Sidor som bilder
PDF
ePub

TO M. S. G.

TO CAROLINE

[blocks in formation]

Think'st thou I saw thy beauteous eyes,

Suffused in tears, implore to stay;
And heard unmoved thy plenteous sighs,

Which said far more than words can say ? Though keen the grief thy tears exprest,

When love and hope lay both o'erthrown; Yet still, my girl, this bleeding breast

Throbb’d with deep sorrow as thine own. But when our cheeks with anguish glow'd,

When thy sweet lips were join’d to mine, The tears that from my eyelids flow'd

Were lost in those which fell from thine. Thou couldst not feel my burning cheek,

Thy gushing tears had quench'd its flame; And as thy tongue essay'd to speak,

In sighs alone it breathed my name. And yet, my girl, we weep in vain,

In vain our fate in sighs deplore; Remembrance only can remain,

But that will make us weep the more.
Again, thou best beloved, adieu !

Ah! if thou canst, o'ercome regret;
Nor let thy mind past joys review,
Our only hope is to forget!
1805,

I ne'er have told my love, yet thou

Hast seen my ardent flame too well; And shall I plead my passion now,

To make thy bosom's heaven a hell ?

No! for thou never canst be mine,

United by the priest's decree: By any ties but those divine,

Mine, my beloved, thou ne'er shalt be. 20

Then let the secret fire consume,

Let it consume, thou shalt not know: With joy I court a certain doom,

Rather than spread its guilty glow.

TO CAROLINE

[blocks in formation]

You say you love, and yet your eye

No symptom of that love conveys;
You say you love, yet know not why,

Your cheek no sign of love betrays.
Ah ! did that breast with ardour glow,
With me alone it joy could know,
Or feel with me the listless woe,

Which racks my heart when far from thee. Whene'er we meet my blushes rise,

And mantle through my purpled cheek; But yet no blush to mine replies,

Nor e'en your eyes your love bespeak.
Your voice alone declares your flame,
And though so sweet it breathes my name,
Our passions still are not the same;

Alas ! you can not love like me.
For e'en your lip seems steep'd in snow,

And though so oft it meets my kiss,
It burns with no responsive glow,

Nor melts like mine in dewy bliss.

IT

[blocks in formation]

20 30

Ah! what are words to love like mine,
Though utter'd by a voice like thine,
I still in murmurs must repine,

And think that love can ne'er be true,
Which meets me with no joyous sign,

Without a sigh which bids adieu;
How different is my love from thine,

How keen my grief when leaving you.
Your image fills my anxious breast,
Till day declines adown the West;
And when at night I sink to rest,

In dreams your fancied form I view.
Tis then your breast, no longer cold,

With equal ardour seems to burn, While close your arms around me fold,

Your lips my kiss with warmth return. Ab! would these joyous moments last; Vain Hope! the gay delusion 's past, That voice ! - ah, no, 't is but the blast Which echoes through the neighbouring

grove. But when awake, your lips I seek,

And clasp enraptured all your charms, So chill is the pressure of your cheek,

I fold a statue in my arms.
If thus, when to my heart embraced,
No pleasure in your eyes is traced,
You may be prudent, fair, and chaste,

But ah! my girl, you do not love.

That the time must arrive, when, no longer

retaining Their auburn, those locks must wave thin

to the breeze, When a few silver hairs of those tresses

remaining Prove nature a prey to decay and disease. 'T is this, my beloved, which spreads gloom

o'er my features, Though I ne'er shall presume to arraign

the decree, Which God has proclaim'd as the fate of

his creatures, In the death which one day will deprive

you of me. Mistake not, sweet sceptic, the cause of

emotion, No doubt can the mind of your lover in

vade; He worships each look with such faithful

devotion, A smile can enchant, or a tear can dis

suade.

40

But as death, my beloved, soon or late shall

o'ertake us, And our breasts, which alive with such

sympathy glow, Will sleep in the grave till the blast shall

awake us, When calling the dead, in earth's bosom

laid low,

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]

This votive pledge of fond esteem, Perhaps, dear girl! for me thou 'lt

prize; It sings of Love's enchanting dream,

A theme we never can despise.

Your shepherds, your flocks, those fantasti

cal themes, Perhaps may amuse, yet they never can

move:

10

Arcadia displays but a region of dreams; TO THE DUKE OF DORSET
What are visions like these to the first kiss
of love ?

DORSET! whose early steps with mine have

stray'd, Oh! cease to affirm that man, since his Exploring every path of Ida's glade; birth,

Whom still affection taught me to defend, From Adam till now, has with wretched- And made me less a tyrant than a friend, ness strove;

Though the harsh custom of our youthful Some portion of paradise still is on earth,

band And Eden revives in the first kiss of Bade thee obey, and gave me to command, love.

Thee, on whose head a few short years will

shower When age chills the blood, when our plea- The gift of riches and the pride of power; sures are past —

E'en now a name illustrious is thine own, For years fleet away with the wings of the Renown'd in rank, not far beneath the dove –

throne. The dearest remembrance will still be the Yet, Dorset, let not this seduce thy soul last,

To shun fair science, or evade control, Our sweetest memorial the first kiss of Though passive tutors, fearful to dispraise love.

