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Thrust foully into the earth to be forgot!
Oh Heavens—but I appal Your heart, old man! forgive ha! on your lives Let him not faint !-rack him till he revives !
Vain-vain--give o'er! His eye
Glazes apace. He does not feel you now
Stand back! I'll paint the death-dew on his brow!
Gods! if he do not die
But for one moment-one-till I eclipse
Conception with the scorn of those calm lips !
Shivering! Hark! he mutters
Brokenly now—that was a difficult breath-
Another? Wilt thou never come, oh, Death!
Look! how his temple flutters !
Is his heart still ? Aha! lift up his head!
He shudders--gasps--Jove help him!--0--he's dead."
How like a mounting devil in the heart
Rules the unreined ambition! Let it once
But play the monarch, and its haughty brow
Glows with a beauty that bewilders thought
And unthrones peace for ever. Putting on
The very pomp of Lucifer, it turns
The heart to ashes, and with not a spring
Left in the bosom for the spirit's lip,
We look upon our splendor and forget
The thirst of which we perish! Yet bath life
Many a falser idol. There are hopes
Promising well, and love-touch'd dreams for some,
And passions, many a wild one, and fair schemes
For gold and pleasure—yet will only this
Balk not the soul-Ambition only gives
Even of bitterness a beaker full!
Friendship is but a slow-awaking dream,
Troubled at best-Love is a lamp unseen,
Burning to waste, or, if its light is found,
Nursed for an idle hour, then idly broken-
Gain is a grovelling care, and Folly tires,
And Quiet is a hunger never fed—
And from Love's very bosom, and from Gain,
Or Folly, or a Friend, or from Repose,
From all but keen Ambition, will the soul
Snatch the first moment of forgetfulness
To wander like a restless child away,
Oh, if there were not better hopes than these-
Were there no palm beyond a feverish fame-
If the proud wealth flung back upon the heart.
Must canker in its coffers—if the links
Falsehood hath broken will unite no more-
If the deep-yearning love that hath not found
Its like in the cold world, must waste in tears-
If truth, and fervor, and devotedness,
Finding no worthy altar, must return
And die of their own fulness—if beyond
The grave there is no Heaven in whose wide air
The spirit may find room, and in the love
Of whose bright habitants the lavish heart
May spend itself—what thrice-mocked fools are we!
“Love borrows greatly from opinion. Pride above all things strengthens affection."
He sat and read. A book with silver clasps, All gorgeous with illuminated lines Of gold and crimson, lay upon a frame Before him. 'Twas a volume of old time ; And in it were fine mysteries of the stars Solved with a cunning wisdom, and strange thoughts, Half prophecy, half poetry, and dreams Clearer than truth, and speculations wild That touched the secrets of your very soul, They were so based on Nature. With a face Glowing with thought, he pored upon the book. The cushions of an Indian loom lay soft Beneath his limbs, and, as he turned the page,
The sunlight, streaming through the curtain's fold,
Fell with a rose-tint on his jewell’d hand,
And the rich woods of the quaint furniture
Lay deepening their veined colours in the sun,
And the stained marbles on the pedestals
Stood like a silent company. Voltaire,
With an infernal sneer upon his lips,
And Socrates, with godlike human love
Stamped on his countenance, and orators
Of times gone by that made them, and old bards,
And Medicean Venus, half divine.
Around the room were shelves of dainty lore,
And rich old pictures hung upon the walls
Where the slant light fell on them; and wrought gems,
Medallions, rare mosaics, and antiques
Fron Herculaneum, the niches filled.
And on a table of enamel, wrought
With a lost art in Italy, there lay
Prints of fair women, and engravings rare,
And a new poem, and a costly toy,
And in their midst a massive lamp of bronze
Burning sweet spices constantly. Asleep
Upon the carpet couched a graceful hound,