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The flashes fell upon them; some lay down
And hid their eyes and wept; and some did rest
Their chins upon their clenched hands, and smiled;
And others hurried to and fro, and fed
Their funeral piles with fuel, and look'd up
With mad disquietude on the dull sky,
The pall of a past world; and then again
With curses cast them down upon the dust,
And gnash'd their teeth and howl'd: the wild birds
And, terrified, did flutter on the ground, [shriek'd,
And flap their useless wings; the wildest brutes
Came tame and tremulous; and vipers crawl'd
And twined themselves among the multitude,
Hissing, but stingless-they were slain for food:
And War, which for a moment was no more,
Did glut himself again;-a meal was bought
With blood, and each sate sullenly apart
Gorging himself in gloom : no love was left;
All earth was but one thought-and that was
Immediate and inglorious; and the pang [death,
Of famine fed upon all entrails-men
Died, and their bones were tombless as their flesh;
The meagre by the meagre were devour'd,
Even dogs assail'd their masters, all save one,
And he was faithful to a corse, and kept
The birds and beasts and famish`d men at bay,
Till hunger clung them, or the dropping dead
Lured their lank jaws; himself sought out no food,
But with a piteous and perpetual moan,
And a quick desolate cry, licking the hand
Which answer'd not with a caress-he died.
The crowd was famish'd by degrees; but two
Of an enormous city did survive,

And they were enemies: they met beside
The dying embers of an altar-place,


Where had been heap'd a mass of holy things
For an unholy usage; they raked up,
And shivering scraped with their cold skeleton
The feeble ashes, and their feeble breath
Blew for a little life, and made a flame
Which was a mockery; then they lifted up
Their eyes as it grew lighter, and beheld
Each other's aspects-saw, and shriek'd,
Even of their mutual hideousness they died,
Unknowing who he was upon whose brow
Famine had written Fiend. The world was void,
The populous and the powerful was a lump,
Seasonless, herbless, treeless, manless, lifeless-
A lump of death--a chaos of hard clay.
The rivers, lakes, and ocean all stood still,
And nothing stirr'd within their silent depths;



Ships sailorless lay rotting on the sea,
And their masts fell down piecemeal; as they
They slept on the abyss without a surge—

The waves were dead; the tides were in their grave,
The Moon, their mistress, had expired before;
The winds were wither'd in the stagnant air,
And the clouds perish'd; Darkness had no need
Of aid from them--She was the Universe.
DIODATI, July, 1816.



I STOOD beside the grave of him who blazed
The comet of a season, and I saw
The humblest of all sepulchres, and gazed
With not the less of sorrow and of awe
On that neglected turf and quiet stone,
With name no clearer than the names unknown,
Which lay unread around it; and I ask'd

The gardener of that ground, why it might be
That for this plant strangers his memory task'd
Through the thick deaths of half a century;
And thus he answer'd-"Well, I do not know
Why frequent travellers turn to pilgrims so;
He died before my day of sextonship,

And I had not the digging of this grave." And is this all? I thought,—and do we rip

The veil of Immortality, and crave

I know not what of honour and of light
Through unborn ages, to endure this blight?
So soon, and so successless? As I said,
The architect of all on which we tread,
For Earth is but a tomb-stone, did essay

To extricate remembrance from the clay, [thought,
Whose minglings might confuse a Newton's
Were it not that all life must end in one,
Of which we are but dreamers;—as he caught
As 'twere the twilight of a former sun,

Thus spoke he,-"I believe the man of whom
You wot, who lies in this selected tomb,
Was a most famous writer in his day,
And therefore travellers step from out their way
To pay him honour,-and myself whate'er

Your honour pleases," then most pleased I
From out my pocket's avaricious nook [shook(3)
Some certain coins of silver, which as 'twere
Perforce I gave this man, though I could spare
So much but inconveniently :-Ye smile,
I see ye, ye profane ones! all the while,

(1) On the sheet containing the original draught of these lines, blended what I would deem to be the beauties as well as defects Lord Byron has written:-"The following poem (as most that I of his style; and it ought to be remembered, that in such things, have endeavoured to write) is founded on a fact; and this detail is whether there be prafse or dispraise, there is always what is an attempt at a serious imitation of the style of a great poet-called a compliment, however unintentional.”—E. Its beauties and its defects: I say, the style; for the thoughts I laim as my own. In this, if there be any thing ridiculous, let it b. attributed to me, at least as much as to Mr. Wordsworth, of whom there can exist few greater admirers than myself. I have

(2) Originally

"then most pleased, I shook My inward pocket's most retired nook, And out fell five and sixpence."-E.

Because my homely phrase the truth would tell.
You are the fools, not I-for I did dwell
With a deep thought, and with a soften'd eye,
On that old sexton's natural homily,
In which there was obscurity and fame,—
The glory and the nothing of a Name. (1)

DIODATI, 1816.


