« PreviousContinue »
On the cool margin of the purple main,
Intent her Junio's veffel to descry,
One eve (faint calms for many a day had rag'd)
The wing'd Dæmons of the tempeft rose--
Thunder, and rain, and light'ning's awful power.
She fled: could innocence, could beauty claim
Exemption from the grave ; the ethereal bolt,
That stretch'd her speechless, o'er her lovely head
Had innocently rollid.
Meanwhile, impatient Junio leap'd ashore,
Regardless of the dæmons of the storm.
Ah, youth! what woes too great for man to bear,
Are ready to burst on thee! Urge not so
Thy flying courser. Soon Theäna's porch
Receiv'd him ; at his fight, the ancient slaves
Affrighted shriek, and to the chamber point :-
Confounded, yet anknowing what they meant,
He enter'd hafty
Ah! what a fight for one who lov'd so well!
All pale and cold, in every feature death,
Theäna lay; and yet a glimpse of joy
Play'd on her face, while with faint faltering voice,
She thus address’d the youth, whom yet she knew :
“ Welcome, my Junio, to thy native shore !
“ Thy fight repays this summons of my fate :
• Live, and live happy; sometimes think of me:
“ By night, by day, you still engag'd my care;
“ And next to God, you now my thoughts employ:
“ Accept of this My little all I give ;
6. Would it were larger”-
-Nature could no more She look'd, embrac'd him, with a groan expir'd. But say, what Arains, what language can express
The thousand pangs, which tore the lover's breast?
Upon her breathless corse himself he threw,
And to her clay-cold lips, with trembling haste,
Ten thousand kisses gave. He strove to speak;
Nor words he found : he clafpt her in his arms;
He sigh’d, he swoon'd, look'd up, and died away.
One grave contains this hapless faithful pair !
And stiil the Cane-isles tell their matchless love!
DOUGLAS TO LORD RANDOLPH
My name is Norval : on the Grampian hills
My father feeds his flock; a frugal swain,
Whose constant cares were to increase his store,
And keep his only fon, myself, at home.
For I had heard of battles, and I long'd
To follow to the field fome warlike lord :
And Heaven foon granted what my fire denied.
This moon which rosé last night, round as my shield,
Had not yet fill'd her horns, when, by her light,
A band of fierce barbarians, from the hills,
Rush'd like a torrent down upon the vale,
Sweeping our flocks and herds. The Shepherds Aed
For safety and for succour. I alone,
With bended bow, and quiver full of arrows,
Hover'd about the enemy, and mark'd
The road he took, then hasted to my friends a
Whom, with a troop of fifty chosen men,
I met advancing. The pursuit I led,
Till we o’ertook the spoil-encumber'd foe.
We fought and conquer'd. Ere a sword was drawn,
An arrow from my bow had pierc'd their chief,
Who wore that day the arms which now I wear.
Returning home in triumph, I disdain'd
The shepherd's slothful life ; and having heard
That our good king had summon'd his bold peers
To lead their warriors to the Carron fide,
father's house, and took with me
A chosen fervant to conduct my steps:
Yon trembling coward who forsook his master.
Journeying with this istent, I pass’d these towers,
And, Heaven-directed, came this day to do,
The happy deed that gilds my humble name.
Most potent, grave, and reverend Signiors,
My very noble and approv'd good masters,
That I have ta’en away this old man's daughter,
It is most true ; true, I have married her ;
The very head and front of my offending
Hath this extent ; no more.
Rude am I in speech,
And little bless'd with the set phrase of peace ;
For since these arms of mine had seven years pith,
Till now fome nine moons wasted, they have us'd
Their dearest action in the cented field ;
And little of this great world can I speak,
More than pertains to feats of broils and battle :
And therefore litile shall I grace my cause,
In speaking for myself. Yet, by your patience,
I will a round unvarnish'd tale deliver,
Of my whole course of love ; what drugs, what charms,
What conjuration, and what mighty magic
(For such proceeding I am charg'd withal)
I won this daughter with.
Her father lov'd me, oft invited me;
Still question'd me the story of my life,
From year to year; the battles, fieges, fortunes
That I have pait.
I ran it through, ev'n from my boyish days,
To th' very moment that he bade me tell it.
Wherein I spoke of most disastrous chances,
Of moving accidents by food and field :
Of hair-breadth 'scapes in th' imminent deadly breach;
Of being taken by the infolent foe
And sold to slavery: of my redemption thence,
And with it all my travel's history :
Wherein of antres vast, and deserts wild,
Rough quarries, rocks, and hills, whose heads touch heav'n,
It was my bent to speak.All these to hear
Would Desdemona seriously incline.
But still the house-affairs would draw her hence,
Which ever as she could with hafte despatch,
She'd come again, and with a greedy ear
Devour up my discourse: which I observing,
Took once a pliant hour, and found good means
To draw from her a prayer of carneft heart,
That I would all my pilgrimage dilate ;
Whereof by parcels fhe had something heard,
But not distinctively. I did consent,
And often did beguile her of her tears,
When I did speak of some distressful stroke
That my youth suffer'd. My story being done,
She gave me for my pains a world of fighs:
She swore, in faith, 'twas strange, 'twas passing ftrange;
'Twas pitiful, 'twas wond'rous pitiful
She wilh'd she had not heard it yet she wilh'd
That Heav'a had made her such a man:-he thank'd me,
And bade me, if I had a friend that lov'd her,
I should but teach him how to tell my story,
And that would woo her. On this hint I spake;
She lov'd me for the dangers I had past;
And I lov'd her that she did pity them.
This only is the witchcraft I have us’d.