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XVII.

He talked of daggers and of darts,

Of passions and of pains, Of weeping eyes and wounded hearts,

Of kisses and of chains;
He said, though love was kin to grief,

She was not born to grieve;
He said, though many rued belief,

She safely might believe;
But still the lady shook her head,

And swore, by yea and nay,
My Whole was all that he had said,

And all that he could say.

He said, my First--whose silent car

Was slowly wandering by,
Veiled in a vapor faint and far

Through the unfathomed sky-
Was like the smile whose rosy light

Across her young lips passed,
Yet oh! it was not half so bright,

It changed not half so fast;

But still the lady shook her head,

And swore, by yea and nay, My Whole was all that he had said,

And all that he could say.

And then he set a cypress wreath

Upon his raven hair, And drew his rapier from its sheath,

Which made the lady stare; And said, his life-blood's purple flow

My second there should dim, . If she he served and worshipped so

Would only weep for him; But still the lady shook her head,

And swore by yea and nay, My Whole was all that he had said,

And all that he could say.

XVIII.

UNCOUTH was I of face and form,

But strong to blast and blight,
By pestilence and thunderstorm,

By famine and by fight;
I pierced the rivets of the mail,

I maimed the war-steed's hoof,
I bade the yellow harvest fail,
And sent the blast to rend the sail

And the bolt to rend the roof.

Within my Second's dark recess

In silent pomp I dwelt, Before the mouth in lowliness

My rude adorers knelt; 'Twas a fearful place; a pile of stones

Stood for its stately door; Its music was of sighs and groans, And the torch light fell on human bones

Unburied on the floor !

The chieftain, ere his band he led,

Came thither with his prayer;

The boatman, ere his sail he spread,

Watched for an omen there; And ever the shriek rang loud within,

And ever the red blood ran, And amid the sin and smoke and din I sate with a changeless, endless grin,

Forging my First for Man!

My priests are rotting in their grave,

My shrine is silent now; There is no victim in my cave,

No crown upon my brow; Nothing is left but dust and clay

Of all that was divine; My name and my memory pass away, But dawn and dusk of one fair day

Are called by mortals mine.

XIX.

My First to-night in young Haidee

Is so surpassing fair,
That though my Second precious be

It shows all faded there;
And let my Whole be never twined

To shame those beaming charms,
A richer one she cannot find

Than fond Affection's arms.

(1826.)

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