Images de page
PDF
ePub

III.

But silent not that adverse eastern path,
Which saw Aurora's hills th' horizon crown:
There was the river heard, in bed of wrath,
(A precipice of foam from mountains brown,)
Like tumults heard from some far distant town;
But softening in approach he left his gloom,
And murmur'd pleasantly, and laid him down
To kiss those easy curving banks of bloom,
That lent the windward air an exquisite perfume.

IV.

It seem'd as if those scenes sweet influence had
On Gertrude's soul, and kindness like their own
Inspired those eyes affectionate and glad,
That seem'd to love whate'er they look'd upon;
Whether with Hebe's mirth her features shone,
Or if a shade more pleasing them o'ercast,
(As if for heavenly musing meant alone ;)
Yet so becomingly th’ expression past,
That each succeeding look was lovelier than the

last.

V.

Nor guess I, was that Pennsylvanian home,
With all its picturesque and balmy grace,
And fields that were a luxury to roam,
Lost on the soul that look'd from such a face !
Enthusiast of the woods ! when years apace

Had bound thy lovely waist with woman's zone,
The sunrise path, at morn, I see thee trace
To hills with high magnolia overgrown,
And joy to breathe the groves, romantic and alone.

VI.

The sunrise drew her thoughts to Europe forth,
That thus apostrophized its viewless scene:
* Land of my father's love, my mother's birth!
The home of kindred I have never seen !
We know not othermoceans are between :
Yet say, far friendly hearts! from whence we came,
Of us does oft remembrance intervene?
My mother sure-my sire a thought may claim;
But Gertrude is to you an unregarded name.

VII.

And yet, loved England ! when thy name I trace
In many a pilgrim's tale and poet's song,
How can I choose but wish for one embrace
Of them, the dear unknown, to whom belong
My mother's looks,-perhaps her likeness strong?
Oh, parent! with what reverential awe,
From features of thy own related throng,
An image of thy face my soul could draw!
And see thee once again whom I too shortly saw!

VIII.

Yet deem not Gertrude sigh'd for foreign joy;
To soothe a father's couch her only care,

And keep his reverend head from all annoy:
For this, methinks, her homeward steps repair,
Soon as the morning wreath had bound her hair ;
While yet the wild deer trod in spangling dew,
While boatmen caroll'd to the fresh-blown air,
And woods a horizontal shadow threw,
And early fox appear'd in momentary view.

[merged small][ocr errors]

Apart there was a deep untrodden grot,
Where oft the reading hours sweet Gertrude wore;
Tradition had not named its lonely spot;
But here (methinks) might India's sons explore
Their fathers' dust, or lift, perchance of yore,
Their voice to the great Spirit :~rocks sublime
To human art a sportive semblance bore,
And yellow lichens colour'd all the clime,
Like' moonlight battlements, and towers decay'd

by time.

X.

But high in amphitheatre above,
Gay-tinted woods their massy foliage threw;
Breathed but an air of heaven, and all the grove
As if instinct with living spirit grew,
Rolling its verdant gulfs of every hue;
And now suspended was the pleasing din,
Now from a murmur faint it swell’d anew,
Like the first note of organ heard within
Cathedral aisles,-ere yet its symphony begin.

XI.

It was in this lone valley she would charm
The lingering noon, where flowers a couch had

strown;
Her cheek reclining, and her snowy arm
On hillock by the pine-tree half o'ergrown;
And aye that volume on her lap is thrown,
Which every heart of human mould endears ;
With Shakspeare's self she speaks and smiles

alone, And no intruding visitation fears, To shame the unconscious laugh, or stop her

sweetest tears.

XII.

And nought within the grove was heard or seen But stock-doves plaining through its gloom pro

found, Or winglet of the fairy humming-bird, Like atoms of the rainbow fluttering round; When, lo! there enter'd to its inmost ground A youth, the stranger of a distant land; He was, to weet, for eastern mountains bound; But late th' equator suns his cheek had tann'd, And California's gales his roving bosom fann'd.

XIII.

A steed, whose rein hung loosely o'er his arm,
He led dismounted; ere his leisure pace,

Amid the brown leaves, could her ear alarm,
Close he had come, and worshipp'd for a space
Those downcast features :-she her lovely face
Uplift on one, whose lineaments and frame
Wore youth and manhood's intermingled grace:
Iberian seem'd his boot-his robe the same,
And well the Spanish plume his lofty looks be-

came.

XIV.

For Albert's home he sought-her finger fair Has pointed where the father's mansion stood. Returning from the copse he soon was there; And soon has Gertrude hied from dark green

wood; Nor joyless, by the converse, understood Between the man of age and pilgrim young, That'gay congeniality of mood, And early liking from acquaintance sprung; Full fluently conversed their guest in England's

tongue.

xv. .

And well could he his pilgrimage of taste
Unfold,—and much they loved his fervid strain,
While he each fair variety retraced
Of climes, and manners, o'er the eastern main.
Now happy Switzer's hills romantic Spain,
Gay lilied fields of France,-or, more refined,
The soft Ausonia's monumental reign ;
Nor less each rural image he design'd
Than all the city's pomp and home of human kind.

« PrécédentContinuer »