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And roll the sheeted silver's waving column
(MANFRED takes some of the water into the palm
of his hand, and flings it in the air, muttering the adjuration. After a pause, the WITCH OF THE ALPs rises beneath the arch of the
beam of the torrent.) Man. Beautiful Spirit! with thy hair of light, And dazzling eyes of glory, in whose form The charms of Earth's least-mortal daughters grow To an unearthly stature, in an essence Of purer elements; while the hues of youth,Carnation'd like a sleeping infant's cheek, Rock'd by the beating of her mother's heart, Or the rose tints, which summer's twilight leaves Upon the lofty glacier's virgin snow, The blush of earth embracing with her heaven, Tinge thy celestial aspect, and make tame
The beauties of the sunbow which bends o'er thee.
Son of Earth!
Man. To look upon thy beauty-nothing further. The face of the earth hath madden'd me, and I Take refuge in her mysteries, and pierce To the abodes of those who
herBut they can nothing aid me.
I have sought
Witch. What could be the quest
Witch. I know not that; let thy lips utter it.
Man. Well, though it torture me, 'tis but the same; My pang shall find a voice. From my youth upwards My spirit walk'd not with the souls of men, Nor look'd upon the earth with human eyes; The thirst of their ambition was not mine, The aim of their existence was not mine; My joys, my griefs, my passions, and my powers, Made me a stranger; though I'wore the form, I had no sympathy with breathing flesh, Nor midst the creatures of clay that girded me Was there but one who- -but of her anon. I said, with men, and with the thoughts of men, I held but slight communion; but instead, My joy was in the Wilderness, to breathe The difficult air of the iced mountain's top, Where the birds dare not build, nor insect's wing Flit o'er the herbless granite; or to plunge Into the torrent, and to roll along On the swift whirl of the new breaking wave Of river-stream, or ocean, in their flow. In these my early strength exulted; or To follow through the night the moving moon, The stars and their developement; or catch The dazzling lightnings till my eyes grew dim; Or to look, list’ning, on the scatter'd leaves, While Autumn winds were at their evening song.
These were my pastimes, and to be alone;
Man. Oh! I but thus prolong'd my words,
But to my task. · I have not named to thee
Witch. Spare not thyself-proceed.
Man. She was like me in lineaments-her eyes, Her hair, her features, all, to the very
With thy hand?
her heartIt gazed on mine, and wither’d. I have shed Blood, but not hers—and yet her blood was shed I saw-and could not stanch it. Witci.
And for this