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Seat of my youth!' thy distant spire
Recalls each scene of joy;
In mind again a boy.
Each flower a double fragrance flings;
"Friendship is Love without his wings!"
My Lycus I» wherefore dost thou weep?
Thy falling tears restrain;
From this my hope of rapture springs;
"Friendship is Love without his wings '."
In one, and one alone deceived,
Did I my error mourn?
I left the wretch to scorn.
Twined with my heart's according strings;
Te few! my soul, my life is yours,
My memory and my hope;
Unfetter'd in its scope;
Let Adulation wait on kings;
"Friendship is Love without his wings!"
Fictions and dreams inspire the bard
Wno rolls the epic song;
To me no bays belong;
Whose heart and not whose fancy sings;
"Friendship is Love without his wings!"
Dec. 39, 1806. [Firit published, 1832.]
i Harrow. 1 [The Earl of Clare. — See p. 406.]
s [The young poet had recently received from Lord Clare, epistle containing this passage: —" I think by your last letr that vou are very much piqued with most of your friends; if I am not much mistaken, a little so with inc. In one part you say, 'there is little or no doubt a few years, or months, will'render us as politely indifrerent to each other, as r -.-p never passed a portion of our time together:' indeed, i wrong me : and I have no doubt — at least I hope —| yourself.1']
* fit is difficult to conjecture for what reason, —but these lias were not included in the publication of 1807 ; though will hesitate to place them higher than any thing given In t volume. "Written when the author was not nineteen T*ars of age, this remarkable poem shows," says Moore, " how
Thou, who In wisdom placed me here.
Who, when thou wilt, canst take me hence,
Ah! whilst I tread this earthly sphere,
To Thee, my God, to Thee I call!
Whatever weal or woe betide, By thy command I rise or fall,
In thy protection I confide.
If, when this dust to dust's restored.
My soul shall float on airy wing. How shall thy glorious name adored
Inspire her feeble voice to sing!
But, if this fleeting spirit share
With clay the grave's eternal bed, While life yet throbs, I raise my prayer,
Though doom'd no more to quit the dead.
To Thee I breathe my humble strain,
Grateful for all thy mercies past, And hope, my God, to thee again This erring life may fly at last
December 29, 1806. [First published, 1830.]
TO EDWARD NOEL LONG, ESQ. >
Dear Long, in this sequester'd scene,
While all around in slumber lie,
Come rolling fresh on Fancy's eye;
And interrupt the golden dream,
And still indulge my wonted theme.
In Granta's vale, the pedant's lore;
Our raptured visions as before,
Tes, I will hope that Time's broad wing
I [This young gentleman, who was with Lord Byron both at Harrow and Cambridge, afterwards entered the Guards, I and served with distinction in the expedition to Copenhagen, j He was drowned early in 1809, when on his way to join the , army in the Peninsula; the transport in which he sailed being | run foul of in the night by another of the convoy. '* Loux's
Where smiling Youth delights to dwell.
To soothe its wonted heedless flow;
But ne'er forget another's woe.
Though now on airy visions borne,
To you my soul is still the same.
And all my former joys are tame.
Your frowns are gone, my sorrows o'er:
I '11 think upon your shade no more.
And caves their sullen roar enclose.
When lull'd by lephyr to repose.
Full often has my infant Muse
Attuned to love her languid lyre;
The strains in stolen sighs expire.
E is a wife, and C a mother,
And Carolina sighs alone.
And Mary's given to another;
Can now no more my love recall:
For Cora's eye will shine on all
The aid which once improved their light,
Now quenches all their sparks in nigh:;
As many a boy and girl remembers,
Extinguish'd with the dying embers.
But now, dear Long, 't is midnight's noon.
father," says Lord Byron," wrote to me to write his soo'i
For why should I the path go o'er,
Has thrice perform'd her stated round,
And chased away the gloom profound, I trust that we, my gentle friend, Shall see her rolling orbit wend Above the dear-loved peaceful seat Which once contaln'd our youth's retreat;1 And then with those our childhood knew, We H mingle In the festive crew; While many a tale of former day Shall wing the laughing hours away , And all the flow of souls shall pour The sacred intellectual shower, Nor cease till Luna's waning horn Scarce glimmers through the mist of morn.
Oh! had my fate been join'd with thine,
These follies had not then been mine,
To thee these early faults I owe,
They know my sins, but do not know
For once ray soul, like thine, was pure,
But now thy vows no more endure,
Perhaps his peace I could destroy,
Tct let my rival smile in joy,
Ah! since thy angel form is gone.
But what it sought in thee alone,
Then fare thee well, deceitful maid!
'T were vain and fruitless to regret thee; Nor Hope nor Memory yield their aid,
But Pride may teach me to forget thee.
Yet all this giddy waste of years,
These varied loves, these matron's fears,
1 [The two friend* were both passionately attached to Harrow; and sometimes made excursions thither together, to revive their school-boy recollections.]
1 [Mrs. Musters. See aisle, p. 384.]
3 [" Our union would hare healed feuds in which blood had b^n shed by our fathers —it would have joined lands broad and rich—it would have joined at least one heart, and two persons not ill matched in years (she is two.years my elder), a.*id —and—and — what has been the result? — Byron Diary. 1M.]
