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But back she chased it with a sigh austere;
And did she chance, at times like these, to hear
Her husband's footstep, she would haste the more,
And with a double smile open the door,
And hope his day had worn a happy face;
Ask how his soldiers pleased him, or the chase,
Or what new court had sent to win his sovereign grace.

The prince, at this, would bend on her an eye
Cordial enough, and kiss her tenderly;
Nor, to say truth, was he in general slow
To accept attentions, flattering to bestow;
But then meantime he took no generous pains,
By mutual pleasing, to secure his gains;
He entered not, in turn, in her delights,
Her books, her flowers, her taste for rural sights;
Nay scarcely her sweet singing minded he,
Unless his pride was roused by company;
Or when to please him, after martial play,
She strained her lute to some old fiery lay
Of fierce Orlando, or of Ferumbras,
Or Ryan's cloak, or how by the red grass
In battle you might know where Richard was.

*"Sir Ferumbras " was a knight of romance. The cloak of King Ryan, or Ryence, was said to be made of the beards of his royal brethren, whom he had conquered. Richard is Richard Caur de Lion, a terrible knight de facto as well as in fable.

Yet all the while, no doubt, however stern
Or cold at times, he thought he loved in turn,
And that the joy he took in her sweet ways,
The pride he felt when she excited praise,
In short, the enjoyment of his own good pleasure,
Was thanks enough, and passion beyond measure.

She, had she loved him, might have thought so too: For what will love's exalting not go through, Till long neglect, and utter selfishness, Shame the fond pride it takes in its distress? But ill prepared was she, in her hard lot, To fancy merit where she found it not, She, who had been beguiled, - she, who was made Within a gentle bosom to be laid, To bless and to be blessed, - to be heart-bare To one who found his bettered likeness there, To think for ever with him, like a bride, To haunt his eye, like taste personified, To double his delight, to share his sorrow, And like a morning beam, wake to him every morrow.

Paulo, meantime, who ever since the day He saw her sweet looks bending o'er his way, Had stored them up, unconsciously, as graces By which to judge all other forms and faces, Had learnt, I know not how, the secret snare, Which

up, that evening, to his care.

gave her

Some babbler, may-be, of old Guido's court,
Or foolish friend had told him, half in sport :
But to his heart the fatal flattery went ;
And grave he grew, and inwardly intent,
And ran back, in his mind, with sudden spring,
Look, gesture, smile, speech, silence, every thing,
E'en what before had seemed indifference,
And read them over in another sense.
Then would he blush with sudden self-disdain,
To think how fanciful he was, and vain;
And with half angry, half regretful sigh,
Tossing his chin, and feigning a free eye,
Breathe off, as 'twere, the idle tale, and look
Åbout him for his falcon or his book,
Scorning that ever he should entertain
One thought that in the end might give his brother

pain.

This start however came so often round, -
So often fell he in deep thought, and found
Occasion to renew his carelessness,
Yet
every
time the

power grown less and less,
That by degrees, half wearied, half inclined,
To the sweet struggling image he resigned;
And merely, as he thought, to make the best
Of what by force would come about his breast,
Began to bend down his admiring eyes
On all her touching looks and qualities,

Turning their shapely sweetness every way,
Till 'twas his food and habit day by day,
And she became companion of his thought;
Silence her gentleness before him brought,
Society her sense, reading her books,
Music her voice, every sweet thing her looks,
Which sometimes seemed, when he sat fixed awhile,
To steal beneath his cyes with upward smile:
And did he stroll into some lonely place,
Under the tress, upon the thick soft grass,
How charming, would he think, to see her here!
How heightened then, and perfect would appear
The two divinest things in earthly lot,
A lovely woman in a rural spot !

Thus daily went he on, gathering sweet pain About his fancy, till it thrilled again : And if his brother's image, less and less, Startled him up from his new idleness, 'Twas not - he fancied, that he reasoned worse, Or felt less scorn of wrong, but the reverse. That one should think of injuring another, Or trenching on his peace,

this too a brother, And all from selfishness and pure weak will, To him seemed marvellous and impossible. 'Tis true thought he, one being more there was, Who might meantime have weary hours to pass, One weaker too to bear them, - and for whom? To matter; — he could not reverse her doom;

And so he sighed and smiled, as if one thought
Of paltering could suppose that he was to be caught.

Yet if she loved him, common gratitude, If not, a sense of what was fair and good, Besides his new relationship and right, Would make him wish to please her all he might; And as to thinking, — where could be the harm, If to his heart he kept its secret charm ? He wished not to himself another's blessing, But then he might console for not possessing ; And glorious things there were, which but to see And not admire, was mere stupidity : He might as well object to his own eyes For loving to behold the fields and skies, His neighbor's grove, or story-painted hall; 'Twas but the taste for what was natural; Only his fav'rite thought was loveliest of them all.

Concluding thus and happier that he knew His ground so well, near and more near he drew; And, sanctioned by his brother's manner, spent Hours by her side, as happy as well-meant. He read with her, he rode, he train'd her hawk, He spent still evenings in delightful talk, While she sat busy at her broidery frame; Or touched the lute with her, and when they came To some fine part, prepared her for the pleasure, And then with double smile stole on the measure.

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