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An exiled mortal, sounds its pleasant name! Brushing, awaken'd: then the sounds again
So saw he panting light, and towards it went Upon my ear a noisy nothing rings
Through winding alleys; and lo, wonderment!
And more of beautiful and strange beside :
In midst of all, there lay a sleeping youth
Of fondest beauty; fonder, in fair sooth, Thus ending loudly, as he would o’erleap Than sighs could fathom, or contentment reach: His destiny, alert he stood : but when
And coverlids gold-tinted like the peach, Obstinate silence came heavily again,
Or ripe October's faded marigolds, Feeling about for its old couch of space
Fell sleek about him in a thousand folds And airy cradle, lowly bow'd his face,
Not hiding up an Apollonian curve Desponding, o'er the marble floor's cold thrill. Of neck and shoulder, nor the tenting swerve But 't was not long; for, sweeter than the rill Of knee from knee, nor ankles pointing light; To its old channel, or a swollen tide
But rather, giving them to the fill'd sight To margin sallows, were the leaves he spied, Officiously. Sideway his face reposed And flowers, and wreaths, and ready myrtle crowns On one white arm, and tenderly unclosed, Up peeping through the slab: refreshment drowns By tenderest pressure, a faint damask mouth Itself, and strives its own delights to hide To slumbery pout; just as the morning south Nor in one spot alone; the floral pride
Disparts a dew-lipp'd rose. Above his head, In a long whispering birth enchanted grew Four lily stalks did their white honors wed Before his footsteps; as when heaved anew To make a coronal; and round him grew Old ocean rolls a lengthen'd wave to the shore, All tendrils green, of every bloom and hue, Down whose green back the shortlived foam, all hoar, Together intertwined and tramellid fresh : Bursts gradual, with a wayward indolence.
The vine of glossy sprout; the ivy mesh,
Shading its Ethiop berries; and woodbine, Increasing still in heart, and pleasant sense, Of velvet leaves and bugle-blooms divine ; Upon his fairy journey on he hastes;
Convolvulus in streaked vases flush ; So anxious for the end, he scarcely wastes
The creeper, mellowing for an autumn blush ; One moment with his hands among the sweets : And virgin's bower, trailing airily; Onward he goes-he stops--his bosom beats With others of the sisterhood. Hard by, As plainly in his ear, as the faint charm
Stood serene Cupids watching silently.
At the youth's slumber; while another took
In through the woven roof, and fluttering-wise
Rain'd violets upon his sleeping eyes.
At these enchantments, and yet many more,
To that same feather'd lyrist, who straightway, Half-happy, by comparison of bliss,
Smiling, thus whisper'd: “Though from upper day Is miserable. "Twas even so with this
Thou art a wanderer, and thy presence here
When some ethereal and high-favoring donor
Presents immortal bowers 10 mortal sense ;
Was I in nowise startled. So recline
Alive with sparkles-never, I aver,
Rubbing their sleepy eyes with lazy wrists, Since Ariadne was a vintager,
And doubling overhead their little fists So cool a purple: taste these juicy pears,
In backward yawns. But all were soon alive : Sent me by sad Vertumnus, when his fears For as delicious wine doth, sparkling, dive Were high about Pomona : here is cream,
In nectar'd clouds and curls through water fair, Deepening to richness from a snowy gleam; So from the arbor roof down swellid an air Sweeter than that nurse Amalthea skimm'd Odorous and enlivening; making all For the boy Jupiter: and here, undimm'd
To laugh, and play, and sing, and loudly call By any touch, a bunch of blooming plums For their sweet queen: when lo! the wreathed green Ready to melt between an infant's gums :
Disparted, and far upward could be seen And here is manna pick'd from Syrian trees, Blue heaven, and a silver car, air-borne, In starlight, by the three Hesperides.
Whose silent wheels, fresh wet from clouds of mom,
On soft Adonis' shoulders, made him still
Soon were the white doves plain, with necks stretch'd By telling how the sea-born goddess pined
out, For a mortal youth, and how she strove to bind And silken traces lighten'd in descent; Him all in all unto her doting self.
