Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

As the flames of sacrifice
From the marble shrines did rise,
As to pierce the dome of gold
Where Apollo spoke of old.
Sun-girt City! thou hast been
Ocean's child, and then his queen.

Noon descends around me now; 'Tis the noon of autumn's glow, When a soft and purple mist, Like a vaporous amethyst, Or an air-dissolved star, Mingling light and fragrance, far From the curv'd horizon's bound To the point of heaven's profound, Fills the overflowing sky; And the plains that silent lie Underneath ; leaves unsodden, Where the infant frost has trodden With his morning-wingéd feet, Whose bright print is gleaming yet; And the red and golden vines, Piercing with their trellised lines The rough dark skirted wilderness ; The dim and bladed grass, no less, Pointing from this hoary tower In the windless air; the flower Glimmering at my feet; the line Of the olive-sandalled Apennine, In the south dimly islanded ; And the Alps, whose snows are spread High between the clouds and sun; And of living things each one; And my spirit, which so long Darkened this swift stream of song, Interpenetrated lie By the glory of the sky; Be it love, light, harmony, Odour, or the soul of all, Which from heaven like dew doth fall, Or the mind which feeds this verse Peopling the lone universe.

John Keats. 1796-1821. (Manual, p. 443.)

300. FROM ODE TO AUTUMN.' Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store ?

Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,

Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind ;
Or on a half-reap'd furrow sound asleep,
Drows'd with the fume of poppies, while thy hook

Spares the next swath and all its twinéd flowers : And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep

Steady thy laden head across a brook ;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,

Thou watchest the last oozings, hours by hours. Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?

Think not of them, thou hast thy music too, While barréd clouds bloom the soft dying day,

And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue; Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn Among the river shallows, borne aloft,

Or sinking, as the light wind lives or dies ;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;

Hedge-crickets sing ; and now, with treble soft,
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft ;

And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

301. FROM HYPERION.'

As with us mortal men, the laden heart
Is persecuted more, and fever'd more,
When it is nighing to the mournful house
Where other hearts are sick of the same bruise ;
So Saturn, as he walk'd into the midst,
Felt faint, and would have sunk among the rest,
But that he met Enceladus's eye,
Whose mightiness, and awe of him, at once
Came like an inspiration ; and he shouted,
* Titans, behold your God l" at which some groan'd;
Some started on their feet; some also shouted;
Some wept, some wail'd, all bow'd with reverence ;
And Ops, uplifting her black folded veil,
Show'd her pale cheeks, and all her forehead wan,
Her eye-brows thin and jet, and hollow eyes.

[ocr errors]

There is a roaring in the bleak-grown pines
When Winter lists his voice; there is a noise
Among immortals when a God gives sign,
With hushing finger, how he means to load
His tongue with the full weight of utterless thought,
With thunder, and with music, and with pomp :
Such noise is like the roar of bleak-grown pines ;
Which, when it ceases in this mountain'd world,
No other sound succeeds; but ceasing here,
Among these fallen, Saturn's voice therefrom
Grew

up

like organ, that begins anew
Its strain, when other harmonies, stopt short,
Leave the dinn'd air vibrating silverly.
Thus

grew it up—“Not in my own sad breast, Which is its own great judge and searcher out, Can I find reason why ye should be thus : Not in the legends of the first of days, Studied from that old spirit-leaved book Which starry Uranus with finger bright Sav'd from the shores of darkness, when the waves Low-ebb'd still hid it up in shallow gloom ;And the which book ye know I ever kept For my firm-based footstool :-Ah, infirm! Not there, nor in sign, symbol, or portent Of element, earth, water, air, and fire, At war, at peace, or inter-quarreling One against one, or two, or three, or all Each several one against the other three, As fire with air loud warring when rain-floods Drown both, and press them both against earth's face, Where, finding sulphur, a quadruple wrath Unhinges the poor world ;—not in that strife, Wherefrom I take strange lore, and read it deep, Can I find reason why ye should be thus : No, nowhere can unriddle, though I search, And pore on Nature's universal scroll Even to swooning, why ye, Divinities, The first-born of all shap'd and palpable Gods, Should cower beneath what, in comparison, Is untremendous might. Yet ye are here, O’erwhelm'd, and spurn'd, and batter'd, ye are here! O Titans, shall I say 'Arise!'-Ye groan : Shall I say · Crouch !'~Ye groan. What can I then ? O Heaven wide! O unseen parent dear! What can I ? Tell me, all ye brethren Gods,

