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Now every petty brook that crawled along, Railing its pebbles, mocks the river's rage, Like the proud frog i' the fable. The huge Danube, While melting mountains rush into its tide, Rolls with such headstrong and unreinèd course, As it would choke the Euxine's gulphy maw, Bursting his crystal cerements. The breathing time Of peace expired that hushed the deafʼning scenes Of clam'rous indignation, ruffian War Rebels, and Nature stands at odds again: When the roused Furies of the fighting winds Torment the main ; that swells its angry sides, And churns the foam betwixt its flinty jaws; While through the savage dungeon of the night The horrid thunder growls. Th’ ambitious waves Assault the skies, and from the bursting clouds Drink the glib lightning; as if the seas Would quench the ever-burning fires of heaven. Straight from their slippery pomp they madly plunge And kiss the lowest pebbles. Wretched they That ʼmidst such rude vexation of the deep Guide a frail vessel! Better ice-bound still, Than mock'd with liberty thus be resign'd To the rough fortune of the froward time; When Navigation all a-tiptoe stands On such unsteady footing. Now they mount On the tall billow's top, and seem to jowl Against the stars; whence (dreadful eminence!) They see with swimming eyes (enough to hurry round In endless vértigo the dizzy brain) A gulph that swallows vision, with wide mouth Steep-yawning to receive them; down they duck To the rugged bottom of the main, and view The adamantine gates of vaulted hell:
Thence toss'd to light again; till borne adrift
DARKLY EXPRESSIVE OF SOME PAST EVENTS THAT WERE SOON TO BE
REVEALED TO HER.
Last night I dreamt,
1 'Progne :' daughter of Pandion, and wife of Tereus - turned into a swallow, to save her from the wrath of her cruel and unfaithful husband. See Grecian Mythology, which, however, in some versions of the story, makes Progne the nightingale, and Philomela the swallow.
Many a slippery fathom down we sunk,
Into a hideous kind of wilderness,
With all the lion-sinews of despair,
BAISED TO ACCOUNT FOR THE LATE RETURN OF A MESSENGER.
The sun went down in wrath; The skies foamed brass, and soon th' unchained winds Burst from the howling dungeon of the north : And raised such high delirium on the main, Such angry clamour; while such boiling waves Flashed on the peevish eye of moody night, It looked as if the seas would scald the heavens. Still louder chid the winds, the enchafèd surge Still answered louder; and when the sickly morn Peeped ruefully through the blotted thick-browed east To view the ruinous havoc of the dark, The stately towers of Athens seemed to stand On hollow foam tide-whipt; the ships that lay Scorning the blast within the marble arms Of the sea-chid Portumnus, danced like corks Upon th' enragèd deep, kicking each other; And some were dashed to fragments in this fray Against the harbour's rocky chest. The sea So roared, so madly raged, so proudly swelled, As it would thunder full into the streets, And steep the tall Cecropian battlements In foaming brine. The airy citadel, Perched like an eagle on a high-browed rock, Shook the salt water from its stubborn sides With eager quaking; the Cyclades appeared Like ducking cormorants—Such a mutiny
Portumnus :' god of harbours—the same with the Palæmon of the Greeks.
Out-clamoured all tradition, and gained belief
AN IMITATION OF SPENSER.
WRITTEN AT MR THOMSON'S DESIRE, TO BE INSERTED INTO THE CASTLE OF
1 Full many a fiend did haunt this house of rest,
And made of passive wights an easy prey. Here Lethargy with deadly sleep opprest,
Stretched on his back a mighty lubbard lay, Heaving his sides; and snorèd night and day.
To stir him from his traunce it was not eath, And his half-opened eyne he shut straightway:
He led I ween the softest way to death, And taught withouten pain or strife to yield the breath.
2 Of limbs enormous, but withal unsound,
Soft-swoln and pale, here lay the Hydropsie;
For ever fed with watery supply;
And here a moping mystery did sit,
She called herself the Hypochondriac Fit, And frantic seemed to some, to others seemed a wit.
3 A lady was she whimsical and proud, Yet oft through fear her pride would crouchen
All the diseases that the spitals know,
And still new leeches and new drugs would try.