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Contending tempests on his naked head, And thus reward the toils which to those summits led.
XLVI. Away with these! true Wisdom's world will be Within its own creation, or in thine, Maternal Nature! for who teems like thee, Thus on the banks of thy majestic Rhine? There Harold gazes on a work divine, A blending of all beauties; streams and dells, Fruit, foliage, crag, wood, cornfield, mountain, vine,
And chiefless castles breathing stern farewells From gay but leafy walls, where Ruin greenly dwells.
XLVII. And there they stand, as stauds a lofty mind, Worn, but upstooping to the baser crowd, All tenantless, save to the crannying wind, Or holding dark communion with the cloud. There was a day when they were young and proud, Banners on high, and battle's pass'd below; But they who fought are in a bloody shroud,
And those which waved are shredless dust ere now, And the bleak, battlenients shall bear no future blow.
XLVIII. Beneath these battlements, within those walls Power dwelt amidst ber passions; in proud state, Each robber chief upheld his armed halls, Doing his evil will, nor less elate Than mightier heroes of a longer date, What want these outlaws (10) conqueror's should have But History's purchased page to call them great ? A wider space, an ornamented grave ?
[brave: Their hopes were not less warm, their souls were full as
And many a tower for some fair mischief won,
L. But Thou, exulting and abounding river ! Making thy waves a blessing as they flow Through banks whose beauty would endure for ever Could man but leave thy bright creation so, Nor its fair promise from the surface mow With the sharp scythe of conflict--then to see Thy valley of sweet waters were to know
Earth paved like Heaven, and to seem such to me [be. Even now what wants thy stream ?--that it should Lethe
But o'er the blackened memory's blighting dream
Joy was not always absent from his face,
In one fond breast, to which his own would melt,
Small power the nipp'd affections have to grow
And there was one soft breast, as hath been said, Which unto his was bound with stronger ties Than the church links withal; and, though unwed, That love was pure and far above disguise, Had stood the test of mortal enmities Still undivided, and cemented more By peril dreaded most in female eyes; But this was firm, and from a foreign shore Well to that heart might his these absent greetings pour. 1. The castle crag of Drachenfels (11) Frowns o'er the wide and winding Rhine, Whose breast of waters broadly swells Between the banks which bear the vine, And hills all rich with blossomed trees, And fields which promise corn and wine, And scattered cities crowning these, Whose far white walls along them shine, Have strewed a scene, which I should see With double joy wert thou with me!
2. And peasant girls, with deep blue eyes, And hands which offer early flowers, Walk smiling o'er this paradise : Above, the frequent feudal towers Through green leaves lift their walls of grey, And many a rock which steeply lours, And noble arch in proud decay, Look o'er this vale of vintage bowers ; But one thing want these banks of Rhine, Thy gentle hand to clasp in mine!
3. I send tbe lillies given to me; Though long before thy hand they touch, I know that they must withered be, But yet reject them not as such ; For I have cherish'd them as dear, Because they yet may meet thine eye, And guide thy soul to mine even here, When thou beholdst them drooping nigh, And knowst them gathered by the Rhine, And offered from my heart to thine.
4. The river pobly foams and flows, The charm of this enchanted ground, And all its thousand turns disclose Some fresher beauty varying round; The haughtiest breast its wish might bound Through life to dwell delighted bere ; Nor could on earth a spot be found To nature and to me so dear, Could thy dear eyes in following mine Still sweeten more these banks of Rhine!
LVI. By Coblentz, on a rise of gentle ground, There is a small and simple pyramid, Crowning the summit of the verdant mound; Beneath its base are heroes ashes hid, Our enemy's, but let not that forbid Honour to Marceau ! o'er whose early tomb Tears, big tears, gush'd from the rough soldier's lid,
Lamenting and yet envying such a doom,
On such as wield her weapons; he had kept (10) The whiteness of his soul, and thus men o'er him wept.
LVIII. Here Ehrenbreitstein, (13) with her shattered wall Black with the miner's blast, upon her height Yet shows of what she was, when shell and ball Rebounding idly on her strength did light; A tower of victory ! from whence the flight Of baffled foes was watch'd along the plain ; But Peace destroy'd what War could never blight,
And laid those proud roofs bare to Summer's rain-
Wild but not rude, awful yet not austere,