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Only consider, that to-night this mountain
is all enchanted, and if Jack-a-lantern
Shows you his way, though you should miss your own,
You ought not to be too exact with him.
Faust, Mephistopheles, and IGNis-FAtuus, in alternate Chorus.
The limits of the sphere of dream,
The bounds of true and false, are past.
Lead us on, thou wandering Gleam,
Lead us onward, far and fast,
To the wide, the desert waste.
But see, how swift advance and shift, Trees behind trees, row by row,
How, clift by clift, rocks bend and lift Their frowning foreheads as we go. The giant-snouted crags, ho! ho! How they snort, and how they blow!
Through the mossy sods and stones
Stream and streamlet hurry down,
A rushing throng . A sound of song
Beneath the vault of Heaven is blown'
Sweet notes of love, the speaking tones
Of this bright day, sent down to say
That Paradise on Earth is known,
Resound around, beneath, above.
All we hope and all we love
Finds a voice in this blithe strain,
Which wakens hill and wood and rill,
And vibrates far o'er field and vale,
And which Echo, like the tale
Of old times, repeats again.
Tu-whoo! tu-whoo! near, nearer now The sound of song, the rushing throng! Are the screech, the lapwing, and the jay. All awake as if 't were day?
See, with long legs and belly wide,
A salamander in the brake :
Every root is like a snake,
And along the loose hill-side,
With strange contortions through the night,
Curls, to seize or to affright;
And, animated, strong, and many,
They dart forth polypus-antennae,
To blister with their poison spume
The wanderer. Through the dazzling gloom
The many-colour'd mice, that thread
The dewy turf beneath our tread,
In troops each other's motions cross,
Through the heath and through the moss;
And, in legions intertangled,
The fire-flies flit, and swarm, and throng,
Till all the mountain depths are spangled.
Tell me, shall we go or stay?
Shall we onward Come along!
Everything around is swept
Forward, onward, far away!
Trees and masses intercept
The sight, and wisps on every side
Are puffd up and multiplied.
nephistop-art-EsNow vigorously seize my skirt, and gain This pinnacle of isolated crag. One may observe with wonder from this point, How Mammon glows among the mountains. F-1 st. Ay— And strangely through the solid depth below A melancholy light, like the red dawn, Shoots from the lowest gorge of the abyss Of mountains, lightening hitherward :there rise Pillars of smoke, here clouds float gently by: Here the light burns soft as the enkindled air, Or the illumined dust of golden flowers; And now it glides like tender colours spreading: And now bursts forth in fountains from the earts: And now it winds, one torrent of broad light, Through the far valley with a hundred veins; And now once more within that narrow corner Masses itself into intensest splendour. And near us, see, sparks spring out of the ground, Like golden sand scatter'd upon the darkness; The pinnacles of that black wall of mountains That hems usin, are kindled. Miephistopheles. Rare, in faith * Does not Sir Mammon gloriously illuminate His palace for this festival—it is A pleasure which you had not known before. I spy the boisterous guests already. Faust. How The children of the wind rage in the air : With what fierce strokes they fall upon my neck: MEPhtstophetes. Cling tightly to the old ribs of the crag. Beware : for if with them thou warrest In their fierce flight towards the wilderness, Their breath will sweep thee into dust, and drag Thy body to a grave in the abyss. A cloud thickens the night. Hark! how the tempest crashes through the forest The owls fly out in strange affright; The columns of the evergreen palaces Are split and shatter'd : The roots creak, and stretch, and groan; And ruinously overthrown, The trunks are crush'd and shatter'd By the fierce blast's unconquerable stress. Over each other crack and crash they all, In terrible and interiangled fall; And through the ruins of the shaken mountase The airs hiss and howl— It is not the voice of the fountain, Nor the wolf in his midnight prowl. Dost thou not hear? Strange accents are ringing Aloft, afar, anear; The witches are singing? The torrent of a raging wizard song Streams the whole mountain along. citoaus or witches. The stubble is yellow, the corn is green, Now to the brocken the witches go; The mighty multitude here may be seen Gathering, wizard and witch, below.
