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"Tis to create, and in creating live

A being more intense, that we endow

With form our fancy, gaining as we give
The life we image, even as I do now.

What am I? Nothing: but not so art thou,
Soul of my thought' with whom I traverse earth,

Invisible but gazing, as I glow

Mix'd with thy spirit, blended with thy birth,

And feeling still with thee in my crush'd feelings' dearth.


Yet must I think less wildly:-I have thought
Too long and darkly, till my brain became,

In its own eddy boiling and o'erwrought,
A whirling gulf of phantasy and flame:
And thus, untaught in youth my heart to tame,
My springs of life were poison'd. 'Tis too late!
Yet am I changed; though still enough the same
In strength to bear what time can not abate,
And feed on bitter fruits without accusing Fate.


Something too much of this:-but now 'tis past,

And the spell closes with its silent seal.
Long absent HAROLD re-appears at last;

He of the breast which fain no more would feel,

Wrung with the wounds which kill not, but ne'er heal; Yet Time, who changes all, had alter'd him

In soul and aspect as in age: years steal

Fire from the mind as vigour from the limb;

And life's enchanted cup but sparkles near the brim.


His had been quaff'd too quickly, and he found
The dregs were wormwood; but he fill'd again,
And from a purer fount, on holier ground,
And deem'd its spring perpetual; but in vain!
Still round him clung invisibly a chain
Which gall'd for ever, fettering though unseen,

And heavy though it clank'd not; worn with pain,
Which pined although it spoke not, and grew keen,

• Entering with every step, he took, through many a scene.


Secure in guarded coldness, he had mix'd
Again in fancied safety with his kind,
And deem'd his spirit now so firmly fix'd
And sheath'd with an invulnerable mind,
That, if no joy, no sorrow lurk'd behind;
And he, as one, might midst the many stand
Unheeded, searching through the crowd to find
Fit speculation! such as in strange land

He found in wonder-works of God and Nature's hand.


But who can view the ripen'd rose, nor seek

To wear it? who can curiously behold

The smoothness and the sheen of beauty's cheek,
Nor feel the heart can never all grow old?
Who can contemplate Fame through clouds unfold
The star which rises o'er her steep, nor climb?
Harold, once more within the vortex, roll'd

On with the giddy circle, chasing Time,

Yet with a nobler aim than in his youth's fond prime.


But soon he knew himself the most unfit

Of men to herd with Man; with whom he held

Little in common; untaught to submit

His thoughts to others, though his soul was quell'd In youth by his own thoughts; still uncompell'd,

He would not yield dominion of his mind

To spirits against whom his own rebell'd;

Proud though in desolation; which could find

A life within itself, to breathe without mankind.


Where rose the mountains, there to him were friends; Where roll'd the ocean, thereon was his home; Where a blue sky, and glowing clime, extends, He had the passion and the power to roam; The desert, forest, cavern, breaker's foam, Were unto him companionship; they spake A mutual language, clearer than the tome Of his land's tongue, which he would oft forsake For Nature's pages glass'd by sunbeams on the lake.


Like the Chaldean, he could watch the stars,

Till he had peopled them with beings bright

As their own beams; and earth, and earth-born jars,

And human frailties, were forgotten quite:

Could he have kept his spirit to that flight
He had been happy; but this clay will sink
Its spark immortal, envying it the light

To which it mounts, as if to break the link

That keeps us from yon heaven which woos us to its brink.


But in Man's dwellings he became a thing
Restless and worn, and stern and wearisome,
Droop'd as a wild-born falcon with clipt wing,
To whom the boundless air alone were home:
Then came his fit again, which to o'ercome,
As eagerly the barr'd-up bird will beat

His breast and beak against his wiry dome
Till the blood tinge his plumage, so the heat

Of his impeded soul would through his bosom eat.

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