And soon, returning from love's banishmert,
Her shadow fell upon his breast, and charm'd
Into his eyes. Ah, miserable strise,
But for her comforting! unhappy sight, When on the pleasant grass such love, lovelorn, But meeting her blue orbs! Who, who can write Lay sorrowing; when every tear was born of these first minutes ? The unchariest muse of diverse passion; when her lips and eyes To embracements warm as theirs makes coy excuse. Were closed in sullen moisture, and quick sighs Came ver'd and pettish through her nostrils small. O it has ruffled every spirit there, Ilush! no exclaim-yet, justly mightst thou call Saving Love's self, who stands superb to share Curses upon his head. I was half glad,
The general gladness : awfully he stands ; But my poor mistress went distract and mad, A sovereign quell is in his waving hands; When the boar tusk'd him : so away she flew No sight can bear the lightning of his bow; To Jove's high throne, and by her plainings drew His quiver is mysterious, none can know Immortal tear-drops down the thunderer's beard; What themselves think of it; from forth his eyes Whereon, it was decreed he should be rear'd
There darts strange light of varied hues and dyes : Each summer-time to life. Lo! this is he,
A scowl is sometimes on his brow, but who That same Adonis, safe in the privacy
Look full upon it feel anon the blue of this still region all his winter-sleep.
Of his fair eyes run liquid through their souls. Ay, sleep; for when our love-sick queen did weep Endymion feels it, and no more controls Over his waned corse, the tremulous shower The burning prayer within him; so, bent low, Heal'd up the wound, and, with a balmy power, He had begun a plaining of his woe. Medicined death to a lengthen'd drowsiness : But Venus, bending forward, said : “My child, The which she fills with visions, and doth dress Favor this gentle youth ; his days are wild In all this quiet luxury; and hath set
With love-he--but alas! too well I see t's young immortals, without any let,
Thou know'st the deepness of his misery. To watch his slumber through. 'Tis well-nigh pass'd, Ah, smile not so, my son : I tell thee true, Even to a moment's filling up, and fast
That when through heavy hours I used to rue She scuds with summer breezes, to pant through The endless sleep of this new-born Adon', The first long kiss, warm firstling, to renew This stranger aye I pitied. For upon Embower'd sports in Cytherea's isle.
A dreary morning once I fed away Look, how those winged listeners all this while Into the breezy clouds, to weep and pray Stand anxious: see! behold!"- This clamant word For this my love: for vexing Mars had teased Broke through the careful silence; for they heard Me even to tears: thence, when a little eased, A rustling noise of leaves, and out there flutter'd Down-looking, vacant, through a hazy wood, Pigeons and doves : Adonis something mutter'd, I saw this youth as he despairing stood : The while one hand, that erst upon his thigh Those same dark curls blown vagrant in the wind; Lay dormant, moved convulsed and gradually Those same full fringed lids a constant blind I'p to his forehead. Then there was a hum Over his sullen eyes : I saw him throw Of sudden voices, echoing, “ Come! come!
Himself on wither'd leaves, even as though Arise! awake! Clear summer has forth walk'd Death had come sudden; for no jot he moved, L'nto the clover-sward, and she has talk'd
Yet mutter'd wildly. I could hear he loved Full soothingly to every nested finch:
Some fair immortal, and that his embrace Rise, Cupids! or we'll give the bluebell pinch Had zoned her through the night. There is no trace To your dimpled arms. Once more sweet life begin!" of this in heaven: I have mark'd each cheek, At this, from every side they hurried in,
And find it is the vainest thing to seek;
And that of all things 't is kept secretest.
And purblind amid foggy midnight wolds. Endymion! one day thou wilt be blest :
But he revives at once: for who beholds So still obey the guiding hand that fends
New sudden things, nor casts his mental slough? Thee safely through these wonders for sweet ends. Forth from a rugged arch, in the dusk below, 'T' is a concealment needful in extreme;
Came mother Cybele! alone--aloneAnd if I guess'd not so, the sunny beam
In sombre chariot ; dark foldings thrown Thou shouldst mount up to with me. Now adieu! About her majesty, and front death-pale, Here must we leave thee.”-At these words up flew With turrets crown'd. Four maned lions hale The impatient doves, up rose the floating ear, The sluggish wheels; solemn their toothed mnawy Up went the hum celestial. High afar
Their surly eyes brow-hidden, heavy paws
Art thou wayworn, or canst not further trace
The diamond path? And does it indeed end For all those visions were o'ergone, and past,
Abrupt in middle air? Yet earthward bend And he in loneliness: he felt assured
Thy forehead, and 10 Jupiter cloud-borne Of happy times, when all he had endured
Call ardently! He was indeed wayworn; Would seem a feather to the mighty prize.
