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SHALL the harp then be silent, when he, who first gave
To our country a name, is withdrawn from all eyes? Shall a minstrel of Erin, stand mute by the grave,
Where the first-where the last of her patriots lies ?
No-faint though the death-song may fall from his lips, Though his harp, like his soul, may with shadows be
crost, Yet, yet shall it sound, 'mid a nation's eclipse,
And proclaim to the world what a star has been lost !
What a union of all the affections and powers,
By which life is exalted, embellished, refined, Was embraced in that spirit, whose centre was ours,
While its mighty circumference encircled mankind.
Oh, who that loves Erin-or who that can see
Through the waste of her annals, that epoch sublimeLike a pyramid raised in the desert, where he
And his glory stand out to the eyes of all time!
That one lucid interval, snatched from the gloom
And the madness of ages, when, filled with his soul, A nation o’erleaped the dark bounds of her doom,
And, for one sacred instant, touched Liberty's goal !
Who that ever hath heard him-hath drank at the source
Of that wonderful eloquence all Erin's own,
In whose high-thoughted daring, the fire, and the force,
And the yet untamed spring of her spirit are shown
An eloquence, rich-wheresoever its wave
shone through, As clear as the brook's “stone of lustre," and gave
With the flash of the gem, its solidity too.
Who, that ever approached him, when, free from the
crowd, In a home full of love, he delighted to tread 'Mong the trees which a nation had giv'n and which
bowed, As if each brought a new civic crown for his head
That home, where like him who, as fable hath told, Put the rays from his brow, that his child might
conie nearEvery glory forgot, the most wise of the old
Became all that the simplest and youngest hold dear.
Is there one, who hath thus, through his orbit of life, But at distance observed him,-through glory,
through blame, In the calm of retreat, in the grandeur 'of strife,
Whether shining or clouded, still high and the same
Such a union of all that eariches life's hour,
Of the sweetness we love and the greatness we praise As that type of simplicity blended with power,
A child with a thunderbolt only portrays;
Oh, no-not a heart that e'er knew him, but mourns, Deep, deep o'er the grave, where such glory is
shrined O'er a monument Fame will preserve, 'mong the urns
Of the wisest, the bravest, the best of mankind !
ODE TO A NIGHTINGALE.
My heart aches, and a drowsy numbness pains
My sense, as though of hemlock I had drunk,
One minute past, and Lethe-wards had sunk :
In some melodious plot
Singest of summer in full-throated ease.
O, for a draught of vintage ! that hath been
Cooled a long age in the deep-delved earth, Tasting of Flora and the country green,
Dance, and Provençal song, and sunburnt mirth!
And purple-stained mouth ;
And with thee fade away into the forest dim:
Fade far away, dissolve, and quite forget
What thou among the leaves hast never known, The weariness, the fever, and the fret
Here, where men sit and hear each other groan; Where palsy shakes a few, sad, last gray hairs, Where youth grows pale, and spectre-thin, and dies; Where but to think is to be full of sorrow
And leaden-eyed despairs ;
Or new Love pine at them beyond to-morrow.
Away! away! for I will fly to thee,
Not charioted by Bacchus and his pards,
Though the dull brain perplexes and retards :
But here the no light,
Thro' verdurous glooms and winding mossy ways
I cannot see what flowers are at my feet,
Nor what soft incense hangs upon the boughs, But, in embalmed darkness, guess each sweet
Wherewith the seasonable month endows
And mid-May's eldest child,
The murmurous haunt of flies on summer eves.
Darkling I listen ; and, for many a time
I have been half in love with easeful Death, Called him soft names in many a mused rhyme,
To take into the air my quiet breath ; Now more than ever seems it rich to die, To cease upon the midnight with no pain, While thou art pouring forth thy soul abroad
In such an ecstasy! Still wouldst thou sing, and I have ears in vain
To thy high requiem become a sod.
Thou wast not born for death, immortal Bird !
No hungry generations tread thee down; The voice I hear this passing night was heard
In ancient days by emperor and clown : Perhaps the self-same song that found a path Thro’the sad heart of Ruth, when, sick for home, She stood in tears among the alien corn ;
The same that oft-times hath Charmed magic casement, opening on the foam
Of perilous seas, in faery lands forlorn.
Forlorn! the very word is like a bell
To toll me back from thee to my sole self !
As she is famed to do, deceiving elf.
In the next valley-glades :
Fled is that music :-Do I wake or sleep?