge of prudence, and indulged their vein of satire to the borders of licentiousness. Both died in the flower of their age in a foreign land." - SIR WALTER SCOTT. - Churchill died at Boulogne, November 4. 1761, in the thirty-third year of his age. -"Though his associates obtained Christian vurial for him, by bringing the body to Dorer, where it was interred in the old cemetery which once belonged to the collegiate church of St. Jartin, they inscribed upon his tombstone, inA FRAGMENT. COULD I remount the river of my years To the first fountain of our smiles and tears, I would not trace again the stream of hours Between their outworn banks of witber'd flowers, But bid it flow as now — until it glides Into the number of the nameless tides.

Titan! to whose immortal eyes

The sufferings of mortality,

Seen in their sad reality,
Were not as things that gods despise ;
What was thy pity's recompense ?
A silent suffering, and intense ;
The rock, the vulture, and the chain,
All that the proud can feel of pain,
The agony they do not show
The suffocating sense of woe,

Which speaks but in its loneliness,
And then is jealous lest the sky
Should have a listener, nor will sigh

Until its voice is echoless.
Titan ! to thee the strife was given

Between the suffering and the will,

Which torture where they cannot kill ;
And the inexorable Heaven,
And the deaf tyranny of Fate,
The ruling principle of Hate,
Which for its pleasure doth create
The things it may annihilate,
Refused thee even the boon to die :
The wretched gift eternity
Was thine — and thou hast borne it well.
All that the Thunderer wrung from thee
Was but the menace which flung back
On him the torments of thy rack;
The fate thou didst so well foresee,
But would not to appease him tell;
And in thy Silence was his Sentence,
And in his Soul a vain repentance,
And evil dread so ill dissembled,
That in his hand the lightnings trembled.
Thy Godlike crime was to be kind,

To render with thy precepts less

The sum of human wretchedness,
And strengthen Man with his own mind;
But baffled as thou wert from high,
Still in thy patient energy,
In the endurance, and repulse

Of thine impenetrable Spirit,
Which Earth and Heaven could not convulse,

A mighty lesson we inherit :
Thou art a symbol and a sign

To Mortals of their fate and force ;
Like thee, Man is in part divine,

A troubled stream from a pure source ;
And Man in portions can foresee
His own funereal destiny ;
His wretchedness, and his resistance,
And his sad unallied existence :
To which his Spirit may oppose
Itself - and equal to all woes,

And a firm will, and a deep sense,
Which even in torture can descry

Its own concenter'd recompense,
Triumphant where it dares defy,
And making Death a Victory.

Diodati, July, 1816. stead of any consolatory or monitory text, this Epicurean line from one of his own poems –

“ Life to the last enjoy'd, here Churchill lies." Southey's Cowper, vol. ii. p. 159.)

What is this Death ? - a quiet of the heart ?
The whole of that of which we are a part ?
For life is but a vision - what I see
Of all which lives alone is life to me,
And being so — the absent are the dead,
Who haunt us from tranquillity, and spread
A dreary shroud around us, and invest
With sad remembrancers our hours of rest.

The absent are the dead — for they are cold,
And ne'er can be what once we did behold;
And they are changed, and cheerless, - - or if yet
The unforgotten do not all forget,
Since thus divided - equal must it be
If the deep barrier be of earth, or sea;
It may be both — but one day end it must
In the dark union of insensate dust.

The under-earth inhabitants — are they
But mingled millions decomposed to clay ?
The ashes of a thousand ages spread
Wherever man has trodden or shall tread ?
Or do they in their silent cities dwell
Each in his incommunicative cell ?
Or have they their own language ? and a sense
Of breathless being ? — darken’d and intense
As midnight in her solitude ? - Oh Earth !
Where are the past ?—and wherefore had they birth ?
The dead are thy inheritors — and we
But bubbles on thy surface ; and the key
Of thy profundity is in the grave,
The ebon portal of thy peopled cave,
Where I would walk in spirit, and behold
Our elements resolved to things untold,
And fathom hidden wonders, and explore
The essence of great bosoms now no more.

Diodati, July, 1816.

SONNET TO LAKE LEMAN. ROUSSEAU — Voltaire - our Gibbon- and De Staël

Leman!! these names are worthy of thy shore,

Thy shore of names like these ! wert thou no more, Their memory thy remembrance would recall : To them thy banks were lovely as to all,

But they have made them lovelier, for the lore

Of mighty minds doth hallow in the core Of human hearts the ruin of a wall

Where dwelt the wise and wondrous ; but by thee, How much more, Lake of Beauty ! do we feel,

In sweetly gliding o'er thy crystal sea,
The wild glow of that not ungentle zeal,

Which of the heirs of immortality
Is proud, and makes the breath of glory real !

Diodati, July, 1816. Geneva, Ferney, Copet, Lausanne. - [See antè, p. 35." I have traversed all Rousseau's ground with the Heloise before me, and am struck to a degree that I cannot express, with the force and accuracy of his descriptions, and the beauty of their reality.” — Byron Letters, 1816.)

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