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Not in those climes where I have late been straying, Though Beauty long hath there been matchless deemed, Not in those visions to the heart displaying Forms which it sighs but to have only dreamed, Hath aught like thee in truth or fancy seemed: Nor, having seen thee, shall I vainly seek To paint those charms which varied as they beamed— To such as see thee not my words were weak.
Childe Harolds Pilgrimage PDF Book by Lord Byron
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To those who gaze on thee, what language could they speak? Ah! mayst thou ever be what now thou art, Nor unbeseem the promise of thy spring, As fair in form, as warm yet pure in heart, Love’s image upon earth without his wing, And guileless beyond Hope’s imagining! And surely she who now so fondly rears Thy youth, in thee, thus hourly brightening.
Beholds the rainbow of her future years, Before whose heavenly hues all sorrow disappears. Young Peri of the West!—’tis well for me My years already doubly number thine; My loveless eye unmoved may gaze on thee, And safely view thy ripening beauties shine: Happy, I ne’er shall see them in decline.
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Happier, that while all younger hearts shall bleed Mine shall escape the doom thine eyes assign To those whose admiration shall succeed, But mixed with pangs to Love’s even loveliest hours decreed. Oh! let that eye, which, wild as the gazelle’s, Now brightly bold or beautifully shy, Wins as it wanders, dazzles where it dwells.
Glance o’er this page, nor to my verse deny That smile for which my breast might vainly sigh, Could I to thee be ever more than friend: This much, dear maid, accord; nor question why To one so young my strain I would commend, But bid me with my wreath one matchless lily blend.
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Such is thy name with this my verse entwined; And long as kinder eyes a look shall cast On Harold’s page, Ianthe’s here enshrined Shall thus be first beheld, forgotten last: My days once numbered, should this homage past Attract thy fairy fingers near the lyre Of him who hailed thee, loveliest as thou wast, Such is the most my memory may desire; Though more than Hope can claim, could Friendship less require?
What beauties doth Lisboa first unfold! Her image floating on that noble tide, Which poets vainly pave with sands of gold, But now whereon a thousand keels did ride Of mighty strength, since Albion was allied, And to the Lusians did her aid afford A nation swoll’n with ignorance and pride, Who lick, yet loathe, the hand that waves the sword. To save them from the wrath of Gaul’s unsparing lord.
But these between a silver streamlet glides, And scarce a name distinguisheth the brook, Though rival kingdoms press its verdant sides. Here leans the idle shepherd on his crook, And vacant on the rippling waves doth look, That peaceful still ‘twixt bitterest foemen flow: For proud each peasant as the noblest duke. Childe Harolds Pilgrimage PDF Book
Well doth the Spanish hind the difference know ‘Twixt him and Lusian slave, the lowest of the low. But ere the mingling bounds have far been passed, Dark Guadiana rolls his power along In sullen billows, murmuring and vast, So noted ancient roundelays among. Whilome upon his banks did legions throng Of Moor and Knight, in mailed splendour drest; Here ceased the swift their race, here sunk the strong.
The Paynim turban and the Christian crest Mixed on the bleeding stream, by floating hosts oppressed. Oh, lovely Spain! renowned, romantic land! Where is that standard which Pelagio bore, When Cava’s traitor-sire first called the band That dyed thy mountain-streams with Gothic gore?
Where are those bloody banners which of yore Waved o’er thy sons, victorious to the gale, And drove at last the spoilers to their shore? Red gleamed the cross, and waned the crescent pale, While Afric’s echoes thrilled with Moorish matrons’ wail. Teems not each ditty with the glorious tale? Ah! such, alas, the hero’s amplest fate!
When granite moulders and when records fail, A peasant’s plaint prolongs his dubious date. Pride! bend thine eye from heaven to thine estate, See how the mighty shrink into a song! Can volume, pillar, pile, preserve thee great? Or must thou trust Tradition’s simple tongue, When Flattery sleeps with thee, and History does thee wrong? Childe Harolds Pilgrimage PDF Book
Awake, ye sons of Spain! awake! advance Lo! Chivalry, your ancient goddess, cries, But wields not, as of old, her thirsty lance, Nor shakes her crimson plumage in the skies: Now on the smoke of blazing bolts she flies, And speaks in thunder through yon engine’s roar! In every peal she calls—’Awake! arise!’ Say, is her voice more feeble than of yore, When her war-song was heard on Andalusia’s shore?
Hark! heard you not those hoofs of dreadful note? Sounds not the clang of conflict on the heath? Saw ye not whom the reeking sabre smote; Nor saved your brethren ere they sank beneath Tyrants and tyrants’ slaves?—the fires of death, The bale-fires flash on high:—from rock to rock Each volley tells that thousands cease to breathe: Death rides upon the sulphury Siroc.
Red Battle stamps his foot, and nations feel the shock. Come, blue-eyed maid of heaven!—but thou, alas, Didst never yet one mortal song inspire— Goddess of Wisdom! here thy temple was, And is, despite of war and wasting fire, And years, that bade thy worship to expire: But worse than steel, and flame, and ages slow. Childe Harolds Pilgrimage PDF Book
Is the drear sceptre and dominion dire Of men who never felt the sacred glow That thoughts of thee and thine on polished breasts bestow. II. Ancient of days! august Athena! where, Where are thy men of might, thy grand in soul? Gone—glimmering through the dream of things that were: First in the race that led to Glory’s goal, They won, and passed away—is this the whole?
A schoolboy’s tale, the wonder of an hour! The warrior’s weapon and the sophist’s stole Are sought in vain, and o’er each mouldering tower, Dim with the mist of years, grey flits the shade of power. III. Son of the morning, rise! approach you here! Come—but molest not yon defenceless urn! Look on this spot—a nation’s sepulchre!
