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CHARLES THE FIRST.

KING.

It partly is,
That our minds piece the vacant intervals
Of his wild words with their own fashioning ;
As in the imagery of summer clouds,
Or coals in the winter fire, idlers find
The perfect shadows of their teeming thoughts:
And partly, that the terrors of the time
Are sown by wandering Rumour in all spirits ;
And in the lightest and the least, may best
Be seen the current of the coming wind.

QUEEN.

Your brain is overwrought with these deep

thoughts.
Come, I will sing to you ; let us go try
These airs from Italy,—and you shall see
A cradled miniature of yourself asleep,
Stamped on the heart by never-erring love;
Liker than any Vandyke ever made,
A pattern to the unborn age of thee,
Over whose sweet beauty I have wept for joy
A thousand times, and now should weep

for

sorrow,
Did I not think that after we were dead
Our fortunes would spring high in him, and that
The cares we waste upon our heavy crown
Would make it light and glorious as a wreath
Of heaven's beams for his dear innocent brow.

KING.

Dear Henrietta!

SCENE III.

HAMPDEN, Pym, CROMWELL, and the younger VANE.

HAMPDEN.

England, farewell! thou, who hast been my cradle,
Shalt never be my dungeon or my grave !
I held what I inherited in thee
As
pawn

for that inheritance of freedom
Which thou hast sold for thy despoiler's smile
How can I call thee England, or my country ?
Does the wind hold ?

VANE.

The vanes sit steady Upon the Abbey-towers. The silver lightnings Of the evening star, spite of the city's smoke, Tell that the north wind reigns in the upper air. Mark too that flock of fleecy-winged clouds Sailing athwart St. Margaret's.

HAMPDEN.

Hail, fleet herald Of tempest! that wild pilot who shall guide Hearts free as his, to realms as pure as thee, Beyond the shot of tyranny! And thou, Fair star, whose beam lies on the wide Atlantic, Athwart its zones of tempest and of calm,

Bright as the path to a beloved home,
() light us to the isles of th' evening land !

7
Like floating Edens, cradled in the glimmer
Of sunset, through the distant mist of years
Tinged by departing Hope, they gleam! Lone

regions, Where power's poor dupes and victims yet have

never

Propitiated the savage fear of kings
With purest blood of noblest hearts; whose dew
Is yet unstained with tears of those who wake
To weep each day the wrongs on which dawns;
Whose sacred silent air owns yet no echo
Of formal blasphemies; nor impious rites
Wrest man's free worship from the God who loves
Towards the worm, who envies us his love,
Receive thou, young [

] of Paradise,
These exiles from the old and sinful world !
This glorious clime, this firmament, whose lights
Dart mitigated influence through the veil
Of pale-blue atmosphere; whose tears keep green
The pavement of this moist all-feeding earth;
This vaporous horizon, whose dim round
Is bastioned by the circumfluous sea,
Repelling invasion from the sacred towers ;
Presses upon me like a dungeon's grate,
A low dark roof, a damp and narrow vault:
The mighty universe becomes a cell
Too narrow for the soul that owns no master.

While the loathliest spot

a

Of this wide prison, England, is a nest
Of cradled peace built on the mountain tops,
To which the eagle-spirits of the free,
Which range through heaven and earth, and scorn

the storm
Of time, and gaze upon the light of truth,
Return to brood over the [ ] thoughts
That cannot die, and may not be repelled.

*

THE TRIUMPH OF LIFE.

SWIFT as a spirit hastening to his task
Of glory and of good, the sun sprang

forth Rejoicing in his splendour, and the mask

Of darkness fell from the awakened EarthThe smokeless altars of the mountain snows Flamed above crimson clouds, and at the birth

Of light, the Ocean's orison arose,
To which the birds tempered their matin lay.
All flowers in field or forest which unclose

Their trembling eyelids to the kiss of day,
Swinging their censers in the element,
With Orient incense lit by the new ray

Burned slow and inconsumably, and sent
Their odorous sighs up to the smiling air;
And, in succession due, did continent,

Isle, ocean, and all things that in them wear
The form and character of mortal mould,
Rise as the sun their father rose, to bear

Their portion of the toil, which he of old
Took as his own and then imposed on them :
But I, whom thoughts which must remain untold

Had kept as wakeful as the stars that gem
The cone of night, now they were laid asleep
Stretched my faint limbs beneath the hoary stem

Which an old chesnut flung athwart the steep
Of a green Apennine: before me fled
The night; behind me rose the day ; the deep

Was at my feet, and Heaven above my head, When a strange trance over my fancy grew Which was not slumber, for the shade it spread

Was so transparent that the scene came through
As clear as, when a veil of light is drawn
O’er evening hills, they glimmer; and I knew

That I had felt the freshness of that dawn Bathe in the same cold dew my brow and hair, And sate as thus upon that slope of lawn

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