Sir Urean is sitting aloft in the air;
- hey over stock! and hey over stone!
"Twixt witches and incubi, what shall be done?
Tell it who dare! tell it who dare'
Upon a sow-swine, whose farrows were nine,
Old Baubo rideth alone.
citatatus. Honour her, to whom honour is due, | Old mother Baubo, honour to you! An able sow, with old Baubo upon her, Is worthy of glory, and worthy of honour! The legion of witches is coming behind, Darkening the night, and outspeeding the wind
A Voivo. Which way comest thout
| The owl was awake in the white moonshine: I saw her at rest in her downy nest, And she stared at me with her broad, bright eye.
Since you ride by so fast on the headlong blast. A watch. She dropp'd poison upon me as I past. Here are the wounds—— chotius or witches. Come away! come along The way is wide, the way is long, but what is that for a Bedlam throng: | Stick with the prong, and scratch with the broom, | The child in the cradle lies strangled at home, | And the mother is clapping her hands. stati-choats or wizantos i. we glide in Like snails when the women are all away; And from a house once given over to sin Woman has a thousand steps to stray. se-to-taotaux it. A thousand steps must a woman take, where a man but a single spring will make. voices aboveCome with us, come with us, from Felunsee. voices art-ow. with what joy would we fly through the upper sky! - We are wash'd, we are 'nointed, stark naked are we ; But our toil and our pain are for ever in vain. o born chont'sses. The wind is still, the stars are fled, The melancholy moon is dead; The magic notes, like spark on spark, Drizzle, whistling through the dark. Come away! voices at tow. Stay, ob stay! voices -an-a
Out of the crannies of the rocks Who calls? voices art-ow.
Oh, let me join your flocks'
o 1, three hundred years have striven To catch your skirt and mount to Heaven,
| And still in vain. Oh, might I be
! with company akin to me!
And you may now as well take your course on to Hell,
Some on a ram and some on a prong,
On poles and on broomsticks we flutter along;
Forlorn is the wight who can rise not to-night.
A natir-witch below.
I have been tripping this many an hour:
Are the others already so far before:
No quiet at home, and no peace abroad!
And less methinks is found by the road.
choats or witches.
Come onward away! aroint thee, aroint!
A witch to be strong must anoint—anoint-
Then every trough will be boat enough;
With a rag for a sail we can sweep through the sky—
Who flies not to-night, when means he to fly?
We cling to the skirt, and we strike on the ground;
Witch-legions thicken around and around:
Wizard-swarms cover the heath all over.
What thronging, dashing, raging, rustling;
What whispering, babbling, hissing, bustling;
What glimmering, spurting, stinking, burning,
As Heaven and Earth were overturning.
There is a true witch element about us!
Take hold on me, or we shall be divided:–
Where are you?
y Aust (from a distance).
I must exert my authority in the house'
Be guided now by me, and you shall buy
A pound of pleasure with a dram of trouble.
I hear them tune their instruments—one must
Get used to this damn'd scraping. Come, I'll lead you
Among them; and what there you do and see,
As a fresh compact 'twixt us two shall be.
How say you now? this space is wide enough-
Look forth, you cannot see the end of it—
An hundred bonfires burn in rows, and they
Who throng around them seem innumerable :
Dancing and drinking, jabbering, making love,
And cooking, are at work. Now tell me, friend,
What is there better in the world than this?
In introducing us, do you assume
The character of wizard or of devil?
In truth, I generally go about
In strict incognito; and yet one likes
To wear one's orders upon gala days.
I have no ribbon at my knee; but here
At home, the cloven foot is honourable.
See you that snail there?—she comes creeping up,
And with her feeling eyes hath smelt out something
I could not, if I would, mask myself here.
Come now, we'll go about from fire to fire:
I'll be the pimp, and you shall be the lover.
[To some Old Women, who are sitting round a
heap of glimmering coals.
Old gentlewomen, what do you do out here?
