페이지 이미지
PDF
ePub

XVIII.

THE HUMAN SEASONS.

F

OUR Seasons fill the measure of the year; There are four seasons in the mind of man : He has his lusty Spring, when fancy clear Takes in all beauty with an easy span : He has his Summer, when luxuriously

Spring's honey'd cud of youthful thought he loves To ruminate, and by such dreaming high

Is nearest unto heaven: quiet coves
His soul has in its Autumn, when his wings
He furleth close; contented so to look
On mists in idleness to let fair things

Pass by unheeded as a threshold brook. He has his Winter too of pale misfeature, Or else he would forego his mortal nature.

XIX.

ON A PICTURE OF LEANDER.

Co

(OME hither, all sweet maidens soberly,
Down-looking aye, and with a chasten'd light,
Hid in the fringes of your eyelids white,
And meekly let your fair hands joined be,
As if so gentle that ye could not see,

Untouch'd, a victim of your beauty bright,
Sinking away to his young spirit's night,
Sinking bewilder'd 'mid the dreary sea:
'Tis young Leander toiling to his death;

Nigh swooning, he doth purse his weary lips
For Hero's cheek, and smiles against her smile.
O horrid dream! see how his body dips
Dead-heavy; arms and shoulders gleam awhile:
He's gone; up bubbles all his amorous breath!

XX.

TO AILSA ROCK.

H

EARKEN, thou craggy ocean pyramid !
Give answer from thy voice, the sea-fowl's

screams!

When were thy shoulders mantled in huge streams!

When, from the sun, was thy broad forehead hid ? How long is't since the mighty power bid

Thee heave to airy sleep from fathom dreams? Sleep in the lap of thunder or sun-beams, Or when gray clouds are thy cold cover-lid? Thou answer'st not, for thou art dead asleep! Thy life is but two dead eternities The last in air, the former in the deep;

First with the whales, last with the eagle-skies Drown'd wast thou till an earthquake made thee

steep,

Another cannot wake thy giant size.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

XXI.

ON SEEING THE ELGIN MARBLES.

M

Y spirit is too weak; mortality Weighs heavily on me like unwilling sleep, And each imagined pinnacle and steep Of godlike hardship tells me I must die Like a sick eagle looking at the sky. Yet 'tis a gentle luxury to weep,

That I have not the cloudy winds to keep Fresh for the opening of the morning's eye. Such dim-conceived glories of the brain,

Bring round the heart an indescribable feud; So do these wonders a most dizzy pain,

That mingles Grecian grandeur with the rude Wasting of old Time -- with a billowy main A sun, a shadow of a magnitude.

XXII.

TO HAYDON.

(WITH THE PRECEDING SONNET.)

H

AYDON! forgive me that I cannot speak
Definitively of these mighty things;

Forgive me, that I have not eagle's wings,
That what I want I know not where to seek.
And think that I would not be over-meek,
In rolling out upfollowed thunderings,
Even to the steep of Heliconian springs,
Were I of ample strength for such a freak.
Think, too, that all these numbers should be thine;
Whose else? In this who touch thy vesture's
hem?

For, when men stared at what was most divine
With brainless idiotism and o'erwise phlegm,
Thou hadst beheld the full Hesperian shine

Of their star in the east, and gone to worship them!

« 이전계속 »