« PreviousContinue »
But soon, too soon, the lover turns his eyes :
Again she falls, again she dies, she dies !
How wilt thou now the fatal sisters move?
No crime was thine, if 'tis no crime to love.
Now under hanging mountains,
Beside the fall of fountains,
Or where Hebrus wanders,
Rolling in Mæanders,
He makes his moan;
And calls her ghost,
For ever, ever, ever lost!
Now with Furies surrounded,
He trembles, he glows,
Amidst Rhodope's snows:
See, wild as the winds, o'er the desert he flies ;
Hark! Hæmus resounds with the Bacchanals
Music the fiercest grief can charm,
And fate's severest rage disarm:
Music can soften pain to ease,
And make despair and madness please:
Our joys below it can improve,
And antedate the bliss above.
This the divine Cecilia found,
And to her Maker's praise confin'd the sound.
When the full organ joins the tuneful quire,
Th’ immortal powers incline their ear;
Borne on the swelling notes our souls aspire,
While solemn airs improve the sacred fire,
And angels lean from heaven to hear.
Of Orpheus now no more let poets tell;
To bright Cecilia greater power is given:
His numbers rais'd a shade from hell,
Hers lift the soul to heaven.
(From " Prometheus Unbound ")
My soul is an enchanted boat,
Which, like a sleeping swan, doth float Upon the silver waves of thy sweet singing;
And thine doth like an angel sit
Beside a helm conducting it,
While all the winds with melody are ringing.
It seems to float ever, forever,
Upon that many-winding river,
Between mountains, woods, abysses,
A paradise of wildernesses!
Till, like one in slumber bound,
Borne to the ocean, I float down, around,
Into a sea profound, of ever-spreading sound.
Meanwhile, thy spirit lifts its pinions
In Music's most serene dominions; Catching the winds that fan that happy heaven.
And we sail on, away, afar,
Without a course, without a star,
But by the instinct of sweet music driven;
Till through Elysian garden islets
By thee, most beautiful of pilots,
Where never mortal pinnace glided,
The boat of my desire is guided :
Realms where the air we breathe is love,
Which in the winds and on the waves doth
move, Harmonizing this earth with what we feel
We have passed Age's icy caves,
And Manhood's dark and tossing waves, And Youth's smooth ocean, smiling to betray:
Beyond the glassy gulfs we flee
Of shadow-peopled Infancy,
Through Death and Birth, to a diviner day:
A paradise of vaulted bowers,
Lit by downward-gazing flowers,
And watery paths that wind between
Wildernesses calm and green,
Peopled by shapes too bright to see,
And rest, having beheld; somewhat like thee;
Which walk upon the sea, and chant melodi-
Percy Bysshe Shelley.
Orpheus with his lute made trees,
And the mountain-tops that freeze,
Bow themselves when he did sing:
To his music, plants and flowers,
Ever sprung; as sun, and showers
There had made a lasting spring.