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In this life of probation for rapture divine,
Who kneels to the god, on his altar of light
Must myrtle and cypress alternately strew: His myrtle, an emblem of purest delight; His cypress the garland of love's last adieu!
In law an infant 1, and in years a boy,
In mind a slave to every vicious joy;
Versed in hypocrisy, while yet a child;
MARION! why that pensive brow?
1 In law every person is an infant who has not attained the age of twenty-one.
["When I went up to Trinity, in 1805, at the age of seventeen and a half, I was miserable and untoward to a degree. I was wretched at leaving Harrow-wretched at going to Cambridge instead of Oxford - wretched from some private domestic circumstances of different kinds; and, consequently, about as unsocial as a wolf taken from the troop." Diary. Mr. Moore adds, "The sort of life which young Byron led at this period, between the dissipations of London and of Cambridge, without a home to welcome, or even the roof of a single relative to receive him, was but little calculated
All I shall therefore say (whate'er
Of smoothing compliments divested,
TO A LADY
WHO PRESENTED TO THE AUTHOR A LOCK OF HAIR
With silly whims and fancies frantic,
Or doom the lover you have chosen, On winter nights to sigh half frozen ; In leafless shades to sue for pardon, Only because the scene 's a garden? For gardens seem, by one consent, Since Shakspeare set the precedent, Since Juliet first declared her passion To form the place of assignation. +
to render him satisfied either with himself or the world. Unrestricted as he was by deference to any will but his own, even the pleasures to which he was naturally most inclined prematurely palled upon him, for want of those best zests of all enjoyment- rarity and restraint."]
3 [See antè, p. 387. note.]
4 In the above little piece the author has been accused by some candid readers of introducing the name of a lady from whom he was some hundred miles distant at the time this was written; and poor Juliet, who has slept so long in "the tomb of all the Capulets," has been converted, with a trifling
Oh! would some modern muse inspire, And seat her by a sea-coal fire;
Or had the bard at Christmas written,
Had changed the place of declaration.
OSCAR OF ALVA. 2
How sweetly shines through azure skies, The lamp of heaven on Lora's shore; Where Alva's hoary turrets rise,
And hear the din of arms no more.
But often has yon rolling moon
On Alva's casques of silver play'd ; And view'd, at midnight's silent noon, Her chiefs in gleaming mail array'd:
And on the crimson'd rocks beneath, Which scowl o'er ocean's sullen flow Pale in the scatter'd ranks of death,
She saw the gasping warrior low;
While many an eye which ne'er again Could mark the rising orb of day, Turn'd feebly from the gory plain,
Beheld in death her fading ray.
Once to those eyes the lamp of Love, They blest her dear propitious light; But now she glimmer'd rom above,
A sad, funereal torch of night.
Faded is Alva's noble race,
And gray her towers are seen afar ;
alteration of her name, into an English damsel, walking in a garden of their own creation, during the month of December, in a village where the author never passed a winter. Such has been the candour of some ingenious critics. We would advise these liberal commentators on taste and arbiters of decorum to read Shakspeare.
1 Having heard that a very severe and indelicate censure has been passed on the above poem, I beg leave to reply in a quotation from an admired work, "Carr's Stranger in France."-" As we were contemplating a painting on a large scale, in which, among other figures, is the uncovered whole length of a warrior, a prudish-looking lady, who seemed to have touched the age of desperation, after having attentively surveyed it through her glass, observed to her party, that