'says Lord Byron, in 1822. " were stolen
_„ from Mr. Chaworth's grounds to those of my mother was the place of our luterviews. But the
How dull! to hear the voice of those
Whom rank or chance, whom wealth or power, Have made, though neither friends nor foes,
Associates of the festive hour. Give me again a faithful few,
In years and feelings still the same. And I will fly the midnight crew,
Where bolst'rous joy Is but a name.
And woman, lovely woman! thou,
My hope, my comforter, my all! How cold must be my bosom now,
When e'en thy smiles begin to pall!
This busy scene of splendid woe,
Which virtue knows, or seems to know.
Fain would I fly the haunts of men —
I seek to shun, not hate mankind; My breast requires the sullen glen.
Whose gloom may suit a darken'd mind. Oh ! that to me the wings were given
Which bear the turtle to her nest! Then would I cleave the vault of heaven,
To flee away, and be at rest 1
WHEN I ROVED A YOUNG HIGHLANDER.
When I roved a young Highlander o'er the dark heath.
And cllmb'd thy steep summit, oh Morven of snow !« To gaze on the torrent that thunder'd beneath,
Or the mist of the tempest that gather'd below, 3 Untutor'd by science, a stranger to fear,
And rude as the rocks where my infancy grew, No feeling, save one, to my bosom was dear;
Need I say, my sweet Mary 4, 'twas centred in you?
whose notice ii attracted by a fragment of glass to which a sun-beam has given momentary splendour. He hastens to the spot with breathless impatience, and finds the object of his curiosity and expectation is equally vulgar and worthless. Such is the man of quick and exalted powers of imagination. His fancy over-estimates the object of his wishes, and pleasure, fame, distinction, are alternately pursued, attained, and despised when in his power. Like the enchanted fruit in the palace of a sorcerer, the objects of his admiration lose their attraction and value as soon as they are grasped by the adventurer's hand, and all that remains is regret for the time lost in the chase, and astonishment at the hallucination under which it was undertaken. The disproportion between hope and possession, which is felt by all men, is thus doubled to those whom nature has endowed with the power of gilding a distant prospect by the rays of Imagination. These reflections, though trite and obvious, are in a manner forced from us by the poetry of Lord Byron, — by the sentiments of weariness of life and enmity with the world which they so frequently express and by the singular analogy which such sentiments
hold with well-known incidents of his life—Six W. Scott.] 1 " And I said. Oh ! that I had wines like a dove; for then would 1 fly awny, and be at rest." — Ptalm lv. 6. This verse also constitutes a part of the most beautiful anthem in our language.
7 Morven, a lofty mountain In Aberdeenshire. "Gormal of snow," is an expression frequently to be found in Ossian.
3 This wilt not appear extraordinary to those who have been accustomed to the mountains. It is by no means uncommon, on attaining the top of Ben-e-vls, Ilen-y-bourd, &c. to perceive, between the summit and the valley, clouds pouring down rain, and occasionally accompanied by lightning, while the spectator literally looks down upon the storm, perfectly secure from its effects.
* [In Lord Byron's Diary for 1813, he says, — "I have been thinking lately a good deal of Mary Duff. How very odd that I should have been so utterly, devotedly fond of that girl, at
Yet it could not be love, for I knew not the name,—
What passion can dwell in the heart of a child? But still I perceive an emotion the same
As I felt, when a boy, on the crag-cov,er'd wild: One image alone on my bosom impress'd,
I loved my bleak regions, nor panted for new; And few were my wants, for my wishes were bless'd;
And pure were my thoughts, for my soul was wlta you.
I arose with the dawn; with my dog as my guide,
From mountain to mountain I bounded along; I breasted the billows of Dec's 5 rushing tide.
And beard at a distance the Highlander's song: At eve, on my hcath-cover'd couch of repose,
No dreams, save of Mary, were spread to my view; And warm to the skies my devotions arose.
For the first of my prayers was a blessing on you.
I left my bleak home, and my visions arc gone;
The mountains are vanish'd, my youth is no more; As the last of my race, I must wither alone.
And delight but in days I have witness'd before: Ah I splendour has raised but embitter'd my lot,
More dear were the scenes which my infancy know: Though my hopes may have fail'd, yet they are not forgot;
Though cold is my heart, still it lingers with you.
When I see some dark hill point its crest to the sky,
I think of the rocks that o'ershadow Colblcen; * When I see the soft blue of a love-speaking eye,
I think of those eyes that endear'd the rude scent; When, haply, some light-waving locks I behold,
That faintly resemble my Mary's in hue, I think on the long flowing ringlets of gold.
The locks that were sacred to beauty, and you.
