« ÎnapoiContinuă »
Could charm them into such an attitude.
take, It is reflected, clearly, in a lake, With the young ashen boughs, 'gainst which it
rests, And th' half-seen mossiness of linnets' nests Ah ! shall I ever tell its cruelty, When the fire flashes from a warrior's eye, And his tremendous hand is grasping it, And his dark brow for very wrath is knit ? Or when his spirit, with more calm intent, Leaps to the honours of a tournament, And makes the gazers round about the ring Stare at the grandeur of the balancing ! No, no ! this is far off :—then how shall I Revive the dying tones of minstrelsy, Which linger yet aboùt long gothic arches, In dark green ivy, and among wild larches ? How sing the splendour of the revelries, When butts of wine are drank off to the lees ? And that bright lance, against the fretted wall, Beneath the shade of stately banneral, Is slung with shining cuirass, sword, and shield ? Where ye may see a spur in bloody field, Light-footed damsels move with gentle pacer
Round the wide hall, and show their happy faces ;
OUNG Calidore is paddling o'er the
His healthful spirit eager and awake
To feel the beauty of a silent eve, Which seem'd full loth this happy world to leave,
The light dwelt o'er the scene so lingeringly.
And now the sharp keel of his little boat Comes up with ripple, and with easy float, And glides into a bed of water-lilies : Broad-leaved are they, and their white canopies Are upward turn'd to catch the heavens' dew. Near to a little island's point they grew ; Whence Calidore might have the goodliest view Of this sweet spot of earth. The bowery shore Went off in gentle windings to the hoar And light blue mountains : but no breathing man With a warm heart, and eye prepared to scan Nature's clear beauty, could pass lightly by Objects that look'd out so invitingly On either side. These, gentle Calidore Greeted, as he had known them long before.
The sidelong view of swelling leafiness, Which the glad setting sun in gold doth dress Whence, ever and anon, the jay outsprings, And scales upon the beauty of its wings.
The lonely turret, shatter'd and outworn,
Stands venerably proud ; too proud to mourn
Green tufted islands casting their soft shades Across the lake ; sequester'd leafy glades, That through the dimness of their twilight show Large dock-leaves, spiral foxgloves, or the glow Of the wild cat’s-eyes, or the silvery stems Of delicate birch-crees, or long grass which hems A little brook. The youth had long been viewing These pleasant things, and heaven was bedewing The mountain flowers, when his glad senses
caught A trumpet's silver voice. Ah! it was fraught With many joys for him : the warder's ken Had found white coursers prancing in the glen :
dear to him he soon will see ; So pushes off his boat most eagerly. And soon upon the lake he skims along, Deaf to the nightingale's first under-song; Nor minds he the white swans that dream so
sweetly, His spirit flies before him so completely. And now he turns a jutting point of land, Whence may be seen the castle gloomy and grand . Nor will a bee buzz round two swelling peaches, Before the point of his light shallop reaches Those marble steps that through the water dip : Now over them he goes with hasty trip, And scarcely stays to ope the folding doors Anon he leaps along the oaken floors Of halls and corridors.
Delicious sounds! those little bright-eyed things That float about the air on azure wings, Had been less heartfelt by him than the clang Of clattering hoofs; into the court he sprang, Just as two noble steeds, and palfreys twain, Were slanting out their necks with loosen'd rein; While from beneath the threatening portcullis They brought their happy burthens. What a kiss, What gentle squeeze he gave each lady's hand ! How tremblingly their delicate ankles spann'd ! Into how sweet a trance his soul was gone, While whisperings of affection Made him delay to let their tender feet Come to the earth ; with an incline so sweet From their low palfreys o'er his neck they bent: And whether there were tears of languishment, Or that the evening dew had pearl'd their tresses, He feels a moisture on his cheek, and blesses, With lips that tremble, and with glistening eye, All the soft luxury That nestled in his arms. A dimpled hand, Fair as some wonder out of Fairyland, Hung from his shoulder like the drooping flowery Of whitest cassia, fresh from summer showers : And this he fondled with his happy cheek, As if for joy he would no further seek: When the kind voice of good Sir Clerimond Came to his ear, like something from beyond His present being: so be gently drew His warm arms, thrilling now with pulses new, From their sweet thrall, and forward gently
bending, Thank'd Heaven that his joy was never-ending ; While 'gainst his forehead he devoutly press'd A hand Heaven made to succour the distress'd ; A hand that from the world's bleak promontory Had lifted Calidore for deeds of glory.