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But her late foe stopped short amidst his course,
One moment gazed upon her piteously, FROM "ATALANTA'S RACE," IN "THE EARTHLY
Then with a groan his lingering feet did force PARADISE."
To leave the spot whence he her eyes could see ; AND there two runners did the sign abide And, changed likeone who knows his time must be Foot set to foot, - a young man slim and fair, But short and bitter, without any word Crisp-haired, well knit, with tirm limbs often tried He knelt before the bearer of the sword; In places where no man his strength may spare ; Dainty his thin coat was, and on his hair
Then high rose up the gleaming deadly blade, A golden circlet of renown he wore,
Bared of its flowers, and through the crowded place And in his hand an olive garland bore.
Was silence now, and midst of it the maid
Went by the poor wretch at a gentle pace, But on this day with whom shall he contend? And he to hers upturned his sad white face ; A maid stood by him like Diana clad
Nor did his eyes behold another sight
ATALANTA'S RACE," IN Of all tormenting lines her face was clear,
PARADISE.” Her wide gray eyes upon the goal were set Now has the lingering month at last gone by, Calm and unmoved as though no soul were near ; Again are all folk round the running place, But her foe trembled as a man in fear,
Nor other seems the dismal pageantry Nor from her loveliness one moment turned
Than heretofore, but that another face His anxious face with fierce desire that burned.
Looks o'er the smooth course ready for the race, Now through the hush there broke the trum- Stands on the spot he twice has looked upon.
For now, beheld of all, Milanion pet's clang Just as the setting sun made eventide.
what change is this that holds the Then from light feet a spurt of dust there sprang, maid ? And swiftly were they running side by side ;
Does she indeed see in his glittering eye But silent did the thronging folk abide
More than disdain of the sharp shearing blade, Until the turning-post was reached at last,
Some happy hope of help and victory? And round about it still abreast they passed.
The others seemed to say, “We come to die,
Look down upon us for a little while,
That dead, we may bethink us of thy smile." A cry of joy broke forth, whereat the man
But he — what look of mastery was this Headed the white-foot runner, and drew near
He cast on her ? why were his lips so red ? Unto the very end of all his fear; And scarce his straining feet the ground could feel, So looks not one who deems himself but dead,
Why was his face so flushed with happiness! And bliss unhoped for o'er his heart 'gan steal.
E'en if to death he bows a willing head ; Buit midst the loud victorious shouts he heard" So rather looks a god well pleased to find Her footsteps drawing nearer, and the sound Some earthly damsel fashioned to his mind. Of finttering raiment, and thereat afeard His flushed and eager face he turned around,
Why must she drop her lids before his gaze,
And even as she casts adown her eyes
Redden to note his eager glance of praise,
And wish that she were clad in other guise ! Till on the goal she laid her fingers fair.
Why must the memory to her heart arise There stood she breathing like a little child Of things unnoticed when they first were heard, Amid some warlike clamor laid asleep,
Some lover's song, some answering maiden's word? For no victorious joy her red lips smiled, Her cheek its wonted freshness did but keep; What makes these longings, vague, without a No glance lit up her clear gray eyes and deep,
name, Though some divine thought softened all her face and this vain pity never felt before, As once more rang the trumpet through the place. This sudden languor, this contempt of fame,
This tender sorrow for the time past o'er, To win the day, though now but scanty space These doubts that grow each minute more and was left betwixt him and the winning place.
more? Why does she tremble as the time grows near, Short was the way unto such wingéd feet, And weak defeat and woful victory fear ? Quickly she gained upon him till at last
He turned about her eager eyes to meet, But while she seemed to hear her beating And from his hand the third fair apple cast. heart,
She wavered not, but turned and ran so fast Above their heads the trumpet blast rang out, After the prize that should her bliss fulfil, And forth they sprang; and she must play her That in her hand it lay ere it was still.
part ; Then flew her white feet, knowing not a doubt, Nor did she rest, but turned about to win Though slackening once, she turned her head Once more, an unblest woful victory – about,
And yet — and yet — why does her breath begin But then she cried aloud and faster fled
To fail her, and her feet drag heavily? Than e'er before, and all men deemed him Why fails she now to see if far or nigh dead.
The goal is ? why do her gray eyes grow dim ?
Why do these tremors run through every limb ? But with no sound he raised aloft his hand, And thence what seemed a ray of light there She spreads her arms abroad some stay to find flew
Else must she fall, irfdeed, and findeth this, And past the maid rolled on along the sand ; A strong man's arms about her body twined. Then trembling she her feet together drew, Nor may she shudder now to feel his kiss, And in her heart a strong desire there grew So wrapped she is in new, unbroken bliss : To have the toy ; some god she thought had Made happy that the foe the prize hath won, given
She weeps glad tears for all her glory done. That gift to her, to make of earth a heaven.
ACBAR AND NOURMAHAL.
Illumed by a wit that would fascinate sages,
Yet playful as Peris just loosed from their cages. FROM "THE LIGHT OF THE HAREM."
While her laugh, full of life, without any control Oh ! best of delights, as it everywhere is, But the sweet one of gracefulness, rung from her To be near the loved one, what a rapture is his Who in moonlight and music thus sweetly may And where it most sparkled no glance could disglide
cover, O'erthe Lake of Cashmere with that one by his side! In lip, cheek, oreyes, forshe brightened allover, – If woman can make the worst wilderness dear, Like any fair lake that the breeze is upon, Think, think what a heaven she must make of When it breaksinto dimples, and laughs in the sun. Cashmere !
Such, such were the peerless enchantments that
gave So felt the magnificent Son of Acbar,
Nourmahal the proud Lord of the East for her When from power and pompand the trophies of war
slave ; He flew to that valley, forgetting them all And though bright was his Harem, - a living With the Light of the Harem, his young Nour parterre mahal.