Abode of gods, whose shrines no longer burn. E’en gods must yield—religions take their turn: ‘Twas Jove’s—’tis Mahomet’s; and other creeds Will rise with other years, till man shall learn Vainly his incense soars, his victim bleeds; Poor child of Doubt and Death, whose hope is built on reeds. Childe Harolds Pilgrimage PDF Book
Bound to the earth, he lifts his eyes to heaven— Is’t not enough, unhappy thing, to know Thou art? Is this a boon so kindly given, That being, thou wouldst be again, and go, Thou know’st not, reck’st not to what region, so On earth no more, but mingled with the skies! Still wilt thou dream on future joy and woe? Regard and weigh yon dust before it flies: That little urn saith more than thousand homilies.
Or burst the vanished hero’s lofty mound; Far on the solitary shore he sleeps; He fell, and falling nations mourned around; But now not one of saddening thousands weeps, Nor warlike worshipper his vigil keeps Where demi-gods appeared, as records tell. Remove yon skull from out the scattered heaps: Is that a temple where a God may dwell?
Why, e’en the worm at last disdains her shattered cell! VI. Look on its broken arch, its ruined wall, Its chambers desolate, and portals foul: Yes, this was once Ambition’s airy hall, The dome of Thought, the Palace of the Soul. Behold through each lack-lustre, eyeless hole, The gay recess of Wisdom and of Wit. Childe Harolds Pilgrimage PDF Book Download
And Passion’s host, that never brooked control: Can all saint, sage, or sophist ever writ, People this lonely tower, this tenement refit? It came to pass, that when he did address Himself to quit at length this mountain land, Combined marauders half-way barred egress, And wasted far and near with glaive and brand; And therefore did he take a trusty band To traverse Acarnania forest wide.
In war well-seasoned, and with labours tanned, Till he did greet white Achelous’ tide, And from his farther bank AEtolia’s wolds espied. Where lone Utraikey forms its circling cove, And weary waves retire to gleam at rest, How brown the foliage of the green hill’s grove, Nodding at midnight o’er the calm bay’s breast.
As winds come whispering lightly from the west, Kissing, not ruffling, the blue deep’s serene: Here Harold was received a welcome guest; Nor did he pass unmoved the gentle scene, For many a joy could he from night’s soft presence glean. LXXI. On the smooth shore the night-fires brightly blazed. Childe Harolds Pilgrimage PDF Book Download
The feast was done, the red wine circling fast, And he that unawares had there ygazed With gaping wonderment had stared aghast; For ere night’s midmost, stillest hour was past, The native revels of the troop began; Each palikar his sabre from him cast, And bounding hand in hand, man linked to man, Yelling their uncouth dirge, long danced the kirtled clan.
Childe Harold at a little distance stood, And viewed, but not displeased, the revelrie, Nor hated harmless mirth, however rude: In sooth, it was no vulgar sight to see Their barbarous, yet their not indecent, glee: And as the flames along their faces gleamed, Their gestures nimble, dark eyes flashing free.
The long wild locks that to their girdles streamed, While thus in concert they this lay half sang, half screamed: Tambourgi! Tambourgi! thy larum afar Gives hope to the valiant, and promise of war; All the sons of the mountains arise at the note, Chimariot, Illyrian, and dark Suliote! Oh! who is more brave than a dark Suliote, To his snowy camese and his shaggy capote? Childe Harolds Pilgrimage PDF Book Download
To the wolf and the vulture he leaves his wild flock, And descends to the plain like the stream from the rock. Shall the sons of Chimari, who never forgive The fault of a friend, bid an enemy live? Let those guns so unerring such vengeance forego? What mark is so fair as the breast of a foe?
Macedonia sends forth her invincible race; For a time they abandon the cave and the chase: But those scarves of blood-red shall be redder, before The sabre is sheathed and the battle is o’er. ‘Tis to create, and in creating live A being more intense, that we endow With form our fancy, gaining as we give The life we image, even as I do now. What am I?
Nothing: but not so art thou, Soul of my thought! with whom I traverse earth, Invisible but gazing, as I glow Mixed with thy spirit, blended with thy birth, And feeling still with thee in my crushed feelings’ dearth. VII. Yet must I think less wildly: I HAVE thought Too long and darkly, till my brain became, In its own eddy boiling and o’erwrought, A whirling gulf of phantasy and flame. Childe Harolds Pilgrimage PDF Book Free
And thus, untaught in youth my heart to tame, My springs of life were poisoned. ‘Tis too late! Yet am I changed; though still enough the same In strength to bear what time cannot abate, And feed on bitter fruits without accusing fate. VIII. Something too much of this: but now ’tis past, And the spell closes with its silent seal.
Long-absent Harold reappears at last; He of the breast which fain no more would feel, Wrung with the wounds which kill not, but ne’er heal; Yet Time, who changes all, had altered him In soul and aspect as in age: years steal Fire from the mind as vigour from the limb; And life’s enchanted cup but sparkles near the brim.
His had been quaffed too quickly, and he found The dregs were wormwood; but he filled again, And from a purer fount, on holier ground, And deemed its spring perpetual; but in vain! Still round him clung invisibly a chain Which galled for ever, fettering though unseen, And heavy though it clanked not; worn with pain. Childe Harolds Pilgrimage PDF Book Free
Which pined although it spoke not, and grew keen, Entering with every step he took through many a scene. Secure in guarded coldness, he had mixed Again in fancied safety with his kind, And deemed his spirit now so firmly fixed And sheathed with an invulnerable mind, That, if no joy, no sorrow lurked behind.
And he, as one, might midst the many stand Unheeded, searching through the crowd to find Fit speculation; such as in strange land He found in wonder-works of God and Nature’s hand.