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“ And what is friendship but a name,
A charm that lulls to sleep;
And leaves the wretch to weep?
“ And love is still an emptier sound,
The modern fair one's jest: On earth unseen, or only found
To warm the turtle's nest.
“ For shame, fond youth, thy sorrows hush,
And spurn the sex,” he said: But while he spoke, a rising blush
His lovelorn guest betray'd.
Surprised he sees new beauties rise,
Swift mantling to the view;
As bright, as transient too.
The bashful look, the rising breast,
Alternate spread alarms:
A maid in all her charms.
* And, ah! forgive a stranger rude,
A wretch forlorn,” she cried ; “ Whose feet unhallow'd thus intrude
Where heaven and you reside.
“ But let a maid thy pity share,
Whom love has taught to stray ; Who seeks for rest, but finds despair
Companion of her way.
My father lived beside the Tyne,
A wealthy lord was he; And all his wealth was mark'd as mine,
He had but only me.
“ To win me from his tender arms
Unnumber'd suitors came, Who praised me for imputed charms,
And felt or feign'd a flame.
“ Each hour a mercenary crowd
With richest proffers strove; Among the rest young Edwin bow'd,
But never talk'd of love.
In humble, simplest habit clad,
No wealth or power had he; Wisdom and worth were all he had,
But these were all to me.
“ The blossom opening to the day,
The dews of heaven refined, Could nought of purity display
To emulate his mind.
“ The dew, the blossoms of the tree,
With charms inconstant shine; Their charms were his, but, woe to me,
Their constancy was mine,
“ For still I tried each fickle art,
Importunate and vain; And while his passion touch'd my heart,
I triumph'd in his pain.
Till, quite dejected with my scorn,
He left me to my pride; And sought a solitude forlorn
In secret where he died,
“ But mine the sorrow, mine the fault,
And well my life shall pay; I'll seek the solitude he sought,
And stretch me where he lay.
“ And there forlorn, despairing, hid,
I'll lay me down and die; 'Twas so for me that Edwin did,
And so for him will I.”
“Forbid it, Heaven!” the hermit cried,
And clasp'd her to his breast : The wondering fair one turn'd to chide,
'Twas Edwin's self that press’d.
“ Turn, Angelina, ever dear,
My charmer, turn to see
Restored to love and thee.
6. Thus let me hold thee to my heart,
And every care resign:
My life—my all that's mine?