Yet the day may arrive when the mountains once roorr Shall rise to my sight in their mantles of snow:"
an age when I could neither feci passion, nor know the meaning of the word. And the effect 1 My mother used always to rally me about this childish amour ; and, at last, man? yes--, after, when I was sixteen, she told me one day; * Oh, Byron. 1 have had a letter from Edinburgh, from Miss Abercrontb?. and your old sweetheart, Mary Duff, Is married to a MrCockburn.' [Robert Cockburn, Esq. of Edinburgh.] aad what was my answer? I really cannot explain or account for my feelings at that moment; but they nearly threw me into convulsions —to the horror of my mother, and the astonishment of every body. And it is a phenomenon in my exisuaxr (for I was not eight years old), which has puxiled. and wiQ puixlc me to the latest hour of it." — Again, In January, Ml*, a few days alter his marriage, in a letter to his friend Cantab Hay, the poet thus speaks of bis childish attachment: —M rrsy tell me more — or as much as you like, of your cousin Mary. I believe I told you our story some years ago. I was twentyseven a few days ago, and 1 have never seen her since we were children, and young children too; but I never forget her. nqr ever can. You will oblige me with presenting ber wild my best respects, and all good wishes. It may seem ndioilous — but it Is at any rate, I hope, not offensive to ber nor hers — in me to pretend to recollect anything about ber. sf. so early a period of both our lives, almost, if not quite, in osjr nurseries; — but it was a pleasant dream, which she must pardon me for remembering. Is she pretty •till? I have lbs most perfect Idea of her person, as a child; but Time, I sappose, has played the devil with us both."]
3 M Breasting the lofty surge." — SRAKsraanE, The Dee » a beautiful river, which rises near Mar Lodge, and talis lata the sea at New Aberdeen.
• Colbleen Is a mountain near the verge of the Highland*, not far from the ruins of Dee Castle.
In the spring of 1807, on recovering from a severe nines*. 1 Byron had projected a visit to Scotland. The pUa »»' not put Into execution ; but he thus adverts to ft, m a letter in August, and addressed to his fair correspondentlV
But while these soar above me, unchanged as before, WU1 Mary be there to receive me ?—ah, no 1
Aditu, then, ye hills, where my childhood was bred! Thou sweet flowing Dee, to thy waters adieu!
So home in the forest shall shelter my head, — Ah! Mary, what home could be mine but with you?
TO GEORGE, EARL DELAWARR.'
Oh! yes, I will own we were dear to each other; The friendships of childhood, though fleeting, are true;
The love which you felt was the love of a brother, Nor less the affection I cherish'd for you.
But Friendship can vary her gentle dominion;
The attachment of years in a moment expires: Like Love, too, she moves on a swift-waving pinion,
But glows not, like Love, with unquenchable fires.
Full oft have we vrander'd through Ida together, And blest were the scenes of our youth, I allow:
In the spring of our life, how serene is the weather 1
So more with affection shall memory blending,
When pride steels the bosom, the heart is unbending,
However, dear George, for I still must esteem you
The few whom I love I can never upbraid
The chance which has lost may in future redeem you,
Repentance will cancel the vow you have made.
I *fll not complain, and though chill'd is affection, With me no corroding resentment shall live:
My bosom is calm'd by the simple reflection, That both may be wrong, and that both should forgive.
Ton knew that my soul, that my heart, my existence,
Tou knew me unalter'd by years or by distance,
Too knew, — but away with the vain retrospection!
The bond of affection no longer endures; Too late you may droop o*er the fond recollection,
And sigh for the friend who was formerly yours.
for the present, we part, — I will hope not for ever;
For time and regret will restore you at last: To forget our dissension we both should endeavour,
I ask no atonement, but days like the past.
Southwell —" On Sunday I set off for the Highlands. A '"■fad of mine accompanies me in my carriage to Edinburgh. Taera we shall leave it. and proceed in a tandem through the testers parts to Inverary, where we shall purchase shelties, to 'abW us to vlew placet Inaccessible to vehicular conveyances. rM the coast we shall hire a vessel, and visit the most remarkable of the Hebrides, and. If we hare time and favourable to sail as far as Iceland, only three hundred northern extremity of Caledonia, to peep at to collect all the Erse traditions, poems, &c.
TO THE EARL OF CLARE.
"Tu semper amoris Sis memor, et cari comitis ne abscedat imago." Val. Flac.
Friend of my youth! when young we roved.
With friendship's purest glow,
On mortals here below.
The recollection seems alone
When distant far from you:
And sigh again, adieu I
My pensive memory lingers o'er
Those scenes regretted ever;
And we may meet—ah 1 never!
As when one parent spring supplies
Two streams which from one fountain rise,
Together join'd in vain;
Till mingled in the main 1
Our vital streams of weal or woe,
Nor mingle as before:
And both shall quit the shore.
Our souls, my friend I which once supplied
Now flow in different channels:
And shine in fashion's annals;
"r is mine to waste on love my time,
Without the aid of reason;
Nor left a thought to seise on.
Poor Little! sweet, melodious bard 1
That he, who sang before all,—
As void of wit and moral. 3
&c, and translate, or expand the subject to fill a volume, which may appear next spring, under tin denomination of 'The Highland Harp* or some title equally picturesque. What would you say to some stanxat on Mount Hecla? They would be written at least withySre."] < [See una?, p. 408.]
s These stanzas were written soon after the appearance of a severe critique, in a northern review, on a new publication of the British Anacreou^[See Edinburgh Review, July, 1807, E e