Abrupt, in middle air, his way was lost; So, with unusual gladness, on he hies
To cloud-borne Jove he bowed, and there crost Through caves, and palaces of mottled ore,
Towards him a large eagle, 'I wist whose wings, Gold dome, and crystal wall, and turquoise floor,
Without one impkous word, himself he flings, Black polish'd porticoes of awful shade,
Committed to the darkness and the gloom : And, at the last, a diamond balustrade,
Down, down, uncertain to what pleasant doom, Leading afar past wild magnificence,
Swift as a fathoming plummet down he fell Spiral through ruggedest loop-holes, and thence
Through unknown things; till exhaled asphodel, Stretching across a void, then guiding o'er
And rose, with spicy fannings interbreathed,
Came swelling forth where little caves were wreathed
So thick with leaves and mosses, that they seem'd Then heighten'd just above the silvery heads Of a thousand fountains, so that he could dash
Large honeycombs of green, and freshly teem'd
With airs delicious. In the greenest nook The waters with his spear; but at the splash,
The eagle landed him, and farewell took
Was Hesperean; 10 his capable ears
A dewy luxury was in his eyes ;
The little flowers felt his pleasant sighs Moving about as in a gentle wind,
And stirr'd them faintly. Verdant cave and cell Which, in a wink, to watery gauze refined,
He wander'd through, oft wondering at such swell Pour'd into shapes of curtain'd canopies,
Of sudden exaltation : but, “ Alas!"
Said he, “will all this gush of feeling pass
Without an echo? Then shall I be left
Yet still I feel immortal! O my love, Of those dusk places in times far aloof
My breath of life, where art thou ? High above, Cathedrals call'd. He bade a loth farewell Dancing before the morning gates of heaven? To these founts Protean, passing gulf, and dell, Or keeping watch among those starry seven, And torrent, and ten thousand jutting shapes, Old Atlas' children ? Art a maid of the waters, Half-seen through deepest gloom, and grisly gapes,
One of shell-winding Triton's bright-hair'd daughters! Blackening on every side, and overhead
Or art, impossible! a nymph of Dian's A vaulted dome like Heaven's, far bespread Weaving a coronal of tender scions With starlight gems : aye, all so huge and strange, For very idleness? Where'er thou art, The solitary felt a hurried chango
Methinks it now is at my will to start Working within him into something dreary, - Into thine arms; to scare Aurora's train, Vex'd like a morning eagle, lost, and weary, And snatch thee from the morning ; o'er the main
To scud like a wild bird, and take thee off Endymion! dearest! Ah, unhappy me!
His soul will 'scape us–O felicity!
To the very tune of love-how sweet, sweet, sweet! Its powerless self: I know this cannot be.
Revive, dear youth, or I shall faint and die ;
Affright this lethargy! I cannot quell
Its heavy pressure, and will press at least
Until we taste the life of love again.
Yet, can I not to starry eminence
And I must blush in heaven. O that I
Had done it already! that the dreadful smiles O'fountain'd hill! Old Homer's Helicon!
At my lost brightness, my impassion'd wiles, That thou wouldst spout a little streamlet o'er Had waned from Olympus' solemn height, These sorry pages; then the verse would soar And from all serious Gods; that our delight And sing above this gentle pair, like lark
Was quite forgotten, save of us alone! Over his nested young : but all is dark
And wherefore so ashamed? 'Tis but to atone Around thine aged top, and thy clear fount
For endless pleasure, hy some coward blushes : Exhales in mists to Heaven. Ay, the count Yet must I be a coward! Horror rushes Of mighty Poets is made up; the scroll
Too palpable before me-the sad look Is folded by the Muses; the bright roll
Of Jove-Minerva's start--no bosom shook
With awe of purity-no Cupid pinion
But what is this to love? Oh! I could fly
With thee into the ken of heavenly powers, That there is no old power left to steep
So thou wouldst thus, for many sequent hours, A quill immortal in their joyous tears.
