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Is thy face like thy mother's, my fair child! ADA! () sole daughter of my house and heart? When last I saw thy young blue eyes they smiled, And then we parted,—not as now we part, But with a hope.— Awaking with a start, The waters heave around me; and on high The winds lift up their voices: I depart, Whither I know not; but the hour's gone by, When Albion's lessening shores could grieve or glad mine eye. (?) (1) [In an hitherto unpublished letter, dated Verona, November 6, 1816, Lord Byron says – “By the way, Ada's name (which I found in our pedigree, under king John's reign), is the same with that of the sister of Charlemagne, as I redde, the other day, in a book treating of the Rhine.” .-E. (o Byron quitted England, for the second and last time, on the 25th of April, 1816, attended by William Fletcher and Robert Rushton,
the “yeoman” and “page” of Canto I.; his physician, Dr. Polidori; and a Swiss valet. - El
II. Once more upon the waters! yet once more! And the waves bound beneath me as a steed That knows his rider. Welcome, to the roar! Swift be their guidance, wheresoe'er it lead! Though the strain'd mast should quiver as a reed, And the rent canvass fluttering strew the gale, Still must I on ; for I am as a weed, Flung from the rock, on Ocean's foam, to sail Where'er the surge may sweep, the tempest's breath prevail. III. In my youth's summer I did sing of One, The wandering outlaw of his own dark mind Again I seize the theme, then but begun, And bear it with me, as the rushing wind Bears the cloud onwards: in that Tale I find The furrows of long thought, and dried-up tears, Which, ebbing, leave a sterile track behind, O'er which all heavily the journeying years Plod the last sands of life, – where not a flower appears. IV. Since my young days of passion—joy, or pain, Perchance my heart and harp have lost a string, And both may jar: it may be, that in vain I would essay as I have sung to sing. Yet, though a dreary strain, to this I cling So that it wean me from the weary dream Of selfish grief or gladness—so it fling Forgetfulness around me—it shall seem To me, though to none else, a not ungrateful theme
V. He, who grown aged in this world of woe, In deeds, not years, piercing the depths of life, So that no wonder waits him ; nor below Can love, or sorrow, fame, ambition, strife, Cut to his heart again with the keen knife Of silent, sharp endurance: he can tell Why thought seeks refuge in lone caves, yet rife With airy images, and shapes which dwell Still unimpair'd, though old, in the soul's haunted cell.
VI. 'Tis to create, and in creating live A being more intense, that we endow With form our fancy, gaining as we give The life we image, even as I do now. What am I? Nothing: but not so art thou, Soul of my thought ! with whom I traverse earth, Invisible but gazing, as I glow Mix'd with thy spirit, blended with thy birth,
And feeling still with thee in my crush'd feelings' dearth.
VII. Yet must I think less wildly : — I have thought Too long and darkly, till my brain became, In its own eddy boiling and o'erwrought, A whirling gulf of phantasy and flame: And thus, untaught in youth my heart to tame, My springs of life were poison'd. 'Tis too late Yet am I changed; though still enough the same In strength to bear what time can not abate,
And feed on bitter fruits without accusing Fate.
VIII. Something too much of this: — but now 'tis past, And the spell closes with its silent seal. Long absent HAROLD re-appears at last; He of the breast which fain no more would feel, Wrung with the wounds which kill not, but ne'er Yet Time, who changes all, had alter'd him [heal; In soul and aspect as in age (') : years steal Fire from the mind as vigour from the limb; And life's enchanted cup but sparkles near the brim.
IX. His had been quaff'd too quickly, and he found The dregs were wormwood; but he fill'd again, And from a purer fount, on holier ground, And deem'd its spring perpetual; but in vain Still round him clung invisibly a chain Which gall'd for ever, fettering though unseen, And heavy though it clank'd not; worn with pain, Which pined although it spoke not, and grew keen,
Entering with every step he took through many a
(1) [The first and second cantos of “Childe Harold's Pilgrimage' produced, on their appearance in 1812, an effect upon the public, at least equal to any work which has appeared with.n this or the last century, and placed at once upon Lord Byron's head the garland for which other men of genius have toiled long, and which they have gained late. He was placed pre-eminent among the literary men of his country by general acclamation. It was amidst such feelings of admiration that he entered the public stage. Everything in his manner, person, and conversation, tended to maintain the charm which his genius had flung around him; and those admitted to his conversation, far from finding that the inspired poet sunk into ordinary mortality, felt themselves attached to him, not only by many noble qualities, but by the interest of a mysterious, undefined, and almost painful curiosity. A countenance exquisitely modelled to the expression of feeling and passion, and exhibiting the remarkable contrast of very dark hair and
X. Secure in guarded coldness, he had mix'd Again in fancied safety with his kind, And deem'd his spirit now so firmly fix'd And sheath'd with an invulnerable mind, That, if no joy, no sorrow lurk'd behind; And he, as one, might 'midst the many stand Unheeded, searching through the crowd to find Fit speculation; such as in strange land
He found in wonder-works of God and Nature's hand.
XI. But who can view the ripen'd rose, nor seek To wear it? who can curiously behold The smoothness and the sheen of beauty's cheek, Nor feel the heart can never all grow old? Who can contemplate Fame through clouds unfold The star which rises o'er her steep, nor climbo Harold, once more within the vortex, roll'd On with the giddy circle, chasing Time, Yet with a nobler aim than in his youth's fond prime.
eyebrows, with light and expressive eyes, pr d to the physiog * ~ * the most interesting subject for the exercise of his art. The predominating expression was that of deep and habitual thought, which gave way to the most rapid play of features when he engaged in interesting discussion; so that a brother poet compared them to the sculpture of a beautiful alabaster vase, only seen to perfection when lighted up from within. The flashes of mirth, gaiety, indignation, or satirical dislike, which frequently animated Lord Byron's countenance, might, during an evening's conversation, be mistaken, by a stranger, for the habitual expression, so easily and so happily was it formed for them all; but those who had an opportunity of studying his features for a length of time, and upon various occasions, both of rest and emotion, will agree that their proper language was that of melancholy. Sometimes shades of this gloom interrupted ever, his gayest and most happy moments. – SiR WALTER Scott.]