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And she had made a pipe of straw, Ten thousand lovely hues !
They stand the wonder of the bowers
He told of the magnolia spread
High as a cloud, high over head !
The cypress and her spire ;
Cover a hundred leagues, and seem
The youth of green savannas spake,
And many an endless, endless lake,
Of islands, that together lie
As quietly as spots of sky
And then he said, “How sweet it were
A fisher or a hunter there,
To build a household fire, and find
A home in every glade !
“What days and what sweet years! Ah me!
Our life were life indeed, with thee
So passed in quiet bliss,
That we were in a world of woe,
On such an earth as this !"
And then he sometimes interwove
Dear thoughts about a father's love :
· For there," said he, "are spun The panther in the wilderness
Around the heart such tender ties, Was not so fair as he ;
That our own children to our eyes
Are dearer than the sun.
"Sweet Ruth! and could you go with me Among the Indians he had fought ; My helpmate in the woods to be, And with him many tales he brought
Our shed at night to rear ; Of pleasure and of fear;
Or run my own adopted bride, Such tales as told to any maid
A sylvan huntress at my side, By such a youth, in the green shade,
And drive the flying deer! Were perilous to hear.
“ Beloved Ruth !"-No more he said. He told of girls—a happy rout!
The wakeful Ruth at midnight shed
She thought again-and did agree
With him to sail across the sea, Returning with a choral song
And drive the flying deer. When daylight is gone down.
“And now, as fitting is and right, He spake of plants divine and strange We in the church our faith will plight, That every hour their blossoms change, A husband and a wife."
Even so they did ; and I may say
And yet he with no feigned delight
Sometimes, most earnestly, he said,
“ It was a fresh and glorious world, A banner bright that was unfurled Before me suddenly : I looked upon those hills and plains, And seemed as if let loose from chains To live at liberty. “ But wherefore speak of this? For now, Sweet Ruth ! with thee, I know not how, I feel my spirit burnEven as the east when day comes forth; And, to the west, and south, and north, The morning doth return."
Full soon that purer mind was gone ;
But, as you have before been told, This stripling, sportive, gay, and bold, And with his dancing crest So beautiful, through savage lands Had roamed about, with vagrant bands Of Indians in the west. The wind, the tempest roaring high, The tumult of a tropic sky, Might well be dangerous food For him, a youth to whom was given So much of earth-so much of heaven, And such impetuous blood. Whatever in those climes he found Irregular in sight or sound Did to his mind impart A kindred impulse, seemed allied To his own powers, and justified The workings of his heart. Nor less, to feed voluptuous thought, The beauteous forms of nature wrought, Fair trees and lovely flowers ; The breezes their own languor lent : The stars had feelings, which they sent Into those gorgeous bowers. Yet, in his worst pursuits, I ween That sometimes there did intervene Pure hopes of high intent: For passions linked to forms so fair And stately, needs must have their share Of noble sentiment. But ill he lived, much evil saw With men to whom no better law Nor better life was known ; Deliberately, and undeceived, Those wild men's vices he received, And gave them back his own. His genius and his moral frame Were thus impaired, and he became The slave of low desires : A man who without self-control Would seek what the degraded soul Unworthily admires.
Meanwhile, as thus with him it fared,
God help thee, Ruth !-Such pains she
She from her prison fled ;
Farewell ! and when thy days are told, But of the vagrant none took thought ; Ill-fated Ruth! in hallowed mould And where it liked her best she sought Thy corpse shall buried be ; Her shelter and her bread.
For thee a funeral bell shall ring,
Ard all the congregation sing
"With sacrifice before the rising morn The engines of her pain, the tools
Vows have I made by fruitless hope inThat shaped her sorrow, rocks and pools, and from the infernal gods, mid shades
(forlorn, And airs that gently stir The vernal leaves, she loved them still,
Of night, my slaughtered lord have 1 Nor ever taxed them with the ill
Celestial pity I again implore ;Which had been done to her.
Restore him to my sight-great Jove,
restore !" A barn her winter bed supplies ; But, till the warmth of summer skies So speaking, and by servent love endowed And summer days is gone,
With faith, the suppliant heavenward lifts (And all do in this tale agree)
her hands; She sleeps beneath the greenwood tree, While, like the sun emerging from a cloud, And other home hath none.
