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There where thy finger scorch'd the tablet stone!
Thy glory shrouded in its garb of fire:
Oh! in the lightning let thy glance appear;
SINCE our Country, our God-Oh, my Sire!
Since thy triumph was bought by thy vow—
And the voice of my mourning is o'er,
And of this, oh, my Father! be sure—
As the blessing I beg ere it flow,
And the last thought that soothes me below."
3 [Jephtha vowed, if he was victorious over the Ammonites, that whatever came forth from his house to meet him should be offered for a burnt offering. His daughter was the first to greet him, and at her own request-after bewailing her childless lot two months upon the mountains-she was sacrificed by her father. This is the version of the Bible history adopted by Lord Byron; but according to another interpretation, which agrees equally well with the original Hebrew of the vow, and better with the general tenor of the narrative, she was merely devoted to a single life.]
Though the virgins of Salem lament,
When this blood of thy giving hath gush'd,
OH! SNATCH'D AWAY IN BEAUTY'S BLOOM.
OH! snatch'd away in beauty's bloom,
Their leaves, the earliest of the year;
And oft by yon blue gushing stream
Shall Sorrow lean her drooping head,
And feed deep thought with many a dream,
And lingering pause and lightly tread;
Away! we know that tears are vain,
That death nor heeds nor hears distress:
Will this unteach us to complain ?
Or make one mourner weep the less? And thou-who tell'st me to forget, Thy looks are wan, thine eyes are wet.
MY SOUL IS DARK.
My soul is dark-Oh! quickly string
Its melting murmurs o'er mine ear,
That sound shall charm it forth again:
'Twill flow, and cease to burn my brain.
But bid the strain be wild and deep,
Or else this heavy heart will burst
I SAW THEE WEEP.
I SAW thee weep-the big bright tear
I saw thee smile-the sapphire's blaze
It could not match the living rays
That fill'd that glance of thine.
["It was generally conceived that Lord Byron's reported singularities approached on some occasions to derangement; and at one period, indeed, it was very currently asserted that his intellects were actually impaired. The report only served to amuse his Lordship. He referred to the circumstance, and declared that he would try how a madman could write: seizing the pen with eagerness, he for a moment fixed his eyes in majestic wildness on vacancy; when, like a flash of inspiration, without erasing a single word, the above verses were the result."-NATHAN.]
As clouds from yonder sun receive
Which scarce the shade of coming eve
Those smiles unto the moodiest mind
THY DAYS ARE DONE.
THY days are done, thy fame begun;
The slaughters of his sword!
The deeds he did, the fields he won,
The freedom he restored!
Though thou art fall'n, while we are free
The generous blood that flow'd from thee
Thy name, our charging hosts along,
Thy fall, the theme of choral song
THOU whose spell can raise the dead,
King, behold the phantom seer!"
Earth yawn'd; he stood the centre of a cloud:
His hand was wither'd, and his veins were dry;
Why is my sleep disquieted?
5 ["Since we have spoken of witches," said Lord Byron at Cephalonia, in 1823, "what think you of the witch of Endor? I have always thought this the finest and most finished witch-scene that ever was written or conceived; and you will be of my opinion, if you consider all the circumstances and the actors in the case, together with the gravity, simplicity, and dignity of the language."]