You ought to be with the young rioters
Right in the thickest of the revelry—
But every one is best content at home.
Who dare confide in right or a just claim?
So much as I had done for them and now—
With women and the people’t is the same,
Youth will stand foremost ever, age may go
To the dark grave unhonour'd.
People assert their rights: they go too far;
But as for me, the good old times I praise;
Then we were all in all,'t was something worth
One's while to be in place and wear a star;
That was indeed the golden age on earth.
We too are active, and we did and do
What we ought not, perhaps; and yet we now
Will seize, whilst all things are whirld round and round,
A spoke of Fortune's wheel, and keep our ground.
Who now can taste a treatise of deep sense
And ponderous volume? 'tis impertinence
To write what none will read, therefore will 1
To please the young and thoughtless people try.
Mephistopheles (who at once appears to have grown
I find the people ripe for the last day,
Since I last came up to the wizard mountain;
And as my little cask runs turbid now,
So is the world drain'd to the dregs.
Gentlemen; do not hurry on so fast,
And lose the chance of a good pennyworth.
I have a pack full of the choicestwares
Of every sort, and yet in all my bundle
Is nothing like what may be found on earth;
Nothing that in a moment will make rich
Men and the world with fine malicious mischid-
There is no dagger drunk with blood; no bowl
From which consuming poison may be drain'd
By innocent and healthy lips; no jewel,
The price of an abandon'd maiden's shame;
No sword which cuts the bond it cannot loose,
Or stabs the wearer's enemy in the back;
Gossip, you know little of these times
What has been, has been; what is done, is pist
They shape themselves into the innovations
They breed, and innovation drags us with it.
The torrent of the crowd sweeps over us,
You think to impel, and are yourself impelsd
Who is that yonder 1
Mark her well. It is
Lilith, the first wife of Adam.
Beware of her fair hair, for she excels
All women in the magic of her locks;
And when she winds them round a young mudstod
She will not ever set him free again.
There sit a girl and an old woman—they
Seem to be tired with pleasure and with play
There is no rest to-night for any one:
When one dance ends another is begun;
Come, let us to it; we shall have rare fun. -
[Faust dances and sing, with a Girl,” Witik
stopheles with an Old Woman.
What is this cursed multitude about? -
Have we not long since proved to demonstra”
That ghosts move not on ordinary feet!
But these are dancing just like men and wome"
What does he want then at our ball ',
Is far above us all in his conceit:
Whilst we enjoy, he reasons of enjoyment;
And any step which in our dance we tread,
If it be left out of his reckoning,
Is not to be consider'd as a step.
There are few things that scandalite him."
And when you whirl round in the circle ""
As he went round the wheel in his old ".
He says that you go wrong in all respects,
Especially if you congratulate him
Upon the strength of the resemblance.
fly! . .
Vanish! Unheard of impudence! What still ther
In this enlightened age too, since you have been Proved not to exist –But this infernal brood Will hear no reason and endure no rule. Are we so wise, and is the pond still haunted How long have I been sweeping out this rubbish Of superstition, and the world will not Come clean with all my pains!—it is a case Unheard of ! the Gin L. Then leave off teasing us so. an octo-Phantasmist. I tell you, spirits, to your faces now, That I should not regret this despotism Of spirits, but that mine can wield it not. To-night I shall make poor work of it; Yet I will take a round with you, and hope Before my last step in the living dance To beat the poet and the devil together. Mrphistophe LEs. At last he will sit down in some foul puddle ! That is his way of solacing himself; Until some leech, diverted with his gravity, Cures him of spirits and the spirit together. [To Faust, who has seceded from the dance. Why do you let that fair girl pass from you, Who sung so sweetly to you in the dance? FA ust. A red mouse in the middle of her singing Sprang from her mouth. MEPhistophe L rs. That was all right, my friend; Be it enough that the mouse was not grey. Do not disturb your hour of happiness With close consideration of such trifles. Faust. Then saw I–– MEPhistopheles. What? FAust. Seest thou not a pale Fair girl, standing alone, far, far away? She drags herself now forward with slow steps, And seems as if she moved with shackled feet: I cannot overcome the thought that she Is like poor Margaret. Mephistopheles. Let it be—pass on— No good can come of it—it is not well To meet it—it is an enchanted phantom, A lifeless idol; with its numbing look, it freezes up the blood of man; and they Who meet its ghastly stare are turn'd to stone, Like those who saw Medusa. rAust. Oh, too true!
