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In joyous youth, what soul hath never known ·
Thought, feeling, taste, harmonious to its own ?
Who hath not paused while Beauty's pensive eye
Ask'd from his heart the homage of a sigh?
Who hath not own'd, with rapture-smitten frame,
The power of grace, the magic of a name?
There be, perhaps, who barren hearts avow,
Cold as the rocks on Torneo's hoary brow;
There be, whose loveless wisdom never fail'd,
In self-adoring pride securely mailed :
But, triumph not, ye peace-enamour'd few!
Fire, Nature, Genius, never dwelt with you!
you no fancy consecrates the scene
Where rapture utter'd vows, and wept between ;
'Tis yours, unmoved, to sever and to meet;
No pledge is sacred, and no home is sweet!
Who that would ask a heart to dulness wed,
The waveless calm, the slumber of the dead ?
the wild bliss of Nature needs alloy,
And fear and sorrow fan the fire of joy!
And say, without our hopes, without our fears,
Without the home that plighted love endears,
Without the smile from partial beauty won,
Oh! what were man ?-a world without a sun.
Till Hymen brought his love-delighted hour,
There dwelt no joy in Eden's rosy
In vain the viewless seraph lingering there,
At starry midnight charm'd the silent air ;
In vain the wild-bird caroll’d on the steep,
To hail the sun, slow wheeling from the deep;
In vain, to soothe the solitary shade,
Aërial notes in mingling measure play'd ;
The summer wind that shook the spangled tree,
The whispering wave, the murmur of the bee ;
Still slowly pass'd the melancholy day,
And still the stranger wist not where to stray,
The world was sad !--the garden was a wild !
And man, the hermit, sigh’d-till woman smiled!
True, the sad power to generous hearts may bring
Delirious anguish on his fiery wing !
Barr'd from delight by Fate's untimely hand,
By wealthless lot, or pitiless command ;
Or doom'd to gaze on beauties that adorn
The smile of triumph or the frown of scorn ;
While Memory watches o'er the sad review,
Of joys that faded like the morning dew;
Peace may depart--and life and nature seene
A barren path, a wildness, and a dream !
But can the noble mind for ever brood,
The willing victim of a weary mood,
On heartless cares that squander life away,
And cloud young Genius brightening into day ?
Shame to the coward thought that e'er betray'd
The noon of manhood to a myrtle shade !
If HOPE's creative spirit cannot raise
One trophy sacred to thy future days,
Scorn the dull crowd that haunt the gloomy shrine,
Of hopeless love to murmur and repine !
But, should a sigh of milder mood express
Thy heart-warm wishes, true to happiness,
Should Heaven's fair harbinger delight to pour
Her blissful visions on thy pensive hour,
No tear to blot thy memory's pictured page,
No fears but such as fancy can assuage ;
Though thy wild heart some hapless hour may miss
The peaceful tenor of unvaried bliss,