« PreviousContinue »
Ihr Plätze aller meiner stillen Freuden,
Euch lass ich hinter mir auf immerdar!
So ist des Geistes Ruf an mich ergangen,
Mich treibt nicht eitles, irdisches Verlangen.
Die Jungfrau von Orleans.
Long time against oppression have I fought,
And for the native liberty of faith
Have bled and suffer'd bonds.
Remorse, a Tragedy.
The following Poem is intended to describe the mental con
ficts, as well as outward sufferings, of a Spaniard, who, Aying from the religious persecutions of his own country in the 16th century, takes refuge with his child in a North American forest. The story is supposed to be related by hiinself amidst the wilderness which has afforded him an asylum.
TORTURB-the sorrow of affection's eye,
Fixing its meekness on the spirit's core,
Deeper, and teaching more of agony,
May pierce than many swords and this I bore
With a mute pang. Since I had vainly striven
From its free springs to poor the truth of Heaven
Into thy trembling soul, my Leonor!
Silence rose up where hearts no hope could share:
-Alas! for those that love, and may not blend in prayer !
We could not pray together 'midst the deep,
Which, like a floor of sapphire, round us lay,
Through days of splendour, nights too bright for sleep,
Soft, solemn, holy We were on our way
Unto the mighty Cordillera-land,
With men whom tales of that world's golden strand
Had lured to leave their vines. -Oh! who shall say
What thoughts rose in us, when the tropic sky
Touch'd all its molten seas with sunset's alchemy?
Thoughts no more mingled !--Then came night-th' in.
Dark blue-the burning stars ! I saw thee shine
Once more, in thy serene magnificence,
O Southern Cross! (16) as when thy radiant sign
First drew my gaze of youth.—No, not as then ;,
I had been stricken by the darts of men
Since those fresh days, and now thy light divine
Look'd on mine anguish, while within me stroves
The still small voice against the might of suffering love
But thou, the clear, the glorious! thou wert pouring
Brilliance and joy upon the crystal wave,
While she that met thy ray with eyes adoring,
Stood in the lengthening shadow of the grave!
Alas ! I watch'd her dark religious glance,
As it still sought thee through the Heaven's expanse,
Bright Cross and knew not that I watch'd what gave
But passing lustre--shrouded soon to be
A soft light found no moreno more on earth or sea!
I knew not all-yet something of unrest
Sat on my heart. Wake, ocean-wind! I said;
Waft us to land, in leafy íreshness drest,
Where through rich clouds of foliage o'er her head,
Sweet day may steal, and rills unseen go by,
Like singing voices, and the green earth lie,
Starry with flowers, beneath her graceful tread!
-But the calm bound us 'midst the glassy main;
Ne'er was her step to bend earth's living flower again.
Yes! as if heaven upon the waves were sleeping,
Vexing my soul with quiet, there they lay
All moveless through their blue transparence keeping,
The shadows of our sails, from day to day ;
While shemoh! strongest in the strong beart's WO---
And yet I live ! I feel the sunshine's glow-
And I am he that look'd, and saw decay
Steal o'er the fair of earth, the adored too much! --It is fearful thing to love what death may touch.
A fearful thing that love and death may dwell
In the same world !-She faded on- and I
Blind to the last, there needed death to tell
My trusting soul that she could fade to die!
Yet, ere she parted, I had mark'd a change,
But it breathèd hope'twas beautiful, though strange :
Something of gladness in the melody
Of her low voice, and in her words a flight
Of airy thought-alas! 100 perilously bright!
And a clear sparkle in her glance, yet wild,
And quick, and eager, like the flashing gaze
Of some all wondering and awakening child,
That first the glories of the earth surveys.
-How could it thus deceive me?-she had worn
Around her, like the dewy mists of morn,
A pensive tenderness through happiest days,
And a soft world of dreams had seem'd to lie
Still in her dark, and deep, and spiritual eye.
And I could hope in that strange fire !she died,
She died with all its lustre on her mien !
- The day was melting from the waters wide,
And through its long bright hours her thoughts had been,
It seem'd, with restless and unwonted yearning,
To Spain's blue skies and dark sierras turning;
For her fond words were all of vintage.scene,
And flowering myrtle, and sweet citron's breath
-Oh! with what vivid hues life comes back oft on death!
And from her lips the mountain-songs of old,
In wild faint saatches, fitfully had sprung;
Songs of the orange bower, the Moorish hold,
The “ Rio verde,''(17) on her soul that hung,
And thence flow'd forth. But now the sun was low,
And watching by my side its last red glow,
That ever stills the heart, once more she sung
Her own soft " Ora, mater!"-and the sound
Was even like love's farewell-so mournfully profound.
The boy had dropp'd to slumber at our feet ;
And I have lull'd him to bis smilling rest of Once more !" she said :-I raised him-it was sweet, Yet sad, to see the perfect calm which bless'd His look that hour;-for now her voice grew weak; And on the flowery crimson of his cheek, With her white lips a long, lony kiss she pressid,
Yet light, to wake him not. Then sank her head Against my bursting heart.-What did I clasp?--the dead! VOL. 11.