TITAN! to whose immortal eyes The sufferings of mortality, Seen in their sad reality,

Were not as things that gods despise;
What was thy pity's recompense?
A silent suffering, and intense;

The rock, the vulture, and the chain,
All that the proud can feel of pain,
The agony they do not show,
The suffocating sense of woe,

Which speaks but in its loneliness, And then is jealous lest the sky Should have a listener, nor will sigh

Until its voice is echoless.

Titan! to thee the strife was given

Between the suffering and the will,
Which torture where they cannot kill;
And the inexorable Heaven,
And the deaf tyranny of Fate,
The ruling principle of Hate,
Which for its pleasure doth create
The things it may annihilate,
Refused thee even the boon to die:
The wretched gift eternity

Was thine-and thou hast borne it well.
All that the Thunderer wrung from thee
Was but the menace which flung back
On him the torments of thy rack;
The fate thou didst so well foresee,
But would not to appease him tell;
And in thy silence was his sentence,
And in his soul a vain repentance,
And evil dread so ill dissembled
That in his hand the lightnings trembled.
Thy godlike crime was to be kind,

To render with thy precepts less
The sum of human wretchedness,
And strengthen man with his own mind;
But baffled as thou wert from high
Still in thy patient energy,

(1) "The Grave of Churchill might have called from Lord Byron a deeper commemoration; for, though they generally differed in character and genius, there was a resemblance between their history and character. The satire of Churchill flowed with a more profuse, though not a more embittered, stream; while, on the other hand, he cannot be compared to Lord Byron in point of tenderness or imagination. But both these poets held themselves above the opinion of the world, and

In the endurance, and repulse
Of thine impenetrable spirit,

Which Earth and Heaven could not convulse,

A mighty lesson we inherit: Thou art a symbol and a sign

To mortals of their fate and force; Like thee, man is in part divine,

A troubled stream from a pure source;

And man in portions can foresee
His own funereal destiny;
His wretchedness, and his resistance,
And his sad unallied existence :
To which his spirit may oppose
Itself and equal to all woes,

And a firm will, and a deep sense,
Which even in torture can descry

Its own concentred recompense, Triumphant where it dares defy, And making death a victory. DIODATI, July, 1816.

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What is this Death ?- a quiet of the heart?
The whole of that of which we are a part?
For life is but a vision-what I see
Of all which lives alone is life to me,
And being so-the absent are the dead,
Who haunt us from tranquillity, and spread
A dreary shroud around us, and invest
With sad remembrancers our hours of rest.

The absent are the dead-for they are cold,
And ne'er can be what once we did behold;
And they are changed, and cheerless, or if yet
The unforgotten do not all forget,
Since thus divided-equal must it be
If the deep barrier be of earth, or sea;
It may be both-but one day end it must
In the dark union of insensate dust.

The under-earth inhabitants-are they But mingled millions decomposed to clay? The ashes of a thousand ages spread Wherever man has trodden or shall tread?

both were followed by the fame and popularity which they seemed to despise. The writings of both exhibit an inborn, though sometimes ill-regulated, generosity of mind, and a spirit of proud independence, frequently pushed to extremes. Both carried their hatred of hypocrisy beyond the verge of prudence, and indulged their vein of satire to the borders of licentiousness. Both died in the flower of their age in a foreign land." Walter Scott.-E.

Or do they in their silent cities dwell
Each in his incommunicative cell ?

Or have they their own language? and a sense
Of breathless being ?-darken'd and intense
As midnight in her solitude ?O Earth!
Where are the past ?-and wherefore had they
The dead are thy inheritors-and we [birth?
But bubbles on thy surface; and the key
Of thy profundity is in the grave,
The ebon portal of thy peopled cave,
Where I would walk in spirit, and behold
Our elements resolved to things untold,
And fathom hidden wonders, and explore
The essence of great bosoms now no more.





But thou in safe implacability
Hadst nought to dread-in thy own weakness
And in my love, which hath but too much yielded,
And spared, for thy sake, some 1 should not

And thus upon the world—trust in thy truth-
And the wild fame of my ungovern'd youth-

On things that were not, and on things that are-
Even upon such a basis hast thou built

A monument, whose cement hath been guilt!
The moral Clytemnestra of thy lord,
And hew'd down, with an unsuspected sword,
Fame, peace, and hope-and all the better life

Which, but for this cold treason of thy heart,
Might still have risen from out the grave of strife,
And found a nobler duty than to part.
But of thy virtues didst thou make a vice
Trafficking with them in a purpose cold,
For present anger, and for future gold-
And buying other's grief at any price.
And thus once enter'd into crooked ways,
The early truth, which was thy proper praise,
Did not still walk beside thee-but at times,
And with a breast unknowing its own crimes,
Deceit, averments incompatible,
Equivocations, and the thoughts which dwell

DIODATI, July, 1816.


