« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
Hail! awful madness hail !
Thy realm extends, thy power prevail,
Far as the voyager spreads his venturous sail;
Nor best, nor wisest, are exempt from thee;
Folly—folly's only free.
Hark; to the astonished ear
"The gale conveys a strange tumultuous sound.
They now approach, they now appear,
Frenzy leads her chorus near,
And demons dance around.
Pride-ambition idly vain,
Revenge and malice swell her train,--
Devotion warp'd-affection crossd-
Hope in disappointment lost,
And injured merit, with a downcast eye,
(Hurt by neglect,) slow stalking heedless by,
Loud the shouts of madness rise,
Various voices, various cries,-
Mirth unmeaning-causeless groans-
Bursts of laughter, heartfelt moans-
All seem to pierce the skies.
Rough as the wintry wave that roars
On Thule's desert shores,
Wild raving to the unfeeling air,
The fetter'd maniac foams along,
(Rage the burden of his song,) In rage he grinds his teeth, and rends his streaming hair
No pleasing memory left-forgotten quite
All former scenes of dear delight,
Connubial love-parental joy-
No sympathies like these his soul employ,
But all is dark within, all furious black despair.
Not so the love-born maid,
By too much gentleness betrayed;
Her gentle breast no angry passion fires,
But slighted vows possess, and fainting, soft desires.
She still retains her wonted fame;
All—but in reason, still the same.
Dim haggard looks, and clouded o'er with care,
Point out to pity's tears, the poor distracted fair.
Dead to the world-her fondest wishes cross'd,
She mourns herself thus early lost.
Now sadly gay, of sorrows past she sings,
Now, pensive, ruminates unutterable things.
She starts—she flies—who dares so rude,
On her sequested steps intrude?
'Tis he, the Momus of the flighty train,
Merry mischief fills his brain.
Blanket-robed, and antic crowned,
The mimic monarch skips around;
Big with conceit of dignity he smiles,
And plots his frolics quaint, and unsuspected wiles.
Laughter was there—but mark that groan,
Drawn from the inmost soul ! “Give the knife, demons, or the poison'd bowl, To finish miseries equal to your own !"
Who's this wretch, with horror wild?
'Tis Devotion's ruined child-
Sunk in the emphasis of grief
Nor can he feel, nor dares he ask relief.
Thou, fair Religion ! wast design’d,
Duteous daughter of the skies,
To warm and cheer the human mind,
To make men happy, good, and wise
To point, where sits in love arrayed,
Attentive to each suppliant call,
The God of universal aid,
The God and Father of us all,
First shown by thee, thus glow'd the gracious scene,
Till superstition, fiend of woe,
Bade doubts to rise, and tears to flow,
And spread deep shades our view and heaven between.
Drawn by her pencil, the Creator stands,
(His beams of mercy thrown aside,
With thunder arming his uplifted hands,
And hurling vengeance wide.
Hope, at the frown aghast, yet lingering, flies,
And, dashed on terror's rocks, faith's best dependence lies.
But ah! too thick they crowd—too close they throng-
Objects of pity and affright! Spare further the descriptive song
Nature shudders at the sightProtract not, curious ears, the mournful tale, But o'er the hapless group low drop compassion's veil.
FUNERAL OF ARVALAN.—Southey.
Midnight, and yet no eye
Through all the Imperial city closed in sleep!
Behold her streets a blaze
With light that seems to kindle the red sky,
Her myriads swarming through the crowded ways !
Master and slave, old age and infancy,
All, all abroad to gaze;
House-top and balcony
Clustered with women, who throw back their veils
With unimpeded and insatiate sight
To view the funeral
which passes by,
As if the mournful rite
Were but to them a scene of joyance and delight.
Vainly ye blessed twinklers of the night,
Your feeble beams ye shed,
Quench'd in the unnatural light which might out-stare
Even the broad glare of day;
And thou from thy celestial way
Pourest, O moon, an ineffectual ray!
For lo! ten thousand torches flame and flare
Upon the midnight air,
Blotting the lights of heaven
With one portentous glare.
Behold the fragrant smoke in many a fold,
Ascending, floats along the fiery sky,
And hangeth visible on high,
A dark and waving canopy.
Hark! 'tis the funeral trumpet's breath!
'Tis the dirge of death!
At once ten thousand drums begin,
With one long thunder-peal the ear assailing ;
Ten thousand voices then join in,
And with one deep and general din
Pour their wild wailing.
The song of praise is drown'd,
Amid that deafening sound;
You hear no more the trumpet's tone,
You hear no more the mourner's moan.
Though the trumpet's breath and the dirge of death
Mingle and swell the funeral yell,
But rising over all in one acclaim
Is heard the echoed and re-echoed name
From all that countless rout:
Ten times ten thousand voices in one shout
Call Arvalan! the overpowering sound
From house to house repeated rings about,
From tower to tower rolls round.
The death-procession moves along,
Their bald heads shining to the torches ray;
The Bramins lead the way,
Chaunting the funeral song,
And now at once they shout,
Arvalan! Arvalan !
With quick rebound of sound,
All in accordant cry,
Arvalan! Arvalan !
The universal multitude reply.
In vain ye thunder in his ear the name !
Would you awake the dead !
Borne upright in his palankeen,
There Arvalan is seen!
A glow is on his face-a lively red:
It is the crimson canopy
Which 'o'er his cheek the reddening shade hath shed,
He moves, he nods his head, -
But the motion comes from the bearer's tread,
As the body, borne aloft in state,
Sways with the impulse of its own dead weight,
Close following his dead son, Kehama came,
Nor joining in the ritual song
Nor calling the dead name;
With head deprest, and funeral vest,
And arms enfolded on his breast,
Silent and lost in thought he moves along.
King of the world, his slaves unenvying now,
Behold their wretched Lord; rejoiced they see
The mighty Rajah's misery;
For Nature in his pride hath dealt the blow,
And taught the Master of Mankind to know Even he himself is man, and not exempt from woe.
O sight of grief! the wives of Arvalan,
Young Azla, young Nealling are seen!
Their widow robes of white,
With gold and jewels bright,
Each like an eastern queen,
Woe! woe! around their palankeen
As on a bridal day,
With symphony, and dance, and song,
Their kindred and their friends come on.