The titled child whose future breath may
December 23, 1806.

raise,
View ducal errors with indulgent eyes,

And wink at faults they tremble to chastise.
ON A CHANGE OF MASTERS AT When youthful parasites, who bend the
A GREAT PUBLIC SCHOOL

knee

To wealth, their golden idol, not to thee, (In March, 1805, Dr. Drury retired from his And even in simple boyhood's opening situation of head-master at Harrow, and was

dawn succeeded by Dr. Butler. Byron, before his

Some slaves are found to flatter and to departure for Greece, in 1809, became recon

fawn, ciled with Dr. Butler.]

When these declare, “that pomp alone WHERE are those honours, Ida ! once your

should wait own,

On one by birth predestined to be great; When Probus filled your magisterial throne? That books were only meant for drudging As ancient Rome, fast falling to disgrace,

fools, Hail'd a barbarian in her Cæsar's place, That gallant spirits scorn the common So you, degenerate, share as hard a fate,

rules;'
And seat Pomposus where your Probus Believe them not; — they point the path to
sate.

shame,
Of narrow brain, yet of a narrower soul, And seek to blast the honours of thy name.
Pomposus holds you in his harsh control; Turn to the few in Ida's early throng,
Pomposus, by no social virtue sway'd, Whose souls disdain not to condemn the
With florid jargon, and with vain parade;

wrong;
With noisy nonsense, and new-fangled rules Or if, amidst the comrades of thy youth,

were ne'er before enforced in None dare to raise the sterner voice of schools.

truth, Mistaking pedantry for learning's laws, Ask thine own heart; 't will bid thee, boy, He governs, sanction'd but by self-applause.

forbear;
With him the same dire fate attending For well I know that virtue lingers there.
Rome,

Yes! I have mark'd thee many a passing
Il-fated Ida! soon must stamp your doom: day,
Like her o'erthrown, for ever lost to fame, But now new scenes invite me far away;
No trace of science left you, but the

Yes! I have mark'd within that generous

mind July, 1805.

A soul, if well matured, to bless mankind.

20

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

Such as

30

1

name.

41

80

50

Ah! though myself, by nature haughty, Such were thy fathers; thus preserve their wild,

name, Whom Indiscretion hail'd her favourite Not heir to titles only, but to fame. child;

The hour draws nigh, a few brief days will Though every error stamps me for her

close own,

To me, this little scene of joys and woes; And dooms my fall, I fain would fall alone; Each knell of Time now warns me to resign Though my proud heart no precept now Shades where Hope, Peace, and Friendship can tame,

all were mine: I love the virtues which I cannot claim. Hope, that could vary like the rainbow's 'T is not enough, with other sons of

hue, power,

And gild their pinions as the moments flew; To gleam the lambent meteor of an hour; Peace, that reflection never frown'd away, To swell some peerage page in feeble pride, By dreams of ill to cloud some future day; With long-drawn names that grace no page Friendship, whose truth let childhood only beside;

tell, Then share with titled crowds the common Alas! they love not long, who love so well. lot

To these adieu ! nor let me linger o'er In life just gazed at, in the grave forgot; Scenes hail'd, as exiles hail their native While naught divides thee from the vulgar

shore, dead

Receding slowly through the dark-blue Except the dull cold stone that hides thy deep,

89 head,

Beheld by eyes that mourn yet cannot weep. The mouldering 'scutcheon, or the herald's Dorset, farewell ! I will not ask one part roll,

Of sad remembrance in so young a heart; That well-emblazon'd but neglected scroll, The coming morrow from thy youthful Where lords, unhonour'd, in the tomb may

mind find

Will sweep my name, nor leave a trace beOne spot, to leave a worthless name behind.

hind. There sleep, unnoticed as the gloomy vaults And yet, perhaps, in some maturer year, That veil their dust, their follies, and their Since chance has thrown us in the self-same faults,

sphere, A race, with old armorial lists o'erspread, Since the same senate, nay, the same debate, In records destined never to be read. May one day claim our suffrage for the Fain would I view thee, with prophetic

state, eyes,

We hence may meet, and pass each other by, Exalted more among the good and wise, 60 With faint regard, or cold and distant eye. A glorious and a long career pursue, For me, in future, neither friend nor foe, 101 As first in rank, the first in talent too: A stranger to thyself, thy weal or woe, Spurn every vice, each little meanness shun; With thee no more again I hope to trace Not Fortune's minion, but her noblest son. The recollection of our early race;

Turn to the annals of a former day; No more, as once, in social hours rejoice, Bright are the deeds thine earlier sires Or hear, unless in crowds, thy well-known display.

voice. One, though a courtier, lived a man of Still, if the wishes of a heart untaught worth,

To veil those feelings which perchance it And call’d, proud boast ! the British drama ought, forth.

If these, but let me cease the lengthen'd Another view, not less renown'd for wit; 69

strain, Alike for courts, and camps, or senates fit; Oh! if these wishes are not breathed in Bold in the field, and favour'd by the Nine;

vain, In every splendid part ordain'd to shine; The guardian seraph who directs thy fate Far, far distinguish'd from the glittering Will leave thee glorious, as he found thee throng,

great. The pride of princes, and the boast of song. 1805.

[ocr errors]
« FöregåendeFortsätt »