ON HEARING THAT LADY BYRON WAS ILL. (1) AND thou wert sad-yet I was not with thee:

And thou wert sick, and yet I was not near; Methought that joy and health alone could be Where I was not-and pain and sorrow here! And is it thus ?-it is as I foretold,

And shall be more so; for the mind recoils Upon itself, and the wreck'd heart lies cold, While heaviness collects the shatter'd spoils. It is not in the storm nor in the strife

We feel benumb'd, and wish to be no more,
But in the after-silence on the shore,
When all is lost, except a little life.

I am too well avenged!-but 'twas my right;
Whate'er my sins might be, thou wert not sent
To be the Nemesis who should requite-

Nor did Heaven choose so near an instrument.
Mercy is for the merciful!-if thou

Hast been of such, 't will be accorded now.
Thy nights are banish'd from the realms of sleep!-
Yes! they may flatter thee, but thou shalt feel
A hollow agony which will not heal,
For thou art pillow'd on a curse too deep;
Thou hast sown in my sorrow, and must reap
The bitter harvest in a woe as real!

I have had many foes, but none like thee;
For 'gainst the rest myself I could defend,
And be avenged, or turn them into friend;

In Janus-spirits-the significant eye
Which learns to lie with silence-the pretext
Of Prudence, with advantages annex'd-
The acquiescence in all things which tend,
No matter how, to the desired end-

All found a place in thy philosophy.
The means were worthy, and the end is won-
I would not do by thee as thou hast done! (2)
September, 1816.


BE it so!-we part for ever!
Let the past as nothing be:
Had I only loved thee, never

Hadst thou been thus dear to me.
Had I loved, and thus been slighted,
That I better could have borne:
Love is quell'd-when unrequited-
By the rising pulse of scorn.

which cannot but heal the wound it causes: to him, because
who, in the shattered feelings they betray, will not acknowledge
the grief that hurries into error, and (may we add in charity!)
atones for it!"-Lady Blessington.

(1) These verses, written immediately after the failure of the written negotiation alluded to, ante, p. 926, were not intended for the public eye: as, however, they have found their way into circulation, we must reluctantly include them in this collection.-E. "These lines were written with deep feelings of pain, and (2) "Lord Byron had at least this much to say for himself, should be judged as the outpourings of a wounded spirit de- that he was not the first to make his domestic differences a topic manding pity more than anger. While to the public they are of public discussion. On the contrary, he saw himself, ere any of that value that any reasons for their suppression ought to fact but the one undisguised and tangible one was or could be be extremely strong; so, on the other hand, I trust, they cannot known, held up every where, and by every art of malice, as the hurt either her feelings to whom they are addressed, or his me- most infamous of men,-because he had parted from his wife." mory by whom they are written:-to her, because the very-Lockhart. bitterness of reproach proyes that unconquerable affection

Pride may cool what passion heated,
'Time will tame the wayward will;
But the heart in friendship cheated
Throbs with woe's most maddening thrill:
Had I loved-I now might hate thee,
In that hatred solace seek,
Might exult to execrate thee,

And, in words, my vengeance wreak.
But there is a silent sorrow

Which can find no vent in speech, Which disdains relief to borrow

From the heights that song can reach. Like a clankless chain enthralling

Like the sleepless dreams that mockLike the frigid ice-drops falling

From the surf-surrounded rockSuch the cold and sickening feeling

Thou hast caused this heart to know; Stabb'd the deeper by concealing

From the world its bitter woe! Once it fondly, proudly, deem'd thee

All that fancy's self could paint; Once it honour'd and esteem'd thee As its idol and its saint!

More than woman thou wast to me;
Not as man I look'd on thee:
Why, like woman, then undo me?

Why heap man's worst curse on me? Wast thou but a fiend, assuming

Friendship's smile and woman's art, And, in borrow'd beauty blooming,

Trifling with a trusting heart?

By that eye, which once could glisten
With opposing glance to me;
By that ear, which once could listen
To each tale I told to thee;

By that lip, its smile bestowing,

Which could soften sorrow's gush, By that cheek, once brightly glowing With pure friendship's well-feign'd blush: By all those false charms united,

Thou hast wrought thy wanton will, And, without compunction, blighted What thou wouldst not kindly kill! Yet I curse thee not-in sadness

Still I feel how dear thou wert; Oh! I could not-e'en in madnessDoom thee to thy just desert! Live! and when my life is over,

Should thine own be lengthen'd long,

(1) Geneva, Ferney, Copet, Lausanne-[See ante, p. 133.]"I have," says, Lord Byron, " traversed all Rousseau's ground with the Héloïse before me, and am struck, to a degree that I

Thou mayst then too late discover,
By thy feelings, all my wrong.
When thy beauties all are faded-

When thy flatterers fawn no more--
Ere the solemn shroud hath shaded

Some regardless reptile's store

Ere that hour-false syren! hear me !-
Thou mayst feel what I do now,
While my spirit, hovering near thee,
Whispers friendship's broken vow!
But 't is useless to upbraid thee,
With thy past or present state:
What thou wast-my fancy made thee;
What thou art-I know too late!