Her eyes are like the eyes of a fresh corpse
Which no beloved hand has closed, alas!
That is the heart which Margaret yielded to me—
Those are the lovely limbs which I enjoy'd
It is all magic, poor deluded fool!
She looks to every one like his first love.
Oh, what delight! what woe! I cannot turn
My looks from her sweet piteous countenance.
| How strangely does a single blood-red line,
Not broader than the sharp edge of a knife,
Adorn her lovely neck!
Ay, she can carry
Her head under her arm upon occasion;
Perseus has cut it off for her. These pleasures
End in delusion.—Gain this rising ground,
It is as airy here as in a [ J
And if I am not mightily deceived,
I see a theatre—What may this mean?
Quite a new piece, the last of seven, for "t is
The custom now to represent that number.
'T is written by a Dilettante, and
The actors who perform are Dilettanti;
Excuse me, gentleman; but I must vanish,
I am a Dilettante curtain-lifter.
Wild, pale, and wonder-stricken, even as one
Who staggers forth into the air and sun
From the dark chamber of a mortal fever,
Bewilder'd, and incapable, and ever
Fancying strange comments in her dizzy brain
Of usual shapes, till the familiar train
Of objects and of persons pass'd like things
Strange as a dreamer's mad imaginings,
Ginevra from the nuptial altar went;
The vows to which her lips had sworn assent
Rung in her brain still with a jarring din,
Deafening the lost intelligence within.
And so she moved under the bridal veil,
Which made the paleness of her cheek more pale,
And deepen'd the faint crimson of her mouth,
And darken'd her dark locks, as moonlight doth,
And of the gold and jewels glittering there
She scarce felt conscious, but the weary glare
Lay like a chaos of unwelcome light,
Vexing the sense with gorgeous undelight.
A moonbeam in the shadow of a cloud
Was less heavenly fair—her face was bow’d,
And as she pass'd, the diamonds in her hair
Were mirror'd in the polish'd marble stair
Which led from the cathedral to the street;
And ever as she went her light fair feet
Erased these images.
The bride-maidens who round her thronging came, Some with a sense of self-rebuke and shame, Envying the unenviable; and others Making the joy which should have been another's Their own by gentle sympathy; and some Sighing to think of an unhappy home: Some few admiring what can ever lure Maidens to leave the heaven serene and pure Of parents’ smiles for life's great cheat; a thing Bitter to taste, sweet in imagining.
But they are all dispersed—and, lo! she stands
Looking in idle grief on her white hands,
Alone within the garden now her own;
And through the sunny air, with jangling tone,
The music of the merry marriage bells,
Killing the azure silence, sinks and swells;–
Absorb’d like one within a dream who dreams
That he is dreaming, until slumber seems
A mockery of itself—when suddenly
Antonio stood before her, pale as slie.
With agony, with sorrow, and with pride,
tle lifted his wan eyes upon the bride,
And said–. Is this thy faith to and then as one
Whose sleeping face is stricken by the sun
With light like a harsh voice, which bids him rise
And look upon his day of life with eyes
which weep in vain that they can dream no more,
Ginevra saw her lover, and forbore
To shriek or faint, and check'd the stifling blood
Rushing upon her heart, and unsubdued
Said–. Friend, if earthly violence or ill,
Suspicion, doubt, or the tyrannic will
Of parents, chance, or custom, time or change,
Or circumstance, or terror, or revenge,
Or wilder'd looks, or words, or evil speech,
With all their stings [ ] can impeach
Our love, we love not:—if the grave which hides
The victim from the tyrant, and divides
The cheek that whitens from the eyes that dart
Imperious inquisition to the heart
That is another's, could dissever ours,
We love not...—& What, do not the silent hours
Beckon thee to Gherardi's bridal-bed
Is not that ring”——a pledge, he would have said,
Of broken vows, but she with patient look
The golden circle from her finger took,
And said–. Accept this token of my faith,
The pledge of vows to be absolved by death;
Andi am dead or shall be soon—my knell
will mix its music with that merry bell:
Does it not sound as if they sweetly said,
‘We toll a corpse out of the marriage-bed?'
