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Perchance the bald old eagle
On gray Beth-peor's height, Out of his lonely eyrie
Look'd on the wondrous sight;
Still shuns that hallow'd spot,
But when the warrior dieth,
His comrades in the war,
They show the banners taken,
They tell his battles won,
And after him lead his masterless steed,
Amid the noblest of the land
We lay the sage to rest,
And give the bard an honor'd place,
In the great minster transept
Where lights like glories fall,
And the organ rings, and the sweet choir sings Along the emblazon'd wall.
This was the truest warrior
And never earth's philosopher
And had he not high honor,
The hillside for a pall,
To lie in state while angels wait
And the dark rock-pines like tossing plumes,
And God's own hand, in that lonely land,
In that strange grave without a name,
Shall break again, O wondrous thought!
And stand with glory wrapt around
And speak of the strife that won our life
O lonely grave in Moab's land!
Speak to these curious hearts of ours,
God hath His mysteries of grace,
He hides them deep, like the hidden sleep
Of him He loved so well.
CECIL FRANCES ALEXANDER.
BERNARDO AND ALPHONSO.
WITH Some good ten of his chosen men, Bernardo hath appeared
Before them all in the palace hall, the lying King to beard;
With cap in hand and eye on ground, he came in reverend guise,
But ever and anon he frowned, and flame broke from his eyes.
"A curse upon thee," cries the King, "who comest unbid to me;
But what from traitor's blood should spring, save traitors like to thee?
His sire, lords, had a traitor's heart; perchance our champion brave
May think it were a pious part to share Don Sancho’s grave.”
"Whoever told this tale the King hath rashness to repeat,"
Cries Bernard, "here my gage I fling before THE LIAR'S feet!
No treason was in Sancho's blood, no stain in mine doth lie;
Below the throne what knight will own the coward calumny?
"The blood that I like water shed, when Roland did advance,
By secret traitors hired and led, to make us slaves of France;
The life of King Alphonso I saved at Roncesval,—— Your words, Lord King, are recompense abundant for it all.
"Your horse was down,-your hope was flown,—I saw the falchion shine,
That soon had drunk your royal blood, had I not ventured mine;
But memory soon of service done deserteth the in
You've thanked the son for life and crown by the father's bloody fate.
"Ye swore upon your kingly faith, to set Don Sancho free;
But, curse upon your paltering breath, the light he ne'er did see;
He died in dungeon cold and dim, by Alphonso's base decree,
And visage blind, and stiffened limb, were all they gave to me.
"The King that swerveth from his word hath stained his purple black;
No Spanish lord will draw the sword behind a liar's back;
But noble vengeance shall be mine, an open hate I'll show,
The King hath injured Carpio's line and Bernard is his foe."
"Seize, seize him!" loud the King doth scream; "there are a thousand here!
Let his foul blood this instant stream. What! cai tiffs, do ye fear?
Seize, seize the traitor!"-But not one to move a finger dareth,
Bernardo standeth by the throne, and calm his sword he bareth.
He drew the falchion from the sheath, and held it up on high,
And all the hall was still as death; cries Bernard : "Here am I,—
And here is the sword that owns no lord, excepting heaven and me;
Fain would I know who dares his point,-King, Conde, or Grandee."
Then to his mouth the horn he drew (it hung below his cloak);
His ten true men the signal knew, and through the ring they broke;
With helm on head, and blade in hand, the knights the circle brake,
And back the lordlings 'gan to stand and the false King to quake.
“Ha! Bernard," quoth Alphonso, "what means this warlike guise?
Ye know full well I jested,―ye know your worth I