Of the flowers of this planet, — though treasures When free and uncrowned as the conqueror roved were there, By the banks of that lake, with his only beloved, For which Solomon's self might have given all He saw, in the wreaths she would playfully snatch
the store From the hedges, a glory his crown could not That the navy from Ophir e'er winged to his shore, match,
Yet dim before her were the smiles of them all, And preferred in his heart the least ringlet that And the Lightof his Harem was young Nourmahal!
curled Down her exquisite neck to the throne of the world !
There 's a beauty, forever unchangingly bright,
Three fields to cross, till a farm appears :
And a voice less loud, through its joys and fears, When pensive, it seemed as if that very grace, Than the two hearts, beating each to each. That charm of all others, was born with her face ; And when angry, - for even in the tranquillest
climes Light breezes will ruffle the flowers sometimes,
THE LADY'S LOOKING-GLASS. The short, passing anger but seemed to awaken New beauty, like flowers that are sweetest when CELIA and I, the other day, shaken.
Walked o'er the sand-hills to the sea : If tenderness touched her, the dark of her eye The setting sun adorned the coast, At once took a darker, a heavenlier dye,
His beams entire his fierceness lost : From the depth of whose shadow, like holy re And on the surface of the deep vealings
The winds lay only not asleep : Fronn innermost shrines, came the light of her The nymphs did, like the scene, appear feelings !
Serenely pleasant, calmly fair ; Then her mirth — 0, 't was sportive as ever Soft felt her words as flew the air. took wing
With secret joy I heard her say From the heart with a burst like the wild-bird That she would never miss one day in spring,
A walk so fine, a sight so gay,
But, О the change! The winds grow high,
Dark was her hair ; her hand was white;
Her voice was exquisitely tender ; Her eyes were full of liquid light;
I never saw a waist so slender; Her every look, her every smile,
Shot right and left a score of arrows : I thought 't was Venus from her isle,
And wondered where she 'd left her sparrows
“Once more at least look back," said I,
• Thyself in that large glass descry :
She talked of politics or prayers,
Of Southey's prose or Wordsworth's sonnets, Of danglers or of dancing bears,
Of battles or the last new bonnets ;
To me it mattered not a tittle,
I might have thought they murmured Little.
Through sunny May, through sultry June,
I loved her with a love eternal ; I spoke her praises to the moon,
I wrote them to the Sunday Journal. My mother laughed; I soon found out
That ancient ladies have no feeling: My father frowned; but how should gout
See any happiness in kneeling?
“ But when vain doubt and groundless fear
She was the daughter of a dean, —
Rich, fat, and rather apoplectic; She had one brother just thirteen,
Whose color was extremely hectic ; Her grandmother for many a year,
Had fed the parish with her bounty ; Her second cousin was a peer,
And lord-lieutenant of the county.
Soft songs to Julia's cockatoo,
Fierce odes to famine and to slaughter,
And recipes for elder water.
Her steps were watched, her dress was noted; Her poodle-dog was quite adored ;
Her sayings were extremely quoted.
As if the taxes were abolished ;
As if the opera were demolished.
I knew that there was nothing in it; I was the first, the only one,
Her heart had thought of for a minute. I knew it, for she told me so,
In phrase which was divinely moulded ; She wrote a charming hand, - and 0,
How sweetly all her notes were folded ! Our love was most like other loves,
A little glow, a little shiver, A rosebud and a pair of gloves,
And “Fly Not Yet," upon the river ; Some jealousy of some one's heir,
Some hopes of dying broken-hearted ; A miniature, a lock of hair,
The usual vows, — and then we parted. We parted : months and years rolled by ;
We met again four summers after. Our parting was all sob and sigh,
Our meeting was all mirth and laughter ! For in my heart's most secret cell
There had been many other lodgers ; And she was not the ball-room's belle,
But only Mrs. — Something - Rogers !
WINTHROP MACKWORTH PRAED.
THE FRIAR OF ORDERS GRAY. It was a friar of orders gray
Walked forth to tell his beads; And he met with a lady fair
Clad in a pilgrim's weeds.
“ Yow Christ thee save, thou reverend friar;
I pray thee tell to me, If ever at yon holy shrine
My true love thou didst see." “ And how should I know your true-love
From many another one ?" “0, by his cockle hat, and staff,
And by his sandal shoon.
“But chiefly by his face and mien,
That were so fair to view ;
And eyes of lovely blue."
“O lady, he's dead and gone !
Lady, he's dead and gone !
And at his heels a stone.
“Within these holy cloisters long
He languished, and he died, Lamenting of a lady's love,
And 'plaining of her pride.
“ Here bore him barefaced on his bier
Six proper youths and tall,
Within yon kirk-yard wall."
“And art thou dead, thou gentle youth ?
And art thou dead and gone ? And didst thou die for love of me?
Break, cruel heart of stone !"
“O weep not, lady, weep not so;
Some ghostly comfort seek ;
Nor tears bedew thy cheek.”
“O do not, do not, holy friar,
My sorrow now reprove ;
That e'er won lady's love.
“And now, alas ! for thy sad loss
I'll evermore weep and sigh : For thee I only wished to live,
For thee I wish to die."
“Weep no more, lady, weep no more,
Thy sorrow is in vain ; For violets plucked, the sweetest showers
Will ne'er make grow again.
“Our joys as wingéd dreams do fly;
Why then should sorrow last ? Since grief but aggravates thy loss,
Grieve not for what is past."
not so, thou holy friar ; I pray thee, say not so ; For since my true-love died for me,
'Tis meet my tears should flow.
“And will he never come again ?
Will he ne'er come again ? Ah ! no he is dead and laid in his grave,
Forever to remain.