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From her deep eyes far wandering, on the

wing Of visions that were mine, beyond its utmost


xxx. For, before Cythna loved it, bad my song Peopled with thoughts the boundless uni

verse, A mighty congregation, which were strong Where'er they trod the darkness to disperse The cloud of that unutterable curse Which clings upon mankind :—all things

became Slaves to my holy and heroic verse,

Earth, sea and sky, the planets, life and fame And fate, or whate'er else binds the world's

wondrous frame.

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And this beloved child thus felt the sway
Of my conceptions, gathering like a cloud
The very wind on which it rolls away :
Hers too were all my thoughts, ere yet,

endowed With music and with light, their fountains

flowed In poesy; and her still and earnest face, Pallid with feelings which intensely glowed Within, was turned on mine with speechless

grace, Watching the hopes which there her heart had

learned to trace.

In me, communion with this purest being
Kindled intenser zeal, and made me wise

In knowledge, which in hers mine own mind

seeing, Left in the human world few mysteries : How without fear of evil or disguise Was Cythna !—what a spirit strong and mild, Which death, or pain, or peril could despise,

Yet melt in tenderness! what genius wild Yet mighty was enclosed within one simple

child !

XXXIII. New lore was this-old age with its grey

hair, And wrinkled legends of unworthy things, And icy sneers, is naught: it cannot dare To burst the chains which life for ever flings On the entangled soul's aspiring wings, So is it cold and cruel, and is made The careless slave of that dark power which

brings Evil, like blight on man, who still betrayed, Laughs o'er the grave in which his living hopes

are laid.

XXXIV. Nor are the strong and the severe to keep The empire of the world: thus Cythna

taught Even in the visions of her eloquent sleep, Unconscious of the power through which she

wrought The woof of such intelligible thought, As from the tranquil strength which cradled

lay In her smile-peopled rest, my spirit sought Why the deceiver and the slave has sway O’er heralds so divine of truth's arising day.

XXXV. Within that fairest form, the female mind, Untainted by the poison clouds which rest On the dark world, a sacred home did find : But else, from the wide earth's maternal

breast, Victorious Evil, which had dispossessed All native power, had those fair children

torn, And made them slaves to soothe his vile

unrest, And minister to lust its joys forlorn, Till they had learned to breathe the atmosphere

of scorn.

XXXVI. This misery was but coldly felt, till she Became my only friend, who had indued My purpose with a wider sympathy; Thus, Cythna mourned with me the servitude In which the half of humankind were mewed, Victims of lust and hate, the slaves of slaves, She mourned that grace and power were

thrown as food To the hyena lust, who, among graves, Over his loathèd meal, laughing in agony,


XXXVII. And I, still gazing on that glorious child, Even as these thoughts flushed o'er her :

“Cythna sweet, Well with the world art thou unreconciled; Never will peace and human nature meet Till free and equal man and woman greet Domestic peace; and, ere this power can


In human hearts its calm and holy seat,

This slavery must be broken ”—as I spake, From Cythna's eyes a light of exultation brake.

XXXVIII. She replied earnestly:-“It shall be mine, This task, mine, Laon !—thou hast much to

gain; Nor wilt thou at poor Cythna's pride repine, If she should lead a happy female train To meet thee over the rejoicing plain, When myriads at thy call shall throng

around The Golden City.”—Then the child did strain My arm upon her tremulous heart, and

wound Her own about my neck, till some reply she found.

XXXIX. I smiled, and spake not—“Wherefore dost

thou smile At what I say ? Laon, I am not weak, And though my cheek might become pale

the while, With thee, if thou desirest, will I seek Through their array of banded slaves to

wreak Ruin upon the tyrants. I had thought It was more hard to turn my unpractised

cheek To scorn and shame, and this beloved spot And thee, O dearest friend, to leave and

murmur not.

XL. “ Whence came I what I am ? thou, Laon,


How a young child should thus undaunted

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Methinks, it is a power which thou bestowest, Through which I seek, by most resembling

thee, So to become most good, and great and free, Yet far beyond this Ocean's utmost roar In towers and huts are many like to me, Who, could they see thine eyes, or feel such

lore As I have learnt from them, like me would fear no more.

XLI. “ Think'st thou that I shall speak unskil.

fully, And none will heed me? I remember now, How once, a slave in tortures doomed to die, Was saved, because in accents sweet and low He sung a song his Judge loved long ago, As he was led to death.-All shall relent Who hear me—tears, as mine have flowed,

shall flow, Hearts beat as mine now beats, with such

intent As renovates the world ; a will omnipotent!

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“Yes, I will tread Pride's golden palaces, Through Penury's roofless huts and squalid

cells Will I descend, where'er in abjectness Woman with some vile slave her tyrant

dwells, There with the music of thine own sweet

spells Will disenchant the captives, and will pour For the despairing, from the crystal wells

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