ROUSSEAU-Voltaire-our Gibbon-and De Staël--
Leman! (1) these names are worthy of thy shore,
Thy shore of names like these! wert thou no

Their memory thy remembrance would recall:
To them thy banks were lovely as to all,

But they have made them lovelier, for the lore
Of mighty minds doth hallow in the core
Of human hearts the ruin of a wall

Where dwelt the wise and wondrous; but by thee
How much more, Lake of Beauty! do we feel,
In sweetly gliding o'er thy crystal sea,
The wild glow of that not ungentle zeal,
Which of the heirs of immortality

Is proud, and makes the breath of glory real!
DIODATI, July 1816.


PIERIOS vatis Theodori flamma Penates
Abstulit: hoc Musis, hoc tibi, Phoebe, placet ?
O scelus, o magnum facinus, crimenque deorum,
Non arsit pariter quod domus et dominus!
Lib. xi. Epig. 91.
THE Laureate's house hath been on fire: the Nine
All smiling saw that pleasant bonfire shine.
But, cruel fate! O damnable disaster!
The house-the house is burnt, and not the master.

"Mors Janua vitæ."

WOULD you get to the House through the true gate
Much quicker than ever Whig Charley went,
Let Parliament send you to-Newgate-

And Newgate will send you to-Parliament.

cannot express, with the force and accuracy of his descriptions, and the beauty of their reality. I enclose you a sprig of Gibbon's acacia and some rose-leaves from his garden, which, with



WHAT made you in Lob's Pound to go,
My boy, Hobby?

Because I bade the people throw
The House into the lobby.
You hate the House-why canvass then,
My boy, Hobby?

Because I would reform the den,

As member for the mobby.



El qual dezia en Aravigo assi.

Por la ciudad de Granada,
Desde las puertas de Elvira
Hasta las de Bivarambla.

Ay de mi, Alhama!

Cartas le fueron venidas
Que Alhama era ganada.
Las cartas echo en el fuego,
Y al mensagero matava.

Ay de mi, Alhama!
Descavalga de una mula,
Yen un cavallo cavalga.
Por el Zacatin arriba
Subido se avia al Alhambra.
Ay de mi, Alhama!
Como en el Alhambra estuvo,
Al mismo punto mandava
Que se toquen las trompetas
Con añafiles de plata.

Ay de mi, Alhama!
Y que atambores de guerra
Apriessa toquen alarma;
Por que lo oygan sus Moros,
Los de la Vega y Granada.

Ay de mi, Alhama!
Los Moros que el son oyeron,
Que al sangriento Marte llama.
Uno a uno, y dos a dos,
Un gran esquadron formavan.
Ay de mi, Alhama!

part of his house, I have just seen. You will find honourable
mention, in his Life, made of this acacia, when he walked out
on the night of concluding his history. Madame de Staël has

And who are now the people's men,
My boy, Hobby?

There's I and Burdett, gentlemen,

And blackguards Hunt and Cobby.
And when amid your friends you speak,
My boy, Hobby,

How is 't that you contrive to keep
Your watch within your fobby?
Now tell me why you hate the Whigs,
My boy, Hobby!

Because they want to run their rigs
As under Walpole Bobby.


On the siege and conquest of alHAMA. Which, in the Arabic language, is to the following purport (The effect of the original ballad-which existed both in Spanish and Arabic-was such, that it was forbidden to be sung by the Moors, on pain of death, within Granada.]

THE Moorish King rides up and down
Through Granada's royal town;
From Elvira's gates to those
Of Bivarambla on he goes.

Woe is me, Alhama!

Letters to the monarch tell
How Alhama's city fell;
In the fire the scroll he threw,
And the messenger he slew..

Woe is me, Alhama!

Me quits his mule, and mounts his horse,
And through the street directs his course;
Through the street of Zacatin
To the Alhambra spurring in.

Woe is me, Alhama!
When the Alhambra walls he gain'd,
On the moment he ordain'd
That the trumpet straight should sound
With the silver clarion round.
Woe is me,
And when the hollow drums of war
Beat the loud alarm afar,
That the Moors of town and plain
Might answer to the martial strain,
Woe is me, Alhama!

Then the Moors, by this aware
That bloody Mars recall'd them there,
One by one, and two by two,
To a mighty squadron grew.

Woe is me, Alhama!

made Copet as agreeable as society can make any place on earth." B. Letters, 1816.-E.

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