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I saw a vapor in the sky,

Thin, and white, and very high ; I ne'er beheld so thin a cloud ;

Perhaps the breezes that can fly

Now below and now above,
Have snatched aloft the lawny shroud

Of Lady fair—that died for love.
For maids, as well as youths, have perished
From fruitless love too fondly cherished.
Nay, treacherous image! leave my mind-
For Lewti never will be kind.

Hush ! my heedless feet from under

Slip the crumbling banks for ever;
Like echoes to a distant thunder,

They plunge into the gentle river.
The river swans have heard my tread,
And startle from their reedy bed.
O beauteous birds ! methinks ye measure

Your movements to some heavenly tune! O beauteous birds ! 'tis such a pleasure,

To see you move beneath the moon,
I would it were your true delight
To sleep by day, and wake all night.

I know the place where Lewti lies,
When silent night has closed her eyes :

It is a breezy jasmine bower,
The nightingale sings o'er her head :

Voice of the night! had I the power
That leafy labyrinth to thread,
And creep, like thee, with soundless tread, ,
I then might view her bosom white
Heaving lovely to my sight,

As these two swans together heave

On the gently swelling wave.

Oh! that she saw me in a dream,

And dreamt that I had died for care;
All pale and wasted I would seem,

Yet fair withal, as spirits are !
I'd die indeed, if I might see
Her bosom heave, and heave for me!
Soothe, gentle image! soothe my mind!
To-morrow Lewti may be kind.

1795

THE PICTURE;

OR THE LOVER'S RESOLUTION. THROUGH weeds and thorns, and matted un

derwood I force my way; now climb, and now descend O’er rocks, or bare or mossy, with wild foot Crushing the purple whorts; while oft unseen, Hurrying along the drifted forest-leaves, The scared snake rustles. Onward still I toil I know not, ask not whither! A new joy, Lovely as light, sudden as summer gust, And gladsome as the first-born of the spring, Beckons me on, or follows from behind, Playmate or guide! The master-passion quelled, I feel that I am free. With dun-red bark The fir-trees, and the unfrequent slender oak, Forth from this tangle wild of bush and brake Soar up, and form a melancholy vault High o'er me, murmuring like a distant sea.

Here Wisdom might resort, and here Remorse :

Here too the love-lorn man, who, sick in soul, | And of this busy human he:urt aweary,

Worships the spirit of unconscious life
In tree or wild flower.—Gentle lunatic !
If so he might not wholly cease to be,
He would far rather not be that, he is;
But would be something, that he knows not of,
In winds or waters, or among the rocks.

And you, ye

But hence, fond wretch! breathe not contagion

here! No myrtle-walks are these: these are no groves Where Love dare loiter! If in sullen mood He should stray hither, the low stumps shall gore His dainty feet, the brier and the thorn Make his plumes haggard. Like a wounded bird Easily caught, ensnare him, 0 ye Nymphs, Ye Oreads chaste, ye dusky Dryades ! Earth-winds !

you

that make at morn The dew-drops quiver on the spiders' webs! You, O ye wingless Airs ! that creep between The rigid stems of heath and bitten furze, Within whose scanty shade, at summer-noon, The mother-sheep hath worn a hollow-bedYe, that now cool her fleece with dropless damp, Now pant and murmur with her feeling lamb. Chase, chase him, all ye Fays, and elfin Gnomes ! With prickles sharper than his darts bemock His little Godship, making him perforce Creep through a thorn-bush on yon hedgehog's back.

This is my hour of triumph! I can now With my own fancies play the merry fool,

And laugh away worse folly, being free
Here will I seat myself, beside this old,
Hollow, and weedy oak, which ivy-twine
Clothes as with net-work: here will I couch my

limbs,
Close by this river, in this silent shade,
As safe and sacred from the step of man
As an invisible world—unheard, unseen,
And listening only to the pebbly brook
That murmurs with a dead, yet tinkling sound;
Or to the bees, that in the neighboring trunk
Make honey-hoards. The breeze, that visits me,
Was never Love's accomplice, never raised
The tendril ringlets from the maiden's brow,
And the blue, delicate veins above her cheek;
Ne'er played the wanton-never half disclosed
The maiden's snowy bosom, scattering thence
Eye-poisons for some love-distempered youth,
Who ne'er henceforth may see an aspen-grove
Shiver in sunshine, but his feeble heart
Shall flow away like a dissolving thing

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Sweet breeze! thou only, if I guess aright,
Liftest the feathers of the robin's breast,
That swells its little breast, so full of song,
Singing above me on the mountain ash.
And thou too, desert stream! no pool of thine,
Though clear as lake in latest summer-eve,
Did e'er reflect the stately virgin's robe,
The face, the form divine, the downcast look
Contemplative! Behold! her open palm
Presses her cheek and brow ! her elbow rests
On the bare branch of half-uprooted tree,
That leans towards its mirror ! Who erewhile

Had from her countenance turned, or looked by

stealth, (For fear is true love's cruel nurse), he now With steadfast gaze and unoffending eye, Worships the watery idol, dreaming hopes Delicious to the soul, but fleeting, vain, E’en as that phantom-world on which he gazed, But not unheeded gazed ! for see, ah! see, The sportive tyrant with her left hand plucks The heads of tall flowers that behind her grow, Lychnis, and willow- herb, and fox-glove bells ; And suddenly, as one that toys with time, Scatters them on the pool! Then all the charm Is broken-all that phantom-world so fair Vanishes, and a thousand circlets spread, And each mis-shape the other. Stay awhile, Poor youth, who scarcely dar’st lift up thine eyes ! The stream will soon renew its smoothness, soon The visions will return! And lo! he stays: And soon the fragments dim of lovely forms Come trembling back, unite, and now once more The pool becomes a mirror; and behold Each wild-flower on the marge inverted there, And there the half-uprooted tree-but where O where the virgin's snowy arm that leaned On its bare branch ? He turns and she is gone! Homeward she steals through many a woodland

maze

Which he shall seek in vain. Ill-fated youth !
Go, day by day, and waste thy manly prime
In mad love-yearning by the vacant brook,
Till sickly thoughts bewitch thine eyes, and thou
Behold'st her shadow still abiding there,
The Naiad of the mirror!

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