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THE TOMB OF SHAKSPEARE.

A Mision.

What time the jocund rosy-bosom'd hours

Led forth the train of Phæbus and the spring, And zephyr mild profusely scatter'd flowers

On earth's green mantle from his musky wing; The morn unbarr’d the' ambrosial gates of light,

Westward the raven-pinion'd darkness flew, The landscape smiled in vernal beauty bright,

And to their graves the sullen ghosts withdrew. The nightingale no longer swellid her throat

With lovelorn plainings, tremulous and slow; And on the wings of silence ceased to float

The gurgling notes of her melodious woe: The god of sleep mysterious visions led

In gay procession 'fore the mental eye, And my

freed soul a while her mansion filed, To try her plumes for immortality. Through fields of air methought I took my flight,

Through every clime, o'er every region pass’d, No paradise or ruin scaped my sight,

Hesperian garden or Cimmerian waste. On Avon's banks I lit, whose streams appear To wind with eddies fond round Shakspeare's

tomb, The year's first feathery songsters warble near,

And violets breathe and earliest roses bloom. Here Fancy sat (her dewy fingers cold

Decking with flowerets fresh the’unsullied sod) And bathed with tears the sad sepulchral mould,

Her favourite offspring's long and last abode.

* Ah! what avails (she cried) a poet's name?

Ah! what avails the' immortalizing breath To snatch from dumb oblivion other's fame?

My darling child here lies a prey to death! · Let gentle Otway, white robed pity's priest,

From grief domestic teach the tears to flow; Or Southern captivate the’ impassion'd breast

With heartfelt sighs and sympathy of woe. For not to these his genius was confined, Nature and I each tuneful power

had given, Poetic transports of the maddening mind, And the wing’d words that waft the soul to

heaven. • The fiery glance of the intellectual eye,

Piercing all objects of creation's store, Which on this world's extended surface lie;

And plastic thought that still created more.' O grant (with eager rapture I replied),

Grant me, great goddess of the changeful eye! To view each being in poetic pride,

To whom thy son gave immortality.' Sweet Fancy smiled and waved her mystic rod,

When straight these visions felt her powerful And one by one succeeded at her nod, [arm,

As vassal sprites obey the wizard's charm. First a celestial form' (of azure hue,

Whose mantle, bound with brede etherial, flow'd To each soft breeze its balmy breath that drew)

Swift down the sunbeams of the noontide rode.

Ariel, in the Tempest.

Obedient to the necromantic sway

Of an old sage, to solitude resign’d, With fenny vapours he obscured the day, Launch’d the long lightning, and let loose the

wind. He whirl’d the tempest through the howling air,

Rattled the dreadful thunderclap on high, And raised a roaring elemental war

Betwixt the seagreen waves and azure sky; Then like Heaven's mild ambassador of love

To man repentant, bade the tumult cease; Smooth'd the blue bosom of the realms above,

And hush'd the rebel elements to peace. Unlike to this, in spirit or in mien,

Another form? succeeded to my view; A two legg'd brute, which nature made in spleen,

Or from the loathing womb unfinish'd drew. Scarce could he syllable the curse he thought, Prone were

his

eyes to earth, his mind to evil, A carnai fiend to imperfection wrought,

The mongrel offspring of a witch and devil. Next bloom'd, upon an ancient forest's bound,

The flowery margin of a silent stream, O’erarch’d by oaks with ivy mantled round,

And gilt by silver Cynthia's maiden beam. On the green carpet of the’ unbended grass,

A dapper train of female fairies play'd, And eyed their gambols in the watery glass,

That smoothly stole along the shadowy glade,

2

Caliban, in the Tempest.
Fairy-land, from the Midsummer Night's Dream.

3

Through these the queen, Titania, pass'd adored,

Mounted aloft in her imperial car, Journeying to see great Oberon her lord

Wage the mock battles of a sportive war. Arm'd cap-à-pie, forth march'd the fairy king,

A stouter warrior never took the field,
His threatening lance a hornet's horrid sting,

The sharded beetle's scale his sable shield.
Around their chief the elfin host appear’d,

Each little helmet sparkling like a star, And their sharp spears a pierceless phalanx rear'd,

A grove of thistles glittering in the air. The scene then changed from this romantic land

To a bleak waste by boundary unconfined, Where three swart sisters 4 of the weïrd band

Were muttering curses to the troublous wind. Pale want had wither'd every furrow'd face,

Bow'd was each carcass with the weight of years, And each sunk eyeball from its hollow case

Distill'd cold rheum's involuntary tears. Horsed on three staves, they posted to the bourn

Of a drear island, where the pendent brow Of a rough rock, shagg’d horribly with thorn, Frown'd on the boisterous waves which raged

below. Deep in a gloomy grot, remote from day,

Where smiling comfort never show'd her face, Where light ne’er enter'd, save one rueful ray

Discovering all the terrors of the place,

+ The Witebes in Macbeth.

They held damn'd mysteries with infernal state,

Whilst ghastly goblins glided slowly by, The screechowl scream'd the dying call of fate,

And ravens croak’d their horrid augury. No human footstep cheer'd the dread abode,

Nor sign of living creature could be seen, Save where the reptile snake, or sullen toad,

The murky floor had soil'd with venom green. Sudden I heard the whirlwind's hollow sound,

Each weïrd sister vanish'd into smoke; Now a dire yell of spiritss under ground [broke;

Through troubled earth's wide yawning surface When lo! each injured apparition rose;

Aghast the murderer started from his bed; Guilts trembling breath his heart's red current

froze, And horror's dewdrops bathed his frantic head. More had I seen-but now the god of day O’er earth's broad breast his flood of light had

spread, When Morpheus call'd his fickle train away,

And on their wings each bright illusion fled. Yet still the dear enchantress of the brain My wakeful eyes with wishful wanderings

sought, Whose magic will controls the ideal train,

The ever restless progeny of thought. • Sweet power! (said I) for others gild the ray

Of wealth, or honour's folly-feather'd crown; Or lead the madding multitude astray, To grasp at air blown bubbles of

renown; 3 Ghosts in Macbeth, Richard III. &c.

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