Press me so sweetly. Now I swear at once Long time in silence did their anxious fears That I am wise, that Pallas is a dunceQuestion that thus it was; long time they lay Perhaps her love like mine is but unknownFondling and kissing every doubt away;
Oh! I do think that I have been alone Long time ere soft caressing sobs began
In chastity! yes, Pallas has been sighing, To mellow into words, and then there ran
While every eve saw me my hair uptying Two bubbling springs of talk from their sweet lips. With fingers cool as aspen leaves. Sweet love! "O known Unknown! from whom my being sips I was as vague as solitary dove, Such darling essence, wherefore may I not
Nor knew that nests were built. Now a soft kissBe ever in these arms! in this sweet spot
Ay, by that kiss, I vow an endless bliss, Pillow my chin for ever? ever press
An immortality of passion's thine: These toying hands and kiss their smooth excess? Ere long I will exalt thee to the shine Why not for ever and for ever feel
Of heaven ambrosial; and we will shade
And I will tell thee stories of the sky,
O let me melt into thee! let the sounds
Of human words! roughness of mortal speech! How can we part? Elysium! who art thou ? Lispings empyrean will I sometimes leach Who, that thou canst not be for ever here,
Thine honey'd tongue-lute-breathings, which I gasp Or lift me with thee to some starry sphere? To have thee understand, now while I clasp Enchantress! tell me by this soft embrace,
Thee thus, and weep for fondness--I am pain'd, By the most soft complexion of thy face,
Endymion: woe! woe! is grief contain'd Those lips, O slippery blisses ! twinkling eyes, In the very deeps of pleasure, my sole life?”And by these tenderest, milky sovereignties Hereat, with many sobs, her gentle strife These tenderest, and by the nectar-wine,
Melted into a languor. He return'd The passion": -"O loved Ida the divine ! Entranced vows and tears.
Ye who have yearn'd With too much passion, will here stay and pity, For the mere sake of truth; as 't is a ditty Not of these days, but long ago 't was told By a cavern wind unto a forest old; And then the forest told it in a dream To a sleeping lake, whose cool and level gleam A poet caught as he was journeying To Phæbus' shrine; and in it he did fling His weary limbs, bathing an hour's space, And after, straight in that inspired place He sang the story up into the air, Giving it universal freedom. There Has it been ever sounding for those ears Whose tips are glowing hot. The legend cheers Yon sentinel stars; and he who listens to it Must surely be self-doom'd or he will rue it! For quenchless burnings come upon the heart, Made fiercer by a fear lest any part Should be ingulfed in the eddying wind. As much as here is penn'd doth always find A resting-place, thus much comes clear and plain ; Anon the strange voice is upon the waneAnd 't is but echoed from departing sound, That the fair visitant at last unwound Her gentle limbs, and left the youth asleep.-Thus the tradition of the gusty deep.
And all the revels he had lorded there :
Among the conchs and shells of the lofty groi,
Now turn we to our former chroniclers.Endymion awoke, that grief of hers Sweet plaining on his ear: he sickly guess'd How lone he was once more, and sadly pressid His empty arms together, hung his head, And most forlorn upon that widow'd bed Sat silently. Love's madness he had known: Often with more than tortured lion's groan Moanings had burst from him; but now that rage Had pass'd away: no longer did he wage A rough-voiced war against the dooming stars. No, he had felt too much for such harsh jars : The lyre of his soul Eolian-tuned Forgot all violence, and but communed With melancholy thought: 0 he had swoonid Drunken from pleasure's nipple! and his love Henceforth was dove-like-Loth was he to move From the imprinted couch, and when he did, ”T was with slow, languid paces, and face hid In muffling hands. So temper'd, out he stray'd Half seeing visions that might have dismay'd Alecto’s serpents; ravishments more keen Than Hermes' pipe, when anxious he did lean Over eclipsing eyes : and at the last It was a sounding grotto, vaulted, vast, O'er-studded with a thousand, thousand pearls, And crimson-mouthed shells with stubborn curls, Of every shape and size, even to the bulk In which whales arbor close, to brood and sulk Against an endless storm. Moreover too, Fish-semblances, of green and azure hue, Ready to snort their streams. In this cool wonder Endymion sat down, and 'gan to ponder On all his life : his youth, up to the day When 'mid acclaim, and feasts, and garlands gay, He stept upon his shepherd throne : the look Of his white palace in wild forest nook,
“O Arethusa, peerless nymph! wby fear Such tenderness as mine? Great Dian, why, Why didst thou hear her prayer? O that I Were rippling round her dainty fairness now, Circling about her waist, and striving how To entice her to a dive! then stealing in Between her luscious lips and eyelids thin. O that her shining hair was in the sun, And I distilling from it thence to run In amorous rillets down her shrinking form! To linger on her lily shoulders, warm Between her kissing breasts, and every charm Touch raptured See how painfully I flow: Fair maid, be pitiful to my great woe. Stay, stay thy weary course, and let me lead, A happy wooer, to the flowery mead Where all that beauty snared me."_"Cruel God. Desist! or my offended mistress' nod Will stagnate all thy fountains :-tease me not