The slowers upon my bridal-chamber strewn
will serve unfaded for my bicr-so soon
That even the dying violet will not die
Before Ginevra." The strong fantasy
Had made her accents weaker and more weak,
And quench'd the crimson life upon her cheek,
And glazed her eyes, and spread an atmosphere
Round her, which chill'd the burning noon with fear,
Making her but an image of the thought,
which, like a prophet or a shadow, brought
News of the terrors of the coming time.
Like an accuser branded with the crime
He would have cast on a beloved friend,
Whose dying eyes reproach not to the end
The pale betrayer—he then with vain repentance
Would share, he cannot now avert, the sentence-
Antonio stood and would have spoken, when
The compound voice of women and of men
was heard approaching; he retired, while she
Was led amid the admiring company
Back to the palace,—and her maidens soon
Changed her attire for the afternoon,
And left her at her own request to keep
An hour of quiet and rest:—like one asleep
With open eyes and folded hands she lay, Pale in the light of the declining day.
Meanwhile the day sinks fast, the sun is set, And in the lighted hall the guests are met; The beautiful looked lovelier in the light Of love, and admiration, and delight Iteflected from a thousand hearts and eyes, Kindling a momentary Paradise, This crowd is safer than the silent wood, Where love's own doubts disturb the solitude; On frozen hearts the fiery rain of wine Falls, and the dew of music more divine Tempers the deep emotions of the time To spirits cradled in a sunny clime:– Ilow many meet, who never yet have met, To part too soon, but never to forget. How many saw the beauty, power and wit of looks and words which ne'er enchanted yet; But life's familiar veil was now withdrawn, As the world leaps before an earthquake's dawn, And unprophetic of the coming hours, The maun winds from the expanded slower. Scatter their hoarded incense, and awaken The earth, until the dewy sleep is shaken From every living heart which it possesses, Through seas and winds, cities and wildernesses, As if the future and the past were all Treasured i' the instant;—so Gherardi's hall Laugh’d in the mirth of its lord's festival, Till some one ask’d—, where is the Bride'. And to A bride's-maid went, and ere she came again A silence fell upon the guests—a pause Of expectation, as when beauty awes All hearts with its approach, though unbcheld; Then wonder, and then fear that wonder quesd:For whispers pass'd from mouth to ear which dr" The colour from the hearer's checks, and flew Louder and swifter round the company; And then Gherardi enter'd with an eye Of ostentatious trouble, and a crowd Surrounded him, and some were weeping loud.
They found Ginevra dead! if it be death, To lie without motion, or pulse, or breath, With waxen cheeks, and limbs cold, stiff, and ** And open eyes, whose fix’d and glassy light Mock'd at the speculation they had ownd. If it be death, when there is felt around A smell of clay, a pale and icy glare, And silence, and a scuse that lifts the hair From the scalp to the ancles, as it were Corruption from the spirit passing forth, And giving all it shrouded to the earth, And leaving as swift lightning in its flight Ashes, and smoke, and darkness: in our mith' Of thought we know thus much of death, no" Than the unborn dream of our life before Their barks are wreck'd on its inhospitable * The marriage feast and its solemnity Was turn'd to funeral pomp-the company with heavy hearts and looks, broke up: nor" who loved the dead went weeping on their " Alone, but sorrow mix'd with sad surprise Loosen'd the springs of pity in all eyes, on which that form, whose fate they weepin” Will never, thought they, kindle smiles again. -—T