Obrazy na stronie
PDF
ePub

And now, O Victory, blush! and Empire tremble

1000 When ye desert the free

If Greece must be A wreck, yet shall its fragments re-assemble, And build themselves again impregnably

In a diviner clime, To Amphionic music on some Cape sublime, Which frowns above the idle foam of Time.

SEMICHORUS I. Let the tyrants rule the desert they have made;

Let the free possess the paradise they claim; Be the fortune of our fierce oppressors weighed With our ruin, our resistance, and our

name!

IONI

SEMICHORUS II.
Our dead shall be the seed of their decay,

Our survivors be the shadow of their pride, Our adversity a dream to pass away

Their dishonour a remembrance to abide!

VOICE without.
Victory! Victory! The bought Briton sends
The keys of ocean to the Islamite.-
Now shall the blazon of the cross be veiled,
And British skill, directing Othman might,
Thunder-strike rebel victory. O keep holy 1020
This jubilee of unrevenged blood-
Kill! crush! despoil! Let not a Greek escape !

SEMICHORUS I.
Darkness has dawned in the East

On the noon of time:
The death-birds descend to their feast,

From the hungry clime.

Let Freedom and Peace flee far

To a sunnier strand,
And follow Love's folding star

To the Evening land !

1030

SEMICHORUS II.
The young moon has fed
Her exhausted horn,

With the sunset's fire:
The weak day is dead,

But the night is not born; And, like loveliness panting with wild desire

While it trembles with fear and delight,

Hesperus flies from awakening night, And pants in its beauty and speed with light Fast flashing, soft, and bright.

1040 Thou beacon of love! thou lamp of the free!

* Guide us far, far away, To climes where now veiled by the ardour of day

Thou art hidden
From waves on which weary noon,
Faints in her summer swoon,
Between Kingless continents sinless as

Eden,
Around mountains and islands inviolably
Prankt on the sapphire sea.

SEMICHORUS I.
Through the sunset of hope, 1050
Like the shapes of a dream,
What Paradise islands of glory gleam!

Beneath Heaven's cope,
Their shadows more clear float by-
The sound of their oceans, the light of their

sky,
The music and fragrance their solitudes

breathe

Burst, like morning on dream, or like Heaven

on death Through the walls of our prison; And Greece, which was dead, is arisen!

обо

CHORUS.
The world's great age begins anew,

The golden years return,
The earth doth like a snake renew

Her winter weeds outworn :
Heaven smiles, and faiths and empires gleam,
Like wrecks of a dissolving dream.

A brighter Hellas rears its mountains

From waves serener far ;
A new Peneus rolls his fountains

Against the morning-star.
Where fairer Tempes bloom, there sleep 1070
Young Cyclads on a sunnier deep.

A loftier Argo cleaves the main,

Fraught with a later prize; Another Orpheus sings again,

And loves, and weeps, and dies. A new Ulysses leaves once more. Calypso for his native shore.

1080

O, write no more the tale of Troy,

If earth Death's scroll must be ! Nor mix with Laian rage the joy

Which dawns upon the free: Although a subtler Sphinx renew Riddles of death Thebes never knew.

Another Athens shall arise,

And to remoter time

Bequeath, like sunset to the skies,

The splendour of its prime;
And leave, if naught so bright may live,
All earth can take or Heaven can give.

1090

Saturn and Love their long repose

Shall burst, more bright and good
Than all who fell, than One who rose,

Than many unsubdued :
Not gold, not blood, their altar dowers,
But votive tears and symbol flowers.

O cease! must hate and death return?

Cease! must men kill and die ?
Cease! drain not to its dregs the urn

Of bitter prophecy.
The world is weary of the past,
O might it die or rest at last!

[ocr errors]

NOTES.

(1) The quenchless ashes of Milan [line 60). Milan was the centre of the resistance of the Lombard league against the Austrian tyrant. Frederic Barbarossa burnt the city to the ground, but liberty lived in its ashes, and it rose like an exhalation from its ruin. See Sismondi's Histoire des Républiques Italiennes, a book which has done much towards awakening the Italians to an imitation of their great ancestors.

(2) The Chorus [line 197 et seq.). The popular notions of Christianity are represented in this chorus as true in their relation to the worship they superseded, and that which in all probability they will supersede, without considering their merits in a relation more universal. The first stanza contrasts the immortality of the living and thinking beings which inhabit the planets, and to use a common and inadequate phrase, clothe themselves in matter, with the transience of the noblest manifestations of the external world.

The concluding verses indicate a progressive state of niore or less exalted existence, according to the degree of perfection which every distinct intelligence may have attained. Let it not be supposed that I mean to dogmatize upon a subject, concerning which all men are equally ignorant, or that I think the Gordian knot of the origin of evil can be disentangled by that or any similar assertions. The received hypothesis of a Being resembling men in the moral attributes of his nature, having called us out of non-existence, and after inflicting on us the misery

« PoprzedniaDalej »