« AnteriorContinuar »
'Tis morn:—from these I turn my sight:
What scene is this which meets the eye?
Across the green in numbers fly.
'Tis hush'd :—what sounds are these I hear? The organ's soft celestial swell
Rolls deeply on the listning ear.
The royal minstrel’s hallow'd strain ;
Will never wish to hear again.
Even as a band of raw beginners ;
To such a set of croaking sinners.
Had heard these blockleads sing before him,
In furious mood he would have tore 'em.
6 On a saint's day the students wear surplices in chapel.
The luckless Israelites, when taken
By some inbuman tyrant's order,
On Babylonian river's border.
Oh! had they sung in notes like these,
Inspired by stratagem or fear,
The devil a soul had stay'd to hear.
But if I scribble longer now,
The deuce a soul will stay to read;
T'is almost time to stop, indeed.
Therefore, farewell, old Granta's spires !
No more, like Cleofas, I fly;
The reader's tired, and so am I.
ON A DISTANT VIEW OF THE VILLAGE AND SCHOOL
OF HARROW ON THE HILL.
“Oh! mihi præteritos referat si Jupiter annos." -VIRGIL. Ye scenes of my childhood, whose loved recollection
Embitters the present, compared with the past; Where science first dawn’d on the powers of reflection,
And friendships were form’d, too romantic to last;'
Where fancy yet joys to retrace the resemblance
Of comrades, in friendship and mischief allied ; How welcome to me your ne'er fading remembrance,
Which rests in the bosom, though hope is denied !
Again I revisit the hills where we sported,
The streams where we swam, and the fields where we fought; The school where, loud warn’d by the bell, we resorted,
To pore o'er the precepts by pedagogues taught. ? ["My school-friendships were with me passions (for I was always violent), but I do not know that there is one which has endured (to be sure, some have been cut short by death) till now.”—Byron Diary, 1821.)
Again I behold where for hours I have ponder’d,
As reclining, at eve, on yon tombstone ® I lay;
To catch the last gleam of the sun's setting ray.
I once more view the room, with spectators surrounded,
Where, as Zanga, I trod on Alonzo o'erthrown;
I fancied that Mossop himself was outshone.
Or, as Lear, I pour’d forth the deep imprecation,'
By my daughters, of kingdom and reason deprived ; Till, fired by loud plaudits and self-adulation,
I regarded myself as a Garrick revived.
Ye dreams of my boyhood, how much I regret you!
Unfaded your memory dwells in my breast; Though sad and deserted, I ne'er can forget you:
Your pleasures may still be in fancy possest.
To Ida full oft may remeinbrance restore me,'
While fate shall the shades of the future unroll! Since darkness o'ershadows the prospect before me,
More dear is the beam of the past to my soul !
But if, through the course of the years which await me,
Some new scene of pleasure should open to view,
“Oh! such were the days which my infancy knew."
8 [A tomb in the churchyard at Harrow was so well known to be his favourite resting-place, that the boys called it “ Byron's Tomb :" and here, they say, he usel to sit for hours, wrapt up in thought. —Moore.]
9 Mossop, a contemporary of Garrick, famous for his performance of Zanga.
? [For the display of his declamatory powers, on the speech-days, he selected always the most vehement passages ; such as the speech of Zanga over the body of Alonzo, and Lear's address to the storm.-MOORE.) [In the private volume the two last stanzas ran
“I thought this poor brain, fever'd even to madness,
Of tears, as of reason, for ever was drain'd ;
Convince me the springs have some moisture retain'd.
Has wrung from these eyelids, to weeping long dead,
The last and the fondest I ever shall shed."]
Oh! did those eyes, instead of fire,
With bright but mild affection shine, Though they might kindle less desire,
Love, more than mortal, would be thine.
For thou art form’d so heavenly fair,
Howe'er those orbs may wildly beam,
That fatal glance forbids esteem.
So much perfection in thee shone,
The skies might claim thee for their own :
might dispute the prize, She bade a secret lightning lurk
Within those once celestial eyes. These might the boldest sylph appal,
When gleaming with meridian blaze; Thy beauty must enrapture all;
But who can dare thine ardent gaze ?
'Tis said that Berenice's hair
In stars adorns the vault of heaven; But they would ne'er permit thee there,
Thou wouldst so far outshine the seven.
For did those eyes as planets roll,
Thy sister-lights would scarce appear :
1806. 3 « Two of the fairest stars in all the heaven,
Having some business, do intreat her eyes
TO M. S. G.
When I dream that you love me, you'll surely forgive;
Extend not your anger to sleep;
I rise, and it leaves me to weep.
Then, Morpheus ! envelope my faculties fast,
Shed o’er me your languor benign ;
What rapture celestial is mine!
They tell us that slumber, the sister of death,
Mortality's emblem is given;
If this be a foretaste of heaven!
Ah! frown not, sweet lady, unbend your soft brow,
Nor deem me too happy in this;
Thus doom'd but to gaze upon bliss.
Oh! think not my penance deficient ! When dreams of your presence my slumbers beguile,
To awake will be torture sufficient.
WOMAN! experience might have told me