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STANZAS TO A LADY,
WITH THE POEMS OF CAMOENS, This votive pledge of fond esteem,
Perhaps, dear girl! from me thou'lt prize; It sings of Love's enchanting dream
A theine ve never can despise. Who blames it but the envious fool,
The old and disappointed maidOr pupil of the prudish school,
In single sorrow doom'd to fade ? Then read, dear girl!-with feeling read
For thou wilt ne'er be one of whose;
Iu pity for the Poet's woes.
His was no faint fictitious flame :
But not thy hapless fate the same.
TO M * *
With bright, but mild, affection shine;
Love more than mortal would be thine, For thou art form’d so heavenly fair,
Howe'er those orbs may wildly beam, We must admire, but still despair ;
That fatal glance forbids.esteem. When Nature stamp'd thy beauteous birth,
So much perfection in thee shone, She fear'd that, too divine for earth,
The skies might claim thee for their own ;Therefore, to guard her dearest work,
Lest angels might dispute the prize, She bade a secret lightuing lurk
Within those once-celestial eyes.
These might the boldest sylph appal,
When gleaming with meridian blaze;
But who can dare thine ardent gaze?
In stars adorns the vault of heaven;
Thou wouldst so far outshine the seven.
Thy sister lights would scarce appear;
Would twinkle dimly through their sphere.
☆ The last line is almost a literal translation from a Spanish proverb.
TO M. S. G.
Extend not your anger to sleep;
I rise, and it leaves me to weep.
Shed o'er ine your languor benign!
What rapture celestial is mine!
Mortality's emblem is given;
If this be a foretaste of Heaven!
Nor deem me too happy in this;
Thus doomed but to gaze upon bliss.
Oh! think not my penance deficient;
To awake will be torture sufficient.
And climbed thy steep summit, oh! Morven of snow;*
Or the mist of the tempest that gathered below;f
And rude as the rocks where my infancy grew,
Need I say, my sweet Mary, 'twas centred in yon ?
Morven; a lofty mountain in Aberdeensbire: 'Gormal of snow' is an expression frequently to be found in Ossian.
+ This will not appear extraordinary to those who have been accustomed to the mountains; it is by no means uncommon, on attaining the top of Ben-e-vis, Ben-ybourd, &c. to perceive, between the summit and the valley, clouds pouring down rain, and occasionally accompanied by lightning; while the spectator literally looks down upon the storm, perfectly secure from its effects.
Yet it could not be love, for I knew not the name ;
What passion can dwell in the heart of a child ?
As I felt, when a boy, on the crag-cover'd wild :
I lov'd my bleak regions, nor panted for new :
And pure were my thoughts, for my soul was with you
From mountain to mountain I bounded along;
And heard at a distauce the Highlander's song.
No dreams, save of Mary, were spread to my view;
For the first of my prayers was a blessing on you.
The mountains are vanish'd, my youth is no more :
And delight but in days I have witnessed before.
More dear were the scenes which my infancy knew.
Though cold is my heart, still it lingers with you.
I think of the rocks that o'ershadow Colbleen ;
I think of those eyes that endear'd the rude scene :
That faintly resemble my Mary's in hue,
The locks that were sacred to beauty and you. ** Breasting the lofty mountain.'-SHAKSPEARE.
The Dee is a beautiful river, which rises near Mar Lodge and falls into the sea at New Aberdeen.
Colbleen is a mountain near the verge of the Highlands, not far from the ruins of Dee Castle.
Yet the day may arrive when the mountains oirce more
Shall rise to my sight in their mantles of snow: But, while these soar above me, unchanged as before,
Will Mary be there to receive me? Ah, no! Adieu, then, ye hills, where my childhood was bred!
Thou sweet-flowing Dee, to thy waters adieu ! No home in the forest shall shelter iny bead;
Ah ! Mary, what home could be mine but with you.”
Oh! yes, I will own, we were dear to each other;
The friendships of childhood, though fleeting, are true; The love which you felt was the love of a brother,
Nor less the affection I cherish'd for you.
But Friendship can vary her gentle dominion
The attachment of years in a moment expires; Like Love, too, she moves on a swift-waving pinion,
But glows not, like Love, with unquenchable fires. Full oft have we wander'd through Ida together,
And bless'd were the scenes of our youth, I allow: In the spring of our life, how serene is the weather!
But winter's rude tempests are gathering now. No more with affection shall memory blending,
The wonted delights of our childhood retrace: When pride steels the bosom, the heart is unbending,
And what would be justice appears a disgrace.
The few whom I love I can never upbraid)
Repentance will cancel the vow you have made.
With me no corroding resentment shall live:
That both may be wrong, and that both should forgive.