ePub 版



[ocr errors]

To be, or not to be?--that is the question.-
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer ,
The stings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die, to sleep
No more: and by a sleep, to say, we end
The heart-ache, and the thousaid patural shocks
That flesh is heir to ;-Tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish'd. To die-to sleep
To sleep! perchance to dream!-ay, there's the rub;
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come, :
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause.

There's the respect
That makes calamity of so long life:
For who would bear the whips and scorns, o'th' time,
Th' oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely,
The pangs of despis'd love, the law's delay,
The insolence of office, and the spurns
That patient merit of th' unworthy takes,
When he himself night his quietus make
With a bare bodkin? Who would fardels bear,

and sweat under a wearv life; But

that the dread of something after death
(That undiscover'd country, from whose bourn
No traveller returns) puzzles the will;
And makes us rather bear those ills we have,
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all.:
And thus the native hue of resolution
Is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of thought;
And enterprizes of great pith and moment,
With this regard, their currents turn awry,
And lose the name of action.



OH! my offence is rank, it smells to Heav'n, It bath the primal, eldest curse upon't ; A brother's murder- -Pray I cannot: Though inclination be as sharp as ’zwill, My stronger guilt defeats my strong intent; And, like a man to double business bound, I stand in pause where I shall first begin, And both neglect. What if this cursed hand : Were thicker than itself with brother's blood; Is there not rain enough in the sweet Heav'ns To wash it white as snow? Whereto serves mercy, But to confront the visage of offence? And what's in prayer, but this two-fold forceTo be forestalld, ere we come to fall, Or pardon'd being down. Then I'll look up; My fault is past. -But oh, what form of

prayer Can serve my turn? Forgive me my foul murder! That cannot be, since I am still possess'd Of those effects for which I did the murder, My crown, mine own ambition, and my queen. May one be pardon'd, and retain th' offence? In the corrupted currents of this world, Offence's gilded hand may shove by justice; And oft 'tis seen the wicked prize itself Buys out the laws. But 'tis not so above. There is no shuffling; there the action lies In its true nature, and we ourselves compellid, Ev'n to the teeth and forehead of our faults, To give in evidence. What then? What rests ! Try what repentance can: what can it not? Yet what can it, when one cannot repent? Oh wretched state! oh bosom black as death! Oh limed soul! that, struggling to be free, Art more engag'd! Help, angels !, make assay ! Bow, stubborn knees! and, hcart, with strings of steel,

Be soft as sinews of the new-born babe!
All may be well.




Descend, ye nine! descend and sing;

The breathing instruments inspire;
Wake into voice each silent string,
And sweep the sounding lyre!

In a sadly-pleasing strain
Let the warbling lute complain :

Let the loud trumpet sound,
Till the roofs all around

The shrill echoes rebound :
While in more lengthen'd notes and slow
The deep, majestic, solemn organs blow.

Hark! the numbers soft and clear,
Genily steal upon the ear;
Now louder and yet louder rise,

And fill with spreading sounds the skies:
Exulting in triumph now swell the bold notes,
In broken air, trenibling, the wild music floats;

Tin, by degrees, remote and small,

The strains decay,

And melt away

In a dying, dying fall.
By Music, minds an equal temper koow,
Nor swell too high, nor siuk too low.
If in the breast iumultuous joys arise,
Music her soft assuasive, voice applies :

Or, when the soul is press'd with cares,

Exalts her in enliv'ning airs.
Warriors she fires with animating sounds:
Pours balm into the bleeding lover's wounds:


Melancholy lifts her head,
Morpheus rouses from his bed,
Sloth unfolds her arms and wakes,

List’ning Envy drops her snakes;
Iniestine War no more our Passions wage,
Anu giddy Factions bear away their rage.

But when our country's cause provokes to arms, How martial music


bosom warms! So when the first bold vessel dar'd the seas, High on the stern the Thracian rais’d his strain,

While Aryo saw her kindred trees

Descend from Pelion to the main,
Transported demi-gods stood round,
Anil men grew heroes at the sound,

Entlam'd with glory's charms;
Each chief his sev 'nfold shield display'd,
And half unsheath'd i he shining blade;
And seas, and rocks, and skies rebound

To arms! to arms! to arms!

But when through all th’infernal bounds,
Which flaming Polegethon surrounds,

Love, strong as Death, the Pott led

To the pale nations of the dead,
What sounds were heard,
What scenes appear'd,
O'er all the dreary coasts?

Dreadful gleams,
Dismal screams,
Fires that glow,
Shrieks of wo,
Sullen inmans,

Hollow groans,
And cries of tortur'd ghosts;
But hark ! he strikes the golden lyre;
And see! the tortur'd ghosts respire,

See, shady forms advance!
Thy. stone, O Sisyphus, stands still,
Ixion rests upon his wheel,

And the pale spectres dance !

The furies sink upon their iron beds,
And snakes uncurl'd hany list ning round their heads.

By the streams that ever flow,
By the fragrant winds that blow

O'er th' Elysian flow'rs;
By those happy souls who dwell
In yellow meads of Asphodel,

Or Amaranthine bow'rs;
By the hero's armed shades,
Glitt'ring through the gloomy glades;
By the youths that dy't for love,

Wand'ring in the myrtle grove,
Restore, restore Eurydice to life :
Oh take the Husband, or return the Wife!

and hell consented
To hear the Poel's prayer:
Stern Proserpine relented,
And gave him back the fair:

Thus song could prevail

O’er deaih and o'er hell,
A conquest how hard, and how glorious !

Though Fate had fast bound lier,

With Styx nine times round her, Yet Music and Love were victorious.

But soon, tov soon, the lover turns his e

Again she falls, again she dies, she dies?
How wilt thou now the fatal sisters more?:
No crime was thine, if'iis no crinie to love.

Now under hanging mountains,
Beside the falls of fountains,
Or where Hebrus wanders,
Rolling in meanders,

All alone,
Unheard, unknown,
He makes us moan;
And calls her ghost,

For ever, ever, ever lost!
Now with furies surrounded,
Despairing, confounded,

« 上一頁繼續 »