« ПредишнаНапред »
A FEW hours before Yorick breath'd his last, Eugenius stepped in with an intent to take his last sight and last farewell of him. Upon his drawing Yorick's curtain, and asking how he felt himself, Yorick, looking up in his face, took hold of his hand, and, after thanking him for the many tokens of his friendship to him, for which, he said, if it was their fate to meet hereafter, he would thank him again and again; he told him, he was within a few hours of giving his enemies the slip for ever. I hope not, answered Eugenius, with tears trickling down his cheeks, and with the tenderest tone that ever man spoke, -I hope not, Yorick, said he.-Yorick replied, with a look up, and gentle squeeze of Eugenius's hand—and that was all,--but it cut Eugenius to the heart. -Come come, Yorick, quoth Eugenius, wiping his eyes, and summoning up the man within hin,-my dear lad, be comforted, let not all thy spirits and fortitude forsake thee at this crisis, when thou most wantest them; who knows what resources are in store, and what the power of God may yet do for thee ?-Yorick laid his hand upon his heart, and gently shook his head ;-For my part, continued Eugenius, crying bitterly as he uttered the words, I declare I know not, Yorick, how to part with thee, and would gladly flatter my hopes, added Eugenius, cheering up his voice, that there is still enough left of thee to make a bishop,--and that I may live to see it.-I beseech thee, Eugenius, quoth Yorick, taking off his nightcap as well as he could with his left hand
-his right being still grasped close in that of Eugenius,
-J beseech thee to take a view of my head. I see nothing that ails it, replied Eugenius. Then, alas! my friend, said Yorick, let me tell you, that it is so bruised and misshapened with the blows which have been so unhandsomely given me in the dark, that I might say with Sancho Pancha, that should I recover, and “mitres thereupon be “ suffered to rain down from Heaven as thick as hail, not “ one of them would fit it." Yorick's last breath was hangiug upon his trembling lips ready to depart as he uttered
this ; yet still it was uttered with something of a Cervantic tone ;
-and as he spoke it, Eugenius could perceive a stream of lambent fire lighted up for a moment in his eyes ;-faint picture of those flashes of his spirit, which (as Shakspeare said of his ancestor) were wont to set the table in a roar!
Eugenius was convinced from this, that the heart of his friend was broken; he squeezed his hand,--and then walked softly out of the room, weeping as he walked. Yorick followed Eugenius with his eyes to the door-he then closed them,—and never opened them more. · He lies buried in a corner of his churchyard, under a plain marble slab, which his friend Eugenius, by leave of his executors, laid upon his grave, with no more than these three words of inscription; serving both for his epitaph and elegy:
Alas! poor YORICK!
Ten times a day has Yorick's ghost the consolation to hear his monumental inscription read over with such a variety of plaintive tones, as denote a general pity and esteem for him;
a footway crossing the churchyard close by his grave, -not a passenger goes by without stopping to cast a look on it,-and sighing, as he walks on, Alas! poor YORICK!
THE BEGGAR'S PETITION.
Pity the sorrows of a poor
man, Whose trembling limbs have borne him to your door, Whose days are dwindled to the shortest span, O give relief! and Heav'n will bless your store. These tatter'd clothes my poverty bespeak, These hoary locks proclaim my lengthen'd years; And many a furrow in my grief-worn cheekHas been the channel to a flood of tears.
Yon house, erected on the rising ground,
ELEGY ON THE DEATH OF AN UNFORTUNATE LADY.
Why bade ye else, ye pow'rs! her soul aspire
From these perhaps (ere Nature bade her die)
But thou, false guardian of a charge too good,
On all the line a sudden vengeance waits,
What can atone (O, ever-injur'd shade!)
shall blow: While Angels with their silver wings o'ershade The ground, now sacred by thy reliques made.
So peaceful rests, without a stone, a name,
Poets themselves must fall like those they sting, Deaf the prais'd ear, and mute the tuneful tongue. Ev'n he, whose soul now melts in mournful lays, Shall shortly want the gen'rous tear he pays;