How we can war, how engine our great wrath!
O speak your counsel now, for Saturn's ear
Is all a-hunger'd. Thou, Oceanus,
Ponderest high and deep; and in thy face
I see, astonied, that severe content
Which comes of thought and musing : give us help!”

302. ODE ON A GRECIAN URN. Thou still unravish'd bride of quietness,

Thou foster-child of silence and slow time, Sylvan historian, who canst thus express

A flowery tale more sweetly than our rhyme : What leaf-fring’d legend haunts about thy shape Of deities or mortals, or of both,

In Tempe or the dales of Arcady? What men or gods are these? What maidens loth ? What mad pursuit ? What struggle to escape ?

What pipes and timbrels ? What wild ecstasy ? Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard

Are sweeter ; therefore, ye soft pipes, play on;
Not to the sensual ear, but, more endearid,

Pipe to the spirit ditties of no tone:
Fair youth, beneath the trees, thou canst not leave
Thy song, nor ever can those trees be bare ;

Bold Lover, never, never canst thou kiss, Though winning near the goal-yet, do not grieve; She cannot fade, though thou hast not thy bliss,

For ever wilt thou love, and she be fair! Ah, happy, happy boughs! that cannot shed

Your leaves, nor ever bid the Spring adieu ;
And, happy melodist, unwearied,

For ever piping songs for ever new;
More happy love! more happy, happy love!
For ever warm and still to be enjoy'd,

For ever panting, and for ever young;
All breathing human passion far above,
That leaves á heart high-sorrowful and cloy'd,

A burning forehead, and a parching tongue.
Who are these coming to the sacrifice ?

To what green altar, O mysterious priest, Lead'st thou that heifer lowing at the skies,

And all her silken flanks with garlands drest?

What little town by river or sea-shore,
Or mountain-built with peaceful citadel,

Is emptied of this folk, this pious morn ?
And, little town, thy streets for evermore
Will silent be; and not a soul to tell

Why thou art desolate, can e'er return. O Attic shape ! Fair attitude! with brede

Of marble men and maidens overwrought,
With forest branches and the trodden weed;

Thou, silent form, dost tease us out of thought
As doth eternity : Cold Pastoral !
When old age shall this generation waste,

Thou shalt remain, in midst of other woe
Than ours, a friend to man, to whom thou say’st,

Beauty is truth, truth beauty,”—that is all
Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.

303. FROM ‘ENDYMION.'

MOONLIGHT.

Eterne Apollo! that thy sister fair
Is of all these the gentlier-mightiest.
When thy gold breath is misting in the west,
She unobservéd steals unto her throne,
And there she sits most meek and most alone;
As if she had not pomp subservient;
As if thine eye, high Poet! was not bent
Towards her with the muses in thine heart;
As if the ministering stars kept not apart,
Waiting for silver-footed messages.
O Moon ! the oldest shades 'mong oldest trees
Feel palpitations when thou lookest in:
O Moon! old boughs lisp forth a holier din
The while they feel thine airy fellowship.
Thou dost bless everywhere, with silver lip
Kissing dead things to life. The sleeping kine,
Couched in thy brightness, dream of fields divine :
Innumerable mountains rise, and rise,
Ambitious for the hallowing of thine eyes ;
And yet thy benediction passeth not
One obscure hiding-place, one little spot
Where pleasure may be sent: the nested wren
Has thy fair face within its tranquil ken,

[ocr errors]
« ZurückWeiter »