« AnteriorContinuar »
“No flocks that range the valley free
To slaughter I condemn: Taught by that Power that pities me,
I learn to pity them. “But from the mountain's grassy side
A guiltless feast I bring; A scrip with herbs and fruits supplied,
And water from the spring.
* Then, pilgrim, turn, thy cares forego;
All earth-born cares are wrong: Man wants but little here below,
Nor wants that little long."
Soft as the dew from heaven descends;
His gentle accents fell:
And follows to the cell.
Far in a wilderness obscure,
The lonely mansion lay;
And strangers led astray.
No stores beneath its humble thatch
Required a master's care;
Received the harmless pair.
And now, when busy crowds retire
To take their evening rest,
And cheered his pensive guest:
And spread his vegetable store,
And gaily pressed, and smiled; And, skilled in legendary lore,
The lingering hours beguiled.
Around, in sympathetic mirth, ,
Its tricks the kitten tries;
The crackling fagot flies.
But nothing could a charm impart
To sooth the stranger's wo; For grief was heavy at his heart,
And tears began to flow.
His rising cares the hermit spied,
With answering care opprest; “And whence, unhappy youth,” he cried,
“The sorrows of thy breast?
“From better habitations spurned,
Reluctant dost thou rove?
Or unregarded love?
“Alas! the joys that fortune brings
Are trifling, and decay;
More trifling still than they.
“ And what is friendship but a name,
A charm that lulls to sleep;
And leaves the wretch to weep?
« And love is still an emptier sound
The modern fair-one's jest: On earth unseen, or only found
To warm the turtle's nest.
" For shame, fond youth ! thy sorrows hush,
And spurn the sex," he said: But while he spoke, a rising blush
His love-lorn guest betrayed.
Swift mantling to the view;
As bright, as transient too.
The bashful look, the rising breast,
Alternate spread alarms:
A maid in all her charms.
And, “Ah! forgive a stranger rude,
A wretch forlorn,” she cried, 4Whose feet unhallowed thus intrude
Where heaven and you reside.
“But let a maid thy pity share,
Whom love has taught to stray: Who seeks for rest, but finds despair
Companion of her way.
“My father lived beside the Tyne,
A wealthy lord was he; And all his wealth was marked as mine
He had but only me.
« To win me from his tender arms,
Unnumbered suitors came;
And folt, or feigned a flame.
“Each hour a mercenary crowd
With richest proffers strove:
But never talked of love.
“In humble, simplest habit clad,
No wealth or power had he; Wisdom and worth were all he had,
But these were all to me.
“And when, beside me in the dale,
He caroled lays of love,
And music to the grove.
“The blossom opening to the day,
The dews of heaven refined, Could nought of purity display
To emulate his mind.
*The dew, the blossom on the tree,
With charms inconstant shine; Their charms were his, but, wo to me!
Their constancy was mine.
* For still I tried each fickle art,
Importunate and vain; And while his passion touched my heart
I triumphed in his pain:
« Till quite dejected with my scorn,
He left me to my pride; And sought a solitude forlorn
In secret, where he died.
“But mine the sorrow, mine the fault,
And well my life shall pay; I'll seek the solitude he sought,
And stretch me where he lay.
“ And there forlorn, despairing, hid,
I'll lay me down and die; 'Twas so for me that Edwin did,
And so for him will I.”
“Forbid it Heaven!” the hermit cried,
And clasped her to his breast: The wondering fair one turned to chide
'Twas Edwin's self that pressed! “Turn, Angelina, ever dear!
My charmer, turn to see
Restored to love and thee.
“ Thus let me hold thee to my heart,
And every care resign:
My life--my all that's mine?
“No! never from this hour to part,
We'll live and love so true, The sigh that rends thy constant heart
Shall break thy Edwin's too."