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Sweet Echo, sweetest nymph, that livest unseen

Within thy aery shell,
By slow Meander's margent green,
And in the violet-embroidered vale,

Where the love-lorn nightingale
Nightly to thee her sad song mourneth well ;
Canst thou not tell me of a gentle pair

That likest thy Narcissus are ?

O, if thou have
Hid them in some flowery cave,

Tell me but where,
Sweet queen of parley, daughter of the sphere !

So may'st thou be translated to the skies,
And give resounding grace to all Heaven's harmonies.

MILTON.

TO MARY IN HEAVEN.

Thou lingering star, with lessening ray,

That lovest to greet the early morn, Again thou usherest in the day

My Mary from my soul was torn. O Mary! dear departed shade !

Where is thy place of blissful rest? Seest thou thy lover lowly laid ?

Hearest thou the groans that rend his breast ?

That sacred hour can I forget,

Can I forget the hallowed grove Where by the winding Ayr we met,

To live one day of parting love ? Eternity will not efface

Those records dear of transports past

Thy image at our last embrace !

Ah! little thought we 'twas our last !

Ayr, gurgling, kissed his pebbled shore,

O'erhung with wild woods, thickening, green; The fragrant birch, and hawthorn hoar,

Twined amorous round the raptured scene. The flowers sprang wanton to be prest,

The birds sang love on every spray, Till too, too soon, the glowing west

Proclaimed the speed of winged day.

Still o'er these scenes my memory wakes,

And fondly broods with miser care; Time but the impression deeper makes,

As streams their channels deeper wear.
My Mary ! dear departed shade!

Where is thy place of blissful rest ?
Seest thou thy lover lowly laid ?
Hearest thou the groans that rend his breast ?

BURNS.

TO THE PRIMROSE.

Mild offspring of a dark and sullen sire !
Whose modest form, so delicately fine,

Was nursed in whirling storms,
And cradled in the winds.

Thee, when young Spring first questioned Winter's sway,
And dared the sturdy blusterer to the fight,

Thee on this bank he threw
To mark his victory.

In this low vale, the promise of the year,
Serene, thou openest to the nipping gale,

Unnoticed and alone,
Thy tender elegance.

So virtue blooms, brought forth amid the storms
Of chill adversity ; in some lone walk

Of life she rears her head,
Obscure and unobserved ;

While every bleaching breeze that on her blows
Chastens her spotless purity of breast,

And hardens her to bear
Serene the ills of life.

KIRKE WHITE.

THE COLISEUM.

ARCHES on arches! as it were that Rome,
Collecting the chief trophies of her line,
Would build up all her triumph in one dome,
Her Coliseum stands; the moonbeams shine
As 'twere its natural torches, for divine
Should be the light which streams here, to illume
This long-explored, but still exhaustless mine

Of contemplation; and the azure gloom
Of an Italian night, where the deep skies assume

Hues which have words, and speak to ye of heaven,
Floats o'er this vast and wondrous monument,
And shadows forth its glory. There is given
Unto the things of earth, which Time hath bent,

A spirit's feeling, and where he hath leant
His hand, but broke his scythe, there is a power
And magic in the ruined battlement,

For which the palace of the present hour
Must yield its pomp, and wait till ages are its dower.

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And here the buzz of

eager

nations ran, In murmured pity, or loud-roared applause, As man was slaughtered by his fellow man. And wherefore slaughtered? wherefore, but because Such were the bloody Circus' genial laws, And the imperial pleasure.—Wherefore not? What matters where we fall, to fill the maws

Of worms-on battle-plains or listed spot ? Both are but theatres where the chief actors rot.

I see before me the Gladiator lie:
He leans upon his hand-his manly brow
Consents to death, but conquers agony,
And his drooped head sinks gradually low-
And through his side the last drops, ebbing slow
From the red gash, fall heavy, one by one,
Like the first of a thunder-shower; and now

The arena swims around him—he is gone,
Ere ceased the inhuman shout which hailed the wretch

who won.

He heard it, but he heeded not-his eyes
Were with his heart, and that was far away :
He recked not of the life he lost, nor prize,
But where his rude hut by the Danube lay,
There were his young barbarians all at play,
There was their Dacian mother-he, their sire,
Butchered to make a Roman holiday-

All this rushed with his blood. Shall he expire, And unavenged? Arise ! ye Goths, and glut your ire!

But here, where Murder breathed her bloody steam ;
And here, where buzzing nations choked the ways,
And roared or murmured like a mountain stream,
Dashing or winding, as its torrent strays;
Here, where the Roman million's blame or praise
Was death or life, the playthings of a crowd,
My voice sounds much-and fall the stars faint rays

On the arena void-seats crushed—walls bowed
And galleries, where my steps seem echoes strangely

loud.

A ruin-yet what ruin! from its mass
Walls, palaces, half-cities, have been reared;
Yet oft the enormous skeleton ye pass,
And marvel where the spoil could have appeared.
Hath it indeed been plundered, or but cleared ?
Alas! developed, opens the decay,
When the colossal fabric's form is neared :

It will not bear the brightness of the day,
Which streams too much on all years, man,

have reft away.

But when the rising moon begins to climb
Its topmost arch, and gently pauses there;
When the stars twinkle through the loops of time,
And the low night-breeze waves along the air
The garland-forest, which the grey walls wear,
Like laurels on the bald first Cæsar's head;
When the light shines serene, but doth not glare,

Then in this magic circle raise the dead :
Heroes have trod this spot-'tis on their dust ye tread.

BYRON.

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