Her countenance brightens—and her eye expands ;
(grows; An innocent life, yet far astray! Her bosom heaves and spreads, her stature And Ruth will, long before her day, And she expects the issue in repose. Be broken down and old : Sore aches she needs must have! but less O terror! what hath she perceived ?Of mind than body's wretchedness,
(behold? From damp, and rain, and cold. What doth she look on ?—whom doth she
Her hero slain upon the beach of Troy? If she is pressed by want of food, His vital presence-his corporeal mould ? She from her dwelling in the wood It is-if sense deceive her not-'tis ne ! Repairs to a road-side ;
And a god leads him-winged Mercury! And there she begs at one steep place, Where up and down with easy pace Mild Hermes spake-and touched her with The horsemen-travellers ride.
his wand (crowned thy prayer,
That calms all fear: "Such grace hath That oaten pipe of hers is mute, Laodamia ! that at Jove's command Or thrown away : but with a flute Thy husband walks the paths of upper Her loneliness she cheers :
(space : This flute, made of a hemlock stalk, He comes to tarry with thee three hours At evening in his homeward walk Accept the gift-behold him face to face !" The Quantock woodman hears.
Forth sprang the impassioned queen her I too, have passed her on the hills
lord to clasp ! Setting her little water-mills
Again that consummation she essayed ; By spouts and fountains wild
But unsubstantial form eludes her grasp Such small machinery as she turned As often as that eager grasp was made. Ere she had wept, ere she had mourned, The phantom parts--but parts to re-unite, A young and happy child !
And re-assume his place before her sight.
Protesilàus, lo! thy guide is gone! A river in Somersetshire, at no great dis. Confirm, I pray, the vision with thy voice: tance from the Quantock Hills
This is our palace,-vonder is thy throne :
Speak, and the floor thou tread'st on will And surely as they vanish.—Earth destroys rejoice.
Those raptures duly-Erebus disdains : Not to appal me have the gods bestowed Calm pleasures there abide-majestic pains. This precious boon, -and blest a sad abode."
“Be taught, O faithful consort, to control
Rebellious passion : for the gods approve "Great Jove, Laodamia ! doth not leave
The depth, and not the tumult, of the His gifts imperfect :-spectre though I be,
soul ; I am not sent to scare thee or deceive ;
A fervent, not ungovernable love. But in reward of thy fidelity.
Thy transports moderate; and meekly And something also did my worth obtain ; For fearless virtue bringeth boundless When I depart, for brief is my sojourn—" gain.
“Ah, wherefore ?–Did not Hercules by “Thou know'st, the Delphic oracle fore
(Trojan strand Wrest from the guardian monster of the That the first Greek who touched the
tomb Should die ; but me the threat could not Alcestis, a reanimated corse withhold :
Given back to dwell on earth in vernal bloom?
(years, A generous cause a victim did demand ; And forth I leapt upon the sandy plain;
Medea's spells dispersed the weight of A self-devoted chief-by Hector slain."
And Æson stood a youth 'mid youthful
peers. “Supreme of heroes-bravest, noblest, best !
"The gods to us are merciful--and they Thy matchless courage I bewail no more,
Yet further may relent: for mightier far Which then, when tens of thousands were Than strength of nerve and sinew, or the deprest
sway By doubt, propelled thee to the fatal shore; of magic potent over sun and star, Thou found si-and I forgive thee-here is love, though oft to agony distrest, thou art
And though his favourite seat be feeble A nobler counsellor than my poor heart.
woman's breast. * But thou, though capable of sternest
" But if thou goest I follow-" " Peace !" deed,
he saidWert kind as resolute, and good as brave ;
She looked upon him and was calmed and And he, whose power restores thee, hath
cheered ; decreed
The ghastly colour from his lips had fled ; That thou shouldst cheat the malice of In his deportment, shape, and mien, apRedundant are thy locks, thy lips as fair peared As when their breath enriched Thessalian Elysian beauty, melancholy grace, air.
Brought from a pensive, though a happy
place. “ No spectre greets me,-no vain shadow this :
He spake of love, such love as spirits feel Come, blooming hero, place thee by my In worlds whose course is equable and pure; side!
[kiss No fears to beat away--no strife to heal Give, on this well-known couch, one nuptial | The past unsighed for, and the future To me, this day, a second time thy bride!" sure ; Jove frowned in heaven; the conscious Spake of heroic arts in graver mood Parcæ threw
Revived, with finer harmony pursued : Upon those roseate lips a Stygian hue.
Of all that is most beauteous-imaged “This visage tells thee that my doom is there past :
In happier beauty ; more pellucid streams, Know, virtue were not virtue if the joys An ampler ether, a diviner air, Of sense were able to return as fast And fields invested with purpureal gleams;