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The star which rises o'er her steep, nor climb ? Harold, once more within the vortex, rollid
On with the giddy circle, chasing Time, (prime. Yet with a nobler aim than in his youth's fond
. XI. But soon he knew himself the most unfit . Of men to herd with Man ; with whom he held Little in common; untaught to submit His thoughts to others, though his soul was
quell'd In youth by his own thoughts; still uncompellid, He would not yield dominion of his mind To spirits against whom his own rebellid; Proud though in desolation; which could find A life within itself, to breathe without mankind.
Where rose the mountains, there to bim were
friends; Where roll'd the ocean, thereon was his bome; Where a blue sky, and glowing clime, extends, He had the passion and the power to roam ; The desert, forest, cavern, breaker's foam, Where unto him companionship; they spake
A mutual language, clearer than the tome - Of his land's tongue, which he would oft forsake For Nature's pages glass'd by sunbeams on the lake.
Its spark immortal, envying it the light
To which it mounts, as if to break the link That keeps us from yon heaven which woos us to its brink.
XV. But in Man's dwellings he became a thing Restless and worn, and stern and wearisome, Droop'd as a wild-born falcon with clipt wing, To whom the boundless air alone were home: Then came his fit again, which to o'ercome, As eagerly the barr'd-up bird will beat His breast and beak against his wiry dome
Till the blood tinge his plumage, so the heat Of his impeded soul would through his bosom eat.
*XVI. Self-exiled Harold wanders forth again, With nought of hope left, but with less of gloom; The very knowledge that he lived in vain, That all was over on this side the tomb, Had made Despair a smilingness assume, Which though 'twere wild, -as on the plunder'd
wreck When mariners would madly meet their doom With draughts intemperate on the sinking
deck, Did yet inspire a cheer, which he forbore to check.
XVII. Stop! for thy tread is on an Empire's dust! An Earthquake's spoil is sepulchred below! Is the spot mark'd with no colossal bust? Nor column trophied for triumphal show? None! but the moral's truth tells simpler so, As the ground was before, thus let it be;How that red rain hath made the harvest grow!
And is this all the world has gain'd by thee, Thou first and last of fields ! king-making victory! XVIII. And Harold stands upon this place of skulls, The grave of France, the deadly Waterloo ! , How in an hour that power which gave annuls Its gifts, transferring fame as fleeting too! In “pride of place” (1) here last the eagle flew, Then tore with bloody talon the rent plain, Pierced by the shaft of banded nations through;
Ambition's life and labours all were vain; . He wears the shatter'd links of the world's broken
XIX. Fit retribution! Gaul may champ the bit And foam in fetters:—but is Earth more free?. Did nations combat to make One submit; Or league to teach all kings true sovereignty? What! shall reviving Thraldom again be The patch'd-up idol of enlighten'd days? Shall we, who struck the Lion down, shall we
Pay the Wolf homage ? proffering lowly gaze And servile knees to thrones ? No; prove before ye
xx. If not, o’er one fallen despot boast no more! Ih vain fair cheeks were furrow'd with hot tears For Europe's flowers long rooted up before The trampler of her vineyards ; in vain years Of death, depopulation, bondage, fears, Have all been borne, and broken by the accord Of roused-up millions : all that most endears.
Glory, is when the myrtle wreathes a sword Such as Harmodius (2) drew on Athens' tyrant
XXI. There was a sound of revelry by night, And Belgium's capital had gather'd then Her beauty and her Chivalry, and bright The lamps shone o'er fair women and brave inen; A thousand hearts beat happily; and when Music arose with its voluptuous swell, Soft eyes look'd love to eyes which spake again
And all went merry as a marriage-bell: (3) But hush! hark! a deep sound strikes like a rising
XXII. Did ye not hear it?-No; 'twas but the wind, Or the car rattling o'er the stony street; On with the dance ! let joy be unconfined ; No sleep till morn, when Youth and Pleasure meet To chase the glowing Hours with flying feetBut hark !--that heavy sound breaks in once
more, As if the clouds its echo would repeat; '
And nearer, clearer, deadlier than before! Arm! Arm! it is—it is—the cannon's opening roar!
XXIII. Within a window'd niche of that high hall Sate Brunswick's fated chieftain; he did hear That sound the first amidst the festival, And caught its tone with Death's prophetic ear; And when they smiled because he deem'd it near, His heart more truly knew that peal too well Which stretched his father on a bloody bier, And roused the vengeance blood alone could
quell: . He rush'd into the field, and foremost fighting, fell. XXIV. Ah! then and there was hurrying to and fro, And gathering tears, and tremblings of distress, And cheeks all pale, which but an hour ago Blush'd at the praise of their own loveliness; And there were sudden partings, such as press The life from out young hearts, and choking
Which ne'er might be repeated; who could guess
If evermore should meet those mutual eyes, Since upon nights so sweet such awful morn could.
xxv. And there was mounting in hot haste: the steed, The mustering squadron, and the clattering car, Went pouring forward with impetuous speed, And swiftly forming in the ranks of war; And the deep thunder peal on peal afar: And near, the beat of the alarming drum Roused up the soldier ere the morning star;
While throng'd the citizens with terror dumb, Or whispering, with white lips—" The foe! they
come ! they come !"
foes :How in the noon of night that pibroch thrills, Savage and shrill! But with the breath which
fills Their mountain-pipe, so fill the mountaineers With the fierce native daring which instils