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Her every look, her every smile,
Shot right and left a score of arrows; I thought 'twas Venus from her isle,
And wondered where she'd left her sparrows. 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? She was the daughter of a Dean,
Rich, fat, and rather apoplectic ; She had one brother, just thirteen.
Whose colour 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. But titles, and the three per cents,
And mortgages, and great relations, And India bonds, and tithes, and rents,
Oh what are they to love's sensations?
Black eyes, fair forehead, clustering locks
Such wealth, such honours, Cupid chooses ; He cares as little for the stocks
As Baron Rothschild for the Muses. She sketched ; the vale, the wood, the beach,
Grew lovelier from her pencil's shading : She botanised ; I envied each
Young blossom in her boudoir fading :
She made the Catalani jealous :
For hours and hours to blow the bellows.
She kept an album, too, at home,
Well filled with all an album's glories ; Paintings of butterflies, and Rome,
Patterns for trimmings, Persian stories; 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 ;
How sweetly all her notes were folded :
A little glow, a little shiver,
And “Fly not yet”-upon the river ;
Some hope of dying broken-hearted,
The usual vows,-and then we parted.
We met again four summers after :
Our meeting was all mirth and laughter :
There had been many other lodgers ;
But only—Mrs. Something Rogers !
" There is, perhaps, no subject of more universal interest in the whole range of natural knowledge, than that of the increas. ing fluctuations which take place in the atmosphere in which we are immersed.”
- British Almanac.
At Cheltenham, where one drinks one's fill
Of folly and cold water,
With old Sir Geoffrey's daughter.
Her cheek with summer's rose might vie,
When summer's rose is newest; Her eyes were blue as autumn's sky,
When autumn's sky is bluest;
Of life's most precious flowers,
And half were of its showers.
I spoke of novels :- Vivian Grey
Was positively charming,
And Frankenstein alarming;
Thought well of Herbert Lacy,
And Lady Morgan's “racy."
Was vastly entertaining ;
Because its always raining !”
I talked of Music's gorgeous fane ;
I raved about Rossini,
And criticised Pacini;
The trumpets more pacific,
And voted Paul “terrisc !" What cared she for Medea's pride,
Or Desdemona's sorrow ? “Alas !” my beauteous listener sighed,
“We must have rain to-morrow !”
I told her tales of other lands;
Of ever-boiling fountains,
Vast forests, trackless mountains :
I lauded Persian roses,
And jests for Indian noses ;
Vienna's dread of treason :
Stood, at Madrid, last season ?
I broached whate'er had gone its rounds,
The week before, of scandal ; What made Sir Luke lay down his hounds,
And Jane take up her Handel; Why Julia walked upon the heath,
With the pale moon above her ; Where Flora lost her false front teeth,
And Anne her falser lover ;
Had crossed the sea together :
How could they,-in such weather ? "